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Patanjali Yoga Sutras

Heyam duhkham anagatam

Heyam = To be avoided; duhkham = Misery; anagatam = in future.

Future misery is to be avoided

The previous sutra explained to us that all worldly experiences, in final analysis create misery only. So long as duality remains relativity would persist and all that is relative is transitory and so worldly pleasures seem to just touch us and go.

Is there no way out? Are we born to suffer? How to avoid suffering?

We cannot change our past. We therefore cannot avoid suffering caused by the past karmas. But we cannot mould our future. The miseries, which have not yet come (Anagation) can be avoided (Heyam). How? Firstly by realizing that we cannot get real happiness in this world. To give up the pleasure-seeking tendency: not out of mere intellectual conviction. As the realization of the transistor in ease (Anitya) of the world penetrates deeper and deeper in our being the pleasure- seeking tendency would drop off. We expect many things to happen as per our wish. We always expect that others will be sympathetic to us that the world will understand us or at least does not misunderstand us. If we do not get a pat on our back.

We do not expect a slap! Well, if people do not help us, it's OK, but we expect them not to put obstacles in our path. And whenever these least expectation does not come true, we suffer. The suffering does not teach us a lesson for a future. Can we leave without expecting anything positive or negative from the world?

Does it sound hopeless! Is it then impossible to live in this world? The hopes comes from the life of hundred of sages and saints who were in the world but not of it. Everything cannot be transitory, change is relative something must be permanent, immutable, eternal call it God or Atman. The nearer we go towards the absolute reality the lesser would be our misery. There is no other way out.

This article appears in the Yoga Magazine, Yoga Sudha May, 1991 edition. This article has been published courtesy www.yogasudha.com

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