reversed, inverted, perverse, contrary to, unreal cognition, indiscrimination, perverse cognition, wrong knowledge, misconception, incorrect knowing, not seeing clearly
Sutra 1.8 mithyajnanam atadrupa pratistham- Misconception occurs when knowledge of something is not based upon its true form.
I was walking my dog last night. It was dark. We approached a mountainous pile of leaf-filled garbage bags. He freaked. Did NOT want to pass by. Pulled me away on the leash. He was scared. I pulled him in the direction of the leaves, close enough so I could touch the bags and hold him at the same time. Once he realized I could touch them without harm, he sauntered over, sniffed them and we moved on. Same thing happens with turned over garbage bins, some parked cars, things that make loud noises, etc. Once he realizes that what he thought he saw was not indeed what he thought, he’s fine.
When we perceive a thing as being other than what it is really; that is viparyaya.
When we accept the unreal as real, it is viparyaya.
Jumping to conclusions is viparyaya.
It’s not having all the information, but passing judgement anyway.
Viparyaya is one of the five vrittis (fluctuations of the mind which disturb our peace, thought patterns) the yoga practice aims to control. It is like a blanket of confusion. Through our practice, we begin to see where we have made these mistakes in perception and try to see more clearly. Misperceptions lead to all sorts of ego driven responses that push us farther from realizing our true self- responses such as fear, aversion, anger, hurt, or attraction.
So let us learn to PAUSE before assuming, believing, judging, or interpreting so we avoid misconceptions which lead us down a very unhelpful path on this journey.
He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.