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41Yoga Sutra 1.39: Meditate on what is pleasing to stabilize and clear the mind

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  • Swami Jnaneshvara Bharati
    Oct 15 10:18 AM
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      Yoga Sutras: Yoga Sutra 1.39:
      Meditate on what is pleasing to stabilize and clear the mind

      YOGA SUTRA 1.39: Or by contemplating or concentrating on whatever
      object or principle one may like, or towards which one has a
      predisposition, the mind becomes stable and tranquil.
      (yatha abhimata dhyanat va)

      YATHA = as, according to
      ABHIMATA = one's own predisposition, choice, desire, want, like,
      familiarity, agreeableness
      DHYANAT = meditate on
      VA = or (or other practices above in sutras 1.34-1.39)

      it very clear that the key principle in the stabilizing of the mind
      and the removal of obstacles is one-pointedness. Obviously, saying
      that one may focus on any object or principle that one feels
      predisposed towards is a broad statement. Wisdom should guide the
      choice of object for concentration.

      WE ALREADY KNOW THIS: Virtually everybody already knows this
      principle of focusing on something enjoyable as a means of
      stabilizing the mind. However, the relative usefulness of the object
      chosen is a very different matter. Watching television, playing a
      game, listening to music, having a conversation, or many other
      activities may concentrate the mind enough to partially let go of the
      mental chatter from the activities of the day. While the principle of
      one-pointedness is in all of these, and may have some benefit, the
      meditator will learn to choose more refined objects to stabilize the
      mind for meditation. Remember, in this section and sutra we are
      talking about stabilizing and clearing the mind, not about deep
      meditation itself. This level of one-pointedness provides the stable
      foundation for the subtler meditation practices.

      MANTRA: One of the finest means of focusing, training and stabilizing
      the mind is through mantra. See the articles listed on the Index of
      Mantra Articles:

      ONLINE PRACTICES: There are several online practices that are
      beneficial for one-pointedness. Particularly useful from the
      standpoint of experimenting with online practices are the Soham
      Mantra and the Gazing practices. See the Index of Interactive/Online

      MEDITATION PRACTICE: There is a meditation practice described in the
      Bindu article, which draws upon the nine practices outlined in Yoga
      Sutras 1.33-1.39:
      Meditation Practice from Bindu article: