“Meditation brings wisdom; lack of mediation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom.” - Buddha
Shri Ram Chandra Mission, a non-profit organisation, offers a unique and simple meditation technique known as Heartfulness Mediation, with roots in Sahaj Marg. It was established in 1945 by Shri Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur – fondly referred to as Babuji – in honour of his spiritual guide Shri Ram Chandra of Fatehgarh, also known as Lalaji. After Babuji, Shri Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari, affectionately known as Chariji, became the president and spiritual guide of Shri Ram Chandra Mission. Following Chariji’s death, Shri Kamlesh D. Patel became the fourth spiritual master and president of the mission. He’s affectionately referred to as Daaji.
Born in Gujarat, Shri Kamlesh D. Patel developed an interest in spirituality at quite a young age. In 1976, he met his guru and the founder of the mission, Shri Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur. Currently a global leader of Heartfulness Meditation, Daaji travels the world to teach this form of meditation.
As explained by Shri Ram Chandra Mission, “Heartfulness Meditation is an ancient art of pranahuti(prana means life force and ahuti is offering) or yogic transmission, which can be easily habituated by people over the age of 15, from all walks of life irrespective of their religion, caste and economic status.”It is part of the Sahaj Marg or the Natural Path, which is a Raja Yoga system of meditation. In Heartfulness Meditation, instead of chanting a mantra, all you have to do is focus on the divine light within the heart. The true essence of inner calm can be discovered through a set of Heartfulness relaxation techniques. Heartfulness relaxation techniques help enhance internal skills like empathy, clarity of mind, focus and awareness. Practising this meditation technique regularly aids in better quality of sleep, improved concentration, and reduced stress levels.
Heartfulness is an easy, age-old technique that is divided into four essential steps: relaxation, meditation, cleaning and prayerful connection. The first step in Heartfulness is to take three individual sittings with a trainer, who is trained by Daaji, on three consecutive days. Under the guidance of the trainer, individuals will be offered personal assistance to remove all the complexities in the heart and find a path towards spiritual growth. To understand and experience the true essence of Heartfulness, it is advisable to practice the following steps with a trainer in the initial days, and then follow up with one-on-one sessions every two weeks.
1. Relaxation: Relaxation can be practiced any time of the day or night, and by anyone who is feeling panicked or stressed out. This technique is also useful for people who experience difficulty sleeping. Relaxation can be done either lying down or while seated. The whole process takes about five to seven minutes.
2. Meditation: The best time to meditate is usually in the morning; however, it can be done at any time of day. Just sit comfortably in silence with the thought that the heart is filled with divine light. However, one will experience many thoughts that can be handled by bringing the attention back to the heart.
3. Cleaning: The samskaras are emotions, thoughts, actions, reactions and the experiences we come across in our day-to-day lives that leave impressions. These accumulate over time and influence our behaviour. The cleaning process is an effective way to fill the heart with purity by removing these impurities. The best time to do cleaning is at the end of the day for about twenty to thirty minutes.
4. Prayerful Connection: This is done for a few minutes while meditating in the morning and before going to bed, for about 10 to 15 minutes. When we take a few minutes to meditate on the meaning of the prayer, we develop a strong belief system and surrender ourselves to the divinity within us. “O Master! Thou art the real goal of human life. We are yet but slaves of wishes. Putting bar to our advancement. Thou art the only God and Power to bring us up to that stage”. The essence of the prayer is an acknowledgement of where we are now and how we would like to grow.
The true essence of spirituality is attained as meditation evolves from mental activity to peacefulness of the heart. Our brain is constantly overloaded with lot of thoughts and heartfulness meditation is a proven scientific approach to find inner peace by harnessing those thoughts and discovering blissful moments of silence.