How does Yoga effect the fields of Social relations, Work and Family
Yoga contains ethical guidelines for the treatment of other beings, the Yamas . These are often viewed as a series of Do’s and Don’ts , like the 10 Commandments. Another way to view them, according to Mark Whitwell, quoting Sri Krishnamacharya, is as the by products of practice. What we can actually do is Asana and Pranayama, together with the other 2 parts of Patanjali’s Kriya Yoga, Self enquiry and Faith or non attachment.
Kriya Yoga, Tapas, Svadyaya and Isvaropranidhana, brings us to realize the nature of consciousness, and to be aware of the interference to that realization. Once we identify our essential self as being pure unqualified consciousness, it is obvious that each and every other person is in essence the same as us, all differences being un essential. This has obvious effects on how we treat other people, we naturally afford them the same attention and care as we give ourselves, with obvious benefits for Society.
Yoga brings mental clarity, a cleaning of the mind stuff so that we are able to concentrate clearly and at depth, this has obvious benefits for our work and productivity. The mental clarity achieved through Yoga allows for greater sensitivity and discernment, in just the same way that a subtle breeze can be detected on a calm lake. These subtle breezes may take the form of insights and intuitions that would otherwise be lost or blocked by the excessive mental activity. Such creative insights are highly prized in the work environment as creativity and effective problem solving.
The family is the most important unit of society, yet often the pressure of life intrudes on the idyllic projection, and families are conflicted or divided, being the cause of suffering instead of happiness. One reason for this is the sacrifice necessary to raise a family . Perhaps Mum or Dad had dreams of another life, of more time or money, psychological and emotional conflicts break out as each person feels the pressure of family commitment and personal satisfaction. Or, stuck in generational mindsets, there is little understanding . In each case it is the habitual identification with our mental or sense activity which creates the tension, we feel that “We” are not heard, or have to be free, or should be living another life. Yoga shows us clearly the unreality of these identifications, that we are not what we think we are, that to identify with the circumstances of our lives is no more valid than identifying with a character from a television soap opera. Our daily practice, indispensable, is like switching the television off and just seeing what is there all along, and what we see is we are both much greater and much smaller than we thought, much less vulnerable, our fears and desires much less important, things that seemed important to us are no longer so, we are in a word, free. From this state of freedom, new ways to relate unfold naturally, tolerance, compassion, patience, acceptance, happiness. Parents who manifest such qualities, will naturally influence their children in a positive manner, which is not to say that there will not be problems, for the growth of a child is a mystery, but at least the greatest possibility for love and happiness will be created.