The Ten Classical Observances

Lesson of the Day

From The Master Course by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami

November 17, 2007
Lesson 220

What Are the Ten Classical Observances?

Hinduism’s religious tenets are contained in ten terse precepts called niyamas. They summarize the essential practices that we observe and the soulful virtues and qualities we strive daily to perfect. Aum Namah Sivaya.

Good conduct is a combination of avoiding unethical behavior and performing virtuous, spiritualizing acts. The accumulated wisdom of thousands of years of Hindu culture has evolved ten niyamas, or religious observances. These precepts defining the ideals of kriya are: 1) hri, “remorse,” be modest and show shame for misdeeds; 2) santosha, “contentment,” seek joy and serenity in life; 3) dana, “giving,” tithe and give creatively without thought of reward; 4) astikya, “faith,” believe firmly in God, Gods, guru and the path to enlightenment; 5) Ishvarapujana, “worship,” cultivate devotion through daily puja and meditation; 6) siddhanta shravana, “scriptural listening,” study the teachings and listen to the wise of one’s lineage; 7) mati, “cognition,” develop a spiritual will and intellect with a guru’s guidance; 8) vrata, “sacred vows,” fulfill religious vows, rules and observances faithfully; 9) japa, “recitation,” chant holy mantras daily; 10) tapas, “austerity,” perform sadhana, penance, tapas and sacrifice. The Vedas state, “They indeed possess that Brahma world who possess austerity and chastity, and in whom the truth is established.” Aum Namah Sivaya.

Lesson 220 from Living with Siva
The Costs Of Adultery

Now imagine a married woman working with men in a hospital or an engineering firm and a husband working as a computer programmer among women. Each is attracted to someone of the opposite sex, maybe because of karmas from a past life. Their emotional pranas move out of their bodies and connect with their workmates. Compatibility is established. Talking and laughing together become easy. When the “big happening” happens, as affairs so often do, the physical-mental-emotional-pranic exchange of energies forms an astral tube (nadi) which connects the two for a period of at least twelve years. ….Please click here to read more