Patanjali Yoga Sutra 2.28 (Parisamvad)

Patanjali Yoga Sutra Transcribed from Parisamvad at The Yoga Institute.

Chapter 2, Sutra 28


Yoganganusthanat Asuddhiksaye Jnanadiptih Avivekakhyteh

Yoganga: steps of Yoga
Anusthanat: by the sustained practice
Asuddhi: impurities
Ksaye: with the elimination
Jnana: wisdom, knowledge
Diptih: light, brilliance
a: until
Vivekakhyateh: discriminative knowledge

For By The Sustained Practice Of The Accessories (Steps) Of Yoga, The Impurities Are Destroyed, And Enlightenment Of Wisdom Reaches Discriminative Knowledge.

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Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra:

“So we come to the next important sutra and that has to tell us about the various tips of yoga and how they work. They work at reducing the various hindrances, impurities and make it easier for subsequent yoga. Basically what we have to understand is that yoga would mean overcoming of the Kleshas – overcoming of those defects which we keep on talking about – Avidhya, Asmita, Raga, Dvesha, these have to be overcome and this overcoming work is carried out by the various techniques. So that’s what the sutra is telling us, that when we follow yoga, we are actually working at overcoming these kinds of hindrances. We can’t just forget that. We can’t just talk of yoga and believe that we will land into the yogic land. Things like untruth, these have to be overcome.

So this is the centre point. No doubt, we would progress in yoga, but then these impediments have to be controlled. Only then comes knowledge of the reality. These two are together. If the impediments are there, knowledge is not there. Once the impediments are removed, knowledge reveals itself. But we are so full of this ignorance that this understanding will never come of belief in this world around, our total dedication to material objects and all that. So this is the simple formula. If you want to learn yoga, overcome this impediment. Stop speaking untruth, stop stealing, and all that. And when they start reducing, even little by little, light understanding will come and that is when you will land in yogic ideals of clarity, understanding, etc. This is what basically the sutra tells us.”

Smt. Hansaji J Yogendra:

“This is the most important sutra. Always remember. The first word is ‘Following the path of yoga, steps of yoga.’ So we come to the discipline. These are the eight steps – Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Dharna, Dhyana and Samadhi. So this is the path of yoga to follow. So in any case, as Dr. Jayadeva mentioned, if you are speaking untruth or hurting others, etc. yoga is not followed. So follow the path and see that the impurities are removed. Now what are the impurities? In yoga, it is made clear that all our Kleshas are our impurities. Ignorance, ego, attachment, hatred, selfishness. These are five impurities that are identified very clearly. When following the path of yoga, the main thing is to see that our impurities are removed. As long as the impurities continue, there is no further progress possible. Once we remove the impurities, then the knowledge reveals itself and the person is at the highest level – Viveka Khyati. So this formula is clear. How to reach the highest? By following the path of yoga but seeing to it that you follow it in a way that the impurities are removed because impurities stop you. They are hurdles.”

Out of these seven stages, the first stage is where he knows thoroughly well now, what is worthless and worthwhile in this world. I really enjoy these words – worthless and worthwhile I feel that in our life also, we need to judge what is worthless and worthwhile.

The second stage is total Vairagya (detachment) because the reason for which Prakriti and Purusha united, that reason is understood and they are separated, released. So the deep Vairagya, released state comes in.

The third stage is, whatever he wanted to achieve, he has achieved because he has gone to the Samadhi state and has reached the level of Moksha. The fourth stage is he has achieved the height of knowledge

And then the final three things happen where the Chitta/mind has done its job of Bhoga and Apavarga, i.e. it has helped him experience the world and brought him above that. The Chitta has finished its work. The wisdom has come and the person has realized that the Purusha and Prakriti are separate. So the second stage is that the Chitta releases, it goes back to its roots, which is Prakriti, matter. So the Chitta is over and then the final stage is that the consciousness is revealed and the consciousness is the only thing which is shining.

So this is how they are trying the put these seven stages theoretically for us. But from all this theory, the point is that after all these stages, finally, the consciousness remains. So what we have to work on is very clear and the path which we have to adopt to reach this state is explained next.

So now, from our side, these words have to be understood – worthless and worthwhile, Vairagya (detachment), working hard on ourselves to see that we do some Karma, because the first four are action oriented stages where you are sitting in meditation, understanding what is right and wrong and reflecting on the whole day’s actions of what was worthless and worthwhile. Detachment has to come from this world. Here the Bhagwad Gita comes handy which says do your duty and leave the rest. Rest of the things come automatically. We have to just understand these things logically because to understand consciousness, our own Chitta is of no use. The Chitta has to dissolve – Chitta Vrutti Nirodha has to happen. So such practices have to be done in life.”

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About Parisamvad

On every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, The Yoga Institute, Santacruz holds Parisamvad sessions – Free interactive sessions that are open to all. These session begin at 7:20 am and end around 7:45 am.

The Friday Parisamvad is dedicated to explanation of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by our esteemed Gurus, Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji.

All are welcome to attend.

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