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Thread: The 8 limbs...

  1. #1
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    The 8 limbs...

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    We have had many posts on aṣṭāṅga ( 8 limbs) yoga from patañjali’s yogadarśana. It is time me thinks that we have a better understanding and have the proper framework for understanding this writing.

    So to do this I humbly offer this discussion offered from my teacher mahaṛṣi mahesh yogī ; without him I would be less then a blade of grass in a forest of ignorance. Here is his review of the 8 limbs : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqfs24_2SvY&feature=related

    You will see a picture behind mahaṛṣi-ji which is his guru, svāmī brahmānanda sarasvatī , the Śaṅkarācārya of Jyotirmath from 1941-1953.

    With this knowledge then there is no need to muddle in mis-understanding and the posts within this folder come to life. From this level of knowledge, patañjali’s work becomes a beacon of spirituality for all on this good earth.

    jai guru dev

    praṇām
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:21 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #2

    Re: The 8 limbs...

    Namaste yajvan,

    Thank you for sharing this discussion, you highlight that which I know in my heart to be true, yet I find so difficult to apply.

    I try and try to make my life fit the practise that I know that I need to progress, yet I find the hostile environment in which I live so very detrimental to regulating this practise.

    I am sure that my living environment would be considered ideal to many yet my hypersensitive self, struggles to remain sane in this madness.

    How do I cope with neighbours how make noise until 6 in the morning; in a small apartment separated from what was once a larger house by inadequate walls.

    The sound of drunkards in the street not 3 meters from my bed.

    I have been threatened once even by my local barber; as I sat in his chair he laughed about decapitation as he held a cut through razor to my neck exclaiming that films can come true that he had lived as the Godfather in the past, that he used to watch that film in repetition.
    I informed him that to my mind this act was in fact a bad prayer, which would more than explain the time he had consequently spent in prison; I seem however, to have gained his respect by this remark.

    I remain steady, this does not make me flinch, I rarely exclaim any malice towards my noisy neighbours (I will admit to the odd harsh word with them at 6 am after a completely sleepless night).

    For one who has little discipline such as myself; is it not advisable to retreat in order to make for an environment better suited to the establishment of regular practise, to make a solid base?

    I apologise for the dark nature of my post in what should be an enlightening thread.

    It would appear that I have some Demons with which to battle.
    Rahu 6th from Chandra; Chandra in 10th.

    Thank you kindly.


    praNAma

    mana

  3. #3
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    Vannakkam Mana: Your post isn't dark at all. It's just being realistic.

    Yesterday my whole morning was driving around in the car looking for broken snowblower parts. Starting to feel frustrated, I started singing. (I often sing in the car. Hopefully no family member will ever hide a mike in there.) Anyways from somewhere (memory, intuition, doesn't matter the source) I started singing:
    "I can only do what I'm able to do."

    Then I realised it's the summation of intellectual and emotional honesty with yourself, but also with others for compassion. Then it switches to "She can only do what she's able to do."

    I taught, we raised 5 kids. I tried to do it all. An hour of sadhana so early in the morning there was some peace and quiet. I came home from work to find kids in trouble at school, an upset spouse and Mother, another crying one, a manic depressive neighbour yelling. Then there's be a bill I couldn't pay for waiting for me on the kitchen table. Some days I lost it. I'd go hide in some dark place for an hour or so and try to sleep. Both my wife and I felt we were always always tired. Our love life was 'limited' by time, and moods.

    So yes it gets tough. It gets dark. It becomes a battle to remember God at all. So one thing I could do was to cut out sadhana ... at least the one hour kind. I did, and it helped. A bit more sleep. Looking back, sleep was more useful than sadhana. Less cruelty and harshness all around.

    But somewhere in the back of my mind I knew all this would change. Now, in retirement, I do have time for sadhana. (I took retirement at the very moment I could. Spirituality is so important to Hindus like me.) Even then it was tough. I had to break the pattern of not doing it first.

    Point is: The external conditions will improve ... for you ... for everybody on the spiritual path. That's why we're on the spiritual path. So if there is an apportunity to change environment, do it. But: "You can only do what you are able to do." If you set expectations too high, you are doomed for failure and the accompanying grief.

    Best wishes ... sincerely.

    Aum Namasivaya

  4. #4
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    My son was attacked at school this week, our nonviolent teachings in this home made him almost have his jaw broken. Only after several fist blows to his face did he try to defend himself. He was just as large as his attacker...yet was greatly harmed.

    Yet, I have to lay blame upon myself...as I am not giving them the skills to survive in this realm around me...the one of violence and aggression.

    I have told him that words and compassion come before aggression and this does not align with the ones around us...whom have proudly displayed in local paper when their six year old child has shot a beautiful golden deer in neck and killed it. The caption below says "papaw was proud of his grandson's first kill"

    For this home was raised feeding this deer...and these ones around us are taught to kill it for sport. I would not have had a problem so much with one who was hunting to feed his family, as that is this culture here. But this deer was less than a year old...and it really was for sport.

    Yet, there is no place to run from this karma which we face for that previous and tremendously ignorant, selfish thing which brought me to this place. Can not run from yourself.

    So I pray, meditate and move on.

    This is my world this morning. My seven year old twins were up at six a.m. one was hiding from the other. My daughter became worried about her brother (the hider) so woke me up. I put them back to bed.

    Another son, the sleep walker was up putting mustard into the freezer. He then took a packet of koolaid into a cup of someone elses orange juice and drank this. He has seizures while sleeping which cause this...and ugh...I can not wait for the follow up for this problem.

    One child is playing the radio, the song is "I'm sexy an I know it" by LMFAO.

    and two others are laughing downstairs...they are making viral videos for Youtube.

    My husband is meditating in our private bathroom. The center of the house...and very calm (but really not quiet).

    Blessed sort of chaos.

    I just spoke to my oldest son about this topic yesterday morning. As the six youngest go out the door and husband off to work we three have a blessed moment to talk and pray. I do all the praying:P

    But what I said was...I am surrounded by a turbulent sea which thrashes with storm tossed waves. But I make my own waves too...and my wake overcomes most of that storm, neutralizing it as it gets near to me.

    So I just keep swimming.

    Seas change...but this portion is never changed by the dream...somewhere in the core, that Truth always rings out.

    Here I type to you very calm, very grateful for this day. Inside I have peace in almost every situation. The house on fire would bring out this vessels instinctive response...or perhaps a child choking. It's happened so I know it would do so. But, at those moments it's nice to know an autopilot of sorts exists.

    But, back on the point on this saturday rambling...no matter what kind of chaos exists in our world...no matter the trauma...there is one thing I always remember. We can not change how one will react to us...can only change how we respond. So when things get loud I welcome it as a good training to help me further advance and show that it can not move me.

    Just keep swimming...it will all be oki fine<3

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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    All have talked of difficulties with their challanges with finding the right time, place, etc for one's sādhana to blossom and take hold.

    For me this is on the top of my list. My actions are to move this sādhana forward. If the conditions are not right ( as I have had this experience) I have made the choices to change them - that includes work, location, friends, turning off the phone, etc. but that is me. Not all can do this, but if one can make the choice of changing locations, home, environment , then it seems practical and reasonable to do.

    We do the best we can... it is all about choices. Yet as one continues their practice the universe begins to support your decisions - the environment begins to help, the graha's begin to help.

    I hope that the posts herein can perhaps consider the knowledge offered by mahaṛṣi-ji. His insights are invaluable. You can read many books on this matter and not many ( if any) offer the insights that mahaṛṣi-ji brings to the sādhu; the other muni that talks of patañjali’s yogadarśana at this profound yet simple level is svāmī lakman-jū.

    Once you know Reality, it is quite easy to describe the various paths, like the back of your hand. Both mahaṛṣi-ji & svāmī lakman-jū know the backs of their hands quite well.

    praṇām
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:22 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  6. #6

    Re: The 8 limbs...

    Namaste Eastern Mind, NayaSurya, yajvan,

    Thank you all for your kind words, it means so very much to have your sympathetic ears and wise words of advice.

    Eastern Mind you are right, I should concentrate on small steps and living at the moment, difficult for me at this time as I do feel somewhat isolated by my beliefs, I am getting used to this as it effectively solved other problems that I used to have, so there is defiantly progress.
    I am so sorry to hear of your Sons plight, wish him well from me as one who is hypersensitive, and has suffered at the hand of the emotionally brutal in the past, If I am honest I used to bully the bully's at school so I can't really speak out on this. It is later that I have found that I have difficulty as the Bully's are now the bosses and the leaders, I refuse to either bully with them or submit to their indignity, so I find myself somewhat isolated, I am learning to reply with only wisdom, and never spite or anger. Here Patanjalis' wisdom is first class and truly flawless; I know that from both these and your wisdom I can find my posture and balance.
    I yearn for more knowledge yajvan that I might be better equipped in life, I know that my path leads me towards this goal yet my way of learning is so unorthodox, I find my self at times plagued with doubt as to the validity of my path, as those about do not understand either my actions or speech; that I might be one day, able to give light to others who struggle to find sense in the current state of affairs.

    Thank you kindly for your warm advice and thoughts, and I thank you for this thread, I for one will be looking to read more and putting more effort into concentrating on the 8 limbs, at every level...

    praNAma

    mana

  7. #7
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by Mana View Post
    I for one will be looking to read more and putting more effort into concentrating on the 8 limbs, at every level...
    The key to the 8 limbs is wholeness... the brilliance of mahaṛṣi-ji's insight is the 8 limbs begin with satyaṁ and ends with samādhi. That is we start from wholeness in seed-form and end with it fully bloomed in samādhi; yet these 8 limbs are not sequential.
    It's as if we're baking a cake. All the ingredients are there together and the cake rises at the same time when in the oven ( tapas). Like that, all 8 ingredients of yoga work together and the cake rises, you rise up out of ignorance.

    This is the brillance of the offer. Many think ' oh I cannot capture this samādhi , I will ty it later after I become perficient in the other yama's' . This is not the case - samādhi¹ is one of the 8 ingredients to make the cake rise. In the beginning this experience of samādhi may be short lived but is the building block for experiences down the road to expand in time.
    While it is doing this, all the other limbs begin to take root. Just like a root it is underground. It takes a little time for one of the stems to shoot up above the ground and we then take note - and continue the practice.


    praṇām

    references

    More on samādhi is reviewed on this HDF post:
    http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/sho...26%23257%3Bdhi
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:23 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  8. #8
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    The key to the 8 limbs is wholeness... the brilliance of mahaṛṣi-ji's insight is the 8 limbs begin with satyaṁ and ends with samādhi. That is we start from wholeness in seed-form and end with it fully bloomed in samādhi
    If one looks at patañjali’s yogadarśana, the very first chapter (called a pada) is samādhi pada. We can see how this makes sense , no? It is the experience of samādhi that makes yam and niyam ( some like to write yama and niyama) bloom. That is why it is first.
    This is the brillance of fully realized beings teaching and writing on this matter. They know that Being, samādhi, fullness, purity , is that quality that brings wholeness of consciousness to the human condition. When we are 'individual' we are fractionated consciousness; when one is ~realized~ we are then back in our normal state of wholeness.

    praṇām
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:23 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  9. #9
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~


    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    The very first chapter called pada is samādhi pada.
    This HDF post talks of the other chapters and their significance to jyotish:
    http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/showthread.php?t=2507

    Now it is quite interesting to me that some key numbers are found in patañjali’s yogadarśana. The HDF post aforementioned will discuss two of them : 4 ( as the 4 chapters) , and 8 , as the 8 limbs of yoga (aṣṭāṅga yoga) that mahaṛṣi-ji discusses. Yet there is one more. If we add up all the sūtra-s there are 196 of them. Is this number of any significance ?

    praṇām
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:23 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  10. #10
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    Re: The 8 limbs...

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    If one looks at patañjali’s yogadarśana, the very first chapter (called a pada) is samādhi pada.
    If one listened to mahaṛṣi-ji's discourse on aṣṭāṅga yoga (see post 1) he was quite clear on one item. That patañjali's work is looked at as the limbs of yoga and not steps. Mahaṛṣi teaches there is a big difference in the two. Just this one mis-understanding has put many on a crooked path.

    So we must ask how did this notion of 'steps' come into use ? IMHO from one simple word - pada or pāda. This word pāda पाद means 'foot' . And what does a foot do ? It steps. So when people viewed patañjali’s chapters e.g. samādhi pāda , they viewed it as the step to samādhi.
    They used this same framework then when considering yam and niyam components ( the 8 limbs of yoga); they thought of the 8 pāda-s, an eight-step method. And when one steps they do it one foot after another. We do not get to the 8th step without passing through steps 1 to 7. So you can see the muddle this can cause - one thinks how can I get to samādhi if I am having difficulty with the other steps!


    This is where the brilliance of a realized being assists those with jaundiced eye; They know it is from viewing patañjali’s work as limbs and not steps. Just like a tree as it grows all the branches and leaves and limbs are nourished together when water is given to the root. In this case the ~water~ is pure consciousness, Being, and comes in the form of samādhi.

    But what of this word pāda , is it not the culprit here of causing mischief ? Perhaps to the un-enlightened. This word also means a few additional things:
    • a ray or beam of light
    • a quarter , a fourth part
    • chapter of a book

    So now we have chapters that are rays of light, of a book consisting of 4 parts. Hence patañjali’s yogadarśana consists of 4 pāda-s, that bring light.





    praṇām
    Last edited by yajvan; 20 October 2015 at 12:24 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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