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yoga and klesa

Author: Cristiana Biogli - Sergio Busi

The term yoga is far-reaching: today it is present not only in Asian culture, but in that of all continents, and understanding what it means is a priority since it is often used to indicate activities that have little to do with yoga. In this investigation one cannot ignore Patañjali's Yogasutras, which are the main philosophical reference text of contemporary yoga. Studying the Yogasutras, one comes across the theory of the klesa, the heart of Patañjali's teaching, according to which yoga, far from meaning "execution of postures", is a method that frees the individual from suffering, whose origin lies in five mental afflictions, precisely the klesa: ignorance, sense of self, attachment, repulsion and fear of death. A first part of the book, more technical, in which yoga is historically and etymologically framed trying to shed light on the not simple key concepts of this discipline, is followed by a section with a broader breath, which tries to understand the five mental afflictions exposed Yogasutra, also embracing the reading of them that is proposed in the other classical texts of Indian philosophy, with fleeting references to Western philosophy and recent neuroscientific and physical discoveries. Reality is not as it appears to us. And this erroneous appearance is the cause of our daily suffering.

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