Light of the Soul online discussion group takes up Means 4 and 5 of the Eight Means to Yoga as given by the rishi Patanjali millennia ago. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are the known historical source of all seven schools of yoga and underlie all forms of meditation. Light of the Soul is Alice Bailey’s commentary to the sutras, in which she approaches the subject largely from a Theosophical base.
My goal, as leader of the discussion, is to render this timeless teaching applicable to a conscious person’s life and, furthermore, to clarify that in living according to the sutra’s teaching one is living some of the highest, most comprehensive teaching given to humanity. So much so, that it underlies all eastern teaching as far as I can determine.
For tonight, please read and be ready to discuss Book 2, sutras 49 – 55. More on these Means to Yoga are in Book 3 of the Yoga Sutras. These are the preliminary sutras regarding Pranayama (49-53) and Pratyahara (54, 55). To render pranayama as “right control of the breath or of the life force” is to err as the western reductive mind tends to do: to try to box that which is larger than any box can be, thereby limit that which points to the very nature of All-Mind-Awareness itself. Similarly so for pratyahara, which translates as withdrawal with wisdom and reason implied.
The Light of the Soul by Alice Bailey: Here is a PDF of it.
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