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The Kleshas: Destroy Your Blocks & Strive for Samadhi

Did you know that you already have all the tools to be perfectly peaceful and happy right now? Depending on where you are right now, that might seem like laughable science fiction. Are you thinking: “That sounds like a quaint idea that might apply to other people’s lives, but certainly not mine. At least, definitely not me with this weird scalp rash I have, oh, and that I still don’t know how to file my taxes”? Don’t worry, same here.

Well, you’re in for a treat because GUESS WHAT?! It does apply to you! And if you’re a yogi, which you most likely are, then you’re already on your way:

The goal of Yoga is not to obtain something that is lacking: it is the realization of an already present reality. Yoga practice removes the obstacles that obstruct the experience of samadhi, or the state of complete absorption.” – Inside the Yoga Sutras

The Kleshas, or “afflictions” leave us in disillusion; distorting reality so that we live in our own story instead of the present moment– Like when your lonely neighbor is chatting with you about her doily collection and you’re thinking about all the cinnamon rolls you’re capable of eating in one sitting.

Room darkens. Music changes. The audience holds its breath. They see entering from stage right, The 5 Kleshas! Buh buh buhhhhh.


Avidya- Ignorance: Basic human tendency to not see things as they really are, which is that we are all connected, ALWAYS. Meaning that there should be no such thing as feeling separated.

Imagines life without separation and smiles inwardly


Asmita- Egoism, I-am-ness: Separation makes us think that our personality is the Self, when really it is just a tiny ripple on the surface of the ocean which is Self. We become trapped in the projections we make of our life. We are literally starring in our own mental movie! …then where the heck is my paparazzi? exasperated eyeroll


Raga (Attachment): When people or things give us pleasure we look to them to bring us more pleasure. This logical thought process is what leads to heartbreak, overeating, frustrations with friends. We forget that it’s us and only us that’s in charge of our external and internal world.


Dvesha (Aversion): When we think we know how we like things any other way will simply. not. do. Peers over giant Dolce sunglasses and mentally lasers “are you serious?” into everything and everyone dissatisfactory


Abinivesha (Fear of Death): Think about all your fears- money, relationships, public speaking, clogged toilets. They can all be traced back to the fear of death. Ex: Uncool clothes-> not accepted by tribe-> tribe throws you out-> you can’t survive the winter-> you DIE. Cure all fears by regularly meditating on your own death.


Now that you’ve successfully identified your blocks, hope you enjoy living in Samadhi! Just kidding, we know it’s not that easy. But that’s why yoga is a practice and not a competition, because we are all in this ridiculous journey of realizing our own (forgotten) perfection together.

Take notice today of how the Kleshas might be playing out in your life- which one can you start to peel away first so you can better see the reality of the perfection in all your imperfections.


By Guest Contributor : Sophie Dalton


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