Minds May Be Tampered With
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Minds may be tampered with, which is very bad. To think straight, see what agreements are at work in your confines and if you find them palatable. Listen to your heart for it, that is, keep sensitive at bottom and seek to discern what you feel. That is a method too.
Sociologists have sought to measure many sides to social living, and to know of their findings help some, to some degree - maybe much. The help derived from studies and measurements depend on much. First, they should be manageable and quite easy to work with. If they enrich your participations where it is inherently rewarding to participate, well and good.
On top of sound measuring may rise agreement and trust.
Where the allotted measures give a bitter taste, it is not a mistake to leave that enclave peacefully and tidily. It may be far better than remaining and lamenting much. Some pitfalls cause later regrets.
Sensible, regular and proficient meditation is one of the key factors of development. Two other factors are guidelines and good fellowship. Rise by pointed attention. Guard the mind against what offends. Keep guarding the mind carefully. Train your mind in stupefying ways from there.
In other words, by sustained, pointed attention (focus) the mind rises, that is, becomes interiorised. This is a basic or pivoting point of very many effective meditation methods. One will need to have his wits about him. Find a secure spot to practice, and guard your mind well in between your meditation sessions. The specifics of many meditation manuals seek to establish just that. Ways to train the well interiorised mind are enumerated in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, part 3.
Apply only what is sane, not everything called great
To find an honest guru or helper, become very honest yourself. Among "first things" are the concepts and constructs employed over and over. Many terms found in religious contexts, are charged with attitudes.
Narcissistic sinning may be tough to get to grips with.
Fools cannot be trusted, not even if well gilded.
Behind the bragging "I'm cosmic, my masters are great and big as cosmos" might lie a desire to look great or scare. Someone with a terible need to boast and scare may call his gurus Christs, almighty and all-knowing, as Yogananda did. But what about this?
"It will be all over for us . . . the next generation will not give us a thought." - Yogananda [Ak 344]
The next generation and the next came, yet the guru's followers made sure his words did not come to pass by publishing his talks and other works. They even want him to be infallible, by ignoring many tough facts.
We do not find fault with Paramahansa Yogananda's guidelines. Since we believe that he had attained complete union with God and therefore his wisdom is flawless. [From an SRF letter]
It matters to be warned against unsound dogmatism before becoming a victim of it. In Yogananda's case there is ample evidence that he was not infallible, that his guidelines changed, that some are opposed to other, earlier guidelines, and so on. There is good reason to warn that by confusion some become cackling followers, which is hardly becoming.
Ak: Yogananda, Pa.: Man's Eternal Quest. 2nd ed. Los Angeles: Self-Realization Fellowship, 1982.
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