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March 5, 2012 / Dale Melchin

The End of Suffering

I have been reading the Book Practical Spirituality by Swami Lokeswarnanda.  I originally started reading this book to get a perspective on what someone who is a serious follower of a non-Christian or what I have labeled an “antagonistic” philosophy had to say.  I have found that Lokeswarnanda is not antagonistic to the Christian faith at all.  He is antagonistic to the many errors that result from being part of an organized group of religious people who lose sight of the point of their religion.

Now that it is not all that this book is about.  It is a collection of essays on various topics.  It is a very interesting an engaging read.  The main premise of the book is that the purpose of religion is for man to gain self mastery, and that is all religions.

I happen to agree with this perspective, especially since I am an Orthodox Christian.  From a very practical standpoint, we cannot be close to God if we have inordinate fleshly desires running around in our hearts.  The purpose of religion is to create order out of the chaos of our internal worlds.  We do this with God’s help.  We also do it with the help of controlled breathing.

The End of Suffering does not come easily.  But like other exercises it gets easier with time, and at the same time more complex and difficult because the better you get, the more the nature the challenge changes.  We get sweet, sweet tastes of it during times of quiet meditation.

The point is those who make regular internal work a part of their lives will accomplishmore physically, spiritually, financially, relationionally and otherwise.  Work within the circle of influence and the circle will expand your influence.

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