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Chapter 1 – Welcome to the Universe

I often start public classes with a simple question: “What are the two reasons for life on Earth?” “What are the two things without which there would be no life on Earth?”

I get all sorts of answers. “Oxygen” and “water” are sometimes mentioned. Others are more scientific and say things like “prana.”

The answer: The Sun and the Moon.

The power of the Sun has energized every being that has ever lived. Think about it for a second. Every physical body, every heartbeat, every thought, every act of photosynthesis in a plant, every microbe, everything that exists, has ever existed or will exist derives its power from the Sun – including you, right now.

The only reason you are alive to read this now is because the Sun didn’t explode last night while you were sleeping or so far today. As soon as the Sun explodes or stops shining, everything is dead immediately. After hearing the answer maybe you will slap your head and say, “Of course, the Sun.” Then, your mind goes on to the next thing without really grasping the impact and miracle of the Sun.

Don’t do it this time.

Let this awareness of the Sun sink in. Feel gratitude for it what it means.

We have no idea how the Sun does what it does, why it is doing it, or how it got there. The Sun is this gigantic star that for some reason is sustaining our life and all life on the Earth. It doesn’t ask for anything in return for this. It doesn’t demand, it just gives, and as soon as it stops giving we are all dead. That’s it. The game is over.

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No Sun = no life.

The Sun gives the power, but the power of the Sun would be inert if it were not for the Moon. Her orbit around the Earth is what regulates the tides and water and maintains the seismic activities of the Earth. If it were not for the Moon all the weather patterns would cease, things would stop growing and life as we know it on Earth would cease. In fact, life on Earth did not flourish until the Moon reached the proper harmonic balance with the Sun (more on that later).

It takes the power of the Sun and the creative principle of the Moon for life to flourish on Earth. And just like the Sun, the Moon asks for nothing. The Moon doesn’t demand we praise her or worship her or even think of her at all. We need not do anything: the Moon will continue to circle the Earth, regulating the oceans and keeping the weather patterns and fertility cycles humming. We can land crafts or probes to her, explode projectiles on her surface and she will take it all.

Her love is unconditional, just like the Sun and the beautiful Earth they have given us. In fact, we can even pollute, destroy and degrade the Earth itself and the Sun, Moon and Earth will still continue to provide abundance.

We have no paradigm for this kind of generosity in our worldly, human mind and life. Perhaps the best example we see of this kind of selflessness is shown in the lives of the great saints who give tirelessly to humanity.

The Illusions of a Limited Being in Cosmic Time

The concept of maya is a very important one in Indian thinking. Translated loosely, “maya” means “illusion.” There is a famous story of “the snake and the rope” from the Vedic texts that illustrates the power of illusion.

On a dark night, we may mistake a rope in our path to be a snake. When such a mistake happens, our full mind, body and nervous system react to a snake, albeit an imagined one. For us, in that moment, the snake is real. We may scream, cry and run away at this site. However, later if a flashlight is produced and the rope is seen, we return to normal.

Once we see the rope (truth) for ourselves, we do not later forget and react to the same imagined snake again. The appearance of light/truth removes the illusion of the snake, immediately and permanently.

There are many illusions with our place in the cosmos, which can be shattered by simple contemplation or observation. For example, this very second, the Earth you are standing on is spinning at 1,000 mph at the equator and moving around the Sun at about 70,000 mph. Yet it is all happening with ease, in relative silence and stillness.

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Read Part II of the article Here

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