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Vol. 60

Teachings of Shri Mahayogi:

True Existence—There is Only That!

The Way of Life in Accordance with Dharma

The Illogical Nature of the World and Karma

Thorough and Complete Discrimination

Proceed Forth Boldly and Dynamically

The Existence that is the Eternal Existence

Testimonies from Actual Practitioners

Admiration-Based Faith Turns into the Impetus for Striving
by Sanatana

Believing in God = Believing in Oneself
by Sanatana





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Teachings of Shri Mahayogi:

True Existence—There is Only That!

Translation of Satsangha
July 6, 2019
Kyoto, Japan

This is the Satsangha right before Shri Mahayogi’s visit to New York during the summer of 2019. Many disciples from various locations have gathered, and with excitement permeating the room, the new attendees are introduced. Shri Mahayogi, upon receiving their homage, greets them with a bright smile and the atmosphere of the room instantly becomes warm and pleasant.

The Way of Life in Accordance with Dharma

Mr. Sano, who has moved to Tokyo from Osaka and hasn’t attended Satsangha in four years, is sitting in the front row beside Mr. Kosuge, who is attending for the second time. They have both been actively attending the Mission’s classes in Tokyo. Mr. Sano joyfully says, “Gratefully, at last I am able to come here today through the guidance of gurubai.” He then begins to ask a question.

Mr. Sano: Lately, I have been thinking about how to communicate better at work. I would like to enjoy my work and this is the thought I have as my base; however, I think that looking at it scientifically, scrambling to take energy from each other makes human relationships worse. I think that unless a person has the type of mind that is geared towards spiritual awakening, or has that as a fundamental core, it’s not possible to give one’s co-workers [positive] energy [from Yoga]; nonetheless, since things that were originally treasured in religion are met with prejudice in this current age and discouraged, I am keeping this to myself. When I am speaking with a person and sense that energy, I feel that communication is easier and a relationship of trust is established in a shorter time. What do these things mean from the perspective of Yoga?

MASTER: In one word, that is karma. That is to say, if there are ten people, they appear as if they are ten different shades of different colors, and you can affirm that these manifestations are differences in karma. That “energy” is called prana in India, and people are compelled to act and behave according to their own karma. That is the state of the world. As one eats through karma, prana is working. So, prana is consumed through the clash with [others’] karma. That’s that “scrambling to take energy” from each other that you have mentioned.

As you continue to apply the discipline of Yoga in action, prana, akin to cosmic energy, will accumulate [within you]. Simultaneously, karma—in the sense of wasteful or negative actions—will come to be lessened. According to that, you will come to be unaffected by the clashes between the varying karma of others, in other words, you will gain the strength that will enable you to withstand this with something like endurance and toughness—if I use surface-level words to describe this. Then, your consumption of prana will come to be lessened, and the friction from battles between karma will not arise. And this will manifest in your interactions with others as a great benefit of Yoga in society.

You’ve mentioned the word “religion” just now. The original intention of religion was to know the Truth of the universe, and to lead a righteous life and enrich one’s life on earth by following that religion. If you look back two or three thousand years ago, the word “religion” was expressed as the word “dharma.” Ramayana, Mahabharata, and the ultimate [scripture], the Teachings of Buddha—they were called dharma, which is translated as the “Teachings of the Truth,”—they are considered to be something that people must learn, and it is thought to be the utmost virtue to live according to them. Later on, [the teaching of Buddha] became Buddhism.

However, even religion, after going through various splits and developments over two thousand years, has resulted in seemingly various levels of religions. In short, there are types of religions in which people turn to God only when they are in trouble. And even things like wishing to be happy in the great beyond or when you reincarnate in the next lifetime after being relieved from the suffering of this world, came to be widely spread as religion. Most religions might belong to this category.

What the Buddha or the Yogi aimed for and taught went beyond that. They taught that we should not expect anything from the great beyond or from the next lives, but rather to realize the Truth now, in this lifetime; then, all dualistic conditions no longer exist, they disappear; there is a complete absence of sadness or suffering—then live in this life. Thus their teachings are based on having these non-dualistic teachings as their core. This is precisely the essence of Yoga too. You have been learning Yoga and putting the teachings into action, of course; therefore, in accordance with that essence, there is no such thing as this world or the great beyond, but what exists this very moment, Now!, the True Existence, Truth—to follow only That, to realize that is the purpose of Yoga.

Thus, through continuing to deepen Yoga, regardless of the conditions or your situation at work or your relationships in society, you will become better able to handle them all without difficulty.

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The Illogical Nature of the World and Karma

Mr. Kosuge: Lately, there have been incidents on the news about children dying from tragic circumstances such as domestic violence and a random killer walking the streets. I heard that people are born with karma and are living in order to bring it to fruition and resolve it. If that is so, if I presume that these children are predestined to meet such fates due to their karma, I become quite resentful about it. How should I think about these matters?

MASTER: Indeed, there really have been many such incidents lately. And also when we look overseas, we hear that innocent children and women become victimized and are being killed in conflicts and wars. I think that it is totally absurd and irrational. So, why do things result in such a way? If you look at it from a broader perspective, there is nothing else we can [point to] but karma after all. With these children’s lives too, even though in this lifetime that life of theirs may have been taken while their faces were indeed still like those of angels, nevertheless that child’s soul has been uninterrupted and continuous, and that life will reincarnate again and may live a more fortunate life. Unless you look at life not only as one lifespan, but as a long flow—a long cycle of reincarnation—I can understand well how you could feel helpless about it. Even so, and inevitably, there are clearly such hell-like appearances in many things in the world. This too can’t be explained in any other way except as being due to karma. Even so, what can be said is that by recognizing that the child had past lives and will have future lives, there will be a sense of relief somehow in it all.

Mr. Kosuge: If I think about it in that way, there is some sense of relief.

MASTER: Yes. Truly, it will be best to prevent these tragedies from happening as much as possible.

(Mr. Kosuge seems to be convinced and relieved. He then mentions that recently, and a few days after getting a photo of Shri Mahayogi, Shri Mahayogi appeared in his dream. Shri Mahayogi is listening to his story with a full smile. In fact, everyone there is also brimming with smiles.)

Mr. Sano: This is still about the topic Mr. Kosuge brought up, that we are no different, we are all living in this world, so we ourselves are active participants in it. Then it cannot be perceived simply as a tragic ending, but what can we who have been learning Yoga do?

MASTER: I don’t know exactly how many billions of people are active on this planet, yet it is a collection made up of individuals. We say billions, summarizing just the numbers, however the basis of this is each individual. Every single person should discipline themselves, and act righteously. What I mean by using the word “righteously” is that one rectifies oneself, and at the same time, including in relation to others or within society, one practices righteous action—there is nothing one can do but just continue to do everything that can be done, while making the best possible effort as long as one has a body with which to do so.

Mr. Sano: Thank you very much.

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Thorough and Complete Discrimination

Gopala: You have taught us many times that in Yoga, one must live in the now, that only Now exists. Please teach us the secret of how to cherish the moment, to live in the now.

MASTER: (after some silence) This too [is not different from other things], if it unfolds from the state of the mind, the mind is constantly plagued or affected by past memories and anxiety towards the future and it harbors delusions. That is the cause of one overlooking the now, the moment. Therefore, if there is a secret, get rid of all past and future. That is to say, keep your mind empty. Then, your mind can focus on what needs to be done right in front of you and handle it accordingly.

Gopala: What is lacking for us not being able to get rid of all past and future?

MASTER: Discrimination. Thorough and complete discrimination.

Gopala: Is it to apply discrimination again and again, as soon as a thought arises, even if it’s an instantaneous one…?

MASTER: If you liken it to an illness, the best course is to not get sick due to having taken preventative measures, rather than treating it after one gets sick. Therefore, it would be best if you have already discriminated in advance. And even if you did that yet it is still imperfect and you notice a thought arising, then apply discrimination right there. Through [the application of] discrimination, you will come to understand the reason of things or the Truth of things, as well as the various conditions of the world, and at the same time, you will understand the mechanism of the mind. Therefore, the object of discrimination, the mind that is discriminating, and the act of discrimination—all of these will be laid out on the table of discrimination, and then they will be understood correctly. Once discrimination is completed, then such waves will no longer arise in the mind. That is, the mind will be released and the state of the mind will become as if empty.

Gopala: Does that mean that since thoughts still arise, I have neither been able to truly grasp nor understand the object of discrimination, the act of discrimination or the mechanism of the mind yet?

MASTER: Right, I said, “thorough and complete”—that is what is meant by thorough and complete.

Gopala: (savoring the Master’s words) I will work hard on it.

Asanghan: While sustaining damage to my physical body and various things happening some time ago, when I received an answer from Shri Mahayogi saying that “That’s the way things are—there’s nothing you can do about it,” I felt like whatever I was worried about suddenly peeled away, and that it was fine if I just take care of the things right in front of me. Since then, I have made an effort not to think about unnecessary things. Yet I still cannot get away from the thought that I am this body no matter how much I try to work on it. Is it something that can be peeled away little by little eventually through the accumulation of the application of discrimination again and again, and through trying to live in the now repeatedly? Please teach me how I should overcome this, like whether it is an accumulation of one step at a time or…

MASTER: Until you are midway, indeed it is inevitable that you can only move forward through the accumulation [of steps]. However, you will experience that the more it deepens, the more clear, absolute wisdom, or true, right wisdom will arise. As everyone can attest, when the body is healthy and moves without trouble in any way the mind wishes, you probably feel as if the body doesn’t exist. However, as soon as a body part starts to falter, or you fall ill or get hurt, when these bodily accidents happen, you are forced to be aware of the body regardless and you start to think the body is yourself. Nonetheless, when the body is truly healthy, then it is as if the body doesn’t exist. The mind is the same. When the mind thinks something, that is like an illness of the mind; when the mind does not think of anything and is empty, it is as if the mind doesn’t exist. That is the real healthy, most ideal state [of the mind]. In that sense, you must remove things like you would a kind of sickness—things that force you to feel like the mind exists, whether you like it or not, such as the various karma, pain-bearing obstacles, and ignorance that have accumulated in the mind—(speaking lightly) as soon as possible. And then if discrimination is performed exhaustively and completely, then the mind truly comes into a healthy state, as if it doesn’t exist. Yet, you will be able to concentrate on the necessary things at the necessary time.

Asanghan: Does that mean that according to the degree of discrimination in the mind, the lightness [of the mind] changes?

MASTER: Yes, it changes.

Asanghan: You will no longer be bothered no matter what happens.

MASTER: (powerfully) Not being bothered. On the contrary, [the Truth is that] the Existence itself, as the true Existence, is neither the mind nor the body—in truth, because there are no words for it, it cannot be expressed—it can be called Soul or Spirit, well it doesn’t matter how it is called—only the true Existence as Existence cannot disappear no matter what; it is vividly Existing, eternally; that is everyone’s essence, and the essence of the entire universe. That is why you are That! You see?

Asanghan: What I must do is to tell myself and try to feel that?

MASTER: Yes. While you are in the process, this is still about right knowledge—though, it’s actually not knowledge, the fact is that, this is Existence—and so that becomes the right wisdom.

Asanghan: Is it something like, I will gradually come to feel this as the mind transforms little by little, or something that I will feel instantly in the moment when the mind disappears?

MASTER: There will be a process by which you feel this gradually as you go through that stage. However, at a certain point, it will become definitive.

Asanghan: I will do my best to become light.

Dharmini: My ego-consciousness has weakened gradually, and I have arrived at the point where I am no longer bothered by whatever people say to me. But something made me recognize that I am still attached to my own things. For example, if there was a burglar in my house I could never forgive that; and if someone steals my bag, I would be overwhelmed and shocked. How do I discipline my mind in relation to such things?

MASTER: When you say things, you mean material objects?

Dharmini: Yes. Material objects.

MASTER: (with a light tone) You were born naked, and you can’t take anything with you when you die. You can’t even take the physical body. The only thing you can take is karma. (everyone laughs) You don’t want to take those. Those are the things that you’d rather get rid of. Everything boils down to that. The rest is simply that you will need material objects as necessities in order to have a body and make a living, like pots and pans, so it is inevitable that you need them to a certain degree. However, there is no need to attach to them beyond that.

Dharmini: After all, it all comes down to the fact that I will just continue to carry on the karma of attachment to objects.

MASTER: Right. That is why you must apply discrimination and you must have renounced them.

Dharmini: (with an expression of having grasped it) I understand.

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Proceed Forth Boldly and Dynamically

Ms. Nagaoka: At the last Satsangha, Shri Mahayogi mentioned that “Yoga is Bold,” and I was very moved. Will you please teach us how great this “boldness” is? Intense courage and motivation arose in me upon hearing these words.

MASTER: (sternly) When you proceed in Yoga, first you must deny the common way of thinking and social conventions. You should not be caught up by them. On the other hand, you will focus single-pointedly on what is right, what is the Truth. If that power and that sense of concentration occupies the mind, everything else will be pushed out. Karma, pain-bearing obstacles, these things will just disappear. In other words, unless you heighten your concentration to such levels, you cannot proceed forth in Yoga. If you want to implement this, you must truly, boldly, dynamically proceed forward! Of course, there is no need to worry about what others think. It has nothing to do with how the world evaluates you. The only thing that it’s tied to is the Truth—that Existence. If you are familiar with God, then you can use the word “God.” It all comes down to focusing on Truth single-mindedly. As far as that is concerned, you cannot find anything bolder than this. (smiles) Step up and make an effort to be able to declare that.

Ms. Nagaoka: (with a joyful expression) It means that I just need to move forward seeing only That.

MASTER: Yes. Exactly.

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The Existence that is the Eternal Existence

(Yogadanda is attending with some friends. He has told them that the reason he quit dance and began Yoga was because when he first met Shri Mahayogi, the answers from Shri Mahayogi to all of the questions he had had up to that point were so precise and conclusive to him.)

Yogadanda: First, I asked Shri Mahayogi, “What is the state of Shri Mahayogi’s Enlightenment like?” and he answered that, “In Enlightenment, even the universe disappears. However, just like I see this flower (pointing to a vase in the room), I see the world of Enlightenment.” May I ask Shri Mahayogi to teach us again about the world of Enlightenment that you see?

(Disciples all lean in with sparkling eyes.)

MASTER: Everyone has a problem within their minds, which can be slight or serious depending on the person. What is true? What is existing? … As you accumulate experiences called “life,” no matter what you chase after, no matter how much you believe it will fulfill you, these things disappear soon enough, and also you can expect that even your own body and mind are changing constantly, eventually turning to dust. While you are going through this, I assume that you must have many question marks, such as what in the world is the Truth? What is perfection? What is all of this??? However, the experience of Truth is [the realization] that the essence of the self is That, that is to say, the Eternal Existence, that which is Perfect, the Existence of the Truth itself. (intensely) There is nothing else that exists other than that! Because that Existence does not have a form, it cannot be counted like one, two… It is that which is without second. On this earth, as long as we have matter, or a physical body, we exist with some sort of physical matter, regardless of choice. We think that this chair exists, this room exists, however, they were made at one point and they will eventually disappear; buildings, whatever these things may be, they are not eternal. They only show the temporary phenomenal form of existence.

However, true Existence is nothing like that! It is utterly without a single taint, it was never born and will never die. Yet It exists with pristine clarity and vibrant realness as Existence! No matter what you accomplish—dance too is no exception, you may think that you did well, you may have had the sense of the presence of that—yet it is a “sense of presence,” it is just a “sense.” It’s a momentary dream, something that disappears in an instant. The happiness that everyone is desperately chasing after is the same. It will appear temporarily, but the next day, it disappears. That is not [true Existence]. Once you forget all of these things, when these things disappear completely, then there is only That.

That experience is nothing unusual. Clearly that is everyone’s essence, therefore everyone is That. (with emphasis) There cannot be anything other than That! You are all the Existence that is the eternal Existence. And on this Earth, that Existence is manifest by having taken on form. That is the truth of the world. So originally, this world should have been a wonderful, beautiful place, however this tricky thing called ignorance enters it, and many sad tragedies happen. That is why, [what’s important is] for each and every one to awaken into that Existence. In this experience, you will sense something that is really just like when you are waking up in the morning. When you awaken in the morning from a dream you had during the night’s sleep, you would think that it was a dream; if you can awaken into the Truth, then later on you will understand that this world too was a dream. [Reality is] completely different. But only That is what Buddha arrived at and then taught—Shri Ramakrishna and Ramana Maharishi, and other Holy Beings also taught the same.

You all must experience and know this. Then with the various jobs in the world, or no matter what it is, you can live lightly. At the same time, you can do good. [Let’s say you] leave worldly matters to the world, in any event, what is truly important is for each and every one to deepen and realize It. That is more important than anything else.

(Shri Mahayogi spoke with overwhelming power about the state that can only be spoken about by those who really know it.)

(How much energy Shri Mahayogi has spent to inspire us! True Wisdom has been poured into everyone’s hearts and all are overflowing more and more with admiration, yearning and aspiration towards the experience of Reality.)

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Testimonies from Actual Practitioners:

 

Admiration-Based Faith Turns into the Impetus for Striving

by Sanatana
June 8, 2015, Tokyo

Or by surrendering to the Supreme Existence, one gets closer to the realization of non-distinguished (or Asamprajnatai) Samadhi.

Yoga Sutra 1-23

In the five steps of the application of the practice of Yoga into action “Faith→Endeavor→Recollection→Meditation (leading to Samadhi)→Wisdom (from Samadhi),”1 “Faith” refers to the strong, ardent thirst to get away from the chaotic conditions of the world brought about by human desire that one has witnessed.2

Additionally, to meditate, surrendering all thoughts to the Supreme Being is also described as “Faith.” Probably this meaning is more in line with the image of what the word “faith” implies. The word “ishvara,” which I translated as “Supreme Being” is usually translated as “God.” However, it’s not in the sense of believing that God will save you. Rather, it’s about admiration, or wanting to get closer to It, wanting to become just like It. If I may suggest, it may be more similar to expressions such as “the god of baseball” or “the god of business management.”

For example, when someone says, “To a baseball-playing kid, Ichiro3 is like a god,” then it means that they respect and worship him so much, but it’s not like Ichiro will come down from heaven and bestow upon people some mysterious fortune. Rather, if your baseball playing improves by believing in Ichiro, this indicates that you strive to be like him as your ideal. If one worships Steve Jobs as a god of business, it’s not like his photo is displayed on the altar. It means that your principles and actions are connected to his.

Ishvara can be translated as “god” but it’s a bit different from what us modern humans imagine God to be like. Ishvara does not control fate, mete out justice, or create the universe. Even throughout the history of India, ishvara has been understood not as a god that has a particular character or appearance, but to be the most abstract personified deity, the formless Truth with a bare minimum form.

What kind of an existence ishvara is, is explained in the next sutra.4 Having that understanding, I translate ishvara here as “Supreme Being.” In the case in which we say the “god of baseball” or the “god of business management,” “god” is interpreted as meaning a “Supreme Being.” It can be described as an ideal existence. That is to say, this sutra states that you should admire this existence as your ideal, and yearn to become closer to being like him or her, to become him or her, then strive to do so with the strong conviction that you can. That is how “Faith” then leads to the next step, “Endeavor.”

To surrender one’s mind means to ardently meditate upon the Supreme Being as the object of meditation. It is to intensely try to know the essence of that Existence. Ultimately, it is the same as wanting to know the Truth. However, since Truth is abstract and formless, it is difficult to meditate upon the Truth. It cannot be pictured. By making It into an ideal personified form, it makes It easier to grasp.

“Surrendering the mind” is a translation of the Sanskrit word “pranidhana.” In Buddhism, it is translated as a “vow.” It is used in contexts like “vow to become a monk” or “vow of renunciation” or “Amitabha Buddha’s Vow.” It means to vow that, “I will definitely realize the Truth, and definitely have compassion towards and save all sentient beings.” This is what is meant by having that strong burning thirst towards the realization of the Truth, and it is the vow and faith that will lead to the endeavor that is to come.

Blog from MYM Tokyo

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1 Yoga Sutra 1-20
2 Yoga Sutra 1-21
3 A former Japanese baseball player who spent 12 of his 28 professional seasons playing Major League Baseball in the USA, where he had over 3,000 hits, 10 Gold Gloves, 10 All-Star appearances, and set a number of all-time records.
4 Yoga Sutra 1-24: See the second subtitle of this Testimony, “Believing in God = Believing in Oneself.”


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Believing in God = Believing in Oneself

by Sanatana
June 1, 2015, Tokyo

The Supreme Being is the manifestation that the true Self within everyone is concretely taking on human form. That Existence is never touched by the following four obstacles:

1) Pain-bearing obstacles that cause suffering
2) Various actions of good or bad
3) Results received in accordance with the content of these actions
4) Tendencies of the mind that are stored in the subconscious until the fruits of the actions that were made based on those tendencies manifest

Yoga Sutra 1-24

That is the definition of “Supreme Being,” which means “God” according to the Yoga Sutra. God is certainly not an existence that cannot be seen or heard by humans, living in a completely different world, enabling the fortunes or misfortunes of the world on a whim. Such a dominant, absolute God does not appear in the Yoga Sutra. Moreover, there is not even a need for such an existence.

Humans have a concept called fate. That is because we do not know why we encounter various incidents and so we ourselves are tossed about by them. In those times, we hypothesize about an incomprehensible existence, “God.”

The people considered to be prophets of God can be understood to be those who involuntarily encountered words beyond the comprehension of their mind, without knowing why these things happened to them. And these words were transmitted as words of God, beyond the comprehension of human intellect. However, they were not able to confirm the origin of where these words of God came from, what type of an existence God was or where God was.

The mind can only comprehend what is in its realm of comprehension. That is obvious. However, Yoga practitioners attempted to understand and grasp the realm that is beyond the mind. Precisely speaking, they attempted to go beyond intellectual understanding and intellectual penetration, and rather, tried to master and validate It through the experience of becoming one with It, with their whole being.

When [the teachings and practice of] Yoga are continuously applied in action and one enters a deep meditative state, in the end, discriminative wisdom comes. This is the wisdom that can directly intuit the Truth. It is an utterly fresh realization of something that must seem incredible to have come from within one’s self, being something that one may have never seen, heard, or experienced before. By another name it is known as satori (realization or awakening). Through experiencing the repetition of these small satori, one is led to a medium-sized, and then to the big Satori.

Then, one will become aware of where that Satori came from. It is further, deeper within the mind, yet it is not the thoughts in the mind, but it is the very Essence of a human being. Further, one will realize that not only does It exist within each individual mind, it is One and the same as the essence of the universe, that should be called the Self of the whole universe. At that time, one will directly intuit that the Essence within and the Essence of the external world are originally one and the same once there is no longer a wall between them—that wall being the mind’s thoughts. At that time one then realizes, “That which is called God exists. That is my own essence, and the essence of all that exists.”

Now, what was excellent about the yogi and Buddha is that they confirmed It to the extent that they searched and discovered why we lost sight of It, and what was covering and hiding It. Only by unraveling that was a path opened to realize that one’s own Essence is precisely that which is called God, and that this Essence is not only the Essence of oneself but of all others. That method is precisely the five steps mentioned in the Yoga Sutra5: Faith, Endeavor, Recollection, Meditation, and Wisdom.

God is nothing but everyone’s true existence, the true Self. However, there is something that is preventing us from being aware of it and covering it so that we are not able to see it. These things are explained in the sutra mentioned at the very beginning:

1) Pain-bearing obstacles that create suffering
2) Thoughts, words, and deeds that are rooted in these pain-bearing obstacles
3) The fruits one will come to taste as their result
4) The power and tendencies of the subconscious that are stored in the mind until the pain-bearing actions, which are the cause, bring about the fruits

Yoga Sutra 1-24

Everyone is living in situations where they’re inevitably bound by these, so we lose sight of the true Self. But, to believe that the true existence of our true Self is not that but rather the Pure Existence that is never touched by these things—this, in a deep sense, is to believe in oneself, to have self-confidence, and this is about having faith in Atman (the true Self).

In order to concretely envision the true nature of the Self, we direct the mind towards the ideal figure manifested in human form. That is faith towards God, and at the same time, belief in one’s Self. That faith, or belief, removes the wall in the mind called karma, and becomes an impetus for the external and internal to become one.

Therefore, in the Yoga Sutra there is no need to separate that which is human from God. It teaches that we should have faith in the Supreme Being, who is the manifestation of our true Self, which is purity itself in a human form. That is to say, in order to awaken to one’s own essence, one must believe in oneself and direct the mind towards the Supreme Being who is the concrete, ideal form of the true Self.

From here on, this is my personal opinion and what I intuited through having practiced the applications of the teachings of Yoga. I think that most likely the person who wrote this sutra, actually saw such a Supreme Being. A person, who seemed to be Truth itself completely manifest in human form, a person that you can’t help but think is God—the person who wrote this sutra must have actually experienced the process of Yoga advancing in a remarkable way due to concretely meeting such an ideal existence and seeing such an existence firsthand.

I think that otherwise, there would be no need in particular to mention God as an addition into the system of the Yoga Sutra, where two elements are enough to conclude with: the “true Self” and the “mind’s thoughts and scheming” that hide It. Even regarding [the step of] “Faith,” one aspect is already mentioned,6 so there is no practical need to add two.

It seems that the characteristic of the Yoga Sutra is that it prioritizes what is actually useful and what is practical, rather than making sure that the reasoning is correct. I think that its main purpose and aim was to concretely teach the ways of realistically overcoming suffering and abiding in the true Self, rather than establishing a philosophical system.

Blog from MYM Tokyo

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5 Yoga Sutra 1-20
6 Yoga Sutra 1-21


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