“The individual soul has descended from the higher worlds to this city of illusion, bodily existence. It has descended from the soundless state to the essence of sound, from that sound to light, and finally from the realm of light the the realm of darkness.The natural tendencies of the sense organs draw us downward and away from our true nature” -Swami Sant Sevi Ji Maharaj
From as far back as I can remember I was possessed by a burning curiosity. Why was life such a rollercoaster of emotions? The life of everybody I ever met was a constant exchange between sadness and happiness. Nobody was truly happy. I was always tormented by the paradox of a God that is Love, with a world that is a theatre of suffering. Where innocent children are dying of starvation. Where we are born into a world with so many dreams and possibilities knowing that in the end we will be led to the gates of death.
As a child I was so acutely sensitive to this hypocrisy of life. Why did life have to be this way? Why were we born into a world of imperfection and pain, with an imagination for perfection and joy. When my first nephew Andy was born it appeared strange to my childhood eyes why my family was celebrating his birth whilst he himself could not stop crying. Why was pain and pleasure in life inexorably intertwined?
The more the years passed the greater the fire inside my heart for answers raged. I was raised in an ardent Greek Orthodox family, where we prayed to the Holy Mother of God and the Saints in all adverse circumstances. My mother would always say that back in Cyprus some people in rural areas followed the old ways. That instead of medical science they would ask Saints to resolve their health issues.
The belief in the supernatural was so widespread that virtually every difficulty encountered was the result of the ‘Evil Eye’ or the interference of nature spirits into human affairs. Orthodox Saints were pious Christians who had attained ‘theosis’ or union with God. As a mark of exaltation the Almighty would shine His Grace upon them so that even after their repose their body would remain incorrupt and bear the indelible fragrance of myrrh. The Orthodox Church as the true inheritor of Apostolic Christianity has Saints that intercede on behalf of the Holy Trinity producing miraculous cures for ailments and adversity. Sainthood is a living tradition, and Saints are not confined to legend but to the here and now.
St John (Ivan Maksymovych) of Shanghai and San Francisco (1896-1966) performed countless miracles even during his earthly life. St John continued to celebrate Divine Liturgy in his church in Shanghai during the Japanese occupation of China during the 1930s and 40s. The Japanese military forbade all religious ceremonies except Shinto in the occupied territories.
When the Japanese military commander of the Shanghai garrison ordered his soldiers to stop the Divine Liturgy and disband the congregation, to the astonishment of the Japanese soldiers they could not enter the church. God had placed some kind of invisible wall which the soldiers could not pass! As a Bishop St John spent his life in cities across China, the Philippines, Paris and San Francisco where Orthodoxy was very much a minority religion. Untold people alive today both Orthodox and otherwise still testify to the remarkable miracle workings of this modern urban Saint.
I have always believed that Christianity goes beyond religion. That God himself has no religion. That Christ is universal, and that the Christ Consciousness of love, mercy and abundance is all encompassing, all embracing The mystical experience of divine relationship with Jesus Christ was at the heart of pure Christianity.
That Christ himself wanted each of us to discover a relationship with Him, and secondarily, to establish religious institutions. To know Christ one had to feel, surrender to, be with at heart with the mercy of the Consciousness of Christ. One had to stand in awe and tremble before the unfathomable splendour of God. St Paul said “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 8:38,39 Therefore no race nor religion can profess to have a monopoly over God. And in the garden of spirituality it is wise to look at all the flowers offered by all religions for then you will know that they grow from the same soil and they are watered by the same hand.
In my travels to the spiritual city of Varanasi in India I encountered the pinnacle of meditation practice known as Sant Mat, in the form of Sant Sat Guru Sharnanand. Sant Mat, otherwise known as the way of the Saints is the express gateway to enlightenment based on listening to absorbing oneself in the inner sound.
The essence of the meditation is to focus on the third eye, to a point about an inch behind the middle of the brows towards the brain. And wait for the inner sound to carry you to the different astral levels and beyond. According to the masters, In the third eye which is the portal to the astral world resides the astral form of the Sat Guru. He is the perfected master who having walked the road before you will meet you in the meditation and carry you to experience the different parallel universes. Sound is energy and everything that exists around you is held together by the interaction of sound waves, known as vibration. Even light and colour are the emanations of sound.
The genuine Sat Guru is one who has mastered the different sound frequencies of Creation and can thus move freely in all dimensions of our multiverse. He will never ask for money to initiate you, neither will he ask you to change any of your core beliefs or religion. He is there to serve you. He is akin to the moon which reflects the light of Christ, who in turn is compared to the Sun. He has gone beyond ego. You will see innocence and humility in his eyes and feel a boundless unconditional love enveloping your being upon meeting one such as him.
Contemporary physics has demonstrated that sound underpins matter. That is why scientists say that the universe started with the Big Bang. Sound created light. When we focus on the inner sound, ultimately we will by means of the different sound frequencies become connected to the different heavenly planes. Imagine that all these different dimensions occupy the same time and space like the frequencies of a radio.
The Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity is known as the Word. The Bible says in Genesis that “In the beginning was the Word. And the Word was with God. And the Word was God”. The Greek fathers of the Church knew Christ as the ‘Logos’. This explains how Christ Consciousness is in all things. It is the all pervasive divine frequency. That is why Christ is the “Alpha and the Omega”.
Moreover, it is stated that “The world was created by the Word of God, so that what is seen was made out of things which do not appear” Hebrews 11:3. Hence our moment by moment existence, and that of all things, depends on Christ’s sustenance of every electron, every molecule, and every spiritual entity. St Paul poignantly referred to Christ as the ‘Pantokratoras’ – He who sustains together all things.
We should adopt the expansive version of Christ. The more I comprehend the complexity of the Universe the more I bow with awe before the immensity of my Creator. Aristotle consistent with schools of the occult taught that the physical world was made up of four elements; air, earth, fire and water. Together which intercommunicated by means of a fifth element, ether. What quantum physics describes today as the vacuum. Acclaimed physicist Dr Hal Putoff considers this vacuum or ether to be a vast reservoir of seething energy out of which particles are being formed and annihilated constantly. It is speculated that a zero point field of energy emanates from this vacuum like a vast ocean of sound which embodies within it every possibility. So much so that in its vastness it contains so much overflowing fullness of cosmic sound that just a fluctuation can give rise to an entirely new universe.
The spiritual journey which had taken me to every corner of the globe. To remote jungles and forests. That brought me before the greatest spiritual Masters, miracle workers, and charlatans too was always ever a journey back to myself. There were different roads that led to Christ. Varying routes but the same destination. As we are made in God’s image we are a microcosm of everything that exists. Our universe is truly musical, an interplay of sounds producing the orchestra of life. And truly as is written in the Scriptures the “kingdom of God is within you”, and within me sound, the simplest of all things is the gateway.
We are all part of a mysterious cosmic dance. The Psalms say “You are gods” Psalm 82:6. St Augustine and St Atahanasius both proclaimed that “God came to Earth to become man so that man could become god”.
In Brazil I had met Joao De Deus who cured terminal cancer through psychic surgery . Curing patients before my very eyes without anaesthetic, who the next day bore not even a scar. In Borneo, Abenk had proved to me that the human body could be impervious to knives, axes and any other kind of pain or injury. In Russia, Colonel Ryabko would freeze, throw and knockout people without contact. Pendekar Sartono in Java showed me what was happening back in my office in London in a glass of water. These things and more that I witnessed convinced me that there was a common thread in all religion and spirituality. That our birthright was to be more than our modern society ever imagined us to be.
Perhaps we have the potential to live several hundred healthy years, to overcome wars and financial strife, to live in harmony with nature and the animal kingdom, to live in relationship with God. But as Sat Guru Sharnanand told me this could only be achieved by deprogramming our minds from the conditioning of family, friends, media and the education system.Only this liberated mind could know itself. And these spiritual worlds, the ultimate reality can be known objectively through meditating on this inner sound or nada. If we do not find the truth through meditation, which is based on our own experiences our faith will always be limited to the mental images others have created for us rather than our own genuine experience.
If our religion is based only upon the words of the priest, the hoxha, or the rabbi then it will be like a house built upon sand. But if our religious thinking and experiences are founded upon the truth we have confirmed through our own inner journey, our faith will be unshakeable. Is it not written “Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God” Matthew 5:8 ? Does this not suggest that one who is pure in heart can enter the heavenly realms consciously in this lifetime? It is to re-cultivate this purity and innocence of heart by deprogramming our mind which is the essence of real meditation .Did The Lord not say that to enter heaven we need to be reborn like children again. This can only be done if we take away the conditioning of this world. “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, shall not enter therein” Mark 10:14,15
When our Lord said “There are some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God” Luke 9;27 he may have been alluding to the fact that it was possible to consciously enter the inner kingdom during this lifetime. So it can be said that there are two ways of ascending to the heavenly realms during our lifetime. Through the Grace of God directly, Who is moved by our piety, humility and gentleness of spirit to grant us ascension as in the case of the Christian Saints. Or via connecting to the audible life stream accessed through the third eye, as in the case of the Sant Mat Masters.
The inner experiences of the Sant Mat Masters is not the same as those manifested by mediums. What we refer to as mediums may communicate astounding facts to you, but may also produce unreliable information. They do not have the capacity to contact higher intelligences. Instead more readily they contact beings in the lower astral sub planes. More often than not they unwittingly find themselves subservient to energies who use them as an instrument to interfere in worldly matters.
Accomplished Yogis in turn can access the higher astral realm but only the Saints, the Masters can access through this inner sound the realms of pure spirit. Where can be seen beauty beyond human parameters, and heard music of the unstruck chord ineffable in human language. Where your whole being is bathed in divine light, brighter than a million Suns and you are absorbed in utter freedom from the bondage of the human body, a bliss which I can only express as a cosmic orgasm.
What you see and hear is by your own God given powers and rights. You ascend through these higher worlds with the Master as your guide, but never as your controller. The Master himself is the mirror by which you see the reflection of your own soul. It is the Master as the servant of God who paves the way for you to know the truth of who and what you really are.