Swami Sivananda Radha was a western woman who went to India in 1955 to study with her Guru, Swami Sivananda Saraswati of Rishikesh.

On the day of her initiation into Sanyas, the path of renunciation and selfless service, Swami Radha went for a walk to meditate on the meaning of her new life.

She found her way to a little cave like shelter and began to meditate.

After a while, she became aware of a presence and looked up. She began to realise that the man standing near her was Babaji, the famous figure who had appeared to numerous aspirants in India over many years and centuries (including Paramahansa Yogananda, who wrote of his encounters with Babaji in Autobiography of a Yogi).

Babaji explained the Divine Light Invocation to Swami Radha and taught her the mantra for the practice. He told her that she should teach this to others.

It took Swami Radha some years before she started teaching the practice to others, as she wanted to master it thoroughly for herself before doing so.

Swami Radha says “In the years that I have been practicing and teaching The Divine Light Invocation, I have seen many physical cures brought about through the power of the Light, as well as psychological and moral changes both in those who have practiced it and those with whom the Light has been shared”. It was her hope that the Divine Light Invocation would be as beneficial a form of practice for others as it was for her.

Swami Radha also said, writing in 1966 “In this time of great social and personal changes in the world, acceptance of the spiritual aspect of human nature and of the spiritual teachings of all religions is becoming more and more urgent. People are slowly realizing that the only real hope for dealing with the problems facing the world is through transcending the selfishness and narrow concerns of the ego in everyone one of us. It is the ego that has created the conflict and separation we experience. Peace and unity can only be attained by identification with the higher spiritual dimensions of human nature. In discovering Inner Light we find the wholeness that we are, the Oneness and Light that we share with every other being in the cosmos. The One Light pervades all creation; all of the universe is One in the Light.”

I was introduced to the Divine Light Invocation, which is a standing meditation practice, in the summer of 2015 and started to practice it on a daily basis. I have found it to be a deep and powerful tool that supports personal transformation.

Swami Radha often talks in her books and papers about the practices within the teachings of Yasodhara Yoga as ‘cleaning out a rusty pipe’. I can verify that after working with the teachings, and the Divine Light Invocation for two years, I am a much clearer person for the process.

I have used the Divine Light Mantra to help focus and calm my mind, and the Divine Light Invocation for healing and relaxation, as well as looking into dreams, symbolism and the unconscious.

In April 2016 I undertook a practice of 10 Divine Light Invocations a day. At the end of it, it was as if all previous ‘un-useful’ structures and habits had fallen away, and I was being rebuilt as a newer, better version. The phoenix that arose from the ashes was a new improved Jane, Mark II!

The Divine Light Invocation continues to be a daily practice for me: it has helped to transform many situations and bring calm to troubled waters. If there was one practice that I could take to a desert island with me, without hesitation, it would be this one. It is powerful, subtle, transformative and life changing.

Like Swami Radha, I have used this practice for some time before offering it as a workshop. I am deeply committed to bringing this beautiful practice to others so that they can begin to know the gentleness, power, and transformation of the Light.

On Sunday 12th November, I am offering a gentle, insightful and exploratory workshop on the Divine Light Invocation.

I’ll be sharing the Divine Light Mantra, and exploring the experience of the Divine Light Invocation through mantra, the power of the imagination, relaxation, and hatha yoga.