How, being a Yogi, can you pray to God, when you don’t know your own personality?
Both are one and the same. When you know God you know yourself. And when you know you, you know God. Because God is not different from you. You are that God – Brahman. So if you are praying, you are praying actually to your Self, to the Self which is within you. When you put that Self – the Atman – outside, it becomes God. When you put that same God inside you, it becomes your Self. It’s one and the same.
In the beginning it is not possible to see God inside, so you put Him outside and come and prostrate to Him. Even though I know the Vedanta philosophy, still I put up pictures of Master and of Nataraja. I prostrate before them before I sit so that my ego will not come up. I will never go without praying. Though I know the philosophy, I know that it’s just only words. I have not completely reached the oneness with the Supreme; I have not melted my ego. Maybe through God’s grace and Guru’s grace, I may. God knows. But on my own, I’ve got no strength. I also can fall down after fifty years spent on the spiritual path. There is still no guarantee that I’ll stick to this path. Just as the king of England renounced everything for a woman, so also I might renounce all my spiritual growth in a moment, get married and live like a householder. There’s no guarantee. Only God can help me.
I pray every morning and every evening: “Oh God, You came in this form. You made me to teach.” I never think that I am a super Guru who came to bless you and take you to heaven. I’ve never said that. I am a struggling soul just like you. If God keeps me on the spiritual path, I’m very, very happy. But, it’s not by my will power that I am staying on the spiritual path. Prayer is very essential. It doesn’t matter in which state you are or what type of Yoga you are doing, keep that prayer always in your heart. Ask God to give you strength to stick to the spiritual path.