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Note: For the complete lessons,
with additions, see the AYP
Easy Lessons for Ecstatic Living Books.
Lesson 267 - Subject: About the Word
Date: Sat Jun 25, 2005 4:33 pm
New Members: It is recommended you read from the beginning of the web archive, as previous
lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "Why
Q: I read your articles with great interest. Needless to say that I am into various
branches of yoga.
What surprises me in your last lesson (#266) is your classification
of "Hindu" and "Hinduism." No such thing existed in the "ancient
days" as Hindu/ism. It is called even today as "Sanathana Dharma," a set of
guiding principles, which most learned sages agree. I am a staunch follower of same!
You know how the word "Hindu" came! The west always wanted to identify the rest
of the world with a religion, thus they coined "Hinduism."
Learned people like you should propagate to remove the stigma.
Just my few cents, having subscribed to your Group and enjoying the good articles. Please
keep them flowing.
A: Thank you for writing and sharing.
Interestingly, it is the questioner from India (lesson #266) who
used the word "Hindu." As it turns out, my answer has neither the word nor the
characterization of "Hindu." The reply was about the relationship of organized
religion in general with the methods that promote human spiritual transformation, which
here we call "Yoga."
It was the Persians who coined the term "Hindu," wasn't it? In any case, the
only religious classifications you will find in AYP are on those that promote human
spiritual transformation versus those that don't. Ultimately, the names do not matter very
much in this -- the business of accelerating human spiritual evolution is everything. Yet,
from a cultural point of view, the names can mean a lot. We all need someplace to hang our
hat, at least when starting out on our spiritual journey in this life. Later on, we can
end up seeing all the religions as different expressions of the same truth that lives
within us all. As discussed in the previous lesson, there can be a lot of distortion in
the religions, but not in the underlying and often hidden truth.
As they say, "A rose is still a rose by any other name." In AYP, the rose is
called "Yoga." If you call it "Sanathana Dharma," that is perfectly
okay, as long as proven practices (meditation, pranayama, etc.) and results are there. It
can be called "Hinduism" too. Why not? Many in India feel comfortable with that,
and who are we to deprive them of their way of regarding the spiritual path? Every culture
has adopted a name for truth. It is always the same truth the truth of human
In the new novel, "The Secrets of Wilder," the word "Yoga" is not used
once. The whole journey, with the same practices, is made within a Christian framework,
with no eastern terminology at all. It is still the same rose...
The novel was written that way to appeal to a mainstream western audience -- not to slight
India in any way. There can be no doubt that we owe much to Mother India in all of this.
Every major religion has important connections with the ancient wisdom of India. Jesus
went there too, yes?
Many names can apply to the same knowledge that has come to us from ancient times, and is
bubbling up from within us in this very moment -- pure bliss consciousness, ecstasy and
outpouring divine love!
There is one common denominator behind all the religions -- the human nervous system's
inherent capacity to open to divine experience.
I wish you all success on your chosen spiritual path. Enjoy!
The guru is in you.
Note: For detailed instructions on building a
balanced daily practice routine with self-pacing, see the
Eight Limbs of Yoga Book.
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