Here at the YA Blog Headquarters, we were recently discussing ways to strengthen specific points in our individual practice of Easwaran’s eight-point program. One way that we were reminded of is to choose passages from God Makes the Rivers to Flow that speak to the qualities that we wish to strengthen.
Towards the end of God Makes the Rivers to Flow, after all the passages, there is a section titled “Recommended Passages for Specific Uses.” In the newest edition of the book, this section begins on page 279 and includes passages recommended for various issues, qualities, or phases of life.
The basic idea behind passage meditation is that we become what we meditate on. So, if we wish to strengthen our application of the sixth point, putting others first, we could turn to the back of God Makes the Rivers to Flow to page 282, and under the sub-category “Putting Others First” find a recommended passage that will inspire us to put others first.
These lists at the back of the book are a great place to start, but are by no means exhaustive! And passages inspire different people in different ways. To help us get started in finding a passage to reinvigorate each of the eight points, we chose one passage for each point.
- Meditation on a Passage: "You Must Forget Yourself in Prayer" by Dov Baer of Mezhirech, p. 61
- Repetition of a Mantram: "Singing Your Name" by Meera, p. 217
- Slowing Down: "Silence" from The Ortha Nan Gaidheal, p. 150
- One-Pointed Attention: "The Fruit of the Tree" by Kabir, p. 234
- Training the Senses: "The Nectar of Immortality" from The Amritabindu Upanishad, p. 84
- Putting Others First: "Discourse on Good Will" from The Sutta Nipata, p. 104
- Spiritual Fellowship: "United in Heart" from The Rig Veda, p. 102
- Spiritual Reading: "Be Aware of Me Always" from The Bhagavad Gita, p. 241
Each of us came up with a different plan on how we’re going to use them. For example, one team member wanted to focus on Putting Others First for the next week and so is adding "Discourse on Good Will" into the rotation. Another team member is going to systematically cycle through the points. There are so many options!
As always, we’d love to hear from you! Share in the comments some of your favorite passages for strengthening one (or more!) of the eight points.