There are times, when even the most sincere seeker experiences ‘disconnection’. This disconnection can last hours, days or even weeks. Many seekers hence follow a daily ritual. Some follow a particular meditation style, some a breathing technique, because a daily ritual has a very simple purpose – it brings you back home.
This prayer was originally written by my brother GD to help a few friends who said they kept forgetting the core teaching; who kept getting disconnected… and needed a simple, short, crisp reminder of their true nature. So GD created this small reminder – in the form of an ‘advaita’ prayer – to help them stay connected to their essence.
Just one suggestion… please don’t rush through it.
Go slowly… and savor each line to experience the true power and energy of this unique prayer. It will reveal deeper meanings each time you connect with it.
PS: For those of you who would like a printout for daily use, we have included a pdf file which you can download. Enjoy 🙂Prayer of Oneness PDF
A timeless overcast rainy Sunday before me. White birds flap across twilight greens making their way home. It seems like this moment contains eternities. I watch as tranquil pools of water are broken by raindrops that ripple across and disappear into tranquility again. The water has no fear of being disturbed, no preference for stillness. I wonder at how afraid I am to be shaken up and agitated – how much of my life is managed to ensure it doesn’t happen. Then I remember that beneath this ever-changing persona, there is something else… It’s a reminder I need every day:
My almost-five-year-old son is gradually leaving his magical world-without-words for our grown-up world where words obscure, and even replace, reality. A world where a dead stump of a word like ‘man’ does not change whether the body is twenty or forty or eighty. A world where every moment will feel like a previous moment because it can be described by the same words. A world where life itself feels caged within a small, four-letter-word.
It is sad to see him bit-by-bit losing his innate wonder as he excitedly journeys to become a grown-up every day. And once in a while, it is important for us grown-ups to revisit our original, virginal perception too. In which words have no place — except as musical sounds. In which we realize how many lies we must cocoon ourselves within to live our ‘normal’ life.
Here’s some excerpts from a beautiful, mind-stopping poem by Polish poet Wislawa Szymborska that does that job for me. I hope it gives you also a glimpse into the magical world-without-words that we live in once again:
We call it a grain of sand, but it calls itself neither grain nor sand. It does just fine, without a name, whether general, particular, permanent, passing, incorrect, or apt.
The window has a wonderful view of a lake, but the view doesn’t view itself. It exists in this world colorless, shapeless, soundless, odorless, and painless.
The lake’s floor exists floorlessly, and its shore exists shorelessly. The water feels itself neither wet nor dry and its waves to themselves are neither singular nor plural. They splash deaf to their own noise on pebbles neither large nor small.
And all this beneath a sky by nature skyless in which the sun sets without setting at all and hides without hiding behind an unminding cloud. The wind ruffles it, its only reason being that it blows.
Anyone who has done meditation, knows and cherishes this space of clarity and transparency. This little artwork of a poem by my favorite Zen master Ryokan is a wish for you all to experience the same silence and emptiness this weekend…
And this is how it goes:
The landscape of your childhood
goes first; then those who shared it.
Your own memories turn transparent
And one day, you go too.
A gravestone – a name, two dates –
marks your passage till rain and sun smooth it
into bald-faced anonymity.
The gravestone becomes a rock again,
the body becomes earth again,
the grasses sway in the breeze.
And this is the lie that never lets you see this:
this picture you are seeing just now –
of this field with swaying grasses.
As if the mind can show you
what will remain after you are gone.