Brijendra, Author of the Courses: Essence of Patanjali, and In the Stillness of Breath: Praanaayaam for Meditators
Kaivalyaand Brijendra, Robert William Eaton
A meditator throughout his life, Bob Eaton, known to many around the world as Brijendra, writes and speaks about meditation and the Vision of Oneness.
Experimenting with the practice of zazen, hatha yoga, and yogic meditation while a freshman in college, Brijendra experienced an opening into the basic reality of being, which at the time he called “existence-consciousness.” He says: “I had no real way of understanding it, and so I called it existence-consciousness, or “ec” for short when I would speak and write about it.
All I knew was that it was the eternal being and that it was me. I was astounded that I had never before recognized that this Universal Self is the basis of all life and being. It became clear that my true being was much more than just my personal identity.” Suffused and inspired by this new awareness, Brijendra began reading literature and scriptures that addressed Reality, delighted to find that there were others who had tuned in to and expressed this basic truth of life.
Brijendra speaks of himself, and of all, as pure consciousness. He expresses that we are one, indivisible, pure consciousness and that we can tap into and live this Vision of Oneness. A Canadian, born in England and educated in the United States, he has spent his adult life with sages in consistent Self-inquiry and meditation. This “profound and joyful pursuit” took him to the Himalayas where he has practiced, studied, and taught in the company of his spiritual and meditation guide, Swami Shyam.
Brijendra has been practicing and teaching Patanjali’s system of Yoga and meditation for over thirty years. As well as authoring the Essence of Patanjali Home-study course, he is the author of Patanjali Yog Darshan Samaadhi Paad: Wisdom of Meditation. Brijendra’s contribution to this topic comes from his ability not only to describe the sootras and their meaning, but also to demystify the complexity of these teachings by directing the reader or listener to know their own Pure Being. He leads you to the direct experience of the vision of Oneness that Patanjali is describing.
Brijendra’s creations are the direct expression of a life spent in the light of spiritual inspiration and meditation. In his own words:
“I have spent my life with sages in consistent inquiry into the real nature of the Self. A main and integral part of this experimental inquiry has been the practice of meditation. Without meditation, Self-inquiry remains intellectual: it finds no basis in the ground of being. To reach a conclusion, one must discover a fact; and in the path of Self-discovery, that fact is the Self. Discovering the Self, one becomes joyful, blessed, and decisive about life, its purpose and direction. The Self is not a thing, and is consequently not a separate object to be known by the mind or intellect. Therefore, the Self must inform the intellect, not the other way around. To make the Self the basis of one’s knowledge, requires the practice of meditation and, ideally, the company of one who has already trodden the path. There is no way around this truth. Meditation keeps the mind and intellect honest. It is the very nature of the human ego to claim knowledge and doership. Let it be, but if you add meditation to your life, the pure consciousness of the Self, which is the source and sustainer of all human beings and creatures, will shine its light and joy in your heart and mind. Your life will become transformed into freedom and joy and, as it does so, its inspiration will overflow into the hearts and minds of others and light the world around. This is the great need in the world today. So, it has become clear to me that meditation and awareness of the unity of the Self are the real and lasting solution to the human problems of division, uneasiness, and disharmony.”