Anandaswami Tradition Yoga School
|Place of lecture delivering||Cultural Center “Enlightenment”.|
|Date||April 12, 2008|
|Licence||Creative Commons. You may copy, duplicate and spread this lecture. It’s desirable to give a reference to our site www.openyoga.ru.|
|Typed and edited by||Elena Zvereva|
|Translated by||Anna Polyakova|
|Overview||April 12 is the Cosmonautics Day, i.e. an international celebration of the first human in space. On April 12 a soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin made one complete orbit around the Earth aboard the spacecraft “Vostok 1” for the first time in the world. From the Yoga point of view a mankind has matured enough in karma sense. Space exploration becomes possible only when a positive karma is accumulated enough. In space there is no gravitational field; and a question appears: will yoga remain in weightlessness without gravitational field? Going out of the Earth surface a man leaves a field of his karma activity.
There is an exigence in development of our own lifestyle. We should understand there are no general all-purposes rules of living in different epochs. Moreover different lifestyles exist for different people in one time. We all have human bodies. Our souls are the same in their absolute display, but we all have different consciousness of our “I”. There are tree groups of people: innocent souls, i.e. souls recently passing from animal bodies to human ones (Pashu); souls being in human bodies for a long time and nearly defeated their animal instincts (Vira); souls fully defeated their animal instincts but also unthinkable developed their potential (Divja – yoga teachers). Answering the questions on a lecture theme and other questions.
Theme 1. “April 12: Space Exploration from a Yoga Stand”
Let’s begin with a famous date – the 12th of April. As you remember it it’s a mankind access into space when a soviet cosmonaut made one complete orbit around the Earth aboard the spacecraft “Vostok 1” for the first time in the world.
This subject is wrongly understandably sometimes. A very interesting parallel is drawn here. It would seem there is nothing common between space and yoga. I’m deeply convinced this day is a really holiday; but it is seen by nobody and mentioned only at odd moments. A mankind made a serious dash, a serious step; and in essence this step was different from all the others steps in human history. The point is: flying into space needs several non-technical factors strange as it may seem. I mean that even Ancient Romans if they had been scientists could create some mechanism or aggregate that would take them into space. But they didn’t have anything important. There were no necessary people in Ancient Rome. On the one hand such people should be able to make their dreams come true or to transfer their consciousness into energy. And on the other hand they should be able to coexist, to communicate with each other to reach their common purpose.
Strictly speaking a mankind was wild before this moment. To make a manufacturing line for some rocket components not only technology is needed. It needs also production culture, interpersonal relations, combination of science, way of life, and ability of every person to sacrifice himself in reaching his higher purpose. A mankind paid a heavy in numerous wars for such people appeared. These are people being ready to sacrifice their own happiness, sometimes even their lives for these “higher” purposes. From the yoga point of view a mankind has matured enough in karma sense. Space access becomes possible only when a positive karma is accumulated enough.
There is an esoteric moment which can be seen in ancient yoga texts reached us from the antiquity. These texts are very veiled and allegorical but they tell the same: “A mankind will prove its justifiability or its immaturity as a self-conscious mass of people when goes into space”. And once again: it’s not a question of technical feasibility as they say it sometimes. The main thing is a positive karma earning by people, by engineers, etc. So it counts that only in this moment a mankind reached its next stage. And strictly speaking we were in other epoch before and a new epoch began with this space fly.
So positive karma has been accumulated despite of a negative one that it allowed space access for a mankind. Some very interesting moments are mentioned indirectly in connection with this. There is a point of view that our civilization isn’t the only one lived on the Earth. We have our predecessor. They achieved the higher state and left empty Earth for the next generation. So we are an intermediate section in a sense.
There is also another variant: we could achieve this technology but would use it not for space exploration but to kill each other. Actually such a prospect was quite real. But positive human karma prevails over negative one; so we haven’t still annihilated ourselves in any conflict or in any war.
Why this day should be a serious holiday? That’s because these are fascists who should put the first man into space. Even in 1940s when rocketed they come up at 200 km above the Earth surface; strictly speaking it was space. If so the first spaceman would yell “Heil Hitler!” or something like this from orbit. At that time Germany had its technology level and production culture more serious that in all the rest of the world. But something in their karma hasn’t worked. As a result another civilization the USA took everything that could be taken. The USA are based on other principles called “plutocracy” (or “aristocracy of money”) by spiteful tongues. They had unthinkable financial resources comparatively with the USSR (Russia) after the Second World War. They lived in clover and could ram space exploration purely by their money but they haven’t done it (they’ve done it only later when launched the first man on the Moon).
And we have done strange as it may seem! We’ve done it in spite of difficult living in postwar times: famine, etc; ask your grand parents. Why have we done it? Because of the necessary combination of intellectual forces, dreams come true, capacity to sacrifice for the sake of great purpose, etc. Strange as it may seem our system proved to be more optimal in those conditions. That’s why the fascist-american system was at a disadvantage as compared with the communist one. They all had monstrous disbalance in their karma, their negative karma; but we had less disbalance.
And then real wonders began. Yuri Gagarin made one circuit lasted 1 h 48 minutes; and all newspapers wrote not 1 h 48 min, but 108 minutes. 108 is a sacred number in Hinduism. What do you think about how an Indian Yogin felt himself after such message: a man sortied into space and spent 108 minutes there? So it stirred up an effect of spiritual revolution. It was an incitement greatly increased interest to the USSR. Though we all know the disadvantages of our life. It’s like a litmus paper showing our true worth. So I believe it will be a really great holiday in several years; i.e. holiday with its importance awareness. It was our first topic. So I send my greetings to you on the occasion of this date.
Other topic is closer to yoga. Pay your attention we all live on the Earth in the gravitation field. Hatha yoga bases on the gravitation principles: without gravitation field headstand or any other pose has no sense. There is an idea that all yoga system was created took into account our living conditions. On the Earth this is gravitation field. They ask sometimes about principles forming these or those exercises. These are the principles allowing us to rise and to reveal ourselves. To reach it one should use a thing that he has at his hand. And at his hand he has a gravitation field of the Earth. Yoga system uses it besides other factors following the next principle: turn defeats into victories.
And then after space exploration when a mankind lives in space in imponderability there will be a question: “Will yoga remain without gravitation field?” Once again you won’t do a headstand in imponderability. There is no doubt that it’s possible to make some kind of artificial gravitation but we must be waited a fantastic dash in our bodies transformation. Roughly speaking some parts of yoga we will work through and there will be no need in them. But some other parts we will study with great care.
At last there is one more thing closely related to the idea of space. I’ll draw such an analogy: the Earth is round but we don’t see it; we see it is flat. We can go left and right, forwards and backwards but we still remain in the Earth flat and we undergo all its influences. And when a person sorties into space he leaves an incidence of these influences including gravitation. At any sense it is an analogy with yogin leaving his karma plane, whirl of events, sphere of strict conditionality. But who naturally thinks now about space? Of course, nobody. Everyone has his own works and problems. But there is a very intricate thing: “We are here as in the nest; we should hatch and fly away” – as one classic said. For everything happens successfully a yoga system was given to us by ancient sages. By all appearance yoga knowledge is the heritage of the previous civilization that has hatched and flied away. It left us this knowledge to help us to do the same without staying too long.
There is also a negative aspect: “Guys, a big meteorite falls dawn on the Earth with a periodicity of 400 000 years. And it will kill all if you don’t develop yourself, have no time to fly away, wallow in your animal instincts, don’t do this breakthrough. After then some other human civilization will arise on the Earth. These humans might be smarter and less bloodthirsty and hateful”. So we should take in consideration one more factor i.e. survival race. And survival race not for a lonely man, individual but for all mankind in a whole.
Figure 1. Into the space
(Hurrah, my comrades! I’m outside karma.)
It would seem: this meteorite in 400 000 years is no concern of us; these are our descendants to think about it. But from the yoga stand it is right our business. The point is: we live, then we die and then we are born again at our own children and so far. So these will be ourselves to endure the end of the world in 400 000 years. Everything has cyclic development; and it’s a very ephemeral idea that some problem in many-many thousand years won’t concern us.
That’s why if a mankind is crushed and there is no opportunity to you to be born in human bodies you will be born where such opportunity will be. So you’ll get an opportunity to be born in bodies of creatures survived after catastrophe, i.e. cockroaches, mice, rats. But there's nothing you can do, you must be born somewhere. And then we have to develop these bodies up to a human level again, to invent a rocket again, to sortie into space and then fly away with second, third or tenth attempt. That’s why yoga has very kind and life-asserting, very open and wise conception: everything is interconnected in a single tangle, one display give rise to another and so on. And this timepiece is counting off our time to hatch and fly to the stars. It is started up and who know when a wave of negative karma come and crush us.
Even in this sense April 12 is a date telling us that we have just passed the keypoint, the Middle Ages have finished and I hope the most terrible wars have finished too.
Theme 2. “People Classification According to Their Self-Consciousness Degree”
Let’s pass to the second theme started at the last time “A way of life of Yogins and Yoginis handed us down yoga knowledge”. In the first place here we speak about such exotic Yogas as Amorousness Yoga and other yoga methods very beautiful, fast and open. This knowledge reached us in spite of all the mess of the Middle Ages, ancient times, etc. This knowledge has been preserved in some groups of people led an appointed, strange and concrete life.
Now there is an emergency of our own lifestyle development. We have a lifestyle but we have copied it from previous generation consciously or instinctively. So we have copied all their strengths and weaknesses, all their breakthroughs but also all the obstacles in their path. Sometimes our failures aren’t a result of our negative karma; everything is build into the game rules. I.e. we find ourselves from birth in such a game where we are doomed to suffer beforehand. And it’s by only one reason of instinctive apprehension of game rules or living condition of our parents and grandparents. These living conditions worked perfectly well: they went through very terrible times, terrible wars but for all that they didn’t lose their kindness or something inspiring and clean, they gave us life.
So their way of life was conditional on tough necessity. They ask me sometimes: “What should be a yogin lifestyle? Should it be this or that?” But just imagine: it’s the Second World War, Germans are on the way to your city and you should practice any Hatha Yoga or to lead any other life. It’s clear that a lifestyle helped our ancestors to survive was necessitated. But believe me it doesn’t mean at all that in youth our grandparents dreamed to live such a difficult life; it was a necessity forced them. Today our living conditions turn for the better in some spheres at least: there is no such a starvation or a famine. They ask me sometimes: “How should we eat practicing yoga?” You know in 1940s or 1950s this question would be ridiculous, there was nothing to eat at all. There no starvation today, so we have another lifestyle; but all the same some moments we brought from those times. It happens so: things would be rejected even by our grandparents if they could we brought habitually to nowadays and clutch at them a lot. But the times have changed and we begin suffering. It’s a good reason to give a meaning to our lifestyle. And to understand better our way of life it would be a good thing to consider by contrast.
And indeed those Yogins and Yoginis handed us down yoga knowledge how did they live? What did they do? Did they fall in love? Have they got children? What did they eat? How did they behave? Did they work or idle at home? So many practical questions not philosophic ones come to light.
Well, all their lives were obeyed to this higher purpose up to the trifles, yoga purpose; that’s why their experience is so important for us. But in the same time I don’t want it come out like this: we tried our best, but it was a botch-up as usual. You should remember there are no general lifestyle laws for everyone. Even that fact that Yogins and Yoginis lived in such circumstances doesn’t mean at all we have to blindly copy their experience. No, we have to create our own lifestyle. But what for to re-invent the wheel? Sometimes people ask me: “What do you persuade us for, esteemed guru?” I don’t persuade you for anything. There is only one method in such things: to show how it happens, this way or that. Then you’ll look on your life, compare and you will draw a conclusion by yourselves. Only for this I deliver these lectures.
At previous time we stopped at two things. The first was that Yogins and Yoginis were very unpopular, nonpublic people. They avoid to attract people’s superfluous attention to themselves. Firstly, they had to preserve yoga. Secondly, they had to practice yoga themselves. And the second: their way of life was considerably different from other people in the same place and in the same time. It passes all understanding how they influenced society but it was the fact and their influence began to be expressed through form of different rites and ceremonies. This influence could be seen in different corners of India, Nepal and other places where this knowledge had been preserved. Sometimes it was a very positive influence but after it happened like it happens very often: some distortion began…
People can pervert even a very lofty idea. For example at previous studies we considered the forth point in Yogins and Yoginis lifestyle was to pay a sacred debt. It’s a matter of heritage, of children upbringing. And how did all it end? This point spilled over into an idea that every Brahman had to have a son for family continuation. I.e. the same thing was said but in other words. So it was a disbalance: they stopped to pay any attention to the girls. Another example, we remember considering the last time that Yogins and Yoginis chose not a husband or a wife, but a father or a mother for their children in the first place. How did all it end? It brought to the marriage tradition when husband and wife make the acquaintance of each other already at wedding day. It exists pretty often in India now.
We should understand there are no general living rules for different periods of time. More over different lifestyles exist for different people groups in the same time. Lifestyle essential for some people may be found very dangerous and harmful for other, i.e. more negative than positive. Here we approach such a yoga cornerstone, a thing helping us to understand at least something in yoga.
We all have human bodies, our souls are the same in their absolute display, but have different awareness of our “I”. Also we stayed in human bodies for different time and before we need different time to pass from animal to human bodies. Such incidents occur fairly often that somebody has a human body but an animal soul. It happens sometimes that somebody has a human body and a soul of other-worldly saint philosopher, which already can’t be named “a human”. But on the outside everything looks the same. As you remember yoga refutes people sorting according to their racial, religious and national identity, their lifestyle, etc. Yoga considered all this is nonsense. There is higher “I” in everyone and at everyone it is equally high. That’s why no discrimination (national or any other) could be.
On the other hand you can't throw words out of a song: some “I” are at a high level of themselves awareness, they rejected some savage habits got from animal bodies; and some “I” use these savage habits to one's utmost .
There was given people gradation or differentiation into three groups in different yoga traditions and schools:
1) Innocent souls, i.e. souls being in human bodies now but recently passing from animal bodies to human ones;
2) Souls situated in human bodies for a long time; their animal instincts are practically defeated;
3) Souls not only fully defeated all animal displays in them and also unthinkable developed their potential. We can’t even call them “humans”, some kind of masquerade happens; i.e. the soul of the highest yogin in a body of man. Formally he is not a man already in his displays; this is the next stage of spiritual evolution.
Naturally the lifestyles in these groups are quiet different. In Tantras the first group is called “Pashu”. This word (Sanskrit) has a meaning very close to “creature”, i.e. created being, breather. The second stage was called “Vira” in Tantras. “Vira” is a hero, a man. He is very active, he is afraid of nothing, he has already defeated his brutish (“pig”) character. And he is full of energy to transform himself higher and higher up to the mark in yoga on in spiritual spheres. But he doesn’t have enough experience, enough awareness and practice. So it’s a stage to improve oneself. The last stage is “Divja” when a person completely performed his function and destination in human body and nominally could leave our planet as we said it today. But he remains here to be born among people for only one purpose: to help those who are in Vira stage and to safeguard those who are in Pashu stage against self-destruction.
Figure 2. Creatures groups
(Cheese, hey! Mice, Hey! Cats, hey!
Pashu, hey! Vira, hey! Divja, hey!)
It usually happens a young soul recently being in human body is pure by its nature. There is a little dog deserved a human body by its life. So it is born in a body of any indigene somewhere in difficult of access jungle and it is inexperienced, openhearted, it isn’t depraved by civilization or anything else. American Indians are openhearted and kind but they show their savage part when it’s necessary. People at Pashu stage are harmless and good-natured in general. You may have a dog, it’s your true friend, it serves you, it will give up its life for you, it can even think. But don’t require from it to read Shakespeare or to study philosophy. The same are people at Pashu stage: their souls are rather dull-witted but pure. And what then happens?
And then they begin to grow wiser. Here the great disbalance happens causing in general all the problems on human road. This disbalance appears when a person has animal inexperience at spiritual level, some savage instincts but human mind. Remember how Michael Bulgakov, famous Russian classic, absolutely wonderful described this danger. There was a dog, a good dog. But after it was transplanted mind and heart from an alcoholic it turned into terrible Sharikov. This symbiosis is a very scaring. It’s a pity but such Sharikov can be born not only in the issue of surgical operation of professor Preobradzenskiy. To be more precise in such a way they are born indirectly and later we will consider it. This is a question of mind development. If mind of a person develops quicker than some spiritual components we receive many Sharikovs. These Sharikovs are those called “marginal persons” fouling at entrances, breaking benches, behaving obscenely. Such people are very close to animals but they have human status; and this is a very terrible thing.
For example, a man lived with his fellow villagers, they all know each other, they are kind and nobody deceives someone. And then a man tore himself away to the city and learned to lie. Who will be the first to be deceived by this man? Of course, his fellow villagers. I.e. these are the most unpleasant men. They have enough brains to understand how to do their shady dealings but not enough awareness of karma law and simply of worthy behavior. It’s a negative side of Pashu stage.
For those people there are very strict rules and living conditions. More over easing up on them will worse for them. Just for such people commandments were always written. They need a guiding force. These forces were different in different times: fellow tribesmen society, force of elders, worships or religions, force of communism builder’s moral code, etc. Pashu people don’t have enough brains; and being without a pastor, without a guiding force they do obscenities simply understanding nothing. With no restrictions such people soil their karma incredibly; i.e. do bad things for themselves.
That’s why in all villages, in all such primitive communities they are very afraid and don’t like citizens, civilized people or even men from the same village came to the city and returned back. For example there lived Vasja, the tractor driver. He went off to the Moscow city in search of a living and then came back by Mercedes car. It seems it’s Vasja but they treat him with coolness. Why? They feel that his mind can cheat, bilk, etc. He is such a businessman, he gets on in financial life. But people with their deep wisdom prefer: “We will better live in poverty in our village than make friends with him. Before you could bat an eye you may find yourself in any prison or somewhere else” – such a folk wisdom. And it really happens so. A man without strict restrictions is a terrible thing in Pashu stage. What is the religions importance? They restrict man. A man can get drunk of moonshine, then he is off his rocker and he is going to kill everybody right and left. But he heard somewhere something like “Thou shalt not kill”; it crops up and works for them. He would really kill half a mankind and would repent after getting sober, but it will be late, his karma will be already made. So there is special lifestyle for Pashus where all the liberties are out of the question. Such liberties make only worse for them, they simply deprave them.
A man preserved his soul integrity and developed his mind passes to the next stage called “Vira” in Tantras. Another tragedy appears here. The world seems tight to him. He can’t live with these rural setups: “Our ancestors lived so and your life should be the same”; he begins to suffocate in this situation. His fellow villager’s lifestyle is very just and true for them, but this lifestyle is bondage for such man. Moreover he thinks about committing suicide. Such people usually say: “I can’t follow the crowd and I don’t know how to live otherwise”. Why? Because their mind, energy, conscious and spiritual qualities have been developed but they has been past the stage for “these nappies protecting newborn from cold”; they begin to oppress him.
Such inconstancy is very painful for people. Very often it happens in youth, when yesterday's children become capable of brusque movements in 13, 14, 15 years. They understand the game rules suiting for crowd don’t suit for them. They try to live according to these rules for a long time but it becomes a chain of disappointments; moreover these disappointments and tragedies are underlying in these rules. I.e. instead of creatively develop himself he is told to go on a plant for a work or to dig potatoes in fields. They tell him: “Don’t stick your neck out. Don’t show off. Live in your village and don’t try to get somewhere else”. Previous generations experience showed than if a man went off somewhere he came to a bad end: either ruined himself by drinking, or got in prison, or became any mafioso, etc.
But it’s absolutely different situation. It’s very tight to him. So he begins to create new game rules, new living rules for himself like a blind kitten. The greatest tragedy lies in fact that the vast majority of people studying and practicing yoga falls under this category; these are you and me. We understand that it’s better to hang ourselves than to live according to the society rules. And it seems to be no other rules. They exist indeed as yoga teaches us, but they aren’t flaunted. Why? Because getting among Pashus, semihumen, yesterday’s semianimals, these rules will harm them. Everything concerning mind can rise up a man in Vira stage and make a man in Pashu stage an artful deceiver.
For example there are sexual yogas where you should reveal your sexual potential. But try to reveal it among Pashus. At first they don’t understand it at all. At second perversions will begin immediately. Internet is full of something named “sex” for people in Pashu stage. The tragedy lies here. There are a lot of men in stage of Pashu. So they don’t speak about opportunity of another lifestyle not to entice, not to tempt them. The same Yogins and Yoginis handed us down higher yogas they led this life but didn’t blab about it. It was so including such a simple reason that always any “morally depraved person” would be found to do obscenities using these new knowledge, instructions, high words as a cover. There is a lot of such raging marginal people of diminished responsibility. You understand it’s a terrible thing indeed. What to give them knowledge for? They immediately will pervert everything. That’s why nobody gave any sexual practices to Pashu environment. Moreover this knowledge was guarded against Pashus in every possible way. This lifestyle interesting for us is set for people in Vira stage only; it’s a stage of hero (a good word). Such man already knows value of life, he is not a barbarian, and he is not having a weakness for trinkets, rattles or shining things. Such man doesn’t fall for any common things: power, money, etc. Undoubtedly man in Vira stage is interested in power and money but they don’t become such an idol for him: “You must give up your life for growing rich” or “You must give up your life to override everyone”. It would do no harm for such person to earn money or to exert certain influence, but it is not an end in itself for him.
So there are no game rules, no living rules. Everyone draws them up for himself. But some moments are general for rather long stretch of time. Even these moments aren’t universal; there is at last the third stage – Divja stage. It’s a stage of people already surpassed Vira stage; and there are quite different game rules for them. There is no sense to speak about Divja game rules from our point of view; we don’t even understand them. We call it “super” sometimes; sometimes the superlogic seems us illogical. For example Vasja the Holy Fool could speak straight from the shoulder to the most bigwig. Another person would be cut off his head but Vasja always got away with it. It was so not because of any law failure but because this Vasja was at another development stage, at another level. Sometimes we take them as holy fool or weak-minded but it’s simply the superlogic. It’s clear that as soon as such people appeared a lot of rogues began to mask as them. Thereby many such “holy fools” have appeared; and more such person raged more holy he was considered. We can’t say if a man is in “super” Divja stage or his is a simple swindler. Why? We don’t even understand it and without understanding how can we tell one from the other? In that stage they have quite different living rules.
For what people in Divja stage are born? Just to guard people in Pashu stage and gradually turn them into Vira stage, to observe the mental and ethical standards of behaviour. According to their initial character people in Pashu stage are very reliable, very kind, they are as a devoted dog: it will give up its life for you, it will serve you, it will be glad together with you, and it isn’t depraved by civilization so far. But once such soul is faced with civilization it is off his rocker, it doesn’t know what to start with: what the “Playboy” to read and what the bawdy houses to visit. Such people don’t know anything; they snatch at everything; so they have to be guard.
I hear sometimes about drugs: “Everybody has a right to live how he wishes…” They give me any Amsterdams with Rotterdams as an example: “According to their words everybody takes a grass and nothing special: they are cheerful and healthy”. But one matter is these civilized European people and quite another – if they would legalize grass here in Russia. It would simply lead to the drug addiction epidemic. Because after grass everybody passes on the chemical drugs, I don’t know any exceptions. So people in Pashu stage should be guarded and not depraved; they have to be passed to Vira stage. People in Divja stage do this. Who are them?
They are yoga teachers, those who handed us down yoga knowledge. What are methods? How to help Pashus? At first they need in strictly restrictions. Well, we can't throw words out of a song – no democracy can be here, all drugs have to be prohibited absolutely, blindly, without any explanations. They start to flirt: “LSD is a psychology breakthrough…” But how many such experimenters will be buried because of these breakthroughs? In fact they are dug a grave right now. And everything is the same. Those people need very efficient and unambiguous force guiding them in right direction. You know it’s like a parent bringing up a child. Otherwise it will be bad both for those who seduces and for seduced one. They both will receive a negative karma. Don’t allow this. In any case don’t connive at this. This leaves certain mental and ethical traces on people in Vira stage not to pander to degradation. God forbid yoga knowledge (sexual practices, famous “4 and 5” law allowing your practice with 4 partners besides your husband, etc.) to get in Pashu environment. Could you imagine what a bacchanal will begin? In the issue they will lose all their energy through sex. They will be devastated. They will fall down in spiritual terms, because this is like a big energy source that person don’t how to operate. This is just the reason why all the sexual practices in Tantra Yoga were secret. It’s not a secret as it is but it’s a secret for non-harming inexperienced people.
They tell me sometimes: “Well, we want to begin practicing”. The first thing I ask is “Ok, you will practice: a) with whom? b) do you comply with all the preparatory moments? c) whether other live beings won’t suffer with your experiments? d) and eventually did you make vows?” We touch upon the vows in previous lecture – it means a person should renounce suffering. A man who didn’t renounce to suffer has nothing to be done in Tantra Yoga. Just imagine he will increase his suffer himself. He wants to suffer, he suffers and he will increase his suffer by all these yogas. It is not enough that he spoils his own life; he will also spoil life to his partners.
How to draw up our own lifestyle?
Touching the universal lifestyle: a) there is no it for all the people simultaneously; b) it changes from one generation to another according to the living conditions we are living in; c) at last it’s his own even to each person in one stratum. Once again if code of laws strictly regulating our life exists we would turn into robots and these laws would be our basic program. But we are made with a little bit of free will; even if a very small one. A robot can’t show its free will, we already touched it. I run preparatory yoga instructors courses in cultural center “Enlightenment” (www.yogacenter.ru) inside of Moscow Open Yoga University (all the details about university and courses are in our site www.openyoga.ru). At these courses we study these questions – yoga axiomatics - in a sensible way, deeper and more gradually.
Particularly there is such a moment: robot will never do any accidental action. Strictly speaking every robot is a program. And every random numbers generator even the most perfect is a generator of pseudorandom numbers. A real random numbers generator doesn’t exist in principle; and it must be never created. A machine may be arbitrary alike human. So any machine behavior will malfunction after certain moment. In this sense we differ from robots by having freedom. Or in programmer language we have a real random numbers generator. That’s why we are just one capable of such behavior or further developments that can’t be estimated in any way. They say sometimes every man has a special button or can be estimated. To a certain extent it is true. To a certain extent we act inside of our previous lifestyle, of our previous living conditions. But it’s only to some extent. Some part of us is absolutely free: you will go where you want, you will live as you wish; strictly speaking – everything will be as you wish.
It often happens so among Yogins (I watched it): there was a man, he lived and understood nothing. Then he leaved Pashu stage and began to look for something new, inspiring and spiritual. So he was looking for it during some time and found some marginal yoga current. Actually, it was not yoga at all. It had different lifestyle, some higher philosophy, some easing; but it was only a part of this current. Another part was the same deathful program as it was before. It shouldn’t happen so: it seems a man does a rapid progress but then he finds himself into other mire with other restrictions.
Finally everyone creates his own universe with his own way of live and behavior rules. One global thing can be traced here. Creating your own universe with any internal laws you should follow two principles: 1) don’t injure any live being without emergency and 2) don’t waste of forces and energy on trifles, don’t move unwittingly hither and thither and follow a certain line of behavior. No matter how your internal universe would be good or bad it has a right to exist. And if you observe it will be happy. More over it have to be exactly so, though it may seem absolutely unacceptable, uninteresting and unattractive to other people. But what does their opinion matter for you? Would they die for you? When somebody gives you some good advice ask yourself: “This man giving me good advice will he die for me?” He won’t as a rule. So hasn’t he got right to give you advice how to live if he isn’t going to die for you?
That’s why our task is to create our own living rules taking into account these two principles and groundwork preserved for us by Yogins and Yoginis. Once again don’t look around; starting live as your neighborhoods, as other people very soon you’ll get somewhere you don’t want to. Your sufferings will be caused by your route to the dead-end siding and not by your wrong actions.
Question: “It comes out that caste-system exists now?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “That was an accurate observation. Many informed minds in Europe, in the West as well as in India always rebelled against segregation. You remember now there are four castes though earlier there were three main castes and the fourth was something incomprehensible. Today they breed wisely: there are four castes, there are people outside any caste and also there are many subcastes.
Initially several thousands years ago when Indian civilization developed everything were quite simple there and they could separate people on the caste basis. Because a soul on the same level with Shudra tended to be born in Shudra caste; a soul on the same level with Brahman tended to be born in their caste, etc. This requirement was satisfied from one generation to another. It happened so that only Shudras were born in Shudra caste and only Brahmans in Brahman caste. It was so for a very long time. It was so long that it was fixed in living conditions, customs and traditions. Then the souls began to be born outside castes, i.e. a soul of Brahman was born in a body of untouchable or a soul of untouchable was born in Brahman body. A great chaos began that made this system fall apart at the seams. And consequently it ruined India as a supercivilization.
My friends, we live in Russia. I hear very often we criticize severely Russia, our country. Believe me in India love-match is still out of the question. Love-match is a single instance on thousands marriages entered by parents. I.e. as compared with India we have such a laissez-fair that we have never even dreamed of that. So let’s return to castes.
Well, initially this rule worked indeed. Then any substitution happened; and this rule stopped working. But all the marriages in India continued to be entered strictly between people from the same caste. They have even a special science implicating everything including astrology and not clear what else. I’m sorry for my cynicism but it remembers me how they raised studhorse of necessary breed in England in 18 century or somewhere else. It seems to me sometimes situation with horoscopes in India is the same: “Aha, here is woman horoscope and man horoscope” it looks like “This stallion has one indications, this mare has others; so let’s mate them”.
A Yogin’s soul is outraged. But on another hand this arose not from nothing. This was previous experience shown that such marriages were more stable. Spouses in such couples took more care of the children, more preserved traditions. So they were fanned with blessing. And everything harmed out of this rule. It’s also one of the questions for Pashu laws. Well, you rightly said this is the caste-system. And this system hasn’t got to somewhere. But you have to understand only one thing: it’s very silly to discriminate people according their race, their nationality or any other attributes.
I always remember “Kindzadza” film where one person shine with green, another – with red; and that was the only difference between them. In this way there are no castes. But an ignorance degree differs from one soul to another. That’s why it’s impossible to say all people are the same in this sense. Of course all people will become equally good in their ideal some time or other. But for one it won’t happen soon; for others it may happen quicker; and it could just happen for several persons somewhere in India. We shouldn’t turn a blind eye to this discrimination; it really exists. But once again: we told today about the fascists. They didn’t launch a rocket and it was good that nobody cried “Heil Hitler!” from the orbit. But this disbalance became bigger at them. Fascists decided this characteristic was sexually transmitted. On the one hand it is really so: karmic tendency further this. Let us suppose in one group of people those souls are born which are interesting with these people. That’s why composers are born among composers; scientists are born among scientists. Here we speak about professional dynasty, etc. Why? That’s because a soul is born according to its karma to fulfill its destination. So if it’s an artist soul it will be born near to artists of course.
But another thing happens. Remember Mikhail Vasilyevich Lomonosov who broke out half-life. Such a big power he had that he didn’t only make his way in the world but he passed ahead of everyone as well. They say he passed ahead of contemporary science for two hundred years. Just imagine if he would be on equal terms with others from the very beginning. There is such thing - political correctness - standing West in bad stead. For example I type “man” in English and computer corrects my mistake. I.e. I have to notice women as well: to replace “man” with “human being” or something like this. Or this old anecdote also: calling a black “black” you will be condemned. They wrote a petition to Mark Twain (have you read “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” or not?) for his making blacks out unattractively. How childish it is thinking that we all are equal. But a great percentage of killers and convicts among Blacks couldn’t be explained by trying living conditions or by race discrimination; it’s something quite different. You know “the apple never falls far from the tree”. Our souls are the same; they choose where to be born. But of course we can’t say the Blacks (or to be more politically correct – Afro-Americans) are the people of second-rate. Nothing of the kind. More over an appearance may be five times black (I mean the skin color) but a soul may be the highest. At the same time there may be an opposite situation: a man can outwardly be a typical representative of any civilized race but have quite animal soul. So Yoga isn’t such a childish: “Guys, let’s be happy; everybody is such a splendid man; let’s love everybody, let’s hug and kiss everybody”. Don’t buy that. You should understand a soul is uniform for everyone but a self-consciousness degree is different.
They ask me sometimes: “How should I communicate with these or those people?” in the first place try to understand their level of development. Otherwise it will happen as in this story. One my acquaintance professor of linguistics built his country cottage. He hired a team of workers and began to teach them some good sense. But do they need it? And he saw the souls inside them… He though that they had no luck; found out themselves in Moscow everything would happened differently. But it doesn’t always happen so. It’s an open question in general.
So what does yoga call us upon for? Yoga call us upon only to be kind to everybody but to know a hawk from a handsaw, not to be idiots. And how to look into them? Once again: “An apple tree is estimated by its apples.”
Question: “Could a person pass from one stage to another during one life?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “Not only can but a) he passes; and b) it is yoga that enables this transition.”
Question: “Then may be a professor of linguistics told something to his workers not for nothing? May be someone heard him? May be we should tell this to everybody?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “Here is the second yoga principle: non-wasting of energy on trifles. While this professor built his dachas all his work stood still, he gave up all his students and graduates. These people remained without any deal; they waited his word to speed up their work. But he spent all his time to other people. May be they are going to make a good continuer of linguistics science in five or six lives. But we live now, not in five or six lives. I.e. we have to be realists; it means to choose with whom to work and with whom not. Here I’d like to return to our topic.
The point is that we have to give everyone mechanisms helping him to grow, i.e. don’t teach a builder linguistic analysis. If I were this professor I would teach them Hatha Yoga. Because whether you understand it or not you should practice Hatha Yoga. Hatha Yoga is very adroitly made: it develops your mind through your body. So if teaching you have to teach a person something really useful to him. Otherwise it will happen as in that anecdote: in Russia an American fell down into a river, he drowns and yells “Help me, help me”. Two Russian workers pass by. One says to another: “Look at him, how a clever man he is; how many languages he knows. But what it gives to him? He is drowning.” You understand we shouldn’t teach some abstract knowledge. Do you remember “Love formula” movie where a landowner taught his peasants Latin? There should be a commensurateness of purposes, a commensurateness of efforts. I.e. on the one hand this professor not to receive negative karma. And on the other hand helping somebody help him rightly: give him something he is really need in and not that you only want to give.”
Question: “Do Shudra and Brahman karmic reactions differ from each other? Or realizing himself as Kshatriya a person isn’t subject to Shudra’s karmic reactions? ”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “The moment we said the word “karma” we have just detect that every activity was following by consequence. In this sense it doesn’t matter whether this Shudra, Brahman or worm activity; i.e. you must reap what you have sown. Karma law is a law because it is universal. It is equally suitable both for great saint and for common human. More over it is suitable even for animals and for what we call “inanimate matter”. This inanimate matter shows itself and alters; so there is karma law also. There is nothing inanimate; there are only evident and hidden life displays. That’s why karma law is the same everywhere in this sense. ”
Question: “So Shudra and Kshatriya will have to answer for a murder in equal measure?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “You pass to another topic calling “Dharma”. It’s a course of life or a debt in a different way. ”
Question: “So when dharma appears karma stops working?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “Karma works always and everywhere until we will neutralize our negative karma with positive one by yoga method and then throw away both these karmas and become free. Only then karma law stops working. Or in other words: we live on the Earth, in its gravitation field. We build a rocket and fly to space on it but an accelerating part peels off. We throw it away because we are in the space and we don’t need it. From yoga stand positive and negative karma are the same, this is cause and effect law. So we have to gather our positive actions to neutralize negative ones. Then we receive a ground to go out of our karma.
It’s like with Sergey Pavlovich Korolyov (the head Soviet rocket engineer and designer). As soon as positive karma of our country has neutralized to any degree its negative karma we received a condition to our realization. We used it for rocket construction and went out of karma incidence in general. This is the analogy.
What you are asking about is dharma. An example. I come to a village. They show me a sucking pig running, jumping, enjoying itself. But then I hear squeal and see they bring a blood-stained carcass. It’s a shock for me: because you know a breather was running just now, running… But it’s normal for local people; they fed sucking pig especially for this. They have totally different perception; it’s naturally enough for them. But what refined people we were but buying meat we never think how they killed it, poor devil.
So the game rules are certain; and more over not observing them a person will receive still worse karma. In Russia they always criticize severely military men for that they are killers and “act with submachine gun in hands…” But it’s their dharma. More over not following their dharma they will receive more terrible and horrible karma. Defending your motherland with submachine gun in hands do it at full scale and without any doubts. And breaking your debt you will have still worse consequences than if executed an enemy by shooting.
So all these questions are very tricky and individual. But karma law works in any case: cause engenders effect. But karma can be positive or negative: will we suffer with effect or enjoy it. Also we should distinguish whether we did our duty or triggered off the bloodshed. It’s one thing to unleash a war; then karma is the responsibility of its initiator. But that's quite another story if you are sent to a front knowing nothing. You don’t know the causes of this war, where, what for and why – but it’s your debt. And starting reflect upon it and not do something you will create much more dangerous situation for you as well as for people around you. So it’s a very serious subject.”
Question: “You said yoga practice at nature was quite favorable? Could you explain it in detail: how to take maximum advantages of it? May be there are any special techniques?”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “I sang today the praises of our country but I haven’t touched its negative karma. One of the most monstrous, negative, bleak karmas in our country it’s a housing problem. It has been a heavy burden to us over several generations. We launched a rocket but we paid a heavy price for it. They didn’t create appropriate housing conditions; so average Russian lives roughly speaking in ghetto. It’s a multistoried building as a rule. You can’t simply live there not only practice yoga or pranayma. More over I’ve heard this architecture was specially invented. Why? Because that generation should implement their purpose and die as soon as possible. And really while going on work a man ran round like a squirrel in a cage. But retired on a pension he stays in his small apartment from morning till night. And they can see how he fades away little by little and then one day they take him away to bury. I mean it’s such a catalyst for not living too long. Unfortunately it’s one of our most terrible problems; I don’t know who and how will atone for this negative karma. Moscow is like an inflate balloon that should burst. There is a place for living – it’s a nature but try to live there. That’s why I don’t like to touch upon this topic: many people from you have no place to stay alone. At the next lecture we will consider at greater length way of life of Yogins and Yoginis. They were prescribed to have separate cell or room or cave ad lib calling it. Otherwise you won’t live with your husband or wife for a long time in peace and harmony, i.e. many frictions are just built into.
So having an opportunity of outdoor practice you may count your karma is good. Living in a skyscraper in a closet or tiny room try to do your utmost. At first a balcony is a perfect variant if you have it. They say: “Karma, black karma”. What a terrible word “karma” is? Everybody is afraid of karma. But karma is a very prosy and commonplace thing; it’s like an everyday drunken quarrel in a kitchen. Open doors and windows wider; but not so wide to make your family and friends frozen. And after all nobody prevents you from taking your mat and going to the nearest woodland park to practice. But not everybody have the courage to do this. Somebody is confused with people walking around. This is much harder alternative of course. Here I can say I had pupils with karma burdened in different degree. Someone had quite bad living conditions. So they formed such a habit: he went to park and breathed (if it was a pranayma practice for example) whether there were people and dogs or not. There was nobody for him. And then a very funny thing happened. A person eliminated his negative karma with yoga practice; he got a palace with a pool and a helipad. He could do everything he wanted to. But he continued to go practice on his waste plot of land. Yoga helped him to develop his business indeed. You know everything is interconnected. He began to practice yoga and some things began to take off somehow in different spheres. In short he did everything to reach this and it would seem he could stay at home and meditate near his own pool… But no; he leaves his palace and goes to the neutral place. I asked him: “What for you go there having all the necessary conditions at home?” He answered me very wisely: “You know everything here reminds me of something; any connections appear if I look at something: a fence is unfinished, another thing isn’t completely coloured. But a neutral territory is nobody's; there is nothing to go by for my eyes and I can be more absorbed in my practice.”
And the last thing. It touches people who keep a lot of six hundred square metres somewhere in Moscow area from the Soviet times. I understand so that the Lord didn’t leave us. Even with such a bad karma as lack of dwelling he parceled out these six hundred square metres allotments. You know it’s an ideal combination as many years yoga practice shows. I judge so by my pupils. Six hundred square metres it’s neither more nor less than necessary place to practice; it’s an exactly place not to be worried. But it isn’t too much to need looking after also. I.e. everywhere I see a hand of foresight as it is called. But not everyone dare to go somewhere or to live somewhere.
So if you have these conditions you should practice in clean and beautiful place. It’s good if there was a water body, a river or a waterfall somewhere near. It is extremely advisable this place is nobody’s. In this sense I don’t envy even those people who built their palaces on Rublyovka. What they haven’t really got there: even a pool with tidal waves to roll in and go away. There are such connoisseurs. But looking at something your’s you engender an associative chain: “Aha, my pool. How much money did I spend on it? I have such deals with that contractor... and so on. ” And this takes you away from your practice. In India there are Sadhus or vagrant Yogins. They don’t have any home, they roam about the world. Nothing can draw them away from practicing and so they attain quick results. I don’t advice you to live Sadhu’s life: you won’t simply survive during winter though I know people who do. So returning to the subject: it’s good if a territory is nobody’s, if it’s beautiful, if there is fresh air, if there are no disturbing factors and if nobody diverts you. For all that in park there many dogs and they will run to associate with you as soon as masters let loose them.”
Question: “What happens to woman energy and man conscious if they take alcoholic drinks? You told that consequences of taking alcohol may be more destructive for women than for men.”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “Pay your attention: a man drinks; he may drink for forty years and looks as good as new. But haven’t you seen how terrible it’s if a woman ruins herself by drinking? More over a male alcoholic can be cured easier than a female one. But here are again two sides. Sometimes paranoia begins: “It’s enough. Not a single wine glass, not a drop from tomorrow.” My friends, once again: yoga doesn’t call us upon to become paranoiacs. Alcohol isn’t harm for you in acceptable doses. But non-doing of high-powered practices is an indispensable condition. There are breathing practices implying not a drop in certain moments; but you can be a moderate drinker in other time. There should never be such extremes in anything. I watched it many times: a person didn’t drink for a long time but then he goes another limit…”
Question: “Are there any conditions when people of the second and third castes (for convenience) may come down back to Pashu stage? I.e. become a drunkard for example.”
Vadim Zaporozhtsev: “Well, you said it quite right that they ruin their talent through drinking. We touched today upon a question of free will. But this is a double-edged sword. Freedom of the will open the gate to the paradise as well as the gate to the hell. Do you remember the tree of knowledge of good and evil and serpent the tempter? Freedom of the will it’s when your way depends only of yourself and is in your hand. It presupposes that you may drive yourself into God knows where. So when a person does negative actions and activities he reduces his free will to a certain degree and becomes more and more conditional. In certain sense this is equivalent to animal stage. That’s why human body is considered to be one of the most valuable: as opposed to an animal we have more scope for our free will display, i.e. we can speed-up. An animal is limited unfortunately; it’s goes too but slower. We have just attained human body but we may come down back too. Yes, it’s possible.”