Meditation means transforming ourselves from the inside out and experiencing our most empowered, luminous self. But what happens when obstacles get in the way? In this Secret of the Yoga Sutra Book Club session (sutras 1:30–1:35), Ishan Tigunait explains what the Yoga Sutra calls the nine chitta vikshepa (distractors of the mind), and gives us practical guidance on what we can do to overcome them. Cultivating the four “yogic attitudes,” meditating on an awakened mantra, and practicing a special pranayama called pracchardana vidharana help us nullify our samskaras and transform negativity into clarity, joy, and connection with higher reality.

To prepare for the next session, please read sutra 1:36 in Pandit Tigunait’s The Secret of the Yoga Sutra: Samadhi Pada (for key terms and self-study questions, download the PDF Study Guide).

(Note that sutra 1:35 will be studied in greater depth in the context of 1:36, “The Lotus of the Heart: Our True Abode,” which is Session 6.)

Further Reading

The Secret of the Yoga Sutra: Samadhi Pada

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The Secret of the Yoga Sutra is the first practitioner-oriented commentary of the Yoga Sutra which is fully grounded in a living tradition. It shares the essence of Pandit Tigunait’s rigorous scholarly understanding of the Yoga Sutra, through the filter of experiential knowledge gained through decades of advanced yogic practices, and enriched by the gift of living wisdom he received from the masters of the Himalayan Tradition.

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