It was a spring evening in 2011 when my gynecologist confirmed to us that I am pregnant. I have been trying to conceive now for almost two years and everyone in the family was elated to hear the news, except me. Instead of being happy, I became nervous and jittery. That was the first night when the question ” Who am I ?” came into existence for me. and I started finding resources, people, and events that could help me shed some light on this question: “Why am I the way I am, Can I change my behavior and nature, and if yes, Who am I in reality?. This was the beginning of Satsang for me.
Sat, means Truth, real, and existence. If we combine these three words, that gives us the subtle meaning of Sat, what is real at all times, the absolute truth of our existence, in short, it means our true nature. Satsang is the “sang”, association that brings us closer to this Sat, our true nature.
To bring ourselves closer to our true nature, it is also important to understand what we have assumed ourselves to be. The personality of a human being is multifaceted. Sometimes, we are physical beings, many a time, we behave as intellectual beings, at times, we become emotional beings. Rarely, do we get a glimpse of what we truly are, spiritual beings. The idea of Satsang is to bring this idea of physical, intellectual, and emotional being close to the reality of spiritual being. Truth Be Told, we are always in Satsang, we are always associated with our true nature, We are That! In our ignorance, we choose not to pay attention to our true nature.
Prerequisite for the Satsang Practice:
This can take a few months to a year. The prerequisite is to learn to identify when we identify with our physical body when we identify ourselves as intellectual beings when our emotions overpower us and we become emotional beings. During a day, you can be either of them or all of them. Once we have learned to identify what we have assumed ourselves to be at a particular period of time, the practice is simple.
The Practice of Satsang:
- Physical Satsang: When we behave predominantly as physical beings, our senses are turned outward, we have a desire to perceive the outer world. This can be done using the five senses alone. So, any kind of association that can tune these five senses inward comes under physical Satsang. This post that you are reading currently comes under physical Satsang too, listening to music, attending retreats, nature walks, sightseeing, visiting any place that brings you closer to nature, etc. Yes, contrary to the idea that Satsang can only be done with the association of another human being, Satsang to me means being associated with any element of nature using five senses that bring us closer to our true identity.
- Mental Satsang: What separates the human being at the top of the evolution rank is the ability to grasp ideas and make sense out of them, its ability to segregate, organize and utilize things. Our natural curiosity is to know and understand. We do this by using our intellect, a function of the mind that supports this identification, sorting, analyzing, and assimilating. So, any kind of association that can make our intellect subtler and subtler that can bring us closer to our true nature is a mental Satsang. This can be done by contemplating any spiritual ideas and books, shlokas, meditating on Swamiji’s blog, etc. So, attending a retreat or watching a spiritual video is a physical Satsang but reflecting back on them in solitude is a mental Satsang.
- Emotional Satsang: To me, Emotions are the most beautiful part of our existence. This is what makes us human. The colors and vibrancy of life exist due to emotions within. However, they also bind us with the world. The idea of emotional Satsang is to channel our emotions so that they flow towards our true identity, the divine within us. Devotional bhajans, devotional writing, Spiritual dance, Spiritual plays all come under emotional Satsang. Group or Solo Chanting also comes under emotional Satsang, you come in association within a divine sound that becomes your doorway to come close to your true nature. This also helps in clearing latent emotional tendencies. In a nutshell, anything that can evoke divine emotion within you is an emotional Satsang. This is one of the easiest ways to connect to Divine too.
- Absolute Satsang: Any seeker that diligently practices the above three practices gets established in the absolute Satsang at some point in time. I am yet to be firmly established in this but it does happen for a few minutes to an hour in a day very frequently. Absolute Satsang means when you are established in your true nature. Neither do you feel like meeting any person nor do you feel any need to read scriptures, you do not even feel the need to listen to bhajans, you do not call or long for your divine, or sing bhajans, why? Because a divine bliss, calmness pervades your entire being, because what you wanted to grasp has become you, what you were longing for is within you, you feel the divinity within you that fills your heart with peace and contentment. Your beloved Lord walks with you wherever you are. Then, You become a divine temple of the Lord!!! This is the true reward of the practice of Satsang. Practice it sincerely and see it for yourself.
All Glories to Swamiji alone🌼🌼🌼
Many Thanks to Sreedeviji for inspiring us to pen down our thoughts👏👏👏