There is a direct link between the theme of Chitta-vikshepa and another fundamental subject that Yoga and other esoteric systems have in their arsenal, namely – the subject of energetic “cords” or, as we refer to them in our slangy word – “tails and trails”. For non-practitioners I shall remind that when we speak about energetic cords, or ties, we mean a state when having had a disharmonious interaction with another person one has some stressing-out emotions left in respect of the said person so that in his mind (consciously or unconsciously) he returns to this communication (for instance, trying to explain post factum something that he hadn’t managed to explain live), or when the presence of the said person or some reminder of him comes as something unpleasant, results in breach of chakra or even occurrence of psychosomatic disease.
Many esoteric and even psychological Schools deal with energetic ties from different perspectives. A shaman would speak about “losing one’s soul”, a psychoanalyst would refer to cords as a psycho-traumatic situation, a gestaltist would name this an incomplete gestalt. Within the framework of Castaneda tradition they would correlate them to inner dialogue or later on, after the work of Taisha Abelar – to “whitish fibers in cocoon”. ‘Wild’ mediums (people with occult skills but without systematic knowledge obtained in any Tradition; usually – self-taught) “see” energetic attachments as ‘trails’ in person’s energy field. Actually, the term “trail” has been borrowed from this very subculture.
From the perspective of Yoga we can easily see that it is only some partial understanding of the problem that each of the approaches commands. A psychoanalyst, for instance, is not able to detect the fact that “psycho-traumatic” situation affects synchronously all its participants who seem to have no physical contact. As well as the one that acts and emotions happening while the patient is ‘on the therapy couch’ (that, in fact, are nothing but simplest forms of dis-attachment rituals) exercise influence upon those participants of the situation who are not even aware of such treatment session to take place.
Of the other hand, a medium does not understand that the field anomalies he sees are associated with person’s perception of the world, distribution of his mind, the very Chitta-vikshepa that we speak about.
Indeed, from spiritual point of view an “energetic tie” comes as a repeated mental and emotional return of a person to some stressful and unpleasant situation, so that he tries to “re-act” it in a more harmonious way. But this “re-acting”, being of mental nature, brings neither relief nor experience, while a fraction of chitta “gets stuck” in the situation. As a result, the rate of conscious experiencing of current situations drops thus increasing the number of mistakes made there. Trails breed new trails and a person gets more and more entangled in the net of his karma. By the way, except for Chitta-vikshepa there are other terms in yoga denoting the cords, such as ‘samskara’ and ‘vasana’…
Traditionally, the question of whether there had been any mentioning of ties in early yogic literature or Patanjali was the first to speak about them has excited my curiosity.
And here is the answer: the term “tie” was already mentioned in Atharvaveda that offers certain rituals against “attachments and bonds”. But in was only in Katha Upanishad that their nature and relation to spiritual practice was first made clear:
115.’When all the ties of the heart are severed here on earth, then the mortal becomes immortal–here ends the teaching’
116. ‘There are a hundred and one arteries of the heart, one of them penetrates the crown of the head. Moving upwards by it, a man (at his death) reaches the Immortal; the other arteries serve for departing in different directions.’
[translation by Max Mueller – transl.note]
The second of the afore-given lines speaks about the “arteries” coming from the heart and going outside! This is the way how energy ties are perceived.
Of course all absurdities like “chopping the trails” and cutting them off with a help of “astral sword” or blunt kitchen knife have no relevance to the topic.