The Essential Yoga philosophy

Yoga Philosophy

by V.R.Gandhi

1. Much has been written and said on the mystic philosophy of ancient nations of the Egyptians, Greeks and Hindus. But I doubt whether it has been rightly understood. The advocates of modern science, some of them base the science of ethics on expediency, others on utility, while there are many to whom moral code is a commandment from a superior to an inferior. Thou shalt commit no murder. Why? The theologian would say-Because that is the commandment of God.

The materialists will say- because that is the command of the ruling authority of the state. But why should God and the sovereign issue commands? There is no rational reply. A system of ethics not based on the rational demonstration of the universe is of no practical value. It is only a system of the ethics of individual opinions and individual convenience. It has no solidity and therefore no strength. The aim of human existence is happiness, progress; and all ethics teach how to attain one and achieve the other. The question however remains-What is happiness and what is progress? Those are issues not yet solved in any satisfactory manner in the West by the known systems of ethics. The reason is not far to seek. The modern tendency is to separate ethics from physics or rational demonstration of the universe and thus make it a science resting on nothing but the irregular whims and caprices of individuals and nations.

In India ethics has ever been associated with religion. Religion has ever been an attempt to solve the mystery of nature. Every religion has its philosophical as well as ethical aspect and the latter without the former has in India at least no meaning. If every religion has its physical and ethical side, it has its psychological side as well. There is no possibility of establishing a relation between physics and ethics but through psychology. Psychology enlarges the conclusions of physics and confirms the idea of morality.

The Yoga philosophy then is based on the idea that if man wants at all to understand his place in nature and to be happy and progressing he must aim at that physical, psychological and moral development which can enable him to pry into the depths of nature. He must observe, think and act, he must live, love and progress. His development must be simultaneous on all the three planes. The law of correspondence, according to this philosophy, rules supreme in nature and the physical corresponds as much to the mental as both in their turn correspond to the moral. Unless man arrives at this stage of corresponding and simultaneous development on the three planes he is not able to understand the meaning of his existence or existence in general, nor even to grasp the idea of happiness or progress. To that man of high aim whose body, mind and soul act in correspondence the higher, nay, even all, secrets of nature become revealed. He feels within himself as everywhere that Universal Life wherein there is no distinction, no sense of separateness, but therefore all bliss, unity and peace.

Lest I may be misunderstood as subscribing to the doctrine of Yoga philosophy except Jainism, I should tell you beforehand that what I am saying here is merely the doctrine of the Yoga Philosophy. In my theory in the highest spiritual plane, physical form is not a necessity for the realization of the highest truth. Form is only required in the infant state of development.

The peace of Universal Life then is according to the Yoga philosophy the peace of spiritual bliss Moksh. The course of nature never ceases, action always compels even the peaceful to act; but the individual being already lost in the All there is nothing unpleasant to disturb. The peace of spiritual development is indescribable and so are its powers indescribably vast. As you go on forgetting yourself, just in the same proportion do spiritual peace and spiritual powers flow towards you. When one consciously suppresses individuality by proper physical, mental moral and spiritual development he becomes part and parcel of the immutable course of nature and never suffers. This fourfold development and spiritual peace have been considered the end of philosophy. In India there have been six such schools of thought. Each starts with a more or less rational demonstration of the universe and ends with a sublime code of ethics. There are first the atomic Vaisheshika and the dialectic Naya schools seeking mental peace in devotion to the ruler of the universe. Then there are the materialist Sankhya and the practical Yoga schools teaching mental peace by proper analysis and practical training. Lastly there are the orthodox Mimamsa and the Unitarian Advaita schools, placing spiritual bliss in strict observance of Vedic injunction and in realizing the unity of the Cosmos. It will thus be seen that Yoga is a complement of the Sankhya.

2. I told you last time when we met that the Sankhya philosophy starts with the proposition that the world is full of miseries of three kinds physical, supernatural and corporeal and that these are the results of the properties of matter and not of its correlate intelligence of consciousness, that out of the primordial essence Prakriti comes out the whole universe, by reason of the predominance of one or other of the three qualities of Sativa, Rajas and Tams passivity, activity, all grossness, darkness, ignorance of Tams, all pleasure, passivity, knowledge, peace of Sativa. The mind is a result of Rajas _ and it is Sativa alone which by its light illumines it and enables it at times to catch glimpses of the blissful Purush ever near to the Sativa. As mind or the thinking principal plays an important part in the Sankhya and more so in the Yoga philosophy, for its chief article is 'Stop the transformation of the thinking principal and you will realize the Self', we will come to a consideration of the mind.

3. With the philosophers of the West, mind and soul are synonyms. The popular definition is- mind is the intellectual power in man. In the East there is a difference of opinion on this subject among the several philosophers. The followers of the Naya philosophy hold that all bodies having a form are impermanent but the mind being formless is permanent; it has special attributes and is likewise subtle; hence it is unable to grasp two objects at the same time. The Sankhya philosophy however of which Yoga is the complement considers the mind to be a derivative product. Till the Purush-soul-is emancipated from Prakriti the mind continues in a state of integrity. Its span of duration is limited to a Mahapralaya - the great Deluges when it disintegrates to be taken up by Prakriti. The seat of the mind has been the subject of an able discussion amongst the ancient philosophers. The followers of the Puranas and the Tantrums fix it in the forehead near the junction of the two eye- brows. The anatomical description would incline us to look upon the optic thalamus as the center of the mind. The Vedanta's hold the mind to be situated in the heart, for they say when an individual thinks of a subject he keeps it next to his heart as in the act of worshipping. There are some philosophers who identify the mind with the soul but Kapila refutes their views. He says: If mind and soul were one and the same, one would say 'I am the mind' instead of 'my mind, my hands'. According to him all experience consists of mental representation, the Satva being clouded, obscured or entirely covered over by the nature or property of representation. This is the root of evil. The act of the mind cognizing objects or, technically, taking the shape of objects presented to it is called Verity or transformation. It is the Verity which being colored by the presentation imparts the same color by representation to Satva and causes evil, misery, ignorance and the like. All objects are made of three Gunas or qualities and when the Verity or the transformation of the thinking principal sees everywhere nothing but the Sativa to the exclusion of the other two, presentation and representation become purely Satvik passive and the internal Sativa of the cognize realizes itself everywhere and in everything. In the clear mirror of the Sativa is reflected the bright and blissful image of the ever present Purush who is beyond change, and supreme bliss follows. This state is called Sativapati or Moksa or Kevalya. For every Purush who has thus realized itself Prakriti has ceased to exist, in other words, has ceased to cause disturbance and misery. The course of nature never ceases but one who receives knowledge remains happy throughout by understanding the truth. The Sankhya tries to arrive at this result by a strict mode of life accompanied with analysis and contemplation.

This state of peace besides being conducive to eternal calm and happiness is most favorable to the apprehension of the truths of nature. That intuitive knowledge, which is called Tarka, puts the students in possession of almost every kind of knowledge he applies himself to. It is indeed this fact on which the so-called powers of Yoga are based.

4. The Yoga philosophy subscribes to this Sankhya theory in toto. It however appears to hold that Purush- Soul-by himself cannot easily acquire that Satvik development which leads to knowledge and bliss. A particular kind of Eashwar or Supreme God is therefore added for the purposes of contemplation etc. to the twenty-five categories of the Sankhya. This circumstance has obtained for Yoga the name of Saishvar Sankhya or theistic Sankhya as the Sankhya proper is called nireashwar Sankhya or atheistic Sankhya.

5. The second and really important improvement on the Sankhya consists in the highly practical character of the rules laid down for acquiring eternal bliss and knowledge. The end proposed by the Yoga philosophy is Samadhi leading to kaivalya. Yoga and Samadhi are convertible terms, either meaning Vritinirodh or suspension of the transformations of the thinking principal.

6. With this introduction we will enter into the details of this philosophy. We have defined Yoga to be the suppression of the transformation of the thinking principal. What is the thinking principal and what are its transformations and what results are achieved by the practice of Yoga? As to its power it teaches that the powers of electricity and magnetism are but a drop in the ocean compared with those of the soul, when they are fully developed by the practice of Yoga. But this is no part of true Yoga, although the lower form of Yoga does teach, how to develop these powers. The scope of true Yoga lies in the realization of the immortal part of man and the keynote of this self-realization lies in the suppression of the transformation of the thinking principal.

The thinking principal is a comprehensive expression equal to the Sanskrit word Antakaran., which is divided into four parts-

  1. Manas or mind, the principal which cognizes generally; 
  2. Chit or individualizing, the idea which fixes itself upon a point and makes the object its own by making it an individual; 
  3. Ahamkar or egoism, the persuasion which connects the individual with the self; and 
  4. Buddhi or reasons, the light that determines one way or another.

Knowledge or perception is a kind of transformation Parinam of the thinking principal into anything which is the subject of external or internal presentation, through one or other of these four. All knowledge is of the kind of the transformation of the thinking principal. Even the will, which is the very first essential of Yoga, is a kind of such transformation. Yoga is a complete suppression of the tendency of the thinking principal to transform itself into objects, thoughts etc. It is possible that there should be degrees among these transformations and the higher ones may assist to check the lower ones, but Yoga is acquired only when there is complete cessation of the one or the other. It should distinctly be borne in mind that the thinking principal in this philosophy is not the soul who is the source of all consciousness and knowledge. The suppression of the transformations of the thinking principal does not therefore mean that the yogi- the practitioner of the Yoga-is enjoined to become all, which is certainly impossible. The thinking principal has three-property passivity, activity and grossness. When the action of the last two is checked the mind stands steady like the jet of a lamp in a place protected from the least breeze. When all the transformation of the thinking principal are suppressed there remains only the never changing eternal soul-the Purush-in the perfect Sata passivity. Otherwise when the thinking principal transforms itself into objective and subjective phenomena the Purush is for the time obscured by it or which is the same thing assimilated into it. It is only when the state of Yoga is reached that the consciousness becomes quite pure and ready to receive all knowledge and all impressions from any source whatever. If this state is to be acquired by suppressing the transformations of the thinking principal, let us see what these transformations are.

7. In Yoga philosophy the thinking principal is modified in five ways. 

  1. First when there comes to it the right knowledge, 
  2. second when there comes to it false knowledge, 
  3. third when it is simply put into complex imagination or fancy, 
  4. fourth when we are sleeping and 
  5. fifth when we are exercising the faculty of memory. Let us examine each condition. 

The theory as to how the external world is cognized is a complicated one, but in order to explain it in the simplest way it will do to say [the following]. When organs of sense are put in contact with external objects they are put in to a state of vibration and cause a similar vibration on he mind-substance. This charge in the mind-substance is called direct cognition. It is only one kind of right knowledge. The mind is also transformed when it infers or draws conclusions and also when it receives knowledge from words of authority-trust worthy authority. These three kinds of knowledge are collectively known as right knowledge. When the mind cognizes in any of the three ways there is a corresponding motion or change produced in it. That is one way in which mind becomes subject to transformation. The second way in which it is modified is false knowledge. This is when a false conception is entertained of a thing whose real form does not correspond to that conception, for instance, when a mother of pearl is mistaken for silver or a post mistaken for a man. The third way in which the mind is modified is by having fancied notions, i.e. notions called into being by mere words having nothing to answer to them in reality. The fourth way in which the mind is transformed is sleep and the fifth way is the exercise of memory, i.e. by recollection impressions of past experience. It may be remarked that of these five kinds of transformations of the mind, right knowledge, false knowledge and fancy belong to the waking state. When any of these becomes perceptible in sleep it is dream. Sleep itself has no cognition. Memory may be (may depend on?) any of them.

8. Now the suppression of these transformations is the Yoga, which leads to the realization of the Self. What are the means of suppressing them? The author of the Yoga Sutras says that complete suppression of the transformation of the mind is secured only by sustained application and non-attachment. Application is of course steady sustained effort to reach that state and non-attachment is the consciousness of having mastered every desire for any object. And further rules are given for the purpose of rising to that high state of self-knowledge.

9. But in the meantime I will draw your attention to the fact that some scholars like Monier Williams and others have thought that this system of Yoga is nothing but a mere contrivance of getting rid of all thought and that it is a strange compound of mental and bodily exercises, consisting in unnatural restraint, forced and painful postures, twisting and contortions of the limbs, suppression of the breath and utter absence of mind. In the opinion of such scholars it is not possible that a man should actually know any thing transcending his sensual perception unless it is told to him by some supposed authority. In their opinion the power of intuition cannot be developed to such an extent as to become actual knowledge without any possibility of error and we shall always be doomed to depend upon hearsay and opinions. To them extra-ordinary powers of the soul are mere dreams. The author of the 'Modern Science and Modern Thought' says: "Almost the entire world of the supernatural fades away of itself with an extension of our knowledge of the laws of nature, as surely as the mists melt from the valley before the rays of the morning sun. We have seen how throughout the wide domains of space, time and matter, law uniform, universal and inexorable reigns supreme, and there is absolutely no room for the interference of any outside personal agency to suspend its agency (Hindus have never said so). The last remnant of supernaturalism therefore, apart from Christian Miracles which we shall presently consider, has sunk into that doubtful and shady borderland of ghosts, spiritualism and mesmerism, where vision and fact and partly real partly imaginary effects of abnormal nervous conditions are mixed up in a nebulous haze with a large dose of imposture and credulity." These are the words of a famous English writer. Let us hear then what the neighbor of the John Bull says in regard to the claim of the modern scientist. Dr. Heinrich Hensoldt of Germany says: "Apart from the material progress or mere outward development which the Hindoos had already attained in times which we are apt to call pre-historic as evinced by the splendor of their buildings and the luxuries and refinements of their civilization in general, it would seem as if this greatest and most subtle of Aryan races had developed an inner life even more strange and wonderful. Let those who are imbued with the prevalent modern conceit that we Westerners have reached the highest pinnacle of intellectual culture, go to India. Let them go to the land of mystery, which was ancient, when the Great Alexander crossed the Indus with his warriors, ancient, when Abraham roamed the plains of Chaldea with his cattle, ancient when the first pyramid was built, and if after a careful study of Hindoo life, religion and philosophy, the inquirer is still of opinion that the palm of intellectual advancement belongs to the Western world-let him lose no time in having his own cranium examined by a competent physician." These are the words of Dr. Hensoldt.

10. Without caring much what the foreigners have to say in reference to the religions and philosophies of India we will come to our own subject. We have said before that Yoga is the suppression of the manifestations of the mind. The source of the positive power therefore lies in the soul. In the very wording of the definition of Yoga is involved the supposition of the existence of a power which can control and suppress the manifestations of the mind. This power is the power of the soul-otherwise familiar to us as freedom of the will. So long as the soul is subject to the mind it is tossed this way or that in obedience to the mental changes. Instead of the soul being tossed by the mental changes, the mind should vibrate in obedience to the soul-vibrations. When once the soul becomes the master of the mind, it can produce any manifestations it likes. The ancient Chaldeons and the modern monks of India, Japan and China teach the same doctrine. It was by the aid of this Yoga science that the ancients made many discoveries in chemistry and medicine.

11. We will now come to our point. The suppression of all mental modification produces the state called Yoga or Samadhi. This Samadhi is of two kinds Svikalp and nirvikalpa. The first is that in which the mind is at rest only for the time, the other is that in which through supreme universal non-attachment it is centered in (passivity) Satva and realizes Satva everywhere for all time. The mind being as it were annihilated Purush-the soul-alone shines in native bliss. This is called Kaivalya. This is the end view. This is the summum onum, the end and aim of philosophy. Between this end and the first stage of mental suppression there are several stage. The author of the Yoga aphorisms mentions eight stage; they are Yam, Niyam, Aasan,, Pratyahar, Dharn.a, Dhyan, Smaddhi This leads us to the practical part of Yoga.

12. (a)The first stage is Yam. What a student of Yoga is required to do in the first stage is forbearance or control over mind, body and speech and it consists in abstaining from killing, falsehood, theft, incontinence and greediness. 

  1. The first of these is killing-Hinsa in Sanskrit. It is difficult to give the full meaning of this word Hinsa. It means wishing evil to any being by word, act or thought and abstinence of this kind of killing is the first requirement of a student of Yoga. It obviously implies abstinence from animal food in as much as it is never procurable without direct or indirect Hinsa of some kind. Not with standing the sanction given by the Vedas to the system of sacrificing animals to gods, the Hindu scriptures are very strong on this point when they treat of the practical part of the Yoga philosophy. Manu, the great law- maker of the Hindus, says:

Anuyanta vishsita nihanta kryavikryee
Sanskatee chopharta cha khadkshchaitee ghatak

[One who indirectly gives permission to kill animals, one who separates the several parts of an animal after it is killed, one who actually kills the animal, one who sells meat, one who cooks meat, one who serves meat at the table and one who eats it are all considered killers of the animal.]

Akritva pran.inan hinsan mansan notpadyatai kachit
Na cha pran,ivdhat svarg tsmanmansan vivrjyait

[You cannot get meat unless an animal is killed, killing of animals can never lead to a higher state, therefore abstain from meat altogether.] (i)The avoidance from animal food from another point of view is strongly recommended, as it always leads to the complete obscuration and even annihilation of intuition and spirituality. It is to secure this condition of being ever with nature and never against it or, in other words, being in love with nature that all other restrictions are prescribed. 

  1. The next requirement is abstaining from falsehood, i.e. from telling what we do not know or believe to be the exact state of things. 
  2. The third thing to be avoided includes, besides actual illegal appropriation, even the thought for any such gain. 
  3. So also does incontinence, the fourth danger in the path of success, include, besides physical enjoyment, even talking to, looking at or thinking of the other sex, with lustful intention. And here we come to the very important point of view of celibacy. We know that even doctors of eminence talk about the dictates of nature-as if animosity and brutality are natural parts of man. They may talk about sexual needs, imperious necessities, and uncontrollable passion. But when we come to the actual state of facts, we will realize the truth. We know that the trainer of a pugilist denies his man all sexual indulgence whatever, the trainer on a boat's crew would abandon all hope of victory if he knew that his men visited women even once a week. Indeed so jealous is he that he will not permit his wards even to talk much with the other sex, lest some erotic fancy should affect the condition of their nerves. An eminent doctor of the United States says: "All eminent physiologists who have written on this point agree that the most precious atoms of the blood enter into the composition of the semen. A healthy man may occasionally discharge his seed with impunity, but if he chooses- with reference as in the pedestrian, boat-racer, prize-fighter or explorer or with reference to great intellectual and moral work as in the apostle Paul, Sir Isaac Newton and a thousand other instances- to refrain from sexual pleasure, nature well knows what to do with those precious atoms. She finds use for them in building up a keener brain and more vital and enduring nerves and muscles." The chief monk of my community Muni Atmaramji was once asked by a Hindu gentleman, how it was that in running contrary to the course of nature- i.e. not obeying the urgent demands of natural instincts in such nature- he could build up his constitution which could well defy the attacks of an athlete or a stalwart. The monk in reply simply recited a verse:

Sinho balee dvirdashookrmansjeevee
Sanvtsrain. Ratimaiti kilaekvaram
Paravat kharshilakan.matrjeevee
Kamee bhavtynudinan vad kotr haitu

[The lion eats the flesh of elephants and hogs and is the strongest of all animals, still he enjoys sexual intercourse only once in a year, while doves and pigeons that live on dirt and sorts of refuse are lustful every day.] 

  1. The last of the five forbearances is greediness. It consists not only in coveting more that necessary but also in keeping in possession anything beyond the very necessaries of life. Some practitioners are known to carry this requirement to the extent of even not accepting anything whatever from others. We thus finish the list of five kinds of forbearances; that is the first stage through which a student of Yoga has to pass.

12. (b) The second stage is Niyam, i.e. observances. They are also five, purity, contentment, austerity, study and resignation to Eashwar, - the Lord15. The five kinds of forbearances, which we mentioned before, were negative injunctions, the five kinds of observances, which we are now describing, are positive commands. 

  1. The first in purity, i.e. purity bodily and mental which latter consists in universal love and equanimity. 
  2. The second is contentment- being satisfied with one's lot. 
  3. The third is austerities, i.e. fasts, penances, observances etc. mentioned in the Hindu Dharma Shastras. 
  4. Study-the fourth- is the repetition of the sacred mystic word OM or any other holy incantation. 
  5. Resignation to Eashwar the fifth observance- means that the practitioner should so abandon himself to the will of the Supreme that he must move about only to fulfil his benign wish, not to accomplish this or that result. He must bear all good, bad or indifferent, simple as an act of his grace in carrying which he only pleases him. 

The five kinds of forbearances and the five kinds of observances make ten.

13. (a) (i) The first forbearance was abstinence from killing. What is its result? When one has acquired that confirmed frame of mind- the positive feeling of universal love for all living creatures, even natural antipathy is held in abeyance in his presence; needless to add that no one harms or injures him. All beings, men, animals, birds approach him without reserve. In an extended description of the religious rites, monastic life and superstitions of the Siamese dela loubete cites among other things the wonderful power over wild beasts possessed by the Talapoin (the monks or the holy men of Buddha whose first injunction was protection of all living beings). "The Talapoin of Siam", he says, "will pass whole weeks in the dense woods under a small awning of branches and palm leaves and never make a fire in the night to scare away the wild beasts, as all other people do who travel through the woods of this country. The people consider it a miracle that no Talapoin is ever devoured. The tigers, elephants and rhinoceroses- with which the neighborhood abounds- respect him and travelers placed in secure ambuscade have often seen these wild beasts lick the hands and feet of the sleeping Talapoin." The Jaina history also testifies to the same fact. Mahavira- The twenty-fourth prophet of the Jainas who lived 600 years before Christ- is reported to have attracted, by the sweetness of his musical sermons in parks, wild beasts and animals who stood before him in perfect peace and harmony. Even in the present times no wild beast is known to have devoured a Jaina in India whose first principal is the protection of life -even of the tiniest insect. Strange to say that the Western powers and nations attempt to restore peace and harmony among people by the sharpest swords, huge man-killing machines and animal-food.

(ii) The second forbearance of the five we mentioned before is truthfulness. What is the result? When entire and unswerving truthfulness is fully established, all thoughts and words become immediately effective. What others get by act such as sacrifice to deities etc. He gets by mere thought or word. Emperor Marcus Aurelius says: "He who acts unjustly acts impiously, for since the universal nature has made rational animals for the sake of one another, to help one another according to their deserts, but in no way to injure one another, he who transgresses his will is clearly guilty of impiety towards the highest divinity. And he too that lies is guilty of impiety to the same divinity, from the universal nature of all things that are; and all things that are have a relation to all things that come into existence. And future this universal nature is named Truth and is the prime cause of all things that are true. He then who lies intentionally is guilty of impiety in as much as he acts impiously by deceiving and he also who lies unintentionally in as much as he is at variance with the universal nature, and in as much as he disturbs the order by fighting against the nature of the world; for he fights against it, who is moved of himself to that which is contrary to truth, for he has revived powers from nature, through the neglect of which he is not able now to distinguish falsehood from truth. And indeed he who pursues pleasure as good and avoids pain as evil is guilty of impiety."

What is true of individuals is true of nations. We know that Spain, Greece and Turkey are dishonored in the commercial world. His riches killed Spain. The gold which came pouring into Spain from her vanquished colonies in South America depraved the people, and rendered them indolent and lazy. Now a day, Spaniards would blush to work. He will not blush to beg. The same has been the case with Greece also. She has repudiated her debts for many years. Like Turkey she has nothing to pay. All the works of industry in those countries, are done by foreigners. Much better things might have been hoped from Pennsylvania and other American states, which repudiated their debts many years ago. They were rich states and the money borrowed from abroad made them richer, by opening roads and constructing canals for the benefit and privation, it was he who was the congress at Washington which he afterwards published "The Americans", he said, "who boast to have improved the institutions of the old world have at least equaled its crimes. A great nation after trampling under foot all earthly tyranny has been guilty of a fraud as enormous as ever disgraced the worst king of the most degraded nation of Europe."

But the state of Illinois acted nobly though it was poor. It had borrowed money like Pennsylvania, for the purpose of carrying out internal improvements. When the inhabitants of rich Pennsylvania set the example of repudiating their footsteps. As every householder had a vote it was easy, if they were dishonest, to repudiate their debts.

A Convention met at Springfield and the repudiation ordinance was offered to the meeting. It was about to be adopted, when an honest man stopped it. Stephen A. Douglas was being sick at his hotel, when he desired to be taken to the Convention. He was carried on a mattress, for he was too ill to walk. Lying on his back he wrote the following resolution, which he offered as a substitute for the repudiation ordinance:

"Resolved that Illinois will be honest although she never pays a cent."

The resolution touched the honest sentiment of every member of the Convention. It was adopted with enthusiasm. It dealt a deathblow to the system of repudiation. The canal bonds immediately rose, capital and emigration flowed into the state and Illinois is now one of the most prosperous states. She has more miles of railway than any of other states. Her broad prairies are one great grain field and are dotted about with hundreds of thousands of peaceful happy homes. This is what truthfulness does. It this is true in the science of nations how much more is it true in the highest known science- the Yoga?

(iii) [The last time we left our subject with the result, which can be, worked out from the second kind of forbearance the truthfulness. We will proceed with the rest of them.] The third kind of forbearance is abstinence from self-love and desire of misappropriation. To him who has given up this, all jewels and wealth stumble at his feet even without seeking them.

(iv) The fourth kind of forbearance is continence. On this subject we dwelt at some length the last time. The point settled in this Yoga philosophy is that it is a physiological law that the creative essence in man is closely connected with the intellect and spirituality. Waste of this spiritual element means waste of bodily and mental powers. Preservation of this elements means the acquisition of (?) powers of the brain and body. No Yoga is ever reported successful without the observance of this rule as an essential preliminary.

(v) The fifth kind of forbearance is abstinence from greediness. The Yoga philosophy teaches that when desire is destroyed, when in fact even the last and subtle but unconquerable desire for life too is given up, there arises knowledge of the why and wherefore of existence.

(b) We mentioned last time five forms of observances. They are purity, bodily and mental, contentment, austerities, study and resignation to Eashwar. (i) It is needless to say that mental purity leads to passivity, pleasantness, fix attention, subjugation of the senses and fitness for communion with soul. (ii) The second observance is contentment. Superlative happiness is the result of contentment. (iii) As for the austerities, the Yoga philosophy claims that miraculous powers of the body and the senses arise there from; the inner sense becomes more developed in proportion to the mortification of the flesh and various methods more or less severe are practiced in all religions. Miraculous powers known as second sight, levitation etc. are the result of austerities. Even some ignorant classes of India are known to possess these powers. They are accounted to flow on account of austerities practiced in past incarnation though in ignorance of the laws of such powers. Although these are the sign of the real Yoga power, they are not the true end of Yoga. (iv) Study-the fourth observance-is claimed to lead to communion with the higher and subtler forces of nature.24 The constant silent and devoted repetition of certain formulas is said to be efficacious in establishing a sort of communion with the higher powers of nature. (v) And the resignation to Eashwar leads to the accomplishment of that final state of quietude, the Samadhi We have then finished the first two stages through which a practitioner to Yoga has to pass.

14. The third stage is posture. Various modes of keeping the body in position at the time of perfuming Yoga are given in different books. The general and most convenient definition of posture is that it should be perfectly steady and should cause no painful sensation. There is a class of yogis in India who hold that the breath in the body is a part of the universal breath and that the health of mind and body accompanied by spiritual bliss and knowledge will follow on controlling the individual breath in such a manner as to attune it to the cosmic breath. Their methods are more physical than mental. They give much attention to the different postures of the body to be assumed while practicing the Yoga. These postures are said to be 84 in number and each has its peculiar influence in the body and the mind. By various kinds of postures and modes of controlling the breath the yogis get over almost all kinds of diseases. Of these postures four are considered the best for Yoga practice. The first is Swastic posture. In that posture you have to sit with the body perfectly straight placing the right foot in the cavity between the left thigh and calf and the left foot in the cavity between right thigh and the calf. The second is the Sidh posture, the third is the Padm posture and the fourth is the Bhadra posture. As none of us is ready and willing to pass through all the difficult stages of the Yoga it is needless to describe these postures. Suffice it to say that the Hathyogi having mastered one of the postures commences the actual practice of Yoga. Hatha Yoga Pradipika- the text book of these yogis says: "One who abstains totally form sexual intercourse, keeps temperate habits and remain free from worldliness becomes a yogi after a full twelve month's practice. By temperance in eating is meant the eating only three fourths of what is actually required. The food also should consist of substantial liquids and solid. Bitter, acid, pungent, salty and hot things as well as green vegetables, oil, intoxicating drugs, animal food of every description, curds (?) etc. are to be strictly avoided. Wheat, rice, barley, milk, butter, sugar, honey, dry ginger, oats and natural water are most agreeable. In the beginning avoid fire, sexual intercourse and extreme exertion. Young, old, decrepit or sick may all obtain success by study practice; none succeeds who lacks in practice; mere reading of Yoga books or talking on the subject can never conduce to success."

15. The fourth stage through which a student has to pass is Pranayam the control of the expiration and inspiration of the breath. It does not mean that there ought to be an unnatural flow or control of the breath; it means rather that the breath should be controlled or allowed to flow in accordance with the result to be attained. There are three kinds of Pranayam. When the breath is expired or held out it is called Raichak the first Pranayam. When it is drawn in it is called Poorak the second Pranayam. When it is suspended all at once it is called kumbhaka the third Pranayam. These three are again regulated by time. Works on Yoga say that three kind of Pranayam are often to be combined in one single act and their number should be slowly and slowly carried to eighty every time one sits for practice. There are other works, which say that the number must be sufficient to enable the student to mark the first Udghat and follow it afterwards. By Udghat they mean the rising of the breath form the navel and its striking at the roof of the palate. Pranayam has its chief object the mixing of Pran. the upper breath and Apan the lower breath and rising them upwards by degrees and stages till they subside in called Kudlini. It is this force which is the source of all occult powers. The general practice is to begin with Raichak followed by Poorak by the same nostril, whence the control is begun over again with Poorak and onward. This is called one Pranayam. The Hatha Yoga Pradipika says on this subject as follows:

"Having mastered some one posture and observing the rules of etc. the yogi may begin the study of regulating the breath. Disturbance of mind follows disturbance of breath and mind remains calm when the breath is calm; hence in order to attain fixing of mind the breath should be controlled. So long as the Nadee the vehicles of Pran. Are obstructed by abnormal humors, there is no possibility of the Pran. Running the middle course Sushuman.a and of accomplishing the Unman.i mudra.29 Hence Pranayam should be practiced in the first instance for the clearance of these humors. The Pranayam for this purpose is as follow: Having assumed the Parmesan posture the yogi should inhale at the left nostril and, having retained the breath for the time he easily can, should let it off at the opposite nostril, and repeat the same process beginning with the nostril where he exhales. This will make one Pranayam. These should be practiced four times in twenty-four hours, in the morning, at noon, in the evening, at midnight, and should be carried to eighty each time. The process in its lowest stage will produce perspiration, in its middle stage tremor, and its highest stage levitation. The student may rub off his body with the perspiration, for this will make his body strong and light. In the beginning of the practice being mastered no such rule is necessary. The breath should be mastered slowly and by degrees, just as are trained tigers, bears and other wild beasts, for otherwise the rash student is sure to come to grief. Proper Pranayam destroys all diseases, improper one produces them. When the humors of the are cleared the body becomes light and beautiful and digestion becomes strong, health ensues, the retention of breath is done without effort and the Nad (sound) within becomes audible."

The opinion of the Yoga author is that by this practice of Parmesan the outer covering of the soul-the result of karma- is removed and the real nature of the soul is realized once and for ever.

16. This leads us to the fifth stage through which the practitioner has to pass. By the practice of Pranayam the mind becomes fit for being quite absorbed in the subject thought of. It is Parmesan the mind becomes fit for being quite absorbed in the subject thought of. It is Pranayam, which leads the way to this state, which is the fifth stage. It is Pranayam (abstraction)-imitating by the senses, the thinking principal by withdrawing themselves from their objects. It consists in the sense becoming entirely assimilated to or controlled by the mind. They must be drawn away from their objects and fixed upon the mind and assimilated to it, so that by preventing the transformation of the thinking principal, the senses also will follow it and will be immediately controlled. Not only that, but they will be ever ready to contribute collectively towards the absorbing meditation of any given thing at any moment and even always.

17. Passing through these five stages, Yam, Niyam, Aasan, Parmesan and Pratyahar the yogi purifies the inner self by avoiding distraction. We then come to the sixth stage Dharana or contemplation. It is the fixing of the mind on something, external or internal. If internal it may be the tip of the tongue or the nose or any convenient spot. If external it may be any suitable image of the deity, or a picture or any similar object. Of course it is necessary to bear in mind that any such thing contemplated upon externally or internally should be strictly associated with nothing but holiness and purity. The mind should be able to picture in itself the object even in its absence in all vividness and at an instant's notice.

18. The next stage is Dhyan or absorption, i.e. the entire fixing of the mind on the object thought of to the extent of making it one with it. In fact the mind should at the time be conscious of itself and the object.

19. Proceed a step further and we come to the eighth stage, the Samadhi. The absorption is to be carried to the extent of forgetting the act and of becoming the thing thought of. This state of Samadhi implies two distinct states of consciousness unified in one. The first- that is trance proper- is the forgetting of all idea of the act and the second- the more important factor- is the becoming the object thought of. Mere passive trance is a dangerous practice as it leads to the madness of irresponsible medium-ship. It is therefore necessary to lay stress upon the second part of the connotation of the term Samadhi.

20. The three stages, contemplation, absorption and trance are in fact stages of contemplation; for the thing thought upon, the thinker and the instrument together with other things, which are attempted to be excluded are all present in the first, i.e. contemplation, all except the last, i.e. two, are present in the second and nothing but the thing is present in the third. This trance Samadhi however is not complete Yoga, for it is only Svikalpak or conscious Samadhi, having something to rest upon.

Sanyam is the technical name for these three inseparable processes taken collectively. When the three are successively practiced with respect to the one and the same object at any one time it is called Sanyam. But it is practiced by stages. One cannot pass all at once to the highest kind of Sanyam any more than one can think of something without first knowing it. For example, when Sanyam is practiced with respect to a mental image, the process will tend from contemplating upon the gross to [that upon] the subtle. The image may be thought of in all parts, then without the decoration, then without limbs, then without any special identity and lastly as not apart from self.

21. We have thus finished the eight stages. The first five of them are only the preliminaries to the Yoga, which really consists in the last three. The first five accessories are called the external means of Yoga. The last three are internal. Even the Sanyam as the last three are so called collectively) is merely preparatory for the final end, the unconscious Samadhi for in Sanyam there is something to depend upon whereas in real Samadhi there is nothing to depend upon.

The question therefore naturally arises- what does the mind transform itself into in that state of unconscious Samadhi? The transformed state in that Samadhi is known in Sanskrit as nirodha, i.e. interception of all transformations, thoughts or distractions- of course not ordinary distractions but the distraction, which is still there in the form of conscious Samadhi, conscious Samadhi, is a distraction, no doubt, for there is yet something which the mind entirely transforms itself into. The moment the mind begins to pass from one state into the other, two distinct processes begin viz. the slow but sure going out of the impressions that distract and the equally gradual but certain rise of the impressions that intercept. When the intercepting impressions gain complete supremacy, the moment of interception is achieved and the mind transforms itself into this intercepting moment so to speak. It is in the interval of this change that the mind may drop and fall into what is called Ley or a state of passive dullness leading to all the miseries of irresponsible mediumship.

Hence this passage from the conscious to the so-called unconscious is a very difficult and critical process. This Samadhi is called or the transformation of the mind into interceptions. It is called the or the transformation of the thing's property. The intercepting impressions must rise so often as to become a habit, for then alone their flow will become deep and steady and lead to the highest Samadhi. The mind is as it were quite annihilated, for no transformation exists. The permanence of this state is all that is desired.

So this trance-transformation is the setting and rising of distractions and concentration respectively- distractions, i.e., of the mind which draw it off from unconscious Samadhi i.e. concentration. Interceptions being repeated gain a certain firmness and ripen into unconscious Samadhi. Hence when this stage is reached the mere negative condition becomes as it were positive and there arises concentration on nothing, to use a paradoxical phrase. The moment when the mind arrives at this stage in its transformations is called Avasthaparin,am. What is the state of mind of the moment of complete unconscious Samadhi? The mind is conscious of nothing except the respective repression and revival of certain impressions, viz. distractions and interceptions, both welded in one act of supreme consciousness. This is called or transformation as to condition. The mind has its property first transformed. Then this property is joined to a certain moment of time, then the first transformation becomes perfectly ripe and indicates the real condition of the mind. Then it is easy to see that transformation though essentially one is for the sake of explanation and analysis described as threefold.

23. In the Yoga philosophy the theory of transformation of the mind is extended to all objects, for there is nothing which is not compounded of one or more or all of the three properties (passivity, activity and grossness) which are ever in a state of transformation. When the very property of a thing is altered it is called property-transformation or When afterwards the thing with its altered property becomes manifest in relation to some time, past, present or future, it is called its (rather its property's) character transformation or, for without the limitation of time it is difficult to characterize or define the nature of any conceivable entity. When after this the particular property thus defined ripens into maturity or decay, it is called its condition- transformation or Thus the whole universe consists of nothing but certain objects and their properties which later by their transformation produce all variety. Thus this philosophy puts forth an explanation of the phenomenal universe in accordance with the doctrine of the Sankhya

Let us now see how the Yoga philosophy explains what the object or the substratum of those properties is. The doctrine 'Ex nihilo Nihau fit' is carried out to its full extent by this school and therefore it is held that anything can never manifest itself in any other thing unless it previously existed there. This manifestation has reference only to the properties of things and it cannot be said what will come out of what. In fact every thing is producible for everything, for everything potentially exists in the root of all, the Prakriti. All this however takes place in relation to the form in which a thing manifests itself, and this form is none other than the unique combination of the three original properties. The properties can never exist but in relation to some substratum which in its turn can never become cognizable but through the properties. The properties, which have once manifested themselves and passed into oblivion are called tranquil, for they have played their part and are still there to become actively manifest some other day. Those that are seen at any moment are called active, whereas those not yet manifest are consigned to the realm of possibility or the indescribable. In other words these possible manifestations are as yet latent. Thus the object or the substratum of properties is that which is correlated to the properties in one or the other of the three states. In the opinion of the Yoga philosophers therefore whatever form anything manifests itself as the phenomena is nothing mare than a mere succession of properties in one or other of the three conditions and the universe with all its phenomena is nothing more than an incessant and immediate succession of states of properties.

24. We have digressed from our discussion of the last three stages of Yoga to a discussion of the 'substratum and its transformations' theory of the Yoga philosophy. But in doing so I had a purpose. The Yoga philosophy claims that by performing Sanyam on the transformations the past and future of their substratum is at once revealed to the mind.

25. There is another result claimed by the Yogists to follow from Sanyam and based on a theory to which we are now coming. Every school of philosophy has its own theory about the relation between word and meaning but it would be sufficient here to observe that the Yoga philosophy accepts what is generally known as the Sphote doctrine. Sphote is a something indescribable which eternally exists apart from the letters forming any word and is yet inseparably connected with it, for it reveals itself on the utterance of that word. In like manner the meaning of a sentence is also revealed, so to speak, from the collective sense of the words used. So then, the eternal sense of a word is always different from the letters making that word; and the knowledge which in its turn is conveyed to our mind is equally apart from these two. The sense of words is generally classified under four heads: objects, properties, actions and abstractions; and the impressions into which our mind transforms itself at the moment of cognizing is the knowledge produce. In ordinary intercourse it so happens that the letters, the sense and the knowledge all are so confused together as not to be separable from one another. Thus letters i.e. sounds, being confused with sense and knowledge, convey no precise meaning if they happen to be beyond our previous acquaintance. The fact however is that every meaning is eternally existent and is as eternally connected with particular sounds and therefore conveys or reveals the same sense where ever it is uttered. Acting on this theory and performing Sanyam on the three, i.e. sounds, sense and knowledge, separately the yogi comprehends the sense of all sounds uttered by any sentient being in nature.48 Even so can the music of nature be heard and the joyous Nad within be cognized and understood.

26. Sanyam is also claimed to produce knowledge of former births. In all the philosophies based on the Vedas, as well as in Buddhism and Jainism, transmigration of the soul-re-incarnation from one body to another-is the one doctrine which runs parallel in all of them. As to the grounds on which it is based, we will fully discuss them when we come to Jainism. In this place however we have simply to refer to the Yoga doctrine that by performing Sanyam, which is the same thing as complete mental presentation, on the impressions inherent in the mind from time immemorial, there arises knowledge of previous incarnations.

27. Yoga also claims that Sanyam leads to the power of mind reading. When a yogi performs Sanyam with reference to any sign as the complexion, the voice or any such thing, he at once understands the state of the mind of which these are the sure indices. Anybody's mind can thus be easily comprehended by the yogi, i.e., he understands the state of the mind. In order to understand the subject occupying the mind of that person, he has of course to perform Sanyam on that subject.

28. This philosophy also claims that by performing. Sanyam in a certain way you can even cause the body to disappear. The theory on this point is this. When light, the property of Sativa, emanates from our body and becomes united with the organ of sight which again is a reservoir of similar light, visual perception follows. Following this theory {when} the yogi performs Sanyam on the form of his body, i.e. the property that endows visibility to his body, he disserves the connection between the light from his body and the eye of the cognizer and thus follows the disappearance of the body. The yogi in fact centers all this visibility in his thinking principal and prevents the perception of his body. The same holds true of the other organs of his sense and hence of sounds, sensations (touch sensations?) etc.

29. There is a Sanyam on karma also Karma of course means past actions and they are divided by the Yoga philosophy into two divisions- active and dormant. That karma) which produces its result speedily and is actually on the way to bear fruit is called active, whereas that which is only in a latent condition of potency is called dormant. By performing Sanyam on these two classes of Karma the yogi knows the time of the cessation of his life. He knows at once which will produce what fruit and therefore at once sees the condition of his death.

The same knowledge also arises from portents in the case of a yogi. Portents are corporeal, celestial or physical. The corporeal are such as the inaudibility of the Pran. in the stomach on closing the ears. The celestials are such as the sight of things generally regarded invisible as heaven etc. The physical consists in seeing extra-ordinary or frightful beings etc. These and similar portents such as dreams, the chance hearing of certain words etc. indicate, to use a common expression, which way the wind blows. But none but yogis can make use of any such portents, for it is only they who can precisely interpret them.

30. The Sanyam has also its variety of effects by being practiced things. Of course, by Sanyam we mean three stages; contemplation, absorption and trance. By performing Sanyam with reference to sympathy, compassion and complacency each of these feelings becomes so strong as to produce the desired result at any moment.55 In fact he finds no difficulty in enlisting the good will and friendship of any one at any moment.

31. By performing Sanyam on the powers of elephant or any animal the yogi acquires those powers. By contemplation on the inner light of the Sanyam is acquired the knowledge of subtle things such as invisible atoms, obscure things such as hidden treasures and mines and things which are unapproachably remote. By contemplation on the sun, the knowledge of the space intercepted between the earth and the sun is acquired. By contemplation on the moon the knowledge of the starry region is acquired. By contemplation on the pole star is produced the knowledge of the relative motions and positions of the stars and planets. Such are the powers which the contemplation on the external world brings to the yogi.

32. We now come to powers, which he obtains by contemplation on the parts of his body. In the Yoga philosophy the theory is that there are padma or plexuses formed by nerves and ganglia at different places in the body. The are generally believed to be seven in number. The most important of these, so far as the arrangement of the nerves of the body is concerned, is the Nabhichakra or the navel circle. It is the pivot of the whole system. Hence Sanyam on it leads to knowledge of the conditions of the body. We will now come to the other parts of the body. And the first, the pit of the throat. This is the region about the pharynx where the breath from the mouth and the nostrils meets. It is said that the contact of Pran with this region produces hunger and thirst, which therefore may be checked by performing Sanyam on this part to neutralize the effects of the contact. It may be remarked that the fifth nerve-circle called Vishudhchakr is situated somewhere about the same region and anyone who is able to concentrate his breath in that circle and upward easily acquires freedom from hunger and thirst besides other powers. Next we come to the or the nerve where in the breath called Koorm, and Sanyam on this leads to such a fixate of the body as to make it completely steady and immoveable.

Next there is the light in the head, i.e. the collective flow of the light of Satv which is seen at the Brahamranghr which is variously supposed to be somewhere near the coronal artery, the pineal gland or over the medulla oblongata. Just as the light of a house presents a luminous appearance at the keyhole, so even does the light of Satv show itself at the crown of head. This light is very familiar to all acquainted even slightly with Yoga practices and is seen even by concentration on the space between the eyebrows. By Sanyam on this light is acquired the sight of the yogis called Siddha, i.e. experts in such wonderful sciences so that (sciences with the aid of which?) you can see things not withstanding the obstacles of space and other things.64 But the real object of Yoga seems to obtain the prefect intuitive power which results from Pratibha65. Pratibha is that degree of intellect which develops itself without any special cause and which is capable of leading to real knowledge. It corresponds to what is generally called intuition. If the yogi tries simply to develop this faculty in him by performing Sanyam on the intellect he becomes able to accomplish all that we have referred to before, only through the help of Pratibha. This sort of Pratibha is called Tarak gyan the knowledge that saves i.e. leads to final absolution Moksh. Hence that Yoga which entirely concerns itself with this department of intellectual and spiritual development is often called Tarakyog or Rajyog.

We come to other parts of the body. Sanyam on heart, by which is meant a nerve-circle called Anahat, leads to a knowledge to the mind of others as well as one's own.

33. Sanyam on the Purush- soul itself-leads to the knowledge of soul.67 The Sankhya as well as the Yoga lays great stress on the point that Sanyam, the source of intelligence, is apart and distinct from the ultimate essence of consciousness. The theory is that Purush being reflected in the clear Satv enlivens it, and all experience is assumed by the Satv so enlivened to be entirely its own act. This confused identification of the two, ever distinct by nature, is the cause if all varied experience. The experience, which the Satv receives, is of no use to itself. It is all for Purush; for all the actions of Prakriti, which is the source of Satv, and the correlative of Purush is for Purush. Hence the action of Satv is for another and not for itself. Therefore the Sanyam on self; i.e. on Purush right nature and purpose, will lead to a clear knowledge of Purush. And thence is produced cognition without the intervention of the organs of sense, i.e. intuition cognition of sound, touch, light, taste and smell. The wonderful or, if we may choose to say so, occult powers described hitherto are often all positive obstacles in the way of Samadhi, i.e. Yoga proper whose nature and import is that state in which the soul sees itself. The author of the Yoga Sutras distinctly says that the occult powers serve as obstacles because they become the cause of distracting the mind by the various feelings they excite. Of course, they are not quite useless in as much as they are powers for good in moments when Samadhi is suspended. After all, so far as the Samadhi highest spiritual aim is concerned, and certainly that is the aim of all philosophies, the exercise of these powers is a positive obstacle on the way to Samadhi. This is clearly stated in the Yoga Sutras. But in the Yoga aphorisms published by Mr. Judge of New York this portion is mistranslated (See Judge's Yoga Sutras).

34. The breath in the body is divided into five classes. The air intercepted between the tip of the nose and heart is called Pran.,that between the heart and the navel is called, Sman, that from the navel to the toes of the feet is called Upan, that above the tip of nose is called Udan and the which pervades the whole body is called Vyan. Their respective functions are vitalizing, digestions, expulsion of the excrements, raising up the sound etc. and motion is general. The Udan air has the tendency to raise the body upward and carry it above water etc. Hence by mastery over Udan there arises the power of ascension, non-contact with water, mud, thorn etc. With reference to the Sman breath, the part about the navel is this seat where it performs the function of digestion by keeping the internal fire. When Sanyam is performed on Sman, this fire can be seen about the whole body which will on that account appear effulgent. This effulgence is most perceptible about the head, between the eye-brows and at the navel. It is said to be the basis of the magnetic currents of living beings.

35. By Sanyam on the relation between ether which is the substratum of sound-vibrations and the sense of hearing arises the power of clair-audience. By Sanyam on the relation between the body and the Akash (ether) arises the power of passing through endless space. And There are many other powers which the Yoga claims can arise by reason of performing Sanyam on different things.

36. The true yogi does not attach himself to these occult powers. And the Yoga Sutra expressly says in one of its aphorisms that it is by non-attachment to this that Kaivalya the highest spiritual knowledge is attained.

36. 37. We will now discuss this final aim of Yoga. In doing so we will have to refer once more to the nature and doings of Prakriti. There are many hundred points for which the Yoga philosophy offers its solution. For instance, how is one body changed into another is that the flow of Prakriti does it all, the flow of Prakriti i.e. that inscrutable action of matter which performs all the work of transformation as seen in the material universe. The very potencies of matter do all and by powerful application produce the necessary conditions for independent action. The incidental cause in the production of material results, are our virtuous and vicious actions. It may be asked if Prakriti does all by its action and produces transformations equal to its potentialities, where is the use of individual good or bad actions. The performance of such acts is not useful in setting up the action of Prakriti but it only prepares the way for its free action by removing if good the obstruction in its way. An illustration in point is that of a husband's man who only removes the obstacles in the way of the water which then passes of itself from one spot to another. If the performance of good acts removes all obstacles and prepares the way for the free action of Prakriti, a yogi, whose vision reveals to him all he has still to go through, may with, as it were, to multiply himself and thus undergo at one and the same time the fruition of all that is to happen. In this he would require, as many minds as there are bodies and the question would arise, whence do these come, it being taken for granted that a yogi can duplicate his gross body. Such a yogi has full command over Mhat the root of all egoism and everything else, which makes up "mind". The sense of being or individuality is the result of Mhat and the yogi who has command over it is able to send forth as many minds as he likes from this grand reservoir. And as the one mind of the yogi is the cause of all the minds in their various activities the same individual is preserved in all the different bodies with different minds. These newly created minds are not susceptible to impressions, they being produced by means of Samadhi and because yogis do not acquire impression by actions. Actions or Karma are considered under four heads; white, black mixed and indifferent. The first are of gods, the second of wicked beings, the third of men and the fourth of yogis. In other words, yogis acquire no impression by their acts, for they are perfect in non-attachment and hence are ever considered free. From the first three kinds of Karma those impressions alone are developed for which the conditions are favorable. In other words, every act leaves an impression and these are collected one upon the other, and new ones added to them as any of them spends itself away by producing its proper result under proper conditions. Only those impressions manifest themselves for which conditions are favourable. For example, if a being who is a man becomes a man again, after passing through the dog, the wolf and the ape, it is certain that such impressions alone will manifest themselves in each or any of these existences as are favored by the conditions.

38. Patajali the author of Yoga Sutras discusses from these facts many metaphysical points about the nature of mind and soul. We will however come at once to the final emancipation or Kaivalya. And first the qualifications of one, who attains to it. One who has the desire to know what the soul is and what relation his mind and the universe bear to it is said to be desirous of Kaivalya. When such a person clearly experiences the distinction between mind and soul and understands the power and nature of either the said desire is distinguished within him. Kaivalya is in fact a state in which there is entire cessation of all desire and when the nature of the essence of all consciousness is known there is no room for any action of the mind the source of phenomena. The mind before such knowledge was bent towards worldly objects but now it is entirely bent on discrimination knowledge. This knowledge is of the kind of clear cognition of the different between mind and soul. Not only this but mind is entirely full of the idea of Kaivalya to the exclusion of other thoughts. But while the condition of entire devotion to Kaivalya is suspended, there are other thoughts from previous impression or impressions of previous births84. These impressions are to be destroyed like other distraction85. Even full discrimination is not the desired end and should be suspended by supreme non-attachment which is the nearest road to Samadhi, the door of Kaivalya 86. From constant discriminative recognition of the 26 elements of this philosophy results the lights of knowledge; after this the yogi works entirely without attachment to any object of desire; then he reaches the state of supreme non-attachment, wherein the lights of soul breaks out in full. In fact all appears full of soul and there is nothing to interrupt this blissful perception. Then all distortion and action cease altogether at least for the yogi87. When the distraction are destroyed and when Karma and is rendered powerless for good or for ill, there arises full knowledge which is free from the obscuration caused by Rajas and Tames and cleared of all impurities arising from the distractions. This knowledge is infinite. As compared to this infinity, that which ordinary men regard as knowable appears but as insignificantly small things.88 It is easy to know it any time though is not possible that the desire to know a comparatively worthless thing should ever arise.

While such knowledge arises and supreme non-attachment is at highest there arises in the yogi entire cessation of the effects of three Gun., the properties. The properties work for the Purush; the Purush having known himself the properties cease to act, they having fulfilled their end.89 The whole universe is but a succession of transformation upon transformation of properties.90 These transformations take an inverse source till all is reduced to matter with the three qualities. No fresh transformations comes take place and hence the succession of transformation comes to an end on the case of the Purush who has understood Kaivalya.91 Their effects the various transformation merge onto the higher source and nothing remains for the Purush to cognize. This state of the Purush is Kaivalya or the state of singleness. It dose not mean that the universe is reduced to nothing, for it continues to exist for all those who have not acquired knowledge. In the case of one who has not acquired knowledge, the visible universe, the cause of distraction, the state of concentration, the supreme idea of non-attachment, all with their impression merge into the mind, which again merges into mere being, which resolves itself in Mahat, which finally loses itself in Prakriti. This Kaivalya of Prakriti is by way of metaphor said to be of Purush. Or Kaivalya may be explained from the side of the Purush. When the Purush has so far received due illumination as to estrange itself from all relation with Prakriti and its transformations it is said to be Kaivalya (Kaival) alone or in a state of Kaivalya. This is the power of soul centered in itself. Kaivalya is not any state of negation or annihilation as some are misled to think. The soul in Kaivalya has his sphere of action transferred to a higher plane limited by a limitless horizon. This, our limited minds cannot hope to understand.

Suggestions for Further Reading

This lecture is part of the lecture series dealing with the systems of Indian Philosophy delivered by V. R. Gandhi  before American audience of the common people, while he was on his journey to attend the World Congress of Religions held for the first time in the United States of America in 1893 A.D. The text is reproduced with the understanding that it is in the public domain. Please verify the copyright laws of your country of residence before downloading the text.

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