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Concept of God in Yoga

Patanjali’s concept of God in Yoga is that He is a Purusha (Self) who is eternally free from Klesha (affliction) and also karma-vipaka (consequences of bad or good actions). He is also free from asaya (latent impression of past experiences).

In the first chapter Samadhipada of Yogasutra, Patanjali states that meditation of God is one of the many ways of attaining Samadhi (deeper concentration).

According to Patanjali, Yoga is a means of self-realization, not the realization of God. God is only a means, perhaps the best means, of attaining Samadhi. Thus, God serves only a practical purpose in Patanjali. But later writers find a theoretical purpose in postulating God.

Proofs o the existence of God in Yoga are:
According to the law of continuity, whatever has degrees must have a lower and an upper degree. There are different degrees of knowledge and power, indicating that there is a person who possesses perfect knowledge and perfect power. This omniscient and omnipotent being is God. This argument is of a special type; there is no argument of this type in Western Philosophy.

God is the creator and destroyer of the world. The creation and dissolution of the world are due to the association of Purusha and Prakriti and their dissociation. Purusha and Prakriti cannot be associated or disassociated themselves, but are controlled by adrsta of individual selves. But as no individual self can control his adrsta, there must be an omniscient and omnipotent being who can bring about the association and dissociation between purusha and prakriti, according to the adrsta of the individual selves. The omniscient and omnipotent self is God.

God is established by the received texts, such as Vedas and Upanishads. Yoga, which accepts authority as a source of knowledge, appeals to these texts for evidence of God’s existence.




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