Yoga gone mainstream is the best scenario that could have happened to our stagnate spirituality movement. Why stagnate? Because modern spirituality in the West, which began in the 1920s by just a handful of teachers and entered the mainstream in the 1950s with the Beat Generation and then of course took off massively in the '60s by the counterculture and the flower children hasn't expanded much since inception.
Don't get me wrong, spirituality may have grown in the number of followers, but has failed in bringing about a further expansion of the mind and spirit above and beyond the very basic teachings.
The same way that religion has been kept in a loop for 2,000 years, modern spirituality has been cunningly chained in a box for 60+ years.
Today the same disinformation, half-baked truths, mind numbing and growth inhibiting deity-based agendas are being dished out routinely. One reason for lack of evolution in the teachings is that little information has always made the most profit. In marketing they call it the Lowest Common Denominator and yes, LCD also exists in spirituality, and I have named it "Spirituality 101."
It's time that we change out of first gear and finally allow agenda-free-truth and the universal energy rev high in our minds, bodies and spirits with no limit whatsoever.
In my April 9 blog, "The Yoga Generation Wants Yoga Without Dogma," I wrote that the millennials want their yoga without a side of old-fashioned dogma and that is excellent news. Finally a new generation is demanding that the universal truth be free from dogmatic religious agenda, countless irrelevant gods and deities and submissive programming by those with the sole intention of control.
The real purpose of being elevated to the universal truth energy is to finally shed our slave mindset, ditch our small selves and embrace an empowered, self-guided way of life.
The era of deity swap is over. Exchanging Jesus for Krishna or Jehovah for Buddha is not growth, it's only lateral movement.
Spirituality was never meant to be just another type of dogmatic religious experience, with its own version of heaven and hell, moody (some even bloodthirsty) gods and fearful language. Spirituality is about embracing the universal truth energy, free from any control tactics and external agendas.
The important elements of yoga and hence spirituality do not need misguided embellishments. Meditation doesn't require a deity, tuning in to the universal energy needs no mediator, mind expansion demands no guru worship, stretching and breathing require no foreign mantra and if you feel the need to use a mantra, simply say to yourself "I am." There is no more powerful mantra than "I am."
Everything begins and ends with you. You are the key to your own growth and not any guru or deity. Put away the statues and follow your inner truth.
Every age requires new, expanded teachings. We aren't supposed to be thinking the same thoughts and having the same beliefs for centuries. Two thousand years ago, another Jewish Middle Eastern man, my brother Jesus, rose against the established order and proclaimed love and compassion as the solution and not being slaved to expired teachings in dusty old books and blood sacrifice.
However, Jesus back then still separated God from man and hence created an unneeded sense of duality and disconnection from the universal energy. Some might argue that he felt that his audience wasn't ready for higher levels of teaching and that he needed to talk to them as children using simple metaphors of father, mother and son. That argument holds some truth.
Eight hundred years ago, another Middle Eastern man, my mentor Rumi, corrected this error by merging man and God and declaring that God is not found at any place of worship nor in the heavens, but only in your heart. This profound statement was radical and revolutionary at the time and for some still is today. However, it was the right message at the right time.
We are now ready for the final phase of this mystical puzzle. But first, can you handle the truth? Since most of the planet aren't ready to rise above their childhood programming. The message for our age is that God is in fact you. The deity that you praise and the God that you worship is none other than yourself. You are God! You can now freely tap into the universal truth energy without an intermediary. By remaining open minded and yearning for growth you have metamorphosed from a slaved soul to a true universal soul.
The enlightened yoga without dogma movement is a great leap in our spiritual evolution and the continuing expansion of our universal mind, body and spirit.
I'll end this note with these words from the opening song This Is Enlightenment to my album LOVE EVOLVE:
"You are an ageless lone spark,
having a unique experience
in a constantly shifting reality.
You are a spiral of light
A fountain of fire,
Be a shower of shine."