Understanding The Trance State In Patanjali Yoga Sutras


Indian Streams Research Journal published an research article titled "Understanding the trance state in Patanjali Yoga Sutras and its similarities with the trance state in hypnosis" written by Shitika Chowdhary and Jini K Gopinath from Department of Psychology, Christ University, Bangalore.

Consciousness in yoga can be understood as William James' concept of consciousness being a stream. The altered states of consciousness in yoga and hypnosis are associated with similar phenomena like relaxation, disinclination to talk, unreality, misrepresentation, alterations in perception, increased concentration, suspension of normal reality testing, and the temporary nature of the phenomena. While some researchers consider yoga to be a form of hypnosis, others note that that there are many similarities between the trance in yoga and the hypnotic trance. The present study aimed to investigate the phenomena of trance in yoga and to investigate its similarities if any, with the trance state of hypnosis. An understanding of the concept of trance in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras was gained through a thematic analysis of the book Four Chapters on
Freedom by Swami Satyananda Saraswati. This led to an understanding of the concept of trance in the yoga sutras. The obtained concepts were compared to the concepts of trance in hypnosis (obtained through the literature on hypnosis) to investigate whether or not there exist parallels. The findings of the study show that there are similarities between the trance in hypnosis and the trance in Patajali's yoga sutras in the induction and deepening of the trance states in hypnosis and that of Samadhi, the phenomena present in hypnosis and the kinds of siddhis that are obtained through Samadhi, and the therapeutic techniques and the therapeutic process in Patanjali's yoga sutra and hypnosis.

To continue reading, download the full research paper as a printable PDF - I.S.R.J. Volume 2, Issue. 9, Oct 2012 or visit Indian Streams Research Journal website.