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What is Mastery in Yoga?

Nowadays thousands of people worldwide publicize themselves as yoga masters.

Real masters are few and far between. Even to be a master of one kriya (method or practice) is rare and requires tapasya (ascetic dedication) that few are willing  to undertake.

Practice a kriya until you have mastered it.

How do you know when you have mastered it? Here are the few stages of mastery.

1.    You do not need prompting, or any continued guidance from a teacher in going through the kriya.

2.    You practice the kriya without getting confused about the sequence and the process. You have internalized it.

3.    The kriya gets done in a shorter and shorter time and at subtler and subtler level. For example in a breathing sequence (A) the breath becomes slower and slower and subtler and subtler together with (B) more and more serene state of consciousness and stillness of mind.

4.    During the kriya the mind does not wander.

5.    The experience or the level of consciousness that the kriya imparts can now be accomplished without the kriya. You go into that state without the kriya spontaneously at will.

6.    That state of consciousness becomes your basic state at all times; you remain in it.

7.    When you guide others through that kriya, they reach the desired depth and state of consciousness. Gradually you do it without words.

8.    Your very presence begins to invoke that state of consciousness in them, and that is the real teaching.

9.    When you have mastered one kriya then proceed to other kriyas although related kriyas may be practiced simultaneously in above sequence.

A true master in yoga is a master of states of consciousness with the ability to induce a serene and peaceful state in a student as well as his/environment such as an Ashram. When even a new person enters such an environment s/he feels a touch of peacefulness.

May you become a master in some life time when you are guided by a true master.