sparshan kritva bahir bahyams
caksus caivantare bhruvoh
pranapanau samau kritva
yah sada mukta eva sah
"Shutting out all external sense objects, keeping the eyes and vision concentrated between the two eyebrows, suspending the inward and outward breaths within the nostrils, and thus controlling the mind, senses and intelligence, he is a muni constantly thinking of atman to attain atman sakshatkaram. One who is always in this state is certainly liberated."
Bahya = external, sparsa = contact [listening, seeing, touching, tasting and smelling], bahir kritva = pushed aside or out, that is our sensual experience from outside contact are expelled, bhruva antare = in the middle of the two brows, chaksus = keeping our sight. When a person wants to start practicing yoga, he has to keep off all contacts with external things which can be experienced by our sense organs and sitting on a seat comfortably he has to see the middle between the eye brows . Nasabhyantara = in the nostrils [or nose], carinau = travelling [or passing], pranaapanau = the prana and apana airs [ vayu], samau kritva = equalising them. This way He says how pranayamam has to be done, by equal passage of inhaling and exhaling. Keeping off from all senses except atman, yata = such, indriya = sense organs, mano = mind, buddhi = intellect or resolve, muni = [by controlling organs, mind and buddhi] he becomes a muni or one always thinking of atman, moksha parayana = with atman sakshatkaram as the sole objective, vigata = dispelled, iccha = desires, bhaya = consequent fear, krodha = and consequent anger, ya = such a person, sah mukti eva = he is always in a state of liberated. That is as he starts to practice yoga he attains the state of emancipation. How to practice this? Can we afford to sit in yoga free from all external contacts? Yes, but it does not mean that we have to go to far off places like Badarikshram or Himalayas, but in one's own place and for a short time like 15 minutes or half an hour to start with. Cutting off external contacts is not new to us, as daily while sleeping for 6 or 7 hours we are away from all such contacts. Sleep means a sort of atmanubhavam and we become one with Paramatma. So yogam is possible for all of us. Only difference is that sleep is a result of tiredness and fatigue, while the yoga mentioned here is we have to get atmanubhavam while we are awake. First we have to choose a calm place and have a proper seat not too high nor on the plain floor. It should be comfortable to the person, as many complain of knee joint pain, etc. We should create the ambient atmosphere for practicing the yoga. Padmasana is preferred but it should be possible for the person. We have to keep off all external contacts which can hinder the yoga, from the place where we have to practice yoga. Eyes have to be open as He instructs to watch the mid region between the eye brows. [In a later sloka He is going to tell to see the tip of the nose. But both mean that we have to keep the eyes open and concentrate on a region between the eye brows and nose tip]. Closing the eyes may induce sleep and so with partially open eyes, we have to set our sight. We have to then equalize our breath, intake and outgo. Inhaling is called poorakam and exhaling is rechakam. Retention of the inhaled air in our body is called kumbakam. Sri Krishna tells to equalize prana and apana. We have seen earlier that prana air always goes up and apana air always down. So, equalizing means the time for inhaling, exhaling and retention should be equal. That is poorakam, rechakam and kumbakam should have equal time. All these are body related. Now we have to think of atman and its qualities. Buddhi should direct mind in this only. Once this is done, we will have no likes and dislikes and so we conquer fear and anger arising out of desires. Our objective will be only atman sakshatkaram. Such a person, even in the short duration of half an hour or so yoga is practiced, is like any soul that has attained Moksham. This is the crux of this sloka. This state will be there as long as we practice yoga and so by slowly increasing by constant practice we can improve and even while doing our daily routines we can be in a state of liberated.