The following article was originally delivered as a Satsang Sermon by Acharya Hersh Khetarpal on September 1, 2002.

One of the most stirring Yogic scriptures, the Kath Upanishad uses two marvelous words to help us see which course of action will lead to trouble in the long run and which will lead to detached, loving living. These words apply to every choice, in every circumstance, so they dispel the haze that often surrounds a difficult situation.

Whenever you have a choice, ask yourself this question: “Which is Preya and which is Shreya, the long term good?”

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Below is an article about a devotee’s trip to the main ashram in Hoshiarpur, Punjab:

On March 23, 2007 I set out to discover yoga as it is practiced in the country where it was originated. A group of 14 from eclectic backgrounds, from a poet to a school principle to a dentist, all affiliated with Yog Sadhan in Chicago Ashram in one way or other, had arrived a day earlier than I did. After a 15 hour flight and a 10-hour car ride I stepped inside a true Indian ashram where no Westerner had ever visited.

Soon after my arrival, someone escorted me into a small room where aarti was taking place. The members of my group were already settled in what would be their new home for the next three weeks, chanting along with the locals. Hersh’s father, Satgurudev Shri Chaman Lal Kapur, called “Guruji” by his students was in deep meditation with his eyes closed.

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What is Aatma?

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Who are we really?

Are we the body given to us in this life? Or are we the state of mind or emotions we feel? Perhaps we are the family we belong to, house we own, or car we drive. In fact, we are none of these things.

In this lecture, Acharya Hersh Khetarpal begins by explaining what it really means that we are our aatma (soul) and that the real question is how can we learn to associate with our aatma and disassociate with our mind, body, ego, etc.

Acharya Ji’s lecture goes even further to explain karmic theory – how our aatma passes through multiple lives according to our previous and current actions, with the ultimate goal of ending the birth/death cycle and merging with the Supreme soul. The lecture also briefly describes the 4 yogic paths (bhakti yoga, jyana yoga, karma yoga and raja yoga) to the goal of moksha, or where the individual soul merges with the Supreme soul.

Click on the play button to listen to the 19 minute lecture:

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Below is an article written about the Ashram in Yoga Chicago

I never knew that my visit to Yog Sadhan Ashram in West Chicago two years ago would lead me to the main ashram in Hoshiarpur, Punjab, India, in March 2007.

It is unbelievable to me that a yogic sanctuary of this kind existed less than an hour away from downtown Chicago. On the crisp Sunday morning of my first visit, I saw aspiring yogis practicing asanas, studying scriptures and learning internal cleansing techniques. Nested in the outskirts of the town of West Chicago, the vast property houses several buildings and many acres of green land and tall trees.

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A few months ago, a local filmmaker made a short documentary about the Ashram – its history, mission and teachings. Not only is it a short introduction to the Ashram’s philosophy of teaching yoga in its entirety, as opposed to just asanas, but it’s also serves to inspire and encourage anyone on the yoga path. Please let us know what you think!