Dvesha (Aversion)



Sutra 2.8 introduces Devesha, or Aversion. This Sutra can be translated as 'Aversion is that which follows identification with painful experiences.' Much like attaching to the positive, we have a tendency to create an aversion to negative experiences/pain, but why? Duh, because not dealing with pain is much easier for most of us.

How to overcome this obstacle on your mat?

Notice what poses you avoid on your mat and how they make you feel when you practice them. Why are you avoiding them? Can you try to understand your experience of pain during practice? Is it possible to become aware of the dvesha you've created and make a different choice? Find something likable about the pose you avoid, maybe you could practice it in a way that is more enjoyable and brings you joy. Another example, when you arrive at class and it's a different teacher. Oh, no! Do you want to walk out of the room? Why have you created this aversion? Can you find peace on your mat regardless of the teacher or what is going on in the room?

How to overcome this obstacle off your mat?

In the same way we attach (Raja) to pleasure, we also blame unhappiness/pain on...fill in the blank, and create Dvesha. You might find it interesting that even when you avoid the thing you believe is causing you pain, it doesn't magical change your state of displeasure. Instead, the source of pain changes.

There is no need for Dvesha because we are merely a reflection of our own unhappiness/pain. Attachments and aversions can weigh you down, become a burden, and feel like a heavy weight tied around your neck. Try to remove the weight (blame) and acknowledge what you have and where you are in this moment. Avoidance doesn't create contentment. Instead try to face your pain dead on and search for the root cause, which will surely lead to contentment.

By: Virginia Traylor