Mental tension is the cause of the crimes in the world. Many diseases are also due to psychological imbalance, nervous strain and hypertension. In order to feel relaxed, some people, now-a-days, take tranquilizers, smoke marijuana or use LSD drugs but this does not provide them with a lasting relief. Rather, these things have harmful effects on man’s mental faculties and they make him a slave of the urge to take them again and again. It has now been demonstrated that the best course to be free from mental tension is to practice Raja Yoga daily, even though for a short while.
One would naturally like to know as to what exactly it is that leads man to mental tension and how Raja Yoga helps to keep him free from it. In this connection, one should know that the main factor responsible for the mental tension is man’s attitude towards events, persons and things. It is well-known that the main mechanism through which man reacts to external stimuli in the form of events, persons or things is man’s brain and the network of sensory and motor nerves with which the brain is connected. But it is the soul which is the centre of the consciousness and the soul abides near the pituitary gland. The pituitary receives the external stimuli through the hypothalamus which receives information from the cerebral cortex of the brain and passes it on to the soul. Now it depends upon what attitudes, values or proclivities the soul has. The soul reacts to those stimuli according to its tendencies, beliefs, values etc. through the above-mentioned mechanism. Raja Yoga enables the soul to have proper attitudes, values,will-power and bliss through link with God. If for example, the soul looks upon the world as a drama, it does not feel sad in the face of adverse events. Rather, it takes them as mere passing panorama and remains as a witness.
Again, if the soul has the belief that he was originally calm and peaceful and that all other persons also are souls, related to it as brothers, he treats all with love and if others act unrighteously, he pities them and tries to extricate him rather than get disturbed.
Further, the soul, because of his belief in God as the omnipotent and merciful Father, who helps those who help themselves by acting according to divine law, remains free of worry, feels secure and also get love from Him. It experiences bliss and this saves the soul from the harmful impact of external stimuli on his consciousness. Thus, Raja Yoga helps the soul to feel relaxed and peaceful.