Vibhuti Pada

Definition - What does Vibhuti Pada mean?

Vibhuti Pada is one of four chapters from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, the first known classical text on yoga, dating back around 2000 years. Offering 196 “threads” of wisdom, these sutras offer guidelines for living a more meaningful and purposeful life through the path of yoga.

Vibhuti Pada is the third chapter, comprised of 55 sutras about yogic powers or manifestations.

Yogapedia explains Vibhuti Pada

There are four padas (chapters) in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras:

  1. Samadhi Pada (Chapter on Enlightenment)
  2. Sadhana Pada (Chapter on Practice)
  3. Vibhuti Pada (Chapter on Powers or Manifestations)
  4. Kaivalyam Pada (Chapter on Liberation)

Vibhuti Pada is dedicated to the deeper progression of yoga practice, with a focus on the mind's power to manifest. Sometimes controversially translated as 'supernatural powers,' Vibhuti Pada refers to the seemingly super-human powers or siddhis that can be achieved through dedication to the eight-limbed path of yoga. Other translations of vibhuti include 'abundant,' 'penetrating,' 'mighty' or 'powerful,' hinting at the notion that these so-called powers are not otherworldly, but in fact accessible to all.

The powers listed in this chapter are said to be the result of samyama, the collective term for the last three limbs of Patanjali's eight-limbed path: dharana (concentration), dhyana (meditation) and samadhi (enlightenment). Once these three stages are mastered, it is said that siddhis can be manifested by the practitioner. However, Patanjali warns in Vibhuti Pada that one must practice without ego, or else these powers may become an obstacle on the path to Kaivalya or 'final liberation'.

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