Raja Yoga


by Jai Maha Dev


The most important thing we can do in our life is to stay true to our Self. We know what we are and we know what we are not.We are free souls, we are not the slave of our mind or the victim of false identification.


No one can steal our True Identity, but we can lose it if we listen to our mind and ego. Unless the mind has been purified with divine wisdom and disciplined with renunciation, it cannot be trusted.


Purifying the mind with wisdom means more than just reading books or attending lectures or satsangs. In order for the mind to be purified the wisdom must be applied. The ancient method for the assimilation and application of divine wisdom is called RAJA YOGA.


Raja Yoga is an applied science, not a theoretical one. Raja Yoga consists of a time-tested methodology, which, when applied in real life situations, leads to the direct control of the mind.By practicing Raja Yoga one becomes the ruler of oneís own mind.This means one is no longer overpowered by negative emotions, selfish desires, memories, misunderstandings, hallucinations, and excessive analysis (over-thinking).


Raja Yoga is Ashtanga Yoga, it is Bhakti Yoga, it is Laya Yoga, Mantra Yoga, Karma Yoga, Kriya Yoga, Dhyana Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and every other path of Yoga identified by various practitioners of different aspects of Yoga. Really, there is only one Yoga, but it is sought in many ways. There are many seekers of Yoga but very few true seers of Yoga.To really know Yoga one must understand it and practice it in its totality. To practice it partially or with partiality is to ignore its essence while clinging to its form only. This is akin to loving the body and ignoring the soul.


The soul of Yoga lies in the transcendental Consciousness which can only be realized by building a firm foundation in the fundamentals of Yoga. Those fundamentals are the Yamas and Niyamas, which can be summed up in one word: Ahimsa, Non-Violence.So long as we are violating or going against our higher nature (our Real Nature) we are injuring ourselves and hurting others.


It is an effort to practice Yoga. The effort becomes easier the more we practice it. As Patanjali writes in his Yoga Sutras:

The success of Yogis (practitioners) differs.For those who practice mildly, the results are mild.For those who practice in a mediocre manner, the results are mediocre. Those who practice with diligence will attain illumination.Patanjaliís Yoga Sutras, Chapter 1, Sutra 22


Basically, we need to practice being ourselves, which means being what we really ARE and always have been:ATMAN, soul, Pure Consciousness devoid of all mental superimpositions (images) including the image of self-consciousness which is the mistaken identity called EGO. Practice means making a consistent effort to keep the mind aligned with Pure Consciousness.It means to make the mind sage-like.When the mind becomes a sage it can be trusted.The mind that is made into a Rishi is reliable because that mind is purified with divine wisdom and is not under the influence of ego.


The practice of Yoga is a way of life. Those who embrace the Yogic lifestyle and remain committed to raising consciousness attain transcendence. They realize the inherent freedom of the Self and become the self-ruled master of their own destiny.


By our very nature, each of us is the author of our fate, but only when we master the mind and dethrone our small self ego do we fully realize our Essence.


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