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THE ART OF REJUVENATION Part IV by Paramhansa Yogananda

Praecepta » Volume 1 » Praeceptum #8

 (Review the preceding Parts, I, II, and III, to continue the thread of thought and to strengthen the foundation for the Technique of Rejuvenation.)


We now come to the technique of recharging the body battery, by which you may learn how to draw more and more life-sustaining energy from the ether, and depend less and less upon solids, liquids, sunshine, and gases for sustenance.

Food contains a limited part of Life Energy, hence we can extract strength from food, but if the internal supply of Life Energy is exhausted, food is of no use. Therefore, we should not only utilize the advice presented in the health culture division of the weekly Praecepta for the sustenance of the human body from the outer source of energy, but should also emphasize and daily apply the method of recharging the body with energy from the inner source.


The exercises in “The Art of Rejuvenation” show how to recharge the body battery by will, thus supplying energy from the inner source. Now comes the question: “How can we recharge the body battery?” First, lift your arm, then drop it. What lifted your arm? Will power and energy. Now close your eyes. Can you lift your arm without willing to do so? Can will power alone do it? No. It requires will power and energy. But do you know how will power and energy do this? The answer is: By flowing into the different parts of the body. We want healthy muscles, bones, marrow, blood, and tissues, and in each of these the energy is like a battery. The supply of energy depends upon the chemicals you take into the body and the energy taken in through the medulla. Good health does not consist in energization of the muscles alone. The cells in every body part must be energized. To teach you how to recharge the cells in every body part is the purpose of this series of Praecepta.

Now lift your arm. What is holding your arm up? Will power and energy, you say. Good. If you do not use will power to keep it up, it will drop. So also with energy. Will power is the switch which controls the flow of energy.


Sit on a chair. Tense the whole body and then relax, keeping the body motionless. Then bend forward with arms down, and, clasping your hands together, hold an imaginary cord which is tied to an imaginary weight of 25 pounds. Now tense the hands and add the strength of the tensed hands to that of the tensed forearms. Then add the tensed upper arms; then add to them, tensed chest, abdomen, haunches, thighs, legs, and feet. Then will to lift the 25 pounds and send enough energy and will power to lift it one inch from the ground. Now tense harder and continue lifting the weight higher. It is very heavy. Now the imaginary weight has left the ground about an inch, two inches, six inches, on to one foot. The drop your imaginary weight, relax your whole body, and sit back in your chair, relaxed and motionless.

When you grow stronger, lift imaginary weights of 30 to 40 pounds. The best way to know the exact amount of energy required to lift an imaginary weight of 25 pounds (or any amount) is to lift actually that weight and feel how much will and energy are required. Then relax. Then try to employ the exact amount of tension required to lift an imaginary weight of the same number of pounds.


Tension results when energy is sent by will power to any muscle. There are varying degrees of tension, depending upon the amount of energy sent to the muscles. We shall consider three degrees, which we shall call low, medium and high tension. Low is a small amount of energy; medium is more; and high is as much as possible. The withdrawal of energy from the muscles is called relaxation. This may also be in three stages or degrees; resulting in partial or complete relaxation.

Usually, you must relax before you tense. The popular method of relaxation results when you tell a person to relax while he is sitting, standing, or lying down, and he usually moves his limbs, and while keeping them tensed tries to rest. Then he thinks he is physically relaxed. Even as an automobile standing at your door with the engine running, burns energy, so also, many people while sleeping, sitting, or lying down, are partly tensed, (low, medium, or high) according to their degree of mental nervousness, and are thus burning energy even when their bodies are apparently at rest.

When you move your body or arm to relax it, and keep moving it, you have not relaxed (withdrawn energy) but are really tensing (sending energy) to it instead.

Now after learning the art of producing relaxation and tension in any of the 20 body parts, the student must learn the greatest exercise for recharging the whole body.



Example 1.

1. Extend the right arm in front.

2. Place the left hand upon the right biceps muscle.

3, Bend the right arm at the elbow, observing the automatic contraction of the biceps through the mechanical movement.

* N . B. Note that the action of the WILL is in the bending of the arm and not in the contraction of the biceps. (*Nota Bene, Lat., note well)

Example 2.

1. Relax the right arm loosely at the side.

2. With the left hand grasp lightly the biceps of the right arm.

3. Close eyes.

4. Then, without bending right arm at the elbow, tense the biceps slowly to the maximum of force with WILL.

5. Sense the tensing.

6. Permit no mechanical movement of the arm.

7. Then relax slowly.

N. B. Note that this tensing of the biceps, if done successfully by the novice, is the direct action of the WILL on the muscle. If the novice is not successful with the upper arm, let him make the experiment with the forearm, which may be easier for some people.


At dawn, when your consciousness first awakens in the body, practice the following exercise by lying on your back with closed eyes. Dogs and cats stretch and relax upon awakening, but man strips his muscle gears by jumping from sleep to the floor, and by suddenly throwing the body into action in response to an alarm clock or telephone bell.

Lie down on the bed on your back, tense the whole body (all 20 body parts simultaneously); hold tension, counting 1 – 2 – 3; then quickly relax and exhale. Feel the energy and will power slipping away from the body. Remain perfectly still like a jelly fish without feeling, the bones and flesh, and without moving any muscles, as long as you like, and hold the breath as long as you can with comfort.




1. Gently tense and relax each body part from 1 to 20, mentally saying: “My children, wake up.” Hold the relaxation for half a minute without moving.

2. Place the attention on the center of the instep of the left foot.

3. Slowly tense the left foot, low, medium, and high, drawing the toes under.

4. Keep it tensed. Continue adding tension, low to high, with will power in the above mentioned same manner in all the 20 body parts, from feet to head (1 to 20) by tensing left foot, right foot, left calf, left thigh, right thigh, left haunch, right haunch, contracting abdomen (below navel) and stomach (above navel). Then tense forearm left, forearm right, upper arm left, upper arm right, left breast, right breast, left of neck, right of neck, front of neck, back of neck, in slow rhythmic succession.

5. Gently re-tense and vibrate whole body, holding all 20 body parts tensed, breath held, mentally counting 1 to 6 and quickly noting mentally whether all body parts are tensed or not.

6. Exhale and slowly relax the chain of tensed parts, head to feet in inverse order from 20 to 1. If while relaxing the parts above the waist, you find that you have also unintentionally relaxed the parts below the waist, then simultaneously tense again all the parts below the waist and relax from waist down, one by one.

7. Repeat the above technique once lying on bed, and twice out of bed, standing.

N. B.

a. The above technique can be practiced lying down or sitting in a chair, or while standing.

b. Always practice the above technique with closed eyes and very slowly.

c. Do not tense quickly or relax quickly, but gradually.

d. Tense low any diseased or weak body part.

e. To heal any body part, gently tense and relax that part. Then tense low and hold that tension, counting 1 to 10 mentally, electrocuting the disease with recharged energy. Then relax. Repeat 10 times, three times a day, or as often as you desire Practice healing of any body part in the lying posture.

f. By exhaling or throwing the breath out, you relax the lungs, diaphragm, and abdomen. You can do this exercise sitting, reclining, or standing Of course, if standing you have to keep certain muscles of the feet, calves, and thighs engaged and tensed in order to hold the body upright, or you will fall. Any time you feel tired or nervous, tense the whole body gently, then relax; that is, withdraw the energy and consciousness, and active will power, and quickly exhale; keep still; enjoy the calmness of the body.

Master this highly practical Technique of Rejuvenation by FAITHFUL and REGULAR practice for your own knowledge and benefit. Each step of Original Praecepta Exercises will give definite, satisfactory and invigorating results in body and mind, which you can experience for yourself, if you are regular, faithful, attentive, and correct in your practice.



To have a healthy body one must maintain bodily cleanliness inside as well as out. Poisons or waste products are eliminated through four organs and each must have proper care and attention These four organs of elimination are the skin, the lungs, the kidneys and the bowels. They will be treated separately.


About one quarter of the water taken into the body is eliminated, along with a large quantity of waste products, through the pores of the skin. To keep the skin functioning properly, wear light, loose clothing. Take a warm bath each night to wash off the accumulated waste of the day and to allow the skin to breathe at night. Take a cool or cold shower in the morning to keep the skin in tone and to help it to react properly as a heat regulator.


The normal medium in which the body performs its functions is alkaline. When, as a result of improper diet, overwork, lack of rest, lack of fresh air, and so forth, the body becomes acid, we are ill. The alkali which the body needs at this time to neutralize the acid condition is supplied through food and drink. The alkaline chemicals neutralize and eliminate the acids formed by activity and by an excess of acid-producing foods. Alkalinity means health and immunity to disease

In order to keep the body in an alkaline condition, at least eighty per cent of our diet should be chosen from the foods which have an alkaline reaction. A few of the foods which have an alkaline reaction are tomatoes, lettuce, celery, watercress, cucumbers, beets, eggplant, spinach, strawberries, asparagus, carrots, pears, soy beans, leeks, chard, figs, canteloupe, oranges, peaches, lemons, raspberries, apricots, mushrooms, watermelons, squash, buttermilk, apples, grape juice, and dates.


Crisp cupped lettuce leaves

Cooked zucchini

Small mound of cooked spinach or chopped raw spinach and apples marinated in French dressing

6 strips cooked carrots

3 slices of tomato sprinkled with minced green pepper or parsley

2 halves of stuffed or deviled egg.

Arrange zucchini, spinach, tomato, in lettuce cups, separating them with carrot strips. Place eggs in the center. Or, zucchini, and spinach may each rest on a slice of tomato with eggs in the center.


God is Infinite Omnipresence. He is present in everything equally. His light shines equally in wisdom-sparkling diamond Souls and in charcoal mentalities dark with ignorance. Because God has given us independence to choose between error and truth, we can keep our minds transparent with purity of knowledge and love, or dark with dogma and inharmony. God has so endowed man with His own power of liberty that man can shut God out or receive Him through his logic and right struggle of life. That some people know less than others is not due to God’s limiting the flow of His power through man, but to man’s not allowing His light to pass through. Ignorance-stricken people may be healed of delusion’s diseases by contacting the Christ Consciousness of meditation and faith.

“I am renewed and strengthened by Thy Life Giving Energy.”