3.43 – Through samyama on the fusion of the physical body and space, along with the perfect identification with the lightness of cotton, one can travel freely through space.

कायाकाशयोः संबन्धसंयमात् लघुतूलसमापत्तेश्चाकाश गमनम् ॥४२॥

kaya akashayoh sambandha samyamat laghu tula samatatti cha

  • kaya – the body
  • akashayoh – of space; sky; ether
  • sambandha – fusion; binding together; joining together; intimacy with
  • samyamat – by samyama – the perfect integration of consciousness; the uniting of dharana, dhyana, and samadhi
  • laghu – light
  • tula – equal weight; cotton
  • samatatti – perfect identification with; sameness; likeness; equanimity
  • cha – and; also; both
  • akasha – space, sky, ether
  • gamanam – going; traveling; attaining; obtaining

Whenever we wish to cultivate an attribute, we can practice samyama on something which possesses that quality. That can be an external object or the internal idea of an object. In this sutra, Patanjali has us work with several elements simultaneously—the feeling of the physical body, space, and the lightness of cotton.

When consciousness is absorbed in the feeling of the body, the space within and around it, and the idea of the lightness of cotton, to the point that all other fluctuations within it are still, we experience a sense of levity. It’s as if we’re floating on air and could travel through space. The after-effects of such a meditation leave us feeling twenty pounds lighter and mentally and emotionally uplifted.

On an energetic level, we’re becoming more attuned to the force of sattva guna. We can strengthen this connection through devotion to Awareness and adherence to a yogic lifestyle, including a light, nutrient-dense diet and copious time in nature.