Yoga Sutra Ch 1 Sutra 7 (Parisamvad)

Patanjali Yoga Sutra
Transcribed from Parisamvad at The Yoga Institute.

Chapter 1, Sutra 7

Perception, Inference and Testimony Constitute the Pramanas.
Pratyaksa : direct perception
Anuman : inference
Agamah : testimony ;authority

Pramanani : valid means of knowing.

Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra:

This sutra deals with right knowledge – Pramana. This is very necessary in our life. It is a very clear and correct kind of knowledge. The problem is that we don’t have such knowledge. We are full of wrong knowledge and so the mistakes and so the pain. The simple suggestion is that our perception should be such that it shows us the momentariness of things – things that are continuously changing. Still that does not lead to the attitude of disinterest. Knowing things as momentary, we still hang on to them and that happens to anything and everything in life – whether it is money or individuals. We know that they are going to go, that they are momentary, but we don’t deal with it that way. We take that everything will remain permanent. We are so attached and so we are unhappy.
Vairagya is very much required – a kind of a detachment, objectivity, which is lacking. A villager took his son to a surgeon. The son had some obstruction in the nose and breathing problems. The surgeon advised operation in the nose. The father was standing there. The son was put on the operation table. The surgeon got out his knife. When the father saw the knife, he fainted. He could not stand watching the knife being used on his son. This is the kind of problem we have. We are not able to understand things. We get a suggestion to be detached and that terrifies us and our life is full of pain.
These things happen at our Institute also. An executive of a big organization came to learn in the 7 months teachers’ training course. He was a very nice person, strong, tall, well built. He stood watching as Jalneti being taught. He was apprehensive that when his turn will come, the water will enter the nose and he had a fear that the water will enter the brain. It so happened that he actually fell down and fainted. We revived him. We asked him, what happened? He said, “I will never do Jalneti, the water will go in the brain and the brain will get damaged.” He had his own ideas. Our perception and our imagination play havoc. The facts are not understood.

The fact is that here is a qualified surgeon, he knows what has to be done. Many have trusted him. He is well known and he will do good to my son also. But, no, this Pratyaksa, what we see, is misconstrued and the result is Anuman – logic / inference. That also is wrong. All this becomes the Pramana – truth. This is true of life. We have all kinds of relationships, all kinds of people around, but we are not clear. We want that the person who lives with us, remains with us. He is born to me and will remain with me eternally. We don’t say so, otherwise everyone will laugh at us, but deep within us we have that feeling. The statement is that this misconstruction is the cause of all suffering.

Pratyaksa is what we have experienced through our senses. Is that taking you to a better state, Aklista state or Klista state? Is your attachment increasing, ego increasing? Then despite Pratyaksa, it should be removed. Consciously increase Aklistatendencies. When Buddha saw a dead body, when he saw a sick person, he didn’t get attached to the world. He wanted to understand life. If we are getting entangled in the world, then don’t believe in the Pratyaksa. Develop Aklistatendencies. Anuman is inference. There are too many clouds so it will rain heavily. You can take it negatively (there will be flood) or positively (the weather will become pleasant). Agama is what the scriptures are telling, what wise people are telling you. These things should to be accepted and we should follow them. We don’t have to doubt them. One shouldn’t have ego of knowing the scriptures.

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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