Yoga Sutra 3.41 divine hearing

Sūtra III.41

From saṃyama on the relation between hearing and space, divine hearing

Space is the basis of hearing and sound. So it has been said: ‘Among hearers similarly placed, what is heard is the same for all.’ That very fact is the mark of space. It is said to be by nature free from obstruction. So it is seen that things with a form are opposites of space, since they are clearly obstructions.

A sense of hearing is inferred from the perception of sound; among deaf and the not-deaf one perceives it and the other does not perceive it. Hence sound is the field of the sense of hearing alone. Divine hearing comes into operation in the yogin who has made saṃyama on the relation between hearing and space.

From saṃyama on the relation between hearing and space, divine hearing. What is this relation on which the saṃyama is to be made? He says: Space is the basis of all hearing and sound. As sound is the attribute of space, sounds have space as their basis. The relation between hearing and space is that there is nothing intervening between the hearing and the sound to which the hearing is directed.

So it has been said: ‘Among hearers similarly placed: hearing is that by which something is heard, and those who are exercising it in the same place are the similarly-placed hearers. For them, what is heard is the same for all’: it is in conjunction with one existent thing (space) which gives scope to it to spread, and which is by nature free from obstruction. That very fact is the mark of space.

It is said to be by nature free from obstruction. So it is seen of things with a form such as a jar, with the reverse character to that of space, that they are opposites of space, since they are clearly obstructions, and when there is no obstruction, as within a jewel such as a diamond, etc., there the space is (visible), from which the all-pervasiveness of space is clear.

Now he describes the mark of (the function of) hearing. A sense of hearing is inferred from the perception of sound, for among deaf and not-deaf one perceives it and the other does not perceive it. The reason for the not-deaf man’s perception of the sound, and the other one’s failure to perceive it, is in the sense of hearing.

Hence sound is the field of the sense of hearing alone, for it is not heard by the deaf. Divine hearing comes into operation in the yogin who has made saṃyama on the relation between hearing and space.

 

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