It’s impossible to be taught Yoga it’s only possible to learn it yourself. Everyone’s goal is to reopen Yoga inside each of us. If there is a possibility to use any type of Yoga guides, you should use it. If there is no such possibility, you should reopen it.
No one knows when the Science of Yoga has appeared exactly. It is only known that it was thousands of years ago. First Yoga Knowledge was transferred orally, from Teacher to students, later in written. It is considered that four written Yoga Knowledge evidences have reached us, four Vedas: Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda.
Yoga was one of the most important systems in the antiquity. It gave a person the possibility to open the huge inner potential, leading to self-realization. Yoga helped people to survive during difficult periods of life, and there was a plenty of such periods in the history of humanity. Unfortunately, we have received only crumbs of this Knowledge.
Yoga is the integral united teaching. Different types of Yoga lead to the same result. There is a plenty of Yoga branches. We count more than 20 at the Anandaswami Tradition Yoga School, 15-16 of which are studied. Higher Yoga branches are studied only after climbing the stairs of all basic types of Yoga. Only after this a person would be capable to catch the sense of The Higher Yoga branches.
Hatha Yoga, which works primary with our physical body, has reached our days almost in the full. The reason is as follows:
Yoga is a heritage of more ancient knowledge, which had been disappearing gradually, and never than else partly has reached us. We are probably the heirs of different civilization. There are some stories about saved knowledge in Yoga Schools. According to these stories, The Yoga Knowledge is a kind of spiritual seeds, which were waiting for the appropriate hour to sprout. Hundreds of years the humanity was not ready to accept this information in the whole. Neither material, nor social conditions were suitable: chain of epidemics, revolutions, wars. But despite of this The Yoga Knowledge was preserved.
There is a hypothesis that The Yoga Knowledge was kept in the North, no one knows exactly where. From the territory of India, Himalayas can be considered north, from the territory of Afghanistan or Iran – Russia. From Russia north is the North Pole. There is only a vague indication of civilization owing The Yoga Knowledge, which was situated in the North.
Due to some reasons this civilization started to disappear. Wise men have warned the followers that hard times were coming. They said that life in coming époques would be extremely severe, all knowledge would be lost. There would be the only place, which would avoid troubles and destruction. This place is somewhere in the region of Himalayas, Nepal and India. Followers had hearkened to the wise men instructions and start migrating from the North to the territory of modern India. This process lasted for several generations. On their way some groups of people separated from the majority and established residences. They didn’t want to continue the journey. Sometimes they start fighting each other. But the core – Yoga Knowledge transmitters – has reached the territory of modern India and Nepal and delivered the doctrine to the place where it was due to be kept.
The following events have confirmed the wise men’s words. Those separated groups kept The Yoga Knowledge for some time. But the matter of physical survival grew very sharp with the beginning of the epidemics and wars and The Yoga Knowledge there was lost more quickly than in India. Moreover, people migrated from the North to the South, to absolutely unknown conditions. It was a very dangerous affair. These were the times when most practical branches of Yoga have appeared. These kinds of Yoga helped people to survive. Now it is called a primeval magic. But it was not the magic, in all these methods there was The Knowledge of Yoga which was a core, reviving every practice like an engine.
Orientalists think that fourth Veda, Artharvaveda, has appeared exactly during this migration process. It contains some positive, as well as negative incantations. These were such keen practices, which afforded people to handle with their lives’ disorder and enemies.
There is an opinion that people living on the territory of Russia are one of these separated groups, which had lost The Yoga Knowledge in time. The linguistic reconstruction of the language is another indirect proof that shows the terminology appearance and transformation. The Indo-European group of languages, which include Russian, obviously shows this. Many Sanskrit terms can be easily understood without translation. Sanskrit is the main language of The Yoga knowledge, which reached us. Before Sanskrit there was a so-called Vedic Sanskrit, which is even more ancient language form. Vedic Sanskrit differs from Sanskrit in the same way as Old Slavic differs from modern Russian.
Why do many practical Yoga branches start to disappear? The language started to change. The language was the base of The Yoga Knowledge. In Vedic the pronunciation was the most important and spelling had minor importance. This meant that one and the same word was possible to write in different letters only according to phonetics! The reason is that words in ancient language are mantras. No one could ever mispronounce them in favor of spelling, even on pain of death.
In one School of Yoga they wrote with one letters in another School with other letters. Thus was formed an impression that these were two completely different types of Yoga and this fact added to the mess.
So how many branches of Yoga are there in the whole? As many ways to reveal itself has a human being.
We have a physical body. It can take static postures. Thus appears the division of Yoga named Hatha Yoga. We have a possibility to breathe. From this possibility Pranayama of respiratory Yoga was born. We have eyes. Sometimes our mind reacts on forms, which we see, without realizing it. The Yantra Yoga division appears. Composers have a possibility to hear the music of spheres and write it down. This is the Nada Yoga division. The matters of sex, man and woman mutual relations are in the category of Yoga Triad: Yoga of Alliance, Tantra Yoga, and Yoga of Falling in Love. The capability to demonstrate the domineering skills was a precondition to the appearance of the Raja Yoga division.
This list could be continued. But so-called keen Yogas have reached us in very narrow range. The matter of physical survival was very sharp in ancient people’s lives. That’s why it has happened that only «earth» but thorough Yogas had reached us. First of all, it is Hatha Yoga. And this is right. Because, if the basement is not ready, meaning strong physical body, it is no sense even to talk about meditation and music of highest spheres. That’s why the West was interested in Hatha Yoga most of all.
Let’s analyze the state of affairs in Tantra Yoga. Only 150 years ago the West didn’t know about this Yoga division. There was knowledge, but it could not be accepted in those conditions: in the Victorian Époque no one could ever have in mind even to discuss sexual practices. After two terrible wars have passed there appeared a new generation of hippies who start discussing this theme.
The state of affairs of Jnana Yoga is quite curious as well. Starting to study this division of Yoga, there appears an understanding of contemporary science theory concerning the Universe creation. Jnana says the same but from other positions. At the same time Jnana Yoga is not based on science, neither math nor physics, this knowledge has appeared by itself.
That’s why it is desirable to take utterly serious every Yoga division. It can turn into enormous source within our modern life, including your personal situation. Any kind of human activity can be turned into some kind of Yoga, if you understand the ancient excessive core – the base of Yoga Knowledge. It is not possible to describe in words this core of Yoga Knowledge in a book for example. It is higher than words and ideas, but if you‘ll manage to catch it you can turn any activity into Yoga and revive it.
One more important notice, Yoga has penetrated from India to other countries, into other cultures. There appeared some analogy of Yoga Knowledge. But the word «yoga» was never used there.
With penetration of Yoga to the East there appeared Sufism. Highest edifications of this doctrine are the same as in Yoga. Terms and practices differ, but the essence is the same.
Let’s examine the Tibet countries. There exist a group of edifications, some of which are called with the word «yoga». First of all, these are The Six Yogas of Naropa. The core of Tantric Buddhist practices or the Dzogchen followers is yogic, but it is revealed through another cultural layer. For example, in Tantric Buddhism Yoga is based on religion although, as we remember, Yoga is out of religion.
Let’s analyze China with its numerous martial arts. The Shaolin Monastery was founded by Bodhidharma, who was a Hindu by origin. And his so-called Chan or Dzen Buddhism is one of the branches of Tantric Buddhism.
Thus we see that when the knowledge has reached the Himalayas foothill, some sprouts start coming off from it. That is why if you will understand the Yoga Knowledge core you will find out that you start to understand absolutely different traditions. Moreover, you will easily recognize its week points, because you will have something to compare with. At the same time, you will be able to find common language with adherents of any philosophy, be it Lama or Sufi. Thus, these traditions can be also named Yoga varieties, although the word «yoga» itself is not used there.
The core of Yoga – is the knowledge which appears only after long time practicing. This knowledge could not be transferred. A person can only reopen it himself, can only experience it personally.
Is any person able to reopen Yoga? Yes, any living creature, which has a human body, can reopen Yoga. This is the answer given by the axiom of Yoga. Everything what was reopened in antiquity can be reopened now and here.
Hatha Yoga is a system which devotes attention to the physical body first of all. Methods of working with physical body are static exercises, or in other words, Asanas. There is enormous quantity of Hatha Yoga postures. There is no sense initially to dispute which posture belongs to Yoga and which not.
In our époque around 80-90 postures are actual. Then this range narrows into one posture. In different Schools of Yoga different postures bear the palm. In Anandaswami Tradition Yoga School Siddha Asana is considered the crowning achievement in Yoga perfection. If a person feels the need in additional posture which is out of this limited range, he can choose from the billions of other postures.
The names of many postures were lost. Those, which remained, in different Yoga Schools are called different. Very rare same postures have the same names in different Yoga Schools.
The advantage of Hatha Yoga is that IT WORKS, not depending upon whether you understand the axioms of Yoga and principles of its work or not. Hatha Yoga itself by its action pushes your mind to reopen, realize how it works. This is another reason why Hatha Yoga in particular was preserved more fully. Common person as well as the professor of Sanskrit can learn Hatha Yoga. If a person practices regularly and fair Hatha Yoga exercises he receives the result not depending upon if he understands its principles or not.
So, how does it work? According to The Yoga Knowledge we have two more groups of bodies besides our physical body, which are subtle and causal. These bodies are made of very thin matter and almost don’t cross each other. But there is a thing named Prana which like a glue pierce those three bodies, thus uniting them. Prana is a connecting link between bodies. Influencing on physical body by one or another posture of Hatha Yoga, we start to influence on subtle and causal bodies through Prana. Doing physical exercise, we purify our organism. But an effect of Hatha Yoga is not limited with physical level only. A person becomes more balanced; his intellectual skills start to develop indirectly as they are connected to subtle body as well. If a person hasn’t yet polished its intellect due to some karmic reasons, he polishes it practicing Hatha Yoga. Influencing on physical we get effect on subtle and causal.
Hatha Yoga is a base for practicing Highest Yogas. It is no sense to practice neither meditative nor sexual or any other Yogas without mastering Hatha Yoga.
It’s possible to study Yoga by oneself but it’s advisable to have an instructor who will push you in the right direction in the beginning at least. If there is no such possibility, you can master Hatha Yoga exercises yourself at your own risk up to some level.
In Anandaswami Tradition Yoga School there are two methods for any Yoga. In fact, all the methods we divide in so-called Methods of Energy or maternal and Methods of Consciousness or paternal. These are two diametrically opposite ways of practicing, including Hatha Yoga as well. You can reach perfection in Yoga only matching these two methods.
If a person starts to practice by himself and doesn’t know this he makes one and the same mistakes, usually. Some people slide into energy methods, others into conscious methods.
According to the Method of Energy we are offered to make a posture and wait until the awakened energy will bend our body as necessary, it is also called the method of a funnel. Method of Consciousness is diametrically opposite: while practicing, you see yourself by your inner look as an utter yogi and take exactly that posture which you saw in mind with an effort, and if the body doesn’t obey, you force it, in a good way.
Whether you will practice Hatha Yoga using the Method of Energy or using the Method of Consciousness, you have to feel joy either from practicing or from overcoming yourself. If you don’t fell joy, but suffer, this means that you neither practice energy nor conscious method. You will master Hatha Yoga only when you would be able to make exercises by both methods energy and consciousness. Or, otherwise, as written in the texts: «You need both mother and father for the baby birth». Also for the birth of the utter Hatha yogi or yogini you need both Maternal Method of Energy and Paternal Method of Consciousness.
Besides static exercises our physical body can make some movements. Groups of cyclic movements – Kriya rounds – make the base of Kriya Yoga.
Our body is made in such way that we are supposed to make definite quantity of movements. But in our way of life we mostly spend time in a sitting position in front of a computer, like ancient wise men spent time in meditation postures. This doesn’t let us get necessary quantity of movements during the day. Kriya Yoga is a perfect way to compensate the movements which were not made and to make a reserve even.
Unlike Hatha Yoga, the movements in Kriya Yoga are made in a strict sequence. As we learn reading by studying the alphabet, there is a kind of movements’ alphabet in Kriya Yoga. When it is learnt, it’s possible to make words (your own consequences). But people rarely change the consequence, even if they practice Kriya Yoga for a long time already. Kriya Yoga’s advantage is that you can practice it automatically without thinking about which Kriya goes next. It’s the body which remembers; probably kriyas were selected in a special sequence to make it easy to pass from one Kriya to another, not to disturb the attention of mind. There is another contention that in the labyrinth is necessary to turn left here, right there to reach the depth of yourself and you will reach the goal. If you will walk straight you’ll get mixed up. Kriya yoga is that very way which leads us through the labyrinth of raw, thin and thinnest body to our subconscious.
Kriya Yoga is a separate Yoga as well as Hatha Yoga. It can be studied by self, but an excess could occur as well. A person doesn’t always understand how the exercise should be done, as studying Hatha Yoga. Some people think the result will come as quickly and will be as good as higher and stronger they will rise legs and wave arms. It is a delusion. In Kriya Yoga is considered that each person has its own rhythm. Moreover, this rhythm could change from day to day. The most important in Kria Yoga is how harmonious we make movements and not how fast. To catch the resonance between raw, thin and thinnest body is the most important. If we start to feel dizziness, pain, sickening practicing Kria Yoga, we will concentrate on these feelings and miss the thin ones. In Kria Yoga the emphasis is made on the inner feelings, meaning when you practice and feel like going on, despite of Kria Yoga is physical as Hatha Yoga. Exactly this very feeling is important. That is why it is so important to start studying Kria Yoga with instructor, at least several times in beginning.
The emphasis of Kria Yoga supposes a person to be involved in its inner feelings at once, and rhythmic movements should create a kind of a background for shifting to its inner world. In the beginning when ideas appear, we forget about the body and are concentrated on them; afterwards, if we observe the harmony, ideas disappear and we get to the casual level, which gives sharp euphoric state. This happens because while disconnecting from the casual body we release free Prana which acts like the strongest ecstatic stimulant. It is absolutely wonderful feeling, when a person gradually is unidentified with its structures and reaches its highest «I» with pure Prana, and pure Prana is the highest matter. You cover with c cloud of Prana all sharp moments which usually press you down, you step aside of them and easily change. This is one side of Kria Yoga, another is that Kria Yoga smoothly lead us to other Yogas. For some person it is too difficult to begin from Hatha Yoga, last positions of Krias are in fact Hatha Yoga postures, and practicing Kria movements a person leads its body to Hatha postures. That is why, in some cases there is a sense to start studying yoga from Kria Yoga and then continue with Hatha.
Is Kria Yoga dangerous or not? No, it is not dangerous if we trust our inner harmony and use common sense.
We have a capacity to breathe. Respiratory movements coincide with our inner state. When we are calm we have one type of breath, when not another, when we sleep – the third. Breath is a kind of indicator of our inner state. Yoga uses our capacity to breathe, but Pranayama Yoga is much more magnificent than breath exercises only.
Unfortunately, modern Pranayama Yoga interpreters explain it as an oxygen accumulation and lungs’ purification only. Although all this is true, Pranayama Yoga has much more deep influence.
Our three bodies physical, subtle and causal are glued with Prana. The source of Prana is our highest «I». Prana is necessary to keep all the bodies alive. The bodies must interact and transmit the signal from thin structures to raw. The body immediately dies if there is no Prana.
Respiratory movement gives a kind of nerve impulse, which is transmitted to thin structures. These structures turn to the source of Prana and this source gets back in reverse. Thus, we need respiratory movements not only to inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide, but to start up very thin and not obvious mechanism of Prana accumulation as well. Respiratory movements are used in Yoga to learn how to attract Prana and how to manage it. The Pranayama Yoga Knowledge is to collect and attract Prana by means of respiratory movements.
Prana is an instrument of our «I», Prana is that vitality which further is revealed through our bodies as energy and consciousness. Sometimes Prana is understood as energy, but this is not entirely right. Prana could reveal as your energy and your consciousness as well. In different places it will be displayed as necessary, in this kind, Prana is universal. In some sense, we need some surplus of Prana to transform our body, to purify the channels, to make the Centers work, to uncover our potential. We can get this surplus practicing Pranayama Yoga.
Pranayama Yoga is quite dangerous. First, it is extremely difficult, but possible to master it yourself. There are many concealed nuances in this Yoga, which can negate all your practice.
It is necessary to relax after Pranayama exercises. You would never get the result from practice if you neglect the relaxation after.
It is utterly recommended to make purification, to follow the diet, to be very selective in communication (to choose people to communicate with), to find a place, where you can stay alone while practicing Pranayama. It is utterly advisable to start practicing under instructor’s control. It is a big difficulty to find an adequate Pranayama Yoga instructor. It is a very keen and concealed science. If harmony is the key word in Hatha and Kria Yoga, in Pranayama Yoga it is harmony multiplied by harmony!
We all can talk. The speaking process is not so easy. It is connected straight to the process of thoughts creation, and this process is connected straight to the Kundalini Energy. In some meaning Mantra Yoga is the usage of Kundalini Energy by means of words’ and thoughts’ vibration.
There is a method to pronounce certain words and use our Kundalini Energy, which create real wonders. You pronounce certain mantra, and get enormous effect. There exists energy, conscious and name mantras. Name mantra – is the mantra which has both energy and consciousness in the balanced state.
Mantra Yoga is considered as one of the most harmless yogas. You can study it yourself.
We have an intellect, a capacity to think over, to ask and answer questions. These skills are natural for us because the Principle of Mind, on which is based our intellect, was created one of the first. Our mind doesn’t invent anything new; it just uses one of the fundamental principles of the Universe. The principle which uses our mind exists everywhere in the Universe. First, the Principle of Mind is universal; second, it is a certain level on our way, after passing which, we would reach the Principle of Intuition or Super-mind.
Thus, having a thinking capacity, we have certain Yoga, which tries to analyze logically all the questions dealing with Universe arrangement – it is Jnana Yoga (Yoga of Knowledge). The level of logics and intellect is a high level, but there exists the highest level, which is Super-intellect, The Highest Spiritual Intuition. It opens not earlier than we have polished our intellect. Our aim is to develop the intellect, and Jnana Yoga asks to analyze everything intellectually, but gives notice: «Don’t make your mind your God».
Unfortunately, mind has an opposite side, if we don’t control it, it becomes our worst torturer. That is why highly intellectual person suffers much more in his life than not such clever one, who doesn’t realize most of the problems. Our duty is to develop our intellect, but at the same time to put it under control. If you won’t be able to switch off your mind, you will never reach the highest spiritual spheres. Your intellect will equally prove you that God exists as well as not. Our intellect is simply not capable to understand this; these are not its matters, it doesn’t answer them. Moreover, our intellect tends to accept everything more pessimistic than optimistic.
The only danger of Jnana Yoga is that a strong uncontrolled mind is a monster which makes you suffer first of all. When your intellect works, it works on you, but when it has nothing to do, it starts killing you, that’s why it is so necessary to be able to switch it off.
There exists such meaning – power (over self, other people, circumstances). Sometimes we use power, another time we submit to somebody’s power or accept somebody’s power. The meaning of some hierarchy in the Universe is very complicated and unobvious. If it hadn’t been, The World wouldn’t have existed. It is a kind of agreement: if there is no power, there starts a collapse.
There exists some kind of subordination structure, as if every cell of your body would refuse to submit you, you would die. Every cell of our body is a living creature, generally not depending on us. It can stay alive in test tube as well, but it works on us and accepts our power. Why does she accept our power? She accepts, because there is a hierarchy in the world. The cell gets a possibility of a quick spiritual growth in return of functioning for our body; this means that in its next life the soul of this cell would become something more serious.
Real power is possible only if you would grant somebody the spiritual possibility, in return for its submission. This is, undoubtedly, more precious than to be ever free one-celled creature. We can observe such pyramid not only among the living organisms, but on the State level as well. Frankly speaking, what is president’s aim? Its aim is not to double GDP, but to provide unobstructed spiritual development to each person. And the person, in its turn, would handle all settled objectives himself. This is the highest sense of power.
Raja Yoga or Ruling Yoga Knowledge – is a capability to rule people as well as yourself. But you would learn to submit others only after you would learn to be submitted yourself. A person is able to control people only if he is able to control himself. It is very easy to get power, but it’s very difficult to keep it. Raja Yoga teaches us to use charisma in proper way, to gain people’s support psychologically, to influence on them.
Usually, strong politicians and managers have these skills from birth. According to Yoga, if a person owes something in this life this means he spent much time gaining this in his previous life. A person could get the same skills within this life practicing certain psychological exercises. You can master Raja Yoga yourself, but in case you don’t have the highest spiritual knowledge yet, there is a danger that you will rush, and you will force other people to rush with you.
We all work. This fact follows from our Karma. But to work is not a curse, it is a great chance. Our goal is to get rid of negative Karma and to accumulate positive one.
How can we get rid of negative Karma? Even the fact that the Universe gives us any kind of activity is a chance to neutralize our negative Karma, whatever it is, even if we don’t like this kind of activity. It is a chance to accumulate positive Karma and even rise over the level of Karma in future. The yogi who has exceeded the field of karma is considered free.
So, the job which we have now is a great chance to rise in spiritual level first and, second, to eliminate all negative consequences of our previous actions. Each job you can turn into yoga whatever your activity is. Karma Yoga Science teaches us to work in this special way, to turn our activity into Yoga.
There are three types of people. First level is the lowest; it is a person who works because of fear. Second level takes a person who works for money. Third and highest level takes a person, who works not because of fear or money, but he enjoys the working process itself. Working without fear and reward expectations, we refuse from our positive Karma and eliminate negative Karma, strange as it seems.
Karma Yoga is absolutely harmless, if a person knows how to relax. You should do that part of work which depends on you, and give chance to The Highest Force to do its part of work to make everything match. That is why it is necessary to alternate job with rest.
You can master Karma Yoga yourself, but strange as it seems, you need a teacher in Karma Yoga as nowhere else. There is only one reason. A person simply could not imagine that it’s possible to work in such way. All those ones around you show that you should wail at work, that the salary is too low and the boss is an idiot. But when you start working under the direction of a person, who knows how to work according to Karma Yoga, you get saturated with its impulse and start to work in the same way automatically.
We have a capacity to perceive the world esthetically. Bhakti Yoga teaches us that The Highest Principle (we call it Absolute, God, whatever you like) reveals through everything we consider beautiful. Places where we could feel this «High» attract us and in the ones where we don’t see it, we feel disgust.
Bhakti yoga appeals to sensual perception of the world. It says that finding and contemplating the beauty is already yoga itself. This beauty reflects The Highest Principle, which has created this entire world. Bhakti Yoga explains that it’s possible to communicate directly with The Highest, without intermediaries.
If we make up our mind to The High, we become absorbed in it and will learn how to talk with it. Further, a person understands that the goal of his life is devotion and serving to this beautiful.
There is one danger in Bhakti Yoga – it is fanaticism. It is the case when The Highest has revealed itself to you through something and you start to consider this very thing the only one to see The Highest, because of your misunderstanding. All the rest you consider dirty and not beautiful. This is what all religious quarrels and all other argues are based on. That is why they say a human has created God, meaning that he has created God increasing the human together with all his weaknesses. Yoga is not «against» and not «for» the various religions, it perfectly complements them. If The Highest has revealed to you through religion it’s very good. If The Highest has revealed to you through something else it’s good as well. It is very powerful method itself, because contemplating the beautiful you forget everything which surrounds you and reach naturally the utmost degree of concentration and easily reach the highest state of yoga – Samadhi. The reverse side is that you also force your neighbor to admire this beautiful instead of admiring it yourself. This is the danger. So, if you have opened something Highest, this doesn’t mean that it has to reveal to others in the same way as it has revealed to you.
We have vision, we see different forms. We have developed this capacity in continuous evolution. Our further development is also connected with this ability, even with the appearance of unconscious reactions depending on the picture.
For example, we accept vertical and horizontal lines naturally, but inclination especially if it is wider than certain degree effects a sharp unconscious reaction. Yantra Yoga uses our ability to perceive forms. It doesn’t matter if this form is printed on a sheet of paper, is drawn on the sand or displayed in any other way. The most important is that using this channel it’s possible to reach really fantastic results. Moreover, in some yogas, for example in Tantra Yoga is said that Deity is not pleased if you worship it without Yantra.
What is meant by the Deity in this case? The Deity is The Highest, which reveals by means of definite form. In other words we «invite» The Highest to reveal through definite form and there takes place a powerful effect which is called «prayed icon», it is well known among the followers of various religions. Thus Yantra stops to be just a picture and becomes a channel of communication with The Highest.
Practicing Yantra Yoga is quite harmless, but without certain preparation the result can escape from you. This science is unapparent, but at the same time it is one of the major factors to accelerate personal practice. First of all, it is important in powerful Tantric practices.
We can hear. We hear sounds, which arouse positive or negative emotions inside us. Nada Yoga teaches us that there is a physical organ of hearing, which is our ears, and there is a thin one on the layer of causal body, and physical organ just realizes the function of the thin organ. We can hear common music with our ears, these vibrations spread in our physical world, in the air. Everything which deals with subtle and causal bodies has also a kind of special environment, where vibrations also spread but according to other laws. There the sound can spread to very large distance. In yoga is considered, if yogi has concentrated on thin vibrations he can hear them more bright more exciting. Greatest compositors have an ability to hear this music on thin layer, which is called The Music of Spheres, sometimes. Some of them can write down this music and reproduce it with common musical instruments. This is actually just a raw imitation of that thin, but public is enchanted with it. These people, who are able to hear this thin and concentrate on it, can easily be absorbed in trance states, they forget about everything, being totally absorbed in sound and easily get the state of so-called one-pointed mind. This state is described as if mind has dissolved in sound. And if mind has dissolved in sound, your wrong perception of yourself has dissolved as well, your ego too, and when it has dissolved is much easier to make the transformation inside of you, because you had stopped to grasp with mortal grip to your delusions.
We all spend some time sleeping. Yoga says there is a state of sleep without dreams and sleep with dreams.
Dreams – it is an entire world, a huge layer. Yoga appeals us to use the state of sleep for self-realization and self-comprehension.
Dream Yoga is a wide interesting and exciting division of yoga. Here, for example, you need to take under control your dreams, to reach conscious awareness in sleep and many other skills, which definite practices are given for. The emphasis in this division of yoga is made on the fact that the dream state can be turned into yoga as well.
This yoga is safe. It is difficult to study it as we usually don’t experience self-awareness in dreams. Nevertheless, good practice of basic yogas, such as Hatha, Kriya and Pranayama, creates the necessary energetic base to avoid waking up in case have reached conscious self-awareness in a dream. That is why it is difficult to be involved in this yoga from sight.
Laya Yoga is closely connected to Kundalini Yoga. It is based on principle: Difficult in studying, easy in fighting.
Practicing yoga, especially when we start to use Kundalini Energy (even in its emanations), serious inner processes take place inside of us. This energy dissolves our structures, but we grab to these structure because of our egoism. Thus, we have two opposite directions. From one side we want to get highest spiritual knowledge, from other side we grab to our ego.
There is «dirt» which we want to get rid of, which is our wrong perception of ourselves, and there is other «dirt», which we want to keep and don’t let it go. Yoga doesn’t make any difference between «favorite» and «not favorite dirt». It is absolutely indifferent to it. This energy dissolves or washes out all dirt. If we grab to this dirt we get extremely painful inner conflict: with one hand we remove, with another we grab to it?! This is the reason why Kundalini Yoga is considered one of the most dangerous yogas.
In Laya Yoga we dissolve all, which we garb to, using different practices, the majority of which are meditative practices. We replay in mind our weaknesses, such as jealousy, envy, hate and others, and dissolve them in our imagination first. After, when these weaknesses reveal themselves, we don’t grab to them so strong and they leave us more painless.
Before using the powerful force of Kundalini Energy we need to set the direction, which it will follow and will make the necessary «cut». Practicing Laya Yoga we draw the direction for the energy, being waken up, to follow the way which we need.
There exist many methods to dissolve our wrong self-descriptions, including some supplementary such as Nada (sound) and Yantra (forms). We shift something we grab to on a sound or a form and this way forget these things which we held.
So, the main sense of Laya Yoga is to think over which way the energy will follow, before directing it in real.
If you hear the word «kundalini», you should know this is the division of Tantra Yoga. Most likely, the practices dealing directly with Kundalini Energy were selected from Tantra Yoga and named Kundalini Yoga.
Basic energy of our body is laid inside of us. It is called Kundalini Energy. We don’t have two energies. We have the only one energy. All those energies which we reveal are in some kind Kundalini Energy emanations.
Sooner or later we reach this energy and we get at our disposal an unlimited source of energetic prospects. If before we had not enough strength to do something, now, when we reach Kundalini Energy, this problem doesn’t exist anymore. We have energy more than enough, even more than we are able to use and to put up with. This is why Kundalini Yoga is considered dangerous. It belongs to so-called quickly methods in yoga. You can reach and start using this energy very fast, but there is a risk that you can use it not for its purpose and something can go wrong. It is recommended to study Kundalini Yoga under the control of instructor.
The action of Kundalini Yoga is the following. Being awakened the Kundalini Energy starts to dissolve all other energetic structures on the level of subtle and casual bodies. Physical body doesn’t have enough time to catch up this process that is why it usually doesn’t change. While inner structures are dissolving all the dirt floats to the surface and after Kundalini Energy «re-crystallizes» your clear structures. This is a quickly method to get rid of all unnecessary, but the danger is also big. There comes pain, if we grab to the dirt when it starts to melt. It only seems that we can easily refuse from our delusions, but when it cuts to the quick we will think a hundred times do we really need this or not.
To avoid all this, other yogas, including Laya Yoga, teach us to part with all unnecessary. That is why it is better to start with these yogas.
Which is the essence of Kundalini Yoga? When the energy placed in the basis of our body unites with consciousness in the crown of our head, the process of The Highest Samadhi happens automatically, the «I» gets to know itself and the aim of yoga is reached.
There are three yogas this or that way referring to the fact that we are men women. The Yoga Triad includes the Yoga of Alliance or Sexual Yoga, Tantra Yoga and Yoga of Falling in Love.
YOGA OF ALLIANCE
We have physical body and gender differences including everything which deals with sex. It’s not a secret, to have sex is quite pleasant and usually it leads to the birth of new life.
The mechanisms to reveal ourselves by means of sex are laid deep-deep inside of us and interwoven through all our body structures. All our other systems and functions are connected to sex very rigidly and at the same time indistinctly and indirectly.
Nature has put together energy of sexual pleasure and energy of reproduction. It was made to motivate us for reproduction and propagation. To make us move, run and jump, find food and pair to continue the generation with. It was very serious motivation for spiritual development. This mechanism hasn’t changed much even in human bodies. It still takes the same volume but unlike being in animal bodies in human bodies we have a possibility to divide two energies: reproduction and sexual pleasure. These are two different features.
Yoga appeals us to turn sex into yoga and to gain necessary knowledge in this field. Field of sex indirectly penetrates everywhere, beginning from our unconscious spontaneous reactions up to our intellectual activity. If sex stays out of our attention side effects from it spread into other spheres of our life. Humans’ aim is to avoid being sex slaves and that is why we must know what sex is and how to use it in proper way.
In spite of the fact that reproduction and sexual pleasure energies are connected together, the loss of the first one leads to unpleasant consequences for us. If we spend sexual energy on purpose, meaning reproduction, it’s ok. If we start to abuse it and spend to our whims, we soon feel spiritual devastation and start losing our inner motive. Unreasonable sex leads to our spiritual degradation quite quickly. That is why so many taboos exist in all religions. But despite of prohibition humanity has survived as a class and still keeps reproducing and multiplying.
Yoga teaches us that the loss of reproduction energy leads to spiritual devastation indeed and deprives us of energetic impulse leading to further spiritual development. But if we will learn how to divide these two energies and spend only sexual pleasure energy and keep reproduction energy untouched or spend it only on purpose, we will achieve very interesting yoga. We not only save it, we multiply it on the contrary. More sexual pleasure energy we spend and more reproduction energy we keep, more high overall energetic potential we get.
On certain stage of development in yoga there remains the only one choice – to start studying these yogas. This would be the very first obstacle which you collide when you’ll start to practice yoga. If you left sexual matter without your attention you can suffer from uncontrolled loss of energy. You shouldn’t’t ignore this sphere. It will remind about itself. You also shouldn’t suppress it as you will deprive yourself of important part. The only thing which remains is to learn to use this energy.
Yoga of alliance gives us a possibility to get to know our sexual sphere totally, to work out all our sexual functions and put them under control, learn to divide reproduction and sexual pleasure energies. Yoga of alliance is very tough. Roughly speaking it’s a gym in bed, where yogi and yogini learn how to «squeeze out» pleasure from their bodies, but to squeeze wisely, without losses.
Who fits to practice the Yoga of Alliance? A husband and a wife, if they both accept this yoga, as for unprepared partner it is difficult to follow the rhythm of practice even physically. It’s also possible to practice Yoga of Alliance with a partner who isn’t your wife or husband, but who practices yoga as you do. The matter of a partner it is a matter of your karma and your way of life. For the situation when you don’t have a partner there exist a wide range of preparing exercises in Yoga of Alliance, where sexual contact is not necessary. When partners are already in bed, it’s a real battle, and to feel easy in battle you should work out some practices alone. Anyway you couldn’t practice Yoga of Alliance without further interaction.
Is Yoga of Alliance dangerous? If everything is made in a proper way, it is more dangerous not to practice it. Sexual energy saturates all spheres of our life. If nature feels that you move against the principle of birth continuance, it switches off your mind and a person rushes. The sex theme is sacred. You won’t move further in yoga without learning it.
Numerous interactions between female and male, which include sex despite that sex is not considered the main (flirt, mutual interest, desire) – all these refer to Tantra Yoga.
In Yoga of Aalliance exists only physical component, but in Tantra Yoga we deal with images, ideas, thoughts and souvenirs.
Tantra is very practical yoga; it is of a high demand in present-day. It gives a possibility to watch over the moments of mutual interest, bore and others. This yoga is quite dangerous. Sometimes a person involves in Tantra Yoga motivated by his spiritual beliefs as it seems to him, but further he «slips» into rude routine. The worst for Tantra Yoga is jealousy as it conceals most serious and unobvious danger.
YOGA OF FALLING IN LOVE
From time to time the Universe dares gifts to us: we fall in love. A person who is truly in love experiences widest range of fantastic feelings. Yoga which deals with the matter of falling in love has the same name – Yoga of Falling in Love. It partly opens the process of falling in love but doesn’t explain it. It helps to avoid many serious mistakes, but doesn’t give any warranties. First of all, it doesn’t promise to teach you fall in love or don’t fall in love on your wish.
According to the axioms of yoga it is impossible. There are no factors which could arouse in a person the highest feeling of falling in love. Falling in love is a gift from Heaven, which is given to us in advance. The state of falling in love is considered very close to the highest state in yoga – Enlightenment (although it is not possible to express or describe it). The Universe is humane and generous and it gives us a chance to feel in advance the state of falling in love to motivate us in reaching the highest state. Some people think that Highest Spheres send us these impulses to neutralize negative karma of this world to avoid its self-destruction. The state of falling in love is interpreted in.
If you will stay in truly fallen in love longer than a certain time, you will not need, in the good meaning, any other yogas. The Highest Enlightenment would be reached. Being truly fallen in love is a precious time. It equates to decades of yoga practicing.
There are three stages in in Yoga of Falling in Love.
First stage it is when we are dared falling in love and we experienced it. As yoga teaches we should leave alone people who had fallen in love and don’t over load them with theory. If you are involved in The Triad practice, one of the pledges you have undertaken is to help people who have fallen in love.
Second stage is when the gift is lost. As a rule, due to our karma and our silliness we destroy the state of falling in love ourselves. It disappears. The nature of this state according to Jnana Yoga is extremely complicated. It is easier to explain the creation of the Universe than the appearance of falling in love.
The third stage is the most mysterious, the stage of deserved falling in love. We ourselves eliminate everything which could destroy. If falling in love appears as a gift again in the next time, we are not inclined to destroy it anymore. On the contrary, we are tending to use it in full measure and exit this world.
The theme of falling in love is very complicated and even mystical. In Anandaswami tradition Yoga School we consider that such yogas as Hatha, Nada, Kriya and others have reached us owing to yogis and yoginis, who had been practicing the Yoga of Alliance, Tantra Yoga and Yoga of Falling in Love.
Yoga of Falling in Love is the most blessed safe yoga. Sometimes people say that falling in love brings us suffering. It is a delusion. Falling in love could not bring suffering; it is brought by our karma.
Is it possible to fall in love with several people? Yoga says that it’s possible to love several people, but you can fall in love only with one. When you have fallen in love you think about the one and only, there remain no resources for others. It is quite substantial difference between Falling in love and Love.
We have an ability of tactile perception. Tactile perception is connected to Heart Center, which is actually the cornerstone of our spiritual development. Until we don’t realize the Heart Center in full measure, we are inclined to self-destruction and many negative features. Nyasa Yoga acts like a catalyst and speeds up in 7-10 times the effect of any yoga.
Working with tactile senses in Nyasa Yoga is a totally technical method. It is so-called top of the iceberg. Processes which are taking place during it are much more complicated and deep.
Nyasa Yoga is the most harmless yoga, but it requests the highest skill and experience.
Yoga Nidra has become widely known not long ago. It belongs to Sivananda Saraswati Tradition. Unlike Dream Yoga, Yoga Nidra works with boundary state between sleep and staying awake during falling asleep and waking up. It is considered quite safe. Sometimes it is included in Dream Yoga.
There exist plenty of yogas. We haven’t told about all of them within overview course as we have mentioned already quite a big quantity. Also there exist some so-called «lost» yogas. These are analogues of consciousness transference, which are described in Tibet Tradition very well; Yogas of Death, practice of conscious dying, Yogas of body relocation at the moment of death; Yogas of the transference of one’s consciousness from one alive body to another and others.
As we remember, it is not possible to be taught yoga it’s only possible to learn it yourself. Everyone’s aim is to reopen any yoga. As this can last many lives we recommend using guides in studying this or that division of yoga if possible. If you don’t have such possibility, you will reopen it.