Selected Inspirational Quotes of Swami Kriplavananda

“I know about four, five thousand words in English. I don’t know the spelling, but I have lived among the educated people from the very childhood and so I have heard many words and I know the meanings.”

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“You can bathe the body, but the mind is also impure. With what water can you bathe the mind? Chanting God’s name is the water to use for cleaning the mind.”

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“The mind is a big storehouse of thoughts. Even if you desire to empty that storehouse, you cannot do so. Instead of trying to empty it, think new pure thoughts, and the old impure thoughts will vacate.”

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“The universe is very vast. There is a great possibility there exists less of what you like and more of what you dislike. It is not necessarily true that what seems to be pleasant is good, and what seems to be unpleasant is bad.”

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“Temples are not the madhouses of people who believe a stone image to be God. Temples are schools of humanity, abodes of peace, lands of compromise and purification, centers of hope and centers of inspiration and concentration.”

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“Yogic experiences should be regarded as the mercy of the Lord and the grace of the Master.”

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“Study of the scriptures, devotion, and the execution of good works form the foundation of yoga. They count as the first step.”

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“Love all beings, do not hate anyone.”

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“Speak the truth pleasantly without causing upset to the listener. Talk less and keep silent where the situation demands.”

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“The meaning of yoga is samadhi”

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“Truth is only one but the ways of realizing it are many.”

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“When a train of problems comes to me, I will regard it as God’s grace.”

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“The guru game isn’t a good game. Don’t play it!”

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“Yoga is known as Brahmavidya (knowledge of the supreme spirit). This great knowledge is ancient and extremely difficult to attain. For its accomplishment, many lifetimes are required. If it were evaluated objectively, it would be defined as the supreme religion, the global religion, the universal religion, the human religion or the eternal religion.”

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“In India, yoga is simply called yoga, free of any adjective, because everyone knows the word encompasses all the branches of yoga: Bhakti yoga, jnana yoga, karma yoga, raja yoga, laya yoga, mantra yoga, and yoga. All of these branches are simply called yoga.

And yet kundalini yoga is the root of them all, because everything that happens in kundalini yoga comes to the yogi automatically, free of the sadhaka’s own will, driven by the kundalini power. The yogi feels that whatever happens in sadhana comes from God: all the sounds, all the mantras, all the postures, all the mudras, all the pranayamas, all the various ways to meditate, and so forth. All of these are kundalini driven experiences and they become the various types of yoga.”

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“A unique aspect of yoga sadhana is that the wholehearted practice of any one technique spontaneously elicits the entire spectrum of yogic techniques in a natural way. As a result, the initial stages of yoga prepare the groundwork for the more advanced stages.

The great unifying factor, however, is self-study, or swadhyay. Self-study helps to integrate knowledge, action, and love. To attain knowledge, you must seek refuge in the scriptures. To accomplish action, you must seek refuge in the body, and to find love seek refuge in God.”

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“Self-analysis and self-observation are the keys to progress on the spiritual path. If you do not practice self-observation your decisions will not be the right ones, your conclusions will not be true. You cannot come to accurate self-observation and analysis immediately. It is a gradual process. Peace of mind, complete honesty, and objectivity are essential. When you are able to observe everything that happens in your life with keen awareness and draw inspiration from each action, then you will really be able to grow.

You must constantly check: have you really given up those actions that produce pain and suffering and are you performing only those actions that will bring you true happiness and peace? Next, check the storehouse of your love and see if your love for God has increased even just a little bit. When you observe keenly and correctly you will find sure inner guidance.”

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“The seeker who wants to peacefully pursue the course of sadhana should give up violence, non-truthfulness, stealing, promiscuity, hoarding, jealousy, impatience, cruelty, overeating and other impurities. All these must be avoided and abandoned or there will always be distractions and disturbances in performing sadhana.”

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“Yama and niyama (restraints and observances) are aids to purification. They help to make the sadhana simpler. If they are neglected, many hurdles crop up during sadhana and it takes a very long time to up-root these evils. To save time and energy, it is necessary that one must resort to yama and niyama.”

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“The five yamas are: non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, brahmacharya and non-attachment. The five niyamas are: purity, contentment, study of the self, tapas (austerity) and surrender to God. The yamas and niyamas are the first two components of yoga’s eight integral components which are: yamas, niyamas, asanas, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi. Yoga sadhana can only be performed within the protective fortress of the yamas and niyamas. Without this foundation, the seeker is condemned to endless disturbances.”

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“Yoga is like a temple comprised of eight floors. Yama and niyama constitute the basement and ground floor, while asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana and dhyana constitute the first, second, third, fourth and fifth floors respectively. Savikalpa samadhi is the sixth floor and nirvikalpa samadhi is the seventh floor.

Sadhakas with worldly desires cannot reach the sixth and seventh floors because their desires do not permit them to make progress. Sages lead them towards these floors only to encourage them to make all possible efforts to progress further on the path of yoga.”

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“Human efforts are of four types since there are four ends or objectives of life: Artha (wealth), kama (desire), dharma (religion), and moksha (liberation). The first two drag one towards worldly things while the last two lead one towards God. The first two result in one’s downfall and ignorance whereas the last two culminate in one’s upliftment and knowledge.”

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“There are countless asanas and mudras. Yet the ancient teachers have given predominance to only ten. They are: mulabandha, uddiyanabandha, jalandharbandha, mahamudra, mahavedha, mahabandha, viparitakarani, vajroli, shakticalana and khechari. These ten mudras are the immortal experiences of kriya yoga. A true yogi will certainly realize them through proper yoga sadhana.”

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“The knowledge that is acquired by the yogi comes from beyond the senses. Knowledge that is acquired through the five senses is very ordinary knowledge, but the knowledge acquired beyond the senses is also beyond the ordinary type of knowledge. It is a higher knowledge – the real knowledge. In order to understand it, a sadhaka must stop externalizing his energy and focus within. This inner focus can be called meditation.”

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“Meditation is the inner journey, the spiritual journey, the journey towards the Absolute or the journey of divine love.”

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“To withdraw the mind from various objects or activities, and to bring it to one object or activity and make it concentrated is known as meditation.”

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“Even though you practice regularly, it is not always possible to achieve the same quality of meditation. Sometimes the body, and more often the mind, creates obstructions. On such occasions find out the cause of the trouble to insure that it does not happen again.”

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“Since meditation offers relaxation, it helps to remove all tensions, stresses and strains of the mind. A ray of hope shines in the despairing mind and it becomes tolerant and restrained. In short, it can be said that the mind obtains fresh vigor or new life through the practice of meditation.”

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“Unfortunately, you cannot do away with mental unrest by meditating for a day or a month; you must make regular and untiring efforts for many years. As the sadhaka (one who practices meditation) goes on eliminating and removing the causes of mental unrest, states of mental peace are generated. When the sadhaka attains higher states of meditation, streams of peace start flowing into the sadhaka’s mind, generating such qualities as modesty, enthusiasm, courage and patience. Subsequently the sadhaka becomes addicted to meditation.”

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“Of the three paths – Jnana (knowledge), karma (action), or bhakti (devotion), a sadhaka should choose one which suits one’s nature. Not one of these paths is superior or inferior to the others. It is sheer ignorance to consider one’s own path to be superior and those of others to be inferior.”

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“Whether the sadhaka wants to follow the path of jnana (knowledge), or the path of karma (action), the sadhaka must pass through the stage of action. Karma yoga is the base of all yogas. It is the first step and yoga of knowledge is the second step.”

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“Without love, neither jnana yoga nor karma yoga can be fruitful. Love is the soul of yoga.”

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“Jnana yoga is understanding, bhakti yoga is love, and karma yoga is work done without attachment. The combination of these three is true yoga.”

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“The path of yoga is so completely full of innumerable difficulties that the sadhaka who cannot fight against those difficulties with enthusiasm, faith, patience, and courage will never tread the yogic path.”

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“Has any woman ever had a child without experiencing the pain of delivery? No. But women, being so much in love with having children, do not give such importance to their own suffering. They do not run away from the pain of delivering a child. In the same way, in order to attain self-realization, the devotee is always ready to suffer.”

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“Suffering that arises from devotion is not suffering, it is tapasya (austerity).”

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“Devotion is fearlessness, devotion is suffering. If you are afraid of suffering, forget about devotion.”

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“On the yogic path, various experiences occur which help increase the sadhaka’s faith, courage, knowledge, enthusiasm, devotion to his Guru, devotion to yoga, and finally his or her devotion to God. Initially, the sadhaka gains an understanding of the lower chakras; later the understanding of the middle; and finally understanding of the higher chakras unfolds. Besides this, the understanding or various asanas (postures), mudras (gestures), pranayama (breath control), pratyahara (withdrawal from sense objects) and jyoti darshana (vision of divine light) is accessible through experience. Thus the practice of yoga itself unfolds the knowledge of more advanced states of yoga.”

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“As you may gather, love is my most favorite principle, and dedication is the core of love. Whoever commits himself to developing just one genuine life-building principle receives the benefit of the rest.

Love is the foremost principle and sadhana is second. Knowledge, perseverance, punctuality, patience and conservation of energy combine to form the third set of principles for life development.

The highest form of non-violence is love. Whenever we speak sweetly and without selfishness we’re practicing non-violence. The lowest form of violence is jealousy or hatred. Violence is rooted in what we don’t like or wish were different. When that experience of not liking expands, it becomes jealousy or hatred. Then fighting and conflict arise in our lives.

Find out what it is you don’t like and make sure it doesn’t grow stronger. For as your dislike increases, your mind becomes more and more restless. Instead, determine that your life will be heavenly as you increase the presence of love. Say to yourself, “I want to be happy and I want others to live happily.”

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“If you are followers of truth, try to establish love in your home. Try to love one another and server one another. Life is difficult. We need help and this should start in the family. If you can do that much, you will be followers of Sanatan Dharma.”

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“Sanatan Dharma means the indestructible religion, that which is true forever. Its main principle is: The entire world is one family. Everything is connected. We live in a family, in a town, in a country, in a hemisphere, on a planet, in a galaxy, in a universe, and so forth. We’re expected to spread our love to everyone and everything. The actions of the great masters are always in reference to the entire world as one family. This is the religion I teach. It’s profound and worth studying. I can’t explain to you in one sitting like this, but it’s ancient, timeless.”

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Question—Is it necessary to be a renunciate to achieve liberation? “No, it’s not necessary. To be a renunciate is to change your mind, not your clothes (to dress as a swami). My guru told me a beautiful sentence. “Your boat should be in the water, but the water shouldn’t be in your boat.” In other words you should be in the world, but the world should not be in you, in your mind. A person can retire to the forest, but if his mind isn’t pure, he takes the world with him. What good is his renunciation life, then? He’s still a worldly person, though he’s dressed like a swami. A true renunciate belongs to God. He decreases vices and increases virtues. You can do that anywhere, dressed any way you like.”

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“Guidance From My Own Guru

I will give you, in short, the guidance my beloved Guru gave to me.

  1. Accept that God exists and there is only one God
  2. Practice yama and niyama to the best of your ability.
  3. Pray to God and repeat mantra and japa.
  4. Speak lovingly, but keep silent as much as possible
  5. Eat moderately, one nourishing meal a day. Fast one day a week.
  6. Do asana, pranayama, and meditation according to your capacity.
  7. Study the scriptures, especially the books written by your guru.
  8. Keep the company of saints.
  9. Practice right action, sensual restraint, self-analysis, and faithfully perform your duties.

May God bless us all. May our spiritual journey together be successful. My blessings to you. My constant Jai Bhagwan.

Your dear Bapuji”

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