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J, Jnana

J, Jnana

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0Today, in the A to Z Blog Challenge, we have come to the letter, J.

Somehow it’s hard to take this letter seriously. After all, J conjures jelly or jiggle, jubba, jubes, jibberish. You know, jubilant, jolly things. Juggling jelly beans, jiving Jupiter; A jumble of jello. Richie Cunningham talk.

But Jnana is where I landed.

And this is a stretch for me ..

Wikipedia says Jnana Shakti is “the power of intellect, real wisdom, or knowledge” (Hinduism). Buddhism speaks of jnana as absolute awareness without the miseries of the physical body, with a step-wise progression through levels of ‘knowing’ toward enlightenment.

 .. because, when it comes to understanding meditation and the path to enlightenment, I sit somewhere below where Elizabeth Gilbert started in Eat Pray Love, and slightly above Homer Simpson.

Jnana, knowledge from meditation (its simplest definition) is that elusive experience many yoga/spiritual teachers speak to. The truth of now, the inner knowing, the being, absolute consciousness. The words don’t really get at it, but boy do we try.  

Why Jnana?

Meditation, you see, calmed my mind and my entire neurological system, after a concussion of July 2014. It was during the three wonderful (and wonderfully free) Oprah/Chopra meditation challenges (what a gift!), when I felt the jittery, perseverating, cloudy energy physically leave my mind and body. In fact, I was able to manage my (significant) post-concussion anxiety without the prescribed Lexapro or the Ativan.

Finding peace in a moment with nothing by breath and stillness? I wish that for my tween, as she faces the current-day tween/teen pressure of body-perfect; I wish that for my father as he faces another migraine, the frustration of chemo-brain.

This motivation got me to a Kundalini Yoga workshop just last month, wherein I hyperventilated my way through a series of breathing and chanting with a room full of Kundalini Frequent Fliers. I was a fish flopping on the shore while the koi floated in the deep. A guide, I was told, was necessary to work through this kind of thing. But deep down, I knew: I was not ready. I was missing the understanding, the jnana. It’s possible I’m on the bottom wrung. Level one yoga, level one meditation, level one on the ‘knowing’ ladder. I may not get from the bottom to the top, in order avoid returning as a fish, or worse, but I’ll try, just in case that’s how it works.

That’s where I’m at, right where I landed, marveling at Jnana, the letter J, wondering if I should take any of it seriously.


**This is an excellent description of jnana.

**Wikipedia Jnana (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jnana):

– Jnana yoga (Yoga of Knowledge) is one of the three main paths (margas), which are supposed to lead towards moksha (liberation) from material miseries. The other two main paths are Karma yoga and Bhakti YogaRāja yoga (classical yoga) which includes several yogas, is also said to lead to moksha. It is said that each path is meant for a different temperament of personality.

– Kundalini awakening is said to result in deep meditation, enlightenment and bliss.[5] This awakening involves the Kundalini physically moving up the central channel to reach within the Sahasrara Chakra at the top of the head. Many systems of yoga focus on the awakening of Kundalini through meditationpranayama breathing, the practice of asana and chanting of mantras.


© Robyn T. Murphy


  1. I love your blog name – that’s what drew me here via the A to Z Challenge and I like that your writing style seems to fit your blog name – flitting about, no stopping for breath, eyes wide with excitement 🙂 Lots to take in and very informative – it’s been a pleasure to meet 🙂 Special Teaching at Pempi’s Palace

  2. Hello there.
    Thanks for sharing. Enjoy the rest of the challenge!

    Entrepreneurial Goddess

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