Sutra 2.19: vishesha avishesha linga-matra alingani guna parvani
Such objects may even be of different kinds or categories: 1) they can be special supernatural experiences, 2) they can be commonplace and routine experiences, 3) they may have distinguishing marks or characteristics, or 4) they may be subtle, without any distinguishing marks: and their qualities may be in different stages of development. Simply, the entire cosmos including the external world and the internal sensory system, is the object. Translation and interpretation by Swami Venkatesananda
Is there anything that is “out of this world”?
Sutra 2.19 suggests that there isn’t, not that we can perceive and imagine. Whether big or small, amazing or mundane, all that we experience is by its very nature, part of the same fabric that we ourselves are woven into. We and the objects of our experience are one and the same.
I’m going to leave aside the very big discussion of what exactly is outside of our universe, and focus here on the idea that any separation or distinctions within our world are of our own making.
We’re human, we have likes and dislikes, and we learn to let those likes and dislikes matter to us. Naturally, what matters to each of us is as individual as we are, whether we’re caring about little things, like what to eat for dinner, or bigger things, like how to succeed at work. Sometimes, we let our cares matter so much, that it becomes impossible to see anyone else’s cares.
It’s not that we need to care about everything to understand each other, but by remembering that we all have our own hopes and dreams, worries and troubles, joys and passions, and that each and every single one of them is part of this cloth we share, we keep a larger-than-ourselves perspective on life. Not so that we live in awe of life, but so that we live within its many textures and respect, appreciate, and remember its many colors.
Folded in with other people, creatures, plants, minerals, molecules, atoms, and particles, we are all extraordinary and ordinary, physical and subtle, self and Self.
Hari om tat sat!
Experience your true self and bring it into every moment of your living!
The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are a classical text on yoga–a guidebook of sorts.
Each week, 216 teacher Esther Palmer dives into one of the sutras and we let it take us where it takes us.