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What is nirodha (Sanskrit term) in Yoga?

From the book “Il pianeta dei folli” (“The planet of fools”) by Guido Sgaravatti – Comments by Monica Nicoletti

Pause your mind

Try for a few seconds to pause your mind, waiting to see your next thought.

A special experience, isn’t it?

Giving our mind small daily breaks is very important!

They are moments in which neither time nor space exists and the individual relaxes into a pause that seems endless and extremely profound.

These small pauses have been proven by science to be

…an eternal present, an atemporal and aspatial point which seems to originate matter and the whole phenomenal world and which a religious person could call God and a physicist (Massimo Corbucci) has defined quantum-mechanical void […] For a yogi, this atemporal and aspatial point discovered by physics is nothing new, as it is the point of pause between one thought and another which allows the consciousness to operate and this is the nirodha…

“Il pianeta dei folli” (“The planet of fools”) by Guido Sgaravatti

What is nirodha

To use a metaphor, we could say that nirodha is the space between one carriage and another of a train.

But we can also find it between one thought and another, between one word and another…Guido Sgaravatti used to say “also between one letter and another of the same word”.

His translation of nirodha, as a compound word, is as follows: nir, privative, and odha, participle of vah (to carry), so that one would have a “carried without”, a pause of emptiness between one mental movement (vritti) and another.
Or nir-odha: interval in the temporal phenomenon, through which consciousness can filter (from “Patanjali yoga-sutra” by Guido Sgaravatti).

As a yoga practitioner and teacher, I believe it is essential to acquire the concept of nirodha and pass it on to students, as it is one of the main purposes of yoga practice, allowing the achievement of a deep inner peace that lasts over time.

Yoga provides many techniques for experiencing it, particularly through pranayama (the art of breathing) and then meditation.

Nirodha allows us to re-align ourselves with our power line and connect directly with the Creative Source from which everything begins, to remind us that a divine spark dwells within us.

Reconnecting means regenerating, in the time of a few infinite moments, to bring back Light and Life within us.

Monica Nicoletti
Direct disciple of Guido Sgaravatti


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