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Integral Yoga: A Path to Wholeness

Integral Yoga: A Path to Wholeness

Inspired by Sri Aurobindo

At its core, Integral Yoga seeks to revolutionize our limited human experience.  We often find ourselves compartmentalized – our thoughts, emotions, and very existence fragmented.  Integral Yoga aims to dismantle these walls, fostering a profound spiritual awareness that permeates every aspect of our being.  It's not about escaping the world, but rather integrating our inner and outer lives. This practice allows us to elevate our ordinary existence, transforming it into a way of being that is inspired by the divine.

"Assent to thy high self, create, endure.

Cease not from knowledge, let thy toil be vast.

No more can earthly limits pen thy force;

Equal thy work with long unending Time's.

Traveller upon the bare eternal heights,

Tread still the difficult and dateless path

Joining the cycles with its austere curve

Measured for man by the initiate Gods.

My light shall be in thee, my strength thy force.

Let not the impatient Titan drive thy heart,

Ask not the imperfect fruit, the partial prize.

Only one boon, to greaten thy spirit, demand;

Only one joy, to raise thy kind, desire.

Above blind fate and the antagonist powers

Moveless there stands a high unchanging Will;

To its omnipotence leave thy work's result.

All things shall change in God's transfiguring hour."

……….. Savitri by Sri Aurobindo

Integral Yoga stands apart from some yogic traditions by acknowledging the inherent value of cosmic existence. It views the universe as a real and unfolding expression of a divine reality. The ultimate goal of this path isn't to escape the world, but to access a higher state of consciousness – Truth-Consciousness or Divine Supramental Consciousness.

This elevated state isn't about a passive disengagement from creation. It's about transcending the limitations of our current understanding and aligning our actions with a deeper truth. In this state, creation and action become expressions not of ignorance and imperfection but of the Truth, the Light, and the Divine Ananda (Bliss) that permeates the cosmos.

Embracing Transformation: The Path of Integral Yoga

Integral Yoga recognizes that accessing a higher state of consciousness –  Truth-Consciousness or Divine Supramental Consciousness – requires a fundamental shift. Our regular human mind, with its limitations, struggles to reach this state on its own.  It's like trying to force open a door with a key that doesn't quite fit.

Therefore, Integral Yoga calls for a form of surrender – not of giving up entirely, but of surrendering the limitations of our ego-driven mind, life, and body to the guidance of the higher consciousness. This allows the transformative power of the divine to permeate our being and unlock the door to a new way of experiencing reality, a reality where the driving force is no longer the limitations of the human mind, but a consciousness with a dynamism of quite another power.

However, this path isn't for everyone. Integral Yoga acknowledges the significant change it requires. It's a call to embrace a transformative journey, and only those who feel a deep resonance with this path should embark on it.

The Unfolding Journey: Integral Yoga Practices

Unlike some yoga paths with rigid structures, Integral Yoga's practice (Sadhana) is a more fluid journey. It doesn't rely on a specific set of mental teachings or prescribed forms of meditation, mantras, or other rituals.  Instead, the focus lies on:

  • Aspiration: Cultivating a deep yearning to connect with the higher consciousness.

  • Self-concentration: Turning inwards or upwards, directing your attention within or towards the divine.

  • Self-opening: Creating a space of receptivity, allowing yourself to be influenced by divine power.

  • Connecting with the Divine: Recognizing the presence of the divine within your heart and throughout the universe.

  • Discernment: Letting go of anything that hinders this connection, such as negativity or distractions.

Integral Yoga emphasizes that achieving this state of self-opening comes through three key qualities:

  • Faith: A deep belief in the possibility of transformation and connection to the divine.

  • Aspiration: The unwavering desire to experience this higher consciousness.

  • Surrender: Letting go of ego-driven limitations and opening yourself to the guidance of the divine.

Why This Approach?

Integral Yoga takes this approach because it recognizes that the journey to higher consciousness is a unique experience for each individual.  Prescribed practices might not resonate with everyone.  Instead, by cultivating these core qualities, practitioners can find their own path towards self-opening and connection with the divine.

The Integral Method: A Divine Collaboration

The Integral method of yoga proposes a profound approach to spiritual transformation. It goes beyond mere self-improvement techniques and invites a radical shift – a conscious and complete connection with the Divine.

Here's the core principle: we actively invite the Divine force to permeate our entire being. Imagine placing ourselves as an instrument, ready to be played by a divine musician. In this process, the Divine becomes both the seeker (Sadhaka) and the guide (Master) of the spiritual journey (Sadhana).

The "lower personality," representing our current limitations, becomes the canvas upon which a divine transformation unfolds. Through focused practice (Tapas), we hold the "Idea of the divine Nature" in our consciousness. This creates a powerful pressure, a yearning that attracts the transformative power of the Divine.

The Divine, all-knowing and all-powerful, descends upon our limitations. It progressively enlightens and energizes our entire being, replacing our limited human understanding and actions with the divine light and power.

The Integral Yoga: A Grand Transformation

The Integral Yoga doesn't merely seek to escape the limitations of our ordinary consciousness. It aspires for something far grander: a complete transformation. Here's the essence of this ambitious aim:

  • Bridging the Divine and Material: It seeks to bring down the supramental power of the divine consciousness into the realm of our ordinary minds, bodies, and lives filled with ignorance. 

  • Transformation, not Escape: The goal isn't to abandon our material existence, but to transform it. It's about infusing our daily lives with the divine light.

  • A Divine Life on Earth: Ultimately, Integral Yoga strives to manifest the Divine within the material world, creating a life guided by divine principles.

Embracing the Path: Commitment and Openness

Integral Yoga recognizes the significant commitment required to achieve this transformation. It's not a path for the faint of heart. Here are the key conditions for successful practice:

  • Total Earnestness: This path demands complete dedication and sincerity. One must be truly invested in the journey.

  • Ego Surrender: Integral Yoga requires relinquishing the limitations of our egoistic desires and finding our true selves within the Divine.

  • Unyielding Spirit: Levity or laxity have no place in this demanding practice. It requires constant focus and unwavering determination.

  • Constant Aspiration and Tapasya: A persistent yearning for the divine and a dedicated effort to concentrate the will (Tapasya) are crucial for success. The adverse powers within our lower nature are always ready to exploit any weakness or wavering resolve.

The Integral Yoga Method: A Call to the Divine Mother

Integral Yoga doesn't rely on rigid techniques for meditation. Instead, it emphasizes a more direct approach – connecting with the Divine Mother. Here's the core practice:

  • Concentration and Calling: Focus your attention, ideally within your heart center. In this state of concentration, call upon the presence and power of the Divine Mother. Invite her transformative power to take hold of your being.

  • Flexibility in Focus: While focusing on the heart is considered ideal, some may find it easier to concentrate in the head or between the eyebrows. Choose the point of focus that feels most natural for you.

  • Silence and Aspiration: As your mind quiets and your concentration deepens, allow your aspiration to connect with the Divine Mother to intensify. This creates a fertile ground for transformative experiences.

  • Faith as a Catalyst: The stronger your faith in the transformative power of this connection, the faster you are likely to experience results.

Beyond Self-Effort

Integral Yoga acknowledges the limitations of relying solely on one's own willpower.  The key lies in:

  • Establishing Contact: Cultivating a connection with the Divine Mother, opening yourself to her presence.

  • Receptivity: Developing a state of receptivity to the transformative power and influence of the Divine Mother.

Integral Yoga's Diverse Methods: Unveiling the Divine

Integral Yoga recognizes that individuals have unique preferences for approaching the Divine.  It offers three key methods to cultivate a connection with the Divine Mother:

1. The Path of Devotion and Surrender:

This path emphasizes a deep emotional connection with the Divine Mother. Here's the key:

  • Psychic Movement: This method focuses on cultivating a pure and constant emotional yearning for the Divine Mother. This emotional connection helps overcome ego-driven desires, ultimately enabling surrender.

2. The Path of Knowledge:

This path seeks to access the Divine through meditation and intellectual exploration. Here's the approach:

  • Meditation in the Head: This method involves focusing your attention in the head region. Through focused meditation, a state of peace and quietude descends from a higher consciousness. This higher consciousness gradually influences your entire being, potentially affecting thoughts, actions, and even your physical body.

3. The Path of Works:

This path focuses on integrating spiritual wisdom into daily actions. Here's how it works:

  • Separating the Inner and Outer Being: This approach emphasizes differentiating between your inner, silent being and your outer, active personality. By cultivating a detached, witnessing state within, you gain greater control over your outward actions.

  • Working for the Divine: Another approach within this path is dedicating your actions to the Divine Mother. Through consistent dedication and a shift in your inner intention, you gradually feel a Divine force guiding and influencing your activities.


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