“There is a voice that doesn’t use words. Listen.”

Rumi (1207 1273), Sufi mystic and poet

I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet, strange, I am ungrateful to those teachers. 

Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931), Lebanese-American writer, poet and artist

When you see with your inner eye, then you realize that you are God and not different from Him.

Sai Baba of Shirdi (1838-1918)

When people are truly dedicated to the Divine, there is no difference between action and prayer. Mother Meera,Indian spiritual leader

You think that you are the doer and fall into the trap of bondage. But everything was accomplished long ago. Yogaswami of Jaffna (1872-1964)

A boat cannot go forward if each rows his own way. Tanzanian Proverb

Knowing it, the ignorant man becomes wise, and the wise man becomes speechless and silent, The worshiper is utterly inebriated, His wisdom and his detachment are made perfect; he drinks from the cup of the inbreathings and the outbreathings of love. Saint Kabir (1440-1518)

Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. Lao Tzu (ca 600 bce), Chinese philosopher

If you first fortify yourself with the true knowledge of the Universal Self, and then live in the midst of wealth and worldliness, surely they will in no way affect you. Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950), South Indian mystic

There is no treasure equal to contentment and no virtue equal to fortitude. Sarada Devi (1853-1920)

Sweet are the uses of adversity. William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

Live each present moment completely and the future will take care of itself. Paramahansa Yogananda (1893-1952), founder of Self-Realization Fellowship

God has created lands with lakes and rivers for man to live. And the desert so that he can find his soul. Tuareg Proverb

Stop wearing your wishbone where your backbone ought to be. Elizabeth Gilbert, American author

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Not hammer-strokes, but dance of the water, sings the pebbles into perfection. Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941)

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. Steve Jobs, (1955-2011), founder of Apple, Inc.

Every moment there is creation, every moment destruction. There is no absolute creation, no absolute destruction. Both are movement, and that is eternal. Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950), South Indian mystic

All generalizations are false, including this one. Mark Twain (1835-1910), American writer

He Himself becomes the worlds in all directions, the souls living in those worlds, the occupied bodies and the occupying souls, the tattvas which enable the souls to function while in embodied state and becomes the oceans, mountains and all other parts of the world. Even though He appears as all these things, His supreme Lordship is not lost; He exists ever as the One and Only Master of the worlds. Tirumantiram 412

If you can explain your realization, you know it’s not the highest one. Very simple. Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, publisher of Hinduism Today

Unfoldment doesn’t take a lot of time. It just takes a lot of willpower. Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today

“Oh, you’re a Hindu? Great! We offer some nice non-prophet discounts.”

Did You Know?

The World’s Most Nutritious Plant?

The flowers, seed pods and leaves of this amazing plant are all edible and extremely nutritious. Credit: Shutterstock

THE MORINGA TREE, ALSO KNOWN AS THE drumstick tree because of its slender pods, has been consumed in Southeast Asia for ages, and it’s no wonder why. This scraggly tree has over 92 known nutrients, 46 antioxidants and more than 300 recorded medical uses. A single ounce of moringa contains four times more calcium than milk, more vitamin C than seven oranges, and twice as much protein and three times as much potassium as a banana. The leaves alone have nearly 30 percent protein by dry weight—that’s more than legumes—and are also about 30 percent fiber.

All this makes moringa the most comprehensive natural multivitamin and antioxidant on Earth. It has nearly every vitamin found in other fruits and vegetables and usually in a larger proportion, including 18 amino acids and 9 essential amino acids. Virtually every part of this amazing tree is useful as food and medicine, including its leaves, pods, seeds, flowers and roots.

Studies have shown its potential for lowering cortisol and raising testosterone, and its high antioxidant content makes it great for defense against free radicals, reducing oxidative stress and cell damage. Another study showed potential for the plant’s ability to reduce weight gain and insulin resistance, making it potentially useful for diabetics. It also has natural antibiotic and antibacterial properties which are good for gut health. Finally, much like turmeric, it has been shown to significantly lower cellular inflammation.


What Is Shakti?

From Sivaya Subramuniyaswami’s Dancing with Siva

IN A FEW WORDS, SHAKTI CAN BE described as “power” or “energy.” In the Agamic perspective Shakti pervades all of existence as the active power or manifest energy of Siva. Its most refined aspect is Parashakti, or Satchidananda, the pure consciousness and primal substratum of all form. This pristine, divine energy unfolds as iccha shakti (the power of desire, will and love), kriya shakti (the power of action) and jnana shakti (the power of wisdom and knowing), also represented as the three prongs of Siva’s trishula, or trident. From these arise the five powers of revealment, concealment, dissolution, preservation and creation.

In the ancient perspective of Saiva Siddhanta, Siva is All, and His divine energy, Shakti, is inseparable from Him. This unity is symbolized in the image of Ardhanarishvara, “half-female God.” In popular, village Hinduism, the unity of Siva and Shakti is replaced with the concept of Siva and Shakti as separate entities. Shakti is represented as female, and Siva as male. In Hindu temples, art and mythology, they are everywhere seen as the divine couple. This depiction has its source in the folk-narrative sections of the Puranas, where it is given elaborate expression. Shakti is personified in many forms as the consorts of the Gods. For example, the Goddesses Parvati, Lakshmi and Sarasvati are the respective mythological consorts of Siva, Vishnu and Brahma. Philosophically, however, the caution is made that God and God’s energy are One, and the metaphor of the inseparable divine couple serves only to illustrate this Oneness.

Within the Shakta tradition, the worship of the Goddess is paramount, in Her many fierce and benign forms. Shakti is the Divine Mother of manifest creation, visualized as a female form, and Siva is specifically the Unmanifest Absolute. The fierce or black (asita) forms of the Goddess include Kali, Durga, Chandi, Chamundi, Bhadrakali and Bhairavi. The benign or white (sita) forms include Uma, Gauri, Ambika, Parvati, Maheshvari, Lalita and Annapurna. As Rajarajeshvari (divine “Queen of kings”) She is the presiding Deity of the Sri Chakra yantra. She is also worshiped as the ten Mahavidyas, manifestations of the highest knowledge. While some Shaktas view these as individual beings, most revere them as manifestations of the singular Devi. There are also numerous minor Goddess forms, in the category of village Deities.

In the yoga mysticism of all traditions, divine energy, Shakti, is experienced within the human body in three aspects: 1) the feminine force, ida shakti, 2) the masculine force, pingala shakti, and 3) the pure androgynous force, kundalini shakti, that flows through the sushumna nadi.

Shakti is most easily experienced by devotees as the sublime, bliss-inspiring energy that emanates from a holy person or sanctified Hindu temple.