Post By: Vishwanath Iyer Published on: November 29, 2016 Reading time: 4 minutes
Firstly, yama is the ability to interact with the environment in a manner that results in peace within ourselves and in others.
Importantly, there are no blueprints which guide us on how to live correctly. Similarly, there are no easy solutions to increasing awareness (prajñā). In fact, it takes long hours of practice, effort and introspection before our awareness of our Self experiences a transformation and goes from a confused state (kṣiptā) to a state of stability and clarity (nirūḍha).
However, as clarity increases, this transformation also results in a change in our personality (svabhāva). Our personality experiences increased peace and awareness which results in a better integrated indiviuality or svatantra (the weave of conditioning (dharma) with behaviour (svabhāva)).
Often, we enter situations with neither full knowledge nor complete control of the solution. Consequently, we adapt to the situation as it unfolds. This puts tremendous pressure on us to adapt ourselves to the requirements of the situation even though we may be uncomfortable with the change. However, the question is; can we change?
A famous saying goes: “Often, we do not change; we only change our arguments”.
By the time we have reached our teens, conditioning has been completed by our parents, school and environment. However, by the age of thirty, we find that the conditioning that we grew up with is not adequate for the reality of our situation. At this moment, our awareness begins to get sensitised to the misalignment between our conditioning and behaviour on account of our experience. As our perception of this gap grows, we search for new solutions, introspecting on our vijñāna (awareness of our behaviour in any situation) and jñāna (changes to our sense of the identity in any situation).
Change means having to confront that which we have assumed as correct without question. Transformation requires us to confront denial, fear and pain of severing a dearly held conditioning.
However, once we accept the need of self-transformation, we then need to identify that element in us which needs to be changed. Finally, we act but laziness and delay are not easily overcome. Finally, once we change our values and behaviour, we have to manage the consequence of the change before we become comfortable with the change in us.
Our transformation generally starts with simple alterations, we start by trimming our most obvious faults. Once we experience the be benefits of our change, we become willing to drive further change. Finally, our subconscious begins to change, till there is a harmonising between our conditioning and behaviour, which is called svatantra.
External Tags: Consciousness
Our journey undergoes a metamorphosis from the expression of our identity to altruism and finally to a point where there is no judgement or expectation of return.
The journey is one of purging ourselves of baggage, from the obvious to the subtle.
Finally, all internal transformation and self-control (niyama) need consistent effort and often transformation comes after years of practice, introspection and sustained effort.