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The Art of Relaxation

Dr. M.W. Lewis
San Diego, 12-13-59 This morning: “The Art of Relaxation.” It’s a very important subject, and it really is the art of ridding yourself of tension. That’s the point. Tension has become, “Oh, I read it in the paper, and I hear it on the radio, and, and uh, that seems to be the subject.” But very few really know how to get rid of it. “The Art of Relaxation” is, knowing first, what tension is, and then being rid of it, because tension is at the, is the basis of all our trouble. Tension means that within us there is a turmoil going on due to the lack of control of the Consciousness and Cosmic Energy within us. That’s all it is; that and the fact that when we think we are relaxed, if you will observe carefully within yourself, you are not relaxed at all. It’s like trying to fill a bottle full when you’ve got it half-full to start with. There’s Life Force left within you, that is not controlled, and that is what causes fatigue. Remember that now. If you’re tired, what is the reason? That within your muscles, and tissues, there is a lot of stagnant Life Force that should be gotten out. Then fill the bottle up clee, with new clean Life Force. That is a very important point. Remember, fatigue isn’t, many times, what you think it is. It is the fact that Life Force, residual Life Force, remains within your tissues, and that is what causes you fatigue, to be fatigued. So the definition of relaxation is, according to this dictionary: “to make more lax; to loosen; to slacken.” But scientifically, it is, as I have pointed out, “recalling the attention, or controlling the Life Force and consciousness at will.” You can, if you’ll practice Self-Relaxation Fellowship Yoga, be able to loosen the attachment on you of this Life Force, which keeps you jittery – moving all around – not only in body, but in mind; and it keeps the Soul clouded by the movement going on there. You’ll be able to, at will, be calm and relaxed. But it takes practice. Consciousness and Life Force are the key points in all things. In all of your activity you perform it by the consciousness in you plus the Life Force. Of course, sometimes it becomes automatic. But nevertheless, nevertheless, it was the conscious application of Life Force that formed the habit. And remember those two things: Consciousness and Life Force are the basis of all activity, and

and feel. But one thing I will point out. remove the Life Force from that part. Unless you have been going step-by-step. and know what to do. by will. through the simple techniques. after you’re used to it. And what happens? It pulls the Life Force back into your spine and up through the Supreme Lotus in the brain. right this minute. don’t you? But you are not relaxed. unless you’re an advanced student. Now you feel relaxed. why does it. The stagnant Life Force within you. by control of consciousness and the Life Force. that one thing. you can. and have attained control of Consciousness and Energy. and you’ll feel the Life Force leave the tissues of your body. if you concentrate. and the attachment of your attention to the body. it takes practice. Now. where does the Life Force go? I mean when you put it there.also the control of consciousness and Life Force is at the basis of all relaxation – very important thing. His Love. you can control the Life Force and remove that. Why? Why? Because when you put your attention at this point [the point between the eyebrows]. don’t you feel the tension still there? That’s what causes fatigue. or any part of your body. as much as you can concentrate there. and then fill it with fresh Cosmic Energy of God and His Consciousness. and can be done. enough. as the Source of all . and you are thoroughly relaxed. Let go everything. That’s why I’m dwelling on it for just a little. and know Self-Realization Yoga. you cannot do it. why does the tension leave you? Because as you look at this point. and is in the state of fatigue. you sit upright. You can. at will. Now. That’s what you can do. that is half-filled up with Life Force. It can be done. by will. you’re sitting there. and can be accomplished. and can be practiced. But. but you have to go step-by-step. you contact the Great Attractive Force of God Himself. and think of God enough. It is a very important subject and point. you’ve lift your consciousness to the Christ Center. You lift it now. you can feel. Now that’s something which can be attained. those of you who know it. having removed the obstructions. Of course. sometimes it cannot be done right off. fully. If you put your hand on your muscle. send the Consciousness and Energy there. by the techniques of Self-Realization Fellowship. and you close your eyes. But you can. That’s the key to all relaxation. as you sit there now. if you can do it with strength and with will. But it can be done. Now. except to say it can be done. which I will not go into. remove that stagnant Life Force. you feel relaxed. by the teachings of Self-Realization Fellowship. But you observe closely within yourself. so that you will never feel that fatigue within you.

instead of being trapped in outward things and in this bodily vehicle. if you are at all sensible. But they came from the Consciousness of God plus the Burning Power. And so. His Presence within you. especially Self-Realization Fellowship Yoga. and in contact with God’s Consciousness and Energy within. please do not forget. They are never separated. and not enough on the Spiritual side. because of worries. the Consciousness travels right along with it. That can be done with the practice of yoga. if you can control one.Consciousness and Energy. We live too much in worldly consciousness. if you can put your consciousness at this point [between the eyebrows]. Just that little difference makes you either a human being. plus His Life Force or Energy. and your consciousness. very wonderful. himself. he made Divine Consciousness. many people are filled with tension. So can you separate God? Of course. Self-Realization Yoga is very important. They both go together. he felt instead of his body. That’s His Presence – nothing else. and he felt the Presence of God. And one wonderful thing is. We must live more actively associated. or His Energy. You cannot do it. Why? The balance is too much on the duality side of existence. . if you wanna be rid of tension. control the Life Force in the body. the Energy. returns home to God where it belongs. That is to consciously know God. And he felt. he withdrew it to the spine and the Supreme Centers of the brain. which do you want? You can only want one thing. The Presence of God is the Consciousness and Energy made dynamic to your being. can you? You cannot. and you feel the Peace of His Presence. That’s the key to the practice of yoga. with all the Life Force scattered all through it. or a Divine Being. or in the Supreme Center of the brain. no more than you can separate the fire and the burning power. dynamic to. Divine to. and such things. the Life Force will run right back to the spine and up to God. Look at those beautiful poinsettias. His Manifestations are many. That’s a point. as His Consciousness. So it is within us: Consciousness and Energy go together. When that Brother Lawrence practiced the Presence of God. and is going upward toward God in the cranium. That. you will feel it leave the tissues of your body. with determination of will. Now. Isn’t that a wonderful thing? So. and frustrations. if you can control the Life Force. first learn how to control the Consciousness and Energy of God in you. showing you that the Life Force has retired to the spine. That’s our Divine Nature.

That’s “The Art of Relaxation.” “The lake of the mind must be stilled. and with such determination and will. "I am He. recall it to the spine and brain where God dwells. Then we will know. Learn to do that which is your birthright.” None of this oscillation. instead of being this body. That’s why Master emphasized so much.” That is. then we will know as long. and then applying it where we want to apply it – on the Presence of God within.” Releasing the attachment of consciousness. which makes us run around. at will. What is the trouble there? When your mind is restless you have not controlled the Life Force and Energy. Self-Realization Fellowship Yoga gives you the power to force more Life Force into your muscles and tissues. we are the Infinite Presence of God within.” That’s why in our prayer we always say. which tie us so securely. that is to lift your consciousness. to know. and it stagnate. finally. It can be done. or withdraw it. And gradually.” We say it over and over and over again. “The lake of the mind must be stilled. finally. and underneath is growing a little jitteriness all the time. it’ll permeate through our consciousness and we’ll make the effort. we can free our attention from not only the body. But when we are able to loosen the attachment. it’s all out through our body. And that’s what the definition says. “recalling the attention. but from the mind. and then. learn to do that. “I’m not this body. from the deep organic processes within our body. which makes us seem to be this body. to be able to do what I have just pointed out to you. and still the waves of the mind. I am He. to do what I pointed out means. and. When you have loosened the attachment of the tension to your body. it requires concentration. It can be done. and. which I will come to in a moment. And why? Because. so deep do you . that we think we die. it requires what? Concentration. And by the developing of concentration. we must develop concentration. Yoga gives you that power. that’s all. These are facts. instantly. Blessed Spirit I am He. Concentration is a very important thing. If you want freedom from tension. and be one with the Infinite Presence of God expanded all over.Now. And this applies especially to mind. we still think we are. And so. as Lord Shankara says. That’s the whole thing. Release the attachment. to look at this point. and not be bound by this little bodily vehicle. That isn’t what we should do. through everything. keeping you in misery. We should be able. and to the mental aspect of yourself. and we think we are this body. that’s all. subject to its rules and the dictates of your mind. These are important facts. so to speak. the Stillness of God’s Presence. at this point [the Spiritual Eye]. and then from the mind.

But there is still tension there. follow. just briefly. Yoga is age-old. especially.” I have a reference. and. Incomplete is what? Well. Now. or the internal functions. at least – better than when you were running around full of tension. there are two. one other thing. taking away our freedom and our peace. The other exercises of our Work. which I will not take the time to tell you about. the Great Sages. will help you to once and for all free your attachment to this body. Follow. Do not take my word for it. which I’ll give you. “Oh my. deep within. and to know that is “The Art of Relaxation. You come and flop in a chair. Now. the relaxing exercises. Sleep is another way of partial physical relaxation. full physical relaxation is attained through the techniques of Self-Realization Fellowship. as to what we truly are. And. then. Flinging yourself down in a chair. if you follow it. I just spoke of it. They come from ancient times. or anybody’s word for it. You say. from our Master. there are many kinds of relaxation. then. Blessed Spirit I am He. keeping us attached. not only will we be able to free our attention from the body. but from the mind. at this time.concentrate that you loosen it from the organic aspect of your body. Follow. many kinds of relaxation. also. So we have a wonderful teacher. and feeling – feeling. consciously. then you’ll be without breath. especially Raja Yoga. we can remove that consciousness. let us not forget that. kinds of relaxation. And the final techniques. I am He. who was an adept at it. pointing out that the Recharging Exercises of our Work. First is “physical relaxation. . But. fully alive. if you wish to be free from tension and fully relaxed to the Presence of God. who attained that relaxation. And fully. but was one with God. which makes us feel that we are this body. That’s real relaxation. "I am He. Not only at that. Within you is that tension I spoke of. will help you to release tension from your mind. which is so terrible at times. I can assure you. But that you will know. and there are many in this room who can assure you. what a day!” You are not relaxed. keeps us in ignorance. and keep. from the body parts – all the body parts – and then you are fully relaxed physically.” Two kinds: incomplete and complete. Then you can say with Lord Shankara. That is what we must do. follow the teachings of Self-Realization Fellowship." So. you’ll be. where you withdraw the energy. That’s what we can do by simply following those. practice. And lastly. our Master. you will know. then you’ll know. will help you to free the body from tension.

deeply within. Why wait until we’re thrown out into death. And that relaxation is far greater. you’ll wake up. You can do it right in this life. Conscious relaxation. and then in an unconscious way. Then we come to the third. because you fully relax the mind. giving them a rest so that they can heal. especially. not automatic. if you’ll just do this particular exercise. Mental relaxation. the circulation. and it is attained by Raja Yoga. It is the deep. relaxation is very important. But by the practices of yoga. and up in the Supreme Brain where God and His Angels dwell. especially of the mind. so. How can you feel good. and your heart’s pounding away all the time.” That’s too much for you to remember. for heaven’s sakes. at least.” You have also there the two factors: partial and complete. giving them a rest. Remember it is called “conscious death. but die conscious of the process of death. But are you fully relaxed in sleep? If I stick a pin in you. is sleep. fully withdraw the Consciousness and Energy – not partially – fully. But die.” So.” Now. by the practices of Self-Realization. the part of Self-Realization Fellowship known as Kriya Yoga. you can withdraw the deep energies within you that control your vital processes. Why? Because you have withdrawn the Consciousness and Energy – not only from the body. and allowing you to place that consciousness in the spine. organic relaxation. you won’t die. But. or becoming worn out.” because it takes in relaxation of the deep organic parts of our body: the heart. Those can be relaxed. as in sleep. or even just touch you. metaphysical relaxation is very important. . and consciously control the Life Force. if they’re worn out. No wonder ya feel tired. and that’s the final relaxation until you do die. especially Raja Yoga. There’s a lot of Life Force left within your heart and your lungs. sensorymotor. if you’re going around puffing away [Doctor breathes heavily into the mic] all the time. That’s an automatic state. the third type of relaxation which is called “metaphysical relaxation. the lungs. and such things. you’ll be more refreshed in the morning than as if you had what you call “a good sleep. Kriya Yoga relaxes you deeply. You’re not fully relaxed. but you can consciously withdraw the energy so the mind is still. if you can’t seem to get that sleep to come. consciously! Not be pushed into death. they can rest. far more important to you than sleep. deepest relaxation. It is called “conscious. That’s the complete relaxation. with the muscles and bones and so forth – but from the deep internal organs. in the ordinary sense. you can attain conscious relaxation of your mind so that there is no movement in it. So those of you who are troubled with insomnia. partial and complete.Now there is “mental relaxation. So. partial. You’ll be more awake than you ever were. allowing you to rest.

giving us conscious contact with God. It is possible. you can lift your consciousness to the Christ Center. you’ll have misery. And that comes. You know them. that we are Divine in Nature. Now. you cannot have peace. Let’s not be afraid any longer. in these times it is that tension which people feel. be one with the Infinite Presence of God. if they could just still the waves of the mind. I think. because. of course. There’ll be no tension. is very important. at this time. that’s all. Don’t say those are. and wish you were some other place than where you are. They are conscious. Mental detachment is absolutely necessary. Now. Mind is nothing but the operation of Consciousness and Energy in a certain definite way. and lives. and. at will.We are children of God. and can be accomplished by will. I don’t need to enumerate them. You do not control the Life Force and Consciousness that’s operating. If they could just get rid of that tension.” Well that’s a fact. and have. you will have peace. confusion there. they are possible. do these things and you will prove this to yourself.” Mental relaxation is very important. With the mind restless. because their mind is restless. Why? Because you do not control your mind. lives. Let’s practice these great techniques. Now. So. And all these things come in upon us. and restless. and a million things. You cannot beat it. from nagging worries. if tension bothers you enough. being a part of Him. as Peace and Bliss. You’re afraid of it. There are a million things: the mind with all its memories of ages. at will. just briefly. that’s all. that we can never die. giving us Conscious Realization. “If I could just have one moment’s peace. by following the techniques which I have spoken about. you wanna be rid of it. as I have called it. If you cannot. Your mind is nothing but the action of your own consciousness plus the Energy within you as the faculty called mind. which help us to remove the Life Force and Consciousness from our body. Why not learn to die consciously? There’s nothing to be afraid [of]. But it is possible. being His children? You cannot die. And I know you all will agree with me on that one particular point. Mental detachment is the thing we must understand – mental detachment. when you are mentally like that. How can God die? How can you die. These things are possible. made in His Image. if you can control it. There’ll be no mental restlessness. things are imaginary. not only ages. They are not. consciousness of duty. say just a word about “mental relaxation. that some say. the mental detachment. As our Master has .

” 1 . That’s the greatest thing. past. to come” 2 Ibid. And with that. of all lands.2” All men are born in delusion. by Dr. and our mind is a part of it. What chance have we? But in the next line it says: "O Arjuna.” 3 The Bhagavad Gita or The Lord’s Song. A wonderful reference! I want you to listen carefully. And so. past. that without distortion. 7th Discourse. O Parantapa. O Bhārata. as I have said. Page 232. there’ll be no Dream – only God’s Consciousness. the highest form is. You now. which otherwise impartially prevents all men. Why not take it with you in everything you do? You can do it. from the Poem “Samadhi. what happens? With that comes the Realization that you were never apart from God. freedom from all tension. if you start. Page 153.. It takes a little practice. is “metaphysical aspect” wherein you loosen your attachment to this bodily vehicle. and. feel very peaceful. 27th Line.” You see what an important thing it is to relax the mind.3” Think of what the scriptures say.said. and future are there (sic). but. “Thoughts of all men. from glimpsing their true nature. Chapter 24. as you’re sitting here. The goal of yoga science is to calm the mind. sprung from attraction and repulsion. which it is entitled to. If you break the Dream of God. you release your Soul from bondage to freedom. causes so much trouble. which you cannot control most of the time. like you break your own when you wake up in the morning. These are facts. of relaxation. But it can be done easily. And I will give you a reference. at this time. and to your mind. You only thought you were. Paramhansa Yogananda. these things are very important.” Then.” We can get out of it. you won’t attain. Annie Besant. freedom of God’s Presence. Revision 1951. present. present. "Yoga is a method for restraining the natural turbulence of thoughts. of all lands. which otherwise impartially prevents all men. and then give up at the first obstruction.1” What a job we’ve got to control this mind. all beings walk this universe wholly deluded. “I’m sick of this business of being separated from God. finally. which it is. And you realize that you are not Autobiography of a Yogi. His Great Peace and His Bliss. 1939. which cause. “Yoga is a method for restraining the natural turbulence of thoughts. carry it through. "Yoga is a method of restraining the natural turbulence of the thoughts. from our Master’s Autobiography of a Yogi. “By the delusion of the pairs of opposites. naturally. it may hear the infallible counsel of the Inner Voice.” “I want to know I’m one with God every moment. from glimpsing their true nature of Spirit.” Line 15. if you break the Dream of God.. Make up your mind. get out of my delusion. And finally. They’re worth working for. "The thoughts of all men. Chapter 14. “All men walk the earth wholly deluded. He is Dreaming this thing. really break it.

Spotless is my mental sky. fitful flickering shadows of mortal memory. “When the walls of a reservoir are destroyed. I Am become the Sea of Mirth Itself. And in that. there. if we will but really want it. you will realize: “Gone forever are the fitful flickerings of mortal memory (sic). ahead. Listen carefully. The Master Said. and high above. below. There’s only One Consciousness. speaking. just by fully relaxing yourself from attachment to this vehicle. And it’ll help you realize. I’d like to give you another of Master’s reference here. as our Master says.4” Think of it. Blessed Spirit. and merges in the Omnipresence of Spirit. help me to subdue the incessant ripples of the little wave of my life that Thine Oceanic Vastness spread over me. that’s my birthright. there." the Master said in his little book. Everybody is there. when the limitations of restlessness and delusion are removed by meditation. 4 . one united ray. There’s only One God and Consciousness. the consciousness of man spreads out to infinity. They’re in the Presence of God. that you never were apart from Him. and you are. Similarly. but this delusion makes you think that they are not there. or desire. then by meditation. of which I have been seek. “Spotless is my mental sky – beneath. or want. “…the waters rush out in all directions. and do something about it." And in that state. with separation from God. A tiny bubble of laughter. They’re there. on the positive side. Eternity and I. He is. Ibid. you will find fulfillment of all things you could ever think of. and that’s your birthright. but you have to break the Dream to realize it.” 5 Ibid. as Master says. Metaphysical relaxation will help you break the Dream that you are apart from God. the little bubble of ego has become the sea of bliss itself (sic). “…the consciousness of man spreads out to infinity and merges in the Omnipresence of Spirit. eternity and I. when you break the Cosmic Dream.apart from Him – not separated. one united ray. in front and high above. references here. because there is only one God and His Consciousness.5” Autobiography of a Yogi. Page 154 “…Gone forever. All your relatives are there.” How wonderful! Just by a little control of Consciousness and Energy. and there.