IV. Who is fit for yoga?1Who is fit for Yoga? You are fit for Yoga. He is fit for Yoga. I am fit for Yoga. All human beings without exception are fit for Yoga.
The spiritual fitness can be determined by our feeling of oneness, our desire for oneness. The tiniest drop has a right to feel the boundless ocean as its very own. Such is the case with the individual soul and the Universal Soul.
Where is God and where am I? God is on the third floor and I am on the first floor. I come up to the second floor. He comes down to the second floor. We meet. We both meet together. I do not forget to wash His feet with my tears of delight. Neither does He forget to place me in His heart of infinite Compassion.
Now what is Yoga? Yoga is self-conquest. Self-conquest is God-realisation. And he who practices Yoga does two things by one stroke: he simplifies his whole life and he gets a free access to the Divine.
In the field of Yoga we can never pretend. Our aspiration must ring true. Our whole life must ring true. Nothing is impossible for an ardent aspirant. A higher Power guides his steps. God's adamantine Will is his safest protection. No matter how long or how many times he blunders, he has every right to come back to his own spiritual home. His aspiration is a climbing flame. It has no smoke, it needs no fuel. It is the breath of his inner life. It leads him to the shores of the Golden Beyond. The aspirant, with the wings of his aspiration, soars into the Transcendental.
God is infinite and God is everywhere. To a genuine aspirant, this is more than a mere belief. It is the Reality without a second.
Now let us focus our attention on the spiritual life. It is a mistaken idea that the spiritual life is a life of austerity and a bed of thorns. No, never. We came from the Blissful. To the Blissful we shall return with the spontaneous joy of life. It seems difficult because we cater to our ego. It looks unnatural because we cherish our doubts.
The realisation of God is the goal of our life. It is also our noblest heritage. God is at once our Father and our Mother. As Father He observes, as Mother He creates. We shall never give up demanding of our Mother as a child does of his mother, so that we can win over our Mother's Love and Grace. How long can a mother go on unheeding her child's cry? Let us not forget that if there is anybody on earth on whom all human beings have a full claim, it is the Mother aspect of the Divine. She is the only strength of our dependence. She is also the only strength of our independence. As Her heart is the home of infinitude, so also is it eternally open to each individual.
We should now become acquainted with the eight significant strides that lead a seeker to his destination. The strides are Yama (self-control and moral abstinences), Niyama (strict observance of conduct and character), Asana (various body postures to help us enter into a higher consciousness), Pranayama (systematic breathing to hold a rein on the mind), Dharana (the fixation of our consciousness on God, joined by all parts of the body), Dhyana (meditation, the untiring express train speeding towards the Goal), and Samadhi (trance, the end of Nature's dance, the absolute fixation of our individual consciousness on the Transcendental Supreme).
Yoga is our union with Truth. There are three unfolding stages of this union. In the first stage, man has to feel that God needs him as much as he needs God. In the second stage, man has to feel that without him God does not exist even for a second. In the third and ultimate stage, man has to realise that he and God are not only eternally One, but Equal, all-pervading and all-fulfilling.
29 April 1966. The fourth class of the Spring series on Yoga was held at the home of Sri Chinmoy, 4826 New Utrecht Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y.↩