Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 1
तपः स्वाध्यायेश्वरप्रणिधानानि क्रियायोगः ॥१॥
tapaḥ svādhyāya-īśvara-praṇidhānāni kriyā-yogaḥ ||1||
The activities of Yoga are
self-discipline, self-study and dedication to the lord.
Commentaries and Reflections
Commentary by T Krishnamacharya:
“The first step consists of:
The whole system functions on the strength of mind. Mind is affected by what we eat.
‘Our mind is like our food‘.
Tapas is to discipline our eating habits.
Apart from right food, other activities like travel to holy places, giving away gifts to the needy are also part of Tapas.
The study that helps us to know where we are from and what progress we have achieved.
In short, our journey to our roots is Svādhyāya.
There are many means. Vedic chant where the student repeats exactly how the teacher recites the text is one.
The means should respect our culture. It must help explore our own background, our strengths and weaknesses and our progress.
Even a good teacher can be a mirror, a Svādhyāya.
With faith in Īśvara, the master of the whole universe, regularly offering prayers.
Whether it is Tapas, Svādhyāya or Īśvara Praṇidhānā, the power of Īśvara alone ensures success.”
Commentary by TKV Desikachar:
“The means by which we obtain the
Yoga of result is the Yoga of action,
While only part of Yoga,
Kriyā Yoga is the practical aspect of
Yoga which can initiate a change for
the better in the quality of our lives.”
“It is not enough to clean a vessel,
you must put something in.”
“Kriyā Yoga means to have certain qualities in our actions.
e.g. listening to this lecture
Natural for people with a stable mind.
So something has to be done for others.”
“Tapas is not the rejection of everything around us.
Tapas means to be able to discipline oneself.”
“So if you are too fat eat less.
If you are too thin eat more.
Tapas which harms the mind should be rejected.”
“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.”
“The three Upāya to take control of our inability to see things clearly.
Recognising that changing certain things enables us to see.
So to create conditions so that you recognise yourself.
Working in the direction of rectification.
The means that will help us examine ourselves.
Īśvara Praṇidhānā –
To accept certain realities.
We may fail, things may go wrong,
so to develop a certain sense of interested detachment.
To act to the best of your ability and don’t be attached to the results.”
“Īśvara Praṇidhānā –
What is our attitude towards our own action?”
“The relationship we have developed with the fruits of our actions is Īśvara Praṇidhānā.”
“In the Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 1 Patañjali introduces the term Kriyā Yoga,
a Yoga that anyone can practice,
as distinct from the Yoga practiced by those who devote themselves totally to Yoga,
those whose only concern in life is too reach the highest.”
Commentary by Paul Harvey:
“Tapas – the effort to reduce something.”
“Svādhyāya – to look at that which helps me understand.”
“Kriyā Yoga is about how to engage with our challenges,
especially whilst feeling disengaged by them.”
“In Yoga Sutra Chapter Two, the role for
Īśvara Praṇidhānā in the Kriyā Yoga section, can
be as an appropriate Upāya for a Cikitsā situation.
Here, as one of a triad in the cultivation of helpful
lifestyle habits, its purpose is in reducing agitation.”
“There are five different ways in which the fruits described in Chapter 3 can manifest:
1. Some people are born with this ability.
2. Through taking certain herbs in a special way.
3. Chanting Mantra can change one’s state of mind.
The chanting can be very complex.
4. Austerities can bring power and change perceptions.
This is why Tapas is mentioned as a tool in Chapter Two verse 1.
Tapas needs to be linked to a purpose, so that the heat can be redirected.
There has to be reflection as well as restraint;
you have to reflect on the effect of the restraint on yourself and on others.
5. The practice of Yoga.”
– Paul Harvey on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 1
- Paul’s Yoga Mālā – A Thread of Pearls from Patañjali’s Yoga Sūtra
- Paul’s Yoga Sūtra Study Keywords – Collected & Collated into Chapters
- Paul’s Yoga Sūtra Study Questions – Collected & Collated into Chapters
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