Sample from the Fall 2006 issue of Integral Yoga Magazine

Make Your Life An Ongoing Yoga Retreat

By Meenakshi Angel Honig

In a tribute to Sri Gurudev, one of his senior students and a respected Yoga teacher selects her top 10 jewels of his teachings. With quotes from Sri Gurudev and her own commentary, Meenakshi shares the teachings that inspire and guide her daily life.

1. “Trust in God and fear do not go together. When you trust in God you know He gives you everything you need and takes away anything you don’t need.” If I could have only one of his teachings, this one would be enough to sustain me through my entire life.

2. “Your first and foremost duty is to maintain your peace.” Every day things occur to jar me out of my peace. By remembering this, I come back to center and give my attention to what is really important. With peace we have everything and without we have nothing.

3. “You never get anything you don’t deserve, good or bad. Whatever comes to you is a result of your past actions and its for your benefit and your education.” This jewel is so powerful because it is saying that karma is not a punishment but it is for our benefit and education. So, whatever happens is for my highest good. This helps me to maintain my peace and that leads into the next jewel…

4. “Everyone is an agent of your karma. So do not cherish any ill feeling toward anyone.” Instead of blaming others, I can recognize that they are messengers from God. If they speak harshly or they do something unkind, we can recognize they are “agents” of our karma. It is for our benefit.

5. “Truth is one, paths are many.” This helps me to have an open attitude toward receiving the beauty and gifts of every path. Once you are grounded in one path, then you can enjoy the beauty and fragrance of all the flowers in our spiritual bouquet. Integral Yoga has “integration” at its root — whatever spiritual path we choose, we have to integrate it and make it our own. The best way to be established in peace is to go deeply into one practice.

6. “Saraswati, the Goddess of Learning is still holding a book. What does that say about us?” This teaching makes me realize that there is no end to learning and I can always make course corrections.

7. “It’s all His name, all His form, all His deed, all for good.” When things don’t appear to be going the way my finite mind imagines they should, I throw up my hands and affirm this teaching. It is a real key to maintaining one’s peace.

8. “When disturbed by negative thoughts, opposite [positive] ones should be thought of.” This quote about pratipaksha bhavana is from Sri Gurudev’s translation of the Yoga Sutras. It means that rather than wallowing in the darkness, bring in the light. If I notice I am getting off track, immediately I implement this, replacing the negative thought or mood with the opposite positive. If I feel out of sorts, the second I notice it, I can shift the energy in a holy instant by bringing in gratitude, tuning into my mantra and bringing to mind Gurudev’s teachings. Gratitude is one of the greatest energy shifters.

9. “Do your best and leave the rest.” I am a perfectionist, but there are times when I have to let go. For example, I did everything possible to have my new book ready to present to my mother in honor of her birthday. We both flew miles to be together at Yogaville for this occasion, and the printer assured me the books would arrive on time. But, their equipment broke down and so they didn’t arrive in time. At first I was very disappointed, but immediately, I took refuge in this teaching and found comfort…

Read the rest of this article in the Fall 2006 issue of Integral Yoga Magazine