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Yoga versus Meditation

What is yoga, what is meditation ? What is the goal ? And how to practice ?

There are about 6 – 10 known types like Hata-Yoga, Kriya-Yoga or Kundalini-Yoga.

Known types of meditations are e.g. Zazen, Vipassana, the Dynamic (Osho) or the Transcendental Meditation.

On the Internet one can book on-line Anti-Gravity-Yoga and

Fantasie-Journey-Meditations !

A business man told me once: "Meditation is

to union body, mind and cash flow."

Well, let's go serious !    ;-)


Translation of Yoga

The term "yoga" is Sanskrit (the language of Holy Scriptures) and can be translated as "union". En enlightened person is in the state of constant yoga. This means his mind is peaceful and still. His undisturbed focus is on God, any time and anywhere; he sees God before his eyes. In this context yoga is a state of awareness.

Patanjali's Definition of Yoga

Patanjali defines yoga in the 2nd Sutra (chapter) of his Yoga Sutras as "to stop the whirling of the mind" (yogash chitta vrittii nirodha). In this context yoga is an act of will.

Turk's-cap lily (Lilium martagon)
Turk's-cap lily, Vallais Switzerland (Lilium martagon)

How to put it into Practice ?

This is called Meditation

The Best way to practice yoga is to sit down (crossed legged) and be concentrated. "Concentration now begins" (Patanjali's 1st sutra). Willingly we calm down the mind and bring the mind's functions to a stop.
In the same time we are silently aware. Aware of the world's underlying and unshaken principle: the Absolute, Aatman or God.

Meditation is the exercise to become silent and to get unioned with God. Who has realized enlightenment (how Swami Yogeshwarananda had explained me) does not meditate any more because he already sees God before his eyes. Hence, he is in a constant state of yoga, or in union with God. Exercising does not make sense any more.


The Bhagavad Gita Defines Yoga

An undisturbed and calm mind can be called a mind in equipoise as well. Bhagavad Gita 2:48 "samatvam yoga uchyate". "Yoga is the state of mental equipoise."

Another Definition in the Gita

Another definition for the state of yoga can be found in the Bhagavad Gita 2:50 "yogaha karmasu kaushalam." This can be understood in two ways: One is "dexterity in action is yoga", and the other is, "efficiency in action is yoga". Action in both senses is equally applicable.


How to practice ?

Everything you do has to be done efficiently and well. The very first step is to overcome your likes or dislikes towards the very work that has to be done. Second, you be will perform the work concentrated and undisturbed.

In this way Yoga is integrated into daily life and there is no need any more to perform separately exercises after the working hour. Religious worship (upasana) is also not needed any more, because this focus or awareness towards God we put into the actual work as well.

Acting and doing work (in a sense of yoga) helps to be concentrated and to be aware and will help to practice meditation, and meditation will liberate you. In this way daily work is the challenge to get liberated instead of being bound to the world and to the work.

water tap, a well on the alps
How to avoid to let dry out a drop of water ? – By throwing it into the ocean.

Conclusion

Yoga is the state of union with God. To realize this state of union one has to practice yoga and meditation.
Hence, yoga can be also understood as an mental exercise to become mentally silent, and this in return as a prerequisite to the union of God (enlightenment). This exercise is also called meditation.

Further more, yoga is a way of how to perform action and can be done in daily life and at work.

Acting in the sense of yoga means to be concentrated and to be aware of God (or one's True Self).

More about perfect action in daily life :



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Bruder Markus Wallis


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