“A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways,” says the Book of James
Yama, niyama, Asana, prANAyAma, pratyAhAra, dhAraNA, dhyAna, and samAdhi are the eight limbs [of yoga]. Yoga Sutras, II.29
I’ve recently been in something like love with the concept of dhAraNA, “focusings”, that leads to an incredibly important quality, steadiness.
Steadiness sounds rather dry, doesn’t it? It’s yet another concept that I didn’t process very deeply at first in the Sutras. I think it gave it short shrift: “Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know. I need steadiness.”
Yet I’ve come in the past 6 months to really come to know and appreciate steadiness if not to have wonderful amounts of it.
As Shree Karunamyi says,
“How can you drive on the interstate [of life] and not have steadiness? You’ll get in an accident.”
It takes me awhile to appreciate even the beginnings of what the Greats have to say, and so it was with the above.
Focusing (dhArANa) fully deserves its place as a full limb – equal with Asana – of yoga, and one of the three distinct inner limbs that together – dhAraNA, dhyAna, and samAdhi – are the definition of the all important siddhi “perfect regulation of citta [consciousness]” or sanyama.
The Sutras even tell us how to acheive steadiness through sanyama on the “subtle channel in the shape of a tortoise in the chest below the throat pit”. (III.31)
I’m just beginning to appreciate steadiness in my own life. It’s really been a theme lately. It’s amazing how much even a little bit of can improve a situation.
I feel like I’ve finally discovered a key to my own life, only one of many available to a hyper-dimensional door, but it is so powerful that I just wanted to say a little about it.