Yoga-sutras (Ancient and Modern Interpretations)

by Makarand Gopal Newalkar | 2017 | 82,851 words | ISBN-13: 9780893890926

Yoga-sutras 1.8, English translation with modern and ancient interpretation. The Patanjali Yogasutras describe an ancient Indian tradition spanning over 5000 years old dealing with Yoga:—Meditating the mind on the Atma leading to the realization of self. This study interprets the Yogasutras in light of both ancient and modern commentaries (e.g., Vyasa and Osho) while supporting both Sankhya and Vedanta philosophies.

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration and English translation of sūtra 1.8:

विपर्ययो मिथ्याज्ञानमतद्रूपप्रतिष्ठम् ॥ १.८ ॥

viparyayo mithyājñānamatadrūpapratiṣṭham || 1.8 ||

(8) Viparyaya or illusion is false knowledge formed of a thing as other than what it is.

Ancient and Modern interpretation:

Viparyaya is not a pramāṇa[1] , because that is demolished by correct knowledge of a thing which exist. In other words, the object of pramāṇa, is true, which is not illusory cognition, e.g. illusion of seeing double moon is contradicted by the valid knowledge of one moon. The classical example is of seeing a snake in rope. The illusion vanishes as soon as the knowledge of the rope is acquired.

Viparyaya that causes affliction [has the following five parts—the five kleśas]:

  1. avidyā (nescience),
  2. asmitā (egoism),
  3. rāga (attachment),
  4. dveśa (hatred) and
  5. abhiniveśa (fear of death).

They are technically also [known as the following—signifying the depth of ignorance]:

  1. tamas,
  2. moha,
  3. mahāmoha,
  4. tamisra and
  5. andhatamisra.

Osho says:

‘Wrong knowledge is a false conception not corresponding to the thing as it is.’

Footnotes and references:


Āraṇya, op.cit., p.27

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