It has become the fashion of the day to use the word Yoga for every
activity. Yoga means simply attainment. But attainment of what is
important? The Yoga shastra of Patanjali uses this word strictly in
the attainment of Eswara (Lord). To render service (practical
devotion) to the Lord, mental and physical health is needed. The
early five stages (Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama and Pratyahara)
concentrate on this attainment of physical and mental health.
Afterwards the other three stages (Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi) deal
with the main subject of attainment of the Lord. The preachers are
stopping with the early five steps only and limiting their efforts
by turning their spiritual workshops in to gymnasiums, hospitals and
recreation centers. By this you are preaching the art of peaceful
and happy living on this earth. If you stop here, the main goal of
Patanjali Yoga is totally lost.
A Boy who is admitted to the school is given fees and good food. He
is expected to go to the school and study. But, he goes to the
cinema theatre and uses the fees to purchase the ticket for cinema.
This is the fate of Yoga today. The Yoga centre teaches all the
steps to attain physical health by the first four steps and mental
health by the fifth step. The person becomes fully healthy and
attains mental peace by the control of thoughts (chittavrutti
The thought is controlled so that it is diverted from the world to
use it in the direction of devotion (Vyavasayatmika
Gita). A horse
is controlled by the owner so that it will not have freedom to go as
it likes in the wrong directions. Therefore, controlling thoughts to
divert the mind to the right path is Pratyahara. It is withdrawal of
.Gita) but not destruction of mind (Manolaya
Yoga). The preachers are talking about the dissolution of thoughts
which is equal to killing the horse. By doing so the horse cannot be
used in any direction. The purpose is lost. One medicine to cure the
tooth pain was advertised like this: by using this medicine you will
never get pain for any tooth because this medicine will remove all
the teeth from your mouth! Similarly, if you kill the mind, the
problems and all worries have ended once for all. By killing the
horse, the problem in controlling it is solved forever!
Such a state in which the thoughts are dissolved and the mind is
destroyed results in the state of a stone in human form. You will
become the statue of the human being carved in a stone!
at the lotus feet of swamiji