“All means by themselves have no direction.
One must fix the direction and make sure it is not lost.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 12
It is defined again in the Sūtra. Yoga is the movement of the mind in one direction. It presumes:
1. There is something in each of us called mind.
2. This mind has many movements or activities.
3. It is possible to channelise these movements through certain actions.
4. When we accept movement we accept time and space – moving something from A to B. There are realities.
5. In accepting vṛtti we also accept the idea of an object.
6. We can fix the mind so it confines itself to an object.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 2
“Sometimes we should examine how we relate to objects through the senses.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 35
“When we see the truth, when we reach a point that is higher than ourselves,
there is a deep satisfaction.
It is not the emotional satisfaction that we get from looking at a beautiful object,
but a satisfaction deep within us that is without emotion or sentiment.”
– TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga Chapter Three Page 32
“When we see something that we want and are able to get it, there is no Duḥkha.
If we are unable to to get it, this is the beginning of Duḥkha.
Very often people have this type of Duḥkha even when they are trying to improve their lives.
They become so thirsty for understanding that they are unable to get understanding as quickly as they desire.”
– TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga Chapter Three Page 39
“The greater the Śraddhā, the more meaning there is in the techniques such as Āsana, Prāṇāyāma, Dhyānam, Bhāvana and all the others. Without Śraddhā, these techniques have little effect on the state of the mind and the progress to Citta Vṛtti Nirodha.
However, sometimes some minor benefits that we get through Āsana or Prāṇāyāma practice, open up the Śraddhā within us. Śraddhā is within each of us but is covered. It could be any experience that uncovers it.”
When a person begins to do something with Śraddhā, with conviction, why does this very often dissipate?
Response from TKV Desikachar:
Because Śraddhā influences the mind from within. But the mind has also to continually interact with the external. In the course of these interactions, the mind will often come in contact with situations that evoke other responses that are contrary to the original conviction. When the Śraddhā, conviction, is not strong enough, the mind will follow the contrary response. Over time the original conviction may even be forgotten.
A person may want to keep his voice in good shape and for this reason decide to stop having ice-cream. He may even faithfully follow this for a while. Then somebody brings home a carton of a new ice-cream recently introduced, of a quality never eaten in India before. His interest is aroused and he finds many reasons why the ice-cream can be had: ‘the friend has gone through so much difficulty to get it for rne’, ‘it is a special occasion and the whole atmosphere of the occasion will be spoilt if I refuse’, ‘I will just sample it once to know what its like’ and so on. The voice is forgotten, and the person eats the ice-cream thereby strengthening the contrary response and weakening the Śraddhā.
“Śraddhā is the source of motivation.”
– TKV Desikachar on Śraddhā in the Yoga Sūtra
“Viveka is to be able to understand and appreciate opposites.”
– TKV Desikachar 1980
“Śraddhā is essential for progress, whether in Yoga or any other endeavour.
It is a feeling that cannot be expressed or intellectually discussed.
It, however, is a feeling that is not always uncovered in every person.
When absent or weak, it is evident through the lack of stability and focus in a person.
Where present and strong, it is evident through the commitment, perseverance and enthusiasm the person exhibits.
For such a person, life is meaningful.”
– TKV Desikachar