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Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book IV - 06. Desire carries bondage in its womb

Identifier

008314

Type of spiritual experience

Background

The Sutra is shown as a heading, the comment underneath is by the translator, in this case, Charles Johnston, [1912].  I have included the comment simply because it provides an interesting perspective on the sutra.

A description of the experience

6. Among states of consciousness, that which is born of Contemplation is free from the seed of future sorrow.

Where the consciousness breaks forth in the physical body, and the full play of bodily life begins, its progression carries with it inevitable limitations. Birth involves death. Meetings have their partings. Hunger alternates with satiety. Age follows on the heels of youth. So do the states of consciousness run along the circle of birth and death.

With the psychic, the alternation between prize and penalty is swifter. Hope has its shadow of fear, or it is no hope. Exclusive love is tortured by jealousy. Pleasure passes through deadness into pain. Pain's surcease brings pleasure back again. So here, too, the states of consciousness run their circle. In all psychic states there is egotism, which, indeed, is the very essence of the psychic; and where there is egotism there is ever the seed of future sorrow. Desire carries bondage in its womb.

But where the pure spiritual consciousness begins, free from self and stain, the ancient law of retaliation ceases; the penalty of sorrow lapses and is no more imposed. The soul now passes, no longer from sorrow to sorrow, but from glory to glory. Its growth and splendour have no limit. The good passes to better, best.

The source of the experience

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Concepts and Symbols used in the text or image

Ego

Activities