(Last Updated on : 04-05-2010)
The Fire God has also discussed the eight auxiliary factors that are related to Yoga. It has been said that knowledge is that which leads to a true conception of Brahma, the highest knowledge that illumines the universe. Yoga consists in concentrating the mind or attention on a definite subject, by abstracting or withdrawing it (Sensorium Commune) from all other objects of sense-perception, and in bringing about a communion between the human self (jivatman) and its supreme prototype (Brahmatman). The five factors of discipline or self-control (Yama) are (1) Cessation of all killing propensities, (2) Truthfulness, (3) Uncovetousness, (4) Self-control, or subjugation of the senses, and (5) Renunciation of all desires for gift or gain. These, together with the Niyama lead to all that can be desired in life and ultimately to the final liberation of the Jivatman, or the true Self of a man. Purity, contentment, practice of austerities, and a desire to serve god at all times and under all circumstances, are the virtues that are to be cultivated by a journeyman on the road to self-knowledge. Ahimsa
means clemency to all created beings and annihilation of all killing or pain-giving propensities. O thou twice born one, this non-oppressiveness (Ahimsa) is the best of all virtues. As the peculiar sort of gait known as the Gajapada, includes all other gaits of a journeyman, so other phases of piety are included within this particular factor.
has mentioned that thus all virtues proceed out of this specific one of non-oppressiveness. Hinsa or oppression includes within its meaning all acts which cause anxiety, or positive mental pain, or bodily hurt to others, or spill blood from their bodies, or make them miserable, or permanently obstruct that which might have otherwise proved beneficial to them, or cleaves their hearts, or interferes with their liberty of movements, or destroys their comfort for good. These are known as the ten elements of hurt or killing. Truthfulness consists in speaking a fact, which actually exists, or has really happened at a time and place, and which, if known or communicated, will be of service to the whole human species.
According to the great Purana Brahrnacharyayam forms the basis of all acts of piety, without which they fail to produce their desired effect. It has been said that a Brahmachari should carefully keep away from a woman because the love of a woman to produce the highest intoxication in a man. In fact a woman is considered the fourth kind of wine.
The Purana mentions that contentment signifies the fact of resting satisfied with any thing that may be obtained without the least exertion. Tapas mean the concentration of the mind and the senses on a definite object. The highest virtue lies in subjugating one's senses. Tapas may be classed under three heads, such as the oral, the mental and the physical.
The oral Tapas consist in truthfulness and a constant repetition of a Mantra, held sacred to the tutelary divinity of the penitent. The mental element of the act, embraces the extinction of all desires, whiles the bodily or physical factor, and consists in dedicating one's own body to the service of the eternal deity.
The Supreme Brahma, who is beyond the sphere of the three states of human consciousness, is accordingly called the Turiyam, and is ensconced in the mystic nerve ganglion situated over the region of the human heart, shining all through life, like a lamp placed inside the cavity of a pitcher. A man should do well to meditate upon this constant light, illuminating the petals of the lotus of his heart. The Pranava is like a bow furnished with an arrow, and the Supreme Brahma is the target to hit at. A man with all assiduity and calmness should shoot the arrow of his mind at this target of Brahma, so that like a shaft it might be driven into and kept fast and invisible in the latter. Brahma is the only knowledge and this mystic (OM) syllable is his only exponent. The man, who has fully understood the import of this monosyllable, has attained everything worth obtaining. Gayatri is the metre of this mystic OM, the name of its Rishi is Antaryami (the knower of hearts), and its presiding deity is the Supreme Self. The Mantra should be made use for the attainment of both earthly prosperity and final liberation of the Soul.
It has been said that the god Hari should be worshipped in the course of a sacrifice, performed in one of the three ways, known as the Vaidika, the Tantrika, and the mixed combination of the two preceding procedures. Finally it has been said that the man who has the same reverence for his spiritual preceptor as for his tutelary deity, is only entitled to practise the self control etc., as above indicated, by right of the commonalty of the high-minded.