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Lesson 9 – Level 1 Reading assignment
A) What is Maui?
Maui is the second step of the practice of yoga of Wisdom: the goal is to recondition the mind so that the practical life of the aspirant becomes aligned with the teaching espoused in step 1. That reconditioning of the mind is based on a process that includes deep thinking about the content of the teaching, pondering the notions learned in regards to daily living, fixing our attention to them so that they can be our guides when it comes to decide our actions. That process is culminated with profound reflection about the essential goal of the many aspects of the teaching and their unity in guiding us to achieving enlightenment. The Maui step is the expression of the following proverb: “Give thou thyself to the divine, keep thou thyself to the divine and let tomorrow be as today”. That means we need to strive to constantly remember our divine nature at every moment of our lives so that we can dispel the ignorance of our supreme and abiding reality. The constant remembering of our nature will have a profound effect in our acting and ultimately affect our unconscious mind leading to the generation of new Arius so that gradually we become the expression of the teaching. Another aspect of the MAUI process is to allow us to transform our thinking in generating vibrations that would attract the emergence of the divine presence already within us but veiled previously by the cloud of ignorance resulting from attachment to our perception in the waking state of consciousness as being abiding. The reflection around the unity of the teaching is not done in a way to generate confusion but to gradually integrate the notion of underlying essence of objects of creation. Performing actions that are aligned to the teaching is fundamental to the MAUI process in order to impress the unconscious in a way to generate new Arius. Without the actions that will help to change our unconscious mind, we are bound to act in an unrighteous manner and in ways that may surprise us and our environment. The MAUI process can be assimilated as the cooking of the teaching within ourselves having received the ingredients during the first step. It is a way for us to assimilate the essence of the teaching within ourselves in order for the transformation process to occur. The alchemist refers to that aspect of the practice of the teaching when they refer to transforming the lead that represents our consciousness embedded with gross impurities or the darkness of ignorance into gold, representing the light or a consciousness that is elevated to the realization of its divine nature.
B) Name the process the practice of the Yoga of Wisdom
The Yoga of Wisdom is practiced through a threefold process including the following stages:
– Meh Mestchert: listening to the teaching
– MAUI: to think, ponder, concentrate, and fix attention.
– Uaa Meditation: mind completely introspective leading to expansion of consciousness with revelation and identification with the absolute Self.
What is the aspirant listening to?
Essentially, the Supreme Being is one and alone and encompasses all objects of creation that are its manifestations which in their purest form, are called the Neterus or gods and goddesses. Objects of creation are not distinct elements from the Supreme Being but appear to be as such based on our ignorance of what is wrong and right. That ignorance leads to attachments to objects of awareness in time and space as real and abiding and the development of an ego personality composed of desires and Arius that we consider to be the essence of our true identity. That leads to suffering and craving for bliss which is the state characterized by realization of the true Self. However, we misunderstand that craving and search to attain bliss in time and space reinforcing then our identification to the ego personality and at the same time, we generate of Arius that support ignorance and illusions. To be released from suffering and pain, one needs to realize the illusory aspect in believing that the ego personality is a separate and abiding reality and strive instead to realize the ultimate reality encompassing all objects of creation. With that realization comes true happiness and abiding peace with the end of the necessity to reincarnate in time and space. That realization is the purpose of life and can only be realized through a transformation process that requires purification of all aspects of personality that are currently acting as clouds that veil our true nature and our cosmic union with creation.
What is the aspirant will be reflecting on?
Having listened to the teaching, the aspirant will have difficulties to understand and to accept the illusory aspect of all the attachments. Based on level of spiritual maturity, for some, at first, the understanding may be partial, false, and incomplete because of tendencies of the mind to rely on duality instead of unity. In order to progress, the aspirant will need to exercise conscious effort to reflect on unity despite the diversity manifested through creation. A step that can lead to more illusions as well because seeing unity only with the intellect without expansion in consciousness may lead to incorrect living in time and space. That level of immaturity and the consequences in time and space may help the aspirant with spiritual guidance to understand that true reflection requires not only a mental process but also doing actions that are based on Maat, righteousness, and truth for deeper understanding. Essentially the purpose of the reflection is to lead to intuitional realization with alignment of intellectual understanding and actions in daily lives which in turn will lead to deeper revelation about the abiding nature of the Self. It results expansion of consciousness as well as generation of positive Arius that help neutralization and gradually dissolve our ignorance until complete identification with the object of our study. In summary, that step is where the aspirant is combining the Djehuti and Maat aspect to evolve in the teaching.
What the aspirant will be meditated upon?
A consequence of the reflection in the teaching leads to alignment of understanding and practices which in itself leads to a state of constant introspection and concentration about the unity of all things; when practiced long enough and sustained, it will lead to final revelation of the self.
Another aspect of the yoga of Wisdom is that the three steps relate to the trinity of awareness in time and space expressed as Amun Ra Ptah. Amun, the consciousness is using the mind Ra, to be aware of objects of creation in time and space. The Yoga of Wisdom can be considered as the reversal process of creation leading to the realization of state of Anrutef, pure consciousness dissolving all three aspects of perception. It is in reality the expansion of consciousness elevating the individual from awareness of duality to cosmic unity. The first step in the Yoga of Wisdom purifies the knowledge of creation by informing on its unity despite apparent diversity; the second step relates to gaining of deeper understanding along with practices of righteousness leading to gradual intuitional realization of the goal of the teaching; final step leading to pure awareness itself. When in the Amun state of consciousness and being aware of creation and not identifying with it, there will be no desire, no generation of negative Arius; a state if sustained long enough will lead to pure consciousness where the seer is no longer aware of himself being a watcher but just watches.
C) What are the steps in practicing the Yoga of Actions?
The steps are:
– Learn Ethics and law of cause and effect leading to purifying gross impurities, control of body, speech and thoughts.
– Practice cultivation of higher virtues leading to purification of mind and intellect leading to more subtle purification at the unconscious level.
– Devotion to the divine with righteous actions as offerings to the divinity of Maat.
– Meditation to become one with the divinity of Maat and realize oneness with cosmic order which is the transcendental self.
Yoga in general means a transformation from consciousness of duality to a realization of awareness of unity. At the basis, it is a purification process that starts from gross impurities, to subtle ones until final realization of the goal. The Yoga of Actions is a reflection of the overall process described above using the path of Actions.
The first step consisting in learning about the law of ethics and law of cause and effect will provide the knowledge that our destiny is driven by consequences of our actions. If we act in ways that are not ethical meaning not aligned with Maatian principles, we are inviting suffering and pain into our life. When acting with righteousness, we make progressing in the spiritual path and are in the process of neutralizing negative Arius. In that stage, the aspirant learns about the precepts of Maat as well as the philosophy of Arius as the determinant of one’s destiny; practicing the precepts and use them as guidelines during our practical life will help to purify gross impurities within the personality. Usually, that step leads to an individual that is more balanced, less susceptible to anger and other fetters of Set, with more control of body, mind and feelings. But, at that stage, the subtle impurities remain because identification with illusory aspects of life may still remain.
The second step aims at removing the impurities accumulated from past and current identification with the ego personality that are deeply inscribed in the unconscious mind. The practice of selfless action is a way to dissolve gradually that identification and turn the mind to striving instead for the realization of the true nature of the self, leading to generation of Arius that support the process.
The third step is a reinforcement of the goals of the second step intensified with the degree of practices acquired in first two levels because one has generated enough positive impressions on the unconscious mind. The devotion to Maat, the goddess of order, balance and truth has a primary goal to consciously dedicate our actions not to our own benefits but to the goddess herself. We are dispelling the notion of ourselves as doers to the one where we consider us as servants of humanity for the realization of the higher truth. In other words, we are offering our ego and personality to Maat so her energy can express itself within us.
The last step leads to final identification with Maat, the order of creation as we become that order not only in our actions but within our identity. We are no longer aware of ourselves as doing Maatian actions but, we are essentially Maat. The offering of Maat symbolizing the Ultimate acts of righteousness.
D) How should an aspirant think about ego based feelings and how does the Action path affect them as an aspirant to the transforms through time?
Aspirant should think about ego based feelings as reinforcing their ignorance about their oneness with rest of creation as well as generating negative Arius that have the effect of maintaining the tendency of acting egotistically. The ego based feelings allow expressions of animal passions that are the fetters of Set leading to lack of control over actions, thoughts and feelings. The ego based feelings are the sources and justifications for mental complexes who lead to delusion and wrong ideas about protecting that identity created. With ego based feelings, we are turning away from our true nature and chose rather to develop shadow identities to satisfy society and others. They are what makes us vulnerable to oppressions, and acting in ways that are deceitful just to please others, and finally, they make us developing wrong understanding about our situation in time and space be it social, political and economic as well as false misunderstandings about spirituality and religion. If sustained, they are making us the followers of a social order that is designed paradoxically to maintain us in a state of ignorance. In all and all, they constitute heavy possessions for our heart resulting for us to be born again in the cemetery as our possessions will be heavier than the feather of Maat in the scale of righteousness.
For the aspirant, the yoga of Actions provides the tools to reverse the effect of past Arius that sustain the ego based feelings as well as generating new Arius that will gradually lead to expression of righteousness. At the basis, the Action path corresponds to living according to precepts of the teaching in order to purify our behaviors and dissolve gross to subtle impurities depending on the level of maturity. Instead of keeping our mind occupied to protection of illusory identity in time and space, it redirects it and keeps it instead occupied with uplifting thoughts that help to calm externalization. The action path if sustained enough will lead to development of new patterns of thinking and understanding that will further remove mental complexes. When the yoga of actions is performed long enough, it will help the aspirant to advance to the degree where he or she can feel the internal voice and be able to notice river of peace, faith, security, devotion which will wash away ego based emotions from personality; that is called victory of Heru over Set. In a higher sense, once we establish MAAT within oneself, the maturity gained will help us understand that the battle for self-control is primarily internal and must be done within and not externally. Situations impacting us in present time are in line with Arius and our attitude towards them shall be one of personal responsibility and forbearance. The aspirant must avoid blame and feelings which in turn will reinforce ego based identity but resolve instead to understand causes in order to strive to correct wrongness. The yoga of Actions implies a constant self-evaluation with the purpose of addressing mental weaknesses and wrong understanding using patience and perseverance. It is metaphorically the fire that burns all our ego based tendencies that cloud the shining of our true Self. It is the laboratory that helps transforming the lead within us represented by ego based feelings to gold, representing Maatian actions that lead to enlightenment and not to reborn a second time in the cemetery.
E) If you do not learn the spiritual lesson that the situation is here to teach you, what happens?
The situation is bound to repeat itself based on the law of Arius that governs life in time and space. Not learning the lesson leads to the maintenance of mental impressions originated from past and current Arius as well as generation of new ones that will further reinforce the activation of the trends. It is like an endless cycle that is bound to repetition as well as deeper and deeper suffering until final dissolution of the related Arius. One needs to know that the experience in life has a purpose here to provide opportunities for growth or as one said, they are divine messages to inform us in our level in the path. The experiences are not deigned to makes us be bitter about life; that would be the wrong understanding; At the contrary, they are to help us to develop and in other cases to secure spiritual qualities including patience, equanimity, dispassion, detachment, universal love. Within that perspective, every situation becomes a path for enlightenment and, the performing of practical duties in a righteous manner becomes the same or a continuation of the practice of spiritual disciplines turning away then from pain and suffering that are a by-product of living a life not aligned with Maat and ignorance of our true self. In a higher sense, that means we are always acting consciously in a spiritual manner to promote then spiritual growth toward enlightenment.
F) By acting and moving like the Gods and Goddesses, one can do what?
By acting and moving like the Neterus or Gods and Goddesses, one can allow the discovery of the character of the Neterus, their energy and divine agency not externally but within one’s consciousness and hereby becomes one with their retinue. In other words, it is like vibrating at the same degree with them. Our movements depict a certain type of vibrations like the sinusoidal forms manifest flow of electricity with electrons vibrating in a certain frequency. Therefore, by moving like the Neterus, we are in a way emulating the vibration of the Neterus and, acting like them is a way to integrate within us their Metaphysical characteristics. Relationship between vibration and forms taken in time and space differ in degree and subtlety and emulating the movement with mindfulness of the Neterus can be a way to vibrate from lower to higher hence approaching the energies that vibrate at that level. When such practices are sustained long enough along with other Shedy disciplines, it will lead us to realize oneness with Neterus and ultimately transcending them to realize oneness with the Supreme Being. Another way of seeing it is to say that vibrations when reaching a certain degree of subtlety attire the Neterus vibrating at such level and it is like entering a magnetic field tying all energies with same vibratory frequency. Promoting union with the Gods and Goddesses, the Neterus, and ultimately with God or Goddess, through movement is the purpose of the Sema Paut.
G) Yoga postures began in India. (True/False)
It is false the common knowledge that the Yoga postures began in India. That misunderstanding results from the fact that knowledge about Yoga spread in the Western countries from practitioners in India as well as the tendency in those western countries to hide or denigrate culture of Africa in general and that of ancient Egyptians particularly. In fact, according to researches, physical movement developed around 10th century ACE in India by a sage named Goraksha; before that period, only the practice related to cross legged meditation or the lotus position was known. Prior to emergence in India, similar set of postures were exposed in Temples of Ancient Egypt which dated those practices from 300BCE-1580BCE if not earlier. Such postures were also displayed in Temple of Heteru, Temple of Heru and Tomb of Queen Nefertari prior to the time of practice of India in an earlier period preceding their development in India.
Many enlightened personalities from time to time indulge in recreational activities. Ordinarily, perception of recreation relates to performing activities to regenerate one’s physical and psychological identity for fun and excitement in an egoistic way. From a spiritual perspective, this is relatively wrong and inadequate because it is reinforcing sense of ego self as abiding as well as source of disappointment leading to Arius driving the individual to seek pleasure again and again from the same activity.
An enlightened being has realized union between lower and higher self and is the one able to practice highest degree of recreation that needs to be fully conscious, detached and peaceful not leading to attachment and addiction. In that sense, every activity performed in life becomes play and divine sport because of full immersion and no worries about future and past events that cloud our capacity to be fully present in the moment. The teaching informs us that perception of time separating mentally eternity into intervals leads to concerns associated with past and future.
In conclusion, recreation has a purpose to regenerate one’s consciousness at every moment and in its purest form as practiced by Enlightened beings, does not lead to identification with pleasure or illusoriness of event but rather leads to adjustment of body and mind to achieve greater and greater levels of spiritual practices. In all and all, spiritual disciplines are not meant to deny pleasure and recreation but rather consists in instilling the understanding and realization that true pleasure originates only from internal Self and when searching for it from external sources, the results will be illusory and temporary leading to more craving and hence reinforcing our dependency to our ego based feelings.
H) The stagnation of the flow of energy throughout the body has what effect?
The flow of energy in matter creates and sustains life. If that energy flows freely within the body of a person without obstacle, it allows for spiritual growth. If it is stagnant, our consciousness remains grounded in ego based feelings and identification with physical consciousness (Ptah) as opposed to promoting lightness and subtlety for the mind. The way for energy to flow within the body closely relates to our breathing. The level of control we have in our breathing process reflects how we master our body and mind. This is attested in Ancient Egyptian mysteries with the God Shu holding in place Geb and Nut representing our lower and higher self. In that sense, breathing is an important aspect in our spiritual life.
Ordinarily, people have developed bad habits in relation to breathing when they push out their chest; a method that does not allow enough intake of air and vital cosmic energy and the effect is stagnancy that can possibly lead to diseases at both physical and mental levels. In order to allow for normal flow of cosmic force energy within us and to control our breathing process, it is recommended to breath with the belly that massages our internal organs. This is in fact necessary to have mental and physical health as attested by the following Kemetic proverb: “To be a sun, breath rhythmically and deeply then as RA shall you be”. That means mastering the rhythm of our breath will lead to control over our body and mind and along with the spiritual practices, will result in mastering lower and higher self hence realizes oneness with RA within.