“You carry within your heart a portable paradise.”—Paramahansa Yogananda
A reader asked me the other day why I chose nine experiments instead of 10 for E-Squared and E-Cubed. She wondered if there was some deep spiritual significance. In numerology, nine is the symbol of wisdom and initiation (or mental instability, depending on who you consult), but here’s the real reason I chose nine.
The original book (God Doesn’t Have Bad Hair Days) had ten experiments. But I found readers to be quite resistant to the Lillies of the Field experiment where I asked people to hold the Dude to that guarantee he made in the New Testament. The one where He promised that if we’d just quit worrying, we’d be clothed, fed, and taken better care of than the lilies of the field?
In our culture at least, people don’t have the chutzpah to place all their trust in the care of the universe. They just aren’t willing to “leave their wallets at home” or have the faith that life really does have their back.
In an effort to convince people to try it, I told the story of Paramahansa Yogananda.
When he was 15, he was sent to the Indian city of Brindaban with nary a rupee. He had been yammering to his family about wanting to quit school and devote his life to God. His brother, a stolid accountant, decided to pull a fast one on his pious pipsqueak brother.
“Okay,” he challenged him, “You wanna do God’s work, fine. But let’s forget about your inheritance. If you wanna depend on God, I insist you depend on Him for everything. What do you say we put your vaunted philosophy to a test in the tangible world?”
Ananta, the sermonizing elder brother made this proposal. “I’ll buy you a one-way ticket to Brindaban. It’s where Lord Krishna first displayed his glories, so it’ll be a good place for you to start. You spend the day there. Take no money. No food. You’re not allowed to beg. Yet you can’t go without food or transportation. Furthermore, you’re not allowed to reveal your predicament to anyone. If you return to my bungalow before midnight without breaking any of these rules, I’ll not only give you my blessing, but I’ll become your first initiate.”
Ananta undoubtedly smirked as he sent his penniless brother and a friend off to the strange city they’d never visited, but not before searching both of them for a hidden hoard.
The friend, lacking the young yogi’s faith, was nervous—almost as nervous as you probably are in contemplating this experiment.
“Shouldn’t we take a couple rupees just as a safeguard?” he pleaded. “At least then we’ll have money to telegraph you in case of misfortune. There’s something reassuring about the clink of coins.”
Paramahansa rebuked his friend, refusing to proceed with the test if he took any “safeguard.”
As the train rumbled towards the holy city, the friend started whining. “I’m really getting hungry. Why did you talk me into this?”
Right before the last stop, two men stepped into their compartment, began joking with the young boys. When the train pulled to a stop, the two men linked arms with the boys and led them into a horse cab.
Well, long story short, they ended up at an ashram, taking the place of two princes who, at the last minute, had to cancel their lunch plans. Not only were they served a 30-course meal, while being fanned by a hostess, but they visited Madanamohana Temple and other Krishna shrines, were given train tickets back to Agra, and fed the finest of Indian sweetmeats for dinner.
Was Ananta ever surprised when, at a few minutes before midnight, the young yogi walks into his home with piles of rupee notes and bursting with stories. His brother, as promised, insisted on receiving spiritual initiation that very evening.
Two quick announcements. The kindle version of Thank & Grow Rich is on sale for $1.99 for just two more days. And there’s still time to enroll for the 5th annual Hay House World Summit (it’s completely free) and features hundreds of authors and speakers talking about really enlightening things. You can sign up here. Hope you’ll join us.
And as always, my friends, thanks for your continuing love and support.
Pam Grout is the author of 18 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the recently released, Thank and Grow Rich: a 30-day Experiment in Shameless Gratitude and Unabashed Joy.
I am glad you revealed the tenth experiment. Yes, it is really challenging but I am going for it.
And – as always – it is great hearing from you.
Ocean of love from Zuzana
Oceans of love swimming back to you. Thanks!!
Loved, loved this story and am so touched by it, for some reason. I do so much better in life, when I say, Jesus, I trust in you! The hardest part, the one I have to remind myself of, is, if I trust, I must fully trust, and walk away, knowing that whatever the issue, it’s been fixed already. I just have to catch up!
Exactly! Everything is FIXED already. Or rather nothing, in Truth, really needs fixing.
I always wondered why the two books were different.
There were two extra experiments in the first book and then I added one different one–the Jenny Craig experiment in E-Squared.
This was ecstatic! Thank you for the inspiring story!
Sent from my iPhone
All I can say, Pam, is that every email I get of a new blog post is so inspiring. I love what you’re doing with the world, and I love the level of chutzpah that you have to be doing what you’re doing. God bless you (or whatever you call him. )
I call her God, F.P., the Dude. Doesn’t really matter what you call it. Only matters that you call it forth.
Pam, I’ve sent you some stories already, but this particular post is exactly what I needed right now. I have not had a living wage in two years, and have had to live with relatives since that time. Right now I am basically getting the boot from my parents, whom I’ve lived with for about 18 months. I’m heading to my son’s house, but his girlfriend was not too thrilled that I have no place to live. I told you I won plane fare to wherever I want to go in the world, and I will be staying with friends in Europe for the summer and got a FREE river cruise for two weeks. But once the European trip is finished, I am at a loss about what is next, or where I will live. My relatives all tell me they can’t help me out, and my income is not there. I also have no home, and only own a car. I have been purging myself of basically everything I own. This week I was scared about all this, and kept saying, “GEEZ, if you got two free tripsthat you asked for because you WANTED them, why wouldn’t it be possible to get what you NEED when you get back.” So I decided to trust the divine to provide me with my next chapter and home, along with enough money to live on. I have NO IDEA what that will be, where, or how I will get it but this story confirms for me that I should just trust it. Thanks for posting it.
You’re very welcome. You probably know more about your future than some of us do. As A Course in Miracles likes to say, “planning is a defense against truth.” So just know that all is well.
Please let me know how you are, I really care.
I have faith you are doing well, in fact better than well.
Love and blessings to you,
thank you, this post came just at the right time. My constant prayer for the last few days is: Thy will be done.
I´m curious. What would the tenth experiment have been?
Gesendet: Dienstag, 02. Mai 2017 um 21:47 Uhr Von: "Pam Grout" <email@example.com> An: firstname.lastname@example.org Betreff: [New post] Can we still hold the Dude to that promise he made in the New Testament?
psgrout posted: " “You carry within your heart a portable paradise.”—Paramahansa Yogananda A reader asked me the other day why I chose nine experiments instead of 10 for E-Squared and E-Cubed. She wondered if there was some deep spiritual significance. In numerology, "
The experiment was to leave your wallet, credit card, etc. at home and trust on the brilliance and largesses of the universe.
Hi Pam, do you know the story of the Findhorn Garden? something very similar happened when they were first starting out creating the garden
Yes. In fact, I wrote about it in E-Squared.
ooops! I have E-Squared, I’ll go back and check it out!! :~))
Wow. A true leap of faith. I think to myself that to have that kind of faith you really have to surrender… not ‘give up’, like ‘Surrender Dorothy!’ in the Wizard of Oz but rather, ‘let go’. We spend our whole lives holding onto control that we really don’t have. Control of our lives, our future, our careers, or finances, everything. And to just be able to let go and honestly trust that all will be well is something few of us have the guts to go for. It’s hard to imagine leaving the house without wallet, cell phone, car keys, and a full tank of gas! I will say that since reading E-Squared and Thank and Grow Rich, I’ve had more moments of faith and trust then I’ve ever had before and saw first hand that the universe really does have my back. Things I never thought possible have happened, and yet that shred of doubt will still worm it’s way into my brain to tell be ‘can’t happen’. I’ve come a long way, but this story illustrated to me how much farther I have to go! The idea of this experiment intrigues me. Thanks for the ‘food for thought’
Wow Pam, so perfect for today. I was guided to quit my job 3 months ago. I turned my notice in and my last day was 3/31 much to my husband’s anger, confusion & fear. He thought I had lost my mind. What I found was my soul. We are way in debt right now, but I am not afraid. It was necessary to cut ties with my past so I could grow the seeds I had planted. We had 0.13 cents in the bank Monday night, but that is my lucky number. If you add them together it equals 4 which in numerology means building foundations. My husband is a 22/4 (master builder), but has always had trouble building a strong foundation. This was spirits sign to me that everything is as it needs to be. Love your work! Light & love to you always.
Oh MY God! Pam , I know you will believe this and I don’t know why I am so surprised, but reading this post is a classic evidence of ‘synchronicity’. I have been reading about Paramahansa Yogananda for past few days. I have seen the Netflix documentary on him and have been reading his autobiography. Yesterday I read up-to this paragraph on the train on my way to work. I have not read any further. Then I come to your website today and see the exact paragraph! The Universe has been throwing a LOT of synchronicity at me lately. It knows I am on a quest to know the truth and the whole truth, or at least as close as I can come to truth anyway, given that the uncertainty principle acts in mysterious ways. I have noticed it’s not only me, but people around me who laugh at this as ‘crazy people stuff’ have been noticing a lot of synchronicity in their lives when they are around me. I have so many stories tell, each magnificent in its own way. May be I will send you a detailed email later. But for today, may Swami Yogananda bless us all with his wisdom.
Thanks so much! What I needed to read today. Letting the Universe have it’s way and looking forward to the adventure!
I have a humming bird feeder on my deck and all last year and through the winter two birds would come to it. One was very territorial and would sit on the clothesline guarding it and would chase the other on away when it came. When it was freezing I took it in at night and put it out again in the morning. A couple of weeks ago I didn’t see any birds come and wondered if they had met with some misfortune. I pray to God every day and wondered if God hears my prayers. I said “God if you hear my prayers, In the next three days I want to see two humming birds at my feeder.” On the third day I saw one bird come four times. It was a different bird from the two that had previously come. It was bigger and came from a different direction. Was that a “Yes?”
I should try that going for and see what happen
In my early age l was thought not to test God now l will😊
Been a long time but this is really what l needed to hear
Like the walk without money and a free late with a donuts in ecubed
Pam as you mentioned going outside with no money and see what comes up! I should try that at my local coffee shop Wow!
I like that idea!🖒😊🐾❤
Thanks Pam! You are a big part of my daily prayers..