ते प्रतिप्रसवहेयाः सूक्ष्माः I
te prati-prasava-heyāḥ sūkṣmāḥ
When those (te) sources of suffering are subtle (sūkṣmāḥ), they must be minimized (heyāḥ) by examining their source (prati-prasava).
PRACTICAL LIVING To review, the sources of suffering (kleśāḥ-s) mentioned here are: misperception (avidyā), over-identification or the ego (asmitā), excessive desire (rāga), avoidance (dveṣa) and fear (abhiniveśāḥ). In Sutra II.4 we discussed the different stages these kleśāḥ-s can be in: dormant, feeble, alternating or fully active. Here, Patanjali warns us that when the seeds of our kleśāḥ are dormant or feeble (sūkṣmāḥ), it is common to misperceive and think that we no longer have to worry about them. Instead, Patanjali tells us to be extra careful here because they could be like seeds underneath the earth, just waiting for the right moment to sprout. Usually, it is in times of drama and pain that we become introspective and look for help. The saying “You don’t mend the sail in the middle of the storm” emphasizes the importance of doing self-reflection in calm moments of our life. It is easier to understand something when we are not in it.
The questions here are:
1. What behaviors lead you to pain?
2. What triggers these behaviors?
For several people with addictive tendencies, for example, the behaviors could be drinking, smoking, overeating, shopping, etc. The triggers are often things such as boredom, sleep deprivation, hanging out with certain people who stimulate the behaviors, or going to places that trigger those behaviors. The more we know the triggers, the more we can nip them in the bud.
IN THE YOGA WORLD According to Patanjali, as long as we have a body and mind (ie, as long as we are alive), the seeds will be there. Even the most advanced yogis have the potential of their seeds sprouting given the correct conditions. Ram Das, a wise spiritual leader tells us that if we think we are getting close to enlightenment, we should spend one month with our immediate family 🙂 Often, our families touch seeds that are deep in our subconscious and cause them to take off like a rocket. If aware, we can use these moments as our greatest teachers! Speaking of teachers, Yoga suggests we always have a teacher, or many, in our lives. A teacher many not manifest as a yoga teacher, but anyone who can help us in our paths – anyone who can help us understand our kleśāḥ-s and keep them well tamed 🙂
A man who has crossed oceans, changed professions and encountered physical and life challenges of different types, Aurelio is an inspirational spiritual seeker. Awareness is what he consciously practices. A life-threatening experience lead him to open his eyes and practice involution – the art of looking inside as opposed to pointing fingers to other people and blaming life for his problems. He is kind, thoughtful and humble. His hands heal, literally. A beautiful soul with a sweet heart and twinkling eyes, I am very grateful to spend time with him every year in the southern hemisphere!
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 next week we discuss how to reduce the power of these kleshas when they are fully active!