Attaining Yoga or Union:

Attaining Yoga or Union:
Yoga or "Union" is attained by first training, balancing, and purifying each of the aspects of our being individually, and then systematically receding attention inward through those levels, expanding so as to experience the state of Union, Yoga, Samadhi, or Turiya.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Can a Christian Practice Yoga? (VIDEO: 5:45 minutes)

VIDEO (5:45 minutes):

Swami Jnaneshvara Bharati

Can a Christian Practice Yoga? It depends on the individual Christian and the extent of his or her deep longing for union or Yoga that may lie deeply in the mind and heart. If one practices physical posture without the higher goals, it can hardly be called Yoga. It may be physical fitness, but it is no more Yoga than drinking wine and eating bread alone are Christianity.

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Saturday, August 18, 2007

Spirituality and When it Dawns - Swami Rama
From The Essence of Spiritual Life
By Swami Rama
ISBN 8188157015
Reprinted with permission of the Publisher
Copyright Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust
Swami Rama Foundation

Swami Rama

It is not necessary to retire to a monastery to lead a spiritual life. We cannot escape from our inherent longings or postpone our utmost needs. In addition to the primitive urges for food, sex, sleep, and self-preservation, there is a higher urge to merge with God. We cannot be at peace unless that inherent divine urge is fulfilled.

We all want to experience the all-pervading, omnipresent God from which the entire universe, as well as each individual, has evolved. Direct experience of the truth that each of us originates from God, and ultimately will return to God, makes us secure, happy, and strong.

Today millions of educated men and women are suffering from a lack of purpose. Lacking also in self-confidence, young girls and boys have become victims of dissatisfaction and frustration. Along with a worldly education, we must provide some spiritual education.

Human beings have done research on three levels so far on mind, energy, and matter. Yet we have not found out a way to live in peace, to attain happiness that is free from all problems, pains, and miseries. We study this “ism,” and that “ism.” We go to this church and that temple. We seek advice from this swami and that other yogi. Yet, we have not found the way.

The whole confusion lies in the fact that we do not understand ourselves, and yet we introduce ourselves to others. We are strangers to ourselves yet we get married, have children, have homes, and claim to love others.

That training that helps us to attain a state of happiness free from pains and miseries, is missing from our daily life. Nobody teaches us how to look within, how to find within, how to verify within.

We are taught to know and see things in the external world, but this inner training and knowledge is missing. When we graduate with flying colors from colleges and universities, we find that we are still unsatisfied. The big questions about life still remain questions:

Who am I? From where have I come? What is the purpose of life? Where will I go from here?

Modern education helps us to understand and to be successful in the external world, the world of means. It doesn’t help us to know ourselves.

To know yourself, you don’t have to go anywhere. If you want to know yourself, you have to follow the path from the grossest to the subtle, then to the subtler, and finally, to the subtlest aspects of your life. You have to search for yourself, because religions do not fulfill this need.

I am not telling you not to follow your religion, or not to believe and trust in your religion. Often religions do not answer certain vital questions of life. Religions tell you what to do and what not to do, but religions do not tell you how to be.

No matter how many temples and churches we build, nothing is going to happen unless we accept one principle—that the greatest of all churches and temples is the living human being.

The scriptures say:

"The greatest of shrines is the human body. Look within and find within. There His Majesty dwells in the inner recesses, in the inner chamber of your being."

The day you come to know this, you will be happy. To believe in God is not a bad thing. It is a very good thing, because at least you have faith; but you should not forget that God is within you.

As a part of our educational training, we must define spirituality in its most precise and universal terms. Spirituality means that which helps us discipline our thoughts, speech, and actions, that which leads us toward the center of consciousness, and thereby unfolds our inner potentials.

Education based on such spiritual guidelines will help humanity to become self-reliant, confident, and active in the external world. At the same time, it will enable humanity to broaden its world view, and to become inward to search for the perennial Truth. Only a spiritually based education can bring harmonious balance to our external and inner lives.

Knowledge of theories that prove the existence of God is not as important as learning to discipline oneself, so that God can be experienced directly. Children should be taught how to sit quietly and make their minds one-pointed. Through their calm and one-pointed minds, children can obtain a glimpse of true peace and happiness. We need not force them to believe that there is a God; however, we should provide them with the opportunity to unfold their inner potentials, gain confidence, and become inspired to search for God, according to their own inner tendencies and backgrounds. Children need to cultivate divine virtues within themselves.

That which is purely physical has its limits, like the shell of an egg. Spirituality has infinite horizons and limitless freedom. It is full of knowledge and perennial light, life, and delight. When one is completely detached, one realizes oneself in a wider and deeper relationship with the Universal Being.

When ego becomes aware of something that is higher than ego—the individual spirit, or soul—then spirituality dawns.

Spirituality dawns when individuality vanishes.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

VIDEO Tribute to Swami Rama - Master of Yoga, Vedanta, and Tantra

This video is a tribute to Swami Rama of the Himalayas, one of the greatest teachers of Yoga, Vedanta, and Tantra of the twentieth century. Swami Rama was a master of the Himalayan tradition who taught throughout the world and founded the Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust and Swami Rama University near Dehradun, India, as well as Sadhana Mandir Ashram in Rishikesh, India.

VIDEO (3:53 minutes):

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Sunday, August 12, 2007

Does Yogi Bear have anything to do with Yoga? (VIDEO; 50 seconds)

Does Yogi Bear have anything to do with Yoga?

Have you ever seen the cartoon character Yogi Bear? Did you ever wonder how he got his name? Does it have anything to do with Yoga? Here is the answer!

VIDEO answer to the question (50 seconds):

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Friday, August 10, 2007

Wisdom to live by in Yoga Meditation, Vedanta, and Tantra

Wisdom to live by in Yoga Meditation, Vedanta, and Tantra
Click here for VIDEO (1 minute, 18 seconds):

Swami Jnaneshvara

• There is only one highest reality and many teachers.
• All humans and life arise from the same one source.
• All countries, religions and institutions arise from that.
• There are many books of wisdom from many ages.
• Thinking there is only one way comes from ignorance.
• Coercive conversion is violence against other peoples.
• The goal of life is found within, not in institutions.
• Wisdom, joy and freedom come from inner stillness.
• Love all, as we are all waves of the one ocean.

Love all and exclude none.

Click here for VIDEO (1 minute, 18 seconds):

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Nondualism (Advaita) in Vedanta and Yoga Meditation

Nondualism (Advaita) in Vedanta and Yoga Meditation

VIDEO (3 minutes):

Nondualism is central to Advaita Vedanta and Yoga Meditation. Seek to know that by which knowing, The nature of all things is known, Seek to love that by which loving, That love beyond all forms is known. That by which knowing, loving, holding Comes Absolute Joy, The One Joy that is unbounded, unconditioned, Limitless.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Brief Hindu Timeline for Practitioners of Yoga Meditation

Brief Hindu Timeline for Practitioners of Yoga Meditation

(10 minutes)

The dates for the Brief Hindu Timeline are drawn from a significantly more extensive timeline assembled by Hinduism Today in 1994. It should be self evident that the choice of items on the timelines and the dates themselves may not align with the opinions of all people. This video is presented as general information, not as a scholarly stance. Dates preceded by "ca" are approximate. The notation "bce" means "before common era" in the year zero of the Western or Gregorian calendar. The notation "ce" means "common era" and is after the year zero.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Advanced Yoga Nidra



The form of Yoga Nidra being described in this article can be called Advanced Yoga Nidra. In recent years Yoga Nidra has been distorted in ways similar to Yoga itself. Unfortunately, almost any guided practice that brings a modicum of relaxation is now called Yoga Nidra. Therefore, it is now virtually essential that we use another term, such as Authentic Yoga Nidra, Traditional Yoga Nidra, or Advanced Yoga Nidra. I've opted for the term Advanced Yoga Nidra in this article.