Words of Wisdom by Swami Satchidananda
- "Many people feel that discipline means a lack of freedom, a repression or joyless
life. But imagine that you are tied to the saddle of a galloping horse, clinging for your
life, hoping that somehow the horse might feel sympathy and stop. Is that enjoyment?
That is the situation when we do not have discipline over our minds. The person
who really enjoys horseback riding is the one who controls the horse, who can
stop whenever he or she wants.
You will enjoy the world when you know how to handle it well, when you become master
of it. Who is the person who enjoys eating? The one who eats well, chews well,
digests well, and assimilates well, not the one who eats for the sake of the
tongue, overloads the stomach, and then uses purgatives.
If your friends laugh at you and say, 'With Yoga you are just running away from the
world; you are not going to enjoy anything,' tell them, 'We are the people who are going
to enjoy it best because we are working to bring everything under our control.
We don't want to be controlled by anything. We want to be masters of our tongues
and our eyes. We won't be slaves to our desires.' This is the aim of Yoga."
- Sri Swami Satchidananda
- Watch your mind. Watch your breath. Become an observer, which is the key to Jnana Yoga. Don’t worry about particular techniques. Just sit back and observe the breath, mind, and thoughts. Just see what’s happening within you. Become a witness, which is a wonderful form of meditation. Be still and watch what is happening in your mind and in your body. Maybe you have been repeating a mantra or focusing on one object for a time. You may then relax and sit calmly and watch the mind; observe the peaceful vibrations that come. Listen to the silence completely. Observe your own brain. See how peaceful you are. The mind seems to be totally at rest. You might think the mind is almost asleep, yet you are still conscious of the whole thing. The body is resting. The breath has very much slowed. The mind is almost sleeping but you are aware of everything.
Ask yourself, “Who is aware of them? What is this awareness? Who knows all these things? That is You, the Knower. You are totally different from your body, from your mind. You are the witness—what you call the Self, the pure Self—the witness of the body and mind. If you could maintain this witnessing constantly, still knowing you are the witness all the time, you would reach Self-awareness or
Self-realization. Keep up this awareness, even in your day-to-day activities. When you are eating, when you are walking, and especially when you are distressed, you can still witness. You will constantly enjoy supreme peace. Through this practice you become the master of your own body and mind. You’ll walk through life like an undisturbed sage.