Meditations with the Masters
The Spiritual side of Pranic healing:
The Arhatic Yoga Prep and Arhatic Retreat
By Kaveta A Chhibber
(A Kavita Media Presentation. Please email comments here.)
“If you don’t find a teacher soon, you’ll live this life in vain . . . Without the help of a teacher you’ll never know it. Only one person in a million becomes enlightened without a teacher’s help”
- Bodhi Dharma, the founder of Zen Buddhism
Nothing brought this home even more deeply than after attending the Arhatic yoga Prep and the Arhatic Yoga retreat this past week under the guidance of four Masters of Pranic healing. There are only ten in this world and four of them came together to share their wisdom and knowledge through the five days that I spent in New Jersey along with over 200 people.
There are many of you who’ve been reading my articles on how miraculous Pranic healing has been in my life and how through it I’ve been able to help people with all kinds of health issues, physical, as well as emotional and psychological.
But what makes Pranic healing such a unique energy medicine is how it has another powerful component - the spiritual teachings and intensely effective meditations that allow you create a balance where spirituality and material prosperity go hand in hand. But only, if you learn to live your life the right way.
So there they were - the four masters and all of us were blessed to receive a treasure of knowledge that they brought with them. I learn something new each time I talk to them and they are all extremely generous in sharing. I have nicknames for the three of them. I call Master Stephen Co the kickass Master, because of his no nonsense approach. He laughed hard when I told him that. And then I heard from my friend Ramona that he jokingly called one of the retreats she attended a spiritual boot camp! I guess my clairvoyant skills must be peaking that I gave him that nickname. Jokes apart, in real life he is so much fun to be with. His energy is like that of a rock star. He walks into the room and everyone goes nuts hooting and shouting, and yes, no one slouches in their chairs when he is talking!
Master Stephen Co
Master Glenn has been nicknamed the sweet cuddly Teddy Bear. His wife Master Marilag laughed when I told her that. She said that fits him to a T. He is such a gentle, loving patient Master who wants to see everyone happy, is generous beyond imagination. He will take a large platoon of us practitioners to lunch or dinner and pay for everyone. I think when he walks in-so unassuming and down to earth, we even clap with more gentleness in case we hurt his ears. He is also one of the most thoughtful men I know. I remember getting a scarf for him and he wore it every day till the classes ended just to honor that small token of my appreciation for all that he has taught many of us over the years.
Master Glenn Mendoza
Master Marilag is the Master who keeps going and going and going. I call her the energizer bunny! Looking at her you’d never imagine she is the mother of three grown up sons. She looks incredibly young and says is because the more you help others, the more you heal, the more you glow. She is a little dynamo, full of joy and a wicked sense of humor. You put the two of us together and a lot of raunchy stuff comes out of our mouths. But when she teaches, she is so inspiring and knowledgeable. Her patience with all of us, the sincerity with which she helps everyone and her generosity of heart is immeasurable.
I met Master Santiago for the first time at this retreat. An MD, Master Santi as he is affectionately called, is from Columbia and he is kindness and warmth personified. He brings passion and Columbian warmth with him and sat up after a long day, close to midnight, to do a fantastic interview with me.
The more you get into the practices of Pranic healing, the more you realize how hard Master Choa Kok Sui worked to bring these revelations to you. An Arhat is someone who is in control of all his senses and to become an Arhatic practitioner you go through different meditations and purifications to finally achieve oneness with the higher soul which is beyond this body and beyond the soul that has incarnated to inhabit our bodies.
There are so many forms of Yoga and people get very confused. There is the Hatha yoga, the yoga that is the best known in the West and then there is Raja Yoga and Bhakti yoga and so on.
"Arhatic Yoga" encapsulates diverse yogic techniques that include powerful meditations and energy-generating physical and breathing exercises to move us faster on the path of spiritual development. In fact I’ve seen many Pranic healers keep a very hectic schedule and still not get tired and they all attribute their energy levels to Arhatic Yoga practices.
According to a description given, “Arhatic" derives from the word Arhat, which means "a perfected one or a highly evolved being." An Arhat is one who, through diligent practice of yogic techniques and purposeful character-building, has overcome the impurities of desire and will. An Arhat has well developed intuition, advanced mental powers, highly refined emotions and a strong desire to contribute personally to the uplifting of humanity.”
Arhatic Yoga is beyond all religions and as a matter of fact does not interfere in anyone’s faith.
Master Choa developed this technique in a way that enables the practitioner to combine spiritual with the worldly and pursue the spiritual path without withdrawing from normal living.
|Grandmaster Choa Kok Sui
It is also said that “Arhatic Yoga has been specifically designed to allow the practitioner to maintain their initial religious or philosophic practice. Practitioners may even improve or become more dedicated to their faith through this system of personal and spiritual development. Arhatic Yoga is further distinguished by its multi-leveled approach and its focus on purification, character-building and service.”
There are many levels in Arhatic Yoga but all of us who decided to delve in to the spiritual component of pranic healing have to begin at what is known as the Preparatory level. And it is a lot of fun when you are taught by the masters themselves. They will share anecdotes that encompass inspiring stories, some about their own experiences as well, and how doing these practices has purified their bodies and also enhanced their professional and personal lives.
Last year when I had gone to the beautiful ashram at Bovina with my friend Dr. Krishna we had had one misadventure after the other. You can read the story HERE.
I was told that each time you go to the prep you face something difficult to make you appreciate more deeply the knowledge you will receive. Well it wasn’t as wild as the last time but I woke up to no hot water in the hotel. So that was my baptism by cold water literally as I headed to the center. Reaching there and seeing the smiling faces of people who work there - Angela Barrios, who oversees so much and also teaches and Maria who is always laughing and so many more that selflessly help all those who come from all parts of the world to seek this vast ocean of knowledge.
We are taught about proper diet to purify our bodies, some very effective physical and breathing exercises. It is really important to learn these under a master because if you don’t there are tough side effects to contend with.
It is reiterated everywhere that “purification is a critical element of the Arhatic Yoga practitioner’s foundation. Through physical and breathing exercises, the implementation of simple dietary guidelines, and greater control of their emotions, practitioners develop stronger and more vibrant, "energetically clean" physical and energy bodies. These purification routines yield significant benefits, including the ability to recognize and help avoid negative or unhealthy energies, to maintain healthier physical bodies and to help avoid "Kundalini syndrome."
Kundalini is described as the innate energy that resides near the base of the spine. “When stimulated, this Energy can be used to accelerate spiritual development. However, when this energy is activated spontaneously or without proper guidance or direction, it can produce a host of unpleasant physical and emotional symptoms, and may even cause financial or material reversals. Arhatic Yoga’s emphasis on purification greatly minimizes the risk of kundalini syndrome. Meditation, along with physical and breathing exercises, increases the size of the chakras, or energy centers, but it is character-building that keeps them large and powerful.”
As we went through the purification techniques and did the powerful meditations, all of us felt their power.
It is interesting that character building is based on universal truths that we often forget, like good thoughts, deeds and actions but what was fascinating was to undergo some of the exercises to show that it really works. This time too at the retreat, we were told to scan our wallets to check the energy, then give a donation, and then recheck our wallets. Now one would expect, that when you’ve removed money from the wallet, the energy would be less. Instead the energy increased multifold when it was given to charity, and I know that 2 days later I was compensated many times over by the Universe. The more you give the more you receive.
It was a great to have it reiterated that when we envy others, are insecure and jealous- we decrease our own potential to evolve. Instead we simply waste a lot of time thinking negative thoughts and adding negative energy to our own selves. The most important lesson you learn through those powerful meditations is that you are not the body, your higher self is beyond the petty jealousies, the rat race that you are part of, and if you look at life with a sense of detachment and follow the right path, even the sky won’t be the limit to what all you can achieve.
While you may contort yourself in different shapes huffing and puffing in yoga studios many people forget the real purpose of these physical exercises is to prepare you for meditation. And Arhatic yoga is very secular. In fact I met people of all religious beliefs at the prep and the retreat. Jews, Hindus, Christians, and Muslims-they were all there.
Arhatic Yoga reminds us that our own exalted sense of self importance is not who we are. The world is indeed just a stage and our higher soul perhaps watches our confused state as we try to grab at worldly goals, with a lot of amusement. There is something that is detached, majestic and totally content that hovers above and Arhat yoga is the vine to climb to reach that union with the divine. It’s interesting how these techniques actually help you reach your full potential and better your relationship.
I remember reading this by Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of the famous book “Eat, Pray, Love”. Gilbert spent several weeks in an ashram in India seeking to regain balance after a heart breaking divorce. She quotes a New York Times article where a team of neurologists had wired up a Tibetan monk for experimental brain scanning. “They wanted to see what happens to the transcendent mind, scientifically speaking during moments of enlightenment. In the mind of a normal thinking person, an electrical storm of thoughts and impulses whirls constantly registering on a brain scan as yellow and red flashes. The more angry or impassioned the subject becomes, the hotter and deeper those red flashes burn. But mystics across times and cultures have all described a stilling of the brain during meditation and say the ultimate union with God is a blue light which they can feel radiating from the center of their skulls. In yogic tradition it’s called the blue pearl and it’s the goal of every seeker to it. Sure enough the Tibetan monk monitored during meditation was able to quiet his mind so completely that no red or yellow flashes could be seen. In fact all the neurological energy of this man pooled and collected into the center of his brain and you could see it happening on the monitor-into a small, cool, blue pearl of light. This is the destination of the Kundalini Shakti.”
And how to get to that is taught here at the Arhatic prep and retreat.
While the intense practices are one component, meeting people from all walks of life, and feeling positive energy from the group as well as the Masters is an amazing experience. It’s as if people leave their cares, worries, their insecurities and their pettiness behind.
There is a lot of laughter and getting to know others during lunch break. I met so many interesting people - the film maker and jiu jitsu master who is also a Pranic healer, the French chef who flew in from France, the criminal lawyer healer who got into an intense discussion about Troy Davis (the man on death row for the past 20 years in Georgia whose cause Ive taken up), the many engineers and doctors, the psychologist, the Reiki master, all of whom came together to pray, and play. There is purification by water which is obviously a lot of fun. Many people say they can feel the energy in that pool.
At the end of the five day retreat, as we left the cocoon of all that is positive, I can’t wait to go to the next one. I learnt so much and I think every time you are reminded how to live your life the right way, it somehow washes away all that is negative to expand your heart, your mind and your entire consciousness. For that I’m very grateful.
I also got to spend a lot of one on one time with the Masters who are going to be regular participants in a Q and A session I hope to do with them every month. So please send your questions to editor@Kavitachhibber.com.
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