Thought Bite: Take Care In What We Call Ourselves

These days, many people who teach yoga postures call themselves “Yoga master” “Yogi” and “Yogi-raj” (King of Yogis).

Perhaps this is done for marketing purposes. For some reason, in marketing it seems to be oddly acceptable to aggrandize oneself.

Perhaps this is done because it’s not understood that the word, “Yogi,” means one who is joined in Yoga – meaning the person has accomplished union with the Divine Self - rather than just someone who is a practitioner of Yoga techniques.

Perhaps it’s done due to the influence of the ego.

Whatever the reason, it is worth considering the following words of Swami Veda Bharati on the subject:

“It saddens me, pains me . . . nowadays anybody and everybody has got self-imposed titles of ‘Somebody is a Yogi.’ ‘Somebody is a Yogiraj.’ ‘Somebody is a Yogini.’ My God! Up to now, I sign myself as a disciple. I don't write ‘Yogi Veda Bharati’ after my name. I'd be ashamed of doing it. I'd bury myself in shame the day I started calling myself a Yogi. There are others who write of about "scholar Yogi," and God knows what and what, but I don't respond to that and don't encourage it. So forget about these ambitions. Okay? For success in Yoga, self-effacement is the key. Holding back, maintaining silence about your achievements.” Swami Veda Bharati

Swami Veda had various educational degrees which he wrote behind his name. He also had a title, Mahamandaleshwara, which he wrote in front on his name. This title and these degrees were given to him by authentic institutions that had the authority to confer them. Holding such honors out to the public was not being egotistical. They were facts. The problem comes when we confer our titles upon ourselves. As the Yoga scholar and teacher Jagadananda Das wrote on Facebook this week, “Who is the authority who will tell you you are a Yogiraj? Only your Guru.”


19 Dec 2021;
07:00PM - 08:00PM
Full Moon Meditation 2020