Teachings of Swami Kripalu

Swami Kripaluvanandaji,  a great master of yoga visited the United States and stayed as a guest in the community of seekers lead by Yogi Amrit Desai for four years (1977-81). Kripalu affectionate called Bapuji, taught that all people are brothers and sisters, and that the basic practice of yoga begins by practicing love in the family and among those with whom we interact. Yoga begins with self love which we can then share with others.   Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam means: the Whole World is One Family.   Ekam sat viprah bahudah vadanti, means: “Truth or God, is one…… but different traditions use different names”.  To learn more about Bapuji’s teachings visit:   amrit.org or kripalu.org  Below are some quotes from his writings and public discourses.

Any action which is not motivated by selfish desire is actually considered a form of inaction. For example, any action which is performed for love go God or the public welfare, dedicated to Brahma, or spontaneously inspired by the Lord is “action in inaction” and the best of all forms of nonattachment.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T07:23:43+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Any action which is not motivated by selfish desire is actually considered a form of inaction. For example, any action which is performed for love go God or the public welfare, dedicated to Brahma, or spontaneously inspired by the Lord is “action in inaction” and the best of all forms of nonattachment.
The purpose of observing silence is not merely to restrain speech, but restrain the mind. Just as pulling one end of the carpet draws the whole carpet, restraining one desire controls the entire mind.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:30:56+00:00

Swami Kripalu

The purpose of observing silence is not merely to restrain speech, but restrain the mind. Just as pulling one end of the carpet draws the whole carpet, restraining one desire controls the entire mind.
We cannot truthfully say that we know how to speak simply because we know how to pronounce words and consonants. Unless we speak truthfully, speech is only noise.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:33:01+00:00

Swami Kripalu

We cannot truthfully say that we know how to speak simply because we know how to pronounce words and consonants. Unless we speak truthfully, speech is only noise.
If you do not wish to attain yoga, devotion, or knowledge, don’t! But if you want to lie happily in this world, you will have to practice spiritual exercises to soften your eyes, heart, thought and speech. Both the husband and the wife should practice the exercise of speaking sweetly in front of the mirror when the other is not home. And they should not consider this play-acting, either; it is a form of learning to love.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:33:22+00:00

Swami Kripalu

If you do not wish to attain yoga, devotion, or knowledge, don’t! But if you want to lie happily in this world, you will have to practice spiritual exercises to soften your eyes, heart, thought and speech. Both the husband and the wife should practice the exercise of speaking sweetly in front of the mirror when the other is not home. And they should not consider this play-acting, either; it is a form of learning to love.
The root cause of family conflicts is faultfinding, or blaming. Since fault finding influences thought, speech and conduct, the faultfinder continually unsteadies his mind whenever he ruminates on negativity. One should cultivate the habit of appreciating virtue. By appreciating virtue, pure love increases and manifests in one’s thought, speech and conduct as well.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:33:49+00:00

Swami Kripalu

The root cause of family conflicts is faultfinding, or blaming. Since fault finding influences thought, speech and conduct, the faultfinder continually unsteadies his mind whenever he ruminates on negativity. One should cultivate the habit of appreciating virtue. By appreciating virtue, pure love increases and manifests in one’s thought, speech and conduct as well.
How can one who has not even learned how to express affection ever show tolerance? Tolerance expresses itself as non-violence, whereas intolerance manifests itself as violence. If you are not victorious in cultivating affection and tolerance, you will definitely meet failure in every area of this life. Worldly sadhana (spiritual practice) is the first stage. Those who do not successfully pass through that stage can never be eligible for yoga, devotion or knowledge.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:34:15+00:00

Swami Kripalu

How can one who has not even learned how to express affection ever show tolerance? Tolerance expresses itself as non-violence, whereas intolerance manifests itself as violence. If you are not victorious in cultivating affection and tolerance, you will definitely meet failure in every area of this life. Worldly sadhana (spiritual practice) is the first stage. Those who do not successfully pass through that stage can never be eligible for yoga, devotion or knowledge.
Unless we give happiness to others we will never attain happiness.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:34:30+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Unless we give happiness to others we will never attain happiness.
Wounds from gross weapons heal in one or more months, but wounds from subtle weapons (like speech), which are poisonous, do not heal for a long time.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:34:50+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Wounds from gross weapons heal in one or more months, but wounds from subtle weapons (like speech), which are poisonous, do not heal for a long time.
An excellent form of non-violence is selfless love, and the most extreme form of violence is hatred.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:35:10+00:00

Swami Kripalu

An excellent form of non-violence is selfless love, and the most extreme form of violence is hatred.
In the beginning of yoga sadhana (practice), the sadhak (practitioner) must erect a fortress of yamas and niyamas to protect is sadhana. If he does not fortify his sadhana in this way, he is continually attacked by obstacles which disturb it.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:35:26+00:00

Swami Kripalu

In the beginning of yoga sadhana (practice), the sadhak (practitioner) must erect a fortress of yamas and niyamas to protect is sadhana. If he does not fortify his sadhana in this way, he is continually attacked by obstacles which disturb it.
Just as one must clean a cup before one can fill it with milk, a sadhak (practitioner) must adequately purify his body and mind before practicing any form of yoga.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:35:45+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Just as one must clean a cup before one can fill it with milk, a sadhak (practitioner) must adequately purify his body and mind before practicing any form of yoga.
Karma yoga prescribes the spiritual disciplines and practices called yamas and niyamas, bhakti yoga outlines the practices of various rituals and vows, and jnana yoga encourages the removal of impurities, distractions and the layers superimposed on the light of the soul.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:36:03+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Karma yoga prescribes the spiritual disciplines and practices called yamas and niyamas, bhakti yoga outlines the practices of various rituals and vows, and jnana yoga encourages the removal of impurities, distractions and the layers superimposed on the light of the soul.
All the highest religious sects in the world have accepted the yamas and niyamas to a greater or lesser extent. Indeed, any religious act which does not observe these disciplines cannot survive long.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:36:28+00:00

Swami Kripalu

All the highest religious sects in the world have accepted the yamas and niyamas to a greater or lesser extent. Indeed, any religious act which does not observe these disciplines cannot survive long.
Pure affectionate behavior never flourishes while one is attached to sensual pleasure. If you wish to develop pure affectionate behavior, grasp this concept firmly: the practice of bhramacharya (self-restraint/celibacy) is facilitated only when you change your perceptions towards the opposite sex.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:36:41+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Pure affectionate behavior never flourishes while one is attached to sensual pleasure. If you wish to develop pure affectionate behavior, grasp this concept firmly: the practice of bhramacharya (self-restraint/celibacy) is facilitated only when you change your perceptions towards the opposite sex.
When a person indulges in unrestrained sexual activity, he loses his storehouse of the life energy. Such activity progressively destroys strength, intellect, patience, and memory. It fills our lies with sorrow, agitation, restlessness, boredom and depressions. Those who do not conserve their sexual energy are rejected wherever they go and meet failure in whatever they do. Just as everyone discards mango peelings and pits, those who waste sexual energy are rejected by everyone. Their bodies become lusterless and riddled with innumerable diseases, and hoards of problems attack them insidiously.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:37:07+00:00

Swami Kripalu

When a person indulges in unrestrained sexual activity, he loses his storehouse of the life energy. Such activity progressively destroys strength, intellect, patience, and memory. It fills our lies with sorrow, agitation, restlessness, boredom and depressions. Those who do not conserve their sexual energy are rejected wherever they go and meet failure in whatever they do. Just as everyone discards mango peelings and pits, those who waste sexual energy are rejected by everyone. Their bodies become lusterless and riddled with innumerable diseases, and hoards of problems attack them insidiously.
The profound meaning of yoga can be understood in varying degrees, only by those who are interested enough to study it systematically through personal experiments.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:37:25+00:00

Swami Kripalu

The profound meaning of yoga can be understood in varying degrees, only by those who are interested enough to study it systematically through personal experiments.
The yamas and niyamas build a person’s character so thoroughly that, by sincerely practicing them, one can cease to be an animal and can become transformed into a human being or the Lord.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:37:49+00:00

Swami Kripalu

The yamas and niyamas build a person’s character so thoroughly that, by sincerely practicing them, one can cease to be an animal and can become transformed into a human being or the Lord.
To date, countless commentaries have been written by various authors expounding the original scriptures of spiritual science. These commentaries have proven useful to all. To beginning sadhaks (practitioners), they point out the proper path and provide initial inferences helpful to them in drawing personal inferences from everyday life. However, if some sadhaks, as they develop their own inferences begin making changes in the original texts, these changes could spread everywhere and the original texts would not remain intact.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:38:16+00:00

Swami Kripalu

To date, countless commentaries have been written by various authors expounding the original scriptures of spiritual science. These commentaries have proven useful to all. To beginning sadhaks (practitioners), they point out the proper path and provide initial inferences helpful to them in drawing personal inferences from everyday life. However, if some sadhaks, as they develop their own inferences begin making changes in the original texts, these changes could spread everywhere and the original texts would not remain intact.
It is only natural at first for new students of any subject to consider the terminology of that subject uninteresting. But do not forget that the special language of every science is its only entrance gate. For the traveler to eventually reach the huge courtyard of its knowledge, he must enter the gate of that science and traverse its narrow lanes and alleyways.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:38:39+00:00

Swami Kripalu

It is only natural at first for new students of any subject to consider the terminology of that subject uninteresting. But do not forget that the special language of every science is its only entrance gate. For the traveler to eventually reach the huge courtyard of its knowledge, he must enter the gate of that science and traverse its narrow lanes and alleyways.
The essence of any science is locked in seed form within each of its esoteric terms. We can attain the light of truth in that science only by assimilating that essence. Thus, scientific terminology should be kept in its original form so that the subject to which the terms refer remains more accessible. Yes it is always possible to replace the original terms with new synonyms, and this will make the subject seem more familiar and interesting; but the changes in meaning would prevent the seeker form reaching the feet of the truth. I believe that in the material sciences, under special circumstances, and to the a slight extent, such changes may be permissible. But, in yoga science, any alterations are absolutely contraindicated.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:39:43+00:00

Swami Kripalu

The essence of any science is locked in seed form within each of its esoteric terms. We can attain the light of truth in that science only by assimilating that essence. Thus, scientific terminology should be kept in its original form so that the subject to which the terms refer remains more accessible. Yes it is always possible to replace the original terms with new synonyms, and this will make the subject seem more familiar and interesting; but the changes in meaning would prevent the seeker form reaching the feet of the truth. I believe that in the material sciences, under special circumstances, and to the a slight extent, such changes may be permissible. But, in yoga science, any alterations are absolutely contraindicated.
Nothing in this world can ever match, in quality or in quantity, the pure unadulterated truth. Truth is the ocean of beauty itself. Truth is the source of all the beauties of the entire universe. Not everyone has experienced truth, however; it can be experienced only by the rarest of person. Ordinary eyes are unfit for seeing the plain truth, since this always requires a divine eye.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:58:22+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Nothing in this world can ever match, in quality or in quantity, the pure unadulterated truth. Truth is the ocean of beauty itself. Truth is the source of all the beauties of the entire universe. Not everyone has experienced truth, however; it can be experienced only by the rarest of person. Ordinary eyes are unfit for seeing the plain truth, since this always requires a divine eye.
Sometimes people will actually try to spread the plain truth by decorating it in various ways with untruth. Yes everyone falls head over heels for this fancy truth, but they still remain stuck in the same place. Adulterated truth will never move anyone from darkness of ignorance to the light of truth.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:58:38+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Sometimes people will actually try to spread the plain truth by decorating it in various ways with untruth. Yes everyone falls head over heels for this fancy truth, but they still remain stuck in the same place. Adulterated truth will never move anyone from darkness of ignorance to the light of truth.
Next to the vastness of truth, the human being is the size of an atom. And if truth is please by that atom, it is only by truth’s greatness that it may decide to condescend to human level. On the other hand, if human beings want truth to fit them, it is only by their lowliness that they try to cut it down to their size; and they succeed only in making themselves smaller than they already are.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:58:59+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Next to the vastness of truth, the human being is the size of an atom. And if truth is please by that atom, it is only by truth’s greatness that it may decide to condescend to human level. On the other hand, if human beings want truth to fit them, it is only by their lowliness that they try to cut it down to their size; and they succeed only in making themselves smaller than they already are.
We should never attempt to alter the truth at all; we should alter ourselves instead. Why? Because this is the best way to move from insignificance to greatness and it fits within the natural lows of development.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:59:16+00:00

Swami Kripalu

We should never attempt to alter the truth at all; we should alter ourselves instead. Why? Because this is the best way to move from insignificance to greatness and it fits within the natural lows of development.
When I first arrived in America (1878), I had been practicing the vow of silence for nineteen years. But, for the first three months after my arrival here, I spoke all day, every day.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:59:28+00:00

Swami Kripalu

When I first arrived in America (1878), I had been practicing the vow of silence for nineteen years. But, for the first three months after my arrival here, I spoke all day, every day.
Struggle is the life of everyone. Whether struggle is big or small it will always give something to an individual and then disappear. It is alright if we cannot receive struggle with love, but struggle should never be discarded. To discard struggle is to discard God’s grace. This (Kali Yuga) is an unbearable era. We cannot foresee from which direction struggle will come.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:59:37+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Struggle is the life of everyone. Whether struggle is big or small it will always give something to an individual and then disappear. It is alright if we cannot receive struggle with love, but struggle should never be discarded. To discard struggle is to discard God’s grace. This (Kali Yuga) is an unbearable era. We cannot foresee from which direction struggle will come.
Both suffering and happiness are necessary for personal growth. Happiness is the winter and suffering the summer. Monsoons follow the summer, which seeds must be sown and work must be done. Yes, suffering is the very seed of happiness. Without undergoing suffering happiness cannot develop.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T14:59:55+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Both suffering and happiness are necessary for personal growth. Happiness is the winter and suffering the summer. Monsoons follow the summer, which seeds must be sown and work must be done. Yes, suffering is the very seed of happiness. Without undergoing suffering happiness cannot develop.
Conviction is the ground from which all miracles have manifested in this world. Conviction is the precursor of faith and eventually takes the form of faith.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:00:12+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Conviction is the ground from which all miracles have manifested in this world. Conviction is the precursor of faith and eventually takes the form of faith.
If we are afraid of disease, we must be vigilant and well prepared, or we will invite it. When we indulge in self-destructive actions like overeating, poor diets, addictions, sensual pleasures and lack of exercise, we usually forget that we are not only building a wide doorway for disease, but we are lovingly inviting disease to enter.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:00:24+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Kripalu Yoga and Health Center’s founder, Swami Kripalu
There are both countless diseases and countless causes for disease A person is really foolish if even while he is sick and wishing he were well, he does not make some attempt to know the cause of his disease. Overeating is the main cause of disease, and lack of exercise is the second. At mealtime, one who is careful with his health reminds himself that he will not overeat and that he will eat only pure, healthy foods in moderate amounts. He also remembers that since undigested food creates toxins and generates diseases, he must exercise in proportion to the amount he has eaten in order to thoroughly digest his food.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:00:41+00:00

Swami Kripalu

There are both countless diseases and countless causes for disease A person is really foolish if even while he is sick and wishing he were well, he does not make some attempt to know the cause of his disease. Overeating is the main cause of disease, and lack of exercise is the second. At mealtime, one who is careful with his health reminds himself that he will not overeat and that he will eat only pure, healthy foods in moderate amounts. He also remembers that since undigested food creates toxins and generates diseases, he must exercise in proportion to the amount he has eaten in order to thoroughly digest his food.
Exercise and food are complimentary. In the word of life, exercise is the vowel and food is the consonant.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:00:53+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Exercise and food are complimentary. In the word of life, exercise is the vowel and food is the consonant.
Just as the compost heap pollutes its environment with stench, a person’s vices pollute his family and relatives and cause him to lose their respect. Conversely, just as the garden spreads its fragrance in all directions and purifies the atmosphere, a person’s virtues purify his family members and bring him everyone’s respect.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:01:10+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Just as the compost heap pollutes its environment with stench, a person’s vices pollute his family and relatives and cause him to lose their respect. Conversely, just as the garden spreads its fragrance in all directions and purifies the atmosphere, a person’s virtues purify his family members and bring him everyone’s respect.
One who donates anything to the family, society, nation, and the world, according to his capacity, is truly a wealthy and cultured person.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:01:21+00:00

Swami Kripalu

One who donates anything to the family, society, nation, and the world, according to his capacity, is truly a wealthy and cultured person.
Whenever the mind becomes agitated by an apparently unloving, natural focusing, one should deliberately sew it in some loving and interesting subject.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:01:37+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Whenever the mind becomes agitated by an apparently unloving, natural focusing, one should deliberately sew it in some loving and interesting subject.
“Serenity of mind, gentleness, silence, self-restraint and purity of mind, this is called the tapas (austerity) of mind”. Bhadavad Gita

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:01:51+00:00

Swami Kripalu

“Serenity of mind, gentleness, silence, self-restraint and purity of mind, this is called the tapas (austerity) of mind”. Bhadavad Gita
When a lover loves his beloved with a pure hear, the lover’s mind becomes like a clean mirror on which a clear image of the beloved’s chitta (field of consciousness) is cast. This is why any feeling which arises in the chitta of one of them is immediately realized by the other.

wami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:02:07+00:00

wami Kripalu

When a lover loves his beloved with a pure hear, the lover’s mind becomes like a clean mirror on which a clear image of the beloved’s chitta (field of consciousness) is cast. This is why any feeling which arises in the chitta of one of them is immediately realized by the other.
Just as a seafarer, can board a ship and let it do the swimming for him, a pedestrian can ride a car and let it do the walking for him, and an air passenger can board a plane and let it do the flying for him, a sadhak (practionier) can surrender to the Lord and let prana perform all his actions for him.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:02:32+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Just as a seafarer, can board a ship and let it do the swimming for him, a pedestrian can ride a car and let it do the walking for him, and an air passenger can board a plane and let it do the flying for him, a sadhak (practionier) can surrender to the Lord and let prana perform all his actions for him.
“Whatever exists, animate or inanimate in this world is pervaded by that Supreme Sprit (the Lord). Relish it by renunciation and do not covet the wealth of anyone else”. Upanishads

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:02:46+00:00

Swami Kripalu

“Whatever exists, animate or inanimate in this world is pervaded by that Supreme Sprit (the Lord). Relish it by renunciation and do not covet the wealth of anyone else”. Upanishads
Mistakes are continually experienced everywhere in life; but since they are subtle and concealed, they are invisible. With the eye, one can observe everyone but himself. To observe oneself, one has to seek the help of a mirror. Only then is one able to observe one’s own self.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:03:01+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Mistakes are continually experienced everywhere in life; but since they are subtle and concealed, they are invisible. With the eye, one can observe everyone but himself. To observe oneself, one has to seek the help of a mirror. Only then is one able to observe one’s own self.
Over socialized people use their conduct to conceal their real thoughts and express only those thoughts which others like. What is in their mind is not in their speech, and what is in their mind and speech is not in their conduct. Thus, the basic temperament of the average person really cannot be determined by observing his thought, speech and conduct; However, we can recognize saints in this way since their thought, speech and conduct are harmoniously synchronized.

Swami Kripalu

2016-08-22T15:03:44+00:00

Swami Kripalu

Over socialized people use their conduct to conceal their real thoughts and express only those thoughts which others like. What is in their mind is not in their speech, and what is in their mind and speech is not in their conduct. Thus, the basic temperament of the average person really cannot be determined by observing his thought, speech and conduct; However, we can recognize saints in this way since their thought, speech and conduct are harmoniously synchronized.

 

Reach out  Kripalu Yoga classes are rooted in the teachings of Swami Kripalu developed by Yogi Amrit Desai.