Holistic Living - From Life Positive to Life Divine
by Purnima Coontoor
Four Steps to SurrenderShri Shri Nimishananda Guruji outlines four simple steps that can be practiced by anybody with a will to be transformed, which will lead to destruction of the ego, and foster an attitude of total
As temple bells chime during the maha-mangalarathi every Sunday evening at the Shri Nimishamba Devi Temple in a peaceful suburb of Bangalore, the chanting of ‘om’ reaches a crescendo in the satsang hall below. Seated on an ornate peetha bedecked with flowers, resplendent in white kurta and dhoti with a red angavastram, Shri Shri Nimishananda Guruji speaks to hundreds of avid seekers about the path to self-realization. His language simple, his discourse laced with humor, and peppered with everyday instances that people can identify with, Guruji serves the bitter pill of Vedanta in easily palatable doses. In all his talks, he emphasizes the importance
of patience, tolerance, and unconditional love. Helping people to establish their lives on the stable cornerstones of dharma, satya, ahimsa and prema, Shri Nimishananda Guruji is one of the prominent guiding lights in a world filled with the darkness of ignorance.
Guruji is one of the rare souls who experienced samadhi by the grace of the divine mother in 1995, when he was just 36, which prompted him to abandon the pursuit of worldly pleasures in favor of a spiritual one. A yogi belonging to the grihasta rishi sampradaya (the order of householder rishis), he is now engaged in sharing the divine grace with serious sadhakas. Guruji’s compelling personality is evident in the powerful influence he wields through love and compassion towards his devotees and disciples, many of who have shifted residence and even cities to be near him. Most of them talk reverentially of the miracles wrought in their lives after coming under his grace, benefiting both materially and spiritually. Guruji also meets individuals on a personal level to counsel them, and gently set them on the path to right living. His discourses have been telecast on Aastha, and is presently available on Z Kannada every morning. The Shree Public Charitable Trust is also engaged in socially beneficial activities, including free ambulance service 24 hours a day, and annadana every single day.
In a chat with Life Positive, Shri Shri Nimishananda Guruji talks of the divine alchemy of converting a life negative into a life positive, and then to a life divine.
Guruji on his Journey so Far...
“I was born Shri Harsha in Mysore, a simple seedha sadha individual who loved God, though he didn’t know who He was. I wasn’t into intense worship, but had surrendered to a Higher Power. I was a civil engineer by profession, self-employed with a construction firm. At one point of time, I found myself stuck in my work, and encountered many obstacles. Somebody suggested that I visit the temple of goddess Nimishamba who had the reputation of granting instant boons (as her name suggests). I went to this temple near Mysore and prayed like everyone else, asking her to solve my problems. But on my third visit, I lost myself in her kingdom, and had a mystical experience. If you ask me to describe the experience, I can’t – it’s like eating a sweet, it’s difficult to explain its taste, but easy to experience it (smiles). Just like that, at that moment – I had the feeling that I’m not the body anymore, I am the soul.
“I’m enjoying the bliss of that experience even now. I’m getting deeper and deeper into the domain of soul – which is peace, happiness, contentment, tranquility. Nothing disturbs me any more. I’m able to take different emotional states at the same level. I have the same love for all beings; power and position have receded to the background.
“There is absolutely no conflict with my life as a spiritual guide and as a family person. In fact, I am able to show more love and concern for my family now, whereas previously my work claimed most of my attention. But I have space for everyone in my life now – my love is all-inclusive.
“Now my goal (if you can call it that) is to bring peace and serenity into the lives of people who come to me. I tell them how to get liberated from thoughts. That is enlightenment – a thoughtless state is an enlightened state.”
On Religion and Spirituality...
“Rites and rituals are an important part of religion. In Sanskrit, each and every letter is a deity – each syllable is an encapsulated cosmic energy. Mantras and shlokas, when chanted in a certain manner, connect the atma (individual soul) to the paramatma (divine). But in modern times, people are bored with the overdose of religion, which spells rites and rituals, because nobody has told them of their significance. That’s why religion is equated with dogma these days, and has resulted in factionalism and fragmentation.
“Religion is the outer garment, spirituality is the inner garment. Culture is now coming back to spirituality – people hanker to feel serene and be in harmony with everything. They want to be left alone. I ask people not to reject religion – religion is just to bring in discipline and external harmony – a way of setting right the genes so that the offspring will have a purpose in life. Spirituality will bring in internal harmony.
“The doctrines of all religions are the same – dharma, ahimsa, prema, satya. These are the basic tenets of our sanatana dharma (sanatana: eternal; dharma: principles). No religion preaches ‘an eye for an eye...’”
Will Power v/s Total Surrender
“According to Indian philosophy, one has to surrender to the divine. If you orient yourself to divine will through sadhana and discipline (which could be rites and rituals), then cosmic energy will release its grace – you can tap the energy in the overhead tank through your own will power. Mantras have the power to orient your thoughts and make them powerful.
“According to karma siddhanta, our free will operates only to the extent of two per cent, whereas fate and destiny control us 98 per cent. But using soul power through firm resolution generates will power which allows you to achieve your goals. Sanatana dharma has several methods to tap the cosmic energy – karma yoga, jnana yoga, or ashtanga yoga.
“If you have a spiritual bent of mind, you can surrender. But the younger generation needs to be explained about the power of sankalpa or resolution. They should focus on an aim and goal, tap the soul energy and pass it on to thought, which then becomes an arrow, and achieves whatever is willed. When you raise your spirit thus, you shall become what you think. Spirituality will give you the power of discrimination. You need not know what you want; practice meditation, and things will slowly be revealed to you.”
On the Importance of a Guru...
“A teacher is one who provides general education, and to a certain extent, moral education, to help you get your bread and butter. A guru is one who helps you harmonize your thoughts, helps you comprehend and analyze situations, trains the mind and motivates the soul. A teacher trains the intellect, but a guru trains the soul.
“A guru helps you take no for an answer and minimize negativity; helps you to surrender totally to a higher power. Because of our tradition of the gurukula system, dispassion or vairagya is easier achieved in the East than in the West. With no such system in place, Western society is plagued by overindulgence and materialism.
“The guru helps you to reclaim yourself minus all your identifications – he is the key to open up the treasure of cosmic energy. Have an inner goal, and the guru seeks you when you are ready. It is most beautiful that within 48 days of your sankalpa (resolution), you’ll find that the guru will knock on the door of your heart. Just as an engine attaches itself to a bogey and pulls the train along, the guru will pull you along the journey of life, and reveal life to you step by step. And the moment the guru seeks you – life positive will be converted to life divine! You will find that your thought processes change, and your level of confusion declines.
“Surrender yourself to a guru, and your karmas shall burn like a dry stick fed into a fire.”
On the Setbacks in Life...
“Often, setbacks happen for no fault of ours, maybe because of our past actions and negative thinking. But setbacks are a great opportunity to convert life negative into life positive. This is the time to start seeking answers to the questions ‘What am I doing in life? Why is this happening to me? Who am I?’ This is a great way of opening up your insight. This is the time to reorganize your inner life, or have an inner life to begin with.
“To start with, make a resolution every morning that you shall think noble, hear noble, speak noble, and act noble. This is the beginning of spirituality. When you start your day like this, within 48 days, divinity will be yours. Like air, cosmic vibrations are everywhere. Just as you can feel air when the fan is switched on, you’ll feel it when you tap it.
“Everything starts from a thought. One thought is food for another thought – negative thought seeks negativity. Think divine, and divinity will seek you. Stop seeing and start seeking spirituality. You are born with that energy. The human brain is capable of incredible levels of comprehension: computer, space science, chemistry. The grey cells are such powerhouses. Man is fortunate in that he has the three powers of sankalpa shakti (resolution), jnana shakti (knowledge) and kriya shakti (action).
“Have a material goal, as well as a spiritual goal. There’s a certain negativity attached to material success, but with an internal goal, you will have peace, happiness, bliss.
“My wish for readers of Life Positive is that from now onwards, let them not be mere readers, but become seekers. Reading only gives you information. Let that information lead to reformation and transformation from today. Move from life positive to life divine. That is my wish.”
Subject: Enlightened master Nimishananda - 18 May 2009
Whoever has written this article must be really blessed to have the darshan of the enlightened master His Holiness Shri Shri Nimishananda. I have read many articles of Shri Nimishananda in the Times of India. I hope to read more articles from HIM in Life Positive. This is a very nice article. More...
by: S Vijaya Kumar
Subject: Very impressive - 2 May 2009
Transformation from human to Divine is made very much easier in this article. I Bow down to the Divine master Parama Pujya Shri Shri Nimishanada Gurudev.
Subject: Wonderful article - 2 May 2009
I really enjoyed the words of wisdom from the spiritual master Shri Shri Nimishananda Guruji.Thanks a million for posting such an enlightening article.
by: Dilip singh
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