By Gurudevi Nirmalananda
Many Sanskrit texts describe how a yogi can fly, walk on water, disappear and change the weather as part of the classical ashta-siddhis (eight powers). Making it through a pandemic is minor compared to these world-changing, life-changing abilities. Yet your ability to make it through, and not merely to survive but to thrive, comes from the same inner source.
Yoga is a mystical science, meaning it uncovers the mystery hidden within. Once you know the Divinity Reality hidden within, nothing is impossible. How does this work? A sutra explains it:
Chidvat-tach-chhakti sankochaat malaavrtah samsaarii. — Pratyabhij~nah.rdayam 9
Though full of divine powers, Consciousness contracts to become the individual, whose divine nature is hidden within.
Your divine nature is hidden within you, for you are Consciousness, masquerading as an individual. Yoga is the science of discovering what is already there, just like Fleming discovered penicillin. You are the one who conducts the experiment by following the protocols established by generations of yogis, yoga’s tools that help you look inward. Of course you have divine powers once you know who you are!
Mastery of the body helps with this by giving you gradual mastery of your mind. Yet mastery of your mind means you sit still, turning your attention deeper inward to the Consciousness that you are. Now you’re doing the yoga of the ancient sages. And now you discover that you need help. Everyone needs help with their mind.
That’s what drove me to my Guru — the pain that my mind caused me. He showed me that I didn’t have to wrestle with my mind. Instead he opened the doorway deeper inside. He simply uncovered what had been hidden, my own divine nature. Beyond health, strength, vitality or peace, this is yoga’s greatest gift. Yes, it even helps with a pandemic.
Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati leads Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram in Downingtown PA. An American yogi, she is an inspiring teacher with a loving manner and a great sense of humor. Before becoming a swami (yoga monk), as Rama Berch, she served the yoga community as the founding president of Yoga Alliance. Traveling and teaching nationally and internationally, she is authorized to initiate people into deep meditation through Shaktipat, as did Swami Muktananda, her own Guru. The Ashram website features extensive Freebies, including articles and audio recordings on the principles of consciousness as taught by the sages of India, as well as how to apply them in your life today.