Yoga has come to mean a lot of things, so it’s no wonder people get confused with the question: “How to live like a yogi?”
There is, however, one key point, that differentiates a yogi from a non-yogi.
Technically the term for a non-yogi is karmi, which means that person who practices karma. Karma means action in Sanskrit, but here the term refers to the Law of Karma, or in other words, to act in such a way as to merit a future material reaction.
From the yoga perspective, a future material reaction is always a problem. Normally people think that a future positive reaction is good and a future negative reaction is bad. But this kind of thinking ignores our true nature, as well as the implications involved in getting any kind of material reaction. Our true nature is non-material – we’re spiritual souls. The implication involved is huge: we have to be in a material body to receive the reaction. Good or bad karma is just plain bad for the soul, who could otherwise be in its natural habitat – the transcendental realm, free of a material body.
Imagine you’re in prison, but you’ve done your time. You’re free to leave. However, you’ve become attached to the cafeteria food and you know next Wednesday is lasagna day. So, you say, “I want that lasagna lunch, so I’m not leaving. Please let me stay”. They then let you stay a few more days. But by the time lasagna day comes, you remember that Saturdays they serve your favorite pudding for desert, so you say, “Hey, I want to have more of that pudding!” So, you have to stay a little longer in prison for it. And on and on – you never get to leave the prison, because you always desire another thing in the future which requires you stay in prison to enjoy it. Sound stupid? Well, that’s what we’re doing.
Any time you desire anything in the future, you’re automatically assigning yourself to extra days in the material world, in a material body. It’s the fine print we forget to read. It’s obvious, but we become oblivious to this simple fact: you have to be in the material world to enjoy something in the material world. And if you run out of time in the current body, no problem! You’ll get a new one provided to you free of charge. Thus, we get stuck in the cycle of birth and death – the samsara.
So, the key, crucial, determining aspect of living like a yogi is to NOT desire future pleasures or situations and, instead, to focus your mind entirely in the here and now, on the action being performed. Sounds difficult at first, but the you’ll experience immediate benefits in terms of wellbeing, what to speak of finally working your way out of the prison of material existence.
In my book, soon to be published, “The 3T Path”, you can learn in detail how this is done and the multiple practical advantages of this yogic mindset.
Check out my video on this key point!