Gita Daily Readings

May 9th
Chapter Six: 12
There, having made the mind one-pointed, with the actions of the chitta (the subconscious mind) and the senses controlled, let him, seated on the seat, practice yoga for the purification of the self.

Commentary

The light of the self is veiled by its own rays blinding our conditioned and limited perception. These rays are conducted via the mind (conscious and subconscious) and the senses in order to illumine the world. In meditation, the yogi controls the inner rays in such a way that his attention is not distracted by the senses and the activity of chitta (subconscious mind).

The chitta functions on account of:

( a ) latent desires and tendencies (memory), and

( b ) the movement of prana.

The yogi, therefore, practices pranayama (regulated breathing) and turns the desires upon their own source! Thus the chitta is freed from turbulent activity and it therefore becomes transparent enough to reveal the underlying essential divinity of the self.

The mind and the senses are already turbulent. Violently subduing them will only result in making them more turbulent! A wind opposed by another will only make a whirlwind. "Control" is best illustrated in the expression: "He has good control of the motor-car." Not that he has shut the engine off, but he knows in which direction to steer, when to apply the brakes or press the accelerator. Controlling the mind and the senses, therefore, implies that we are their masters, their skilled manipulators, not their prison warders.

Some people foolishly assert that the aggregate of the senses is the mind. On the contrary, the senses are the leaking holes of the mind. Hence, when they are controlled, the energy and the intelligence that leak through them will be made available for the higher purpose of purification of the self.

When control is achieved, the self is experienced as ever-present and eternal reality. Meditation does not create the self but only removes the opacity, purifying the mind so that the insight shines, unveiling the truth. When the mirror is cleaned the face is seen; the cleaning did not "create" the image, but only removed the dirt which hid the image.

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