Rev. Shrii Shrii Ánandamúrti Ji, (aka Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar) the founder of Ananda Marga has defined the word yoga as:
Saḿyoga yoga ityukto jiivátmá Paramátmanah – “When the unit consciousness merges itself fully and is finally identified with the Supreme Consciousness, Shiva, that is called yoga.” Here the microcosmic drop merges into the vast ocean of Consciousness; the microcosm merges into the Macrocosm. This state of supreme union or merger is what is called yoga. (Discourses on Tantra Vol. Two, “Yoga, Tantra, and Kevalá Bhakti”)
Here, yoga means union of one’s individual existence with the Supreme Cosmic Entity. It is the highest goal of the advancing humanity, the purpose of Human life. To achieve this goal the mind needs to be introverted toward the higher layers and eventually merge with own infinite, blissful Self. In succession then, finally the unit Self merges with Supreme Cosmic Entity. Ananda means the “Infinite Bliss” and Marga means the “Path”; it is the practical Path for humanity to achieve the highest stance of Blissful Union with the Supreme.
In the past, the yogis would retreat to the Himalayan caves and dedicate their lives to meditation and austere practices. Ananda Marga offers meditation techniques that work as powerful tools to achieve spiritual progress and yogic lifestyle to maintain healthy body and mind while leading a social life. The withdrawal of mind that required the ancient yogis to renounce family and society is replaced by a powerful revival, by Rev. Shrii Shrii Ánandamúrti Ji, of Lord Shiva’s original system of regular meditation and service to humanity adjusted to the present day humanity and its safe future course. Most members of Ananda Marga are therefore family people, living and contributing to the society excepting those few with intense calling to dedicate their lives to social service and spiritual practices who are trained to lead truly monastic lives as monks or nuns in the midst of global society.