Q&A with Yogini Kaliji


Q  I was thinking about children. My nephew was cranky over the weekend; he is getting to a point in his development where he feels that everything is his, “the ME stage.” Why do humans have to go through this?
Kaliji  We naturally travel from the small ” i ” to the real “I ” or Higher Self in each life. Some do it faster than others. 🙂 Why is it so hard for some children to want to share? It is natural to want to enjoy creation. Children enter life excited to experience the wonders of creation. During this excitement, they sometimes forget that there is plenty to go around. 🙂 With this remembrance though, it is easy to share. Of course, as one grows older, they will hopefully put this knowledge consistently into action. Another reason is due to the previous impressions in the mind that are carried into this life. These impressions are like seeds that sprout when the soil is right. Therefore, parents need to reflect the positive qualities for children to learn. As we know, children will often take on qualities of those around them. This is why we say that the mother and father are the first gurus for the child.


Q  Someone has caused my family problems. I want to get even, but I know inside this isn’t right.
Kaliji  I recall a story from yoga…
A saint was bathing in the sacred river Ganga. A scorpion floated toward him. The saint carried the scorpion out of the water so the scorpion would be safe. While carrying the scorpion, the hand of the saint was bitten. Afterwards, the saint continued bathing. Within a short time, the scorpion floated out on a wave toward the saint again. And once again, the saint carried the scorpion to safety. The scorpion repeated the same behavior and stung the saint with its bite. Now, those watching this asked the saint why he’d carry the scorpion to safety even while getting bitten. The saint compassionately responded, “This is the nature of the scorpion, just like this is the nature of myself.” Only in following the saintly path is one free. Continued…


Q  (As) I was thinking about the story of the Saint and the scorpion… Now the Saint crosses the river, carries the scorpion, and the Saint does what Saints do, the scorpion does what scorpions do. So far, so good. So knowing that the situation is as it is, please clarify as to why it is that the Saint must continue to carry the scorpion?
Kaliji  The story doesn’t say how long the Saint continued to carry the scorpion. Basically, we could say the Saint was beyond pleasure and pain so the biting of the scorpion wasn’t really felt by the Saint. However, the Flow includes Ahimsa (non-violence) for all involved. Therefore, each experience must be seen through this great universal vow of Ahimsa. Gandhi won the war due to his firm example of Ahimsa.


Q  I understand we must do no harm to the scorpion, and that the scorpion is not of evil intent. The scorpion is just painful to the Saint. But our wise Saint must surely know that his blessed Self is best preserved by not carrying the scorpion on a daily basis, no more than he would continue to walk in front of trucks on a daily basis, proclaiming that trucks will do what trucks will do. So, I’m wondering, when does the Saint say, “No thank you, carrying you is disrespectful to my good health.”
Kaliji  Before he gets knocked down by the “truck.” 🙂


Q  Yesterday my husband was putting in a waterline on the lower 40 in a part not very cleared and was bitten by a baby rattlesnake that he did not see. He ended up in the hospital. He is such a Naturalist and a friend of the animal world, that it was a bit of a shock. So we were looking for the message.
Kaliji  We have our nature and the snakes have their nature. In other words, your husband was doing his thing and the rattlesnake was doing its thing. Just like in life, we can be kind, yet a person can still be mean to us. Obviously, the baby rattlesnake felt he needed to protect himself.


Q  Tonight my daughter did something wrong and I didn’t handle it well. Now I realize how I should have responded. I feel I should have shown unconditional love. But instead I showed judgment which made her more distant. I feel I responded poorly as I was feeling overworked this week. I was just stressed out. Anyway, we are doing better now.
Kaliji  The battle we have to face in life isn’t always easy. However, if we come through it with greater understanding, then the battle was won. The battle is there to present a lesson we need. This battle for you was to experience another lesson in unconditional love and non-judgment. The lessons on the same qualities become more and more subtle. Through the effort of wanting to grow by doing one’s best in life, it will begin to feel more natural. Each battle is like a test to show us where we presently are, how we are really doing. Yes, the stress from your work can undermine the situation, another good lesson regarding the importance of finding our balance. It will come. Perfection of the mind is a journey. Wisdom in action is the path.


Q  I am still struggling with anger and disappointment, both at myself and at my daughter. Any specific postures or mantras to help? I’m just upset how she handled a very important event.
Kaliji  The posture is to keep the mind steady, free from anger. The mantra is, nothing is more important than inner peace: let it go and let it flow. On the physical level, anger’s seat is in the third chakra (energy center). Of course, anger that harms others in a more detrimental way is in the lower body below Muladhara (base chakra). This anger you speak of will pass. It sits before the opening of the fourth chakra of the heart. Anger blocks the door to the heart chakra. Backward bending postures help to open the heart chakra where unconditional love can be felt. As a parent, one needs to recognize that children have their own karma. They must and will act according to their own samskaras (mental prints). A parent does the best they can then they must accept the rest as their children’s own path. Friendship, support, and love: these are great gifts a parent can share. You’ve given good seeds for her growth, now they must settle in her own garden according to her own soil where there are seeds, flowers, and yes, some weeds. Continue to water the garden with love. From love all good things blossom.


Q  I am overly concerned about what people think of me, about being liked, and have a very difficult time when someone is angry with me or doesn’t care for me.
Kaliji  We must reach a point in life where we no longer care how people feel about us but, instead, see how we can be of service to others. Service begins with ourselves and close relationships then can easily spread to others.


Q  I seem to feel that if someone else suffers, it isn’t okay for me to be happy, so I can easily become anxious in that situation.
Kaliji  We need to be happy for those who are happy and compassionate for those in need. However, our inner peace must remain as we need to be focused on the higher path of service. Make others happy and we will also become happier. If one is sad, and we also become overly sad, then our LIGHT will not be of service to them. No matter what, we must not let go of our inner peace. Good and bad comes along our path; no one can escape it. Therefore, we must accept the pair of opposites and continue our path forward.


Q  There is a new person coming to work at our company who I feel doesn’t like me. This is causing me stress. What can I do to overcome this?
Kaliji  All personalities will not be totally happy with one another. But if we look beyond the personality then we can see the beauty in all things. If someone appears not to like you, then it can be seen as a wonderful opportunity to shine love toward that individual who perhaps has misguided judgment. For this reason, what a great blessing . . .to be able to give love unconditionally. When in the flow of love, there is no care about the rest of the so-called problems. It is seen as a vehicle for Karma Yoga, to be able to give without the expectation of anything being given in return, except for the opportunity to give where it is sometimes most needed. And who knows, this may be the best medicine for the relationship to grow. It definitely will be for the true Karma Yogi.


Q  You have spoken about unconditional love within a relationship. Could you say more?
Kaliji  When human love becomes unconditional love, then it is a direct path to the Supreme Spirit, DEVI. As long as the relationship uplifts the spirits of the two involved, then the relationship will be joyful and will serve to inspire the spiritual path of each.


Q  My wife and I have differences that are causing problems. My question is: do we share in the same karma even though our actions are different?
Kaliji  Each individual is on their own journey no matter how much one tries to unite with another. We each have our own separate karmas to experience based on our own separate thoughts and actions. If by chance, the karmas are being experienced at the same time and place, then it can be said we are sharing the common road (karma). In sharing the “common road,” it might appear that two or more are sharing in the same karma. But in reality, no one can share the exact karma even though the external situation is the same because each one’s mind will experience it differently, thus making the experience different for one another. However, at times, it might feel like the karma is being completely shared. This is because some allow their karma to be so mixed with the karma of others, that they will find themselves in situations where otherwise they wouldn’t be. Due to the above reasoning, some of the karma your wife has is being experienced as if it is your own. And vice-versa. Some of your karma is also being shared with your wife. What is the answer? One must accept that each other’s karma is shared to some degree with their companions. When two share their lives, there is no doubt that even though we can?t share the identical karma, we will still share in the experience. This is why it is important to choose our company well.