By Nayaswami Narayan
April 30, 2019

I had an interesting dream the other night. In it I was visiting a spiritual community and two of my friends were leading the work there. One was Drupada a long time member of Ananda and vedic astrologer. I went up to him holding his hands and bowing my head and received a blessing through his presence.

Then the scene shifted to an amphitheater similar to the one at Ananda village if you’ve been there. There was an Indian woman wearing a sari and singing mantras to bless some food. The food was carrot juice! It was odd to have such an elaborate blessing for just a juice (Perhaps an indication that I’ve been in LA too long!). Nonetheless, her voice and the mantras she emanated were entrancing. While she sang the mantra blessing, there were other women who held a long piece of golden silk fabric on two ends. They moved the golden fabric up and down while she sang. The fabric appeared to be the golden wavelike expression of her mantras. I felt blessed to witness the scene.

And as dreams sometimes do, it then turned in a negative direction. I walked around the corner and began to hear a disturbing sound. I looked back at the same stage and there were Americans playing electric guitar with a lot of ego. The music (if I can call it that!) was so grating on the nerves.

Until we are free, we all have two sides to our nature – one uplifting and inspiring, the other disturbing and negative. My dream reminded me of the great Indian epic, The Mahabharata, where two sides (relatives of the same family) are in battle against one another. One side represents the forces of light and higher consciousness, while the other are our negative worldly tendencies.

Which side wins the battle?

There’s a Cherokee tale of two wolves that answers this question:

One evening an old Native American told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between two “wolves” inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

So simple and true. Let’s feast our eyes on the blissful play of flowers in a breeze, masticate the marrow of kind acts, digest the devotion of the saints. Together we can inspire away the darkness by saying “YES” to life, to carrot juice mantras, to the loving wolf, our higher Self. Feed on faith! Live to love and serve God! Through self effort which draws divine grace, He will devour our darkness into light and ultimately bliss!

As Paramhansa Yogananda said in his poem Samadhi:

Anger, greed, good, bad, salvation, lust
I swallowed transmuted all
Into a vast ocean of blood of my own one Being!
Smouldering joy, oft-puffed by meditation,
Blinding my tearful eyes,
Burst into immortal flames of bliss,
Consumed my tears, my frame, my all.
Thou art I, I am Thou
Knowing, Knower, Known, as One!
Tranquilled, unbroken thrill, eternally living, ever new peace!
Enjoyable beyond imagination of expectancy, samadhi bliss!