Useful Yam , Niyam for Self-Realisation

Yam : Yam is particularly useful for society . according to Patanjali Yoga Sutra , there are five forms of Yam are

1. Ahimsa – Non-injury : it connects non-injury to all in world , deed & thought. It is very difficult practice to follow. A weak person cannot observe it. Lack of this restraint in a person makes him a slave of many evils & perversities. Where Ahimsa is observed in letter & sprit , malice & hostility take to their heels.

2. Sateya - Truth : A practitioner of truth is one who observes it in world , deed & thought. Truth means describing a thing or a person exactly as he sees or experienced. Practice of truth can be observed by a person who healthy , strong-wiled & endowed with a steady-intelligence , non-biased & of equanimous temperament.

Besides , two essentials of truth must be noted with care : Firstly the truth melodiously , not bitterly. Secondly , always speak the truth for the good of other people , a truth by which other people , a truth by which other people are benefited. Truth becomes meaningless if these two factors are absent. Real knowledge is attained only by practice of truth. It also makes the style of our life simple & fearless.

3. Asteya – Non-stealing : The meaning of Asteya is abstinence from stealing. Stealing is the act of making things one’s own unlawfully whereas itbelong to somebody else. In other words it means that one should acquire things by honest means & not by stealing , cheating or by resorting to dishonest & corrupt practices. Otherwise peace of mind can never be acquired.

4. Brahmacharya – Celibacy : Means restraining sense organs from such activity which might cause lapse from continence. Controlling of ones senses & mind in word , deed & thought is called Brancharya.

Abstinence from looking at obscene objects , abstinence from listening to foul & futile talks with ears , abstinence from smelling objects , emitting foul smell with nose , abstinence from eating food at wrong times , in large quantities & indigestible nature & impure with tongue , abstinence from touching any person in such a manner as to make the mind restless is in reality Celibacy. Semen is the root cause of all energy. Hence preserving of seminal energy & meditating of god constantly is real Brahmacharya.

5. Aparigarha – Abstinence from Avariciousness : Possession of wealth & property more than the basic need is Aparigraha. The person who does not abstain from this urge to possess more & more of comfort & luxuries of life falls into the trap of attachment & egoism. He gets enmeshed into the net of Maya. With the attainment of this quality all jewels of life fall into the lap. By observing this restrain lot of time & energy is saved for Sadhana.

Niyam : In a person’s code of conduct the observance of Niyam plays an important role. According Patanjali Yog Sutra , it has five parts

1. Saucha – Cleanliness : Cleanliness is two-fold internal & external. External cleanliness includes realizing of bowel , taking a bath regularly , putting on neat clothes etc. the internal cleanliness is the removal of impurities of mind , intellect & chitt. By observing both types of cleanliness we make our life happy.

Those who enhance their facial beauty but unnatural & artificial aids to beauty fill the society only with foul smell. Their mind is , in reality , filled with jealousy , hatred , fear , greed , egoism , attachment , passion & what not ? this is not the proof of cleanliness. By observing cleanliness , we get rid of vices of Tamas i.e. inertia , laziness , dullness , infatuation & those of Rjas i.e. passion & restlessness etc. Its observance makes consciousness clean , mind , steady & our senses introspective.

2. Santosa – Contentment : Happiness derived from the attainment of wealth & property acquired by sweat of the brow is contentment. Not to crave for sense-object , is Santosh. We do not feel jealous of other people when we are contented.

Contentment in itself is the greatest & real wealth. It is rightly said that no wealth is superior to the wealth of contentment. Due to absence of contentment in the society , never befor such an acute degradation was perceived as today’s life.

3. Tapas – Austerity : The control of sense-organs , body & mind is Auseriy. It is by dint of Tap that our great saints have got highest attainments. Austerity brings purity to life. All impurities caused by conflicts of body & mind are removed by the practice of Auserity. Just as the heat of fire purifies the gold , so the heat of penance or austerity alone purifies & glorifies the life of man.

4. Svadhyaya – Study of scriptures : To know one’s oneself is Swadhyay. This process starts with self-intropection ,with the study of scriptures & the listening to the sermons of Rishis & realized souls. These days thousands of journals & magazines are published in the name of literature , but they deal only with matter of worldliness.

Their study can hardly from a part of what we understand by the term Swadhyay. It is the surest way to real joy & progress. Knowledge is never gained by the study of worldly books ; it comes only with the study of Vedic books, scriptures & self-introspection. It ensures both progress & pleasure.

5. Isvara Pranidhana – Surrender to the Lord : It means complete surrender to the all-preventing God. It is to experience His Divine presence in the smallest pores of our body. it is also the surrendering of all the activities of our sense-organs & Pran & the benefits accruing from such actions to God. By devotion to God , Atman rules over the mind , Intellect , Chitt & Ahankar(Ego). His light activates them & removes the impurities of the mind.

All above said factors are instrumental in purifying ones mind. Once you succeed in observing them completely in the conduct of your life , you would realize that you have attained the purification of your Chitt. Hence you must make persistent effort to achieve this noble end.


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