This includes Pratyahara, Dharana and Dhyana-sense abstraction, concentration and meditation.
The senses and the mind must be withdrawn from the sense objects and the mind must be focussed on the God within.
This is inner Yoga.
The outer Yoga practices are to prepare the aspirant to gain fitness to practise this inner Yoga.
Where the necessary preparation is inadequate or wanting, meditation cannot succeed.
Simply sitting cross-legged and closing the eyes, thinking the same worldly thoughts and building castles in the air, or falling into a semi- sleep is not meditation.
A person who wants to meditate must be free from disease and desire, from cares and worries.
He must be free from love and hatred, and from like and dislike.
He must be soaked in Vairagya (dispassion).
He must be able to sit firmly for hours together in the same posture.
His breathing must be slow and even.
His stomach must be free from constipation, free from gas and very light.
when these conditions are not satisfied, meditation will remain just a pipe dream.
To be continued ...