The Kleshas: Five Obstacles to Awareness

The field of the mind is endlessly fascinating to those interested in mastery and transcendence. So much affects us – from the external forces of the universe to the internal forces of our thoughts. The practitioner whose goal is to gain control over the mind must contend with both facets. According to the Samkhya/Yoga philosophical system, the external forces arise from the qualities of the material universe in which we reside. This physical reality, Prakriti, is comprised of and designed by the gunas, which are constantly in flux. Always churning, the gunas create imbalance to the extreme – excitement, volatility and urgency or heaviness, darkness and enveloping inertia. But, when they are brought into balance, through detachment and meditation, they cease to affect the yogi. The wild activity of the material universe no longer pulls or distracts the yogi’s mind field. Instead, the power of consciousness becomes s

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