Breaking the rhythm

Only you have the power to free yourself of your sorrow. The series on Patanjali’s yogaSûtras continues

Sûtra 34 says Prachchardana vidharanaabhyam va praanasya meaning ‘by splitting and retention of breath in a special manner’.

Prachchardana pranasya means breaking the natural rhythms of breath and holding the breath. It means sustaining the breath in different rhythms. By modulating the prana, the mind becomes calm.

Sûtra 35 says Vishayavati va pravruttirutpanna manasaha sthithinibandhini  meaning “by that very activity in the mind, through those very objects of senses, the mind can be made steady, brought to a stand still”.

Through any one of the objects of the senses, the mind can be made still. By the same activity in your mind, that very activity through that very sense, mind can be brought to a stand-still.

Sûtra 36 says Vishoka va jyotishmati meaning “get rid of unhappiness and at the same time know that your mind is bright”.

If you have observed that someone you know is unhappy and you sit with that person, you also start feeling depressed or sad. If someone is joyful, and you sit with them, you start laughing. This feeling of being happy or unhappy is the training we have given our minds. If you have made a habit of being unhappy, you do not special reason to feel unhappy, but it has become sort of a leech on you, to keep a long face and complain!

Patanjali says the answer to this is vishoka, which means ‘get rid of unhappiness’. The sadness is just your habit. It is all self-made. The moment you look at your mind, the self-made sadness will disappear. You become free of that sadness. It is just a concept like any other concept.

Your comparisons can bring you sadness. Do not compare yourself with anybody. You can be more happy then. Make your mind free of sadness. That sadness comes out of concepts. Do you see this?

Jyothishmati pragnya means seeing your whole mind as a light, as a flame. Your consciousness is a flame; your mind is a flame. You forget this. Due to the presence of the mind as a flame in you, your entire body is functioning. Otherwise you will be like an unlit candle. What is the flame? How does that flame work? The flame lives on oxygen. What does it do? The flame uses some matter from the substance earth and then it uses oxygen and lights. What is life? Life is also the same. It uses oxygen and lives on some matter. Just like flames live on wax and the wick and uses oxygen, your life uses the body and the food in the body as wax and then the air is oxygen and exhibits activities in the body. Like the flame exhibits itself, consciousness exhibits life. Life and light are very synonymous. They are very close. If you put a bottle above the candle, the candle will be put off in a few minutes.

The body, after certain years of burning, any amount of food you put into it will not sustain the body. The body does not hold on. This body is holding on to jyotishmati pragnya. Vishoka va jyothishmati – get rid of unhappiness and be happy and at the same time know that your mind is made up of light. It is not matter. Your mind is energy. You are energy.