In India, the Candidates for Initiation into the science of "Raja Yoga,"
when they apply to the Yogi Masters for instruction, are given a series
of lessons designed to enlighten them regarding the nature of the Real
Self, and to instruct them in the secret knowledge whereby they may
develop the consciousness and realization of the real "I" within them.
They are shown how they may cast aside the erroneous or imperfect
knowledge regarding their real identity.
Until the Candidate masters this instruction, or at least until the truth
becomes fixed in his consciousness, further instruction is denied him,
for it is held that until he has awakened to a conscious realization of
his Actual Identity, he is not able to understand the source of his
power, and, moreover, is not able to _feel_ within him the power of the
Will, which power underlies the entire teachings of "Raja Yoga."
The Yogi Masters are hot satisfied if the Candidate forms merely a clear
intellectual conception of this Actual Identity, but they insist that he
must _feel_ the truth of the same--must become _aware_ of the Real
Self--must enter into a consciousness in which the realization becomes a
part of his everyday self--in which the realizing consciousness becomes
the prevailing idea in his mind, around which his entire thoughts and
To some Candidates, this realization comes like a lightning flash the
moment the attention is directed toward it, while in other cases the
Candidates find it necessary to follow a rigorous course of training
before they acquire the realization in consciousness.
The Yogi Masters teach that there are two degrees of this awakening
consciousness of the Real Self. The first, which they call "the
Consciousness of the 'I'," is the full consciousness of _real_ existence
that comes to the Candidate, and which causes him to _know_ that he is a
real entity having a life not depending upon the body--life that will go
on in spite of the destruction of the body--_real_ life, in fact. The
second degree, which they call "the Consciousness of the 'I AM'," is
the consciousness of one's identity with the Universal Life, and his
relationship to, and "in-touchness" with all life, expressed and
unexpressed. These two degrees of consciousness come in time to all who
seek "The Path." To some it comes suddenly; to others it dawns gradually;
to many it comes assisted by the exercises and practical work of "Raja