Ashtavarana = Eight-fold shields or protective coverings of the devotee
The Astavarana are the eight fold shields or protective coverings of the devotee. They protect the Anga from the onslaughts of Maya on him and guide him safely for final beatitude in the world. They shield him from the evils attaching to the worldly life by putting the Anga out of the three taints and five sheaths. They guard and guide him on the way to enduring happiness by means of spiritual discipline and exercises. These eight Avaranas or guards have special significance of their own and are the means of Upasana in this religious life. The eight fold Avaranas are the spiritual one.