PART 17 – Chapter 1: Verse 30: Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Prompted by verse 30, ch.1 of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, Ryan sets out to both shed light on how one can authentically develop in their spiritual practice, as well as on some common trappings throughout the process. Here is a dot-pointed summary of the key ideas, themes and discussion points:

• Samadhi is quickly realized via devotional surrender to the Eternal Self (God). Here one realizes that they are not the doer of the things that they are experiencing, God is the doer.

• If you think you are your emotions, your thoughts, your circumstances or your relationships, you are giving away the power of your innate Eternal nature. This false identification has no real power, is forever changing, and will eventually die. As a consequence suffering ensues.

• Main obstacles to Samadhi: doubt, negligence, confusion, failure to make progress, instability, addictions & attachments, misperceptions and distractions of perception.

• Doubt is a self-fulfilling prophecy, meaning it is not useful to hold onto as holding onto it simply reinforces its significance in your perception. The more you experience glimpses of Samadhi, the easier it becomes to let go of doubt. Consistent practice is therefore essential in this regard.

• Most people who do not have a higher purpose in life, a higher calling, or a strong connection to the Divine will have more problems and accidents in their life due to a negligence of their true nature.

• Avoiding that which will cause you problems, or seeking to carefully remedy the problems, is how you get over negligence. Consciously stepping onto the path of Self-realization is the beginning of resolving negligence.  

• Failure to make progress is always a result of some form of Self-negligence. Enquiring into what sort of lifestyle works best for you and applying insights is key to overcoming this obstacle.

• Using Kriya Yoga techniques and recommendations speeds up the dissolution of Karmas.

• Instability, such as having a weak body incapable of prolonged meditation sessions, is an obstacle to realization. Having a stable structure in your life, a schedule, helps to direct your attention within for the sake of Self-realization.

• Once you truly realize just how eternal you really are, you can handle life so much more joyously and effectively. This is what is meant when sages proclaim that life is just a game to be enjoyed.

This discussion is by Ryan Kurczak during the ‘Yogic Scriptures and Meditation Group’ at ‘Asheville Yoga Center’. Ryan is Kriya Yoga Teacher in the lineage of Roy Eugene Davis and Paramahansa Yogananda.

For a complete discussion on the Yoga Sutras in the light of Kriya Yoga, please see:

26-Hour Downloadable Yoga Sutras Course

and the book: Kriya Yoga: Continuing the Lineage of Enlightenment.

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