The Nature of Equality in Yogic Psychology

The term ‘equality’ in general use relates to inter-personal relationships within the society, but that is not how the term is utilized in yogic psychology. Equality in that sense means the ability to accept all touches from the universe, perceptions, feelings, thoughts, emotions, powers and pressures, with a steady, calm state that is non-reactive. Sri Aurobindo provides an extensive and detailed understanding of the use of the term:

Sri Aurobindo writes: “Equality is to remain unmoved within in all conditions. … Equality is not the same as forebearance, — though undoubtedly a settled equality immensely extends, even illimitably, a man’s power of endurance and forebearance. … Equality means a quiet and unmoved mind and vital, it means not to be touched or disturbed by things that happen or things said or done to you, but to look at them with a straight look, free from the distortions created by personal feeling, and to try to understand what is behind them, why they happen, what is to be learnt from them, what is it in oneself which they are cast against and what inner profit or progress one can make out of them; it means self-mastery over the vital movements, — anger and sensitiveness and pride as well as desire and the rest, — not to let them get hold of the emotional being and disturb the inner peace, not to speak and act in the rush and impulsion of these things, always to act and speak out of a calm inner poise of the spirit. It is not easy to have this equality in any full perfect measure, but one should always try more and more to make it the basis of one’s inner state and outer movements.”

Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, Living Within: The Yoga Approach to Psychological Health and Growth, General Methods and Principles, Equality, pp. 27-29

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