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Samadhi Pada - Yoga Sutras Book I - Patanjali

Samadhi Pada: Yoga Sutras Book I




AUM atha yoganushasanam

1. OM. Now begins instruction in yoga. (1)

yogash chitta-vritti-nirodhah

2. Yoga is the restraint of the modifications of the mind. (2)

tada drashtuh svarupe "vasthanam

3. Then the Seer is established in his own essential nature. (3)

vritti-sarupyam itaratra

4. Otherwise, there is self-identification with the mental modifications. (4)

vrittayah panchatayyah klishtaklishtah

5. The mental modifications are fivefold and are painful or pleasurable. (5)


6. These are correct cognition, misconception, fantasy, sleep and memory. (6)

pratyakshanumanagamah pramanani

7. Correct cognition is based on direct perception, valid inference and verbal testimony. (7)

viparyayo mithya-jnanam atad-rupa-pratishtham

8. Misconception is illusory knowledge based upon what is other than itself. (8)

shabda-jnananupati-vastu-shunyo vikalpah

9. Fantasy, empty of substance, is engendered by words and concepts. (9)

abhava-pratyayalambana vrittir nidra

10. Sleep is the modification engendered by the abeyance and absence of mental contents. (10)

anubhuta-vishayasanpramosha smritih

11. Memory is the not letting go of an object or image of subjective experience. (11)

abhyasa-vairagyabhyam tan-nirodhah

12. The restraint of these mental modifications comes from assiduous practice (abhyasa) and through dispassionate detachment (vairagya). (12)

tatra sthitau yatno "bhyasah

13. Practice (abhyasa) is the continuous effort to abide in a steady state. (13)

sa tu dirgha-kala-nairantarya-satkarasevito dridha-bhumih

14. This is indeed firmly grounded when it is persistently exercised for a long time, without interruption, and with earnest, reverential attention and devotion. (14)

drishtanushravika-vishaya-vitrishnasya vashikara-sanjna vairagyam

15. Dispassionate detachment (vairagya) is the consciousness of perfect mastery in one who has ceased to crave for objects, seen or unseen. (15)

tat param purusha-khyater guna-vaitrishnayam

16. That is the supreme dispassion when there is cessation of all craving for the attributes (gunas), owing to discernment of the Self (purusha). (16)

vitarka-vicharanandasmitanugamat sanprajnatah

17. Cognitive contemplation is accompanied by reasoning, deliberation, bliss and the awareness of pure being (asmita). (17)

virama-pratyayabhyasa-purvah sanskara-shesho "nyah

18. Another sort of contemplation comes through the previous practice, the cessation of all mental contents, residual potencies alone remaining. (18)

bhava-pratyayo videha-prakritilayanam

19. It is caused by phenomenal existence in the case of the disembodied and of those absorbed into Nature (prakriti). (19)

shraddha-virya-smriti-samadhi-prajnapurvaka itaresham

20. In the case of others, it is preceded by faith (shraddha), energy (virya), attentiveness (smriti), and the intellectual insight (prajna) needed for meditative absorption (samadhi). (20) (20)

tivra-sanveganam asannah

21. It is close at hand for those with vehement intensity. (21)

mridu-madhyadhimatratvat tato "pi visheshah

22. There is also a further differentiation -- mild, moderate and intense. (22)

ishvara-pranidhanad va

23. Or by devoted self-surrender to the Lord. (23)

klesha-karma-vipakashayair aparamrishtah purushavishesha ishvarah

24. Ishvara is a distinct spirit (purusha), untouched by troubles, actions and their results, and latent impressions. (24)

tatra niratishayam sarvajna-bijam

25. In Ishvara the seed of omniscience becomes infinite. (25)

sa purvesham api guruh kalenanavachchedat

26. Ishvara is the preceptor even of the Ancients, for He is not fettered by time. (26)

tasya vachakah pranavah

27. His designation is OM. (27)

tajjapas tad-artha-bhavanam

28. Let there be constant chanting of OM and meditation on its meaning. (28)

tatah pratyak-chetanadhigamo "py antaraya-bhavash cha

29. From that comes the turning inward of consciousness and the removal of hindrances. (29)

vyadhi-styana-sanshaya-pramadalasyavirati-bhranti- darshanalabdhabhumikatvanavasthitatvani chitta-vikshepas te "ntarayah

30. The hindrances which cause mental distractions are disease, dullness, doubt, heedlessness, indolence, addiction to sense-objects, distorted perception, failure to find a footing and instability in any state. (30)

duhkha-daurmanasyangamejayatva-shvasa-prashrasa vikshepa-sahabhuvah

31. These distractions are accompanied by sorrow, depression, bodily restlessness and spasmodic breathing. (31)

tat-pratishedhartham eka-tattvabhyasah

32. To check these, there should be constant practice of one truth or principle (eka-tattva). (32)

maitri-karuna-muditopekshanam sukha-duhkha-punyapunya-vishayanam bhavanatash chitta-prasadanam

33. The mind becomes purified through the practice of friendliness, compassion, gladness and indifference respectively towards happiness, sorrow, virtue and vice, (33)

prachchardana-vidharanabhyam va pranasya

34. Or by expulsion and retention of breath (prana). (34)

vishayavati va pravrittir utpanna manasah sthiti-nibandhani

35. The awakening of subtle sensory vision can hold the mind in a state of steadiness, (35)

vishoka va jyotishmati

36. Or a state of serene luminosity, (36)

vita-raga-vishayam va chittam

37. Or the mind is fixed on one free from craving, (37)

svapna-nidra-jnanalambanam va

38. Or by dwelling on insights gained in dreams and dreamless sleep, (38)

yathabhimata-dhyanad va

39. Or by meditating on that which is deeply desired. (39)

paramanu-parama-mahattvanto "sya vashikarah

40. Thus, his mastery extends from the minutest atom to the ultimate infinitude. (40)

kshina-vritter abhijatasyeva maner grahitri-grahana-grahyeshu tatstha-tadanjanata samapattih

41. When the modifications of the mind vanish, it becomes like a transparent crystal, attaining the power of transformation (samapatti), taking on the colour of what it rests on, whether it be the cognizer, the cognized or the act of cognition. (41)

tatra shabdartha-jnana-vikalpaih sankirna savitarka

42. Whenever the construction of words and meanings is confused and uncertain, the mind wavers in a polemical and chaotic state (sankirna savitarka). (42)

smriti-parishuddhau svarupa-shunyevartha-matra-nirbhasa nirvitarka

43. When the memory is purified, when the mind is void of its own form, it is luminous with true knowledge of its sole object, attaining to an unclouded state (nirvitarka). (43)

etayaiva savichara nirvichara cha sukshma-vishaya vyakhyata

44. Also, by this process, the deliberative and non-deliberative states concerning subtle elements (sukshma-vishaya) are explained. (44)

sukshma-vishayatvam chalinga-paryavasanam

45. And the subtle elements extend up to the noumenal, primordial and undifferentiated (alinga). (45)

ta eva sabijah samadhih

46. They are only the basis of meditation with its seed. (46)

vichara-vaisharadye "dhyatma-prasadah

47. On attaining the utmost purity of the non-deliberative state, there is the dawning of spiritual light, the gracious peace and luminosity of the supreme Self. (47)

ritambhara tatra prajna

48. Therein is direct cognition (prajna), which carries and holds the unalloyed Truth. (48)

shrutanumana-prajnabhyam anya-vishaya vishesharthatvat

49. Direct cognition is essentially different from testimony and inference, owing to its focus upon a specific object, Truth itself. (49)

taj-jah sanskaro "nya sanskara-pratibandhi

50. The impress engendered therefrom supersedes all other latent impressions. (50)

tasyapi nirodhe sarva-nirodhan nirbijah samadhih

51. On the stoppage of even that, all else being eliminated, there arises meditation without a seed (nirbijah samadhi). (51)

Yoga Sutras I


Hermes, May 1987 by Raghavan Iyer

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