Sutra I.29 – Chapter I, Sutra 29

ततः प्रत्यक्चेतनाधिगमोऽप्यन्तरायाभावश्च॥२९॥

tatah pratyak-cetana-adhigamah api-antaraya-abhavah-ca

Then (tatah) – after profound meditation through the repetition of your chosen sacred sound, we are able to handle life’s challenges (antaraya) with clarity and attain a profound inner peace (pratyak-cetana-adhigamah).

PRACTICAL LIVING     This is the 7th and last sutra that Patanjali offers on using a Higher Power/God as a tool for meditation, for a profound connection with our inner wisdom. He says that as a result of a profound meditative connection with a Higher Power/God, two things happen:

1. As we repeat this sacred sound with attention and enthusiasm, the obstacles (described in the next sutra) to a state of inner peace are reduced or even eliminated (abhavah). We often see this happening like a dimmer light gradually becoming brighter. In other words, we may catch ourselves being less aggravated by things that used to bother us a lot. We may find ourselves making peace with parts of ourselves or others that used to agitate us. As a result, life gradually becomes brighter, more joyful and juicier!

2. Consequently, that inner source of profound peace, wisdom and love begins to reveal itself. According to Samkhya (see History), beyond the body, thoughts and emotions we all have a source of pure joy. The mind, often clouded for most of us, prevents us from experiencing this (in Yoga referred to as Purusha or Drastuh). As we connect to this source, our lives are filled with awareness, with compassion and a limitless experience of peace.

IN THE YOGA WORLD     The intimate connection described above is the most profound transformation or revelation we can experience. This is the “goal” of Yoga. The rest of the Yoga Sutra-s of Patanjali help us understand why we cannot experience this connection and offers us tools to work on different levels of our life to begin moving that dimmer switch, becoming aware of the sources of suffering, allowing our inner lights to shine brighter. This experience is referred to as Self-realization – realizing the Self beyond the body, thoughts and emotions.

We will be reminded again and again that this process requires courage, trust (see Sutra I.20), enthusiasm (see Sutra I.18), commitment (see Sutra I.1) and beyond that, is largely beyond our control (see Sutra I.12).

INSPIRATIONAL PERSON     A being of light, Santi is a beautiful person to be with! A friend and brother, we have Sutra I.29-Santishared numerous experiences together: some covered with life’s challenges and obstacles, some filled with love and peace. His path in life is inspiring. With physical strength of a bull, mental determination of a salmon swimming against the current, and the heart of a cuddly puppy, his life is filled with powerful examples of a journey from darkness to light. Bro, I love you and admire you so much! Thank you for all the laughter, tears and squishy hugs!

Do you have any experiences you would like to share? Please interact as much as you like – everyone will learn from your personal experiences!

Thanks and we will look at what challenges we encounter in life that prevent us from experiencing this profound connection!

5 thoughts on “Sutra I.29 – Chapter I, Sutra 29


  2. Lucìa, it is so fantastic that you have thought of this young man for this sutra, that I am deeply touched ………… And I do totally agree with you, because he has gone through so many different experiences in his short life, and now he sounds as if he really is well with himself………….
    Thank you for being so amazingly sensitive and letting everybody realize and value all his strength !!!

  3. The way I understand this is that when you practice and work toward something, you break through any obstacles to get to that point, but you also learn something about yourself. I guess a good example with regard to asana practice might be the process of learning how to do a handstand. I think that there is a good portion of yogis out there that have the upper body and core strength to do this but they are afraid of this pose. So, the first time they do it against the wall, as soon as their legs go flying up (even though the wall is right there) they “freak out” and this causes everything else in the body to collapse if you will and they come down. My point is that after quite awhile of practicing handstand, the yogi finally realizes that the wall isn’t moving and get past that fear, then start to bring a foot off the wall at a time, then bring both feet off the wall, and then finally do it in the middle of the room without a wall. After all of this practice, they were able to get past that obstacle (fear in this case) and in the process became more focused. The yogi probably also learned how commitment can bring someone to persevere through any situation. I think that all of this can bring someone to a self-realization moment. Maybe this isn’t the self-realization that a lifetime of yoga may bring you to, but it’s a moment that will bring you closer to that point.

  4. A sound, a symbol, an anchor for resonance and connection. If i can connect and relate to a sound, i could then appreciate its existence and relationship with me and the world around us. Through this sound, what can i see about myself through reflection with the sound? It may be that the sound is also a creature just like me, it’s equal to me, no more and no less. It also has a soul, and perhaps an inner light that can be seen through. Enjoy the moment, the sound and companionship. That’s yoga 🙂

  5. I like to think of the path of yoga as akin to picking a lock – I’m “here”, I’m trying to get “there”, and though I do not have the key that will just open the door, I do have this set of tools that I can use to slowly undo the pins barring me from entry. Ha! Perhaps there’s a reason why the door is locked in the first place? Or maybe it’s like a game, where someone says, “Try to open this door with just this one tool – you have your life to work at it, good luck!” Anyway, the mind is always searching, and maybe it is trying to return to or yoke itself with greater Being. In my own life, I can see this inner peace come to the surface every once in a while as small problems or questions resolve themselves. Sometimes it’s a result of my meditation on them, but sometimes my mind continues to work on these things in the background, and before I know it, things that bothered me before, or behaviors that were roadblocks seem to have fallen away. One of the major ways that going down the path of Yoga has helped me, is to realize the universal and eternal processes of self-growth are not problems or deficiencies, but just another part of the experience of living life – it has allowed me to step back and make space for this contemplation instead of wishing it would just go away 🙂

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