In all the brou-ha-ha about Yoga and its efficacy, I think many of us have forgotten the true essence of yoga that is about the mental and spiritual angle. We all must remember that yoga is not just physical exercise but a system that seeks to make us better in all respects.
Ahimsa (cultivating non violence)
When we refuse to allow violence to reside in us, even in thought, our soul shall indeed bloom, unfettered by negativity.
Satya (sticking to truth)
Life does get simpler and uncomplicated when we stick to the truth
Asteya (never stealing)
This is not just actual stealing but acts of minor or major embezzlement like not buying tickets when we ought to.
Brahmacharya (being disciplined)
This is not celibacy as it is often understood but discipline. He who revels in Brahman is the Sanskrit etymology of this term and naturally such a person is in full control of his senses. The choice of whether we make our senses our masters or slaves entirely depends on us.
Aparigraha (not craving for material possession)
Today, the market is constantly offering new products and gizmos. Do we, however, need any of this? Truly, multiplication of wants is one of the malaises of the times we live in and this principle is more relevant than ever to retain our sanity, if nothing else.
Shareera Shrama (doing physical labour)
The contribution of physical labour in keeping the ego under check and fostering humility has been emphasized by many masters, over the years. Even if the nature of our job is not oriented in this direction, we could take up an activity that involves physical exertion
Aswada (controlling one’s palate)
Eat to nourish your body, not to please your tongue. This will pay off rich dividends in making us calmer, fitter, healthier and happier.
Sarvatra Bhaya Varjana (remaining fearless)
Be truthful and fearless in expressing your opinion. This will do wonders for our self-esteem and the ultimate victory will be yours.
Sarva Dharma Samanatva (respecting all faiths)
Take a stand on religious conflict without looking the other way, whether or not it is your faith that is being attacked. .
Swadeshi (using locally made goods)
This helps us connect with our own surroundings and helps the society progress too.
Sparsha Bhavana (shunning untouchability)
Biases are the worst thing that can happen to us and by extension, to the nation. Let us shun all biases, whether it is against another caste, creed, nationality, region, economic background, religion, race or even against people with certain preferences such as gays, lesbians, ailments such as AIDS or leprosy or professions such as bar dancers or sex workers.
By following all the above principles we shall indeed create a better life for ourselves that will create a better world too, slowly but steadily.
This may take a while but the most important aspect would be that we would be moving in the direction.