E-RYT 500, yoga instructor for children and adults

The Secret in the Sutras

As we learned from the X-Files, the truth is out there, and I love when I find the same truths from different sources. The movie “The Secret” claims to be based on ancient truths that were known by all the great minds of the past, but have been lost to many modern people. Its main assertion is that there is one law of the universe, the law of attraction: like attracts like. In order to manifest more of what we want to have, do, and be, we should think and feel as if we have already attained those things. Most people make the mistake of focusing on the negative, or what they do not want, and inadvertently attract more of the bad stuff. The Secret teaches us to focus on the positive, to imagine what it would feel like to already have accomplished what we want, and to stay in that frequency of feeling good in order to attract more positive to our lives. Recently when studying Patanjali’s yoga sutras, I found several that seemed to be the basis for some of the principles of the Secret. The yoga sutras are 196 aphorisms written down by Patanjali around the 2nd century BCE, and are said to be based on teachings even older than that. In chapter 2 of the sutras, Patanjali begins to outline the yamas and niyamas, which are ten foundational principles of right living that yogis are called to uphold in order to progress on the path to enlightenment. These principles are to be practiced even before postures and breathing exercises, which most of us think of as being the core of yoga. Patanjali describes these principles and tells us what benefits we can expect if we put them into action.

Chapter 2, verse 36 says that when satya, or truth, is firmly established the yogi attains the result of action without acting. My interpretation of this sutra is that when you are truthful in your thoughts, words, and actions, then your personal frequency or vibration matches that of the truth. Like attracts like, so truth must in turn match your frequency. Your thoughts, words, and actions become truth. You manifest your honest desires into reality, thus creating the results of action without acting. The Secret tells us that thoughts become things, and that what we think about we bring about. A yoga teacher I know says that the highest truth is love. When you have loving, truthful thoughts, you establish truth within yourself, and manifest good in your life.

The next verse says that when asteya, or non-stealing, is established then all wealth comes to the yogi. The Secret teaches us that the best way to get things we want is to cultivate the feeling that we already have them. By being grateful for what we have, we then bring more good things to us. If we concentrate on what we don’t have, we send a vibration of lack and want out into the universe, so that is what it gives back to us. If we instead focus on being abundant and fulfilled, then the universe gives us more so that we continue to have that feeling. If we are taking what is not ours, then we are sending the signal that we don’t have enough. Because like attracts like, the universe then sends us more lack, more “not having enough.” We will experience having less. But if we don’t steal from others and instead are content with what we have, then the universe sends us more abundance, more “having enough.” We will experience having more. This idea is also contained in the Bible. Several times we see Jesus teaching something similar to this line in Matthew 13:12: “For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.”

Finally verse 42 tells us that supreme happiness comes from santosha, or contentment. Notice that it doesn’t say that happiness will bring you contentment. It says that being content with what you have, where you are, what you do, etc. will bring you happiness. Instead of chasing things, people, or experiences that we think will make us happy, we should foster contentment for what we already have. This verse emphasizes the idea that feeling happy, content, and fulfilled with what we have right now is actually the best way to get more of what we want.

Finding commonalities in various ancient sacred texts and modern writings helps to prove to me that there is truth in what they teach. The truth is out there, and it is waiting to be found.

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Comments on: "The Secret in the Sutras" (2)

  1. So glad you enjoyed it! The universe communicates in many ways, good for you for listening.

  2. This was very well said and beautifully written. The universe was trying to tell me something as I began to read this post during a period where I was yearning for something I didn’t have. I will keep your words at the forefront of my mind when thoughts such as these occur. Thank you for the breakdown and sharing it!

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