Yogadrstisamuccaya of Haribhadra Suri (Study)

by Riddhi J. Shah | 2014 | 98,110 words

This page relates ‘Pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses)’ of the study on the Yogadrstisamuccaya: a 6th-century work on Jain Yoga authored by Haribhadra Suri consisting of 228 Sanskrit verses. The book draws from numerous sources on traditional Yoga. Three important topics are stipulated throughout this study: 1) nature of liberation, 2) a liberated soul, and 3) omniscience.—This section belongs to the series “The Eight Yogadrishtis and the nature of a Liberated Soul”.

Chapter 4.5b - Pratyāhāra (withdrawal of the senses)

Haribhadrasūri states that the sthirā dṛṣṭi’s understanding always stays with its beholder in any case. It never goes away. It is also characterized by the fifth limb of Pātañjala yoga namely pratyāhāra (withdrawal of the senses)[1] .

According to Jainism right faith is obtained by achieving destruction (kṣaya), destruction-cum-subsidence (kṣayopośama) or subsidence (upaśama) of the visiondeluding karman (darśanamohanīya karman) of the vision-deluding karman (darśanamohanīya karman). An aspirant, who completely destroys the vision-deluding karmans with its roots, is said to possess right faith born out of the destruction i.e. kṣāyika samyaktva. An aspirant, who destroys certain amount of vision deluding karmans and subsides the rest, is called to possess destruction–cum–subsidence typed right faith. The last type is the right faith obtained by merely, subsiding the vision-deluding karmans.

The sthirā dṛṣṭi beholder who possesses first type of right faith is said to perform spiritual activities without transgressions (niraticāra). Hence the understanding of sthirā dṛṣṭi stays with him in any case (nitya)[2] . However, in case of second and third type of right faith its beholder, due to partial destruction of vision deluding karmans, is said to perform spiritual activities with transgressions (sāticāra). For such a beholder Haribhadrasūri says that the understanding of sthirā dṛṣṭi comes and goes due to existence of transgressions (aticāra). Haribhadrasūri says that the person, whose vision had been impaired by a previously occurred eye disease, will not be able to perceive things properly in darkness. In the same way the understanding of the sthirā dṛṣṭi beholder, who possesses either destruction-cum-subsidence type of right faith (kṣāyopaśamika samyagdarśana) or right faith born out of the subsidence (upaśama samyagdarśana), is obscured by existence of transgressions. This state of a subject in question is compared with a gem covered with dust by Haribhadrasūri. The dust makes the shine of the gem dull. Similarly the transgressions cause fluctuations in the stability of sthirā dṛṣṭi’s understanding[3] .

Haribhadrasūri says that the understanding of the fifth dṛṣṭi, which is constant/permanent (nitya), is characterized by withdrawal of senses (pratyāhāra). It is the fifth limb of Pātañjala Yogasūtra.

He defines it as follows:

svaviṣayā'saṃprayogo svacittasvarūpānukārīvendriyāṇāṃ pratyāhāraḥ | [4]

Upādhyāya Yaśovijaya defines the withdrawal of senses [i.e., pratyāhāra] in the twenty fourth dvātriṃśikā of his treatise Dvātriṃśad-dvātriṃśikā. He says that the state where the senses do not stay in contact with their own subjects but incline towards the inner self, is called the withdrawal of senses. This state accomplishes into the attainment of highest degree of control over the senses.[5]

The commentator of Nayalatā says that,

jainadarśanā'nusāreṇa tu śabdādiviṣayāṇāmaprāptānāṃ nirodhaḥ, karṇādigocaramāgateṣu ceṣṭā'niṣṭeṣu teṣu rāga-dveṣanigrahaḥ pratyāhāraḥ kathyate | [6]

In Oghaniryukti bhāṣya it is said that,

iṃdiyavisayaniroho pattesu virāga-dosaniggahaṇaṃ | [7]

In Daśavaikālika niryukti we find following verse where the word iṃdiyappaṇihī seems to refer the concept of the withdrawal of the senses [i.e., pratyāhāra]. The verse is:

saddesu a rūvesu a gaṃdhesu rasesu taha ya phāsesu |
na vi rajjai na vi dussai esā khalu iṃdiyappaṇihī ||

Footnotes and references:


sthirāyāṃ darśanaṃ nityaṃ, pratyāhāravadeta ca |
..........................,......................... || 154 ||


sthirāyā dṛṣṭau daśarnaṃ bodhalakṣaṇa,ṃ nityamapratipāti niraticārāyām,.......... || 154 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya


, sāticārāyāṃ tu prakṣīṇanayanapaṭalopadravyasya tadatु ko (?)pādyanavabodhakalpamanityamapi bhavati tathāticārabhāvāt, ratnaprabhāyāmapi dhūlyāderūpadravaḥ || 154 ||


2.54 Yogasūtra of Patañjali.


viṣayā'samaprayoge'ntaḥsvarūpā'nukṛ tiḥ kila |
pratyāhārohṛṣīkāṇāmetadāyattatāphalaḥ || 24.2 ||
   –Vol. 6, Pg: 1619


Dvātriṃśad dvātriṃśikā, part: 6, Pg: 1620, 1621


Oghaniryuktibhāṣya –167.


Daśavaikālikaniryukti –295.

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