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But the siddhis are not the goal. In fact, it is the supreme test of the yogi to give them up. Patanjali in his classic Yoga Sutras (written in the second century B.C.) refers to these supernatural powers as “obstacles to samadhi.... By giving up even these powers, the seed of evil is destroyed and liberation follows.”[1] Jesus demonstrated this when he successfully passed the three tests of Satan in the wilderness.[2]

  1. Patanjali, Yoga Sutras 3:38, 51, in Swami Prabhavananda and Christopher Isherwood, trans., How to Know God (Hollywood, Calif.: Vedanta Press, 1981), pp. 188, 194.
  2. Matt. 4:1–11; Luke 4:1–12.