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Composed over two millenniums ago, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali remains the philosophical thread that unites the ancient and current world of yoga. Yet, its many translations are underwhelming, lacking connection to reality and practicality.
Innumerable forms and sects of yoga have come and gone in between. Obsessed with gaining special powers over mind and body, yoga’s re-tellers have clouded its history in a mystical mist of fantastic claims. It is human nature to crave powers to radically change our lot in life. These layers of dazzle and glitter have over the centuries led us further away from yoga’s spiritual core. The sutras’ clear, logical, and practical path has been blurred and lost.
Radically breaking with this mystical tradition, A. K. Aruna seeks to reclaim for us this fountainhead of yoga by retying the understanding of these sutras to the even more ancient source of spiritual knowledge and yoga—the Upanishads.
Unlike the yoga tradition infected by desires for powers over the mind, body, and the world, the Upanishad tradition has remained essentially true to yoga’s spiritual core rejection of seeking any glory or power in the world. Glories and powers are time-bound. They fade and disappear with their seekers. They are not different from the gatherings of wealth and power of anyone in the countless generations of our ancestors. When the body dies, the temporal gains are lost. If there is an afterlife, the surviving gains are cashed out in equally time-bound heavenly rewards.
The Upanishads eschewed limited pursuits in order to seek an ultimate goal that was not time-bound. In this still pure form of the yoga of seeking ultimate, timeless truth, the words of Patanjali become crystal clear and practical. Yoga shines in timeless relevance.
A. K. Aruna’s <em>Patanjali Yoga Sutras: Translation and Commentary in the Light of Vedanta Scripture</em> has brilliantly refocused the light on the Yoga Sutras. This is a must read for those who wish to understand and to carry on yoga’s timeless tradition unclouded by the distractions of the past.
This text includes the translation of all the sutras, along with an elaborate commentary, footnotes, the Sanskrit sources for the footnotes, plus a thorough index and several other helpful appendixes. There is a separate seventy page booklet version of this work, <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-patanjali-yoga-sutras-translation-0"><em>Patanjali Yoga Sutras: A Translation in the Light of Vedanta Scripture</em></a>, that includes only the author's translation of these sutras.
Not in India? Or shipping costs too much? There is an electronic, downloadable version of this text at this link: <dt><dd><a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/ebook-k-aruna-patanjali-yoga-sutras-pdf"><em>Patanjali Yoga Sutras: Commentary and Translation in the Light of Vedanta Scripture - PDF Version</em>.</a></dd></dt>
It is half the price and can be downloaded immediately. Being a searchable PDF it also can be an excellent companion to the print version for those who wish to quickly and easily search for any topic or word one wishes.
A.K. Aruna started his studies in Advaita Vedanta and the Sanskrit language in 1976 at an intensive three-year program in a traditional gurukulam, outside Bombay, India, under Shri Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati, the most renowned Sanskrit and Advaita Vedanta scholar of the past century. Stepping outside his academic background in Western philosophy, Aruna immersed himself in the deepest, oldest spiritual tradition in the world. This detailed study opened his eyes. In this ancient teaching, Aruna found a complete merging of the intellect and heart. From that point on, he dedicated his life to the inclusive vision of Vedanta.
Returning to his native United States, Aruna earned a master’s degree in South Asian languages and literature from the University of Washington. Aruna later studied computer languages, becoming a programmer and manager of information technology in San Diego, California. Retiring to India in 2000, Aruna dedicated himself to studies in Advaita Vedanta and the Sanskrit Language. He created a set of tools for those students interested in a thorough study of Sanskrit to better understand the Bhagavad Gita.
These tools consist of a five-book set under the title, The Aruna Sanskrit Language Series. They are: <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-aruna-sanskrit-grammar-reference"><em>The Aruna Sanskrit Grammar Reference</em></a>; <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-aruna-sanskrit-grammar-coursebook"><em>The Aruna Sanskrit Grammar Coursebook: 64 Lessons Based on the Bhagavad Gita</em></a>; <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-bhagavad-gita-dictionary"><em>The Bhagavad Gita Dictionary</em></a>; <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-bhagavad-gita-reader"><em>The Bhagavad Gita Reader: Sanskrit/English Parallel Text</em></a>; and <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-bhagavad-gita-sanskrit-key"><em>The Bhagavad Gita Sanskrit Key: Verse-by-Verse Grammar & Vocabulary</em></a>. Additionally, there is now a reading and pronunciation guide, <em>The Sanskrit Reading Tutor: Read It, Click It, Hear It!</em> Using these tools, Aruna has been teaching Sanskrit at the Arsha Vidya Gurukulams in both South India and in the U.S.
Aruna has lived and studied in a traditional teaching gurukulam for over nine years in India and two years in the U.S. Wishing to help yoga students ground the traditional purpose of yoga in the revered scriptures of India, Aruna releases <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-patanjali-yoga-sutras-1"><em>Patanjali Yoga Sutras: Translation and Commentary in the Light of Vedanta Scripture</em></a>. This presents the yoga discipline as its practitioners in the ancient scriptures understood and practiced. There is also a translation only booklet of these sutras, <a href="http://pothi.com/pothi/book/k-aruna-patanjali-yoga-sutras-translation"><em>Patanjali Yoga Sutras: A Translation in the Light of Vedanta Scripture</em></a>, useful for classroom introductions and repeated readings of this enlightening work.