Tuesday, April 21, 2009


For many of us, yoga poses becomes less important as the sitting increases and the sadhana (spiritual practice) intensifies. But we should not forget to do what Dharma calls "the exercises."

That's the focus of today's daily reading from from Swami Sivananda:

"A Vedantin is afraid to do Asana [poses] and Pranayama [breathing practices] on the ground that the practice will intensify ‘body attachment’ and militate against his practice of Vairagya** [detachment]. Though the two paths, Hatha Yoga and Vedanta*, are different, yet a Vedantin should have a broad vision and practise Asana and Pranayama in order to keep the body in a sound state to achieve the goal of life. There are Vedantins in a sickly condition with very poor physique and dilapidated constitution. They can hardly do any Sadhana.

"The body is closely related to the mind. In other words, a weak, sickly body means a weak mind also. Therefore keep your body strong by the practice of Hatha Yoga and gallantly reach the other shore of Peace and Plenty."


*Vedanta is based on two simple propositions:

1. Human nature is divine.

2. The aim of human life is to realize that human nature is divine.


**How To Get Vairagya [detachment] by Swami Sivananda

(Remember these seven vital points)

1. Hari Om, Sensual pleasure is momentary, deceptive, illusory and imaginary.
2. A mustard of pleasure is mixed with a mountain of pain.
3. Enjoyment cannot bring about satisfaction of a desire. On the contrary it makes the mind more restless after enjoyment through intense craving (Trishnas and Vasanas).
4. Sensual pleasure is an enemy of Brahma-Jnana
5. Sensual pleasure is the cause for birth and death.
6. This body is nothing but a mass of flesh, bone, and all sorts of filth.
7. Place before the mind the fruits of Self-realization or life in the soul or Brahman or the Eternal, such as Immortality, Eternal bliss, Supreme peace and Infinite knowledge. If you remember the seven points always, the mind will be weaned from the cravings for sensual pleasures. Vairagya, Viveka and Mumukshutva (dispassion, discrimination from the real and the unreal, and keen longing for liberation from birth and death) will dawn. You should seriously look into the defects of sensual life (Dosha-Drishti) and into the unreal nature of worldly life (Mithya-Drishti).

Read this once daily as soon as you get up from the bed.


Photos from this website.

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