To benefit from the spiritual science of yoga, the comparative nature between yoga and meditation should be understood.
One should not be performed without the other. Yoga is commonly thought of as a set of postures, however yoga actually goes far and beyond this concept. The set of postures are tools of a yogic system that ready our body for meditation. Performed alone they stand as taxing transition moves and just exercise. The yoga system as a whole is in fact a means to attune the mind and the senses, to draw them away from attachment to sense objects. As described in Senses Decoded, the mind sits above the senses. In material existence we are subjected to the influence of the mind and the senses. Therefore, if we remain attracted by sense objects the soul will be entangled due to the demands of the mind and unregulated senses, taking our relationship with reality further away.
“Until the mind is befriended by the practice of yoga and meditation, one will continue serving the dictations of material energy.”
A yogi is not one seeking an improvement in health or acrobatic feats or one that does not regulate daily practices, namely eating and sleeping. Excessive eating means to consume more than is required to keep the soul and body together. The foods consumed should mostly be in the mode of goodness. One who eats more than required will dream more while sleeping, resulting in sleeping more than is required. Those temperate in habits of eating, sleeping, working and recreation can mitigate all material pains by practicing the yoga system.
Yoga practice is to enable the cessation of all material existence. It is meditation on the supersoul within. In both meditation and yoga there is spirit, therefore these are spiritual practices. Yoga offers us an intimate connection to the universe as well as to realms beyond the material universe. For it to be revealing and everlasting, it should be totally voluntary and fuelled by love. It is a practice that motivates and elevates us by actively engaging us in a manner that is harmonious to all other living beings. This allows us to experience peaceful interconnectedness with all life forms.
Yoga as a whole should be understood as a collective of actions that allow us to live our life as a meditation. Essentially, it is yoga that allows us to meditate. To practice meditation the neck and body should be held upright in a straight line, while looking at the tip of the nose. We should meditate with a calm and subdued mind, without fear.
“What metamorphosis does for a butterfly, is what meditation does for a human.”
Yoga is a state of consciousness. It means to concentrate the mind by controlling the ever-disturbing senses. Such equanimity is called yoga. Yoga establishes a link between your consciousness and God. It is an experience of the inner self, the infinitely peacock, intelligent pure consciousness that is beyond the three modes of material nature. The contemporary world of postural yoga, alone is not considered true yoga. These are part of the path of yoga, which includes those techniques and procedures that support the experience of the state of yoga and the inner experience of the self. A regular practice of yoga postures serves as a starting point in our journey of connecting to the self. In the true yogic philosophy, there are three types of yoga: Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga and Bhakti Yoga.
Karma Yoga, Yoga of Action
Path to liberation through actions performed for God
When performing actions to satisfy God and no other results, the beneficial results will follow naturally. This relieves you of your prescribed duty and you won’t feel your daily work is a burden. These actions build your good karma and bring you closer to liberation from the karmic cycle.
Jnana Yoga, Yoga of Knowledge
Path of knowledge to enlightenment
A laborious process that involves attuning the mind to taught knowledge through the study of scriptures over several years. This knowledge enables you to connect to the supersoul resulting in enlightenment through intellectual advancement.
Bhakti Yoga, Yoga of Devotion.
Path of loving devotion to God
Following dedicated spiritual traditions in the love of God bring us to a harmonious selfless balance. This devotion creates a high frequency in our aura, which purifies our existence bringing us closer to God.
The three types of yoga can be achieved by meditation practice. Meditation is a process of aligning with your higher self. This inner alignment clears path to thrive in material existence. When looking beyond material nature meditation can connect us to spiritual beings, bringing us knowledge and cosmic energies. Breathing plays a key factor in being able to meditate. When the mind is befriended in such manner, we are dictated by the supersoul. Known in Sanskrit as Paramatma, the supersoul is situated within the heart of everyone. The real essence of yoga practice entails meeting the supersoul within the heart. Through the practice of yoga and disciplined mental activities, you can become situated in transcendence, devoid of all material desires. Only then have you attained yoga.
- Space Apricity
Meditation & Yoga
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