"Both practice (Abhyasa) and non-reaction (Vairagya) are required to still the patterning of consciousness”.

the poetry of patanjali’s yoga sutras: exploring sutras 1.12 – 1.15

In Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, Sutra 1:12 “Both practice (Abhyasa) and non-reaction (Vairagya) are required to still the patterning of consciousness”.
Abhyasa means to practice with earnestness (Never Give Up). Vairagya means non-attachment to be present(Always Let Go). Both of them are opposites of each other, but together, if we balance between abhyasa and vairagya, we will be able to attain inner peace, discover the ‘self’ and understand one’s purpose.
These are powerful tools found in the yoga sutras yet little is known about them.
So how do yogis actually attain inner peace during their yoga practice in the modern world when little is actually known about these tools?

We know that it is common to hear yogis mentioning that they practice yoga to find inner peace (I was actually one of them before YTT). Now that we know YOGA is actually a very big term, and most of us are only practicing one of the limbs of yoga, ASANA, can we really ‘find inner peace’ through practicing asanas alone?
How do we (teachers/ teachers-to-be) spread and share the teachings of Yoga, and that ‘ yoga helps you find inner peace’ does not happen after that 1 or 2hrs of yoga class but there are actually deeper meanings behind the practice of yoga.

That said, I guess practicing yoga doesn’t just stop at the asanas, and doesn’t just stop after you’ve mastered all the asanas. It’s about bringing the roots of yoga into the modern day life, practicing YOGA with a balanced state of mind. Now that we have learnt what yoga is about, and what does yoga do to help us in our daily life, as we practice the asanas part of yoga, we’ve got to subconsciously, consciously incorporate the non-asanas part into our practice. Only then can we really attain inner peace, and cease the fluctuations of our mind:)


~Yvonne Boey