The Lotus of the Heart

To complete the teaching of Katha Upanishad Death tells us: ” Radiating from the lotus of the heart there are a hundred and one nerves. One of these ascends toward the thousand-petaled lotus in the brain. If, when a man comes to die, his vital force passes upward and out through this nerve, he attains immortality; but if his vital force passes out through another nerve, he goes to one or another plane of mortal existence and remains subject to birth and death. The Supreme Person, of the size of a thumb, the innermost Self, dwells forever in the heart of all beings. As one draws the pith from a reed, so must the aspirant after truth, with great perseverance, separate the Self from the body. Know the Self to be pure and immortal – yea, pure and immortal!”

The Narrator concludes: “Nachiketa, having learned from the god this knowledge and the whole process of yoga,was freed from impurities and from death, and was united with Brahman. Thus will it be with another also if he know the innermost Self. OM peace, peace, peace.”

Our theme for this year’s annual retreat was the lotus flower. It has rich symbology for the yoga community. The lotus flower is seeded in the mud. It grows up through the murky depths, and then blossoms so beautifully on the surface of the water. So it is with us. We come up through our struggles, our difficulties, our lessons, and then blossom with enlightenment!