Question: What is the Science of Identity, and why is it important for me to understand it?
Jagad Guru: My desire is to share the Absolute Truth with you. When you know who you really are, when you understand the truth of your identity, you will be able to live a happy, purposeful life. And when the time comes for you to leave this world, you will be able to do so without fear, and at peace. If I can help just one person in this way, then I will have succeeded in life.
Question: So what is my true identity?
Jagad Guru: Most people think they are their physical body or their mind. But the fact is, you are not your physical body, and you are not your mind. You are the eternal spiritual soul (atma) who is only temporarily in a material body. If God were the sun, then you are a ray of that sun. In other words, you are an eternal offspring or child of the Supreme Soul. Your body will die, but you, the eternal spirit soul, will never die.
The next truth you need to realize is this: God loves you unconditionally. My purpose in life is to help you realize this truth—to share with you the process which has been shared with me, which will help purify your consciousness so that you can directly perceive or experience your true identity and God’s unconditional love for you, and awaken your natural love for God.
When you are united with God in a bond of love, you will have achieved the goal of the human form of life. This state of being is called “yoga.” Yoga means union. Yoga also refers to the different processes, practices, and techniques that help us achieve that union with God. So the science of identity is the science of yoga.
Question: Where do your teachings originate?
Jagad Guru: First, you should understand that these are not my teachings. If what I teach comes from me, then it is bound to have imperfections because I am imperfect. What I share is what has been shared with me by my guru based on yoga scripture.
And my guru also is not the originator of these teachings. Rather, he received this transcendental knowledge from his guru. In this way, the transcendental knowledge of yoga has been handed down from spiritual master to disciple from time immemorial.
The originator, the source, of this transcendental science is Bhagavan, the Supreme Soul. Bhagavan Sri Krishna shared this transcendental knowledge with Arjuna in the Bhagavad-Gita, which is the foundation and most important of all yoga scriptures.
The chains of teachers that have been handing down the Bhagavad-gita in this way are known as disciplic successions. There are many disciplic successions coming from Sri Krishna. I received the science of Bhagavad-gita from His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad, who was a disciple of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupad, who received this science from his spiritual teacher, Gaurakishora das Babaji, who received this science from his guru, and so on. This disciplic succession is called the Brahma Madhva Gaudiya Sampradaya.
Question: Why is yoga called a science, such as the science of self-discovery or the science of identity?
Jagad Guru: Generally speaking, when people think of “religion,” they envision something that a person can join or quit, can be converted from or converted to. Science, on the other hand, is the step-by-step process of understanding what already is–discovering the truth that already exists.
So yoga is the science of discovering the truth that exists already. In contrast, “religion” is commonly perceived as something that one decides to join or believe in. The approach between these two is very different. Someone who is on the path of yoga wants to know what the truth is and is open to that truth—no matter what the truth may be or where it may lead. A true yogi, therefore, can never be a blind believer or blind follower.