Four Parts of Practice
An outline of flowers
Like a bouquet of four flowers, there are four parts to what we are doing on this antar (inner) journey of Yoga:
Keeping it Simple
The purpose of this page is to suggest a very practical outline of the inner Yoga journey. This website has a lot of resources, yet is only a small sample of books, articles, and videos compared to the vast resources that are available from various traditions or authors. With all these resources, it is a common obstacle for people to feel overwhelmed, feeling the journey is not possible. But, if we hold the simplicity of these four suggestions, those obstacles seem to be not so much a problem; they weaken and fade away. Progress really comes easily by keeping it simple and being patient with ourselves. Gradually, our whole life becomes one of meditation and contemplation. The eternal Center becomes more and more obvious right in the middle of daily life.
The Four Parts
Learning: This means taking in lots of principles and practices, reading books (Yoga Sutras, Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads), articles, and reviewing the Udemy courses. Exploring other videos, including watching some of the daily video postings in the Satsang Facebook group. I say this for those who feel drawn to our community. The four parts described here apply to all people, regardless of what circle of people you are involved with. You don't have to be perfect at any of this, just steady, making these kinds of reviews part of your daily life. This is not merely an intellectual study of information, but is like using instruction manuals on how to operate a character called "me." Don't work too hard at this. Be gentle but persistent with yourself, remembering that this learning is about how to practice meditation and contemplation. Yoga is a whole life process, not difficult physical or intellectual activities. In our world of 110% pressure, a gentle 80% works nicely. Use the Satsang times to talk about and find clarification on what you're learning and practicing.
Meditation: Sit for meditation every day, well within your comfortable capacity. Be gentle with yourself, and let progress come at its own comfortable pace. A couple minutes is enough. Once a day is good. Twice a day is better, starting and ending your day. Two other brief moments per day is ideal. Constant remembrance of the center of Consciousness is meditation in action during daily activities. Talk about all of this in the Satsang groups.
Contemplation: Also do contemplation regularly, again being gentle with yourself. As with meditation, talk in the Satsangs about what you're learning. A lot of contemplation is done right in the middle of daily activities, paying attention to yourself and the world around you. It starts with observing the aspects of your own being, and doing internal dialogue about what you are observing. Later, it is about contemplation on the Great Contemplations, termed as Mahavakyas.
Satsang: Satsang means coming together in the spirit of friendly sharing and learning. It is Q&A to make principles clear. Sang means coming together. Sat means the totality of Truth or Reality. Hold these two loosely, so as to not let it drive you crazy. Playfully, I like to call it "hanging out" together in Truth or in Yoga. Satsang brings the juice, magic, and joy to the practices. We have several Zoom meetings per week; join in and have fun.