Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010

Sit Or Walk

Toronto, Ontario

Some people prefer sitting down in the lotus position for chanting on their beads. I have heard the claim that this is the superior way to chant.

I cannot agree. It is one way. The master of chanting, Caitanya Mahaprabhu, explained there is no hard and fast rules for chanting. It is really a matter of preference and you do what works for you.

My preference is walking. I feel more comfortable with his scenario. It’s the oxygen, the elements interacting with you that are like nature’s support system. Walking while chanting is like dancing to music.

Srila Prabhupada, our guru, needed to walk of pace each morning and chant simultaneously. The walking was for health and the chanting was for purification. Or another paraphrase on this is-walking is for the heart and chanting is for the soul.

In any event it seemed to be a formula that worked for him. It is a method that is like killing two asuras (demons) with one stone. (I prefer not to use that “bird” analogy).

I’m certainly not adverse to sitting down and chanting. Perhaps that will become a reality for me when I’m 78. But for now this antsy monk prefers mobility over something sedentary.

The reason for this explanation is that certain japa (chanting) retreats insist on indoor mantra meditation. That is like a prison for me. My good father encouraged us to walk and hit those nature trails. In our youth my siblings and I started to appreciate the God element in the out-of-doors. Chanting and trekking are totally compatible. No one will ever take that away from me.

4 KM

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