Sutras 2.2-2.10

Kriya Yoga will not come easy. In my last post, I used the example of surfing to explain the kriya yoga steps and decided to continue with this concept to further illustrate an example that has helped me to understand.

Patanjali further explains:

2.2 – By practicing you will remove the hurdles that will arise. The next set of sutras explains these hurdles.

Kleshas/Afflictions

2.3 – This sutra talks about the Kleshas/Afflictions. We thought it best to look at the kleshas as “hurdles” in your path. There are 5 hurdles: Ignorance, Egoism, Attachment, Aversion, Fear of Death. It is important to remember that we are human and will have the kleshas innately within us. It does not need to be a goal of ours to eliminate them because they are a part of who we are. Instead, we can use them as a guide to awaken us to realities of the situations we come to find ourselves in and better prepare us with how to handle the situation so that we may best stay in a state of Samadhi (bliss).

2.4 – The “mama klesha” is Avidya or Ignorance. It is the root of all the other kleshas.

• 2.5 – Avidya/Ignorance: Other words to describe avidya are misapprehensions, misunderstanding, and confusion.
• 2.6 – Asmita/Egoism: Our identity can become an illusion and gives false perception. Example: “I am going to be the next Kelly Slater!!!” Our minds are always in flux. Perhaps you try surfing and realize that you are more interested in teaching surfing as a form of meditation than being a pro.
• 2.7 – Raga/Desire: Excessive attachment to the results of our labor. Example: During practice, I crash my board and the ocean overpowers me. Because of this, I start to get discouraged because its not as easy as it looks. I lose hope and stop surfing. I may even give up my dream altogether.
• 2.8 – Dvesha/Hatred: Aversion or avoidance is a word I prefer to describe dvesha. Hatred seems like a strong word but perhaps you have felt strong feelings towards something that has deterred you from experiencing it. It is important to explore why you are pushing yourself away. Example: Maybe I got my heart broken by a surfer so I don’t want to be near other surfers??
• 2.9 – Abhinivesa/Fear of Death: Contempt before investigation. Example: You read somewhere that a surfer dies, therefore you are quick to draw conclusions that the action of surfing will take your life. Instead of trying it, you avoid the experience of being in the ocean on a surfboard altogether.

2.10: Be vigilant! Once the kleshas are clear, they can easily become unclear again. Be strong to overpower them. Don’t let the hurdles get in your way again.