By Rajeev Sharma
Delhi-based yoga practitioner, Swami Dilip Yogesh Guru, has pointed out a harsh reality facing the students. “With the advancement in the medical sciences, there seems to be a proportionate growth of strange diseases. The situation has come to such a pass that even school students are complaining of depression. Children generally fall sick during exam time. The malady remains undiagnosed even after a series of tests recommended by doctors. Then, such a patient is referred to a psychiatrist , who recommends anti-depressants, which cause damage to health if taken for a long time,” he said in an interview.
Here are excerpts from a discussion on yoga and diseases.
SAT: Why, after all, do we have so many diseases?
Swami Dilip: Physical work has substantially decreased whereas mental tension has increased manifold across all age groups. Fast food has become popular, but digesting such food is a problem. Obesity is rampant. Children, too, are suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes.
SAT: How much is yoga capable of fighting such ailments?
Swami Dilip: One gets 100% success through yoga. Even diseases which are perceived to be extremely difficult get all right by practicing yoga. But one must understand that a yoga teacher has to keep a patient under his strict watch and guidance. The patient has to be given the right kind of diet, which is in tune with individual-specific needs. Yoga is never practiced in a mass gathering. All kinds of yogic activities are not prescribed for all patients. Something of this sort is happening these days: people are doing yoga by watching it on TV. Many yogic activities done without guidance can be fatal. For instance, if a high blood pressure patient does intense Kapalbahti pranaayaam, he can put his life on the line.
SAT: How do you train?
Swami Dilip: First, I ask a patient to see me empty stomach. Then I check his/her pulse. I discuss in detail one’s disease or ailment. This interaction covers issues such as one’s routine, diet and personal problems, if any. I reach a conclusion only after such a personal discussion. In the case of children, I talk to parents as well. If it concerns a mental condition, then a lot of questions are asked before a yogic activity is recommended. Nowadays, schizophrenia cases have increased and so have relationship problems. There have been cases where minor issues have led to suicides.
SAT: What is your advice to the general public which is beneficial to all?
Swami Dilip: Generally, I ask all to do some amount of physical exercises. Exercises keep you away from many diseases. I suggest at least 4km walk each day. A sedentary life-style has led to a variety of diseases. One must, also, try sleep early at night. One must have dinner within an hour after sunset. Early to bed and early to rise can keep many diseases at bay.
SAT: What’s right kind of yoga?
Swami Dilip: Right yoga is that which has been described in the scriptures, something that has been ordained by rishis (seers). Nothing more can be added or subtracted. Those who meditated and practiced, wrote those very scriptures. By definition, a book as such is different from a ‘shastra’. Yoga is pure science. People are playing with the originality of yoga by making it like an entertainment exercise.
SAT: How’s yoga placed or seen in India?
Swami Dilip: Yoga is, as I have said, 100% science and it gives you the required results, but should not be done in a collective, assembly way. In the recent days, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has awakened new enthusiasm among the people and he has presented it vigorously before the world. Such efforts are praise worthy.
SAT: Do tell us about yourself, your guru, how did you treat the so-called difficult diseases?
Swami Dilip: I am basically from Bihar. My father passed away at age 112 years. My father, Ram Avtar, was associated with Bhu-Andolan (land reform campaign). I learnt yoga from late Swami Dheerendra Brahmchari and Swami Ram Lakhan-ji. At present, I hold free yoga classes at Delhi’s Greater Kailash area of Jehapanah forest, which is spread over many miles. I also teach yoga at residences to earn a living. Although there are several cases where medical sciences just gave up and yoga came to the rescue, I would specifically like to mention a case of a 22-year-old youth here. He fell down while horseriding and remained bed-ridden for six months because of a spinal cord injury. The parents of the young man wanted me to make him able to simply move about. Today, after a six-month yoga course, that same man is running! I noted one thing in that man: despite his bad injury, he kept his morale high to fight the disabling ailment that he had found himself in. So, in this way, his perseverance and my knowledge worked. My gurus always insisted that first I must understand the man stricken with a disease. The disease itself comes only later.