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PERSONAL INTRODUCTIONS

Getting to know you better

This is the place to tell us something about yoursef, about your history and how you found Shiningworld and James (Ramji) Swartz.

Moderator: Wayne

Getting to know you better

Postby Mira » Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:55 pm

Hi SW community,
I thought it would be fun to do an ‘interview’ style post to get to know you better in our vyavaharika (transactional) reality. Please feel free to elaborate on any (and all) questions.

My motivation for this post is this: While I have a loving family and close friends, I don’t know of a single person who is actually interested in spirituality (let alone Vedanta!). Therefore, SW is my spiritual community and I would love to get to know you better! Thanks for playing :D.


-Where do you live? (Vague geographic location is fine).


-Are you single/married/kids?


-What age did you start seeking?


-What is your favorite spiritual text?


-How obsessed are you with Vedanta (scale 1-10; 1-have heard about it; 10-watch Ramji videos all the time).


-What is your favorite book/video/teaching of SW?


-Other than SW teachers, do you have any Vedanta teachers you enjoy? If so, whom?


-What was the most difficult aspect of Vedanta for you?


-What is your favorite aspect or teaching of Vedanta?


-What is your favorite symbol of the self?


-What is your favorite mahavakya?


-What is your favorite spiritual music?


-What are your hobbies?


Feel free to add any other questions.
Mira
 
Posts: 160
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2015 3:54 pm

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby Mira » Sat Sep 09, 2017 7:24 pm

I'll go first :D.

-Where do you live? (Vague geographic location is fine).
In the Rocky Mountain region of the US.

-Are you single/married/kids?
Married with one teenager :roll:.

-What age did you start seeking?
Around age 15.

-What is your favorite spiritual text?
Bhagvad Gita. I love the symbolism of the battlefield setting. I love the relationship between Arjuna and Krisha (Friend, mentor, teacher). I love that it contains both self-knowledge and practical applications (karma yoga, raja yoga, bhakti etc).

-How obsessed are you with Vedanta (scale 1-10; 1-have heard about it; 10-watch Ramji videos all the time).
11! I am completely obsessed with Vedanta. Sometimes, I prefer reading spiritual texts and sometimes I prefer biographies or autobiographies or mahatmas. But I have not read any fiction since I discovered Vedanta!

-What is your favorite book/video/teaching of SW?
I love the Satsangs. Every question I have had has been answered there. Sometimes if I get confused about a topic, I do a search and voila! there is the answer :D.

-Other than SW teachers, do you have any Vedanta teachers you enjoy? If so, whom?
I really enjoy everything by Swami Sarvpriyananda these days.
Swami Paramarthananda is also an eternal favorite.

-What was the most difficult aspect of Vedanta for you?

My answer is with regard to the creation theories:
I get the Sristi/Drishti. Ajati Vada makes the most sense since everything resolves to consciousness. Drishti Srishti makes intuitive sense, however, being scientifically minded I keep trying to analyse it and sometimes I can get caught up in trying to figure out the details. How exactly does this projection occur? The intellect wants to know :lol:.

-What is your favorite aspect or teaching of Vedanta?
The knowledge vs. experience teaching of Ramji. It clicked with me immediately and made me trust vedanta.

-What is your favorite symbol of the self?
Baby Krishna. It was love at first sight :D.

What is your favorite mahavakya?
Aham Brahmasmi

-What is your favorite spiritual music?
Prahlad Singh Tipania singing Kabir's devotional songs about the nirguna brahman.

-What are your hobbies?
Trail running, hiking and anything that involves mountains, deserts or other kinds of nature.

Feel free to add any other questions :D.
Mira
 
Posts: 160
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2015 3:54 pm

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby georgschiller » Mon Sep 18, 2017 1:46 pm

HI Mira,

I found your post on getting to know us better very beautiful and I immediately copied the text and filled it out :D


Where do you live? (Vague geographic location is fine).

A little village, surrounded by fields and forests, next to Bamberg, in Bavaria, Germany.


-Are you single/married/kids?

Single, no kids, not married :)


-What age did you start seeking?

When I was 26 years old, in the summer of 2012 after a nightmarish vision of being grabbed in the dark by a huge hand (bigger than my whole body) which took my body and threw it down the Oregon cliff where I happened to camp for the night :)


-What is your favorite spiritual text?

Haha my favorite spiritual text is life :) That's cheesy I know :) But working with the mind and the body seem to be center stage right now.

Well, my favorite Vedanta texts are probably Atma Bodha and Atma Nirvriti.


-How obsessed are you with Vedanta (scale 1-10; 1-have heard about it; 10-watch Ramji videos all the time).

I used to be obsessed about it, until it became harder to listen to Creation and Guna Theories. Now, I still listen to Ramji's and Swami Tattvavidananda's (Swami TV) talks on Bhakti :D


-Other than SW teachers, do you have any Vedanta teachers you enjoy? If so, whom?

Swami Tattvavidananda, Ira Schepetin and Neema.


-What was the most difficult aspect of Vedanta for you?

My interest in the Maya creation theory and the Gunas theory is very low. Mind you, I see the benefit in both theories and don't claim that there is anything wrong with them but I just can't find much interest in it.
I personally found being attached to both theories had detrimental impacts on my mind, it made me judgemental and argumentative.


-What is your favorite aspect or teaching of Vedanta?

Clarity, Directness, and the love for God!


-What is your favorite symbol of the self?

Symbol? I don't know. Books of Direct Knowledge?
I guess my favourite symbol is the felt sense of the body!

but yes, Baby Krishna is also lovely! I also got a very beautiful Buddha statue and Ganesh, and Holy Mary statue :)


-What is your favorite spiritual music?

I like to listen to Latin Laudes, Vespers, etc. I am Catholic by birth and traditional Gregorian choir is a must! :D
I just googled Prahlad Singh, it is beautiful indeed too!


- What other spiritual paths and thinkers do you enjoy?

All kinds of spiritual paths, including Hafiz, Rumi, Rabindranath Tagore, Early Buddhism (Atthakavagga sutta) , Pyrrhonism (10 Modes of Pyrrhonism), Focusing by Gendlin, Nagarjuna, Dalai Lama, Ramakrishna, etc.


-What are your hobbies?

Meditation, watching out the window, enjoying simply being, cloud-gazing and jogging :D
Last edited by georgschiller on Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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georgschiller
 
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Location: Bamberg, Germany

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby Mira » Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:25 pm

Thanks for playing, Georg :D. I'm happy you are a fellow jogger too :D. I think Vedanta and running go so well together. I usually have my major insights while I run.

I'm going to check out Swami T. Any particular videos you recommend?
Mira
 
Posts: 160
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2015 3:54 pm

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby georgschiller » Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:12 am

Yes, check out the mp3 "Emotional stability through Bhakti Part 1" on his website:

http://www.avgsatsang.org/hhstvs/mp3/Em ... Bhakti.mp3

or here: http://www.avgsatsang.org/hhstvs.html

:D

PS: I forgot: What is your favorite mahavakya?

That would be: "I am not that, I am not this. I am indescribable [*fill in your favorite word, such as Brahman, Consciousness, Self, etc.]."
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georgschiller
 
Posts: 79
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Location: Bamberg, Germany

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby DavidVedanta » Fri Mar 02, 2018 12:29 pm

Where do you live? (Vague geographic location is fine).

Bergen - West-Coast of Norway.


-Are you single/married/kids?

No, I am single.


-What age did you start seeking?

When I was a kid. I had alot of out-of-body experiences in my childhood. Always reflecting and asking questions.


-What is your favorite spiritual text?

Many books from James Swartz,Swami Dayananda and Swami Paramarthananda. It is difficult to pick one.


-How obsessed are you with Vedanta (scale 1-10; 1-have heard about it; 10-watch Ramji videos all the time).

I think 11 or 12. :mrgreen:


-What is your favorite book/video/teaching of SW?

So many.


-Other than SW teachers, do you have any Vedanta teachers you enjoy? If so, whom?

Swami Dayananda and Swami Paramarthananda. Atmaprakashananda and Neema Mejmudar I have also read and watched few videos.


-What was the most difficult aspect of Vedanta for you?

Nididhyasana - assimilating - I guess it is for everyone of us. A few vasanas that is very very pesky to remove. But I am patient. 8-)
Gunas management is very helpful and I enjoy observating the three energies - gunas.
I do not have any problems with shradda - faith in the teaching - methodology - I observate how it works in myself.


-What is your favorite aspect or teaching of Vedanta?

To know/realize that I am always full,complete and whole. I am okay as I am and the world is perfect as it is. The whole methodology is great - it is difficult to say one thing.


-What is your favorite symbol of the self?

Ganesh and Krishna.


-What is your favorite mahavakya?

it is difficult to pick one. I love these:
.” The highest Vedantic truth, found in the Upanishads, there are four Mahavakyas: 1) Prajñanam Brahma–“Consciousness is Brahman” (Aitareya Upanishad); 2) Ayam Atma Brahma–“This Self is Brahman” (Mandukya Upanishad); 3) Tat Twam Asi–“Thou art That” (Chandogya Upanishad); 4) Aham Brahmasmi–“I am Brahman” (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad).


-What is your favorite spiritual music?

Enigma with Michael Cretu as composer. In all my adult life since 1993 Enigma has always been there for me. They have got 8 albums!

-
What are your hobbies?

Vedanta,Vedanta,Vedanta and little bit english football and movies/tv-series.
DavidVedanta
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:21 am

Re: Getting to know you better

Postby Turiya » Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:35 am

Where do you live? (Vague geographic location is fine).

I live in Dorset in England and have been in England for 5 years, having moved over from South Africa - where I still have strong ties.

-Are you single/married/kids?

I’m single (divorced) and have 2 sons who are in their twenties.

-What age did you start seeking?

I don’t think I started seeking as such - perhaps not in this lifetime anyway. Sounds strange, but I have always felt a deep sense of enquiry for as long as I can remember. As a young child I felt puzzled by everything. Many things didn’t make sense and why was a big part of my identity.

In high school I was labelled (not so positively) for questioning what we were taught. I was referred to as philosophical. I got deeply involved in evangelical Christianity as a young teenager, which dictated my life path for many years after that.

When I got divorced at age 32, I think I began sincerely seeking for truth more than just answers. Stepped into a more eastern form of spirituality a few years later, when I stumbled upon Ekhart Tolle and A Course in Miracles. Neo-Advaita (online) became a new road of exploration, which eventually led to a form of enquiry that for me led to the seeing through of the illusion of the persona.

Was introduced to a Vedanta teacher in Cape Town who I was with for about 4 years - practicing meditation and attending satsang. Then met James, in Cape Town in 2012 I think it was. I wrote to James, asking for advice, and he replied saying that I wasn’t going to like what he was going to say to me, and that I may perhaps even hate him for what he was going to say. He said I should stop seeking, and go and live an ordinary life for a while. Get more grounded basically. I didn’t hate him for that. It was the best advice I could have been given, and I went ahead and did that for the past few years.

I returned to James’ teaching, through Facebook, gradually over the last year or so. There’s nowhere left to go to :)

-What is your favorite spiritual text?

I have yet to get into the texts.


-How obsessed are you with Vedanta (scale 1-10; 1-have heard about it; 10-watch Ramji videos all the time).

Probably an 8. I read the posts on Facebook all the time, every day. Love them. Have bought most of James books and many more, but haven’t made a point of reading any of them cover to cover. I feel that the time for that will come.

-What is your favorite book/video/teaching of SW?

As above.

-Other than SW teachers, do you have any Vedanta teachers you enjoy? If so, whom?

I enjoy watching Rupert Spira now and then, and most appreciate Swami Dayananda, next to James.


-What was the most difficult aspect of Vedanta for you?

Remembering the Sanskrit terms.


-What is your favorite aspect or teaching of Vedanta?

I appreciate the realisation of the freedom from false/mistaken identity as name and form, and the recognition of the Self.

-What is your favorite symbol of the self?

I wouldn’t say that I connect with any symbols as such.


-What is your favorite mahavakya?

ayam atma brahma

-What is your favorite spiritual music?

Snatum Kaur - or various kirtans (Deva Premal too.)


-What are your hobbies?

Plant-based foods and cooking, Tantra and conscious relating, dancing.
Turiya
 
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