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Self is a worthy experience. Alas for some other experiences.

Gains are not losses

Books and translations of books you embrace through life, could also hurt you by giving you funny ideas that lead to loss and loss. Skilful doubting and ◦TM, on the other hand, may hold helping hands against many losses, and many Buddha teachings help too. The Middle Path is for that.

It could be that victims of low and bad ideas are led into a depleting fare, and not rewarding love, for example. Some things depend on who we give our love to - one at a time, is suggested. Mind how love may knock a lot out of very gullible guys.

Consciousness is not much of a "space-thing"

Hm The Supreme Self is beyond time and space . . . [is] pure being. - Swami Sivananda ◦[Link].

The aim of yogas is Self-knowledge (Atmajnana, knowing one's innermost or transcendent Self beyond time and space - yet also residing in time and space. Opposed to the hoary teaching of Self Beyond, Yogananda taught "cosmic consciousness in time" - but one's Supreme Self is not said to be grasped through matter or time-space, as It transcends. The Vedic teaching is also that Self may be found within oneself, not to forget.

Once someone told Yogananda:, "I have practiced kriya yoga a million times, but have not reached Cosmic Consciousness."

Yogananda replied, "But your attitude was not right." [Story by Bhaktananda]

Well, it could have been that Yogananda's incomplete and awkward teachings failed some or many, or even blocked Advaita's great teachings about the Self.

Neither of these two - a follower and his guru - said anything about transcending concepts of time and cosmos - but Transcendental Meditation is based on such an approach, and has helped many on several levels, research shows. [◦Meditation research: Findings]

Yogananda had handed out a yogi system which he simplified and removed many facets of as he accommodated to Americans. First he said that about half a minute's kriya (a round) equalled a month's natural evolution. Later he taught his later-simplified, aborted kriya yoga equalled a whole year's natural, diseaseless evolution. Thereby he changed the doctrine of his own guru, Yukteswar, who taught that "one kriya equals one month's development otherwise".

There is no profound evidence that a million well done rounds of kriya breathing (first kriya) brings about cosmic consciousness and equals a million years of disease-free, natural evolution. Yogananda's own guru, Yukteswar, wrote that the method was 144 times slower. There is no valid scientific proof of that either. ["Beware of the fog"] - ["Better make sure"]

Also ask: "Could Yogananda have made the handed-over kriya twelve times more effective by leaving out Thokar Kriya and yogic tongue-lifing, which both are considered indispensable by many traditionalist kriya yogis?" Traditionalist kriya yogis in India may not think so. [More]

Swami Satyeswarananda tells, for example, how Yogananda made big kriya changes and modifications - and that he had not been taught all the kriya techniques, like Navi Kriya either.

Removing the practice of Talabya Kriya or Khecharimudra - which is a precondition for practicing the Thokar, Omkar Kriyas and Brahmayonimudra - completely changed the Kriya practice . . . an unproven, new approach with uncertain ... results. [1]

As for the first kriya method, Yogananda's guru's guru in the kriya line wrote to a devotee,

All can be attained by the first Kriya; only sincerity is needed. The After-effect-poise of Kriya and blissful addiction are there at the very first Kriya. Go on practicing Kriya. [Satyeswarananda. Lahiri Mahasay's Personal Letters to Kriya Disciples, p. 22 (2)]

The swami further shows how Yogananda altered the way of transmission of the methods. [◦More at Sanskrit Classics].

Learn to inspect

Learn to inspect well and it may pay. An alternative to it is to be taken in, and suffer from it for the rest of one's life too, in a worst case scenario. throughout the remaining life. One may inspects firsthand, and may also learn to check - at least tentatively - all who claim things. Their standing, the general quality or kind of their outputs (books, for example), and so on. It may not pay to spend one's time, attention and other resourses on quacks among gurus either.

If you don't learn to check well, but get "blinded by facades" and so on, you may find your trust was misplaced, and learn things too so late that you come to lament years spent quite in vain.

"Far from court, far from care." Between 2000 and 2005 about fifty disgruntled SRF monastics [monks, nuns, novices] stopped being affiliated with SRF and left the SRF premises (Parsons 2012:171; Williamson 2010).

Some examples to study
  1. Yogananda renders a hoax book by a Notovitch, he "buys" it wholesale. Experts have debunked the book. [More]

  2. Yogananda and secretaries make a "spiritual commentary" to the medieval Persian poem Rubaiyat by Omar Khayyam. Yogananda's approach revolves around "key symbols" that seem missing in any original. "Spiritualizing" non-existing keys is improper. [More]

Be warned.


Self, Atman, SRF and propaganda, Yogananda, Literature  

James, John W., and Russell Friedman. The Grief Recovery Handbook. 20th Anniversary Expanded ed. New York: HarperCollins, 2009.

Parsons, Jon R. A Fight For Religious Freedom: A Lawyer's Personal Account of Copyrights, Karma and Dharmic Litigation. Nevada City, CA: Crystal Clarity, 2012.

Williamson, Lola. Transcendent in America: Hindu-Inspired Meditation Movements as New Religion. London: New York University Press, 2010.

Yogananda, Paramahansa Man's Eternal Quest. 2nd ed. Los Angeles: Self-Realization Fellowship, 1982.

⸻. The Science of Religion. Los Angeles: Self-Realization Fellowship, 1953.


  1. (a) Satyeswarananda. "Yogananda". San Diego, CA: Sanskrit Classics. Nd. Online.
    (b) Satyeswarananda. "Talabya Kriya, or Khecharimudra, its far reaching implications and Yogananda." San Diego, CA: Sanskrit Classics. Nd.
  2. Satyeswarananda. "Differences between the Original Kriya Tradition and the Modified Kriya Trend". San Diego, CA: Sanskrit Classics, Nd. Online

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