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Discovering Yoga’s Essence Part 3: Cultivating Happiness in Simple Steps

Patanjali, an ancient sage, shares simple yet powerful ways to bring calmness to our minds.

Yoga Sutra

The mind becomes tranquil by cultivating attitudes of friendliness towards the happy, compassion towards the miserable, joy towards the virtuous and indifference towards the evil.

The mind also becomes tranquil by alternately expelling and retaining the breath. When meditation produces extraordinary sense perceptions, the mind gains confidence and this helps perseverance.

Also, meditate on the inner light which is serene and beyond all sorrow.

Also meditate on one who has attained desirelessness.

–Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras

Yoga Sutra No. 1

The mind becomes tranquil by cultivating attitudes of friendliness towards the happy.

1. The Natural Attitudes: Jealousy vs. Friendliness

In our daily lives, jealousy often sneaks in when we see others happy. Patanjali encourages us to flip the script! Instead of feeling jealous, try being friendly. It’s not as easy as it sounds, but trust me, it’s magical. When you genuinely share in someone’s happiness, you create a beautiful circle of joy that embraces you too.

2. The Happiness Sharing Secret

Happiness isn’t like a physical object you can hoard; it’s a beautiful energy that spreads like sunshine. Patanjali opens the secret: when you’re genuinely friendly with someone’s joy, you open a door to let that happiness flow your way too. It’s like catching sunbeams – freely given and abundant.

3. Creating Your Heaven

Guess what? You hold the key to your own happiness. If there’s misery around, don’t blame others – look within. Patanjali reminds us that we’re the architects of our heaven or hell. By finding the cause of our misery and tossing it out, we pave the way for happiness.

4. Becoming a Joyful God

Ever dreamt of being a god? Well, according to Patanjali, a god is someone who knows the secret to being happy with the whole universe. Picture it – celebrating with every flower, river, rock, and star. Becoming a god is about participating in the continuous, eternal celebration of life. The art of finding joy in every little thing is your ticket to happiness.

5. Your Journey to Happiness

Remember, the journey to happiness starts with you. Allow your being to be happy with others’ joy, and you’ll open doors to your personal heaven. Celebrate life like a god in your own unique way, participating in the joy that surrounds you.

Celebrate-yoga-life

Yoga Sutras No. 2

The mind becomes tranquil by cultivating compassion towards the miserable.

1. Understanding Compassion vs. Friendliness

In life, there are moments when people around us might be going through tough times. It’s crucial to understand the difference between friendliness and compassion in these situations. Friendliness often means trying to mirror the emotions of others, while compassion is about lifting someone up without getting entangled in their struggles.

Imagine a friend in tears – being friendly might mean shedding tears alongside them, but is that truly helpful? Compassion, on the other hand, is extending a helping hand without becoming engulfed in the same emotions. It’s not about feeling happy or miserable but about genuinely wanting to assist someone in overcoming their challenges.

2. The Pitfall of Sympathy in Tough Times

When we show sympathy or friendliness to a sad person, there’s often an underlying sense of happiness within us. It’s almost like a relief that we aren’t the ones facing the difficulties. However, true compassion lies in the middle ground. It’s not about feeling superior or cheerful when others are miserable; it’s about sincerely wanting to help them without getting affected by their emotions.

3. Buddha’s Compassion: A Model for Tranquility

Compassion, exemplified by figures like Buddha, transcends the duality of feeling happy or miserable. It’s a state where you care for someone and wish to help them without being dragged into their sadness. Compassion doesn’t love the misery but strives to uplift the person experiencing it.

Being sympathetic can inadvertently lead to embracing the misery rather than supporting the individual. Instead of making misery an object of love, it’s essential to remain aloof. Compassion means extending a helping hand while maintaining a balance – not becoming miserable, not feeling happy, just being there with a loving and supportive heart.

Read moreDiscovering Yoga’s Essence Part 1: The Cessation of Mind

Yoga Sutra No. 3

The mind becomes tranquil by cultivating attitudes joy towards the virtuous

1. Criticizing Virtue: A Common Reaction

In our journey through life, we often encounter individuals who radiate virtue. However, instead of celebrating their goodness, we sometimes find ourselves criticizing or condemning them. Why? Because acknowledging their virtue can challenge our own egos.

2. The Ego’s Defense Mechanism

When we encounter a virtuous person, our first instinct might be to question their authenticity. “How can they be more virtuous than me?” we wonder. This skepticism stems from a deep-seated fear that recognizing their virtue would shatter our ego, forcing us to confront the need for personal change – a daunting task.

Criticism and condemnation become easy outlets. Rather than appreciating and learning from the virtuous, we choose to disprove their goodness. Why? Because proving virtue is challenging, while disproving is effortless. This tendency to believe in the negative not only harms our perception but also limits our personal growth.

3. Self-Destructive Patterns: Poisoning Ourselves

Believing in the negative provides a false comfort, reinforcing the idea that virtue is unattainable. It becomes a self-destructive cycle, poisoning our minds and hindering personal development. By dismissing virtue, we settle for mediocrity, not realizing that this choice only deepens our misery.

4. Breaking the Settlement: Opening Doors to Growth

Breaking free from this self-imposed settlement is crucial. We must challenge ourselves to embrace joy when we encounter virtuous individuals. Rather than seeing their goodness as a threat, we should view it as an inspiration for personal growth. True happiness lies in uprooting ourselves from the comfort of mediocrity and planting ourselves in a higher plane of virtue.

5. The Path to Joyful Growth: Celebrating Virtue

So, let’s celebrate virtue, encourage personal growth, and create an environment where joy towards the virtuous becomes a driving force for positive change. It’s time to break free from self-limiting beliefs and embrace the potential for continuous growth and happiness.

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Yoga Sutra no. 4

The mind becomes tranquil by cultivating indifference towards evil.

1. Understanding the Inner Dynamics

In the journey of life, we often come across situations that tempt us to condemn or judge, be it someone’s actions or what we perceive as ‘evil.’ Patanjali, the ancient sage, offers valuable wisdom – don’t even condemn evil.

2. The Pitfalls of Condemnation

Why? Patanjali understands the intricacies of the mind. When we focus too much on condemning evil, we inadvertently become attuned to it. Constantly saying, “This is wrong, that is wrong,” directs too much attention to the negative, eventually making it a subconscious attraction. It’s like being hypnotized; what you condemn, you might end up committing.

3. Jesus’ Teaching

Jesus also advised against judgment, saying, “Judge ye not.” Patanjali echoes this sentiment, urging us to practice indifference. It’s not about being apathetic, antagonistic, or escaping; it’s about cultivating a serene indifference without any attitude.

4. Embracing True Indifference

Indifference, as Patanjali describes it, goes beyond mere lack of concern; it’s a profound acceptance that certain things are beyond our control. If someone is engaged in wrongdoing, it’s their karma to handle. Life is intricate, and what we perceive as evil today might transform into good tomorrow, and vice versa. So, who are we to judge?

5. The Complexity of Life

This attitude of indifference is not about declaring, “It’s not worth my time.” That would still be an attitude, subtly laced with condemnation. True indifference means recognizing our limitations in understanding the complexities of life. Instead of trying to decide what is good or evil, we focus on our own mindfulness and awareness.

6. Let Go of Attitudes

By practicing indifference without any attitude, we free ourselves from unnecessary mental burdens. It’s a call to self-care – taking care of our own thoughts and actions. In doing so, we not only attain inner peace but also contribute positively to the world around us.

The art of indifference is a key to maintaining our happiness amidst life’s complexities. Remember, it’s not about turning a blind eye but about recognizing our role and choosing not to be entangled in judgments.

maintaining-our-happiness

Yoga Sutra no. 5

The mind also becomes tranquil by alternately expelling and retaining the breath.

1. Exhale, Inhale, Transform:

In the hustle and bustle of life, finding moments of tranquility can be a challenge. But what if the key to calming your mind is as simple as your breath? According to ancient wisdom, the mind can find peace through a rhythmic dance of exhaling and inhaling.

When you feel tension, worry, or an incessant chatter in your mind, take a moment to exhale deeply. Let it all out and hold as long it’s easily possible allowing the air to carry away the mood that has gripped you. Follow this with inhaling deeply, filling your lungs to their capacity. Pause for a few seconds before exhaling again. Repeat this process, creating a rhythmic flow of breath – exhale, inhale, retain, and repeat.

This practice might seem like a mere physical exercise, but its impact goes much deeper. By engaging in this rhythmic breathing, you divert your mind’s attention. It becomes absorbed in the act, breaking the cycle of anger, worry, or anxiety. The mind cannot hold onto conflicting thoughts simultaneously, and this simple exercise disrupts its cooperation with negative emotions.

2. The Power of Rhythm: Cleansing Breath

The magic lies not only in the rhythm but in the cleansing process. When you retain your breath, you create a gap – a moment of emptiness. In this emptiness, the body expels toxins, ensuring they don’t accumulate and harm you. The entire process becomes a gentle cleansing of both the body and the mind.

3. Breathing and Thinking

Yoga teaches us that breathing is more profound than thinking. Altering your breath pattern can transform your thinking. It’s a powerful realization that puts you in control of the climate within you. By understanding your own breathing patterns and their connection to your moods, you gain a tool to consciously shift your mental state.

Moreover, this mindful breathing can lead to extraordinary sense perceptions. Just as certain substances can alter your perception, so can a yogic breathing practice. Your vision becomes clearer, and the world around you takes on a new light. Everyday things become extraordinary, and your relationships are seen with fresh eyes.

4. Your Breath Diary

In the pursuit of happiness, consider making a diary of your breathing patterns for a week. Observe how different moods are connected to distinct breathing patterns. Armed with this awareness, you can consciously choose to shift your mood by adjusting your breath. It’s a simple yet profound way to cultivate tranquility and embrace a joyful state of being. After all, the key to a happier life might just be a breath away.

Read more: Discovering Yoga’s Essence Part 2: Constant Inner Practice (Abhyasa) And Desirelessness (Vairagya)

Yoga Sutra no. 6

When meditation produces extraordinary sense perceptions, the mind gains confidence and this helps perseverance.

Also, meditate on the inner light which is serene and beyond all sorrow.

1. Discovering Confidence through Meditation

Patanjali, the ancient sage, shares profound insights about the transformative power of meditation. According to him, as you delve into meditation, something extraordinary happens – a shift in perception that boosts your confidence and strengthens your perseverance.

2. Embracing the Love Affair with the Universe

Picture this: the world around you starts transforming, becoming more beautiful with each meditation session. The disharmony fades away, replaced by a soothing harmony. It’s as if the universe is whispering love to you, turning your existence into a blissful love affair with the cosmos. This newfound confidence in your spiritual journey infuses your efforts with increased perseverance.

3. Meditating on the Inner Light

Patanjali encourages us to meditate on the inner light, a serene flame beyond all sorrow. While this may seem elusive at first, with increased perceptivity, you can close your eyes and find a blue flame near your heart. This inner light is your center of being, a source of tranquility and bliss. By concentrating on this flame, you invite calmness and connectedness into your life.

4. The Beauty of Inner Light

Initially, entering this inner realm may feel like stepping into darkness, but patience is the key. Close your eyes and look within your heart. After a while, a beautiful flame, a blue light, will reveal itself. Concentrating on this light is an experience of unparalleled bliss. It’s a dance of tranquility, a melody of silence that fills your heart with joy, after countless lifetimes spent outside. Initially, it might seem like darkness, emptiness. But be patient; close your eyes and gaze within. It may take days , but one day, you’ll witness a miraculous sight – a light, a flame emanating from your heart. Concentrate on that inner blue light.

5. Radiating Light to the Universe:

This experience is unparalleled in bliss and beauty. The inner light transforms you, making you tranquil, silent, calm, and collected. The darkness dissipates, leaving your heart brimming with light. When your heart radiates light, the entire universe bathes in that light.

Spiritual journey, take heart. Meditation is not just a practice; it’s a gateway to a world where your confidence soars, and your perseverance becomes unshakable. It’s an intimate exploration of the inner light, a dance with the divine within you. As you venture into this magical journey within, may your heart be forever illuminated with the serene blue flame of joy and tranquility.

Yoga Sutra no. 7

Also meditate on one who has attained desirelessness.

–Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras

1. Connect with a Fulfilled Being

Patanjali, the wise sage, offers us a profound suggestion in our journey of self-discovery – meditate on someone who has attained Fulfillment. Whether it’s Mahavira, Buddha, Christ, or your own revered spiritual guide, immersing yourself in the energy of someone free from desires can bring about a significant shift within.

Why does this work? When you focus your meditation on someone who is fully conscious and fulfilled , a magnetic force is activated. Consider it like a cosmic pull that helps you detach from your own mind. It’s not about seeking perfection but about creating an inner space where transformation becomes possible.

2. Choose Your Object of Meditation Wisely:

Meditation is a powerful tool that molds you into the likeness of its object. What you pay attention to shapes your being. So, be mindful of where you direct your focus. Choose to meditate on qualities you admire and wish to embody.

Patanjali’s wisdom encourages us to seek Masters who have attained desirelessness. Surrender to their teachings, absorb their essence, and let them become a guiding force in your life. It’s a relationship of attention – what you observe, you become. The Master becomes a catalyst for your own transformation without actively doing anything.

Krishnamurti rightly says, “The observer becomes the observed.”

In the pursuit of happiness, surround yourself with those who have walked the path of desirelessness. Let their energy be a silent guide in your journey. Through the gentle art of meditation, you can absorb their wisdom, and, in time, become a reflection of the serenity that comes with desirelessness. Remember, the seeds you sow with your attention today will blossom into the garden of your tomorrow. Choose wisely, meditate mindfully, and let the journey bring light and fulfillment into your life.

The way of Yoga New vision is rooted in loving guidance and bringing all the ancient teachings of the east under one roof.

See Why London’s Om Yoga Magazine Calls Yoga New Vision, World’s Most Authentic Yoga Teacher Training in Bali.

Blessings
Deep “A yogi friend”
“Uniting East and West by combining Ancient wisdom with Modern science”

Deep-ji (1)
Lead Trainer and Visionary
Yoga New Vision Bali

Acknowledgement – it is inspired and directed from “Patanjali Yoga Sutra” Osho Vision “ Yoga Alpha and the Omega” Samadhi Pada.
Grateful for the guidance of enlightened masters.

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