I have recently finished the second year of the Himalayan Academy Master Course. I have found this very fulfilling, as well as the study there are saddanas or spiritual practices, each one to be tried for a week. As I found with the level 1 master course, this was well worthwhile and I would recommend it to anyone. However I have decide that I am going to repeat the stage two master course over the next year rather than go on to the stage three.
There are several reasons for this. Reading the words of Gurudeva again will certainly be worthwhile, every time I read them I see something new and learn more every time I read them. I also feel that I could do with spending some more time on some of the exercises. For some of them a week was a very short time, and some weeks I did not carry them out every day.
Also I don’t feel that I can meet all the requirements for the phase three course yet. I don’t want to say much about this on the public blog, because it involves decisions about what is reasonable for me and reasonable for my family.
What I can say is that the requirements are not unreasonably, and I am just as committed to the Nandinatha Sampradaya as ever. My family are fully supportive of me, though not as committed to hindu dharma as I am. Hindu teaching makes it clear that family dharma (Grihastha Dharmah) is of utmost importance and taking steps that would negatively impact this would be wrong. Taking some of the next steps at this time would not be fair on my family, and the Himalayan Academy monks have always made it clear that for householders family comes first.
Having said that, on reflection it is better for me to consolidate and increase my knowledge, and to follow the path better. There are many ways I need to improve, and I think that this time of consolidation is the right thing.