upāyaDevanāgarī: उपाय Translation: approach, coming near; that by which one reaches one's aim, a means, way, stratagem, craft Related concepts:hāna, sādhana
Appears inYoga Sūtra:
Chapter 2: 26Yoga Rahasya:
Chapter 4: 31
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“In introducing the Yoga Sūtra Chapter One Upāya section within verses 20-39,
Krishnamacharya talks about Das Upāya or ten approaches,
of which two are Śodhanam (Purifying) Sādhana
and eight are Śamanam (Palliating) Sādhana.”
“Patañjali has proposed 3 approaches to verify the indications.
Tapas – Process of action
Food, Āsana, Prāṇāyāma.
You will be doing something that you will not be habitually doing.
For example one day no salt, cigarettes, Prāṇāyāma.
Tapas is from the root to create thirst.
It means to deprive.
It will tell us about ourselves.
It will reveal our Saṃskāra and Pariṇāma or changes in ourselves.
From this Tapas we will start to get an indication of our individual nature.
For example active or lazy.
Tapas indicates the the beginning of the Bheda, through the Bhāva.”
– TKV Desikachar France 1983
“The Yoga Sūtra of Patañjali deals with the mind.
It examines the different functions of the mind
and provides means to modify these functions
so that it serves the person in a very constructive way.
The means by which certain qualitative changes in the mind
are brought about is called Sādhanā.”
– TKV Desikachar on Śraddhā in the Yoga Sūtra
“We cannot escape the need for adaptation.
Adaptation is the application of certain principles,
to achieve certain results.
– Knowing where the person is now.
– Knowing where we want them to go.
Adaptation is the means used to bridge this gap.”
– TKV Desikachar 1981
“Then he has certain ideas also about Kuṇḍalinī.
The force is Prāṇa,
the force called Śakti or Kuṇḍalinī is indeed Prāṇa.
The only means that can have any effect is the use of Prāṇāyāma,
with emphasis on exhalation and the Bandha,
aided by devotional chantings.
And the evolution of Kuṇḍalinī is very much linked to the person’s state of mind and Vairāgya.”
– TKV Desikachar from lectures on ‘The Yoga of T Krishnamacharya’,
given at Zinal, Switzerland 1981.
“The means to knowledge
i.e. our method of knowing (Pramāṇa – right perception), involves a progression,
a movement from Āgama (authentic teachings),
what we hear or perceive or learn from authoritative sources;
to Pratyakṣa (through the senses) to see the fire, itself, the fact, the truth, the reality.
Such a means to know is a movement from the gross to the subtle.
In Vikalpa, we don’t have this progression.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras December 19th 1988
“I unintentionally mixed the Vedic tradition,
teaching about God’s pre-eminence,
with Yoga, whose goal and intention are different.
Yoga regards the mind principally, this is absolutely universal.
In the Yoga system, Īśvara, the principle of perfection,
is nothing but a means to attain mental clarity,
and still, it is a means among others!
Things are very different in the Vedic culture, for which God only matters.
The Brahma Sūtra understood it perfectly,
since they exclude Yoga from the ways of salvation,
because it does not give the Lord the first priority.
One must be aware of the image conveyed by Yoga,
when it is confused with Vedic chanting,
and of the image of the Veda,
when Vedic chanting is confused with Yoga.”
– Extract from an interview with TKV Desikachar on Vedic Chanting
Prāṇāyāma is common to both Haṭha and Rāja Sādhana,
whether working with the Prāṇa Śodhana of Haṭha Yoga,
where you were taught to practice it at each
of four transitional points through the day,
or with the Citta Śodhana of Patañjali,
where it is the pivotal Bahya Aṅga,
Prāṇāyāma is seen as the primary means to engage
the Élan Vital, the vital force or creative principle.
“Prāṇāyāma as a Tool in the Morning,
– Can be a Means to Hone the Mind.
Prāṇāyāma as a Tool in the Afternoon,
– Can be a Means to Refresh the Mind.
Prāṇāyāma as a Tool in the Evening,
– Can be a Means to Clear the Mind.
Prāṇāyāma as a Tool in the Night,
– Can be a Means to Settle the Mind.”
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