Initially, I found it very difficult to be open to new concepts of spirituality since I came from a strict Catholic up-bringing. I was curious to try meditation however as I had researched the benefits and I figured I had everything to gain and nothing to lose by trying it.I also had two specific goals; first, I wanted to see if it was possible to heal myself physically since I had been dealing with back pain and second, to explore the concept of making positive change in this crazy world. Consequently, I found Sahaja Yoga back in March, through a website called Halton Sahaja Yoga meditation meet-up. What I discovered was way beyond anything I could have ever imagined. During my first class, I learned that we all have seven energy centres called Chakras as well as three channels within the subtle system of the body. Then there is a very special loving feminine energy called, the ‘Kundalini’, which everyone has but which remains dormant within our sacrum bone until it is awakened. To ‘awaken the Kundalini energy’ is considered by Sahaja Yoga’s founder, Shri Mataji, to be everyone’s ‘God given right’ and therefore, the classes are to always remain free. I also learned that she had been giving people ‘Self-realization’ (self-knowledge) with Sahaja Yoga meditation program for decades. One must also have a pure desire to be able to experience ‘Self-realization’, which is in and of itself, a spiritual journey if one can just be open minded enough to accept the possibility and/or the accept that it is a divine gift to be received and to be shared. Through the guided meditation, I was informed I may or may not feel a “cool breeze” above my head or I may feel heat or other physical sensations. What I did feel was heat above my head and a tingling sensation in my hands and feet which I learned means that specific energy centres were essentially blocked and that I needed to learn how to clear them in order for the Kundalini energy to properly flow to connect through to my Sahasrara Chakra, (Crown Chakra). This initial experience led me to attend classes regularly. Then something miraculous happened which I did not anticipate. I began to experience a nurturing feeling whenever I meditated with the group and I learned how to be more spontaneous. I began to get to know the other ‘seekers’ in the classes and I was amazed at how wonderful everyone was, not just to me but with each other as genuinely caring human beings. It seemed as though there was compassion that was coming through them all and I found myself much more appreciative than before finding Sahaja Yoga. It was as though I was not only evolving personally but I was also becoming part and parcel of ‘everything and everyone’ as well as becoming, what feels like, part of a new family since everyone is so welcoming. I also began to experience new vibrations, not just from sole meditation but from group meditation and also from things in nature, which inspired me.
My creativity seemed to catch on fire with each passing day as well so I starting painting again, even though it had been years since I had painted anything. I started with the ‘Tree of Life’ garden rock, then more rocks, then I made a ‘Serenity Garden’, then a canvas painting, ‘Namaste Chrysalis’ and then I jumped into creating a large 7’x 8’ painting on paper in my driveway which I called, ‘Blooming R/evolution’. All of a sudden I was feeling much happier as if my creativity was a messenger from a higher calling and I was the vessel.
Giving Life to Bees
Since Sahaja Yoga’s founder, Shri Mataji is so highly and lovingly respected within this community and throughout the world, I found myself opening up to learning more about her teachings and from the wonderful volunteers in the classes.
Even though she herself had passed away two years ago, there are many videos and books available to learn from. One night, we had group meditation and then we watched a talk video which I found to be quite moving and I felt more connected to her somehow after listening to it.
It rained later that night so when I went out in my yard the next morning, I was grateful for the sweet fresh scent when I noticed a bee that was not moving but was floating in the bottom of a flower vase filled with water. I quickly dumped it out onto the ground and it was lying on its side and not moving so I felt sad that I couldn’t have gotten to it sooner. Then I started to feel my own empathy getting stronger and stronger as I drank my coffee and, after about ten minutes, it occurred to me that maybe there was still a chance that I could help the bee. Since I had been learning through Sahaja Yoga that I am not my thoughts or my body but that I am a ‘pure spirit’ and that I am ‘my own master’, I decided to see if there was something I could do for the bee. I knelt down in front of it, put my hands out and tried sending it positive loving energy but it still did not move and I feared that fate had already come and gone for this precious creature. Then I decided I had nothing to lose so I asked Shri Mataji if she could come and help me to help the bee. As soon as I did, the bee stood up from lying on its side and began to stabilize itself and started rubbing its wings together. I continued holding up my hands, focused on it, and slowly, it began moving more and more until it finally flew away. As I shed a genuine tear of joy, I then knew with every fibre of my being that I had actually truly experienced a very special moment and one which I will not soon forget. Some people may think, oh, its just a bee, but to me it was an opportunity to ‘make a positive change’ and I believe I did (with a little divine intervention).
Self realization Experience – witness one (Cicada) being born
Then I was invited to the Joseph Brant Day celebration at La Salle Park and it turned out to be a beautiful day with many people in attendance. Those from our group were busy providing workshops when I then met a lady from Scotland who was watching with curiosity. I asked if she would like to try mediation and she agreed so she sat with me and another volunteer as we explained the process and she was able to feel the ‘cool breeze’ from receiving her ‘Self-realization’. It was really wonderful to learn how to give someone else their first mediation as she was truly amazed with the vibrations she was able to feel in her first experience. Shortly after that, I decided to take off my shoes to feel the earth under my feet and I then noticed a new born Cicada (also known as the 17 yr locust even though it is not related to the locust family) on my shoe. It had just climbed out from underground after 17 yrs of incubation! I took some photos and was astounded by all its colours. What was amazing about it the most however, was that it chose that exact moment at that exact location to be born and that I was there to witness it. Interestingly, it did leave me with a feeling of gratefulness that I was somehow chosen to be a part of something special by being there to witness its birth and/or that it arrived to give me a message of the beauty of transformation somehow. I placed it on a nearby tree and then showed it to the group, explained what it was and how rare of an opportunity it is to witness one being born. Oddly enough, as I am writing this right now, a Cicada just starting to singing in my yard! Cicadas are also sometimes referred to as the ‘heat beetle’ since they only sing their high pitched songs when it’s really hot outside. The experience left me feeling more connected to nature somehow and for that I was also grateful.
The Blue Dragon Fly: Connection to Nature – Connection to Shri Mataji
Speaking of connecting with nature, I had always admired dragonflies for their beauty, agility and grace which is why I’ve been collecting various forms of them for many years now. This is why I felt a strong connection one morning recently when I experienced a very unusual experience with one of them. I awoke to a dream about Shri Mataji which I quickly forgot the details about by the time I got my first coffee. I was trying to remember it though as I opened the back door to sit outside. Suddenly as I stepped out, a dragonfly appeared and started to fly all around me in circles. For some strange intuitive reason, I had an instinctive feeling that this was more than just a random visit so I asked the question in my mind, is that you Shri Mataji? As soon as I asked the question, the dragonfly suddenly stopped right in front of my eyes and hovered there for what seemed like the longest time as I stood still but it probably only lasted about 30 seconds. It was long enough however for both of us to really look at each other and to actually feel each other’s presence, as extraordinary as that may sound. It was as though I was being reached out to in some way, but in a way which only I could relate to in a deeper level and in a way where I could actually have what seemed like an epiphany. After it finally flew away, I was left with astonishing amazement that frankly, was very gratifying. I then just looked up at the sky and simply said; OK, I get it! I feel you! I now know you really are there for me! Now I know that I do not have any doubt what-so-ever in my mind that I am on the right path and that this journey has truly been a huge jump start to my personal growth and evolution to be divinely connected. It’s also about being able to be open enough to be able to read the subtle signs when they appear and to be able to interpret them for the lessons they offer. I also have come to realize that it’s ok to just let go and to go with the flow however different it may be to what I am used to but rather to embrace change and to be in awe of its incredible power and the pure knowledge it holds for me to discover.
Through this new and enlightening transformation experience, I can honestly say that I feel as though I am evolving with the ‘pure knowledge’ I am receiving within Sahaja Yoga. I have also reduced my physical pain substantially and my eyesight has also improved, so alas, I will have to get weaker glasses!
It also feels as though I have only scratched the surface with my self-realization so I am looking forward to my next class and I hope to see you there!
– Testimonial by Brenda Telchak from Burlington Class
Read more testimonials from Sahaja Yoga Meditation – Halton/Niagara/Barrie