Darshan of Gurumayi’s Message Artwork I

March 4, 2015

Dear all,

Namaste.

On January 1, in A Sweet Surprise satsang, Gurumayi Chidvilasananda gave Siddha Yogis and new seekers her Message for 2015.

Each year, Gurumayi’s Message is accompanied by Message Artwork, a visual means by which to explore the year’s focus of study. By having darshan of the Message Artwork, by reflecting and meditating upon it, you further your experience and understanding of Gurumayi’s Message.

Warm regards,

Swami Ishwarananda

Swami Ishwarananda
Siddha Yoga Meditation Teacher

 

About Swami Ishwarananda

bio photo Copyright SYDA Foundation

Swami Ishwarananda has been following the Siddha Yoga path for more than forty years. In 1980, he took monastic vows to become a Siddha Yoga Swami. Swami ji serves Gurumayi as a Siddha Yoga meditation teacher, and he has traveled throughout the world to teach in satsangs, courses, Sadhana Retreats, and Shaktipat Intensives.

Swami ji teaches with great clarity and wit, encouraging students to discover for themselves the essence of the Siddha Yoga teachings and practices. He especially loves to teach students how to meditate.

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This morning I returned to Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, and I saw it in an entirely new way. It was like the experience I have of Gurumayi's talks and books—no matter how many times I read or listen to her words, they are always alive and brand-new. I also saw the Artwork not as a representation of the Message, but as a form of the Message itself. I was drawn inside to a soft, quiet space and had a sweet meditation.

a Siddha Yogi from Massachusetts, USA

When I first saw Gurumayi's Message Artwork, I studied it to find what all the aspects of it might mean. Like so many who have shared, I was eventually drawn into a meditative state. I look at her Artwork often. And I have found that every time I do this, I'm drawn to different parts of the painting, and that what I receive is just what I need at that moment. 
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for your grace, your wisdom, and your boundless love.

a Siddha Yogi from Minnesota, USA

When I received the darshan of Gurumayi's Message Artwork, my mind immediately became still. Afterward, I saw in her painting a reminder that nature, which is all around us, is inherently divine.

Gurumay's Artwork also reminded me to bend flexibly and gracefully as I turn inside to meditate, to let go of my preconceived ideas of what meditation is, and to just be-like the image before me.

I then imagined myself as the painter, sitting so still and allowing God’s creativity to flow through me. Imagining myself as the painter brought me into a feeling of oneness, of ease.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for reminding me that I don't have to try so hard. Meditation is natural to me.

a Siddha Yogi from California, USA

When I saw Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, I was truly amazed at its beautiful natural form. I could feel a gentle energy and balance coming from the composition. I am an artist and have been struggling with subject matter and style for my painting. When I contemplated the image, I had the strong intuition that, during the process of painting, I should stay connected to the space I experience during my meditation practice. Then that state would flow into my painting effortlessly.

Then I realized that this was a template for living my whole life. I feel this Message Artwork has contained a profound personal blessing.

Thank you, Gurumayi.

a Siddha Yogi from Federal, Australia

Gurumayi's Artwork brought home to me once again the Message we received from her in A Sweet Surprise satsang. Looking at the Artwork, I understand that Gurumayi is teaching me to be steadfast and resilient; disciplined, yet flexible; to be an individual and, at the same time, part of the sangham.

Above all, the Artwork inspires me to breathe in deep and breathe out completely, and to remember the mantra with each breath—until my body, my mind, and my entire being sing the mantra, like a flute.

a Siddha Yogi from Sydney, Australia

This morning, my mind was troubled by unpleasant thoughts. I decided to change my state by listening to a CD of the mantra Om Namah Shivaya. After a few minutes, I remembered hearing people at the Siddha Yoga meditation center speaking about Gurumayi’s Message Artwork on the Siddha Yoga path website.

I sat on the couch and opened the computer to the website. In the background, the mantra kept playing. As I looked at the Artwork, I felt the shakti that gently, slowly arose from within and absorbed every little space of my body and my mind, releasing me from the residue of the earlier thoughts. I was filled with great peace and serenity.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for this gift.

a Siddha Yogi from Rome, Italy

Yesterday, after viewing Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, I decided to participate once again in A Sweet Surprise 2015. When I went to register for the audio webcast, I noticed that the talk by Swami Ishwarananda, “The Power of Listening to Learn—The Power of Learning to Listen,” was still available. Remembering how helpful it had been when I first prepared to receive Gurumayi’s Message, I listened to it once again.
 
When I heard Swami ji speak about how a student would carefully prepare to receive prasad from the Guru with both hands, it occurred to me that, although I’d looked at the Artwork several times, I hadn’t really prepared myself to receive it in the same way I had prepared to receive Gurumayi’s Message.
 
I decided to go back to the Artwork, holding the understanding that I was about to receive a life-transforming teaching from my Guru. I made myself very present, and then I “listened” attentively to what the Artwork was communicating. Immediately, I perceived visual depth in the image that I had not noticed before. The Artwork “spoke” to me of a serene state on the physical plane, and at the same time lifted me to an amazing experience of transcending creation.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi.

a Siddha Yoga Meditation Teacher

Every time I have the darshan of Gurumayi's Message Artwork, my awareness automatically and effortlessly turns toward my breath, my mind quiets, and I slide into a meditation on my breath. A gentle in-breath, pause, and gentle out-breath, pause, continuing in a circle of contentment as I am filled with a sweet stillness.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for this sweet darshan.

a Siddha Yogi from Massachusetts, USA

In the past, I have sometimes thought of the Self as a single, monolithic, and, perhaps, unattainable state. Gurumayi’s Message Artwork reminds me that the Self is textured and varied. It helps me open to and embrace many beautiful qualities and aspects of myself. It reflects my recent experiences of meditation in which the background is alive, fluid, changeable, and harmonizing. It helps me let go of my expectations and be present to what is happening now.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi!

a Siddha Yogi from Ohio, USA

When I first gazed at Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, I noticed my mind engaging with it in a somewhat perplexed way, trying to assimilate what I was seeing. Yet beneath that, I could feel a subtle, yet distinct inner pull. Surrendering to this, my whole being began to settle into a silent space that was both rich and full, while also feeling totally empty and free.
 
Now, I find I am seeking this experience more and more. This is a state I easily could be happy residing in continuously. There is a sense of wonder and possibility, and it no longer feels like an unattainable struggle to reach this state. Instead, it’s become an enjoyable endeavor. For that I am profoundly grateful.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for making meditation palpably accessible for me.

a Siddha Yogi from California, USA

While having the darshan of the Message Artwork, I experienced the earth and sky, movement and stillness, and the five elements all dissolving into their source—Oneness. I directed my attention with a soft and sustained focus on the Message Artwork. The effort I made to do this seems to have evoked the grace that allowed a shift in my awareness. Whereas my attention had been focused on specific aspects of the composition, I now began to experience a pervasive stillness and serenity.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for once again guiding us to the experience of the Self.

a Siddha Yogi from Washington, USA

After studying Gurumayi's Message Artwork this morning, I held the image in my awareness as I began to meditate. As I did this, a feeling of softness suffused my mind and body, and my awareness was very gently drawn inside. When thoughts arose during meditation, I remembered the image, and once again my awareness was drawn deeper, beneath the level of thoughts.
 
Thank you, dear Gurumayi, for this lovely image that supports us in practicing your Message for 2015.

a Siddha Yogi from Massachusetts, USA

This morning, after practicing three rounds of Surya Namaskar, I sat down to receive Gurumayi’s Message Artwork. I breathed mindfully and listened to my inner responses while regarding it. And voila! The Message Artwork leapt into a lively splendor—full of wonder. The colors seemed to flow about and softly breathe with life, creating an elixir of soothing tranquility. Gurumayi’s words seemed to effortlessly transmit their meaning to me. Very naturally, my eyes gently closed, and I slipped into meditation.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for this sublime and powerful gift of love.

a Siddha Yogi from Virginia, USA

Yesterday, after having the darshan of Gurumayi’s Artwork, I had a short and deep meditation. Then during my daily activities, the sound of Om Namah Shivaya arose spontaneously in my heart. This sound accompanied me the entire day. I was happy.
 
Thank you, Gurumayi, for this wonderful experience.

a Siddha Yogi from Düsseldorf, Germany

A few days ago, I was at my favorite bookstore perusing for art tutorial books. I noticed some books on a particular style of art that I was not familiar with. For some reason, I felt compelled to pull these books off the shelf and leaf through the pages. I spent several moments studying and contemplating them. I wondered to myself why these books had caught my eye, but then forgot about it.

A couple of days later when, for the first time, I opened Gurumayi's Message Artwork for 2015, I let out a delighted laugh. It was in the style I’d been drawn to contemplate in the bookstore. I felt so connected and loved by the Guru.

I adore this year's Message Artwork. I look forward to contemplating it for the rest of the year.

a Siddha Yogi from South Carolina, USA

When I first saw Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, I was delighted by its graceful lightness. I felt that it was an invitation for me to bring that very feeling inside when I sit to meditate.

a Siddha Yogi from Massachusetts, USA

Just before I woke up this morning, I dreamed I was offering seva in Shree Muktananda Ashram. I could feel the presence of Gurumayi nearby. Then I saw an arati tray placed on a puja. On it, there was an image that I didn't recognize at first.

When I woke up later and looked at the Siddha Yoga path website, I saw Gurumayi’s Message Artwork displayed there. I recognized the image that I’d seen on the arati tray. I understood that I’d had the darshan of the Artwork in my dream.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for the numerous ways you lovingly guide us on the path.

a Siddha Yogi from Mont-Saint-Hilaire, Canada

All day I had been feeling strangely empty and hollow. Then I had the darshan of the Artwork for Gurumayi's Message. A gentle energy came up from the core of my being and spread throughout my body. My entire being was suffused with the vibrations of the mantra. I saw how, having become empty, I was ready to receive.

a Siddha Yogi from Sydney, Australia

This delicate image is a warm invitation. One look at the subtle and magnificent Message Artwork, and I am transported to the stillness of Gurumayi's presence deep within.

a Siddha Yogi from Washington, USA

When I first looked at the Message Artwork, I had a subtle energetic feeling. It was the experience I have of darshan of Gurumayi, a flash of recognition.

a Siddha Yogi from Iowa, USA

Seeing Gurumayi's Message Artwork, my breath rushed in and filled my lungs. The Artwork was both a surprise and felt familiar. As my eyes moved between the elements, I felt a circular, cyclical energy. I felt the old and the new existing in the present moment, and saw both as beautiful expressions of time unfolding.

As I looked, the words of the Message seemed to pulsate, and my focus was drawn naturally from one to the next by the graceful curve of the letters. This brought me to my breath flowing in and out, steady and easeful, and my eyes rested on Gurumayi's beloved name.

Thank you, dearest Gurumayi, for this experience of meditation. Thank you for this access to the Heart. Thank you, Shri Guru, for your Message.

a Siddha Yogi from New York, USA

My first view of the Artwork evoked a feeling of softness. As I gazed at it, I felt soothed. An inner intensity I hadn't been aware I was holding melted away. I was drawn into stillness.

a Siddha Yogi from Massachusetts, USA

The shapes, colors, and light of the Artwork take me by surprise. I keep looking, repeating the words of Gurumayi’s Message, feeling my body soften, my breath deepen, and my awareness turn inward.

As I look, I am aware of movement, shades of color and meaning—all creating a single light-filled note. This note sings in my heart. And it stirs memories of stillness—of a light and perfect inner balance.

I know I will return to this Artwork again and again.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for this beautiful way to study your Message.

a Siddha Yogi from Melbourne, Australia

Initially, I was surprised by the simple elegance and lightness of Gurumayi’s Message Artwork. However, as I continued to gaze at it, I began to perceive how beautifully textured and inviting it is. I experienced myself softening and releasing into a space of sweet peacefulness—one that I have been entering more and more as I’ve put Gurumayi’s Message to practice this year.

Along with gracefulness and flexibility, the Artwork also communicated strength, endurance, and stability to me. I felt I was being encouraged to bring these qualities forth in myself. And behind the soft colors, I could sense enormous power, which drew me into meditation.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for giving us this exquisite way to contemplate and practice your Message.

a Siddha Yogi from Wisconsin, USA

When I first saw Gurumayi’s Message Artwork, a feeling of tranquility spread through my whole body. Even though I was in the midst of a very busy time, I felt everything around me become still. As I admired the Artwork, my breathing spontaneously became deeper, and I began silently practicing mantra japa. My eyes were open, having the darshan of the Artwork, but I felt as if I was in a state of meditation. It was hard to look away!

Now, as I write, I realize that this was an experience of what Gurumayi is directing us to do through her Message, Turn Inward Meditate Easefully. Even though I have been contemplating and practicing Gurumayi’s Message every day, today I felt that I was truly embodying her words.

Thank you, Gurumayi, for the Message Artwork and the myriad other means you give to help us deepen our understanding of your teachings.

a sevite in Shree Muktananda Ashram