In the following interview Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda shares her story on how she discovered her practice, what she’s learned from it and how we can apply its teachings to our daily lives. Her words are filled with wisdom, and bring with them a beautiful way of looking at life. I am grateful to have met Swathanthirapriya and hope you will derive as much wisdom from her words as I did.
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda is an integrated practitioner of Sanatana Hindu Dharma and a disciple of Swamiji, H.H. Bhagavan Paramahamsa Sri Nithyananda. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and is currently working to complete her second Bachelor’s degree, in Law. She is an avid explorer of the Self and offers an abundance of wisdom to the public through her YouTube channel. Her home base is in Montreal, Quebec, Canada though she still makes trips to the mystical land of India to learn from Swamiii.
Swathanthirapriya’s practice is primarily focused on increasing the expansion of consciousness through meditation and using processes of completion which originate from the Vedas and the Agamas (sacred Vedic Scriptures). The main focus of these practices is to spot powerless cognitions, ignorance and traitorous blindspots in order to replace them with right thought, which will ultimately lead one to attaining their highest self, or nature of eternal bliss.
Alec Holmes: How would you summarize your spiritual practices?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Listening to Swamiji’s satsangs (discourses) and programs live from India and receiving his Darshans (initiations) so that my inner space continues its quantum expansion. Facing myself, which can feel extremely uncomfortable at times because we have so many vested interests in acting and reacting the way we do. Not allowing any traitorous blind spots or powerless cognitions to enter and stagnate in my inner space through the process of completion and meditation. Destroying the layers and layers of inauthenticity within myself to realize, experience and embody our true nature, eternal (Nithya) bliss (Ananda). Deep Oneness within myself and with all others around me because we are mirrors to each other. I would describe my spiritual practice as one of courage and fearlessness, that aims to get rid of all conditionings so that I can attain Swatantra, Ultimate freedom within myself, and live as an enlightened Being on planet Earth. I know it is possible, I have experienced glimpses of it through the grace of my Guru.
AH: Do you remember the time you first felt drawn to Sanatana Hindu Dharma, can you describe what happened and how you felt?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: WOW yes I clearly remember what happened to me that night, the inner torture that I was experiencing. See, I was 26 when I opened my Being to Existence in the form of Swamiji. I am now 28. Before that, as a child, as was very connected to the Source, was often in silent, observing what was going on around me. However, as a teenager, I went through a very violent inner phase, I carried so much anger and resentment within myself and towards Life. I resisted spirituality until 26, and even though my mother had found Swamiji many years ago and that my brother took Sannyas (the sacred monk vows), my inner space was very closed, I was stuck in arrogance and felt I was in control of myself and did not need any guidance…until that one night.
I was in my bed, my stomach was twisted in so many unravel-able knots, overwhelmed by jealousy and possessiveness and emotional ups and downs. At that very moment, I realized how stuck I was in my own mind despite the fact that I have a bachelor in psychology, a basic training in NLP…I was stuck in a prison and nothing I had done in my life could get me out of it. I was stuck within myself, completely stuck and in that instant, without being able to logically explain why or how I knew, a deep certitude arose from deep within me that going to see Swamiji was the only way out. I got up, woke up my mother, and told her I was going. That is when I went to my first Inner Awakening program. This decision has been and will always remain the greatest victory of my whole life.
AH: Were there any obstacles in your life that these practices have helped you overcome?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Everything hahahahaha EVERYTHIIIIIING. Not only has it helped me resolve conflicts that were in my life for many years but I now do not even entertain the word “obstacle” in my inner space because I have seen and experienced the intense ferociousness and persistence that is in me when I sincerely want to manifest something. Going through various programs with Swamiji has awakened in me the tremendous life force, Kundalini energy, that lies within all of us but that we waste and abuse out of ignorance. Manifesting the presence of Swamiji in my life saved my life. Living a life in ignorance is the saddest way to live. Ignorance is NOT Bliss, ignorance is constant suffering, that manifests over and over again in your life, taking different faces, different disguises until you WAKE UP and take responsibility for your Existence, until you understand that YOU are the Source of everything that you create in your life, that nothiiiing happens outside of you: “In is out and out is in” H.H. Bhagavan Paramahamsa Sri Nithyananda.
AH: Which aspects or experiences of your practice have helped you stay committed to it?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: When I first got to India, I knew nothing of the Vedic tradition, of Sadashiva, of Swamiji, of what an Incarnation of consciousness was, of Shaktis. Nothing. The only thing I knew was that I was there to get out of the prison of my own mind. The third day, Swamiji asked us why we were there. I told him: “Swamiji I am here because I want to feel powerful, so powerful that nothing can shake me inside”. Then, we did the first meditation, in which he placed us in a sacred mandala. All of a sudden, I felt this extremely intense flow of raw energy awakening inside of me, the power of that energy was too much for my physical body, it felt like my physical body could not contain it. My hands turned into fists my jaw was clenched, locked, something was about to explode from inside out, the rush of energy was spreading all over my body. It felt like in Dragon Ball, the moment when they transform into Super Saiyans. An electric courant was going through my spine, my whole body was vibrating and I was convinced that if I opened my eyes and raised my hand towards an object, it was going to be propelled meter away from its original point. At the same time, I was experiencing an ecstatic bliss that I had never felt before. The experience was so intense that when the meditation ended, I could not move. When I finally stood up, I felt so powerful, my feet were so solidly planted on the ground and I felt like roots had grown. My inner space felt so stable, like it had never been before. Someone then walked towards me and told me: You have just experienced Kundalini awakening.
Since that very moment, what I had felt about Swamiji without “knowing Him” was instantly confirmed. He was the way out of my prison. The Guru is there to show you what you truly are, to reconnect your Being to its true nature, eternal bliss, Nithyananda. Since then, I have had so many experiences like this one and I know that they are the Truth and that is what I follow. I will never tell anyone that I believe in anything other than in my own divine experiences. I don’t have beliefs, I have experiences through which I mystically experience the most beautiful divine connection. I feel the need to add that with Swamiji, we never use any hallucinogenic substances and I have never smoked marijuana in my whole life, not even once. Not that the opportunity never presented itself to me, but something in my Being has always known that it is not the way out of the prison of the mind and I somehow always felt like it would do the opposite to me, drown me in deeper delusion, meaning convincing me that I’m expanding when in reality I am destroying the power of my consciousness.
AH: What effects do you notice in your own daily life regarding your meditative and introspective exercises?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: I have become so light and yet so powerful in my way to approach situations and people, so aware of how we treat other Beings (I became vegan after seeing Swamiji for the first time), I have discovered the energy of gratitude and the space of compassion has started opening within me. This recent post is expressing the light that has started glowing in my inner space: “as long as I focus on the words, the body language or the tone of the other, I will miss everything. Not only will I not understand but I will be stuck in arrogance. Only when I can catch and connect to the inner space that the other is in when he or she expresses can I truly experience compassion within me. Thank you Swamiji for Blessing me with this experience and understanding”.
I realize how much we all take ourselves and others for granted and I have become my best friend, I have become so inspired by the force that resides inside me in continuous intensity. I have become so much more gentle and respectful towards my own physical body. OOOOOO and my space of listening has become so much more attentive to the other ☺ One of the things that I love the most about my transformation is the intense sparkles that come to life in my eyes when I am deeply connected to Existence, that powerful wave of love that I feel awakening in my chest and how I can laugh so freely. My very laugh has changed, it has become so alive, so spontaneous, so free!!!
AH: Which spiritual fruits from your practice would you most like to share with people?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Realizing what you are, Eternal Bliss, Nithyananda is the most vital thing in one’s life. Do not wait until something tragic happens to you to start turning inwards. Here is something I wrote that I would like to share with all of you:
“The inner journey, the journey towards the Source, the journey towards your core, Nithyananda, Eternal Bliss, is the most irreplaceable and precious happening that can ever present itself to you. Everything else that you are working for will disappear, from one day to the next everything you have worked so hard for in the external world can vanish, be taken from you, forgotten. But your Being can never forget initiation from Sri Nithyananda Swami and all the miracles that will happen to you afterwards. Beings that I didn’t even know in this Life, that have left the physical body, have appeared to me and have Blessed me.
When you open your Being to consciousness, you will find an inexhaustible fuel from deep within yourself that will transport you to universes that you didn’t even know exist and that your physical senses will never be able to show you. As long as you resist your own consciousness, you are like a dried-up well that suffers from the decays of time.”
My Source is Sri Nithyananda Swami, Ultimate Incarnation in a living body at this point in time. He has taken the body to show you your highest possibility, to make you experience what you are. Do not waste your life caught in the illusions of the senses. Refuse to be a prisoner. Freedom, Ultimate freedom from your false sense of self, experience Swatantra, the fundamental unit that can never be controlled, that can never be enslaved.
AH: Have you had any bad experiences on your spiritual journey?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Facing oneself, facing one’s own ghosts can be the scariest thing when it happens, depending on the level of delusion that you have been entertaining towards a particular pattern. As I mentioned earlier, we have developed so many cunning ways to go through life and we have so many vested interests that we don’t even see so when this identity of ours, that is completely false, gets shaken, it can trigger intense anger and panic attacks.
The hardest pattern that I had to face was the depression pattern, which we all go through by the way lol as long as we are not enlightened, our Being is depressed because all it wants is to merge in Oneness again with its blissful nature. When that pattern showed its face, I fell into a deep dark hole for a few weeks. I was Blessed to be in the Adheenam at the time and wrote to Swamiji that I felt like I had lost everything, all my seeking, my divine connection, I felt nothing, no more love, no more excitement, no more joy. My Being felt hallow, dead. I was disgusted by life and by everyone around me. I faced the space of despair, loss, desire to end my own existence because it felt senseless.
One thing I have learned is that consciousness will never make you face something that you do not have the strength to handle. The way I came back to Life so to speak was through a mystical appearance. Krishna manifested into my life through the grace of my Guru and when I came out of my hole, my connection to myself had become so much more authentic. As long as we don’t face ourselves, we remain strangers to ourselves.
AH: Are there any barricades that attempt to prevent you from making progress?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Laziness hahahahahahahahaha
AH: According to your teachings, how can we prevent our minds from bombarding us with worries and stress as we are going about our day?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: AAAAAAA the big question!!!!!! Using the words “prevent” and “bombarding” suggest that we are at war with our own mind, the mind itself is delusion hahahahaha if we fight with it, we will never win. The only thing to do is to un-clutch, listen and go through the meditation that is part of it
(A photo of Swamiji, H.H. Bhagavan Paramahamsa Sri Nithyananda)
AH: What do you think the effect on society would be if a larger percentage of us practiced introspective attention and meditation?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Society would not exist as we know it now. Simple as that. Like after a tsunami, everything needs to be rebuilt, same would happen to society when it realizes as a whole how it is so deeply caught in delusion, which is creating so much chaos. It takes tremendous courage to enter this path and the best gift you can give Humanity is your own liberation. Bliss will spread everywhere and will guide all our decisions and the space that will result from it will be Kailash itself, the space of Ultimate Bliss and Freedom ☺
AH: If you had one piece of advice for us to aid in achieving a higher state of consciousness, what would it be?
Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda: Start by realizing that you are the Ultimate Joke. As you are reading these words, get up, go in front of the mirror, stare at your own stare and start laughing hysterically even if you don’t feel like it. Laugh until you are rolling yourself on the ground. Everything that we do from the space of ignorance is a joke. Be very clear with yourself. As long as you don’t start looking in, you may feel like you are visiting so many places and meeting so many people, but really you are going nowhere LOL Then, go sit in front of Swamiji during a workshop or in person in Bangalore, your Being will become so light and the whole Universe will start opening itself up to you. THATASTU (so be it). Here is a precious book of existential Truths that you can download for free by clicking here.
If you would like to learn more about Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda, you can check out her youtube channel here: youtube.com/…sGMpowSh_s0qx5VJK4hmQ/videos
You can also connect with her on Facebook by typing in: Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda
3 thoughts on “Journey to Enlightenment: An Interview with Ma Nithya Swathanthirapriya Ananda”
Thanks for reading Shubham, it is inspiring indeed.