Not Getting Upset, Viewing Reaction from Higher Faculties


A measure of how serious we are in making spiritual progress is that we've learned the lesson from experience. Develop the ability to watch the mind think, understand the patterns of emotional action and reaction. Have the sense that you are a divine being to root out imperfections. Becoming upset is a temporary suspension of our higher faculties; transmute the energy into the third eye.

Master Course, Living with Siva, Lesson 149; Master Course, Merging with Siva, Lesson 152; Yogaswami, Words of our Master

Unedited Transcript:

Good morning.

This quote stood out to me in the recent Living with Siva lessons, it's lesson 149.

"Every experience, no matter how difficult or embarrassing, is a good experience, providing the lesson to be learned is extracted from it. Experiences that are unresolved and repressed can be very burdensome for the individual. Living Saiva Dharma makes us our own psychologist, psychiatrist, counselor and problem-solver. This is because one slowly becomes the watcher of his mind thinking, the watcher of his emotions feeling, acting and reacting."

Sounds good on paper, right? No matter how difficult or embarrassing, is a good experience..." Sounds good on paper but sometime we don't take it that way. We feel we didn't do the right thing or we feel we let ourselves down, we didn't come up to a certain standard that we should of. And therefore, if we have that perspective what's it do? It adds a new burden to the burdens we already have. So, why did we do that? So, therefore, we have to be careful not to end up in that, what would you say? That often used approach to experience it. Experiences that work out well are the good ones; experiences that work out poorly are the bad ones. We don't want to fall into that thinking.

But every experience is a good experience providing one thing happens and that needs to happen: "The lesson to be learned is extracted from it." That's what makes it a good experience. We've learned the lesson from it. So, what does that mean? Well, it means if it didn't work out exactly like we wanted it to work out, either slightly off course or in a major wise off course, we give thought. What could I do next differently next time in the same situation? Well, think about it. This didn't work out right. What can I do differently next time this same situation comes around to avoid this shortcoming? There's no reason to repeat it.

And that's really a measure of how serious we are in making spiritual progress. Can we just make one mistake once? Do we have to make the same mistake again, again? If we could only make the same mistake once or twice or three times, that's good. You know, that shows we're really paying attention. Paying attention to what? The mind thinking? "The watcher of his emotions feeling, acting and reacting."

Often individuals mention to me they can't seem to make their mind quiet. They sit in meditation and it's going all over the place. Well the fact that you know it's going all over the place is actually a good thing. You know what happened and that's one of the sadhanas that Yogaswami gave Markanduswami. That, "Watch the mind. If it goes to 100 places, don't miss one. "

So, learning how to watch where the mind is going in terms of thought and emotion is important even though we're not necessarily able to quiet it down as perfectly as we'd like. So, being able to watch the patterns, understand the patterns is necessary. Otherwise, when when there is an experience and it doesn't work out well we're not, we're not seeing it, we're not willing to admit it, we're certainly not learning from it. So, it's all a one thing is the point.

The ability to watch the mind think, watch the patterns of emotional action and reaction. Gurudeva says: The emotional reaction is good but when we react to the reaction that's when it's going one step too far. We don't need to go through that.

"Experiences that are unresolved and repressed can be very burdensome for the individual. Living Saiva Dharma makes us our own psychologist, psychiatrist, counselor and problem-solver."

So we never want to fall into this perspective that we're flawed and somebody we're working with is perfect. In western approach it's the psychologist or the psychiatrist. In Catholicism it's the priest, you know. And in Hinduism we don't want to take on that perspective that the teacher is perfect and I'm flawed. I'm going to the teacher to fix me. That's not the idea. Gurudeva's saying we're our own psychologist, psychiatrist. Meaning we're fixing our self. And inside everybody's perfect. The teacher perfect, the student's perfect. Inside we're all perfect but we're fixing the outside; we're improving it through various techniques that Gurudeva gives us in the Master Course.

So we're improving our self, correcting any issues that are there. And experiences unresolved or repressed, can be hard to find. But in the process of maha vasana daha tantra they can pop up. Or subsequent years of maha vasana daha tantra they can pop up. But repressed means we've hidden them. So, it can take some writing to bring them back. And the point here that isn't really said but implied is: We're a divine being on the inside. So we have to have that sense. Otherwise, if something is unresolved and repressed we can be reluctant to pop up. It's repressed because it makes us feel bad about ourselves So we have to feel we're a divine being to have that concept in order to face these things, these imperfections in our outer nature. And then the idea of being a divine being.

That's why in Dancing with Siva Gurudeva starts out that way: You are a divine being. The first sloka as I often mention isn't about Siva it's about you. You are a divine being. A very important part of Gurudeva's teachings, you have to be convinced of that in order to root out any imperfections and not have them overwhelm us. Just parts of the outer nature we need to improve.

We have Yogaswami's shrine as you know and in front of the shrine there's the "Words of our Master." You know we're in monastic routine when we have the Siva puja, not the Siva homa but the Siva puja from 5:30 to 6. I'm given the flower and I get to give that flower to Yogaswami. And quite often I open up "Words of our Master" and see what it says. So it said this:

"You must learn to be cool and calm. You must learn to be cool and calm in the midst of intense activity."

So at the moment I read it, that struck me and it means a number of things; but it's not limited to one point only. But it meant to me that nothing should upset you. Simple way of putting it. "Be cool and calm in the midst of intense activity." Intense activity shouldn't upset you; you shouldn't lose your cool and calm. So therefore, if something someone says or does upsets you, from the mystical point of view, it shows you have a weak point. "I'm upset-able. I have a flaw, a weakness; I need to strengthen it cause nothing should upset me."

That's the point. Nothing should upset you. If we have the right perspective and the right control of the mind nothing should throw us off center. Why should something be able to throw us off center, make us emotional? This shows short-coming in us. So, of course, if someone does or says something that upsets us we tend to blame them, right? You shouldn't have done that. But you can turn it around and thank them. And say: "Oh (at least inwardly.) Thank you very much for upsetting me. It shows an area I need to improve. Thank you very much for doing this outlandish thing that I got really upset about. Shows an area, shows an area I need to improve cause there's no benefit of getting upset, right? Just a temporary suspension of our higher faculties. That's probably a good definition.

Becoming upset is a temporary suspension of our higher faculties. It's like we're at the computer but the internet is not there, you know. I can't do what I want to do. I lost my higher faculties temporarily. So it too, when we get emotional then we've lost touch with our higher, higher nature. It depends how upset we get. Gurudeva says if we get extremely upset takes 72 hours to calm down. Imagine that! 72 hours. So if someone is of that nature within the 72 hour period they'll probably get very upset again. Then within that 72 hour period they'll get upset again so permanent state of upset, right? Permanent suspension of one's higher faculties.

So, there is a quote that relates to that, I think it was in today's lesson.

Gurudeva says: "Because ignorance is all... (He's talking about anava.) Because ignorance is all-pervasive, equally distributed throughout the world, one must leave the world and get a wise dome, wisdom, a wise head (a wise dome.) He must transmute the energies from the solar plexus--nothing must affect him there--to his third eye, see into the past, see into the future, and with that understanding, and with that seeing understand the present."

I'll read that sentence again: "He must transmute the energies from the solar plexus--nothing must affect him there--to his third eye, see into the past, see into the future, and with that seeing understand the present."

So Gurudeva's talking about the same thing we've been talking about, right? He's saying: Don't get upset. Nothing must effect you in the solar plexus. Meaning nothing disturbs your emotion. That's where your emotion is, the solar plexus. So, if you get upset solar plexus gets upset. If you really get upset then some people can't eat. You know, the stomach's there too. It just disturbs the physical forces as well as the emotional forces and you just don't feel like eating. You've lost your appetite cause you got upset.

So, Gurudeva's saying: Don't get upset. Transmute the energy into the third eye. Or, use your higher faculties. That's really what he's saying. Don't let life upset you. Transmute energy, use your higher faculties. "...see into the past, see into the future, and with that seeing understand the present."

Okay, well thank you very much. Have a nice day.

Photo of  Gurudeva
Control your circumstances and your life. Guard your weak points with understanding, and don't allow yourself to be put into a position where you will react.
—Gurudeva