I grew up with my grandfather speaking to me about one big family , of Carls Sagan, Aryabhata ( an Indian astronomer and mathematician who lived around 3000 years ago) and of Greek gods. He mentioned how six thousand years before Aryabhata we had advanced astronomical observations and spoke of many civilizations and their ways, like pharaohs being mummified. He said that though everything seemed larger than life for a child of 10 such as myself, all these worlds were within me.
He loved Beethovan and I listened to the symphonies as well as listened to MS Subbulakshmi’s suprabatham (South Indian classical music) and saw my grandfather cry to his favourites “Ram Niranjan” and “Guruji” by Kumar Ghandarva (North Indian Classical music).
He made me aware of how plants could sense what I was feeling and how ayurvedic herbalists chanted and asked the plant to participate in another’s healing before plucking their leaves or whichever part was required. He spoke of how “The secret life of plants”, a book in English was speaking about similar yogic principles where equipment attached to the plants indicated that the plants were agitated or had violent tremors when a person with the intent to harm the plant would enter the room. Also other plants which were not going to be harmed had tremors and empathised with the plant that was to be harmed. Just being around him I realised we impact the world around us just by what we think and feel. I realised that we are all one.
I was soon my grandfathers helper in watering the hundreds of plants in my home with him and sometimes even speaking to a few of them as I went about it.
Just by living with him I was able to feel that we are all more similar than we would want to believe. We are all looking for peace, happiness and to feel fulfilled.
All of us want to feel safe, respected and utilise our full potential. All of us want to be valued and all of us want to love and to be loved
This is the Yogic principle of Vasudhaiva kutumbakam. This means the world is one family and is also engraved in the entrance hall of the Indian Parliament.
This expansive thinking is what is needed to unite us and not divisive thinking based on religious fanaticism, colour or race as we see increasingly nowadays.
I would like to share with everyone two things to live by as my grandfather, my first guru, told me. He said walk in the world like you do not care who this world belongs to and walk like this world belongs to you.
By that he meant “Do not get intimidated by wealth or power or enamoured by it, do not care or give too much importance to those external trappings.” Second thing is if something needs to be done in the world, take care of it, protect it, stand up for what is right and nurture it and be compassionate ,just as if it belonged to you.
As I travel to many countries I remember with gratitude how my first guru taught me to embrace many worlds.
Below is a poem dedicated to my grandfather, my students and everyone on the evolutionary path to allow them to see and embrace the worlds within and without.
THE ETERNAL EMBRACE
There is a space
Where I’m neither man nor woman,
Young nor old
No colour, no race, not even a face
All I feel is my heart bursting with love
Holding the divine and you, in a long warm embrace
Yogacharini Maitreyi is a practical mystic who trains Arkaya yoga teachers& healers and creates conscious community around the world. She also runs a foundation for children living in slums in Chennai. She is in Vancouver in the summer to train Arkaya Yoga teachers and guide them on a path of self awareness , classical yogic principles, sattvic tantra and multidimentional healing. Next TT starts in July 2017.
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