The 8 Fold Path of Yoga

Many different spiritual paths and teachings include reflections on desire, and how it can keep us from our truth. Being human means we experience desire. In order to live a spiritual existence, we have to look at desire and begin to define it differently for ourselves, and for the world.

When you desire something very badly, you can be assured it’s never going to arrive. If you chase after a result, the energy of desire pushes away what you are looking for. There’s a good chance you won’t even know what you are calling forth with that desire.

There is a concept in the Bhagavad Gita that says, “Do not reach for the fruits of your actions.” You must not be attached to outcomes. To be enlightened is to react in exactly the same way to both happiness and pain during the course of your life. The Bhagavad Gita also tells you to just live your life and be happy. As you explore the Bhagavad Gita further, look into ‘The Eightfold Path of Yoga,’ which will expand your spiritual journey.

In Buddhism, the teachings say that the root of all suffering in life is desire and craving. When we are attached to our desires, any satisfaction and happiness will not last, as we will continue to desire a never-ending chase of ‘wanting.’  Buddha spoke of these ideas and more in the Four Noble Truths, and offered The Eightfold Path, or Middle Way, as instruction for finding balance and mindfulness.

A Symbol of the 8 Fold Path

Premapranahuti represents the Buddhist teachings of the 8 fold path, where happiness, joy, and love are created by prana (chi) – the life force energy that permeates the entire universe.

1. Right Understanding

Understand that life is ever-changing, in flux – yet we can embrace change by finding something or somewhere to stand firm. Know that happiness does not come from outside yourself or from materialistic things, and that all that comes into being must pass away. All happiness comes from this understanding.

2. Right Purpose

Be willing to see life as it really is. Use your desire, will and thought to help order your life, so you can learn to live with purpose.

3. Right Speech

First was the word and then the word manifested – what you speak will return to you. So learn to live in harmony and unity by speaking kindly. You can’t always oblige, but you can always speak obligingly.

4. Right Conduct

Conduct yourself with dignity, your conduct is like electricity, it can bring shock or light into your life. Electricity holds a positive and negative charge but needs a third force to ground it. So keep your power in balance by conducting yourself with mindfulness.

5. Right Occupation

Bring no harm to any being. Occupy your thoughts with love, occupy your actions with effort, and occupy yourself with an occupation that inspires and supports all, not just you.

6. Right Effort

Constantly endeavor to train the mind and align thought, word, and deed. A man whose thoughts, words and actions are out of alignment will be vexed by anger.

7. Right Attention

Keep your mind steady in the here and now, focused on one thing, while allowing all else to happen around you. Focus your attention on kindness, compassion and service to others; this is the highest attention.

8. Right Meditation

Train your mind to stop jumping here and there like a monkey. Train it to produce health – be happy to serve and awaken to higher thoughts and ideas. This purifies your spirit, mind, and body. Always know spirit runs the show.

9. Manifestation

Like the wandering monk, holding a bowl and living on the donation and kindness of others, the bowl at the base of the Premapranahuti represents the manifestation of the 8 fold path, the state where we have complete trust that all we need will be given. Apply the mantra ‘trust in trust, faith in faith’ – rejecting nothing, being attached to nothing, judging nothing, allowing all to be the game of illusion.

Aum Sri Premapranahuti

Premapranahuti pendants can be worn as a talisman of protection, and to connect all who see it to the qualities of the 8 fold path (middle path).