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Falling Into Grace

Early New Year’s Eve 2023 my family and I sat around the table to share our thoughts about the coming new year of 2024. We each selected a word we wanted to characterize our experience as we went through our daily lives.

The 15-year-old nephew chose freedom. That meant getting his driver’s license, a car, and surfing at dawn before school starts. My daughter chose challenge. She loves fund-raising. My son-in-law wanted flow. By that he meant when everything effortlessly comes together and is full of surprising synchronicities. His sister, an artist, wanted re-inspiration to take her painting in a new direction. I wanted the Delight of the Self that results from always focusing on the Divine. For me that meant being in the moment. I need to be fully aware of my thoughts by the witness to my mind, from moment to moment.

The 2024 New Year’s Message from Kedarji

Early the next morning I receive Kedarji’s 2024 New Year’s message. He said:

“Attain freedom and the courage to love.”

He then quoted from his book, Vibration of Divine Consciousness: “In the courtyard of duality, the Shakti [Divine Energy] threads through everything. When experienced, this sensory enjoyment belongs to the experient.” Kedarji also explains in his book, “How to Live Strong and Be Happy”, that this Divine Energy, this Spiritual Energy is the energy substratum of everything and everyone. It is Spiritual Power. It is the first of the four pillars that make up our 4 Pillars of Joy in Daily Living.

The Courtyard of Duality

What is the courtyard of duality? This refers to our mundane world, the world, as we usually experience it. We perceive the world as full of diversity, divisions and often chaos. Yet despite the appearance of duality, division and chaos, the Divine Energy makes up everything. There is only Divine Energy. When I focus on the Divine Energy by repeating my mantra, chanting, or thinking of my spiritual leader, Kedarji, my experience of Delight increases. After all, the only experient is God. In another of Kedarji’s wonderful books, “The Verses on Witness Consciousness”, he states in verse 48:

“Outcomes belong to God, the only Experient. Choose not to self-appropriate the experience of your interactions to the false notion that you are just a person, the body, a personality. Instead practice remembrance of your True nature. Remember that you are the Self and that all other people, places, and things are the Self also.”

The Divine Energy is fully available and present for me to experience and requires freedom. “Attain freedom and the courage to love.”

What Is Freedom?

Kedarji explained, “Freedom is complete absorption in the Self, the bliss of the Absolute.” Is this not in some way what we (my family and I) were all seeking for 2024? But I must ask, is self-styled spirituality useful in the long run? Is it an end in itself? Are there not pitfalls?

Cherry picking or the grocery shopping approach to spirituality is tempting. The caution is that it is one’s ego that usually prepares the shopping list. The ego leaves off those items with which it does not want to deal. The ego leaves off items of which it has no knowledge. This blocks the possibility of freedom or complete absorption in the Self. There is no constant state of flow, easeful re-inspiration, or Delight of the Self.

Reflecting on those questions I had to admit I was both criticizing my family for not following a spiritual leader and at the same time criticizing myself for not making that happen, forgetting outcomes belong to God. Kedarji’s Guru once said:

Do not get involved in “mine and thine,” “this is small and this is big,” “this is yours and this is mine.” Do not create such divisions. Keep working without ego or pride. If the feeling of “mine and thine,” “small and big,” arises in you, and the desire to raise someone up and bring another down, then you can be sure that you are falling.
~ Muktananda Paramahamsa, from his book Bhagawan Nityananda of Ganeshpuri

Spiritual Law

Kedarji points out that this is the love planet. Our time on earth is a time when we can make great spiritual progress if we so choose. Even if we don’t choose it now, sooner or later everyone turns to seek God. This is a spiritual law.

My family is very aware of my spiritual path. As they ask questions about it, I share my experiences. They have the privilege of crossing paths with a Siddha Guru. So, when they long to seek spiritual transformation and when the time is right, they will do so.

Those thoughts were rumbling around in the back of my mind as I cooked and baked for a birthday party. I allowed my mind to get caught up in the details of the day. I failed to make the effort to be absorbed in the Delight of the Self. I finished all cooking on time. I carried the heavy dishes along the side of the house, squeezing through the row of ceramic planters on the porch and into my daughter and son-in-law’s kitchen. I walked back the same way to my wing of the house.

Pride Goeth Before a Fall

Again, I made my way through the planters. I make this route all the time. I am very good at taking this route even though I am no ‘spring chicken’. I have prided myself on how adroit I am at navigating through the planters. In fact, I am so good at it I forgot to pay attention to what I was doing. I allowed my mind to keep wandering instead of being in the present moment and focused on the Divine Energy that flows through my body guiding my steps.

Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. Better it is to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: And whoso trusteth in the LORD, happy is he.
~ Proverbs 16:18-20, King James Version

In squeezing through the planters, I somehow stepped out of my sandals. I dropped the packages. I twisted to regain my balance. In attempting to right myself, I turned sideways. I fell face first, into the planter full of scruffy foliage and banged the side of my leg.

To get off the foliage, I rolled out of the planter. I landed on my back, in the grass, with a piece of foliage sticking out of my cheek. I didn’t move. I couldn’t move; it hurt too much. In no way was I in a state of Delight! Even though the Divine Energy was still available, I did not experience it. I was in the courtyard of duality.

In moments of crisis Kedarji instructs us to be sure to repeat our powerful mantra, Om Namah Shivaya. But I had contracted, and I went into ‘freeze’ mode. I did not repeat my high vibration mantra. I repeated those other words. You know those ones with a much lower vibration.

Grace Is All There Is

This pride I was exhibiting came in the form of a positive-sounding affirmation dictated by my ego. But I was self-appropriating the outcome. I would tell myself how great I was doing in maintaining my balance.

I do make the effort to exercise to stay fit. That is the Grace of my self-effort. But it is God’s Grace that is always the outcome, and I was claiming it for myself. Had I acknowledged God’s Grace, I would have expressed my gratitude for the outcome. God’s Grace came in the form of this lesson. It was a test. God did not fail me by allowing me to fall.

From this experience I have learned more about humility. By God’s Grace my bones were not broken. By God’s Grace, my grown children were right there to take me to the ER. By God’s Grace, I already had an appointment the next day with an osteopathic physician who provided a treatment.

By God’s Grace my exercise trainer was able to get me fast-tracked for physical therapy. By God’s Blessed Grace my Guru, Kedarji, gave me a very high vibrational mantra to assist the healing process. By God’s Grace my injury is healing on schedule. Grace is always flowing in.

Thank you, Lord, for another day to Glorify You.

Sarah Porter, PhD MS MPH RN CHTP/I is a certified healing touch instructor, teaching in Hawaii and Japan. She has over 15 years of Healing Touch practice and 30 years of practice as a psychiatric mental health nurse and clinical specialist with a holistic perspective. She is the co-author of the book, “Women’s Health and Human Wholeness”, emphasizing the necessity of bringing wholeness back into the health care system. She also serves on the Board of Directors for our school

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