1. WE ARE LIVING IN A WORLD OF DANGER FROM EVERY SIDE
2. DIVINE FORCES ARE ROUSED INTO ACTION BY THE PRACTICE OF YOGA
4. WE ARE LIVING IN A SENSORY WORLD
5. WE BECOME UNSELFISH IN THE PRACTICE OF YOGA.
6. YOGA IS NOT A SUPPRESSION OR REPRESSION OF ANYTHING
7. SUBLIMATION MEANS A HEALTHY TRANSFORMATION
8. OUR PERSONALITY BECOMES A CENTRE OF ATTRACTION
9. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS EXTERNALITY EVEN IN THE WAKING WORLD
10. WE SHOULD BE SATISFIED WITH WHAT WE HAVE AND DISSATISFIED WITH WHAT WE ARE
11. THE BRAHMANDA IS IN THE PINDANDA
12. WE HAVE BEEN BANISHED LIKE CULPRITS FROM OUR OWN KINGDOM
13. OUR FEARS ARE FROM THE EXTERNAL WORLD
14. THIS IS DISCOVERY OF YOGA PSYCHOLOGY
15. WE HAVE TO BRING ABOUT A COPERNICAN OF REVOLUTION.
16. WE CANNOT KNOW THAT THE PROBLEMS ARE INSIDE US
17. THIS IS THE CAUSE OF REBIRTH. (abridged)
18. TO TOUCH ANYTHING ANYWHERE IS TO TOUCH EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE.
19. LIBERATION IS NOT AN ACTION AND IT CANNOT BE ACHIEVE BY ANY KIND OF ACTION
20. THERE IS NO SUCH THINGS AS OBJECT IN THIS WORLD THERE IS ONLY A SELF
21. WE ARE LOVING ONLY THE SELF, AND NOTHING ELSE.
22. THE MIND CAN OVERCOME THE BARRIER OF SPACE AND TIME
23. LOVE AND HATRED ARE ILLNESSES OF THE MIND. (abridged)
24. DESIRE ITSELF IS NOT DESIRABLE
25. GIVE GIVE GIVE AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN
26. WE ARE HAPPY WHEREVER THE ATMAN IS MANIFEST. (abridged)
27. WE HAVE GIVEN ONE-THIRD OF THE MIND TO GOD
28. HOW THE LOVE OF GOD ARISES IN THE MIND IS DIFFICULT TO EXPLAIN
29. IN THE HIGHEST FORM OF LOVE WE BECOME THAT WHICH WE LOVE (abridged)
30. Iswaranugrahadeva Pumsamadvaita Vasana
The best way to present Sri Swami Krishnananda ji Maharaj is not present him in his own inimitable style through his own world. Often it is not possible for the general reader to go through lengthy books, or even understand be the depth of Swami Ji insights. But when those are presented in a shortened and accessible form, even the general reader may feel inspired and inclined to read them and thereby, perhaps, gain a self-transforming insight from them. That is the purpose that the booklets serve ably compiled by Sri U. Narayana Rao. Many of Swamiji’s books have been made available to the general reader through this effort.
I am privileged to have a preview of Excerpts from True Spiritual Living, Vol. II, of revered Swami Ji which form the subject matter of spiritual journey in August. And write a foreword at the behest of Swami Hamsananda Ji whose devotion to Sri Swami Krishnanandaji is expressed through his support for these regularly brought out booklets containing the teachings of thismodern Sage who guided numerous devotees through their journey in this life.
In thirty-one short essays the booklet gives us a methodology for living life in harmony with the forces of Nature. Swami Ji did not want us to live like small helpless beings controlled by small evanescent things around us. He always encouraged his followers to make a leap from their limited personhood to a larger self and live meaningful lives. Through the powerful world of Swamiji, the booklet brings out how true Yoga enables a small individual being to stir up forces of the universe with the aim of living a holistic life. By overcoming egoistic assertions of individuality. A human being can harness energies that would enable him or her to transcend the lower self and experience the joy of wholeness.
Swami ji tells us that we can hone this very body that constricts us to harness universal energies that residein Nature. As he says, we ourselves are particular centres of energy, and through the practice of asanas, by learning to regulateour confused and chaotic movements,we can attune ourselves to the atmospheric forces outside,and set our bodies in harmony with the very same forces that seem external to us. He exhorts us to know that the practice of Yoga would protect us like a parentin a world full of dangers. It is for us to undertake it with dedication and love. By so doing we can live as masters of the forces that otherwise may enslave us.
Some important revelations are made in this booklet with regard to breath and other Yogic disciplines with the aim of awakening and transforming the small being into a larger Consciousness. May the living words of this Sage awaken us to our true potential. May we have the wisdom to follow his teachings and realise the goal pointed out by him.
May the blessings of the Sages ever remain with us and give us the strength to follow in their footsteps.
Om Namo Bitagavate Krishnanandaya
Om. The 31 excerpts contained in the present book, named "Spiritual Journey in August" are obtained from the book 'True Spiritual Living - Vol. II", of H.H. Pujyapada Sri Swami Krishnananda of The Divine Life Society in Rishikesh. These excerpts are thought-provoking and would certainly evolve the readers. These excerpts can easily be read by those devotees who are unable to read big books, due to paucity of time in the modern times. It can be read on any day in the year, not strictly in the month of August.
Pujyasri Swami Hamsanandaji of Sivananda ashram, Rishikesh and Sri Nitta Ramprasad & Smt. Suseela are instrumental in bringing out this book, for which I am very much thankful to them. I also thank Veena Sharma, for offering beautiful foreword for this book. My thanks aslo goes to my wife, Smt. U. Saraswathi, who helped me in prepar-ing this book and proof reading.
Last but not the least, I thank Sri Chakra Off-set Printers, Tatipaka for printing the book beautifully.
Choicest blessings would be showered by Gurudev Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj, Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj and Sri Swami Hamsanandaji Maharaj upon all those readers with happiness, peace and wisdom.
Om Shantih Shantih Shantih.
RAZOLE, Dt. 3-3-2020 Yours,
In the Service of Gurudev,
(U. NARAYANA RAO)
We are living in a world of danger from every side. That we are not harassed with the thought of death or destruction every moment does not mean that it is away from us. When the queen of King Aja, a great emperor of the solar race in India, died due to an accident, the king wept and beat his breast. He went to his preceptor, Vasishtha, and said, "Oh! My queen is dead. I am feeling that life itself is worthless. What is your advice?" Vasishtha gave a very short reply. Maranam prakrtih saririnam vikrtirjivitamucyate budhaih (Raghuvamsa 8. 87): "Your highness, that you are subject to death is no wonder; that you are living is a wonder." This is all he said. This is what Buddha also said—that the apparent security of life is an illusion. Everything is insecure in this world, and that is the truth of the matter. This is not merely Buddha's statement or discovery, or the wisdom of Vasishtha, but also the conclusion of great stalwarts in modern science. We do not know science, we do not know philosophy, we do not know anything—nor do we want to know them, because we are happy. But, this happiness is itself going to be our foe. The comfort and joy which is apparently around us is going to be the cause of our own ruin, because this joy is not real. The circumstances of life, which make us feel that everything is all right for the time being, are subject to dissection, disunion and disintegration. Whatever experience we have in life is the outcome of our personal relation-ship with certain conditions prevailing in the world outside. These conditions are not permanent, and they cannot be permanent. Every cell of the body changes; every moment, the entire structure of our body is subject to transformation. There is a perpetual vehement movement of every atom of this body, as is the case with every object in the world. There is no such thing as a static object in this world.
Yoga is not merely an abstract thinking. It is a stirring up of forces in the universe, which will protect us at all times. Divine forces are roused into action by the practice of yoga, and these forces will act like milch cows which will yield the necessary sustenance for us. Nobody can take care of us with such complete and comprehensive caution as the powers roused in the practice of yoga. These powers are not merely persons, though persons in this world can be used as instruments by these forces. Ultimately, we will realise there are no persons in this world, there are only forces. Even these persons seated before me are not really per-sons but are only forces. We have a wrong notion that persons are in front of us. There is no such thing as a person or a thing in this world. Everything is a centre of energy, and it is these energies, these centres of force that we are trying to rouse up into a comprehensive action by an all-round technique that we adopt in the practice of yoga. Glorious is the practice, indispensable it is to every human being, and vigilance is its watchword. The practice should be continued for a very long time without remission of effort, without break in the practice. This means to say, it has to be continued every day. We should not miss it even one day. Even if we are moving in a train, we must sit and see that the practice is not broken. We must have great love for it. We are not taking to yoga because the Guru has told us to, or the scripture has declared it, or some pressure has been brought upon us by outside factors. We like it, and we have voluntarily taken to it. We have affection for it; it is dear to us. It is like a mother and a father to r us. It is everything to us. Such is yoga, which is going to protect us like a parent, and take care of us as if we are its children.
The pressure of diversity and the pressure of unity are two aspects which work. Everyone and everything in the world. The senses—the eyes ears, nose and in and all the apparatus of perception—insist on a diversity. Of things because unless there is diversity, there is no such thing. As seeing, hearing. Etc. Because the senses have an egoism of their own and want to assert themselves and keep their position intact, they affirm a diversity of things. Otherwise, they will have no status, because they have no function to perform when there is no diversity. They will die out. But who would like to die out? Everybody would like to live as long as possible. So the senses maintain their position by hook or by crook. Thus, the assertion of diversity is the primary activity of the senses; and we are wedded to the senses. We are living in a sensory world. We are slaves of the eyes, ears, nose, etc. We are not the masters thereof. The yoga technique is the method of gaining control over these various forces, which up to this time had sway over us and made us their subjects. The yogi is not a subject of anybody; he is a master. He does not wish to be a slave of forces, and he is awakened to the consciousness that his connection with things is such that he need not be a slave for all times. He has a place in the parliament of the cosmos, as it were, and he is not merely a subjected slave of this universal government. Or, we may say, he has a place, a voice, in the government of the universe. To this fact, he is awakened by the knowledge of yoga. He is not merely a puppet in the hands of forces over which he has no control. We are slaves from the point of view of the body, but masters from the point of view of the soul. There is, therefore, the necessity to rise from bodily subjectivity to the mastery of the soul, stage by stage, in the practice of yoga.
4. WE BECOME UNSELFISH IN THE PRACTICE OF YOGA.
We are only particular centres of energy, and this asana practice, to come to the point, is a first step that we take to attune ourselves to the atmospheric condition of the forces outside, so that the condition of the forces which constitute this bodily personality is set in harmony with the very same forces which are external to us. It is as if a small drop or a wave in the ocean tries to tune itself with the vast ocean of which this small wave is made. If the wave concentrates itself on its own little localised individuality, it forgets that it belongs to the ocean, that it is a child of the ocean. It thinks, "I am a small particle of water." Yoga is this small particle awakening itself to the consciousness: "Oh, I am the en-tire ocean." It is really that! It is not gaining any new knowledge or making a new discovery; it has forgotten that it itself is the ocean. Such a terrific thing it is, but it looks like a small drop be-cause of its self-affirmation. Thus, yoga is a gradual, systematised technique of overcoming the prejudice of self-affirmation—the egoistic assertion of the bodily individuality—towards which, the next step is asana. The confused movements of the body, the chaotic postures we assume, are put into a proper order, and we refuse to be chaotic any more. We make a determination to be systematic from today onwards. The first system was that of the social harmony we establish by the practice of the yamas—ahimsa, satya, asteya, brahmacharya, aparigraha. The more we advance in the practice of yoga, the more we become unselfish—which means to say, we get into the realm of a wider self. It does not mean that we are losing our self. It is a transcendence of the lower self in gaining mastery through the higher self. So, `unself means no self; or, in the present context, it means gaining mastery over the lower self by the higher self All the values that we find in the lower self are Found in the higher self, in a transmuted and rarefied form.
A person walking on a wire in a circus holds his breath, or when we cross a high precipice by walking circus a narrow trail, we hold our breath. When an archer shoots an arrow, he holds his breath. He does not do alternate breathing at that time; there is a spontaneous stopping of the breath. Even when we see a cobra suddenly dropping in front of us, we automatically hold our breath. Anything that requires attention of the mind also calls for retention of the breath. That means to say, an undistracted mind is harmonious with retention of the breath. We are breathing because we are distracted; it comes to that, finally. It is because our mind is distracted that we are breathing; otherwise, we will not breathe. Patanjali all specifically mentions in one sutra that breathing is a great obstacle in yoga. We will be surprised because we live by breathing, and Patanjali calls it an obstacle. It is an obstacle because it is an unnatural condition that has arisen in us, because our whole personality is unnatural. We are not natural beings. The more we understand our predicament today physically, socially, biologically—the more we will be surprised, and d in a state of concentration as to our smallness and the humble position that we occupy in the realm of Truth. There is a sort of agitation in our body—that is to say, in our whole personality. This agitation has to be subdued, but not suppressed. The intention of pranayama.is not, to suppress the breath. Yoga is not a suppression or repression of anything not repression of the desires, not repression of .the, breathing, not repression of the thoughts. The words 'repression and suppression' should not be used, as the connotations thereof have no relevance to yoga. Yoga is sublimation, which is again a difficult thing for ordinary minds to understand. Even the process of Pranayama should be sublimation, and not suppression, of the process of breathing.
Yoga is sublimation. Sublimation means a healthy transformation. It is a growth, and not decomposition, destruction or fall of any kind. An adult grows from childhood or adolescence, but an adult does not lose anything by becoming an adult. The adult does not think, "I have lost my childhood, I have lost my adolescence, so I am a loser." The adult is not a loser by not being a child or an adolescent, because that lower condition has been absorbed into the higher condition of the adult. Growth is, therefore, a good ex-ample of the sublimation of lower conditions, and both Pranayama and the stages of yoga which come later on are processes of sublimation. In fact, every stage of yoga—not merely Pranayama, Pratyahara, and so on—is one of sublimation. Right from yama, Niyama, and so on, it is a process of sublimation, boiling, purifying, and making us into gold from the condition of ore—by which nothing is lost, but something wonderful is gained. A sense of elevation, buoyancy of spirit, health, lightness, etc., will be the symptoms of success in the art of sublimation. We will feel like running, rather than slowly walking. Lightness and buoyancy are the symptoms of health, which are a freedom that we feel in the entire system, and are not suffocation in any part of the body, the Pranas or the mind. Which is extraneous to our true nature is what we call toxic. This extraneous matter is the element of diversity interfering with the principle of unity. Essentially, there is an indivisible something in us, whose expansion into infinitude we are seeking through yoga; but the factor of diversity interferes with it constantly and pulls us externally through the organs of sense, making us attracted to certain things and repulsed by other things. These factors cause distraction both in breathing and in thinking, and they have to be carefully obviated.
Continued practice of asana, and a systemized effort at methodical breathing, create in oneself a new kind of power and energy which otherwise gets dissipated by the naturally distracted condition of the body. A regularised practice of even a simple physical posture, the meditative pose, and a normal healthy practice of breathing, will create a tendency in the powers of the body to unite themselves together into a new kind of force which attracts things towards itself. A gradual capacity to exert influence on one's atmosphere rises automatically in oneself. Our personality becomes a centre of attraction. It is not that we dress ourselves, groom ourselves or wear any kind of make-up. But certain changes that take place \k ohm the body create an internal atmosphere which attracts eve; thing that is around oneself. We will not be suddenly roused into happiness, nor will we sink into grief even if the worst thing happens. The body, in collaboration with the mind, will be Able to bear everything in the world. Even if by chance we fall sick, we will recover quickly and not be incapacitated for a long time. A new kind of capacity to rejuvenate oneself arises in the system, though there may be a sudden failing of health for various reasons and we may have fever, headache, and so on. This strength is not ordinary strength. It is the strength of the tendency to the unity of powers. It is not the strength that we ordinarily think of in the world, such as social strength, political strength, the strength of one’s public status, the temporary strength gained by eating a good meal, and so on this is another Kind of strength altogether, which will keep us sane and stable even in an atmosphere of conflict, dissention and tension. Even if we are placed in an atmosphere of severer conflict, we will not be affected by it. We will be able to understand, rather than react.
One of the greatest miraculous discoveries of the philosophy of yoga is that whatever we seek is in ourselves. It is not outside, because there is no such thing as outside. the concept of outside is an illusion that is created by a peculiar structural defect in the activity of the mind, just as there is a false out sidedness in dream while there is actually no such thing there is no such thing as externality even in the waking world. Do we not see a vast external world in dream, something disconnected from us? But is it really disconnected? we know very well how the vast world that we see in dream is connected with us and the externality of that so called world is a falsity created by a peculiar movement of the mind in the same way this externality keeps us cut off from the world of nature. The world is not outside us because the very idea of notion of outside is an erroneous effect produced by a king in the mind therefore yoga again and again points out that the only thing that we have to do is to set right mind-yohah cittavrtti nirodhah (Y.S. 12). This mind, which is a mischief-maker, has created such havoc that it has produced in us a perpetual wrong notion about our own selves and a consequent wrong notion about everything else. We think something is wrong with us and something is wrong with everybody else in the world. The mind survives only by creating this confusion. If everything becomes clear, the mind cannot exist. There are many people in the world who somehow or other get on by creating a state of confusion. They create such confusion that it becomes a source of strength for them. They do not allow others to think correctly by either shouting loudly or bringing about such a state of affairs that people’s minds are side-tracked and they cannot think about the actual problem on hand. Many politicians do that, and the mind is a master politician. It has simply thrown everything into a state of confusion.
In Patanjali's Yoga System the stages of physical posture, or asana, and of Pranayama go together with a system of personal discipline called the niyamas. In our personal conduct and daily activity, there should be a method and a procedure. One of the essentials contributing to success is the method of working and the procedure of behaviour and conduct. One must know what to say at what time, in what manner, what to eat when, in what quantity and quality, and so on—which applies to the body, the speech and the thoughts. Everything should have its own time, its own quantity and quality. Contentment is something which most people do not know, because it is often dissatisfaction which goads us into action. We are dissatisfied and, therefore, we work, but that should not be the motivating force for work. Are we working because we are dissatisfied? On the other hand, the reverse should be the case. We should work because we are satisfied. As a matter of fact, that work alone can be called healthy which is motivated by satisfaction. His holiness Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj said that we should be satisfied with what we have and dissatisfied with what we are. Generally, we are satisfied with what we are and dissatisfied with what we have, which should not be the case. We should be grieving because we have not achieved perfection. We are little bodies, small personalities, almost nobodies before the might of the universe, and our effort should be to gradually approximate ourselves inwardly and outwardly to the extent possible towards the perfection that we are seeking; and that has nothing to do with what we have in the form of material possession, etc. The internal feeling of satisfaction and contentment comes on account of an understanding. It cannot come by mere force of will.
There is no belief or trust in the truth that there is in our own selves the seed of what we are ultimately seeking. The seed is in ourselves, and the vast universe of objects through which we seek satisfaction is only a ramification of this seed that is within us. We are a centre in which the universal values are rooted, and everyone is such a centre. Therefore, it is said that Reality is that which has its centre everywhere but its circumference nowhere. It has no limitation; therefore, it has no circumference. But every point is a centre of the universe, and therefore, the centre of the universe is everywhere. Every atom of the world is a centre of the universe and has as much capacity to reveal Truth as any other point in the world. It is an absence of this knowledge that makes us discontented and distracted. All things are finally to converge upon oneself, instead of one's being a centre of centrifugal forces from which energies shoot off in diverse directions like rays of the sun. The purpose is to withdraw these rays and make them converge upon the centre, so that a time will come when the powers of nature will begin to vibrate through our body. The world, which is so vast and unimaginable and frightening, is not really as vast and frightening as it appears to be, because its tentacles are rooted in our own bodily selves. In one sense, we may say, the strings which operate the movements of the objects outside like puppets are connected to the various centres in our own body. This is why yoga scriptures and masters tell us that the brahmanda is in the pindanda—the macrocosm is in the microcosm. To give an analog of how the macrocosm can be in the microcosm, the whole banyan tree, which is very big, vast and expansive, is in a tiny an enormous tree Ho, so weighty and expansive, is in that tiny seed. Such an enormous tree, so weighty and expansive, is in that tiny seed. How is it possible? This wondrous universe is within us; this is what yoga tells us.
Einstein's equation E = mc2 says that an enormous amount of energy is contained in even the smallest quantity of matter. We know the power of the atom bomb—how it can devastate large areas, though it is so small. If one atom can contain so much energy, what is the energy of all the atoms in our body? So why do we look like small monkeys when there is so much strength within us? We can simply blow away the mountains, if we want; but we cannot digest even one glass of milk, so much is our weakness. This is because we have become exiles from our own realm. We have been banished like culprits from our own kingdom, and we have lost our heritage. We are not citizens of the very land to which we belong. This is really a wonder. We regard the world, which is our mother, as a stranger and, therefore, our mother feels sorry for our state of affairs. The energy that is to come to us from the whole creation outside is cut off from the energy of our body on account of the egoistic affirmations with which we have identified ourselves. The Yoga System is the final blow that is dealt at the root of this egocentric personality. To lay this final stroke upon the centre of the problem, so much of preparation is made—like a huge ceremony, celebration or function which may take place for one hour, but for which we go on making preparations for a month. For one month we work for a celebration that will take place for only one hour. Likewise, some great function is to take place in the form of yoga meditation, and for that so much Preparation is being made. It is the glorious consummation that is called meditation, towards which we are moving; and the beauty of the function and the perfection thereof, depend upon the meticulous care that we take in the preparations we make for it.
The Yoga System is described as the process of controlling the mind. A doubt may arise: What is this peculiar thing that We call control of the mind, and what do we gain by controlling the mind? This doubt arises because our problems are not apparently in our minds; they are outside in the world. We have economic problems, social problems, political problems, family problems. Since there are all these terrifying features in the world outside, what is the point in ignoring these realities of life, closing one's eyes in a room and thinking something under the notion that the mind is being controlled and everything will be all right? How can everything be all right by merely controlling the mind? This is a doubt that can occasionally arise even in an advanced seeker, a well-equipped student of yoga. What is the connection between our thinking process and the realities of the world outside? If there is no connection, this yoga process is useless, it is a waste of time, because no one thinks for a moment that the troubles of life are inside the mind. If that is the case, then we can keep quiet and worry about ourselves privately in our rooms, and not concern ourselves with the world outside. But the entire problem is outside. Our fears are from the external world. We do not fear anything from inside us; the fears that somebody may attack us, somebody may rob us of our property, something that we need from the world may not come, something unwanted may pounce upon us, and so on, come from outside. If that is the case, is this great principle yogah cittavrtti nirodhah (Y.S.1.2) that Sage, Patanjali lays down? if yoga is a discipline of the mental processes and is the ultimate duty that one may be called upon to do, there must be some secret relevance of this internal process called yoga to the vast reality of the external cosmos.
We were trying to observe that the vast stretches of the cosmos, with all their intricacies and internal complicated structure—the variety of grandeur and magnificence of all this vast universe outside—is subtly connected with all that we are made of in our own personalities. Whatever be the extent of the world or the largeness of creation, the mystifying universe before us has its roots in ourselves. The strings of the cosmos appear to be operated from within, and a proper adjustment of the various constituents of one's personality would be tantamount to establishing a harmony with everything in the world, in all creation. Inasmuch as we are intimately related to the remotest parts of the world, and there is nothing anywhere with which we are not related, it would be wisdom on our part to find everything in our own selves—to discover the secrets of nature within our own bodies, as it were. This is a masterstroke of the yoga genius. Ordinarily, man is prone to run about in search of the secrets of nature, as scientists generally do. They have long telescopes and powerful microscopes through which they want to probe into the mysteries of nature by observing things through their eyes and other senses. That means to say, there is a feeling in the mind of man that the secrets of nature are outside, and to discover these secrets we require external instruments such as a microscope or a telescope, etc. No one has the least idea that these secrets are hidden in our own selves. This is a discovery of yoga psychology.
We can be silently seated in an apparently isolated corner of the world and yet be connected with everything in creation without moving about in motorcars or airplanes. To be connected with things of the world, we need not fly in airplanes. We can be seated even in a bathroom in our house and be connected with everything in the world. This is a great secret which no one knows, and this secret is the secret of yoga. Otherwise, what is the point in merely restraining the processes of the mind—the Vrittis, as they are called? Why are we bothered about these Vrittis? We can let them do whatever they like, as if they are not our problems. Our problems are hunger and thirst, poverty, backwardness, illiteracy, tension, warfare, and whatnot—and if these are our problems, where comes the need for having to do anything with our mental processes? So, there is a necessity to entirely reverse the attitude we have towards things in general. We have to bring about what may be called a Copernican revolution. Copernicus discovered that the earth moves around the sun, instead of the old idea that the sun is moving around the earth. The tables were turned completely. This sort of revolution—Copernican, we may call it is brought about by yoga.
We were under the notion that all the troubles come from people outside, from the world external to us—just as, once upon a time people thought that the sun is moving around the earth. We find out that the sun is not moving around the earth, the earth is moving around the sun. This we are not able to understand because we are on the earth and we are moving with the earth, so we cannot know that there is any motion at all. Likewise, we cannot know that the problems are inside us, because we are moving with the problems—even as we are moving with the earth on which we are seated. There are no such things as problems, because problems are not things by themselves. It is not a material substance that we call a problem. We cannot see it with our eyes. It is a state of affairs, we may say, brought about by a misjudgment of things in our minds and a maladjustment of values, a disharmonious arrangement of ourselves with things external. These are the problems of life, the difficulties, the pains, the sorrows of life. Yoga, therefore, tries to go to the root of the matter to dig out the very base of the disease within us. The problems of life are not going to be solved unless we go deep into the problems to discover the ultimate cause thereof, and not merely the immediate cause. The ultimate cause discovered by yoga is a peculiar maladjustment of the subject with the object--the drashta with the drisya, to put it in Sanskrit: the seer with the seen. I cannot properly adjust myself with people around me, with the things outside me, with the whole world external to me. In our apparent external life of waking consciousness we appear to be in harmony with others, but this is not the truth of the matter. Your conscious activity at this present moment represses the major part of your personality and makes it appear that everything is well adjusted with the environment.
What you have adjusted with the environment at present is merely a fraction of your conscious mind. Yoga psychology endeavours to study the whole personality of man, not merely the conscious mind or, much worse, a fraction of it. What is maladjusted with the world outside is not merely our conscious mind, but our total personality. Our whole personality is out of order. It is not in a state of balance; and this has to be set right, which is the purpose of yoga. "Why is it that always only a part of the mind is working, and not the whole mind?" It is because the mind is a very shrewd politician, as it were, which knows how to work its ways. It will not bring out its deeper motives always, lest they be defeated. The mind, in being conscious of an object and in dealing with that object, lays emphasis only on the specific character of the particular purpose or aim in view at that given moment of time, and everything else is shoved into limbo. It is not bothered about the other things that are there, because they are not necessary. While we are deepseatedly disharmonious with everything, we openly and overtly appear to be harmonious with all things. Therefore, there seems to be a sort of satisfaction and success in outward life, while there is dissatisfaction and disharmony inside. And life being short, we may die in this very condition of a tremendous potentiality for disharmony within us, without having achieved anything substantial in life. This latency for disharmony that is within us pursues us even after death. This is the cause of rebirth. We are reborn into embodiment in successive lives because we carry with us, in spite of shedding the physical body, the potentialities of which we are made--the psychological stuff which we really are. As long as our deep-rooted, deep-seated potentialities are not brought to the conscious level and made a part of our conscious nature, our transmigratory-process-of-rebirth-cannot-end.
Whatever we think and feel, whatever we propose to do in the form of our daily activities, whatever our aspirations are, whatever we were in the past and are in the present and shall be is in the ego in the future, everything in miniature form. Therefore, know thyself. When we know ourselves, we have known everything because the entire past, present and future is hidden inside us. Even the unimaginable past and the remotest future possibilities are all potentially present in ourselves. Hence, to know one's own self is, in other words, to become omniscient, to know one's own self is to know the whole creation, and to know one's own real difficulties is to know everyone's difficulties. Thus comes about the need for controlling the mind. This psychological process of controlling ourselves, harmonising ourselves through yoga techniques, is not merely a so-called internal activity of ours because, though for the purpose of expressing ourselves, for the sake of convenience in language we may speak of yoga as an internal process, it is really a cosmic process. It is so because our so-called internality, our apparent individuality, is really connected with all things everywhere. Therefore, to touch anything anywhere is to touch everything everywhere. Thus, we can imagine the importance of a thought because it immediately stirs up powers and forces which are everywhere in the world. Therefore, while rightly directed thoughts can bring about immediate miraculous success, wrongly directly thoughts can bring about a reverse consequence. We can create a heaven or a hell at once,. With the power of our thinking this capacity, this potentiality, this power, this latency hidden within an individual is discovered by the psychology of yoga.
Yoga is terrific, repelling, most offensive for the ego-ridden individuality. If it had been so simple, the world would be overflowing with yogis; but that is not possible. Sometimes it looks humanly impossible. We have to become superhuman in order to become real students of yoga. An ordinary human being cannot become a student of yoga, because we cannot even understand it. It will not enter our heads because what we have to deal with is ourselves, and that is the problem. But we cannot deal with ourselves in any manner because all our actions are processes, and there is no process involved in this dealing because yoga is not a process, merely because of the fact that what is to be dealt with is ourselves. Thus, the achievement in yoga becomes a sort of awakening rather than an activity. When we wake up from sleep, we are not performing an action or engaging ourselves in any kind of work. We are not doing anything at all when we wake up from sleep, and yet there is such a tremendous difference because of our achievement of entering a new world altogether when we wake up from sleep. The achievement called `waking up from sleep' is not the result of an action. This is why Acharya Sankara tirelessly hammers upon the idea that liberation is not an action, and it cannot be achieved by any kind of action. The reason behind his extraordinary proclamation is that what is to be achieved is so intimately connected with us that any activity of our personality cannot touch it; and moksha is nothing but an awakening into a wider reality which is already planted in us and is not external to us.
THERE IS ONLY A SELF.
The whole of life is nothing but an awareness of self hood. If we properly and deeply think over the matter, we will realise that there is no such thing as an object in this world; there is only a self. Even that which we call an object is a part of our self in the sense that we associate that object with ourselves and make it a part of ourselves, and the moment it becomes a part of ourselves even in a social sense, it becomes a social self and it is not any more an object. The family is a self, though it is constituted of external members. It is because it is a self that we are so much attached to the members thereof. It may not be the real Self, because it is involved in space, time and causality; but in spite of the fact that it is not the true Self because it is not indivisible, it is a self Otherwise. why are we related to it? Why are we thinking about it? Why are we concerned with it? Why are we attached to it? We have a national self, and because of the existence of such a self, we identify ourselves with a nationality. We identify ourselves with a creed or a cult or even a language group, and we identify ourselves with the human species. We are very much concerned with humanity, much more than we are concerned with anything else in the world. Is it not so? This is also a kind of self hood. Whatever we are doing is for man only, as if God has created only man and there is nothing else in the world but man-though it is not true. Why are we so worried about mankind and not about animal’s lions, tigers, snakes, scorpions as if they are not existing?
There is no such thing as a self getting connected with an object, ultimately speaking, because the moment the self gets connected with an object, the object ceases to be an object. It becomes a part of the Self itself. This is why it is said that what we love is the Self only. There is no such thing as love of an object, because the moment we love an object, that object ceases to be an object; it becomes the Self. It is the Self that we are loving even in the so-called object. The great sage Yajnavalkya has proclaimed that no love is possible where the Self is absent. Atmanastukamaya sarvam priyam bhavati (Brihad. Up. 2.4.5): It is for the sake of the Self that we are loving things. It is not merely for the sake of the Self that we are loving things; we are loving only the Self, and nothing else. And when we extend our self hood, what we are doing is not the action of love for an object outside, but for only another form of the Self. If we are utterly selfish, we love only the bodily self, only this physical body. If we are more altruistic and civilised, we become a family self, a social self, a political self, an international self, a human self. We may become even a world self But it is, after all, the Self. There is nothing but that. The whole point is that there is nothing but the Self anywhere, in one form or another. Whether it is a counterfeit self or the real Self, that is a different question, but it is a self. Counterfeit currency notes may look like genuine currency notes. Though they are counterfeit notes, they are passed for genuine notes; otherwise, they have no value. Likewise, even if we create an artificial self, it is to be valued as the Self; otherwise, it has no sense. To control the mind and to control the self are the same thing. Mind control is self-control.
Even such a simple act as walking was a very difficult thing when we were babies and we fell down many times and injured our knees but now we can run take part in a race and not even be conscious that we have legs when we are running while in earlier days we were very conscious of our legs and fell down. Practice makes perfect. The control of the mind is effected by a spirit of renunciation and a tenacity of practice. The effort of the mind to repeatedly think the same thing again and again, and not allow itself to think anything other than what it has chosen for its ideal may be regarded as practice for the purpose of yoga. A deep whole souled concentration or absorption of the mind on a given subject, object or concept works wonders. It brings about a miracle by itself. The mind is connected to objects. There is no object anywhere in this world which is not connected with the mind of the individual who thinks it. Hence, repeated thought of a particular object hero, te chosen one for the purpose of yoga-stirs up those capacities and powers within us which bring the object or the ideal in proximity to us by abolishing the distinction between the subject and the object that is brought about by the factors of space and time. A thing that is far off, in the distant stars, is impossible of achievement or acquisition, ordinarily speaking. This is why we cannot easily acquire the distant stars or even something that is on a different continent. It is so far from us; it is ten thousand miles away. How we can get it, is a difficulty. But there is no ten thousand miles for the mind, because the mind can overcome the barrier of space and time; and by repeated concentration on what it wishes to achieve, acquire, possess or experience, it can materialize that object at the spot where the yogi is seated. This gives an idea of the nature of the practice and its consequences.
Everything in the world is, generally speaking, everywhere, The world is not in dearth of things; it is never poor. Its resources are illimitable, and so anything can be materialised at any time. But this materialisation will take place only if the mind is non-spatially connected with the object it seeks. What makes it difficult for us to achieve anything, possess anything or experience anything directly is the spatial distance between us and the object. We have to abolish this spatial distinction, and this is the purpose of the practice. But, simultaneously, Patanjali says that this kind of effort at abolishing spatial distance between us and the object is impossible unless we have another qualification, called vairagya. Vairagya does not mean putting on a single cloth. It means a spirit of understanding the true nature of things, on account of which the mind ceases from attaching itself to particular things of the world, knowing very well that every particular object in the world is included in that which it seeks. That which the yogi seeks is so large and universal in its compass that the little things of the world to which the mind is usually attached are in it in a transmuted form. When this knowledge arises, when there is this discrimination—this ability to correctly understand the relationship of any particular object in the world with that which one is seeking in yoga—there is automatic dispassion. The absence of passion is dispassion; the absence of raga is viraga. The condition of viraga is vairagya. Vairagya and abhyasa should go together.
Yoga does not aim at transformation of the world, because such a thing is not necessary. 'What is necessary is a self-adjustment with the order of things. The great wisdom of the Creator projected the universe in the manner in which it ought to be, and it does not need a modification or an amendment of the act. The act of God is not subject to amendment. It has been very wisely constituted by Him. He has permanently fixed the order of things, and if we accept the wisdom of God, we have also to accept the correctness of this order with which He has manifested this universe. The order is trans-empirical; it is beyond the perception of the senses. The organisation of the universe instituted by God is not capable of human understanding and, therefore, we misconstrue the whole order and imagine that there is chaos, that God has created confusion and a tremendous ugliness, a resource of evil, pain, suffering, and everything that is unwanted. This is all the wisdom of God; He could not find anything better. Yoga aims at an individual transformation necessary for an adjustment with the cosmic order of things. The cosmic order will not change. There is no need for a change in it. But there is a need for change somewhere else, in what is called jiva srishti, not in Ishvara srishti. These are all technical jargons of Vedanta. The meaning is that the creation of God needs no change, but the creation of the individual needs change. The creation of God does not need change because God is omniscient, and He has wisely construed everything In the manner it ought to be. He has placed everything in the very. place where it ought to be, in the condition in which it has to be; but the individual cannot comprehend this mystery because no individual can be omniscient, and no one who is not omniscient can understand the perfection of God's creation.
If the ugliness, the stupidity and the evil of this world are really there as we imagine it, it should be there always. But we have the epic illustration of the Viratsvarupa, for example, described in the Bhagavadgita, and no ugliness was seen when the Virat was manifest. Arjuna could not see dung or drains and sewage. Where had it gone? All this stupidity of the world is not there in that perfection, but that perfection is inclusive of this stupidity, this ugliness. What Arjuna was made to visualise was the very same thing that we are seeing with our eyes. They were something else, because they were arranged in the pattern of universal perfection which could be seen with a new eye altogether, not with the fleshy eyes. The eye of perfection saw only perfection. The point is that this is a mistake in perception. Vairagya, or dispassion, is a tendency of the mind to adjust itself with the natural order of things, and when this attitude is appreciably effected, there is also a simultaneous feeling of mental health, which is the proper attitude towards things. An improper attitude is mental illness. Love and hatred are illnesses of the mind. We are very fond of the word `love’. We think it is a great, gorgeous, divine blessing upon us, but it is not so. It is also an affection of the mind because where there is no object, there can be no love; and as we are again and again told that objects do not really exist as they appear to our senses, then love also cannot exist in the way in which it is manifest because what is love, if there is no object of love? All emotional movements, whether in the form of like or dislike, cease on account of a self-completion and a self-sufficiency felt within by a manifestation of spiritual awareness. This is the vitrishna which Patanjali speaks of. We have no desire for things because we have now understood things in a better way.
What is wrong if we desire things? What is the precise mistake that we are committing in loving things, hating things, or desiring things in this way or that way? What is the matter? The natter is simple. It is against the constitution of things. It is unscientific because the order of things, the nature of the universe is it is, is such that everything is arranged in an organic connectedness. This system is called the Virat. When an organic connectedness of things becomes the content of consciousness, his is the experience of the Virat. What do we mean by this connectedness? It is a realisation that there cannot be objects and, therefore, there cannot be subjects. There cannot be causes and, therefore, there cannot be effects, and vice versa. In a mutual interrelation of things, we cannot say which is the because and which is the effect, which is the object and which is the subject, who is the lover and who is the loved. We cannot say anything. The idea of externality, isolation, separatedness is the cause of attachment, which is the principle of desire, passion, etc.; and inasmuch as any desire for a thing is an affirmation of there being no such organic connectedness among things, desire is contrary to Truth and, therefore, it is not desirable. Desire itself is not desirable. We should develop an inward feeling of 'enough with things'. A sense of enough, of satiety, should arise in us, not because we do not have things, not because we cannot get things, not because there is a threat from outside, but because we ourselves do not feel a need for things; we have enough of things. Either we have enough of everything, or we have seen that desire itself is not a proper attitude or a correct form of understanding. Rightly or wrongly, we cannot have freedom from desires as long as there are covetable objects in the world, whether we can actually possess them or not.
While we are very shrewd in judging others, we are not so Clever in judging our own selves. We are very lenient towards ourselves, and very hard upon others, which is very unfortunate. The point is, we have to be hard on ourselves and a little lenient on others, but we are not. The yogi is very severe upon himself, though he may be very kind towards others. He may be very charitable towards other people, but not so charitable towards himself. Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj was a great example of this. "Give, give, give, and it shall be given" was his philosophy, as was the case with Jesus Christ. In my life, at least, I have seen only one person who was a follower of the philosophy of giving, and it was Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj. I have never seen any other mahatma or a saint of this type, someone who would give things and feel that he loses nothing by giving. There is always a fear that by giving, we lose. "If I give five dollars, I have lost five dollars." That is not so, my dear friend. We do not lose, we gain something. What we do not know is that when there is an apparent debit of five dollars here, there is a credit of five thousand dollars somewhere else in another, superior bank altogether, in which we have an account. Man, with his foolish, stupid brain, cannot understand this. "Give, give, give, and it shall be given unto you, pressed and overflowing." The meaning is that man's understanding is inadequate to the task. Man is born and brought up in a set of conditions which insist on selfishness of behaviour and comfort of the body, glory, name, power, and what not. All these are the doom of yoga. When one steps onto the ladder of yoga, one will be repelled by its requisitions—not because it is really hard or exacting, but because it is unintelligible to the uninitiated mind. Therefore, to live with a Gum for a sufficient length of time, until one is well grounded in an understanding of what is one's true aim in life is called for.
What is giving us joy, pleasure, is the Atman present in things. We are happy wherever the Atman is manifest. Where the Atman is not manifest, we cannot feel joy. Even in the grossest object of sense, the Atman is manifest. That is why it attracts us. It is a great wonder how the Atman can manifest itself in an object of sense. Is it possible? Yes, it is possible, and it is because of this mystery that is revealed through the objects that the senses run after them. The Atman is not an object, of course, and yet it is capable of getting revealed in some degree through the objects. The Atman is a symmetry of perfection, a well-arranged pattern which reflects completeness; and wherever this arrangement of completeness, pattern or symmetry is visible, the mind begins to feel that its object is present. Completeness, or an absence of any kind of want, is the character of the Atman. There are many features in the Atman, not merely symmetry. It is difficult to explain the qualities that are discover able in the Atman. There is exuberance and buoyancy, force and symmetry, perfection, and freshness. The object of sense looks fresher and fresher every day. The more we see it, the more we like to see it. It does not look old. We do not feel that we have seen it a hundred times. Every day we would like to see it as many times as possible, because freshness is one of the characters of the Atman. We cannot know what this freshness is. It is not the freshness of a ripe fruit, like an apple; it is something that pulls our whole being. For example, every day. the sun rises in a beautiful manner. We are happy to see the rise of the sun, and we never feel that it is a dull sun that has been rising for centuries. Every day it is fresh, invigorating, and exciting.The capacity to excite us into a tremendous activity through every part of our body, senses and mind is the capacity of the Atman.
There are three stages of the feeling for God, according to Sage Patanjali—the mild, the middling, and the intense. It is only the intense feeling for God that finally succeeds, not the middling or the mild. Almost every religious person has a mild feeling for God, and this feeling accepts the existence of God as the supreme reality, but it also accepts the reality of the world and of people around. When an equal reality is accorded to the world, to human society, and to things in general, as much as to God, that love of God becomes very mild. This is because a fraction of the mind believes in the existence of God and feels that it is proper to love God, but another fraction of the mind goes to the world and feels that it is also proper to love the world and that there is something valuable in the world. There is also a fraction working for the values that are human, personal, social, etc. Like a stream of water which is divided into different channels, the mind channelises itself into various streams of movement—one stream alone touching the concept or feeling for God, and the other streams going somewhere else. This means that though some part of the personality feels for God, the whole of the personality does not feel for God. We have given one-third of the mind to God, sometimes even less than that. But this will not succeed, says the discipline of yoga. Sometimes we have experiences in the world which awaken us into a feeling that things are not what they appear to be. There seems to be something different from what we take them to be in our daily activities. Though it looks as if the world is all right and people are all right, they seem to be all right only for some time, and not for all times. This fact enters our mind occasionally, on certain conditions of experience such as when we are frustrated, defeated or done a bad turn, as we say, which makes us feel a kind of resentment towards everything which we originally felt to be worthwhile.
How the love of God arises in the mind is difficult to explain. There are hundreds and hundreds of ways. Not even great philosophers can satisfactorily explain how the love of God arises in the mind of a person. Sometimes, these divine feelings arise by apparently silly and meaningless occurrences in life. A word that is uttered against our wish is sufficient to turn us away from everything in the world. Though it may look like a small affair, that is the last straw on the camel's back; it was all that was needed. Even frustrations can sometimes drive people to God. Though that is not the normal way, it is not impossible. Loss, bereavement, destruction, and a sense of hopelessness in regard to everything may drive a person to God. And when God calls us, He can bring about such a catastrophic situation. It is not that He will always call us very smilingly. In a wrathful mood, He can crush us down and then force us back to Himself that is one of the ways in which God works. God does not care for what we hug as dear to us. The wrath of God can come like a flood of the ocean which devastates everything, and He does not care what our feelings are. But very rarely does God take such action. If anyone can give a long rope, it is God; and perhaps, He gives the longest rope. Anything and everything can be a cause of the mind turning to God. Even a cat or a rat can be a cause. A wisp of wind or the mildest stroke of misfortune can turn us to God. Yoga requires a whole-souled direction of the mind to God. Realisation of God becomes possible only when the feeling for God becomes most intense. If it is mild or middling, it will not be a success. Ananya means one who is not devoted to any other. This is said to be the most purified form a divine devotion. Devotion is divine love, an love becomes intense when it has only one object before it.
The bhakti scriptures, treatises dealing with divine love, speak of apara bhakti and para bhakti—or, as they say, gaunabhakti and ragatmika bhakti, and so on. Gauna bhakti, or apara bhakti, means devotion or love that requires accessories, instruments. We require some apparatus to stir our affection or love. If the apparatus or instrument is absent, it will not work. For example, there are some musicians who cannot sing unless there is an instrument. They want a harmonium, a violin, a veena or some other instrument because without it, their singing is not beautiful. But, an exuberance can take possession of oneself, and then we start singing even without an instrument, and we can dance even without a tune accompanying us. Devotees speak of ragatmika bhakti, or para bhakti, as the real form of devotion or love, which does not require any accompaniment. It does not care even for moral and ethical codes of society, and it breaks all boundaries of human convention. To tell you the truth, it has not even shame. We may call it shameless, if we like. Such is whole-souled love. A person becomes shameless when the love becomes whole-souled. Whether it is in the world or in the realm of spirit, he acts in the same way. This is when the taste for the object inundates the personality wholly. Raga means a taste, a tinging of the whole personality with the character of the object which is loved. This is ragatmika bhakti. This happened to the gopis. The distinction between the lover and the loved is abolished in ragatmika bhakti, or para bhakti, in whole-souled love. In the highest form of love, we become that which we love. There is no love there, as a matter of fact, because in ordinary language `love' means the movement of our emotions towards something outside, but when we ourselves have become that object, where is the movement of our affection? We have gone mad; that is all.
Whole-souled love of God cannot come by human effort. Human effort is inadequate for the purpose, because it would be something like attempting to carry burning coals with a piece of straw. We cannot do it. Even the great master Acharya Sankara did not properly answer this question when he himself raised this point in his commentary on the Brahma Sutras. How does knowledge arise in the jiva? It is not by human effort, because effort towards knowledge is possible only when there is knowledge, and we are asking how knowledge arises. How can the love of God arise in a person? It cannot arise by effort, because who can have the energy to put forth such effort as to invoke the power of God which can rouse such a feeling for God? So, the great Advaitin Sankara himself says—apparently contrary to his own doctrine, we may say-that it is /shvara-anugraha.Iswaranugrahadeva Pumsamadvaita Vasana (Avadhuta Gita 1.1), says Dattatreya in his Avadhuta Gita: The feeling for the unity of things arises due to the grace of God. Iswaranugrahadeva only by that, and by no other way. It is very difficult to understand what all this means. Thus, while from one side it looks as though hard effort is necessary, on the other side it appears that we have to be passively receptive to the ingress of divine grace, always awaiting the call, and yearning which can come upon us at any time. for that light and blessing Whatever be the means by which such a love of God can rise in ourselves, this is indispensable and the there is no other alternative. Nanyah pantha vidyateyanaya (Svet. Up. 3.8.): There is no other alternative for us .No other path can be seen; there is no other way out. This is a must for each and every person. When that intensity of feeling arises, miraculous experiences automatically follow, which is the glorious consummation of yoga.
Om Tat Sat
Om Shantih Shantih Shantih
Bhava Saagara-Taarana-Kaarana Hey,
Ravi-Nandana-Bandhana -Khandana Hey,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Hridi-Kandara. Taamasa Bhaaskara Hey,
Tama Vishnu Prajaapati, Shankara Hey,
Parabrahma Paraatpara Veda Bane,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Mana-Vaarana Kaarana-Ankusha Hey,
Nara-Traana Kare Harichaakshusha Hey,
Guna-Gaana-Paraayana Deva Gane,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Kula-Kundalini Bhava-Bhanjaka Hey,
Hridi-Granthi Vidaarana-Kaarana Hey,
Mahimaa Tava Gochara Shuddhamane,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Atidina-Jane Turn Rakshaka Hey,
Man Kampita Vanchita Bhakti Dhane,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Ripusudana Mangalanaayaka Hey,
Sukha-Shaanti Varaabhaya Daayaka Hey,
Traya Taapa Hare Tava Naama Gune,
Gurudeva Dayakara Dinajane.
Tava Naama Sadaa Sukhasaadhaka Hey,
Patitaadhama Maanava-Paalaka Hey,
Mama Maanasa Chanchala Raatri-Dine,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.
Jaya Sadguru Ishvara-Praapaka Hey,
Bhavaroga Vikaara Vinaashaka Hey,
Mana Lina Rahe Tava Shri Charane,
Gurudeva Dayaakara Dinajane.