Mukhya Swami Swaroopananda’s ‘Yogas of the Geeta’ talk series in Brisbane, April 2017
In the current day, yoga is one of the most popular forms of physical exercise that is performed with the intention of gaining flexibility, losing weight and for select few for relaxing at the end of a stressful day at work. Those who attended the five-day series of free public talks on ‘Yogas of the Geeta’ by Swami Swaroopananda, the Global Head of Chinmaya Mission, were privy to the secrets of the infinite potential of yoga as described in the Bhagavad Geeta. This knowledge has been passed down to us by the great sages of the yore, and its indisputable logic was revealed to us by Swamiji in his witty, rational and inspiring manner.
In his talks, Swamiji described the true meaning of yoga, the ways in which one should perform yoga and the benefits of performing yoga as expounded in the Bhagavad Geeta. Briefly, yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word ‘yuj’, which means to unite. Yoga is that practice through which one unites and creates harmony and integrity between the body, mind and the intellect. This can be achieved through various practices including those of karma-yoga (performing action detached from stress and anxiety of the results), jnana-yoga (being convinced in the knowledge about the true nature of man) and bhakthi-yoga (having love for all), which were elaborated upon in detail by Swamiji. Through such a union of the body, mind and intellect, where the mind is calm, pure and single pointed and the intellect is convinced in the knowledge of the true nature of the Supreme Infinite, yoga is that which ultimately unites the Atman (Soul) in us with the Paramatman (Supreme Infinite). Then, by referencing verse 5 of chapter 6 of the Bhagvad Geeta, Swamiji explained that these practices are possible only if the spiritual seeker is able to “Lift himself by himself and does not allow himself to lower himself”.
On the last day of the talks, Swamiji guided the audience through meditation as he taught us the yoga of performing our actions with love. The audience was left awed, empowered and motivated by this knowledge and the true potential of yoga and promised Swamiji that their actions henceforth would be performed with devotion in the true spirit of yoga.