I am going to explain you something else about the aphorisms…….

“I am going to explain you something else about the aphorisms, about their translation.
Many books or courses have been written about the treatise of Patañjali.
Some of them analyse the words one by one, trying to translate them separately,
dissecting the text. This way of proceeding may be interesting,
but unfortunately it can also confuse instead of helping understanding of the text.

Why?
Because literally translating the aphorisms is nothing but a series of words glued together,
in sentences that very often lack in consistency.

The ancient way of exposing was not translating them into a new language;
it was mainly making the student grasp the sense of the aphorism.
In this case, the Sanskrit text is just a reminder,
a mnemonic that the teacher is not going to translate textually.
They are going to use it to develop the idea or the sense of the aphorism.
They will explain these notions, sometimes even without referring to any word of the aphorism.
What is important is to give a teaching that is adapted to the level of understanding of the student.”

– TKV Desikachar on Learning from the Yoga Sūtra
Extract from Viniyoga Europe No 1

108 Sūtra Study Pointers – 40 – Awareness is a quality not a quantity.

cit devanagari

Awareness is a quality not a quantity.
Commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 34

Link to Series: 108 Sutra Study Pointers

The Yoga Sūtra indicate five ways to reach the highest……

samadhi

The Yoga Sūtra in Chapter Four verse One
indicate five ways to reach the highest.
The fifth is the most laboured
because we must start from the bottom.”
TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988

Patañjali says that the only way to understand yourself……

Patañjali says that the only way to understand yourself
is to understand what is outside of yourself.
He also says that the more you talk about yourself
the less you know about yourself.”
– TKV Desikachar

108 Sūtra Study Pointers – 23 – Vāsanā is an unconscious motivation directed towards……

vasana

Vāsanā is an unconscious motivation directed towards
satisfying a physiological or psychological need.
– Commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 8

Link to Series: 108 Sutra Study Pointers

According to Patañjali even when you have something in front of you……

uparaga

“According to Patañjali,
even when you have something in front of you,
you may not see it.
Even when you don’t have something in front of you,
but you want to see it,
you will see it.
Everything depends on YOU.”
TKV Desikachar Madras 1988

108 Sūtra Study Pointers – 19 – In the Yoga Sūtra, the pre-eminent text on Dhyānam within Yoga……

In the Yoga Sūtra, the pre-eminent text on Dhyānam within Yoga.

Book One is about the Process of the practice of Dhyānam;
Book Two is about the Preparation for the practice of Dhyānam;
Book Three is about the Outcome of the practice of Dhyānam;
Book Four is about the Goal of the practice of Dhyānam.

Link to Series: 108 Sutra Study Pointers

108 Study Path Pointers – 11 – Reflection on Saṃkalpa – The Art of Volition……

samkalpa

Yesterdays Smṛti can become Todays Saṃskāra,
without Tomorrows Saṃkalpa being re-affirmed,
through Todays Sādhana each and every day.
– Reflection on Saṃkalpa – The Art of Volition

Link to Series: 108 Study Path Pointers

108 Sūtra Study Pointers – 12 – The witness cannot be witnessed.

The witness cannot be witnessed.
– Reflections on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 18

Link to Series: 108 Sutra Study Pointers

What the mind accomplishes is of little consequence……

“What the mind (Citta) accomplishes is of little consequence;
what is important is that the inner self should experience an accession of power,
that universal energy called Cit,
which is the life source of the individual.”
– ‘Land of a Thousand Buddhas’  Theos Barnard.

Making a start in learning to Chant the Yoga Sūtra

yoga_sutra_cover

Mostly we come across the teachings of the Yoga Sūtra through a group class situation or by coming across a book.

This is fine as a starting point, however longer term the Yoga Sūtra needs to permeate from the inside rather than just be read and thought about from the outside.

A good starting point for initiating this psychic process is to learn how to chant as a process in itself and then how to chant the Yoga Sūtra specifically.

read more

I do feel that verses 10 and 11 Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two offer……


This post arose from a comment in a thread yesterday on my facebook page:
“I feel that by now you are surely off Yoga Sūtra 2.1?”
Its not something I think about often from that perspective so my thanks to Ivan for the following reflection:

“I do feel that verses 10 and 11 Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two offer an inspiration for the transition from Kriyā Yoga towards Aṣṭāṅga Yoga.

read more

What is the greatest obstacle to meditation?

dhyana

“Question: What is the greatest obstacle to meditation?”
TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988

When an object is invisible, it is not invisible because it is not there……

visaya

“When an object is invisible,
it is not invisible because it is not there,
but because something hides it.
What you seek may be next door,
but you won’t find it precisely because it is next door.”
TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988

According to Patañjali, comprehension is dependent opon two things……

apeksa

“According to Patañjali (Yoga Sūtra C4 v17), comprehension is dependent upon two things:
1. Your interest
and
2. The proximity of the object.
Apekṣā is the interest of the Puruṣa for the object.
The success of Dhyāna depends on the force (Śakti) of the Puruṣa
that pushes the mind to direct itself towards an object.
Without interest, there is no question and no answer.
If you have the interest, you will discover the proximity.”
TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988

How does the ‘I’ influence Dhyāna?

dhyana

Question: How does the ‘I’ influence Dhyāna?
“Patañjali’s Yoga Sūtra, which describes every aspect of mental activity,
provides an answer to this question…….”
TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988