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Sutra 2.9: Abhinivesha (Fear of Death)

I bought a Scoopy in January but I’ve been too scared to drive it. It’s been sitting outside my house for the past two months while I book GoJek bikes (Uber style rides.)

Over the past few days I’ve noticed it’s been increasingly harder to book GoJeks. Overall I think this is a good thing because it means more tourists are coming back to the island (yay!!) however it’s meant I’ve been late for a lot of yoga classes and meetings while waiting for a ride.

Today I was trying to book a bike for power yoga and after fifteen minutes of waiting I realized I had to leave the house right then or I wouldn’t make it.

This particular class is one of my faves and I didn’t want to miss it… so… I decided it was time to learn how to drive the bike.

I started acting without thinking finding the keys and the registration and my license and getting on the bike.

I couldn’t even figure out how to turn it on (a Balinese guy had to help me.) As I drove down the road it suddenly dawned on me… I was driving a motorbike!! “You’re doing it!! You’re doing the damn thing.”

One thing Pantanjali refers to in the sutras is the kleshas, mental afflictions, or obstacles that prevent us from being enlightened. The fifth klesha (2.9) is abhinivesha or fear of death. Anything we avoid because we’re afraid of danger or an accident happening - like riding a motorbike - is abhinivesha.

The problem is we’re afraid of an accident because we think our lives will end if we die. We mistakenly think we are our bodies. We are attached to our bodies. But we’re actually infinite. Our soul is just moving through life through the body. This body is the vehicle. In reality we’re not our body. We are connected to all.

Yoga asks us to remember who we are. We let go of the uncertainty of death. We accept that we can’t control when our lives begin and end. We let go. And we get on the damn motorbike. This is yoga.

#yoga #yogasutras #philosophy #abhinivesha #kleshas

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