Saturday, January 12, 2008

8 point program

Sri Eknath Easwaran ( introduced a very simple program called 8 point program to find peace in this mad world. His 8 point program draws best points common to all spiritual disciplines and puts into simple 8 points which if followed with sustaining enthusiasm and regularity is sure to improve your well being. I can say that with personal experience after having followed it for more than 5 years now. I do not call myself the die-hard follower or extremely diligent follower of this program. Even with mediocre practice of this program, benefits I have received from this program immense. Generally improved outlook towards life, resilience to face day-to-day challenges, increased peace level are some of the biggest gains.

What are 8 points.

1) Meditation

2) Spiritual reading

3) Putting other's first (or putting the interest of other people before yours own)

4) One pointed attention

5) Slowing down

6) Spiritual companionship

7) Training the senses

8) Repetition of the mantra

Whether you are spiritual aspirant or someone who is wholly centered on improving your own well being, this program gives you a great start.

I came across this program and one point - spiritual reading- got me hooked. I have been a voracious reader all along. Prior to coming across this program I was reading a lot anyway. However, most of my reading back then was what I today call junk. Good amount of reading pertained to my education. That was not all that bad. Other category of reading related to reading all sorts of sensational news in print or on the Internet. When I started reading wonderful books from Sri Eknath Easwaran, my time started getting spent well. I have read most of his books. Many books over and over again. The wisdom which is present in enormous amounts has trickled little by little in me. How wonderful.

There are some points in 8 points I have not practiced much. But they are all important. It is very important to make sure that we follow this program without ignoring any points. Even if it is not possible to follow all points of 8 points equally well, we can not afford to ignore any of them all together. We should try to follow each of them as well as possible.

When this world is full of many bogus program aimed at well being, this 8 point program is so refreshing. It is deceivingly simple at the outset and it is easy for us to suspect if it really packs the punch. We can only verify for ourselves.


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