Namaste, beloved. I pray you are well and balanced. I imagine your curiosity for Truth led you here. After all, it was Truth which caused the creation of this site. I will briefly share with you the series of events that called me to Love and Service. Ever since I was a child I vividly recall looking up towards the heavens and marveling at the brilliance of the stars strewn across the evening sky. What are they and what is their purpose? I would wonder, but more importantly what is the purpose of my own existence? These questions burned in my heart as a boy, but went unanswered as I grew older into adulthood. The ways of the world enticed me leading me astray from virtue and further from my curiosity to know the unknowable. By my late twenties I found myself in the depths of a dark depression driven by egoic tendencies. Binge drinking and lustful pursuits of women were commonplace as I ignorantly believed it was the way to slay the demons which tormented me. I sought comfort in the arms of incompatible women because it was better than being alone, but all I found was more discomfort. I searched everywhere in my search to relieve my suffering, everywhere but inside myself. In truth I was a coward running from my fears and those pursuits rooted in the false-self only served to magnify my melancholy. I was living in a city populated by 8 million people and yet I still felt completely and utterly alone. Devoid of love for myself or anyone else. I felt a void and a loneliness so profound it produced panic attacks in me that I wouldn't wish upon my greatest enemy. I was completely consumed by darkness. I was a lost child trying to find my way back home, but it was dark and I couldn't see the light.
After much suffering, two years of sobriety, and a broken engagement by the grace of God I experienced a Spiritual awakening at the age of 33 and my desire to know the unknowable resurfaced. Suddenly I found difficulty in finding meaning working as a fitness instructor in Los Angeles and quickly grew a distaste for material objects and the mundane. The world as I knew it no longer appealed to me, I only longed to know God. I wanted to be closer to source. My longing inspired me to abandon my material possessions and purchase a one way ticket to Bali without a return date in site. Fate would find me embarking upon a five month Spiritual quest which led me through Bali, Malaysia, Thailand, India, Egypt and finally Greece. During that time I witnessed Angels, faced my fears, practiced Yoga, found my Guru, studied Sanskrit, the Vedas, the Yoga Sutras, meditated beneath the Great Pyramids at Giza, and studied Socratic and Platonic dialogues. By the end of that particular journey I had learned to find peace in the deepest part of me. I learned to commune with God in the silence of solitude. And honestly, if I hadn't personally experienced my own journey, I probably wouldn't believe some of the phenomena I experienced. Truth is truly stranger than fiction.
It was high in the Himalayas during Yoga Teacher Training where I first encountered Yoga and met my Guru. After completing the mandatory 2oo hours I accepted an apprenticeship with Swami Ram Ji, who is a renounced scholar, and together we took a pilgrimage to some of India's holiest sites. During that trip we would chant Sanskrit mantras in the early morning hours then Guru Ji would give me discourses dedicated to dissecting three of India's most sacred texts; Isha-Upanishad, Bhagavhad-Gita and Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. Our time together along with the study of these scriptures served to enlighten me on the nature of reality.
I couldn't have found my light without first exploring the depths of my darkness. Doing so provided perspective on how to perceive "good" and "bad" as neutral experiences which occur along our worldy journey. The essence of who we are is the Eternal soul within. Akin to a container of water, the vessel is not its contents; in the same way the soul is not the body, but because of attachment to material objects, human beings falsely believe themselves to be the container. We are not our mind, we are not our body, we are the Eternal soul which dwells within the holy temple of flesh.
Meditation allows for direct experience with Divinity or what we can effectively call cosmic consciousness, God or the Universe. This is a necessary step to attain inner peace. Without meditation we cannot realize our fullest potential. The mind, body and soul must work in a harmonious flow achieved through movement and meditation. Praying is talking to God, while Meditation is listening to God. Meditation is how we connect to our soul and recieve guidance from Divinty. When my beloved Guru began to instruct me on the true teachings of Yoga, he told me it would become my duty to share the God-given knowledge he bestowed upon me, thus Ricveda.org was born. The Sanskrit term Veda means knowledge. At the root of every religion and spiritual practice lies one Universal truth; LOVE. Uncondiontal love resides in the hearts of all humans. It's up to us to access it through the process of personal development. The heart is the way. May God bless and guide us all as we find our way back home.