Destruction of ego and elimination of ahamkara
By Sri Sharavana Baba | Published: 23rd May 2013 11:17 AM |
In reality (by that it is meant from an experiential point of view), they are one and the same. For a person inclined to introspection, the path of jnana-yoga or wisdom is recommended.
The key to such a path is atman- vichara or self-enquiry. For those who find comfort from placing the comfort of others before their own, the path of karma-yoga is advised.
Seekers who experience unblemished bliss in worshipping their deities are encouraged to follow the path of bhakti-yoga, and those who are easily inclined to quiet contemplation, the path of raja-yoga or meditation is suggested.
There are numerous other paths as well and some of these include shakti worship or worship of the Divine Mother, Tantra, Tamil Yoga Siddhantam and many others. But it is said that in the Kali Yoga, the path of devotion is perhaps the easiest path to God.
The aim of all paths lies in the accomplishment of a common goal: destruction of the ego or the elimination of ahamkara and mamkara.
It is maya that causes the Universal Self to identify itself with the limited human body, and so long as this identification is not decisively ruptured, the individual will continue to remain under its sway. Lord Krishna declares in the Bhagavad Gita that nature has endowed all individuals with the three gunas (attributes) including sattva (purity), rajas (activity) and tamas (sloth and indolence). No individual can escape these three alternating states of pure well-being, vigorous activity and indolence which occur in our lives as a daily experience.
A spiritual seeker will attempt to cling to the sattvic or pure state of well-being. Our real essence or the truth of who we are is said to be covered by five sheaths or layers, and it is important to penetrate these sheaths to arrive at the reality of who we are. These sheaths are said to correspond to the five elements and these in turn are said to correspond to five out of the seven yogic chakras (energy centers of the subtle body). The first of these five layers include the annamaya kosha, representing the earth element through food that symbolises the muladhara chakra located in the perineum. The second is the pranamaya kosha, representing the water element through vital breath that symbolises the svadhishthana chakra located behind the pubic region.
The third is the manamaya kosha, representing the fire element through the mind that symbolises the manipura chakra located behind the navel. The fourth is the vijnanamaya kosha, representing the air element through the intellect that symbolises the anahata chakra located behind the heart.
The article is taken from the book
The Global Mission of Sadguru Sri Sharavana Baba