Organized religion has a product to sell us. The product is "Spirituality" with a capital S. Religion demands unquestioning belief. If we are obedient, we may earn a place for ourselves in some future heaven. If we are curious and question a religious authority, we may be rewarded with the threat of eternal banishment and torture. As in all selling, fear is a very effective motivator. Our choice is simple: obey or die.
This less-than-gentle paradigm is not the way of the Veda. We have no doctrine to sell you. Do your own research, follow your own heart, we say. We don't require that you believe in a God or Gods. You needn't tithe to a church or bend to an authority.
There is a technique that we teach that has simple instructions. For this knowledge, we ask a traditional payment. Because an exchange of energy and information takes place, the student keeps his newfound knowledge close to his heart and has a chance to observe the results of diligent application over time. There is no shame in choosing a different path or in not following a path at all.
We meditators tend to express a loving reverence toward our teachers. This is not an enforced requirement. It is a simple and sincere expression of gratitude. In any spiritual community, there are instances when a charismatic leader might have sycophantic followers, and ego worship can develop, but this circumstance has no bearing on the value of the practice itself. Once learned, our simple technique can be repeated for a lifetime of satisfying meditations.
Paradoxically, we are not anti-faith. if you follow an established religion that enriches your life, regular meditation serves to deepen that bond, and to clear away stresses that conflict with a stronger connection to a higher power. We have many practitioners in all faiths.
We do not recruit. We do not punish. There is no eternal torment in our worldview. One is always free to practice or not to practice. My teacher said one thing consistently. "Follow your heart, and observe the results."
Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn.
If you would like to learn yourself, or if you are already a student and would like to pass on this knowledge, it starts with a free intro talk. click here to attend.