1982, Opening Speech at the International Yoga Teacher's Convention

Swami Satyananda Saraswati, 15 November 1982, Puerto Rico

Hari Om

This is an important function for me as I am one of the founders of the International Yoga Teachers Association of Australia, sharing this task with Swami Venkateshananda and Roma Blair. It was a humble beginning in 1968. During these years, the association has done a lot of good work throughout the world.

Responsibility of yoga

When I was invited here by Amy Moya I was happy because it is after many years that I am able to address the members of the association. I am standing here to express my good wishes to all of you. However, I have only one thing in my mind about yoga.

I don't see yoga as anything else but a process of improving the quality of the body, mind and emotions. The moment yoga transgresses the limit of its responsibility and obligation, it will become a religion. We have dozens of them and don't want another one. As yoga teachers we have to be careful about it and not prepare and manufacture prophets.

New teachers should have a scientific approach to yoga which is able to transform the quality of the body, mind and emotions in them and in their students.

Bringing peace

If one adds religion after religion, there won't be any peace on this earth. In fact, religions have failed in the past and betrayed history. If peace has to come on this planet, it will not come through a philosophy, but through man. Three billion restless souls cannot bring peace to humankind, definitely not. At least one billion people must understand how to bring peace into the framework of their personality.

Yoga has to accomplish that. If it cannot, we must reject it and find another method. Yoga is not an end, it is a means. When yoga becomes the end, it is going to become a religion and I am going to be a prophet.

With this note of warning I wish good luck to the convention.

Hari Om Tat Sat