Ko Ham to So Ham
“Who Am I” to “I Am That”
From a very early age we are guided to be goal-oriented and successful. One goal after another, one milestone after another, one accomplishment after another, through the flow of events we call ‘life’.
We create society and are an inseparable constituent of it. Society dictates many things to us that we imbibe without necessarily being aware or conscious always. As a result, we develop habits sub-consciously and evolve many aspects of our life. We measure our success on the scale society defines for us. Society even tells us whether we feel happy or sad; also if we look happy or unhappy. Our independent, thinking faculty appears to be non-existent. However, even though it may be dormant, it is not dead, nor can it ever be.
Every divine creation has an inclination, however slight it may appear at the moment, to be one with Divinity. We are born for one purpose only and that is to know tat (That)- to be one with and to merge into the Divine. It is a tragedy that we are unaware of this and hence the question- Ko Ham? (Who am I?)- never arises. But it does not mean we will never ask that question. Perhaps we have already raised it silently within, in the times we have found ourselves alone.
Ancient Rishis (seers) and yogis were great visionaries. They had the ability to see the future clearly. They could see the time continuum. They could see a need. They were inspired in their higher and deeper states of meditation to lay out a plan and to articulate a science, in all its grandeur. That plan, that science, is Yoga.
Unless and until an aspirant develops the seriousness and sincerity, the full spectrum of awareness and the beauty of instruction may not be realized. A disciple has to approach his master with his utmost sense of surrender and observe him in every minute detail. He salutes him, bows down to him, and holds his image as a beam of light. He prostrates to him with surrender in totality. 
Slowly he is led to experience that he, the aspirant, is such an inexhaustible treasure of energy and knowledge that he does not have to depend upon anybody. He has everything. He is Poorna, total, full, and perfect. For his radiance he does not have to depend upon anybody. 
As he progresses, he witnesses power as if a spring of energy beams from within. All of his experiences concur with his earlier postulations that the root of this energy is inside him. The induction of power is realized within. 
Once the power is realized within, he feels that his ignorance, which is nothing but the absence of knowledge did not have real existence. It seems as if a puzzle is being solved, piece by piece. A new light appears on the path of his journey. The path looks clearer and clearer. 
What was a puzzle becomes instead a different modality of life. A painful experience turns into an amazing event. He feels weightless, free and relaxed.He feels light within. The mind experiences openness and feels unlimited and unrestricted. He feels the openness of the sky- Àkàsh. 
Having experienced the sailing through the sky, feeling energy at all levels appears possible. The whole body feels as if every cell receives abundant energy. The body feels nourishment at different levels. 
Every particle in nature feels a belonging to a unified field of energy, a fully dynamic net, pulsating in all directions- Astitwa (existence). This makes the aspirant understand creation as a whole- the golden knowledge he has been waiting for. 
Having experienced this golden guidance, false understanding gets dispersed or dissolved, and truth shines out. 
Every part of the aspirant’s body feels full of energy. He experiences vibrancy as if a huge reservoir of energy is made available to him. 
As every cell in the cosmos is connected through this dynamic net, this wondrous web, he understands the nature of the cycle of birth and death and the whole of creation in general. The creation is visible and invisible (Vyakta and Avyakta). 
Sequentially then, he understands the nature of his existence and the reason for his birth, growth, decay, and departure. Thus he appreciates the essence of life. 
Finally, once again in a dedicative mood, he surrenders totally and fully, requesting his master to guide him to understand the real “I” (self) within him. The guru witnesses self-realization in the beaming brilliance in the disciple’s eyes. He blesses the disciple in a joined prayer in silence. 
Please look at the table that follows:
The first column refers to the number at the end of each of the above paragraphs. The second column contains words that summarize those paragraphs. Third column depicts the corresponding Sanskrit name of the addressee, and the fourth column indicates the mantras the seers were inspired to recite. Along with the mantras, the shapes that were witnessed inspired them to formulate the postures (asanas) in that sequence. And the entire sequence of asanas is called Surya Namaskar.
Hence Surya Namaskar is a journey from Ko-Ham to So-Ham. It may be a lifelong journey or a life’s long journey.
 Friendship - Mitra - ‘Aum Mitràya Namah’
 Self Shining- Ravi - ‘Aum Ravaye Namah’
 Power Induction - Surya - ‘Aum Suryàya Namah’
 Illumination - Bhànu - ‘Aum Bhànave Namah’
 Lightness - Khaga - ‘Aum Khagàya Namah’
 Nourishment - Pushan - ‘Aum Pushne Namah’
 Golden Light - Hiranyagarbha- ‘Aum Hiranyagarbhàya Namah’
 Illusion Elimination - Marichaya - ‘Aum Marichaye Namah’
 Energy Source - Àditya - ‘Aum Àdityàya Namah’
 Creation - Savitra - ‘Aum Savitre Namah’
 Essence - Arka - ‘Aum Arkàya Namah’
 Self Realization - Bhàskar - ‘Aum Bhàskaràya Namah’