Skip to main content

Yama and Niyama

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionSend by emailSend by email

Yama

(i) Ahim'sa': Not to inflict pain or hurt on anybody by thought, word or action, is Ahim'sa'.

(ii) Satya: The benevolent use of mind and words is Satya.

(iii) Asteya: To renounce the desire to acquire or retain the wealth of others is Asteya. Asteya means " non-stealing."

(iv) Brahmacarya: To keep the mind always absorbed in Brahma is Brahmacarya.

(v) Aparigraha: To renounce everything excepting the necessities for the maintenance of the body is known as Aparigraha.

Niyama

(i) Shaoca is of two kinds -- purity of the body and of the mind. The methods for mental purity are kindliness towards all creatures, charity, working for the welfare of others and being dutiful.

(ii) Santos'a Contentment with things received unasked-for is santos'a. It is essential to try to be cheerful always.

(iii) Tapah: To undergo physical hardship to attain the objective is known as Tapah. Upava'sa (fasting), serving the guru (preceptor), serving father and mother, and the four types of yajina, namely. pitr yajina, nr yajina, bhu'ta yajina and adhya'tma yajina (service to ancestors, to humanity, to lower beings and to Consciousness), are the other limbs of tapah. For students, study is the main tapah.

(iv) Sva'dhya'ya: The study, with proper understanding, of scriptures and philosophical books is sva'dhya'ya. The philosophical books and scriptures of Ananda Marga are A'nanda Su'tram and Subha's'ita Sam'graha (all parts), respectively. Sva'dhya'ya is also done by attending dharmacakra (group meditation) regularly and having satsaunga (spiritual company), but this kind of sva'dhya'ya is intended only for those who are not capable of studying in the above manner.

(v) Iishvara pran'idha'na: This is to have firm faith in Iishvara (the Cosmic Controller) in pleasure and pain, prosperity and adversity, and to think of oneself as the instrument, and not the wielder of the instrument, in all the affairs of life.