Upadesa Saram verse 11

Verse 11:
vayurodhanat liyyathe manah jalapakshivat rodhasadhanam

vayurodhanat : by restrain of the prana
manah : the mind
liyate : becomes absorbed
jala pakshivat: like the ensnaring of the bird
rodha sadhanam: is a means of checking

By holding the breath, mind is restrained like a bird caught in a net. This is a way to restrain the distracted mind.

Upadesa Saram Verse 11:
“The mind may be subdued by regulating the breath, just as a bird is restrained when caught in a net.”

Pranayama is the science of breath. Mind is accustomed to stray in nonself leaving its source the “Self”. To control such a chaotic mind cultivating the prana (life force) makes the mind temporarily settled like a pond in full moon light and mind for the first time tastes the bliss and happiness of thought free state while awake. This tasting of bliss makes the aspirant certain that the nature of his being is bliss. So he pursues further to establish in that state of bliss without any interruption. In this way pranayama is an aid in preparing the mind of the aspirant to do self-enquiry. In pranayama only manolaya (temporary cessation of activity of the mind) happens and so annihilation of tendencies will not happen in pranayama. No radical transformation of the mind is possible in pranayama. It helps us to taste the bliss of thoughtless state of the mind as long as pranayama
lasts. Prnayama is an important Anga in Astanga Yoga. Body health and quality and length of life are profoundly affected positively due to pranayama. But when the breath (prana) comes out, the mind will also come out and wander under the sway of tendencies as usual. So pranayama is mere aid for restraining the mind but will not bring destruction of the mind.

Ramana Maharshi


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