July Focus: Kaivalya/Freedom



What is freedom? What are we freeing ourselves from? Should freedom go hand in hand with responsibility? Does one enhance or hinder the other?

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra has four chapters, the last one entitled Kaivalya, the teachings on liberation, and the ultimate goal of Raja yoga. From this viewpoint, liberation is the idea of solitude, of separation from the play of the gunas, or the constituent elements of nature. The gunas consist of raja, tamas and sattva, translated as passion, inertia and harmony.

The 34 sutras in the fourth chapter deal with the impressions left by our endless cycles of births and it portrays a yogi who has attained kaivalya as one who has gained independence from all bondages. Pure consciousness settles into its own pure nature.

How do we apply this concept in our daily lives? Sutra 6 in the Kaivalya chapter suggests a method: meditation.

“Only the minds born of meditation
are free from karmic impressions.”

—Kaivalya Pada: Sutra 6.

In summary, we have habitual, ego driven ways of seeing ourselves, and the world, and we need to settle the mind enough to see this clearly. Our pure consciousness underlies all the surface confusion and is a much more reliable guide for our awakening to freedom.

Meditations for Healing

Many of us suffer from chronic pain, whether it’s from arthritis, joint pain, injury or illness. Narcotics are often prescribed, and while they can help considerably, many patients either don’t want to take opiates, or if they do, they feel that they can’t function as well.

Meditation is gaining recognition every day as a way to work with pain – researchers have examined meditation’s effects on people, such as attention regulation, body awareness, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and addiction.

Scientists have asked two questions: “Does meditation help?” and “How does meditation help?” One study showed an approximately 40 percent reduction in pain intensity ratings during meditation when compared with non-meditation. And that it worked for beginners.

Meditation teaches people how to react to pain. People are less inclined to have the ‘ouch’ reaction, and are able to control their emotional reaction to pain.

We are offering these meditations to you to use when you need guidance to reduce stress and pain. There are many forms of stress that can be soothed, including such things as a busy schedule, exhaustion, or agitation.

These meditations were written by Stephen Levine, and read by Sondra Loring. Our dear musician friend, Steve Gorn, plays the music. For more from Steve, visit his website: SteveGorn.com

In loving memory of Metta Callahan

Give the Gift of Yoga!

Satya Gift CertificateGift certificates for yoga classes are now available to purchase online and at the studio!

Choose from the following options: Single Class ($18), 5-Class Card ($80), 10-Class Card ($145), Monthly Unlimited ($150), Yearly Unlimited ($1,200) and Private ($85/$100).

If you buy online, you’ll have the opportunity during checkout to indicate the name of the gift recipient. The certificate will be mailed to you at the address you provide.

Did you know?

You can get the BEST deal on classes by signing up for our Yearly Membership. Just $110 per month (billed monthly via credit card) for unlimited classes at Satya! Or pay “UpFront” for an even bigger discount! And now, just $120 per month gets you Unlimited Classes at both Satya and Sadhana Center for Yoga in Hudson! Sign up here…