When you say Om, the prana
is total, complete

Patanjali Yoga Sutras - Knowledge Sheet 22

Contd. from knowledge sheet 21

“Sa esha purveshamapi guruhu kalenanavachchedat’’

saha = that, He; eshaha = this, here; purvesham = of the ancients (of those who lived before); api = too; guruhu= master; kalena = time; anavachchedat = not being limited by.

“He is the master of those who lived before too as he is not limited by time.” - Patanjali Yoga Sutra #26

This being, consciousness is the Guru, is the guide even to those who were there before. There is no breakage of time as far as it is concerned. There is something in The Bible about that? “I was before Abraham. I taught people who were before him.” The same thing Krishna also says, “I have taught Ikshvāku and Manu” and Arjuna says, “Come on, don’t tell me that. They were born long ago and you are with me now, contemporary to me. How could you have taught those people?” Arjuna says, “I am terribly confused already. Don’t tell me these things. You are Guru to somebody before you, thousands of years ago before you. How is it possible?”

Then Krishna says, “Come on. Look, you do not know me. See I have come so many times and you have come so many times. You have forgotten and I know it all. I have taught then, I am teaching now also. I will continue to teach in the future also.” That ‘I’ is the same, that Guru principle is the same because there is no breakage of time. It continues. Jesus is continuing through out . It is not that he stopped, broken and somewhere. People think “Oh! He is going to come in the future sometime”. Pūrveshāmapi guruhu – he was the master of those who were before because there is no breakage of time.

Tasya vachakaha pranavaha’’

tasya = Him; vachakaha = connoted; pranavaha = Om.
“He is known as the pranava, Om.” - Patanjali Yoga Sutra #27

What do you call the consciousness where the all-knowing seed is present? How do you address it? Patanjali says “Om is the nearest sound that it can be addressed with. When you say Om, the prana, the consciousness is complete. Om is the combination of ‘Aa’, ‘Oo’ and ‘Mm’. When you say ‘Aa’, the prana is in the lower portion of the body. When you say ‘Oo’, it is in the middle portion and when you say ‘Mm’, the prana moves to the upper portion. When you say Om, the prana is total, complete. Aaa Ooo, mmm, have you experimented that on your body? Om is the sound which is so special, which is the nearest sound that could be used to address the totality of consciousness. All religions in the world have something very close to Om. Christianity has ‘Amen’ and Islam has ‘Ameen’. That is why Om is the sound which is accepted by all religions in the world. Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, whatever religion that is there in the world, they all have a word which is Om or very close to Om. Om is one sound which comes very close to this totality of consciousness. All other names are just the periphery.

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(This is part of a series of knowledge sheets based on Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's commentaries on Patanjali Yoga Sutras.)