The Art of Sāṃkhya Philosophy Module One Workshop February 22/23rd 2020

Module One Art of Sāṃkhya Philosophy
– Exploring the Primary Principles of Sāṃkhya and its relationship to Yoga

The Art of Sāṃkhya Philosophy Module One Workshop offers a weekend opportunity for a student from any Yoga background or style to have an in-depth introduction to the primary principles and teachings from the Sāṃkhya Kārikā and how they can inspire and guide our personal Yoga practice and study Sādhana, either for personal development or, if relevant, professional skills.

“Sāṃkhya has been fundamental in its influence on the philosophical foundations
underpinning such as Yoga, Buddhism and Āyurveda.”

Based in the Cotswolds, it is open to all except complete beginners and is limited to around five students to allow for a personalised approach and in-depth transmission between teacher and student.

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The Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa – Personal Study Workbooks

The Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa

The first of my thirty plus journeys to India to study Yoga with Desikachar was in 1979, to what was then known as Madras. As it was to be a two year stay and my first visit, we talked about how my studies could be shaped during this time and towards the future. In this discussion it became apparent for me that there were a number of threads to be woven together into a rope that became known as the viniyoga of Yoga.

These were broadly grouped into personal practice development, personal practice theory and textual study. Regarding the latter I asked him where do I start within this vast array of textual options. Without hesitation he said textual study must start with Sāṃkhya as it is a foundation for much of what follows in terms of other texts ranging from the Yoga Sūtra, even to root Āyurveda texts.

Although I had spent a week in Switzerland in 1978 studying Sāṃkhya and Prāṇāyāma with Desikachar and his brother, Sribhashyam, I really had little idea what it meant to study a Yoga related text within the intensity and focus a one to one situation offers. Nor did I have any real grasp of even basic Saṃskṛta. Thus my three decade odyssey into textual studies within the school of Krishnamacharya began with a word by word, verse by verse study of the Sāṃkhya Kārikā.

Now here I am nearly four decades later, within memories of handwriting many, many textual verses, offering workbooks as a support for students interested in textual studies. I have already offered Yoga Sūtra PDF Workbooks and Gītā Chapters PDF Workbooks and now offer a support for those students interested in a study in the foundational philosophy known as Sāṃkhya. Here a Romanised Saṃskṛta Āryā by Āryā personal study support workbook for the Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa is offered via the links below.

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The Yoga Sūtra is about reflecting on that which reflects……

The Yoga Sūtra is about reflecting on that which reflects,
in order to reflect from that which is the source of attention,
rather than from that which is the scene of inattention.
Reflections on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Three verse 49

There is an impression in some schools that Tamas and Rajas……

guna

“There is an impression in some schools that Tamas and Rajas are to be rejected.
This is not so, both are necessary. It is the combination thats important.”
– TKV Desikachar December 1st 1979

Lightness or Sattva is not always correct…..

sattva

“Lightness or Sattva is not always correct.
Sometimes it is necessary to create
heaviness and activity for memory, etc.”
– TKV Desikachar December 1st 1979

For Yoga Teachers it is important to understand the movement of the mind……

citta

“For Yoga Teachers it is important to understand
the movement of the mind
as well as the body.”
– TKV Desikachar 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Yoga is about cultivating a profound discernment of the……

viveka

Yoga is about cultivating a profound discernment
of the difference between
the Nature of our Being and
the Being of our Nature.
Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verses 12-16

As is the food in front of you, so is the mind behind you.

annam

“As is the food in front of you,
so is the mind behind you.”
– TKV Desikachar Class on Sāṃkhya 1979

Associated Yoga Texts Searchable Saṃskṛta Word Index Database

sanskrta

A lesser known facet of the Yoga Texts and Freenotes section of the Yoga Studies Website is the Yoga Texts Saṃskṛta Word Index. It started life as word by word linked index for the online Yoga Sūtra verses offering a meaning for each word and a cross Sūtra reference resource when exploring related contexts.

However as more Yoga Related Texts were added to the online Database it was obvious that the glossary needed to expand beyond the Yoga Sūtra to include Yoga related terms from other textual sources that matched or correlated with those in the Yoga Sūtra. So the glossary has expanded to include terms from Yoga related sources such as the Sāṃkhya Kārikā, the Bhagavad Gītā, the Gītārtha Saṃgraha and Haṭha Yoga Texts, though inevitably these will expand further over time.

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Sāṃkhya Kārikā joins online searchable Yoga Texts Database.

samkhya

The Sāṃkhya Kārikā is now going online and linking to the Yoga Sūtra and the Bhagavad Gītā

Sāṃkhya is said to be a relative of Yoga. In fact they are often linked together when presenting models around the six major schools of inquiry within the Indian tradition.

“Sāṃkhya has been fundamental in its influence on the philosophical
foundations underpinning such as Yoga, Buddhism and Āyurveda.”

The first text that I was privileged to be able to study word by word, Śloka by Śloka along with the commentaries of Krishnamacharya and then Desikachar, within the intimacy and vitality of private lessons, was the Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa.

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Defining our relationship with awareness is an inquiry……

na iti na iti

“na iti na iti – not this, not this”
Defining our relationship with awareness,
is an inquiry into re-defining our relationship with matter.
– Bṛhad Āraṇyaka Upaniṣat II.3.6

The learning process is only possible with Pariṇāma.

parinama

“The learning process is only possible with Pariṇāma.
Remembering what you have learned is only possible with Saṃskāra.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

The Ten Senses or Das Indriya are the gateway between…….

samkhya

The ten senses or Das Indriya are the gateway between the inner and the outer,
in the twin roads of this phenomena we call experience or action.

The five senses that transport experience from the outer to the inner
are called the Jñāna Indriya, or the senses through which we receive the world.

The five senses that transport actions from the the inner to the outer
are called the Karma Indriya, or the senses through which we put out into the world.

The co-ordinator of this remarkable interface is known as Manas.
The identifier in this remarkable process is known as Ahaṃkāra.
The discerner in this remarkable trinity is known as Buddhi.
The observer in this remarkable play of experience and action is known as Cit or Puruṣa.

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In order to discipline the mind we need to develop a mental practice……

TK_1980_aged_91

“In order to discipline the mind,
we need to develop a mental practice that clearly reveals the distinction
between the nature of spirit and matter.”
– T Krishnamacharya commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 12

Until we see through the illusion of life……

samkhya_small

Until we see through the illusion of life,
we will be unable to see,
through the illusion of life.

Yoga is about recognising change and recognising that which recognises change.

samkhya_small

Yoga is about recognising change and recognising that which recognises change.

Sāṃkhya and its aspects, what are the characteristics?

samkhya_small

Sāṃkhya and its aspects, what are the characteristics?
1. What is seen – The effect
2. What is not seen – The cause
3. What sees – Something other than cause and effect
The relationship between these three is discussed in Sāṃkhya philosophy.”
– TKV Desikachar India 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Yoga attributes everything to the mind.

samkhya_small

“Yoga attributes everything to the mind.”
– TKV Desikachar India 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

There is a relationship between Pariṇāma Tāpa and Saṃskāra.

parinama

“There is a relationship between Pariṇāma, Tāpa and Saṃskāra.
When you recognise this phenomena there is something that recognises it.
That something is not part of the phenomena.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

A Yogi is one in who Pariṇāma and Saṃskāra are in harmony……

avidya

“A Yogi is one in who Pariṇāma and Saṃskāra are in harmony.
When there is no harmony there is the wrong combination of Pariṇāma and Saṃskāra.
This is known as Avidyā or not knowing a thing as it is.
The right combination is Vidyā.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Duḥkha and the absence of Duḥkha on the mental level is due to Saṃskāra and Pariṇāma……

duhkha_5

Duḥkha and the absence of Duḥkha on the mental level is due to Saṃskāra and Pariṇāma.
With no Saṃskāra the mind is dead.
With no Pariṇāma the mind is not alive.
With the two we try to strike a balance,
to have the two in harmony.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

The practice of Yoga is an attempt to influence Saṃskāra and Pariṇāma……

samskara

“The practice of Yoga is an attempt to influence Saṃskāra and Pariṇāma in a  positive way.
If not the practice is wrong.
Therefore Yoga is a Saṃskāra which gradually changes from old Saṃskāra.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Depending on what and how you feed Pariṇāma and Saṃskāra……

parinama

“Depending on what and how you feed Pariṇāma and Saṃskāra you can have good or bad reactions.
Pariṇāma relates to perception, Saṃskāra relates to memory.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Without Saṃskāra there can be no evolution, memory, action……

samskara

“Without Saṃskāra there can be no evolution, memory, action.
There would only be Pariṇāma or constant change.
So Saṃskāra can be good or bad.
The mind is basically neutral.
It depends on what happens to us.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Pariṇāma is change and can be from one moment to the next……

parinama

Pariṇāma is change and can be from one moment to the next.
Suppose we are listening to music we like, a Saṃskāra or tendency,
and something happens to jar the appreciation.
The change is immediate and opposite to how we were.
Thus the Saṃskāra of listening to a particular style of music causes friction when there is change.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 8th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

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