Let us now study Raja yoga. The aim of Raja yoga is to attain to the perfection of mental powers and secondly the discovery and realisation of the Immobile Individual distinguished from all which is mobile. In our normal experience we see only that which is mobile. Even what is immobile, like matter, stone, even that is in some way mobile. Even the stone gradually becomes dust, may be after thousands years, because it is mobile. As you now every material piece consists of electrons and protons which are in constant motion. Therefore even the so call stable things are really mobile. Raja yoga aims at the discovery of the Immobile Individual as distinguished from the mobile. It is a discovery because normally you don’t find something immobile. That which is mobile is called Nature. All nature is mobile. In Sanskrit the world nature is called Prakriti. The Immobile individual is called in Sanskrit Purusha. One special attribute of Purusha is it is immobile. It may be mobile but also it is immobile. This is an important point. The way by which you can distinguish between Purusha and Prakriti is that while Prakriti is always mobile Purusha is in any case immobile, – even though it is mobile also but it is also immobile. But according to Raja yoga Purusha is immobile? It is never mobile. When you go further in Integral yoga you will find that Purusha is also mobile. But Raja Yoga only gives the realisation of the immobile Purusha as distinguished from mobile Prakriti. And when this happens, when you discover the immobile Purusha you have an experience of release. The teguments, the ties, that you have with your body, with what is mobile, they seem to be broken. The ties are supposed to be your bondage, the ropes of bondage by which you are tied. According to Raja yoga the aim is to give the discovery of the immobile individual, – the Purusha in an experience in which the individual feels that the teguments by which he is tied to the mobility vanishes. It is also called the experience of liberation; we feel liberated. Nothing, nothing, nothing touches you thereafter. Sorrow does not touch you, happiness does not touch you, relations does not touch you, body does not touch you. Even when body is in pain Purusha is experienced to be immobile. It is an extraordinary experience that you gain. That is the aim. It is two folds: perfection of the mental powers, and release of the immobile Purusha from the ties of the mobile Prakriti.
The mental powers of a Raja yogi are tremendous. There is one full chapter given by Patanjali in his book on yoga in which the powers of the mind are described. One of the powers of the mind is to know the language of the birds and if you practice the Raja yoga you can understand the language of the birds. You can know what is happening thirty thousand kilometers away and you can see the objects very clearly regarding that subject. As in Hatha yoga, there are the powers of the body; there are numerous powers of the mind. There is a very interesting chapter in Collected Works of Vivekananda… Swami Vivekananda has given lots of lectures as you know and one of the lectures was on the powers of the mind. He has described his encounter with a yogi who had developed many powers of the mind. One of the experiences when he went to meet this Raja yogi was: That yogi gave him a piece of folded paper and said: “Don’t open it.” So, Vivekananda put this piece of paper in his pocket and there was long talk and afterward the yogi suddenly said: “I can tell you, what is your mind? Think of an idea... So he thought of an idea, a very difficult idea and that too in a language which Vivekananda thought this man will never know. Then he wrote down that sentence and gave it to the yogi. Then the yogi said: “Now please open the piece of paper which I gave you when you came in.” It was exactly the sentence which Vivekananda wrote much after coming into the room and he said: “I had decided that you will think of this when I ask you to think.” This is an example given by Vivekananda of his own personal experience. It is not a fiction. This is the power of the mind. Raja yoga can develop extraordinary powers of the mind. There is a special chapter in the Patanjali yoga which is called Yoga Sutra. Sutra means aphoristic expression. In that chapter there is a part called Vibhuti Pada, – vibhuti means extraordinary powers. You can read this chapter one day.
Now the question is what is the instrument? Just as in Hatha yoga the instrument was the body, similarly in Raja yoga the instrument is the mind. Raja yogis don’t do all kind of asanas excepting one or two, Raja yogi concentrate upon the mind. Mind is the instrument, the conquest of the mind.
What is the process? The process is a gradual movement of the mind by which it attains to concentration in the state of stillness. The mind is used for developing a capacity of concentration to such a degree that in the state of concentration there is complete stillness, complete silence of the mind. This is the process, gradual process and gradual movement.