A: Considering the current popularity of Yoga, this is a good question. I went to Wikipedia in order to get a good overview of yoga, since I know very little about it, and you can see that page HERE. There is quite a lot of information and several different styles of Yoga.
The Urantia Book calls yoga a “futile” practice that Gautama Siddhartha, the founder of Buddhism, practiced while he was developing his unique philosophy of life and religion. Whether it was futile to him in particular, it does not say, but one gets the idea that it is the revelators who are using that adjective to describe Yoga in general.
In Buddhism, the concept of a personal God is significant in that it really does not exist, so when Gautama was practicing Yoga, he evidently did not get that benefit from it. If you’re looking for God it may indeed, be futile to look for that experience through Yoga…I can’t make that determination for you, though.
Physical exercise is a plus, no matter how we get it, and I think it’s been proven as a benefit of Yoga. But as a spiritual practice, simple meditation, prayer and worship are the easiest way to go, and can be done by anyone, anywhere. And that brings us to your second question.
You also asked: I’m still not sure exactly how to pray, worship and meditate. What exactly are the steps to connecting with a higher source? Could you guide me into doing this?
I can tell you how I do it, but there are probably as many ways of doing this as there are people who do it, and you will develop your own way, too. The Urantia Book does not offer precise techniques for meditation but we are told that Jesus engaged in prayer and meditation often—this link will take you to a scholarly and informative article about how he did it from one Urantia Book reader’s perspective and with liberal Urantia Book references.
This advice from Rodan is also helpful:
160:3.1 Look to your Master. Even now he is out in the hills taking in power while we are here giving out energy. The secret of all this problem is wrapped up in spiritual communion, in worship. From the human standpoint it is a question of combined meditation and relaxation. Meditation makes the contact of mind with spirit; relaxation determines the capacity for spiritual receptivity. And this interchange of strength for weakness, courage for fear, the will of God for the mind of self, constitutes worship. At least, that is the way the philosopher views it.
Meditation/worship can be done quite simply by getting comfortable and then becoming quiet in body and mind. Many people feel that it helps to take a few deep breaths in order to center yourself, and then simply breathe normally and close your eyes, concentrating only on the breath going out and coming in. Concentrating only on the breath helps one to avoid intrusive thought. If your thoughts begin to wander, simply return to the breath, until you can feel yourself become very relaxed. It is then that we become receptive.
The Urantia Book calls prayer the “breath of the soul, ” and prayer can be done throughout your day while engaged in any activity—just thank God for your blessings, and talk to him at any time for guidance. When added to meditation/worship, you can lay out your deepest self to him in sincere prayer. Prayer is the process of talking to God, and in meditation, we listen for God to talk to us. So prayer, meditation and worship can be done together.
5:3.8 The worship experience consists in the sublime attempt of the betrothed Adjuster to communicate to the divine Father the inexpressible longings and the unutterable aspirations of the human soul —the conjoint creation of the God-seeking mortal mind and the God-revealing immortal Adjuster. Worship is, therefore, the act of the material mind’s assenting to the attempt of its spiritualizing self, under the guidance of the associated spirit, to communicate with God as a faith son of the Universal Father. The mortal mind consents to worship; the immortal soul craves and initiates worship; the divine Adjuster presence conducts such worship in behalf of the mortal mind and the evolving immortal soul. True worship, in the last analysis, becomes an experience realized on four cosmic levels: the intellectual, the morontial, the spiritual, and the personal—the consciousness of mind, soul, and spirit, and their unification in personality.
Anyway, those are only a few suggestions that work for me. I never knew much about these things before I found The Urantia Book, so it was all new to me, and a lot of it is simple trial and error. But your intention is the important thing. If you sincerely want to get closer to God, he WILL help you achieve that goal.
We have created some topical studies on these topics as well. You can read good summaries of Urantia Book teachings on MEDITATION, PRAYER, and WORSHIP. Just click on the word to see the study. And from there, you can go further into the text if you want.
Date published: 2016-05-17 10:40:44
Author: Truthbook Staff