M E D I T A T I O N A N D F O C U S E D T H O U G H T
Selections from the Agni Yoga Series
Presented before the Agni Yoga Society, May 22, 2007
1. The rhythm of truth is an invincible stronghold. It is not a pile of words, but a rhythmic sound, that carries decisive significance. Why try to conquer with words when the lightning bolts of rhythm can drive away the most harmful beings? Of what use is it to compose lengthy letters when thought pierces the consciousness instantly? Indeed, the Teaching about thought and the action of will has already been distorted by people. They have endeavored to compensate for their own weakness of will and thought by mechanical means. All the artificial hypnotic devices for lulling one into a trance, including glittering playthings, are ridiculous. And the crossing of the eyes is unnecessary! The one who realizes the true Yoga of Life knows that the lightning of truth can strike down, but can also resurrect.
When We speak of the need for honesty, We do not have in mind unworthy people. We point out the direct path of perfect truth, devoid of any personal element. This opportunity can be perceived through straight knowledge. The experience accumulated in the center of the Chalice gives invincible knowledge. The center of the Chalice is close to the blood reservoir, for blood is the wherewithal for our passage on Earth.
Thus, the truth is not an abstraction; it is the realization of cosmic laws based upon direct experience. Therefore, though an honest accountant can make an error in his figures without becoming dishonest, an accurate but hypocritical person will not gain the power of spiritual effectiveness.
It is right to consider initiations, meditation, and concentration superfluous practices; these concepts must be expressed in one's actions. All artificial magic must be left behind.
Agni Yoga, 156.
2. If thought in itself contains creative energy, then how useful it is to direct good thought into space. When mankind shall agree to send forth good thought simultaneously, then the infected atmosphere of the lower spheres will at once clear. Hence, it is necessary to take care, even a few times daily, to send out thought not about oneself, but about the world. Thus the thinking will accustom itself to disinterested strivings. As the Savior of mankind thinks only of the entire world, so in emulation of him we can apply our thoughts for the manifestation of creative energy. It is not necessary to look upon the transmission of thought as a supernatural act. Let it provide nurture for the spirit, just as does fuel for the bonfire during the night. Thus, also, it is necessary simply to follow the highest example. The heart will be like a trusty chronometer when it calls to thought about all. It is not necessary to have tiring meditations; thought about the world is short and reflects so simply the renunciation of self. Let good befall the world!
3. Fiery affirmation takes place not in pleasant drowsiness but in storm and lightning. He who accustoms himself to feel tranquility amidst lightnings easily meditates about the Fiery World. It is necessary to think about the World of Light. Thoughts should be send into its heights. Thus is it possible to participate mentally not only in the earthly battle but also in the battle of the Subtle World. Indeed, earthly destructions are as nothing, compared to the destruction of the Subtle World. A great number of the best intentions are dissipated together with hideous accumulations. At the same time the inhabitants become involved, particularly those who display activity. There are many of these, both in the lower strata and in the higher. The fire breaking through is sensed by all who have not accustomed themselves to the fiery state. Therefore, when I speak about thinking of the Subtle World, I am advising something very useful, and when I speak about thinking of the fiery worlds, I am advising something indispensable. The affirmation of fiery thought is already an acquisition of invincibility. As the links of a coat of mail are gradually strung together, so, too, the fiery plumage grows invisibly.
Fiery World I, 235.
4. One’s mastery of thought does not consist alone in the deepening and concentration of thinking. One must also possess the knowledge of how to free oneself from untimely and debasing thoughts; thus thought is affirmed when we master it. It is not easy to free oneself from thoughts flying in from without, and it is difficult to cast off sad and burdensome meditations. But one should be able in like manner to send thought forward, and also to leave behind the one which is of no use. Usually, people are enslaved by their thoughts; and nothing so impedes advancement as grievous immobile thoughts. Most often such heavy thoughts are sent from without, and many eyes watch with malice, awaiting the suppression of energy. Learn to expel this obvious burden immediately, it is one of the worst aspects of Maya. Hardly a day will pass without an alteration in Maya. Thus, let us be doubly vigilant in possession of thought.
Fiery World II, 227.
5. Meditation in quiet about the Higher World will be equal to the best remedy. It is possible thus to sense the relativity of that which exists. Such a measure will not be a limitation, on the contrary it will strengthen the flight of thought. When confusion takes possession of the world, propound the most simple.
Earthly existence cannot be final, and in such a transitory state one may only prepare that which is most needed for the future flight, in other words—sharpen thought. Wings grow only through thought. Aum, 104.
6. You ask whether you should continue your meditations. Everything that develops the concentration of thought is most useful. Clearness and the crystallization of thought should be greatly encouraged. Just now there is so much chaotic thinking that one should be particularly on guard and try hard to harness one's thoughts and not permit their capricious jumping. Sequence in thought and action is so essential for the broadening of consciousness.
Letters Of Helena Roerich I, 26 April 1934.
7. Verily, life is full of miracles if we approach everything with an open heart and with striving to beauty and self perfection. And not by way of all sorts of artificial meditations and concentrations and other mechanical means, but in the great deed of everyday life. This great deed of life in all its severe beauty is practised by N.K. His life is the life of complete renunciation; he lives for the great service to humanity. Nothing belongs to him and he himself belongs not to himself. The greatest tolerance is his nature, and, like a magnet, he attracts the most diverse people and groups them around his name. The wisdom of the Master is his wisdom. Had it been otherwise, how could he be such a prophet? How could he succeed in the entrusted mission in spite of the dreadful obstacles which are raised by the dark ones at the end of Kali Yuga, during the dreadful Armageddon?
Letters Of Helena Roerich I, 17 February 1934.
8. Descending into a deep cavern, one prefers to have a bright and even burning lamp, rather than a smoky sputtering torch. It is the same with the quality of psychic energy. The sparks of a smoky flare do not improve a situation. But how to attain an even light? Only by constant meditation about the basic energy. Like a wordless mental process, in the rhythm of the heart the inextinguishable Light is strengthened.
Let hermits on the one hand and scholars on the other equally evaluate the light of the heart. Luminosity corresponds to an accepted degree of tension. Let us see how people often observe this luminosity, yet they find many excuses and denials and bashful silences. As if they were worse than a glowing stump! Frequently, people are capable of recognizing a special feature in a most ordinary object, but they deprive themselves of these possibilities.
If, after reading these writings, people would more attentively observe the manifestations of their own psychic energy, one could call this a success.
9. I understand that you adhere to a chosen method of preparing yourself for meditation. Everything spiritual is so individual that everyone should sense precisely with his heart what is particularly close to him and follow this path. I am so fond of a statement in the Bhagavad Gita, this finest pearl of the Eastern writings, that I never tire of repeating it, and so I shall quote it to you as well. “Man comes to Me by various paths, but by whatever path man comes to Me, on that path I welcome him, for all paths are Mine.” It is impossible to indicate better and more precisely that the form is of no importance; only the idea itself is essential. But people cling to forms most of all, thus losing any understanding of the thought behind them.
Letters Of Helena Roerich II, 11 September 1937.
10. You ask whether or not you should continue with meditations. Everything that increases the power of concentration and thought is very useful, and clearness of thought should by all means be encouraged. There is now so much chaotic thinking that it is most essential to learn to marshall one's thoughts and to avoid an involuntary leaping. Clarity and sequence of thinking is very necessary in the process of the broadening of consciousness.
Letters Of Helena Roerich I, 8 November 1934.