Speaking to the Master an interview with Yogi
Dr. Samprasad Vinod

As the world celebrates 3rd International Yoga Day, we speak to Dr. Samprasad Vinod of Maharshi Vinod Research Foundation on adapting the 'Yoga Lifestyle'.

Dr. Samprasad Vinod is a unique, multifaceted personality from the field of yoga. He is a qualified Medical Doctor, a renowned Yoga Guru, Published Author, Motivational Speaker and a scientist of the Inner World.

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He is well-known in India and abroad for his unique contribution to the field of Yoga for ‘Shavasan-Meditation’ and teaching how to perform ‘Yoga Practices in a Meditative State’, so as to facilitate its integration into daily living.

There are many school of thoughts in Yoga. How one should choose and start?
There are many forms of Yoga and for choosing the right path, one must dive deep within to make friends with oneself and start understanding one’s actions, emotions, thoughts for developing deep insight into one’s basic nature. It is essential first step to decide about the particular path of yoga to follow.

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‘Karma Yoga’ – path of action is suitable for the extroverts or outgoing people 12whereas, intellectuals do well in ‘Gyana Yoga’-the path of knowledge. Path of devotion is appropriate for the emotional/sensitive people and ‘Dhyan Yoga’ – path of mediation is meant for the mentally strong ones.Interestingly, ‘Eight Limb path of Yoga’ – the Ashtanga Yoga of Maharshi Patanjali is suitable to all regardless of age, sex, nationality, religion, education and experience.

Even if we choose one path, others are not banned for us, although our chosen path remains our main spiritual sadhana, but we may have to make combinations of various approaches from time to time according to our needs.

People start with Yoga with lot of enthusiasm and after certain point of time they loose on momentum. What would you advice?
Most people start yoga for one reason or the other. Once, the limited goal is achieved they tend to become slack. But, if they continue to learn and practice yoga for the sheer joy of learning and experiencing it, results follow as a natural consequence of such approach.

Over a period of time you begin to understand yoga well, develop true taste for it and start having good time doing it regularly. Later on, ‘having good time’ becomes your constant motivation.

You have closely associated with many Corporates. What kind of people challenges dominate?
Modern day Corporate personnel is struggling to meet the challenges on two fronts. First one, as we are all aware, is the work pressure. Faster delivery deadlines, time constraints and the accompanying stress. Adapting to every day changes, particularly related to recent developments in technology is one more major cause of concern for them.

Meditation and meditative way of doing yoga practices can bring profound peace that would help one stay in a perpetual learning mode, which is a very effective long term solution to those problems. Myopic perspective of reality is the root cause of all human problems. It either makes one bog down or retaliate with vengeance. Both are harmful in all human relations.

But, learning mode consequent to proper practice of yoga takes care of one’s ego and related problems. It makes one receptive to outside world by developing good rapport with it. Good rapport further improves learning by helping one take work related challenges in stride and proceed towards effective solutions.

In last 20 – 25 years, how do you see yoga has evolved in peoples daily life?
10 In the wake of growing worldwide interest and popularity based on realization of its rational basis, the ancient science of yoga is juxtaposed to modern science and is getting readily accepted by the scientific community.
Its transcultural nature is also getting recognized by people from different parts of the globe.

Surely, it is crossing the religious and geographical boundaries with rapid pace. Sadly, only physical yoga has reached all corners of the world. It is mainly because physical flexibility attained through yoga is visible to the individual person practicing it and can be demonstrated to others. On the other hand, mental flexibility which is developed through meditation is not readily visible to others. It is still the most important aspect of yoga that should also be understood and practiced. It is surely a far more appropriate and complete perspective of yoga.

Yoga as lifestyle… your definition?
Yoga should always be practiced as a way of living for bringing lasting balance between worldly and spiritual life. Such a balance is extremely important for healthy, happy and complete living. It is made possible by addressing all aspects of human personality – body, mind, intellect, emotions as well as spirit.

Message on International Yoga Day
Taking inspiration from the International Day Celebration, we have to focus on learning and practicing classical or abhijat yoga than mere physical yoga for getting the best results. Classical yoga has the potential to effectively handle our personal, familial, social, national as well as international problems in a practical and fundamental manner.

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