Satsang is an ancient tradition. The Sanskrit word means “keeping the company of truth.”
This tradition is a time when like-minded seekers come together for meditation, contemplation, and dialogue about the nature of reality; the nature of God.
People often ask me how to meditate. They buy books. They buy tapes and CD’s. They cannot believe they should do anything in silence, so they want instruction as to the very nature of reality itself. They want noise so they can sit in silence. They want to learn how to breathe, having forgot the essence of their own reality. It becomes too easy, so they quit.
MEDITATION IS AS CLOSE TO YOU AS YOUR BREATH. It is your natural state. YOU CANNOT NOT meditate!
It is a rare and unusual gift to form a group (“sanga”) and to have someone articulate what YOU ALREADY KNOW BUT MAY HAVE FORGOTTEN (“sat”). This spiritual teacher can lead you into a dialogue with your inner self as well as with your peers.
What is the nature of reality, of God? How did you come into being-ness? Who is the “I” to which we refer when we speak of ourselves? Have you ever contemplated this? Who am I? Who am I?
Advaita Vedanta asks this question until the mind pops. Zen Buddhism uses koan, a meaningless phrase to get the same result. (“The sound of one hand clapping”). Kundalini yoga uses bhastrika pranayama (bellows breathing) to effect awakening.
We do kirtan – call and response chanting – to drive us into ecstasy, using the ancient sounds of the Sanskrit alphabet to drive us out of our minds and into our hearts.
What a gift to sit with ourselves in silence, in the company of our own greatness and our own hearts. We share these great hearts and extend them to one another, in meditation, prayer and praise.
This is Satsang.