Perfection of the body in beauty, strength, and brilliance is one of the different types of Spiritual Power or siddhis outlined in the Vibhuti Pada (Book III) of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. In my moments of contemplation, I sometimes try to speculate about the underlying reasons for existence. In doing that, however, I notice that I tend to dwell on one question: “What is the purpose of life on Earth, especially for humans?”
Those of you who are familiar with the doctrine of reincarnation, regardless if you believe it or not, may observe that with the increase of population, the condition of life appears to be just in reverse proportion to the number of souls pouring into this realm. What gives? Do souls just come and go in physical reality without a coherent objective? Are we just here to create a mess on this planet? What is the aim of entities like us for taking on different roles as human beings?
Well, I don’t know, but Sri Aurobindo seems to have a plausible answer:
"The perfection of the body, as great a perfection as we can bring about by the means at our disposal, must be the ultimate aim of physical culture. Perfection is the true aim of all culture, the spiritual and psychic, the mental, the vital and it must be the aim of our physical culture also. If our seeking is for a total perfection of the being, the physical part of it cannot be left aside; for the body is the material basis, the body is the instrument which we have to use. Sariram khalu dharmasadhanam, says the old Sanskrit adage,—the body is the means of fulfillment of dharma, and dharma means every ideal which we can propose to ourselves and the law of its working out and its action. A total perfection is the ultimate aim which we set before us, for our ideal is the Divine Life which we wish to create here, the life of the Spirit fulfilled on earth, life accomplishing its own spiritual transformation even here on earth in the conditions of the material universe. That cannot be unless the body too undergoes a transformation, unless its action and functioning attain to a supreme capacity and the perfection which is possible to it or which can be made possible."
— Sri Aurobindo, The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth, From the Bulletin of Physical Education (1949 – 1950)
"Beauty, fine complexion, strength and adamantine hardness constitute the perfection of the body."
— I.K. Taimni, The Science Of Yoga
"This perfection includes beauty, grace, strength, and the durability of a diamond."
— Chip Hartranft, The Yoga-Sûtra of Patañjali
"Shapeliness, beauty, force, the temper of the diamond: these are the endowments of that body."
— Charles Johnston, The Yoga Sutras Of Patanjali: The Book of the Spiritual Man
Attaining Perfection Of The Body In Beauty, Strength, & Brilliance
This sutra elaborates on the third siddhi described in the previous article (Sutra 46: Attainment of perfection of the physical body). Accordingly, the attainment of this siddhi requires Mastery of the Elements or Panca-Bhutas.
The human body, as we all know, functions in accordance with the laws of nature. The discovery of these laws by science has enabled our race to invent technologies like medicine, surgery, robotics, etc. that allow us to make all kinds of changes in the body.
However, we must remember that for every known physical object, there are subtle and causal properties which are working behind the scenes. What science knows about the laws that govern the human body is only superficial knowledge according to the philosophy of yoga. The genuine properties are still undiscovered and it will remain that way unless we gain a full understanding of consciousness. Unfortunately, consciousness is not something that science can easily investigate. That’s why yoga exists.
|Making The Body Atomically Small, Indestructible, Perfect||Mastery Over The Five Senses Of The Body|