Wed, 11 Mar 2015 04:05:47 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Power of Rudraksha Malas Mon, 16 Sep 2013 04:41:45 +0000 Rudrakshas   (Sanskrit: rudraksha = “Rudra’s eyes”)

          The Sanskrit name is comprised of the words Rudra (another name for Lord Shiva) and akha (“eyes”). Also know as “the eyes of Lord Shiva”.

The Rudraksha bead is said to originally come from  Shiva’s tears.   According to mythology, Lord Shiva was said to have spent 1000 years in meditation for the benefit of all beings, and upon opening his eyes, tear drops rolled down from his eyes and landed upon the earth taking birth as the sacred Rudraksha tree.

It is said that the Rudraksha evolved from the eyes of Lord Shiva, with Rudra being another name for Lord Shiva and Aksha meaning eyes. Aksha also refers to the letters of the Sanskrit alphabet- called Varna- and as such, can be inferred as a seed in which a group of Sanskrit letters called Varna reside.

The eye of Rudra 9Shiva) is considered to be the most potent manifestation of the Cosmic Force. Hence, the Rudraksha is the object of veneration and also the source to reach the higher self. Rudraksha is often believed to symbolize the link between the earth and the heaven.

Rudraksha beeds are very rare and precious.  Spiritually they have been worn and used for meditation, japa mantra, and pujas/fire ceremonies for many centuries. Asian Yogis and Monks found that merely wearing the Rudraksha beads gave them astonishingly tremendous amount of tranquility, concentration that helped them meditate for a long period of time with spectacular control over their mind. Buddha wore Rudraksha beads, along with the Dalai Lama, Gandhi, and many enlightened Indian yogis.

From ancient times, the power of Holy Rudraksha beads have been scripted in various religious texts found in the Vedas, Puranas and Upanishads. The divine qualities of this bead were first noted in ancient Hindu scriptures and have been proclaimed down through the ages: they bless one with peace of mind; protects against evil doers and spirits; protects the wearer against an early or untimely accidental death; if wearing the bead upon dying one would be released from the karmic cycle of birth and death: blesses one with nirvana, moksha, peace and prosperity.  Each Rudraksha acts like a bio-energy generator, charging the wearer’s energy field, chakras, kundalini energy, and the 108 sensitive nerve centers in the human brain.

rudraksha buddhaForming naturally from the Rudraksha tree, they grow in the wild, and also in sustainable plantations. The Rudraksha trees and beads found in the Himalayas are said to hold the greatest power and strength, as they are fed by the holy lands and rivers of the Himalayas. They are found in the Himalayas in India and Nepal, Malaysia, Indonesia, New Guinea to Australia, Guam, and Hawaii. Most of the Rudraksha trees, however, are found in the South Eastern Asian Islands of Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Bali, Iran, Java, Timor (Indonesia) Nepal, and India. Around 70% of the Rudraksha trees are found in Indonesia, 25% in Nepal and 5% in India.

Medicinally they are known to: heal many of the mind & body ailments, be cooling when worn against the skin, reduce heart disease and lower blood pressure, increase mental clarity, memory & general awareness, calm the central nervous system, quiet the mind & free one from negative thoughts, increase immunity, energy & stamina, and rejuvenate the entire mind & body.

Extensive scientific research has been conducted over the years by leading scientists in universities in India, and now also in the west. Their findings have proven that Rudraksha beads have certain electrical and magnetic properties, and when worn against the skin, and especially over the heart, act on our human neural network in a number of beneficial ways.  It can balance the heart’s magnetic field, control pulse rate, improve blood circulation, and purify the blood. When we wear Rudrakshas we are literally carrying sacks of oxygen, carbon and hydrogen against our bodies as we soak up the vibration of these pure living organisms.  Rudrakshas also increase negative ion levels and act directly on our central nervous system, by releasing certain chemicals in our bodies that are responsible for positive emotions and a calm mind. Many people for this reason alone have found freedom from stress, depression and lethargy when using Rudrakshas.  Rudrakshas are also said to absorb and store solar energy, and thus releases and distributes this solar power into all parts of the body.

A typical Rudraksha Mala is made with the auspicious number of 108+1 bead. The +1 bead is called the Sumeru or The Guru Bead and it is not supposed to be crossed while chanting mantra- it is considered as a boundary for returning in the reverse direction for further counting. In this way, the Guru or Sumeru Bead is placed at the top when holding the Mala and represents the Absolute or the Guru and is not meant to be crossed during mantra japa or recitation, as it is a symbol of the Absolute or Supreme Consciousness, and out of respect, we never ‘step over it’ or cross it.

You can use your Mala to wear on your body for protection, blessings, good fortune, health & well-being, and for spiritual evolution.  Many people where the Guru bead at the top of the Mala behind the neck to represent the Divine or the Guru as the highest state of Awareness. As well, you can use the Mala as it is traditionally used for meditation and Japa (chanting mantra repetitively).

When using your Mala for Japa purposes, we hold the Mala with our right hand only, and we can use our thumb, ring finger and middle finger to move from one bead to the next as though we are ‘guiding’ the beads towards us. (The index and little finger are considered as inauspicious for touching the Mala when used for Japa purposes.)

Most Rudraksha Malas- unless specifically made otherwise- use 5-faced or 5 Mukhi Rudraksha beads, which represent Shiva or the Absolute. It has many benefits & properties.  The 5 Face Rudrakshas are said to be beneficial to heal the liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, breasts, sexual disorders, memory, bone, arthritis, ears, thighs, and regulate blood pressure, diabetes, fat, and purifies the blood.  Overall, it is great for one’s health. It is also said to promote fame, peace & prosperity, and dissolves karma & fear. It is used for Spiritual Evolution. Wearing Rudrakshas result in the destruction of negative karma from previous births that cause difficulties in the present life.


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Yogananda Thu, 23 May 2013 17:42:08 +0000 ]]> 0 Thich Naht Han Sat, 11 May 2013 04:36:15 +0000 ]]> 0 Ramana Maharshi Wed, 01 May 2013 11:19:17 +0000 ]]> 0 Gandhi Wed, 01 May 2013 11:03:44 +0000 ]]> 0 Buddha Quotes Wed, 24 Apr 2013 10:37:43 +0000 ]]> 0 Nagarjuna Wed, 24 Apr 2013 10:35:50 +0000 ]]> 0 Yoga Lesson # 1 – Living to the Fullest Sun, 07 Oct 2012 06:01:28 +0000 If this moment, now, was your last breath, what would you do?
How would you feel?
Upon reflection, would you be ready to let go into the unknown?

These questions address the heart of living.  By answering them, with deep contemplation and sincerity, we can get a true a glimpse of what is happening in our lives now.

Do you feel happy and at peace with life?  Are your relationships with your family and loved ones healthy and in balance?

Are you contributing and sharing in the world in a way that is meaningful to you?
Would you like to let go of certain habits or patterns that are consuming too much of your time and energy?
Are you filled with love, compassion and gratitude?

Often it is only in times of facing extreme hardship or the possibility of death, do we truly see things as they are.  Being in this human body is a very rare and precious gift.

Imagine being given just a few days to live.  How grateful do you feel, now, for being given the opportunity to experience this miracle of existence.   If we all approached life with this sense of gratitude, the whole world would be a much more peaceful place to live and every one would be a whole lot happier.  If we can remind our self again and again of the gift of the breath, the gift of life in this human body, we can get a broader perspective on life and how we are living.

 Anger, depression, resentment and laziness all come into our lives.  Sometimes these emotions and experiences play a small distracting role, while at other times, they envelope and overtake our lives.  If we can hold strong to the truth of impermanence- that all things will eventually come and go- we can bring more patience and understanding into our present situation to allow for it to take its course and eventually dissolve. This practice of allowing for thoughts, emotions, and experiences to arise and dissolve- without attaching to them or rejecting them- is witnessing the present moment.  This practice of present moment awareness is the essence of yoga – the union of our awareness with the pure Consciousness that exists here and now.

We can spends days being angry or upset at our partner, friend, or co-worker.  The smallest things can irritate us and effect the rest of our day. We can hold a grudge or feel resentment for something that happened long ago in the past. We can spend days, months, and years living in a way that is dissatisfying and unfulfilling. We get caught up identifying or personalizing each experience as being about “us”.  We are constantly focused on me, my, and mine.  All of this is leading to pain and suffering in one form or another.

Ultimately, pain and suffering is a state of mind, and stems from forgetting who we truly are. Just as we can get lost and forget our true selves, we can remember again and find our way home.  We do this through awareness of the present moment, by witnessing and being mindful of what is, now.  This is the yoga practice of meditation.  Meditate daily, without fail, and witness the enormous benefits it has on your life.  Be mindful and practice present moment awareness, throughout the day and night, and see how this changes your life.

Just watch and witness, and be present with what Is.  Accept what Is without trying to change or judge it.  Watch each thought or emotion without attaching to them or pushing them away.  By remaining a clear witness to the unfoldment of life without identifying or personalizing our experiences, we become unaffected by the ups and downs of life.  We become filled with unshakable inner peace and joy.  Being present in each and every moment is true freedom-  it is living to the fullest.


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What is Yoga Nidra? Sat, 29 Sep 2012 03:52:00 +0000 YOGA NIDRA, or Sleep Yoga is a systematic method of inducing complete physical, mental, and emotional relaxation: known as psychic sleep or the yoga of conscious sleep.

In the Yoga Nidra practice, the consciousness is said to be resting in a state between wakefulness and sleep, sometimes referred to in modern psychology as the “hypnagogic state”.  It is in this state during the Yoga Nidra practice that the alpha brain wave length is prolonged, providing the body with the ability to deeply restore and heal itself both physical, mentally and emotionally.   During the practice of Yoga Nidra, the mind becomes exceptionally receptive, and the identification of the egoic “I”, “me” or “mine” identification is bypassed.  This enables the practitioner of Yoga Nidra to learn languages and other subjects very rapidly, and the intentions given during the practice of yoga nidra are said to be successful in removing unwanted habits and tendencies.  Even habits such as smoking and over-eating can be overcome with the continual use of Yoga Nidra.  However, the Yogis would advise us to ‘go for the gold’ and create an intention or sankalpa that is of the highest spiritual nature – as this intention would create the ultimate satisfaction and peace in all areas of one’s life.  In fact, it is said that yoga nidra can be used for directing the mind to accomplish anything.

Yoga Nidra is a form of deep meditation that allows us to access the fountain of creativity, artistic expression & deep knowledge.  It is also said that in this same state of Yoga Nidra the source of the most creative scientific discoveries, such as those of Einstein, Goethe, Kekule & Bohr were made.

Yoga Nidra is said to be such an effective meditation technique, that  a single hour of yoga nidra is the equivalent of four hours of  sleep. In this way, Yoga Nidra is especially beneficially for those experiencing insomnia or lack of sleep.


Yoga Nidra is highly effective for the following conditions:

  • Stress, insomnia, anxiety and depression
  • Diabetes, hyper-tension, migraine, asthma, ulcers, heart diseases, arthritis, digestive & skin disorders.
  • Promoting creativity & healthy development in children
  • Mental imbalances & psychiatric treatment
  • Reducing tension and anxiety


Suggested Reading:  Yoga Nidra- by Swami Satyananda Saraswati

To learn more you can go to our Yoga Nidra page to learn more or download a free, 16 minute, yoga nidra MP3 and experience it for yourself.

>>> Download the Yoga Nidra MP3 “Unwind” <<<


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The Greatness of Ganesha Tue, 18 Sep 2012 04:44:32 +0000 Every year, on the sacred day called Ganesha Chaturthi, yogi’s rejoice as the universal creative principle, called Ganesha, reveals itself.  Though it has no form, since time immemorial, humans have used shapes and symbols to represent the inherent capacity for wisdom and compassion that we all can access through moments of inner silence and stillness.  The form of Ganesha is an intricate matrix of tantric symbolism that when contemplated deeply awakens the hidden energy called Kundalini within.  For those of you who have joined us here and chanted the Ganesha mantra “Om Gam Ganapatayai Namaha” this day is especially powerful for this mantra vibration.  If you can, chant it at least 108 times out loud or silently and if you can try to chant it for 1000 times!  In due course many of the obstacles and problems that inevitably enter all our lives will begin to invisibly diminish and many positive changes unfold.


This year this special day is on Sept 19th and to honor the greatness of Ganesha we are re-posting an article written by the revered Indian Saint Amma Shri Karunamayi to give greater insight into the inner significance of Ganesha.  We hope you enjoy!



 “Dear Children, every individual wishes to live a great and happy life. Though many people wish for this very strongly, how many are able to fulfill their wish? Yet, anything and everything is possible with the grace of Sri Ganesha. Here one may ask, who is Sri Ganesha? He is none other than Adi Para Shakti, Divine Mother in the form of the original supreme cosmic energy. In the Ganapati Atharvashirsha Upanishad, Sri Ganesha is praised by the Vedic rishi as “Shakti Trayatmaka,” the very soul or essence of the three forms of divine shakti.

In the Vedic worldview, male deities are worshipped as forms of prajnanam, or consciousness, and female deities are worshipped as forms of shakti, or divine energy and power. Truly speaking, this shakti has no form, but we give it forms so that we may approach Divinity.

The shakti of Rudra is Mother Rudrani. The shakti, or power, of Narayana is Mother Narayani. And the shakti of Brahma is Brahmi. These three powers of Rudrani, Narayani and Brahmi are all contained within the power of Sri Ganesha. In fact, the powers of all the forms of Divine Mother are within Sri Ganesha. Thus, worshipping Ganesha brings the blessings of all deities.

This is especially true when he is worshipped on one particular day of the year – Sri Ganesh Chaturthi. This day is known as the most important and auspicious day for obtaining Sri Ganesha’s blessings. Ganesh Chaturthi, which is also known as Ganesh Chavithi or Vinayaka Chavithi, occurs on the fourth day of the waxing moon in the Hindu month of Bhadrapada (Aug-Sep). This year, Ganesh Chaturthi occurs on September 19.

When Ganesha is worshipped on Ganesh Chaturthi, he removes all obstacles and gives auspicious positive results for all our endeavors. Worshipping him on this day grants the complete grace of the three Divine Mothers – Sri Lakshmi, Sri Saraswati, and Sri Rudrani. The compassionate grace of Divine Mother confers inconceivable spiritual effulgence and divine energy.

Through the worship of Sri Ganesha, difficulties are destroyed, poverty and diseases are eliminated, every kind of success is obtained and Sri Ganesha grants infinite auspicious results. All adverse circumstances and home conflicts are also destroyed, such that home life becomes very peaceful and happy.

My dear children, if you are having any difficulties or problems, Sri Ganesha’s compassionate grace will destroy that negative karma and liberate you from your problems. Worshipping Sri Ganesha will give peace to you, your family, your country, and all of humanity. Mother Nature is greatly pleased with those who worship Sri Ganesha with faith and love. This Ganesh Chaturthi, worship Sri Ganesha with strong devotion and receive his most loving grace and blessings.”

To learn more about the Vedic and Tantric meaning of Ganesha you can continue reading this article :

Amma’s 2010 Ganesha Chaturthi Message

Blooming Lotus Yoga Holiday

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