Babaji’s community has a great way to strongly connect through music – this is what I love the most.
It’s like being at a rock concert but with sacred lyrics. Experiencing spirituality communally in a tribal way, also balances out the quieter more personal spiritual experience of reflection and prayer.
A lot of my life has been in towns and cities, away from the elements, so gathering around the sacred fire also feels special. But I do wish we had a bit more translation and variation in the mantras and names, just to feed the brain and heart a little, and prevent those of us who aren’t schooled in the Vedic scriptures from drifting off.
One other spiritual community that I am reminded of is Taizé, an ecumenical Christian monastery in France. Here, also, the communal singing of chants (in many different languages) opens the hearts. But there is an additional aspect: teachings from Jesus are introduced in an open, secular way and contextualised historically with one of the brothers. And then (the essential part), the teachings are discussed in small groups without the Brother, giving people of similar age the chance to reflect upon the stories, personalise them and share their own experience.
This spiritual connection via the mind is so refreshing, taking us away from the usual everyday chit-chat. In the Taizé groups they discuss important aspects of life, such as how to deal with adversity, how to be more forgiving, how to allow failure – all with the teachings as the inspiration for conversation. Maybe we can take a leaf out of Taizé’s book, and allow the teachings of Babaji to broaden our horizons. Perhaps we could chew on two or three stories at a time, and compare them to the teachings of other great masters, to find unity in their collective wisdom.