Yoga Sutra 15

Sutra 15

The wise man knows that owning to fluctuations, the qualities of nature, and subliminal impressions, even pleasant experiences are tinged with sorrow, and he keeps aloof of them.

The 3 characters of intelligence that are talked about in this sutra are Luminosity (sattva) vibrancy (rajas) and Inertia (tamas) this sutra states “that pure inner peace can be reached by acquiring the right knowledge that will weed out the roots of pain and pleasure.”

When I first read this sutra I focused on the aspect of reaching inner peace with the right knowledge. Through the Bible, I found many psalms and Proverbs that echoed this truth. They are too long to write out here so please grab your Bible and look them up and see if you hear what I hear, one is Psalm 119 another is Proverbs 22-29. What I understand it wisdom is found only in following and living Gods commandments. IF we do this both pleasures and pains are ever changing and we attach to neither for our focus is always on God and his commandments. As Christ shepherds us we surrender to wherever he leads. Proverb 20:24 “A man’s steps are directed by the Lord, how then can anyone understand his own way.” There are many stories including the passages I mention above where God is telling us not to be attached to riches, food, or even joy, for God takes and gives to both good and bad people throughout our lives.

The second time I focused on this sutra I focused on the pleasant experiences even being tangles with sorrow. Take a moment and think about how many good people you know that are not “living on easy street.” Possessions can be blessings, but they can’t take the place of God, and when they do take the highest priority, they can become curses. Another example of things feeling good yet not being good for our highest good following in God’s commands, excess, eating, drinking, partying all feel good at the time but disconnect us from focusing on God. I notice when I have put my focus on feeling good, rather than being good in my own life, I end up feeling disconnected and deviating from God’s chosen path for me. It tends to be a much harder and depressed road for me. Yet when I listen, live in balance and don’t over indulge in the feel good life, I am much happier, more confident, and peaceful.

As Christians it is our responsibility to know and follow Gods commands, then no matter if we are suffering or experiencing many blessings we know we are living righteously. This brings trusting, peace, a sense of calm to our spirits. So Read your commandments again and focus on them. Do you love God above everything else in your life? Do you love your neighbor as you would yourself? Being happy no matter what is looked at as a moral obligation by some and I think it is wise, as a Christian and a yogi I am practicing being happy even when I am feeling those earthly fluctuations of nature. In the Yoga tradition, we realize how this body and life are just temporary and Heaven is our goal. To be with and sit with God, to do this God teaches to know and live by his laws to love his son and trust the Holy Spirit to guide us; all this will give peace to our souls.