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The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book 1 - The Problem of Union
2. This Union (or Yoga) is achieved through the subjugation of the psychic nature and the restraint of the chitta (or mind).

The follower after union has two things to do:

  1. To gain control of the "versatile psychic nature,"
  2. To prevent the mind from assuming the many forms it so easily does. These are frequently called "modifications of the thinking principle."

These two produce control of the emotional body and therefore of desire, and control of the mental body, and therefore of lower manas or mind. The student should remember that uncontrolled desire and an unregulated mind shut off the light of the soul and negate spiritual consciousness. Union is impossible as long as the barriers exist, and the Master therefore directs the attention of the student (at the beginning of his instruction) to the practical work to be done in liberating this light so that it may "shine forth in a dark place;" i. e., on the physical plane. It should be borne in mind that, occultly speaking, when the lower nature is controlled it can manifest the higher. When the second aspect of the lower personal self, the emotional body, is subjugated or transmuted then the Christ light (the second aspect egoic) can be seen. Later, in its light, the Monad, the Father, the One, will stand [10] revealed. Equally, when the first aspect of the lower personal self, the mental body, is restrained, then the Will aspect of the ego can be known, and through its activities, the purpose of the Logos Himself will be cognized.

There are certain lines of least resistance in the spiritual life and along them certain forces or energies are released.

a. Emotional intuitional
or buddhic
monadic to the heart of the aspirant
b. Mental spiritual
or atmic
logoic to the head of the aspirant
The student is therefore given the WORD of restraint or control as a key to all his endeavors.

The chitta is the mind, or mind-stuff, the mental body, the faculty of thought and of thought-form making, the sum total of the mental processes; it is the material governed by the ego or soul out of which thought forms are made.

The "psychic nature" is kama-manas (desire-mind), the emotional or astral body, tinged faintly with mind, and is the material clothing all our desires and feelings. Thereby they are expressed.

These two types of substance have their own line of evolution to follow and they do so. Under the logoic plan, the spirits or divine sparks are imprisoned by them, being first attracted to them through the mutual interplay of spirit and matter. By the control of these substances and the restraint of their instinctual activities, these spirits gain experience and eventually liberation. Thus union with the soul is brought about. It is [11] a union known and experienced in the physical body upon the plane of densest manifestation through the conscious intelligent control of the lower nature.

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