Rappler live blogs the event as it happens at the SM Mall of Asia Arena
MANILA, Philippines - A 24-year-old Indian woman was in despair. She was about to jump off her balcony after learning that her husband had been keeping a mistress.
Thankfully, she got hold of herself and immediately called a hotline to vent her dilemma to a meditation teacher named Sister Shivani.
Sr. Shivani advised her over the phone: “First, calm down. What do you really want to happen now?”
“I want for things to go back to normal again, to have a happy family,” said the young wife.
“Then, just consciously create the thought, 'Everything is fine, I am fine, my husband is fine,' and see what will happen.”
After that, the wife worked on her self-esteem. She learned and practiced meditation to harness her mind in creating thoughts that would lead her to her vision of a happy life.
Ten days later, her husband handed over the divorce papers to her, saying that he was about to move to the US with another woman. By then, she had developed enough self-esteem and strength to face the situation. She quietly accepted her husband's decision and wholeheartedly let him go.
Two months later, her husband called from overseas, realizing his mistake and asking to get back together with her.
“Because I changed my thoughts to create the reality I wanted, I was able to steer things back to the state of happiness that I deeply wanted in life,” the woman told Sr. Shivani, grateful for the advice she got that practically brought her back to her self-respect and well-being.
Shivani Verma has encountered many cases like this: people on the verge of despair or simply grappling with minor but daily challenges in life. And like a spiritual alchemist, Sr. Shivani is always ready with practical and sound advice that is meant to open people's minds: that they have the power within them to create their own long-term solutions rather than submit to instant but short-lived fixes.
Fondly known as “Sr. Shivani,” this lady has been a Raja Yoga practitioner for the last 14 years. She is one of the personalities behind the India-wide TV program "Awakening with the Brahma Kumaris," making her a popular figure in many Indian households.
Ready to choose happiness? Listen to this guided meditation:
Sr. Shivani finished her Electronics Engineering graduate course from Pune University in 1994, after which she served for two years as a lecturer in Bhartiya Vidyapeeth College of Engineering in Pune.
However, she has fully dedicated her life to 'spiritual social service' by running values-based workshops internationally and leading the said TV show.
“Situations are not in our control. We think that spirituality and religions will change our problems. They won't.
"Obstacles and problems will come. But when I go back to my spiritual values, it will give me the power to take charge of myself and face any situation,” Sr. Shivani shares.
In many of her talks, Sr. Shivani emphasizes the value of maintaining thoughts based on our original qualities of goodness. “If I have to be good in anything, I have to be well inside first. Even if I don't do well in terms of physical achievement, at least I can be good to myself,” Sr. Shivani says.
Always highlighting the fact that real happiness is an internal strength that stems from the practice of right thinking, Sr. Shivani encourages us by reminding us that the destiny of happiness is always within reach.
“Happiness doesn't mean jumping and dancing the whole day. When I create the wrong thoughts, I will feel low.
"If my thoughts are right, I will feel stable inside. If I am stable, then I am strong. I can face any situation.”
Given the ecological disasters of our times, Sr. Shivani was also once asked on how spirituality can affect our environment for the better.
“Our thoughts have an effect on the external environment. When the turmoil inside our minds settles down and peace prevails, the same would be reflected in our external environment.
"So, if we constantly remain peaceful and positive, we are contributing in creating a better environment.” - Rappler.com
(Sr. Shivani will be in the Philippines to run a free two-hour interactive talk called "Feeling Great, No Matter What" on Sunday, March 24, 5 to 7pm at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Makati. She will be interviewed by Suresh Oberoi, an internationally-acclaimed Indian film actor. For inquiries and confirmation, please call the Brahma Kumaris Center-Makati at 890-7960. Text 0927- 2808363 or visit the BK Makati Facebook page.)
(Rina Angela Corpus is an assistant professor of Art Studies at the College of Arts and Letters, University of the Philippines. She survived Sandy while on special detail in New York in October 2012. She practices the healing arts of shibashi-chigong and Raja Yoga meditation. Her poems have been featured in Mad Swirl, Philippine Collegian, Philippines Free Press, and Tayo Literary Magazine.)
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