2.2 – The purpose of kriya yoga practice is to weaken the painful barriers to samadhi.

समाधिभावनार्थः क्लेश तनूकरणार्थश्च ॥२॥

samadhi bhavana arthah klesha tanu karanarthah cha

  • samadhi – unity consciousness; union of subject and object; bringing together; deep absorption
  • bhavana – contemplation; dwelling upon; absorption in; building; developing; cultivating
  • arthah – purpose; meaning; an object
  • klesha – afflicting; pain causing; troublesome; distressing; the painful barriers to samadhi
  • tanu – to reduce; weaken; attenuate
  • karana – causing; effecting; organ of the senses; perception
  • arthah – purpose; meaning; an object
  • cha – and; also; both

We practice kriya yoga to remove the painful barriers, the kleshas. Once removed, samadhi is revealed as our natural state.

This is an important concept to grasp because it shows that the path is not one of attainment. It’s not about the acquisition of power or a process of becoming something we’re not. Yoga is a path of unlearning. It’s a stripping away of everything we’re not until what we are is all that’s left.

The kleshas, described in the following sutras, are the root causes of all our suffering. They’re the pain of our perceived separation from Spirit.