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Darsana Upanishand - the yoga with 5 sthanas

Sankrithi approached Dattatreya when Dattatreya was alone, and asked with folded hands "I am an expert in some yoga. But please, tell me about the Yoga which has 8 branches, and 5 Sthanas, that I may destroy my sorrow." (Sthanas - places, place for staying, place for engagement and performance, standing or waiting place, the political stability of a Monarch, the mental and physical stability of a person, a plain where a temple is located, the nuclear energy field [in both modern and ancient senses] where fire originates through the combination and separation of elemental and atomistic components, the architecture of a temple that ensures stability in the various and different activities undertaken in it. These 5 Sthanas have double meaning: five is a word that signifies Artha, as well as a general sense of completion and wholeness: Sankrithi is asking for the entire yoga required for Artha, required for successful effort, that he may be made whole and stable to accomplish Dharma).

Dattatreya said, I will tell you that the 8 branches are yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, prathyahara, dharana, dhyana, and samadhi. I will tell you that the 5 Sthanas are achieved by Dharana (being able to hold steady): this is required for Dhyana, which can be used to obtain Samadhi, which destroys all sorrow. Holding steady is possible by prathyahara, sensory control - and this is possible by asana. Asana is possible by the niyamas, which requires the yamas.

Yama is the ability of practice. This is achieved by self restraint. Self restraint is learned by first by attempting to live rightly: practice non-harm, truth, not taking that which is another's, continence (moderation), emotional control, non-prejudgement and compassion, cleanliness, patience, and other similar practices. When you fail in these, when you see these fail to achieve self-restraint, you will see the necessity for Niyama.

Niyama is the non-practice, the failure of practice, and is learned by first expressing regret - through penance, joy, religiosity, charity, study, discipline, fear of bad actions, austerities, singlemindedness, and other similar practices. When you fail in these, when you see these fail to achieve the Yamas, you will see the necessity for Asanas.

Asanas are the rest required for exertion, and the exertion which requires rest, the constant, easy, tireless, unrelenting and restful exertion. It is first learned by physical positioning of the body: when you stand, sitting is rest. When you sit, standing is rest. Hold the positions of bent-cross, cow face, lotus, valorous, lion, safe, free, peacock, pleasant - discover whatever position that is easiest for you to hold, everyone has an Asana that is easier than others. Everyone has a way of living that is easier than others. Find the Asana that gives you courage to undertake constant exertion: this is called Sukhasana. If you lack strength, this is the position you can use. Victory in such an Asana is complete, in every world. When you have achieved this Asana, you will begin to practice Pranayama, and achieve the Yamas, Niyamas and Asanas.

The place for Pranayama is the place without tapas (Ashram), where you may perform tapas, secretly. Sit in your easy asana, then exert yourself, so that it is no longer easy. Until you have achieved sensory control, and self-control, prathyahara. It is by self-control one comes to better one's self. Then, break yourself, sacrifice yourself, until you have emerged with Paramatma, and become selfless. This is the purpose of Prathyahara.

Now, you can hold steady, in Dharana. Be resolute! Concentrate! Bear! Hold! Holding the reins and bearing the yoke, learn to use your selfless body and mind: study its nature, understand your Dharma. As you would wear or carry cloth upon your body, as you would resolve toward success before action, as you would resolve a difficulty, resolve now the tapas. Each elemental composite of your being: every kind of form is in your body and mind. Air, water, heat, mineral, etc - are in your breath, fluids, exertion, bones and muscle, etc. You will with the Tapas say Ham! Yam! Ram! Vam! Lam! Having conquered, given up, sacrificed your own self, now conquer and suppress Brahma, Vishnu, Rudra, Iswara, Sadashiva, suppress all other selfs, all beings from the conditionality of self until there is nothing which remains that is unclear, unclarified, until there is nothing which remains that could condition the self. Then everything you speak, everything you do, and you yourself, shall be the pranava, the conditional causative of the Vedas.

Then you will destroy, give up, accomplish the purpose of, sacrifice your sorrow. Your sorrow arises out of your birth and becoming, it's purpose is its own ending. This is the voice, the musical note, the note sounded by various animal bellowing, the sound of your own triumph, the lion's roar, the air breathed in through the nostrils that is exhaled with exultation. This is the form of Para Brahma, of Virupaksha, this is the form of "I am Him!" This is the mind of the great Purusha. In such a success, the Vedanta automatically and naturally appears, and is understood, and certainty and confidence is gained.

From such a state, you will then develop Samadhi with the Atma which, though singular, seems many due to the illusion of its form. In this Samadhi, you will find what is singular is, by the illusory nature of form itself, is not - not singular, nor plural, nor anything at all. In Samadhi, when there is no difference between one and the infinite many, there is no difference between one and none. This is the attaining of Brahman. This is the purpose and result of your seeking. Seeing the truth, the true self, the illusion and the reality as non-separate, you will have no cause for sorrow.

Thus advised by Dattatreya, Sankrithi attained that state, deep in himself.