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Patanjali Yoga Sutras

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Patanjali Yoga Sutras

Saucat Svanga Jugupsa paraih asamsargah (II/40)

Saucat : from purity
Svanga : (with) One's limbs i.e. body 
Jugupsa : Disgust 
Paraih : With others 
Asamsargah : Non-contact

From physical purity arises disgust for one's own body and disinclination to come in physical contact with others.

"BEAUTY IS SKIN DEEP" goes the proverb. For a yoga practitioner it becomes very obvious when he performs kriyas like Dhouti. How much dirt is hidden beneath this beautiful frame!

There happened to be a pious lady of unparalleled beauty. A rich man, blind with lust, started behaving in a funny way with her in social gatherings. The lady felt pity for the poor, infatuated, intoxicated, ignorant fellow! And she thought to get him red of his illusion, the grip of maya. When he made advances to her next time, she invited him to her house after a couple of weeks. His joy knew no bounds. Imaginations of all sorts played havoc in his 'chanchal' mind. Meanwhile the lady followed a schedule of taking only liquids to sustain her life with a liberal dose of purgatories almost every day. When the day of her appointment with the rich man arrived she was all bones and skin.

One can imagine the state of the fellow on seeing her! He became as sober as a drunkard on pouring cold water on his head. And that was the right time for the lady to preach philosophy. He came to his senses-for ever.

To more sensitive we become about cleanliness, the more we become aware about the dirt that our own body carries-in and out. Then, our fareination for our own body and those of others, melts off.

That is the result of practice of Saucha (purity) at physical level. But let us not turn negative and cynical as the result of this realization of superficial beauty of our bodies and start hating ourselves and others. The end result should be non-attachment.

This article appears in the Yoga Magazine, Yoga Sudha March, 1994 edition. This article has been published courtesy

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