Yoga – a way of life

Books

The simplest possible meaning of ‘Yoga’ is to unite. The technique of uniting the soul (‘atman’) with God (Parm- atma) is known as ‘Yoga’ in spiritual language. The activities which are required to be followed for starting ‘Yoga’ are known as ‘sadhna’ (spiritual disciplines). ‘Sadhna’ is merely a means in that direction. It is important in as much as it helps in achieving the goal (‘sadhya’). Most people consider means as the end and regard those formalities alone which are used in ‘sadhna’ as ‘Yoga’.   In ‘Yoga Sadhna’ several physical and mental activities and techniques are required to be performed. Their purpose is to create a mental state of uniting self consciousness with cosmic consciousness.

Achievement of goal is possible only if this fact is kept in view. If these actions and techniques alone are considered as practice of  ‘yoga’ and no effort is made for the refinement of one’s consciousness, this existing illusion, will keep one simply where he was like a galley slave, despite hard practices performed.   In ‘Hath yoga’, there are formalities like ‘asan’, pranayam’, ‘bandh’, ‘mudra’, ‘vrat’, ‘maun’, ‘neti’, ‘dhoti’, ‘vasti’, ‘nyoli’, vajroli’, sleeping on the ground, bearing heat and cold. The aim of all of these is merely to gain inner strength and achieve piousness, so that a man who is full of impurities may make his journey towards spiritual progress. Similarly in ‘Upaasana’, for getting enlightened and initiated, one has to take recourse to the practice of ‘jap’, ‘dhyan’, ‘nada’, meditation, ‘swadhyaya’, ‘satsang’ etc., so that consciousness may get inspiration and proper motivation to merge one’s own limited self into the limitless ‘Brahma’.

Purposeless ‘Sadhna’ is nothing else but a mockery and akin to wandering aimlessly in a forest. Physical and mental practices should be regarded merely the basic leans of ‘yogabhyas’. It will be totally fallacious to consider them miraculous and to think that merely by becoming expert in these practices, the object will be achieved. A man uses paper and pen to convey his thoughts. This is definitely an important equipment and, but for it, communication of thoughts will be difficult. Still, the object of  correspondence cannot be fulfilled merely by pen and paper.

If one rubs pen and draws some zig-zag, absurd lines here and there, the purpose of communication by correspondence an not be served. Expression of thoughts in verbal form is extremely essential in the process of writing. Thus. one should not be satisfied by regarding formalities of physical and mental exercises as ‘yogabhyas’. There should be keen effort to elevate emotional consciousness so as to link soul with God. The importance is of emotional awareness and excellence. Then alone will the vehicle move ahead and purpose be solved.

Meditation

Meditation is a bath to your personality of noble thoughts, which you start calling from super conscious realm directing them in such a way that you gradually transcend the everyday level of consciousness.

Man today is living a life of utter chaos. After witnessing and encountering achievements of Science as materialistic means to give him utmost satiety as far as sensual pleasure is concerned, he finds himself at crossroads with no relief from dynamics of today giving him stress and strains.Stress is a menace today killing silently maximum no of persons in society through psychosomatic ailments. Stress is inevitable and each and everyone have to face it in day to day life. Stress free life should never be imagined, as man is born out of stress only. Yogis and Sages of east knew this and they devised spiritual disciplines to modify stress, a physiological phenomenon, constructively, into a source of energy by harnessing dormant storehouse of pranashakti- kundalini (the serpentine fire)

Stress survival is something which eastern mysticism and spirituality mentions in scriptures as a part of day to day living. How negative emotions can be converted into positive ones and how ones’ immunity can be enhanced through meditation giving an eternal fountain of youth, is the lesson we’ve been taught since ages by Rishis of Himalayas in scriptures.

Patanjali Yoga Sutra and Shrimad Bhagwat Geeta are two such ancient books on yoga which teach one how he/she can stress-proof ones’ life style by becoming a Yogi. Meditation is a process which one automatically learns by practicing it. Meditation is a bath to your personality of noble thoughts, which you start calling from super conscious realm directing them in such a way that you gradually transcend the everyday level of consciousness.

Meditation is a practice to bring back the state of equilibrium, which you have disturbed by your present way of living. To streamline the bizarre thinking process leading to lot of distraction and phobias, one needs to meditate every day. Meditation adds to ones creativity, alertness and opens vistas of mind-brain stuff which were lying hidden, unused – unopened till now.

Meditation as a therapy relieving one from destructive stress, making it constructive, is a process which needs constant learning. Once learnt and imbibed in consciousness, it becomes an automatic phenomenon. There are various procedures but each is intended to bring three results bringing complete relaxation of body, slowing down breath and calming the mind.

Meditation or Dhyan is an attempt to bring micro-cosmos closer to macro-cosmos. It can be contemplated by :

1.
  Tratak Yoga (Meditating on a symbol as early morning rising Sun or a light object as a lighted lamp). Gradually by closing and opening eyes and concentrating on light object one can practice how to direct wavering thoughts to one particular point.

2. Jap Yoga (recitation of Mantras with meditation).

3. Nad Yoga (listening to various ragas or sound symbols and concentrating on them),

4. Soham Yoga (controlling breath, contemplating all the time on vedantic philosophy of Divinity residing in one self) or

5. Gandha Yoga (olfactory senses being utilized by aromatic  herbal therapy or Yagna- fumigation of medicinal plants inhaling and contemplating on them).

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