Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Kleshas

The Kleshas are 5 behaviours that keep us from experiencing calm abiding happiness. I can "see" them pop up during my average day. Patanjali wrote about them in the Yoga Sutras, which are four chapters about the path to enlightenment... or peace. 196 lines, divided into four chapters that give us wisdom on overcoming unhappiness, or getting out of our own way, so we can see how wonderful we really are. Wonderful, not in an egoic way but in a humble, peaceful, centered kind of way.

So, the Kleshas are:
1. Ignorance
2. Egoism
3. Attachment
4. Aversion
5. Fear

During an average day I would be scared (ooops, there's one already) to ponder how many of my thoughts are Kleshas.

The second line in the Yoga Sutras talks about "calming the fluctuations of the mind". So a fluctuation could be any of the five above, which are the negative Kleshas.

Now who wants to get rid of these! Well, me for sure. Its so exhausting having the mind run riot, its so reassurring to know that we can actually calm our mind, and we can begin to notice what we notice.

Which leads me to my next point, meditation. Meditation helps you get to know yourself, really know yourself. Then you learn to calm that damn monkey mind and you begin to see life play out in front of your very eyes, see the dramas unfolding and begin to see your life more clearly.

Thanks Patanjali.


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