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Recovering Natural Joy

Many of us think of joy as an experience we have when something special happens. We may plan specific activities, such as a vacation, some entertainment or dining out, that we think will bring us joy. This thinking is so prevalent in our culture that we don’t realize...

If Yoga was Meant to Enhance an Already Perfect Life, No One Could Benefit from It

Before I had any experience with Yoga—the practice, the principles, the lifestyle—I assumed it was for people who already had their act together. Those who could live life successfully and were looking to enhance what they already had. I pictured holy men in caves or...

Finding the Balance Within

If you want to love all, serve all, and spread peace you first have to learn to love yourself. You also have to find peace within yourself. If you recognize the peace and joy within, then you will be able to give the same to everyone else. And you are not actually...

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Here’s a Secret: You Already Know How to Meditate

Here’s a Secret: You Already Know How to Meditate

When people think about meditation, often an image of a blissed-out figure sitting cross-legged on a soft pillow comes to mind... Ahh, total peace, quiet, and comfort. Wouldn’t that be nice! While meditating in a quiet place without distraction is an amazing...

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Yogaville 108k: Soup, Steps, and a Sky Full of Stars

Yogaville 108k: Soup, Steps, and a Sky Full of Stars

As a follow-up to her article on her hopes, dreams, and preparation for a 108k run in Yogavile, Tracy Cooley shares the experience of actually undertaking and completing the run. You can read her first article, "Running: A Moving Meditation" here. There are trail runs...

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Earth Day and Beyond

Earth Day and Beyond

In honor of Earth Day, here is the answer to a question a student once asked Swami Satchidananda the question: "What do you think will happen to our natural environment?" It’s already happening. We are ruining it. Now we are thinking of repairing it. Well that’s the...

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How to Keep the Mind from Losing its Peace

How to Keep the Mind from Losing its Peace

The basis of the mind, which you call the ego, has a tendency to want everything. I want this, I have to gain or own it; I want to do this or that. Wanting to possess is the nature of the ego. That’s why the little “i” always has a “mine” in it. You become really...

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Learning Lessons

Learning Lessons

Anybody can follow saints, sages, and prophets—even the tail follows the body of the dog but it remains a tail. You have to become that peace, joy, wisdom, on your own. You should bring out those qualities in your life and let people say, “Oh, here is another Jesus,...

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What Does Moderation Really Mean?

What Does Moderation Really Mean?

Question: I’ve heard you say that everything is all right in moderation. Can you speak more about that, and does it apply to drinking alcohol and smoking? Swami Satchidananda: There is a saying, in the Tirukkural, one of the oldest spiritual texts in Tamil, “You can...

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Saucha: Enough Already—The Pleasure of Simplicity

Saucha: Enough Already—The Pleasure of Simplicity

After years of dedicated service in Integral Yoga ashrams and centers in California, New York, Virginia, India and other places, Swami Divyananda now travels more than ever, calling the entire world her home. Along the journey, she has learned some insightful lessons...

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Facing Tests

Facing Tests

There are continuous, constant tests on a spiritual path. A person who wants to get a degree is given tests. Those who are not interested in learning, do not need to be tested. Teachers will not even want to give a test to a person who doesn’t want to learn. And, the...

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Running: A Moving Meditation

Running: A Moving Meditation

In March, I will be running a self-supported 108k trail “moving meditation” at Satchidananda Ashram–Yogaville to honor Sri Gurudev Swami Satchidananda—the Woodstock Guru—during the 50th anniversary year of Woodstock. Although I have decades of experience running long...

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