I.4 वृत्तिसारूप्यमितरत्र

vṛtti-sārūpyam itaratra

“Otherwise, there is identification with old patterning.”

Our ordinary state of being is an identification with our thoughts, our feelings, our past reactions to the events of our lives. We label ourselves, and this labeling affects how we act and what we do.

“If [citta] is not consciously directed it will conform to the activities (vṛtti) that have shaped it in the past. This is very much like a default selection. Thus, prior to yoga, changes in citta are programmed by habits—physical habits, mental habits, sensory habits—all of which create repetitive patterns of experience, some pleasurable, some painful, but all contributing to a limited sense of self….Nirodha is the only force greater than that of habit—specifically the habits that perpetuate citta in a constricted and clouded state….Nirodha is the force that continuously purifies citta.” —Vyaas Houston, “Sanskrit, the Language of Meditation,” p. 2

• Do you identify with your thoughts? Your feelings?
• Has yoga helped you find a “standing” within yourself, that is, your own authority?
• How does yoga practice affect your sense of identity?



feminine noun in compound

patterning of the mind, manner of thinking (from vṛt, “to abide, to move, to turn, to condition”)


neuter noun, 1st case sing.

conformity, identification (from sa, “with,” + rūpa, “form”)




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