One bright summer afternoon, friends and I hiked and swam at the beautiful South Yuba River. It was a lively day at the river, with many other visitors happily calling to one another, swimming, splashing, and sunbathing nearby. After some time our little group gathered to practice the Energization Exercises of Paramhansa Yogananda and then to meditate along the rocky canyon beach. As we commenced our practices, several onlookers interestedly studied our group exercising in unison with a singular and unusual focus on each of the bodily exercises.
Gradually their curiosity waned, and we sat to meditate. After an hour our meditation came to a close. I was fascinated to observe a peaceful serenity along the river that had not been there earlier—not only in myself and my companions—but as far as I could see or hear along the river bank. Surely, I realized, our group’s meditative focus had produced a tangible, peaceful impact in our immediate vicinity. All those around us had received the harmonious blessings of our spiritual efforts. Nature itself reflected to us in water, wildlife, and sky the very peace we had touched in meditation.
In light of global disharmony, conflict, and even terror, now is an important time to be conscious agents of peace in the world. Through each of our sincere spiritual efforts, a powerful ray of peace gradually shines brighter within us and around us.
Peace and harmony, like all divine qualities, are reflections of a greater state of awareness, beyond what the human mind or ego can comprehend. The stillness of the soul is found only in deep calmness, concentration, and meditation.
One day Paramhansa Yogananda and a disciple were walking in the garden of his seaside hermitage in Encinitas, California. Upon seeing his most spiritually advanced disciple, Rajarshi Janakananda, in a state of very deep meditation, the Master quietly cautioned not to disturb him. He said, “You have no idea what great blessings are drawn to the work every time someone goes as deep in meditation as Rajarshi does.” So too is the world profoundly blessed, when just one person with sincere devotion makes even a little contact with God. We must strive ever more deeply, individually and together, to know God, and to share His blessings of Peace.
This wonderful article by Ananda’s Spiritual Director, Nayaswami Jyotish, gives more thoughts on how to share inner peace: World Peace