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by Swami Sivananda
Life and Works of Swami Sivananda
Other books in this series:
Sivananda: Biography of a Modern Sage (Vol. 1)
Health and Hatha Yoga (Vol. 2)
Karma Yoga (Vol. 3)
Raja Yoga (Vol. 4)
Bhakti Yoga (Vol. 5)
Vedanta (Vol. 6)
Table of Contents
About This Book (Back Cover) Preface vii Acknowledgements viii Introduction ix Chapter 1: Yoga 1 What is Yoga? 1
Different Paths in Yoga
4 Benefits of Yoga 5
Outline of Raja Yoga
7 Practice 10 Who is a Yogi? 11 Karma, Bhakti and Jnana in Raja Yoga 12 Chapter 2: Sadhana 15 Four Letters From Lord Yama 18 Be Regular 19 Difficulties in Sadhana 20 Necessity for a Guru 22 Three Things 25 Chapter 3: Mysteries of the Mind 26 Nature of the Mind 27 Time A Mode of the Mind 34 Atman is One 34 Metaphysics of the Inner Man 35 The Power Within 36 The Subconscious Mind 38 Mind is Like a Chameleon 39 Marvels of the Mind 41 Power of Thought 41 Chitta 44 Vrittis Modifications of the Mind 46 Samskaras 50 Gunas 51 Chapter 4: Control of Mind 57 Balance of Mind 57 Purification of Mind 62 The Two Wings of the Mind-bird 65 Control Thoughts 66 Victory Over Mind 71 Desires The Cause of Bondage 74 Vasanas Subtle Desires 79 Vairagya Dispassion 84 Abhyasa Practice 85 The Mind and the Senses 86 The Sense Organs (Indriyas) 88 Control of Senses 89 Tongue (The Most Turbulent Indriya) 90 Vow of Silence (Mauna) 92 Chapter 5: Afflictions of the Mind 95 What are Afflictions? 95 How to Remove Likes, Dislikes and Clinging to Life 99 How to Remove Evil Thoughts 100 What is Pratipaksha Bhavana? 100 Root of Afflictions 101 Fruits of Afflictions 103 Karma and Environment 104 Avoid Misery 105 The Cause of Misery 105 The Means for Kaivalya
107 Chapter 6: Yama 109 Ahimsa Non-violence 110 Satyam Truthfulness 118 Astheyam Non-stealing 120 Brahmacharya Purity 122 Practice of Brahmacharya 125 Aparigraha Non-covetousness 127 Chapter 7: Niyama 129 Saucha Purity 130 Santosha Contentment 130 Tapas Austerity 132 Svadhyaya Study of Scriptures 135 Ishvara Pranidhana Self-surrender 136 Chapter 8: Asana 138 Asanas for Meditation 139 Benefits of Asanas 140 Chapter 9: Pranayama 141 What is Prana? 141 What is Pranayama? 144 Control of Breath 144 Pranayama and the Mind 146 Physical Benefits of Pranayama 148 Hints for Practice 148 Pranayama Exercises 150 Pranayama and Hatha Yoga 152 Pranayama and Pratyahara 153 Chapter 10: Pratyahara 154 Chapter 11: Dharana 159 Concentration as Part of Raja Yoga 162 Benefits of Concentration 164 Concentration in Daily Life 165 Ethical Basis 167 A Hard Task 168 Useful Hints for Concentration 170 Exercises in Concentration 173 Concentration on Anahata Sounds 175 Objects of Concentration 176 Attention and Interest 178 Hatha Yoga Techniques 184 Chapter 12: Dhyana 187 What is Meditation? 187 What Happens in Meditation? 189 Benefits of Meditation 192 Meditation and Rest 195 Mind and Meditation 196 Qualifications for Practice of Meditation 204
207 Chapter 13: Hints on Meditation 209 Places for Meditation 217 Important Places for Meditation 218 Seclusion and Meditation 221 Meditation Room 223 Best Time for Meditation 224 Reasons for Failure 227 Preparation for Meditation 232 Signs of Progress 233 The Power of Silence 235 Meditation and Work 236 Chapter 14: Kinds of Meditation 238 Light of Lights 240 Meditation on a Buffalo 242 Meditation on Virat Purusha 243 Saguna Meditation 244 Simple Saguna Exercises 245 Meditation on a Rose 247 Meditation on Twelve Virtues 247 Meditation on Divine Songs 248 Meditation on Gita Slokas 248 Meditation on Gayatri 249 Uddhavas Meditation 250 Vedantic Meditation 251 Formulae for Meditation 253 Meditation on Mahavakyas 255 Positive Meditation 256 Negative Meditation 257 Nirguna Meditation 257 Simple Nirguna Exercises 258 Saguna and Nirguna Meditation Compared 259 Meditation and Action 261 Chapter 15: Philosophy of OM 265 Where it is Heard 266 OM as Brahman 269 Japa of OM 271 Meditation on OM 272 Meditation Exercises 273 Meditation on Soham 276 Benefits of Chanting OM 278 Chapter 16: Practice of Samyama 280 Chapter 17: Obstacles 282 Obstacles in Meditation 282 (a) Physical Obstacles 285 (b) Mental Obstacles 289
Obstacles on the Spiritual Path
300 (a) Subtle Obstacles 310 (b) Psychic Obstacles 316 Chapter 18: Experiences in Meditation 323 Physical Sensations 323 Feeling of Separation 325 Astral Journey 326 Visions 327 Vision of God 328 Lights in Meditation 329 Anahata Sounds 331 Experiences of Sadhaks 332 In the Hours of Meditation 335 Chapter 19: Siddhis 336 Stories of Siddhas 338 Requirements for Attaining Siddhis 339 Real Nature of Spiritual Experiences 340 Chapter 20: Samadhi 343 How to Attain Samadhi 346 The Mind in Samadhi 349 Deep Sleep and Samadhi 350 Cosmic Consciousness 351 Turiya The Fourth State 353 Jada Samadhi and Chaitanya Samadhi 354 Savitarka Samadhi and Nirvitarka Samadhi 356 Savichara Samadhi and Nirvichara Samadhi 357 Sananda Samadhi The Blissful Samadhi 359 Sasmita Samadhi 359 Raja Yoga Samadhi 359 Jnana Yoga Samadhi 363 Bhakti Yoga Samadhi 365 Samadhi and Work 366 Glossary 368
About This Book
A long-awaited text book on raja yoga, not by a Western scholar or Indian pundit, but by one who has attained the goal of yoga Self-realisation. Instruction is given in language of simplicity, clarity and force. As in all his books, the spirit of Swami Sivananda permeates every page, compelling the reader to put the ideals into practice.
This book is a must for all who aspire to control their mind.
Instructive, inspiring, illuminating.
We am indebted to:
We are indebted to:
H.H. Sri Swami Venkatesanandaji Maharaj, whose mammoth task was to compile and edit almost 300 of Holy Master Sri Swami Sivanandajis books into 19 volumes, in spite of his demanding programmes and failing health.
Swami Lakshmi Ananda for the final editing.
The Inward Path to Liberation
Yoga is the union of the individual soul with the Supreme Soul. Just as camphor melts and becomes one with the fire, just as a drop of water when it is thrown into the ocean becomes one with the ocean, the individual soul when it is purified, when it is freed from lust, greed, hatred and egoism, when it becomes pure becomes one with the Supreme Soul.
The process of yoga embodies an ascent into purity, into that absolute perfection which is the original state of man. It implies therefore the removal of the enveloping impurities, the stilling of the discordant vibratory tempo of the lower sheaths and the establishment of a state of perfect balance and harmony.
Now, all the above-mentioned factors that bind down the individual soul may be seen to be operating on a larger scale through humanity as a whole. The present age is enmeshed in ignorance (characterised by restlessness, a blind clinging to earthly existence, perverted individualism and voluptuous abandonment to pleasures of the flesh) and violence, strife and discord in all walks of life.
Modern age is the machine age. As such it is power-ridden. Discovery of newer ways of generating power, exploiting fresh aspects of known forces and inventing machines to make machines is the present craze under mans control, but man himself does not have his senses and his mind under his control. This has resulted in the misuse and abuse of the fruits of civilisation and science, because all power corrupts. The adoption of the yoga way of life is the release from and the guarantee against such abuse of power and the resultant disaster. Training in yoga brings to man several supernormal powers that no machine can ever generate. Yet the discipline laid down on the path ensures against their abuse.
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