How to Succeed with People

Learning interpersonal skills

This is a write up of the talk given by Prashant Shah (http://spiritual-living.in) on several occasions and before many groups in both India and USA

WinWin

Most of our life is an interdependent reality. We have to work with people, live with people and deal with people. Further, we often share responsibility with others, but we don’t have the authority to direct them. We can work well by ourselves, but when we have to get things done through others we experience many difficulties. Hence, the common saying is: “The people problems are the worst!

Human relationships can be either enjoyed or suffered; they can be either encouraging or frustrating. What we get will always depend on how we conduct ourselves! To succeed with people, first we have to understand the psychology of the ‘other person’. Next, we have to see things from the other person’s point of view and understand what motivates their behaviour. Only thereafter we can know what we need to do to get the right response from the other person.

The skill in dealing with people can be learnt and it will be very valuable for everyone in society — for a businessman, a professional, a colleague, a housewife, and a member of any group in society. And this skill will become increasingly important as we climb up to the higher positions in our social system. The business tycoon, J. D. Rockefeller, once said: “I will pay more for that ability (to succeed with people) than for any other ability under the sun.”

Why do we neglect learning interpersonal skills?

In college we are educated to think rationally. We are trained to direct our efforts towards personal efficiency, towards learning scientific techniques, and towards earning money. But in the process our emotional nature remains uneducated. Hence, we do not easily understand the ‘psychological side’ of human nature. For this reason in modern society people’s inner life gets easily messed up. They just don’t know how to be happy by themselves or by relating with people.

Why is this subject not taught in our colleges?

There are some things that we really appreciate only after things have gone wrong in our life; after we have made a mess in our relationships. People feel the need to invest in the emotional side of life only after they have stumbled a few times. The common saying is: “Wisdom arises only after our hair has already turned a little grey with experience!”

Further, there is not much in the form of newer ideas to learn here. The bigger task is to implement these ideas in your life. To succeed in human relationships it does not matter how much you know; what matters is how well you implement what you know. Hence, it is not a matter of learning the technique. Professional psychologists will not necessarily do better than you!

What is the KEY to success here?

It is to become genuinely concerned about other people’s feelings; to change how you regard them; and to change your assumptions about other people. Without this basic change you can only make some small cosmetic changes in your relationships.

It is admitted that it is always difficult to change yourself. The normal human tendency is to want the other person to do all the changing! A course participant once said: “I’ll give you a 1000 dollars if you teach this course to my mother-in-law.” I could only smile, but in my mind I said: “You are paying me too much for that, but it’s a very small price for changing your relationship with your mother in law; and it may also not work out because she will want you to do all the changing.” To succeed with others the only price you have to pay is to change yourself. However, when you succeed here, I assure you that you’ll never be alone in your life or be lonely wherever you go!

This talk is based on some of the ideas that were originally developed in Dale Carnegie’s classic: “How to win friends and influence people”. Other topics that are discussed in our larger workshop are:

  • The art of negotiation
  • Man and woman relationships
  • The win-win option
  • The stages in maturity
  • Teamwork

To know more click here https://darshanacentre.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/introductory-workshops/

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Spiritual Yoga

This is a write up of the talk given by Prashant Shah (http://spiritual-living.in) in London on 14 April 2013, at the Discovery Day Program by Solar Events.

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Prashant’s talk in London

Yoga has been introduced in the western world as a technique for reducing our stress and improving our health. However, the traditional purpose of Yoga is to develop our spiritual life. Here we explore this ‘spiritual side’ of Yoga. First we explain the nature of the inner life and the spiritual quest; and then we show how spiritual yoga can help you in accomplishing the spiritual goal.

The Inner Life

We are born on earth with a mind that directs our attention outward towards things. Hence, we do not see the inner life and we seek our satisfaction from the outside — through the ‘things’ of the outer world. Thus, we chase comforts, pleasures and possessions in the outer world.

We pursue these things thinking that by having them we shall get the deeper satisfaction that we really want. However, when we achieve something, we do get some superficial satisfaction, which lasts for a short time. However, soon thereafter we again become dissatisfied and start to chase something else. In this way the chase goes on and on. It does not strike us that we are looking for our satisfaction in the wrong places!

Yoga considers our mind and body as instruments through which we function on earth. They are like our possessions – our house or car. Hence, by satisfying the desires in the mind and body, we can only get some superficial and temporary satisfaction. If we want deeper and lasting satisfaction, then we have to also satisfy something that is truly deeper and lasting! That something deeper or lasting is the soul or spirit.

When we satisfy our spiritual being, spiritual qualities begin to arise in our inner life. And as we organise these qualities in our nature, we develop spiritually. Let us tray and understand this development in terms of the two levels of our consciousness.

The two levels of consciousness

Throughout our life on earth two levels of consciousness (the ordinary and the higher level) are reflected in our mind. The ordinary level reflects the desires in our mind and body; and the higher level reflects the impulses got from our soul and the over-soul or God.

When we function at the ORDINARY level, we are attached to our mind and body. Then we experience ourselves as a ‘mental-self’, which is simply a self in the mind. This mental-self causes us to live mainly to satisfy the desires in our mind and body. So, we keep on looking for comforts, pleasures, possessions and recognition in the outer world: We want to own a posh house; we want to eat tasty food; and we measure our success by how well we stack up against others.

In society we experience the ordinary level as our ‘GROUP IDENTITY’. When we serve this group identity, we move beyond the boundaries of our personal selfishness and try to include the feeling of others in our group. In this way we identify with our family members, with our work associates, with the followers of our religion, and with the people of our community. The group identity enlarges our concern, and that causes us to think that we are serving the higher consciousness. That can happen sometimes, but more often the group identity merely replaces our personal selfishness. And sometimes the group identity can make us behave in ways that are more degrading than mere selfishness (as in terrorism).

What happens when we can function at the HIGHER level? It awakens our ‘sense of unity’ and the ‘voice of our conscience’. The experience of UNITY makes us feel that as human beings we are like children of the same father. Thus, we feel kindness towards others; we cannot be cruel or insensitive towards them; and we cannot solve our problems by making them someone else’s problems. Even the idea of competition makes us uncomfortable. So we try to replace it with feelings of cooperation and coexistence.

The voice of our CONSCIENCE is the silent voice from the heart. It enables us to recognise the right and the wrong in all matters concerning life; it causes us to refine the values and motives that guide our thoughts and actions in the world. When we try to follow this voice, a truth-sense develops within us.

The process of spiritual growth

Both the ordinary and the higher levels of our consciousness are always reflected in our mind. However, initially we mainly function at the ordinary level. That is, we serve the mental-self. And the mental-self in turn keeps us preoccupied with physical activity and egoistic pursuits.

Our spiritual being also has its presence inside our mind through the higher level of consciousness. However, we give so little attention to it that in most of us it has become something vague, hesitant or far removed. As a result we do not feel united; our ‘truth sense’ is weak; and we do not perceive any deeper purpose to our life.

The practice of Yoga seeks to REVERSE this situation. And it does that by changing our ‘point of view’! Instead of looking upon everything from the ordinary level, and giving an ordinary meaning to higher things, Yoga makes us look upon everything from the higher level. It changes the ‘level’ of our perception. It changes ‘from where’ we see or ‘what depth’ we see from.

Gradually we begin to see everything as a part of a much LARGER PICTURE: We can situate everything correctly or find the proper place for each thing; we can look deeper into the happenings in our life and in the world; and we can recognise the true motives behind the actions of people and the world movements. The result is that we are not easily deceived by outer appearances.

The method of Spiritual Yoga

The term Yoga is a common noun that means joining or union. In the beginning our mind is joined with the ordinary consciousness. In Spiritual Yoga we change this. We begin to detach it from the ordinary level and attach it to the higher level. And as we do that, spiritual qualities get organised in our mind.

The KEY idea of Spiritual Yoga is that wisdom and the higher values of life arise naturally in our mind when we are responsive to the higher consciousness. Thus, wisdom is not the result of developing our ordinary consciousness, as in modern education! It is the result of disciplining the mind and making it responsive to the higher consciousness. Then, instead of being led by the desires and tendencies of our mind and body, we shall be guided by the wisdom of our spiritual being.

The idea of unity in Yoga is similar to the ‘oneness’ that develops between a horse and its rider. However, the oneness has to be such that the will of the rider prevails! When the rider wants to go somewhere, the horse should also want to take him there. The horse should not protest or assert its independence and wander away.

The technique

We begin the practice spiritual yoga by learning to concentrate. What does that do? It brings together all the scattered forces of our attention under a higher will. It is like bringing the different chieftains under a ‘central leadership’. Gradually all the forces inside the mind are made to acknowledge the presence of the higher will and adjust themselves accordingly. When that happens, we can concentrate on our tasks without distraction; we can change our mental habits; and we can remake our values on the basis of a higher principle.

In Yoga we practice concentration by giving the mind something to hold on to, like a mantra. Then, in our task is to simply try to confine our attention to the mantra. The natural tendency of the mind is to drift onto other thoughts, particularly to thoughts of pending matters and personal concerns. So, our attention will stray onto other thoughts. However, when we find that our attention has strayed, we must continue the practice by simply returning it to our chosen theme, the mantra. The act of persistently returning our attention to the chosen theme makes all the difference: Gradually all the forces inside our mind will accept the leadership of the higher consciousness and adjust themselves to it.

Is Spiritual Yoga theistic or atheistic?

Let us consider these two different points of view. The atheistic view regards God as an imaginary concept or a belief. On the other hand the theistic view uses the ‘God idea’ to perceive the spiritual presence that exists behind all things and happenings. In the theistic view we learn to relate with the spiritual presence and try to make it a reality in our life.

It should be evident that Spiritual Yoga is a theistic pursuit. Here a personal (self-made) God is used to bring about a deliberate shift in consciousness – from the ordinary level to the higher level. When the higher consciousness gets organised in the mind, we become intuitive and begin to live at a higher level. It totally changes how we regard ourselves and the outer world. Then, instead of perceiving ourselves as a personality that has arisen out of a mind and body, we begin to see ourselves as a spiritual being that is temporarily functioning on earth through the instruments of a mind and body. Thus, it opens up the truly mystical dimension of our life.

The author is a spiritual guide for aspirants of Mantra Yoga. To know more, read the author’s book: Solving the Problems of Life’; click here: http://a.co/fDEjbYR. And for the book ‘The Art of Awakening the Soul’ the URL is http://a.co/jfAc1bf

Good Health without Medicines

A simple solution to your health problems

Summary of a talk by Prashant Shah (http://spiritual-living.in) on 1 August 2015; organised by Carmen Ambert in Puerto Rico; and on 1 July 2017, organised by Yoga Parivar of Nilamber Bellissimo at Vadodara

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Contents:

  • The Message
  • The medical science is focused on relieving symptoms
  • What is so wrong with just relieving symptoms?
  • The three big mistakes
  • Understanding the disease in terms of toxaemia
  • How to detoxify the body
  • Reduce the existing toxaemia
  • Avoid generating toxins
  • Some good eating habits
  • If natural healing is so simple, why isn’t everyone doing it?

The Message

Today we are ingrained to believe that our health depends on doctors, medicines, and the health care industry; whereas the truth is that our health really depends on our lifestyle, diet, emotions and constitution. When we understand this simple truth, we can learn to restore and maintain our health by our own efforts and, except in extreme cases, we will not need to consult doctors.

The medical science is focused on relieving symptoms

The Medicine Show (A Consumer Union of U.S. Publication) says: “The public has grown accustomed to thinking that a doctor’s job in curing diseases is to find the cause and remove it. However, the truth is that a greater part of the physician’s efforts goes towards relieving symptoms with very little knowledge of their causes; and today’s most prevalent illnesses, many of which are chronic illnesses, are merely treated symptomatically.”

The approach in modern medicine is to classify a collection of symptoms as a disease syndrome, and then to treat this syndrome with powerful drugs. This method is very useful in treating life-threatening disorders and stubborn infections. However, most of our everyday illnesses are merely FUNCTIONAL DISORDERS such as: Respiratory disorders like the common cold and cough; skin disorders like rashes that itch, dandruff and foul odour; pains like headache, stiff-joints and back pains; and digestive disorders like irritable bowels, constipation and flatulence. And for such ailments the modern medical science has no effective remedy. They only try to manage or relieve the symptoms and provide some temporary relief.

What is so wrong with just relieving symptoms?

When you habitually treat the symptoms of common functional disorders with drugs, you merely modify the symptoms without removing the causes. And when the underlying causes continue, the disease develops further and becomes chronic. It gives rise to annoying symptoms like the headache, stuffy nose, acidity, gas trouble, rheumatic pain, skin rash, respiratory allergy (like asthma, wheezing), blood pressure, etc. Such chronic disorders are less intense in their effects, but they harass more since they last for a long time and recur periodically.

And for such chronic conditions there are ‘no outright cures’ – there are only medications that temporarily manage or relieve the symptoms. Hence, you are never healed; you are merely put on medication, which has to be continued for the rest of your life! Hence, hypertension is not healed; it is treated with BP pills that have to be taken for a lifetime. Asthma is not healed; inhalers become your constant companions Osteoarthritis is not healed; the ultimate remedy is sought in knee replacement. Allergies are not healed; you become increasingly dependent on medication. The list is endless.

However in the early stages a disease is always just a functional disorder. If you choose to suppress the symptoms at this stage, you bypass the healing that should happen at this stage and allow the disease to become internalised. Then it develops further and becomes chronic; and ultimately it becomes degenerative wherein the structures of the organs like the heart, liver, lungs, kidneys, etc. begin to break down. Then you need surgical intervention.

The three big mistakes

  • The symptoms are considered as the disease, whereas the symptoms are only the EFFECTS of a diseased state.
  • The causes of a disease are sought in external agents like germs and bacteria, whereas the true cause is due to TOXAEMIA – a ‘diseased state’ that arises due to the accumulation of toxins in the body at the cellular level.
  • When the treatment focuses on merely relieving symptoms, the CAUSE CONTINUES. Then the ailments become chronic or newer disorders continue to arise. Hence, the patient is never really healed.

Understanding the disease in terms of toxaemia

In natural healing the primary disease factor in the body is called TOXAEMIA. It is experienced as irritation, pain, restlessness, indigestion, or sluggishness. The deeper causes of the toxaemia usually lie inside the person – in their lifestyle, diet, emotions and constitution. Let us perceive how this diseased state arises.

Whenever there is some disturbance or excess in our life, the vital force gets depleted. Then it becomes insufficient. Then our digestion, assimilation and elimination also become weak and our system becomes sluggish. That is, our digestion is incomplete; our assimilation is poor; and all this stuff has to be decomposed so that it can be thrown out. The ultimate effect is that there is a gradual build up of toxins or waste products in the body at the cellular level. And once the ‘toxin level’ is higher than the body can tolerate, the body’s resistance to the external agents of disease like the allergens, germs, bacteria, etc is lost. Then the body becomes SUSCEPTIBLE to illness.

How to detoxify the body

  • Reduce the ‘toxin level’ in the body. Once the toxin level is lowered, the vital force will be able to perform the function of healing naturally.
  • Correct your lifestyle, eating habits, etc. so that toxins are not allowed to accumulate in the body.

Reduce the existing toxaemia

Nature cure uses many methods such as fasting, water cure, baths, packs, elimination diets, etc. Here we consider the method of ELIMINATION DIET, which is to eat only fruits for breakfast.

This diet has two considerations:
a) You give the body a long period of rest from digestion on a daily basis. Then the body will use the extra vitality that becomes available to eliminate the toxins.
b) Next, you eat fruits that have good cleansing properties for breakfast. They assist in eliminating the toxins.

The correct way of eating fruits:
Fruits detoxify your body, but the detoxifying effect is best when you eat them on an empty stomach and not when you take them after meals. When you mix other food with fruits, the mixture stays for a long time in the stomach and ferments (turns to acid). Then you experience acidity or gas.

Avoid generating toxins

TooMuchFoodRule-1: Eat less, and take only easy-to-digest food. When you eat less food, you do not waste your energy on processing the excess food. When you can digest all the food you eat, you become more energetic and produce fewer toxins.

Rule-2: When food remains undigested in the body, it ferments. And that increases the toxin level in the body. Hence, value food items according to your ability to digest and assimilate them, and not according to their nutrient content! Simply avoid eating food that is hard to digest or has toxic additives.

In specific:

  • Avoid fried food, soybean preparations, sweets, chocolates, refined flour preparations and food containing preservatives.
  • Avoid consuming food that is highly processed, highly sweetened or salted; or foods that carry health claims (don’t encourage deceivers). Food is processed to increase its shelf life (not your life) and the processing makes it more indigestible in your body.
  • Further, some foods are processed to make them tasty (deep-fried or addicting ingredients are added). It increases their consumption. However, that is better for the seller’s business and not for your body.
  • Avoid consuming ‘concentrated’ food-stuff. Don’t be deceived by the label of extra nutrient value. They will be harder to digest. Instead, eat the food with lower nutritional value that comes with a lot of roughage and fibre. The fibre and roughage make it easier for the body to digest and assimilate the food, and the waste products that are generated will also be easier to eliminate.
  • Avoid consuming diet supplements and micronutrients unless you have a specific deficiency. Otherwise by taking them you serve the interests of the pharmaceutical companies, and not your interest. If you have a specific deficiency, take the supplement (preferably from a natural source) only until the deficiency is overcome. Do not continue to consume it thereafter. Otherwise it creates DEPENDENCIES and generates imbalance in the body.

Some good eating habits

  • The main purpose of eating is to feed the body. Hence, do not combine other purposes, like parties and thrill with the act of eating.
  • While eating, try to become conscious of what you eat, and how much you eat. When you maintain this discipline, the natural instinct of the body will awaken and allow you to sense the quality of the food you eat.
  • Eat only two main meals in the day. Establish your meal time and adhere to it. Avoid eating between meals. If you eat at odd times, you will not be hungry at the meal time! Further, if you don’t get the hunger sensation at meal time, don’t eat.
  • Drinking water: You need about 9 glasses of water a day. Try to drink ‘fresh stream’ or mountain water; and avoid drinking tap water or recycled water. Further, drinking water is not the same thing as drinking beverages.
  • The time factor: The morning time is naturally suited to the function of elimination. Hence, at this time avoid eating food, and drink of lot of water. The digestion is strongest around mid-day. Hence, lunch should be your main meal. Take rest after eating a big meal. The digestive fire becomes weak on overcast days and in the rainy season. Hence, eat less on such days and in the corresponding season.

If natural healing is so simple, why isn’t everyone doing it?

Natural healing not been popularised because the modern medical business is not interested in finding a solution from which there is no money to be made.

Further, some people understand the message of natural healing, but still they do not pursue it because they lack the will power that is necessary to change their lifestyle, diet and emotional habits. So they come for advice, but they are actually looking for a quick fix. These people don’t want to accept the responsibility for their health. So, they prefer to take the pill and settle for some temporary relief.

These ideas are developed further in the author’s book: ‘Healing without Drugs’; click here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HYR3RRAA/

Also read our book: ‘How to Restore your Health Naturally – a time-tested way to heal yourself by simply changing your lifestyle and eating habits. The URL is https://www.amazon.in/dp/B075V5R1FJ

To know more about holistic healing, click here: http://a.co/0HZL7X6

However, if you are still interested in using the pill option, consider doing it on a holistic basis. To know more, click here: https://darshanacentre.wordpress.com/2016/02/20/using-biochemic-remedies/

Management by EKS

A growth strategy for business and profession

The summary of a talk by Prashant Shah (http://spiritual-living.in) for the Manager’s Wonderland session at L&T Knowledge City, Vadodara held on 8th of April, 2016eks (4)

Introduction

EKS is a ‘holistic approach’ to managing your affairs in an ‘open system’. It shows you how to conduct yourself so that you can have extraordinary growth and remain always wanted. The principles of EKS are simple to understand. However, to be able to apply them consistently and effectively, you may have to also make some changes in your business strategy.

EKS was originally devised by Wolfgang Mewes of Frankfurt. It is a concerted (simultaneous) application of the energy laws, cybernetic control and a benevolent strategy. In this introduction we explain these terms individually and then we put them together to show you the power of the concerted effort.

The Energy Laws

The energy laws are commonly known to define the growth processes in nature. But it was left to Mewes to show how these energy laws also determine the behaviour in human systems. EKS says: “When you act according to energy laws, the greater system or the environment encourages you and you have growth. When you act against these laws, you meet with diminishing results and the environment tries to shut you down.” The general idea is that you should not to try harder to win against the energy laws; instead you should aim to better utilise the energy laws.

Applications of energy laws in social systems:

Concentration: Find what you really like to do and can do better than others; develop your speciality on that and become attractive.

Gap Behaviour: Develop into the gap between others; offer what is missing and don’t try to do what everybody is doing.

Develop into the Depth: Find the best solution for your target group and don’t try to merely improve the existing methods.

Bottleneck Orientation: The energy in systems gets obstructed at bottlenecks. Hence, direct all your effort to overcome the bottleneck in your target system. Here you make maximum impact with minimum energy.

Become Settled: Aim to do a constant task for a clearly defined target group that you are suited to serve.

Cybernetics

It is a method of controlling (steering) a system through feedback. Your body, your family, your business, your company, your trade, your market, your philosophy, etc. are all systems. They a network of forces that are interconnected, continuously interacting, self-adjusting and work as a whole. Hence, once you have set your goal, you can use feedback to make the system ‘goal oriented’.

Some examples of control through feedback: You can regulate the temperature in air conditioning with a thermostat; you can regulate the price in the market by adjusting the factors of supply and demand; and you can regulate the water-level in a flush tank by using a floating ball mechanism. In all such cases the output or result is used to regulate the next action or input.

What is the real advantage of cybernetic control?

If you analyse all the different parts of a system and try to control them individually, the task becomes very cumbersome, complex and laborious. Instead, you accept the complexity of the system and try with the ‘whole system properties’, you can control the system through feedback. The control will be much simpler and more effective. The nature of systems is such that they are always self-adjusting and self-organizing. Hence, their behaviour can be effectively controlled through cybernetics.

In EKS you begin by turning your information systems (sensors) outward, to sense the needs of the target group. Then you use feedback to make your actions more goal-oriented. When you set it up like that, you won’t waste your energy in blindly pursuing irrelevant knowledge or opportunities; you will know what is really important and how to make the relevant knowledge and information gravitate towards you automatically. Then you will be able to recognise your true options and you know what you have to do to get them to work for you.

Strategy

The need:

Your strategy (or business philosophy) decides how you command your forces and means to achieve your objectives. It decides what you choose; what you trade-off in a give and take exchange; and how you try to find your fit (suitability) into the larger system or environment. All these things are decided by your strategy.

In today’s world, everything is changing rapidly and there is competition everywhere. There is too much information demanding your urgent attention, and you cannot have the time to deal with it. Under these conditions if you don’t have a strategy that differentiates you from the other players, you become a common person with no special appeal to anyone. Then you become a mediocre person who can be easily replaced; your life becomes a continuous struggle; and you land up in situations where everyone is trying to arrive at the same place.

However, if you have a clear strategy, you have to don’t wander around aimlessly or try to find something from here and there; and you won’t keep on reacting to other people’s moves. Your strategy will show you the right things to do in every situation; and when you are in difficulty, it will show you how to turn things around to generate your competitive advantage.

Some people think their strategy is to simply provide the highest-quality product at the lowest cost, and keep on improving their product endlessly. That is ‘operational effectiveness’ and not strategy. It is good for every business, but it is not something you choose!

The EKS strategy:

EKS uses an extroverted strategy. It says that your value in a system is not determined by how you evaluate your product or yourself. It is determined by the value other people attach to you. Thus, the importance you get is not personal. It arises indirectly from the value or benefit you bring to your ‘target group’ – the receivers of your work.

Your individual efficiency or ability may be great. But to be utilised by the larger system, you must be relevant to the larger system, and contribute to its needs. And to do that you have to give up your individual selfishness and instead identify with the goals and aims of the greater system. Hence, EKS says: “Your strategy should be to bring the greatest value to your target group. Satisfy their needs better; and correspondingly your own attractiveness, turnover, profit and security will improve automatically.”

STRATEGY (for individuals)

  1. a) First, do your ‘own thing’. Build your core strengths on what you really like to do; and do it better than others.
  2. b) Next, match your distinctive capabilities with the opportunities that exist or are arising in your environment.
  3. c) Then, integrate your special knowledge with the actual problem situation of a concrete target group so that you don’t become irrelevant.

Prashant Shah does counselling with EKS for professionals and owners of small business. For more information click here: https://darshanacentre.wordpress.com/counselling/

Feedback received: It was a privilege for us to have you deliver a talk session on ‘EKS’. It provided new insights on growth and success. The participants gained many useful insights. Everyone present highly appreciated the valuable inputs provided by you. Once again thank you for your efforts! Vittasta Kaachru, L&T Power, vittasta.kaachru@lntpower.com

 

Advanced Workshops

By Prashant S. Shah, http://www.spiritual-living.in

Contents:

  1. The Cosmos according to Occult Philosophy
  2. The Cosmic Cycle and the Sign of Our Times
  3. The Way of the Mystic
  4. How to Recognise a Sage?
  5. The Hidden Side of Spiritual Practice
  6. EKS: A Growth and Success Strategy

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1. The Cosmos according to Occult Philosophy

This workshop gives you an insight into the place of the human being in the cosmos. Here, the human being is a microcosm, a miniature of the cosmos; and the growth of the human being is related to the development of the inner bodies and faculties on the interior planes of the cosmos.

The questions for the workshop are: What is the spiritual purpose of our human life on earth? What are the inner worlds? What is the correspondence between the inner worlds and our subtle bodies? What remains of us after death? How do we grow on the inner planes? What is the cosmos in occult philosophy? What is the law of correspondence? What is the place of ‘the occult’ in spiritual life? What is the nature of occult experiences?

CONTENTS

  • How Charles Darwin made a monkey out of us. The evolution of consciousness. The four stages in the evolution of life in the cosmos.
  • The occult constitution of the human being. The inner planes and how we function on them. What develops as we grow spiritually?
  • Occult cosmology: Placing a human being in the cosmos. Microcosm as the little world. Using astrology to illustrate the law of correspondence.
  • The place of ‘the occult’ in spiritual life. Understanding occult experiences.

Some Opinions Received:

  1. An excellent exposition with many sets of examples symbols and charts. Paul Czkevianianc, paulc@questpartnersllc.com
  2. (It was) a great course, but there is lots to digest. Very insightful. It gets better and better each time I do this course. Elizabeth, aleliz@aol.com
  3. Prashant’s physical presence and his simple way of saying it wins my trust. The course answered many questions and raised many more! David, davyc67@yahoo.com
  4. This course was an eye-opener. The discussion was very profound and subtle. I enjoyed the discussion on the correspondence between the planets and the emotional energies the most. Carmen, cla516@aol.com
  5. Everything was very clear. You have retained the flavour of ancient things while making them accessible to the modern mind. Frank, nyudonne@aol.com
  6. (This course was) very interesting. I pointed out the gaps in my practice. When you say these things they seem to be so simple, but when we do the practice we find it is a lot harder. Ludy, ludy_mr@hotmail.com

2. The Cosmic Cycle and the Sign of Our Times

Modern humanity, in the age of science, has made a lot of progress; we all can see it. However, we don’t see what humanity has lost in the process of making this progress. In this workshop we begin by showing this. We evaluate the progress in the modern world from the point of view of the spiritual purpose of human life. The aim is not to be critical of modern developments, but to make you aware of the nature of the challenge that is coming in the near future.

In particular, we show that the world is on the brink of a change in consciousness; and we, as human beings, can either participate in making the changes in ourselves and in society, or we can resist these changes. Further, to participate in these changes we have to prepare ourselves, since the new era demands ‘higher level’ solutions of a different kind. The message of this workshop will be most valuable to people who wish to serve as spiritual workers for the new era.

CONTENTS

  • Introduction: The two basic levels of human consciousness; the cosmic cycle; understanding the ‘men of antiquity’; why the present time is called the Dark Age.
  • Spirituality lost: What makes an idea sacred or profane; what is more important, knowing the whole or knowing the parts? Uniformity as the opposite of unity; the false supremacy of reason.
  • Counter spirituality: The decay of religions; confusing the super-conscious with the subconscious; mistaking the occult for the spiritual; the mushrooming growth of pseudo-cults.
  • The New Age: The ending of an era; how to participate in the coming of the new era; towards a change in consciousness; some expected changes in society.

This program is based on the speaker’s book: The Crisis of Modern Humanity.

Some Opinions received:

This was the most vibrant of all the teaching I experienced this time around. It felt as if you reached me directly with no filters. It helped to bolster my optimism about what is coming. I am thankful to be in a state to receive this powerful message. Frank, nyudonne@aol.com.

3. The Way of the Mystic

Just as behind the superficial existence of a leaf there is a greater existence of the tree, so also behind our individual and personal consciousness there is the greater consciousness of the soul and the over-soul.

In this workshop you learn how to install a presence of the greater consciousness in your mind and involve it in your affairs. When you can do that, you will not be easily misled by your mindset and wishes or the people in your environment. Instead you will develop a ‘truth sense’ and be guided by the prompting from a higher consciousness.

Contents:

  • Basic ideas of mysticism: the relationship between our personal consciousness and the God consciousness
  • The technique of mysticism: making a personal God and learning to attune the mind with it
  • Devotional exercise: making God a reality in your life; learning to live for God’s sake; stages in awakening
  • The levels in the practice; the doctrine of the mystics

Duration: 8 hours

To know more, read the book: ‘The Art of Awakening the Soul’ by Prashant S. Shah. The URL is http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AXI9BRW/

Some Opinions received:

  1. This workshop has reinforced my spiritual practice. Now I turn to the Deity often. It has led me to see things from a totally new perspective. Frank, nyudonne@aol.com.
  2. This is my favourite course. It has really made me go for it. I could rename it as ‘mysticism for practitioners’. Ferdinand, seibert@hotmail.com
  3. I have taken this course several times and it has become a major basis of my spiritual practice. Bob, boblester@hotmail.com

4. How to Recognise a Sage?

This course is based on wisdom of the book: Tao Te Ching. It says the Tao is like a universal awareness that underlies all things. Hence, to attain inner freedom, transcendental peace, and deep contentment in your life you have to only align your ways with the way of the Tao. However, the Tao is very subtle and it can only be grasped with a mind that is without personal motives. So, how can you pursue the Tao?

The clue is: First, follow the law of heaven and purify your motives. Next, find a Sage or living master. Then track the ways of the Sage, for the Sage naturally follows the Tao. However, the Sage does not show himself in society. Hence, it is not easy to recognise a Sage. So the Sage Lao Tzu addresses the issues: How does the Sage behave? What are his guiding principles? Why does he value things differently? What is his true attainment? What strategies does he adopt? How does the way of the Sage differ from the way of ordinary folk?

Contents:

  • On the origin and interpretations of book: Tao Te Ching; basic Taoist concepts
  • Comparing Taoism to other systems; the nature of the Tao; the law of heaven
  • The way of the Sages; Taoist leadership and strategies; and
  • The basic Taoist practices; the nature of spiritual experience

This course is based on the insights that are developed in the speaker’s book: The Ways of the (Taoist) Sage (under publication) see under Books.

Some Opinions Received:

The old Tao translations I own come nowhere near this exposition. This is seamlessly connected with the rest of the teaching I have been privileged to attend. Frank, nyudonne@aol.com.

5. The Hidden Side of Spiritual Practice (Sadhana)

Spiritual practice is not about worshipping Gods, performing rituals; or following some moral precepts. The main aim is to clear the impurities from the mind so that you can mirror the calm, intelligent and balanced state of the higher consciousness.

In this task the techniques of concentration, prayer, meditation, breath control, gazing, etc. can only help you to an extent. To have a real breakthrough you have to overcome the forces inside your nature that RESIST the ways of the higher consciousness. Here you do not work to learn new things. Instead, you work to unlearn many things and to break away from the mindset that binds you to the lower consciousness.

In this workshop first you understand the psychological side of spiritual growth. Next, you observe the mental tendencies that seem to obstruct your spiritual awareness. Then, you learn to overcome these tendencies and clear up the faults in your perceptions. When this work is done you will be able to see yourself, the people and the situations of life better. You will not merely see things as they show themselves, but you will see them as they really are.

Contents

  • Introduction: The nature of spiritual quest; quantum learning; place of purification in spiritual life.
  • Working with emotions: Observing the emotions; balancing your perceptions; emotions in relationships.
  • Working with thoughts: The outer mind and its deceptions; introspection and disillusioning.
  • Cleaning the subconscious: The conflicts inside the mind; breaking habits; releasing suppressed emotions; overcoming the mental-self; towards direct awareness.

Some Opinions Received:

  1. This is a great course that makes us aware of where we really are and where we can get to. It has made me aware and watchful of many things. It has removed so many of my illusions! Elizabeth, aleliz@aol.com
  2. (It was) an extraordinary course with a superb presentation. The need to control the emotions instead of justifying them impressed me the most. Some of the exercises were remarkable and I can see some positive changes in me. Carmen, cla516@aol.com
  3. This course was AA++. There is an immediacy about it — a direct connection, like being plugged into a live source of energy. Frank, nyudonne@aol.com
  4. (This course was) very interesting. I pointed out the gaps in my practice. When you say these things they seem to be so simple, but when we do the practice we find it is a lot harder. Ludy, ludy_mr@hotmail.com

6. EKS: A Growth and Success Strategy

EKS is a ‘holistic approach’ to managing your affairs in an ‘open system’. It shows you how you should conduct yourself so that you can have sure growth and remain always wanted. The method was originally devised by Wolfgang Mewes of Frankfurt. It consists of a simultaneous application of the energy laws, cybernetic control and a benevolent strategy. An outline of our presentation of EKS is given under ‘TALKS’. Click here https://darshanacentre.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/inspiring-talks/

The Course Contents

Part-1: The Basic EKS

Session-1: Introducing Cybernetics and Systems Thinking.

Session-2: Using Strategy and the Energy Laws: Growth, concentration and gap behaviour.

Session-3: Energy Laws continued: Developing into the depth; bottleneck orientation; settling on a target group.

Session-4: Leaning to value of intangible assets; centralised versus cybernetic control; deciding your growth strategy.

Part-2: Advanced Applications of EKS

Session-5: The hierarchy of problems; Specialization; The growth spiral.

Session-6: Socially oriented specialization; finding your social basic-task; demarcating your target group.

Session-7: Locating the bottleneck; having outward looking behaviour; motivation through feedback.

Session-8: An overview of EKS strategy and problems solving.

DURATION: Each session is of two hours. The total duration of Part-1 and Part-2 is 16 hours.

About the Program:

This course was originally devised by Prashant Shah to assist students of the ‘Advanced Management Diploma Program on Energo-Cybernetic-Strategy’ (called EKS), which was then conducted jointly by the Baroda Productivity Council and Mewes Systems of Frankfurt, Germany.

Over the years he has conducted this program for many groups in India and USA. He uses this EKS method to help people solve their personal, professional and business problems. This method is very striking, simple to understand, and easy to use. The best part, however, is that if you follow it consistently, it always works.

What Our Participants Say:

  1. You got all of us charged up. Now we use ‘bottleneck’, ‘concentration’, ‘gap’, ‘feedback’, etc. in our routine discussions. We look forward to having a refresher program when you visit next year. (Asheem Aggarwal, Chief Guru, New York).
  2. I took your workshop only because a friend had recommended it very strongly. I expected to get some up-to-date ideas. However, I was totally amazed. This is a totally new way of looking at the issues of growth and success. Your presentation was very clear and enjoyable. The catchy words that you use make these difficult concepts easy to grasp. I’m happy I took this course. (KS, Management Consultant, Bombay).
  3. This systems approach to management makes the issues of our business extremely clear. The program was much superior to the other (management) programs that we’ve had. It has really boosted our confidence. (N. C. Mehta, CEO, Bell Ceramics, Baroda).
  4. Your course was very insightful. In many places it consisted in simply putting already known, but disparate concepts, in one cohesive framework… It has opened my eyes to the fact that things happen of their own, and more often we are facilitators to a process that is happening with or without us! (A.H., Partner in financial business, New York).
  5. Your words are now engraved in my mind: “Develop your unique strength, grow into the gap between others, find superior solutions to the problems of your target group, and concentrate your efforts on removing the bottleneck.” Truly, I feel very confident. Thank you very much. (NMD, Works Manager, Bombay.)

Counselling with Vedic Astrology

© 2013-17, Prashant S. Shah http://www.spiritual-living.in

We use astrology to provide valuable advice and NOT to make predictions. We provide two kinds of services: ‘Advice for Decision Making’, and ‘Guidance for Problem Solving’. What is the difference?

When you want to find a suitable marriage or business partner; when you want to find the kind of work or study that would really suit your nature; or when you have to make a choice from your options, you need advice in decision-making. However, when you want to overcome a problem that is recurring you first need to have a clear diagnosis. Only thereafter you can formulate your strategy for overcoming it.

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Advice for Decision Making

Your horoscope is a map of the planetary forces that existed at the time of your birth. From this map an astrologer can know your predispositions such as your likes, dislikes and individual peculiarities. All these forces combine in your nature and have a marked influence on the happenings in your life. Thus, from your horoscope an astrologer can know your nature: what suits you, what would be your natural preferences and what kind of things are likely to work out for you. In addition, the astrologer can also access if the time is agreeable or disagreeable for a certain undertaking. If the present time is not agreeable, he can find a time that is more agreeable so that you don’t have to struggle very much to push for what you want. In this way astrology can help you in making the correct choice.

People usually use this kind of advice to find a suitable marriage partner; to find suitable work, study or orientation; or to make a decision in a specific matter.

Guidance for Problem Solving

Sometimes you have a problem or situation that keeps on repeating. That happens because the problem is somehow connected with your nature. To overcome such a problem, you need to take advice from someone who can look at the situation from outside your frame of reference. They can show you some things that you cannot easily see or recognise by yourself.

Here the counsellor questions your assumptions and examines the faults in your line of thinking so as to locate the root cause of your problem. First, you have to clearing up the faults in your thinking that has given rise to your problem. Then you can decide on a suitable strategy for overcoming the current problem. People seek this kind of guidance to solve problems relating to their job, business or career; to resolve their conflicts in marriage, family or personal life; and to overcome health related problems.

If you need specific advice or guidance, visit our Site. Professional advice will cost you a little, but it will be money and time well spent. You will not have to search for impractical solutions or in the wrong places

AstroBk

Moments of Overflowing

Adapted from the book The Art of Awakening the Soul, by Prashant S. Shah — available from Amazon and Kindle book store.

These poems depict the emotional experiences that arise at the different stages on the mystical path. They express clearly and in just a few words what cannot be conveyed through extensive philosophical writings. They lead to the experience of a divine presence that exists behind your mind.

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Verses:

  1. The Call
  2. Patient Waiting
  3. The Ego
  4. Your Cupbearer
  5. You Lead And I Follow
  6. You Are My Strength
  7. I Live For You
  8. The Awakening

1. The Call

The pride in me would say,

“I do not beg, nor do I pray.”

But one day a call quietly came in to say,

“Hold my hand and I’ll show you the way.”

I held the hand, just to know.

But now, I never want to let go.

Insightful Notes:

When an egg is hatched, it cracks open. In the same way, when we arrive at a critical stage in our journey on earth, we find some reason to embark on a spiritual path. Sometimes we are motivated by dissatisfaction. Sometimes we are seeking to find a love that lasts. Sometimes we are intrigued by the mysterious and the unknown. And sometimes we want to make our life more valuable by living for a cause greater than ourselves.

Whatever it is, first a call arises from within. Then we find the commitment to go wherever it may lead us.

2. Patient Waiting

Would you pluck a flower before it has blossomed?

Would you crush a sprouting seed?

Through patient waiting they ripen.

So also our unexpressed thoughts and unfinished works

Must await their time for harvesting.

Insightful Notes:

All of us want to progress quickly. So, when the progress is slow (or not at all) we become very impatient.

But everything in nature has to pass through the different stages as it matures. A baby doesn’t start running. First, it learns to turn over. Then, it begins to crawl. Next, it learns to stand up and balance. And later on it begins to take a few steps forward.

In the same way, all of us have to pass through the stages. The stages prepare us for higher things and test our readiness. What happens when we try to arrive before we are ready? Nothing works. Hence, we frustrate ourselves.

3. The Ego

You were the first occupant of my house.

So, as a friend, I trusted you.

But you and your companions are no friends of mine.

You bring in only trouble and strife.

Henceforth, stay away from this house;

For now, this is my masters’ dwelling.

Insightful Notes:

In the early stages of our practice our actions are motivated by the ego. If the ego is not tempted or satisfied, we sulk or become impatient and threaten to give up our pursuit.

However, as we progress we see that the ego is setting up or causing all the troubles of our life. This insight totally changes our attitude towards the ego. Then we do not act with the motive of ego satisfaction. Instead, we look for the ways to get out of clutches of the ego! And that makes a big difference.

4. Your Cupbearer

You keep filling my cup.

But I spill it again and again.

I’ve scattered your gift so often,

But you still fill it again.

Truly, I do not know how to fill this cup.

I only know that you have placed this cup in my hand.

You give and you keep;

I am only your humble cupbearer.

Insightful Notes:

As our insight matures, we understand that the talent we have and the opportunities that we get are not so deserved. More often these are granted to us. Hence, we begin to feel grateful to have them.

Then, our achievements do not make us proud. We do not wish to make a claim of greatness. We know that without God’s support we are really not worth very much.

5. You Lead And I Follow

I look back upon the mess I have made and ask:

“Could it have been better?”

But you say: “Whatever happened had to happen.”

So now I have stopped striving for myself

And only seek to serve you.

Now you lead and I follow.

And everything turns out just right.

Insightful Notes:

When we are guided by our blind and inferring mind, we are led by our desires and tendencies. They decide for us. It makes our personal nature assertive. Then we spoil everything.

However, once we understand this fact we begin to lower our ego and subordinate it to a higher principle that has started to awaken within us. Then we discipline the mind to be quiet and make it receptive to the intuition that arises. Further, we make our mind follow the directions that we receive intuitively. Something strange happens when the mind gives up its resistance. We become peaceful, more capable and also more effective in what we do.

6. You Are My Strength

As light dispels darkness,

You have overcome my formidable foe.

What I tried so hard to do, but could not,

You have done in just one stroke.

Now that I have your presence, I feel safe.

Please stay with me.

I have no strength without you.

Insightful Notes:

Some of our tendencies are so deeply entrenched in the subconscious that we helplessly give in to them. Thus, they make us dance to their tune.

To overcome such tendencies we must have access to a power that is higher than the mind. To hold on to this higher power, we contemplate on it. We attune our mind with it and allow it to work through us.

Gradually we can perceive the action of this higher power. It quietly guides our actions and accomplishes in us what we cannot do by ourselves.

7. I Live For You

I first came to you with a load of things.

So I could not take your gift.

I tried to pick something from here and there,

But you would not let me make my mix.

So disappointed, I returned to shed the load.

Now I come empty and unaccompanied,

To take whatever you may give, and to do your wish.

Mine is gone, and yet I remain.

I have emptied, and yet I’m filled.

Now I live, but just for you.

Insightful Notes:

God does not wish that the higher powers should be used for our egoistic purposes. Hence, when we seek divine help and receive it, we should be very careful not to misuse it.

We say that God is with us and so success will be ours. But God seems to ask: “Are you really with me?” “Do you want success for yourself or do you want to accomplish something for me?”

Truly, to live spiritually is to live for God and to allow God to look after us.

8. The Awakening

The sound of your mantra has aroused me – Who was lost in idle dreams.

I woke up just for a moment,

But something has turned over inside me.

Now, even in sleep

Something is still awake and watching.

That which you have awakened sleeps no more.

Insightful Notes:

Your awareness at the surface of the mind is restless and like a dream (lost in inner chatter). However, when the awareness shifts to a position behind the surface mind the mind becomes calm and open. Then we can hold the intuition and insight.

When the awareness goes deeper within, you can mirror the watcher. It reveals the sublime and luminous consciousness of the soul. You feel that it has always been there, watching over you from behind a veil, and waiting for you to reverse the direction of your gaze to find it. It will thrill you with its love and beauty, and give you the feeling of deep happiness that earlier you had sought through people and things of the world.