Yoga Sutra 3.45 becoming minute, and perfection of the body

Sūtra III.45

From it (the saṃyama) manifest a set of eight powers like becoming minute, and perfection of the body, with freedom from impediment for its (bodily) attributes

Of these powers, becoming minute is to be like an atom. Lightness – he becomes light; greatness – he becomes great; range – he could touch the moon with a fingertip; irresistible will – he can dive into the solid ground and move about there as if it were water; mastery – by this he can master the elements and elementals, and himself is not mastered by any others; sovereignty – he can will the production, absorption and disposition of them; omnipotence – his purposive idea becomes true, so that whatever that purpose, so the states of the elements and their natures become.

Now he describes the effects of saṃyama on himself. From it, manifest a set of eight powers like becoming minute, and perfection of the body, with freedom from impediment for its (bodily) attributes. Of these, what is becoming minute? It is to be like an atom. If he will, he is more subtle than the subtle. By that power he can enter anything, even a diamond, and so he cannot be seen by anyone.

Lightness – he becomes light, lighter even than such things as a cotton thread. By this power he can go anywhere without needing anything to support him.

greatness – he becomes great. He can extend as far as space, range – from this very earth he could touch the moon with a finger-tip. irresistible will – any desire he has comes to be as he desires; he can dive into the solid ground and move about there just as he wishes as if it were water, mastery – mastery of all worlds. By this he can master the elements and elementals, and himself is not mastered by any others, sovereignty – he can will the production, absorption and disposition the appearance, maintenance and dissolution of them the elements. omnipotence – in whatever he desires, the things become and remain as he wills. His purposive idea becomes true, so that whatever that purpose, so the states of the elements and their natures become.

Though he has the power, he does not create a reversal of (the nature of) things. Because they are as they are from the purpose of another omnipotent one before him.

These are the eight powers.

Though he this yogin has the power, he does not create a reversal of (the nature of) things. He does not make fire cold. Why not? Because they all things are as they are from the purpose of another omnipotent one before him, the Supreme Lord (parameśvara). A reversal by one who wished to reverse the order of things could not be without hate for that previous perfect one. Since the yogin is without impurity, he will not cause such a reversal, for his conduct is most excellent.

These eight powers, becoming minute and the rest, come about from mastery of the elements.

The perfections of the body will be described below. Freedom from impediments in the way of its attributes means: the earth with its hardness does not oppose the movements of the yogin, for his body can penetrate even rock; waters with all their wetness do not moisten the yogin; fire does not burn him with its heat, nor does the wind which makes all bow, move him; in space, which by nature obstructs nothing, he becomes hidden, becoming invisible even to perfected beings.

The perfections of the body will be described below (sūtra III.46). Freedom from impediments in the way of its attributes means: there is no impediment by the attributes of the elements forming any obstruction in the way of the attributes of the yogin as described.

The earth with its hardness its particular attribute does not oppose the movements of the yogin. Why not? His body can penetrate even rock. Waters with all their wetness do not moisten the yogin though he stand in them a thousand years. Fire does not burn him with its heat, nor does the wind which makes all bow, move him. In space, which by nature obstructs nothing, even there where all is open, he becomes hidden, he becomes invisible. He becomes invisible even to perfected beings.

 

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