We’ve heard it before in yoga class: “The light in me honors the light in you.” One needn’t walk far down the spiritual path before encountering the teaching that there is light—call it basic goodness, love, or our true, pure nature—in each one of us, shining beyond the false selves we’ve constructed to get by in society. Many spiritual teachers make it their mission to help others come into contact with this light, this sacred divine essence.
One such teacher is Mirabai Devi, the author, healer, and leader behind the Mirabai Devi Foundation, whose goal is to cultivate growth and raise the consciousness of humanity. One of the primary avenues this is done is through the practice of Darshan, or a light transmission ritual.
The light transmission ritual is intended to accelerate the soul’s evolution, transmute karma, and purify the body to help others awaken to their divine nature, no matter one’s personal religious path. While Darshan is a practice, it is also the cultivation of a sacred, healing space: a space where people can gather to release pain in community and develop a relationship with their highest self.
A Personal Experience with a Light Transmission Ritual
Recently, I had the opportunity to experience Darshan for myself when Mirabai’s healing tour stopped in Saratoga Springs, New York. As someone studying marriage and family therapy, when I am introduced to a new spiritual practice, I always consider its implications for relationships: How would claiming my divine nature and actively nurturing it affect the connections in my life? Could experiencing a light transmission ritual and truly getting centered in the presence of the Divine empower me to show up better in my relationships? I was determined to find out.
When the evening came to gather for Darshan, we prepared for the divine light transmission with kirtan, meditation, mantra, and guided practices for communing with the higher self. When it was finally time for the light transmission ritual itself, we assumed meditative positions and received the divine light channeled through Mirabai as she led a guided meditation.
As we were called back into the space and into the present moment and out of our meditative state, my spirit felt revitalized in the glorious way that it does after a fulfilling spiritual experience. Hands cupping a mug of tea, I turned to my teacher who had brought me to Darshan, exclaiming my gratitude and amazement that Mirabai and the talented kirtan musicians had been able to come here and share such a special gift with us.
My teacher responded by laughing a kind laugh. “You’re missing the point,” she said. “We all have this gift.”
Incorporating the Gifts of a Light Transmission Ritual
Back home, I looked for ways to bring the spirit of that light transmission ritual into my day. I practiced the prayer Mirabai had channeled and written out for us—a prayer to open up to guidance. I repeated her words:
“Divine light, please open me to the qualities of clarity, compassion, and understanding so that I may make the right choices and decisions, choose the right words and actions, and create my life from the highest connection to the Divine.”
Sitting with this prayer, my teacher’s words to me came back into focus. We all can choose to live from this space of divine light and let that be what emanates from within us. While a light transmission ritual can be a profound experience on our spiritual path, the gifts the practice offers don’t exist only in its container. Every day, we can choose to cultivate and share the light within and let it do its work on us.
What if we could frame all of our interactions as opportunities for light transmission? What if we didn’t confine our open heartedness to our yoga mats and meditation cushions? What if we were to catch ourselves looking at our partner as the person who forgot to take the garbage out and decided to regard them as a vessel of divine light instead?
Tips for Integrating a Light Transmission Ritual into Relationships
Practice mantra: Mirabai recommends making mantra a part of your daily spiritual practice. You can work with a set of mala beads and recite your chosen mantra 108 times, once for every bead. One of the best mantras to start with for integrating the divine light is “aham prema,” which translates from Sanskrit to mean “I am divine love.” Try making this a daily practice, and be mindful of feelings, sensations, and emotions that arise for you. Do you notice your connection to the Divine growing? As you cultivate your capacity to connect with the Divine in yourself, you will be better able to recognize it in others.
Visualize: When you’re in conversation with your partner, or any significant person in your life, practice visualizing a light transmission between both of your heart centers. Imagine that this light opens into a free-flowing channel traveling between you both. Notice how you feel during the visualization: What changes? What is able to soften? Do you feel more connected or more able to empathize?
Channel your own prayer: Mirabai’s prayer for guidance repeats the phrase ‘“Divine light, please …” five times. Consider writing your own prayer to receive the guidance you need to navigate what’s showing up in your relationships. To start, sit for a 5-10 minute meditation. Then, when the time is up, free-write by prompting yourself with the phrase “Divine light, please …” five times. When you’re done, read back what you wrote. When you read your words, what needs do you see yourself calling out for? What guidance showed up? You can use these insights to move forward in your relationships.
Commit to a 24-hour challenge: How would you treat your partner (and yourself!) if you were consciously aware of the divine light in each of you? Challenge yourself to live this way for 24 hours. When you’re done, reflect back on what made this day different from any others in your life. Were there any actions you took that you can carry over into everyday life?
The divine light is in all of us. You can create your own practices for integrating the power of a light transmission ritual into your relationships, too. What matters most is not what you do, but that you are able to create sacred space to honor its presence—and let it grow.
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