Sunday, December 4, 2011



(SUTRA III-1) देशबंध चित्तस्य धारणा

“DHARNA is the process of goal formation by the CHITT (चित्त)”.

We know now that the process of goal formation can be achieved by the three VRITTIS of human beings and these are the mind (MAN मन), the SATTVA (सत्त्व) and the CHITT (चित्त). It is the technical process employed by the CHITT only that can qualify to become DHARNA (धारणा). How is it different? The VRITTIS (वृत्ति) of mind (मन) and SATTVA (सत्त्व) will never permit a person to form any DHARNA. These permit only objectives while DHARNA is a flawless objective. No English word or any other word in vernacular conveys the sense of DHARNA. The words used wrongly to denote this concept are aim (DHYEYA ध्येय), objective LAKSHYA (लक्ष्य), goal (UDDESHYA उद्देश्य) and resolution (SANKALP संकल्प) etc. and these are all the automatic offspring of MANOVRITTI (मनोवृत्ति) of DESIRE motivated by the considerations of material, mental, moral and social self aggrandizement. It is presumed that realization of these will ultimately lead to personal safety, security and happiness. These are generally paraded as remarkable, intelligent achievements of human mind. There is one more highly abused word – mission. It is generally associated with zeal that discards personal safety for a so believed but invariably indoctrinated “greater cause”- going by the names earlier ‘CRUSADES’ replaced by modern CHRISTIANITY MISSIONS, Muslim ‘JEHAD’ and so called Hindu ‘ASTHA’. All these translations have two aspects in common. One is the mention of absence of means to be employed for achieving them and secondly non achievement of the ultimate personal safety, security and happiness the very presumption these set out to proclaim. That is why we keep on hopping from one good solution to another good solution; never realizing that reason of failure is hidden in the first common aspect that is absence of means thus permitting ‘no holds barred’ approach. Has Patanjali advocated any foolproof method of forming flawless objective? Yes, he has recommended the following approach for this:-
Formation of DHARNA (धारणा) – while discussing flawlessness we have seen that our objectives are flawed because these are based on the imaginary VRITTIS of KLESH (क्लेश) and the tools employed are based on the VRITTIS of KARM (कर्म), VIPAK (विपाक) and ASHAY (आशय). These are the VRITTIS of mind (MANOVRITTI मनोवृत्ति) If our objectives are based on the following five VRITTIS known as YAM (यम) in his yogic procedure these will automatically ensure flawlessness. The objectives then become DHARNA – a function of CHITT and not of mind.

i. AHINSA (अहिंसा) – Non-violence
ii. SATYA (सत्य ) – Truth
iii. ASTEYA (अस्तेय) – Non-stealing
iv. APRIGRAH (अपरिग्रह) – Non-hoarding
v. BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य ) – Increasing of energies
For that we must know exactly the meanings of above mentioned YAMS (यम) that he exhorts for universal application (SARVBHAUMA सार्व भौमा). All the five concepts enumerated under YAMS (यम) are highly debatable and absolutely essential for formation of DHARNA (धारणा) by the CHITT (चित्त). These are so intricately woven with each other that any one gives birth to the other. Patanjali explains these concepts as parallel arguments (PRATIPAKSH BHAVNAM प्रतिपक्ष भावनम) and maintains that perverted logic (VITARK वितर्क) will always come as impediment in understanding the definitions and application of these concepts as is evident from the following sutra:-

SUTRA (II-33) – वितर्क बाधने प्रतिपक्ष भावनम्

At mind level human beings will invariably involve themselves and seek gratification in opposites of YAM (यम) namely; violence, falsehood, stealing, hoarding and frittering away the energies by advancing arguments that lack in content (VASTU SHUNYA वस्तु शून्य) and are in tune with already explained VRITTI of IMAGINATION (VIKALP विकल्प) under MANOVRITTI (मनोवृत्ति). No definition of any YAM (यम) as given by Patanjali can be understood as a parallel argument (PRATIPAKSH BHAVNAM प्रतिपक्ष भावनम्) without this context of perverted logic (VITARK वितर्क). In other words parallel argument has got to be free from VITARK. It must be NIRVITARK (निर्वितर्क). Therefore before proceeding to define these concepts Patanjali refers to the concepts of perverted (सवितर्क) / non-perverted logic (निर्वितर्क) which he has already explained in sutras I – 42 and I – 43.

SUTRA (I-42) – शब्दार्थ ज्ञान विकल्पैः संकीर्णा सवितर्का समापत्तिः
That logic is called perverted i.e. SAVITARK (सवितर्क) which is always enmeshed in words (शब्द), meanings (अर्थ), information (ज्ञान) and imagination (विकल्प). As per SUTRA (I -9) imagination i.e. (VIKALP विकल्प) is verbose in nature and lacks content as already explained under VRITTIS of mind MANOVRITTI.


SUTRA (I-43) – स्मृतिपरिशुद्धौ स्वरुपशून्येवार्थमात्रनिर्भासा निर्वितर्का
Only way it can become non-perverted (NIRVITARK निर्वितर्क) is by losing and cleansing these appendages of VITARK (वितर्क) that have come into existence due to archive of MEMORY (स्मृति) as explained under VRITTIS of human beings i.e. MANOVRITTI.

How to lose? It may appear to be a very big question but Patanjali gives a very down to earth simple solution that is a sure test also for perverted logic. Any argument is perverted if is based on any three of the following:-

i. Anger – (KRODH क्रोध)
ii. Greed – (LOBH लोभ)
iii. Attachment – (MOH मोह)

Such an argument is always enmeshed in the above mentioned appendages and lacks the content (VASTU SHUNYA वस्तु शून्य) in comparison to the words used. It is an offshoot of MANOVRITTI behavior and has nothing to do with CHITT. History is replete with and we confront in our day to day life the instances of perverted logic (VITARK वितर्क) that we use to indulge in our so cherished aims. We refuse to understand how it comes as impediment in understanding the parallel argument (NIRVITARK निर्वितर्क) given by Patanjali to define any of the five YAMS. We will find in the end that these three are also inter-related and inseparable in essence and we keep on justifying these in the name of rights, civilized behavior, succession, charity, loyalty etc.


अहिंसा प्रतिष्ठायां तत्सन्निधौ वैर त्यागः

This is the first requisite for making any DHARNA (धारणा). As per above definition a person is firmly established in non-violence (AHINSA अहिंसा) if he has completely renounced the VRITTI of enmity (VAIR वैर). Since we are talking in the context of objective formation, the sutra means that any objective becomes DHARNA (धारणा) if it is based on non-violence i.e. complete renunciation of enmity. The parallel argument (PRATIPAKSH BHAVNAM) further clarifies it that an objective can not be devoid of enmity if it is based on any of the considerations of anger, greed and attachment. Let me take anger first. Hitler’s and Stalin’s aim of cleansing humanity by decimating the Jews or deporting the non-conformists to Siberia does not remain lofty if they had understood that it was based on anger and revenge. On the other hand Mahatma Gandhi could fire the imagination of the entire nation by understanding the definition of AHINSA as given by Patanjali meaning ‘renunciation of animosity’ and announcing to the entire world and partly convincing even not so receptive listeners also that his objective of demanding freedom was not based on any feelings of animosity (VAIR वैर) towards the British while their occupation of colonies was solely driven by anger, greed and attachment.Communism’s Eldorado of a stateless and classless society does not remain cherished if it is soaked in permitted bloodbath due to the VRITTIS of revenge. No terrorist outfit or any institution even religious can ever have a laudable aim if it is wrapped in dogmatic superiority giving birth to hatred, revenge and animosity.
Similar justification of perverted logic in the name of need, economy or even a natural inevitability is exhibited when animal slaughtering is resorted to for non-vegetarian food habits. The authors of Vedas also knew it fully well that one species is the food of another species (JEEVO JEEVASYA BHOJANAM जीवो जीवस्य भोजनम) but when you start slaughtering and torturing animals not for food but for greed it becomes violence and such objectives do not come within the purview of DHARNA. For DHARNA must be based on non-violence only. Otherwise these remain objectives only with unpalatable (KLISHT क्लिष्ट) or palatable (AKLISHT अक्लिष्ट) repercussions at MANOVRITTI level and are bound to be doomed ultimately being unreliable.

SATYA (सत्य) – TRUTH
सत्य प्रतिष्ठायां क्रिया फलाऽऽश्रयत्वम्

This is the second requirement for forming a DHARNA. It means that you are firmly established in truth if you have cultivated the habit of understanding that the definite actions will invariably lead to the definite results and therefore, actions can be dependent on results. It is awareness of a definite action leading to a definite result. It appears to be over simplification of truth. Who does not know that as you sow so shall you reap? Your achievement (RESULT फल) depends upon the labor / work (ACTION क्रिया) that you put in. But Patanjali says that even this simplified definition of truth is not understood by those whose actions stem from anger, greed and attachment. There sense of judgment is impaired and they cannot appreciate either the actions or the consequences. They only expect results from actions which cannot lead to those desired results. They become result oriented and not action oriented. Hence they are unable to decide about actions and interpret the corresponding results. There is no question of cultivating the habit of understanding that any result is an automatic outcome of a definite action. They are, therefore, established in falsehood and not in truth. And all this happens due to perverted logic that Patanjali calls (VITARK वितर्क) that is invariably the result of anger, greed and attachment. How does this happen? Our actions are always of three kinds i.e. thinking, speaking and doing. A person consumed by anger, greed and attachment indulges into the action of ‘THINKING’ and expects a RESULT (FAL फल). But he indulges into the next action of ‘SPEAKING’ quite differently than his previous action of ‘THINKING’ and expects the same result. Lastly, he indulges into the action of DOING still quite differently than his previous actions of THINKING and SPEAKING and expects the same result. Obviously, the results are bound to be different because the actions are different. In the process coordination of ‘actions’ and ‘results’ is lost. In the language of Patanjali a person does not remain established in TRUTH. He no more remains the same in thinking (MANSAH मनसः), speaking (VACHSAH वचसः) and doing (KARMANAH कर्मणः). Rather this psychedelic nature of different results takes over and induces a tendency of either gloating or cursing because the results have got to be either AKLISHT or KLISHT and will straightaway be bracketed in any of the five unreliable (not based on TRUTH) compartments of human mind i.e. PROOF (PRAMAN), FALSE KNOWLEDGE (VIPARYAYA) etc. as per human behavior discussed under (B) CLASSIFICATION – VRITTIS UNDER GENERAL GROUP – (MANOVRITTI मनोवृत्ति). Therefore Patanjali advises in the context of DHARNA (धारणा), that it must be based on TRUTH if the expected results are to be achieved and TRUTH is awareness of the fact that the results are the automatic logical by-products of action (KRIYA क्रिया). By sowing a thorny tree one can’t expect the produce of mangoes (बोए पेड़ बबूल का तो आम कहाँ ते खाए). But a person basing his objective on anger, greed and attachment loses this sense of distinction between the seeds of a thorny tree and a mango tree and therefore keeps on the illusion of mango alive.
The same concept of TRUTH is echoed in oft quoted SHLOKA of GITA. KARMANYEV ADHIKARASTE MA FALESHU KADACHANA (कर्मण्येव अधिकारस्ते मा फलेषु कदाचन). The exhortation is that truth is awareness in advance of the RESULT (FAL फल) of an ACTION (KRIYA क्रिया). But the spiritualistic explanations negated the very relation of the ACTION and RESULT by sermonizing that “indulge into action without expecting any RESULT” because the RESULT is in the hands of some invisible force. A complete new branch of YOG known as KARMYOG (कर्मयोग) was thus instituted. For details see THIRD BLUFF – YOGA.
अस्तेय प्रतिष्ठायां सर्व रत्नोपस्थानम्

This is the third requirement of forming a faultless objective i.e. DHARNA. ASTEYA means non-stealing and the literal translation of the above definition is very strange. It means that for a person who is firmly established in non-stealing (ASTEYA अस्तेय) all the precious gems make themselves available to him. Does it mean that even if all the gems are scattered around him he will not be tempted to steal. Does it mean that for such a person there is no craving for valuable gems? Does it mean that he does not understand the value and, therefore, listless? Such translations don’t make much sense but these very translations become pregnant with meanings if these are understood as parallel argument (PRATIPAKSH BHAVNAM) free from perverted logic (VITARK) born due to anger, greed and attachment. If anyone makes an objective based on anger, greed or attachment he will invariably drift into any form of stealing and there will always be a justification for all such actions on the grounds of law, sustenance, convenience, urgency, helplessness, success, competition, motivation, international phenomenon etc. The various forms of stealing may be plagiarism, violation of copy rights and patenting, any kind of human or material trafficking, adulteration, tax evasions, faulty weights and measures, bribing and all sorts of corruptions, cheating and deceit and so on and so forth. The list is unending. On the other hand DHARNA has to be based on ASTEYA – whatever may happen no form of stealing will ever be resorted to. For such a person all the benefits (FAL फल here RATNA रत्न in this sutra ) accrue automatically as a logical consequence of action (KRIYA क्रिया) of hard work put in and knowing it only is TRUTH as explained in the definition earlier. Now here is an example to illustrate from our daily lives where stealing is imbibed in our very existence by advancing perverted logic. If we begin with say school education of a child, we find first it is not available to all. It does create repulsion, a form of anger in the minds of the parents and the students. Secondly, in whatever differently affordable monetary shades it is made available; a child along with parents is forced to undergo a well regulated system ridden with sweet sounding and so propagated healthy concepts of competition and motivation. A child imbibes with the concurrence of his parents and teachers not a habit to study, to shine or to play but a tendency to out-study, outshine or outplay the fellow students as if this is the end all of the world. Teaching is converted into tuition by avaricious teachers who blackmail in return of grades. The schools are handed over to those management leeches who know nothing about education but are expert in buying professionally competent people for a price who now train the students for various competitive vocational as well as regular studies where the students and the teachers know it fully well that all can’t make the grade because as many vacancies are not available in the limited number of institutions. But the parents are willing to be fleeced. The unscrupulous people plan mischievously to mushroom fictitious universities, institutions and even degrees at exorbitant rates. The genuine also introduce under the table rates for admission. Even attendance by the students is condoned for a price. The business of deceit flourishes as a vicious circle. And ultimately the sweet sounding ‘competition’ changes into rivalry of cut throat practices with no holds barred. The ‘motivation’ becomes revenge and the process goes on. A brother becomes inimical to a brother, a neighbor becomes jealous of a neighbor and a nation firmly believes that it must remain on top or come on top by hook or crook in all the fields whatever the price even in terms of bloodbath or criminal activities of any kind of trafficking. Again the refuge is taken in newly coined words like, success, valor, patriotism, excellence and high sounding awards are instituted for all those acts. How true is Samuel Johnson when he says, “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel”. Patanjali analyses this as the behavior having the origin in objectives based on anger, greed and attachment and projected as laudable due to perverted logic (VITARK वितर्क). Now a comparison is called for that deprived child who could not get schooling as he was not the privileged one. He doesn’t appear to be faulting if he thinks that if the privileged ones indulge ultimately in criminal activities only of corruption, adulteration, bribery, torture, extortion, hoarding, dowry offenses, trafficking of drugs, currency and humans, etc. in the name of success then why not to indulge in it right from the beginning! A society of literate and illiterate criminals thus comes into existence only because the objectives are based on anger, greed or attachment. The irony is that solace is achieved by endorsing these activities as international phenomenon and it is no surprise that political governance is taken over by such elements.

अपरिग्रह स्थैर्ये जन्म कथन्ता सम्बोधः

This is the fourth essential requirement of forming a DHARNA. The translation of this sutra is again simplistic. A person who is established in non-hoarding (APRIGRAH अपरिग्रह) understands the story of life between birth and death. The story of life is a sort of record of all those incidents and efforts that begin with an incident of birth and come to an end with an incident of death. Whatsoever takes birth must die. This is the ultimate truth also as per definition of truth given earlier. Death is the result of birth. But the people who define their objectives due to anger, greed and attachment do not understand this story of life and indulge in all sorts of hoarding activities due to perverted logic (VITARK). They think they will be able to stick to life and defeat death and thus become immortal by constructing tombs, memorials, pyramids, buildings, palaces and stuffing these with all sorts of provisions. They indulge in hoarding money and material presuming they are providing not only for themselves for ever but for their progeny also. They are not likely to understand Indian saint Kabir’s quote that translates as “If the son is incompetent why to hoard and if the son is competent then again why to hoard!” (पूत कपूत तो का धन संचय, पूत सपूत तो का धन संचय).That way they not only deprive the fellow human beings who are in need but give birth to a vicious circle of inequality, artificial paucity, exploitation and torture. All these acts are condoned through coining the terms like charity (which they only can afford) or inequality being God’s way of doing justice. The concepts are eulogized through temples constructed by them, by placing gods of their choice in them and appointing pliable priests in them. But they find themselves stupefied when no amount of their hoardings is able to ward off the inevitable. All these arguments of perverted logic prove one thing conclusively and it is that a person involved in hoarding cannot understand the story between life and death.
The objectives of hoarding are generally based on greed. We all know but for rhetorical purposes only that this earth can satisfy the needs of each and every individual but cannot meet the greed of a single person. We not only as individuals but as state and society also encourage those aims that are based on revenge, greed or attachment and give rise to hoarding. Trafficking in drugs, arms, human beings, prostitution, spreading terror are not only state sponsored activities but individuals indulge in these for greed only. On one hand state educates its people about the harms of smoking and drinking and on the other permits production, sale and purchase for considerations of state greed in the name of state economy of filling the coffers without blinking an eyelid for the health of its populace. As a consequence the individuals indulge in hooching, black marketing, hoarding and adulteration etc for greed only and now the officials responsible for running the state machinery not only show their sincerity, loyalty and sense of duty by depositing an insignificant amount in state coffers but pocketing the major extortion for themselves and their bosses in chain thus giving birth to money laundering, corruption, scams and many connected illegal adventures. Patanjali considers all these as acts of violence, hoarding etc. generated due to greed and justified as essential, unavoidable and even laudable due to perverted logic (VITARK वितर्क).

BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य)
ब्रह्मचर्य प्रतिष्ठायां वीर्यलाभः
BRAMCHARYA means increasing of energies (वीर्यलाभः)
This is the last essential requirement of forming a DHARNA where the definition given by Patanjali has been ignored completely. In Indian ethos BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य) is a widely misused and misunderstood term mainly due to manipulated spiritualistic undertones attached to it. The term has been restricted to mean an act of preservation of male semen (VIRYA वीर्य) and the derived term BRAHMCHARI (ब्रह्मचारी) has been stretched to mean a bachelor or an unmarried male. If such a person happens to be a spiritualist also who displays his visage in any kind of saintly robes of white, maroon, red, yellow, blue, black or even stark naked or half clad; he has to be placed straightaway on a pedestal to be revered as YOGI (योगी) - a practitioner of YOGA as he is supposed to have mastered the related ethical values of self-restraint and discipline since he is never guilty like ordinary male mortals of any voluntary or involuntary depletion of his semen. Obviously such a partisan explanation catering for males only must have met strong antagonism from the female population. All the sects, therefore, gradually and sheepishly accepted female monks (SADHVI साध्वी) also with a strict rider of remaining celibate to earn the title of YOGINI (योगिनी) - a female YOGI. Such interpretations helped in keeping the exploitation oriented tenets of spiritualism in circulation and buried even the etymological or grammatical meanings of the words BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य) and VIRYA (वीर्य) as Patanjali intended to convey. The word BRAHMCHARYA is made up of two syllables BRAHM (ब्रह्म) meaning ‘knowledge’ and CHARYA (चर्य) meaning ‘walking into’ or ‘seeking’. So BRAHMCHARYA means an act of seeking or walking into the realms of knowledge and a BRAHMCHARI (ब्रह्मचारी) becomes a ‘seeker’ of that knowledge. In Vedas, therefore, a complete period named as BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) of first twenty five years of human life has been exhorted to be devoted by everyone for seeking knowledge as a student (BRAHMCHARI ब्रह्मचारी). Why should one seek knowledge? This is the most pertinent question by any seeker and Patanjali further clarifies the definition in the above sutra that this act of seeking knowledge i.e. BRAHMCHARYA must be indulged into with a view to increasing (LABH लाभः) various energies (VIRYA वीर्य) which can be physical, mental or material. Further the next period of life has been addressed as GRAHSTH ASHRAM (गृहस्थ आश्रम) meaning married life where so gained energies in BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM can be fruitfully utilized. Perhaps the spiritualistic translations of BRAHMCHARYA quoted this sequential mention of ASHRAMS as authority to translate VIRYA as male semen only and not as various energies in the form of capabilities. Can energies be increased by mere setting of such an objective? Human beings at MANOVRITTI stage do indulge in such objective formations every now and then and gloat over also on meager achievements that they consider as miraculous and start frittering away their energies with a view to showing off only. This is not BRAHMCHARYA. Patanjali here introduces the concept of YOG and insists on distinguishing between objective and DHARNA (धारणा). The yogic DHARNA cannot stem from anger, greed or attachment and this can happen anywhere even if one has not heard or come into contact of the concept of DHARNA. Many worthwhile discoveries and inventions have been made by people all over the world for the benefit of all and for the happiness of all and their objectives became DHARNA. In Patanjali language their CHITT an apparatus present in human body only as per Vedic discoveries; was responsible for it and not the MAN (मन) – the mind where an objective can base itself on the considerations of anger, greed and attachment only. Mind based objectives result into forgotten great empires, crumbling of big business houses one after the other, great wars and untold great miseries. But the lure of great or as Patanjali calls as perverted logic (VITARK) becomes an impediment in understanding that no worthwhile increase in energies is possible if the objectives are not based on BRAHMCHARYA as defined by him.

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