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Wednesday, September 16, 2020

(Mind68)- Ultimate goal of Yoga



Depending on what state you are in, and what your expectations are, the goals of Yoga can be different.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

(Mind67)- Where did Buddha go when he died?




With no offense meant, this is an important question. Buddha himself once faced this question and he handled it in his own way.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

NewBook: The ultimate book on Yoga




 

I am happy to announce the release of my 22nd book namely “The ultimate book on Yoga”. This also happens to be my 5th book on Yoga.

I have been working on this book for quite some time.  


Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

(Mind65)- Burnt seeds don’t germinate!



If you have ever done a bit of gardening, you very well know how difficult it is to keep the weeds at bay. No matter how many times you pluck them out, they regrow once again.

That is because these weeds leave back their seeds before you pluck them out. And these seeds sprout back into new weeds at proper times. So, you will forever face the menace of these weeds.


One way is to carefully eliminate the seeds one by one so that there is nothing left to germinate. But that is a difficult proposition. Now-a-days we have several chemical sprays that render these seeds ineffective. They literally burn out these seeds. And burnt seeds don’t germinate.


Patanjali says that our mental impressions that delude us are like the seeds left behind by our past Karma. They re-germinate however much we try to suppress them. We have to somehow get rid of these seeds or render them ineffective.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

(Mind64)- The five things that bind us to the world










We were talking about the preset impressions that all of us are born with. Patanjali calls it Avidya or wrong knowledge.

How does this Avidya cause problems?

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

(Mind63)- We have a firmware that is hard to erase!









We concluded our previous episode by wondering why we cannot remain in an ever-blissful state even after we attain the ‘self-realization’ through the practice of Yoga.

The ultimate state of Yoga namely the ‘Samadhi’ is supposed to take us back to our real state – namely a blissful state. But when we come out of this Samadhi, we once again get trapped into a mix of happy and sad states of mind. Why?

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

(Mind62)- Does Samadhi have any practical use?






It was mandatory in many ancient Indian scriptures or philosophic texts to spell out the ultimate purpose of whatever was going to be espoused in the text before starting the discussion
.
So, does Yoga have any practical utility? Well, I am not talking about byproducts of Yoga such as health benefits, stress reduction and so on. I am talking about the utility of reaching the ultimate state of Yoga namely the Samadhi. Does it have any utility?

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

(Mind61)- Is Samadhi a self-induced slumber?



In the previous episode we tried to answer two important questions about the ultimate stage of meditation, namely the Samadhi.

Firstly, we argued that Samadhi may not always be a result of some form of mental conditioning. 


We also reasoned that the blissful experience that one goes through in the initial phases of Samadhi may not be originated in the brain, though our brain experiences it and we get aware of that.

Moving on, one important question about Samadhi is whether it is some form of deep sleep or unconscious state that we enter into as a result of meditation.

 

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

(Mind60)- Samadhi - Does it all happen in the brain?



I am happy to be back exactly after two months. I know lot of things would have happened in these two months. It is sad that there were so many deaths. I wish they did not happen.

During the pause, I was observing that many of you were re-reading/listening past episodes. 


Some asked me quite a few interesting questions both as comments as well as through the “Ask me” page in my blog. Some even communicated with me through other modes as well. I have always tried to respond in the best possible way. I am thankful to all of you.

I took the break mainly because of my voice related problem. I am better now and so I decided to break this silence. But instead of twice a week, I would be talking to you once a week – every Wednesday 12 PM PST. I am doing it both to avoid straining myself, and also to give you more time to ponder over the things I will be discussing in future episodes. 


The topics I will be discussing from now on are going to be a bit more technical and intense. But I will assure you that I will provide you details which probably you will not find elsewhere. At the same time, I will put every effort to provide authentic information and make it easy to understand.


So, let us get back.

 

Friday, June 26, 2020

Baba's Miracle!



I am sorry that I am still not in a position to record my voice. So, you have to read these posts on my blog. I hope to get back soon with my regular series on Mind that I paused a month ago.

The havoc created by Corona unnerves even a seasoned Yogi. So many deaths not just in underdeveloped countries but even in those countries supposedly advanced and on the cutting edge of innovation. 

Our scientists are struggling to come up with either a cure or a vaccine for this dreaded virus that has already upset our lives and appears to ruin it altogether. But no hope at sight.

All of a sudden, here comes an Indian Yoga Guru who claims that he has a cure for this dreaded disease! Before you dismiss this as yet another ‘Indian rope trick’, please read on. Maybe you will find some food for thought.

Friday, May 22, 2020

(Mind59)- Let us take a break!










I started this long series of talks on Mind beginning November last year. I spent a month each, discussing various scientific and philosophic aspects of Mind.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

(Mind58)- Samadhi with awareness









Many people associate different meanings to the Yogic state called Samadhi. Most people imply a sudden loss of awareness, or an experience of proximity to the divine, and so on.

Friday, May 15, 2020

(Mind57)- Once the fun starts all actions stop!






We were discussing the strange and unusual experience that Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to go through every now and then. What was it?

Let me start with a simple analogy.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

(Mind56)- Can you experience Samadhi without meditating?

















Samadhi is the final stage of meditation. It is the eighth step of Yoga. As the meditation continues for a prolonged duration, one slips into this state of Samadhi.

The question is – “is meditation a necessary precondition to attain samadhi?”.

Friday, May 8, 2020

(Mind55)- What happens when you meditate?



In the past few episodes, I rushed through a selection of meditative practices from various disciplines, both ancient and modern. 

I am sure there are many more ways. 


In one of my books namely “Meditation – Important things you need to know”, I have hinted that most meditations ultimately lead you to the same destination irrespective of their form and origin. The time taken to reach the destination may differ in each case though.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

(Mind54)- Kundalini based meditation of the Hatayogis






For many people, Kundalini is an inalienable part of Yoga. 

They talk about the dormant mystic power Kundalini, an array of energy centers called Chakras spread all over the spine starting from the lower tip of the vertebral column to the top of the skull. 

 

Friday, May 1, 2020

(Mind53)- Meditation – The Buddha’s way




 







Meditation is the crux of Buddhism. But then what exactly is this meditation is something not very clear.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

(Mind52)- Bhagavad Gita’s way of meditation





As I discussed a few episodes ago, the ancient Indian scripture namely the Bhagavad Geetha has an entire chapter devoted to Meditation. It is called Dhyana Yoga, chapter 6.

Friday, April 24, 2020

(Mind51)- A meditation technique straight from Upanishads












Upanishads may be the most ancient of the philosophical texts that deal with meditation and the ultimate realities of the world. They are parts of ancient Indian Vedic scriptures, which the Indians believe to be eternal and authorless.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

(Mind50)- What to do with a focused Mind?













In the previous episodes, we climbed the 4 steps of the Yoga ladder and came up to the step namely Pratyahara. The first 4 steps namely Yama, Niyama, Asana, and Pranayama gradually shaped our mind into a well-focused Mind.

Friday, April 17, 2020

(Mind49)- What happens when you have a single pointed Mind?




A single pointed mind is a prerequisite for advanced stages of Yoga practice. The initial steps of Yoga namely Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama are meant primarily to take you to that state. A state where your mind does not wander around.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

(Mind48)- How does a focused mind minimize stress?




A stress-free mind is a boon since it keeps us healthy. Whether we are really interested in the end results of Yoga practice or not, all of us want to live a healthy life.

As we discussed a few episodes ago, there are three ways Yoga minimizes stress.

Friday, April 10, 2020

(Mind47)- Which focusing technique is the best?






Having a focused mind is definitely an advantage in many ways. Such a mind not only minimizes stress but also helps you in achieving greater success in life.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

(Mind46)- Are you a ‘physical’ person?



Many of us are good at ‘physical’ activities than at intellectual tasks. Anything that involves action, appeals to us and we can do that easily.

If I ask you to sit in one place and concentrate, probably you will find it very difficult. But you may be good at sports, may be good runners, good musicians, good cooks, and what not. But merely sitting and thinking is not your cup of tea. You just can’t keep your mental focus.

Friday, April 3, 2020

(Mind45)- Are you a good talker?




Many of us may not be good listeners. But we are good talkers. I mean, may not be proficient talkers but profusive talkers 😉

Can we use this talkativeness to hone our focusing skills? Afterall, tongue is a very powerful tool that we have.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

(Mind44)- Are you a good listener?



In my younger student days, I was such a good listener that I could reproduce whatever the teacher said in the class just by listening once!

Later I extended this to ‘easy reading’ or ‘lazy reading’ if you wish - where I used to loudly read a chapter from my book, record it on a tape – I am talking about those good old days – and play the tape back. 


Just listening to the tape once, I could remember the entire chapter for a long time without ever having to re-read it again!


If you are a good listener like me, then the focusing technique I am going to narrate next, is for you.

Friday, March 27, 2020

(Mind43)- How long can you keep your eyes open?



There is a legend that once two warring brothers Bharata and Bahubali engaged themselves in a ‘staring war’!. They were two princes who ruled India more than 2000 years ago. They wanted to settle a succession dispute among themselves by engaging in a ‘war of staring’ or DrShti Yuddha. 

They did not want to indulge in bloodshed. They kept staring at each other without batting an eye lid. Whoever winked first, is the loser. A completely nonviolent way of settling a dispute!

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

(Mind42)- Are you mindful or Mind FULL?










In the previous episode we were discussing the Pranayama technique of Yoga that helps us in honing our focusing skills. 

Towards the end of that episode, I also made a passing reference to methods that also go by the same name, but come from a different source and have an altogether different purpose.

Friday, March 20, 2020

(Mind41)- Pranayama – Yoga’s way to improve concentration







Many modern Gurus interpret the word Pranayama to mean controlling of the life force or Prana. They are right if they are talking about the air we breathe in and out. That is definitely something that keeps us alive.