Subagh Singh Khalsa believes in a deeper kind of love.
Khalsa, the longtime Sikh Dharma meditation leader and co-director of the Mystic Heart Program, will lead this week’s meditation series, from 7:15 to 8 a.m. July 4 through July 9 at the Main Gate Welcome Center. The theme of the week is “Energy and Effectiveness Through Meditation,” with Khalsa showing how meditation can allow one to be present and content in the world, opening up a new type of love.
“What I mean by love is the capacity of a person to be fully present with another person or a situation or an environment … even if something is very negative or very shocking or very aggressive,” Khalsa said. “To have the capacity to stay with it or not run from it or or not even to judge it, to be neutral in relation to the circumstances of life.”
How can a neutral relationship be related to love, ostensibly its opposite? Khalsa said that level of peace of the world and circumstance lets a person accept another individual and remain in the present, allowing everything but that person in his or her current self to melt away. Fully in the moment, all of one’s and the other person’s flaws, goals or past actions fall away, and one can simply accept that person in his or her entirety.
“Anything else is at best is affection: ‘Oh you make me feel good, so I like you,’ ” Subagh said.
With a neutral mind, Khalsa said, even the worst of life circumstances aren’t overwhelming because people can always handle day-to-day struggles. What people can’t handle is the feeling that life will never be OK striving for something they don’t attain, Khalsa said. Meditation, he argues, can assuage that feeling.
Achieving that state of mind, however, can take an immense amount of time. As one of the original students of Yogi Bhajan, the Sikh who brought Kundalini Yoga to the United States, Khalsa has been practicing for decades.
Still, Khalsa calls meditation “the practice of being fully present with whatever occurs,” and anyone can benefit, even from just a week or a day, and he finds that some people end up sticking with it for years.
“If you can first be silent and then in that silence, simply experience what is without judging it, you automatically come into place where you’re peaceful and there’s a profound pleasure in that,” Khalsa said. “It’s lovely.”