ABHAYA – Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA.
Priya Yoga Mitra,
Hari: Om !
Greetings from ABHAYA – Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA.
By the blessings of Yogeshwara Bhagavan Sri Krishna and Gurunatha we are progressing in our path of Yoga Seva and serving thousands of people. Our activities, Yoga Shalas, Yoga Sikshakas, Yoga Mitras and Yoga Sadhakas are growing day by day and there is scope for further streamlining and expansion and outreach. We could make all these possible only with all your support.
As you are aware our activities are twofold – Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA. Both are not different from each other, infact these are two sides of same coin. Though the awareness on Yoga is spreading more and more and the number of Yoga centres and teachers are mushrooming day by day, it is also an alarming situation due to lot of dilution happening with these new trends of Yoga. Hence it becomes our duty to take ahead the teachings of the Yoga Guru Parampara to see that Yoga in its original sense and spirit is continued. Yoga is an age old Spiritual Discipline of unifying the body, energy, mind, intellect and soul complex for a healthy, happy and harmonious living in the worldly life and transcending all these to go to the life beyond the worldly life to get established in the ultimate goal of Godliness. Though certain aspects of Yoga like Asanas have tangible benefits in human body like fitness and health, the scope of Yoga should not be limited to these alone.
The tradition of Yoga starts right from the Rig Veda which is the oldest literature in the world. Kathopanishad is one of the ten major Upanishads called Dashopanishads commented by Adi Shankaracharya and other Acharyas who followed him. The courageous youth Nachiketa who dared to meet death Yama and question him about life beyond death was an hero of Swami Vivekananda’s appreciation. Swami Vivekananda’s famous quote, “Arise, awake, stop not till the goal is reached!” is as well from a Kathopanishad mantra. It is Lord Yama who taught Adhyatma Yoga to the shraddhavaan Nachiketa for the first time. It was taught to Vivasvan, Surya Deva by Lord Sri Krishna in the beginning of creation itself according to Srimad Bhagawad Gita. Adhyatma Yoga is the Yoga of Spiritual Discipline, the Yoga of the Atman-soul. All four streams of Yoga viz Jnana Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga or Ashtanga Yoga and karma Yoga serves as means to attain the highest state of Adhyatma Yoga.
I was greatly influenced by the thoughts on Adhyatma Yoga from Kathopanishad by Swami Vivekananda in his complete works, Pravachana of my Adhyatma Guru Mahatma Sri Sri Krishnapremi Swamigal on Upanishads, Gita, Srimad Bhagawatam and other scriptures, discourses of Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati and our professor Vidwan Dr Ramachandra Bhat Kottemane. In all possible forums Dr Ramachandra Bhat ji was emphasizing the need of Adhyatma Yoga. Hence when the sankalpa emerged in me to start a Yoga institution I couldn’t think of a better name than Adhyatma Yoga. This is to remind myself that I am not going to limit my yoga sadhana and teaching only to asanas but eventually try to progress in the direction of the ideal called “Adhyatma Yoga”.
Our nation Bharata is unique in all aspects. Bharata was well advanced in knowledge, science and technology, mathematics, medicine, arts, culture, linguistics and all fields thousands of years before other countries could evolve in these areas. All these developments emerged with the unifying undercurrent of Adhyatma- Spirituality. There is no Bharata without Adhyatma and there is no Spirituality to the rest of the world without Adhyatma. Hence our nation can be called as “Adhyatma Bharatam”. My Adhyatma Guru Sri Sri Krishnapremi Maharaj, a living embodiment of Bhakti Yoga has authored a book called “Adhyatma Bharatam” enlightening about the Spiritual and Cultural glory of Bharata. It is one of my favourite books for life time. Influenced by that book and other shastra granthas and divine discourses of my masters, along with the “Adhyatma Yoga Shala” that we had started, we started to dedicate humble services to Bharata with a small team called “Adhyatma Bharatam”.
Adhyatma Bharatam is a spiritually rooted socio cultural movement to serve the people of all ages and all walks of life.
With the concept of “Adhyatma” being common in both Adhyatma Bharatam and Adhyatma Yoga, the activities in both sides started developing. In fact these are not separate from each other. I could have called it as Adhyatma Yoga Bharatam. But as both these names have their own significance – I wanted to retain these names as such.
So our mission started with the name, “Adhyatma Bharatam Adhyatma Yoga”. When I started thinking of acronym of this, it came out to be the powerful profound name: “ABHAYA”. I was excited as ABHAYA has been spelled by all my favourite heroes. The hero of Kathopanishad Nachiketa is an embodiment of Abhaya, fearlessness that he dares to meet the death and question him. Bhagavan Sri Rama’s assurance in Sri Valmiki Ramayana during Vibhishana Sharanagati is as follows:
Lord Sri Rama in Valmiki Ramayana (6.18.33B-34A)
सकृद् एव प्रपन्नाय तव अस्मि इति च याचते l
अभयम् सर्व भूतेभ्यो ददामि एतद् व्रतम् मम ll
“He who seeks refuge in me just once, telling me that “I am yours”, I give him ABHAYA – assurance of safety against all types of beings. This is my solemn pledge“.
The Lord says that He gives ABHAYA in the sense of assurance of protection to devotees who surrender themselves to Him even once. What a powerful statement!
Bhagawan Sri Krishna also continues by mentioning ABHAYA in the sense of fearlessness as the first essential Divine Quality – Daivi Sampath.
Lord Sri Krishna in Srimad Bhagawad Gita (16.1)
अभयं सत्त्वसंशुद्धिः ज्ञानयोगव्यवस्थितिः।
दानं दमश्च यज्ञश्च स्वाध्यायस्तप आर्जवम् ll
“Fearlessness, purity of heart, steadfastness in the wisdom of Yoga (Yoga of wisdom), charity, control of the senses, sacrifice, study of scriptures and straightforwardness – these are Daivi Sampaths- qualities of the aspirant growing spiritually”.
Every Divine form ensures ABHAYA – protection to the devotees by the hand gesture of ABHAYA Mudra. According to Swami Vivekananda, the essence of all Upanishads is ABHAYA– fearlessness and his life and teachings too embodied that.
Thus the acronym ABHAYA also suited our work perfectly. Ultimately through Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA- all that we want to assure people to be fearless (ABHAYA) about the dangers of worldly life and to be ensured about the Divine protection (ABHAYA). Thus the name ABHAYA emerged and suited our mission.
My Guru Sri Sri Anna had immensely blessed me always since childhood with his Yogic insights and by sharing his Yoga Sadhana anubhavas whenever I had his darshan and had guided me to start such an institution way back in 2005 itself when I was blessed to travel back from Kashi to Chennai with him. As mentioned, earlier, his book on “Adhyatma Bharatam” is a lifetime favourite for me. Thus he is the main motivation for me in this movement of Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA. But for the Yoga and Spiritual training and experience I had from my Yoga Guruji Dr H R Nagendraji, Dr R Nagarathna and Prof NVC Swamy, I would not have had the confidence to start an institution and take other initiatives. Each and every faculty and resident volunteers of Prashanti Kutiram, right from Pujya Lakshmi Amma had been of great strength and support for me in this path. Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati had always his blessings on me and was happy about the sankalpa to start such an organisation. I had his approval for “Adhyatma Yoga”. Also we had the blessing of Dr Ramachandra Bhat ji, Honourable Vice Chancellor of S-VYASA Yoga University, our mother institution who had been a pioneer of Adhyatma Yoga. My Master Dr Ranganji had reminded a constant inspiration to me in this path. Sri Raghuramji and Dr Venkatram, my mentors had always held my hands and taken me ahead in the path. They are the ones who literally stood by me to get the shala started. Swamijis of the Ramakrishna Order, Sanyasis of Arsha Vidya, my friends from DISHA, YFS and Yuva Brigade had all been of great encouragement. Thus Adhyatma Yoga and Adhyatma Bharatam, together as two sides of same coin called ABHAYA – Adhyatma BHaratam Adhyatma YogA got commenced from Guru Purnima 2016.
With all your blessings, encouragement and participation, we have completed three years of this journey and are purposefully moving into the fourth year. On behalf of all of us, I thank you all for being with us! The path we had travelled milestones we had achieved and blessings we had acquired have motivated us immensely to march ahead with pride!
चरे वेति चरे वेति ll
Yours in Yoga Seva,
Yogi Subbu Bhaiya