‛Lilies’ by: Diana Janavičienė
The Paradigm of
YOGA Juri Aidas AAAP 48:J1
Fourth Issuu Edi�on
Work in progress This edition of ‘The Paradigm of Yoga’ is adapted for presentation here on the Issuu platform (i.e., this page is a filler page). Downloading the pdf from Issuu though gives rise to noticeable differences in the reading experiece when the downloaded file is viewed in the double page mode of Adobe Acrobat Reader. The pdf here at Issuu does not preserve left/right page sequencing when viewed in that mode. A version of this document that is downloadable, that I regard as my master document, and that reads well in Acrobat, is available from my catalog ‘Books’ on my SkyDrive at Microsoft Live . A Note on Nomenclature
Since 2008, when I had written this thingy, I have had a rethink as to the interpretation of the two bottom branches, in the eight-fold metaphor of The Tree of Life, the ‘Ethics’ and ‘Morals’ (my take on the Sanskrit terms yama, restraint, and niyama, observances). Naming these concepts in English should reflect their impact on the practical use of the methodology of yogic
process – I do not, in this context, regard these two as ideological determinants in any way (excepting when the expression of yoga blooms in life and living), yet in ordinary speech they imply a certain stance, an imperative to be actualized – thus I have decided to accent the ideas of yama and niyama somewhat differently. All in all, my thinkings tell me now to overlay the ideas on ‘Ethics‘ and ‘Morals’, to rewrite them all with the umbrella terms ’Attitude’ and ’Behaviour’ substituted (also looked upon in terms of their impact on yogic process in the practical sense of how to apply yogic methodology). Additionally the state of blissful samadhi has been retermed ‘The Deep’. This edition of ‘The Paradigm of Yoga’ has not yet incorporated all these changes in toto.
For more on my perspectives on yoga see the compilation of different writings of mine on the yogic theme: “Yoga and the Natural World”.
AAAP 48:J1 – Document updated, 12 January 2013, 21:35 PM, GMT +01:00.
The Paradigm of Yoga Rest & Activity
â€?The truth which claims to be universal requires to be continually re-created. It cannot be something already possessed that only needs to be re-transmitted. In every generation, it has to be renewed. Otherwise it tends to become dogma which soothes us and induces complacency but does not encourage the supreme personal adventure. Tradition should be a principle not of conservatism but of growth and regeneration. We cannot keep the rays of the sun while we put out the sun itself. Petrified tradition is a disease from which societies seldom recover. By the free use of reason and experience we appropriate truth and keep tradition in a continuous process of evolution. If it is to have a hold on peopleâ€™s minds, it must recon with the vast reorientation of thought that has taken place.â€? Sarvepelli Radhakrishnan
I the writer.
Well, I, in my life, have had a great good fortune offered me, the opportunity to teach yoga to the many, and many chances have emerged for me to present lectures on the themes reflected upon in this informally held, yes, in no way strictly formal, ‘thesis’, “The Paradigm of Yoga: Rest & Activity”. During the course of this work I have gradually come to develop many of the ideas presented herein in somewhat my own manner and have again and again been caught by surprise at how well the stance of yoga meshes with the overall perspectives of a naturalistic world view (which does make it theistically neutral). In yoga the upholding of a continuity to the pendulum swing between the two extremes of rest and activity, with, as for the subject, a fully retained cognitory dynamic, becomes of deep relevance and offers a basic tool for the enhancment of all of lifes multifarious endeavours.
So. This is my merit in this undertaking here; that the ideas herein have been tried, tested, and enjoyed by many. Thus my thanks go to all the teachers that have guided me and to all the students that I, over the years, have had the pleasure to work with and offer my perspectives to on the fine art of application of the experiential science of yoga. Yoga brings a great personal venture to the quest for relevance in life for sentients such as us. For us to gain a deeper clarity as to the wildy concepts and depths we all possess (the outgrowths of our biological bases) the venture of yoga ought not to be neglected in the adventurous and entertaining enterprises we undertake for to bring lifes strenghts, depths, heights and delights into the utmost clarity of cognitory focus. Thus, energized by this general background of mine in the teaching of yogic method and process and with the extra interest I do hold for the method of science, for the paradigm of science as such (the paradigm of freethinking with which to create a pattern, or model, or an outstandingly
clear or typical example, and thus uncover its archetype), with this outlook, with this stance, with the effortless effort of yoga and with the precision and reason of science the openness of science and the yogic stance combine to unfold a vista of possibility for the advancment of ones life − this is what I adhere to in my life and in all the work I do (‘cept when I make the occasional stumblin’ error). Lastly, and as an addendum here, introductorywise, I must underscore that the great thinkers and originators to my references herein are in no way to be held accountant for any eventual misunderstanding or misinterpretion of mine that I may have occcasioned with the use of their ideas in these exploratory and somewhat hariolatory ponderings. ● And, yes, gratefully, many heartfelt thanks to Lithuanian Poet/Painter Diana Janavičienė for her kind approval to the use of her flower paintings for the beautifying of this little work on Yoga.
Science, to put its warrant as concisely as possible, is the organized, systematic enterprise that gathers knowledge about the world and condenses the knowledge into testable laws and principles. The diagnostic features of science that distinguish it from pseudoscience are first, repeatability: The same phenomenon is sought again, preferably by independent investigation, and the interpretation given to it is confirmed or discarded by means of novel analysis and experimentation. Second, economy: Scientists attempt to abstract the information into the form that is both simplest and aesthetically most pleasing â€“ the combination called elegance â€“ while yielding the largest amount of information with the least amount of effort. Third, mensuration: If something can be properly measured, using universally accepted scales, generalizations about it are rendered unambiguous. Fourth, heuristics: The best science stimulates further discovery, often in unpredictable new directions; and the new knowledge provides an additional test of the original principles that led to its discovery. Fifth and finally, consilience: The explanations of different phenomena most likely to survive are those that can be connected and proved consistent with one another. Edward O. Wilson
Copyright © Juri Aidas, 2013 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Work in progress! This document is presently undergoing a process of continuous revision and is in no way complete as is, though, I guess, the main points have been made. This second edition this book may be viewed on-line at Issuu.com: http://issu.com/albatross/docs/paradigm-of-yoga Copyrights © 2013
Art, Graphs, Schematas: Juri Aidas Except Sun / Moon illustration: Nina Aidas Oil Paintings: Diana Janavičienė Oil Painting, ‘A Dearie’: Juri Aidas (Photo, ‘A Dearie’: Lasse Grundmark)
A poem, ‘Words´: Juri Aidas Line drawings on pages. 33, 73, 86, 91, 1115, 129 & 154 : Magnus Malmsten Quotes on Single Cell Consciousness, p. 80: Jonathan C.W. Edwards Quotes on phonemes, p. 83: Margaret Magnus Clipart: Microsoft Sun/Note logo (clipart composite): Juri Aidas Neuron: Public Domain (digital enhancment by Pinkers) Lay-out & Design: Juri Aidas An Another Albatross Publication AAAP 48:J1
The Paradigm of Yoga Rest & Activity
Juri Aidas AAAP 48:J1 12 January 2013, 21:35 PM GMT+01:00
Yoga is the Science of Experience
One Fundamental Obser vation
Rest and Acti vity
The Aspects of Yoga ar e Uni versals
Thr ee Metaphors
The Tr ee of Lif e
The Algor ythm y
Into The Dee p
Heaven and Earth
The Phonon and the Phoneme
The Hariolator y
A Yogic Stance on Ethics and Morals
Little Big Flow er
‛ Little Big Flower ’, (33 x 41 cm), Oil painting by: Diana Janavičienė.
The Paradigm of Yoga Rest & Activity
Yoga brings unity to life. Movement in Yoga is process. Yoga is the settling of the mind into silence. Established in Yoga, Perform Action.
Yoga is one of the six systems of Indian philosophy. … the fourth, its main concern therein being personal experience via the practical application of method. The philosophy of Yoga has its roots in Vedic culture, of ca. 2500–1700 BC, and gets its first exposé by Patanjali in the Yoga-Sūtra, of ca. 200 BC–100 AD.
Yoga offers the experience of a deep quiet, in terms of both mind & body.
Yoga, as method, is process. Its different methods thereby synergistically lead to a deep, wakeful, refreshing rest.
Yoga relies on the spontaneity of the mind as it journeys to rest & cognizes ‘bliss’ when opportunity is given.
In Yoga an inner recursive algorythmy is revealed. The practitioner of Yoga, by rythmic continuity over time, establishes an inner sense of ease in the subjective experience of a gravitating towards rest and then on to activity.
The application of Yoga stabilises mind & body. This engenders dynamic activity.
The wholity of Yoga is, by metaphor, a Tree of Life. “The Tree of Life”: a recursive heuristic metaphor.
Yoga is the Science of Experience n the philosophy of yoga all of life, in terms of the human being, is looked upon, nominally, from the existential & phenomenological middle ground of
the cooperative symbiosis of cognitive experience as such (as it arises and acts to work in tandem) with its physiological correlate and counterpart the body itself. These two together pertain to construe our consciousness a grand subjective vista, noded by objectivities, wherein all the dynamics of life and living necessarily must chime
in unison; the systemic harmony achieved when the opposites integrate will effectively add to, will bring quality to, will revitalize the many ways whereby the wholeness of our gravitating dynamic system, of inner reverberating narrative reflectivity and of powerful cresting biological drive, in itself, will be able to recognize the utter breadth, the grand vista, of these two bases to our existentiality. Cognized thusways and well united in that perception these apexes ultimately, as said, ascribe a wide panorama to life, whereof sublime awareness and the resulting hand in hand further refinement of body-physiology are attained by continued application of the experientially stanced nature of yogic recursive method; by the upholding of a systematic continuity of such processee the extremes of life thus merge in the apprehending. In all this we find the depth of sublime paradigm3: of rest and activity.
One Fundamental Obser vation Life is the upholding of a dynamic balance of rests and activities, of moments of inner quiet and of periods of sweeping outward expressiveness. In life’s actions we refine our works and our ambitions and carry on and do our thing − but this all is only upheld by the constant infusion of deep rest. We sleep to rest, we dream, we daydream, we linger, loiter an’ laze about, and but for sleep this is all still action, though unfocused. In the state of sleep we also relinquish our awareness, and along go our cognitory abilities, and thus we miss out on the possibly deepest obtainable rest available to us − deeper than deep sleep, yet infused with the wakefulness of an ethereal and bright inner recognition of simultaneous mental and biological quietude, a relaxation of all active
intent unto the nature of a subjectively almost absolute stillness. This recognition realized reveals the true nature of trust: in that tranquil quiet we have no other recourse but to trust life, to trust the beat of the heart, it won’t stop (unless there be a system fault), trust our breath to return though it seemingly be gone and our consciousness but a bright candle in a room where no wind blows4, where no breeze flutters, when no gusts, or guests call, as no concept divides and no god intrudes (we be left in peace), where all is singularly calm and utter silence reigns. To thus remain is ‘trust’. • The true relevance to life that the systemic experience of wakeful deep rest unfolds is to be seen in the far ranging rejuvenating effects it brings as regards the individual and as an evolving capacity for dynamic accomplishment
(these issues have, by now, gathered quite some scientific research5). The practical side of the philosophy of yoga has found, has explored, has tested, has put to trial and has developed both method and understanding as goes for the attainable development, management and fulfilment of the dual requirements of lifeâ€™s demands on our existance, we must care for the necessities of both mind and body, life requires development of both the inner and the outer; thus time is what is needed, time to rest, and time to act. In the final end deep rest and skill in action combine, and eventually bring abundant time. The offer of yoga implies âˆ’ access to a deep inner wakeful experience of rest supreme and a resulting enhancement of our active ways. In a skilful delineation, in the classic Yoga-Sutra6 (100BCâˆ’200AD), its originator Maharishi Patanjali7 undertakes the systematizing and explanation of many
considerations as regards the method and philosophy of yoga and a general definition is proffered: Yoga is the settling of the mind into silence.8 And thatâ€™s it. Nothing but. When the mind settles and thought and thinking are suspended, and finally not even upheld, though awareness is, the resulting mental quiet as if spreads throughout the whole biological system that in the process of yoga has been set up to maximize the natural propensity of systemic response for the nervous system as a whole to stay balanced as it naturally gravitates towards rest and relaxation. As the yogic paradigm is accessed in slightly different ways by the individual, according to the specific needs of each and every one of us, this differentiation thus gives rise to a spectrum of slightly different approaches to yoga that yogic philosophy
meets up with by slight variations to practice; different schools of yoga arise. If timeâ€™s short a shorter programme is recommended, if thereâ€™s time enough, do a longer one, adjustments are made on an individual basis. But the centre point of all yogic method hinges on the deepest aspect of its paradigm, actuation of our inherent ability to access the deepest attainable possible rest. Yogic rest is not about getting into subjectively phantastic states, nor is it about the creating of moods. Nothing is supposed to happen when we are quiet. Thatâ€™s what rest is all about. Established in Yoga, Perform Action.9 This expression of the yogic paradigm states the corollary to the basic definition. Clearly it is so that yoga ultimately is for action, and not but for the otherworldly.
Rest and Activity Letâ€™s have a glance at the cycle of rest and activity. This pulse of life acts as a bridge to unite extremes which range from the elusiveness of the quiet inner terrain to the creativities and, at times though, mayhems, of our engaged ambitions. To be effective in ultimate action we have to take recourse to ultimate rest, half-measures will always be half-measures. Sure, sleep and relaxation rejuvenate but do they give us ultimate trust in the existentiality of our lives, do we cast off existential angst by half-measures? Continuity in the process of yoga implies a structuring of life to swing dynamically between the poles of the opposite characteristics of rest and activity. In deep wakeful rest we find trust, joy and a sense of wonder, in the creative management of worldly concerns we may
Semantic Cycle of Rest and Activity.10
find trust, joy and a sense of wonder too, then its called fulfilment. If our foundation of rest is strong and has a broad base our aspirations might actually bring us closure, and bring a deeper relevance and meaning to pertinent life. In our glance here at the entangled development of the interaction of the outmost poles of mind/body reach, from the quiet thought to dynamic fulfilment, it is possible to intuit a few parallel semantic flows that mirror the dynamics of the actual coming to be and expression of an act, from its subtle primal preparations unto its completion. This little cyclic schema attempts to but throw a wee glance at the semantic interrelations of the inwards and outwards flows and attempts to draw parallels that semantically suggests the main nodes of the minds inwards directed movement, resources, process, turnaround, that resonate in full harmony with the likewise â€˜strongâ€™ nodes of its quite
habitual outwards directedness, withdrawal, focusing, meditative process (in this an algorythmic11 recursive machinery can be sensed and the properties of its mehanism may be worked into a functional metaphor to further the understanding of the recursive yogic process). In this flow that we see is displayed a naturalness in the way both these processee, the inwards and outwards momentums, proceed and we may in this also see the rationality in placing a high value on the necessity of the cycle of rest and activity to be taken at face value, incorporated naturally into the natural flow of outer-directedness; to establish a continuity to it, to make of it a recurring balance that in itself will compensate for all them fatigue generating effects of an active life 足 thus we can grasp the very real necessity for the upholding of a continuity to the full cycle of the inwards/outwards movement of awareness which by this
effectivisation maximizes the qualitative advantages of balance and clarity that the mind/body system may gain in life. In this way together rest and activity dance, if I may, a grand algorythmy. From rest springs thought, ever fresh, ever light, inspiring; full â€˜a zest, dance and song, intricately spun, in patterned gyrations its supple momentums cause a memetic flow to ensue. Then of course this expression of natural propensity hits the hard rocks of existentiality. Action becomes quite necessary. We must act to survive, this is imperative, and if it was not but for the process of recursive alorythmy stillness would be hard to sustain âˆ’ and activity with no stillness in its centre dynamic will tumble about mad as a hatter and will bring no fulfilment to the entity caught up in its whirlwind. If the whirly centres of narrative gravity find no undisturbed spot
where to rest from the ever-insistent flows of connotation how would they ever become supportive of a balanced life? Activity needs rest as rest needs activity, without which there would be no strengthening of the system and all awareness would erode.
The Aspects of Yoga ar e Universals From the perceptive viewpoint of the self-reflecting cognitory framework, the minds I, the panorama of experience ranges over a span of eight nodes which connect the ultimate depths of our murky behavioural Attitude
and memetic reality-whirlpools of ethics (1) and morals (2), by way of a trawl along the great span through direct approaches on body (3) and breathing (4), further continued in the courses of natural psychological flow via
the subtle alignment of general withdrawal (5), effortless focusing (6) and graceful recursive inner mental process (7), and finally, in this traverse, the phenomenological flow generates a gentle stance towards that which actually brings pleasure and joy, a connection of our cognitory The Deep
roots unto a platform of a subtly blissful (8) inner state of basal unity of physiology and psyche is made, a recursivity completed. A span well worth the existential journey to make an extended, deep and ultimately satisfying acquaintance with. Attitude
Ethics13, Morals14, Posture15, Breath16, Withdrawal17,
Focusing18, Meditation19 (as process) & (Dynamic) Bliss20. These here, in my own parlance, are the eight aspects of yoga12 as derived from the application of empirically developed, practical, experiential, consistent methods of yoga.
I would say that these eight characterizations here and the attributions they generate, their subcategories21 (see the schemata in “The Tree of Life” section below, p. 33), are as universals to a ‘life’ entity, of sorts, to a life form, to something living, a human being, or a single cell22, say? Time spent on the study and careful application of sensible recommendations from the rich fields of each and every one of these generalizations of the human condition, as regards the individual, results in a refinement of attitude, understanding and behaviour as to inherent needs and worldly concerns that need be resolved and not overlooked. Yes: “See the Need, Do the Deed.” 23 The practical methods appended to the specific categories in the philosophy of yoga serve to regulate the swoop and dive, the pulse and the rhythm, the inwards and outwards movements, the elegant dance, the natural
algorythmies24 of life that our consciousness seemingly surfs upon, flows along, gyrates about, spins, wings, rings, gravitates its narrative centres upon as its wanders and wonders; turn it around now, yoga brings the utmost existential silence unto the utmost complex demands of ‘real’ life, so to say; this yogic ‘quiet’ becomes as if infused into all our undertakings, into all the acts we but must perform, that are necessitated by those common prerequisites we ultimately must attend to for to serve our basal survival needs and thus, with the practice of yogic method, a stable basal balance of mind and body is formatted and over time the resulting life-supportive systemic enhancements embrace all aspects of vibrant life. The categories of yoga provide a structural focus for our attentions as we care for the many different aspects of that which makes for quality and perceptiveness in
life, they provide an enhanced connection to the natural platform of deep wakeful rest as they, as said, care for that fundamental, the deepest wakeful rest, which develops our ability to spring into action when demands and encroachments arise and impinge upon the different life events we encounter. The categories spring from as if an utmost inner event-horizon, from the vertigo depths of the subjective inner (from its subtle neuro-physiological correlate), and then do traverse the full vista of lifeâ€™s subjective/objective character up unto the far-reaching complexities of the outer event-horizon (as we find when we study lifeâ€™s big-bang-origin; for to formulate complex concepts, as in mathematics, these have first to be intuited, e.g. the proposal of the existence of the photon25). The categories range from one end to the other of the existential spree. The eight aspects of yoga are aspects
that stimulate the growth of well-being of every sort, if attended to, they are ‘wholity’ generators, thus universals, they uphold the natural dynamics that shape our life. From a middle ground phenomenological angle the spree may seem infinite, and may well be, but for the cognitory reach the opposites be but an instant away.
Thr ee Metaphors And now for a few metaphors to unite our conception of them quality nodes, so to say (see illustration next page). • But firstly, to put the idea of metaphor itself in context one could say, in a paraphrasing of Steven Pinker26, that metaphors are heavy generalizations, they include the particulars of a phenomenal structure in some overarching
Three Metaphors of Yoga.
category or rule, and like other generalizations they can be tested on their predictions and scrutinized on their merits, including their fidelity to the structure of the world27, and one could further say that metaphors are powerful to the extent that they are like analogies, which take advantage of the relational structure of a complex analogy28. A perceptive meataphor provides us an analogy deep enough to see through the veneer of sensory experience
to a shared conceptual skeleton of events, states, goals, causes and extents29. For more on metaphor see this note30. So, now, on to metaphor in yoga. â€˘ Traditionally the aspects of yoga are presented in a linear fashion, in straight list form. This allows, as a place to start, for a nice, simple metaphor of a stair, or a ladder (which refines the metaphor), (see illustration on p. 27). A stair we climb from the bottom up, thus the end result of yoga, the attainment of inner bliss and happiness, may seem a long way off. One would start from deep intense study of the laws and rules of life, one would train the body and breath for ages, then one would have to do quite terribly complicated mental exercise stuffs and, doh, enlightenment! Exhausting. Now. If the metaphor is of a ladder this image may be turned around and one is able
to make a start from the more alluring end of theory and practice − start from the enchanting bliss, so to say, and as that inner content spreads and infuses everything of concern to the living entity an easier path to completion is perceived − but this, of course, implies getting hold of an easy method to access the starting point. One could also use the metaphor of a table (I like to use the image of a grand piano, p. 27) with which to purview the aspects of yoga. In this construal there is a strong connectivity to the aspects, if they are as legs to a table (or a piano), pull one leg and all the others come along. Thus one can approach yoga from any angle pertaining to the aspects. One could study the philosophy, or start with the body say, do some limbering up stuff, or take a deep breath, and a gentle breath etc., or start with the mind, say, in this view all life’s avenues are influenced − but where
be the deep fundament? There we are, lost in space, the metaphor spins and finds no anchor. Thirdly one could use the metaphor of a tree (p. 34, and see also the full illustration overleaf, p. 33). So, now, this here is an idea Iâ€™ve lately spent some time on developing into a semblance of coherence. Letâ€™s put as if a magnifying glass on the relationship of two particular aspects of the eightfold structure of yoga, letâ€™s close in on the relationship meditation/bliss, as these two are traditionally conceptualized to be in close proximity (and somewhat logically too, the recursive process of meditation hovers near the most subjective node of the aspects, the dynamic bliss, they almost fuse). But in that relation is a seed-pattern, a recursive redraw of the whole outer metaphoric tree in itself (might be we have a reflection of the natural forces that uphold the unity
of a resonating cell membrane, see appendix, p. 79). In this we have a structural framework to underscore the relevance of silence as it relates to all other engagements in life. In essence the yogic paradigm brings an essential suspending of the energetic bio-dynamic − yet with no loss of awareness. From the bottom of the first metaphor of a stair meditation and bliss are both far off; the ladder, though, allows us to get closer to that essentiality by flippin’ it around, but we’re still riding in as from nowhere, so to speak; the piano metaphor (or the table dito) allows for many entry points yet the wholity here is somehow off by itself, floating free; in the tree metaphor on the other hand there’s a deep anchor to life’s existential ground, our common ground, and even the process of recursivity can be viewed in its image, the algorythmy itself is revealed.
The categories of Yoga (and the subcategories implied therein), as presented in the schemata of the metaphor of â€œThe Tree of Lifeâ€? and in the traditional listings, all refer to the process of Yoga as such and are not to be ideologically transferred to any other domain, their qualities will rather become infused into our life and into our living depending on what application gives and what circumstance brings. â€˘
”The Tree of Life” An Heuristic Metaphor of Inner Recursive Algorythmy.
The Tr ee of Life Allow me to now introduce a graphic rendering (see preciding page) of the third of these metaphors, the tree, in somewhat more detail, so as to engender a ‘visual’ of the interactions of the categories of yoga as viewed per metaphor in this schemata of “The Tree of Life”. Hopefully this will bring the essence of the yogic paradigm into a clear view and perchance it will also help render the relational dynamic of the aspects of yoga quite tangible. The connectivities, the interdependencies and the fusion of these eight aspects of yoga when viewed in terms of the yogic process as a whole may be visualized by the use of an heuristic31 metaphor, a learning device, here I use an image of a tree, seven-branched, eight-aspected (seven branches and a root): “The Tree of Life”.32
The device of a tree allows for a unique perspective on the dynamics of consciousness as purportedly perceived and transmitted by the empirical science of yoga. How does this work? One does one thing in yoga, something happens, one does it again, same thing happens, etc. The methods of yoga are subjectively empirical over a range of subjects and in that we may define certain momentums and inclinations, attributes, I’d say, of the behaviour of the conscious dynamics of what constitutes our sense of self − that elusive ‘I’ − and we may define even the absence of that ‘I’, as paradoxically we find that as long as our body retains its functionality and biological drive even the absence of that ‘I’ may be cognized by basal biological awareness as such. (This gives rise to the conjecture of a single neuronal cell, a cell ‘a the brain, so to say, as being the upholder of such a basal awareness; and I would
attribute a sense of existential satisfaction to the ‘ground’ state of the single cell − a basal state of ‘bliss’ upheld by the dynamics of ‘life’ itself, as scientific theory within the field of neurologic functionality allows for consciousness to reside therein, as a phononic wave. See appendix, p. 79, for: “The Phonon and the Phoneme” − an hariolatory33 on The Single Neuron Theory of Consciousness.34) • The opposite page here, p 37, portrays a rendering of the process whereby, by the discerning and magnifying power of yoga, one metaphor is turned into another, we see the long ladder turned into a tree, a ‘Tree of Life’.
Now in this graph of the aspects of yoga the structural pattern of the ‘Tree of Life’ metaphor is seen as it arises out of the basic relation of the process of meditation and the state of a quiescent inner dynamic awarness.
The metaphor of a ‘Tree of Life’ as projected from the metaphor of a ladder.
In my image of a tree, “The Tree of Life”, as a metaphor for all of life as seen through the lens of yoga, I place the subjective reflection of the basal state, the blissful, at the root of this metaphoric tree, lifes subjective base thus being inner ‘bliss’, so to say (empirically validated as per the discussion above, in an heterophenomenological35 sense, the third person view – and as the practice of yoga is established that inner experience grows ) (for a seminal artefactual resonance on this idea see the illustration in the next section, ‘The Seals’, p. 45). As we traverse the pattern of this metaphoric ‘Tree’ and The Deep
as we start out from its blissful (1) root we find firstly ethics Behaviour
(2) and morals (3) grounded therein (as they, in the field of yoga, pertain to the individual and not to the ideologues of outward action), following the lead of Shearer36, 1982, these two, ethics and morals, may consistently be viewed,
in an inwards sense and distinctly applied to yogic process, as The Laws of Life and The Rules for Living and they are as two great lower branches upon which, as two more branches, the edifice of body (4) and breathing (5) are held (these four be the outer limbs of yoga), and upon which four the four inner limbs of yoga, withdrawal (6), focusing, (7) and the meditative process (8) reside, as two more branches and a crown of pure algorythmy to this metaphoric tree to top it off, and then thus via algorythmic recursivity the applied processuality connects back, back-propagates, via The Deep
the central trunk of this ‘tree’ to the dynamic bliss (1) (do take note of how the superficial numbering of the aspects changes. in this benign intuition pump visual of a ‘Tree of Life’ versus the ‘stair’ metaphor, as one starts out from the ‘root’ [new #1], which ordinarily would be depicted as the ‘crown’ [old #8], which it, in a sense, also is).
Now, everything above the root of this metaphoric tree lies partly in an objective realm and partly in the structured subjectivities of the resulting experientials, as perceived from within the yogic process. This kind of object/subject cognitive figure/ground shift blurs the fundamental inner/outer distinction we mundanely cognize as we refer to ‘self ’ (which implies an ‘other’) and in this allows for deep
a biological basis to enter the dynamic. The blissful state thus, finally, as both root and concluding next/last note in this yoga octave ties the meditative and blissful states depth
into an even tighter fold. This (dynamic) ‘Bliss’ holds a category to itself, as said, being the subjective root of the whole metaphor, yet it could in itself be biologically based, as intuited (by the projection of this metaphoric structure onto the purely physical characteristics of a single cell37). This collection of attributes, the aspects, of the
experiential subjective provides an overarching wholity to the basic paradigm of rest/activity, as it be propounded by the philosophy of yoga; all aspects of life are tended to. So. Here we have eight aspects to yoga. These aspects in turn express subcategories of their own that refine and further define the broad scope of the universal paradigm − yet they all, categories and subcategories pertain to the process of yoga as such and should not be imposed upon any ideology of an ‘outwards’ characteristic (say, of any political, supernatural or fabular norm system). The metaphor of a tree frees our understanding of yoga from some restrictions of the traditional metaphor of a stair/ladder and also of those imbued in the idea of a table with many legs. (I.) A stair represents sequence and may only be approached from the bottom up, a long extortive climb ensues. A ladder though can be turned
around and thus allows for a traversing of said sequence in the opposite direction (start with the â€˜blissâ€™ anâ€™ but flow along); thus the more natural approach of the firsthand establishment of inner quiet comes within easy reach (this refinement to yoga was introduced by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi38 in 1958). (II.) The metaphor of a table brings immediate contact with any one of all the aspects of yoga, grab a leg and pull and the whole table (piano) will follow. In other words, in the sense of this metaphor, one may approach the yogic methods by referencing any singular one of the eight aspects (herein lies the deep seed of the systemic global tree metaphor). To exemplify. We may discuss morals and ethics, or we may start with the body, say, as has become quite popular, or use breathing techniques, and we do know that focusing collects the mind, etc. Any aspect applied will draw one into the
whole field of yoga. But, of course, this whole table/ piano contraption floats about. Wherein is that basic bliss grounded in this view? Nowhere? Everywhere? Yes. It floats about. Now. I have introduced (III.) a ‘Tree’ metaphor (this kind of metaphor is ordinarily successfully used in the construing of genealogies or hierarchies) and it would seemingly be out of place for to unite the eight aspects39 (if one insists on holding onto the implications of the metaphor of a stair/ladder − the following of a sequence − it would not be possible to see the object/subject dichotomy as clearly as the tree metaphor allows for, to see the great highway of a nerve, so to say, of direct connectivity of the outmost perimeters of the metaphors). deep
But. If a transversal is drawn and the blissful basal state, as such, is separated from the also likewise abstruse and
subtle process of the dynamic of recursivity implied in the concept of a ‘process’ of meditation as such (a method to reduce cognitive content, within the yogic setting, that simultaneously will uphold awareness in a wakeful state) we find that the process of meditation may indeed be described in objective terms and thus it falls on the objective side of the transversal within the subjective field as a whole, thereby the phenomenological subjectivity we attribute to experience, the story within, the illusion of ‘self ’, the cognitory traversing of a pattern, is revealed as a constituting of dynamic narrative gravities which, in a replicative sense, harbour multiple drafts of similar ‘selves’ (in a way, all these must be of objective nature, as the dynamics of mental rumination can be defined and this thus bring objective quanta into the turbulent, or dynamically quiescent, trawling fields of qualia40).
The Seals In this manner, as portrayed in the preceding section, all the upper seven aspects of the philosophy of yoga may be looked upon as the branches of a great tree that spreads out into the fabulous manifold multiplicities of the objective world − as if they were the great branches of a tree reaching from the heavens to the ground, as we find in ancient Vedic literature41 (Rig Veda, 1:24:7): “Varuna, King of hallowed might, sustaineth erect The Tree’s stem in the baseless region. Its rays, whose root is high above, stream downward. Deep may they sink within us, and be hidden.”
The root would, in that view, be stemmed in a mythic heaven (or haven, so to say, as the non-theist perchance would have it), yet it could also be seen as emanating in
structural form from the existentiality of man − a tree with its roots in the inner man visually rendered as a tree rooted in the head of a yogi.42 This image brings an echo of ancient Celtic mythologies of Cerununnos to mind.43 Viewed thisways then what has been accomplished is the metaphoric rooting of this magnificent ‘Tree of Life’ in a purely naturalistic ground. The ‘Tree’, of the inner bliss, has been uprighted. A bright perspective unfolds and spreads its leafy branches indeed. The first glimpse of yoga to be seen in the history of mankind glimmers subtly suggestive among archeological artefacts from the land of the Indus valley, from 2500−1700 years before the Yoga-Sūtra; a fascinating vista to reach us, well & hale, a remnant of a culture called Harappa44, loca-lised to numerous sites around the area of Mohenjo-daro45 (a district of what is now Pakistan).
Here many seals of hard clay have been found, eg. the Steatite-seal (of steatite-clay) upon which the figure of a ‘Shaman’, seated in traditional yogic posture, is seen. Have a look now at some antique artefactery dug out from ground along ancient river-flows, from where once The Saraswati 46, Mother of the Vedas, used to flow. Steatite-seal – Paśupati
Seals of Harappa and Mohenjo-daro.47 From the Indus valley in what is now modern Pakistan.
Seals, such as these, of the Vedic Harappa culture, can be dated from between ca. 2500-1500 BC; figurines and animals have been carved in intaglio against the background. The left one here (the Steatite-seal) carries a representation of a male figure, with strange head-gear, in what might be a traditional yoga-posture. The association The seal of Mohenjo-Daro
reveals a tree-structure that (from its metaphoric root in the consciousness of the yogi/shaman) branches out in seven directions; as do the upper 7 aspects (of the 8) of Yoga in the metaphor of
The Tree of Life. Seven branches … and a root, ”Eight” aspects. Horns of the Buffalo & Leaves
with the surrounding animals and the posture suggest that this motif might depict a respected person (shaman/yogi?). Do take note of the fancy branching head-gear of both of our ‘yogis’ above (p. 47). In the Mohenjo-daro-seal we clearly see a structure of seven branches and a root, all made from Buffalo horns and of the branches and leaves of the pipal tree, an eight-aspected structure, as if rounding in all the universals in one pattern. Here, in hariolatory fashion (see graphic on former page, p. 48), I see a prototype of the metaphoric reach of a “Tree of Life”, and we find it rooted in the head of the yogic figure. To me this alludes to consciousness, as such, existant, senescent, real, and grounded in the biological functionality of the single cell and centered in the narrative dynamic of our psycho physiological awarity. •
The Algor ythmy Now for the processual part of the yogic process. Yes, I would like to trace the methods of approach to the practical management and balancing of systemic propensities. What stance to take? First and foremost I would like to highlight the liâ€™l mental trick that brings closure to the whole yogic process. But why start with the somewat abstruse process of the recursive algorythmy of the mental mode of the yogic process? The body and breathing are quite obvious entry points for a discussion of yoga to make its point in lieu of their concreteness, as are the parameters of ethics and morals (the paradigms whereof are the only guidelines to a good life that we can sensibly embrace); the interactions that ensue from all manners of worldly encounters in terms of ideals and
ideationals have thoroughly and properly been addressed by both science and theology over the centuries and a certain grasp of the consequences of extreme divergence from norms and the rewards attainable from a closer social cohesion to the same normatives have been suggested in different formats by the many cocnizers in these fields. In yoga the normatives point distinctly to the process of recursivity in the algorythmy of process, method, and should not be applied to any ideological venture, as I’ve, again and again, emphasized herein. See my statement attached to the graphic of “The Tree of Life” (p. 32). For to pin-point the yogic stance on ethics and morals and to distinguish the two senses to these ideationals, the differences of viewpoint between the yogic stance and the ideological one, I discuss these ideas in further depth in the appendix, “A Yogic Stance on Ethics and Morals” (p. 93).
As we study the laws of life and the rules for living, as we take care of body and breathing, and as we allow for the quietening of withdrawal and the attentivity of effortless focusing we are finally (or to start with) brought up to the recursive process of cognitory algorythmy, the systematic process of ultimately distracting our thinkings from their inherent motives and from their fundamental drive. Thus, in due course, the cognitory aspect of our awarity comes to a standstill and a freedom from the flows of all activity comes about. Subjectively a feeling of an almost as if torrential transcendent, tranquil, tractable, triumphant peace comes aboutbut, yet, nothing is supposed to happen (remember, that is what rest is all about). It is not as if one puts ones fingers on this unikum, it is but that deep rest is a distinct joy for the integrated mind/body system as a whole and thus I, as in the foregoing discussion, state the
conjecture of basal single cell bliss. Now why start from the meditative angle? Well. This harks back to the original metaphor of a ladder, the modern-ized stair. A stair is like a hill, there would be steps to take in an upwards direction, but downwards would, of course, be an easier go. So, what happens when we turn the stair upside down, as per the ladder? Will, we actually retain the idea of ease to the process of now ascending a ladder in contrast to the hard climp upwards to the top of a hill. As it was discovered (possibly as far back as the neolithic age48) that there is an element of joy in life to the contem-plation of the qualiative phenomenon of life itself, aware-ness, this then, over time, must have given way to more refined techniques and methods for to bring more of those exquisite qualia of inner life into existential relevance. Then, from here, one would of course wonder what it is
that supports the meditative practices (so closely intertwined with that basal bliss of deep rest). Well. This is the point where the breathing techniques and gymnastic postures enter the arena, they set the platform for the effectivness of the meditative practice (which brings joy) and thus become an element of the yogic progress, as do considerations of ethics and morals (which at first are directed solely towards the yogic process but in the final end become relevant guides even of outer-directedness; they should not, though, be the bringers of dogma â€“ as it is not the practicing of an ideology to do the yoga but it is rather the setting of the stage for quality on all levels, from the inner fields of resonant qualia unto the utmost care in ouwards life spent on making this world a good world). Thus, allow me now to take a dive into the intricacies of the yogic process of meditation as it is the
discoverable recursivity of that process which makes for an understanding of what actually is going on. With a sensible attitude towards oneâ€™s own psycho physiological system one may go a long way: in the preparatory stages of the yogic process the ethics and morals, of this context, tell us that it is good thing to get on with a little bit of refinement to things, behaviours, outlook, ones stance in life; with methods for attuning body and breathing a stabilizing of the body-posture and its dynamic ensues whereby the beginning of a physiologically arranged systemic balance is brought to the fore; then as withdrawal occurs (as there, in quietude, is a systemic propensity for that) our silent attention can manage a broader swathe and thinking itself becomes accessible to cognition from the level of its impulse, from its first cognitory renderings Â this platform is where our ideational stances tumble
about as the impulsivity of thought bubbles about, many ideas rise as if from nowhere (from the area of the hippocampus in the brain49), it’s as if one is looking far towards a shimmering simmering horizon where ideas start out and then pour their energies into existing conceptual structures and thereby remold them bit by bit, in this we see an example of memetic evolution. In the yoga we step back from even this level – well we ain’t going anywhere when we rest – and suddenly there’s no activity going on at all. It is the disengagement from thinking, by an at that subtle level that must be enhanced by process as otherwise our thinking dynamic will constantly be reactivated by the ensuing memetic flow. The recursivity of yogic method back-propagates50 through the whole system of subjective and objective reality and in this it stabilizes our wholity from stance to dance, so to say.
Vanishing Point What I allude to here is the use of a technique to distract the mind from getting caught up in cognitory processing. A distraction is introduced. A Sound. A Mantra (vehicle for thought) is used.
Mantra: a word, a sound
The Mantra is a tool for to
(of no inherent meaning);
distract the flow of thin-
is only effortlessly used as a
king and, in that, thinking
ceases its momentum.
The word ‘mantra’ stems from the Sanskrit verbal root ‘man’ meaning “to think, ponder”. The suffix ‘tra’ indicates instrumentality.51
The Algorythmy of the Process of Meditation.
Here now is a schemata (see the graphic rendering to the left, p 58) of the process of meditation. Unto the platform of our inner subjective cognizing of an inherent thinking process (of multiple narrative gravities, where macroscopic ‘self ’-nodes, of persona and personality emerge and gyrate about) another process is added: an effortless minim of activity, a slight active impulse in the form of a word of no meaning or connotation is introduced to the cognitory works. The undirected impulse of a mantra into the cognitory flow distracts the thinking process from its momentums and in that subdues our desire for conceptual closure, a defusing of the contextual arrow occurs, a fragmentation of intent comes about – and yet, the spark of awareness is upheld by this subtle turn ‘a the mind in the effortless practice.
The process of thinking is autonomous and engenders multitudes of thought as beautiful pearl on a string. In meditation (in application of the meditative process) thereâ€™s no point in putting a lid on top of thinking, it is difficult to force a stop to thinking (if not impossible). Instead a technique to distract thought is brought into play; this results in a state of no activity at all. In the final end both thinking and process are left alone and both mind and body come to be at ease. Effortlessly â€“ approach & attitude!
It is quite natural to cognize thinking, as it goes on most of the time, but usually a circumstance of what to do with the thoughts arises; in yoga one does not have to do anything with them.
When awareness, during meditation, in Yoga, comes to recognize that thoughts and activities occupy it a mantra is effortlessly added to the process of thinking, as just any thought among other thoughts. The subtle activity (not its content â€“ of which it has none) of this impulse slightly engages the mind, thereby mental dullness is countered as the process of thinking is distracted and our mind comes to deep rest. The flow is distracted but the process continues.
A mantra, used on the level of thought stimulates awareness and alertness (by the act of its use), and this effortless use also acts, as said, as a distractive impulse on the process of thinking, fragmenting and thus diverting it. Thinking relaxes; unfinished thoughts fade away, as does the mantra now and then.
Cognition is upheld along a sublimity-gradient.
As the process of thinking becomes distracted, nonintent based, on account of the use of a mantra subtly breaking the flow of thoughts, thinking stops seeking a goal in action and leaves no more footprints in the mind. As the meditative process continues occasionally too the mantra is forgotten, and as thinking about whatevers may be long gone, the mind is settled. There is a sense of graduality to the whole flow of meditation as process, cognitively non-bound thoughts leave a supple afterglow of smooth ideational progress yet even those creative sprouts are allowed, by the effortless nature of our approach, to retract into dormancy, and if the body is stable in its meditative posture the whole system relaxes. Nothing is supposed to happen, and as nothing happens â€“ we rest.
Mind & Body are companions.
When this deep settling occurs the mind (vitalized by this meditative process) attains a state of restful alertness and relaxes its subjective hold on the persona, it becomes calm, the ego dissolves. This causes the body to relax and rest as no impetus to activity remains. Yes. Occasionally the mantra is forgotten. If nothing else then happens (or does â€˜not happenâ€™, so to say) then there you are, deep quiet and its accompanying calm have infused every nook and cranny of our existential frame. Deep, Alert Rest.
Deeper than deep sleep Restful alertness. The cornerstone of the whole idea of yogic relevance. Allowal of a deep invigorating rest is a preparation for dynamic activity â€“ is good in itself.
Thoughts (and whatnot) come an’ go.
Two processes surface as mind and body relax: the pure creative process itself opens up and a release of latent physical and mental debris occurs, activity flares. When bound residues of activity are released this release causes further activity, tangling pure creative thought. The process of meditation defuses both flows. The Cycle proceeds: rest/activity.
The use of a mantra, on the level of thinking is to start up a recursive ‘algorythmic’ process; thoughts fade away and as also occasionally the mantra is forgotten what remains (on empirical grounds) is a restful state of stillness, calm, serenity, full of bliss. The use of a mantra in the process of meditation fragments the inherent active cause (whatever that may
be) that motivates the thinking process as such. The meditative process is self-referential across the whole vista of conscious experience as represented by the span-range of the meditative process and the systemic bliss, thus it has a recursive nature that is channelled into algorythmies by the yogic process. No Assigned Content.
A mantra is not supposed to have any meaning or be the name of anything. It must be possible to forget a mantra while using it in the meditative process: therefore it is used in a natural manner, no effort is applied. The mantra is kept private, so that meaning and connotations do not to accrue to it and thus condition it (giving rise and drive to new trains of thought), unabling us in this to occasionally forget it. Thus it is used in a natural way, without effort,
effortlessly, more as ‘a letting go of ’ than ‘the picking up of something’; there’s not to be any monotonous or tiring repetition. For a mantra not to become conditioned by meanings (and in this thus become a vessel of contemplation within the process of meditation) it should be obtained by personal instruction, preferably from a trusted source. In a way any word would do as everything we think loses its connotations after a while if it is not incorporated in some semantic syntax. I’d say it be easier not to pick some word that might have an for us unwanted resonance of inherent meaning, and as on would be wont to use that impulse of a word/sound over time something unique from a trusted source would be preferable. Though Maharishi Mahesh Yogi himself in his very first public lecture said that any word will do – then he says the word
‘mike’ and knocks on the microphone52. As we think in terms of word and phrase a shorter word would be preferable in the beginning stages, as the mind then is full of expectation and very prone to go into analytic mode, later it’d be wise to lengthen the impulse as, as said, the natural rhythm of thinking comprises words, a phrase or two and maybe a feeling to go along, some qualia and whatever, but basically an impulse to distract the thinking process from its momentum (it is not possible to shut it off, ‘cept by trickin’ it) ought not be some lengthy affair, verse and other stuff grow out of multiple mental patterns and thus ‘meaning’ appears in the minds arena. Thus a mantra is not supposed to become a part of language per se as in a semantic and syntactical sense. To use a word in action is to name something, a thing, a process, an abstraction, anything that happens. The spoken word
aligns itself with whatever narrative surge that comes along and becomes a part of that, thus when it is connected with on the level of thinking it will have accrued a mountain of reference, this is just the opposite of what is necessary for a process of algorythmy to connect with the still centre of no intent. A mantra is, almost, a silent word. Yes, one does repeat a mantra, but, thereâ€™s an algorythmy of method to that to consider ... and that is what this little book is really about.
The Enlightenment To conclude now would, in a way, be to draw a transversal of objectivity across the subjective structures embedded in the psycho-physiology of us humane biota. Well, this
may be impossible of course (well almost, see appendix). And what more, in terms of yogic practice (conducting the recursive algorythmy of subject/object introspectivity) what one is doing in the applying of yoga is seemingly not possible to pinpoint exactly, as it is being explained, except by allusion and metaphor it is only possible to but subjectively, so to say, be able to put ones finger on the subjective. In the sense of cognitivity and comprehension this is what happens when the effortless effort to so do is finally distracted (even the algorythmy gone), and one is not ‘doing’ that anymore, that’s the paradox. It is there, the tranquil, the serene, the supreme, redundant with intensities, bright an’ clear, yet it ever slips away to the direct glance. So one but remains as if held in an arcadié, in an all embracing unity, a wide and open closure, of dynamic bio-psychological trust.
Into The Deep
Before we knew the starry skies, Before we knew what was above the clouds, Heaven and Earth were far apart.
Heaven and Earth
Heaven and Earth Before we knew the starry skies, Before we knew what was above the clouds Heaven and Earth were far apart. Now each footstep on this my beloved ground Reveals a path that was there all along, From where we came to where we go, From a billion years ago.
The only way I know is step by step, The only way to go is outwards bound, Yet stand still a while and catch the roll and flow of time, Yeah take your time, consider all the choice you have, Stand still a while, there’ll always be another road to take. He said, “It never was so easy, it never was so slow.” Dear friend of mine, it’s quite natural – the way to go.
I will go, I will be, I will climb those steps From the deepest gravity, Soar and roar up to almost utmost blessed infinity, Into weightless states and dreams reminding me of consistency. Iâ€™ll climb far above to the heaven weâ€™ve joined with earth so rationally, All the way from where we came to where we go. Ah my love, from a billion years ago.
‛ Cottonpoppies ’, (55,5 x 46 cm), Oil painting by: Diana Janavičienė.
The Phonon and the Phoneme Algorythmy. Yes. I would like now to quote (next page, p. 80, highlights by me) from the work of Professor Jonathan Edwards on a correlation of consciousness with the properties of Single Cells, particularly the Neuronal cells of the brain (of which there are approximately one hundred billion, 10¹¹)53. Edwards debunks certain ‘views’ on the nature of consciousness and offers a relevance to another one, an insight that allows for a grasp of the functionalities of these minute entities of the brain, the nerve cells, in terms of and in relation to our understanding of consciousness as such. The conclusion being that: Each and every single neuronal cell is conscious in its own right.
Real Neurons. â€œPerhaps the most baffling unanswered question in science is how the physical working of the brain gives rise to conscious awareness. There are several reasons for this question being difficult, but the most important may be that we are looking for the wrong sort of answer. Almost everyone assumes that we are trying to explain one copy
81 of awareness in each person’s brain, one observer, one subject; one consciousness. However, as William James pointed out in 1890, having one copy of awareness in a brain makes very little sense, whether in terms of logic, physics or neurology. It would make much more sense if there were lots of copies and lots of subjects, even if it seems odd. There is also a basic biological reason for there being many subjects in a brain; a brain is not a single life unit but a colony of cellular life units which are not joined together by any mysterious ‘life force’. The hypothesis of Single Cell Consciousness (also known as the Single Neuron Theory of Consciousness) arose from the simple strategy of trying to find an explanation for awareness that fits with what we know about the physics of the brain. There appears to be only one option that works; that each brain cell is aware separately. Although this may seem to conflict with our experience it almost certainly does not.”
82 … “The hypothesis seems to make two requirements of a wave that might endow the neuronal membrane as a whole with sentience linked to behaviour. Firstly, a wave with access to information about the state at all synapses would need its wavefront (or domain of non-trivial amplitude) to occupy the whole neuronal dendritic tree. This would seem to require a reverberating wave with time to make several passes – like the resonation of the bell. In Vitiello’s (2001) terms it would be a long range correlation. Secondly, to be describable as a quantised field it probably needs to be energy conserving, at least to a first approximation.” 55
• Then I happened onto a site dedicated to the study of phonemes, the minutest coherent quanta of words, the
sounds of the letters as such, a study which leads on to an idea of archetypally associated inherent meanings to these minutiae, the phonemes. This site is the work of linguist Margaret Magnus (who has written a Dictionary of English Sound). â€œIndividual phonemes and phonetic features are meaningbearing. They each have a unique semantics which can be identified by first measuring the semantic disproportions within phonologically defined classes of words and then the converse âˆ’ measuring the phonological disproportions within semantic classes. One finds in this way that every word which contains a given phoneme bears an element of meaning which is absent in words not containing this phoneme. One finds further than the effect of the phoneme-meaning varies with the position that the phoneme bears within the syllable. In addition, one finds
84 that all phonemes which have a common phonetic feature also have a common element of meaning.”
In the deeper study of the details of Ms. Magnus research she offers this interesting insight: “In truth, I believe data of this type to be incredibly important. What it says essentially is that the consonants and vowels do in fact have a meaning. The most fundamental aspect of that meaning is pure sound without any interpretation or symbolism. That pure sound is meaningful (and how!). But one step above that most fundamental and pure sound-meaning is the archetypal meaning. Since the consonants and vowels form the foundation of the word − not only of its sound, but also of its meaning, then we literally talk in terms of archetypes. Every word is a sound − a shruti note − on which are superimposed a collection of gods whose interaction forms
85 the basis of the word. It is really like that. It is poetic, but it is also cold, sober fact. What is added on top of that the semantic class and the referent is secondary to sound and archetype.”
• And then I happened onto a masterful treatsie on the nature of human thought by Steven Pinker (see note 22). In this work I found that our thoughts reflect the basal forces of events, states, goals, causes and extents (see p. 26, “Three Metaphors”) to the analogy of sensory experience to a shared conceptual skeleton of causality, and I get the impression that the physical forces that we encounter in life on account of our being a part of the world and not separated from it, thus I speculate that the attributes of our physiology (and it’s interface, the
morphology of the macroscopic outer body sheath or the minute cell wall/membrane) are reflected and molded upon the ways we think and interpolatedly act. I think that in liéu of the foregoing discussions above that it’d not be too far-fetched to imply that the phenomenon of sound has essential consciousness as one of it’s emergent properties, the propertiy of sound that is, as long as it is bound in the physical structure and is would be live, so to say, but in extenso in it’s expressions in the spoken or written word it would be virtual to different degrees.
The Hariolator y And now but for fun, a bit ‘a hariolatory (some somewhat informed speculative pondering and it’s fun). • Is there a relationship of the phonon and the phoneme? Is there a dynamic to the phonon that is mirrored by the phoneme? Are the lilts, movements and reactions of single cells, by whatever stimulus caused, translated into cascades of phonic waves that in patterns of spreading multiple drafts of interaction through neural networks, accented by reverberating recursions of further stimuli patterned on the single cells response to the first input, are these minute movements, the flexings of the cell, a conscious song? Is it all just plain Rock ‘n Roll? Is Life – a Singin’, Swingin’ Momentum?
The embedded structure of “The Tree of Life” within the Single Cell.
In the Single Cell Theory the membrane of a cell is viewed as the carrier of an elastic wave, capable of accessing ‘rich’ information. In terms of Edwards’s single cell theory, it has SAMEDI, Simultaneous (cotemporal) Access to Many Elements (of information) in Defined Inter-relationships, i.e. it has access to a pattern.58 These patterns, as they propagate, might, give rise to further multiple drafts of actuation, to be received as new patterns and cognized by the single cell in the networks of neural nets reciprocally surrounding differentiated single cell nodes? Would the cells internal update dynamic thus define a temporal shift in the multiple overlays of different reverberating patterns (some of which be recursive, and thus algorythmic) to be cognized as a whole, a moving dynamic? The ring of a bell? If it be broken in one place that’ll be expressed by the whole wave. We have a wholity
of structured self-referring temporality, i.e. life goes on. (Might the stilled out wave reciprocally be void of both subjectivity and objectivity yet be there, aware? Awareness made of basal bliss?. What do I know?) Multiple Drafts, Neural Nets, Narrative Subjectivity Nodes – causal interaction? Is it that consciousness is not but that the illusion of consciousness is? Though that is not? Is illusion also qualia in itself ? Is bliss a qualia? Or does it have a physiological correlate? How to understand the physiological reverberations of a ‘silent word’? It’s phononic cascade? •
‛ Tulips ’, (32,5 x 41 cm), Oil painting by: Diana Janavičienė.
A Yogic Stance on Ethics and Morals Science of Morality, Anyone? (This was the title to a discussion topic, started by Coberst at The Brights Forum over a few days in November 2008 and that sparked the following, more informal, reflections of mine on morals and ethics as seen through the lens of the yogic paradigm of rest and activity. The text below is based on four post I made at the forum and I have included a few comments from another participant as they arose.)
Thereâ€™s another way of looking at the â€˜expressivenessâ€™ of the polarized interactivities we engender and display in life and living. I come from the field of yoga and this philosophical stance bases itself on the empirical experience of the recurrence of subjective yet similar
states over a range of subjects. What I mean is that in yoga I regularly, for a li’l moment of my precious time, attain a moment of quietude, which in ‘subjective’ terms may be described as: that abstract psycho physiological state of inner contentment of no ideational content. From the refreshing influence of a daily dose, or two, of that, or in the dentists waiting room, or whenever I need calm and have yet just a little extra time available, from that influence I gladly go my ways, meet people, do my thing, my job, my art, and a satisfaction in everything seems to grow as well as a non-acceptance of the suffering of others - See the need, Do the deed! Now in yoga the thinking on ethics and morals is construed in terms of the supportive effect specific behaviours have on the actual performance of the yogic algorythmy of recursivity, in an easy and effortless
manner of course − well it’s about going for an allencompassing view of life by the recognition of the universality of the yogic paradigm of rest and activity. It’s a pendulum thing − demanding action needs a swing back into effective rest, − yoga offers total subjective rest, that is, sans loss of cognizance, a biological and psychological suspension of all intent, of any ideational type, to the cognitory bran of brain we’ve been endowed with. See. The first category of the eight aspects of yoga Yama has been translated and understood in many different ways, one of the best, in my opinion, is Shearers ‘The Laws of Life’ which I have shortened down to ‘Ethics’, plain and simple, the ethics that pertains to the actual practice of yoga, the ethics that pertains to the psycho physiological dynamic structure of life, hangin’
in the balance, the mind/body collaborative. In this, the Ethics of Yoga, we find the subcategories of: Nonviolence, Truthfulness, Integrity, Collectedness & Nonattachment, five rough categories that could as well be applied to ideology âˆ’ but in yoga it is not so. In yoga I do not hurt myself, I stay true to myself, I uphold the means to be able to perform my practicer by my integrity towards it, I collect myself a bit (all that runninâ€™ around is exhausting) as I go into the deeper states (I do not gorge myself before my practice) and in the actual process of the practice I gradually let go of the different impulses to hold onto stuff and thus even the intentional stance goes into suspended animation, and Iâ€™m in a tranquil state of contentment. This platform of wellbeing and and of subsequent inspirational upwelling, as happens when I confront the outer with a clear mind
(not clogged up by the latest memetic jumble), is a good indicator to tell me if my deeds create good or bad effects − if my conscience is clear my yoga is smoother, if not I do more yoga and my conscience clears enough for me to grasp my mistakes and get a clear lead on how to go abouts with the acute dilemma. so that’s Etics in yoga. From here the good stuff can build. We can cast our glance at Morals in the same way. Niyama. Following Shearer again we have, ‘The rules for Living’, which I short down to ‘Morals’, this aspect of yoga also has its subcategories. From this angle, the yogic angle, they are: Simplicity, Contentment, Purification, Refinement and that Sense of Wonder. Well I don’’t need much to do my yoga (in the lotus position, beware the knees, I have built in pillows), It usually feels good to be able to take a bit ‘a time out for yoga, and it’s nicer
when one is clean (take your shower before the yoga – it’s about rest not about gettin a work-out), Ah, and the refinement, well, when I’m drunk I can’t manage da balance, so I do not drink before the yoga, whatever I do afterwards is my business as long as I do not hurt anybody and stay out of the life of crime, as goes for the more mundane ‘enhancements’ to life and living I might possibly notice that if I’m moderate in my consumptions it does not interfere with da yoga (so it carries over into life), and that Sense of Wonder, well (well try Carl Barks − I regard his works as an ultimate work to study the ethical and moral behaviours of humans, though they amazingly look like ducks). Well. Sense of Wonder. I translate this pranidhanani as Sense of wonder, though it’s been translated with everything from ‘meditation of god’ to ‘surrender to the lord’ - with my naturalistic
leanings Sense of Wonder does well for me (see the starry skies, take a walk at night under milk wood). So this is the yogic take on the ideas of Etics and Morals. What one does with the seeds that yoga sows is of course up to oneself, as there are no dos an’ don’ts in yoga (a bit ‘a high life dont hurt me), but the influence of the experiential part of yoga, the immaculate rest (as if the universe would sigh; as the microwave background radiation is supposed to sound like as its signal is made audible59), this supreme rest is invigorating indeed. • “While that all may be very interesting, it is not science.” /WZB • Yah! Of course.
But yet, interesting or not, scientific or
not, the yogic principle applied may be empirically tested
for its results, over a span of subjects. With the yoga, there is the access to a recurring experience of a subjective state, of a strangely similar character over time, and in the empiricism thereof one may see a pattern of lifesupportive dynamics. I find that these dynamics as such, the aspects of yoga, find their relevant places in an overall schemata, da tree, from which it is possible to derive an alogrithm of recursive algorythmy that makes the ultimate cognitory suspending in time of a â€˜no actâ€™ moment relevant, and in that to describe a systematicity. From this platform a construal of values, or rather but suggestions and recommendations, to go by the yogic spirit of noninfringement of others, may be attempted âˆ’ if ones conscience is clear, I hold, better decisions are made. So, a methodicity is discerned to yoga, and as the mechanism of that is revealed, as algorythmy implies recursivity, one
may hold that the seeds of the subcategories in yoga must find their equivalents in whatever ideological stances we as humans create amongst ourselves, the different Ethics and Moralities of the world. The introspection (which is a spin-off within the yogic process, the moments of contemplative reach into causes and deeds, acts and consequences) in yoga, and yoga in itself as a wholity, is ultimately for activity, for sensible effort, and for a balance of emotion and intellect, all good things, I think. Now the root of the tree of yoga may, in an hariolatory fashion, be conjecturally grounded in the forces that uphold the life of a living sentience, a single cell say. What may be the parameters that make life possible for the cell (so itâ€™ll be able to stretch itâ€™s membrane in a contented manner, so to speak)? (And as the cell is nudged or
nudges itself [becaus â€˜a the brownian thingy] its phononic resonance differentials may be the seeds of our phonemes of language that in the end make up thoughts and thinking and languages and metaphors and understandings, and sing the glories of the trees of all life in the galaxy pointing their crowns at us, as we walk under milk wood.) Thereâ€™s a science to yoga and an understanding of the recursive principle of yoga may well aid science as such in making the mechanisms of phononic intuition more graspable in general. As one is in deep quietude nothing is supposed to happen. At times nothing must happen for a long time before one notices that nothing is happening, and then of course nothing is not happening anymore. So it goes, round anâ€™ round, through ever deepening mento-physio-logical strata. This is the kind of dynamic the mind experiences
all by itself, at rest, at the borderline of it’s cognitory reach − and an extending of this state is what yoga suggests, as a, maybe, sensible contrast to all the hustles an’ bustles of life. An algorythmic dipping is what it is. (Sorry, I better lay down this virtuaquill right now, starting now, stopping now.) One could dig in into the nuts and bolts of the framework of morality. But I will not get into that angle but will rather give my response, from mine own perspective, on the divergent stances on this issue of the yogic stance and its contribution to the study of the parameters of Ethics and Morals. • … “The self induced euphoric state created by yoga has absolutely nothing to do with morality or science.”
… “People in euphoric states are more peaceful and less likely to commit violent acts, but that does not mean that they are more moral. Plus, the cultural side effect of euphoric states is introversion and less action and eventually they lose out to cultures that are extroverted; more intense and active. They may not be killed, but they are sidelined, minimalized.” /WZB • I must contend the view above. Yes.
So. No. The result
of yoga is not a “self induced euphoric state”. The result of yoga is fulfilment in action. To dwell on the (even though they be beneficial) side effects of yoga is to miss the point. And why? Yoga is not about the creating of phantastic states of either emotive or cognitive characteristics. Yoga is about setting up the means for en effective momentary
time-out for the whole system of both biological cresting drive and cognitory dynamic. It is not about associating an inner experience of momentary quietude with an emotional or conceptual character of any kind (although a good feeling seems to reverberate through the systemic structure). No. As the quietude deepens (in yogic process), and the foreground/background reversal occurs to cognizance (that figure/ground shift cognition is prone to), in the balancing of this transversal I find that yoga is about naturalness, about the natural nature of the deep restfulness that yoga provides, of the natural happening of that non-happening that happens as if by itself (when all prerequisites have been tended to âˆ’ it is, for example, not conducive to the process of yoga to perform the practice on a moving platform, just as it is not easy to sleep on the back of a horse60 [unless the
horse stands still âˆ’ and the allusion to sleep is not really correct]), if the platform shakes, rickety-rick, rickety-trick, this will disturb and activate the intentional stance, yes, the deep rest in yoga comes about by itself, as the means for its establishment are provided, as if it were a natural propensity of the system as such to attune itself to such a state (of suspended animation, almost), a state of balance between otward and inwards momentums, a quiescening, a quietening of all emotional and cognitive drives. The process of yoga suggests a framework to guide the whole system to this ultimate pole on the existential spree, the natural stance of algorythmy, the opposite one to dynamic and forceful activity (yet the active stance is quite a natural stance too, see below). Ya. Yoga is for activity. Without activity thereâ€™s no sense to yoga. Yoga is for ultimate activity. A yogi should
be in the midst of the fray, to lead and assist, and then there’s a time to rest and recuperate, and if this too, this resting, is done effectively strength is built. There are two steps to yoga, rest and activity. That’s the paradigm. It is by the performing of activity that the system is strengthened. To excessively dwell within the subjective sphere is quite rightly dulling − to rest and to act, that’s the process, that is yoga. Now. The yogic paradigm is not quite grasped by the multitudes (as your response indicates to me), or even by famous yogis (as occurs with the preponderance of restrictive handed down dogma). A caricature of yoga is often created where difficult processee and silly images of upside down people are held forth as to the fabulousness of yoga. Yes, yoga is often pictured as a hopelessly introverted contorted navel gazing wherein the outer
world has ceased to be of interest. Well that is all nonsense. It is held that one of the great tragedies of India is due to the leaching off of intelligent people from society by misunderstandings of the yogic paradigm.61 People have taken to the woods instead of standing upright and tall and ambitious and up to the existential challenge to ride the creative trail. The lure of theistic projections creeps into the philosophy and causes some folks to give up all sense and reason for a construed ideal of isolation (as in standing by a window snappinâ€™ fresh air as the rest of the party enjoys the moment âˆ’ and no allergies or such for the excuse, just plain overdone fanatic purification noja, yeah, with dissaproving glances from curtainways, silly). No, the categories of yoga point to the essential balanced state of the whole living organism, which is a good âˆ’ and should some of the implications of this vitalization carry
over into daily life, the better. As that which is good for ourselves, in the yogic sense, is a universal, and is thus good for all. It is good to take some care of the system, we do all brush our teeth, whether with twigs or with nylon brush. Yoga does not infringe on the liberties of others but sets a platform for sense and reason in our interaction with the world, and yoga is also a support to skill and intelligence, and a continuity of alteration of deep rest and activity brings force and drive. If I take care of myself according to some universal principle that brings life supportive qualities into my life, and if, by the systemwise extension of my balanced apprehension of those, some of them might carry over into the lives of others - a synergistic â€˜goodâ€™ dynamic is set up. So yoga is definitely about ethics and morals as well as of body and breathing, and is of withdrawal (of the
senses) and of a slight effortless focusing of intent to lead into the meditative phase (as process) and thus establish an awarity of the natural contented state of the system at rest. Then itâ€™s time for activity. As one has arrived at this state, of potential (the state of quietude), this state is as an arrow pulled back and readied to shoot from the bow, or from the hip, (a yogi, just as Lucky Luke [French comic book cowboy], needs roll his cigarettes with but one hand and draws his gun faster than his own shadow), a quality just as important as the lotus position - skill in action - uh, Iâ€™m not advocating smoking here, as we nowadays know what that leads to, but if one should happen to be a smoker thereâ€™s no prerequisite that one should give up smoking for to do the yoga, so, I take my coffe after the yoga, not immediately before), yes, as one arrives at rest it is time for the next step of yoga, to get into the dynamics
of activity, as has been said, â€œGo out and lose it, then come back!â€?62. I do think this topic is the right place to insert the view of recursive algorythmy into the attempt to understand morality and ethics. Yoga provides the seed for good living and a good life and what would that be sans others. These seeds can be understood in a systematic way and may also be dirctly applied by any individual in their daily ongoings for to strengthen all natural synergies that emerge from our widespread ambitions and acts. Yoga makes us sensitive to the consequenses of our acts and offers the deeper platform of systemic rest (which improves introspective insight) upon which to build spontaneous systemic rejuvenation and for to attain access to a cornucopia of inspirational thought âˆ’ again a side effect of the yogic stance, while resting the expression of
memories simmers about in the cogital field and as one comes at these impulses, again and again (in the midst of that momentary time-out), from the deeps and depths of quietude solutions appear. Here is the reality of, “A rightly stated question, contains it’s own answer!”. In any attempts to create a coherent understanding of the outwards effects of our societal drives there are many specifics to identify. To list every biological drive one first has to be aware of them all. How to discover ‘em all? What I’m attempting to show is that morality is not but a cerebral concept but is directly dependent on the state of our health, psychological and physiological, and thus my work is but my humble attempt to clarify and show that the parameters of yoga have a direct relevance on our understanding of the abstract field of which Ethics and Morals partake.
• … “think about what will happen when a warrior meets a yogi that opposes him. Do not fantasize that the yogi will survive the encounter.” /WZB • Yoga is not by itself a cause to any introverted lifestyle. Yoga is not a profession. A yogi might as well be a warrior as be a representative of any other aspect of human behaviour. Then we’d have one warrior of certain skill meeting a yogic warrior who would draw on the continual yogic infusion of rest that has helped build a platform of skill in action, so the yogi would fight. As said, the other step op the yogic paradigm is activity. Activity is necessary to build the strength to keep ignorance at bay. If skill is put into the building of a well focused, balanced and dynamic
state and if this platform has been established beforhand then all the yogi need to do is to release the metaphoric arrow of the yogic stance into the world of action. Skill comes naturally for the yogi. If one applies oneself, then, in whatever one does, there will be skill. â€˘
116 In the text above I have edited away the trivia of the original posts from The Brights Forum, and the quoted questions by WildZBill (yoga teacher himself), a participant of the forum who goes by that handle, are abouts where they appeared in flow of the discussion. The four, slightly edited, posts here were written for to emphasize the non-projective stance in the streaming flow of the yogic application of ethical and moral precepts âˆ’ these do not create ideology, their aim is the yogic process as such. I wrote the pieces over a few days in November 2008 and they are accessible in their original context at The Brights Forum via the links here below (overleaf). So. Thank you WZB for goading me onwards with your critiques as I built up my conceptualizations of these quite, in a way, subtle matters.
‛ Little Sky ’, (40 x 40 cm), Oil painting by: Diana Janavičienė.
119 Pages 4 November 2008, post 149562, http://www.the-brights.net/forums/, 4 November 2008, post 149578, 5 November 2008, post 149631, 6 November 2008, post 149687.
I have not yet engaged in referencing the quotes and statements I drag forth in this section above on ethics and morals (and in which I adopt the yogic stance) but much of this is covered by the footnotes to the main part of this document. I’ll have this section properly referenced too, by an’ by. This document is available on the Internet from the address right below here, and in that document I will endeavour to update the textualities in whatever way I deem necessary as my thinkings on these things hopefully develop further, keepin’ at it: The Paradigm of Yoga - A Thesis, (pdf),
which along with a Powerpoint slide show of ca 30 min on all, all, the above, The Nature of Yoga – A Tree of Life, (pps),
these two documents reside amongst all of the other diverse stuffs on my blogs:
120 Albatross Sandrian Wanders and Wonders. http://sandrian.livejournal.com/
(On this blog, at ‘LiveJournal’, I go under the nomé Sandrian rather than Albatross, as I mostly do on the Internet.) This is the first blog I ever started and thus here I have my earlier work represented, like poetry an’ stuff. Another Albatross Goes Arundo, http://another-albatross.spaces.live.com/
This is my blog at ‘Spaces’. Here you will find the two documents mentioned above: “The Paradigm of Yoga” and “The Nature of Yoga”. As Spaces also offers large amounts of digital storage I keep quite some whatever-stuff along with the more serious things, e.g. an art exhibition by Lithuanian Poet/Painter Diana Janavičiené. An Another Albatross Arrives. http://www.myspace.com/ananotheralbatross
Here, at my MySpace site, abides a bit ‘a my ‘bright’ music (there’s a mix of some ‘a mine songs there for immediate play). I do folk music mainly, singer/songwriter stuff, but in my lyrics I do, da do, perchance display a leaning towards a naturalistic world view. Have a listen. The Algorythmies of An Another Albatross. http://another-albatross.blogspot.com/
The appendix herein, “The Phonon and the Phoneme” I first published at ‘Blogger’, and on my blog there I’m wont to keep my naturalistic ponderings, hariolatory abstrusnessee, and other stuffs that are of relevance to the naturalistic world-view.
121 My Yoga Journal Blog. http://community.yogajournal.com/service/displayKickPlac e.kickAction?u=4693281&as=25925
At Yoga Journal I write a blog-post on yoga now anâ€™ then. http://issu.com/albatross/docs/paradigm-of-yoga
Hrih. A forum on yoga geared towards the work of Patanjali. http://issu.com/albatross/docs/paradigm-of-yoga
This book may be viewed on-line at Issuu.com: http://issu.com/albatross/docs/paradigm-of-yoga
123 Notes 1.
Dr. Sarvepelli Radhakrishnan, philosopher/politician, second president of India “The Brahma Sutra - The Philosophy of Spiritual Life”, 1960, Georg Allen & Unwin Ltd., second impr. 1971, p. 8.5. 2.
Edward O. Wilson, “Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge”, Knopf, 1998, pp. 58-59, hardcoverat all. 3.
Paradigm: (păr’ə-dîm’, -dĭm’)
[Middle English, example, from Late Latin paradîgma, from Greek paradeigma, from paradeiknunai, to compare : para-, alongside; para + deiknunai, to show.] n. • One that serves as a pattern or model. • A set or list of all the inflectional forms of a word or of one of its grammatical categories: the paradigm of an irregular verb. • A set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that constitutes a way of viewing reality for the community that shares them, especially in an intellectual discipline. Since the 1960s, paradigm has been used in science to refer to a theoretical framework, as when Nobel Laureate David Baltimore cited the work of two colleagues that “really established a new paradigm for our understanding of the causation of cancer.” Philosopher of science Thomas Kuhn gave this word its contemporary meaning,
124 in 1972, when he adopted it to refer to the set of practices that define a scientific discipline during a particular period of time. Kuhn himself came to prefer the terms exemplar and normal science, which have more exact philosophical meanings. However, in his book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions Kuhn defines a scientific paradigm as: • what is to be observed and scrutinized, • the kind of questions that are supposed to be asked and probed for answers in relation to this subject, • how these questions are to be structured, • how the results of scientific investigations should be interpreted. Alternatively, the Oxford English Dictionary defines paradigm as “a pattern or model, an exemplar.” Thus an additional component of Kuhn’s definition of paradigm is: • how is an experiment to be conducted, and what equipment is available to conduct the experiment. Thus, within normal science, the paradigm is the set of exemplary experiments that are likely to be copied or emulated. The prevailing paradigm often represents a more specific way of viewing reality, or limitations on acceptable programs for future research, than the much more general scientific method. http://www.answers.com/topic/paradigm 4.
The Bhagavad-Gita, 6:19. “A lamp which does not flicker in a windless place – to such is compared the yogi of subdued thought practising Union with the Self.” Maharishi Mahesh Yogi; 1967,
125 “On the Bhagavad-Gita 1-6”, p. 421.
A New Translation and Commentary, Chapters
Since the first seminal paper in 1970 by Robert Keith Wallace, PhD, on the physiological correlates on The Transcendental Meditation Program, a veritable cornucopia of scientific research has accrued around this yogic method. This research is quite voluminous, and as that method defines one of the aspects of yoga quite comprehensively, the meditative angle, I may as well reference a set of volumes of collected papers of studies on the biological and psychological effects on the individual engendered by that method. See: “Scientific Research on the Transcendental Meditation Program, Collected Papers, Volumes 16”, edited by David W. Orme-Johnson and John T Farrow, Volume 1, 1977. Maharishi European Research University Press, # G1181; ISBN 3-88333-001-9. This volume collects 104 studies and all the volumes together presents abouts a full 600 studies. 6.
The Yoga Sūtra is an ancient text (sūtra/thread – binds the context) from abouts 200BC – 100AD: this text consists of 196 short (195, depending on how they are counted) mnemonic, memorizable verses; this is the basic text of yoga, it delineates philosophy and mechanism, and sets the expression of yoga firmly in 4 short chapters. Contentwise the Yoga-Sūtra may be traced back to Vedic culture (2500–1700 BC). Patanjali, author of the Yoga-sūtra, offered the ideas of yoga a surprisingly stable format as early as 200 BC – 100 AD. 7.
Not much is known of Maharishi Patanjali who is historically placed somewhere in the span of years from 300 B.C. to around 200
126 A.D. Tradition favours the earlier date but modern inquiry based on linguistic study of the Yoga-Sûtra, as discussed by e.g. Georg Feuerstein, places Patanjali closer to the later date (“The Yoga-Sûtra of Patanjali: A new translation and commentary”, 1979, p, 3). We know little of Patanjali, yet his study of yoga has propagated, he must have had students. For to undertake the task of defining Yoga he must at least, in our minds, have been merited, must have been endowed with great insight and scholarly status, and must surely have had the reputation of being an influential teacher of his time. A few other Patanjali’s are known to history: the grammarian Patanjali, who is also the author of different medical texts, and we find reference to a Patanjali in southern India, but really, almost nothing is known of Maharishi Patanjali. His ageless work, the Yoga-Sûtra, upholds a concise vision of Yoga, the Daršana of Yoga; its expression is the philosophy of Yoga. The first mention of Patanjali as author of the Yoga-Sûtra we find in Vâscapati Misras commentary of this text in the 9th century A.D. (Feuerstein, 2003, patanjali.htm – from www.yrec.org). 8.
Yoga Sūtra, 1:1, Patanjali, 200BC – 100AD. If one takes a look at how the definition of Yoga is treated in translation and interpretation we find that the idea about and the definition of a stilling of the many activities of the mind is treated somewhat differently (to so say) by the many different interpreters. The definition of Yoga, in translations from the Sanskrit, thus carries perspectives formed of two opposite criteria: allowing and restrictive.
127 Allowing interpretations: 1978 – 2003 Alistair Shearer – 1981: Yoga is the settling of the mind into silence. P. Y. Deshpande – 1978: Yoga is that state of being in which the ideational choicemaking movement of the mind slows down and comes to a stop. Barbara Stoler Miller – 1996: Yoga is the cessation of the turnings of thought. B.K.S. Iyengar – 1996: Yoga is the cessation of movements in the consciousness. Chip Hartranft – 2003: Yoga is to still the patterning of consciousness. Restrictive interpretations: 1914 – 1982 James Haughton Woods – 1914: Yoga is the inhibition of the mental processes. Alice A. Bailey – 1927: This Union (or Yoga) is achieved through the subjugation of the psychic nature and the restraint of the chitta (or mind). I.K. Taimini – 1961: Yoga is the inhibition of the modifications of the mind. Swami Hariharânanda Aranya – 1963: Yoga is the suppression of the modifications of the mind.
128 Georg Feuerstein – 1979: Yoga is the restriction of the fluctuations of consciousness. Trevor Leggett – 1982: Yoga is inhibition of the mental processes. 9.
The Bhagavad-Gita, 2:48. “Established in Yoga, O winner of wealth, perform actions having abandoned attachment and having become balanced in success and failure, for balance of mind is called Yoga.” Maharishi Mahesh Yogi; 1967, BG. p. 135. 10.
Cycle of Rest and activity: A semantic cycle to describe the outwards and inwards flow of cognitory engagement. From rest to activity and then back. As the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi once said (La Antilla, 1971, personal lecture notes): “Go out and lose it, then come back.” The idea thereof being the fact that as the necessities of life drag us into ambitious undertakings we ought to compensate for the certain fatigue that will hit our system by recognizing the inward flow of cognition and all but allow it to do its refreshing work. In this a complication arises as the mind has a tendency to fade out from the fatigue it has gathered in activity, so a slight trick is necessitated to bring back and, in an effortless manner, stimulate the faint mental alertness required to have a conscious experience at all. 11.
I use the concept ‘Algorythmy’ to allude to the recursive factor of the inward leg of the cognitive journey from activity to rest, but as that ability of the mind essentially underlies activity itself, becomes it’s base, so to say, as life’s dynamic evolves, and as activity has many multiply-patterned algorithmic components to it I find it quite natural
129 to allude to that rationale as I describe the recursive character of the inward journey of the subjective cognitory node of awareness, the ‘I’, and as this is based on continuity of a regulated swing of awareness from one end of the abstractness spectrum of the phenomenologically perceived to the other (from inner abstraction to outer, via objectifying nodes, aka., nature construes unto consciousness a perception of ‘The World’,) 12.
Yoga Sūtra, 2:29. In the Sanskrit the eight aspects are referred to as: Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, Samadhi − Ethics, Morals, The Body, Breath, Withdrawal, Focusing, Meditation (as process) & (Dynamic) Bliss. If we take a look within some of the available translations of the Yoga-Sūtra we will find a great variety of interpretation, of gestalt, of the same original ideas. Now look at the different main words which describe the aspects of Yoga and compare the fall-out of difference in nuance across the spectrum of interpretation amongst them. (Observe the richness of variation. I have here highlighted yama and samadhi for easier perusal of the comparision.)
130 James Haughton Woods – 1914 (1) Abstentions, (2) Observances, (3) Postures, (4) Regulationsof-the-breath, (5) Withdrawal-of-the-senses, (6) Fixed-attention, (7) Contemplation & (8) Concentration. Alice A. Bailey – 1927 (1) Commandments, (2) Rules, (3) Posture, (4) Right Control of Life-force, (5) Abstraction, (6) Attention, (7) Meditation & (8) Contemplation. I.K. Taimni – 1961 (1) Self-Restraints, (2) Fixed Observances, (3) Posture, (4) Regulation of breath, (5) Abstraction, (6) Concentration, (7) Contemplation & (8) Trance. Swami Hariharânanda Aranya – 1963 (1) Restraint, (2) Observance, (3) Posture, (4) Regulation of breath, (5) Withholding of Senses, (6) Fixity, (7) Meditation & (8) Perfect Concentration. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi – 1967 (1) Observance, (2) Rules of Life, (3) Posture, (4) Breathing exercises, (5) Retirement of the Senses, (6) Steadiness of Mind, (7) Meditation & (8) The State of Transcendental Consciousness. Georg Feuerstein – 1979 (1) Restraint, (2) Observance, (3) Posture, (4) Breath-control, (5) Sense-withdraval, (6) Concentration, (7) Meditative absorption & (8) Enstasy.
131 Alistair Shearer – 1981 (1) The Laws of Life, (2) The Rules for Living, (3) Posture, (4) Breathing exercises, (5) Retirement of the Senses, (6) Focusing of Attention, (7) Meditation & (8) The Settled Mind. Trevor Leggett – 1982 (1) Restraints, (2) Observances, (3) Posture, (4) Restraint of Vital Currents, (5) Dissociation, (6) Concentration, (7) Meditation & (8) Samâdhi. Barbara Stoler Miller – 1996 (1) Moral Principles, (2) Observances, (3) Posture, (4) Breath control, (5) Withdrawal of the Senses, (6) Concentration, (7) Meditation & (8) Pure Contemplation. B.K.S. Iyengar – 1996 (1) Moral Injunctions, (2) Fixed Observances, (3) Posture, (4) Regulation of Breath, (5) Internalization of the Senses towards their source, (6) Concentration, (7) Meditation & (8) Absorption of Consciousness in the Self. Chip Hartranft – 2003 (1) External Discipline, (2) Internal Discipline, (3) Posture, (4) Breath Regulation, (5) Withdrawal of the Senses, (6) Concentration, (7) Meditative Absorption & (8) Integration. Attitude Behaviour
Juri Aidas – 2003 (1) Ethics, (2) Morals, (3) The Body, (4) Breath, (5) Withdrawal, (6) Focusinng, (7) Meditation (as Process) & (8) (Dynamic) Bliss. The Deep
Yama (also see note 35): This is what I call Ethics (yamas are observances); The Laws of Life. A single thing yet comprising several parameters, as the ring of a bell tells of its properties. My characterizations of the eight aspects of yoga are broad and general. Usually the two first categories, ethics and morals (as I conceptualize these) are looked upon as collections of rules and precepts for the living of a good life. In a way that is true yet all those performs really only pertain but to the yogic process as such and ought not be regarded as the only relevant ways of living life, they do not represent any ideology with which to imprint the outer world. The categories of yoga are rather ideal to pursue during the process of application of yogic method as such. Thus these things are taken into consideration as practice proceeds from more concrete platforms to subtler such. It’s a progression. One starts with preparations of practical matter, mindset and attitude, one continues via the limbering and balancing of body, the stabilizing of breathing. These are called the outer limbs of yoga. Then the period of engagement in yogic method, the actual doing of yoga, is taken into the subtler fields of inner life, the inner limbs of yoga: withdrawal, focusing, meditation and bliss (see footnotes 10, 11, 12 & 13). So as goes for ethics I have chosen this concept to embrace the whole idea of ‘The Laws of Life’ (as one translator would have it; Shearer 1981). Ethics I take to be the most basic consideration in our engagements with others and with ourselves − yes, with ourselves, and this is the angle yoga represents, the direct practical involvement of the individual in setting up the prerequisites for a good and fulfilling session of yoga, all the way from treating mindset and body and breath
133 etc., so as they tune up to be optimally conducive to the precious moments of time set aside for the continual, over time, practice of yoga. Patanjali defines Yama in terms of five sub-categories: Truthfulness, Non-attachment, Restraint, Integrity, Non-violence. Behaviour
Niyama (also see note 35): This is Morals, the basic ‘Rules for Living’, also comprising of several parameters, a spectrum of propensities to be recognised as conducive to sensibility and good living. The second great branch on ‘The Tree of Life’ is Niyama, what I designate Morals or ‘The Rules for Living’ (as Shearer, 1981, wold have it), so to say (but remember that all consideration here are made in terms of the application of the processes of Yoga). Together with the first, Ethics, I perceive these two branches, Ethics and Morals, as offering deep insight in the experientially understood functionings of a nervous-system (we have available a bit of historically early phenomenology but with the twist of recursivity often forgotten or uncommunicable because of dogma or secrecy, but to be fair to the yogic world there is a certain dilemma built into the teaching of yoga − how to teach about that which is not tangible but in the sense of the deep, clearly perceived rest it brings is quite real? see the section ‘The Algorythmy’, p. 11, for more on this), and also, in the final end, being
134 the platform of all human interaction, all cooperation, all mingling of interests and loyalties: these two together make the platform where we get to know ourselves and each other. To this end Patanjali defines five sub-categories of Niyama, fixed observances, sensible rules, Morals: Refinement, Contentment, Simplicity, Purification, Sense of Wonder. Out of the great embrace of these two lower branches a sense of wonder rises, shines, appears on the horizon of possibility, when collaborations suddenly work and entrusted obligations are kept. Without going any further a respectable life can be lived when these precepts are actualized in life. Isn’t this the central part of what the Dalai Lama constantly teaches? At least to the general audience? I do realize though that my defining Yama and Niyama as ‘Ethics’ and ‘Morals’ does make the sub-categories float a bit, certainly these sublists could be expanded and structured yet more, but do we not see a basic idea here, a sense that we must learn to sensibly trust others; we are urged to the cultivating of qualities of kindness, compassion, joy and as the fourth of these universals we must develop a sense of impartiality towards that which is wrong, so that affectations of our own do not overwhelm the discriminative faculties of sense, in the telling of wrong from right when the time for action is come. We must come to see that there’s something relevant in all the budding strivings of inner man, that there’s something we deem worthwhile to
135 perform for the good of all and sundry. To wish for an incahote world seems very strange to me and is seemingly the lure of a maelstrom of sensation and misdirected desire, the result is not acceptable, as states Maharishi Mahesh Yogi “Conflict is a result of intellectual bankruptcy.” Therefore the fourth of these universal categories of trust must be developed, enabling us to to what needs be done. We must want the world to evolve into something great. Upon the dual platform of Ethics and Morals it is possible to build a stable structure to maintain and uphold the balances demanded by circumstances, by the ever-changing, good and bad happenstances that may befall anyone fortunate enough to count as belonging to the sphere of living beings capable of reflection, of a deepened selfsense. 15.
Asana: Pertains to the body. Posture In the yogic sense the balance and sustain of dynamic posture. Asana is that which makes the body supple and strong, stable. The result of yoga-asanas, the exercises, thus provides a heightened possibility, a patform of stability whereupon the mind does not becomedistracted by the body. In the meditative phase of Yoga, in the performing of dhyâna, meditation, this balance and freedom from disturbances from the physical structure combined with strength built up along the spine, does thus enable stability to the back while one rests in the yogic posture, the asana, making for a free flow, prana, of breath – all the energies of the body become stabilized and those abilities are thus conducive to the continuation of the experience of deep inner bliss obtainable by the more abstruse aspects of this asthanga-yoga.
Prana-Yama: Breath, The Breathing. In practice the techniques and exercises designed to develop a smooth natural flow in the whole round of in-breath and out-breath and the respective pauses of suspension, an exploration of the dynamic of breath, of its peaks and and valleys and of the silent mechanisms of sustain in the absence of breath, as in between the in-breath and out-breath and vice-versa. 17.
Pratyâhâra: Withdrawal. Now here we meet the Tortoise. Pratyâhâra represents the idea of retracting the senses from external object (in meditation it is helpful to close the eyes, letting our attention rest somewhere behind the eyebrows). As a Tortoise withdraws its lims at occasion, head, extremities and tail, so does the mind withdraw from the objects of the senses as the yogic process proceeds. We can understand the sense of pratyâhâra in considering the sense of hearing. It does happen that one becomes so engrossed in reading that one does not hear when one is spoken to, well one does hear but it doesn’t really register, we somehow disregard the noises we hear and do not feel disturbed by them. In reading or some other focused activity this quality of absorption may come into play and help deepen our facility to concentrate. This is not to imply that the meditative state of pratyâhâra cuts off the critical faculties of our mind. If somebody yells ‘Fire!’ – we hear, we act, we run, save someone if we can. It’s just natural, as the mind, in performing Yoga, gains alertness though simultaneously being at rest: this is the meaning of restful alertness, its dynamic so to say, the creative impulse being always at hand in alertness, its not as if one is otherwhere, one is at home and ready to roar, one is really just engaging in a few moments of innerness,
137 hopefully gaining a fresh, discerning wiev on whatever. 18.
Dhâranâ: Focusing. When the senses have retracted from their objects, through the application of dhâranâ, the mind is free to dive into deep essential rest. Dhâranâ is the subtle gate that we can learn to regulate so as to enable us to perform yoga, helping us to maintain the process consistently over a longer period of time. Dhâranâ is often misleadingly called concentration and thus it easily gives rise to the idea of strenuous effort, hard work, arduous application, exhausting difficulty. It is not difficult or complicated to do Yoga. Yoga is based on natural processes, on what happens in the nervous system by natural order, so to say. It is unfortunate that this harsh attitude towards Yoga has sprung up with practitioners, dissuading others who have much to think about in life and who’d do well to develop, and tune the physical and mental structures. It is unfortunate that many good people have come to associate Yoga with excessive ascetism and denial and strife when it is rather the balance of opposites that is enhanced: the ability to interact is augmented by self-sense and sensible ideals. Revealed by Yoga we find a vision of fullness of utter relevance to life to set us on a path of ‘Dharma’, ‘Natural law’, in which Life becomes ultimately meaningful. This process of Dhâranâ, of the senses letting go, retraction, can be stimulated by a somewhat detached attitude to people and events in life, but which overdone can lead to alienation in the social interaction with others. We’re all, more or less, dependent on each other, this is the boundary of the essence of humanity, holding out is not an option – in the processes of Yoga dhâranâ comes about naturally. This should
138 become clear to our understanding as the next aspect of Yoga, dhyâna, comes up for consideration. 19.
Dhyâna: Meditation (as process). The systematic and gentle process of bringing the mind to a state of restful alertness by making use of the natural tendency of the mind to be drawn to that which is rewarding to it. The lure of the ultimate dynamic bliss of samâdhi deep within becomes unresistable to the diving mind as it engages in a process of transcendence by use of the simple yet rational techniques of dhyâna. The inner bliss of samâdhi (see below), is felt even from a distance (as we draw close to it we become aware of the presence of the ocean even before it is in wiev). In this the mind and the whole physical structure relaxes and allows for alertness and insight to rise and soar, to ascend in clarity (as a pool grows clearer when its waves subside). See the illustration on p. 7, “The Tree of Life” (or follow the link here for an Internet PowerPoint presentation in the folder ‘metaphor’ at, http://another-albatross/spaces.live/com), for the structure of the epistemology of a method of transcendence offered by the 7th limb of Patanjalis asthanga-yoga. This way of putting things, in general terms, represents what I have been teaching, all these years, as regards dhyâna, meditation. The vocabulary used is standard, though I have brought in a few new specifying terms and modernized others, adding some clarifications of my own. The key point in the schemata I present is the way the mind is channeled away from activity to rest in meditation. It is the slight distraction of a mantra, a word, used on the level of the thinking mind, as a slight thought, which becomes
139 vaguer as the process proceeds, it becomes a veichle for the sense of reality; this channels the mind in a direction of no activity at all, only rest. And this is the crucial point, this is the hinge. Here we find the root of paradox in the contrast of a mantra, creating a state of no activity and also simultaneously stimulating the mind into alertness. Used in the prescribed way (effortlessley, naturally, more in a sense of letting go instead of as in picking something up, yet the mantra is treated as just another thought among others) this distracts the impetus of intentionality carried by mental structures generated by the thinking process. A slight impulse of activity is also engendered by this slight distraction itself, this is what stimulates awareness from falling into dullness, and, as the process continues other thoughts fade away; and as there is no effort applied in using the mantra, and as no inherent meaning is attributed to it, it will fade too leaving the alert mind in a state of no activity whatsoever â€“ â€œNothing is supposed to happenâ€?. While resting, we rest. We do not do anything as the process of trancendence takes us in a deep dive to the centre of our inner being. But here the categories break up. The inner field becomes a singularity, parallelling our modern understanding of the singularity of the Big Bang of Creation. In the inner field, as well as in the outer the laws we have come to identify and integrate in our perspectives break down. As the laws of Time and Space become undefined, while, as when looking far into the outer Universe, we find that similarily the subjective rules of our inner being dissappear, the inner unboundedness we popularly conceive might just as well be regarded as an inner singularity - the objective mind, with its trappings of subjective Gordic magnitudes, dives into a field of no definition, dragging the body along to whatever
140 stillness is in its ability to uphold (therefore posture, asana, prepares the body for longer proximities to this ur-state of inner being). To assign the properties of diverse infinities to this state is tricky indeed, and as fact would have it there’s no empirical evidence for subjective states like this. Though subjectively we may treat this state as of infinite nature. See my internet page, Cosmology (http://hem.bredband.net/ columbia/timeline.htm), for an early graphic rendering of these ideas (the single cell stuff had yet to be integrated into the exposition). As silence and inner quietness deepen it becomes easier for the generated wakefulness to remain sustained and thus the process accellerates (and/or subjectively slows algorythmically) until a state of no activity at all of the mind is obtained, in concert with, in unity with a maximum of awareness at hand: a state of restful alerteness. The Deep
Samâdhi: (Dynamic) Bliss. In the Yoga-Sûtra Patanjali recognizes two kinds of samâdhi: with or without object, samprajnata samâdhi and nirbîja samâdhi. Samâdhi represents the direct subjective experience of an inner ‘ground state’, so to say (as perceived, nominally, from an existential and phenomenological middle ground,) and is in a nominal sense endowed with the self-same qualities of existence, intelligence and bliss (sat, chit, ananda) closely associated with the subjective concept of an Absolute. 21
Yoga Sutra, the categories (see notes 1118): Ethics, 2:30, the “Great Law of Life” − non-violence, truthfulness, integrity, collectedness; Morals, 2:32, the “Rules for Living” − simplicity, contentment, purification, refinement. Sense of wonder; Physical postures, 2:46; Breathing exercises, 2:49; Withdrawal, 2:54; Focusing,
141 3:1; Meditation (as process), 3:2; (Dynamic) Bliss, 3:3. 22.
Single Neuron Theory of Consciousness: Dr. Steven Sevush (http:/
/cogprints.org/4432/) and Jonathan C.W. Edwards (http://www.imprint.co.uk/ jcs_12_4-5.html#edwards).
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. From personal lecture notes, early 1970’s. 24.
Algorythmy: The outwards and inwards swell and ebb of activial tides. (See note 7.) 25.
It was Albert Einstein who first proposed and gradually developed (1905–17) the modern concept of the photon, a quanta of light, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photon#cite_note-Einstein1905-4. Einstein ‘imagined’ how it would be to be a photon as it travels. As the speed of light becomes a defining element the idea of time can be collapsed into the behaviour of this energetic quanta. The photon was originally called a “light quantum” (das Lichtquant) by Albert Einstein. The modern name “photon” derives from the Greek word for light, φῶς , (transliterated phôs), and was coined in 1926 by the physical chemist Gilbert N. Lewis, who published a speculative theory http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photon - cite_ note-Lewis1926-8#cite_note-Lewis1926-8 in which photons were “uncreatable and indestructible”. Although Lewis’ theory was never accepted being contradicted by many experiments his new name, photon, was adopted immediately by most physicists. Isaac Asimov credits Arthur Compton with defining quanta of light as photons in 1927. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photon,
Steven Pinker: Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology, Harvard University. 27.
Freely paraphrased from Steven Pinker’s, “The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature”, 2007, p. 261 (Penguin). 28.
Ibid., p. 267.
Ibid., p. 272.
Ibid., p. 276: “Though metaphors are omnipresent in language, many of them are effectively dead in the minds of todays speakers, and the living ones could never be learned, understood, or used as a reasoning tool unless they were built out of more abstract concepts that capture the similarities and differences between the symbol and the symbolized. For this reason, conceptual metaphors do not render truth and objectivity obsolete, nor do they reduce philosophical, legal, and political discourse to a beauty contest between rival frames. Still, I think that metaphor really is a key to explaining thought and language. The human mind comes equipped with an ability to penetrate the cladding of sensory appearance and discern the abstract construction underneath not always on demand, and not infallibly, but often enough and insightfully enough to shape the human condition. Our powers of analogy allow us to apply ancient neural structures to newfound subject matter, to discover hidden laws and systems in nature, and not least, to amplify the expressive power of language itself.”
Heuristic (hyʊ-rĭs’tĭc); The teaching on methods of finding new sientific insight. [From the Greek, heuriskein, to find.] Adj.: Of or relating to; an usually speculative formulation serving as a guide in the investigation or solution of a problem: “The historian discovers the past by the judicious use of such an heuristic device as the ‘ideal type’” (Karl J. Weintraub). Of or constituting; an educational method in which learning takes place through discoveries that result from investigations made by the student. Computer Science; relating to or using a problem-solving technique in which the most appropriate solution of several found by alternative methods is selected at successive stages of a program for use in the next step of the program. noun.: An heuristic method or process. Heuristics (used with a sing. verb): The study and application of heuristic methods and processes. 32. 33.
“The Tree of Life”, Metaphor by Juri Aidas, 2003.
Hariolation: I found the word hariolation squeezed in with, guesswork, speculation and probability in Roget’s International Thesaurus, 4-th ed., 1977, p. 412, under Class six, II, D 543 - that
144 is, following the chain, under: Intellect, States of Mind, Anticipation, Prediction, and finally under prediction as this is expanded upon under its heading 543, eureka - hariolation. So I guess it means speculative guesswork, I guess? Hariolator. I’d guess that’d be one who does the speculative guesswork? 34.
“Single Neuron Theory of Consciousness”: http://cogprints.org/4432/ 1/single_neuron_theory.htm (Sevush, 2005). “Is Consciousness Only a Property of Individual Cells?”: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~regfjxe/aw.htm (Edwards, 2005). 35.
Heterophenomenology. The third person view of understanding experience. See, Daniel Dennett, 2005, “Sweet Dreams”, p. 35. 36.
The concepts of Ethics and Morals are treated as The Laws of Life and The Rules for Living by Alistair Shearer in his beautiful little gem of a translation of the Yoga-Sutra, “The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali”, 1982, p. 107-108 (first ed. 1981). It is important that these two great pillars of human existence not be vielded into behavioural rules of interaction with the lives of other individuals, our interactions in society could ideally be drawn out of the yogic pool of understanding of the dynamics of the psyco physiological system, but it is important that the ideas on Ethics and Morals of yoga allude to the process of yoga as such and should not be mixed into ideologies of behaviour (see the subscript to the tree illustration on p.7). If yoga does its trick successfully the qualities of these laws and rules should emerge spontaneously from the individual and be infused into the daily activities of the individual. And, yet, these aspects are succintly generalized by the subcategories assigned to these two great brances of: Ethics, Truthfulness,
145 Non-attachment, Restraint, Integrity, Non-violence; and Morals, Refinement, Contentment, Simplicity, Purification, Sense of Wonder (see notes 12 and 13). As is obvious these expressions are ideals of any behavioural commitment, but when applied in the recursive yogic setting they are qualities that support the practice as such and if their effluence carries over into the attitudes we bring unto others so much the better. 37.
This graphic presumes to illustrate the correspondence of the dynamics of the ‘Tree of Life’ metaphor with the structurality and thus the life-upholding properties of a single neuronal cell. The simplicity of the tree image of stem and branchy forkings might well have some analogous resonance with the fundamental physical forces that hold together the molecules and atoms and quarks, and whatever, of the whole dynamic. In an interesting debate on causality, determinism and free will on The Brights Forum between ColonelZen and CharlieD, The Colonel has quite a few points to make. Charlie-D: So what’s the point about “brownian motion”? ColonelZen: … the mechanisms of the brain are causal but not entirely deterministic. A dendrite will not fire until its receptors interact with sufficient neurotransmitter molecules, but in the very small space between axon and dendrite there may be only a few billion to trillion molecules total and only a few thousands of the transmitter chemicals. The timing between activation of the axon and the subsequent firing of the dendrite may vary considerably. In consequence the
146 sequence of thoughts (or complex states in the neural net that later reduce to symbolic throughts) are not completely predictable even if “perfect and complete” information about the initial state were available. This is of course true of all macroscopic phenomena when measured with adequate precision to detect the influence of Brownian motion, but most macroscopic objects are not even remotely near the complexity of the brain, thus nowhere near as sensitive to those microscopic variations. Which is to say that in large if once we have a realistic and complete interactive model of how the brain/mind works, you might be able to make some measurements of me, add in everything I’ve ever written to date, grill me for a couple days on all my views about everything, and ask the model questions about how I would respond. It will come out with very good answers today - but it will not be a perfect exact match to what the real me would say. A month from now, if you don’t update it, it would still be by and large close, but farther than what I would say. A year out if not updating it for what the real me does but giving it the same information of the outside world that I encounter, it would still reflect a lot of my views fairly accurately but on some issues it and I would disagree, … Charlie-D: I’m no scientific theorist, but I do know a tad about brownian motion from the stock market. Is the brownian model more than a statistical way of describing a seemingly random phenomenon, or does it actual hypothesize that the process is non-causal and nonpredictable? I know that in the case of the stock market, it works pretty well as a model but the shape of the curve does not come out to be normal, and does not confirm the hypothesis of strict randomness. In other words in the case
147 of a particle in a gas, you have zillions of gas molecules that are hypothetically “randomly” bouncing around, and the brownian model works well. But if you actually had the information of the exact location and trajectory of every gas molecule, would you not still be able to predict a caused outcome, at least in theory. ColonelZen: Brownian motion (the real thing in real matter) is genuine quantum chaos. When two molecules bounce, what is happening is that there are photon exchanges between the electrons in the outer shells of atoms in the approaching molecules. Electron and photon interaction .. if you’ve studied physics the bells of Heisenberg should be ringing loudly. To be sure, if two large molecules collide head on there will be so many photons exchanged that it will begin to approximate a pure mechanical (perfectly elastic) collision. But not all collisions are that violent ... many, many will be glancing with only single photon pair - single electron exchange bearing the full weight of uncertainty for such interactions. Take that for even the submicroscopic sample of a few trillion molecules, bouncing off each other billions of times a second. Take “perfect and complete” information for any instant in time, and a nanosecond later you have complete chaos predictable only statistically. Charlie-D: But don’t the bells of Heisenberg just refer back to the issue of whether any phenomenon involving “single electon exchange bearing the full weight of uncertainty for such interactions” can be modelled as causal in some predictable sense? What does this have to do with the brain per se? http://www.the-brights.net/forums/forum/index.php?showtopic=8977& pid=147973&st=15&#entry147973
148 Well, I might be a bit off topic in this putting all this here but I thought the above exchange very interesting in that one can almost tangibly feel the inspiring capacity of the reasoning minds behind the back anâ€™ forth ongoings, as if the pendulum movement of congnition is reflecting a natural, say algorythmic, swing from clarity to consternation and back, and they are keeping it all on a strictly naturalistic platform. 38.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1912-2008. (Born: Mahesh Prasad Varma, in the Panduka area of Raipur, India, yet a different form of his name appears in the Allahabad University list of distinguished alumni, where he is listed as M.C. Srivastava ), http://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Maharishi_Mahesh_Yogi. 39.
I once, in 1970, asked Maharishi Mahesh Yogi how a tree metaphor approach would suit for to present the eight aspects of yoga. At that time I did not have a clear view of all the intricacies of the philosophy of yoga and was yet unable to conceptualize a metaphor to embrace the wholity of yoga in one full breadth of a paradigm and in this to also recognize a processual component. Maharishis opinion on this, at that time, was that a confusion with schools of yoga might ensue. But looked at from the viewpoint of Single Cell basal biological necessities the metaphor of a Tree of Life obtains a firm foundation. It was not until the early middle ninety seventies though that The Maharishi himself delved deeper into the work of Patanjali and from my point of view the classical exposition is fully relevant and needs no amendment, yet I think that if the recursivity of algorythmic method itself is heuristically perceived that that then makes for deep relevance
149 and a revigoration of the philosophy of yoga. 40.
Qualia. See: “Consciousness Explained”, Daniel C. Dennett, 1991 (pp. 369411). “The power in the external object is clear enough, it seems, but what kind of a thing is an idea of red? Is it, like a beautiful gown of blue, colored in some sense? Or is it, like a beautiful discussion of purple, just about a colour, without itself being colored at all? This opens up possibilities, but how could an idea be just about a colour (e.g., the color red) if nothing anywhere is red?” (P. 371.) 41.
Rig Veda. Book 1:24:7. Hymn dedicated to ‘Varuna and Others’.
E.g., the Steatite Seal, and others, 2500-1500 BC.
“In Search of the Cradle of Civilization”; Feuerstein, Kak & Frawley, 1995; Quest Books, 2001, p. 264-266. 44.
Harappa: as above (note 43), p.61
Saraswati: The Saraswati River of ancient Pakistan used to flow north to south from the Himalayas through the Indus Valley unto the sea. It dried out around almost 4.000 years ago. Between 2000 B.C. and 1700 B.C., seismic activity caused the waters of the river’s two main sources to change course. The Sutlej moved course westward and became a tributary of the Indus River. The Yamuna moved course eastward and became a tributary of the Ganges. The tremendous loss of water which resulted from these movements caused the once mighty river to become sluggish and dry up in the Thar Desert without ever reaching
150 the sea. Without any water for irrigation or transportation, the dense population of the river basin soon shifted east with the waters of the Yamuna to the Ganges River valley. Late Vedic texts record the river as disappearing at Vinasana (literally, “the disappearing”), and as joining both the Yamuna and Ganges as an invisible river. http://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Saraswati. 47.
The Steatite Seal, http://www.yogagalaxy.com/history-of-yoga, Material: Tan Steatite Dimensions: 2.65 x 2.7 cm, 0.83 to 0.86 thickness Mohenjo-daro, DK 12050 Islamabad Museum, NMP 50.296 Mackay 1938: 335, pl. LXXXVII, 222 The Mohenjo-daro seal,
In one of Georg Feuersteins books xxx a persons name is mentioned which, by Vedic memory, reaches all the way back to the neolithic age. Play being an important part of life, and the hedonistics, et.al. All the inner joys of life must have been accessible to primaeval man as well as it is to the modern. 49.
“The Wisdom Paradox: How your mind can grow stronger as your brain grows older”, Elkhonon Goldberg, 2005, p. xxx. 50.
Back-popagation occurs in learning algorithms, systems that ably characterize their own workings and are able to apply them in novel situations. See article on Back-popagation in neural nets by Stephen Williams at The Subsymbolist Forum: http://subsymbolist.lefora.com/ 2008/09/24/debating-the-virtue-of-the-radical-subsymbolist-ap-2/page1/.
Mantra: “In Search of the Cradle of Civilization”; Feuerstein, Kak and Frawley, 1995; Quest Books, 2001, p. 189. 52.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1958, as he started up his movement, this is from his first lecture in India, newspaper review (I’ll have to dig out the details), http://xxx 53.
Jonathan C.W. Edwards, “Single Cell Consciousness”, a conjecture about the nature of self. Here’s a further quote on the nature of the base properties of consciousness: “In modern physics the elements of the universe are not tiny lumps but rather oscillations with strange properties attached to them such as spin, mass, and charge. Although some of these oscillations are familiar subatomic particles, some cover much larger domains and are known as longrange correlations. Thus a piezoelectric crystal is ‘inhabited’ by quantised long-range correlations in which transient photons are coupled to ‘phonons’. A long-range correlation behaves as a whole with no parts, so any information received at any point in a domain defined by such a longrange correlation can be seen as being received by a single ‘thing’. Almost by definition, cell membranes, as liquid crystals, should be inhabited by long-range correlations. In fact piezoelectric oscillations are recognised in specialised nerve cells in the inner ear known as outer hair cells. To be of any relevance to awareness in cells within the brain such oscillations would probably have to be higher frequency and lower amplitude, but it would not be unreasonable to predict that such oscillations might exist.
152 Thus the suggestion is made that the observers in our heads are piezoelectric oscillations and that these should be discoverable.” http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~regfjxe/awnew.htm
(page started in 2002).
Jonathan C.W. Edwards, “Is Consciousness Only a Property of Individual Cells?”, April/May 2005 issue of Journal of Consciousness Studies. Edwards revised version from february 2005 can be found here: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~regfjxe/aw.htm. 56.
Here’s a link to, “Margo’s Magical Letter Page” http: The quote used comes from Margaret Magnus dissertation: “What’s in a Word? Studies in Phonosemantics” http://www.trismegistos.com/Dissertation/, from this page-link it is possible to download the whole dissertation and diverse appendixes as pdf’s. //www.trismegistos.com/MagicalLetterPage/.
This link “Archetypes”, from the left frame on Ms. Magnus main site, will bring you directly to this discussion. (Clickin’ in from the main page though keeps the sites frame structure intact.) http://www.trismegistos.com/MagicalLetterPage/Archetypes/index.html,
SAMEDI: Simultaneous (cotemporal) Access to Many Elements (of information) in Defined Inter-relationships. “How Many People Are There In My Head?And In Hers?”, Jonathan C.W. Edwards, 2006, p.50. 59.
Scientific American, 1971.?
60.“What’s the Hurry?”
Oil painting by Carl Barks, moral genius, sustainer of the fabulous Disney ‘Donald Duck’ comic book for 25
153 years straight. This painting depicts a farm boy asleep on the back of a sturdy farm horse on a hot sunny day. 61.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, from the introducion to his translation of the Bhagavad-Gita,1967, p. 15. 62.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Lecture notes from my stay with the Maharishi in La Antilla, Spain in 1971.
In this section here I aim to present a list of books that have been an inspiration to me as I’ve been working my ideas. It is meant to be of a general background to tangent and illuminate the ideas on the paradigm of yoga that I, in my work here, am attempting to develop. Firstly come the Sanskrit/English translations of the Yoga-Sutra:
Aranya Swami Hariharânanda 1963 Yoga Philosophy of Patanjali
Deshpande, P. Y. 1979 The Authentic Yoga: Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras
Feuerstein Georg 1979 The Yoga-Sûtra of Patanjali: A New Translation and Commentary
Hartranft, Chip 2003 The Yoga-Sûtra of Patanjali: A New Translation with Commentary
Lerggett, Trevor 1983 Šankara on the Yoga-Sutras, Volume 2
156 Maharishi Mahesh Yogi 1967 The Bhagavad-Gita – A New Translation and Commentary
Miller, Barbara Stoler 1995 Yoga: Discipline of Freedom (The Yoga Sutra Attributed to Patanjali)
Shearer Alistair 1982 Effortless Being: The Yoga Sūtras of Patanjali 2002 New Edition, ”The Yoga Sūtras of Patanjali”
Taimni, I.K. 1961 The Science of Yoga
Woods, James Haughton 1927 THE YOGA-SYSTEM OF PATANJALI - Or the Ancient Hindu Doctrine of Concentration of Mind
Vivekananda, Swami 1978 Raja-Yoga – or Conquering the Internal Nature’, 17 Impr.
And now, here’s my own translation of the Yoga-Sutra into Swedish I’ve based it on these English translations (above) from the Sanskrit. Aidas, Juri 2003 Yoga-Sutra. A poetic translation into Swedish from the English editions above and a few Sanskrit sources. (Yet unpublished.)
Here is my attempt to give the broad view of the subject of yoga. In this work I start outlining the metaphor of a Tree of Life. 2005 The Tree of Life: A Modern Theory on Consciousness as Seen through the Lens of the Yoga Darsana, New Light on the Philosophy of Yoga. (Yet unpublished.)
And here now, secondly, are the general works on different topics ranging from science and philosophy to novels and whatever. These are books that have inspired and guided my quest in this formulation of the yogic paradigm. Barrow, John D. 2005 The Infinite Book: A Short Guide to the Boundless, Timeless and Endless Jonathan Cape, ISBN 0-224-06917-9
Brockelman, Paul 1999 Cosmology and Creation: The Spiritual Significance of Contemporary Cosmology Oxford Univerity Press, Inc,. ISBN 0-19-511990-8
Campbell, Anthony 1973 Seven States of Consciousness: A vision of possibilities suggested by the teaching of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi Victor Gollancz Ltd., ISBN 0 575 01659 0
158 Chittister, Joan 2000 Illuminated Life: Monastic Wisdom for Seekers of Light Orbis Books, ISBN 1-57075-233-8
Crowley, John 2000 Dæmonomania Bantam Books, ISBN 0-553-10004-1
1994 Love & Sleep
Bantam Books, ISBN 0-553-09642-7
1994 Great Work of Time (in ‘Novelty – Four Stories’) Foundation, Doubleday, ISBN 0-385-26171-3
Bantam Books, ISBN 0-553-05194-6
1980 Engine Summer
Bantam Books, ISBN 0-553-13199-0
Dass, Ram 2004 Living the Bhagavad-Gita Harmony Books, ISBN 1-4000-5402-8
Dennett, Daniel C. 2003 Freedom Evolves Viking, ISBN 0-670-03186-0
1991 Consciousness Explained Penguin, 0-14-012867-0
1995 Darwins Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life Penguin, ISBN 0-14-016734-X
1996 Kinds of Minds: The Origins of Consciousness Phoenix, ISBN 0-75380-043-8
159 Early, Abraham 2004 Gem in the Lotus: The Seeding of Indian Civilization Orion Books Ltd,. 0-75381-854-X
Edwards, Jonathan C.W. 2005 How Many People Are There In My Head? And In Hers? Imprint Academic, ISBN 1-84540-072-0
Feuerstein, Georg 2003 The Deeper Dimension of Yoga Shambhala, ISBN 1-57062-935-8
1980 The Philosophy of Classical Yoga Manchester University Press, ISBN 0 7190 0777 1
1974A The Essence of Yoga: A Contribution to the Psychohistory of Indian Civilisation Rider & Company, ISBN 0 09 120801 7
1974B Introduction to the Bhagavad Gita: Its Philosophy and Cultural Setting Rider & Company, ISBN 0 09 120791 6
Feuerstein, Georg; Kak, Subash; Frawley, David 1995 In Search of Ancient Civilization Motilal Banarsidass
Finlay, Victoria 2001 Colour: Travels Through the Paintbox Sceptre, ISBN 0-340-73329-2
160 Goswami, Shyam Sundar 1980 Layayoga: An Advanced Method of Concentration Routledge & Kegan Paul, ISBN 0 7100 0078 2
Hancock, Graham / Santa Faiia 1998 Heaven’s Mirror: Quest for the Lost Civilization Three Rivers Press, ISBN 0-609-80477-4
Hofstadter, Douglas R. 1979 Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid The Harvester Press Ltd.
Illich, Ivan 1978 The Right to Useful Unemployment: and its Professional Enemies Marion Boyars, ISBN 0-7145-2628-2
1981 Shadow Work
Marion Boyars, ISBN 0-7145-2711-4
Marion Boyars, ISBN 0-7145-2758-0
Kramrich, Stella 1981 The Presence of Šiva
Princeton University Press, ISBN 0-691-10015-9
Lawson, Hilary 2001 Closure: A Story of Everything Routledge, ISBN 0-415-13650-4
161 Leary, Timothy 1979 The Game of Life
Peace Press, Inc., 0-915238-30-6
Mâdhavânanda, Swâmî 1921 Vivekacudamani of Sri Shankarâchârya XXX
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi 1967 The Bhagavad-Gita: A New Translation and Commentary, Chapters 1–6 Penguin Books Ltd., ISBN 0 14 00.2913 3
1965 The Science of Being and Art of Living XXX
Mascaro, Juan 1965 The Upanishads Penguin Books Ltd.
Penrose, Roger 2004 The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe Jonathan Cape, ISBN 0-224-04447-8
Radhakrishnan, Sarvepelli 1953 The Principal Upanishads
George Allen & Unvin Ltd., SBN 04 294046 X
162 Sarvânanda, Swâmî 1972 Mândûkyopanisad
Sri Ramakrishna math, Mylapore
Shearer, Alistair 2001 Effortless Being: The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali Bell Towers, ISBN 0-609-60959-9
Sim, Dave & Gerhard 2004 The Last Day Asrdvark-Vanaheim Inc., ISBN 0-919359-21-3
Watson, Lyall 1979 Lifetide: A Biology of the Unconscious Hodder and Stoughton, ISBN 0 34023119 X
Wolf, Fred Alan 2004 The Yoga of Time Travel: How the Mind Can Defeat Time Quest Books, ISBN 0-8356-0828-X
(This is but a faint start at the indexing, there’s a bit ‘a play in this as I’m figuring all the indexiæ.) (At present the coherence of the referenced page numbers blow is totally out of kilter.)
Symboler (Dynamic) Bliss
A Absorption of Consciousness in the Self Abstentions Abstract addendum, introductorywise Aidas algorythmy Another Albatross asthanga-yoga
137 136 18 11 14 19 14 144
137, 146 137 137, 142 142 146
C collectedness Commandments Concentration consilience Contentment
146 16 7 14
B Bliss Body Breath Breathing Breathing exercises
contentment Contents continually re-created Copyrights
146 136 136 13 140
Dhyâna Diana Janavičienė Dynamic Bliss
144 11 146
E economy Edwards Edward O. Wilson Enstasy Ethics External Discipline
13 147 13 136 137, 146 137
F Focusing Focusinng
G Great Law of Life
164 I in-breath Integration Integrity integrity Internal Discipline
non-violence 142 137 139 146 137
J Janavičienė 11 Jonathan C.W. Edwards
L Laws of Life 137
M Magnus Malmsten 14 Malmsten 14 Meditation 137, 144, 146 Meditation (as Process) 137 Meditation (as process) 146 mensuration 13 Morals 137, 146 Moral Injunctions 137 Moral Principles 137
N naturalistic world view Nina Aidas Non-attachment Non-violence
9 14 139 139
O Observance out-breath
P Perfect Concentration Petrified tradition Physical postures Prana-Yama Pratyâhâra Pure Contemplation Purification purification
136 7 146 142 142 137 140 146
R reason and experience Refinement refinement repeatability Restraint Rules for Living
7 140 146 13 136, 139 137, 146
S Samâdhi SAMEDI Self-Restraints Sense of Wonder Sense of wonder Settled Mind
137 158 136 140 146 137
165 Sevush Simplicity simplicity Single Neuron Theory of Consciousness spontaneity State of Transcendental Consciousness Steven Sevush
147 140 146
T teach yoga 9 The Aspects of Yoga are Universals 64, 95 The Paradigm of Yoga: Rest & Activity 9 The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature 148 The Tree of Life 144 Three Metaphors 71 Tradition 7 tradition 7 Trance 136 Transcendental Consciousness 136 truth 7 Truthfulness 139 truthfulness 146 truth which claims to be universal 7
137, 142, 146 140
Y 146 To be completed
Words Words are flowing in my mind In patterns made of silv’ry smiles, New worlds are being born, bang bang, An’ they spread out across the starry vault. All around me that hustle bustle propensity Is lightin’ up the world, As the dance of life Throws up a bright billion galaxies of light: O! I find that words are not enough.
Ah! Golden ships fly the range galore, From middle ground to utmost shore. Both ways they go. Set up a call; An’ the world will tumble as it falls Free, ablaze, a great delight; An’ that a trail of transversality creates That will will itself the great divide To bridge, as word and æon burn. O! Fly me beyond the horizon.
Yea, as I look from shore to shore, At my canvas edge strange worlds unfold. Galaxies, bang bang, like grains of sand Abound, are everywhere around, An’ in my hand, a fire, a pertinence Of essence, every colours’ inner shinin’ light. And thus I strive to finalize, To draw the line, set the scene: To make, and then, as river ripplin’ flow, go.
‛ A Dearie ’, (100 x 100 cm), Oil painting by: Juri Aidas.
An Another Albatross Publication AAAP 48:J1
The Paradigm of Yoga Rest & Activity
Juri Aidas An Another Albatross Publication AAAP 48:J1
Published on Nov 20, 2008
Published on Nov 20, 2008
The Paradigm of Yoga: Rest & Activity - and an heuristic metaphoric tool, "The Tree of Life", to understand this paradigm. (Fourth Issuu edi...