Open main menu

Back to Glossary


The seeker of liberation gets rid of attachment, throws away from his soul the dualities, but as the dualities appear to be the whole act, stuff and frame of life, this release would seem to be most easily compassed by a withdrawal from life, whether a physical withdrawal, so far as that is possible while in the body, or an inner retirement, a refusal of sanction, a liberating distaste, vairāgya, for the whole action of Nature. There is a separation of the soul from Nature. [1]

The vairagya of one who has tasted the world’s gifts or prizes but found them insufficient or, finally, tasteless and turns away towards a higher and more beautiful ideal or the vairagya of one who has done his part in life’s battles but seen that something greater is demanded of the soul, is perfectly helpful and a good gate to the Yoga. Also the sattwic vairagya which has learned what life is and turns to what is above and behind life. By the ascetic vairagya I mean that which denies life and world altogether and wants to disappear into the Indefinite—and I object to it for those who come to this Yoga because it is incompatible with my aim which is to bring the Divine into life. [2]


There are some men who are self-evidently superhuman, great spirits who are only using the human body. Europe calls them supermen, we call them vibhūtis. They are manifestations of Nature, of divine power presided over by a spirit commissioned for the purpose, and the spirit is an emanation from the Almighty, who accepts human strength and weakness but is not bound by them. They are above morality and ordinarily without a conscience, acting according to their own nature.[3]

A Vibhūti is supposed to embody some power of the Divine and is enabled by it to act with great force in the world, but that is all that is necessary to make him a Vibhuti: the power may be very great, but the consciousness is not that of an inborn or indwelling Divinity. [4]


The consciousness of Unity is therefore called Vidyā, the Knowledge.[5]

It is by Vidyā, the Knowledge of the Oneness, that we know God.[6]


The vigilance to perceive and reject all that belongs to the ego and the tamasic persistence of the lower nature. [7]


Viraha is a transitional experience on the plane of the vital seeking for the Spirit.

The pure feeling of viraha is psychic—but if rajasic or tamasic movements come in (such as depression, complaint, revolt etc.) then it becomes tamasic or rajasic.[8]


There is a whole range or many inexhaustible ranges of sensory phenomena other than the outward physical which one can become conscious of, see, hear, feel, smell, touch, mentally contact—either in trance or sleep or an inward state miscalled sleep or simply and easily in the waking state. This faculty of sensing supraphysical things internally or externalising them, so to speak, so that they become visible, audible, sensible to the outward eye, ear, even touch, just as are gross physical objects, this power or gift is not a freak or an abnormality; it is a universal faculty present in all human beings, but latent in most, in some rarely or intermittently active, occurring as if by accident in others, frequent or normally active in a few. But just as anyone can, with some training, learn science and do things which would have seemed miracles to his forefathers, so almost anyone, if he wants, can with a little concentration and training develop the faculty of supraphysical vision. When one starts yoga, this power is often, though not invariably—for some find it difficult—one of the first to come out from its latent condition and manifest itself, most often without any effort, intention or previous knowledge on the part of the sadhak. It comes more easily with the eyes shut than with the eyes open, but it does come in both ways.[9]


Vishnu or Narayana in this image which is a normal Puranic image is the Lord of the waters of Space and Time—the Preserver of the principle of the Universe which he maintains as a seed in himself even in the intervals between one creation and another. Out of that seed in his navel (the navel is the central seat of the Vital, the Life-Principle) Brahma the Creator arises in the Lotus (cosmic consciousness) which grows from it when Vishnu awakens from the inter-cyclic sleep. The Snake Ananta is the Energy of the cosmic manifestation of the Infinite in Space-Time.[10]

Visuddha Chakra

It is the physical mind that acts like that. The centre of the physical mind or externalising mind is in the subtle body in the throat and connected strongly with the speech—but it acts by connection with the brain. [Vide Throat centre] [11]


There are four parts of the vital being—first, the mental vital which gives a mental expression by thought, speech or otherwise to the emotions, desires, passions, sensations and other movements of the vital being; the emotional vital which is the seat of various feelings, such as love, joy, sorrow, hatred, and the rest; the central vital which is the seat of the stronger vital longings and reactions, e.g. ambition, pride, fear, love of fame, attractions and repulsions, desires and passions of various kinds and the field of many vital energies; last, the lower vital which is occupied with small desires and feelings, such as make the greater part of daily life, e.g. food desire, sexual desire, small likings, dislikings, vanity, quarrels, love of praise, anger at blame, little wishes of all kinds—and a numberless host of other things. [12]


Vijnāna is the original comprehensive consciousness which holds an image of things in its essence, totality and parts and properties; it is the original, spontaneous, true and complete view of it which belongs properly to the supermind and of which mind has only a shadow in the highest operations of the comprehensive intellect. [13]


One of the five life-force (prana) in the body of man.

The Vyana, pervasive, distributes the vital energies throughout the body. [14]