The volumes which have been envisaged and which will be related to yoga will have the primary focus on the exploration of consciousness and thus they will describe and discuss as also present the historical account of various aspects of the nature of consciousness which has emerged as a result of cumulative experiments in Yoga conducted in India and elsewhere right from the pre-Vedic period to the present day.
The first volume is being developed and executed by Professor K. Ramakrishna Rao and it will be related to studies in psychology, parapsychology and their relevance to yoga. The second volume, being developed and executed by Professor S.P. Singh will trace the history of development of yoga, chiefly in India but also in other parts of the world along with the contributions that have been made by Shamanism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Sufism, and Bahai’s. This volume is also expected to highlight some of the latest studies in evolutionary psychology which have momentous bearing on the theory of evolution of the human species and also its possible mutation. Volume three is being developed and executed by Professor Manoj Das, who will present an account of varieties of Yogic experience, and in doing so, he will include a statement of (a) the common features of yogic experiences which the seekers encounter at the turning-point from the ordinary life to the practice of yoga, and (b) common features of some of the major experiences that occur at some of the important stages of the yogic practice, as also (c) an account of the major penultimate and ultimate experiences of yoga siddhi. A Seminar on this subject is being held in the near future, where materials are being collected on various schools of Yoga, including those of Buddhism, Jainism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Islam, and Sufism.
The fourth Volume which is to be entitled “Synthesis of Yoga” is being planned and the tentative plan which has so far emerged is briefly described as follows:
Introductory part of the volume will be related to the following issues:
This introductory part will be followed by the First Part devoted to a discussion of the following three issues:
There will be further discussion on the nature of synthesis in religions and syntheses of yoga as one finds them in the history of religions and of yoga. This will also deal with the problem of claims of synthesis on the part of certain special systems of yoga. This discussion will include a critical examination of claims and counterclaims of special and even rival systems of yoga. A special focus will on the discussion of the relevance of yoga to life and utilisation of the results of yoga for the fulfilment of the highest conceivable aims of individual and collective perfection.
The Second Part of the Volume will describe in some detail the following special systems of yoga: Hatha Yoga, Raja Yoga, Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Bhakti Yoga. The purpose of this study will be to consider in what respects they manifest some fundamental common factors and in what respect they differ from each other in terms of object, instruments of consciousness which are specially utilised in their methodology, and specialities of their methodologies. A question will be raised and sought to be answered if a synthesis of these systems of yoga has been effected in the past, and if so, in what manner and for what purposes, and whether the past syntheses of yoga need to be further re-examined from the point of view of some farther aims that can be conceived for attaining which a new synthesis is required, and if so, on what principle it can be effected.
The Third Part of the Volume will, therefore, examine four important syntheses which were effected in the past, namely,
While examining these syntheses, an attempt will be made to study the synthetic processes of yogic practices or practices which have come to be advocated in Buddhism, Jainism, Zoroastrianism, Puranas, Bhakti movement, Judaism, Christian mysticism, Islamic practices, Sufism, Sikhism and Bahaism.
In the recent times, several special systems of yoga have come to be enlarged so as to embrace within their own specialisations some kind of synthesis. There are also some new forms of synthesis, such as Gopinatha Kaviraj’s akhanda yoga. Finally, this part will indicate two great efforts which have been made in the late 19th and 20th century, namely, the synthesis of the yoga practised by Sri Rama Krishna, and Sri Aurobindo’s synthesis of Yoga.
Part Four will describe in detail the yogic experiments and yogic experiences of Sri Rama Krishna and expositions of different systems of yoga presented by Swami Vivekananda in the context of their synthesis.
Part Five will be centred on the exposition of the synthesis of yoga as developed by Sri Aurobindo.
Part Six will be related to a survey of the contemporary research in consciousness, including that being developed under socio-biology. In this connection, the discussion will focus on the evolutionary nature of material organisms, of human organisms, of the inherent drives that can be detected at the rudimentary level of the organic cell and of the cell in the human body. Consequences of these studies for the development of yoga will also be sought to be indicated.
In this connection, Sri Aurobindo’s statements of the possible action of the supramental consciousness on the human cell will be studied, with particular reference to Sri Aurobindo’s work, “The Supramental Manifestation on the Earth” which deals with supermind and humanity and the manifestation of a new supramentalised physical consciousness that is envisaged to develop on the earth a new form of material body or divine body, the progressive development of which would influence humanity towards the attainment of the ideals which the humanity today is aspiring for, namely, lasting world peace, harmony, mutuality and unity.