There are four main paths of Yoga – Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga , Jnana Yoga and Karma Yoga. Each is suited to a different temperament or approach to life. All the paths lead ultimately to the same destination – to union with Brahman or God – and the lessons of each of them need to be integrated if true wisdom is to be attained.
Different Yogic philosophies discuss many paths to achieve Yoga are based on developing our awareness and learning to respect and accept who we are. This Body and Mind of ours is an instrument to marvel, to understand, and to care for. It may not be perfect but it is what is required for us. The more we understand it and care for it the better we can manage our life and realize our purpose. When we do not accept ourselves and others we suffer. The cause of all suffering is ignorance. This same Body and Mind that experiences this suffering is the very same instrument that will allow us to experience the Self that is Truth. So the call comes to “Wake Up” and not to waste the opportunity this life has given to you.
What is Raja Yoga
All over the world there has been the belief in the supernatural throughout the ages. All of us have heard of extraordinary happenings, and many of us have had some personal experience of them. In very remote times in India, thousands of years ago Hindu yogis being analytically minded took up and investigated, and they came to certain remarkable conclusions; that is, they made a science of it. They found out that all these, though extraordinary, are also natural; there is nothing supernatural. They are under laws just the same as any other physical phenomenon. It is not a freak of nature that a man is born with such powers. They can be systematically studied, practiced, and acquired. This science they call the science of Râja-Yoga. There are thousands of people who cultivate the study of this science, and for the whole nation it has become a part of daily worship.
The conclusion they have reached is that all these extraordinary powers are in the mind of man. This mind is a part of the universal mind. Each mind is connected with every other mind. And each mind, wherever it is located, is in actual communication with the whole world. This shows that there is a continuity of mind, as the Yogis call it. The mind is universal. Your mind, my mind, all these little minds, are fragments of that universal mind, little waves in the ocean; and on account of this continuity, we can convey our thoughts directly to one another.
Meaning of Raja Yoga
According to Swami Vivekananda and the Bhagavad Gita, this is the “Royal Path” or highest path to God-union.
Raja Yoga teaches meditation as the ultimate means for realizing God, and incorporates the highest essentials from all other forms of yoga. Also known as “Classical Yoga”, the “King of Yoga” or “Yoga of the Mind“, Raja Yoga is the noblest of all yoga and can be practiced systematically by anyone, regardless of current spiritual status or type of personality.
Because the mind is “Kingly” in the human being, we use the mind to regulate the mind and thereby, to transform the heart, the “landing ground” of all thoughts: “In Raja Yoga, it is the mind that we use, it is the mind that we master, and it is the mind that we apply.
“It is Raja Yoga and Raja Yoga alone that can lead you to the Ultimate Goal, or the highest point of human approach. No other practice can bring forth such results. It is, therefore, essential to have recourse to this science if you aim at the highest point.”
It will gain the control of all mental waves, in itself or in others, even before they have translated themselves into physical energy; and when he will be able to perceive the mental reaction by itself, the Yogi will acquire the knowledge of everything.
Those who think that their prayers are answered by a being, or beings, above the clouds as coming from ignorance, superstition in many instances the so called miracles have the excuse of ignorance, or at least of a defective system of education, various extraordinary phenomena have been recorded as happening amongst human beings. Scientific mind to throw overboard anything without proper investigation. Surface scientists, unable to explain the various extraordinary mental phenomena, for thousands of years such phenomena have been studied, investigated, and generalized, the whole ground of the religious faculties of man has been analyzed, and the practical result is the science of Raja-Yoga. Raja-Yoga does not, after the unpardonable manner of some modern scientists, deny the existence of facts which are difficult to explain; it declares that each man is only a conduit for the infinite ocean of knowledge and power that lies behind mankind. Each soul is potentially divine. The goal is to manifest this Divinity with in by controlling nature, external and internal.