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Consider the following excerpt from the preface of Raja-Yoga by Swami Vivekananda

In the first part some simple and specific directions are given for the student who want to practise, but all such are especially and earnestly reminded that, with few exceptions, Yoga can only be safely learnt by direct contact with a teacher. If these conversations succeed in awakening a desire for further information on the subject, the teacher will not be wanting.

Normal people in my question refers to the people who are not with any special powers or avatar etc., How to understand the above sentence? Is guru mandatory for normal people or one can attempt to do with interest/desire as only necessity?

  • I think normal people can not be 'few exceptions'. – user17294 Apr 28 at 5:30
  • @commommam but see the next sentence. If these conversations succeed in awakening a desire for further information on the subject, the teacher will not be wanting. my question is on this.. – hanugm Apr 28 at 5:40
  • That Swamiji meant for His audience and NOT for the readers. – user17294 Apr 28 at 5:48
  • @commonman what about audience then? Are you saying that he will be their guru? – hanugm Apr 28 at 5:51
  • If you read about the expeiences of His audience, you could easily know that.So many writings of His foreign devotees are there! – user17294 Apr 28 at 5:53
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Well, a guru is required to each person. A selfless guru, just like Swami Vivekanand's guru Ramkrushn Paramhans. But if one cannnot find such (just like in kali yug today). Yog is preferred. But a true Yog can be taught by the Guru. Even if that Guru is not available then Shastr (Books By Rishis with Sanskrit) are the only guru left.

for your information, a shlok may have multiple meaning depending on what context you're reading it. So better option will be to learn sanskrit from scratch rather than translating it.

  • Welcome! Answers on this site should be backed up with proper sources. Please visit Guidelines for new users answering questions – The Destroyer May 3 at 11:09
  • @TheDestroyer Does this count as a source- the following excerpt from the preface of Raja-Yoga by Swami Vivekananda "In the first part some simple and specific directions are given for the student who want to practise, but all such are especially and earnestly reminded that, with few exceptions, Yoga can only be safely learnt by direct contact with a teacher." LOL. – Shashwat May 3 at 12:26

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