Passionate mind and dispassionate mind

There’s nothing wrong with passionate mind or dispassionate mind. They just have different prospect and interest towards life existence, and how they live and act in the world.

Both minds can also be endowed with kindness and generosity and good will, to be good, to do good and to hope for the best for the world. Though the meanings of what is best for the world and the way of achieving what is best for the world can be very different for the passionate minds and the dispassionate minds.

In terms of Satsanga as one of the important elements for the yoga practitioners to progress in the path of yoga, especially those who haven’t develop a strong foundation of non-attachment and they are easily be affected or influenced by other people’s thinking, belief and behavior, and they attached onto their actions that are being performed out of good intention and they are affected or determined by the outcome of their actions very much, then they need the company of the dispassionate (less conflicts), and avoid the company of the passionate (more conflicts). Satsanga doesn’t matter for those who had developed strong non-attachment, who are not affected or influenced by other people’s thinking, belief and behavior, who don’t attach onto their action and are not affected or determined by the outcome of the action, there’s no difference between the company of the passionate or the dispassionate for them, but for the sake of conserving energy to not wasting energy into unnecessary issues created by the passionate minds, the yoga practitioners should also avoid the company of the passionate.

Those who are passionate are not bad people. They can be very good people who believe in goodness and righteousness and maintaining the order of the society or the environment. They can be doing many good actions in the world that they think are the best for the world. Just that the passion or intense love towards what they love, what they believe in, or what they think how the world should be like and how people should think and behave (act and react), could generate unnecessary disturbance or disharmony in themselves, and create disturbance and disharmony for others.

Passionate mind will feel hurt, frustrated, irritated, disappointed, distressed, depressed and angry, when things are not the way that it thinks they should be, or the way that it wants them to be, and under the influence of impurities, it will generate hurtful or violent action and speech to project the disturbed state of mind. There’s attachment towards the action being performed, and there’s expectation towards the fruit of action has to be the way that it thinks it should be. This is a mind that changes according to whether the experiences are something that it likes and wants, or something that it doesn’t like and doesn’t want. This mind projects kind qualities when it is happy and satisfied, when things are the way that it likes them to be, but it projects unkind qualities when it is upset and dissatisfied when things are not the way that it likes them to be. At one moment, it can be very kind and friendly, and in another moment, it can be very unkind and hostile.

Dispassionate mind won’t feel hurt, frustrated, irritated, disappointed, distressed, depressed or angry, when things are not the way that it thinks they should be, or the way that it would prefer them to be, and won’t generate hurtful or violent action and speech as the mind is free from disturb, ill-thinking or ill-will. This mind projects kind qualities disregard whether things are the way that it likes them to be, or not. Even when things are not the way that it would like them to be, this mind is still kind and compassionate. It doesn’t have ill-thinking or ill-will to hurt those who are different from them, who dislike or disagree with them, and who against them or hurt them.

There might be necessary action being performed, to bring awareness to others who are under the influence of ignorance, but there’s no attachment or expectation towards the action and the fruit of action. If others are getting offended and upset for being ‘lectured’ by other people and they continue to be ignorant, let them be. None can change another being, or remove the ignorance in others. None can change the world to be the way that one thinks it should be.

Yoga teachings doesn’t discriminate good or bad people. But it points out the distinction between passionate minds and dispassionate minds on the path of yoga towards peace and harmony in the society or in the world. Even good people who have good intention to perform good action might be under the influence of passion. These minds are not free. Yoga practice is to free the mind from passion, to be dispassionate, while living in the world, do one best performing necessary actions for the sake of peace and harmony in oneself and in the world, and let it go.

Be free.

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Yoga in the commercial world and practicing yoga while living among the society…

The means of yoga is to attain annihilation of the egoism, realize unconditional peace through the self-realization of the truth, be free from ignorance, and thus transcend suffering.

The mission of yoga being spread into the society of the commercial world is for the sake of world peace. It’s not so much about getting some health and fitness benefits from performing the yoga asana exercises. Though there’s nothing wrong about that.

World peace has to start from individual peace that is unconditional, undetermined by physical conditions and abilities, or qualities of names and forms. When one has attained unconditional peace in oneself, one is no longer being affected nor disturbed by any impurities or disturbance that exist in the world. One will be free from ill-will and violence, and will not generate disharmony in oneself or into the surrounding atmosphere. And this is how yoga contributes to world peace.

Yoga practice is about self-awareness, self-discipline, self-control, self-restraint, self-transformation, self-realization. It’s not about to convert other people to abandon their existing beliefs or religious practice, and to believe in the teachings of yoga and to take up the yoga practice, nor to change other people to behave the way that we think they should behave, nor to change the world to be the way that we think it should be.

Yoga practice is eliminating the egoism and ignorance through the practice of non-attachment and non-identification, and letting go of craving and aversion. All these yoga practice can be incooperated into any existing beliefs or religious practice that one already has, without interfering what one used to believe and practice.

While allowing the existing beliefs and practice to be there, one also allows the mind to be opened. One learns how to stay detached from the existing beliefs and practice, without identification with the beliefs and practice to be who ‘I’ am. One also doesn’t attach towards the teachings of yoga, but will perform self-inquiry inquire into the truth of everything, including the existing beliefs and practice, as well as the teachings of yoga.

For many people, it is not that easy to have the determination and perseverance to perform serious yoga practice (Sadhana) while living among the society in the commercial world, unless the aspirant has developed a strong foundation of non-attachment (Vairagya) and right discrimination (Viveka). As there are many distractions around that will hinder one to immerse into the yoga and meditation practice especially if the aspirant has not yet developed a strong foundation of non-attachment, non-identification, right discrimination, self-discipline and self-control. One might be influenced by the worldly thinking and beliefs, and easily swayed into the worldly passionate desires and greed.

Most of the contents in the worldly social conversations in everyday life are strengthening worldly ideas, identifications, desires and attachments. It is empowering the egoism without us being aware of it. We tend to move away from the path of yoga and meditation, while thinking that we are pure enough, and we love yoga very much.

And thus, it is quite useful for someone who truly wants to be free from ignorance and to realize unconditional peace, by having the company of the wise (Satsanga) if there is one, or by attending yoga and meditation retreats once in a while, provided that these yoga and meditation ‘retreats’ are about the yoga and meditation practice, and it’s not about indulge in luxury sensual enjoyment ‘treats’. It can help to remind ourselves about Dharma, and to re-ignite the desire to attain liberation (Moksha).

Om shanti.

Self-discipline, self-control, yoga and meditation practice…

In the traditional teachings of yoga about yoga practice, it depends very much on the level of self-discipline and self-control of the yoga student, whether the yoga student can mix freely in the society, or the yoga student requires certain amount of solitary and restriction about who the student mixes with.

As well as whether the yoga student is easily being distracted, disturbed, affected or influenced by other people’s thinking and behavior.

Yoga is about meditation, sublimating the modifications of the mind to transcend the perception of names and forms. Reducing inputs and outputs of the mind, or quieting the mind activities is part of the important practice for meditation.

There are some important observances that can help to quiet the mind for realization of the truth to transcend names and forms, especially for those who have no strong self-discipline and self-control yet, such like reducing newspaper and novels reading or movies watching, avoid excessive physical activities, talking, eating, mingling or any activities that will stimulate the mind, and make the mind very busy.

If the yoga student has very strong self-discipline and self-control, and is not easily being distracted nor influenced by anyone that the student mixes with, and is not being affected nor determined by the worldly activities that the student involves with, then this student can mix freely with anyone and engage in any worldly activities, but these activities will not affect nor distract the student’s spiritual practice.

To be compassionate towards ourselves and other beings, we need to take care of our own practice first. We need to know who we shall mix with, and have certain degrees of restriction and limitation, so that our mind will not be distracted nor influenced by worldly passionate influences that will pull us away from our practice.

If mixing with certain people will allow us to develop dispassion and right discrimination (knowing what is real and unreal), then these are the Satsanga that we shall mix with.

If mixing with certain people will pull us away from dispassion and right discrimination, then these are the Kutsanga that we need to keep a distance.

This is not being selfish, but it’s an noble action, to take care of our own practice, before we can take care of other beings.

If we think we are practicing ‘compassion’, try to be ‘compassionate’ towards other beings, and try to help other beings to be free from negativities and suffering, but ourselves has not yet develop firmness in our own practice of non-attachment, dispassion and right discrimination, and easily being disturbed, affected, influenced and determined by whatever the mind perceives through the senses of what it sees, hears, smells, tastes, touches and thinks, being influenced by likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements derive from egoism, then we need to have some kind of filtration or restriction about who we mix with and what type of activities we engage with.

How can we help other beings to be free from negativities, if we are easily being influenced by other people’s negativities? How can we help the world to be free from negativities when we are vibrating negativities into the world?

We need to be able to take care ourselves first before we can take care of others.

To be able to help the world to be a better place, it requires wisdom and compassion, dispassion and right discrimination, non-attachment and selflessness/egolessness.

This teaching is a guideline for those who seriously want to transcend egoism, ignorance and suffering. As it appears to be something ‘horrible’ or ‘disagreeable’ for those who enjoy gratifying craving and aversion, who don’t like about self-discipline and self-control, who are passionate and not interested in transcending egoism, ignorance and suffering. There’s nothing wrong with being worldly minded, and busy with gratifying the ceaseless craving and aversion of the egoistic mind. Be happy.

Om shanti.

The importance of Satsanga, Kutsanga & Asanga in the path of yoga and meditation…

There are wise spiritual beings (Satsanga) that can uplift us, help us and guide us in the path of yoga and meditation to evolve towards higher consciousness… These Satsanga will encourage us to immerse in spiritual practice and to move away from worldly passionate activities, such like gossiping, back-bitting, slandering, mocking, teasing, increase of greed, craving, clinging, worldly desires and attachments, and building castles in the air…

There are worldly minded beings (Kutsanga) that can pull us down, distract us and move us away from our yoga and meditation practice to evolve towards higher consciousness, especially if we are still being affected very much by the qualities of names and forms, and the energy fields of other people, and we have no strong self-control and non-attachment… These Kutsanga will distract and discourage us from immerse in spiritual practice, and will lead us and encourage us to get involve with more worldly passionate activities which cause great distraction and obstacles…

There is a teaching or advice from our ancient Gurus saying that – If there is no good or wise company (Satsanga), then it is better to be alone (Asanga) than to be with evil company or worldly minded company (Kutsanga).

In the beginning of the path of yoga and meditation, it is very important to choose what type of inputs that we bring into our mind, especially if we have no strong self-control and non-attachment, and are easily being affected and influenced by sights, sounds, smells, taste, sensations and thoughts, and being affected and influenced by other people’s energy fields…

Until one day, we have developed strong self-control and non-attachment, and are not being affected or influenced by all these elements and energy fields, then we can mix freely with anyone no matter they have bad influences or negative energy fields… When we are unaffected and uninfluenced by other people energy fields, we can be compassionate to help to uplift these people instead of being pull down by them…

When we still don’t have strong self-control and non-attachment, it is not being selfish or arrogant at all to keep away from evil company or worldly minded company. This is indeed being humble, and being kind and compassionate towards ourselves… To admit that we are not that “strong” yet to be unaffected or influenced by other people’s energy fields, and to allow ourselves to evolve spiritually to be free from ignorance and suffering…. Only when we ourselves are free from ignorance and suffering, we can be kind and compassionate towards other beings to help other beings to evolve and be free from ignorance and suffering… If we ourselves are ignorant and in suffering, how can we guide others to be free from ignorance and suffering?

So, do not feel bad when we have to say “no” and to keep away from certain worldly minded company for the sake of our own spiritual growth, if we are still easily being affected and influenced by other people’s energy fields… It is a noble and compassionate action…

When we are completely unidentified with the body and the mind, when we are free from attachments, craving and aversion, then we can mix freely with anybody and not being affected and influenced by elements and energy fields of sights, sounds, smells, taste, sensations and thoughts, of what we eat and drink, and who we are mixing with…

The wise foresee trouble, and do not intentionally invite troubles, and will naturally keep away from unnecessary troubles, and are able to concentrate its attention and energy onto spiritual practice and evolution…

The ignorant can’t foresee trouble, and will invite troubles, and will drawn towards unnecessary troubles, being busy with troubles and worries, and have no interest and energy for spiritual practice…

Om shanti.