How does Vedānta differ from Yoga?

vedanta

“How does Vedānta differ from Yoga?
In brief, we can say that the purpose of Yoga is to change the state of mind,
so that it is less muddy.
In this effort, God may help.

The purpose of Vedānta is to become God…..
At an ideological level, Vedānta rejects Yoga’s idea of God as something potentially helpful,
beside that point it likewise rejects whatever is said in Yoga that does not take one toward God.

However, the Vedānta Sūtra does emphasise the importance of sitting properly for meditation
and the Bhagavad Gītā speaks of the need for proper breathing.
All the Śāstra, in fact, accept the physical discipline of Yoga.”
– TKV Desikachar Chennai July 1981

The ultimate goal of Yoga is to always observe things accurately……

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“The ultimate goal of Yoga is to always observe things accurately,
and therefore never act in a way that will make us regret our actions later.”
– TKV Desikachar

The first Sūtra also acts as a key for the memory to link all the Yoga……

atha

अथ योगानुशासनम् ॥१॥

atha yoga-anu-śāsanam

“Now follow the teachings of Yoga.”

Atha – Now in the sense of nowness.
By convention let there be something auspicious.
The Sūtra are different in the sense of not having a prayer dedication in the first Sūtra.
Thus Atha fills this role.
Particularly the letter ‘A’ which is a dedication.

“Of sounds I am the first letter A.”
Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Ten verse 33

Now I am going to tell you something about Yoga.
A serious discussion as you, the students, are ready.
This also refers to the student’s previous attempts at learning, which will now be clarified.

read more

Question to TKV Desikachar on Yama and Niyama:

TKV_France_1999

Question to TKV Desikachar on Yama and Niyama:

“The idea behind Yama and Niyama is the attitude we have to the inside and outside.
If I don’t know what is true there is no question of telling the truth.
However there is the intention, because one day it may become a reality.
Even though some of these things are not there in the beginning,
if the intention is sincere then one day it will become an action
if conditions and our psychological state change.
Yama as telling the truth also means discretion.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

Each person possesses a body……

isvara

“Each person possesses a body.
Encased in the body, as it were, he goes through pain and pleasure.
The pain and pleasure through the body arises because of contact with the external world.
However such variations of pain and pleasure do not happen to one absorbed in Īśvara.”
– T Krishnamacharya commentary Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 50

In the Yoga Sūtra the purpose of the different Sādhana is to clear the mind…..

Āsana_6

“In the Yoga Sūtra,
the purpose of the different Sādhana is to clear the mind,
so the light can come out.”
– TKV Desikachar 1984

The mind is agitated because of certain things inherent…..

klesa

“The mind is agitated,
because of certain things inherent,
not from the outside,
these are already inside.”
– TKV Desikachar 1997

Viparyaya or mental activity that is based on something other than fact……

viparyaya

“Even when our understanding is consistent with our perception or repeated experience,
it does not necessarily indicate a fact.
For instance,
if we assume that a person is a woman simply because that person is dressed in a woman’s clothes,
this is called Viparyaya or mental activity that is based on something other than fact.
Viparyaya, then, is comprehension based on a perceived characteristic in the observer,
which leads to false assumptions.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 8

The world exists to set us free.

TKV_5

“The world exists to set us free.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 18

Perception is said to be right when something happens….

pramana

Perception is said to be right when something happens,
where we can see the design of the mind as well as the object.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 4

Svādhyāya implies what the tradition teaches……

svadhyaya_2

Svādhyāya implies what the tradition teaches or a teacher has taught as studies.
Thus, it does not necessarily mean that they should read and recite Veda.”
– T Krishnamacharya 1984

You cannot change the past, only our understanding of the past.

samkirna

“You cannot change the past,
only our understanding of the past.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 42

There are different grades of inclination and possibility…..

samadhi

“There are different grades of inclination and possibility
among those who are interested to experience the state of Samādhi.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 21

read more

For something to work you must participate positively….

sraddha

‎”For something to work you must participate positively.
In other words Śraddhā.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras 2000

Patañjali lists the nine kinds of obstacles that are confronted……

antararya

“In this Sūtra,
Patañjali lists the nine kinds of obstacles that are confronted by those who,
though fit and able to meditate on Īśvara, neglect to do so.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 30

Yama – How we relate, how we face the society we are part of……

yama

Yama – How we relate, how we face the society we are part of.
How we link ourselves to others in speech, action, confidence.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 30

Avidyā and Freedom do not exist together……

avidya

Avidyā and Freedom do not exist together.
Here Avidyā represents both the basis and attitude towards our action.
The aim of Yoga is to reach that state where our actions are not based on Avidyā.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 25

Can these four Yoga Aṅga be practiced by everyone at every stage of life?

anga

“Can these four Yoga AṅgaYama, Niyama, Āsana, Prāṇāyāma
– be practiced by everyone at every stage of life?
How often and how long should one practice?
How can we adapt our practice to changing circumstances?
These questions and others like them must be answered by a competent teacher,
according to each student’s individual circumstances.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 30

What is unpleasant is not desired…….

dvesa

“What is unpleasant is not desired.
The response of the mind is then to move away from it.
Whether in fact such a step did prevent Duḥkha is not immediately evident.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 8

Knowledge from the past prevails and influences me…..

asmita

“Knowledge from the past prevails and influences me to either judge or inquire.
Assuming my knowledge and my memory and I proceed is Asmitā Kleśa.
Assuming that I may be wrong and wishing to find out more is Asmitā Jñāna.
However to hesitate completely or question everything is Asmitā Kleśa.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 6