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2020 New Years Message From Sri Dharma Mittra

The secret to success is constant practice. In yoga, there are eight steps that lead to Self-realization, the great goal of all life. The first Yama is Ahimsa which means non-violence in word, thought and deed. We put this into effect through compassion.

The action of compassion is to see yourself in others. This is the most important thing for all of us to practice all the time. It’s easy to love your family, your friends, your pets, but harder to love those outside this circle. See everyone older than you as your father and your mother. How would you treat them if they really were? See those your age as your brother or your sister and those that are younger as sons and daughters. 

The animals also are like us. They want to live free from fear, to eat when they are hungry and to take care of their children. The cow, the horse, the pig, the chicken, the goat: they are made to be loved, not to be food on your plate. If there are roaches or ants where you live, see how they run when you turn on the kitchen light at night? They run from fear of violence. 

Make yourself a walking church, temple, synagogue or mosque. Make yourself a place of peace, a fountain of compassion. It’s easy to hate, mistrust, or argue. Do the more difficult thing, and love. Love even those who cause you pain. In many cases, they need it more. Love those you don’t know, because in loving them, they become familiar. Love those who are less easy to love, because their resistance keeps love from them. Love our inferior brothers and sisters from the animal kingdom, because they depend on our love and compassion to survive, especially in the world of today.

Spend some time each day practicing yoga. If you are established in compassion, all the other virtues, the other Yamas, will cling to it. Niyama, the Yogic practices, will help you live as a Yogi. Asana helps us to make the body healthy. Healthy body leads to healthy mind. Then we are able to attain to the higher limbs of yoga. Move the body every day. With a flexible spine, you are ready to conquer anything. Forward bend, back bend and twist every day without fail. Then you will surely attain glowing radiant good health.

Pranayama, breathing exercises, will help to calm the mind and Asana and Pranayama work together to help move the attention inward. With the attention firm, we learn to sustain concentration. Concentration without interruption is meditation, and this will help us to attain a heart of wisdom, provided we ask the right questions and look without ceasing for the answers.

Keep always Yama — the ethical rules of yoga. Without Yama, no Kingdom of G-d and no chance to acquire Self Knowledge. Indeed, without Yama, there is no yoga. The secret to success is constant practice. Without fail, practice yoga in 2020.