"Meditate, Meditate, Meditate"
"Give up all sorts of fears, cares, worries and anxieties. Rest in the ocean of silence. Enjoy the eternal peace." – Swami Sivananda
Conquest of Anger: Controlling Without Suppressing
Q&A with Swami Swaroopananda
Swami Swaroopananda is the Acharya (spiritual director) of Sivananda Yoga Centers and Ashrams in the West Coast of the United States, the Middle East, and the Bahamas, and is one of the foremost disciples of Swami Vishnudevananda. He is renowned for his spontaneous yet clear, concise, and complete answers to every question. This Q&A is from this March 2010 at the Bahamas ashram.
Q: What is the difference between controlling anger, as taught by Swami Sivananda, and suppressing it in such a way that it can continue to affect the person subconsciously?
A: The main cause of anger, according to the teachings of yoga, is obstructed or unfulfilled desires. When we have desires, we try to fulfill them. If these desires are obstructed, if we cannot fulfill them, this brings anger.
The yogic method to control anger is to meditate on the opposite of anger. What is the opposite of anger? Joy, patience, love, peace, compassion. So when anger arises, we do not suppress it; we meditate on its opposite. If I am under the impression that "this person made me angry," then I should meditate on the fact that it is not possible for that person to make me angry. Nobody else can make me angry because anger always rises from within. And the only way to overcome anger is to transform it into its opposite. We can do this through meditation. And by repeating this process, by doing it again and again, we become better and better at it.
So in yoga there is no issue of suppressing anger; there is the issue of transforming anger into its opposite or sublimating anger. We can go even further. We can do the very opposite action that we intended to do toward the target of our anger. Let's say that we direct anger toward a certain person, and with the anger there comes a certain action. Not only should we think the opposite thought, we should also do the opposite action. By doing it again and again, the energy of anger is transmuted into its opposite, and what was destructive in the beginning becomes constructive and positive.
This is a yogic practice, and we can do this again and again. When we sit and meditate, if we suffer from anger, we can meditate on its opposite. We can invoke the opposite of anger. And if we do it day after day, slowly, slowly the quality of anger is going to change.
To learn more about the yogic methods for controlling anger, join us for a six-day program from September 7-12 taught by Swami Brahmananda and other senior staff of the ashram. Take home practical tools to overcome anger and transform it into a positive force in your life. CLICK for MORE
(From this March at the Sivananda Ashram, Bahamas)
Alleviating Suffering and Soul Revival
We are pleased to welcome two distinguished presenters to the ashram this November: Deirdre Fay, a licensed clinical social worker with a specialty in trauma and attachment, and Fadel Behman, PhD, who teaches a new holistic therapy technique for physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being.
Fay is the originator of “Becoming Safely Embodied (Skill Building Groups for Trauma and Dissociation)” and has written a book with the same title. She is working to create “a supportive, inspiring community for people on the journey of healing from trauma.”
“My commitment is to support people to find their way through the dark and horror, to help people listen to themselves, to hear their own knowing,” she writes. To that end, she teaches individuals and therapists how to find concrete psycho-spiritual ways to alleviate suffering.
“We all get lost at various times in our lives,” Fay says. “We feel stuck and can often feel terribly alone. Having a resilient community of people who understand the dark and foreboding world of trauma, who have lived the chaos but are willing to serve as helping hands, as guides along the way, makes a difference.
Deirdre Fay’s program, “Healing Trauma by Developing Compassion,” will be presented November 14-18.
Behman is the originator of a new holistic therapy technique for physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being, which includes a holistic craniosacral technique for energetic wellness, an emotional release technique for liberating cellular memories from past traumas, and a cognitive dialogue technique for soul revival.
"This is the difference between Holistic CranioSacral Therapy, which includes holistic counseling for the total human being, and normal CranioSacral Therapy, which is for the physical body only," Behrman writes. "By including the effect of subtle energies on the physical body, added benefits can be gained." He lists examples such as emotional clarity and peace, focused and concentrated mind, a higher level of spiritual joy, and more harmony in relationships.
"Expanded states of consciousness from yoga practice can be facilitated and elevated with Holistic CranioSacral Therapy", he says, "for the fulfillment of both the individual and humanity."
Fadel Behman's program, "Holistic Craniosacral Therapy" will be presented November 29-December 4.
Join the Ashram Community
Our Residential Study Programs give you an opportunity to deepen your knowledge and practice of yoga, open your heart, learn some useful skills and enjoy the beautiful white sand beach and the various ashram programs in your free time. All that is required is a willingness to serve and lead a yogic life. Click here for more information or to request an application form.
2010-2011 Brochure Now Available!
We are pleased to announce that the new 2010-2011 brochure is now being sent out to all centers and to everyone on our mailing list. The brochure is full of exciting new courses and programs for the coming season as the ashram continues to bring together leading teachers, healers and artists from all traditions. This multi-faceted program is a direct result of the Grace of Swami Vishnudevanananda, who taught us to always seek Unity in Diversity. Make sure to get a copy of the new brochure soon, so you can read about all the wonderful events coming up and plan your next trip to the ashram.
Click here for a copy of the new 2010-2011 Brochure.
To see the updated website with the 2010-2011 courses and vacation programs, click here.