Real Yoga with Swami Harinanda

Swami Harinanda
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Hello subscribername,

When ever I write an article, I always get about 4 cancellations. This happens every time. It always gives me a chuckle because what I write about always has its basis in - or at least the instructive part - in Yoga. Often though, toes are stepped on inadvertently because many people come to Yoga with preconceived ideas, which are not usually their own, but which have been taught to them, and which they have bought in to. This is called "conditioning".

This premise they have bought in to suits them, and to have that uprooted, appears as though I might be knocking some very special person, or some highly thought of ideal. That is not the case at all as I do believe that for every person there is some specialized teaching, but that is not to say, new information cannot be added to what one already has.

It is in this way we grow and develop in our thinking until the day comes that we can actually begin to think for ourselves.

As an example, why do so many people in Yoga accept as fact that levitation exists. I even had one teacher many years ago try and levitate me. Of course it failed, and many excuses were made why he could not accomplish this feat that day. Something to do with what I had eaten had made my molecular structure too heavy. It was quite laughable at the time. WATCH OUT FOR GOBBLEYGOOK.

Then I got to thinking about how much we just "accept" - even if it goes against common sense and reasoning, and for that matter natural law. This was brought home to me one day as I was sitting in front of one of my first teachers who was in the Lotus posture and all of a sudden I saw him lift off the ground and float across the room. I blinked and instantly he was were he had always been. I had hallucinated his levitation by my continual open-eyed gaze which affected the optic nerve.

Levitation doesn't make sense. Some say that just because it doesn't make sense doesn't mean it couldn't happen. Yeh sure, and pigs will fly one day.

Siddhi powers are another of the irrational Yogic feats which no one will see happen. Making your self as light as a feather - or - making yourself as heavy as an elephant. It just does not make sense does it. It goes against natural law doesn't it? All so called miracles are only that, until we discover how the trick was done, then it always falls under the laws of science.

Stigmata used to be thought of as a miraculous gift from God, until we discovered that body mutilation could be mind induced.

I remember when the great huge crop circles were made in the English wheat fields - some of them covering acres - were thought to have been done by some Alien creatures by some magic means, until a group of scientists found a very likely site - a field of such pristine beauty that it was prime land just waiting to be desecrated by the Alien magicians - so they set up night vision cameras with results that were quite hilarious.

The movie showed a group of students walking on stilts into the field carrying ropes and long boards. They made a fulcrum point with the rope, which was tied to the long boards which they began to drag behind them in ever widening circles. Their furious endeavours resulted in the most beautiful and complicated field patterns that took them only a matter a few night hours. Packing up their gear they were shown far to one side of the field having a beer and a good laugh.

The magic a guru may appear to have is nothing more than what his disciples place upon him. Oh I know some of them have great personalities and magnetism and as against lesser mortals of ordinary personality, may seem to have an aura of spiritual power, yet early snake oil salesmen with a great gift or oratory, sold ordinary oil to the gullible as some magic potion which would cure all ills - and lo and behold it did too. In the early days of these salesman, the ordinary man on the street did not know much about psychosomatic illness.

How cures occur in these great mass religious meetings is now understood, but alas only to return after the fervor of religious excitement can not uphold the mind enough to retain the cure any longer, and usually within hours or days, the cure is no longer. So much disenchantment.

I write this article for those of you who have not really thought about what you have accepted as being REAL, and that, in the face of all reason. I would like to save everyone time in their Yoga studies by allowing them to give their head a shake for a moment, and get down to the brass tacks of Yoga and not the fairy tales and the folk lore, as they will get you absolutely no where - in fact it will hold you back from furthering your studies. Why? Because the soporifics of tales and magic arrest one's ability into being able to forge deeper into what Real Yoga is. They get caught up in the romance of these folk lore tales.

During the cold war, the Russians began experimentation on prisoners and private citizens on methods of how to gain complete mind control. The Chinese did the same, and soon America under the CIA followed suit using soldiers and private citizens, experimenting with LSD and other drugs, electric shock therapy, sleep deprivation, and some forms of torture.

This has been well reported and documented with many of these cases taking the Government to trial - and winning - for being so maliciously abused.

Most minds were totally erased under these experiments - some died, and some were able to recuperate enough to continue, years later, a fairly normal life.

Under sever conditions like that, the mind can be erased - all memory - everything, with people left in a zombie like state. In some small way we allow this to happen to us. Take for example when we may be sitting at home watching the TV, not thinking of food or eating at all, when all of a sudden, some delicious food advert comes on the screen, and without even thinking we get and up go to the kitchen to get a snack.

We are being programmed and conditioned all the time. Most people do not think of it at all and get carried away by the onslaught, developing into enormous huge walruses with hips at least 64 inches and stomachs draping over their belts.

Now of course, listen to the excuses for this fat illness - genetics, "my
doctor says, I can't help it. I have no love in my life so I eat", and on and on it goes.

We are western nations, glutted with advertising which has conditioned us into being the unhealthiest race on earth with the earliest deaths due to fat, which give rise to heart attack, diabetes, cholesterol buildup, stroke and a host of other illnesses.

You would think it would make sense for fat people to learn how to control their eating habits - but it is hard, as conditioning of the mind, is like a form of mind control. Once you give yourself over to any form of mind control it becomes then an addictive habit, that even common sense cannot break.

Much the same thing happens in Yogic beliefs. People become conditioned to think in a certain way - even in such simple things as this.

Many students of this program write for my blessings in whatever undertaking they are on. This is an erroneous outlook to have. I can bless no-one and neither can anyone else. If they do happen to have themselves set up as some intermediary power between earth and God that can influence the outcome of events, then they have fooled themselves and the recipient of their blessings - another fallacy - another conditioning.

How many ships went down at sea that were blessed. Blessing is just a ceremony done by men who feel they must cover all bases - like crossing your fingers or touching wood. Superstitions to be sure, but it makes one feel safe. They are all superstitions.

Like the sun, blessings are flowing all the time on the wicked and the righteous alike. Instead of turning your face towards someone else for blessings, turn it toward the source, the ATMAN - self within.

Letting go of conditioning is hard. After all, you learned so much at Mother's knee and elsewhere, and we retain it, because we feel secure with what we know. To let go of everything and jump in to the unknown is scary.

Well, to jump into Samadhi takes letting go of everything you know, so that you are able to transcended mind and raise consciousness to another state, unknown by most people. Do you take this on faith. Do you allow yourself to be conditioned to these new ideas? No - you must put to the test all aspects of Yoga. If it makes sense and works for you - then do it, but do not go on forever chasing rainbows.

If you have pertinent questions regarding this I will personally answer you in detail.


Swami Harinanda

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