Because it is the self who uses the body, this self sees value in the body. Other people see value in the body of some other self primarily because the body is a means by which that self communicates with them, expresses love to them, works for them, and so on.
The yogi's interest is inner peace and self-realization and social harmony.
Buddhists do not believe in a life of hedonism because they believe in the law of karma (that is, a personís actions in this life will affect his existence in his next life) and because they preach that happiness can be obtained . . .
The material body can be likened to a computer/machine. Each person operates his own private computer/machine, and when he is finished using his machine, it no longer has any value because no one else can operate it. When the operator is present, the value of the computer certainly exceeds the net worth of its ingredients. Without an operator, however, a computer has no useful function, and is worth no more than the scrap value a junk dealer will pay for its component bits of plastic and metal.
When we are attracted to a person, what we are really attracted to is the particle of life, i.e., atma. Without the presence of this atma, without life, you see a body for what it really is: just a hunk of blood, guts, flesh, bones, teeth, stool, mucus, hair, urine, bile, and so onóa bag of chemicals. The monetary value of this bag of chemicals called the material body is about $9.
What is your essence? Is it matter - a mere collection of material atoms and molecules? Or is it something else?
The body is yours - but it is not you. The body is a garment that you are wearing, a machine that you are using, a vehicle that you are driving. The body is your possession. Just as a person does not identify himself as being the shirt he is wearing, he also should not identify himself with the body that he is wearing.
If you erroneously identify yourself with your body, you will conclude that your existence will end with the destruction of your body. But if you know that you are the eternal self within the body, you know that your existence will not end when your body dies.
This planet can be made a happier, more peaceful place to live, but the change will have to come from within the hearts of all of us living here
Each body has a multitude of different labels and characteristics. This in itself isnít bad; just like it is not bad for people to wear different-colored clothes. What is bad is that due to identifying the body as the self, we wrongly consider the person to be the labels that are on his body.
Mystic yogis, by the practice of mystic or psychic powers, can do things that ordinary people consider very wonderful and miraculous. Such yogis then exploit the people, claiming that they are God Himself. And millions of foolish people believe such charlatans and blindly follow them. This is very unfortunate.