At home the monks are on Sadhu Paksha. We just passed through a 3-day retreat. Periodically each of the kulam groups goes to stay by the ocean for a day or so to take a break. Watching the sun rise on the eastern ocean horizon is always an uplifting experience.
On another retreat outing we visited a noni farm near on the north eastern coast. At the edge of the farm, just a few feet from the drop-off to the ocean, huge albatrosses are nesting.
These birds have a wing span of nearly 6 feet. They have no fear of humans as their only known predator are sharks and if you are not a shark then they don’t fear you. This led to the near decimation of the species when dogs were brought to Hawaii and the dogs ate many of the birds who did not see them as predators. Later the birds were protected and their population is increasing again.
If you thought your parenting logistics were challenging, consider this: the main staple of these birds are a form of squid that they can only eat off the coasts of Alaska. But to breed they must have warm weather. So Mom and Dad fly to Hawaii, where their eggs are warm and protected. While Mom sits on the eggs, Dad takes a 3-day flight to Alaska, eats his fill and returns to Kauai. Then he sits on the eggs and Mom takes the 3 day journey to Alaska, has lunch, and flies back to Kauai!
Unless kundalini is active, the deepest meditative states are not available to us. But to activate kundalini, Gurudeva tells us we must invoke the grace of Lord Ganesha and Lord Murugan. "Yoga is internalized worship which leads to union with God." Experience the inside of you in a profound way. This requires dispassion. The popular term "kriya yoga" usual refers to a form of pranayama, but the original kriya yoga is defined by Sage Patanajli as the practice of three of the niyamas: tapas, svadhyaya and Isvarapranidhana. To achieve samadhi we practice yoga, steady restraint of mental activities, austerity, meditation, detachment, self study and worship of God. Communion with the Ishta Devata, the chosen God is a key and also Gurudeva tells us: the Deity chooses you.
Master Course, Dancing with Siva, Lesson 39
Master Course, Merging with Siva, Lesson 5
Patanjali's Yoga Sutras