Once upon a time, there was a king named Arrogance. King Arrogance was the ruler of the largest kingdom in all the world. Although he ruled only his part of the world, he looked out upon the entire world as his true kingdom and he felt responsible for all of the world’s peoples. King Arrogance was, for the most part, a good king to his people, and his people mostly liked him. King Arrogance wanted the people of the whole world to become like his own people. He wanted them to live the way his own people lived. He wanted them to think the way his own people thought. He wanted to be their king.
There were many smaller kingdoms in the world. One was ruled by another king named King Rage. King Rage was an angry king. Many thought he was a crazy king. He did crazy things and often he brought harm to his own people, and sometimes to the rest of the world. His kingdom was small and he wanted it to be larger.
He did not like King Arrogance because King Arrogance has a larger kingdom and had more power in the world. King Arrogance did not like King Rage because he was not very nice, respectful, or obedient.
One day, the two kings got angry with each other and got into a fight. Then, they decided to go to war. They called all of their soldiers and sent them into battle.
Meanwhile, somewhere in the kingdom, there was an ordinary boy. He was playing outside with a ball. He kicked the ball as hard as he could and the ball rolled down a hill of grass into some bushes and trees. The boy chased the ball and when he found it, he found himself in a beautiful field of flowers. He sat down to admire the beauty of the field and the sweet smelling flowers. There, as he sat, he had a vision. A radiant being floated toward him. The being was both beautiful and awesome, powerful and quiet.
"I am Narayana," the being said. "I am the God of Peace." The boy prostrated before the great God and said, "Why have you come to me?" The God said, “You are the one I have chosen. Go to the battlefield where there is war and bring peace in my name." Then, the magical being disappeared.
The boy did not know what to do. He was, after all, not a great God, but a small boy. How could he bring peace? However, the boy knew that, when God asks you to do something, you should at least do your best. So, he set out for the great battle field.
As he approached the battlefield he saw great bombs exploding. He saw men and woman in uniforms with guns in their hands fighting with one another. He did not know how he could stop anyone from fighting. Who would listen to him? What would he say anyway?
The boy closed his eyes and saw the image of Lord Narayanaya, the God of Peace. With this image firmly in his mind, he walked into the middle of the battlefield and sat down. He kept his eyes closed as if in a dream and continued to see the image of the God of Peace.
The two generals leading their armies saw the boy and ordered their troops to stop fighting so that the boy would not get hurt. When the guns stopped firing they heard the voice of the boy singing the name of the God of Peace. The boy was chanting “Om Namo Narayanaya. Om Namo Narayanaya. Om Namo Narayanaya.” Over and over he chanted.
The two armies stopped and listened as the words resonated from the boy’s lips the boy’s voice echoed through the countryside. Its vibration entered the hearts of the soldiers. Hearing the name of the God of Peace being chanted so beautifully, the two armies dropped their guns. Deeply moved, they walked toward the boy and surrounded him. There they sat, and then began to chant with him. "Om Namo Narayanaya." As they chanted their hearts became purer and purer; arrogance and rage faded away. They felt only the love that was inside of them.
When the two kings heard what was happening they came to the battlefield. They ordered their armies to fight. "Victory for our kingdom!" they each called out. The soldiers did not move. They kept on chanting. The kings picked up a gun each and fired them into the air to scare the soldiers. Still, the soldiers did not move. Still they chanted. "Om Namo Narayanaya."
As the soldiers chanted, the words that resonated from their lips entered into the hearts of the two kings. The words stirred great conflict inside of themselves. One king was moved to sit down and chant with the boy and the soldiers. His heart became pure. The other king could not let go of his pride. He jumped up and down, yelling and screaming. He fired his gun at the soldiers, but struck a rock and ricocheted back. His arrogance and rage died with him.
Their hearts pure, the soldiers and their one king set out to spread peace throughout the world. Whenever they came to a conflict, they chanted, "Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Narayanaya."
Today, during times of conflict, Yogi’s by themselves or in groups often sit quietly and chant the name of the God of Peace hoping that their words will purify the hearts of those who are in conflict.
Dr. Marc Halpern is the founder and President of the California College of Ayurveda. An internationally respected expert in the fields of Ayurveda and Yoga, Dr. Halpern received the award for Best Ayurvedic Physician from the Indian Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Dr. A. Ramdas. He is a co-founder of the National Ayurvedic Medical Association and the California Association of Ayurvedic Medicine. He is on the advisory board of Light on Ayurveda Journal in the United States and the Journal of Research and Education in Indian Medicine in Varansi, India. Dr. Halpern has published articles in popular journals and magazines of Ayurveda and Yoga including Yoga Journal. He is also a contributing writer in several popular books on Ayurveda and has written two textbooks. Dr. Halpern is a regular speaker at Ayurvedic and Yoga conferences and teaches regularly at the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers where he received his Yoga Teacher certification. Read more...