1.29 Tatah pratyak cetana adhigamah api antaraya abhava ca

From repetition of the mantra, abide as the Witness, and obstacles to that will dissolve.

As you mentally recite the mantra, what part of you notices that the mind is repeating the mantra?

And when you notice the mind repeating the mantra what is happening?

What is happening is that the Knower and the Known have separated themselves out from each other.  For as long as you are witnessing the mind, you are not embodying the mind.  For as long as you are witnessing the mind you are abiding in your own fundamental nature – as pure unconditioned awareness.


1.27 Tasya vacakah pranavah

Purusa’s body is the sound “Aum.”

The Word was with God and the Word was God.

This is about as mystical as it is possible to get.  Purusa is Aum.  Purusa has an energetic signature that we hear as a sound: Aum.  This sound is known in Christianity as “the Word.”  We can use this Word to designate God, but know also that the “Word was God.”

1.26 Sa purvesam api guruh kalenanavacchedat

Purusa is the Guru that has ever existed across the ages.

Every Guru is actually the same Guru.  A true Guru has no Ego.  This means that the Guru contains a Consciousness that does not identify itself within anything in the material realm.  This Consciousness is the same no matter what the vessel (human form).  This Consciousness is always the Consciousness of the Purusa.  Thus the Purusa is every Guru that has ever existed across the eons.

1.23 Tatra niratisayam Sarvajna bijam

The Purusa’s omniscience is the limit of our own omniscience.

Since our own consciousness is contained within the Purusa’s, His evolution defines the outer perimeters of our own possible evolution.

Ok. You don’t have to believe that you are contained inside another consciousness.  But just consider this:  when you dream, you create entire worlds populated by many people – yet all of those people are contained within you.  But, you might protest “they last only minutes or hours, not more than a single night.”  Just remember that time is relative.  Still more fundamentally, time is illusory – there is only ever now.

1.24 Klesa karma vipakasayair aparamrstah purusa visesa Isvarah

Isvara is a particular Purusa who is free of attachments and reactivity.

We are in deep now.

Underlying Yoga philosophy is the knowledge that Consciousness becomes the myriad.  In other worlds, all of creation is created out of the body of God.

How does this happen?  It happens by progressive emanations out of the divine.  Each emanation is a trinity.  The absolute Creator does not have any qualities and so is called “Nirguna Brahman,”  meaning “the Creator without any qualities or qualifications.”  Emanating out of Nirguna Brahman is “Saguna Brahman.”  Saguna Brahman means “the Creator with qualities.”  What are the qualities of Saguna Brahman?  They are three: Sat, Chit and Ananda – or Truth, Sentience, and Bliss.

At a certain level these emanations are called Purusa – or units of Consciousness.  Each Purusa has evolution to undertake.  This is because – just as the inbreath follows the outbreath – involution follows emanation.

This Sutra is saying that Isvara is a Purusa who is fairly evolved.  It is within the consciousness of Isvara that we exist, seeking evolution ourselves.


1.23 Isvara pranidhanad va

Alternatively, simply surrender to God.

This simple Sutra refers to the whole of Christian Yoga.  Christian Yoga espouses confession to purify the mind, and then the surrender of the individual will to the Divine will.  Christ said “not mine, but Thy will be done.”  Adam and Eve were ejected from the Garden because they chose to defy the Divine will.  Abraham was tested again and again to see if he had the inner strength to surrender to the Divine will, only then was he fit to father the Tribe of Israel.

This path does not require the rigors of meditation.  However, just a a mind ripe for evolution possesses an innately developed wisdom faculty, one who surrenders must also be evolved.

So, yes, this path of surrender, also known as Bhakti Yoga, requires some innate endowment.  But what is that endowment?  Is it the capacity to love?  Or for compassion?  What was Christ’s innate endowment, what was Abraham’s or Joseph’s?  The poet Rumi was surrendered – what did he have?  He was intoxicated by love of God.  Was that it?

I am a Jnana Yogi, the yoga of using the mind to transcend the mind. Surrender is a path of the heart.  So I confess it is mysterious to me; though I wish it weren’t.  I also confess I am afraid to leap into that ever yawning abyss of love, it seems dangerous.  In fact it is dangerous – but only to the Ego.




1.21 Tivra samveganam asannah

Samadhi is nearest to those whose desire is strong.

Desire generates reactivity.  Reactivity results in embodiment.  So how can desire lead to Samadhi which is actually a state of desirelessness?

Desire underlies the effort to train the mind to silence.  Desire underlies the willingness to repeat a mantra, or engage in other forms of meditation.  Desire underlies remembering to witness instead of react.  But finally, when the mind is silenced desire is transformed into detachment.



1.20 Sraddha virya smrti samadhi prajnapurvaka itaresam

The ability to direct attention and evolved discriminative wisdom are required for Samadhi (to disengage from embodiment, and abide in your fundamental nature as the Witness)

This Sutra describes the individual whose mind is ripe and ready to evolve.  To be clear here, some people talk about the evolution of consciousness – but consciousness does not need to evolve, it is fully evolved as the Witness.  What evolves is anything in the material realm.  Mind, though it is not perceptible to the ordinary senses, is in the material realm, and can evolve.  So, this Sutra refers to the ripened mind.

Eckhart Tolle talks about the flowering of humanity.  All of humanity doesn’t flower at once, just a few do.  The remainder do not need to undergo the rigors of Yoga, and they shouldn’t if it is not their own “rta dharma.”  Those who do pursue the rigors do it because it is its own motivation.  Just as some brilliant artists must create their art, they ripened Yogi must seek and abide as that ultimate font of Truth, Sentience and Bliss.