What does it mean that doing the more advanced yogic practices can have some very negative effects if the mind, body and spirit are not yet clear and strong enough to support all of the energy that comes through?
When doing the more advanced practices we begin to become aware of things about existence that can completely turn our world upside down. One brief example:
Things that we never thought possible might begin to become clear to us as being a reality. We begin to understand certain things, and at the same time we also begin to realize that many other people are not to perceiving those same things. This could, for example, cause a person to think he is special, or chosen…. for instance, he may begin to believe that he is the reincarnation of Jesus or Mohammed. In fact, this actually *does* happen….
People end up having schizophrenia and other mental illnesses, such as depression, paranoia, and inferiority/superiority complexes because of their spiritual awakenings.
This can be avoided, though, if the practices are done in a systematic way. It is highly recommended that when beginning any advanced practices that some system of support be sought out, such as a spiritual group that has a history with these practices, a guru, or other competent and experienced teacher.
Furthermore, I cannot stress enough the importance of cleanliness of the body before beginning these practices. The diet should be a very clean vegetarian (or even very highly raw vegan) diet.