Question: What is the spiritual purpose of Yoga?

Sri Chinmoy: We cannot separate spiritual purpose from Yoga. The spiritual purpose of anything is to become one with God’s Light and Delight. Spiritual purpose, when it is applied in our day-to-day life, is Yoga. What can we derive from Yoga or from the spiritual life? We can derive peace of mind, divine joy, divine love and a sense of true accomplishment. On earth we do many things and we feel that we have accomplished something. Then, a few years later we feel that this accomplishment was only the fulfilment of some desires which did not give us total satisfaction. But if we follow the spiritual life and follow the inner discipline of Yoga, then at each moment we feel a true sense of satisfaction whether we have achieved anything outwardly or not. Outwardly we may not achieve anything or receive any recognition, but inwardly we feel that the very act of praying, of meditating is an achievement, an accomplishment.

In the outer life, if we see the results of our actions as success then we feel that we have accomplished something. If we have not achieved success, then we feel that what we did was no accomplishment at all. Failure is not accomplishment in our outer life; only success is accomplishment. But in the spiritual life failure as well as success are both accomplishments since they are both a form of experience.

Yoga is a continuous march, an inner march and each moment you are accomplishing something. While you are marching towards your goal you are accomplishing something. So this is the purpose of Yoga. When you follow the spiritual life, every second you are accomplishing something for God and for yourself which will last permanently in your inner being. This is the spiritual reason why we accept Yoga and why we follow Yoga.