Here are some frequently asked questions. If you still have questions, please contact Rohini.
The word “Guru” is derived from the Sanskrit terms for darkness and light. The syllable “gu” means darkness, the syllable “ru” light. Technically, the Guru is the grace-bestowing power of God—what many people would call divine grace—and it leads us from the darkness of ignorance into the light of our True Nature. The Guru often manifests through a human vehicle, an accomplished spiritual teacher who guides others in the way of spiritual practice.
Swami Muktananda, or Baba, is my Guru. In his life, he was a Self-realized being who, after his discipleship with Swami Nityananda, became a Guru and travelled around the world to share what he had learned. Baba left his body on October 2, 1982, yet he remains alive to his disciples.
I lived and studied with Baba from 1976 until his mahasamadhi in 1982. I first met him physically in 1975. During my time with Baba, I served as his head of security and his personal appointments secretary. Most importantly, I studied with him one-on-one for years; this is how he taught me spiritual practice.
When people say “yoga” nowadays, they almost always mean hatha yoga, a form of postural practice that may be good physical exercise but is at best merely preparatory for spiritual practice. There is nothing wrong with pursuing hatha yoga, but it is a mistake to believe that such outward practices will get you far along the spiritual path. True spiritual practice is interior. This interior practice is what Baba taught me and what I pass on.
It doesn’t. There is nothing New Age about what Baba taught me and I pass on.
The short answer is yes. The universe is Consciousness, and there is ultimately only one Subject; we as individuals are just limited expressions of that infinite Subjectivity. Liberation means going back beyond, or prior to, all separateness. There is no such thing as an “enlightened” shrunken self.
7. If not, what makes us distinct? 'On the grid' I suppose what changes is how we use, or choose the things/qualities available.
What makes us distinct is our vehicles; each of us has a unique set. Our vehicles are run by cause and effect—another way of saying by karma, which is just action and effect. The more nonattached we are to any of our vehicles, the more we move toward the pure Subject that is the Self. Getting “off the grid” of course means disentangling from a fourchotomy or seed that runs us, but ultimately “off the grid” means free of all separateness.
Yes, it is possible. First, there is the joy, freedom, and Love that come from having cleaned our separate selves up so we can better express through our vehicles the Love that is our true nature. But beyond that—again, beyond all separateness—is who we truly are, which is Absolute Truth, Absolute Consciousness, Absolute Bliss. Love. We have to surrender our individuality to God in order to re-cognize this.
There is no “my God”; there is only God. Obviously, we cannot say what or who God is, because that would make God an object. God is all, and beyond all. God can be approached through any real spiritual tradition. My Baba used to say, “You can drive any car to the house of God, but to go in you have to get out of the car.” God is the center of my life—at every moment, I work to surrender to His will. As to “His” or “Her,” it doesn’t matter. In the familiar terms of relative reality, there are genders; in terms of Absolute Reality, there is only God, and no division. The more I practice, the less there is of “Rohini” and the more there is of Love.