Category Archives: FAQs

Selection from previously asked Question and respective Answers

Which is the best Yoga?

Which Yoga is the best?
Kindly accept my humble pranams.
I am a bachelor working professional of age 30+. I got a couple of philosophical question as I read a text on the Srimad Bhagvat Gita recently.
My first question is regarding the best form of Yogas as applicable in today’s world. It looks that Bhagavan Sri Krishna has glorified all the four forms of Yoga (i.e. Karma, Bhakti, Jnana and Raja) at different chapters of the Gita. Now, which form is the best for practicing in this time with least struggle and with more probability of success?
One more question regarding Karma and Jnana Yoga. As it seems pure Jnana is devoid of any Karma and inclination to Karma is opposite to that of Jnana, is it ever possible to mix both in order to get the best out of those?
I will be obliged in case you kindly give a suggestion to my query.
p>It is nice to read your questions.
The final and factual teaching of the Vedas, ( mentioned very clearly in the Upanishads) is that the Jiva (ie. You/ I ) is Brahman – the Infinite consciousness. There is only one Infinite which is called/recognized as Brahman, (the infinite consciousness) by the men of wisdom, and which is called/perceived as Jiva (the finite Individual). Infinitude is a fact, and the finitude is a mere appearance. This is the final teaching of our Vedas.
According to our Scriptures, Self Ignorance is the cause of all problems. Every jiva takes millions of birth and death as long as he/she considers himself/herself as a jiva. Unless a jiva understands the ultimate goal of life, that this life is to conquer the death through the love of God and wisdom of his real nature, he/she is subject to repeated death and birth and various sufferings. The only purpose of human life is to realize our own Inner Divinity, which people generally call as God Realization.
Since Self Ignorance is the cause, the solution must be gaining “Self Knowledge”. Gaining ‘Self Knowledge’ means, recognizing your own Infinite nature which is, an ever existing fact. You just drop the idea that you are “finite jiva”. Therefore ‘jnana’ is the only solution. To get the knowledge, you can start with any yoga according to your temperament and prepare your mind. All the 4 yogas are necessary since each one plays a distinct role. A spiritual seeker has to go through all these yogas in one janma or the other. There is no choice in 4 yogas. Karma Yoga helps you to get Vairagyam (dispassion) from the worldly attachments. Raja Yoga helps you to prepare your physiological and psychological personalities. Bhakti yoga helps you to have emotional stability and love for the Lord (which is the goal). Finally when the seeker is fully matured with four-fold qualifications –like Viveka, Vairagya, Mukukshutwa (burning desire for Knowledge) etc., Jnana yoga reveals the “Ultimate Reality”, which is fortunately happened to be our own “Infinite nature”.
So, start any yoga as per your wish, and in course of time you will understand that they are not water-tight compartments and serious practice of one particular yoga need the practice of other yogas also. Therefore, there are not many paths. There is only one path, wherein many stages have to be crossed and mind must be prepared for the Self- Knowledge.
Generally Bhakti Yoga and Karma Yoga are prescribed for everybody, since one can’t avoid working and one needs emotional stability in the spiritual life. Therefore perform your duties as the offering to the Lord, wherein there is no place for any worldly desires and unethical means. Surrender to the Lord with full faith. Offer your mind to Him and pray Him to manifest in your mind and make your life a purposeful one and with peace.
Jnana means the absence of idea of “doer-ship”. Karma means “having doer-ship”. Both can’t exist simultaneously. Combination of Jnana and Karma is not possible only in terms of technicality. But we come across in the lives of Wise men like Sri Shankara and Swami Vivekananda were highly active. Since they did not have “doer-ship” they were not affected by the fruits of the Karma. But while doing all the actions they were absolutely wise. Therefore, in general, their life is combination of “Knowledge with action”. Don’t bother about these technicalities. Start your spiritual journey with all earnestness, knowing fully the benefits you are going to get and requirements of this spiritual journey.
Leading a life of Brahmacharya, with the practice of moral values, Prayer, Namajapa and Satsangh are means for growth in spiritual life. Try them and wait for the Lord’s Grace. He will certainly bless you with a Spiritual guide and growth. Offer your mind to Him and pray Him to manifest in your mind and make your life a purposeful one and with peace.
Also we suggest you to read the life and teachings of Sri Ramakrishna, Sri Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda for the general guidance for your spiritual life.
For more personal guidance, if you are staying in Bangalore, you are welcome to attend our Sunday Class (at 3.30p.m.) which is specially conducted for the youths, in our Ashram.
Visit our site . We update lot of materials for youth. Enrich yourself with good things and be happy in life.
With prayers,

What is in your view the real remedy?

Question: I have been going through internal struggle for quite sometime: If we do Soul searching today..or in last 50-100 years……in India …we see the situation in the Country has gone down rapidly ..from worse to Worst…in all spheres of life…Socially, Educationally… (Terribly poor quality), politically, communally, racially …. Results … Country…. Most of our population .. is living in Terrible traumatic conditions. Things are constantly .. worsening … looking doomed…Poverty levels are alarmingly increasing.
These situations generate …pain..agitation…and i wonder why Ultimate reality…Divine Bliss…God…Supreme soul .. Brahman .. Whatever you Call it… has created such situations … or all those names .. are mere our imaginations…or may be entirely different set of rules govern our …lives…mankind…universe..etc..etc..I have no answer to all these … what do you honestly think about these issues?
What is in your view the real remedy? or we are helpless?…How India and world at large would become Peaceful and blissfully livable ..for entire mankind. or This would remain our dream only!!!!
Or may be a stark Reality of present times will remain…for thousands of years to come..
Your kind views on above would be highly appreciated.

Answer: My Dear ****** *********, The world is a dog’s tail. The absolute sorrow, misery and poverty can never be removed. In fact, you can never point such a place on the earth. But we in the process of removing poverty and misery, become better and better persons. Even though education improves the lot of the people, we also see simultaneously how inhumanely they behave in their dealings. In fact, the wars & conflicts are not the contributions of illiterates, but, of the so called civilized. In fact, I am a believer of Karma Theory & each one face for what he has done. Somehow it only seems to me a rational theory. So, let us be good and go on doing good.
RESPONSE to Above REPLY: Thanks very much for your kind response. My mind runs numerous varied thoughts all the time and generates restlessness. I need to practice some spiritual discipline to achieve some peace of mind. May be attending spiritual retreat once in a while or spending few days in solitary place might help.
Certainly I fully agree with you on Karma Theory, we do our good and surrender to God and God’s will. I need to learn to live on this principle imbibed in my heart. Of course, this would again depend on God’s grace. … …

Query on Advaita Philosphy

Namaskar Swamiji,
I recently read the book Jnana Yog and Karma Yog by Swami Vivekanandji.I was deeply inspired by the books. And I’ve a few queries about the philosophy of Advaita. I couldn’t comprehend the relation of Maya with Brahman. Is it a part of Brahman or is it seperate. If it is seperate from Brahman , won’t there be a duality which is against Advaita? If it is part of Brahman, won’t Brahman also have qualities apart from Sat-Chit-Ananda , because Maya is endowed with Rajas and Tamas as well? Swami Vivekanandji has said in Jnana Yog that our minds are finite and Brahman is infinite ,is it because of this, that this contradiction seems to arise?
Though I have these queries , I still find that Advaita is a most complete explanation of this universe , only because of lack of comprehension I have these queries.
In the Big Bang Theory of Universe, all observable matter was said to originate from a single point . But if we look at this from duality , we still can’t account for empty space (or Akasha), when did the space come into existence is the question that comes to the mind. But Advaita seems to be the answer to this query. That Akasha(i.e space) and Pran (i.e matter) are all one. All part of the absolute.

Nice to read your questions with regard to Advaita Philosophy!
Maya means “that which is available for experience but that which does not exist actually, and therefore that which is inexplicable”. Inexplicable means that which can’t be explainable. Can you explain about “mirage water”. Does the mirage water is different from the “sand”, or one with the sand? If it is different from the sand, then you should be able to use it as water for your thirst. If it is one with the sand, then you can’t call it as “mirage water”. You should call it is sand only. The fact is when there is no mirage water at all, then why we should attempt to find a place for it. It is a mere appearance, from the stand point of the fact. What people call as “mirage water” is nothing but sand.
Similarly, you can’t talk about “Maya” which is a mere appearance. Because what the ignorant people call as Maya is nothing but Brahman for the wise-man . The very attempt to find a “place” for Maya shows, that it is taken for granted, that it exists as a second entity. Maya does not exist at all from the Absolute stand point. Wise man does not have any confusion. For him, this Maya is Lord’s power (like the power of a magician) from the Relative stand point of Creation-preservation-destruction. Same Maya does not exist at all from the Absolute stand point.
Don’t try to understand “Maya”. It is neither “existing” nor “non-existing” entity. It does not come under any definition. Without definition, we can’t understand anything as an object. You can’t understand it unless you the Subject recognize your Infinite nature as Brahman.
Moreover, don’t try to understand the Scriptures in an academic way by “self-study”. These academic informations can not solve the human problems. Getting Self-knowledge from the Scriptures depends upon the following questions:
· Are you guided by any Spiritual Teacher?
· Are you a sincere seeker of the Truth?
· Do you have devotion to the Lord, who is the Ultimate Truth of the appearing world?
Therefore, our suggestion is, first of all, find a Gurudev for your spiritual journey.
“Leading a clean life with the practice of moral values, Prayer, Namajapa and Satsangh are means for attaining Gurudev in our spiritual life. Try them and wait for the Lord’s Grace. He will certainly bless you with a Spiritual Teacher. Offer your mind to Him and pray Him to manifest in your mind and make your life a purposeful one and with peace”.
With Prayers,
Yours in Service,