32. Purity, contentment, austerity, self-study, and surrender to god are the laws to be observed.
33. When the mind is disturbed by wrong thoughts, ponder on the opposites.
34. It is necessary to ponder on the opposites because wrong thoughts, emotions, and actions, such as violence, result in ignorance and intense misery whether they be performed, caused, or approved through greed, anger, or delusion in mild, medium, or intense degrees.
There are laws, and laws: laws to suppress man, laws to help him bloom; laws to prohibit, restrict, and laws to help him expand, increase. A law which simply prohibits is destructive; a law that helps to grow and increase is creative. The Old Testament Ten Commandments are different from Patanjali’s laws. Those ten commandments prohibit, restrict, suppress. The whole emphasis is: you should not do this, you must not do this, this is not allowed. Patanjali’s laws are totally different; they are creative. The emphasis is not on what should not be done; the emphasis is on what should be done. And there is a vast difference between the two.
In the Old Testament it seems as if the laws are the goal – as if man exists for them, not that they exist for man. For Patanjali there is a utility in the laws, but they are not ultimate or absolute in any sense. Man doesn’t exist for them; they exist for man. They are means, and one has to go through them – and go beyond them. That has to be remembered; otherwise you can carry a wrong impression about Patanjali.
Ordinarily, religions have been very destructive. They have crippled the whole of humanity. They have made everybody guilty – and this is the greatest crime that can be done against man. And the whole trick is: first, you make people guilty; when they are trembling with guilt – afraid, scared, burdened, living in a hell – then you help them out of it, then you come and teach them how to be free. In the first place, why create guilt? And when man is guilty he becomes so crippled and so afraid of growth, so afraid to move and grow, so afraid to go into the unknown and the unfamiliar and the strange that he becomes static. a dead thing; then everybody is there working for his salvation.