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Twenty Important Spiritual Instructions Chidananda.

TWENTY IMPORTANT SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTIONS

1. Get up at 4. a.m. daily. This is Brahmamuhurta which is extremely favourable for


meditation on God.
2. 2. Asana: Sit on Padma, Siddha or Sukha Asana for Japa and meditation for half an hour,
facing the east or the north. Increase the period gradually to three hours. Do Sirshasana
and Sarvangasana for keeping up Brahmacharya and health. Take light physical
exercises as walking, etc., regularly. Do twenty Pranayamas.

sanas para Brahmacharya.


3. Japa: Repeat any Mantra as pure Om or Om Name Narayanaya, Om Namah Sivaya, Om
Name Bhagavate Vasudevaya, Om Saravanabhavaya Namah, Sita Ram, Sri Ram, Hari
Om, or Gayatri, according to your taste or inclination, from 108 to 21,600 times daily.

Mantra pra pegar na mente, mais de 10.000 vezes.


Dietetic Discipline: Take Sattvic food, Suddha Ahara. Give up chillies, tamarind, garlic, onion,
sour articles, oil, mustard, asafoetida. Observe moderation in diet (Mitahara). Do not overload
the stomach. Give up those things which the mind likes best for a fortnight in a year. Eat simple
food. Milk and fruits help concentration.

Take food as medicine to keep the life going. Eating for


enjoyment is sin. Give up salt and sugar for a month. You
must be able to live on rice, Dhal and bread without any
chutni. Do not ask for extra salt for Dhal and sugar for
tea, coffee or milk.

5. Have a separate meditation room under lock and key.

6. Charity: Do charity regularly, every month, or even daily according to your means, say six
paisa per rupee.

7. Svadhyaya: Study systematically the Gita, the Ramayana, the Bhagavata, Vishnu-
Sahasranama, Lalita-Sahasranama, Aditya Hridaya, Upanishads or Yoga Vasishtha, the Bible,
Zend Avesta, the Koran, the Tripitakas, the Granth Sahib, etc., from half an hour to one hour
daily and have Suddha Vichara.

8. Brahmacharya: Preserve the vital force (Veerya) very, very carefully. Veerya is God in
motion or manifestationVibhuti. Veerya is all power. Veerya is all money. Veerya is the
essence of life, thought and intelligence.

9. Prayer Slokas: Get by heart some prayer-Slokas, Stotras and repeat them as soon as you sit in
the Asana before starting Japa or meditation. This will elevate the mind quickly. 10. Satsanga:
Have Satsanga. Give up bad company, smoking, meat and alcoholic liquors entirely. Do not
develop any evil habits.

11. Fast on Ekadasi: Fast on Ekadasi or live on milk and fruits only
12. Japa Mala: Have Japa Mala (rosary) round your neck or in your pocket or
underneath your pillow at night.

13. Mouna: Observe Mouna (vow of silence) for a couple of hours daily. 14. Speak the Truth:
Speak the truth at all cost. Speak a little. Speak sweetly. 15. Reduce your wants. If you have four
shirts, reduce the number to three or two. Lead a happy, contented life. Avoid unnecessary
worry. Have plain living and high thinking. 16. Never hurt anybody: Never hurt anybody (Ahimsa
Paramo Dharmah). Control anger by love, Kshama (forgiveness) and Daya (compassion). 17.
Do not depend upon servants: Do not depend upon servants. Self-reliance is the highest of all
virtues. 18. Self-analysis: Think of the mistakes you have committed during the course of the
day, just before retiring to bed (self-analysis). Keep daily diary and self-correction register. Do
not brood over past mistakes. 19. Fulfil duties: Remember that death is awaiting you at every
moment. Never fail to fulfil your duties. Have pure conduct (Sadachara). 20. Surrender to God:
Think of God as soon as you wake up and just before you go to sleep. Surrender yourself
completely to God (Saranagati).

We however have inherited a synthesis of the three main paths of bhakti (devotion), dhyana
(meditation), and atma-jnana (direct knowledge of the self), a beautiful integrated synthesis, a
harmonious blend of the three. So we have to exercise our vichara (enquiry) also. At the same
time Gurudev gave us a very systematically drawn up discipline through his 20 Important
Spiritual Instructions.

You have to get up early in the morning. You have to do a little


meditation, a little japa, a little kirtan, a little asana, pranayama
every morning, then only you must enter the day. This is His
speciality.

So there is this paddhati (traditional way) of Guru parampara (lineage of Gurus). Therefore,
Sadasiva samarambham, Sankaracharya madhyamam, asmad Acharya paryantam, vande
Gurum paramparam. I bow and pay homage to this long line of succession of Gurus that
originated from Sankar Bhagavan Himself and that had in its middle Sankara Acharya
Absence of attention to this concluding admonition will make the 20 Important Spiritual
Instructions useless and of no benefit to anyone.

Start with this, read it first and afterwards come back to


the first instruction. That will do for today. Tomorrow
you start with the one after the 20th instruction and
the second instruction. The day after tomorrow you
start with the one after the 20th instruction and the
third instruction. On the fourth day, you start with the
one after the 20th instruction and the fourth
instruction.

After completing the 20 instructions (i.e. after 20 days) go over all of them starting with the first.
Spend half an hour or 45 minutes meditating upon all twenty instructions that should now be
standing in shining letters of gold before your minds eye. Concentrate upon it. Meditate upon
it and see what it does for you. Then think of ways and means of incorporating this into your
daily life. Become an embodiment, a living and active embodiment of Swami Sivanandajis 20
Important Spiritual Instructions within the scope and mettle of your own ability and capacity.
CHAPTER II FIRST SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION GET UP AT 4.00 A.M.

1.Get up at 4. a.m. daily. This is Brahmamuhurta which is extremely favourable for meditation
on God. The first spiritual instruction is: Get up at 4 a.m. This is brahmamuhurta. This is very,
very helpful and conducive for meditation and sadhana (spiritual practices). Why should you
get up at 4 a.m.? Because it gives you more time, and that time can be utilised for sadhana.
The hallmark of a spiritual aspirant is that he is awake among the slumbering, vigilant among
the heedless, alert among the indolent and he attains liberation. Therefore, if others are
slumbering when you are awake, at least there will be no disturbance and you will be saving
time. Time is the essence of life. If you sleep away you lose time, if you lose time, you lose life.
Lord Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita: I am Timethe all destroyer. I swallow up everything,
including human life.

How can you expect real shanti (peace) if you sleep your time away, by night and by day? He
did not say that, but one of the greatest swallowers of time is this terrible thing called sleep
a product of tamo guna (inertia) and a destroyer of life, also, more than anything else a
destroyer of spiritual sadhana, and if indulged in more than what is necessary, becomes a
destroyer of healthphysical as well as mental.
ASANA Relationship of Body with Spirit. 2. Asana: Sit on Padma, Siddha or Sukha Asana for Japa
and meditation for half on hour, facing the east or the north. Increase the period gradually to
three hours. Do Sirshasana and Sarvangasana for keeping up Brahmacharya and health. Take
light physical exercises as walking, etc., regularly. Do twenty Pranayamas. The body is the
spiritual manifestation of the Supreme Being in its grossest form. The Spirit is the ultimate
invisible form of gross prakriti (matter) as is manifest as the material universe.

a) The first part of this instruction deals with japa and meditation. In the early morning, as
soon as you get up, sit for japa and meditation. Therefore, get up at 4 a.m.
brahmamuhurta, and sit in padma, siddha orsukha asana for japa and meditation for
half an hour, facing East or North. You get up in order to think of God, to remember Him,
to take His Name and focus your mind upon Him. This is the way to start the day
b) Gradually increase the period. Do not be satisfied. We are never satisfied with eating
tasty things.

The second part of the instruction speaks about physical health. Do sirshasana (head-stand)
and sarvangasana (shoulder-stand) for keeping up brahmacharya and health. Take light
physical exercise such as walking, regularly. Do some pranayama (breathing exercises). For all
the four purusharthas (human efforts) including earning money, accumulating wealth,
fulfilling of your legitimate sattvic (pure) desires, and even for attaining moksha, health of the
body is of paramount importance. Never neglect it. It is folly to neglect it. It is wisdom to
preserve it. When you draw near to old age, then you will realise the truth of this adage.
Therefore, Hatha Yoga exercises should be practised, and also take some light physical
exercise like walking, jogging etc. Take care of this physical vehicle.
3. Japa: Repeat any Mantra as pure Om or Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Sivaya, Om Namo
Bhagavate Vasudevaya, Om Saravanabhavaya Namah, Sita Ram, Sri Ram, Hari Om, or Gayatri,
according to your taste or inclination, from 108 to 21,600 times daily. God is intangible,
avyakta (unmanifest), adrishta (unseen) agochara (imperceptible). All this is made very clear
in the Vishnu Sahasranama. He is goodhah (hidden): Eko devah sarva bhuteshu goodhah (the
one Lord is hidden in all beings). He is sukshma-atisukshma (subtler than the subtlest),
avangmanogochara (not known by the senses or the mind). Yato vacho nivartante aprapya
manasa saha (whence all speech along with the mind, turn back, not reaching it). He is beyond
thought, beyond speech.

Gurudev says Do japa of any Name that is to your taste


or just OM, from 108 times each day to 21,600 times,
that is from one mala to 200 malas (21,600 are the
number of breaths that we take every 24 hours). The
more the better!

FOURTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION DIETETIC DISCIPLINE 4. Dietetic Discipline: Take Sattvic food,
Suddha Ahara. Give up chillies, tamarind, garlic, onion, sour articles, oil, mustard, asafoetida.
Observe moderation in diet (Mitahara). Do not overload the stomach. Give up those things
which the mind likes best for a fortnight in a year. Eat simple food. Milk and fruits help
concentration. Take food as medicine to keep the life going. Eating for enjoyment is sin. Give up
salt and sugar for a month. You must be able to live on rice, Dhal and bread without any chutni.
Do not ask for extra salt for Dhal and sugar for tea, coffee or milk.

The fourth instruction is a little lengthy. It concerns an important aspect of our daily lifethe
food we eat.
You all know the well-known saying: Eat to live. Do not live to eat.

Take sattvic (pure) food. In Gurudevs commentary on the Gunatraya Vibhaga Yoga in the
Bhagavad Gita Jnanopadesh, in Practical Lessons in Yoga and in many other books He has given
a complete list of sattvic and tamasic ahara (food).

You must be able to live on rice, vegetables and bread without any pickle. Do not ask for extra
salt for vegetables or extra sugar for tea, coffee or milk. So, if you want to be a self-controlled
person you must be able to control the tongue.

There is a saying: Jitam sarvam jite rase All the senses


are controlled if the tongue is controlled. Therefore
moderation is the keynote and not indulging in articles
that are likely to be tamasic and disturbing to your
spiritual evolution.

There is a saying in Tamil: Adhikam aanaal amrutamum visham. If you take beyond measure,
even nectar may become poison.

Fast on Ekadasi, food is the one thing that constantly goes into our body from birth until death.
That which goes inside and becomes part of us is certainly likely to influence and affect our entire
make-up, not only our physical health, but its quality affects the mind also. Its subtle vibration
becomes our second nature (svabhava) and then it goes to form the mind-stuff (chitta). Food
has therefore a threefold effectit affects the body, the mind and the sub-conscious mind.
Hence these general instructions. Moderation is the keynote, so fast once in a fortnight and try
to discipline yourself.

It is the one thing which goes into you constantly, without missing a single day, except on
Ekadasi. Therefore it is of great importance to know how to eat, what to eat and what not to
eat. This Physical body is called annamaya kosha (food sheath). This sheath is pervaded by food
and naturally it is the one element which enters, and goes to form our brain cells and mind-stuff

In this Kali Yuga, the body is sustained by food, and


therefore food is inevitable.

Have a separate meditation room under lock and key. This of course, may not be possible for
monastics living in a monastery or university or college students living in a hostel where perhaps
they have to share a room with others. Therefore, the essence of it has to be taken namely, have
a particular spot in your own room which is used exclusively for meditation, prayer, japafor
spiritual sadhana only.

Do not keep changing your place everyday. If you do not wish to meditate inside your room,
perhaps you can go for a walk and end up by sitting on the banks of the Ganga on some stone.
If that is the practice, let it be the same stone day after day, week after week, month after
month, as long as you stay there, because there is something about the same place and the
same timea certain vibration, a certain atmosphere is created in that spot.
Therefore the same applies psychologically also. If at a particular time everyday you sit in a
particular place and do japa or meditation, it invokes the same mood and inclination in the mind
when that time comes. And to support it with external factors Gurudev has suggested the
repetition of certain slokas or keeping quiet for sometime or doing the pranavaOMa
number of times. Then immediately the whole mood becomes indrawn, meditative and uplifted.
Such is the force of DIETETIC DISCIPLINE regular repetition of a particular process exactly at a
given time, day after day

A separate meditation room under lock and key means that it


should be used for that purpose only. No other type of vibration
should be allowed to intrude there. If others with dissimilar
vibrations are allowed to enter they will evoke inharmonious
vibrations, and you will not be able to take advantage of your
own atmosphere or vibrations in the akasha (space). Therefore,
we should not allow other people to come inside our room and
gossip and spread their inharmonious vibrations around.

However, the best meditation room is your heart, the interior of the mind. The advantage of
this is you can enter into it wherever you are, at any time you like. Even in the midst of a
General Body Meeting, you can retire into yourself and be in meditation for a little while if
the meeting is going out of bounds.
There is a Bengali saying: Where to meditate? Which is the ideal place? Bane, kone, mane.
Banethe ideal place, if possible, is to go and sit in the jungle; otherwise konein a corner of
your room; otherwise manein your own heart, your own mind. Close your eyes, enter into
your secret closet where you and God alone dwell within your own being. Close the doorthat
means close all the senses. Do pratyahara (withdrawal), do not allow the senses to tempt you
to go hither and thither, control rajas and be at peace. For in truth, you have neither rajas nor
tamas nor sattva. You are the Atman beyond the three gunas.

Therefore, enter into your secret closet, close the door and
there be alone with God. Listen to what He has to say. That is
the sanctuarythe inner sanctuary. Sri Ramakrishna
Paramahamsa said: Do you know what the sattvic man does?
He pretends to go to sleep, gets under the mosquito curtain and
switches off the light and everyone thinks he is sleeping. There
he sits and meditates. So, no one can see him under the
mosquito net,

6. Charity. Do charity regularly, every month or even daily according to your means, say six paisa
per rupee.

SEVENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION SVADHYAYA

7. Svadhyaya: Study systematically the Gita, the Ramayana, the Bhagavata, Vishnu-
Sahasranama, Lalita-Sahasranama, Aditya Hridaya, Upanishads or Yoga Vasishtha, the Bible,
Zend Avesta, the Koran, the Tripitakas, the Granth Sahib, etc., from half an hour to one hour
daily and have Suddha Vichara.

The greatest virtue of the human heart is gratitude. Even dogs have it. Therefore, they say
that nothing is so terrible as a persons ungratefulness. There is a sonnet: Blow, Blow, thou
winter wind, thou are not so unkind as mans ingratitude. So we have to be grateful to them
from whom we have received something. There is a concept of Pancha Maha Yajnas (five main
sacrifices). Through yajna (sacrifice) we offer a part of ourselves, our time, our energy, our
intelligence and thus repay a little bit of the debt of gratitude we owe to others. (1) Pitru
Yajna: We are grateful to our ancestors in whose line we are born. We inherited this body
from them in which we live and function and also do spiritual sadhana and attain
enlightenment and then try to serve humanity. In this way we are grateful to our ancestors
immediate as well as remote. (2) Deva Yajna: We are grateful to the various cosmic forces
that keep this cosmos in perfect order and precisionfire burns, water flows, wind blows.
So to Vayu Devata, Agni Devata and Varuna Devata we are grateful. We have to give a part
of our gratitude to the Devatas. (3) Bhuta Yajna: We are beholden to so many creatures,
insects, even crows because they scavange. This is bhuta yajna. (bhuta means creatures). (4)
Atithi Yajna: An unexpected visitor arriving at your door affords you an opportunity to serve
him with your hospitality. An opportunity to serve is a great blessedness because service
makes you shed your selfishness, it purifies your heart and opens up a feeling for others, a
feeling of love and oneness. Therefore, be grateful. (5) Rishi Yajna: And then, for our guidance,
for our practical instructions, for our inspiration, for our caution, for our protection, for our
warningdue warning before danger comesthe great men of wisdom and enlightenment,
the illumined sages of God-realisation have left their wisdom teachings in the form of
scriptures. So to them the whole world is eternally grateful. These Maha Rishis have produced
the scriptures and that debt gets repaid by making use of these wisdom teachings by daily
study. This study is an attempt to repay our debt of gratitude to the great sages, remote as
well as recent. This is called swadhyaya.
Gurudev says: Do swadhyaya, study systematically holy scriptures according to your religion for
half an hour to one hour daily and have pure thoughts. Holy scriptural reading should be backed
up by pure thoughts, and pure thoughts induce you to take to holy scriptural study, and this
study, encourages and brings about purity of thought.

They are all inter-connected. Therefore, study of scriptures is an important part of the 20
Spiritual Instructions and forms what is known as Rishi Yajna. To repay our debt of gratitude
to these great sages of yore, the ancient men of wisdom SVADHYAYA who have given us the
greatest of all treasures, jnana (knowledge)which alone distinguishes the human being
from all lesser specieswe should make a sincere, earnest, daily attempt on our part to study
these wisdom teachings. Jnana (knowledge) makes the difference between the pashu
(animal), the manava or manushya (human being) and the haivan (devil).
EIGHTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION BRAHMACHARYA 8.
Brahmacharya: Preserve the vital force (Veerya) very, very carefully. Veerya is God in motion or
manifestationVibhuti. Veerya is all power. Veerya is all money. Veerya is the essence of life,
thought and intelligence.

Preserve the vital force very, very carefully. Veerya is


God in motion or manifestationvibhuti, veerya is all
power. Veerya is all money. Veerya is the essence of life,
thought and intelligence.

A certain psychic fineness of the antahkarana (inner being) is said to be essential and
indispensable for rising higher into sublime ideas, thoughts and processes of viveka
(discrimination), vichara (enquiry) and atma sadhana (enquiry into the Self). Therefore, this
process of purification, the rising from the gross to the subtle, is the essence of the concept of
brahmacharya.

Because provision was made by the Cosmic Intelligence Power that we call para-Brahman and
the Cosmic Force that we call Para-shakti, Adi-shakti, Maha-shakti, it has been possible that
different species of living creatures, different species of plant life, botanical life, has lived,
developed and evolved through the ages. This perpetuation of the species is the law of life in
the entire universe, in every form of life, not only human, animal or sub-animalinsect, reptile,
fishbut even in the botanical world.

Power of Brahmacharya It is this force of brahmacharya that is the invaluable force that gives
success in sravana (hearing), manana (reflection) and nididhyasana (concentration). It gives
success in the practice of the nine modes of BhaktiSravana, kirtana, smarana, archana,
vandana, pada-sevana, dasya, sakhya, and atma-nivedana. It makes possible the successful
practice of Raja Yogayama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and
samadhi. It makes for a fruitful practice of asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, kriya leading
into samadhi of the Hatha Yoga system. It is this force that brought forth Ravindranath Tagore,
Bhagat Singh, Mahatma Gandhi, Beethoven, Bach, Albert Schweitzer, Joan of Arc and Mother
Theresa. It is this marvellous force that brought forth sage Valmiki and all the other great
towering figures in history. Their miracle was because of this secret of conservation,
preservation, sublimation and sublime application towards a higher purpose.

You must have your ears under control. You must have your eyes under control. You must
have your hands and feet under control. You must have your tongue also under control. Then
there is some possibility of being established in sex purity.
The root cause of all sin is body consciousness. Therefore, if you want to be free of body
consciousness you start with your body level. Be rooted in brahmacharya. Brahmacharya is the
sense of total mastery of all your senses, self-control and all that is necessary to bring about self-
masterypurity of food, purity of company, purity of reading, nobility of thoughts, having self-
restraint (nirodh) in your mind. If any negative down-playing thought comes, instantaneously it
must be thrown out. It should not be allowed to remain for a single moment, not even a split
second. That type of self-restraint, samskara (impression) has to be cultivated, created within
your antahkarana (inner being).

You can never be wrong if you have deep Guru bhakti, if you have deep faith, absolute trust in
the words of the Gurus teachings. It is the right approach to life. Therefore it is said in the Gita,
a person is what his faith is. Tell me what he believes inI will tell you what he is. Tell me what
company he keepsI will tell you what that person is. In this way, as is your faith and firm
belief, so will be your chesta or endeavour. Develop, therefore, firm faith in the teaching of the
Guru, the scriptures, what you hear in satsanga. And due to constant hearing in satsanga, be
convinced of the emptiness of fleeting names and forms, fleeting things which attract you, that
seem to be real, but are not real.

NINTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION PRAYERSLOKAS 9

. Prayer Slokas: Get by heart some prayer-Slokas, Stotras and repeat them as soon as you sit
in the Asana before starting Japa or meditation. This will elevate the mind quickly. Get by heart
some slokas, some prayers, some stotras and repeat them as soon as you sit in the asana before
starting japa or meditation. This will elevate your mind.

Gurudev says in The Essence of Yoga that Prayer elevates the mind. It fills the mind with purity.
It is associated with praise of God. It keeps the mind in tune with God. Prayer can reach a realm
where reason dare not enter. Prayer can move mountains. It can work miracles. It frees the
devotee from the fear of death, brings him nearer to God and makes him feel the Divine
Presence everywhere. It awakens in him the Divine Consciousness and makes him feel his
essential immortal and blissful nature.

TENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION SATSANGA 10.

Satanga: Have Satsanga. Give up bad company, smoking, meat and alcoholic liquors entirely. Do
not develop any evil habits. Have satsanga, give up bad company, smoking, meat-eating and
alcoholic liquor entirely. Do not develop any evil habits. Ego is very bad company. Selfishness is
very bad company. Anger is very bad company. All these are bad company. All that constitutes
this little barrier personality, little ego, is bad company.

ELEVENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION FAST ON EKADASI 11.

Fast on Ekadasi: Fast on Ekadasi or live on milk and fruits only. Fast two days in a month or live
on milk and fruits only. That of course is incumbent upon all sadhakas, fasting on Ekadasi. Some
fast every Monday or every Thursday or every Friday or every Sunday.

Gurudev says in His book Hindu Fasts & Festivals, that in this Kali Yuga, even if just one Ekadasi
is observed with dispassion, faith and devotion, and if the mind is wholly fixed on Hari, one is
freed from the rounds of birth and death. There is no doubt about this. The scriptures give us
their assurance on this point.

Devotees fast on this day, observe vigil the whole night and do
japa, Hari kirtan and meditation. Some do not take even a drop
of water. Those who are unable to fast completely can take
some light fruit and milk.

No rice should be taken on Ekadasi days. This is very important. The sweat that fell from the
head of Brahma assumed the form of a demon and said to the Lord, O Lord now give me an
abode to dwell. Brahma replied: O demon! Go and dwell in the rice particles eaten by men on
Ekadasi day and become worms in their stomach.

For this reason rice is prohibited on Ekadasi. If one observes the Ekadasi fast regularly, Lord Hari
is propitiated. All sins are destroyed. The mind is purified. Devotion gradually develops. Love for
God becomes intense. Orthodox people in South India observe complete fasting and vigil even
on ordinary Ekadasi days. For the devotees of Lord Vishnu, every Ekadasi is very sacred day.

TWELFTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION JAPA MALA (ROSARY) 12.


Japa Mala: Have Japa Mala (rosary) round your neck or in your pocket or underneath your pillow
at night.

If one does 200 malas of japa every day it is tantamount to remembrance of the Lord throughout
the day. Malas contain beads which form divisions of 108. The meru (the central bead in the
mala) denotes that you have done the repetition 108 times. This also denotes that every time
you come to the meru bead you have gone one step further on the spiritual path and crossed
over one obstacle. A portion of your ignorance is removed.

THIRTEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION VOW OF SILENCE (MOUNA) 13.

Mouna: Observe Mouna (vow of silence) for a couple of hours daily. Gurudev meant absolute
not making hoo-hoo or pointing or other gestures. Silence means it should be absolute silence
(kashta mouna). One should be withdrawn at least two hours dally. Someone wrote and asked:
I am observing mouna during my sleep. Is this also to be counted as mouna? Swamiji said
No! It is daily, not nightly. Observe absolute silence a couple of hours daily. That is control of
vak indriya (organ of speech). Two hours is the absolute minimum. Greater still is the need of
mental silenceinner silence.

A vow of silence must be practised once a week. Much energy is wasted in talking.

Do not allow anything to come out from the mind through the vak-
indriya (organ of speech). Observe mouna (a vow of silence). This will
help you. Considerable peace follows mouna. The speech energy
becomes transmuted into spiritual energy (ojas). Sankalpas become
much decreased. Will becomes stronger. Now you have shut out a big
source of disturbance. You will rest now in peace. Meditate on God or
Brahman now in right earnest.

Be careful in the selection of your words before you speak. Think thrice before you speak.
Consider what effect the words will produce on the feelings of others. Observe mouna for a
couple of years. It is tapas of speech. Do not argue unnecessarily. Argument brings about
hostility, heated feelings and wastage of energy. Every man has got his own views, his own
opinion, ideas, sentiments, beliefs and convictions. It is very difficult to change the views of
others. Do not try to convince others. When you are an aspirant, when you are gathering facts
and knowledge from the study of sacred lore, do not argue with others till your thoughts have
become mature and steady.

In the beginning, when you observe mouna, you will find some difficulty. There will be a severe
attack of vrittis. Various kinds of thoughts will arise and force you to break the silence. These
are all vain imaginations and deceptions of the mind. Be bold. Concentrate all energies on God.
Make the mind fully occupied.

FOURTEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION SPEAK THE TRUTH 14.

Speak the Truth: Speak the truth at all cost. Speak a little. Speak sweetly. Speak the truth at all
cost. Mita bhashana (little speech), madhura bhashana (sweet speech), mrudu bhashana (soft
speech) and satya vachana (truthful speech). Speak a little. Speak sweetly. In other instructions
Gurudev also said speak softly. The second of the Universal Vows which Maharshi Patanjali lays
down for the seeker to practise is the strict observance of TRUTHFULNESS. You have got to be
absolutely truthful if you would progress towards God who is TRUTH. To realise the Truth one
must live in truth. One must grow into the very form of truth. Not a partial but a perfect and
comprehensive adherence to truth is therefore the second element in forming the foundation
of the sadhaka life.

Do you realise fully now the extreme importance of this


item of yama? Never swerve from Truth. Have no
compromise with half-truth. Many forms of falsification
and so-called harmless untruths have become part and
parcel of present-day social life.

Flattery is a form of untruth. You dont mean what you utter but shamelessly utter it just to
obtain the favour of the other person. Exaggeration is another form of falsehood you indulge in
just to create sensation and gain importance. Duplicity and diplomacy is another despicable sin
against satyam. Be sincere and straightforward. Be open-hearted.

O sadhaka! You are pure Divine Spirit. To be pure, to be spiritual is to be true. To be undivine, to
be impure or unspiritual is to be false. Your whole being, your entire conduct and every aspect
of your life must manifest only the true atmic nature. Truth denotes the practising of all the
daivi-sampat as described in the Bhagavad Gita. O aspirants! If you are really earnest about
sadhana, if you want quick progress in the spiritual life, if you are eager to attain the Goal of life,
then stick to truth at any cost.

REDUCE YOUR WANTS

15. Reduce your wants. If you have four shirts, reduce the number to three or two. Lead a happy,
contented life. Avoid unnecessary worry. Have plain living and high thinking. Reduce your wants.
If you have four shirts reduce the number to three or two. Lead a happy, contented life (sada
santushta Yogi). Avoid unnecessary worry. Here there is an equal of Mahatma Gandhis
teachings in the next sentenceHave plain living and high thinking. This was Mahatma Gandhis
instruction to all his correspondents as also to students and the whole nation, and which, during
his own lifetime, he himself practised.

SIXTEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION NEVER HURT ANYBODY 16.

Never hurt anybody: Never hurt anybody (Ahimsa Paramo Dharmah). Control anger by love.
Kshama (forgiveness and Daya (compassion).

Triple is this gate of hell, destructive of the selflust, anger and greed; therefore should one
abandon these three. Anger (krodha) is due to desires, anger is due to selfishness, anger is due
to various types of inner vikritis (changes). It can take many, many formssubtle forms, so you
have to do introspection, self-analysis and try to find out the different aspects of anger lurking
within. Gurudev wrote a complete booklet of about 32 pages on Conquest of Anger. He also
wrote a little drama many, many years ago, Anger and Passionthere is an argument
between who is superior. Passion says I am superior, anger says I am superior. Then they say let
us make experiments upon man and see who is superior. Anger wins the day because it
overcomes man suddenly, like a tiger pouncing upon an unwary traveller in a jungle.

SEVENTEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION DO NOT DEPEND ON SERVANTS

Do not depend upon servants: Do not depend upon servants. Self-reliance is the highest of all
virtues. Self-reliance is the highest of all virtues. Not to depend upon servants does not
necessarily mean paid servants. It means do not depend upon others. A Karma Yogi should never
take work from others. He must wash his own clothes, sweep his own room. He must not be
ashamed to carry heavy loads. Feel that you are nothing. 41 NEVER HURT ANYBODY Gurudev
says do not depend upon anybody, Rely on yourself. Be centred in the Atma only.

EIGHTEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION SELF-ANALYSIS 18.

Self-analysis: Think of the mistakes you hove committed during the course of the day, just before
retiring to bed (sell-analysis). Keep daily diary and self-correction register. Do not brood over
past mistakes. Think of the mistakes you have committed during the course of the day just
before retiring to bed (self-analysis). Keep a daily spiritual diary and self-correction register. Do
not brood over past mistakes. Once you correct yourself the necessity of brooding goes away.
In the evening, after having done the days work, sit for fifteen or twenty minutes and recollect
what actions you had engaged in from morning till evening. Recollect what you did, how you did
it, why you did it. Ask the question, Why? What was your ultimate object in performing every
action? Was it only to help someone else? Was it only to fulfil your duties, to discharge your
obligations, to obey orders, or was there something else also? What was your inner feeling when
you engaged in each action? This kind of recollection and self-analysis is known as introspection.
Daily introspection is very necessary for the spiritual seeker. For this purpose, set apart a certain
time in the evening, sit and review the whole days activities and try to go into its inner contents.

NINETEENTH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION DO YOUR DUTY 19. (BEST)

Fulfil duties: Remember that death is awaiting you at every moment. Never fail to fulfil your
duties. Have pure conduct (Sadachara). Remember that death is death is awaiting you at every
moment. Never fail to fulfil your duties. Have pure conduct (sadachara) because the law of
action and reaction governs life. In the book Sermonettes of Swami Sivananda, Gurudev says
that you should not expect any reward for your service. The human mind is so framed that it
does not allow you to render any service to anybody without your expecting a reward, an
expression of gratitude, a smile or a thanks. Even if you are unjustifiably criticised, even if you
are scolded by the very person whom you serve you should go on rendering your service with
atma bhava. Do not hanker after praise or approbation. Let us do our dutyshould be your
motto. Love for loves sake. Work for works sake.

TWENTIETH SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTION THINK OF GOD WHEN YOU WAKE UP 20.

Surrender to God: Think of God as soon as you wake up and just before you go to sleep.
Surrender yourself completely to God (Saranagati). Think of God as soon as you wake up and
just before you go to sleep. Surrender yourself completely to God, saranagati. Isvarapranidhana
is translated as surrender to the Divine. It is Saranaagatioffering ourselves unto the Divine.
I am now in one position, and in surrender, I change my position and put myself into another
position. I centre myself in the Divine. I give myself up and place myself in the Divine for the
Divine to do what It wishes with me. So, it is called self-offering or offering of oneself. It is
called self-surrender. Now, self-surrender, rightly practised, is a great help in achieving the
ultimate aim of Yoga namely, Superconsciousness. Superconsciousness is a state in which one is
able to go beyond the present state of bondage resulting from an erroneous idea about oneself.
In Superconsciousness, one transcends error and moves into truth, into right perception; thus
moving, one attains illumination, one regains ones true status of Purushahood. That is the
value of Super-consciousness; that is the significance of attaining Super-consciousness.
Superconsciousness corrects the whole error of the human being and puts him back where he
belongs. Now, in the realm of Yoga, in the realm of niyama, in realm of isvarapranidhana also,
the same situation prevails; the same truth holds good. You have to say, O Lord, I place myself
entirely in You. Let it not be as I wish, but let it be as Thou wishest. My whole life is in Your hands.
I place myselfbody, mind and soulin Your hands. In this way, the Yogi, the Sadhaka, must
learn to abide by the Will of God, must try to find out the Will of God. He must learn to place
himself at the feet of God in obedience. He must surrender the inveterate urges of the ego
principle and the demanding desire nature of the mind and the turbulent urges of the sense
appetites at the feet of God. He should place all of these things under the governance of the Will
of the Divine. He DO YOUR DUTY should put himself under Divine control, Divine supervision,
Divine direction. He has thus to liberate himself. (Taken from the Lectures on The Philosophy,
Psychology and Practice of Yoga by Swami Chidananda.

Then the time for activity arises, you must be ready for needful action, right action yuddhaya
kritanischayah, inaction is a great danger, inaction is a great trap. Inaction is an ever present
temptation. Inaction is a treacherous quagmire. It is not difficult to rationalise about anything,
even about tamo guna, even about that which is not good for you. But the sadhaka is a viveki
(a person who discriminates), a vichaaraman (one who does enquiry) and his viveka
(discrimination) is not theoretical. It is not academical. It is not what the sadhaka possesses,
but it is something which the sadhaka exercises. It is meant to be lived. It is meant to be
actively manifested each moment of the waking hours of the day. Discrimination is not a
quality with which you are endowed. Discrimination is an activity. It is a sadhana. The great
world teacher Adi Sankaracharya devoted an entire book to this one subject of discrimination.
That is enough to prove beyond all doubt and argument, its importance. No wonder therefore
it is put as one of the first qualifications for one who aspires after liberation, sadhana
chatushtayaviveka, vairagya, shatsampat and mumukshutva
Gurudev says: The spiritual path is thorny, precipitous and rugged, temptations will assail you.
You will sometimes become weak. Sometimes there will be a downfall or a backward pull by the
dark asuric forces. In order to strengthen your will and resist the unfavourable currents you will
have to make again and again fresh resolves. This will help you to ascend the ladder of Yoga
vigorously and quickly.

HEALTH CULTURE 1. Eat moderately. Take light and simple food. Offer it to God before you eat.
Have a balanced diet. 2. Avoid chilies, garlic, onions, tamarind, etc., as far as possible. Give up
tea, coffee, smoking, betels, meat and wine entirely. 3. Fast on Ekadasi days. Take milk, fruits or
roots only. 4. Practice Yoga Asana or physical exercises for fifteen to thirty minutes every day.
Take a long walk or play some vigorous games daily. ENERGY CULTURE 5. Observe silence
(Mouna) for two hours daily and four to eight hours on Sundays. 6. Observe celibacy according
to your age and circumstances. Restrict the indulgence to once a month. Decrease it gradually
to once a year. Finally take a vow of abstinence for whole life. ETHICAL CULTURE 7. Speak the
TRUTH. Speak little. Speak kindly. Speak sweetly. 55 SADHANA TATTVA 8. Do not injure anyone
in thought, word or deed. Be kind to all. 9. Be sincere, straightforward and open-hearted in your
talks and dealings. 10. Be honest. Earn by the sweat of your brow. Do not accept any money,
things or favour unless earned lawfully. Develop nobility and integrity. 11. Control fits of anger
by serenity, patience, love, mercy and tolerance. Forget and forgive. Adapt yourself to men and
events. WILL CULTURE 12. Live without sugar for a week or month. Give up salt on Sundays. 13.
Give up cards, novels, cinemas and clubs. Fly from evil company. Avoid discussions with
materialists. Do not mix with persons who have no faith in God or who criticise your Sadhana.
14. Curtail your wants. Reduce your possessions. Have plain living and high thinking. HEART
CULTURE 15. Doing good to others is the highest religion. Do some selfless service for a few hours
every week, without egoism or expectation of reward. Do your worldly duties in the same spirit.
Work is worship. Dedicate it to God. 16. Give two to ten percent of your income in charity every
month. Share what you have with others. Let the world be your family. Remove selfishness. 17.
Be humble and prostrate yourself to all beings mentally. Feel the Divine Presence everywhere.
Give up vanity, pride and hypocrisy. 18. Have unwavering faith in God, the Gita and your Guru.
Make a total self-surrender to God and pray: Thy Will be done; I want nothing. Submit to the
Divine Will in all events and happenings with equanimity. 19. See God in all beings and love them
as your own Self. Do not hate anyone. 20. Remember God at all times or, at least, on rising from
bed, during a pause in work and before going to bed. Keep a Maala (rosary) in your pocket.
PSYCHIC CULTURE 21. Study one chapter or ten to twenty-five verses of the Gita or your scriptures
with meaning, daily. Learn Sanskrit, at least sufficient to understand the Gita in original. 22.
Memorise the whole of the Gita, gradually. Keep it always in your pocket. 56 20 IMPORTANT
SPIRITUAL INSTRUCTIONS 23. Read the Ramayana, the Bhagavata, the Upanishads, the
Yogavasishtha or other religious books daily or on holidays. 24. Attend religious meetings, Kirtans
and Satsanga of saints at every opportunity. Organise such functions on Sundays or holidays. 25.
Visit a temple or place of worship at least once a week and arrange to hold Kirtans or discourses
there. 26. Spend holidays and leave-periods, when possible, in the company of saints or practice
Sadhana at holy places in seclusion. SPIRITUAL CULTURE 27. Go to bed early. Get up at four
oclock. Answer calls of nature, clean your mouth and take a bath. 28. Recite some prayers and
Kirtan Dhvanis. Practice Pranayama, Japa and meditation from five to six oclock. Sit on Padma,
Siddha, or Sukha Asana throughout, without movement, by gradual practice. 29. Perform the
daily Sandhya, Gayatri Japa, Nityakarma and worship, if any. 30. Write your favourite Mantra or
Name of God in a notebook for ten to thirty minutes, daily. 31. Sing the Names of God (Kirtan),
prayers, Stotras and Bhajans for half to one hour at night with family and friends. 32. Make
annual resolves on the above lines. Regularity, tenacity and fixity are essential. Record your
Sadhana in a spiritual diary daily. Review it every month and correct your failures.

THE ROLE OF CELIBACY IN THE SPIRITUAL LIFE Chidananda

Brahmacharya or celibacy is a rational process of preserving and conserving precious energy so


that it can be utilised in other very essential and indispensable functions. And if it is preserved
like this, it can be converted, just as tangible, gross water is converted into subtle steam. Then
it can do wonders. A river may not have much power in it by itself. You may be easily able to
row or swim across it. But, if it is dammed up and its waters conserved, then it has the power,
when properly channelled, to turn huge turbines and produce electricity.

Swami Sivananda used to say: Brahmacharya is the basis of


immortality. And in many places in the Upanishads it says:
Wisdom experience cannot come to one who has not his
senses under restraint and who has not controlled the vagaries
of his wandering mind.

Question: I presume that Vedantic enquiry, the more intellectual approach to the spiritual life,
would also not be incompatible with normal married life. Swamiji: Yes, yes. But in the Vedantic
type of life, gradually, unconsciously, without even intending it on purpose, in the course of time
the person would graduate to that level of consciousness where sex would begin to seem
superfluous. Because it contradicts the very basic thesis of Vedanta: I am not this body. I am
not the five elements. I am not the limiting adjuncts. I am something quite distinct and
different. And for that different, distinct Thing, sex has no meaning. For, It is not within the
realm of physical consciousness and physical functioning.

So brahmacharya is neither repressing sexuality nor avoiding sexuality. It is just bypassing


sexualitymaking use of this sexual potential for something ten times, a hundred times
greater. Therefore, the question of repression and suppression is a misnomer. It is due to a
lack of proper understanding of what the real spiritual quest is. If it is understood, then these
terms will not be used. We are not just human beings; we are more than human beings. Our
human status is only a pale reflection of what we really are. The only reason our human status
acquires some meaning and significance is because if it is properly utilised, it can raise us up
and take us into that which is our own, bring us into the Kingdomto which we have a
birthright.
Question: Tantra or the practice of Sacred Sexuality, is becoming very popular in the West
today. Do you think these teachings offer an authentic spiritual path? Swamiji: No, I do not
think that these teachings offer an authentic spiritual path. Why? Because of human frailty,
human weakness. The human mind is so made that it always takes the path of least resistance.
It always wants the easy way. Tantra is an approach to God through all types of sense
enjoyment. Everything is offered to God and so everything becomes sanctified; nothing is
profane. One enjoys sense satisfaction and sees it also as part of Gods bliss. There is a view,
and it has something to it, that while in all human experiences duality persiststhere is an I am
enjoying this object feelingthat in the ultimate sexual experience between a truly loving
male, intensely in love with the female and fully reciprocated by the female, there is no
consciousness of ones separate individuality. There is a total fusion of the separatist
consciousness in each one, and there is only the awareness of bliss experience. There is no
experiencer. They say this is a possibility when it is done to its perfection. The two cease to be
and there is only one, non-dual experience, Experience Absolute, Brahmic-consciousness. So
they say that the human body is an instrument that, if properly made use of, can bring about a
rising above body consciousness.

Mind you, this was an authentic path that did once upon a time exist in India, especially in the
Eastern part. Even now it exists. But it became grossly perverted. People became enmeshed
in it. They said they were practising tantra but it was only wining, dining, and sex pleasure. It
took them nowhere, but I suppose it took them where they wanted to go. So it was dubbed
by enlightened people of that time as the perverted path. Two paths then came into
existence: the authentic path which was called the right-hand path, and the perverted path
which was only after enjoyment. That was called the left-hand path.
Question: Considering the number of lapses and aberrations in those who have taken a
lifelong vow of celibacy both in the West and East, do you feel that perhaps undertaking
the practice should be restricted to individuals who have attained a certain degree of
spiritual maturity first? Swamiji: I wouldnt fully subscribe to this view because, first
and foremost, people who have attained to a certain degree of spiritual maturity
would have reached that at least partially through brahmacharya. The very fact that
they have reached a certain degree of spiritual maturity indicates that brahmacharya,
at least in the broader sense of the term, must have been part of their make up or part
of the way by which they ascended to that degree of maturity. And I have no hesitation
in saying that the lapses and aberrations you refer to cannot lessen the validity of the
concept and the tradition of brahmacharya in any way. They are solely due to the
imperfection of the persons concerned.

Brahman is the highest brahmachari because He is One without a second, and if you are
established in Brahman, you are in that same statewhere there is no second, where there
is no other. There is a stage where one becomes totally devoid or free from the sex idea.
There is no sex or man or woman or this or that because ones view has radically changed.
Actually, the vast, vast majority of human beings are human animals only; they are totally rooted
in body consciousness. So the yogi says that their consciousness only revolves in the lowest three
centres, that is food, sex and lower elimination. If some higher awakening comes and they
develop compassion for others, a spirit of service, wanting to make others happy, then the
consciousness occasionally manifests itself in the fourth centre, the centre of feeling.

Actually, the vast, vast majority of human beings are human animals only; they are totally
rooted in body consciousness. So the yogi says that their consciousness only revolves in the
lowest three centres, that is food, sex and lower elimination. If some higher awakening
comes and they develop compassion for others, a spirit of service, wanting to make others
happy, then the consciousness occasionally manifests itself in the fourth centre, the centre of
feeling. If the consciousness persists in the upward trend of spiritual evolution and ideal living,
it can come to the visuddha-chakra where one can have many subjective experiences, visions
etc., but still the experiences come and go and the consciousness moves up and down, up and
down. If consciousness rises further to the ajna-chakra, one tends to be more and more
stable, established, because it is the centre of the mind, the psyche. But it is only when
consciousness comes to the sahasrara that there is no longer a chance of a downfall. One is
above body consciousness. One is not aware of oneself as a body. One does not think or feel
or conceive of oneself as a physical entity at all. There is no moving down. Consciousness is
firmly established. But until then there is always a need to be vigilant.
Question: What is the key to success in brahmacharya? Swamiji: It is how you look at it!

So the first key to success in brahmacharya is to recognise and


understand the sacred and precious nature of the energy potential one
has. When one has this clear perception that it is meant to be conserved,
preserved and directed towards the greatest of all attainments, then
one has a desire to be brahmachari. It is seen as a very positive process.

A second key to success, and a way of looking at both brahmacharya and the sex function, is
even more fundamental, and it is one of the two factors that to a large extent have been
personally utilised by me. It is to clearly perceive that first and foremost what they call the
male sexual organ is not a sexual organ at all. It is only a urinary drainpipe. That is what it
is, and that is its main function from the moment a child comes out of his mothers womb and
sees the light of day, right up to the last breath, till one departs from this world.
Part of the reason for the worlds obsession with sex and why it has become such a big
problempremarital sex, adultery, promiscuous sexis its exploitation by commercial interests
and their advertising. To sell merchandise, they blow up the girl-meet-boy phenomenona girls
body is meant to be enjoyed, and therefore she has to cultivate a body that can attract as much
as possibleas if sex was the only important thing in life. They completely distort its basic
purpose. The sooner that this is recognised, the easier will become the possibility of
brahmacharya. Because when you come to think of it, the main function of the sex act is the
important, indispensable process of procreation.

If one can understand it in this wayrealise its real, sacred cosmic nature, as the microcosmic
aspect of the macrocosmic sakti or Cosmic Powerone takes a healthy attitude of reverence for
it. It is not something to be just spat away like spittle. A person may spend away nickels and
dimes, but if he has gold coins he will not so easily part with them. So reverence is a fruit of this
understanding. Furthermore, the aspirant recognises and sees clearly: There is something very
important that I have to do. I have a great goal to achieve and I require all the energy at my
disposal to put into my spiritual quest. I cannot afford to divert it into other channels in order to
obtain a lesser achievement. As Swami Krishnanandaji used to say, It is better to aim at a lion
and miss it than to aim at a jackal and hit it.
The third key to success is also something that I myself have used right from the very
beginning, and I think it is the ultimate answer. The real secret of success in brahmacharya, the
real key, is what Im just now going to state. The moment you begin to think that I am Atman
unborn, nameless, formless, I have neither body nor mind, I am satchidananda (Existence-
Consciousness-Bliss Absolute), Self-sufficient, I am of the very nature of Bliss Absoluteif you
thus totally shift your consciousness to your reality, to your essential, eternal, true identity, then,
finished! Brahmacharya is no longer a problem. The problem of brahmacharya ceases to exist
except only once in a while due to old impressions. If some factor outside of you happens to act
as a stimulus, then an idea may come.

Part of the reason for the worlds obsession with sex and
why it has become such a big problempremarital sex,
adultery, promiscuous sexis its exploitation by
commercial interests and their advertising. To sell
merchandise, they blow up the girl-meet-boy
phenomenona girls body is meant to be enjoyed, and
therefore she has to cultivate a body that can attract as
much as possibleas if sex was the only important thing
in life. They completely distort its basic purpose.

But if the mind is diverted into higher things, automatically brahmacharya becomes easy. You
can succeed in brahmacharya if the mind is totally taken up by something so wonderful, so
big, it absorbs you and elevates you, and the mind is simply gripped by it.

So the devotee puts it in a different way. But the ultimate key to success in brahmacharya is
the Vedantic process of shifting your consciousnessrejecting the body consciousness and
becoming established in your true Self-awareness as something where there is neither male,
nor female, nor body, nor sex, nor personality

AMRITA GITA Sivananda

9. Ida is the Chandra-Nadi. It cools the body. It flows through the left nostril. 10. Pingala is the
Surya-Nadi. It heats the body. It flows through the right nostril. 11. Sushumna Nadi flows through
both nostrils. It helps meditation. It is Agni-Nadi.

13. Practise Yoga Asanas and Pranayama on an empty stomach in the early morning.

14. Be moderate in eating and sleeping. Then alone can you have success in Hatha Yoga.

15. Be regular in your practice. Regularity is of paramount importance. 16. Drink a tumbler of
milk after finishing the Asanas. 17. Wait for half an hour after finishing Asanas for taking a
bath. 18. Do Asanas first and then practise Pranayama.
19. Spend half an hour daily in the practice of Asanas and Pranayama. This will give you health,
vim, vigour and vitality. This will remove all diseases. Dhauti (cleansing of stomach with a piece
of cloth), Basti (drawing up of water through anus), Neti (cleansing of nostrils with the help of a
thread), Nauli (manipulation of the abdominal muscles), Trataka (gazing on an object),
Kapalabhati (a kind of Pranayama)are the Shad Kriyas of Hatha Yoga.

Sirshasana is the king of all Asanas. It strengthens the brain and the brain-centres and
improves memory, and helps Brahmacharya. Sarvanga, Hala and Ardhamatsyendra Asanas
make the spine elastic. Sarvanga develops thyroid gland and bestows good health. It helps
Brahmacharya and gives longevity.
23. Paschimottanasana reduces fat and helps digestion. So does Mayurasana. 24. Bhujanga,
Salabha and Dhanur Asanas remove constipation and muscular rheumatism of the back. 1 . Relax
all the muscles through Savasana. Do this Asana in the end.

26. Ujjayi, Sitkari, Sukha-Purvaka, Suryabheda are other kinds of Pranayama. Through the
practice of these Pranayamas Kevala-Kumbhaka results.

Sitali Pranayama cools your body and purifies


the blood. Bhastrika warms your body and
removes asthma and consumption.

29. Practise Bhandatraya Pranayama. It includes Mula-Bandha or contraction of anus, Jalandara-


Bandha or chin-lock and Uddiyana-Bandha, drawing the belly backwards at the end of
exhalation. 30. Maha Mudra is an important Mudra. This removes piles, enlargement of spleen,
indigestion, constipation. 31. Practise Yoga-Mudra daily. This is a good exercise for the
abdominal organs.

KARMA YOGA

KARMA YOGA 1. Work is worship of the Lord. 2. Karma Yoga is the Yoga of selfless action,
without agency and expectation of fruits. 3. Karma Yoga removes the impurities of the mind.
It is a potent purifier of the heart. 4. Karma Yoga prepares the mind for the reception of
Divine Light, Divine Grace, and Divine Knowledge. 5. See God in every face. Behold the Lord
in all creatures. 6. Share what you have with others. Serve the saints and sages. 7. Serve the
sick. Serve the poor. Serve your parents. Serve your motherland. Serve humanity in general. 8.
Scrutinise always your inner motives. Destroy selfish motives. 9. Work without egoism.
Cultivate the Nimitta-Bhava. Feel you are an instrument in the hands of the Lord. 10.
Surrender always your actions and their fruits to the Lord. 11. Have equal vision and balanced
mind in pleasure and pain, gain and loss, success and failure. 12. Develop nicely adaptability.
Serve always with Atma-Bhava and Narayana-Bhava. 13. Sing Sitaram, Radheshyam or Hare
Rama while you work. Remember the Lord always. 14. Give up Abhimana of all sorts. Kill the
Vairagya-abhimana, Seva-abhimana, Tyagi-abhimana, Kartritva-abhimana, male-female-
abhimana, and doctor-judge-abhimana. 15. Do not expect even thanks or appreciation for
your work. 16. Do actions as your duty, duty for dutys sake. 17. Never say: I have helped that
man. Feel and think: That man gave me an opportunity to serve. 18. Watch for
opportunities for service. Never miss even a single opportunity. 2. Cultivate amiable, loving,
social nature, generosity, catholic nature. Kill selfishness. Control the senses, practise self-
restraint, tolerance, sympathy and mercy. These are the qualifications of a Karma Yogi. 20.
Bear insult, injury, harsh words, criticism, heat and cold. 21. If you are a doctor, treat the
poor free of charge. If you are an advocate, plead for the poor. If you are a teacher or a
professor, give free tuition to poor boys. Give them books free. 22. Keep Twelve Tissue
Remedies or some household remedies and treat the poor. 23. If anyone is suffering from acute
pain, shampoo the painful part. Feel you are shampooing the body of the Lord. 24. Do not
make any difference between menial and respectable work. 25. Keep always some small coins
in your pocket and distribute them to the poor and the decrepit. 26. Feed the poor. Clothe the
naked. Comfort the distressed. Remove glass pieces from the road. 27. There are three kinds
of Karma, viz., Sanchita, Prarabdha and Agami or Kriyamana. 28. Sanchita is the accumulated
storehouse of actions of previous births. Prarabdha is that part of Karma which has given rise
to your present birth. Agami is current action. 29. Sanchita is destroyed by Brahma-Jnana. You
will have to enjoy the Prarabdha. Agami has no binding force as there is no agency or egoism
in the sage. 30. Do not be attached to the work itself. You must be able to give it up at any
moment. 31. As you sow, so you reap. Virtue gives you happiness. Vice gives you pain. 32. You
are the master of your destiny. You sow an action, reap a habit. You sow a habit, reap a
character; you sow your character and reap a destiny. Destiny is your own making. Abandon
desires and change your mode of thinking. You can conquer destiny. 33. Think you are man;
man will you become. Think you are Brahman; Brahman will you become. This is the
immutable divine law. 34. If there is no agency, if there is no selfish motive, action becomes
an inaction. You are not bound by an action. 35. Sastras and saints and your own pure, clean
conscience will point out to you what is right, what is wrong. Follow them and do the right.
36. An egoistic man alone thinks: I am the doer. Really it is the Guna or Prakriti or the sense
that does the action. Atman is actionless, Akarta, Nishkriya. 37. Practise your Svadhanna, your
Varnashrama Dharma unselfishly, without egoism. You will attain purification of heart.
Knowledge of Brahman will dawn in your heart.

JAPA YOGA 1.

In this Iron Age, Japa Yoga is an easy way for attaining God-realisation. 2. Japa is the repetition
of any Mantra or Name of the Lord with Bhava and feeling. 3. Japa removes the impurities of
the mind, destroys sins and brings the devotee face to face with the Lord. 4. Every Name is
filled with countless powers; just as fire has the natural property of burning things, so also the
Name of God has the power of burning the sins and desires. 3 KARMA YOGA 5. Sweeter than all
sweet things, more auspicious than all good things, purer than all pure things, is the Name of
the Lord. 6. Name of the Lord is a boat to cross this Samsara. It is a weapon to destroy the mind.
7. The repetition of the Mantra again and again generates great spiritual force and momentum
and intensifies the spiritual Samskaras or impressions. 8. Mananaat Trayate iti Mantrah: By the
Manana, constant thinking or recollection, one is released from the round of birth and death; so
it is called Mantra. 9. Repetition of Mantra raises vibrations. Vibrations give rise to definite
forms. Repetition of Om Namah Sivaya gives rise to the form of Lord Siva in the mind;
repetition of Om Namo Narayanaya gives rise to the form of Lord Hari. 10. The glory of the
Name of God cannot be established through reasoning and intellect. It can certainly be
experienced or realised, only through devotion, faith and constant repetition. 11. Japa is of three
kinds, viz., Manasic Japa, Upamsu Japa or humming, and Vaikhari Japa, loud and audible Japa.
12. Mental repetition of Japa, Manasic Japa, is more powerful than loud Japa. 13. Get up at 4
a.m. and do the Japa for two hours. Brahmamuhurtha is most favourable for Japa and
meditation. 14. If you cannot take a bath, wash your hands, feet, face and body, and sit for
Japa. 15. Face north or east when sitting. This enhances the efficacy of the Japa. 16. Sit on a
Kusha-grass seat or deer-skin or rug. Spread a white cloth over it. This conserves body-electricity.
17. Do some prayer before starting the Japa. 18. Have a steady pose. Have Asana-Jaya or
conquest over Asana. You must be able to sit in Padma, Siddha or Sukha Asana for three hours
at a stretch. 19. When you repeat the Mantra, have the feeling or mental attitude that the Lord
is seated in your heart, that Sattva or purity is flowing from the Lord to your mind, that the
Mantra purifies your heart, destroys desires and cravings and evil thoughts. 20. Do not do the
Japa in a hurried manner, just as a contractor tries to finish his work in a hurried way. Do it slowly
with Bhava, one-pointedness of mind and single-minded devotion. 21. Pronounce the Mantra
distinctly and without mistakes. Do not repeat it too fast or too slow. 22. Use not the index
finger while rolling the beads. Use the thumb, the middle and the ring fingers. When counting
of one Mala is over, revert it and come back again. Cross not the Meru. Cover your hand with a
towel. 23. Be vigilant. Keep an alert attention during Japa. Stand up and do the Japa when sleep
tries to overpower you. 24. Resolve to finish a certain minimum number of Malas before leaving
the seat. 25. Mala or rosary is a whip to goad the mind towards God. 26. Sometimes do the Japa
without a Mala. Go by the watch. 27. Practise meditation also along with Japa. This is Japa-
Sahita-Dhyana. Gradually Japa will drop and meditation alone will continue. This is Japa-
Rahita-Dhyana. 28. Have four sittings for Japa dailyearly morning, noon, evening and night.
29. A devotee of Lord Vishnu should repeat Om Namo Narayanaya; a devotee of Lord Siva,
Om Namah Sivaya; a devotee of Lord Krishna, Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya; a
devotee of Lord Rama, Om Sri Ramaya Namah or Om Sri Ram Jaya Ram Jaya Jaya Ram; a
devotee of Devi, Gayatri Mantra or Durga Mantra. 30. It is better to stick to one Mantra alone.
See Lord Krishna in Rama, Siva, Durga, Gayatri. 4. Regularity in Japa Sadhana is most essential.
Sit in the same place and at the same time. 32. Purascharana is repetition of the Mantra Akshara-
Laksha, one lakh of times for each letter. 33. Japa must become habitual. Even in dream you
must be doing Japa. 34. Japa Yoga is the easiest, quickest, safest, surest, and cheapest, way for
attaining God-realisation. Glory to the Lord! Glory, glory to His Name! 35. O man! Take refuge in
the Name. Nama (Name) and Nami (Lord) are inseparable.

NADA YOGA 1. Sound helps to control the mind easily. When the mind is absorbed in
melodious sound, it does not run after sensual objects. 2. Do Japa or Soham with breath
(Ajapa Japa). Practise Pranayama for one or two months. You will hear the ten sounds
(Anahata sounds) clearly and enjoy the music of the soul. 3. The sound that you hear will
make you deaf to all external sounds. 4. Sit on Padmasana or Siddhasana or Sukhasana. Close
the ears with the thumb. This is Shanmukhi Mudra or Vaishnavi Mudra. 5. Now hear the music
of Anahata sounds. You will have wonderful concentration. 6. Abandon all worldly thoughts.
Subdue your passion. Become indifferent to all sensual objects. 7. Practise Yama (self-
restraint), or Sadachara (right conduct); concentrate on the sound which annihilates the mind.
8. The first sound is chini, the second is chin-chini, the third is the sound of a bell, the fourth
is like that of a conch. 9. The fifth is like that of a lute. The sixth is like that of a cymbal. The
seventh is like that of a flute. 10. The eighth is like that of a drum. The ninth is like that of a
Mridanga. The tenth is like that of thunder. 11. Hear the sounds through the right ear.
Change your concentration from the gross sound to the subtle. The mind will soon be
absorbed in the sound. 12. You will get knowledge of hidden things when you hear the
seventh. 13. You will hear Para-Vak when you hear the eighth sound. 14. You will develop the
divine eye when you hear the ninth. 15. You will attain Para Brahman when you hear the
tenth. 16. The sound entraps the mind. The mind becomes one with the sound as milk with
water. 17. It becomes absorbed in Brahman or the Absolute. You will then attain the Seat of
Eternal Bliss.
BHAKTI YOGA 1.

God is love. Love is God. God is nectar. God is Prema. 2. Bhakti is supreme love towards God. It
is love for loves sake. The devotee wants God and God alone. There is no selfish expectation
here. 3. Bhakti is the greatest power on this earth. It gushes from ones pure heart. It redeems
and saves. It purifies the heart. 4. Devotion is the seed. Faith is the root. Service of saints is the
shower. Communion with the Lord is the fruit. 5. Bhakti is of two kinds, viz., Apara Bhakti (lower
type of devotion) and Para Bhakti (highest Bhakti or Supreme Love). Ringing bells and waving
lights is Apara Bhakti. In Para Bhakti, there is no ritualistic worship. The devotee is absorbed
in God. 6. In Supreme Love, the devotee forgets his self entirely. He has only thoughts of God.
7. Para Bhakti and Jnana are one. Bhakti melts into wisdom in the end. Two have become one
now. 8. Bhakti grows gradually just as you grow a flower or a tree in a garden. Cultivate Bhakti
in the garden of your heart gradually. 9. Faith is necessary for attaining God-realisation. Faith
can work wonders. Faith can move mountains. Faith can take you to the inner chambers of the
Lord, where reason dares not enter. 10. Japa, Kirtan, prayer, service of saints, study of books on
Bhakti are all aids to devotion. 11. Sattvic food is a help to devotion. Take milk, fruits, etc. 12.
Evil company is an enemy of devotion. Give up evil company. Take recourse to Satsanga or
company of the saints. 13. Pray to the Lord thus; O Adorable Lord of Compassion and Love!
Give me faith and devotion. Let my mind be ever fixed On Thy Lotus Feet. Let me have constant
remembrance of Thee. Let me sing Thy glory always. 14. The Name of the Lord is your sole
refuge. It is your prop, shelter and abode. Name is divine nectar. Nama and Nami are
inseparable. 15. Keep a picture of the Lord and concentrate on itthe face or feet or the whole
picture. Then visualise the picture in your heart or the space between the two eyebrows. 16.
Repeat your Ishta MantraOm Namah Sivaya, Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namo Bhagavate
Vasudevayamentally, sometimes verbally when the mind wanders. 17. The five kinds of Bhavas
are: Santa Bhava, Dasya Bhava (master-servant relation), Vatsalya Bhava (father-son relation),
Sakhya Bhava (friendship), Madhurya Bhava (the relationship of lover and beloved). 18. Bhishma
had Santa Bhava; Hanuman had Dasya Bhava; Jayadeva and Gauranga had Madhurya Bhava;
the Gopis had Sakhya-Bhava; Arjuna and Guha had Sakhya Bhava; Yasoda and Vishnuchitta
had Vatsalya Bhava. Have any kind of Bhava that suits your temperament. Develop it again and
again. 20. Practise the nine modes of devotion or Nava-vidha Bhakti, viz., Sravana (hearing the
Lilas of the Lord), Kirtan (singing His Name), Smarana (His remembrance), Padasevana (service
of His Feet), Archana (offering flowers), Vandana (prostrations), Dasyam (servant-Bhava),
Sakhya (His friendship), and Atmanivedana (self-surrender). 6 A. Say unto the Lord: I am Thine,
all is Thine, Thy Will be done. Feel you are an instrument in the hands of the Lord, that the Lord
works through your mind, body and senses. Offer all your actions and the fruits of the actions
unto the Lord. This is the way to do self-surrender. 22. Do Anushtan frequently. Live on milk and
fruits for a week. Observe Mouna or silence and do Japa and meditate in an intense manner.
23. Manasic Puja or mental worship is a great help for increasing devotion and attaining
concentration. Offer flowers, incense, etc., mentally to the Lord. 24. Consider your house as a
temple of the Lord, every action as service of Lord, the light that you burn as waving lights to
the Lord, every word you speak as the Japa of the Lords Name, your daily walk as
perambulation to the Lord. This is an easy way of worship of the Lord. 25. Shall I wash Thy Feet
with holy water, O Lord? The very Ganga flows from Thy Feet. Shall I give You seat? Thou art all-
pervading. Shall I wave lights for Thee? Sun and Moon are Thy Eyes! Shall I offer flowers to Thee?
Thou art the essence of flowersthis is Para Puja. 26. Feel the presence of the Lord
everywhere. He dwells in the chambers of your heart, too. He is in the breath in the nostrils; He
glitters in your eyes. He is nearer to you than your jugular vein. Behold Him in every face. 27.
Horripilation (Romanchana), tears from the eyes (Asrupat), Kampan or twitching of muscles,
Svarabhanga (choking of the voice) are marks or Lingas of devotion.

A realised Bhakta is free from lust, egoism, mine-ness, hatred, jealousy,


greed. He is full of humility, compassion and kindness. He sees God in all
beings, in all objects. He has equal vision and a balanced mind. 29.
Draupadi was an Arta-Bhaktini; Nachiketas was Jijnasu-Bhakta; Dhruva
was an Artharthee-Bhakta; Suka Deva was a Jnani-Bhakta; Prahlada was
an absolutely Nishkama Bhakta. 30. Bhakti is immortalising nectar. It
transmutes a man into divinity. It makes him perfect. It bestows on him
everlasting peace and bliss.

RAJA YOGA 1. Raja Yoga is an exact science. It aims at controlling all thought-waves or mental
modifications. 2. Where Hatha Yoga ends, there Raja Yoga begins. 3. Hatha Yogi starts his
Sadhana with his body and Prana. He practises Asanas and Pranayama and through control of
Prana, tries to control the mind. 4. A Raja Yogi starts his Sadhana with the mind. He starts
meditation and tries to control the mind. 5. The eight limbs of Raja Yoga are: Yama (self-
restraint), Niyama (religious observances), Asana (posture), Pranayama (regulation of breath),
Pratyahara (abstraction of the senses), Dharana (concentration), Dhyana (meditation) and
Samadhi (superconscious state). 6. Yama consists of five parts, viz., Ahimsa (non-injury), Satyam
(truthfulness), Asteya (non-stealing), Brahmacharya (celibacy), and Aparigraha (non-
covetousness).

He who practises meditation without ethical perfection, without the practice of Yama-Niyama
cannot obtain the fruits of meditation. 10. Purify your mind first through the practice of Yama-
Niyama. Then practise regular meditation. Then you will attain illumination. 11. The practice of
Yama is a Mahavrata, universal vow. It must be observed by all. 12. Any easy, steady,
comfortable pose is Asana. 13. Asanas steady the body. Pranayama checks the outgoing
tendencies of the mind. Pratyahara gives inner spiritual strength. It removes all sorts of
distractions. It develops will-power. 14. Real Raja Yoga starts from concentration. Concentration
merges in meditation. Meditation ends in Samadhi.

15. Retention of breath, Brahmacharya, Sattvic food, seclusion, silence, Satsanga, not mixing
much with people are all aids to concentration. 16. Sleep, tossing of mind, attachment to
objects, subtle desires and cravings, laziness, lack of Brahmacharya, gluttony are all obstacles
in meditation.
18. Do not mix much. Do not talk much. Do not walk much. Do not eat much. Do not sleep much.
Do not exert much.

19. Never wrestle with the mind during meditation. Do not use
any violent efforts at concentration. 20. If evil thoughts enter
your mind, do not use your will force in driving them. You will
tax your will. You will lose your energy. You will fatigue
yourself. The greater the efforts you make, the more the evil
thoughts will return with redoubled force. Be indifferent.
Become a witness of those thoughts. Substitute divine thoughts.
They will pass away.

21. Never miss a day in meditation. Regularity is of paramount importance. When the mind is
tired, do not concentrate. Do not take heavy food at night.

The mind passes into many conditions or states as it is made up of three qualitiesSattva,
Rajas and Tamas. 23. Kshipta (wandering), Vikshipta (gathering), Mudha (ignorant), Ekagra
(one-pointed), and Nirodha (contrary) are the five states of the mind.
24. By controlling the thoughts the Sadhaka attains great Siddhis. He becomes an adept. He
attains Asamprajnata Samadhi or Kaivalya. 25. Do not run after Siddhis. Siddhis are great
temptations. They will bring about your downfall. 26. A Raja Yogi practises Samyama or the
combined practice of Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi at one and the same time and gets detailed
knowledge of an object. 27. Control the mind by Abhyasa (practice) and Vairagya (dispassion).

28. Any practice which steadies the mind and makes it one-
pointed is Abhyasa. 29. You must practise Yoga steadily with
great patience and zeal. Then alone will you attain perfection.
30. Concentrate on Trikuti (the space between the two
eyebrows) with closed eyes. This is the best spot for
concentration. The mind can be easily controlled, as this is the
seat for the mind.

31. Dull Vairagya will not help you in attaining perfection in Yoga. You must have Para Vairagya
or Theevra Vairagya, intense dispassion. 32. Tapas, Svadhyaya, Ishvarapranidhana constitute
Kriya Yoga. Kriya Yoga purifies the heart quickly. 33. Meditation on OM with Bhava and its
meaning removes obstacles in Sadhana and helps to attain Samadhi. 34. Avidya (ignorance),
Asmita (egoism), Raga-Dvesha (likes and dislikes), Abhinivesha (clinging to mundane life) are
the five Kleshas or afflictions. Destroy these afflictions. You will attain Samadhi. 35. Samadhi
is of two kindsSavikalpa, Samprajnata or Sabija, and Nirvikalpa or Asamprajnata or
Nirbija. 36. In Savikalpa or Sabija, there is Triputi or the triad (knower, known and
knowledge). The Samskaras are not burnt or fried. 37. Savitarka, Nirvitarka, Savichara,
Nirvichara, Sasmita and Saananda are the different forms of Savikalpa Samadhi. 38. In Nirbija
Samadhi or Asamprajnata Samadhi there is no triad. The impressions are fried in toto. 39. A
Bhakta gets Bhava-Samadhi, a Jnani gets Badha-Samadhi, a Raja Yogi gets Nirodha Samadhi.
JNANA YOGA

1. There is an Atman or soul independent of body and mind. This soul is immortal, unchanging
and infinite. Realise this Atman and be free. 2. This Atman is Satchidananda (Existence-Absolute,
Consciousness-Absolute, Bliss-Absolute). It exists in the past, present and future. So it is Sat. It
is pure or Absolute Consciousness without any thought. So it is Chit. It is absolute Bliss. So it is
Ananda. 3. The unreal body perishes, but the Atman or the indweller is Immortal. So, you should
not grieve when anyone dies. In essence everyone is Immortal Atman. 4. This Atman cannot be
hurt by anyone. It is subtle, all-pervading. It is the Innermost Self of all. 5. This Atman is birthless,
deathless, changeless. When the body is killed, He is not killed. Therefore grieve not, lament not,
regret not. Be always cheerful. 6. Fire cannot burn this Atman, sword cannot pierce this Atman,
bomb cannot destroy this Atman, machine-guns cannot kill this Atman. 7. This Atman is eternal,
immovable, secondless, self-existent, self-centred. Therefore, knowing this to be such, thou
shouldst not grieve, when your father, mother, son, wife or relative dies. 8. This perishable body
will certainly pass away. Indweller can never perish. Thou art the immortal soul. Therefore, over
the inevitable thou shalt not grieve. 9. Brahman or Atman is beyond the reach of the mind and
speech. He is beyond logic, reason, mental process, science. He must be realised through
meditation.

10. You cannot deny or doubt your existence. You always feel that you exist. This existence is
Atman or your own Self. The knower of the doubt or denier always exists. That knower is your
own Atman. 11. In dream you are distinct from the physical body. In deep sleep, you are distinct
from the body and the mind. You enjoy peace and bliss in deep sleep. This proves that you are
neither body nor mind, but you are All-Blissful Soul. 12. There is only one Reality or Truth. That
is Brahman or Atman. All appearances are unreal. They are the effects of Maya, the illusory
power of Brahman. 13. Behold the one Immortal Atman in all names and forms. This alone is
correct perception. 14. Ignorance is the cause for pain and sorrow. Annihilate this ignorance
through Brahma Jnana. All miseries will come to an end. 15. This Atman is beyond time, space,
causation. Time, space, causation are mental creation. 16. Just as snake is superimposed on the
rope, this world, and the body are superimposed on Brahman. 17. Bring a light, the snake
vanishes; rope alone remains. Attain Illumination, this world and this body vanish. Atman alone
remains. That Atman thou art. Tat Tvam Asi. 18. I-ness and mine-ness, agency and enjoyership
bind you to the Samsara. Destroy these notions. Identify yourself with the Atman which is non-
doer, non-enjoyer. You will attain Immortality and eternal Bliss. 19. Sensual pleasure is only pain.
It is momentary mental excitement, momentary sensation of flesh, momentary itching and
scratching of the senses. You can have eternal bliss in your own Inner Atman alone. 20. Enquire
Who am I? Deny or sublate the limiting adjuncts (body, mind, etc.); know the Self and be free.
2l. Constantly think of the Immortal, all-pervading Atman. Give up thinking of body. You will
attain Self-realisation. 22. You are ever free. You are already free. Moksha is not a thing to be
attained. You will have to know that you are Atman, that you are free. 23. Destroy the Vasanas,
subtle desires, and Trishnas, cravings. This will lead to the annihilation of the mind. Destruction
of the mind will lead to the attainment of Brahma Jnana or wisdom of the Self. 24. This world is
illusory. Brahman alone is real. You are identical with Brahman. Realise this and be free. 25. The
liberated sage is ever blissful. He rests in his own Satchidananda Svaroopa. He is free from
egoism, lust, hatred, greed, anger and the pairs of opposites. He has equal vision and balanced
mind. He is Brahman Himself. 26. OM is the symbol of Brahman. OM is your real name. Meditate
on Om with Bhava and its meaning. You will attain Self-realisation. 27. I am the All-pervading,
Immortal Soul. I am Pure Consciousness. I am Satchidananda Svaroopa. I am witness or
Sakshi.These are the formulas for constant meditation and assertion. 28. Equip yourself with
the Four Means. Hear the Srutis, reflect and meditate. You will attain Self-realisation. 29. Thou
art not this perishable body. Thou art not this changing mind. Thou art all-pervading, immortal,
infinite, changeless Soul or Atman. Realise this and roam about happily.

30. Watch the breath. It sings Soham, So during inhalation and Ham, during exhalation. It
reminds you I am He. Meditate on Soham and attain Self-realisation. 31. I am body. I act. I
enjoy. She is my wife. He is my son. This is mine.This is bondage. I am Immortal Soul. I am
non-actor, non-enjoyer. She is my soul. Nothing is mine.This is freedom.

Adhyaya VIII

ADHYATMA YOGA

1. This world has no real, independent existence. It appears to exist, because Brahman or the
Absolute exists for ever. 2. There is no body before its birth; there is no body after its death.
Think and feel that which you see now does not really exist. That which does not exist in the
beginning and end does not really exist in the middle also. 3. Sensual pleasure is the womb of
pain. The cause for pain is absence of pleasure. Sensual pleasure is imaginary, illusory, fleeting
and tantalising. Abandon sensual pleasure and rejoice in the Eternal Bliss of Atman. 4. He who
has destroyed desire is really a harmonised, peaceful and happy man. 5. Slay anger and desire.
Control the thoughts. Know thyself. You will enjoy Supreme, Everlasting Peace. 6. Desire is
insatiable. It is born of Rajas or passion. It is born of ignorance. It is an enemy of peace, wisdom
and devotion. Master first the senses and then slay this desire which abides in the senses, the
mind and intellect, ruthlessly through enquiry, discrimination, dispassion, devotion and
meditation. 7. Anger also is born of Rajas. When a desire is not gratified, anger manifests itself.
Anger is a form of desire only. Slay this anger through Vichara, discrimination, patience, love,
meditation, identification with the ever-serene Atman. 8. Subdue the lower self by the Higher
Self. Annihilate all desires. Slay egoism. Destroy all attachments. Meditate and rest peacefully
in your own Innermost Atman, which is Existence, Consciousness and Bliss Absolute. 9. If you
want to attain immortality, go beyond the pairs of opposites. 10. Endure bravely heat and cold,
pain and sorrow, loss and failure, censure and dishonour. You will attain equanimity of mind,
peace and poise. 11. If you are balanced in pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat,
sin will not touch thee; you will not be affected by the fruits of your actions. 12. Keep the senses
from attraction and repulsion. Attain mastery over the senses. Discipline the senses and the
mind. You will not be affected now even if you move among sense-objects. 13. He who is free
from desires, cravings, attachment, egoism, and mine-ness, attains the Peace of the Eternal. 14.
Stand up. Have mastery over the senses. Be devoted to Atman. Destroy all doubts through
Satsanga, study, enquiry, meditation and wisdom. 15. Do actions without the idea of agency,
without expectation of fruits, without attachment to the actions themselves, balanced in success
and failure. You will not be bound by actions. 16. Selfless actions will purify your heart and lead
to the attainment of wisdom of the Self. 17. Constantly do your duty without attachment. Your
heart will be purified. You will attain immortal bliss. 18. Think and feel that Prakriti or Svabhava
or Guna does everything. Identify yourself with the Actionless Atman, the Silent Witness and
thus free yourself from the bondage of action. 19. Surrender all actions unto the Lord. Fix your
mind on Him. Free yourself from egoism, attachment, desire. No action will bind you. Actions
are burnt by the fire of Wisdom. Such actions are no longer actions at all. You will attain the
Supreme Abode of everlasting bliss and peace. 20. Conquer likes and dislikes which abide in the
senses. You can conquer mind and attain the Peace of the Eternal. 21. Serve your Guru. Be
devoted to your Guru. Obey him. Have implicit faith in his teachings. You will grow in
spirituality. The veil will be torn down. You will attain Self-realisation. 22. All actions culminate
in Jnana or wisdom. Bhakti also terminates in wisdom. Without Bhakti, Jnana is impossible. 23.
Knowledge of Atman burns all actions. There is no purifier in this world like Brahma-Jnana. 24.
Seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, moving, speaking, grasping, etc., are actions of the
senses. Atman is the silent witness. Thou art really the Atman or the Witness, Sakshi. Never
forget this. 25. Behold only the One Atman or the Self in all beingsin the ants, dogs, cows,
horses, elephants and outcastes. This is equal vision or Sama Drishti. 26. Give the mind to the
Lord and the hands for the service of humanity. Always think of Lord only. You will soon attain
God-realisation easily. 27. Whatever you do, whatever you eat, whatever you offer, whatever
you give, whatever austerity you do, do it as an offering unto the Lord. Your heart will be
purified. You will not be bound by actions. You will soon attain the Lord. 28. Cultivate the divine
qualities: humility, harmlessness, purity, steadfastness, self-control, dispassion,
unostentatiousness, non-attachment, balance of mind, fearlessness, angerlessness, self-
restraint, renunciation, straightforwardness, truthfulness, compassion, non-covetousness,
steadiness. You will attain Wisdom of the Self or Brahma-Jnana. 29. Be cautious. Be vigilant. Be
diligent. Be alert. The senses are very turbulent. They will hurl you down into the abyss of
ignorance at any moment. Always do Japa, do Kirtan. Meditate ceaselessly. 30. Sin is only a
mistake. Knowledge of Self will burn all sins. The Name of the Lord will destroy all sins. Therefore,
repeat His Name and attain Wisdom of Atman. 31. Have faith in your own Self, in the existence
of Brahman, in the teachings of your Preceptor, in the sacred Scriptures. Then alone can you
attain Self-realisation. 32. Behold the Lord in the effulgence of the sun, in the fragrance of
flowers, in the brilliance of fire, in the sapidity of water, in the birds, beasts, in the air, ether, in
the mind, intellect, in the heart, in the sound, in music. 33. The Lord is seated equally in all
beings. He is imperishable. He is the Supervisor, Supporter, Enjoyer. He who thus seeth, he really
seeth. 34. Be firm in the vow of Brahmacharya. Control the senses and the mind. Abandon greed.
Cultivate dispassion. Make the mind one-pointed. Sit steadily on Padma, Siddha or Sukha or 12
Svastika Asanas. Now meditate and practise Yoga. You will attain Samadhi or the
superconscious state. 35. Now you will behold the One Atman in all beings and all beings in
the Atman. 36. Withdraw yourself. Annihilate all attachments and external sense-contacts. Be
in tune with the Infinite. Find joy in your own Atman. You will realise Immortal, Undecaying Bliss.
37. Control the senses and mind, and sit for meditation. Do not allow the mind to think of sensual
objects. Again and again withdraw the mind and fix it on the Lord. 38. Get established in the
Eternal. Be balanced. Pain and sorrow will not touch thee. 39. Rejoice in the Atman. Be satisfied
in the Atman. Be contented in the Atman. Rest in Atman. Root yourself in Atman. All your desires
will be gratified. Your heart will be filled with the Self. 40. Rajas is passion, motion. It causes
attachment and thirst for mundane life. Inertia is darkness. It causes heedlessness, laziness,
indolence, and sloth. Sattva is purity, harmony. It produces peace and bliss. 41. When Rajas
predominates, Sattva and Tamas are subordinated; when Sattva preponderates, Rajas and
Tamas are subordinated. When Tamas predominates, Sattva and Rajas are subordinated. 42.
Hypocrisy, arrogance, conceit, anger, harshness, are demoniacal qualities. They are enemies
of wisdom and devotion. They are obstacles in the path of Yoga. Slay them ruthlessly. 43. Sattvic
food helps Yoga Sadhana. Take green gram, spinach, milk, fruits, barley, bread, Lauki, bitter-
gourd, plantain stem and flower, and cows ghee. These augment vitality, energy, vigour,
health, joy and cheerfulness. They are delicious, bland, substantial and agreeable. 44. Give up
chillies, sour, overhot, pungent, dry, burning, too much salted things. These are Rajasic
substances, which produce pain and sickness. Abandon them.

45. That which is stale, putrid, corrupt, useless leavings of a meal, eggs, fish, etc., are Tamasic
foodstuff. Give up these things also. 46. Worship the Gods, the preceptor, the wise, sages,
Yogis, Munis, saints and Sannyasins, learned Brahmins. Be straightforward. Be pure. Observe
Brahmacharya. Practise Ahimsa. This is austerity of body. 47. Speak the truth. Speak that which
generates love. Speak that which is beneficent. This is austerity of speech. 48. Be equanimous.
Be cheerful. Be self-controlled. Be pure in nature. Control the thoughts. This is austerity of mind.
49. A glutton is unfit for Yoga. One who starves cannot practise Yoga. Similarly, one who is
filled with inertia and so sleeps much, or one who sleeps very little and is ever engaged in
Rajasic activity is also unfit for Yoga. Adopt the golden mean. This is the Path of the Wise. 50.
He who is alike to foe and friend, who is balanced in pleasure and pain, heat and cold, honour
and dishonour, censure and praise, who is without attachment and egoism, who is ever content
and harmonious, who is compassionate, who does not hate any creature, is a devotee of God-
realisation. He has crossed the three qualities. 51. A liberated Sage is free from passion,
attachment, fear, anger, egoism. He has a balanced mind and equal vision. 52. No one can slay
or destroy this Atman or soul because It is extremely subtle, formless. It is Spirit, not matter. 53.
Mind is greater than the senses. Pure Intellect is greater than the mind. Atman is greater than
the intellect. There is nothing greater than the Atman. 54. Brahman is without senses, mind,
Prana, quality. He is within and without all beings. He is Immovable. He is extremely subtle. 55.
He is the Light of lights. He is beyond the three qualities. He is a mass of wisdom. He is attainable
through wisdom. 56. Just as one sun illumines the whole world, the one Brahman illumines all
intellects. 57. Control the senses and the mind. Burn all desires. Aspire fervently and intensely.
Kill fear and anger. You will attain Liberation or the Final Beatitude. 58. Think of Brahman.
Meditate on Brahman. Be devoted to Brahman. Get merged in Brahman. Get established in
Brahman, This is Brahma-Abhyasa or Jnana-Abhyasa, or Vedantic Nididhyasana or Ahamgraha
Upasana.

Adhyaya

IX KUNDALINI YOGA

1. Kundalini is the coiled up, dormant, cosmic power that underlies all organic and inorganic
matter within us. 2. Kundala means coiled. Her form is like a coiled serpent. 3. Kundalini Yoga
deals with the practical methods which will awaken this great pristine force in individuals. 4.
Kundalini Yoga is an exact science. It treats of Kundalini Sakti, the six centres of spiritual
energy, Shat-Chakras, the arousing of the sleeping Kundalini Sakti and its union with Lord Siva
in Sahasrara Chakra, at the crown of the head. 5. Kundalini Yoga is also known as Laya Yoga.
6. The six centres are pierced (Chakra-Bheda) by the passing of Kundalini Sakti to the top of the
head.

7. Asanas, Bandhas, Mudras, Pranayama help in awakening Kundalini. 8. Neti, Dhauti, Nauli,
Bhasti, Kapalabhati and Trataka are the Shat-Kriyas or six Yoga Kriyas. 9. Mula-Bandha,
Jalandhara-Bandha, Uddiyana-Bandha, Maha-Bandhaare the important Bandhas. 10. Maha-
Mudra, Yoni-Mudra, Sambhavi-Mudra, Khechari Mudra, Sakti-Chalani Mudra and Vipareeta-
Karani Mudra are the important Mudras. 11. Sarvangasana, Sirshasana, Paschimottanasana are
the important Asanas. 12. Learn the Asanas, Pranayama, Bandhas and Mudras under an expert,
Siddha Yogi Guru. 13. A Guru is one who has full illumination, who is endowed with all divine
virtues, who is able to remove the doubts of his disciples and guide them in the path of Yoga.
14. The Guru transmits his powers to the disciple through Sankalpa (willing), Drishti (sight), Sakti-
Sanchar (touch). 15. A Sadhaka should observe perfect discipline in diet. He should take Sattvic
food in moderation. A glutton cannot dream of success in Yoga. 16. Do not fast much. It will
produce weakness.

17. He who has firm faith in the scriptures, who has Sadachara (right conduct), who constantly
engages himself in the service of his Guru, who is free from lust, anger, delusion, greed, vanity,
hatred and egoism can awaken Kundalini, attain perfection and enter into Samadhi quickly. 18.
The first step in Kundalini Yoga is the purification of Nadis. 19. Kanda is situated between the
anus and the root of the reproductive organ. It is like the shape of an egg. It is the centre of the
astral body. The Yoga-Nadis spring from Kanda. 20. Nadis are the astral tubes made up of
astral matter. They carry Pranic currents. 21. There are 72,000 Nadis. Of these, three are most
important. They are Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. 22. Kundalini, when awakened will pass
through Sushumna Nadi which passes through the spinal column. 23. Sushumna Nadi extends
from Muladhara Chakra to Brahmarandra or crown of the head. 24. When Sushumna-Nadi
flows through both nostrils, you will have wonderful concentration and meditation. 25. You
can change the flow of breath in Ida and Pingala Nadis through concentration on the left and
right nostril, through Khechari Mudra, etc. 26. When you practise Pranayama vigorously, take
butter and sugarcandy. Live on a small quantity of milk. 27. He who has Chitta-suddhi or purity
of heart will be benefited by the awakening of Kundalini Sakti. 28. He who is addicted to
sensual pleasures, who is arrogant, proud, dishonest, untruthful, who disrespects the Guru,
Sadhus and Saints can never attain success in Kundalini Yoga. 29. Kundalini Sakti passes
through the Muladhara, Svadhishthana, Manipura, Anahata, Vishuddha, Ajna Chakras and finally
enters the Sahasrara at the crown of the head. 30. The Yogi attains different Siddhis at each
Chakra and experiences Ananda or bliss in various degrees. 31. Anima, Mahima, Laghima,
Garima, Prapti, Prakamya, Vasitvam, Ishatvam are the major eight Siddhis. 32. Doora-Darshana
(clairvoyance), Doora-Sravana (clairaudience), Manojaya (control of the mind), Kamarupa,
Parakaya Pravesha, Iccha-Mrityu are the minor Siddhis. 33. During the ascent of Kundalini layer
after layer of the mind becomes fully opened. The Yogi experiences various visions, knowledge
and bliss. 34. When it reaches the Sahasrara, he gets the highest knowledge and bliss. He reaches
the highest rung in the ladder of Yoga. He becomes free in all respects. He is a full-blown Yogi.
35. Eventually the Yogi attains Nirvikalpa Samadhi, the state of superconsciousness. He gets
intuition. Real knowledge flashes in him. 36. These are the signs that indicate that Kundalini has
been awakenedviz., dispassion, fearlessness, joy, ecstasy, peace, unruffled state of mind,
Siddhis or powers, contentment. 37. Kundalini can also be awakened by devotion, strong, pure,
irresistible, dynamic will, the grace of the Guru and recitation of Mantra. 38. A Kundalini Yogi
attains Bhukti (enjoyment) and Mukti (liberation).

17. He who has firm faith in the scriptures, who has Sadachara (right conduct), who constantly
engages himself in the service of his Guru, who is free from lust, anger, delusion, greed, vanity,
hatred and egoism can awaken Kundalini, attain perfection and enter into Samadhi quickly. 18.
The first step in Kundalini Yoga is the purification of Nadis. 19. Kanda is situated between the
anus and the root of the reproductive organ. It is like the shape of an egg. It is the centre of the
astral body. The Yoga-Nadis spring from Kanda. 20. Nadis are the astral tubes made up of astral
matter. They carry Pranic currents. 21. There are 72,000 Nadis. Of these, three are most
important. They are Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. 22. Kundalini, when awakened will pass through
Sushumna Nadi which passes through the spinal column. 23. Sushumna Nadi extends from
Muladhara Chakra to Brahmarandra or crown of the head. 24. When Sushumna-Nadi flows
through both nostrils, you will have wonderful concentration and meditation. 25. You can
change the flow of breath in Ida and Pingala Nadis through concentration on the left and right
nostril, through Khechari Mudra, etc. 26. When you practise Pranayama vigorously, take butter
and sugarcandy. Live on a small quantity of milk. 27. He who has Chitta-suddhi or purity of heart
will be benefited by the awakening of Kundalini Sakti. 28. He who is addicted to sensual
pleasures, who is arrogant, proud, dishonest, untruthful, who disrespects the Guru, Sadhus and
Saints can never attain success in Kundalini Yoga. 29. Kundalini Sakti passes through the
Muladhara, Svadhishthana, Manipura, Anahata, Vishuddha, Ajna Chakras and finally enters the
Sahasrara at the crown of the head. 30. The Yogi attains different Siddhis at each Chakra and
experiences Ananda or bliss in various degrees. 31. Anima, Mahima, Laghima, Garima, Prapti,
Prakamya, Vasitvam, Ishatvam are the major eight Siddhis. 32. Doora-Darshana (clairvoyance),
Doora-Sravana (clairaudience), Manojaya (control of the mind), Kamarupa, Parakaya Pravesha,
Iccha-Mrityu are the minor Siddhis. 33. During the ascent of Kundalini layer after layer of the
mind becomes fully opened. The Yogi experiences various visions, knowledge and bliss. 34.
When it reaches the Sahasrara, he gets the highest knowledge and bliss. He reaches the highest
rung in the ladder of Yoga. He becomes free in all respects. He is a full-blown Yogi. 35. Eventually
the Yogi attains Nirvikalpa Samadhi, the state of superconsciousness. He gets intuition. Real
knowledge flashes in him. 36. These are the signs that indicate that Kundalini has been
awakenedviz., dispassion, fearlessness, joy, ecstasy, peace, unruffled state of mind, Siddhis or
powers, contentment. 37. Kundalini can also be awakened by devotion, strong, pure, irresistible,
dynamic will, the grace of the Guru and recitation of Mantra. 38. A Kundalini Yogi attains Bhukti
(enjoyment) and Mukti (liberation).