“Countless desires and demands of the ego clamor for attention ... It is up to us to choose whether the ego or the soul will guide the trend of our consciousness.”
“Intuition is soul guidance, appearing naturally in man during those instants when his mind is calm ... The goal of yoga science is to calm the mind, that without distortion it may hear the infallible counsel of the Inner Voice.”
—Paramahansa Yogananda, in Autobiography of a Yogi
Every one of us can learn to move through life enjoying a radiant peace and serenity. Instead of permitting the inevitable complexities and demanding situations to make us nervous or emotionally upset, we should use each of them as motivation to open in ourselves a new window onto the Divine Consciousness. We can be constantly renewed by fresh inflows of inspiration, understanding, and heavenly assurance if we resolve to maintain evenness of mind.
The rishis of India, said Paramahansa Yogananda, were the greatest psychological experts. And evenmindedness is their supreme prescription for psychological and emotional well-being: keeping the mind calm and unruffled, that we may behold and identify with the perfect soul-reflection of the Divine within us—ever blissful, never troubled.
Life is so often capricious, its course filled with unexpected twists and turns. Just when we feel content, successful, and at peace, some unforeseen circumstance takes us by surprise; or the buffeting of daily challenges erodes our good resolves. We are tossed again on the waves of duality, of health and sickness, joy and sorrow. There is only one way to maintain an unshakable inner tranquility. We cannot think ourselves into that state; we cannot achieve it through the beauties of nature or music or art or other outer experiences, no matter how peaceful they may make us feel. It comes only through deep, devotion-filled meditation that takes us beyond thought and emotion, anchoring us in the calm center of our being.
Finding the Inner Certainty of Our Connection With the Divine
To walk inwardly with God is the state of the spiritual person. Each day, silence the body and still the mind, and turn your whole being within to commune with God. If you form that habit of meditation, it will make all the difference between your being an ordinary person, one who is uncertain, filled with doubts and frustrations, and a spiritual person, who feels that his life is completely in the hands of God and that therefore all is well with him.
Nothing in life or in death should make us fearful or upset. The marvelous guidance Paramahansa Yogananda gave us, for which I am forever grateful, instilled in us the awareness that life is eternal. For a short while the immortal ray of light that is our soul wears a perishable mortal garment—woman or man; black, white, red, or yellow—but for all eternity the soul is sustained by the Infinite Source of that light. The more we meditate, the more we feel that consciousness. And the less we meditate, the less able we are to transcend identification with the little self—so many pounds of flesh encasing a limited mind bound by sense perceptions to the troublesome environs of the world. We have to get to the Self beyond its physical and mental instrumentalities to realize we are not fragile mortal beings; there is an unbroken link between ourselves and the Beloved Mother of the universe, the Divine Consciousness flowing through us and permeating Infinity.
Guiding Our Daily Choice of Life’s Many Options
The way to unite our consciousness with God-consciousness begins with our daily choice of thoughts and actions. Life places many options before us, often contradictory. We respond either to the pull of our senses, desires, and habits or to the still, small voice of conscience that reminds us wherein lies real happiness—using the divine strength of our discriminative will to make those choices that affirm by action God’s consciousness and qualities within us.
Countless desires and demands of the ego clamor for attention ...
It is up to us to choose whether the ego or the soul will guide the trend of our consciousness.
Excerpted from Intuition: Soul-Guidance for Life’s Decisions by Sri Daya Mata. Self-Realization Fellowship, Los Angeles, California, www.yogananda.org. All rights reserved.
Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF), with international headquarters in Los Angeles, California, was founded in 1920 by Paramahansa Yogananda to disseminate his yoga meditation teachings worldwide. Author of the spiritual classic Autobiography of a Yogi, Yogananda is widely regarded today as the father of yoga in the West. His society, SRF, celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2020. To learn more about how to meditate and the Self-Realization Fellowship Lessons, visit yogananda.org.