[b]Vacillations of the Mind ? Descriptions of the last two vacillations.
I, 10 Abhava pratyaya alambana vrittih nidra
Sleep is a
vacillation of understanding
dependent upon the
absence of mindfulness.
I, 11 Anubhuta visaya sampramosah smrtih
Memory is a
vacillation of knowledge
not allowing the objects
of sensory experience
Swami Satchidananda explains that during sleep all but one thought is suspended ? ?the thought of ?having no thought?, of knowing nothing?. It is this thought that gives the impression of emptiness. In contrast, if you were unconscious, you would be devoid of this thought and the perception of being asleep. Iyengar proposes that sleep gives one a glimpse of the seer, but only indistinctly because the light of discrimination, viveka, is clouded. ?Stimulation of this state of sleep when one is awake and aware, is samadhi, wherein the seer witnesses his own form.? Therefore, the goal is to achieve this state of having no thought while awake.
Iyengar defines memory as a collection of impressions of correct perception, misconception, imagination/delusion, and sleep. He explains that memories are subject to changes and modifications just as perceptions are subject to changes. However, if memory is used correctly to recall the original experiences without modification, it lays the foundation for discrimination. So here we have a tool to help develop discrimination.
Swami Satchidananda explains that memories can resurface either intentionally or not via dreams if sleeping or daydreams if awake.
Iyengar, B.K.S., Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. New Delhi, India: Harper Collins Publications India. 1993
Swami Satchidananda, The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. Buckingham, VA: Integral Yoga Publications. 2004
Swami Shyam, Patanjali Yog Darshan, India: International Meditation Institute, 2001, 3rd. edition.
Stiles, M., Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. Boston, MA: Red Wheel/Weiser LLC. 2002