Thursday, September 27, 2012

Rāja Yoga

Rāja Yoga 

Aims at controlling all thought-waves or mental modifications. While a Hatha Yogi starts his sādhanā, or spiritual practice, with āsanas (postures) andprāṇāyāma, a rāja yogi starts his sādhanā with the mind as well as a certain minimum of āsana and prāṇāyāma usually included as a preparation for the meditation and concentration. In Samādhi Pada I,27 it is stated that the word of Īśvara is OM, the Praṇava. Through the sounding of the Word and through reflection upon its meaning, the Way is found.

In the Jangama dhyana technique of Rāja yoga, the yogi concentrates the mind and sight between the eyebrows. According to Patanjali, this is one method of achieving the initial concentration (dharana: Yoga Sutras, III: 1) necessary for the mind to go introverted in meditation (dhyana: Yoga Sutras, III: 2). In deeper practice of the Jangama dhyana technique, the mind concentrated between the eyebrows begins to automatically lose all location and focus on the watching itself. Eventually, the meditator experiences only the consciousness of existence and achieves Self Realization. In his classic Raja Yoga, Swami Vivekananda describes the process in the following way:
When the mind has been trained to remain fixed on a certain internal or external location, there comes to it the power of flowing in an unbroken current, as it were, towards that point. This state is called dhyana. When one has so intensified the power of dhyana as to be able to reject the external part of perception and remain meditating only on the internal part, the meaning, that state is called Samādhi.