Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise
– Benjamin Franklin
Many self-development, productivity & healthy living experts suggest this one: wake up early. How early? Most of them suggest somewhere between 5-6 am.
It is written in the scriptures that it’s best to wake up 1.5 – 2 hours before sunrise. This window of time is called “Brahma Muhurta” or literally means “Brahma’s hour”. It is the best time to do sadhana, when the sattvic quality dominates. Swami Sivananda specifically instructs his disciple to wake up at 4 am everyday for sadhana.
I’ve been (attempting) doing morning sadhana for almost 3 years now, and the biggest challenge is to leave the warm bed. And there’s the snooze button, thinking “just 5 minutes more” and I ended up back to sleep again until 6 (and I only set the alarm 4:45 am!)
For the past 2 weeks, I woke up everyday effortlessly around 4 am. And without much dilly-dallying immediately sit for japa & meditation. How did I do that? I’m not sure either. I know it’s something to do with meeting my guru and receiving his blessings, but I’m not sure how did it work.
My speculation is that Swamiji gave me a “spiritual juice” – like a nitro boost for spiritual practice. With this renewed spiritual energy sadhana becomes something natural, something I actually look forward to and without it I feel something is missing. It is not an activity that I have to do anymore, but something I actually want to do.