What Swami Vivekananda thought about yoga


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All problems, according to Swami Vivekananda, can be solved by imparting right education. Problems cannot be solved on racial, religious, national or narrow grounds but have to cover the whole of humanity. Holistic education will generate compassion for all sentient beings as extension of self and also awaken aspiration for the highest wisdom. The common error in all ethical systems has been the failure of teaching the means by which man could refrain from doing evil under instinctive compulsion. The solution: controlling our nature through the path of yoga. With this end in view, Swamiji thought of a universal way acceptable to all: yoga. To the worker, it is a union between man and whole of humanity, to the mystic, between his higher and lower selves, to the lover, a union between himself and God of love, to the philosopher, it is a union of all existence. Swamiji asserted that each soul is potentially divine with omnipotence and omniscience, awaiting manifestation. We can realise the same through selfless service, assimilation of wisdom through deeper introspection, devotion to the Almighty or some special psychophysical practice.

To Swamiji, selfless service was a unique path for Self-realisation. Liberation is a matter of expansion of the self spread over the entire universe. The essential divinity and, thereby, unity of all creatures has to be realised through unconditional love for all, wise detachment and extension of self through serving humanity beyond the dogmas and sectarian faith.

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