Now we will end this chapter by hearing about the end result of successful Yoga practice.
Continued from “From Desire to Fulfillment” (verse 44):
By persevering in his efforts, the mind withdrawn from anything else, he is completely purified of faults, and after many births is perfected and goes to the final destination.
“By persevering in his efforts”
Now he keeps going no matter what. This yogi knows something of what is ahead through his own experience, and will not be stopped.
“With the mind withdrawn from anything else”
The yogi is now steeped in Yoga. He thinks of nothing else. Any thought seemingly outside of it that should arise, is associated with God/Truth and his Yoga. Anything that is not, is dismissed.
“He is completely purified of faults”
These ‘faults’ are not really his, they are in the packaging, and Shakti wants to get the package to be like the Divine Individual that this yogi really is.
Shakti – Divine Energy. The intelligent, activating force of Nature.
The purification process that is going on in the body is sometimes uncomfortable, but our yogi knows what is going on, so he doesn’t fight it, but regards it as a sign of progress and happily continues his Yoga practice.
Purification – The reordering of things to get them in their proper places, inside or outside of the body, mind and feelings. This ultimately gets one in sync with the Real Self. (See Yama and Niyama for descriptions of what this would look like).
Because prana (Life Energy) can heal anything, it is often thought to be imprudent to avail oneself of resources considered to be unnatural. But this is unnatural—we are here on earth when we’re here, not at some other time. There are different resources available now than were available hundreds (or thousands) of years ago. Forcing oneself to endure something that might otherwise be relieved can cause more trouble from the stress it creates.
At this stage of sadhana, one really must be self-honest. Without self-honesty, mistakes will be made. Because of what is at the core of the mind (‘ego’), self-honesty is a difficult undertaking, so one must start immediately to practice it so that this skill is already developed and in place.
Sadhana – Spiritual practice. Sanskrit: The means of going straight to the goal. Mastering, cure, completion, perfection.
There is often (in any age) some difficulty determining what to do. One eventually gets the means of contacting inner guidance, but that alone isn’t always enough because of the mind’s propensity for interfering and causing mistakes to be made. Inner guidance must be more than just listening to your feelings or your mind, or confusing either with intuition. The mind will cause you more trouble than you can imagine, and feelings have their roots in the mind.
Ideally, you should consult your guru. In the event that your guru is no longer on this earth, the adepts who know their way around yoga can be called upon to advise you. If you don’t have direct contact with them they may send you dreams, in which case you will need to know how to understand dreams.
You should also consult scripture. Its purpose is to help you with this very thing. Then contemplate the yamas and niyamas to determine the correctness of your conclusions. It is also very helpful to talk with others on your path who are having similar experiences.
“After many births he is perfected and goes to the final destination”
I don’t think anyone can make it to or through this stage of sadhana without self-honesty and a whole lot of meditation experience (years). But it is very inspiring to know there will be a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, when one is finally, successfully ‘perfected’.
The yogi is superior to the ascetic, the learned, and those who are active in good works. Therefore, be a yogi!
The yogi, the ascetic, the learned, and those who do good works, are all the greatest of devotees, but in this verse the yogi is ranked the highest. The ascetic is ranked higher than the learned, and the learned higher than those engaged in good works.
For many people, asceticism is the practice of severe self-discipline, sometimes even self-mortification, and abstention from all forms of pleasure. But we learned earlier that this is not the intended message. ‘Ascetic’ was defined as “one who is self-motivated, self-disciplined, and inspired, and can be a saint, sage, seer, monk, devotee or hermit”. The learned, on the other hand, is meant as someone who knows a lot but doesn’t have the personal experience behind the knowledge that the yogi and the ascetic have.
Of all yogis, one who loves Me with faith and considers Me as in himself and himself in Me, is united with Me, and is the highest of all.
This verse speaks for itself.
End of Chapter Six
The Yoga of Meditation
Namaste (I bow to the Divine One that You really are),