All About Ishvara

The next section of the Yoga Sutras starts with “Ishvara pranidhana va…Or devotion to the Lord.” Special devotion to Ishvara is offered as an alternative to the five prerequisites to realize samadhishraddaviryasmritisamadhi and prajna. Patanjali says “or” which means everything before this is optional. If the five-fold path to samadhi is just too much to bear, and only one practice can be done, make it devotion to Ishvara.

Before I would be willing to devote myself to anything, I would have to ask the next question: Who is Ishvara and how will special devotion bring me to that high level of super consciousness that is samadhi?  Patanjali obliges and spends sutras 23 to 28 answering these questions.


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