WHAT IS KARMA YOGA ?
Karma Yoga is consecration of all actions and their fruits unto the Lord. Karma Yoga is performance of actions dwelling in union with the Divine, removing attachment and remaining balanced ever in success and failure.
Karma Yoga is selfless service unto humanity. Karma Yoga is the Yoga of action which purifies the heart and prepares the Antahkarana (the heart and the mind) for the reception of Divine Light or attainment if Knowledge of the Self. The important point is that you will have to serve humanity without any attachment or egoism.
BENEFITS OF KARMA YOGA
By doing selfless service you purify your heart. Egoism, hatred, jealousy, ideas of superiority and all the kindred negative qualities will vanish. You will develop humility, pure love, sympathy, tolerance and mercy. Sense of separateness will be annihilated. Selfishness will be eradicated. You will get a broad and liberal outlook on life. You will begin to feel oneness and unity. Eventually you will obtain knowledge of the Self. You will realize One in all and All in one.
Generally people are impatient and they expect Siddhis after doing a little service. The real Karma Yogi who serves people with humility and Atma Bhava (seeing God in every face) becomes a real ruler of the world. He is honoured and respected by all. The more service you do with Atma Bhava the more power, energy and capacity you get. Practice this and feel.
In the practice of Nishkama Karma Yoga, there is no loss of effort. There is no harm. There is no transgression also. Even a little of this practice can protect you from great fear of rebirth, of death with its concomitant evils. You will reap the fruits of Karma Yoga, viz. Jnana. There is no uncertainty here. The path of Karma Yoga eventually leads to the attainment of Bliss of the Self.
The path of Gyan Yoga is suited for those who are gifted with strong mental and intellectual faculties. This path emphasis on the true knowledge regarding the nature of the self, and requires sharp intellect coupled with intense spiritual longing. Since ignorance (avidya) obscures the self from achieving salvation, the aim of this path is to destroy ignorance by discrimination and contemplation on Truth.
This basic features of Gyan Yoga are:
Listening to the scriptures and the spiritual discourses from spiritual teachers (gurus) who are themselves well-established in Truth. The company of truly awakened souls strengthens the power of right discrimination and accelerates the unfolding of the true Self. Discriminating truth from falsity and intense contemplation on the guru’s words. Thoughtful contemplation gradually weakens the ego and frees the soul from its wrong identification with the body and mind.
Practice of shifting the focus of attention from the mortal aspect of one’s being to the immortal aspect of being, and intense contemplation therein. Jnana is the highest teaching of the Upanishads and the central theme of the Bhagavad Gita. As stated in the following verses of the Bhagavad Gita, Jnana is considered a supreme purifier:
‘Nothing indeed purifies in this world like wisdom. He who lives in self-harmony finds it [wisdom] in time within himself, by himself.’ (BG 4.38)
Mantra Yoga has its origin in Vedic Sciences and also in Tantra, infact all the verses in Vedas are called mantras, it is said that any person who can chant or sing Vedas can achieve the ultimate salvation or union with supreme consciousness only by chanting the mantras, which is the aim Mantra Yoga.
Effects of Mantra
On personal level
– Mantra impacts on mental & psychological plane in a positive way.
– Stirs up emotions (desires, fears, jealousy from subconscious mind to conscious level as thoughts.) for removing negative tendencies of mind and re programming the thinking process
– Creates potential energy reservoir
– Deeper, subtle & astral spheres
– Impacts on macro cosmos & micro cosmos
– Purification of collective conscious mind
How to practice?
One should have a Mala or Rosary consisting of 108 beads as is significant in all Tantra & Veda Texts.
o Repeat Mala for 2 to 3 times daily (increase to even 8 to 10 hours) or Chant Mantra for at least 11 times.
Time of Practice – Morning or evening time
Tantra Yoga is a holistic approach to the study of the universal from the point of view of the individual: the study of the macrocosm through the study of the microcosm. Tantra Yoga draws on all the sciences – astronomy, astrology, numerology, physiognomy, physics, chemistry, alchemy, Ayurveda (the traditional medicine of India), psychology, mathematics, geometry, and so on – to provide a practical means of realizing the highest ideals of philosophy in daily life. Instead of separating and categorizing the different areas of human knowledge, Tantra Yoga draws them together. Tantra Yoga studies the tree of life itself instead of limiting itself to any single branch of the tree. This tree is a microcosm, a great organization of diverse elements linked together by a unifying law (dharma) that is inherent in their very nature. Tantra Yoga seeks to understand this law.
The aim of Tantra Yoga is to expand awareness in all states of consciousness, whether waking state, dream state or sleep state. To accomplish this we need a kind of “deprogramming” and “reprogramming” of our human computer. Our birth in a particular place and time gives us our primary programming, influenced by heredity and environment. If we are content with the results and live our lives without too many problems, then we will see no need for change. But when we experience great difficulties in life or begin to seek something beyond our limited “program” then we need a way to alter it. Tantra Yoga provides the methodology and the tools for this work. Tantra Yoga teaches us to identify the various factors that influence our thoughts and feelings and to transcend the obstacles to our evolution arising from ignorance, intolerance, attachment to our animal nature, and selfishness. By refining our thoughts and feelings by means of these Tantra Yoga practices, we learn to create peace, harmony, and order within ourselves. Tantra Yoga thus promotes a one-pointedness and centeredness that help us to free the consciousness from limitations.
Ardhnarishvara symbolizes the unity between the Shiva and Shakti principles – click for a larger image.The universe is a product of two opposites: the static principle (rest, shaktiman, powerholder, Shiva) and the dynamic principle (movement, energy, power, creativity, Shakti). The external part of everything is the creative aspect, and inside every dynamic creation is the static aspect. The play of Shakti has no beginning or end. Although it is restless, the energy moves in an orderly cycle, alternating periods of motion and rest. Energy undergoes many changes, gets distorted and then it reorganizes itself during the period of rest. Thus a continuous process of creation, preservation and destruction, reorganization and re-creation goes on forever. Tantra Yoga believes that as long as the phenomenal world exists, it is the Universal Mother who is the creator, preserver and destroyer. Thus in Tantra Yoga she should be worshipped as an aspect of the Divine.
Ashtanga yoga is a system of yoga recorded by the sage Vamana Rishi in the Yoga Korunta, an ancient manuscript “said to contain lists of many different groupings of asanas, as well as highly original teachings on vinyasa, drishti, bandhas, mudras, and philosophy” (Jois 2002 xv). The text of the Yoga Korunta “was imparted to Sri T.
Krishnamacharya in the early 1900’s by his Guru Rama Mohan Brahmachari, and was later passed down to Pattabhi Jois during the duration of his studies with Krishnamacharya, beginning in 1927″ (“Ashtanga Yoga”). Since 1948, Pattabhi Jois has been teaching Ashtanga yoga from his yoga shala, the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute (Jois 2002 xvi), according to the sacred tradition of Guru Parampara [disciplic succession] (Jois 2003 12).
Ashtanga yoga literally means “eight-limbed yoga,” as outlined by the sage Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras. According to Patanjali, the path of internal purification for revealing the Universal Self consists of the following eight spiritual practices:
To know more about the eight limbs of Astanga Yoga, read through the following lines.