Essentials of Hinduism – Yoga – The Means

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Yoga – The Means

A religion, to satisfy the largest proportion of mankind, must be able to supply food for all types of minds ; and where this capability is wanting, the existing sects all become one-sided. Suppose you go to a sect which preaches love and emotion. They sing and weep, and preach love. But as soon as you say, “My friend, that is all right, but I want something stronger than this ; a little reason, and philosophy; I want to understand things step by step and more rationally,” “Get out,” they say, and they not only ask you to get out, but would send you to the other place, if they could. The result is, that that sect can only help people of an emotional turn of mind; they not only do not help others, but try to destroy them ; and the most wicked part of the whole thing is, that they will not only not help others, but do not believe in their sincerity. Again, there are philosophers, who talk of the wisdom of India and the East and use big psychological terms, fifty syllables long, but if an ordinary man like me goes to them and says, “Can you tell me anything to make me spiritual 7” the first thing they would do would be to smile and Say “Oh you are too far below us in your reason. What can you understand about spirituality 7″ These are high-up philosophers. They simply show you the door. Then there are the mystical sects, who speak all sorts of things about different planes of existence! different states of mind, and what the power of the mind can do, and so on ; and if you are an ordinary man and say, ”Show me anything good that I can do; I am not much given to speculation ; can you give me anything that will suit me ?” they will smile, and say, “Listen to that fool; he knows nothing, his existence is for nothing.” And this is going on everywhere in the world.

To become harmoniously balanced in all these four directions, is the ideal of religion. And this religion is attained by what we call Yoga – union To the worker, it is
union between men and the whole of humanity ; to the mystic, between his lower and Higher Self; to the lover, union between himself and the God of love ; and to the philosopher, it is the union of
all existence. This is what is meant by Yoga. This is a Sanskrit term, and these four divisions of Yoga have, in Sanskrit, different names. The man who seeks after this kind of union is called a Yogin. The worker is called the Karma-Yogin. He who seeks the union through love is called the Bhakti-Yogin. He who seeks it through mysticism is called the Raj a-Yogin. And he who seeks it
through philosophy is called the Jnana-Yogin. So this word Yogin comprises them all.

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