Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Yoga Sutra 3.17: Discernment between three aspects of an object

Expand Messages
  • Swami Jnaneshvara Bharati
    Yoga Sutra 3.17 DISCERNMENT BETWEEN THREE ASPECTS OF AN OBJECT http://www.swamij.com/yoga-sutras-31737.htm#3.17 YOGA SUTRA 3.17 The name associated with an
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 18, 2007
      Yoga Sutra 3.17

      YOGA SUTRA 3.17

      The name associated with an object, the object itself implied by that
      name, and the conceptual existence of the object, all three usually
      interpenetrate or commingle with one another. By samyama on the
      distinction between these three, the meaning of the sounds made by
      all beings becomes available.
      (shabda artha pratyaya itaretara adhyasat samkara tat pravibhaga
      samyama sarva bhuta ruta jnana)

      shabda = name of an object, word, sound
      artha = object implied, meaning
      pratyaya = idea, concept, conceptual existence
      itaretara = one another, of each with the others
      adhyasa = due to the convergence, coincidence, overlaying,
      interpenetrating, superimposition, commingle
      samkara = confusion, appearing to be one, mixed together
      tat = these
      pravibhaga = distinctions, differentiations, separate
      samyama = dharana (concentration), dhyana (meditation), and samadhi
      taken together (3.4)
      sarva = all
      bhuta = of living being (beings that are in form, as bhuta = five
      ruta = sounds produced, language, speech
      jnana = knowledge, meaning


      The sutra speaks of three things: 1) the name associated with an
      object, 2) the object itself implied by that name, and 3) the
      conceptual existence of the object. To understand this, think of a
      table, and you will see that there are these three parts:

      1) SYLLABLES:

      If you did not know English, you would hear the syllables of table
      spoken, but neither an image or a concept would come to mind. All
      there would be for you is the sound.


      If you think of some specific table you know of, that table can be in
      your memory without the need for the syllables. If you had never seen
      a table, and did not know what it was used for, the concept of table-
      ness would not be there either.

      3) TABLE-NESS

      The third part is that there is the concept of table-ness that can
      exist without the syllables, and without thinking of a specific
      table. In any language the word for table would bring forward table-
      ness for those who know that language. The principle of table-ness is
      there with all specific tables you might think of or see.


      However, in day-to-day usage, all three of these converge into one,
      unified experience, of table, in this example. However, the yogi
      wants to go far beyond the world of appearances. In the practice of
      this sutra, the samyama (3.4-3.6) is directed towards distinguishing
      these three. From that samyama, greater, subtler insight is attained.


      Many meditative traditions and spiritual traditions speak of the
      fundamental vibrations of the subtle and causal planes of reality as
      being sound vibrations, word, or mantra. Here, in this sutra, the
      instruction is that by discriminating between these three parts, the
      subtle sound is revealed, and through that revelation, the meaning of
      the sound is attained.


      One very practical example of the relationship between name, object,
      and conceptual existence is that of mantra. With mantra, one starts
      with the word or phrase itself, allowing the others to gradually
      become revealed. One might have a definition of sorts, but the real
      meaning comes in direct experience. Then comes the clarity of the
      distinction, as the subtler spiritual significance of the mantra
      stands alone. A most significant use of mantra was explained earlier
      in relation to OM Mantra. (1.23-1.29)
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.