The gateway to the Divine is the act of meditation. This has been known for ten thousand years in the Eastern countries, where prophets such as Buddha have opened the door to understanding of who we are. Those who practice the belief systems of both the Buddhist and Hindu religions should have little difficulty understanding the concepts written in this book. If there is any religion which has the hallmark of truth, then it is probably the Hindu belief system above all others. This recognises the basic nature of eternal life, through reincarnation and the nature of the Divine Spirit, through its inter-action with men and nature.
In the West the Hindu belief in gods in the form of statues and idols is not generally understood. This is because the West has been heavily influenced by Christian dogma. This teaches that the worship of idols is a sin - stemming from the biblical story of the Israelites flight from Egypt, where they worship a golden calf. The proliferation of statues in temples of Hindu culture has therefore been misunderstood by casual observers, who have failed to look deeper than they should.
The Hindu already understands that the Divine Spirit is in everything and that includes all men, as well as nature. In many ways this is advanced thinking compared to Western belief in a God on high, who sits on a throne in Heaven. A place that there is no evidence for whatsoever in the human experience. The development of the Hindu god is a way of expressing the many faces of the Divine Spirit. It is not an attempt to worship many gods, as some in the West have been led to believe. Each god is an expression of the Divine Spirit in a way that men have understood the actions of the Divine Spirit, since men first walked upon the planet.
The Hindu sees the Divine Spirit in the form of storms and lightening which may be expressed as one god, whilst the Divine in the form of love comes in the form of another. Each god is an embodiment of the understanding of one aspect of the Divine Spirit, as a united entity guiding us all through life. In consequence the statues are themselves of no significance, as the worship applied to them is not upon the statue itself, but the concept of the manifestation of the Divine Spirit in that particular form. Hindus do not therefore need either temples, priests or statues, because the Divine Spirit is everywhere in their life. The statues simply form a focus upon which the mind can visualise the otherwise impossible visualisation.
It is no surprise to find that the Hindu culture originated in the Indus Valley which runs into Kashmir, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The very word Hindu being a derivative of Indus - a river that brings life to that region. That same culture being the birth place of humanity.
The Eastern religions teach that each life is a learning course that leads us towards enlightenment. Enlightenment is simply the same as the return to pure spirit that we all achieve in the course of time and learning. This is the same as expressed through the sea and beach analogy, where each grain of sand is returned to the sea when the time comes.
The Eastern religions also teach that as each life passes we experience events, which not surprisingly operate under the basic rules of the universe - such as cause and effect. This too has a basis in science, once the rules of the universe are understood and we remember who we are. These rules are as solid as the science we learn at school. Once you become aware that life does not end at death then there is no reason to doubt that every cause should not create an effect. We all know that even in outer space every action has an equal and opposite reaction, which can be measured by science. So too in life every action is measured and has an effect. Sometimes the effect is immediate and sometimes it cannot be seen at all. The spiritual record created in this way carries with you through life and death into each following life. It builds into a record which Eastern sages call karma.
Once you become aware of your own immortality karma plays an important control upon advanced human beings, because you know that death is not the end of everything. Whilst in a state of ignorance it was assumed that death freed you from responsibility for your actions. When awakened to the true nature of the universe it doesn't take long to realise that eternal life also means eternal accountability. Death no longer provides the escape that you once believed in. Now every action has a value that goes beyond death.
This does not mean that as a result of living a life of greed that you will return to the next life as a pet dog. The interplay of karma and the human spirit is far more sophisticated than that. It may mean that a person who abuses another may return in the next life to be abused in a similar or worse way by the very spirit they abused. It may mean that a person who lives a life of greed and glutton may spend the next in poverty and famine - as many do. Karmic bonds are created in every life that tie us to people and places that transcend time. These bonds cannot be broken until such time as the karmic debt is repaid. Karma is absolute and unforgiving, because its actions fall upon those responsible for their action. Karma cannot be excused or passed to a third party.
Cause and effect operates as the judge and jury of all men's actions, since karma operates through eternal life and cannot be escaped any more than the spirits of people from the past can be destroyed. In consequence those who have lived before are still with us today. They have either learnt from their past mistakes, or continue to make the same ones until such time as they can move on. Great souls good and bad do not die, but return to continue their destiny, as do you. Souls tend to travel through life together, returning to the places they have occupied in previous lives and being attracted to relationships they have built previously. This is often explained as Déja-vu by those who are not familiar with their own history.
Bonds form between people at the etheric level of our being. The etheric level is a physical level, which is one of the seven levels of existence. The etheric level is like an electronic network communications system, which maintains structure to your physical body, but also communicates with others at a subconscious level. It is not usual to be able to see this level of activity but it can be seen when your consciousness rises beyond a certain point. It is recognised by psychics under the generic name of the Aura. Seeing the aura is a first step along the road of understanding the wonder of your mind and can be achieved relatively quickly. To see something that we all possess for the first time opens the mind to the understanding that other things that you may have read about could also exist to your perception, should you be prepared to devote your time to it's development.
The etheric level can form bonds between lovers, family, friends and places, which if broken by death or physical parting can create real pain in those who experience it. This pain is emotional, because it communicates at a higher level than normal pain. Unlike normal pain it is felt in the heart and chest at the point where these communications processes occur. None can deny the pain of the death of a loved one is a real pain. Science is only just starting to understand the underlying spiritual nature of what makes man tick. The advanced soul instinctively knows that there is much that science cannot yet explain and probably never will.
The fact that you are questioning your life and are reading this book is a sign that you are probably unable to reconcile all elements of your philosophical belief system. A true philosophical belief system must be able to explain why more people exist every year and how reincarnation operates in this environment. A true belief system must also explain why people die of famine and plague every year. It must explain why children die in childbirth. It must answer the person who has lost a loved one and the person who suffers pain, either emotional or physical. A true philosophy of life will answer all unasked questions as well. These unasked questions are the ones that undermine Western religious teachings, but people are often too afraid to ask.
Why for instance doesn't anyone ask the Catholic Church to explain how more and more people each year fit into heaven? Will I meet cavemen in heaven? If everyone is saved by the Son of God where is Hell? Surely it's not needed any more? Why should I believe in something that I have no experience of? Why doesn't anyone ask the Christians why the gospels tell us that if we believe in God we shall have "everlasting life" (John 3.36). Isn't that telling us that if we believe in the true God we shall understand that we live for ever? Since when was the expression "everlasting life" meant to be "heaven". If Jesus and the disciples had meant heaven they would have said it - John referred eight times to ""everlasting life" in Jesus' teachings. Isn't that telling us that reincarnation was actively promoted by the great Christian teachers, but has been misrepresented for two thousand years?
A true understanding of life must be able to answer all questions without contradiction and not be exclusive in what evidence it seeks to allow. A true belief system is one that accommodates the failings of all religions, by recognising their failings and providing the answer to the unanswered questions.
If heaven exists then the nature of eternal life must mean that proof of heaven must exist for men to wisely believe in such a thing. Equally well, for men to believe in hell then proof of hell must also exist. We no longer live in the fourteenth century where it was sufficient to be told by someone who could read and write that "it is so". Nowadays you can read and write and have access to a hundred thousand times more information. Information that has been checked, verified and inspected by humanity over many centuries. Tell me, is it logical to accept the dogma of heaven and hell upon the word of a priest? Show me a priest who has more faith now that one a thousand years ago? Have we, as humanity, really learnt nothing in the last thousand years?
Proof of reincarnation on the other hand is much easier to find than many would believe. It is easy to find children who remember past life experiences in India and in countries that understand the true nature of our existence. People who remember who they were in a previous life and more often than not still carry physical scars from past life experiences.
Western intellectuals have sneered at Eastern mystics since the Victorian colonisation of India in the belief that the "good book" that they carried, and an inherent belief in science was greater than any truth held by native hearts. The Victorians had a lot to answer for, unaware that their ancestors wore animal skins when the Eastern cultures were at their greatest. Victorians even changed maps - removing biblical name places from maps of Kashmir in the misguided belief that Abraham could never have been a native - even though the evidence of their own bible pointed to the North-East of India as the birthplace of humanity.
In order for you to find the answer to what you are looking for, and know deep inside you it is there, you must first look inside yourself. You do not need to consult anyone else for his or her opinion, you should be warned that it is dangerous to do so. You have everything you need to know the absolute truth about yourself. All you have to do is look inside. This is the most difficult task for many, because most people have not been trained in the art of looking. Meditation is the doorway to a higher consciousness, because it allows you to open the doorway to communicate with your inner voice - the real you waiting to welcome you to a new world.
The art of communication is the ability which meditation provides to allow you to turn off what I have referred to previously as the "I voice". Many philosophers call this the ego, because it represents the will of the human who has grown up from birth. It is better explained by seeing humans as having two halves of their existence. There is the side of our existence that is timeless, which we bring with us from our previous lives. We call this the soul, as it is connected to the Divine Spirit, even if we cannot usually directly communicate with it. There is the other side, which starts at birth and is based upon the experiences of this life. This is called the ego and manifests itself through the "I voice."
The "I voice" learns quickly that it is able to direct your life and assimilates knowledge. It can compute actions and estimate responses. It communicates throughout life with the "you voice" as we have discussed earlier and dominates your thought processes.
The act of meditation is a control system that teaches you how to turn off the "I voice" to allow you to communicate with your "you voice". This in turn allows you to communicate at the deepest level of your existence directly with the Divine Spirit. When I say this I do not mean that you communicate in an esoteric way like a one way prayer with no-one listening. I mean real communication, with a voice that is real, knows you completely and from which nothing can be hidden. A voice that responds to your needs and guides you through life.
When you do this it has an amazing effect upon you and your life. You can spend your whole life repeating words out of a book, parrot fashion, singing praise to your God. You can make statements of faith until your last dying breath. Most of these you know deep inside are repeated more like an insurance policy, than any knowledge of truth. Selling insurance for your spirit has been the plague of the churches for the last thousand years - the time has come to recognise that you don't need insurance when you experience truth. Experience is the only truth. Nothing I say will convince you until the day comes when you hear that voice - and you know with whom you are communicating. This is an awe inspiring and life changing experience.
The truth is that you do not need to learn from outside. Everything you need is already there inside you waiting to be remembered. Once remembered your life will change in a way that I cannot explain. You will find the real world. You will know who you are and you will be freed from ten thousand years of history. You will hear with your own ears and there will be no-one else to deflect you from the true understanding of what your life is about and why you are here.
All that stands in your way is the constant chatter of the voice that has grown with you since birth. Training to silence that voice will allow the voice of the Divine Spirit to communicate directly with you through your "you voice" in a controlled and life enhancing way.
You will learn to hear your "you voice" in the daily grind of life. You will learn to trust it completely and as a result your life will fulfil itself. God will be with you in a way that has never been before. More importantly you will be happy. This is happiness born out of the satisfaction of spiritual need, as opposed to physical need - something that is so deep inside you that you should not need anything else to feed your soul - because you will know who you are and why you are here.
Meditation leads to remembering who you are. It releases the memories of past lives and experiences. These may come as dreams or visions, which you will remember. Remembering does not come quickly, but does come - opening the door to understanding who you really are and who you have been.
Meditation is not the providence of priests, prophets and the elite. It belongs to everyone and does not even need to be taught in a specific manner. Those who make a living from selling meditation courses and New Age philosophies will not appreciate what I have to say. Every person can find their own method of meditation in a way that suits them best. In my case I learnt to meditate by accident, because the time had come in my spiritual growth to do what was needed. It came to me at a time of crisis, but will come to you either when you need to do it, or when you are right to make the transition to move towards being an advanced human being.
There is no great Divine Plan which says you should meditate in one particular way. I needed to commute two hours to work every day upon a train. I used to leave quite early in the morning and found that if I adopted a favourite posture and closed my eyes I would drift into sleep. The rhythmic sound of the track and the act of getting into the train every morning at the same time set the scene for what would follow. Meditation grows stronger by the ritual of repeated actions.
I expect that it was the regular stopping of the train as it passed through the commuter belt that kept bringing me back to consciousness. Then one day I realised that I was communicating with someone or something. Each time I came back to consciousness I found I could at first remember a snatch of a discussion. A few words here and there.
At first I was not sure what was going on. I decided to learn more about what was happening to me and read a number of books upon psychic experiences, psychic growth and the art of meditation. They taught me to practice at home closing my mind to the constant chatter of my own ego. I would lie in bed at night and close down my body, using a well known close down method. This took the form of telling each part of the body in turn to close down, starting at the feet and working up the body.
This is easy - especially in bed - but of course very difficult to maintain, because the body likes to go to sleep when given the opportunity. Perseverance wins through and provided you persevere you too will achieve your goal.
Then I learnt with practice to close down the chattering voice in my head. This is undoubtedly the most difficult exercise. Some seek to do this through rhythmic chanting. The use of a rhythmic chant has the same effect - it excludes the mind from being able to create thought processed to divert you. In so doing it is possible to keep that chattering voice at bay over longer and longer periods.
The first thing to take on board is that successful meditation is best adopted in the form of a ritual. At first you may only be successful for a few seconds or minutes if you are lucky. However the daily observance of the same ritual appears to build strength of mind that allows the quietening effect to take place.
I no longer commute and have replaced the ritual of getting on the train with the ritual of a bath every day. I find this the best way to meditate in a busy household. It fulfils the requirements that make success that much easier to achieve. Bathing in the morning also has the advantage of not being overwhelmed by a tired body pushing you into sleep - which is all too easy.
The elements that contribute towards successful meditation are firstly a place that you feel safe in and will not be disturbed - a bathroom is good for this because it can be locked. A bedroom may be equally suitable. The next element is doing your meditation exercises on a regular daily basis. This adds weight to what you are doing, as the act of meditation is done in a ritualistic way. The effect is for the act itself to pass a message to the subconscious that puts you quickly into the frame of mind required to let go of the bonds that bind your mind to the physical. Meditation is the training of the mind and therefore the exercise's primary aim is to free your mind from the awareness of either your body or the chattering voice within.
As time passes you will find that by adopting a ritualistic approach to meditation the act of going to your place of meditation at a specific time of day will advance the meditation process. Instead of needing to adopt exercises to empty the mind the act itself of getting into the bath, or lying in the same bed or chair in a specific manner, is enough to put you into a deep state of consciousness. A state where your mind frees itself from your body very quickly.
To begin with it is enough simply to instruct the voice that creeps into your head to stop. That is the only thing you need to do. When it starts up again remind it to go away until it is required.
Do this for two minutes by organising yourself so that you can achieve that. It sounds easy but believe me it is not. Then the art is to lengthen the time to five minutes. That is five minutes without any thought process. The total absence of logical thoughts and an empty head.
The amount of time this takes will depend upon you. Some people may achieve this in a month and some may never achieve it if they are not ready. The rewards to control of the mind are far greater than you can imagine, as a point will come when you will hear your "you voice". For many this will be the first time and can be life-changing.
The object of these exercises is to close the active mind. If you are not meditating in a bath then it is best to wear clothing that will not constrict. In order to close the mind you need to be unaware of your clothing or surroundings. However bearing in mind that any commuter can use the time to meditate, as I did, there are no rules that apply to everyone. Every person has to find their own way.
In my case I close my mind by taking the conscious decision not to engage in thought. It took me nearly six months practice before the big break came. I had read about the theory in a number of books, but nothing prepared me for the change when it came.
When you first start meditation it is a hard grind with a goal that isn't well defined, because you do not know what it is that you can achieve. You really need to be dedicated and you need to persevere. Nothing happens quickly. I simply repeated the process of doing what I did in the train, but in the far more comfortable bathroom scenario. I follow the same procedure every day. Starting by thanking the Divine Spirit for another day in this life. I close my eyes and tell myself not to think. Which is fine until about two seconds later when the thought processes take over. Which is when I realise about five minutes later that I am meant to be meditating.
You have to remember that you are in charge of your body and mind. This means that you have to tell that voice to be quiet. You have to be able to hear yourself and you can only do that when the voice is quiet. Meditation is the doorway to your existence. If you are ready to walk through it you will find a welcome there that you would never have believed possible.
I believe that it is a natural activity for the advanced soul to meditate. Meditation produces balance in our lives and allows our inner guide to direct us to the advancement of our own lives and humanity generally. Meditation should never be a forced activity, as it can only operate under free will. Meditation brings every one of us closer to the Divine Spirit and in so doing brings us closer to understanding the true concept of Love.
You can read the Book of Life free to all here but if you want a copy for a friend or prefer to read in bed you can get a proper printed copy here.