Challenging Gender Biases around Spiritual Growth

Maharshi Adhyatma Vishwavidyalay won the superlative award for the best 16 papers selected over 90 papers !

An extensive study by America’s famous think tank ‘Pew Research’ found that women dominate the ranks of the faithful in most religions. The study showed that women generally are more religious than men by several key measures of religious commitment, although the study does say that this pattern is not universal and can vary by religious tradition. However, if you look at history’s most influential religious and spiritual leaders – among them Shriram, Abraham, Moses, Shrikrushna, Gautam Buddha, Jesus Christ, Prophet Muhammad – they all tend to be predominantly, if not exclusively, male.

Here we have provided excerpts of a Paper presented on the abovementioned title, whose Author is Paratpar Guru (Dr) Jayant Athavale and the presenting Co-Author is Mr Sean Clarke.

Mr Sean Clarke.

Many religious groups allow only men to be clergy

This may give people the idea that most religions favour men over women especially when it comes to giving out spiritual guidance. So what does this mean for women spiritually ? And are they at any disadvantage in growing spiritually or giving out spiritual guidance ?

Brief on Maharshi Adhyatma Vishwavidyalay (MAV)

MAV was founded by Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale and has a background of over 40 years of spiritual research. It specialises in conducting research into how the spiritual dimension and spiritual vibrations affect our lives. One of the focal points of our research has been on how to help any individual – men and women – to grow spiritually in the most efficient and fastest way.

Our spiritual research shows unequivocally that in the field of Spirituality, all people (men and women) have equal opportunities to grow spiritually. In this paper, we share our findings and some basic concepts that govern spiritual growth and why gender bias in actuality does not exist in God’s eyes when it comes to Spirituality, regardless of what people may think.

What is spiritual growth ?

The words ‘spiritual growth’ are in accordance with the science of Spirituality. All humans are made up of the physical body, the vital energy (which is the life force within us), the mind (which is our feelings and emotions), the intellect (which is our decision making ability) and the soul. The soul is the God Principle that resides in every person. For almost all people, our identity is based on the physical appearance and our personality and the various things we own or have in life. Spiritual growth is about transcending all these gross aspects and identifying with the soul within which is our true and Divine nature.

Spiritual growth can take place only through regular spiritual practice and that too which adheres to some universal principles. If the spiritual practice does not adhere to the universal principles, we can stagnate or even regress spiritually even though we may seem to have a devout religious outlook or commitment.

What is meant by spiritual level ?

Spiritual level is a scale from 1 to 100 where 100 is the pinnacle of spiritual growth wherein our consciousness merges with the Divine or God. 1% refers to the spiritual level of an inanimate object. A person’s spiritual level is based on various criteria such as how less is the ego, fewer personality defects, love for others and how much one is experiencing internal happiness or Bliss. Through our spiritual research, we have found that in today’s times, the average spiritual level of people is 20%. Through correct methods of spiritual practice, one experiences spiritual growth and the spiritual level increases. When one attains the spiritual level of 70%, one is considered a Saint. As one progresses from 70 to 80 to 90% spiritual levels, the process of merging with the Divine or the soul goes on increasing. In today’s times, there are very few true Saints in the world.

Can we measure the spiritual level and auras ?

The most definitive way to measure the spiritual level of a person is by taking his ‘reading’ using the sixth sense, which needs to be of a very advanced level. This level of sixth sense is generally found only in Saints who are above the spiritual level of 80%.
However, nowadays with the advancements in aura and energy scanners, we are able to gauge to some extent the positivity or negativity in a person’s aura, which is an indicator of his / her spiritual level. The higher the spiritual level the more positivity in the aura. So, are the auras of men and women comparable ?

Experiment to measure the auras

We conducted an experiment using the Universal Aura Scanner (UAS – Please see bottom right in yellow) to measure the auras of men and women. This instrument detects positivity as well as negativity in one’s aura.

We measured the aura of 24 seekers whose spiritual level we had earlier assessed through the sixth sense. We divided them into 4 groups of men and 4 groups of women.

So basically, we split the men and women groups into seekers of an advanced spiritual level, meaning, beyond the spiritual level of 60% and those whose spiritual level was less than 60%. We then further split these 2 groups of seekers into those who had spiritual distress and those who did not have spiritual distress. In total, there were 8 groups with 3 seekers in each group. In the diagram, we have presented the average negative aura observed in each group. As you can see in the seekers who are above the spiritual level of 60% there is no substantial difference between the negative aura of men and women. However, in the seekers who are below the spiritual level of 60%, the average negative aura in women was significantly less than men.

Here we can see the average positive aura of each group. In the seekers who are above the spiritual level of 60%, the positive auras of men were marginally better.

However, in the case of seekers who are below the spiritual level of 60%, the positive auras of lady seekers were significantly better. There is a significant difference in positive auras between the above and below 60% groups. Also, we will notice that in the groups of seekers who had spiritual distress, the positivity in their auras were less than those who did not have spiritual distress. This shows that spiritual distress is an important criteria that can impede spiritual growth for men as well as women. Any person who has spiritual distress will have to work much harder to grow spiritually.

Talking about growing spiritually

We conducted another experiment to demonstrate how spiritual practice can positively affect the aura and if performed regularly, will eventually increase the spiritual level over time. We asked 4 seekers to chant ‘Om Namo Bhagawate Vasudevaya’ for 30 mins.

This is a very powerful chant that brings immense positivity in the person who chants. As we can see from the diagram, in the seekers who are above the spiritual level of 60%, the negativity in their auras was eliminated after just 30 mins of concentrated chanting and their positive auras almost doubled. Even in the seekers who were below the spiritual level of 60%, the negativity in their auras reduced by half. The positivity in their auras increased significantly. What this experiment shows is that men and women can enhance their spiritual growth through regular spiritual practice. However, the more advanced the spiritual level, the better the effect of spiritual practice.

But is spiritual practice enough ?

Whilst spiritual practice is important, it is just as important especially in the earlier stages to live a spiritually purer lifestyle. Every day, and in fact every moment, we make a multitude of decisions and engage in a multitude of activities all of which can either increase our positivity or negativity.

An experiment conducted where we asked a male and a female subject to ingest different types of alcohol

Within a very short period, something like 5 minutes, their positive auras were wiped out, and within half-an-hour, the negativity in their auras grew exponentially. This is like a cautionary tale of how any person can undo all the good work of proper spiritual practice if they indulge in activities that have negative vibrations. Food and drink affect us the most as we ingest them directly into our system.

What have we not been taught in schools

We have not been educated in our schools and Universities about the perils of negative subtle vibrations. Continuous exposure to subtle negative vibrations through our activities and thoughts and the company we keep have long term ramifications that affect us first at the subtle or spiritual level and eventually show up at the physical and psychological levels.

There are many things that women do which can affect them at the subtle level

For example, something as simple as a lady’s hairstyle. You will be surprised to know that it has a subtle effect on a woman’s aura. On this photo, you can see 4 hairstyles we experimented on. What we found is that a bun, how it is shown in this picture, is the best hairstyle from the point of view of generating spiritually pure vibrations for a woman. Leaving one’s hair open has the opposite effect.

Colour of clothes and their effect on auras

Here you can see a subject who is wearing somewhat the same clothes. The main difference is their colour. What we found is that darker shades, especially black, have a negative effect on the aura when compared with white and other lighter shades such as light pink, yellow and light blue. While colour affects us spiritually, the shape and material of the clothes also affect us significantly since it has direct contact with our skin. Out of the many garments that we studied and their effect on women, we found that the Indian sari when worn in a proper manner has the most positive effect on a woman’s aura.

The effect of jewellery on auras

Jewellery is something very close to a woman’s heart. But even jewellery can either add to or reduce a woman’s positivity. This depends on the metal, the design and the precious stones used in the piece of jewellery. As you can see, this subject has worn 3 separate necklaces, and within half-an-hour the first 2 necklaces made her aura more negative whilst the 3rd necklace increased her positive aura.

Analysing the characteristics of women and men and their potential to grow spiritually

It was found that excessive emotionalism was on average one of the major obstacles for women growing spiritually when compared with men. However, where women had a clear advantage over men is that their basic nature is more devotional than men, and they use less of their intellect in matters of faith. Faith is a key ingredient in growing spiritually. Excessive use of the intellect is one of the main obstacles in experiencing the Divine. This is because the spiritual experiences that define spiritual progress are beyond the purview of the 5 senses, mind and the intellect.

When it comes to spiritual progress, both genders can learn from each other by understanding each other’s strengths and emulating them

Ultimately spiritual progress depends on the efforts made to practise Spirituality. Men as well as women can grow spiritually by performing proper spiritual practice. God does not favour gender but sees the desire and efforts of a seeker to grow spiritually.
Spiritual practice has to conform to some universal laws for it to be effective. If our spiritual practice does not follow these laws, we can experience stagnation.

The ability to guide others spiritually depends mainly on the spiritual level and access to knowledge of the Soul or the Divine.

Whilst spiritual practice is important, it is especially important in the earlier stages to live a spiritually purer lifestyle !

– Mr Sean Clarke (Spiritual level – 64%), Editor, SSRF and Spiritual Research Section, Maharshi Adhyatma Vishwavidyalay, Goa. (2016)



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