Some sadhakas are very impatient. They want to have the experience at the very beginning of their sadhana. And they think that only such experience constitutes the sign that they are progressing. They want to have a tree within days of planting a seed! You should not be too impatient. You must have sufficient abhyasa (practice) before you start looking for results.
This impatience in sadhaka is a result of not realising that a good part of sadhana goes not into the structure of spiritual life, but into its foundation. When the foundation of a building is being built, no structure is seen above the surface of the ground. Someone looking from far off will see nothing there. Yet something important, something indispensable is being done. If you want to see walls and rooms within a few days of starting the construction, it is impractical view and approach.
Many spiritual teachers offer techniques, which will show results. Someone presses your eyeballs and make you see flashes of light. There are organisations that promise this type of spiritual experiences, awakening of Kundalini, siddhis (psychic powers).
But then, are you trying to lead a spiritual life, or do you want to get some results? What is that you understand about a life of nivritti, of renunciation, of seeking? Are you paying attention to your spiritual life or are you paying attention to your mental acrobatic? These questions have to be very, very definitely made part of your consideration. Spiritual teachers lay down together with sadhana some principles, certain ideals, some way of life.
First and foremost, try to know that all sadhana, all yoga-abhyasa have one aim: to remove distraction of the mind and focus it. And thus bring about a state of one-pointedness, concentration, and to integrate your life, your thoughts, feelings emotions, sentiments, imagination and aspirations towards one unified quest, one clearly defined goal. All sadhana—japa, meditation, kirtan, puja, upasana—should make you totally absorbed, one-pointed, completely focussed. The focussing of the mind is sadhana, that is abhyasa. It is the key to success. It is the solution to all problems. And it does not come in a day. A life governed by principles, moving towards an ideal is yoga and sadhana and spiritual life. God bless you!
This article is a chapter from the book Daily Swadhyaya.
“…morality is the basis of spiritual life…Practice of morality leads to purity of hearty, and attainment of Self-realisation. Without morality, you will become a spiritual bankrupt.
“Without ethical perfection, there is no spiritual progress. Without spiritual progress, there is no emancipation. Ethical perfection comes through the practice of Yama and Niyama. Asanas and Pranayama form the second stage. Concentration and meditation form the third stage. Samadhi is the summum bonum. Thus, the human soul aspiring after perfection goes from stage to stage and finally merges itself in the blissful glory of the highest union. Aim, therefore, at moral perfection. Spiritual success is half achieved through strong moral foundation.
“Always bear in mind that the primary condition of success in the spiritual life is an earnest longing for purity. So, be sincere and very earnest in your Sadhana and strive for purification and sound ethical culture.” (pg. 116, Ethical Perfection)
“Right from the very beginning of your spiritual life, you must understand clearly that in true humility, sincere desire to root out gradually pride, egoism and jealousy earnest and unceasing introspection to find out one’s own defects and improve oneself, lies your hope of progress. Witout this, all sorts of Sadhana become a delusion and a waste.” (pg. 98, Ethical Perfection)