Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.15

drsta anushravita visaya vitrshnasya vasikara samjna vairagyam
दृष्टानुश्रविकविषयवितृष्णस्य वशीकारसंज्णा वैराग्यम्

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.15

drsta = seen
anushravita = heard
visaya = objects
vitrshnasya = who has control over desires
vasikara = mastery
samjna = consciousness
vairagyam = aligning with what is

I feel that this isn’t just about asceticism and renouncing things we want, and could also be something we naturally grow into or already are without realising it. Similar to the unconditional love that a parent has for a child that is just giving, doesn’t need anything in return and just flows out without any effort.

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.14

Over time continued earnest practice becomes firmly grounded

sa tu dirgha kala nairantarya satkara sevito drdha bhumih
स तु दीर्घकाल नैरन्तर्य सत्कारा असेवितो दृढभूमिः

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.14

sa = this
tu = and
dirgha = long
kala = time
nairantarya = continuous
satkara = earnestness
asevito = well attended to
drdha = firm
bhumih = ground

I drew the tree roots to represent firm grounded-ness and the people are doing a balance pose, to represent continued earnest practice.

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.13

Practice is efforts to settle your thoughts

tatra sthitau yatnobhyasa
तत्र स्थितौ यत्नोऽभ्यासः

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.13

tatra = there
sthitau = situate, settle
yatna = effort
abhyasa = practice, repetition

This is much easier said than done!
As well as yoga and exercise, I find drawing seems to help..
What helps you settle your thoughts?

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.12

Repeated practice and aligning with what is settles thoughts

abhyasa vairagya abhyam tan nirodah
अभ्यासवैराग्याअभ्यां तन्निरोधः

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.12

abhyasa = practice, repetition
vairagya = aligning with what is
abhyam = together
tan = they
nirodah = supress, restrain

This could be interpreted in so many ways.

I quite like the idea that it means take repeated action towards what you think you want, but without attachment to the result of the action. While trusting that even if it doesn’t work out the way you hoped, it somehow brought you closer to what you ultimately want.

Halloween Lanterns

Halloween Lanterns


These look great, are so simple and if you use water based paint you can wash the jars and use them again for something else!

How to make glass jar Halloween lanterns

You will need:

  • Glass jars
  • Orange paint
  • Paint brush
  • Masking tape
  • Scissors
  • Fairy lights, small led lights or candles to light up the lanterns
  1. Use the masking tape to make eyes, noses and mouth shapes on the lanterns – sharp edges can look more spooky 👻
  2. Cover the jars with orange paint on the outside only (inside and the paint may burn if you use candles)
  3. After the paint has dried remove the masking tape and put your lights or candles inside.

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.11

Memories are things we’ve experienced that are not completely gone

anubhuta visaya asampramosah smrtih
अनुभूतविषयासंप्रमोषः स्मृतिः

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.11

smrtih = memories

anubhuta = experienced
visaya = objects of sense perception
asampramosah = not fully lost

I drew the photo to represent memory triggered by a place where it was taken, even though the person in it isn’t around.

Even when we aren’t with someone because they’ve died or because they just aren’t around, I feel that we aren’t completely separated.

At the very least we’re connected to them through memory.

John Donne points to it in his poem “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning”: –

Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion,
Like gold to airy thinness beat.

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.10

Deep sleep is the non existent impression rooted in still thoughts

abhava pratyaya alambana tamo vrttir nidra
अभावप्रत्ययाअलम्बना तमोवृत्तिर्निद्र

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.10

nidra = sleep

abhava = non-existent
pratyaya = impression
alambana = based (on)
tamo (tamas) = void, inertia, darkness
vrttir = thought

I love sleeping people – they look so calm and at peace.
The translations I read described this as being about deep, dreamless sleep.
It’s interesting that it gets included as a “thought”. I find sleep fascinating – it’s almost as mysterious as infinity and thinking about the edge of the cosmos.

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.9

Imagination is knowledge arising before it becomes a reality
(like a sandbox for creation 😊)

sabda jnana anupati vastu sunyo vikalpah
शब्दज्ञानानुपाती वस्तुशून्यो विकल्पः

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.9

vikalpah = imagination

sabda = word, sound
jnana = knowledge
anupati = arises
sunyo = without any
vastu = reality

Vikapla seems to be interpreted quite a lot as delusion, manifesting in ways such as the results of misinformation, propaganda and unconscious bias.

But I thought I’d celebrate the wonderfulness of imagination so I drew a sandbox to represent it, thinking how lucky we are to be able to imagine things and the unlimited freedom we have in what we can create there.

Make your own medicine jars!

I made these jars to help make taking medicines easier and more enjoyable 🙂

They are great as have quite a lot of space and it’s easy to see what’s inside. If you live with other people you can have your own jars so the medicines don’t get mixed up and you can put them somewhere where they are easy to see so you don’t forget to take the medicine and they are decorative so nice to look at!

How to make some medicine jars

You will need:

  • Clean jars (if it’s hard to get the labels off, you can try soaking them in water and/or boiling them). if you have a few, choose which ones best fit the shape of the medicine packets and feel nice to open and close.
  • pens that can write on glass

Then just draw nice patterns or a picture on the jar and fill with your medicine!

Yoga Sutra Illustration 1.8

Misconception is mistaken perception of the true form

viparyayo mithya jnanam a tad rupa pratistham
विपर्ययो मिथ्याज्ञानमतद्रूप प्रतिष्ठम्

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 1.8

viparyayo = misconception
mithya = (is) mistaken
jnanam = knowledge
a tad rupa = not that form
pratistham = (of the true) form

I often mistake things for other things and it’s so weird when you actually see what you think is there until you realise what it really is. In this one he is freaked out when he thinks the rope is a snake, but then he finds out that it‘s just a rope and can bring him joy in the form of a swing 💖