by Acharya Shunya
The Vedas, which are the most ancient tradition of wisdom from India, suggests that we plant seeds of health and wellbeing every day. These seeds are called sādhanā. Simply defined, in my book Sovereign Self, sādhanā is "any dedicated spiritual discipline consistently maintained over time." There are several different types of sadhanas outlined in the Vedas, each that leads to a slightly different spiritual outcome. We can think of daily sādhanā as a way to plant the seeds that ultimately allow us to harvest a spiritual life.
We plant the seeds of sādhanā for the healthy body, for the calm mind, and for the elevated Spirit. The discipline of this practice asks us to keep up our commitment every day — every day, we must continue planting the seeds. We then water them with mindfulness, attention, discipline, and focus. Daily sādhanā requires work; it's not an easy task to continue this type of dedication as life moves forward. We may find ourselves pulled in the directions of family, profession, and more. But when we commit to this practice, we are planting a garden that we may harvest — and that harvest is a powerful one. Because at the same time that we are planting the seeds, we are becoming resilient to the planting. The practice comes more easily and becomes more fluid the more we do it.
The powerful harvest, blessed by the beauty of the universe, yields the fruits of wisdom, joy, light, knowledge, health, and wellbeing — sometimes at the most unexpected times. You may feel yourself able to avoid reacting in anger when you feel angry, or from a place of compassion when you are frustrated. This carefully-cultivated ability is a blessing from the universe. To say, if we do our part — if we engage in daily sādhanā, if we plant the seeds for a spiritual life — the universe blesses us back.