Pratyahara, the fifth limb, begins with the yogi turning Yoga ball his or her attention inside and withdrawing from the pull of the senses. Seeing, smelling Yoga ball , hearing, feeling, and tasting all draw the yogi outward toward the world of enticements, whereas the discipline of turning inward through pratyahara makes the yogi receptive to inner, more contemplative realms of experience. Dharana, concentration, comes after the body has been tempered through asana, the mind is invigorated through pranayama, and the seductive powers of the senses are controlled through pratyahara. Essentially, this is concentrating and focusing the mind, the very heart of the matter, the still point of the turning wheel, where the fire and the rose are one, as Elliot wrote in The Wasteland. 23 This single-pointedness or ekagrata is essential for the final two stages.
Dhyana, or meditation, is not easy to capture in words, but can best be understood by experience. Some definitions include a higher form of awareness ;24 a form of centering, which involves our disengagement from the machine of the mind and our resting in the heart ;25 coming into relationship with our own consciousness ;26 and the basis of all inner work . Which shifts our understanding of who we are and gives us the power to stand firmly in the center of our being.
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