The Abandonment of Money

By George A. Boyd ©2017

Q: In several spiritual traditions, they encourage adopting the monastic path of poverty and idealize the saint’s disregard for money. Can you speak to the motivations of monastics and saints for adopting these attitudes?

A: When spiritual seekers become completely absorbed in their spiritual life, the foundations of material life—career, money, and relationship—are often willingly sacrificed on their altar of devotion to God. Through intense cultivation of their inner life, they learn to tolerate not having money. Moreover, they no longer desire a relationship, a family, or a career, choosing instead to focus fully on their spiritual development and to move closer to the Presence of God.

What are some of the motivations for this abandonment of money?

  1. Saints are so absorbed in their inner experience that their outer experience is unimportant to them.
  2. God is the most important thing to saints: they may often see the outer world as a distraction or an illusion. They may see what goes on in the outer world as not relevant to the core values of their lives.
  3. Saints have gratitude and equanimity for whatever befalls them, as they see it comes from God’s Will and Providence.
  4. Saints believe God will provide for them, and look to God for sustenance, instead of their own efforts.
  5. Saints may be so uplifted into ecstatic spiritual consciousness that working a complex, modern job, with its stress, its multiple demands, and highly distracted environment is something they are no longer capable of doing.
  6. Some saints wish to preserve their energy so they can commune with God, and might feel working a job for the sake of earning money depletes their energy and interferes with their spiritual communion with the Divine.
  7. On some traditions, saints take a vow of poverty or have renounced accepting gifts during their monastic ordination, so they may see pursuing or even accepting money is a violation of the rule by which they are expected to live.

Abandoning money is an extreme position, but saints readily embrace this, because drawing closer to God is the most important thing to them. Perhaps no more than one percent of seekers have this overriding passion to entirely devote their lives to prayer, meditation, and the service of God—but we note that it is from this small group of the most dedicated seekers that many spiritual groups draw their priests and clergy.

The Mudrashram® system of Integral meditation holds that it is important to be able to function fully in the personality—having the ability to work, have a relationship, and raise a family—meanwhile making steady progress towards spiritual Mastery and Liberation. For some rare individuals, a monastic avocation is appropriate, but for most people, a life balanced between spirituality, and discharging the duties of student, worker, parent, and citizen enables them greater fulfillment, even if their rate of spiritual development and acquisition of holy virtues may be slower than that of saints.

The Seven Fires of Man

By George A. Boyd ©2017

Q: What is the fire in the belly of which people speak?

A: There are actually seven fires within human beings. Across the Seven Rays, they are:


Type of Fire

What It Does


The fire in the belly

This activates your personal octave of will. It aligns your volition, personal intuition, intellect, concrete mind, conscience, persona, and commitment to achieve a goal despite obstacles or setbacks.


The fire in the brain

This is the kindling of the Illumined Mind, or Buddhi, with the downpour of intuitive knowledge. This purifies ignorance and removes negativity from the mind.


The fire in the sacred heart (Hridaya)

This is the anointing of the Divine that is anchored in an ensouling entity that has drawn into the Divine Presence. This anointing is also bestowed upon the cosmic consciousness nucleus of identity for the Yogi Preceptor in the 1st Cosmic Initiation; on the cosmic soul awareness of the Light Master in the 2nd Cosmic Initiation; and on the Supracosmic seed atom of a disciple who has fully opened the Supracosmic brain chakra on a Supracosmic Path. This empowers the individual who has attained this exalted station on the Path to be a spiritual Master in that tradition.


The fire in the center of the palms of the hands

This is the fire of life force with which healers are imbued. This fire connects the point between the eyebrows (visualization and intention) with the heart (compassion for the suffering of the client) with the palms (the focalized nexus of healing energy).


The fire in the eyes

This is the attentional principle, anointed with the Light of Spirit. It ministers the Light through an attunement, as we do in our Mudrashram® Light Sittings. On Transcendental Paths (T1 to T5 and T7), this attunement is made with the spiritual heart instead of the attentional principle.


The fire in the heart

This is the anointing of the Holy Spirit, anchored in the Moon Soul or Christ Child. The fire of anointing can come to dwell in other nuclei of identity or the Astral Soul. This awakens that center, purifies it, and connects it with the Divine at that level of the Continuum.


The fire in the spine

This marks the awakening of the Kundalini Shakti, the energy that opens awareness and activates the vehicles of consciousness of the Subconscious, Metaconscious, and Superconscious mind.

Everyone should be familiar with the stirring of will and resolve to achieve a goal that arises from your personal volition, when you are determined to succeed despite obstacles or adversity. This is your personal fire: it comes forth when you decide you are going to do, be, or have something you truly want, no matter what it takes.

Those who invoke the Divine as the Holy Spirit are familiar with the fire in the heart. When this glorious flame enters the receptacle of the Moon Soul or Christ Child, it inspires confession and repentance, and re-dedication of your life to God. It may also bestow the “Gifts of the Spirit,” which temporarily enables you to access hidden knowledge, speak words of wisdom, act as an instrument of healing, or become a channel for Divine Prophecy—among other gifts.

Those who are healers should be familiar with the heat they feel in their hands when they are ready to heal others. This is the tangible marker that they are charged with the Living Force (prana, Chi), and can direct it to others through laying on of hands or visualization with intention.

Those whom a Master initiates, and actively unfold their spiritual potentials experience the awakening of their Kundalini (fire in the spine) and their Illumined Mind (fire in the brain). Some spiritual traditions will also train their disciples in ministering the Light to others (fire in the eyes), which may be sent through the attentional principle or the spiritual heart of disciples, depending on the core focus of the Path. [Typically Transcendental Paths empower the spiritual heart.]

Those who become Initiates [Masters] directly experience the anointing of the Divine to carry out their spiritual Mission and complete the Dispensation granted to them.

Aspirants will benefit from recognizing what triggers the activation of will (fire in the belly), the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (fire in the heart), and the gift of healing (fire in the palms).

Disciples should become familiar with how to stir the Kundalini Shakti into activity (fire in the spine), and how to awaken their Illumined Mind through entering full Samadhi (fire in the brain). If your tradition practices it, you may be trained in sending the Light to the ensouling entities of others through attunement (fire in the eyes).

When you become an Initiate, you will experience the direct anointing of the Divine (fire in the sacred heart), which will enable you to kindle—depending on the Dispensation given to your tradition—between two and six of these other fires in humanity, and to pass the torch of the Living Fire to the one ordained to be your successor (fire of the sacred heart).

Those unfamiliar with the Seven Rays can read more about them in A Mudrashram® Reader: Understanding Integral Meditation. Those who are taking one of our intermediate courses—the Accelerated Meditation Program or the Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation—can also gain greater understanding of this topic by taking the webinar series in the Level One member area on the Seven Rays.

Reflections on the Types of Questioning

By George A. Boyd © 2015

Questioning is a powerful tool to arrive at understanding and insight. There are seven major types:

  1. Questioning to arrive at facts or evidence – Interrogation typifies this type of questioning. It attempts to determine what actually happened. It attempts to arrive at the truth about what someone did or said. Investigators and reporters use this type of questioning.
  2. Social questioning – This type of question interviews another person to learn about their experience, beliefs, values, and perspective on the world. This type of questioning lets another person feel known, and establishes an atmosphere of trust and empathic rapport. It is the basis of friendship. It is used in psychotherapy.
  3. Intellectual questioning – This type of questioning aims to assess intellectual knowledge and skills acquired through learning. It is the foundation of academic testing. Questioning on topics of interest, framed as a hypothesis, forms the basis of scientific research. Educators and scientists use this type of questioning.
  4. Experiential questioning – This type of questioning seeks to know what a person is experiencing in the present time. Examples of this are “what are you feeling right now?” It leads to the uncovering of a person’s immediate and intimate experience. This type also is used in psychotherapy.
  5. Structured process questioning – This type of questioning asks a repetitive question to the unconscious mind, with the objective of uncovering the origin incident that triggered a pattern of belief, behavior, or emotional upset. This type of questioning is utilized in Scientology™ and other groups that rely upon process meditation to work with emotionalized issues and dysfunctional patterns.
  6. Spiritual questioning – This type of questioning seeks to gain understanding of spiritual ideas, to master the practice of meditation, and to realize one’s spiritual essences—the attentional principle, the spirit, one of the nuclei of identity, or the ensouling entity. This type of question develops the faculty of inner insight and discernment, and builds the Illumined mind (Buddhi). Spiritual aspirants and disciples ask these questions; spiritual teachers and Initiates answer these questions.
  7. Evocative questioning – This type of question seeks to make a person think deeply about their assumptions, beliefs, and their sense about what is possible, achievable, or doable. It is a heuristic type of questioning, for it aids insight and discovery. It can lead people to reject other people’s values and beliefs, and authentically embrace their own. It can lead people to discover the truth about who they are. It can empower people to make new bold and life-changing choices. This type of questioning is found in the Socratic method that philosophers utilize, in philosophical inquiry, and in the evocative queries of life coaches.

Skillful questioning is a key skill in acquiring knowledge, insight, and wisdom. It is a way of knowing oneself; it is a way of knowing others and the world.

Meditation primarily relies upon type 6, spiritual questioning, in which the chela asks a question to the Guru and receives an answer. This type of questioning may also be dome internally: one can ask questions to a spiritual guide, an angel, the Holy Spirit, or to the Master or Initiate supervising one’s religion or spiritual group.

In the Mudrashram® system of Integral meditation, which uses a broader range of meditation techniques than unitive systems—i.e., unitive systems highlight one major meditation technique, with some supportive methods to facilitate the practice of that technique—questioning also embraces type 4, experiential questioning; type 5, structured process meditation; and type 7, evocative questioning.

Type 4 enables the aspirant to study the vehicles of consciousness and to contemplate their function, and to discover the authentic integrative centers: the Self and the Soul.

Type 5 facilitates the working out of issues that impede optimal functioning.

Type 7 empowers insight and change.

So, in addition to gaining spiritual insight, Integral meditation seeks to give the aspirant the tools to make the personality into an instrument of the Soul, and function optimally. Rather than reject the personality as an illusion or an impediment to spiritual progress, Integral meditation assists the aspirant to work through life issues and become fully functioning; and to actualize personal potentials along with spiritual ones.

We encourage you to reflect upon these seven types of questioning, and to think deeply about how you can utilize each of these types more effectively to enhance your knowledge of reality, your relationships, your scholarship and research, and your journey of personal and spiritual discovery.

What Holds A Person Back?

By George A. Boyd ©2016

There are a variety of issues that people encounter that holds them back from achieving what they desire. These include:

  1. Fear, anxiety and worry
  2. Shame
  3. Inferiority, a belief that one is not competent, evidenced by a lack of confidence
  4. Unbelief, lack of faith
  5. Societal or cultural prohibition: laws, mores, or taboos
  6. False information believed as true, received from superstition, revelations, or conspiracy theories
  7. Lack of permission from the Soul and God

There are several meditational methods that can be used to resolve issues one through six; issue seven must simply be accepted.

  1. Connecting with the Higher Self or wave of the present time and transcending issues, traveling in full consciousness to the Higher Planes with Raja Yoga
  2. Dialog methods such as Psychosynthesis, Voice Dialog, or Rainbow Method
  3. Debating or refuting the beliefs underlying the issue, inquiry, connecting with inner sources of truth (Dharma Yoga)
  4. Mindfulness, Vipassana
  5. Process meditation
  6. Invocation of a spiritual being through prayer and supplication to help overcome the issue
  7. Use of autohypnosis, affirmation, visualization, and syncretic methods to create new outcomes

We teach all seven methods in our intermediate meditation courses, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program. Learning methods to work with your issues internally empowers you, enables you to work out your issues, and to function more effectively in your life. When you function more effectively, and personal issues encumber you less, you are more capable of fulfilling your life dreams.