Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 8

विपर्ययः मिथ्याज्ञानमतद्रूपप्रतिष्ठम् ॥८॥

viparyayaḥ mithyā-jñānam-atadrūpa-pratiṣṭham ||8||

Wrong perception is false knowledge not established in form.

viparyaya - wrong perception, misapprehension, error, mistake; intrinsic misconception; reversed, inverted, perverse, contrary tomithyā - falsely, deceitfully, untruly; incorrectly, wrongly, improperlyjñāna - knowing; knowledge; higher knowledgeatat - not thatrūpa - any outward appearance or phenomenon or colour; form, shape, figure; aggregatepratiṣṭha - established

Commentaries and Reflections

Commentary by T Krishnamacharya:

“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.”

“A particular Dharma is not there,
but somewhere we feel it is there.”

Commentary by TKV Desikachar:

“These problems in our observation are related to the mixing of:
Vikalpa:
Imagination is already there operating when we begin to observe.
All the more that we are better and better informed about what we should see, etc.
Viparyaya:
Because of the past Saṃskāra,
there is a sort of perversion in observation.
Smṛti:
Memory is, unfortunately, never factual.
Finally, we should never forget that all conclusions are wrong,
because things change.”

Commentary by Paul Harvey:

“Wrong perception is a false knowing that has no basis.”

Viparyaya is merely an opinion,
convincing in its rightness to exist.
A flight of fancy, posing, as if a truth.”

Viparyaya is seeing what we want to see,
or not seeing what we need to see.”

“In Sūtra 1.8 Patañjali defines Viparyaya as a false knowing.
How can we discern a right perception from a wrong perception
and can a false knowing be both Kliṣṭa and Akliṣṭa?”

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Inspirational Quote

“If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people....” Virginia Woolfe