NARADA PURANA

Naradapuran

Yoga, the proven way to Moksha Prapti

Brahmarshi Narada gave a direct question to Sanaka Kumara as to which ‘Karma’ (Holy Action) would assure the attainment of Moksha and Sanaka  replied that Yoga was indeed the unique way and ‘Jnaan’backed by ‘Bhakti’ was the best form of Yoga- a mix of Karma Yoga and Jnaana Yoga, or a blend of ‘Karma’(Action) with Bhakti (devotion). Ahimsa Satyamakrodho Brahamacharyaa Parigrahou, Aneershyaa cha Daya chaiva  yogayorubhayo samaah/ ( Non-Violence, Truth, absence of hatred, Brahmacharya, Aparigraha or non acceptance, destruction of jealousy, mercifulness and benevolence-these are the features in required proportions).

The person who treats the way that he himself desires to be treated is qualified for Yoga. Contrarily, the person who is overcome by envy and fault-finding might be immersed with Dhyana and Tapasya, but these noble qualities are considerd futile. That is why restraint, self-control and equanimity in terms of speech, thought and action are the cornerstones of ‘effective’ Vishnu Puja . Given these basic pre-conditions, Pujas, Stutis, Fastings, Vratas, Purana Shravanas, Tirtha Yatras, Daanaas, Yagnas and the like assume redoubled proportions of efficiency and are truly termed as implements of Karma Yoga. The lack of distinction between Jeevaatma and Paramatma, signifying the Maha Vakyas of Vedas viz. Tatvamasi or Sohamasi constitute the basis of Vedas and forms of the Ashtanga Yoga viz. Yama, Niyama, Aasana, Pranahaara, Pratyaahaari, Dharana, Dhyana and Samaadhi. The relevant definition is: Yamaascha, Niyamaavaschaiva, Asanaani cha sattama, Praanaayaamah, Pratyaaharo Dharana Dhyanamevacha, Samaadhi Munusreshthah yogaangaani Yatha kramam/ While ‘Yama ’ denotes Ahimsa, Satya, Steya (non-stealing), Brahmaharya, Aparigraha, Akrodha, Anasuya and Daya are the constituents of Yama; Niyama ’ comprises of Tapas, Swadhyaya (self-learning), Santosha (contentment), Shaucha (Cleanliness), Aradhana or worship and Sandhyapasana. ‘Tapa’ includes meditation, Chandrayana and other Vratas which signify fastings, Pujas, Stutis etc. ‘Swadhyayana’ encompasses Japas of three kinds viz. Vaachika/ Uchhaarana or Vocal, Upaamshu or slow and distinct rendering and ‘Maanasa’ or recitation within while considering the meaning and context of the Mantra). ‘Santosha’ basically refers to mental satisfaction that the life style is smooth and contented, organised, wholesome and virtuous. ‘Shuchi’ means ‘Bayha Shuddhi’ or physical as also ‘Antassuddhi’ without interaction with the ‘Arishat vargas’ viz. Six enemies from within viz. Kama, Krodha , Lobha, Moha, Mada, and Matsara; ‘Aradhana’ including ‘Stuti’ by ‘Manas’, ‘Vani’ or vocal; ‘Kriya’or Tirtha Yatras, bathings, Daanas, good deeds such as digging of water bodies/ wells, construction of Public Utilities etc. and most significantly ‘Sandhyopasana’.

Aasana is the next significant ‘Yoga Sadhana’; it is stated that there are thirty prominent Aasanas ‘Sitting postures’ viz. Padmasana, Swastikasana, Peethasana, Simhasana, Kukkutasana, Kunjarasana, Kurmasana, Vajrasana, Varaahasana, Mrigasana, Chailikasana, Krounchasana, Naalikasana, Sarvatobhadrasana, Vrishabhasana, Nagasana, Matsyasana, Vyaghrasana, Artha Chandrasana, Dandavatasana, Shailasana, Khadgasana, Mudgarasana, Makarasana, Tripathasana, Kaashtaasana, Sthanurasana, Vaikarnikasana, Bhowmasana and Veerasana.

The next Yoga Sadhana is Pranaayama which could be Agarbha or Sagarbha; the Agarbha type is without Japa and Dhyana and the better kind one is while performing Japa and Dhyana. Pranayama comprises ‘Rechaka’ or exhaling air through left nose, ‘Puraka’ is inhaling through the right nose and ‘Kumbha’ is holding air as also ‘Shunyaka’ (stand-still). The right ‘nadi’of the human beings is called ‘Pingala’ whose Deity is Surya / Pitru yoni. The left Nadi is ‘Ida’ / Deva yoni nadi whose Deity is Moon. In between the Pingala and Ida nadis is a minute and hidden nadi called ‘Sushumna’ whose ‘Adhi Devata’ or Deity is Lord Brahma.

Pratyahaara is the next Yoga Sadhana, by which ‘Indriyas’ or Limbs are controlled by being dis-associated with worldly matters. This is the preparatory step of mind-control when one could close the eyes or even keep them open but possess high degree of concentration on a blank screen or any chosen object irrespective of surrounding visions, sounds, nasal / touch reactions and mind-borne reactions except the focussed one, say an illumination through which to probe the Almighty!

Having conquered the external limbs and internal feelings, a stage is set to hold or practise Dhaarana of the required vision of Paramatma even for split seconds by regulating the vision and once that is practised, the length and depth of the visualization could be prolonged as Yogis could.

The vision when continued the Yogi enters a stage of Samadhi when the Yoga Purusha could neither hear, nor see nor react to any situation, except the one that is focussed!  Such a situation is not death but death-like since that trance could be retrieved, as claimed by those Maharshis who experienced! They were able to realize Para Brahma Paramatma in their hearts that was ever lasting, pure, dazzling and complete through their inner vision. In the World, there are three kinds of feelings viz. ‘Karma- ‘Brahma’and ‘Ubhayatmaka Bhavanas’. Till Karma Bhavana is not demolished or controlled, one would not visualise Brahma Bhavana. Only when differences of worldly nature and Para Brahma are completely merged, that state is called as Brahma Gyan or of the real Nirakara Vishnu.  Also, there are three kinds: ‘Para’, ‘Apara’ and Karma Shaktis. Bhagavan is the Para Shakti; ‘Kshetrajna’ is the Apara Shakti and ‘Avidya’ (ignorance) is the Karma Shakti. Indeed, Kshetrajna Shakti is dormant in all Beings; it is minimal in ‘Jada’ rupas like trees and mountains, some what weak among animals and birds, but human beings are fairly aware of the Shakti; while it is conspicuous among higher levels like Gandharvas, Yakshas and of course Devas. Like the Sky the Kshetrajna Shakti is all pervading in different ‘Rupas’; it is the awakening of that Shakti which Yoga is all about.

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