If Yogananda's guidelines are so infallible, why has Self-Realization Fellowship removed many of them?
The fellowship of Yogananda was registered as a church in California in late March 1935. The ◦articles of incorporation are online. Many of Yogananda's aims and goals for SRF were removed in an amendment from 5 December 1954. Membership anyhow carries with it many guidelines of do's and don'ts, and some of the early Yogananda thoughts are there in SRF's Aims and Ideals, but not all of them. The omissions and changes indicate other attitudes than all those of the guru-founder:
The hype surrounding kriya yoga is designed to present Yogananda's kriya as a golden carrot. To learn kriya, you allow him to ride-guide you. That is also in the deal. Since the core kriya yoga is the public and well known pranayama method called ujjayi, steer out of fangs and learn core kriya in full freedom; for that could suit you better, far better. Yes, the "secret Kriya method" was not so secret after all. It stands out that Yogananda's kriya marketing ("formerly secret, now available if you swear in to us") has been infirmly footed.
Many people could profit more from taking up jogging than the yokes of Yogananda. If you want to feel like an idiot - like several former SRF monastics - and neither painting nor clowning seems much, well, SRF membership may take you there. However, I don't recommend it, just to make that clear.
Alfred Hitchcock shows the way
One day when Alfred Hitchcock was still a churchgoing Catholic, he was driving through a Swiss city when he suddenly pointed out of the car window and said, "That is the most frightening sight I have ever seen."
His companion was surprised to see nothing more alarming than a priest in conversation with a little boy, his hand on the child's shoulder.
"Run, little boy," cried Hitchcock, leaning out of the car. "Run for your life!"
Straight business ethics
Good meditation offers much help. Higher yoga - meditation - does not have to be elaborate to work well, studies on the swift mantra meditation method called Transcendental Meditation suggest.
Go for proficiency if you can. Deliver what you promise. Don't seek to impress and convince; find and present the relevant facts you can find instead.
Being factual-minded works better than being taken in.
When a gilded facade and great-looking phrases differ much from a content that is hardly profitable for yourself and for yours, make out something fit to adhere to instead. Facades and rigmarole for the shallow and duped guys? or something better, far better? Getting your life on an even keel is better than getting duped, sidetracked or fooled. Here, too, Yogananda teaches a little:
Don't take my word for anything. . . . find out for yourselves. Don't get hung up on words . . . please remember. - Yogananda, in Dietz 1998
And this is supposedly to say we may not take Yogananda's word about finding out for yourselves or not getting hung up in words for anything either. It is at times different with "Run, little boy, run for your your life!"
Dietz, Margaret Bowen. Thank You, Master. Nevada City, CA: Crystal Clarity, 1998.
Uy: Buzan, Tony. Use Your Head: How to Unleash the Power of Your Mind. Harlow: BBC Active / Pearson, 2010. ⍽▢⍽ A British psychologist tells us how to study. However, an old slogan he makes use of to motivate learners, namely that that we use only one percent /or five or ten percents) of our brains, is not confirmed by brain research; let him speak for himself. The brain may be at work and fine without textbook study. Yet there may be room for building neuron networks and favour retrieval from the long-term memory (LTM) by fit and fair study methods. Otherwise, almost all we have spent time on learning, may soon be beyond retrieval - in a few weeks or more, much as the curve of forgetting suggests. Yet it can help to lLearn how to focus on keywords and key phrases (such memory pegs), overlearn a bit and memorise cleverly, and then you may not waste much study money on forgetting. I can recommend this book's study methods, but not its unfounded brain claims, because "to get over-optimistic could go before a fall," methinks.
Yogananda, Paramhansa. The Master Said. Los Angeles, CA: Self-Realization Fellowship Publishing House, 1952. ⍽▢⍽ This is a first edition, from the year Yogananda passed away. Later editions of the book carry other titles, like Sayings of Paramahansa Yogananda. It is good to know that some of the stories in them have been changed too. -->
Harvesting the hay
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