Remembering Gandhi: Ahimsa – The Way of Peace

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September 11th, 2001, is the unforgettable day in history. Precisely 95 years prior, Mahatma Gandhi launched the modern nonviolent resistance movement, which he called Satyagraha. The date was September 11th, 1906. Gandhi addressed an audience of 3,000 Indians at a theater in Johannesburg where he organized a strategy for nonviolent resistance to oppose racist policies in South Africa. On that day Satyagraha was born. Gandhi’s “weapon” was Ahimsa—a Sanskrit word that means “nonviolence,” which is the core value of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.

During that speech Gandhi sparked the global movement of Ahimsa that would one day free India from British colonized rule and turn the tide of history. Adopted since by many world leaders to resist social injustice and oppression, the policy of Ahimsa—striving for peace above all else—was successfully used by leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr. who led the United States in opposition to segregation in the Civil Rights Movement, Nelson Mandela in South Africa to end apartheid, and the Dalai Lama to address Chinese atrocities in Tibet.

More than a century later, violence and oppression are progressively worsening in our world. The scourge of disease, poverty, war, murder, physical violence, and no-touch torture has escalated. Disharmony among ourselves and with each other is the seed that creates violence against the planet. This parable from Science Alert (www.sciencealert.com) tells the story: “The Earth is 4.6 billion years old. Let’s scale that to 46 years. We have been here for 4 hours. Our individual revolution began 1 minute ago. In that time, we have destroyed more than 50% of the world’s forests.” The time has come when we must recognize this truth that our individual suffering is a reflection of the hurting world.

The damage we’ve done to our Earth is humongous. And the damage already done to human memory is at a critical level. Although the depths of the war we are now facing is of a different nature than what Gandhi faced—loss of human sentiency, impairment of our collective memory, and contamination of the Earth’s ability to sustain, nourish, and heal us—the perils of this time call for a revival of Gandhi’s legacy—Ahimsa!

We live in an unprecedented time in history where a prescient degree of darkness and destruction seem to prevail inside and out. What we must realize is that every war, battle, and act of violence is first conceived in the human mind. Violence begins inside of us. It is fed by patriarchal habituation for greed, competition, and oppression, in short, the irreverence for human values, women’s sanctity, and Mother Nature’s resources. This pervasive reality demands that each and every one of us do the inner work of Ahimsa.

The experience of Ahimsa, the desire for peace, is the birthright of each person, regardless of our ancestral traditions, religions, and cultures. Expecting a handful of courageous men and women to lead us to victory is no longer viable. The war we are fighting has to be negotiated and strategized within ourselves. Violence, pain, disease, and hopelessness—all of which influence what we are feeling, sensing, and enduring—have arisen due to our symbiotic bond with the Earth and comprise her clarion call for us to re-align with our true human nature of inner harmony, love, and kindness.

In my work of Living Ahimsa, we strive to remove darkness from our thoughts, words, and actions. Whenever we become aware of negative thoughts and emotions arising, we take pause, sit with ourselves, walk in nature, allow the inner disturbance to show itself. Rather than ignoring it or setting it aside for later, we learn to identify, acknowledge and honor them. By reclaiming our inherent right to internal peace, we restore the sentience of the eternal heart. In so doing, we overthrow bankrupt systems of governance within ourselves and in our world.

Luminaries say the world is transitioning into a new paradigm where the Divine Feminine is honored as sacred alongside her Divine Masculine counterpart. According to the Rishis, the ancient Hindu seers, we are currently at the advent of the universe’s rebirth. As we discovered in the historic year of 2012, the fear-based forecasts of it being “Doomsday” and the “End of the World” were simply that. The present time, however, demands our collective awareness. On a universal level, we are living through a massive system purgation, the likes of which no one has witnessed since the end of the last cycle of life in the universe, approximately 3,893,111 years ago. It is evident that the old systems are crumbling; political, economic, environmental, social, and familial structures now can be replaced by an ancient paradigm of Ahimsa and grace renewed.

This tremendous birthing pain brings forth the awakening potential for mass consciousness.

How Do We Begin to Reclaim Ahimsa within Ourselves?

Energized by my radical recovery from ovarian cancer at the age of 23, I recognized the need to create change in human behavior and understanding through education, outreach and service to humankind. Gandhi taught us that to succeed in changing the world, we must first transform ourselves into an instrument of peace. In this way, we transcend cultural and social barriers to help individuals, communities and families to heal and recover inner harmony. Since its inauguration in 2009 at The Parliament of the World’s Religions in Melbourne, Australia, I have been traveling on The Living Ahimsa World Peace Tour where I have inspired hundreds of communities to invoke the Vow of Ahimsa while creating Peace Mandalas from Mother Nature’s organic seeds and grains. In touching the seeds with our Ahimsa Vow of peace, we invoke Mother Earth’s seed memory and begin to remember our own power to heal, nourish, and nurture. The outcome of the process is the renewed ability to simply experience joy, love, and harmony.

The avowed peace seeds, enriched with the vibration of each person’s powerful intent, are placed on the fertile ground of Mother Earth to seed, sprout, and bloom. This blessing to the Earth produces wholesome food to nourish the hungry, and leads what is broken back to the light. In this way, we remember the spiritual connection with Mother Earth  —to serve and nourish peace while we restore the splendor of love.

Tenalach, a Celtic expression, describes the relationship we have with the earth, air, water, and forest. It speaks to the deep connection that allows us to hear the earth sing. My own personal journey through pain brought me to my knees upon Mother Earth where I had the privilege of learning her cyclical songs. As a woman, like hundreds of thousands of women across the globe who have endured extreme violence and the painful patterns of patriarchal society, I am continually awakening to the love within my heart; I ache for Mother Earth to be healed. Women are equipped with the innate primordial power not only to heal themselves and safeguard the universal family, but also to nourish, nurture, and make whole everything around them. And as part of the human species, we are physically, mentally, and psychically designed to engineer peace. Pain either destroys our physical bodies or brings us alive to our real nature—Peace. The process of living through pain is never easy, but as Gandhi said, if we keep strengthening the attitude of non-violence especially when we are pushed to the breaking point, we win.

Mother Earth’s Sacrifice

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As I journey around the globe on my Living Ahimsa-The Power of Peace tour, I have been peppered a zillion times by vegans and meat-eaters alike with the same questions.  Among these queries is a critical one: “By harvesting and eating a plant, aren’t we also contributing to killing a life?”  In short, no.  In my tradition, we observe how the Great Goddess feeds and nourishes her universe through the universal law of yajna, sacrifice for the benefit of humanity.  According to this law, the plant kingdom makes the greatest, most phenomenal sacrifice for the subsistence of life on earth.  A plant’s life is cosmically designed to be perennial, annual, or to last only for the span of a few months or a season.  In the vegetable kingdom, plants such as carrots, beets, potatoes and leeks, which we uproot to harvest, would not last out the season even if left untouched.

In contrast, I view senselessly felling a forest as an act of violence; farming of cattle for the production of its meat as a death sentence to the prolific green earth; the unconscious, excessive exploitation of nature as a death sentence to the plant kingdom.  We don’t kill fruit trees or berry bushes when they bend in service to us with weighted offerings made to us year after year.  They remain transfixed in dedicated service with the single purpose of creating food for humanity and all earth’s creatures.  As the season of their bounty passes, they bow to the Mother bosom of the earth.  Thusly, the cyclical, spiraling process of nurturance continues.  The devoted plant continues to feed her mother, the Good Earth, after the vegetarian populations have had their fill.  Most plants broadcast an infinite number of new lives through their seeds before they go under.  We don’t have to chase them, hunt them down with fierce intention of wounding and killing them.  They do not run from us, rather they are entirely at our disposal.  They remain immobile as we reap their nourishment.

Nourish Peace

Mother Earth

Each one of us has the power to shift global consciousness into the mind of peace.  To achieve a mind of peace we must understand healing as a perennial process, the ever-generating energy of being Whole. Wholeness is not a state of being free from disease. We are forever whole, with disease, without disease, with despair, without despair, with pain, and without pain.

Peace is the absolute freedom from all forms of disorder. We fortify this state through the cultivation of awareness. But to nourish peace we must first heal the mind. The path of ahimsa heals the mind of peace.  In aligning ourselves with this process we reveal the hidden cavern of unresolved desires, fears, weakness, and hurt – transported from generation to generation, from life to life.  This revelation of unresolved negativity gives us the opportunity to heal.

The successful outcome of this healing is to realize our natural state of peace.  It is critical to be present in the process of healing, however unexpected and challenging it may be. The process is often hard to face because it is not so pretty. It contains, at the heart of it, that part of our journey which is hidden, that “stuckness” and staleness that need to be shaken loose, and brazened out. If we are able to face that part of our journey which is hidden head-on, we open up to spirit and find resolve.

To heal, we invoke the clear intent to honour our journey, however it unfolds. Challenges are plentiful, but the solution is simple: it is the same for all of us. Nourish Peace. In other words, untether the mind, and do the arduous work to create harmony within – Ahimsa!. When we get knocked down, how quickly can we get back up and strive to bring forth love and happiness?

In living ahimsa, we learn that peace does not depend on conducive conditions.  Peace is about learning to transcend disharmony, disorder, disease, and despair by reaching for that inner flame, the irrevocable, incorruptible light that redefines all living conditions. Peace is about becoming comfortable with the carnal ground of noxious, rotten bones.

We are living in an intensive time where consciousness is highly accelerated. At the same time, this rapidity exposes an equally intensive state of imbalance, where many layers of vulnerabilit in both urban and rural communities are exhibited. With the advent of globalization, the central force for human happiness, love, and nurturance has been severly compromised. And with this central force compromised, the progressive deterioration of the human community has followed.  In this state of deterioration we have become alienated from our roots – ancestral, seasonal, geographical, and archeological. These roots are our primary source for nourishing body, mind and spirit. To restore harmonic conditions in our cultures, communities, and in ourselves, we must nourish peace.  To do so, we reclaim a life of ahimsa as the foremost priority of our time.

Nourishing peace is about mothering, accepting, giving, caring, and protecting this serene space of the One Self we all share. This peace engenders the greatest love. My Vedic ancestors understood love and peace as foundational to nature. They recognised that harmony is produced only by cooperation with nature. They surrendered to nature to learn how to sustain prosperous communal living. They worked hard at nourishing peace and kept love thriving. Harvesting herbs, roots, fruits, and legumes without bludgeoning the forest or animal members of their community, they viewed their everyday tasks as a sacred duty to keep reseeding love into the soil. They knew, what we are now rediscovering,  that the greatest value in human life is to nourish peace.

Ayurveda’s Healing Secret Revealed

“We are not tired, overworked, ill and lonely because we do too much; we are weary because so much of what we do runs counter to the rhythms of nature.” Maya Tiwari

What is true and essential is, by its very nature, accessible to everyone. Ayurveda is the science of life. It is a healthcare system originating in India more than 5,000 years ago. The rishis (sages) teach that the pathway to a harmonious life is honoring the flow of energy in the universe and within us. Ayurveda invites us to live with wisdom, common sense, measure and purpose, according to our inborn instinct. This makes life simple and clear, even in the storms of fate.

Our body-mind is a marvelous thing; its resilience, amazing. We have the fundamental duty to care for our body-mind, while peacefully aligning with the laws of nature. What does that mean?

Everything in nature is rhythm, sound, breath, light and vibration. All elements in the universe are interrelated and in motion. Nothing is permanent. From all the suns to the smallest cell, each entity is born and then matures, dies and reawakens to life in another form. No raindrop falls to the earth without moistening a comet a light-year away. No thought passes by without a trace.

Every moment of our life arises and dissolves by the influence of nature’s rhythms. Human beings, animals, plants, stars, planets, sun and moon are all in the same flow. We’re part of the rhythmic dance of the universe. The tricky part for humans is that we have the power to choose to go against the flow. When we do, we become exhausted and sick.

A balanced life means honoring and adapting harmoniously to this flow. Ayurveda teaches us to thrive with an understanding of the independent and combined effects of solar and lunar rhythms, biorhythms and breathing; whole food nutrition and herbs; the power of sound and thought; respect for our homes and love for the Earth.

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Ayurveda paves the way to a clear understanding of what weakens or strengthens people physically, mentally and spiritually. Wise Earth Ayurveda is a particular methodology drawn from the Vedas (the oldest scriptures of Hinduism) by Maya Tiwari, who founded the first U.S. school for Ayurveda in 1981. It advocates simple daily practices, called sadhanas, which allow individuals to prioritize all that is natural, plain and simple, without discarding the gifts of the modern age. This enables us to slow down, sense, watch and experience, providing the true secrets to healing.

Mother Nature willingly gives us everything we need, providing we live in friendship with her and ourselves. This friendship is a personal decision and achievement. Wise Earth Ayurveda prioritizes awakening the memory and inner knowing that the power to heal lies within. The approach uses food, breath and sound practices to awaken the courage and unshakeable will to trust and apply what Wise Earth identifies as inner medicine healing power, or the choice to heal.

Shakti, our innate intelligence, is the primordial energy of the universe and the foundation of inner medicine healing, according to the teachings of Wise Earth Ayurveda. Shakti knows what is truly beneficial to our growth. Felt first as an inner knowing, intuition or inkling, it is the voice that recognizes the exact cause of our problems and illnesses, telling us what we must really do to heal. Awakening Shakti is central to the work of Wise Earth Ayurveda. Shakti presents us with an unerring, brightly polished mirror, seeing things exactly the way they are and seeing the essential, deepest self, poised for self-expression and self-care.

This transforms lives and opens the door to true freedom, which permits the rapid and certain knowledge that there really are not so many choices. Decisions come from the rock-solid certainty that no other alternative even exists except what is part of the flow. When we accept responsibility for our own life, thoughts, speech and actions, Shakti flows freely within us. We trust what we know and act from that knowing.

Our inner knowing is unlike any other impulse within us. It isn’t a feeling in the sense of an emotion, sentiment or desire; nor is it a thought in the sense of calculating, planning or hoping. Self-love sharpens our entrainment to the voice of inner knowing. Ayurveda offers exquisite practices to support honing this aptitude.

Ayurveda provides the map to awaken the memories of our Inner Medicine Healing Power, the best medicine we have. It is the deeper purpose of life to follow this personal awakening and support it in others.

Sarita-Linda Rocco is a master teacher and sadhaka adept of the Wise Earth Ayurveda school and has studied under the tutelage of its founder Maya Tiwari for the past 18 years. Rocco owns YOGA INLET, a yoga/ayurveda school, located in West Reading. For more information, visit YogaInlet.com and WiseEarth.com.

The Ethical Law of Loving Ancestors- Loving Self

Mother  Particpants pouring Mandala grains back to Earth- May 2011We are forever connected to the memory and cellular intelligence of our ancestors. Honoring the Ancestors unearths past traumas and hurt carried through family lines. Many people go through life carrying their ancestor’s burdens on their back without realizing it. We recognize ancestral traumas prevent us from continuing in our own life because ancestral memory is embedded in our vital tissues. The challenging karmic ties are re-enacted as self-defeating patterns, personal despair and challenges in our own lives. Kindness and love toward our ancestors release the karmic ties of our past. When the autumnal leaves begin to fall we hear the rustling voices of our ancestors calling us to remember them. At this junction of the year we celebrate the universal time of the ancestor we take time to remember our loved ones. In so doing, their journey in the etheric field is supported, strengthening love, joy and abundance in our lives.

Honoring our Ancestors strengthens our soul’s vision and the contractual bonds we made before birth. Embrace each and every one of your ancestors, departed teachers and guides in the divinity of spirit.  Practice ahimsa as you feed, nourish and comfort their souls.  Sustain the unbroken grace that flows from generation to generation. Release worn out negative memories and unproductive ancestral patterns so you can own your personal freedom- the freedom to live, love and prosper!

We are now approaching the auspicious season of the ancestors. Each year, during the dark fortnight and starting at the autumnal full moon (September-October) of the Hindu calendar, comes 15 days of premium time for honoring and nourishing the ancestors.  This powerful ahimsa practice for the ancestors is followed by nine days of celebrating the Divine Mother.  Timeless millennia of unbroken practice in the Hindu tradition informs us that this is the perfect time to identify and release ancestral memories, and break the blueprint of illness, unhappiness and habitual patterns and reclaim your happiness, health and well-being.

Come Join Maya Tiwari in Honor the Ancestors Event on September 27-29, 2013 at Kripalu Center in Lenox, Mass. Invoke your ahimsa psyche, release ancestral baggage and hurt, and reclaim your freedom during this healing weekend.

Maya Tiwari’s Itinerary for 2013-2014

Begin now by taking the Vow of Ahimsa to heal yourself and the unbroken chain of your ancestry, known or unknown. As you access your ancestral memory, your obstacles will dissolve into joy, healing, and winged spirit. Seize the opportunity to reclaim your freedom from ancestral baggage and reclaim the blessing and gifts of your ancestors.

THE ANCESTRAL VOW OF AHIMSA:

I take the Vow of Ahimsa

To heal myself, family, and ancestors

May Celestial Grace guide me to nourish, honor and my ancestors.

May I strengthen inner harmony in thought, speech and action.

 

The Act of Renunciation to Freedom

Namaste
Blessed Self,
I love my tradition of Hinduism and honor Veda Vyasa, the familial lineage to which I was born. I was privileged to receive Diksha in February 1998, standing on the banks of the sacred River Ganges at my Guru’s ashram in Rishikesh. I took my Vows as a Sanyassin, a noble step in my life that brought me Isvara’s Bhavana, and my Guru’s illimitable grace. Through it, I have learned the true meaning of spiritual freedom.

While serving as a Swami in the saffron robes, I participated in interfaith conferences and presented at holistic health and wellness events around the world. Through this service, I recognized a radically simple way of thinking, being and leading that creates inner prosperity and supreme health for all. This recognition led me to a personal rubicon- an irrevocable step. I decided to renounce my saffron robes for the purpose of attaining full spiritual freedom- to walk a simpler, more accessible life in service to All. Upon receiving permission from my SatGuru, His Holiness, Pujya Swami Dayananda Sarasvati, I was blessed with a new spiritual journey in November 2011 as I shed my robes as Swami Mayatitananda Sarasvati.

I renounced the formality of the monastic path in favor of reaching out to people more directly and accessibly. My desire is to allow the Light of the Goddess’s energy to flow freely without the formality of robes, which can be intimidating to many of those I serve. You see, to serve requires only one identity: Harmony- the unconditional love we bear for each other.

I continue to advocate the work of Wise Earth Ayurveda®. I travel around the world with the Living Ahimsa World Tour, reaching thousands with the simple message that they have the full potential to be their own master. I offer sadhanas that support cultivating a life of inner peace and freedom, while fostering reverence for Self (Mother Nature).

I wish to live my remaining breaths in the Hindu tradition of Sanatana Dharma, the universal good for All- who is the One. My goal in this Janma (birth) is to realize my full spiritual freedom. My allegiance is to Isvara and my Guru. The birthright of every human is to evoke the force of awareness and self-healing. This is the intimate intent of the One.

I love my family, fellow beings, and all the people who love me. I love those who show me the face of hatred and violence. My journey continually challenges me to summon courage, strength and the forbearance to be an entirely free being- naked and noble in an untarnished Spirit. My firm allegiance remains in dharma.

Life is simple when Love is ones full identity. Awareness becomes pristine. I pray to walk within Divine Grace, empowered by the unconditional love that needs no title. I am grateful for each new day and the challenges bestowed upon me. I pray for those who celebrate my decision, as well as those who do not. I pray for universal peace and freedom.

May the glorious Bhavana of Isvara light the way for All.

The “Ness” Of Oneness

Today I arrived at my 60th milestone on this earth, my birthday. The day dawned gently. Wrapped in dawn’s pink light she waxed serenely in the ionic energy of the Atlantic sea. The hum of traffic on a nearby busy local highway emulates the haunting curvature of the waves as they rise and fall into the mother ocean. That mother that is the One – Isvara – or God that is firmly seated within the heart. What I seek on this day is not richness, or gift-ness, or happiness, or love-ness, or companion-ness. For I know I am  the One, and therefore I am Love, I am Happy, I am Rich, I am the Gift, I am the Companion. I am not pushed by the “ness” of life – that suffix which suggests a mere quality, or the three hundred trillion characteristics of whom we are. I am able to understand my mind, thoughts, and emotions as being part of the “ness” of living. We must know that when we allow ourselves to get attached to the “ness-ness” of living, we become entangled in what I call the “ness-net” and end up with a “ness-mess”.

What is a “ness-ness”, “ness-net” and “ness-mess”? In my own lexicon, “ness-ness” is that which belongs to the parcel of karma, the ongoing continuum that is the character of personal existence; the seemingly endless dirge of cause and effect that has been revolutionizing, spinning memories from the vast past into the complex weave we grandly call life. Altogether, we sum this up as the “ness-ness” of life. There is nothing perverse about “ness-ness”, it is an organic reality of our manifested state. However, when we allow ourselves to get caught in what I call the “ness-net” of life, we get automatically disconnected from the cosmic source of awareness; we become attached to the “ness-ness” of it all, stuck in the karmic imprints and their habituations which are tightly fastened to the operation of mind. At this juncture, we quickly morph into the “ness-mess” and get stuck.  We can get stuck there for a long, long time.

Wisdom is about avoiding the “ness-net” and not investing in the “ness-mess” of life.

Unless we so do, love perishes. What pushes us away from awareness into the ness-net? Simply put, the use of mind. We must know the mind and see that “I am not the mind”, nor are we the “ness” of thoughts, emotions or activities.  Albeit, the mind is a ingenious human organism that flawlessly gathers the memory effects of the past and weaves them into karma- the karma of attachment and loss, expectation and disappointment, joy and sadness, good and evil. The mind serves a phenomenal purpose and without it we cannot express or expend karma. In my own play of karma, I recognize I am the One without the “ness”; The One that is Awareness. I see that I am not at One-ness with you and all things, but that I am One with all.

Over a quarter century, I have attended countless conferences and gatherings that address spirituality, faith, health, wellness, and prosperity- in essence, the subject and object of Being-ness.  From my viewpoint, each presenter tries to do the right thing; they “accommodate” each other and show “tolerance” for precepts and ideas they may disagree with. However, amid these efforts for peace and equanimity, there exists the strains of stretched boundaries, palpable tension, frowned hearts, beleaguered minds, and demure arguments-postures which reveal the struggle between cultural or society ideology and our humanity. With good intention, and great effort we try to accomplish “oneness”. We believe that in striving for “oneness” and “sameness” we can attain and secure peace. But this is not so. Our worldview of  “sameness” and our concept of “oneness” holds a great falseness which creates a greater struggle. Harmony is accomplished only when we are prepared to fully embrace each other, regardless of and because of our differences. This understanding comes only from the knowledge, “We are One, (and not Oneness); We are blessed (not maligned) by diversity. And we will never be “sameness”. We are One and, at the same time, individualized!  In the understanding of “I am the One”; “You are the One” there is effortless peace, a flowing sentiency. We are the One divinized only by Love- the infinite space wherein it does not matter what our tenets and beliefs are.  We are not separate from each other, nor are we a minuscule part of the One, or a speck of the Whole. The Whole is not a goal. We are the Whole, I am the Whole, you are the Whole, and as we recognize this sublime reality, our perception of “I-ness” and ‘You-ness” dissolves. Physical bodies are separate; minds are individualized, but our heart and soul evolve only in Love, and exist only in the One. The shortest distance in the world is between the Self and Heart, and yet it is the longest journey in the universe.  According to the Rishis, it takes each one of us approximately eighty four million births to attain moksha, self realization, (the knowledge that “I am One with Full Consciousness”.)

As the cool wind swirls in the empty space that is my mind, I am aware of a young boy entering the local toy store with uncertain rapidity, his face lit with glee. He does not live in the “ness-net” of life. He knows he is happy. He does not need to believe he is happy. There was nothing “ness-mess” about his invocation to glee. At the same time, I see an elderly couple leaving the store with slow precision, gift bags in hand, the years of living etched onto their forehead, now almost untethered from the ness-net of mind, thoughts, emotions and activities. Their eyes spoke, “done with most of it!”  They do not need to believe in awareness. They know awareness. They have lived it. They do not need beliefs. They are awareness. They have lived love.

Nameness ~ What’s In A Name?

A name is a mantra, the spoken word, a cosmic sound – by far the most uttered sound we hear throughout our lives. Whether we are given an appropriate name in accord with our astrological birth time, as we do in the Hindu Tradition, or it is picked with great care by parents a name is usually given with love. My name is Maya, for most of my life I have been called by this name. Our birth names are significant for each journey. I respect the love of my parents that accompanied this bequeathal. But I am not attached to it. I have had a prized and rich journey through this name and it bears a lovely sound when it is  properly enunciated.  It has a profound meaning: In Sanskrit, “Maya” is the Shakti of manifestation,  she is both cause and effect. This name is often erroneously translated as “illusion”. Later on, as I took to spiritual vows I was given another awesome name, Mayatitananda, meaning that which goes beyond the beyond of Maya, that which is called, Isvara.

Two years ago, as the circumstances of my life endured yet another major transition, I found myself naturally resuming the use of my birth name.  In brief, shortly before commencing the Living Ahimsa World Tour, I was poisoned by a misguided family through a hate crime. As often occurred in my life, the divine healer quickly appeared. That remedy that ensued arrived in the form of a soul mate whose stoic nobility and unconditional outreach of love helped me to rapidly heal. And as my life is always continually unfolding in Isvara’s Grace, I embrace all expressions of my karma. Apparently, the karma of “Maya” had expressions left to be fulfilled, and completed. Since having dropped the spiritual names and titles, “Brahmacharini, and Swami” these honorable monikers which were handed to me by my Divine Satguru, I have been reveling in the awesome depth and lightness of spirit.  This humbling fills me with light, and shows me that all names are simply forms of love. They ferry the profound divinity of the Guru’s Grace that unconditionally blesses me at all times.

Regardless of what I am called, the soul of whom I am does not change, the essence of my growth continues to rise in consciousness. It is this growth that I choose as I keep thinning out adjuncts from within, clearing out the unnecessary that occupies the inner space and dissipates energy. In this journey, my only sankalpa is to be true to Self as I move in absolute freedom of Self, Svabhava.  The fact is that we are who we are. In my case, love is the journey, light is the energy that moves me forward, the simpler the walk, the brighter the light. As I continue to strip away karmas – veils that cover spirit – light is exposed, the awareness that I am love becomes richer, fuller, more sublime. In this fullness, I continue to serve as mother, father, child, brother, sister, friend to all beings- a lover of all.

Albeit, as I move around with my work, this naked freedom from title, and entitlement has had some interesting effect on those around me. It appears to unnerve people, especially those with whom I am in close association or those whom themselves bear a title. The consensus, as it is shared with me, is that a title implies respect, or adoration and in not being able to use it, many find it uncomfortable. When we look back at the great Rishis, or Master of Wisdom, we find barely a name associated with them; titles came later through generations that benefited from the infallible light of the masters’ knowledge. Shiva is Shiva; Isvara is Isvara, Durga is Durga, Jesus is Jesus, Krishna is Krishna, Buddha is Buddha, Mohammed is Mohammed.

Part of letting go of “nameness” is about awakening the heart. At this very moment, everything is being changed forever. More and more we are witnessing the collapse of titles, entitlements, monikers as the largely bankrupt model of hierarchal control and patriarchal command fall apart. These worn-out approaches have lost their power for us. Simply put, in the light of this day, tags of title and monikers are appendages in the way of the Divine Love.  As the paradigm of authority and leadership rapidly changes across the global landscape, we find more structures crumbling in the dust. Simply put, there is no more room for fancy names, titles, and entitlements. There is just the One – called by one name only – Love.

The time to reclaim who we are as essential Love is now. In creating the inner space to expire our karmas we garner the courage to love. In this way, we move in harmony with the cosmic sway of a new Light. Let us, together, lighten loads, keep it simple, clean out the affairs of past years, shred the baggage of burdens, let go of regrets, empty the mind and keep heart alive!  Allow the truth of the One to live for the length of our years in eternity.

Maya Tiwari in Rotorua, New Zealand 2012

Please share your thoughts!

And may you join me in taking the Prema Vrata:

I take the Vow of Love. 
I make Love my first priority. 
I take the Vow of Love in my thoughts, speech and action.
www.ahimsalife.com

Origin of the Vow of Ahimsa

 

Cultivate harmony in your thoughts, speech and action.

Your Vow of Ahimsa has a profound impact on the cosmic psyche of peace.


My Peace Vow“We must stop the bleeding. We must stop the hurting. We must stop the killing. We must become the light we strive for.”

Maya Tiwari

Maya Tiwari’s extraordinary work on Living Ahimsa-The Power of Peace throughout the world has been touching and healing thousands of lives. Since Maya Tiwari’s inauguration of this pioneering work following the disaster of September 11, 2001 she has personally guided more than 145,000 participants into the Vow of Ahimsa – the individual commitment to inner-harmony, health and world peace. Maya Tiwari served as one of the religious leaders in the Forum of Concerned Religious Leaders prayer service in New York City, offering prayers for grieving families and the suffering of people everywhere. She initiated the Vow of Ahimsa on the scarred grounds of the World Trade Center, New York City.

In Maya Tiwari’s words, “I am on this journey to do what it is I naturally do in the path of my purpose: to guide and participate in the process of human wholeness in order that we may cull the elements within to safeguard the mind of peace. Living Ahimsa is humanity’s work – a primal call to take back the world! That is, the world within. Each day that we breathe and pause and look up in awe at the wonderment that is manifestation is a day spent in harmony. As we move about and use up the pranic force that empowers each of our distinct number of days on earth, let us we flow with all that is about to unfold in our lifetime. Indeed, the future of our earth is riven with nature’s massive movements and reorientations, with a prescient decree of death, tragedies, and destruction. Living Ahimsa guides the way to gather our internal elements and remain poised in sentiency and consciousness. This we must do, if we are to scale the terrain of yet another cycle of life in which we live.”

The Vow of Ahimsa means many things to many people. For the Vedic Seers, and Hinduism, ahimsa is an everyday way of life. The vast Vedic tomes on meditation, yoga, holistic medicine, physics, astronomy, architecture, and so on, are all rooted in the universal law of ahimsa. For Mahatma Gandhi, it was to implement civil disobedience (satyagraha – holding firm to the truth) in defiance of British imperial law in India. His path of ahimsa assumed courageous, yet simple forms (such as a nation harvesting salt from the sea). He demonstrated that the spirit of ahimsa can ultimately win all battles.

In Maya Tiwari’s work with Living Ahimsa, we bring ahimsa to the inner terrain of the human mind, emotion, and purpose. Ultimately, it is the human person who has the power to change darkness into light, ignorance and intolerance into wisdom and understanding. As the order of nature continues to fall out of balance, the imperative directive is to look within- to find our equilibrium. If we can remain poised within, we can create inner harmony. Simply by utilizing each and every ray of light that streams into our awareness, we can pierce through to the bottom of darkness and expose hope and love. After all, these are transformers that conduct light into lightness and intelligence into knowing.

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  • In 2009, the Living Ahimsa Tour in USA and Australia attracted approximately 50,000 advocates to the Vow of Ahimsa – More Info
  • For 15 years, Maya Tiwari has been teaching this powerful work of Living Ahimsa to groups of holistic practitioners at Wise Earth School, Asheville, North Carolina.
  • Each month at the Wise Earth School instructors create an Ahimsa Peace Mandala from nature’s organic grains and legumes. Each offering is taken with The Vow thereby re-initiating the commitment to ahimsa every month.
  • At the Women’s Power to Heal Tour which occurred in July – September 2008 in the USA & Canada; Maya Tiwari guided approximately 6,500 women into the Vow of Ahimsa – More Info
  • At the Sacred Reality Programs in Rishikesh, India, February -March 2008, Maya Tiwari continued the Living Ahimsa journey by guiding 500 participants at the Ayurveda Conference, Rishikesh, India into taking the Vow of Ahimsa – More Info.
  • Australia in November 2007: On her Peace Be Your Journey Tour, Mother guided 5,500 participants into the Vow of Ahimsa in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Emu Park – More Info.
  • Each year (2003 – 2007) during the annual event of the Honoring Ancestors’ Conference: at the Kripalu Yoga Center in Lenox, MA, participants each take The Vow of Ahimsa. More than 1000 participants have taken the Vow of Ahimsa at these events – More Info
“Living Ahimsa” is a trademark of the Living Ahimsa Foundation and all materials are copyright by the Living Ahimsa Foundation. References to Living Ahimsa® program may be made in other publications and other websites provided the context clearly refers to the Swami Mayatitananda as the founder of the program with this attribution containing a link back to thewww.mypeacevow.com web site.

The Peace Seeds

Awaken your Memory to Nurturance and Peace

Spice mortar and holder

I have just completed the Living Ahimsa Peace Tour in Canada: Bountiful experiences witnessed and shared.  Amongst them, is the awakened heart and outpouring of joy from each and every participant contributed the peace seeds onto the Mandala, and took the Vow of Ahimsa. In touching the peace seeds with our Ahimsa intent, we invoke the seed memory and begin to remember our power to heal, nourish and nurture. The outcome is simply joy, love, peace and harmony. Whilst creating the Peace Mandala, we invoke the power of the seed, we are empower our individual memory and help each other to awaken theirs. The avowed peace seeds, enriched with the vibration of each person’s powerful intent, are placed on fertile ground of Mother Earth to seed, sprout and bloom into fruit packed with hallowed prana of the vow seeds, thereby blessing the earth to nourish all who is hungry, and in despair back to the light.   In this way, we remember the spiritual agreement we made with Mother Earth before birth- that is, to serve and nourish peace within as we restore the splendor of love.

Peace starts within. It begins with me; it begins with you. Together, we are on a symbiotic journey to cultivate harmony, reclaim love, and fulfill humanity’s destiny of the One Self. All we need to do is remember! Remember that we are the light. The massive projection of light around us comes from the collective energy we generate.  So too does the prescient degree of destruction that surrounds us. Each one of us has the power to convert darkness and destruction into light and creativity. To do so, we we must do the inner work. At every given moment, we create lightness or perpetuate the darkness. In living ahimsa, we recognize that we always have a choice, the choice to celebrate life. Take the Vow of Ahimsa, place your peace seeds onto the mandala ground of Mother Earth. Awaken your memory to fulfill our human destiny of love!
Let us celebrate life!

I take the Vow of Ahimsa
I make inner harmony my first priority
I take the Vow of Ahimsa in my thought word and action