ते ह्लादपरितापफलाः पुण्यापुण्यहेतुत्वात् I
te hlāda-paritāpa-phalāḥ puṇya-apuṇya-hetutvāt
The fruits (phalāḥ) of those (te) (our state of mind during the action, the length of the action and the experience of the action) cause (hetutvāt) either joy (hlāda) or pain (paritāpa) depending on whether the intention was noble (puṇya) or corrupt (apuṇya).
PRACTICAL LIVING This is the last of 3 sutras that talk specifically about the importance of our actions in life. Sutra II.12 introduced the idea of the ‘Law of Attraction’, which basically says that everything we do has a consequence, whether we see it immediately or not. Sutra II.13 taught us that we know an action is based on the kleśas (misperception, attachment, avoidance, ego and fear) because of how we feel, how long we think it took and the state we were in while acting. This sutra is now saying that the fruits of our actions are based on the intention behind every action. Whether the intention was noble or not, there is always a consequence. This sutra is asking us to go deeper into our state of awareness when we’re about to act and stop. Then ask ourselves: “Why am I doing this?”. If the answer is truly one with great intentions, then proceed. If, deep down, there is a hint of revenge, desire, escape, jealousy or any thought of “I’ll show them!”, then stop. And take the time to reflect and reconsider the action that you’re about to take. Yes, it’s easy to write about this. And yes, it is a habit that will take several attempts to change. And that is what Yoga is about, planting seeds and watering them everyday.
IN THE YOGA WORLD Patanjali is making a very clear statement in these last 3 sutras: our wellbeing depends on us. How so? Well, according to him, the results of our actions are dependent on the actions themselves. Who we are today is a result of yesterday’s actions. Who we will be tomorrow is a result of today’s actions. The fruits of our labor is not measured in things like winning the lottery, fame or power. The fruits in Yoga are measured by our inner clarity, our inner sense of peace and joy. In Yoga, awareness is our ultimate currency.
INSPIRATIONAL PERSON What a blessing it is to have such a human being in my life: Patti! This woman has invited me into her life and inspires me with every email, message and face-to-face encounter we have. She has a thirst to learn, to grow, to throw out the old to and make space for the new. Her sensitivity is profound. Her creativity is colorful and filled with texture. Her willingness to feel and change is a daily inspiration! Patti touches lives with her presence. From notes left on supermarket shelves, words to strangers, to emails filled with raw honesty and silky kindness, she leaves traces of her wonderful self wherever her feet touch. Thank you Patti! You help me be a more proactive human being one day at a time! Love you lady!
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 look into the nature of change and the conditioning of the mind!