Mahashivaratri 2019 at the Isha Yoga Center – Webstream

Please join me at 7:00 pm for a 12-hour watch party of music, dance, meditation, and magic happenings at the celebration of MahaShivaRatri from the Isha Yoga Center located in Coimbatore at the foothills of the Velliangiri Mountains in southern India, Isha Yoga Center is a sacred space for self-transformation, where you can come dedicate time towards your inner growth.

The spiritual process involves staying up sitting or standing with the spine erect for the entire night, but you are welcome to come and go as you please. Sadhguru will explain why this night is such an important night for spiritual development in the Northern Hemisphere.

In 2011 I came began a long journey out of a brutal 10-year depression, and it all began with the meditative practices of kriya yoga that I was introduced to in Sadhguru’s Inner-Engineering program.

Here is the schedule:
Schedule:
7 PM to 8 PM – Mahashivratri opening video discourse by Sadhguru
8 PM to 11 PM – Music, dance, and celebration
11 PM to 12:30 AM – Midnight Meditation and discourse video
1 AM to 4:45 AM – Music, dance, and celebration
4:45 AM to 5:15 AM – Sadhguru’s closing video discourse

Depression Journal Entry

I am feeling very depressed today.  I have been in bed for the last three days.  It feels like someone sucked all of the joy out of me.  Most things I try to do, the techniques I know that can help, seem too hard to do right now.  Notice that I used the word “seems” in the last sentence instead of “are”.  When we talk to ourselves we have to be truthful and even when we think something is true, it not always so.  I have to take responsibility for not doing everything I know to help myself but if I am being completely honest with myself I have to say that I am choosing not to do things that can help me.  Why is that?  When I was in a longer multi-year depression I really believe that there were things that I could not do.  If someone put a gun to my head and said “get up and go for a run, or die” I would have said, “then shoot”.  So I guess I should recognized and be grateful for not being at that depth of depression.  But I think most people would be pretty freakin’ scared to be where I am right now.  I’m not sure if the sensations that I have are the same as anyone else’s but I imagine some people might feel this way:  my face feels numb, the front of my body feels like someone injected some numbing agent (just a little) into my body and then put one of those led things that they put on you in the dentist’s office when they take X-rays.  I feel tired and lethargic.  I want to feel better but I don’t have the energy or willpower to make that happen just yet (I am hoping it will come back since it has before); the light is dull and the colors look dull; I picked up a book to read and it felt heavy, and to read it felt like more energy was being drained out of my body.  I cannot make myself smile by thinking of nice experiences and the things that I know I should be grateful for.  I feel gratitude more from a sense of “Please God, Don’t take these people away from me because I am not grateful!  I am grateful!”, but I feel this more out of fear than gratitude.  The gratitude is intellectually there, but the feeling is very faint.  I will get out of this.

So if I want to get out of this depresses state of mind, and I know that it is possible, why don’t I try to do all that I can?  First, I’d like to say that I have tried several things but my energy is too low and my mood is too low.  That doesn’t mean that these things no longer work.  It just means that right now I need to use a different tool.  Writing this blog post is a tool that I am using.  Some of you might want to try journaling when you are depressed.  My first suggesting is exercise, but I sure as hell am not exercising now.  Second, we need to ask ourselves “What is the gain that I get out of either being depressed or not taking more action to get out of it?”  A friend of mine would say to me, ‘What is the “secondary gain” that I am getting out of the behavior?’  My answer is that I really do not know.  Sometimes there is a secondary gain that I am either aware of or most often unconsciously aware of.  For example, I might want to get out of doing something that I have to do; or maybe I want sympathy or attention; maybe I want special treatment?  Secondary gains might be found by examining the resistance or the strength of my attitude of “I don’t want to”, “I can’t”, or “I won’t” do x or y or z.  “Maybe I want to hurt someone who hurt me by making them feel bad?”  No, not this time.  I am chalking it up to my biochemistry just being out of whack due to the fact that I have been upset and under pressure for several weeks.  I knew that I was getting more depressed, but I couldn’t seem to stop it.  I have to accept it and do what I can when I can to the best of my ability.  One thing that I know I cannot do is engage is self-pity, self-blame, or guilt.  Those thoughts and feelings serve no useful purpose whatsoever.

Hopefully my next post will be more optimistic.  But I thought that it wouldn’t hurt to show you how I try to deal with it.  Sometimes I just take a nap and hope that I will feel better when I wake up.  That can work when I have some depressed feelings but am overall doing well.  It might help with this.  I always try to have hope.  But when I’m like this the nap usually doesn’t do much good except to let me not feel the pain for a while.  Then I feel guilty for wasting a day that God gave to me, but that is another self-defeating behavior.  Gentle acceptance, hope, and gratitude for the wellbeing of my family are what I will hold on to.  I hope that you have people and/or things to hold on to too.

Inner Engineering – Master Your Body, Mind, Emotions, and Energies

I want to tell you about a program that really was/is a miraculous blessing to me. Several years ago in the midst of a brutal depressive episode that had lasted for several torturous years I was desperately looking for something to help me. I had active suicidal ideations. I was in tremendous pain. In my desperation I scoured the Internet looking for something, anything to help me that I could afford. I had been on several expensive retreats which gave me some temporary relief and comfort but that relief would always disappear within a day or two of coming home and I was out of money. It was at this time that I found Inner Engineering Online – a seven session online program that cost $150.00 It was the best $150 I ever spent.

Through this amazing program I was able to learn, experience, and therefore know that it was possible for me to manage my mind, my body, my emotions, and my energies in a way that would lead me out of the depths of depression and put me on a path to wellbeing. Right away I experienced a new found sense of hope. This was followed by many new insights into how the mind, body, emotions and energies could be used to develop a sense of stability and relief from depression. As the course continued I was able to experience to my utter amazement that I could quiet my mind which gave me instant relief from anxiety, worry, fear, depression, rumination, and suicidal ideation. The first experience only lasted 15 seconds, but 15 seconds was like a miracle for me. I would then be able to expand that timeframe of equanimity to longer and longer periods. After completing the Shambavi program at the Isha Institute of Inner-Scienses I was shocked and thrilled to experience a 16 hour day of cancelled airline flights, running from terminal to terminal only to get to a flight that wasn’t going to my airport but to another in New York, which then caused me to miss another flight, and numerous other frustrations, with a sense of peace! I was elated at my ability to stay calm, logical, and even happy as I encountered each challenge. This would never have been possible for me before Inner Engineering Online and Shambavi Mahamudra.

Inner Engineering was not able to cure me of Depression from a genetically inherited biochemical imbalance, but it was able to make it possible for me to have a much happier, healthier, and enjoyable life.

Afterward: It is important for people with biochemically based Major Depressive Disorder that the medications can only take you so far. Medication alone will not lead to happiness; it will lead you to a brain state that is not depressed. From that platform of a more “normal” brain state one can learn how to be happy by eliminating the bad habits that are acquired during childhood and while being in states of chronic depression, and to develop more healthy beliefs and behaviors that lead to peace, happiness, and overall wellbeing.

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