Training the Trainers
PART 4QUESTION AND ANSWER SESSION WITH SWAMI AMRITASWARUPANANDA
(The final day of the training session concluded with this interactive session)
To see, hear and interact with the Swamiji at the end of the course was a joyous opportunity for the particpants. Time flew; nobody noticed they had spent half an hour more with the Swami.
Swamiji spoke lovingly and drew their attention to the fact that today humanity is in dire need of silence, relaxation and a tension-free life. Mankind desperately hankers for some peace and a little space in lifein order to become creative and to be productive and successful.
So, though our goal is Self-realization, we must not forget to share the benefits of meditation with others who are spiritually inclined and also with those who are not. But he also reminded that when one has tasted the fruits of meditation by regular, unfailing practice, then only can one impart it to others.
Gradually, the meditation should percolate from the level of the body to the level of the mind, and then to the deepest layers of the heart; and then, even beyond. Then, and then only, meditation truly becomes a part of your existence.
Since it came from a divine master such as Amma, IAM is one of the most powerful meditation techniques. Amma is the embodiment of meditation; its spirit and its power. If you can imbibe that spirit, that power, then meditation becomes a joyous experience. Then, sharing just happens; it becomes a beautiful experience. Carry that divinity within and manifest that every moment, in every thought and action.
Question: Since IAM is proven to be a great stress-busting technique, should it not be made compulsory to staff and students in our institutions?
Swami Amritaswarupananda: Yes, it is a good idea. Not only just in our institutions, meditation should become a part of our curricula. Not only in our universities but in all universities across the globe... Even Amma feels spirituality should form a part of the syllabi. Spirituality means meditation - they are inseparable.
Question: Could you please tell us something about the origins of IAM? We hear different versions...
Swami Amritaswarupananda: There are no different versions; there is only one version. This happened years ago, may be a couple of years just after I came to the ashram... If I remember correctly, it was around 1985, that Amma dictated these things to me. She specifically told each and every step; it was recorded in a tape recorder and I wrote them down and I submitted them several times to Amma. Amma went through it, made many corrections and modifications and fine tuning, that's how it is, you know... but we didn't release it at the time. It sat there for a long time before we could, you know, share it with the general public.
Where did it come from? I don't know, to be very honest. How can I say? When Amma tells us something, we can't point out the source It is beyond the mind; it is beyond the intellect; it comes from the Original Source. Anyway, the most important thing is, this is a seed as - Amma puts it- it contains the tree. The fruit is there: the fruit of meditation. Protect it, it'll sprout. But Amma is there in it, hiding. And she will come out. This is a great gift...
Question: What are the results of practicing IAM, and what are the phases in its achievement?
Swami Amritaswarupananda: The results depend on what you want. If it's relaxation, you will certainly get it. If it's Self-realization, youll attain that as well; but you need to be more serious. The whole set of rules are different, depending on what you are seeking. Ask, and you will get it.
Question: In the market today, there are meditation techniques and masters, dime a dozen. What is the difference between IAM and these other meditation techniques?
Swami Amritaswarupananda: "Anybody can design a meditation course or a personality development course. What makes it genuine, powerful and effective, is the person it emerges from. The effect reflects the cause.
Whatever Amma does is always as a response to a call; a spontaneous response to the need of the world. That was how it was, whether for a tsunami, or for a Haiti or for a Kenya: a call and a response...
Just because IAM came from Amma's divine sankalpa (resolve), that makes it special, unparalleled. Since it came from a divine master such as Amma, IAM is one of the most powerful meditation techniques. That is the difference."
Thus ended the final session. Swamiji, the true messenger of Amma that he is, was enchanting in his insights into the nuances and subtleties of her teachings.
Years, perchance centuries down the line, this day might well be remembered as the day Amma the torch bearer of a new dispensation heralded a golden moment, a silent transformation in the evolution of human soul.
Compiled by: Janardana Krishna