The Retirement of the Senses


Completion of Book II

ii. 53-55 Mind is Freed from all Distractions

2.53 Thus Purified, Successful Self-Recollection is Won

Mind now beholds Itself in the Luminous Light of the Unborn. Within Meditation, the Yogin now successfully navigates the pranaic (Qi)-channels (nadis) as Right Breath Regulation (Pranayama) purifies them, thus empowering the Chakras (see Elixir of Life) to rotate freely thereby stimulating one’s union with the Tathatic-Spirit. This empowerment, if you will, was fully covered in our Tantric-Exercises throughout the Tathagatagarbhatārā Tantra (see Blogs, August-Sept 2013). This empowerment can also be won throughout the course of one’s chosen various yogic exercises as well.

2.54 Withdrawal (Pratyahara) of former mind abstractions disengages their power of “false-identification” with objective/subjective strata that once held Mind spellbound.

Mind is no longer subjugated by sensorial impressions as it withdrawals (Pratyahara), or better yet, turns-about from their bewitching influences and instead Recollects Its Perfect Staturehood in the Unborn, one that is sans all sensate dominance.

2.55 Self-Mastery over the senses is now complete.

There no-longer exists a tug of war between sensate phenomena and the spiritual noumenon of the Unborn. The schizoid existence has ended. Like a tortoise withdrawing its limbs, the Yogin can effectively and decisively withdraw from all sensate phenomena and “re-direct” the savage energies into more refined spiritual pursuits. This does not signify total sensorial deprivation, but rather a surer and permanently dignified position in the Unborn.


In Book II of the Yoga Sutras we have effectively dealt with the hindrances to Proper Recollection through various methods (Yoga’s Eight Limbs and its accompanying principles) that effectively “bracket” the lesser mind-fields and taming and exchanging them with the Tathatic Elements of Right Observance. These observances, in turn, permanently subjugate the lesser with the greater spiritual resilience of Tathagatahood.

Book III introduces the “Siddhis”, wherein superior spiritual abilities usher in “refined ways” of rearranging the karmic-environment

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