Jyoti Meditation Is For All Faiths, Instructor Claims

Jyoti Light Meditation Sai Baba

Jyoti Meditation Is For All Faiths, Instructor Claims
June 20, 2008 – 11:15AM

EDWARDSVILLE – Silently following the light leads to inner peace for students of Jyoti meditation.

Unlike commonly known meditation that involves music, chanting vocally or spoken repetition of a single syllable, for Jyoti meditation, silence is golden – literally. Jyoti, which means light, involves focussing on a candle’s flame through half-open eyes, while silently chanting praise to a deity of choice, such as Jesus Christ, Mother Mary or Sri Sathya Sai Baba, a Hindu swami.

Sai Baba is the leader of Hinduism much like Pope Benedict XVI leads Catholicism. Hindu is the third largest world religion after Christianity and Islam. Sai Baba, who lives in India, has a page of teachings that includes Jyoti meditation. But instructor Chuck Chakraverty, of St. Louis, occasionally teaches Jyoti at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

Chakraverty taught Jyoti meditation at the SIUE Religious Center during the meeting of the Sri Sathya Sai Baba Center of Southern Illinois led by SIUE professor T.K. Parthasarathy. Meetings at the center are held from 7:45 to 9:30 p.m. Thursdays, for a study circle and devotional singing. All religions and faiths are welcome.

Jyoti meditation also is open to all.

“The difference with Jyoti is its emphasis on silence,” Chakraverty said. “Baba teaches silence is the language of God and there should be a time of day for silence, inner and outer.”

He explained that the silence allows a dialogue with God.

“Silence is important because the language you speak is not God’s,” he said.

Jyoti teaches value, not religion, he added.

“You don’t look for results, you allow benefits to come,” he said.

Since Chakraverty, an engineer, started practicing Jyoti years ago, he has experienced health benefits including lower blood pressure. He does not guarantee this will happen for everyone, but he does think all will find some inner peace through silent and light meditation.

Some basic steps recommended by Chakraverty for Jyoti meditation are:

Select a place in the home conducive to quiet contemplation, and use the same place every day.

Select a time of day – preferably between 3 and 6 a.m., every day. Very early morning is best because it is a time of natural silence, before creatures stir.

Select comfortable clothes.

Select a wooden plank for insulation from the ground, some cushion or seat with a backrest. If sitting on the ground is uncomfortable, a chair can be used. Insulation provides for meditation to be unaffected by magnetic fields from the earth.

Select a candle, matchbox, incense sticks and a picture of a favorite deity.

Other recommendations for Jyoti preparation is to eat a light, early dinner the night before; meditate regularly; and meditate after a good night’s sleep for a fully alert mental state.

Next – meditate.

Sit in a comfortable position in front of the lit candle with eyes always half open concentrating on the candlelight and visualize the deity. Visualize the flame at the center of the chest, or location of the spiritual heart, Chakraverty said. Imagine the light getting rid of all darkness and negativity.

After spreading the light in the body, visualize the light emanating from the head to reach close relatives, friends, colleagues, adversaries, animals, plants and other worlds and cultures.

“Do not praise the self or criticize others,” Chakraverty said. “Meditation will bring peace and changes to your life.”

He advised that there are “good” meditation days and “great” meditation days, but not “bad” meditation days. He also said meditation would continue throughout the day.

With enough interest, Chakraverty will return to SIUE’s Religious Dome to teach Jyoti meditation sessions. For Sai Baba’s Jyoti meditation teachings go to saibaba.ws/teachings/jyotimeditation.htm.


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