Updated: Aug 10, 2019
CELEBRATE INTERNATIONAL YOGA DAY – June 21 the longest day of the year
Yoga - Part 1
Lord Hanuman is our Yoga Guru. Owing to Bhagavad Gita we have many Yogas. In all our scriptures, in the Ramayana etc., there are many references to Yoga. Yoga means lessons for our Atman. Atma Jnana (Self-realization) is Yoga. Yoga is another name for Atma Jnana. Of course there’s the principle, “Yogah chitta vritti nirodhah” (restraining mental activity is Yoga) which is a Patanjali Yoga Sutra.
Real meaning of Yoga
The real meaning of Yoga is Self-knowledge and Self-realization. One or two births are not enough to achieve Atma Jnana. It’ll take many different births. It doesn’t matter. Don’t be disappointed. Don’t be depressed. Go ahead with your sadhana. If you have strong will and strong sadhana, you will definitely achieve (Atma Jnana) in one birth. When one does rigorous yoga practice out of love and affection, then one understands Atma Jnana and has vision of the Atman. We can’t explain what Atma Darshana is. Atman is invisible. Atma Darshana is merging in Yoga. Immersing in bliss is Atma Darshana. It’s not a visible form that we can see. Becoming one with Atman is Atma Jnana. Atma Darshana, Atma Jnana is immersing in Atman, becoming the Atman. Once we become THAT, there is no going back or discussing it. It’s very rare to go back. Only few great souls can do it. Others can’t come out of it. They go deep into Atma Jnana.
Result of Yoga
When we become one with Atman, that is achievement. What is the result of Yoga? The result is that you become the Atman, leaving the three bodies – sthula sharira, sukshma sharira and karana sharira (the gross, subtle, and causal bodies). Getting rid of these three bodies is Atma Jnana. The three bodies are karma body, causal body and subtle body. That is the only sadhana for Yoga. There are many great souls, many Upanishads, different Yoga Sutras. Each gives different definitions, different opinions and talks about different results. It doesn’t matter. You can take all that knowledge. Don’t reject any. Don’t compare, don’t be confused. Just take the knowledge about Yoga.
It is your duty to practice daily, early in the morning. Concentrate on your Prana, concentrate on your atman. Ask yourself, “Who am I?” Look within. Forget the outer world and objects. Go on an inner journey. That is your journey.Sleep is different from being in Dhyana. You must be awake, not asleep. Sleeping is not dhyana. Sleep is a different state. I’ll talk about sleep and dream some other time. In Vedanta, we discuss sleep and illusions. We’ll talk about that later in Vedanta classes. Anyway, sleep state is different from the awake state. Yoga is different. There’s yoga in Sleep state, in Awake state and in ignorance as well. Kriya is also Yoga. You must practice Pranayama daily. Concentrate on Prana. Some people say they are unable to sleep. If your mind concentrates on Prana, you will automatically get sleep, you will forget the pain. If you concentrate on pain, there’s no sleep. Forget that pain and concentrate on Prana, the sounds of Omkara. Automatically, the pain disappears and you will get sleep. In the sleep state, the pain will disappear. You think the body is yours. “This is my body, these are my Indriyas/sense organs”. “I am”, “I am”, “I am”. If you think along those lines, you will automatically feel the pain. If you think, “I am not the body”, “I don’t know this body”, “I don’t want this body”, “I am not the body”, the pain automatically is not yours. That is the body’s problem, not your problem. Separate the body and the Atman. One day, this body merges with the earth. It belongs to earth. We are all like tiny little insects. We would not be visible to even a microscope in Brahma’s calculation. So, why do you bother? We are all insects. This body belongs to earth. Atman is always flying, it’s different, it’s Paramatman, it’s the invisible Atman. It’s the higher state.
To be continued…