From Practice Principle to Concentration

8 June, 2018
In this podcast David teaches how utilizing a single principle in your yoga practice can take you from a clouded, disturbed mind to a clear, lucid, settled, blessed mind.


Dear Students,

Below you will find some quick notes that I took while relistening to the talk. I hope they are helpful.  Thank you for listening! 




The main theme of this podcast is to use a single principle (Eka Tattva) to go from a clouded, disturbed mind (Citta Vikshepah) to a clear, lucid, settled, blessed mind (Citta Prasad).  *****Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras that are used in this podcast are:  I-30 to 1-39, and III-35 and III-36.


Yoga Sutras I.30 - I.38 and III.35 - III.36


Grouping 1.30 - 1.32 - Obstacles that cloud the mind (Citta Vishepah)

I.30 -  The obstacles that disturb the citta field are: 

1) sickness, disease (vyadhi)

2) density (styana)

3) doubt (sansaya)

4) carelessness (pramada)

5) lethargy, indolence (alasya)

6) sexual preoccupation (avirati)

7) erroneous perception, seeing (branti darshana)

8) not obtained groundedness (alabha bhumikatva)

9) instability, restlessness (anavasthitatvani) 

1.31 - These distractions are felt in the body through dukkha (suffering, lack of space, dis-ease), frustration, restlessness and trembling of the body, and irregular, disrupted breathing.

I.32 - The practice of focusing on a single principle, element, truth (Eka Tattva) is the means to prevent these distractions.  


Grouping 1.33 - 1.38 - Clearing or Blessing the Mind (Citta Prasad)  

I.33 - Citta Prasad comes through the cultivation of 1) friendship when you encounter ease, pleasure 2) compassion when you encounter suffering 3) joy when you encounter virtue 4) impartiality when you encounter non virtue.  

I.34 - or through directing Prana (LIfe Energy) within your body through regularizing, controlling, and freeing your breath.

I.35 - or when you can hold your attention on higher, more refined and subtle thoughts.    

I.36 - or when your senses and the thoughts that go with sensing transcend attachment.  

I.37 - or when your thoughts are founded on knowledge that comes from dreams and deep sleep.  

I.38 - or or you can create a blessed state of mind by meditating on anything at all that brings into the sacred present moment.  


Grouping III.35 - III.36 - Knowledge of the Spirit

III.35 -  Experience is a pratyaya (arising thought directed towards an object) whcih does not distinguish between sattva guna (quality of brightness, a primary constituent of matter) and Purusa (Spirit)-the self as absolutely unmixed.  By sanyama (intense focus) on what exists for its own sake (Purusa) distinct from that (sattva) which exists for the other, the knowledge of Purusa-Spirit comes to you.  

III.36 - From that arise Pratibha (in a flash, instantaneously) the flash of illumination and suprasensory hearing, feeling, seeing, tasting, smelling, and intelligence.  



You can focus on one or more of these asana principles during practice, and at other times, to clear your mind.  These asana principles are all different perspectives on one position, one consciousness, all of them can unite to help you make the ultimate expression of each pose.  I've listed a few below for you. This is by no means a complete list. 




4) BREATHING: (inhalation as Prana Vayu expansion force, exhalation as Apana Vayu concentration force.

5) CONCENTRATION: Meditation, absorption, sustained focus inside the body.

6) USING ARMS AND LEGS: gesturing, activating, participatory, supporting spinal position.

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