Though pratyahara is a complex and intricate aspect of yoga which entwines both the inner and outer elements, lets start off simple with a little metaphor. The term pratyahara is most commonly translated as “withdrawal from the senses”. Let us take the symbol of a turtle retreating into its own shell. Here the turtle’s shell is the mind, or the inner self, and the turtle’s body parts are the senses, or what we take in from the outer world. The shell is our place of retreat, that part which is eternal and unchanging. We must strengthen and reinforce the walls of our minds through practices of focused concentration in order that we do not become too swept away by the dazzling display of the world we take in every day. When we are too immersed in the experiences happening all around us, we become blind to that most important aspect of ourselves.