November, 1932 VOL. 5—1
Meditations—By Swami Yogananda
I will enjoy Thee.
I will feel Thee
In my emotions.
I will think Thee
In my thoughts.
I will use
Thy wisdom-guided will
To guide my
Since all business,
Directly or indirectly,
Is connected with Thy laws,
I will bring
Thy conscious Presence
Into my mind
In order to solve
My God-given problems.
I will make a bonfire
Of all my desires for things
And burn them
In the one great
Flame of desire
Only to know Thee.
Take away the weight
From my mind
And make me drink
Of Thy ever-blessed Presence.
Lead all the ruins
Of my ambitions
Friends, fame, and success,
To Thy Bliss within.
Teach me to do away
With the mockery
Of parroting prayers.
Lead me to pray deeply
Until the darkness
With Thy flaming Presence.
Teach me to pray
With my own soulful words
And to pray
With the silent
Of my unceasing devotion.
Not to wait until tomorrow
For Thy song.
From today on,
I will broadcast
My soul-call into the ether And Thou
Through the receiver
Of my silence.
With the soft touch
I will tune my soul radio
And rid my mind
Of static restlessness,
That I may hear
Of Cosmic vibration,
The music of atoms,
And the melody of love
Vibrating in my
Naughty or good,
I am Thy child.
Sinner or saint,
I am Thy child.
Is in me,
Teach me to wipe away
Stains of ignorance
And to know
That Thou and I are,
And always have been,
As I worship Thee
In the outer
Of dawn, noonday,
Gloaming, and night,
So will I worship Thee
In the morning
The noonday of activity,
Of advanced age,
And the night of death.
I will keep
The memory of my devotion Ever burning,
So that in that light
I may behold Thee equally
Through the change
Births and deaths.
Teach us to remember Thee Equally
In poverty and prosperity,
In sickness and health,
In ignorance and wisdom.
Teach me to remember
And be grateful
For the years of health
Which I enjoyed
Preceding my present
Teach me to open
My closed eyes of belief
I am no longer
The wave of consciousness
Thinking itself separated
From the sea
Of Cosmic Consciousness.
I am the Ocean of Spirit
Which has become
The wave of human life.
The Spirit of God
Has become myself.
I am the ocean
Of Cosmic Consciousness
And the wave of my soul.
Thou art the owner
Of the cosmos
Its abundance and wisdom.
I am Thy child.
I have everything.
Transfer my consciousness From my limitations
Suggested by others
And my own weak thoughts,
To the realization that,
Being Thy child,
I am the owner
Of Thy Kingdom
Of Infinite Possessions.
The greatest asset in life? Character.
I will build
My credit and fortune
On the capital
Of my character.
Along the highway of time Come the children
To enter into
The temple of life.
May I love
And play with them
In spite of
Dirt on their bodies
And noise from their lips.
The art of life
In the power
I will enlarge
The arc of my comprehension
The depth of my profundity.
When life takes its leave,
It offers its spoils
To the hands of death.
I will conduct my daily life
In such a manner
That nothing will be left of me
But a spark of immortality.
Though a straight line
Is the shortest distance
Between two points,
It is the longest to traverse
In the field
Of morality and spirituality.
With dangers and risks,
I will forever follow
The straight line.
Whenever reason is dead,
Possesses the soul of man.
When intuition is dead,
From cold rationalism.
May I forever keep burning
The flame of intuition
And reason in life.
My life is barren
Without Thy love.
Shower Thy love
On the barren spaces
Of my life,
When the light of the day
Dies before my eyes
Deepens around me,
I always find
In Thy thought.
How can I repay my debt
For what Thou hast given me
In the shape of great love
I will pay my debt
By serving my brother man.
My mind swings
May I chasten my thought
To the measure of altruism.
I have no country, no religion no "ism," nor cult.
Is the whole universe,
My religion is Truth,
Ism is human service,
And cult is self-discipline.
I may suffer in life
As anyone does,
But in all my sufferings
I will never swerve
From the track of Truth.
I find my God
Through love, beauty, service,
Other than this,
I do not care to appear godly,
A barren belief
About an unperceived God.
A great awakening
Has knocked at my door.
Grant me the strength
To welcome the dawn
Over the ashes
Of many desires.
By Cecil M. Kyle
Come, oh Goddess
Of the Quiet,
Mother of Silence—
Come with stars
Fastened in the dark waves
Of your unbound hair,
And lay your cooling hands
On day’s burning forehead—Oh beloved Psyche,
From your golden chalice, Sleep.
Now I Know
By James Warnack
MANY things I do not know, of course, and I am not prepared to say that I know anything in its fullness, but one thing I feel that I do know, and that is, that all things, all thoughts, and all experiences have but one great meaning and one final purpose; to lead man to the full consciousness of his supreme Selfhood.
Now, I shall not quarrel with my orthodox friends who choose to call the Supreme Being, God, nor with any religionist, anywhere, who may have for the Spirit another name than that which I might give it. Call the great One God, Allah, Mother, Father, Love, Truth, or by any other name and we shall not go to war over your choice.
My only hope is that you, whoever you are, will recognize, with me, the existence of that All-Glorious One who has all names because He is all things. In fact, we cannot speak without naming Him, we cannot think without thinking Him, we cannot truly live unless He be in us.
Now, at last, I know that all my dreams have been yearnings for the realization of my own Divine Selfhood. Now I know that all dreams, all thoughts, all of my emotions, sensations, speech, and actions have been motivated by that Beautiful One who constantly calls me home.
Now I know why it is that I am thrilled when I see a ship through the mist, out at sea. It is because the ship suggests romance, adventure, mystery, and because all romance, adventure, and mystery have their root and support in that Being who is behind and beyond all things. Now I know what it is that gives the brightness to the diamond and the glitter to gold, the redness to the ruby, and the green glow to the emerald. Now I know why I love music and books and dramas and stories and science. It is because my Beautiful One is in each and all of them, and because Her glory illuminates them all.
Yes, I sometimes like to think of the Supreme Being as a Goddess, as a Lover, or a Mother, for truly, is She not each and all of these? However, whatever He or She may be, that wondrous Being is the highest, sweetest, best of which I can conceive—and infinitely more! She its is who inspires all religions, all religion, if you will, and all philosophy, and literature, and art. The author of lovely Nature is She and of my appreciation of Nature’s beauty.
When I hunger, it is not for bread alone, but for my Perfect One. When I thirst, it is not for water only, but for the wine of Her presence. When I want a friend, it is not only a human, but the Divine Companion for whom I long. Oh, that all the words I utter might be songs about Her beauty! When I speak of myself, let all the world be certain that I am talking of my Love.
So may I learn to see Her smile in every new-born dawn, to taste Her breath in every passing breeze, in the wild rose, and gentle violet, to drink the fragrance of Her hair. So may I learn to hear Her voice in zephyr and in break of wave, in bird songs, and the happy speech of children. So may I feel Her blessed presence in my dreams and waking hours, and know Her for my own forevermore.
Of Overcoming Nervousness
NERVOUSNESS seems to be a simple ailment, but it is very complicated and very uncomfortable. It gnaws at the roots of most physical, mental, and spiritual disturbances. If you are nervous, it is difficult to heal any disease you may have. If you are nervous, you cannot concentrate and work efficiently to attain success. If you are nervous, you cannot meditate deeply and thus acquire peace and wisdom. In fact, nervousness interferes with all the normal functioning of the human body and mind. It upsets the physical, mental, and spiritual machinery.
The body may be compared to a factory, in which many kinds of products are made by various machines, which are run by electricity conducted through wires from a main dynamo. In the body factory, the brain is the main dynamo which sends energy through a complicated system of special conductors, or nerves, to the different organs and members, which in turn act as the machines to produce vision, touch, hearing, taste, smell, movement, metabolism, circulation, breathing, and thought. You are the manager of your own body factory, and you must see to it that its departments work together in perfect harmony, and produce the highest class of products, physical, mental, and spiritual.
The particular disturbance of equilibrium which we call nervousness, may be caused by great and continuous excitement, whether it is excessive stimulation of the senses, as in pleasure hunting, drinking, wrong eating, over-eating, faulty elimination, over-activity, over-indulgence physically, or following the modern speed mania, or whether it is mental or emotional over-stimulation, such as long-continued fear, anger, melancholy, remorse, sorrow, hatred, discontent, or worry. Lack of the necessities for normal and happy living, such as proper exercise, fresh air, sunshine, right food, agreeable work, and a purpose in life, aggravate, if they do not actually cause, a condition of nervousness. Nervousness is highly contagious and may also be caused by association with nervous, fault-finding, or otherwise disagreeable, people.
Any violent or continued mental or physical excitement causes disturbance of the balance in the flow of life force throughout the sensory-motor mechanism and the bulbs of the senses. It is as if you put a two-thousand-volt current through a fifty-watt lamp. It would burn out the lamp. In the same way, too great a stimulation upsets the functioning of the nervous system.
Some of the emotions which do most damage are fear, worry, and anger. Fear and worry are very closely connected. Worry is usually fear that something undesirable is going to happen which practically never does happen. Volumes can and have been written on this subject, and it cannot be dealt with at length here. All that can be said now is that a calm analysis of the cause will usually remove worry.
Another form of fear is the fear of death. Death should be regarded as a universal experience, a change which everyone passes through. It should be looked upon as good, as a new opportunity, as a rest from the weary struggle on this earth. When you have made a mess of life, God sends this relief and gives you a fresh trial. Besides, there is nothing to fear, because as long as you are not dead you are alive, and when you are dead, it is over and there is nothing then to worry about. This fear is born of the greatest ignorance, and it paralyzes activity, thought, and ambition. Live today well and the next step will take care of itself.
Stage fright is another form of fear which causes nervousness in many people, so that they are never able to do anything naturally. If you are shy and have stage fright, get your mind quiet and remember that all the power you need is within you, all the power to convince people, all the power to give the direct truth. The particular kind of truth you want to give is in the Infinite Spirit, which functions through you.
Realize that all power to think, to speak, and to act, comes from God, and that He is with you now, guiding and inspiring you. As soon as you actually realize that, a flash of illumination will come and fear will leave you. Sometimes the power of God comes like an ocean, and surges through your Being in great boundless waves, sweeping away all obstacles.
If you really desire to help and serve people, to make them happy, to give them some spiritual power that will electrify their souls, you have nothing to fear. You will be able to do it. Why be afraid of people when you can give enthusiasm, inspiration, or wisdom to them? Let God flow through you, and you will have all the power you need. Fishers of souls are needed to speak with the voice of wisdom. Words without soul-force are like guns without ammunition. Meditation is the only way to keep yourself filled with the power of the Spirit.
Some of the physical methods of overcoming nervous are, first, a soothing drink made of fresh limes. It is made in this way: To one glass of water, add the juice of one-quarter of a fresh lime and about a tablespoonful of sugar. Stir thoroughly, and add a little crushed ice. It is difficult to give exact measurements because of the difference in the size of limes, but it should not taste at all like the ordinary limeade, bought at soda fountains. This is far too strong. This drink should be blended so that the sweetness and sourness are equal, and you cannot distinguish which you are tasting. Ground rock candy is even better than sugar, but do not use honey. If properly blended, every nerve will feel calm. Sip two or three glasses. If you have too much lime or too much sugar, it will not produce the result. The blending must be equal.
A second good physical method is to jump into a tub of very cool water. This produces a cool vibration and naturalizes the unbalanced heat or congestion. A third method is massage and spinal adjustment. There are many simple exercises which may be practiced at home with beneficial results, such as lying face downward on the floor and having a small child walk up and down the spine, and on both sides of it.
It is good also to go to an expert once in a while to keep the spine flexible and to be sure that the vertebrae are in their proper places and that they are not shutting off the life force by pinching the nerves. Another good method is to rub a piece of ice on the temples, back of the neck, mouth, hands, feet, and all the openings of the body. You will feel very clam and rested after this treatment.
Association with strong, happy, serene, kind, and spiritual people is of great benefit to the mentally or emotionally nervous person. Even a few moments’ company with a saint can work wonders in producing calmness and quiet. A real holy man acts as a raft to carry you thru suffering. Millions of people attend churches without finding any solution to cross the stormy sea of uncertainty, sin, the problems of life. They find only empty words. Also, people who know the way to peace and permanent happiness are usually too lazy to follow it. They take lessons and forget. Make use of your spiritual bombs. You want to be fed by intellectuality, but your souls remain dark.
It is difficult for married people who are incompatible to have to live in the same house. Either one or both are likely to develop nervousness. Usually it is due to living too much on the physical plane, with no force of real love and understanding binding their souls. People tire of each other unless they have the Divine attitude in which the soul is constantly filled with the joy of God. Married people should cultivate spiritual joy and communion in order to preserve their serenity, love, and happiness. Intuition and understanding are needed instead of nagging and fault-finding. No matter what the provocation, always remain quiet yourself and try to see God in the other person.
Meditate as much as possible, and try to hold on to the quiet and peaceful after effect. Find the affirmation which has most meaning for you, and repeat it to yourself until your subconscious mind is clear of all tendency to anger and harsh speech. Live a godly life yourself and every one who crosses your path will be helped just by your contact. Criticize and reform yourself. That is where your greatest problem lies. Affirm Divine calmness and peace, and send out only thoughts of love and goodwill if you want to live in peace and harmony.
God has been partial to those who love Him. They shall never sleep in ignorance again. They shall awake and remain awake to God’s glory. The temple of God is within your soul. Enter into this quietness, and sit there in meditation with the light of intuition burning on the altar. There is no restlessness, no searching, or striving here. Come into this temple which was not created by man. Come into the silence of solitude, and the vibration there will talk to you with the voice of God, and you will know that the invisible has become visible, and the unreal has become real.
Get away from the delusion of matter. Remember that until you have built the Temple of Silence within yourself, that until you have broken down the ramparts with which environment has surrounded you, you shall never see the glory of God, you shall never have real peace and lasting joy. When you meet the Great One, darkness will pass away forever. The power of Truth is here, and if you will but make a determined effort you shall no longer walk nervously in fear and uncertainty on the path of life. There is a power which will light your way, which will bring you health, happiness, peace, and success if you will but turn toward the Light.
THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST
DEEP meditation is possible only when all bodily functions are stilled. This is one reason why fasting is helpful in attaining a state of quiet and freedom from body consciousness. People who eat too much and never fast, keep the Life Force in their bodies busy burning carbon and cleansing venous blood, and they thus overwork the heart and keep the five-sense telephones forever active.
When a long meditation of several days is desired, a fruit diet is to be recommended because it contains less carbon than the ordinary varied diet. It also satisfies the bodily bad habit of continuous eating and is better for most people than complete fasting. Such partial fasting by a group of people, accompanied by long meditation, can give a tremendous spiritual experience. This experiment should be undertaken only under the strict guidance of a wise preceptor or guru.
Meditation is the method of connecting the life Force with Cosmic Energy, and this can be accomplished only when all bodily functions are slowed up. Therefore, meditating when the stomach is full defeats the very purpose for which one meditates. With a full stomach, the heart, nervous system, and the five-sense telephones are all busy digesting food, burning carbon, and keeping up the circulation in the body. This keeps the subconscious mind busy and in turn makes the conscious mind restless, and thus prevents it from becoming one-pointed and concentrated on God.
On the other hand, to meditate when the stomach is empty is a good practice because the energy which runs the nervous system is not then busy with the bodily functions. When the body, lungs, and diaphragm are still, the heart is calm. When the heart is calm, the current is switched off from the five-sense telephones.
Therefore, fasting in connection with meditation means the slowing up of activity in the muscles, heart, circulation, diaphragm, and lungs by denying carbon and chemicals to the blood. Hence, fasting helps to draw the attention away from the body and its functions, and metaphysically it helps to open up the inner source of Cosmic Consciousness and Cosmic Energy by which the body really lives.
Jesus said: "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." Man’s body battery is not sustained by sunshine, oxygen, and food alone, but by the word or vibrating current of Cosmic Energy which, by radio-active force descends into the body and human will through the medulla, or "mouth of God." Not to use the will, as some people teach, is to shut off all Divine currents from the body.
Man can be like a dry battery. He can live more and more by condensing Cosmic Energy into flesh instead of always receiving chemical atomic energy from food.
In a book called "Amanzil," about Teresa Neumann, the peasant girl of Konnersreuth, Bavaria, taken from an address of Rt. Rev. Joseph Schrembs, D.D., Bishop of Cleveland, delivered Feb. 12, 1928, and reprinted from the Catholic Universe Bulletin, Cleveland, Ohio, (eleventh edition) we find striking facts about Teresa Neumann’s life relative to living by Divine Energy.
(1) "She possesses the wounds of the Crucified Savior. The wounds remain always the same. They neither fester nor heal."
(2) "She goes through the Passion of our Lord each Friday."
(3) "She repeats the Aramaic words spoken by Christ."
(4) "She divines the innermost secret of the heart."
(5) "She takes neither food nor drink. Has eaten no solid food since 1923, except water or a little fruit juice."
But on Christmas Day of the year 1926 she ceased entirely taking any food or any drink, so that almost for two years now, this girl has neither eaten nor drunk anything except to receive Holy Communion every morning. Now, it may be that you will say ‘Perhaps she takes food on the sly. Perhaps this is all deception.’ No. It is guaranteed. It is absolutely certified. The Episcopal Government of the city of Ratisbon has sent four hospital sisters who were placed under oath to watch her night and day. These sisters changed off in pairs and never left her presence. They stayed for fifteen days and have deposed under oath that the entire time not a drop of water or any liquid substance or a morsel of food passed her lips. And the verdict of all the doctors from the University of Berlin, from Prague, from Frankfurt, from Munich—doctors without any faith—is this: ‘Deception and fraud are absolutely out of the question in the case of Teresa Neumann.’ She is not emaciated, despite lack of food since Christmas, 1926, and is as healthy looking as anyone around you. On Fridays she loses about eight pounds. Six hours after the vision of the Passion is over, she is again back to her normal weight of one hundred and ten pounds."
The greatest of all things in Teresa Neumann’s life is that she actually demonstrates what Jesus said: "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God," and she does not become emaciated by fasting. To live by eating food is not a sin, but to live and think only of the physical means of sustaining life is to live in delusion. We must know that it is the power of God that digests food and changes it into blood and nourishment. It is God alone who sustains life. Teresa Neumann shows that her Divine Will can replace the decayed bodily tissues by materializing electrons of energy into flesh.
Many Hindu saints have demonstrated that life is possible without oxygen or food. Sadu Haridas, of India, conducted an experiment under the observation of medical men and was buried several feet beneath the surface of the earth for forty days, in the courtyard of a well-guarded palace, and came back to life even though he was pronounced dead.
These extreme examples are cited, not in order to make you aspire to become another Haridas, or Teresa Neumann, but simply to show that if such great control of the physical being is possible, it is also possible for a person living a normal life to so spiritualize his body that he can be free from physical suffering, and that he can actually know through experience that Divine Power is the real source of his life.
Of course, long fasting, that is, more than three days, is not necessary in order to demonstrate that you really live by Divine Power. You can also spiritualize the body, or make it live on this higher plane, by right eating at all times. The proper diet should be chosen and care should be taken never to overeat. It is a good plan to go without breakfast, eat a normal meal at noon, and very little, if anything, at night. Morning and evening are the usual periods for meditation.
When fasting, mental resistance and fear of losing weight should be overcome, and the whole attention should be put upon the spiritual purpose for which the fast is undertaken. During this time, you must feel alive with Cosmic Consciousness and the newly awakened Life Energy.
Jesus discovered this new source of energy through fasting and meditation. He also found that He had conquered the race-habit and the race-idea of the necessity of living by physical food alone. The Cosmic Delusive Force has led man to believe that he would die without physical food and the body consciousness. Jesus refused to convert the stone into bread because He knew that He lived by the power of the changeless infinite Energy and not alone by the limited relative energy derived from physical food.
During fasting, you should say to yourself and actually realize: "I am learning to live by the power of God and not by physical means only." Everyone should test out this truth in his or her own life by long fasting and long meditation, and thus prove, as Jesus did, that man lives by Divine Power, and that by the proper effort he can become aware of God Consciousness and Cosmic Energy.
However, be sure to remember that long fasting should never be undertaken without the guidance and direction of a competent preceptor. It is good at all times, however, to fast one day a week, to choose the proper diet, to eat little at night, and to meditate regularly every day.
How Christ Consciousness descends into human consciousness will be discussed next month.
Gandhi Uses Christianity to Free India
MOST self-styled Christians say: "We sacredly read in the bible ‘whosoever shall smite thee on thy cheek, turn to him the other also,’ but if you dare to slap us on the right cheek, we will give you a donation of twelve slaps on your left cheek, a kick, and maybe a bullet, and we know we are good Christians."
The above is the psychology of most people in the world. To be a real Christian, one must demonstrate the working quality of Christian principles. Hitherto, the majority of people have preached "might is right," and that machine guns and bullets are more powerful than kind words in adjusting political wrongs. Gandhi has been the first leader since Jesus to prove to the world that, as civilized beings and human brothers, made after God’s image, we can more effectively adjust our wrongs by Divine understanding, or by resisting the wrong brothers with love, than by fighting them.
Seven hundred years of gun-fighting has not achieved for Ireland what Gandhi has accomplished for India, in a comparatively short time, by using the error-exploding spiritual guns of resistance of evil by the spiritual force of love. Within from five to ten years of resistance by spiritual laws, Gandhi has won for India a new era of social, political, and religious reforms far beyond anything attained by any of the powerful ancient or modern Kings who have ruled India. Gandhi has taught the Hindus to organize the first most unique, bloodless revolution by martyrs, who are ready to shed their own blood, like Christ and his disciples, for Truth, and to prevent expensive bloodshed, which must result from armed resistance.
Freedom is the birthright and strong desire of all nations. As the English did not like to be ruled by the Romans, or would not like to be ruled by efficient Hindu Kings, so also the Hindus do not like to be governed by outsiders, no matter how righteous or efficient, but want Self-Government. Even the Americans did not like to be ruled by their own kinsman, King of England, and started the first fight for freedom by dumping tea into Boston Harbor. Likewise, it is no wonder that Gandhi started the trouble with England by making salt out of ocean water. Gandhi has, for the first time, taught Christian principles, not only to his followers, but has been successfully using them to train his soldiers for the spiritual revolution. His soldiers do not use so much as a needle or club in self-defense, but they die using only their ceaselessly-pouring machine-gun bullets of love. The whole British Empire respects and considers Gandhi’s ultimatum enforced through his fasting, non-cooperation, and so on. The recent settling of the electorate bills, and the quick acceptance by the Prime Minister, due to Gandhi’s vow of a death-fast, shows that Gandhi’s spiritual determination is winning such concessions for India as have never been won before by any nation except by machine guns, bullets, and bloodshed. Legions are the political victories and advantages which Gandhi has wrested from the British government, not by guns and armed soldiers, but by fasting, non-cooperation, and non-resistance, even when fired upon and thrown into prison.
We can say now that Christianity is really being applied and its principles are working without guns to conquer a nation by love and will power, and to bring political evolution and the goal of self-government within an incredibly short time. Fight with love and make your enemies break their own swords. Resist wrong with reason and love. To destroy evil by evil methods, is evil.
It would not pay to be dogmatic as to how India should win her freedom, but if she wins her political goal by Christian principles, she will show to the world the greatest art of settling political dissentions, and she will help to outlaw war from the hearts of nations. Disarmament will not stop war. We would still fight and kill each other with our fists. Machine guns are brainless. They cannot kill without the igniting power of hate and industrial selfishness. Amputate international misunderstandings and war by outlawing national selfishness, industrial greed, hate, and revengefulness from human hearts.
An India free by spiritual methods, by creating understanding in the British, will be universally beneficial. It will bring industrial and spiritual friendship between England and India on a basis of equality and friendship. This would be mutually beneficial. England would be spiritualized by the soul-solacing Hindu philosophy, and India would be benefited by England’s industrial missionaries. Such a spiritual victory will teach other nations to use the more powerful and effective instrument of non-resistance to dispel international misunderstanding, and to discontinue draining manhood and wealth for the upkeep of useless armies, and will help to bring lasting peace among brother nations. India, England, Japan, America, Germany, France, and all other nations, are children of the One God, and should act like brothers.
Feeble man has been successful in conquering vicious and powerful animals by his mind power. Let us conquer the animal power of the international machines of war by the superior Christ principles of intelligence, understanding, and love as Gandhi teaches, and is successfully demonstrating in winning political and spiritual victories for India.
Some Experiences in Self-Realization
—By Louis E. Van Norman
THE wise old Greek, Socrates, said that the very highest wisdom was to know oneself.
How few of us have ever come face to face with ourselves and learned anything thereby! Several times in my life, as I remember very distinctly, I have had particularly clear and keenly impressive experiences in Self-Realization, visions, translations to another sphere for the moment, if you will, but unmistakable evidences of an inner self, working and becoming manifest according to laws quite unsuspected in my every-day life.
We modern people, particularly we Americans, have been trained to regard education as something brought in from the outside, rather than as a faculty cultivated in our inner selves, which makes us better fitted to live in our environment—whatever that may be—and be happy in it.
We really do not know ourselves, much as we may know, or think we know, the external world. In a recent lecture, a professor of philosophy put it well when he said: "We don’t even really know much about our surroundings, not much more than our parents. Only we have a larger vocabulary. We are sophisticated; that is, the "jazz" of the age has gone to our heads. Moreover, we really don’t want to learn. We want to be "put wise". We despise the real things which are made known to us by our senses, calling them "obvious," and are continually seeking something which can be labeled "believe it or not!"
The supreme knowledge; in other words, "The Kingdom of God," is within us. No outside agency can bring it to us, or, thank our Heavenly Father, take it away from us. We can begin to know God by knowing ourselves, and as we grow in our knowledge of God, we will advance in knowledge of ourselves.
When I was a boy of about 14, one day I had what the religious folk would call a vision. It was in the woods, in the autumn. I was gathering nuts. Nature was very beautiful that day. The air was crisp and invigorating, the sun shone gloriously, and the foliage was all-resplendent with color.
Up to that time, I had been a lad like other lads, thoughtless, carefree, pleasure bent, accepting, as my right, all the love my parents bestowed on me. I was, indeed, little more than a bundle of physical sensations. The birds sang and so did my heart. Life on this globe was very good, very desirable. I was happy.
Suddenly, somehow (I cannot explain how or why) I felt I had changed completely in all my ideas, my feelings, my desires. A haze seemed to have spread over the landscape. I remembered my father’s tired facts, my mother’s sweet, unvarying patience, my own occasional unruliness.
There had come to me a touch of what a recent writer has called the "ache of existence," which is sometimes a phase of early adolescence. It was a glimpse of life as it was. I suddenly felt that I owed something to someone. A sense of responsibility crept into my heart. I did not realize it then, but, at that moment, I passed out of childhood. I had become a man. Never again was I to lose that sense of responsibility, that feeling of obligation to the world, to God, to my own people.
Of course, in large measure, this feeling was the result of my religious upbringing, of my orthodox Protestant background, but I had begun to understand that there was an inward life, an Ego. This was my first meeting with myself. Later we were to become better acquainted. I was to learn many things about my mental and psychological make-up, of which, up to that time, I had no idea. My Ego had begun to develop in the commonly understood sense of the word. I was to become, for a time at least, a self-opinionated, egotistical trial to my fellows.
For a few years after this there seemed to be a sort of relapse. I confess, to my regret and (as I see it now) amusement, for a time I was so convinced of my own importance in the universe, so sure of myself that I must have been a most uncomfortable person to live with. No human being could possibly ever know as much as I knew, or believed I knew, at that time.
Obviously, this state of affairs could not go on very long. At the age of 21 I had become a pillar of the church, a trustee, they called me. Then one night I so far forgot myself as to go to hear grand opera, "Faust." I came away with a strange feeling of human littleness, but with a realization of moral and spiritual potentiality. When my brother church officials heard of my sin in going to wicked opera, they convened, to consider my censure, if not expulsion. I had a swift conference with myself. I decided to leave the orthodox fold. From that moment I date the beginning of my intellectual emancipation.
Then one day another further step in emancipation came. While reading Thomas a Kempis, a flash illumined me and, like Saul at Tarsus, I saw clearly, perhaps for the first time, my own mental littleness, my spiritual immaturity. A new sense of perspective was given me. Again my old Puritan training, in its better aspects, did not fail me. Henceforth, nothing mattered except the struggle to do my duty, to "play the game without whining," to be captain of my own soul.
This stern duty attitude toward life—obligation without joy—remained with me and dominated my life until I first heard Swami Yogananda and took his lessons. Then I had another realization and, oh, the joy of it! I was not a worm, a miserable sinner, awaiting the penalty for wrong doing at the hands of an avenging deity. I was a child of God, with a chance, no, a right to happiness.
This past summer I had a rare experience about which I want to tell you. It was a new meeting face to face with my real self. One beautiful, clear, cool morning in August, at my summer camp in Massachusetts, I had just finished my exercises, and meditation. Everything was beautiful and beyond words, peaceful. There was the noble ash tree outside the Lodge door and the apple orchard above, with a faint tinkle of the cowbells coming musically through the trees—thank God, he made vegetation green! Hovering above and darting back and forth among the bee balm, the larkspur, and the spikenard, just beyond our door stones, was a radiant little spirit in the form of a humming bird. He knew me and was not afraid.
On the breakfast table a rarely beautiful collection of narcissus, gladiolus, and roses stood out against the blue of the sky. Down across the valley the early morning mists still clung like cotton wool over the pond. I looked at the flowers intently, absorbingly, and my soul forgot everything else.
I felt strangely elevated, elated. Time passed. There was no longer any time. Patanjali would have said I was making shangjama over the flowers. I began to see beyond them—the flowers—out into the world of non-material things.
Beauty, said the poet, is a kind of good. Beauty, also, in a way, is Truth. And there you have the eternal Trinity. Realizing the beautiful, the true, and the good all in one, in God’s own symbols, I was carried away. I saw myself no longer a single detached human being. All the world was my brother, its suffering …my suffering, its joys …my joys. I began to be part of the great universe. I was experiencing a kind of samadhi.
Just then strains of gentle, sweet music came from above. My good wife was arising and had started an old music box, one of those liquid-toned things, no longer made in the jazz age. It chimed out a hymn I had once sung in Sunday School.
"There is a happy land far, far away—"
No, not far away. Right here and now, in myself, not dependent upon the possession of things, but growing out of a vision of my inner self as it really is. If this realization of Oneness with the Universe gave me a consciousness of acceptance with what we call the Eternal Father, why should I not rejoice!
The Bhagavad Gita
THE practical metaphysician, in the course of his attempts to free his soul from material bondage, must learn how to be victorious in the material, biological, chemical, social, psychological, and spiritual battles which confront life. The soul descends from omnipresent Spirit to the little body, and, being identified with the imperfections of the body, it loses its omnipresent, perfect states and has to battle with all the limitations of the physical system.
It has been shown that the soul must do away with all identification with both the good and bad conditions to which the body and life are subjected. The first step consists in trying to conquer greed by cultivating the desire to succeed and to make money in the right way only. Also, the soul should conquer sense cravings by cultivating self-control; should conquer fear of ill-health by cultivating desires and activities which make good health.
The second and higher step consists in rising above all personal desire, such as that for money, mental power, and physical health. In the final analysis, a man is not yet a master who has still to battle with life, blood chemicals, sense-psychology, temptation, or ignorance. While experiencing the different forms of material, psychological, biological, ethical, and spiritual battles, the soul must ask itself each night in introspection: "The soldiers of the higher faculties, after eagerly battling the soldiers of the lower faculties, what did they?"
The spiritual interpretation of the first stanza ends with the description of the chemical and hereditary battles which the soul has to win in order to attain the changeless state in which health and disease, life and death, and all the pairs of opposites, appear like waves of change rising and falling on the ocean-bosom of changelessness.
Disease is the sailing of the boat of life in the stormy sea of existence. Health is swimming in the gently-stirred sea of Being. Wisdom consists in jumping out of the boat of flesh limitation and becoming one with the sea of Life. As long as we concentrate wholly on the changing waves of health or disease, of life or death, so long do we forget to watch the changeless sea of all-protecting Spirit.
Remember, it is good to emphasize the desire to destroy poverty, ill-health, and so on, but after winning riches and health, if one does not try to rise above all the conditions of the body, one cannot ultimately reach Spirit. In the West, many modern religious teachers make a sickening appeal to mob-psychology by using religion and God only for health, happiness, and prosperity. One should seek God first, last, and all the time as the ultimate aim, and in finding God, will find the satisfaction of all the heart’s desires in Him.
After contacting God, it is right and effectual to demand health, prosperity, or anything else which is needed. Before finding God, people usually want the toys of material things, but after finding Him, even the greatest desires become insipid, not through indifference, but because of the contact of the all-satisfying, all desire-quenching God-Bliss. Many people unsuccessfully beg all their lives and fail to see that if they were to put forth one-fourth of the concentration used in seeking material things into the effort to find God first, then they could have, not only some, but all of their heart’s desires fulfilled.
Also, it must be remembered that finding God does not imply complete neglect of the various physical and spiritual battles of life. On the other hand, the climbing spiritual aspirant must learn to conquer in order to make the Temple of Life free from the darkness of ignorance and the weakness of disease, so that God’s perfect Presence may be perceived. As a house full of jewels cannot be seen in the dark, so the presence of God cannot be felt while the darkness of ignorance, overpowering disease, or mental inharmony prevails.
The Chemical Battle of Life
Most people are afraid when they hear about the bacteria which are always present in their bodies, but there is no cause for alarm, for it is only certain specific kinds of bacteria which create poisons in the blood and cause disease. The large intestine is the home of billions of friendly bacteria. These do no injury but break up the cellulose and increase the fetid odor.
The half-digested food or chyme gently runs along the intestines and countless tiny projections or villi dip into it and saturate themselves with the nourishment. About sixteen square feet of food-receiving surface is found in the small intestines, from which the food materials are taken into the blood and the lymph. The rest passes to the large intestines. Large quantities, at least two-thirds, of our food should be bulky, such as fresh vegetables, cereals, and fruits, which leave a residue. This roughage acts like a broom or cleaner of the intestines. The semi-digested food material taken into the body is absorbed in the intestinal wall and passed into the blood-vessels. The blood becomes saturated and after moving through the liver sieve, it is pumped through the body for the different organs to choose the specific food they require.
Examine a drop of your blood under a microscope. You will find countless numbers of neatly arranged globules in a yellowish watery fluid. This fluid is termed the plasma or serum. It serves a two-fold purpose. It carries nourishment to the cells and waste matter from them. The red globules, or red corpuscles, carry oxygen from the lungs to all the tissues in the human system. These make the blood red.
It has been discovered that the human serum has affinities and antipathies. The human plasma is agreeable to its own red corpuscles, but when blood of a different animal is mixed with it, the red cells die. Animals closely related do not suffer ill effects when their blood is mixed. It is a very strange fact that man’s blood agrees when mixed with the blood of anthropoid apes or with blood of a different race. In blood transfusions, there is no such thing as wrong mixture of blood between the brown, white, yellow, or red races, for all men have one blood and all are made in the image of God.
Under the microscope, it is seen also that the blood contains numerous little discs or white corpuscles. These act like amoebae. The red corpuscles in the blood are the servants who carry oxygen to the whole body. In the same blood, also, the white corpuscles act as white soldiers who arrest any intruding bacteria. The white cell immediately attacks any intruding bacteria, enfolds them in a death-grip and digests them.
Whenever there is a wound, malignant bacteria begin their work, but the white corpuscles, led by the conscious general, Life Force, gather together to defend the broken castle wall of tissues. These white corpuscles have a sort of chemical intuition and they mobilize in the parts which are threatened with the invasion of malignant bacteria.
The great battle between the white corpuscles and the harmful bacteria results in battle heat or feverishness on the part of the patient. If the white corpuscles win, the battle for health is won, but sometimes, when the dangerously multiplying bacteria win, the body is ravaged with serious sickness. Bacteria produce a poison or toxin which destroys the chemical balance of the blood. On the other hand, the blood produces a counter-agent or anti-toxin to destroy the power of bacterial toxins. From dead bacteria a sort of chemical or an opsonin is formed which serves as a stimulant and encourages the soldiers of white corpuscles to fight disease.
Therefore, anyone desiring health should live in such a way hygienically as to make his body immune to disease. He should consumes an abundance of milk, fruits, and vegetables, which make red blood and nourish the white corpuscles to be ready for bacterial battles.
Over-indulgence in sex, over-eating, lack of exercise, lack of fresh air, and lack of sunshine, all destroy the red blood corpuscles and especially affect the fighting power of the white corpuscles.
Sluggish circulation often culminates in poison deposits in the system. By energizing the muscles, the white and red blood corpuscles are specially charged with vital force. This electrification of blood cells helps to make them immune to disease and helps to surround them with a charged barbed wire of life force which electrocutes all invading inimical bacteria. The Yogoda tensing exercises are especially helpful in stimulating sluggish circulation.
Absolute cleanliness is necessary to prevent infection, but above all, self-preparation by recharging the blood with vitality is the surest measure of immunity against disease. When your vitality is low, even if you are in a hygienic sanitarium, you may become the victim of the invisible army of bacteria, and, in a dirty slum, full of bacteria, you may live in health if your blood is charged with the warmth of good character, self-control, and energy derived from right living, right exercises, (such as Yogoda) and right meditation. So the wise man asks himself daily during his introspection: "Gathered together on the battlefields of the body are the soldiers of protective white corpuscles, arrayed against those of the invading destructive poisonous bacteria—what are they doing?"
Everyone, like the wise man, should know whether his body is winning the chemical battle or not. By constant introspective, psychological, and physiological examination of the condition of the entire human system, he must know if the bodily vitality is becoming stronger and is destroying the power of the constantly invading poisonous bacteria.
It is almost useless to mentally read Bhagavad Gita without digging into the depths of its spiritual meanings and especially into their applications in daily life. The spiritual interpretation of the first stanza will be continued in the December issue of East-West with the explanation of the battle between Cosmic Consciousness and human consciousness.
The Voice—By B. Nerode
(The Soul and Truth constitute but one and the same substance. The voice of the Soul is the voice of Truth. Goodness, justice, and wisdom are not accidental attributes of man but are his innermost essence. His weaknesses and errors, follies, and mistakes are mere accidents of life that he can avoid and overcome if he submits his wayward will to the voice of the Soul. Soul speaks when the mouth is sealed and silence prevails within and without.)
THE WEAKMAN: "I have been imprisoned in the prison-house of matter by the cruel decree of destiny to undergo a term and kind of life on earth whether I choose it or not. I am suffocated with the slavery of this body. Intolerable are the physical, physiological, economic, biological, and social laws, beyond which I have no freedom to move, or against whose tyranny I have no power to protest or revolt.
The Voice: "Yes, my child. You are the willing victim of your own wish. Your body is the materialized fruit of your own desire and action. The present is not an isolated moment in time. It follows the Past and precedes the Future. All that you are today is the fruition of your yesterday, here or elsewhere, and what you are going to be tomorrow is contingent upon how you use your today. You have the free will to rebel or submit, to a great extent.
The Weakman: "I am a victim of my own will? When did I wish for a body that is a slave to the pull of the earth and of the emotions of the mind? Did I wish that I may not even enjoy the least freedom to soar in the open sky under the open Sun without gravitation pulling me down, down, down, to the valley of shadows and disappointments?
The Voice: "Your Ego wanted to play with the dust on the shores of the earth. It was tempted to enjoy the softness of the grass and the sun rays on the dewdrops. It wanted to play and frolic in the cradle of this globe as it whirls through space, careless of the fate of its neighboring stars. So, your sojourn on this earth is but the fulfillment of your own wish. Yet, now by personal efforts you can outgrow your former wish and its evolving effects.
The Weakman: "Then, why are all these laws hemming me in and strangling my soul to death?"
The Voice: "Because in the anarchy of life there can be no constant growth. Laws bind as well as release. They bind and discipline weaknesses and release them as strength. Through these Cosmic laws, weakness grows into power and dust into brains of man. Laws keep the wheel of evolution, reincarnation, and progress moving.
The Weakman: "Oh, the tyranny of evolution and reincarnation! I hunger and cannot get food; I thirst and water is withheld from me; I crave for prosperity and poverty is my lot; I strive after saintship and compunction is all that I receive at the hands of life. Do you call that justice?
The Voice: "Yes, and more. You say you hunger, yet the world is wide and the earth fertile. Why do you not toil and adventure even at the risk of death? You say the earth fails to give you food. Why do you not make food out of the Cosmic rays? God gave you a body; even so did He give you a mind with which to work. You say the earth has no room for you. Why do you not fly into the space and colonize the stars or claim your rightful place under the Sun? You say you are thirsty. Why do you not cry aloud, and burst the clouds and bring down rains from the Heart of God? You say you are poor. Why do you not shake the world with the tumult of your desire and move God on His throne?
The Weakman: "Tell me; tell me how?"
The Voice: "Build your dream on the rock of meditation and upon the grace of God, but stop not your toiling and struggling until your just demand is rightly answered. Think and work; work and think. Work, think, and meditate.
The Weakman: "My will is weak. My body is frail. Opportunities I have none. What—what can I do?"
The Voice: "Meditate and be silent, that your weak will may be made strong and your frail body become the abiding place for the All-Presence. Do not deplore the lack of opportunities. Rather make yourself an opportunity for God to reveal His power through you. Be the vehicle for the perfect expression of the Infinite God."
On The Mountain—By William Schorn
I would stand on the highest mountain
‘Mid the mists of early morn,
And watch the pomp and splendor
When the bright new day is born.
I would stand on the highest mountain
When the noontime sun rays dart,
And hear the song of the winds that pass,
Singing God into my heart.
I would stand on the highest mountain,
Watching the sunset glow,
And feel a serene contentment,
That the scorner cannot know.
I would stand on the highest mountain,
Early morn and in noontime blaze,
‘Til the evening shadows hide the earth,
And chant my Maker’s praise.
Be True—Horatius Bonar
Thou must be true thyself,
If thou the Truth wouldst teach;
Thy soul must overflow, if thou
Another’s soul wouldst reach!
It needs the overflow of heart
To give the lips full speech.
Think truly, and thy thoughts
Shall the world’s famine feed;
Speak truly, and each word of thine
Shall be a fruitful seed;
Live truly, and thy life shall be
A great and noble creed.
Astrological World Cycles
—By Laurie Pratt
LAST month’s article dealt with the method used by the ancient Hindu sages to arrive at the correct Age of the world in reference to an astronomical 24,000 year cycle, the Precession of the Equinoxes. Following this plan, we have seen that the present year of 1932, A.D., corresponds to the year 234 of Dwapara Yuga (Bronze Age) of the Ascending Arc. Such a system of chronology commends itself to reason, linking the time-periods of the world with the heavenly phenomena, which alone, by their impersonality, can have an universal significance and application.
Various Chronological Eras
No such universality can be claimed for any other method of chronological reckoning. All systems of national or religious time-keeping have meaning only for a limited group of adherents, and serve as stumbling-stones for historians, since these groups often leave records dated, without explanation, by various chronological calendars, such as civil and religious.
Thus, the year 1932, A.D., of the Christian era, corresponds to the year 5693 of the Jewish era, the year 2592 of the Japanese era, the year 1351 of the Mohammedan era, and the year 2244 of the Grecian (Selecidae) era in present-day usage among the Syrians. Further, of the many chronological eras followed in modern times in various parts of the world, some are reckoned by years based on solar returns, and others on years based on 12 or 13 lunar returns. There is thus room for much confusion among later students of history in their efforts to correctly synchronize past events.
We must grant, therefore, that man can have no more accurate universal measuring-stick for the passage of time than that afforded by the position of the fixed stars in relation to the yearly equinoctial place of the Sun.
Western astronomers, who have not as yet investigated the great universal truths which lie hidden in the ancient division of the 24,000 year Equinoctial Cycle into two sets of four World ages, and who hence, doubtless, would be unwilling to designate the present era as "Dwapara Yuga," would nevertheless be forced to concede that no more practical and accurate method of universal chronology could be adopted than one based on the position of the equinoxes during their 24,000 year cycle.
Reckoning time in this way, we could say, with scientific accuracy, that a new half-cycle (12,000 years) commenced in the year 498, A.D., when the equinoxes coincided with Aries O° and Libra O° of the Constellations, and that, as 1,434 years have elapsed since that time, the present year could well be designated in present-day usage all over the world as the "year 1434 since the last coincidence of the two Zodiacs" (or, in more astronomical language, "since the last coincidence of the Vernal Equinox with the fixed star Revati.")
Such a computation would fit in perfectly with the Brahmanical division of the Equinoctial Cycle into World Ages, since, after subtracting 1,200 years, length of the last Kali Yuga, from 1,434, we have a remainder of 234 years, which marks our present place in Dwapara Yuga.
First Error in Calculations
This accurate method of measuring time was current in India for thousands of years, up to about 700, B.C. At that time a colossal mistake crept into the Hindu almanacs and has been blindly perpetrated ever since. Reference to Diagram (I), which accompanied last month’s article, will show that the year 702, B.C., marked the completion of Dwapara Yuga, and the beginning of Kali Yuga, of the Descending Arc.
The Maharajah Judhisthir, who began to reign in India during the latter years of the Dwapara era, voluntarily gave up his throne to his grandson, Raja Parikshit, shortly before the start of Kali Yuga, and retried with all the wise men of his court to a religious retreat in the Himalaya Mountains. Thus, there were none left, at the grandson’s court, sufficiently versed in the ancient wisdom, to calculate the Ages correctly.
So, when the last year of the 2,400 year period of Dwapara Yuga passed away, and the first year of the 1,200 year Kali Yuga dark Age had arrived, the latter was numbered as the year 2401 instead of year 1 of Kali Yuga. In 498, A.D., when the 1,200 year period of Kali Yuga of the Descending Arc had been completed, and the first year of Kali Yuga of the Ascending Arc began, the latter was designated, in the Hindu almanacs, as the year 3601 instead of year 1 of Kali Yuga of the Ascending Arc.
Solar Years Become "Divine" Years
However, as the wise men of that period were well aware, from conditions in India and the world generally, that mankind was in Kali Yuga, the dark Iron Age of Necessity, as described in the prophecies in the Mahabharata, their sacred teachings, and as they also knew that, according to these same scriptures, the age of Kali was fixed at 1,200 years only, they fancied, by way of reconciliation between the scriptures and their current almanacs, that the 1,200 years of Kali were not the ordinary solar year of our earth, but "Divine" years of the gods, consisting of 12 Divine months of 30 Divine days. Each of these Divine days was supposed to be equal in length to one of our solar years.
Thus, the Sanskrit scholars of Kali Yuga, such a Kullu Bhatta, explained away the discrepancies in their almanacs, saying that the 1,200 years allotted by the ancients for the duration of one Kali Yuga were equal (1,200 x 360) to 432,000 solar years of our earth, and that, in 498, A.D., 3,500 years of this long Kali Yuga had passed away. Thus the mistaken calculation gained firmer ground in Hindu chronology, and today the almanacs used in India state that the present year is the 5,034th of Kali Yuga, of which 426,966 years still remain.
Equinoctial Cycle Disregarded
By thus expanding the 1,200 year period into 432,000 solar years, the Kali Yuga teachers entirely lost sight of the connection of the Yugas with the 24,000 year Equinoctial Cycle, and the key to the correct calculation of the World Ages was lost. A modest 24,000 year period is well within the grasp both of the human mind and of historical annals and prehistoric records, but who can hope to trace the characteristic outlines of the two sets of Four Yugas in the affairs of mankind for a period of 8,640,000 years (24,000 x 360)?
No such difficulty faces us if we seek the evidence of the various World Ages in a 24,000 year cycle, and enough is known of the history of mankind for the past 7,000 years (which, rightly, covers our historical period) to enable us to clearly trace the distinctive influence on world events of the various Yugas which have, either completely or partially, run their course during that 7,000 year span.
Mistaken Expansion of Cycle
The erroneous computations of the Four Ages, given out by the Kali Yuga scholars when they discovered their chronology was not in keeping with the rules laid down by the ancient rishis, are as follows:
Satya Yuga, 4,800 X 360 = 1,728,000
Treta Yuga, 3,600 X 360 = 1,296,000
Dwapara Yuga, 2,400 X 360 = 864,000
Kali Yuga, 1,200 X 360 = 432,000
Total Mahayuga in Solar Years, 4,320,000
No justification exists in the Mahabharata, or in the teachings of Manu, for this transformation of solar years into "Divine" years in reference to the Four Ages of the Equinoctial Cycle, yet these mistaken expanded figures have been accepted, without due investigation, not only by the mathematicians who compile the almanacs in present-day India, but also by writers of standard metaphysical and astrological textbooks. These authors have erected, on this shaky mathematical foundation, elaborate cosmological structures which will not stand the test of astronomical verification.
The 12,000 year period, which loses its intrinsic significance when turned into 432,000 years, was known to all ancient civilizations as the half of an Equinoctial Cycle. The old Mazdeans (Magi, of whom the modern Parsis are descendants) had a 12,000 year cycle, Zervan Daregho Hyadata ("Sovereign Time of the Long Period.") With the Greeks and their instructors, the Egyptians, the "Great Age" again referred only to the tropical or sidereal year of the Equinoctial Cycle.
Ancient Atlantean Cycle
There are cycles within cycles—cycles of inconceivably long as well as of unimaginably short duration. It is not, therefore, my aim to contend that the cycle (rather, half-cycle) of 4,320,000 years (Mahayuga or Manvantara) which the Kali Yuga scholars brought into prominence, has no basis in fact. In truth, a solar cycle of that length is recorded in ancient Hindu almanacs as having been preserved from the chronological compilations of a great astronomer-astrologer, Asuramaya, of the old lost continent of Atlantis, but I do wish to point out that, whatever the astrological import of the 4,320,000 year cycle, it should not be confused, as it has been since the dark days of Kali Yuga of the Descending Arc, with the Equinoctial 24,000 year Cycle with its two sets of four World Ages.
Daily 24-Hour Cycle
Our 24-hour solar day, divided (on the equinoctial days) into 12 hours of day (corresponding to Daiba Yuga of the Ascending Arc) and 12 hours of night (corresponding to Daiba Yuga of the Descending Arc), repeats, on a smaller scale, the grand Equinoctial Cycle. According to this plan, the hours of our day would be under the influence of the various Age-vibrations, as follows:
Ascending Arc (Day Cycle)
6.00 a.m. to 10.48 a.m. Golden Age Hours
10.48 a.m. to 2.24 p.m. Silver Age Hours
2.24 p.m. to 4.48 p.m. Bronze Age Hours
4.48 p.m. to 6.00 p.m. Iron Age Hours
Descending Arc (Night Cycle)
6.00 p.m. to 7.12 p.m. Iron Age Hours
7.12 p.m. to 9.36 p.m. Bronze Age Hours
9.36 p.m. to 1.12 a.m. Silver Age Hours
1.12 a.m. to 6.00 a.m. Golden Age Hours
Daily "Age" Influences
The above arrangement is ideal, rather than practical, since it assumes, for the sake of a simple mathematical division, that sunrise occurs at 6 a.m., and sunset at 6 p.m., whereas this is true only on the equinoctial days, about March 21 and September 22 of each year. This ideal division of a 24-hour day into two 12-hour parts, follows faithfully the Equinoctial Cycle plan of separating the cycle into two divisions of 10 parts each, of which the Kali Yuga period measures one-tenth part, the Dwapara Period two-tenths parts, the Treta period three-tenths parts, and the Satya period four-tenths parts.
Hence, in the compilation given above, the Kali Yuga hour-period measures one-tenth of the 12-hour half-cycle, or one and one-fifth hours, while the Satya Yuga hour-period is as long as four-tenths, or four and one-fifth hours. In practice, however, the length of these hour-periods would vary, according to the season of the year and the latitude of the place on the earth, since all mundane things are under the limitations and changes imposed by time and space.
Daily Zodiacal Hours
Still following the analogy between the 24,000 year Equinoctial Cycle and our 24-hour day, we may (ideally) divide our daily period between sunrise and the following sunrise, into 12 parts of two hours each, and allot the first two hours after sunrise to the influence of the zodiacal Aries, and so on around the circle of the 12 Signs (see Diagram I), ending with Pisces ruling the two hours before sunrise of the next day.
The above illustrations may have a more theoretical than practical interest for most of us, since a day is so short that we may not think it worth our while to determine the astrological influences which lie within it, but the examples have been given here in order to point out the relation of smaller to larger cycles, and the mathematical perfection of the Divine Plan which links the greatest to the most infinitesimal within, and doubtless beyond, the shores of our universe.
(To be Continued in Next Issue)
Food, Health Recipes
2 onions, sliced
1-1/2 pints cooked vegetables: cauliflower, turnip, carrot, green beans, potato, or any other vegetable in season.
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 cup boiled rice, or more if needed
1/4 lb. butter.
Heat the butter, fry the onions, sprinkle in the curry powder, cook ten to fifteen minutes, add the vegetables, which have been diced, and heat thoroughly. Add a little water, if needed. Serve the curry with boiled rice.
3 qts. sliced apples (sour apples are best)
4 medium onions
4 medium green peppers
1 medium red pepper
3 small hot red peppers (dry)
1 cup raisins
3 cups vinegar
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 lemon rind, ground
3 cups or l lb. brown sugar
1 glass tart jelly (currant or cranberry)
1 tablespoon ginger
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cloves.
Put the onions and peppers through the food grinder. Add to the sliced apples. Add the vinegar and jelly. Simmer over a slow fire until the apples are tender. Then add the other ingredients and cook until well reduced, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Pour into sterilized jars and seal.
* * * * * * * * * *
WHEN you are unhappy, you forget the days when you were happy, and when happiness comes, the days of unhappiness seem to go away forever, but as the sunny days would not be appreciated if there were no cloudy days, so also happiness can never be appreciated without unhappiness. It seems as if life is checkered with unhappiness in order to make people look for the happiness hidden behind the clouds of trials. If that is so, the unhappiness of depression should not bring terror, for behind its cloud is the silver lining of real prosperity.
The false standard of happiness and security which came from having too much unused money and from falsely inflated stock values led people to the marshes of imaginary prosperity. The will-o’-the-wisp of greed led nations to the mire of universal poverty due to over-production, too much luxury, no buyers, sloth, and unemployment.
Depression is the universal law for pulling national industries back to their normal sizes, lest they, like over-puffed balloons, collapse beyond repair. Hence, we must be content to have the law of life make us concentrate on real struggle-won stable prosperity and not strive for over-inflated balloon-like prosperity which may burst when we need it most. We should be glad that all the real industries did not burst, but rather, were saved, forewarned by the fate which befell the falsely-swelling stock industries.
We must think that depression came to us to rid our minds of greed and imaginary prosperity, and to make us concentrate upon real prosperity, which alone can give permanent financial security and happiness.
Hymn to Earth
—By Cecil M. Kyle
Go ye to my vineyards
With greedy hands
Gather my great clusters of grapes,
Tinted with evening’s purple.
Thrust your eager hands
In the vines, my tangled hair.
My destruction is your strength.
—By Sradha Devi
"All Thy children shall be taught of God."—Isaiah 54:13.
(Continued from October Issue)
Law of Compensation
The third formula is compensation. It comes from the Latin compensare, which means to weigh together. It supplies the place of something else. It makes up a deficiency. According to the law of compensation, if one organ of the body refuses to function properly, others work harder to make up for the deficiency. If the human spine is accidentally bent in one direction, it develops what is called a "compensating curve" in the opposite direction in its effort to remain straight and upright. The baby cries because the right breast is taken away, only to find the full left breast is offered as a substitute for the empty one.
The application of this law will often cause the experimenter to remain in the smoke-filled laboratory crying for fresh air and sunshine, but if he remains until the experiment is completed, the soft breeze of duty will open the windows of heaven, and lift the veil, revealing rainbow-shadowed heights, while the soul experiences the conscious knowledge of a new quality given as a reward.
Suffering is nothing if you reach your goal. Out of the thick darkness of materiality come some of the most blessed experiences. When they pass in review before an awakened soul, he would not blot one out, no matter what unpleasant memories might be attached. He knows that experience was the beginning of his conscious march to better things, and he weighs together the pleasure and the pain and realizes the way of the cross is not strewn with rose petals, but it is the path to self-mastery.
Law of Rhythm
The fourth lesson may be likened by way of illustration to the periodic star, which shows periodic changes in brightness. To each student in the School of Life is given a period of active experimental work, and a time to absorb its vital points. As Nature folds her wings with the shadows of evening and opens her eyelids with the morning, so we must repeat again and again in periodical review until with colder eyes we can write out the exact results in each well-learned experiment. "For when Nature putteth forth her buds, ye know that spring is nigh."—New Testament.
All things manifest in periodic cycles as we climb the spiral ladder of life. You sleep, you are cast down, you want to rush into the loneliness of the forest, and then you feel ashamed of your weakness. Oh, Soul, why are you cast down? There is nothing that confronts you that is not a step in your unfoldment.
"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to read, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboreth? I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it. He hath made everything beautiful in his time. Also, he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end."—Ecclesiastes, 3:1-11.
All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. Through pressure the diamond is made, and we are also in the making.
Law of Magnetism
The fifth experiment will be the angles of your triangles of life upon the dial of Polarity. There is a little instrument called a reflecting galvanometer, in which a delicately poised and adjusted magnet is attached to a mirror which reflects a ray upon a scale in such a manner as to indicate the strength of an electric current by reflection.
This instrument aptly illustrates where your life radiation falls as you pass around life’s cycles. If the magnet is set Godward, and it is attached to a mirror of reflection (meditation upon God) that will turn the wandering mind back to its Creator and show the angle to which you daily lean. The measure of your strength will be weighed by the predominating ray you reflect. "Draw nigh unto God, and He will draw nigh unto you." Your strength will be treated by the current you have set in motion through reflection. By adjustment of the magnet, you draw all good to you. Realize that you are a small magnet, a small portion from the universal magnet placed upon the dial of eternal cycles, which draws you to seek first His Polarity and revolve around His Heart.
Law of Motion
"I shake not the earth only, but also heaven."—Hebrew 12:26. Motion is our sixth experiment. How can the Divine manifest without motion? (Vibration.) I prefer to use the word motion, although vibration expresses my meaning better, but the use of the word vibration is like a dull razor. It has been used so much, with so little meaning. To the chemist, the atomic action is well known, and often likened to a room filled with tennis balls, each going at a very high rate of speed and rebounding when they hit a solid object. We might also illustrate this by looking through the little optigraph which produces Life motion pictures in solemn silence from the tiniest atoms to the largest bodies. For the eternal purposes of God shall roll onward in vibrant joy until all is fulfilled.
"My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle."—Job. How well this expresses the fleeting changes which sweep around our feet. We are jostled like balls along with the crowd, pressed into the smallest spaces, withdrawn and hurled without warning to eternal shores, but there is something that can change all the world for you. It is the knowledge of the laws of your Being and your ability to work with the universal.
"Study the hearts of men, that you may know what that world is in which you live, and of which you will be a part. Regard the constantly changing and moving life which surrounds you, for it is formed by the hearts of men, and as you learn to understand their constitution and meaning, you will by degrees be able to read the larger Word of Life, (Law)."—Light on the Path.
The student will find in the study of the seventh practical experiment that there is one great Law Giver, one great First Cause, the creator and source of all life and power, the Cause that impels into existence.
This Cause is a substance exerting its power to act, and the effect is the substance produced into form by the exerting power. All these experimental tests serve to bring us before another teacher whose name is Faith. It is like a degree conferred upon the persevering ones.
"The promise of faith is given to them that believe, but before faith came, we were kept under the Law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore, the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith, but after that faith is come we are no longer under a school master. We are the children by faith in Christ."—Galatians, 3:23-26.
In this higher grade there is neither Christian, Hindu, nor Buddhist. There is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female, for we are all one in Christ.
Then, if you are Christ’s, then you are the seed of Abraham, a Brahma, and heirs according to promise through faith because "The promise of Spirit is through faith." Long have you struggled under tutors and governors until the appointed time of the Father. Children you were in bondage under the elements until graduation exercises, when the Father said: "Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God, and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain, for the former things are passed away. He that overcometh shall inherit all things, and I will be his God, and he shall be my son."—Revelations, 21:3-7.
"Tell me, ye that desire to be under the Law, do ye not hear the Law? It is written that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bond woman was born after the flesh, but he of the free woman was by promise."—Galatians, 4:21-22.
These represent the two covenants, one from the mountain which is above and free, which is the mother of all. The Scripture says to cast out the bond woman and her son, for the son of a bond woman shall not be heir with the son of a free woman. We are not children of the bond woman (the flesh) but of the free Spirit.
"Therefore walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh, for the flesh lusteth against the Spirit and the Spirit against the flesh, but if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law."—Galatians, 5:16-18.
Make your final analysis a review of comparative works of the Spirit and the flesh. The flesh manifests hatred, wrath, uncleanliness, heresies, and so forth, while the Spirit is easily entreated, gentle, patient, long-suffering, calm, well-poised, and tempered with spiritual justice.
"But now after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements (or rudiments) whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage," or prefer to be little children going back to the old school master, to the experimental laboratory again. I beseech you to seek the freedom through faith in God.
"And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."—Galatians, 5:24-25.
God Consciousness—By B. Jotin
MAN can never be permanently satisfied with the pleasure which is derived through his senses. Such pleasure might give him a temporary thrill, but the enjoyment of it is over almost before the thrill has passed. This enjoyment has hardly crossed the threshold of its duration when he at once longs for it again, as though he had never experienced it before. Some people are thus led to believe that they will be permanently happy if they constantly have the pleasure they seek through their senses. That belief is a great illusion. If all the pleasures of the world were given to us, we would still continue to be as unhappy as before.
We can never be satisfied with the pleasure of the senses alone. We instinctively seek for something which is beyond. We intuitively feel that there is something lying beyond our sensed perception which could give us happiness—permanent and conscious happiness. This conviction springs from within our soul. Through our soul’s perception, we realize that we can never be permanently happy in the world of the senses.
But why are we unable to find happiness in our sense life? Primarily, because we, ourselves, are not the senses. Because we are the Spirit. Because our real nature is spiritual. Spirit can never find happiness in a body of matter. The Infinite can never be happy in the finite. Hence, there is that inner longing to find happiness outside the world of the senses. There is not only the inner longing, but, along with it, there is also a conviction that we can find true happiness beyond our sense life.
Every individual believes this, whether he actually admits or lives up to his belief or not. Sinner and saint believe in it equally, but there is a great difference in the point of view of the sinner and the saint. The sinner believes in happiness beyond this life with fear and the hope of vicarious atonement, whereas the saint believes in it with a sense of joyous freedom and right conviction that it must be self-attained.
Without exception, all religions preach this truth in one form or another. Every religion teaches that there is a stage beyond our sense life, attaining which we shall find what we really seek—true happiness. That stage is variously described, however, in the different religions. According to some, it is the "Kingdom of Heaven," "Kingdom of Jehovah," or "Kingdom of Allah." According to others, it is the "State of Nirvana," "State of Brahmahood or Godhood," or "State of Freedom," but they all refer to one and the same state of consciousness. All religions agree upon this point.
This is, indeed, the foundation upon which stand all schools of religion, high or low. There is no difference in the acceptance of this ideal among all religions. Although on this point all religions agree, they differ among themselves on two fundamental points: First, regarding the nature of Godhood and the existence of the individual in the state of Godhood, and, second, the way by which this state of Godhood is to be attained.
For example, let us consider the different beliefs of various religions regarding the nature of Godhood and man’s place therein. The Christians have their own conception of Heaven, the Mohamedans have another, while the Jews hold a belief which differs from both. The Hindus, likewise, have still another ideal, yet, in reality, they all agree that the state of Godhood is one of conscious, permanent happiness. The various religions believe that the position of the individual in the after life is different.
Regarding our individual existence in "Heaven," or the "State of Godhood," all religions except Hinduism, including Buddhism as a branch of Hinduism, believe that in Heaven we live as citizens in the Kingdom of God. God is the King and we are his happy subjects. They would have us believe that we live in the Kingdom of God, but remain separated as individuals from Him. Hinduism, on the other hand, declares that our existence in the State of Godhood signifies actual unity with God. In that state we are one with God, without King or subjects, for in that state God alone exists. Thus, in becoming one with God, we actually become God.
"Just as the various rivers lose their individual forms and differences when they flow into the ocean and become one with it, so do we lose all form and differences when we attain salvation and become Infinitely One with the Infinite God." This is, indeed, a very bold statement. Perhaps it rings within your ears as almost sacrilegious. Perhaps it makes you shudder. Truth always makes the ignorant shudder. It takes great wisdom and spiritual courage to say: "I am God. You are God. All is God."
"He who knows God (Brahman), he indeed, becomes God." This is the truth of the Vedas. God is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, in One. A wrong conception of spiritual truths keeps man in perpetual ignorance, or damnation, if I may be permitted to use such an expression. Which is more sacrilegious, to declare that eternal salvation is for all, or to say that eternal damnation is for the children of God whom we think to be sinners? Are we self-appointed judges to damn or save the children of God? Is there foolishness greater than ours when we find a man violating our code of morality and at once condemn him to hell to be eternally burned.
I wish these foolish, self-styled Daniels could really understand the words: "Judge not, that ye be not judged." What they really mean is that we must not judge mankind merely by our social and religious code. Always remember that all men are born of God and nothing can prevent their going back to Him. We came from God, we exist in God, and we are going back to God. We are that which was, and is, and is to be. Verily, "I am That I am." "I am Brahman."
The second point on which religions differ is regarding the way by which the Kingdom of Heaven may be reached, or the method of attaining Godhood. Different religions have pointed out many ways, some, perhaps, are highways and some are byways. Hinduism has also offered a way, but before we describe this particular way which Hinduism has shown, we must remember that all roads lead to God. "At the end of all ways, I wait," avers the voice of God. Recognizing that our ideal is to attain the realization of our Godhood, Hinduism says the best way to realize this ideal is to constantly live in Spirit. Since we want to become one with God, we must always live in the consciousness of God. That is the most effective way. By constantly living in the consciousness of God, you will become God. This is the realized truth of the Vedic religion.
How, then, can we live in the consciousness of God? The only way is to cease living perpetually in the consciousness of matter. In every religion it is taught that to live the life-spiritual we must destroy the life-material. This is very true. That is the only way, but just what does that statement mean? Does it mean that we must destroy this body which we have voluntarily taken as an instrument in attaining the goal of our life, which is always spiritual? Does it mean that we should dispose of all our material possessions, either by destruction or by distribution? Certainly not.
This reminds me of a little story: Way out in the woods, in the dusk of a warm day, two friends were seated on the bank of the Ganges, enjoying the cool river air. One was lolling lazily against a tree, while the other watched the insects as they flitted about in the fading light. Suddenly, a particularly vicious-looking mosquito, which the observer recognized as of the variety which spreads malaria by its bite, settled upon the forehead of his friend and prepared for a hearty meal. In frantic zeal to save his friend from the fate which awaited him in the next instant, he seized a large stick from the water’s edge and struck that mosquito such a blow that both it and his friend were killed.
(To be Concluded in December East-West)
IV—Man The Thinker—By Tadmusat
WE have learned that the word "man" is derived from the Sanskrit root "mu" of the verb "to think."
The Western mind is familiar with two distinct beings in man—the spiritual and the physical—the man who thinks, and the man who remembers as much of these thoughts as he can record.
The Oriental mind has found, in its more subtle analysis of man, that it is helpful to divide the spiritual man into three aspects and the physical into four aspects.
These aspects are often referred to as the upper triad or spiritual, and the lower quaternary or physical man. The triangle is an old symbol of the triad and the square is a symbol of the quaternary.
Plato divided man into three aspects—the Spirit and the Soul and the man of flesh. He was the greatest of Greek philosophers, whose writings were known the world over. He was the pupil of Socrates, and the teacher of Aristotle, and he lived over four hundred years before our era.
In a previous article we have called attention to the Laws of Manu, the great Hindu legislator. The laws of Manu inspired the doctrines of Plato, Philo, Zoroaster, and Pythagoras.
We may here be privileged to quote from George Grote’s "History of Greece," Vol. II, page 81: "The allegorical interpretation of the myths has been by several learned investigators, especially by Creuzer, connected with the hypothesis of an ancient and highly instructed body of priests, having their origin either in Egypt or in the East, and communicating to the rude and barbarous Greeks, religious, physical, and historical knowledge under the veil of symbols."
It is not strange, therefore, that Plato did not go into details. He was passing on the ancient teachings of the Masters of India. While he spoke of man in the three aspects of Spirit, of Soul, and of the man of flesh, he gave them seven separate functions, and thus the sacred septenary division of man was carried from the East to the West.
St. Paul was also instructed in the wisdom of the East, who maintained that there is a psychical body, which is sown in the corruptible body, and a spiritual body that is raised in an incorruptible substance.
In the study of man, we may begin with the physical body, which, without life, is as nothing. Then we come to the subtle body of the ancients, the principle of form about which the evolutionists are still groping in the search for the missing link. In so far as man is concerned, the human form has reached the limit of change, differentiation, as the scientists say, and it has maintained that unchanged form for thousands of years. Therefore, the form aspect of man should be considered in this study.
There are three aspects of physical man: body, life, and form. The fourth aspect is that of desire. Why include it? As desire is the incentive to action in so far as we can follow it, and as desire is such a large part of human life, the ancient sages of India included it.
The higher triad—Spirit, or as the Vedas put it, Atma, then Soul, or Budhi, and then Manas, or Mind.
This septenary division, or these seven aspects of man, form a convenient plan of study by which the inner nature of man may be better apprehended. This inner nature is real, but immaterial. Life is real, but immaterial. Desire is real and a tremendous force to be reckoned with, but immaterial. Mind needs no introduction to us. It cannot be seen, but its tremendous products, its manifestations, its results, are seen in the present-day achievements of the minds of men, of which the navigation of the air is the latest. Yet mind is immaterial.
We know these as realities by their manifestations, and that is how we know Soul and Spirit. These function in people who do great and noble things. These make great Souls like Plato, like Manu, like Washington, like Krishna, and Buddha, and Jesus.
The "Thief"—By James M. Warnack
He wandered through the fields of Palestine,
A youth in love with Nature and with Life;
Far from the cities wandered he, alone,
A stranger to all sorrow, sin, and strife.
He plucked a fig that grew, invitingly,
Upon a tree that bordered the bright lane;
His smile was like the sunlight as he stood
And ate the fruit—and plucked and ate again.
A passing Pharisee beheld the boy
And thus rebuked him: "Thief, be on thy way!
Why takest thou that which is not thine own,
Doubly profaning this, God’s Sabbath day?"
Awakening from reverie, the lad,
Resenting not the bitter words of blame,
Walked slowly onward, smiling at the man
Whose lips had uttered his dear Father’s name!
Thy Home-Coming—S. Y.
THY mansion of the Heavens is lit
By perennial auroral displays of mystic light.
The stellar system swings across
The endless dark Highways of Eternity
Which lead to Thy mystic home.
The comet-peacocks spread their plumes of rays,
And dance in wild delight
In Thy garden of many moons.
I sit on a little patch of the Milky Way
And watch the glory of Thy kingdom
Spread endlessly everywhere.
The festivities of the Heavens are dazzling
With the fireworks of meteors and meteorites.
Shooting stars are hurled across the blue vaults
By Thy unseen band of obedient, devoted forces.
Everybody, everything, every atom, rejoices
During Thy Coronation
As the Uncrowned King of Universes.
Every day the trees drop flowers in Thy Honor,
And the Skiey Vase
Sends wisps of fire-mist incense to Thee.
Candlesticks of heavenly powers
Hold the burning stars to light Thy temple.
Meteorites skip, glow, swoon, and fall to earth,
Mad with Thy Joy.
The planetary dance glides in stately rhythm
Awaiting Thy Home-Coming.
Because Thou hast been away,
Thy mansion of matter has been dark,
Now darkness is being dispelled
And Thy gloom-drenched Chamber of Eternity
Is becoming radiant at the news of Thy return.
Heavenly lights have opened their gates.
Bonfires of nebulous mists
Are heralding Thy approach.
The speedy sentinels of sun and moon
Patiently are waiting for Thy Home-Coming.
And I am running wild, dancing in my little body
On my little earth,
Or skimming over the Milky Way,
Coaxing everything, every atom of space,
Every speck of consciousness, to open its gates
And let Thy light shine through completely
And drive darkness evermore
From the lonesome wilderness of matter.
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