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The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book 4 - Illumination
10. Desire to live being eternal, these mind-created forms are without known beginning.

Another term which might be used in connection with the words "desire to live" is "the will to experience." Inherent in the informing self-conscious lives of our system (those existences who are superhuman and human) is this desire to be, this longing to become, this urge to contact the unknown and the distant. The explanation of this urge, being cosmic and dependent upon the evolutionary standpoint of that great Life in whom we live and move and have our being and in Whose body every form is but a cell or atom, is impossible for us to comprehend. All that a man can do is to build the mechanism which will make this comprehension possible, and to develop those powers which will enable him to contact and thus be en rapport with that which lies both without and within him. When this becomes possible he awakes to the realization that those desires which drive and impel him to action, those longings which force him into varied activities are something which are not only personal and real, but which are also part of the activity of the whole of which he is a tiny part. He discovers that the stream of desire-impelled mind images which occupy his attention and form the motive power of his life are formulated by [396] himself, but are also part of a stream of cosmic wind images arising in the Universal Mind, as the result of the activity of that cosmic Thinker who functions as the Life of our solar system.

Thus the truth and teaching which has been formulated in the three previous books is lifted from the realm of the personal and the individual, and becomes wider, broader and more general. For the human unit the mind images, the result of desire and of thought action are therefore without known beginning. They surround him on all sides, the stream of their activity beats upon him at all times and draws forth from him that response which bears witness to the existence of desire within himself.

Therefore for him there must come two new activities; first, that of transmuting and transcending those desires and longings for sensuous perception which are found within himself, and secondly the task of insulating himself or isolating himself from the allure and influence of those greater streams of mind images which eternally exist. Thus only can he achieve the "condition of Isolated Unity" described in Book III. Sutra 50.

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