Yoga means karma yoga, bhakti yoga, raja yoga and jnana yoga. Each yoga has something to complete in your life.
Bhakti yoga channelizes your emotions. It should be practised before raja yoga or with raja yoga. Karma yoga helps you to balance the impurities of mind, the distractions of mind. If you practise the yogas systematically, then you will never come across the problems created by the mind and emotions in your practices of meditation.
We face the mind in meditation because we have not treated the mind through bhakti yoga and karma yoga. In yoga, meditation is considered to be the highest point, but still I think that in the modern countries meditation is overemphasized and incorrectly emphasized. Meditation is a very high stage and therefore it needs a lot of preparation. If you do not practise the other forms of yoga, then you will have to face difficulties in meditation.
Karma yoga is the philosophy of your relationship with life. What is your relationship with everything around you and what should be your attitude to your work, family, children, problems, enemies and everything else? How should you react in success and failure, love and hatred, victory and defeat? This is very important. Karma yoga is the philosophy which fixes your relationship with everything else in the world in such a way that nothing disturbs your mind at any time, no matter what has happened to you.
In the same way, bhakti yoga is so important that without it you cannot properly balance your emotions. Therefore, we have to find out who to love, who can accept all our love without reacting in a negative manner. Most problems which people suffer from today are the problems caused by love or the absence of love. Therefore, it is as necessary to know how to train your emotions, as it is to train your mind. Untrained mind, untrained emotions and untrained drivers cause accidents. Therefore, in bhakti yoga the emotions are channelized to divinity, in the form of God, a deity or guru. If I love someone, he should not exploit me. If he will not exploit me, I will love him more and more. God does not exploit his devotee. In the same way, guru also should not exploit his devotee.
When you have practised karma yoga and bhakti yoga, and then you practise raja yoga, the mind automatically becomes quiet. It is because we do not practise bhakti yoga and karma yoga that there are emotional and mental problems in meditation. You must say, “Okay, let them come.” Don’t stop them, because stopping them will be the greatest disaster.
Published in Satyananda Yoga in Italy, Volume 1