Regulative Principles to be followed in life...
Today many people practice yoga to lose weight or otherwise improve their health and appearance. But there is much more to yoga than that. Yoga actually means "To link with the Supreme". It may be compared to a ladder for attaining the top most spiritual perfection.
Thousands of years ago, conditions were such that people could devote a great part of their lives to unbroken yoga practices in a secluded place, taking strict vows of penances and austerity. But who today can sit alone in a mountain valley or jungle for long periods without moving; minimizing eating, sleeping and speaking, and on top of that fixing ones mind on the self? By following the bhakti yoga process which has been recommended for this age, this can be achieved.
The Bhakti yogi controls his mind and senses by the simple process of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra. Chanting purifies the mind and the senses just as medicine prescribed for a bodily ailment gradually restores the body to its natural, healthy condition. We engage in this practice, known as mantra meditation to gradually develop great mental control and awareness. In this pure state of consciousness, free from inebriates such as tension, confusion, depression and feelings of envy and hatred, one experiences real peace of mind.
We also abstain from activities which bind us to materialistic life and have negative karmic reactions.
These we call the regulative principles of freedom and can be classified as four:
No eating meat, fish or eggs
No intoxicants (like drugs, alcohol, tobacco, etc.)
No illicit sex
We follow these principles in order to develop love of God. They are conducive to the development of spiritual life and also bring peace and stability of the mind. We believe there are three enemies to civilized human life. These are lust, anger and greed. These activities which we abstain from are those which increase our lust, anger and greed. They also cloud the mind which then leads one to misjudgment.
Abstaining from these four sinful acts allows us to lay a rock solid foundation in our devotional quest.
So by regularly chanting Hare Krishna - this will help us to follow the four regulative principles and by following the four regulative principles we can easily chant Hare Krishna. They go hand in hand, neither one can be done without the other.