RAJA YOGA

Raja Yoga (Sanskrit)  Royal union; more generally, the balance of all the faculties 

 physical, mental, moral, and spiritual. Raja yoga is a true system of developing psychic, intellectual, and spiritual powers and union with one’s higher self, the inner divine source of all our being.

This royal union with the self within must be attained by self-directed evolution. Union with this inner divinity is the source of all human genius and inspiration. Man increases his receptivity to the divine powers in his inmost being by cooperating with nature on its spiritual even more than its physical and astral planes, and by intellectual and spiritual aspiration combined with a fervent love for all beings.

The objective of the Yoga school is attaining union or at-one-ness with the divine-spiritual essence within which is virtually identical with the spiritual essence or Logos of the universe. True yoga is genuine psychology based on a complete philosophical understanding of the entire inner human constitution.

The higher branches of Yoga, however, such as the Raja-Yoga and Jnana-Yoga, implying strict spiritual and intellectual discipline combined with a fervid love for all beings, are perfectly safe.

STAGES

Yama(Sanskrit) (restraint, forbearance)[from the verbal root yam to subdue, control]A curb, rein, bridle; hence the act of curbing, suppression, self-control, self-restraint. No hurry, truthfulness, no covetousness, chastity, not receiving anything from another. The idea here is that when a man receives a gift from another, his heart becomes Impure, he becomes low, he loses his independence, becomes bound and attached. the companyThere is no happiness higher than what a man obtains by he attitude obtains by this attitude of non-offensiveness, to all creation. He

Niyama (Sanskrit)[from ni the verbal root yam to hold back, curb] Regular habits including restraint of the mind by meditation and religious observances of various kinds, such as watchings, fastings, prayings, penances, etc.

Asana (Sanskrit)[from the verbal root as to sit quietly]; postures of various kinds;: “Providing that the position of the body be comfortable so that the mind is least distracted, genuine meditation and spiritual and actual introspection can be readily and successfully attained by any earnest student without the slightest attention being paid to these various postures. The only thing to understand is leaving the body free, holding the chest, shoulders and head atraight.

Pranayama(Sanskrit) [from prāṇa breath + āyāma restraining, stopping] - various methods of regulating the breath. Pranayama, when actually practiced according to the exoteric rules, is a very different thing from the excellent and common sense advice given by doctors to breathe deeply, and to fill the lungs with fresh air. Pranayama should never be practiced by anyone unless under the guidance of initiated teachers, for the adepts use it only in rarest cases for certain pupils who for karmic reasons can be helped in this unusual and extraordinary way.

Pratyahara (Sanskrit)[from ā-prati-hṛ to bring back, recover, withdraw, reabsorb - the withdrawal of the consciousness from sensual or sensuous concerns, or from external objects, and the placing of the consciousness in the spiritual monad of the human constitution. Bringing the organs under control of the will.

Dharana (Sanskrit; [from the verbal root dhṛ to hold, carry, maintain, resolve] (firmness, steadiness, resolution).  Intense concentration of the mind when directed to one interior object,  for example the head or the heart. accompanied by complete abstraction from everything pertaining to the external Universe, or the world of the Senses. Holding the mind on an object of thought in an effort to unite the human with the divine within, passing into and merging with the Seventh sense, the most spiritual.

Dhyana(Sanskrit) (dhyai to meditate, contemplate) Profound spiritual mediation on the divinity within, abstract contemplation or meditation freed from exterior distractions;

Samadhi (Sanskrit) Samādhi [from sam with, together + ā towards + the verbal root dhā to place, bring] Complete collection of the consciousness and its faculties into union with the monadic essence. Self-conscious union with the spiritual monad by intense and profound spiritual contemplation or meditation. It implies “the complete abstraction of the percipient consciousness from all worldly, or exterior, or even mental concerns or attributes, and its . . . becoming the pure unadulterate, undilute super-consciousness of the god within.Samadhi can be attained at any time by the initiate without conscious recourse to the other phases or practices of Yoga enumerated in Oriental works. The seeker on attaining samadhi becomes practically omniscient for his solar universe because his consciousness is functioning in the cosmic spiritual and causal worlds.