Shukdev's Letters to his mentor 4

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Dear Mentor,

I am presently staying at the base of Arunachala, an ancient mountain worshipped as Shiva for centuries and the residing place of Ramana Maharshi. The vibrations here are strong and take an empirically noticeable effect on meditation and my contemplative disciplines. The feeling of "God" or the spirit (atman) has grown considerably since the beginning of my journey.

I stayed at Aurobindo ashram for about 2 weeks and will stay here for about the same. These places seem to be imbued with some power that attracts people to them and aids them with their respective practices. It is said,through discriminative practice one make solid this fleeting feeling that abides in the self, but seems stronger in the company of holy persons or in holy places.

To make this feeling constant, always within and unceasing, is the work of the aspirant. The discriminative discipline is to reject the false and outward movements of the mind-ego-body and concentrate on that which brings non-attachment and Love to the heart, stillness to the mind-ego-body.

So, I'm not sure if I can swing that paper or nt. That I am doing the work as best I can is not the issue in mind - the apprehension arises when I think of documenting and thereby belittling the true nature of my search and practice. Leave it to express itself in my life or work, if my work is to be a formal college type effort, so be it, but I will not sacrifice my yearning and need of peace in pursuit of recognition in the form of a degree. We'll talk about this further.

Om Satchidananda Annamalai -- j