Early teachings of Sri Swamiji

Rishikesh, March 25, 1956

Keep a spiritual diary every day. This will be most helpful for your own self-reflection and also I can follow your daily progress.

Get up at 4 or 5 am. Do japa, dhyana and asana; then go to your office. Fulfil the office duties with cheerfulness, peace, love, inspiration and selflessness. Again at night do japa, kirtan and satsang. Think over how you passed the whole day and try to make better resolves. These are the fundamental principles of keeping a diary.

Doubts do arise in every mind. Why did God make this world? What is the use of yogic sadhana when even a leaf can’t move without his orders? If everybody is God, what is good or bad then? All these doubts are such that we have no concern with them. If there is transmigration or not, how are we concerned? We have just to throw impurities out of ourselves. We have to sublimate lower impulses into higher missions. We have to fill ourselves with divine virtues.

So, my child, try to make your life eternally divine through the process of sadhana. Whenever you get some time, do go to satsangs and gradually learn the art of assimilating the gifts of satsang. Encourage your friends and neighbours to tread the path of truth and lead a divine life. Do read yogic and vedantic literature and reflect over what you have read. Do surya namaskara. Don’t worry about your eyesight. It is enough to have the eye of intuition.

I am sure you will walk on the path of spiritual sadhana and lead a divine life. Infinite blessings for your success.

Never think of renouncing your home and avocation and going anywhere, even if anyone tells you a million times. Thy house is a tirtha, thy body is a mandir, thy soul is thy devata and thou art his pujarin.

I am sure that you must be carrying on your sadhana enthusiastically. There is no noise in the world; there is no peace in the Himalayas! Both are within you. You can have darshan of God if you can make your mind desireless. It is impossible to have his darshan even in the Himalayas if you don’t have faith in God and practical interest in sadhana. Therefore, the essential thing is to correct the mind and keep on removing unnecessary thoughts. While it is true, my child, that one can have darshan of God even at home, it is also a fact that one can find peace in the world as well.

Renunciation of society or sannyasa is not as important for spiritual life as brahmacharya, service, dhyana and asanas. Start sadhana at 4 am daily. Practice yogasanas for 10–15 minutes after answering the calls of nature and taking a wash or a bath. Then do japa and Practice meditation on your Ishta. Japa and meditation may be practiced at night also before going to bed. Besides all these, realize that the domestic work and studies are also Ishwara sadhanas provided they are done with full concentration, love, inspiration and with the bhava of his worship.

I am confident that you will put into practice what Satyam has hitherto told you. Let me know your progress by sending your spiritual diary to me once every month.

—Letter to Vishwaprem, first published in Steps to Yoga