How to recenter – interview with Jeffrey Armstrong
Jeffrey Armstrong is a practitioner of YOGA for over 40 years and enjoys teaching the Philosophy and Lifestyle of Yoga to western practitioners. He is also the founder of VASA – Vedic Academy of Sciences and Arts.
Jeffrey Armstrong Interview Trascription:
Charley: Hi Everybody Charley Patton here, I am co-founder of the Yoga Barn in Ubud, Bali and we are here today at the 8th Annual BaliSpirit Festival. Today is April 1st, no kidding, and I am here with my very good friend of a long time, since the early 1990’s, Jeffrey Armstrong. Jeffrey is a resonance man, a Vedic scholar or I should say a Sanskrit scholar, a Vedic Astrologer, a long time Yogi over 40 years, as well as a martial artist. My introducing Jeffrey would do no justice to the many hats and many talents that he has, Jeffrey welcome to the BaliSpirit Festival.
Jeffrey: Namaste Charley, great to see you.
Charley: Nice to see you.
Jeffrey: Great to be here in Bali again.
Charley: Thank You, Great to have ya.
Jeffrey: Yeah, the Spirits here are so welcoming, they are so great.
Charley: Thank you. Many of us in this day and age are yet to find our calling, our purpose in life, our Dharma, our passion, whatever that may be. So you are speaking to this generation that is coming through and you are talking about these tools that we might be able to give them, to help them change this paradigm. Can you actually give some specific advise, some words of wisdom for these people, for this new generation coming up, how it is they actually find, what it is that will help them contribute to the betterment of society as a whole and actually be part of the solution as opposed to the problem.
Jeffrey: I think Charley this is why Yoga as a physical practice has been so helpful, because people need to re-embody quickly and properly and then they need to recenter with a different orientation, rather than just being a political person in just one country against others. So this is why India is so interesting because for thousands of years they’ve held a bigger view that when you meet other people, you shouldn’t try to colonise them, you should try and have a conversation with them.
Charley: Very Yogic.
Jeffrey: Very Yogic, conversation is better that conversion or colonisation.
Charley: Or Dogmatism
Jeffrey: Or any form of Dogmatism that would make their opinions seem invalidated. Better get to know each other and let the interesting culture spread without force. So there are two parts to the Yoga teaching. One is we are otherworldly beings visiting this realm, we have an immortal self that we need to stabilise and be confident of.
Jeffrey: I just saw a saying from Albert Einstein, he said “The first and most important thing you need to decide, is are you in a friendly or unfriendly Universe?”
Charley: And if you are in a friendly Universe?
Jeffrey: I am at home here, something good is going to come of this, it is being operated in a benign way. Ultimately this experience is good, I feel good about being here.
Charley: Either way, it’s the Law of Attraction. You’ll attract the good to yourself or you’ll attract the bad to yourself.
Jeffrey: And you’ll pollute your body with poisons from being afraid, fear based and cringing and terror, or you’ll stand calmly and look at other beings and stay poised. So the first thing that needs to be installed is a stronger centre for people, that is non-denominational.
Charley: And how do you do that?
Jeffrey: You pass the knowledge across and that’s called initiation. There is a process of doing that fairly quickly and efficiently, then the person practices it, they embody it and it is almost like being re-born.
Charley: Physically through Asana, through purification, through meditation?
Jeffrey: Through Asana’s, through breathing, through mantras, through meditation and through a little time under the care of someone who helps you re-embody. Think of them as a coach, a Guru slash coach.
Charley: But for people who have never experienced this, how do you reach out to them?
Jeffrey: Through knowledge and through the medium of communication. I have hundreds of audio classes on my website, where you could be in Nome, Alaska, listen to them and learn and grow and you go ‘Oh I didn’t know that, oh that’s interesting”. You’re installing a new operating system.
Jeffrey: So along with that, everyone needs to find, what is their work in the world. But in the world we live in, with technology changing so fast, it becomes a moving target, which can be a place of frustration. You have to make the inner strength strong enough to stand the outer frustration of being in a world of very rapid change, so that the person can find the particular thing that they can do in this world with their abilities and strengths. That one conforms to Universal and Planetary Law, meaning working with nature. So the two goals and to become an immortal being, visiting the material world and a wise resident of the mature world working with natural law, rather than just human law.
Charley: Ghandi once said be the change you wish to see. Can you speak to that quote and talk a little bit about how that embodiment of that quote pertains to you and you’re life, and by extension I would like to connect that to the importance of the work of Seva or Altruistic Devotion, giving back one to others.
Jeffrey: Well here is an interesting way to think of that Charley, it’s a great question because religions for many years have said you should Tithe. Tithe means give 10% of your earnings. I thought about that and I though, well there are times when that makes sense, you have money and you give a certain amount of it and the group spends it on helping people that need help, that’s fair enough. But what does it really mean to everyone? And to a Yogi it means spend 10% of your day working on yourself, if you are not, you are not being serious. So that’s 2.4 hours per day in meditation, in practice, in yoga and things that substantially change you. You are introduced to tools of empowerment, which activate. Now you’re walking your talk. If you don’t do that, you won’t have the muscles to walk your talk when you incur resistance or when you go to adverse environments, or when it is not easy. So the first rule, find a good teacher, the second rule, do what they say 2.4 times/hours per day, until you develop the muscles to be the change.
Charley: So tell me what you’re doing, in this be the change you wish to see.
Jeffrey: For the last 40 years I’ve done the 2.4 hours every morning. Mantra’s, meditation, Asanas, Qigong, various practices to become the most I could be and to erase the ill effects of the previous day. Then I take that out into the world and whoever is willing, within reach and earshot, I help quickly to empower if they are interested. I have being doing this full time the last 18 years.
Charley: Are you talking in little ways, like helping the little old lady across the street?
Jeffrey: Could be that and saying a Mantra to her on the way across the street. But more likely, it’s all that plus, looking for the leaders and having important conversation with them. You can meet them on airplanes, you can meet them anywhere. But we live in a time where if you are skilful you can have an interesting and important conversation with a lot of people with people from all over the world, if you think like a thought leader, think like a symbiote, you are just giving people tools to move from a parasitic culture to symbiotic culture. You’re spreading life.
Charley: Can you provide a specific recommendation or a suggestion in very simple terms as to what simple exercises might you suggest to someone to help them develop.
Jeffrey: Well use a cellphone for an example. We are all wireless communication devises and that’s what Yogis understood. They knew that we are our-self, wireless communication devices connected to everything in the Universe around us.
Charley: All is one
Jeffrey: Wirelessly. Before there were cell phones there was a cell phone made of cells and there are hotspots, and those hotspots are beings who exist as part of nature and we can download from them their energies and become more powerful as beings. More energised because those are hotspots where you can download a big signal, that’s called a mantra, so if you know the mantra, you say Om Namah Shivaya, Om Namah Shivaya. What is Shiva? Shiva is the being who always stands under all adversity, who’s back is straight, who is impervious to anything that can destroy him. He is like a mountain, the last thing to be taken down. So if you want to be like Shiva, say that mantra, Om Namah Shivaya, Om Namah Shivaya. If you want to add his feminine in, she’s the valley, Om Shakti Maa, Om Namah Shivaya, Om Shakti Maa. You didn’t have to join anything, you just connect to the hotspot, download the energies, now they’re inside you. Now you are more congruent with nature, and in that condition you’re not afraid, you’re not disturbed by the things around you, you’re not colonised by negative sounds and messages coming in the media, cause your field is strong enough to withstand. Everyone has to do that first, until they are impervious to the things that are trying to crush them or colonise them in the world around them.
Charley: Well Jeffrey, I thank you for joining us today here at the 8th annual BaliSpirit Festival.
Jeffrey: Thank you for being a messenger of the Bali Spirits and the ancient wisdom and putting this together, where so many wonderful exchanges are taking place.
Charley: Thank you. To those of you out there, please come to the 9th BaliSpirit Festival this time next year, 2016.
Written by : BaliSpirit