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Cosmic Consciousness by Ali Nomad


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Oriental philosophies recognize four important methods of yoga.

Yoga is the word which signifies "uniting with God." From what has gone before in these pages, the reader will understand that unity with God means to us, the uncovering of the god-nature within or above, the human personality; it means the attainment and retainment in _fullness_ of cosmic consciousness. We do not believe that any one retains full and complete realization of cosmic consciousness and remains in the physical body. The numerous instances to which we allude in former chapters, are at best, but temporary flights into that state, which is the goal of the soul's pilgrimage, and the only means of escape from the "ceaseless round of births and deaths" which so weighed upon the heart of Gautama.

The paths of yoga then, are the methods by which the mind, in the personal self, is made to perceive the reality of the higher Self, and its relation to the Supreme Intelligence--The Absolute.

The various methods or paths are pointed out, but no one, nor all of these paths guarantees illumination as a _reward_ for diligence. That which is in the _heart_ of the disciple is the key that unlocks the door.

These paths are called:

_Karma Yoga; Raja Yoga; Gnani Yoga; Bhakti Yoga_.

_Karma Yoga_ is the path of cheerful submission to the conditions in which the disciple finds himself, believing that those conditions are his because of his needs, and in order that he may fulfill that which he has attracted to himself. The admonition "whatever thy hand finds to do that doest thou with all thy heart," sums up the lessons of the path of Karma Yoga. The urge to achieve: to do; to accomplish; to strive and attain, actuates those who have, whether with conscious intent, or because of a vague "inward urge," devoted their lives to taking an active part in the material or intellectual achievements of the race.

There are those who are blindly following (as far as their mental operations are concerned), the path of Karma Yoga; that is, they work without knowing why they work; they work because they are compelled to do so, as slaves of the law; these will work their way out of that necessity of fulfillment, in the course of time, even though they blindly follow the urge; but, if they could be made to work as masters of the conditions under which they labor, instead of as slaves to environment, they would find themselves at the end of that path. Karma Yoga would have been accomplished.

"Work as those work who are ambitious" but be not thou enslaved by the delusion of personal ambition--this is the password to liberation from Karma Yoga.

_Raja Yoga_ is the way of the strongly individualized _will_. "_Knowledge is power_" is the hope which encourages the disciple on the path of Raja Yoga. He seeks to master the personal self by meditation, by concentration of will; by self discipline and sacrifice. When the ego gains complete control over the mental faculties, so that the mind may be directed as the individual will suggests, the student has mastered the path of Raja Yoga. If his mastery is complete, he finds himself regarding his body as the instrument of the Self, and the body and its functions are under the guidance of the ego; the mind is the lever with which this Self raises the consciousness from the lower to the higher vibrations. The student who has mastered Raja Yoga can induce the trance state; control his dreams as well as his waking thoughts; he may learn to practice magic in its higher aspects, but unless he is extremely careful this power will tempt him to use his knowledge for selfish or unworthy purposes.