According to the Yoga Sutras, there are four stages to overcoming the influence of kleshas: the
active stage (udaram), the separated stage (vicchinna),
the attenuated stage (tanu) and the dormant stage (parsupta).
The process begins with mindfully observing one's own kleshas as they arise.
The five kleshas mentioned by Patanjali are:
- Avidya (delusion or ignorance) is
the first of the kleshas because it is the basis for the others. By
destroying avidya, the other kleshas are no longer an obstacle. Avidya
obscures the higher Self by firmly establishing negative habits and
- Asmita (egoism) is
the attachment to ego and the ego's sense of reality. It is mistaking the physical, emotional and mental aspects
of the mind-body for the true Self.
- Raga (attachment) is the desire
for material objects, relationships, status, power or other
- Dvesha (repulsion) is aversion to
unpleasant things, people and experiences.
- Abhinivesha (will to live) is the
fear of death and desire to live, even if life is filled with