Q&A on ‘Spirituality in Today’s Times’

A special Satsang was held on Sunday, 20th July, 2014 in memory of Dr. Paranjali J. Yogendra, son of Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra. The topic of the English Satsang was ‘Spirituality in Today’s Times.’

Following is the transcript of the Q & A between the audience and Smt. Hansaji J. Yogendra.

Listen to the audio:

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Q. What is the the definition of spirituality in yoga?
Dr. J: Simplicity and hard work.
Smt. H: And in whatever work you do, keep in mind that you are doing the work of God, or that you are not the doer, you are just an instrument in doing the job. This body, mind and intelligence are used to do the work. So the ‘Me’ and ‘Mine’ and ‘I did’ should go, then only can God be experienced.

Q. We do good things in a happy way, yet from within, we want a word of appreciation. Will we ever be able to get spiritual?

Dr. J: Not if I say so.
Smt. H: Not at all. This want has to go. A person should uplift himself, a person should have respect for himself. He should see God within and everywhere. So the wants and expectations should go. As long as that remains, we can’t grow spiritually.

Q. We say that to excel in any area with focus and concentration is yoga. Is spirituality a part of yoga philosophy?
Dr. J: I think you have not understood the whole talk.
Smt. H: How can you separate yoga from spirituality. Yoga tells you a very systematic, scientific path to reach to the highest. Everything in yoga has to be spiritual. Doing Asanas and Pranayamas also helps you to grow spiritually.

Q. We are late for a programme. We blame our partner or circumstances. How to get spiritual in such small moments of life?
Dr. J: Don’t ask questions.
Smt. H: Acceptance – we are late, now what next? Learning to live in present, not blaming anybody for getting late, organizing in such a way that next time we should not be late, all that is a progressive path.

Q. I find my lifestyle very irregular w.r.t. sleep, wake cycle, eating habits, working time, etc. How to regularize my timings and habits?
Dr. J: Just follow what was being said in the talk, that will help you.
Smt. H: Begin with something simple. You want to get up early, then sleep early. Or you want to do some Asanas, little bit awareness about some Asanas; if time may not be there, you can still take just one long breath. When you are waiting for the lift, you can stretch your arms up. Something could be done. Awareness has to be there and things will fall into place. For spirituality, for yoga you don’t need a separate time. Your life by itself should be lived in such a way that that becomes yoga. Yoga has to be lived.

Q. I am married but I have not disclosed my identity to anyone because soon, I’m planning for a divorce. Is this right?
Dr. J: You should not ask us also.
Smt. H: Well, this is very clear. You are deciding for yourself. You are ‘planning’ for divorce. A person plans for divorce? That I’m hearing for the first time. A person should try not to have divorce, plan not to have divorce, it should be the other way round. Whatever it is, what is the question we don’t know. The point is learn to listen to wise people, learn to find out some person who can understand your situation and give you some direction which you should follow. Somewhere you have to understand that life cannot be lived like this – marry and then divorce. You see, we are not senseless people. We are very sensitive, palpable personalities, very impressionable personalities. You will suffer if you don’t give importance to your own mind and your own emotions and self. So take the advice of wise people and follow the path of not breaking but creatively making and moving ahead if possible. If it is wrong, then even the wise person will say go ahead and separate.

Q. If there is too much negativity around a person, how can he keep his mind open to learning?
Dr. J: See, this statement is wrong. Why keep on telling about one’s negativity? Just go on acting.
Smt. H: Once the mind is negative, it has to calm down. If you are seeing negativity around, you are in a Tamasic state. So first remove that Tamasic state. So eat the right type of food, sleep early, see that you read something good which would bring some joy in your personality If nothing else, read some jokes so that you can laugh and giggle. Use your memory for remembering something good. Jokes, some good sayings, some good shlokas. If you use your memory to remember those good things, the mind would get into a new way of function. So once the mind is less negative or is free from negativity, then think on how to go about in life. Positivity doesn’t come suddenly. Yous state has to become positive. For that, the body and mind should be healthy in the beginning. Once you know how to remain positive, the things are different. The body may have some problems, but the mind will remain positive.

Q. My friend’s wife, who suffers from cancer, is dying. How can spirituality help him?
Dr. J: You should not come to the loud speaker and announce it.
Smt. H: Death is something we have to just accept. You cannot change it. You have to accept and move ahead in life. That is what today’s day is for also. Your own people are no more with you. Now you don’t sit and cry for that. You know that nothing gets destroyed. Understand the science thoroughly well. Even science says that energy remains constant. Everything just changes its name and form. So even spirituality says the same thing. Your body changes, your soul is not destroyed at all. So when this is the case, you should know that anybody who was with you is going to be with you, although physically he may not be there, his body has changed. So there is no question of a loss. It is a question of accepting this change quickly. We have to know that that person is not going to be there anymore in this form. So once a person is deep down in philosophy, in faith, one does not get into negativity.


Satsang is an open meeting held every Sunday from 9:30 to 10:30 am at The Yoga Institute, Santacruz East, Mumbai. It involves an interesting presentation to the public, made by the students of the Teacher Training Course. Each week, a new presentation of a Yogic concept is made in a simple way through skits and decoration for the general public, followed by a short speech from our Gurus, Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra.

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