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We were studying sutra 1/15 regarding asceticism. Here Patanjali Rishi says that “Anushravik Vishya” are pertaining to those, which took place in the past in respect of life of ancient Rishis/Munis. The merriments of next birth mentioned in Vedas, the next top class birth, full with every assets and enjoyment, over lasting pleasure of final liberation and the perfection of Yoga’s achievement. Vyas Muni says about this Vishyaya (subject) matters) becomes undesirous then this stage is called fully controlled asceticism of an aspirant. Let us learn about ‘Anushravik Vishaya’.

Our ancient Munis like Vyas, Agastya, Atri, Shringi, etc. attained the stage of ‘Asampragyat Samadhi’. Those Rishis were worshipped by the then kings, queens, their daughters, sons and even by the public. Rishis like Gargi, Yagyavalka, Shatananda and Vamdev, etc. used to live in the palace also. Yagyavalka Rishi had two wives and so many Rishis had even more. So the knowledge being given in the sutra is that if the aspirant or a saint of the present time starts quoting the said reference of the Rishis, Munis with the intention that they should also get the merriment in the same manner of the ancient Rishis then this thinking comes under ‘Anushravik Vishya’ and so-called saints/aspirants of the present time are wasting their lives and life of the public, being arrogant. We should also know here that in addition a present saint or aspirant are comparing them with the ancient Rishis who were having the complete knowledge of four Vedas and yoga philosophy in experience whereas the present saints/aspirants are very few who are so. In this asceticism, the materialistic merriment is also included. So, according this sutra, no saints or aspirants must collect the materialistic articles to become a true yogi. The next sutra tells about the supernatural asceticism:

Tata Parmam Purushkhya Ter Gun Vaitrishnayam (1/16)

(Tata) that (Param) is the highest asceticism which comes (Purushkhyatehe) after realizing the knowledge of God and the aspirant (Gunvaitrishnayam) becomes undesirous from the qualities of Prakriti.

Meaning = when the aspirant becomes ascetic, mentioned in the sutra 1/15 and he is even going to practise Ashtang Yoga, study of holy books like Veda, shastras, does auspicious deeds with full faith and without disturbances and break, then he gets the full knowledge about the Almighty God. Due to this effect of realizing Almighty God, he is detached with the qualities of Prakriti (i.e. Rajo, Tamo, Sato qualities). In the Yoga Shastra, this is called Parvairagya i.e. the highest stage of asceticism. Here a story of Mahabharata is remembered –

There was a king named Nahush. Once he prayed Rishi Chayvan to pay his visit to his palace. The king served the Rishi at his level best. But still the king could not make the Rishi happy. Even once the Rishi Chayvan left the palace without telling anybody else, for his Ashram. In the morning when the king and the queen came to know about the Rishi, they both followed the path to the Rishi’s Ashram. After a long distance they saw a very beautiful palace, full with all assets and all materialistic merriment, including sensuality, etc. For a second, king and queen were astonished but after looking every article of the palace and leaving it, they reached to Rishi Chayvan’s Ashram. They got down on the feet of Rishi and prayed to become happy with them and to shower blessings. When the Rishi pleased and showered blessings on them, then in a pleasant mood, the queen requested with folded hands to Rishi to tell about the enchanted palace in the jungle. Chayvan Rishi smiled and told that the enchanted palace was made by him with Yogic illusion for the king and his queen. Chayvan Rishi further added that he (Chavyan Rishi) thought that both, the king and his queen, will become entangled in the illusion of materialistic attractive articles and thus king and queen will be ruined. But Chayvan Rishi was surprised that neither king nor queen were entangled with the enchanted palace. After all, Rishi had too blessed king and the queen both. King requested the Rishi to make his family a Brahmin one. But in return the Rishi blessed that the king and his son will not be Brahmins, but his son’s son will first become Rajrishi and thereafter he will be turned as a Brahmin. And everybody knows that Rishi Vishwamitra was born in Kshatriya family and was a king. After sometime, he left for jungle, did the highest Ashtang Yoga practice, studied Vedas and became a Rishi. So this all was possible only de to asceticism of Rishi Vishwamitra’s forefathers. Here Vyas Muni comments on this sutra that whatever we see or hear, if we feel the faults/sins/damage about listening and hearing then we will be an ascetic. Actually what happens that the scene we see and the talk we listen gives us enjoyment of materialistic world and we always are indulged through eye, ear, skin, nose and tongue to see, listen, feel, smell and taste about the worldly affairs. Due to lack of Vedic preach or practice of Yoga philosophy, we do not realize the bad effects of all these listening and hearing and that is why we do not leave it. Instead we are indulged more and more in worldly affairs.

We must concentrate on the said great point of Vyas Muni that he is an ascetic who seeks fault/sins in listening and hearing on the materialistic subjects. Nowadays, cinema, TV, backbiting, etc. are the most dangerous activities, which are mostly based in worldly attraction. So one should carefully listen and hear on the matter of faith, truth, Vedas, shastras, Holy Books and even one should seek good or bad from the same. Even until and unless we do not continue practicing Ashtang Yoga and authenticated worship of God including listening of Vedas, Holy Books, etc. then it will be very difficult to determine that what is wrong and what is good. Even to realize the effect of shastra’s preach, it is very difficult to understand. In this sutra also an ascetic has been warned not to plan for pleasure even of the final liberation and enjoyment, whatever our ancient Rishis/Munis had gained and what to talk about materialistic merriment. So will have to realize that even listening the cassette of religious songs or stories to define religion will not meet with success in the matter of truth/worship/control of organs/to continue Ashtang Yoga etc. It will give us only timely pleasure of listening by ears. So the matter of faith/religion/yoga philosophy is deep and vast and requires study of Vedas/shastras and continue practice of Vedas/shastras and continue practice of Yoga philosophy under the supervision of an experienced Yogi who knows all the said system. When the aspiratnt becomes able to realize the fault about listening and hearing, as mentioned above, then he becomes a real ascetic and this is the stage of a Purified Chitta. Thus the practice of realizing Almighty God makes the acetic able to detach him from the effect of qualities of Prakriti (Rajo, Tamo & Sato Gun) and thus the soul attains Par-vairaagya (the highest stage of asceticism). The only soul who has attained the said highest stage of asceticism is only capable to attain the final liberation.

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On the matter of “practice” the Yoga Shastra further says

“Sa Tu Dirghkalnirantrayasatkara savita Dridbhumihi” (1/14)

(sah) that practice (tu) but (Dirghkal) for a long time (nairantraya) continuously (satkar) and with respect (Aasavitah) should be adopted/done (Dridbhumihi) and too with firmed decision and firm stage.

Meaning = the practice on the resources said before should be continued for a long time with respect, faith and based on firm decision. When we say about long continue practice then its meaning is the long practice uptill the last breathing. In this connection Lord Krishna clearly says in Bhagwad Geeta shaloka 6/38-42 that the result of the pious deeds based on Vedas and the practice of Ashtang Yoga never go in vain. So we must learn that whether we restore the result of materialistic deeds, which will give us no peace and too will go in vain at last. Or we live duly supported ourselves, with asceticism, on the path of pious deeds preached in Vedic philosophy. Because Lord Krishna here further says that the result of the said pious deeds remains attached with our future in so many births and on this basis only an ascetic gets next birth in the family of Yogis. And the above said worship will start where he stopped in the previous birth. Therefore Yajna/Yoga practice should continue uptill death with respective manner being everlasting. Vyas Muni in this connection also says this practice must be continued in every stage daily and uptill death, without break, and with faith and respective manner. This type of practice gives an aspirant a firm stage and steady position of the chitta where the chitta does not attach in materialistic environments. Then what is the significance of real asceticism? It is given below:

Drishtanu shravik Vishyavitrishnsya Vashikaarsangya Vairaagyam (1/15)

(Drisht) already saw (Aanushravik) already listened (Vishya) scene/incidents/matters (vitrishnsya) without attachment/desires (vashikaarsangya) this controlled stage of chitta (vairaagyam) is Asceticism.

The above sutra concludes that whatever we have seen or listened through the organs of eyes, ears, etc. about the materialistic articles have seen or listened and considered/gone through/determined through organs of eyes, ears, mind etc. about the materialistic articles like assets, building, family. These are called the seen/experienced articles/matters.

But as said in the sutra regarding the “Aanushravik Vishya”. This knowledge cannot be got without listening the preach from Rishi/Muni/Yogi/true saints or without studying Vedas/shastras/holy books through a spiritual master. This Aanushravik subject matter pertains to be master of the knowledge of future birth, final liberation, realization of permanent merriment beyond the pleasure experienced from organs regarding materialistic world, and perfect judgement of supernatural powers. These all are gained through the long practice of the authenticated spiritual path including practice of Ashtang Yoga. The materialistic activities and experience thereof by general human being and even by Rishi/Muni/Yogis also come in “Aanushravik Vishya” i.e. already seen and experienced worldly affairs both are neglected and become undesirous and even do not come under consideration in life again, then only this type of stage of chitta is controlled asceticism. Because at this stage an aspirant has controlled his worldly desires and the remembrance of all previous life, happenings, etc. It is very much clear that normally when we sit on meditation for worship, etc. then our chitta starts remembering of all the previous lives’ good or bad happenings.

But still more often today’s saints say to sit on meditation and reciting Holy name of God. On the contrary, the traditional knowledge of yoga philosophy preached in the most ancient Vedas do not accept it. As briefed above, this traditional knowledge says about the determination of the authenticated path first, and then follow the same by its practice. Secondly, through the preach of Rishis/Munis/Vedas/shastras etc. an aspirant must remember that the whole world is destroyable and both by practicing yoga philosophy and listening preach as briefed above when he becomes a true ascetic then only the fruitful result is obtained.

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We were Learning Sutra 1/12 of the Yoga Shashtra that the said five Vrittis are stopped by practise and asceticism. Because the five Vrittis of the Chitta are not stopped, the salvation cannot be achieved. Therefore the huge importance in the life is asceticism as in clear from the Sutra. Actually in which community we are born, accordingly we are stressed to follow the same. For example, we are Hindu, so from the childhood we are told to go to the temple. If we are Muslim, Christian, Sikh or so on then we have to follow the respective religion. But in every religion too it is preached that the materialistic world is immortal. Only God is love and He is the truth. If we follow it faithfully then naturally our thinking (vrittis) will not love mortal articles and we will be satisfied whatever we get through hard working, In Vedas it is also preached only in two words,"Satyam Braham jagat Mithya" means only God is truth Who is Omnipresent and Immortal. Rest the world including our bodies will be perished away at one time even our body will leave the soul within hundred years. And so the death is sure being a fundamental law of God. Why we should be greedy, why we should be militant, etc. and we don't try to learn the basic principles of death etc. and we directly adopt above said religions due to custom/tradition or so on then we will perform the formalities of worship but internally we will be engaged even through religion, with the materialistic untrue deeds of the world. For example we will be gathering the money, building, gathering, dignity etc. So Vedas and shashtras raise the necessity of asceticism first then we must start worship. Now again the method of worship must be traditional preached in the Vedas-Shashtras and Holy Books. To perform such kind of traditional, known and authenticated worship will be our practice. Lord Rama, Yogeshwar Krishna, Rishis-Munis and the previous saints were ascetics first and then started Yoga practice worship etc. that is why Rama wondered in the jungles, left Kingdom and Lord Krishna never took rest in life, right from the birth in the jail, murder of Putna, Kansa and several evil elements in the Mahabharta also. In the end it is mentioned in Musal Parav of Mahabharta that Lord Krishna gave his kingdom and all assets thereof to Arjuna and he (Krishna left for jungle. Mahavir Swami, Mahatma Buddha, Guru Nanak Devji and so many previous saints, ascetics and they did worship together. So the importance of the asceticism in the life must be remembered first. The true worship is not for those who have anger, greediness, attachment, sensuality etc. In the next Sutra Rishi Patanjali preaches that what is practice?

Tatra Sthitau Yatno Abhyaasha (1/13)

(Tatra) from the above two (Abhayaas and Vairaagya i.e., practice and asceticism) (Sthitau) for steadiness of Chitta whatever the (yatna) hard struggleis there that hard struggle is called (abhyaasha) practice.

Meaning = to control the unsteady chitta's vritti whatever authenticated path we determine and accordingly we do the efforts/hard struggle that is called Practice. In this connection, Vyas Muni says the stage of the unsteady Chitta where the Chitta functions in calm and quiet situation then this stage of Chitta is called steadiness or perfect stoppage of Chitta's Vritti. To make this situation firm (steady) we will have to do the efforts on the best path. When we do the hard struggle in this way duly inspired with our level best and too in the best lonely place then these all efforts are called "Practice". For example --- Tapsya, the study of Vedas, Shashtras, repeatedly reciting the holy name of God, to do holy Yajna and to do Yoga Practice etc., are all the true resources on which we have to do hard Practice.

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We are studying about Smritti (memory) Vritti. When we have seen any matter in the past and gained knowledge through five organs of perception as said before, then the effect of the matter is built and remains on the Chitta. And when we do not forget the matter or incident etc; then this Vritti (subsistence /modification) is called Smritti Vritti. In this situation memory is based on the preach of the Vedas, Shashtras, Holy books, Holy words of Rishi /Muni /Yogi and so other pious deeds then this Vritti (subsistence) is called Aklishta Vritti which gives merriment peace and never gives sorrows etc. But on the other hand if we remember the past incidents based on materialistic articles, sorrows, hatred and bad deeds of worldly affairs/then this Vritti is called Klishta Vritti, which always gives sorrows, repentance, problems, tension, etc.

Vyas Muni says in this matter that here two things act. First is the mind, which gains the knowledge and second is the memory of the subject matter. In the Smritti (memory) Vritti both the subject matter and the memory of the subject matter are generated. There are two kinds of this Smritti. First is, when in the dream we see the incidents or matters of awoken time ie; whatever we saw when we awoke and this memory we see in the dream. It means we remember all this in the dream it is called "Bhavitas martavya Smritti" in Yoga Shashtra. And when we remember in the awoken stage the memory of the incidents, which we had seen in the dream then this is called "Abhavitasmartavya Smritti". These all Smrittis(memories) are experienced based on the Pramaan, Viparyaya, Viklapa, Nidra and Smrittis Vrittis (subsistence /modification). These Vrittis (modifications) are due to attachment, hatred/aversion and affection and are painful. When we experience the materialistic merriment and we are desirous of getting the same time and again then this is called Raag (Attachment). This may be in case of eating Rasagula etc; or ornaments, sexual attachment etc. If we have experienced sorrows, pains, sickness etc; from anybody else and when the same man or the articles or the situation from which we experienced the sorrows arise and thus we feel anger. Then this is called Duesh (hatred /aversion). Affection is due to Avidya (False knowledge). This is the duty (religion) for everybody to restrain all these Vrittis (Modification/Subsistences) to enable to get peace, happy life and Salvation, even this is the target of the human being to restrain the said Vrittis. Because in the Yoga Shashtra the Samadhi (Salvation) is called when an aspirant becomes able to restrain/stop all these five Vrittis of Chitta (Modification of mind). When an aspirant is able to stop the said Vrittis, then he first attains Asampragyat Yoga and thereafter Sampragyat Yoga (final liberation). Mostly the people remains in touch with these Vrittis and listen the preach which becomes of no use. Actually we have to listen first and in second attempt we must do the religious deeds/practise by which we become able to stop the said Vrittis. Mere listening the stories or description of any Shaloka will not help human being. Samkhya Shashtra especially says-

Na Shravanmatrat -tat Sidhihi [2 /3]

Means mere listening the preach will not serve the purpose. So Yoga Shashtra tells the method to help us to stop the Vrittis.

"Abhayaas Vairaagyabhyaam Tannirodhaha " [1/12]

Meaning = by doing practice and becoming an ascetic the said five Vrittis are restrained. We get Sampragyat and Asampragyat Samadhi only when we became able to restrain the Vrittis. Therefore practise and asceticism must do together. But in the life the first requirement is asceticism in the absence of which nobody is able to practise Yoga philosophy. It is said ,''Satyam Brahm Jagat Mithya" means only God is Everlasting, Omnipresent and Omniscient whereas the whole world is destroyable including our human bodies. Everybody we see the death, but hardly anybody feels that he should remember God or accept true path or must do Yoga Practise etc. Mostly we became attached with the worldly affairs. Actually this is due to the merriment we get from the five organs of perceptions, mind and five bodily organs like mouth etc. Due to this merriment we remains effective in affection, attachment etc; with the result we do not leave this merriment and it most requirement of the asceticism is forgotten.

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We were studing about Nidra (sleep) Vritti. Nidra (sleep) Vritti gives us knowledge about the nothingness, when we get deep sound sleep we must not waste our life to have access sleep, which will start giving us sorrows, sickness, tension and so many other diseases. In Mahabharta too Vyas Muni says that to eat, to sleep, to marry and to be afraid - these are four qualities equally in human beings as well as in animals. The human being is only separated from the animals’ category if they follow the religious path which animals cannot adopt. So in the absence of religious path human beings even having the body of the man or woman, they are equal to animals. In SAAM VEDA, it is said in mantra 1826 that he who awakes early in the morning about 4'0clock and does worship, meditation and studies of holy books like Vedas, shashtras then one day Almighty God becomes his friend, which has the deepest meaning. Students and family holders used to awake in the past Satyug, Dwapur,Treta Yug early in the morning to do auspicious deeds and to discharge their duties stated in the past and holy books. We see in the Mahabharta and Valmiki Ramayan that Rishis and Munis used to awake even before 3'0clock morning for taking bath and religious deeds Vyas Muni says that Lord Krishna used to awake in the middle of night and used to do worship and yoga practise. This tradition stated in the Vedas is now not being adhered to often, which has resulted in unhappiness and early death, sickness, etc. Actually Nidra (sleep)is the mental modification but soul never got sleep.

Now we come to Smriti Vritti.

Anubhut Vishya Asampromoshah Smritti (1/11)

(Anubhuut Vishya Asampromoshaha) when experienced matter are not forgotten then this Vritti is called Smriti (memory) Vriti.

Meaning = whatever we had seen, listened and experienced about the incidents, scenes etc., in the past and those are not being forgotten and often we remember the same in our life time again then this Vritti which recollect the past experiences is called Smritti (memory) Vritti. Here Vyas Muni says that whether the Chitta remember the past experienced matters. Actually in the memory both are appeared. First, past experienced knowledge, which is to be recollect and second the matters (objectives) ie; the desire towards the experienced knowledge and its subject matter both are appeared in the memory. The reason for its rememberance is mental affections ie; the desire towards the experienced merriment again and again. The experienced knowledge and attachment towards the materialistic world generates the form on the chitta about the matter and its knowledge both. Therefore whatever knowledge we get sense ie eye, ear, nose, tongue and skin that makes effect on our Chitta, which comes in our memory again and again. For example-suddenly our memory recollects mango. Here theshape of mango is the shape which we had seen in the past. Apart from the shape of mango the second knowledge is about the sweetness and healthiness of the mango. Both the situations will be recollected at one time. So the shape of mango and the quality (sweetness, etc.) of the mango which both are produced on the Chitta, these are the forms, effects of the mango which had been effected on the Chitta when we saw and used mango in the past. So in this case the shape and the qualities of the mango previously made the effect on the Chitta and afterwards these effects are raised on the Chitta and generated both the memory of the already experienced shape of mango and its qualities on the Chitta.

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Yoga philosophy alerts us from false thinking as we read in previous Vritti. Now we consider about ''Nidra'' Vritti

Abhavapratyaya Aalambana Vrittihi Nidra (1/10)

Abhava=non-existence. Pratyaya=knowledge
Aalambana=reliance. Vritti=effect of various forms.
Nidra=deep sleep (without dream).

Meaning = Nidra is the Chitta's Vritti where in we realise the knowledge of non-existence. In Nidra Vritti we realise the knowledge of nothingness, because when we take deep sleep then we forget ourself or any link with the whole world, and on awakening we say that we took a deep sleep we are felling freshness so who told us about the sleep? This is only Nidra Vritti who told us about our deep sleep. Even after awakening we say that we had forgotten about the whole world, family or our position. Shashtra says that this fact also told us by Nidra Vritti. Therefore the Nidra Vritti is also a Vritti of Chitta who gives us the knowledge of nothingness. Even if we do not take a sound sleep then also the Nidra Vritti gives us the same knowledge. Otherwise, we were sleeping, we should have known nothing.

When the five organs and five perceptions and Chitta is entangled in laziness, sensuality, proud, anger, worldly desires etc; and we are having the pleasure of getting sound sleep, then this Nidra Vritti is called Klishta Nidra Vritti, which always give sorrows, repentance, early death, etc.

On the contrary if we worship adorable God by virtue of yoga philosophy and attain knowledge by Nidra Vritti that there is a knowledge of nothingness in deep sleep and if we apply this knowledge while awakening that the total world is destructible, nothing is immortal. So we must do the true and pious duties entrusted in Vedas/shashtras only and carefully we must study Yoga philosophy and if while meditating we in awoken condition realise nothingness as realised in deep sleep. So this Nidra Vritti is called Aklishta Nidra Vritti, which gives no sorrows. Instead it gives salvation. So we must remember that the God has blessed us to learn the knowledge through ourselves, but for the same we must seek the guidance of an alive spiritual master.

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We must recollect that the soul acts in accordance with the Chitta's Vritti is. Whatever the Vritti is, so is the Soul. If the Chitta Vritti is happy the soul feels happy. If Chitta Vritti is feeling sad so is the soul. Samadhi is salvation. And in Samadhi there is neither happiness nor sorrows but there became a permanent spiritual pleasure. That is why to restrain the various forms of Vritti is called Yoga. In the series the third is Vikalapa Vritti,ie; SHABAD GYANANUPATI VASTU SHUNYA VIKALPA (1/9)

Meaning-Vikalpa Vritti is the Vritti where we gain the knowledge merely based on words only, that is mere thoughts only, but the matter/target is nil. For-example suppose a man viz. labourer does work hard and hardly he manages food to live upon, but he starts thinking that if he could be President of India, then he could get nice accommodation, food and dignity etc. In this way he is not a President. His dream is based merely on the words he thinks. So the Vikalapa Vritti is based only on words knowledge but there is no any matter in fact to experience. Actually there becomes no shape of the matter, which is based merely on wording knowledge. That is why, in the second sutra the word for the Vikalapa Vritti has been used as vastu shunya. Vastu means matter like book, house, money etc; and shunya means zero ie; shape is nowhere. Only words are without existence of any matter. For example-somebody says that the man is carrying bow made by rabbit’s horn. In this case also basically there is no rabbit on the earth who has horns. So this is false statement.

Vyas muni comments in this matter on the said sutra that this Vritti does not come as a true proof and even does not come under Viparyaya Vritti. So there is lot of difference between Viparyaya and Vikalapa Vritti. False knowledge in a matter due to misunderstanding is Vipparyaya Vritti, but the matter actually exists there. Whereas in Vikalapa Vritti there is no existence of matter like rabbit's horn.

Now a days we thinks about swarg and narak based on words only whereas in Vedas/shashtras, there is no swarg and narak. One has to face his Karmas (done deeds) here only on this earth by taking birth based on pious deeds/sins. Now when we listen preach from a spiritual master/yogis and sits on meditation or doAshtang yoga then this Vikalapa Vritti is Aklishta and gives no sorrows. But on the contrary when we talks about God, Goddess, worship etc.; but do nothing practical then this Vikalapa is Klishta and gives sorrows. This Klishta Vritti makes our attachment with the materialistic world and we ultimately get sorrows always. Description of Nidra Vritti will follow.

IndiaTimes Chat Transcripts: February 10, 2004

What are the health benefits of meditation and yoga? How do they help in relieving stress in today's world? Chat with Expert on meditation and yoga, Swami Ram Swarup, conducted at at 12 pm (IST) on February 10, 2004

Swami Ram Swarup
Spiritual Guru
"Yoga philosophy is always learnt personally"

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ravi> Which asanas do you recommend we do before doing meditation and for how long?

Swami Ramswarup> Every asan must be done at least thrice within one minute or more, and sequence is Vajrasan, Pashimotaan asan, Halasan, Gauasan, Uttanpaadasan, Padmasan and then Siddhasan - these are are 8 asans. Before Padmasan or Siddhasan, if anyone can do, include Bhramcharyasan, Sarpasan, and Halasan - otherwise eight are enough. And meditation must be on first Siddhasan, or Padmasan, but Siddhasan is the best.

Love> How can we help our neck pains through yoga?
Swami Ramswarup> Pranayaam must be done on Siddhasan or Padmasan. Otherwise, for pranayaam, padmasan is the best. Because one time yogi takes jump while doing pranayaam, but yogi will leave the earth for taking jump in padmasan only.

Shalinisethi> I am suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and I am completely pain free, I do yoga on and off, but the real help came from medicines. I have never seen anyone completely cured by yoga. What do you say to that?
Swami Ramswarup> Sarpasan, Halasan and Tiddiasan, will help you. And Yog Mudra, including exercise by turning neck right to left, and left to right, front and back, if possible. But it must be learnt in presence of spiritual master.

Lalaisa> I was wondering well I don't do much yoga etc and what would be the simplest forms just to get started...just through meditating...I find my back starts hurting easily...also i had a question for a elderly friend who has arthritis and is overweight what do you think is best to do.
Swami Ramswarup> Yoga philosophy is always learnt personally but you can start first some asans and try to go to a spiritual master to learn. Yoga means samadhi and it is the eighth stage of ashtang yoga. Yoga realises God, that is why it is called samadhi. And we start yoga, right from beginning, that is yam, niyam, asan, pranayaam, pratyahaar, dharanaa, dhyaan, and at last, samadhi, then achieving this stage of samadhi, the eighth position, we automatically become free from bodily, mentally diseases and illusion. So yoga is not called asan, pranyaam or meditation, and even real yoga is not only meant for getting off from any kind of disease. But yoga philosophy mentioned in the Vedas is meant for getting salvation, that is samadhi (yoga).

Ganesh> I am 74 years old, Which are the asanas that you suggest for me? I have undergone by-pass surgery two years back
Swami Ramswarup> Vajrasan, Bhujangasan, Siddhasan, Uttanpaadasan, Pashimotaanasan and especially Gaumukh asan are especially beneficial for you, if the interval of the surgery is above 6 months. Pranayaam will also suit you, starting from lom and vilom kriya. Please learn it personally. If possible, you must also do havan from gayatri mantra, daily, which purify the atmosphere, even of your inside, using the wood of mango tree only because mango tree has antibiotic meditation in it.

Shalinisethi> How often and how long should one do yoga in rheumatoid arthritis?
Swami Ramswarup> Yoga, in the shape of asan, pranyaam, etc. must be of one hour minimum duration, both times with light physical exercise and daily walk must be done. It can be extended for another one hour, if possible, which will give you extra benefit.

Monikagaur> How can yoga help me to come out from depression?
Swami Ramswarup> Depression is due to over-thinking mostly and weakness, etc. Yoga concentrates our thinking on one point. Yoga means Samadhi that is realisation of God. Yoga is not called asan, pranyaam, or meditation. These are actually part of yoga. So when we start yoga practice, from yam, niyam, and reach the eighth stage, then we find our body totally purified, and duly concentrated our mind, where, then God realises in our heart. So, yoga when concentrate our all mind, so automatically depression is out. Yoga gives us mental and physical strength, because yoga philosophy teaches us about maintaining our character by bhramcharya, purification, non-violence, to maintain truth, not to take burden about unwanted materialistic articles, satisfaction at all level, tapasya - means to hear vedic preach, yajna, donation etc. to a right path - so these are the basic principles of starting yoga, which are called yam, niyama. Then we reach to asan and pranyaam, pratyahaar and dharna, and then meditation - the seventh stage. So full yoga must be learnt, starting from yam and niyama. Atharveda says that if a rat cuts your clothes and takes the cut-piece, and similarly you take the cut-piece of the knowledge of the Vedas or yoga, so this is a great sin. If your shirt is cut off by a rat, then it is useless. So if the yoga philosophy is cut off, then it is made useless. It must not be made professional. It is spiritual, and a great yogi, who knows full Vedas, or full yoga, is only authenticated to preach the yoga philosophy, as said in Atharveda mantra - Atharvan pitaram, that is mantra number 7/2/1.

Lalaisa> Also, I was wondering do you think its best to do yoga such as cardio yoga outside your home or is it best to do yoga inside your home?
Swami Ramswarup> Outside the home is the best because you will get there fresh air. And the timing of the yoga is in early morning and evening too. Because your lungs require fresh air in the open air atmosphere. But if you have good room where fresh air is coming then it may serve you also. Otherwise, the best place is outside the home. The 3/4 path of life was being used by our forefathers in the jungle in the shape of bhramcharya, vaanprasath, and sanyaas ashram and only 1/4 of their life they used for family life in city only. That's why they got the long ill-free life of more than 300 years say Valmiki Ramayan and Mahabharat and Yajurveda mantra 3/62 - Trayusham jamadagne pashya... Therefore open air is the best for doing yoga practice.

Signoff Message> To be strong again, and to be called World Guru and Golden Bird again, we will have to follow the Vedic philosophy, which is eternal, again as followed in the previous three periods, that is satyug, treta and dwapar. The old and youth, everybody must come forward, then again our India will generate the warrior like Bhisma, Yudhisthar, Arjun and Abhimanyu and knowledge's like Vyas Muni, Kapil Muni, Guru Vashist, Pantanjali Rishi, Atri Rishi, Agast Rishi, Balbhramcharini Gargi (who was the Guru of King Janak and she did the Shastrath with Rishi Yagvalk even) - the philosopher of Vedas and Yoga, who are not taking birth nowadays in the absence of eternal knowledge of four Vedas. The yoga is also being preached in a cut form, and a short-cut form, which is a sin. It must not be made professional. We must make our country strong, and we must make our future bright by following again the path of eternal Vedic philosophy. Unfortunately most of the present Guru are telling people that everybody must make Guru. Giving the example of Lord Rama and Lord Krishna, who did Guru but their Guru knew full Vedas and Yoga but present Gurus do not. Then why they are giving the Rishis' example? Why they are encashing their name baselessly?

Isavasya upanishad - mantras 9 to 14

(In response to a question by Ramesh Babu Badisa)

Swami Ramswarup:
It is lengthy one. However some points are here. This Upnishad actually reproduces almost all same mantras of 40 chapter of Yajurveda.

9. Those who are only attached with materialism and do not pay attention in spiritualism they are always in illusion and those who are also only attached or do hard job only in spiritualism they are more effected with illusion. So both are experiencing sorrows, problems, etc., etc. Here the correct knowledge of Vedas is:

10. To know the correct meaning of Vidya (spiritual knowledge) and Avidya (knowledge about duties and progress in science for the benefit of human lives. Because our learned (forefather Rishis) have told the meaning of Vidya and Avidya in some other senses. And we have been listening from those DHIRANNAAM (YOGIS who have attained the stage fromYam, to Dhyan and Samadhi). Now a days this is the main problem with the world that we are listening the preach not from a competent Yogi but we are listening the preaches and studying the books of those who do not know about the eternal knowledge in experiences bypractising Yoga philosophy in full and studying Vedas and hence the problem. And most of the people even studying books and even worshipping do not feel peace and long happy life. Hence the problem to promote love and international brotherhood at all level.

11. One should do hard job to get progress equally in spiritualism as well as discharging duties i.e., real duty mentioned in Vedas for family, society and Nation. So for this purpose a real spiritual master is required. So after knowing the real meaning of Avidya (materialistic knowledge /science etc.) that our human body and this world is destroyed one day and is not true and we are soul and we are immortal so we will be away about the worry of death because soul is immortal and body is destroyed only. And secondly when we will be able to know Vidya (realisation of God by Vedas, worship, Yajnas, Ashtang yoga etc.) then we willget salvation. We mean souls. But it is not possible until we get real preach from the mouth of an alive real spiritual master.

12. Those who pay attention only in study of science, materialistic articles to attain the deepest knowledge as to from where sun, moon, our body, air and each materialistic article of the world has been generated i.e., study of prakriti only they fall in illusion and gets sorrows etc. But those who are only after the article made of Prakriti i.e., getting enjoyment/pleasure from sun, moon, gold, body etc., etc., they are falling themselves more and more in illusion than first one.

13. So what is prakriti(ASAMBHUTI) and what is sambhuti i.e., materialistic articles in fact, these have been told by DHIRANNAAM------ same as against 10 above.

14. So he who knows the real meaning of Sambhuti and Asambhuti (VINASHAM) both together----- same as 11 above.

Ashtang Yog camp concludes at Vedmandir

Ashtang Yog camp was organized at Vedmandir ashram from December 23, 2003 to January 01, 2004. Swami Ramswarup, who done has hard-practiced ashtang yog for several years, imparted the knowledge of ashtang yog. It was widely attended by hundreds of enthusiasts from all around the country.


Swami Ramswarup at Ashtang Yog camp at Vedmandir

The camp was one of the most unique camps on yog in which all elements of ashtang yoga, namely yam, niyam, asan, pranayam, pratyahar, dhayan and samadhi were discussed deeply. The participants also were able to put up their questions regarding yog and their own problems. Swamiji replied to all queries in great detail. Experiences were also shared of those who have recovered from chronic problems by ashtang yog.

The knowledge given in the camp was given out from the supreme source - Vedas, with inputs from Patanjali Yog Darshan, Ramayan, Mahabharat and Geeta, Upnishads, Manusmriti, and other granths. Swamiji also talked about his own experiences and gave practical knowledge on incorporating ashtang yog in own personal lives. He also gave insights into various misconceptions and prejudices about ashtang yog that commonly propagated.

The camps are held twice every year - April and December. For more information and registration, please write to us with your postal address.

IndiaTimes Chat Transcripts: December 05, 2003

What are the health benefits of meditation and yoga? How do they help in relieving stress in today's world? Chat with Expert on meditation and yoga, Swami Ram Swarup, conducted at at 2 pm (IST) on December 05, 2003

akshay> Which asanas do you recommend we do before doing meditation and for how long?
Swami Ramswarup> Ten asans must minimum be done. Siddhasan, padmasan, paschimotanasan, uttaanpaadasan, halasan, sarpasan, vajrasan, sarvangasan, tiddiasan. Every asan must be done at least for 2-3 minutes. But siddhasan and padmasan must be done at least for 1 hour to 2 hour, if possible because on these two asans, naam jaap and meditation is done and gives fruitful results. But these asans must be learnt from an experienced yogi because Vedas say 'Brahmano mukham aasit' (Yajurved Mantra 31/11), which means that a yogi who knows vedas and yoga must only preach.

naomi> How many times should I medidate in a day and is it true that meditation will help me in increasing my concentration power?
Swami Ramswarup> In Saamveda, it is said 'Thoshavasta dive dive', which means that twice a day, that is early in the morning, and in evening. Practice depends on available time but after 50 years of age, at least more than 2 hours must be given each in morning and evening. But a sanyasi practises even four times a day because the main objective of the human life is to realise God even while discharging duties towards family and nation. Yoga controls 5 perceptions, 5 organs and mind. So it is perfect meditation and is a complete way to attain samadhi, that is, salvation, which is our motto. The human being, whether family, nation or world, if they do not practice yoga, then they cannot concentrate. And without concentration, anger, selfishness, ego, lobh (greediness) and several other bad habits arise and thus you cannot control and cannot give justice to the public and yourself also.

naveen> I am a diabetic and a heart patient, I want to know in what way can yoga can be beneficial to me? Please help.
Swami Ramswarup> Yoga is meant for ill-free life. So ardhmatisindriya, uttanpaad, sarpasan, gaumukhasan, bhramcharyaasan and pranayaam can give you ill-free life, if they are learnt and done in presence of an experienced yogi. Please try to attend yoga camp in Dharamsala commencing from December 23. Contact at www.vedmandir.com. One of my disciples, a retired army officer with heart problem, is now fully cured (named L R Gulati of Panchkula), by doing yoga practice.

radha> Is visualisation same as meditation? I read somewhere that it is very good in relieving stress?
Swami Ramswarup> No because in meditation eyes and every organ becomes dead and meditation is the seventh stage of ashtang yoga. And meditation means a man has controlled all desires and nothing to do with features, sites, etc. and has got ascetism (vairagya) as said in yoga shastra sutra 1/15. In meditation the aspirant knows only two things that he is there and he is meditating to God. That's all. So he has nothing to do with the world at that time. As regards visualisation, it is some kind of practice, in which one has to see some point parallel to his eyes without closing eyes, as much time as he can and mostly the magicians practice this type of exercise. God is realized inside only, that is in human body by a yogi.

nida> What is patanjali system of yoga and how useful is it? Can it cure psoriasis?
Swami Ramswarup> Yes, you can cure. Patanjali yog darshana teaches ashtang yoga in full. That is, yam, niyam, asan, pranayam, pratyahaar, dharna, dhayaan and samadhi, by which a yogi conrolls chitta vriti and realises God in his body. But the base of this ashtang yoga is yam and niyama, in which bhramcharya and study of vedas are most essential by which only an aspirant is able to know the real God and the way of ashtang yoga.

romidas> How can I keep a control over my emotions? I feel hurt on every small thing? I am very sensitive can yoga or meditation make me strong from inside because if this keeps happening I am going to lose everyone who's close by this attitude of mine?
Swami Ramswarup> There is only one way to control all these problems, which is to practice ashtang yoga, which is mainly meant to control five perceptions, five organs and mind, resulting in peace of mind and getting power, energy, mental fitness and physical fitness with long happy life and even salvation. Shri Ram, Shri Krishna, and every muni did this, even in family life and served the human beings too. We must not break the tradition and eternal knowledge by making our own path.

karuna4all> Whevever I try to meditate my mind gets involved in unwanted thoughts, which disturb me a lot. What should I do?
Swami Ramswarup> It is natural because Pantanjali yog darshan says about two samadhis - sampargyaat and asampargyaat. So, if anyone starts practising real ashtang yoga, starting from yam, niyam, aasan, pranayaam, pratyahaar, dharnaa, dhyaan and samadhi, then you must please know that dhyaan is the seventh stage of ashtang yoga, and dhyaan means meditation. If anybody else does not fulfil the rules and leaves all the first six stages and directly starts from meditation, then it is quite wrong. And if anybody else starts properly then in sampargyaat samadhi, first is vitark, in which, a he has to face the sthool features and ideas, and it is not harmful. When he still continues it, he will have to to face vichaar, where suksham views will come. In the third stage, the aspirant will experience merriment and in the fourth stage, he will realise his soul, which is called asmitanugat-sampargyaat samadhi. Thereafter he gets asampargyaat samadhi, which is called salvation. So this is not the problem that one starts feelings of some outgoing and ingoing ideas or thoughts. Problem is this that whether he practices right from the beginning of ashtang yoga or not.

karuna4all> Apart from asthang yoga, what is the simplest way of meditation which could bring peace of mind and which we can do in this busy life?
Swami Ramswarup> First of all, one should listen the shabda braham that is the preaches of vedas and shastras (holy books), which is clearly said in Shanti Parv of Mahabharat by Bhishma (53/20) that "O Yudhistar, he who becomes perfect yogi by listening the preaching of vedas, i.e. shabda braham then he only realises almighty God. In addition, one should daily do jaap of holy name of God. But at last, in one stage, he will have to do the meditation also because it is said in shastra that fundamental law of nature can never be changed."

reeeeeeeeeee> My niece is 12 years old who has been diabetic for the past seven years and now has renal infection. She is at AIIMS now. She in bad shape please help us.
Swami Ramswarup> This can be cured by practising the yoga. But first one will have to be learned because it is clearly said in Bhagwad Geeta by Yogeshwar Krishna: "Yogo Bhavati Dukha (6/17)", which means that yoga practice ends all problems or sickness, etc.

siddh> Swamiji my mind is not stable. I am not able to concentrate on my studies, what should I do?
Swami Ramswarup> You need to practice ashtang yoga, but first please listen to the preachings about yam and niyam. Yam means satya, ahinsa, astaye, bhramcharya, apariygrah and niyam means shauch, santosh, tap, svadhyaye, ishar panridhanani. Shauch means purification, santosh means heart working towards right way and religious deeds, tap means to listening to vedas, etc. Svadhayay means to read religious books which inspire salvation, and jaap. Isharvar paridhanam means faith on God and surrender the all deeds and results thereof to almighty God. Whereas ahimsa means not to harm anybody, satya means to listen to tell only the truth and the facts and qualities of God, which are true only, to be listened. Astahye means to avoid theft. Brahamcharye means to control five perceptions, five organs and mind. Aparhyigraha means that the things which are actually needed are to be gathered and used and avoid baseless and huge quantity of articles, whatever maybe. And thereafter you should awake early in the morning for a long morning walk and exercise. Thereafter you can start one day asan and pranayaam. It will give you full mental and physical energy and concentration.

karuna4all> Swamiji practicing all these things which you told right now is quite difficult for a common man in the present life, for doing so he has to take "sanyas" I think. Isn't there any shortcut method of getting peace of mind?
Swami Ramswarup> In shastras, it is clearly said that fundamental laws of nature can never be changed. So, traditional and eternal knowledge of the vedas, originated directly from God and thus cannot be changed. Nowadays there is a pollution, so can any scientist change the fundamental law that man can use carbondioxide in place of oxygen? Moreover studying science, and maths is essential but I think it is more difficult than learning and doing meditation, which was practiced in more than 96 percent of people in family life in past three yugas like Shri Ram, Shri Krishna, Harish Chandra, Yayati King, Ashtak, Shipt and Vikshipt, Manu bhagwan and all their public. So before starting the yoga practice, please control your mind, because only this will give you peace and a long and happy life, which is fundamental requirement of a soul. Mostly present saints who are against the vedas and yogas at their own have started saying the simplest way, which is totally against the enternal knowledge of the vedas, shastras, Geeta, Ramayan and other holy books. And in this way Tulsi has rightly said that "Dvij Shruti Bechat, Bhoop Prashasan". So yog shastra clearly says in sutra 1/7 about four proofs, that is prataksh, anumaan, vedas and alive mantradrista yogi.

Signoff Message> Human beings, after getting birth, always try to get peace and long ill-free life but it is only attained by hard-working, present pious deeds towards a right path, and by concentration, devotion, dedication, Everybody must do this and the base of all these achievements is a study of or listing of Vedas or doing ashtang yoga practice. So, what is the future? Future is based only on the present pious deeds towards a right path. By which, we can make our nation strong also. The present type of astrology is not mentioned in vedas, 6 shastras, 11 upanishads, Bhagwad Geeta, Balmiki Ramayan, etc. So there is no proof of such astrology and without any proof, it cannot be accepted.

Conversation on God, life and religion

Bala S sent a set of questions on God, life and religion. Swamiji gave detailed reply to his questions. The conversation is, as follows:

Bala S: Pranaam Guruji, At the outset let me say that I am a Hindu by birth. I am putting across these thoughts to you not as a disrespect or to challenge you or your spiritual attainments. The intention is a hope that you will be able to show me a way out of this Jhanjhat called life.
Swami Ramswarup: Your views are appreciated and I bless you. I would also advice you to go through whole web site where you will gain a lot of knowledge, please.

Bala S: Concept of God varies from religion to religion and from individual to individual. Some say and believe that God resides in everyone and that we are also God. How can that be true? God is that Great Power from whom the Creation has originated. What is then the comparison between the Almighty God and the helpless creature called human being? Why are the religious leaders fooling the common mass by saying that He (God) is the Ocean and we are a drop from that Ocean and hence we are also God. There is water in urine, so does that mean that urine is equivalent to Ganges water? That being the case, Hindus can take a dip in urine tank and attain moksha?
Swami Ramswarup: Religion to religion is plural number whereas Almighty God is always in singular number. So definition of religion is made by God and not by men. In Mimansa Shashtra sutra 2 the definition of religion is --- inspirations from Vedas to perform pious deeds is religion. So to study Vedas, shashtras and holy books are necessary. In chapter 3 shalok 15 Bhagwat Geeta says that all deeds (karmas) are originated from Vedas and Vedas are originated from Almighty God. Shalok 2/6 of Manusmriti says every deed is originated from Vedas. So we the individuals must study Vedas, shastras etc., first from a learned spiritual master to decide religion. But it is bad luck that based on self views the religion is being accepted boycotting the eternal knowledge ortraditional knowledge of Vedas originated direct from God at the time of first creation. So the religion and God is one. Yajurved mantra 40/1 says that there are two kinds of world. First materialistic world created by God from prakriti in the shape of sun, moon, air, mountains, human/animals/birds bodies, earth etc., etc., which is non-alive. The second world is of souls which are alive. Now the mantra says that in both the worlds almighty God is there being Omnipresent.

Mandal 10 of Rigveda and Chhandog upnishad also say that God created the universe and then became omnipresent. You think yourself also that you always says this is your nose, eyes, head etc., but you never say that you are nose, eyes, or head. So it is clear that you are not body. So you are soul resides in the body. I.e., soul is separate and body is separate. Rigveda mantra 1/164/20 says that in human body made by panch mahabhoot there live soul and God in it. So soul, can never become God or sun, moon, etc., can also not be a God being different qualities. This is proof, Samkhya muni says in sutra 2/25 of his Samkhya shashtra that the truth or any matter when is decided by means of solid proof then it can not be denied merely based on self thinking. Because Vedas are eternal proof so the knowledge of Vedas can not be denied.

God has created ocean therefore God can not be a ocean. In ocean there is water and the drop of water can be separated from ocean being non-alive too but God is not a non alive ocean, he is alive, omnipresent, almighty, beyond description and beyond calculation so how we are able to calculate and describe God as ocean and soul as drop, when God is beyond description and calculation? Water can be divided into drop but God is always undivided. To consider soul as a drop of ocean first soul will have to be treated a non-alive element. And God will have also to be treated as a non-alive element like water which is always impossible. We have to worship the creator and not creation. So the example of ocean and drop which are non alive is fundamentally wrong in respect of almighty God who is omnipresent and Alive. But ocean and water drop do not have these qualities. So Tulsi in his Ramayan truly says in Uttrakand verse 100 (kha) that the worship of almighty God explained in four Vedas with ascetics has been left in this kaliyug due to worldly attachment instead self created worship and path have been made against four Vedas.

Bala S:Has any living being seen God? Can anyone from the other side come and tell us if they have seen God and how God looks like? The answer is a big No. If you really believe in what you preach and you are confident that your thoughts and beliefs about God have matured and that they are not going to change, then my challenge to your respected self is:
Swami Ramswarup: Only a yogi like Vyas muni, Vishwamitra, Guru Vashisht who knew four Vedas and did ashtang yoga practice realised God and the yogi in the same category can only realise God at present because tradition can not be changed.

Bala S: (1) Have you seen God? If yes, then can you let me know and also help me to see Him?
Swami Ramswarup: In Keno Upanishad it is said that God is he for which the voice is unable to describe but God creates the voice. Secondly if someone says that he knows God then he knows God little bit only. But if someone says that he does not know God then really he has known.

Bala S: (2) In the material world every action has an equal and opposite reaction and everything can be quantified. If I throw a stone on the glass, it breaks, if I heat water it boils, if I freeze water it become ice. Likewise, on the spiritual side can you suggest something like chanting a Mantra n number of times, or singing a bhajan or calling out a specific Godhead or some such thing which will result in a specific result that can be measured and quantified. Your answer to the questions will help restore my confidence in our religious practices and God.
Swami Ramswarup: The realisation of God or its practice to realise can not be measured. But Yoga shashtra sutra 1/23 says that if you based on study of vedas, believe on God or has full faith on God and surrender all the result of pious deeds to God then there are chances of realisation of God. Chanting of holy name of God—Om and Gayatri mantra makes our mind purify and help us to realise God.

Bala S: My next question - Who is happy in this world? Take the Americans, the Russians, we Indians, the Pakistanis, the Europeans - no one is happy.
Swami Ramswarup: In Yoga shashtra sutra 1/24, it is said that God has not to bear the result of any deed, God is away from any problem etc., therefore he is always merriment or pleased. So he who worship God and after sometime realises him, that person is always otherwise whole world is in worry, sickness, problems, corruption, fourtwenty, etc., etc. and therefore without real worship of God no one can be happy. Doesn't matter if he has assets and sons even more than Ravan, Duryodhan, Kans, Napoleon, Aurangjeb etc.

Bala S: The healthy is not happy because he envies the rich, the rich is not happy because he is not healthy, the poor is not happy because he is neither rich nor healthy. The beautiful is not happy because it is not permanent, the ugly is not happy because it is not beautiful. A student is not happy because he has to study, an employee is unhappy because he has to work, an unemployed is unhappy because he does not have work. Man with two eyes is unhappy seeing all the wrong doings around him, a blind is unhappy because he cannot see. Yesterday was unhappy, today is unhappy - can tomorrow be happy? When no one is happy in this world, then what for has God created this world. Does it mean that God is a Sadist sitting and enjoying all this fun? Might, as well it is high time He calls it a day and pull the curtains so that all the living beings are saved this miserable existence. Let the scattered drops get back into the ocean and let us all enjoy the oneness.
Swami Ramswarup: So happiness is not based on organs or materialistic articles. Soul is separate and organs and body is separate. If anyone sees good sight from eye then it means he (soul) is pleased through eye. Similar is the case for all organs. But Vedas, shashtras says when an aspirant controls all organs ,all perceptions and mind then he realises himself (soul) and afterwards he realises God, gets salvation i.e., permanent pleasure.

Prophecy of Prophet Muhammad in Hindu scriptures?

Rahul: Recently a Muslim friend of mine is spamming my mailbox with verses of the Vedas and bhavishya purana saying Allah and prophet Muhammad is prophesied in them. Since I do not have proper knowledge of Sanskrit and am thoroughly confused could you please help me translate the verses?

Rigveda bk no 2 hymn 1 verse 11, he says which mentions ila and is pronounced as Allah. I know this sounds stupid argument but could you help me with the meaning of ila?

Atharvaveda book 20. hymn 21.verses 1 to 7.

IndiaTimes Chat Transcripts: August 14, 2003

What are the health benefits of meditation and yoga? How do they help in relieving stress in today's world? Chat with Expert on meditation and yoga, Swami Ram Swarup, conducted at at 2 pm (IST) on August 14, 2003

sitara> Swamiji which is the right time and way to do Pranayam? What are the benefits that one gets from doing pranayam?
Swami Ramswarup: Pranayam clears all the clots of the veins and resists the senses which go out and come i.e. control on all the senses and perceptions to enable us to get us salvation. Meditation afterwards too gives us final liberation. Meditation is the seventh stage of Astang Yoga whereas Pranayam is fourth. The best time of doing Pranayam is 4 am in the morning and after 7 pm in the evening. But it must be regular and asanas must be done before doing Pranayam. Pranayam gives us mental as well as physical strength and final liberation too with a long happy life.

akshay> Which asanas do you recommend we do before doing meditation and for how long?
Swami Ramswarup: At least 8 to 10 asana must be done before doing Pranayam i.e. Sidh, Padam, Uttang, Tiddi, Sarp, Ardhmatasyandra, Bhujang, Hal, Sarvang and Gupt asanas. Each asana must be done for at least 2 minutes.

bawa> Do you honestly think that any one who takes full breath through stomach and laughs with open heart needs yoga/dhanya? Why go technical then, instead tell them the basics?
Swami Ramswarup: Definitely yes. Because full breath and laugh is emotional action but Pranayam is a yoga philosophy, which gives us long happy life with salvation. Whereas full breath and laugh is not worship like yoga.

marc> I have read many of your answers before in which you advised that yogasans should be done at a specific time in order to give a good result. However, due to my bad schedule, I am not able to do them at a specific time. I have not missed a single day of asanas and pranayams in almost last one year but I have not done at a specific time. Is it ok to do them like this or they should only be done at a specific time?
Swami Ramswarup: But specific time will give you the good result only. However, you please continue because you will be attaining something for sure. God has made morning and evening time, as mentioned in SamVeda: "Dosha Vasthah Dive Dive". That is, morning and evening, and daily.

reena> How long should one meditate everyday? If I am not able to concentrate one day should I do the entire stipulated duration or should I give a break then and try later?
Swami Ramswarup: In this connection, no break is required because it is spiritualism. Like we cannot take break in our daily food-taking. Morning one and a half hour, and evening the same time daily is required in family life. And for sanyasi it is more.

rimmee> If someone wants to learn from you swamiji, where should they get in touch with you? Do you take shishya's also? What is the duration of the course and the charges?
Swami Ramswarup: Yes, please. You can contact me on http://www.vedmandir.com. And before coming, you can make telephonic conversation, and first duration of learning yoga takes at least 15 days. No charges please. If you want, you can give a donation.

veena> Swamiji is it possible to break free from the karmic cycle? What should one do to achieve this?
Swami Ramswarup: Yes, it is 100 percent possible by worship, yajna and more astang yoga. Otherwise, there will be no use of human life. Ravan, Diryodhan, etc. could not worship and could not manage to free from karmas. Whereas, rishis, munis, and disciples were out of their karmic cycle due to the true spiritual path adopted by them. The philosophy of karmas is very vast and must be learned through an experienced spiritual yogi who knows four vedas and yoga philosophy (in experience).

Signoff Message> So one success is harmful, that is materialistic, or spiritual. Both success and knowledge is required for maintaining international brotherhood, social services, and making a strong nation.

IndiaTimes Chat Transcripts

What are the health benefits of meditation and yoga? How do they help in relieving stress in today's world? Chat with Expert on meditation and yoga, Swami Ram Swarup, conducted at at 2 pm (IST) on May 17, 2003

Q 1) How does meditation help us in relieving stress?
Swami Ramswarup: Meditation means: to reach at the seventh stage of Ashtang Yoga. That is, right from the beginning, yam, niyam, aasam, pranayam, pratyahar, dharna, dhyan... Dhyan means meditation. Yam, niyam purifies us by means of our daily routine, satya, ahimsa, astaye, bhramcharya, etc. When we reach at aasan, yoga-aasan, the aasan purify our body. Next is pranayam, whose practice purifies our mind, and all types of arteries and veins, etc. Then comes pratyahar, which stops us to do anything wrong or against religion or ved-shastras. When we have achieved all these qualities then from where depression will come? When our body is purified, when our mind (man, buddhi, chitta, ahankar) is purified by means of yoga practice, then from where any illness, depression, or sorrows will enter? Meditation is the next stage after pratyahar where we try to realize God, being purified. Because we have been purified by the practice of Yoga, as said before. And God is also purified, and he loves purification, and he thus showers all merriment, pleasure, long-life, etc. when we do Yoga practice. There is no alternative of Yoga philosophy.

Q 2) Inorder to practice yoga and meditation is it necessary to have a guru?
Swami Ramswarup: Yes. When the world is created, then unsexual shristi (world) is created by God as mentioned in Mandal 10, Sutra 129 of Rig Veda. At that time, no learned person is available because all have left their bodies in the previous earth. So there is only one learned, who is almighty God. So he gives us knowledge as a Guru in the shape of four Vedas, mentioned in 31st chapter of Yajurveda. So, also, Patanjali Rishi in Yoga Darshan, Sutra 1/26 says that God is our first Guru at the time of creation. Thereafter alive Rishis, Munis have been giving knowledge as a Guru because until and unless knowledge is given by anybody else, no knowledge can be attained. As newly born baby, if nursed in a densy jungle cave, and is not given any language or knowledge he cannot be a learned at the age of 25 or 80. So Guru is required, but learned Guru is required who knows the Vedas, Yogas, fully. This is fundamental law of God and cannot be changed. And this law is mentioned in Vedas, Shashtras, Gita, Ramayan, etc. everywhere. But we must be aware of false prophets nowadays.

Q 3) I read somewhere that you are an engineer by profession so how did this transformation happened?
Swami Ramswarup: I was fond of meeting with the Saints right from the beginning of my childhood. So, in my services too, I used to be alone in jungle or in home, or while posting to Ladakh, or Rajouri Punj sector, and used to study Upanishad, Gita, and used to do Yoga practice. I was met with a great Yogi whom I searched in the densy jungle of Rishikesh, who actually gave me Ashtang Yoga philosophy. So, from the childhood, I have been touched with spiritualism. My father was also in Army, who was also a spiritual person. So, when I became totally ascetic, I got my premature retirement after rendering 26 years service. I am pentioner too. So, when felt one way, and he become addict thereof, he gets the Goal at last. I also discharged my family duties, settled them and side by side I did Yoga hard practice. My disciples know, I used to awake early 2:00 o clock, and continuously used to do Yoga, and in the evening, it repeats. The main aim of the human being to get long-life and peace and to build nation strong is to do realize God. I still serving the people and the nation by donating Yog-vidya and inspiring public to discharge their duties towards family and nation. And in my books, written by me, these preaches exist.

Q 4) Swamiji, is it wrong to wish for wordly happiness and how does one know whether what one is wishing for is right or wrong for him/her? how does one know that what it is wishing for is there for the person in this birth or not? can one know oneself with astrology? is there any limitation to one's self relisation?
Swami Ramswarup: Our shastras want proof. As Yog shastras asked for proof to know whether it is wrong path or right path. The main proof is proof of four vedas. So whatever we say for services to people, nation or God, etc., it should be mentioned in Vedas. So if it is according to the Vedas, that is true, otherwise it is wrong. Astrology is not mentioned in the four Vedas, Shastras and Geeta, etc. The luck is only based on hard-working, pious deeds, cooperation, towards a right path say Vedas, Shastras and Holy books. Self-realization is to be attained because we have been blessed by almighty God for the same. If we are failed, then life is ruined. We will have to face our karmas as per the karmas of our previous births. To remove the effect of our previous bad deeds, worship, yoga-practice is needed. Salvation is self-realization.

Q 5) There are many stress reliving methods, why is meditation most talked about?
Swami Ramswarup: Because meditation, which is fully known as Ashtang Yoga, being 8 path of the same (that is yam, niyam, aasan, pranayam, pratyahar, dharna, dhyan and samadhi) has been preached by the Almighty God in the vedas. So, when in comparison of God, who is almighty, and one for the whole of the world, there is no other God. He is neither born, or will be born. So, there is no alternation of Yoga Philosophy. God is supreme. Sun has been made by God. No other people can make such Sun. So Yoga has been preached by God, so no other alternation of Yoga can be preached by anybody else because nobody can be bigger than God. Almighty means, God has all powers and needs no assistant. Whereas mankind needs assistance. We are soul. Soul needs assistance to see (from eye), to hear (from ear), and so on.

Q 6) What is the perfect way to do meditation?
Swami Ramswarup: Perfect way of meditation is mentioned fully in Vedas and thereafter briefed by Patanjali Rishi in Yoga Darshan, but until and unless an alive Yogi is met, no Yoga philosphy can be taught. So the perfect way is to search a learned Yogi. It is mentioned in the Rig Veda that an alive Yogi is required. God has briefed and praised Yogi in all four Vedas. It is very sad that nowadays most of the saints are telling that Yoga, Vedas and Yajna is needed not. This is against Indian eternal culture. So alive Yogi is only required to know the perfect way of Yoga philosphy and that Yogi must be learned of four Vedas and philospher of Yoga, like Vyasak muni, Vasisht muni, Kapil muni, and Rajrishis like King Janak, Dashrath, Harishchandra, Yayati, Ashtak, and the public thereof. So in the presence of a learned Yogi, the Yoga philosphy is achieved. This is for all family-holders as well as non-family holders, because our all Rishis munis, and all family-members, even Shri Ram and Shri Krishna, did Yoga practice while in family. So, it is very rough to say that Yoga is not for married personnel. Actually Yoga is meant for whole of the world. Being preached by Almighty God, who nurses the world creation. When sun, moon, air, water, etc. and every article of the world is applicable by all human beings, that is Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, etc. then why not Vedas and Yoga? - which is also made by God. So Vedas and Yoga is not a sect, and must be accepted by all human beings faithfully, as adopted in previous 3 periods - satyug, dvapar, treta.

Q 7) What causes jeevatma to become attached to materialistic articles (prakrati)? You had said that "Satsangatwe Nihisangatwam". What can be done to cure this attachment if we cannot get Satsang often?
Swami Ramswarup: The jivatma is attached with its nature of Parishwangdharmi. Without satsang nothing can be achieved.

Q 8) How successful has your philosophy and unique negative approach been for the advancement of Hinduism? What is your modus oprendi?
Swami Ramswarup: The Vedas and Yoga philosophy has been successful. First of all, for me, because I have felt pleasure like everything and I am away from every kind of dirt and illusion. And the same is being preached by me to my disciples, who have also achieved a lot. And at Internet also, so many answers I receive, in which they say that they are satisfied and they have solved their problems. And this philosphy has also promote the brotherhood internationally, that is why I had tours of America, Singapore, and Indonesia, and specially all religions respect this philosphy. My approach is according to the four Vedas, six Shastras, Geeta, Ramayan. And the Vedas being eternal knowledge of God, so cannot be negative approach. So my way is to preach Vedas and every religious preach by writing books, articles in magazines and newspaper, personal speaks, and daily worship by Yajna and spiritual songs. And I am satisfied for the same, and this approach does not deny other religious philosphy. So, it is not a negative approach being according to eternal knowledge of four vedas.

Q 9)I have done Reiki and meditation both, but sometimes they both are not able to help me relax. What should I do? Am I doing something wrong?
Swami Ramswarup: The right way I have already told that there is Ashtang Yoga in the world preached by God in the Vedas. So you will get the good result when you will start right from the beginning. That is yam, niyam, pranayam, etc. But, nowadays, so many kinds of Yoga are being taught, like Hathyoga, Sahajyoga, and Laya-yoga, etc. But in Vedas there is only one Yoga.

Q 10) Swamiji, how can one stay away from the fear of ghosts? Does meditation provide any solution to this?
Swami Ramswarup: Ghost is not on the Vedas. This you can treat illusion of psychological effect, so when we will study Vedas and will become learned automatically this fear is over. Yes, proper meditation also makes a man understand that there is no any ghost. Because the Yoga philosphy will be preached by a learned Yogi, where he will preach Vedas knowledge also, which will clear the doubt of ghost. Already I talked that Vedas asked proof. When there is no any proof in Vedas, Shastras, Upanishads, Geeta, regarding ghosts, so it is not true.

Q 11) Why do good people always suffer and evil prosper, sometimes it makes me wonder if there's a god or not....
Swami Ramswarup: This is all due to the result of our previous births' deeds, which oftenly are not known by everybody. Yajurveda says, human being does deeds and result is awarded by God. So, unnecessarily God does not give problems to human beings. The problem is only due to our own karmas. There are three types of karmas - sanchit, prarabdha, and kriyavan. Kriyavan is important, because kriyavan karmas are being done presently and if we do pious deeds presently, like worship, Yoga, etc. then we become able to finish all the previous karmas, and become happy, because we then have no karmas to face. The karma philosphy is to be understood. Ravan was a King and happy, but destroyed. Similarly, Duryodhan, Kansa, Aurangzeb, etc.

Q 12) Is meditation more effective if done at a specific time?
Swami Ramswarup: Yes please. The time of meditation must be selected and it must be faithful if it is four o clock early in the morning first. And then can be selected in the evening. Minimum 10 aasans must be done daily and pranayam thereon. Spiritual books should be read. So, the Yoga practice done at the correct time daily is more useful than the disturbed times.

Closing message:
Swami Ramswarup: We are all human beings and must respect each religion and personnel, and promote brotherhood internationally. Yoga and Veda is not a "mazhab", being preached by God of all human beings and God is also not a "mazhab". God has created universe, sun, moon, air, etc. which are being used by all human being, keeping aside the sects, and the castes. So the Vedas and Yoga must be accepted by all human beings for a long, happy, life, which everybody want.

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