Wednesday, February 8, 2012
PATANJALI YOGA SUTRAS = Chapter 3 = Vibhoothi Paadha = What is Dhyanam (Meditation)
Ø thathra = therein (the object on which Dharana or concentration is occurring)
Ø prathyaya = if the causative principle is
Ø ekathahnathaa = uninterrupted flow of attention
Ø dhyanam = (is) meditation
We examined Dharana or concentration in the previous Post.
Sadhaka must concentrate his total attention (in his chittha) on one object, one idea, or one place. All other thoughts must be totally dropped. The previous five limbs of Yoga make this possible for the Sadhaka.
This power of concentrating one’s attention on a single object is a Great, new found Power for the Sadhaka.
The important point is – Sadhaka can direct the Chittha now – to focus attention on a single thought, or object, or place, or person – to the total exclusion of all other things.
Dhyanam is a continuation of Dharana, a continuous flow of it, on the same object.
Once the attention is Fixed on a particular object – Sadhaka must ensure that the attention remains on the same object continuously. This is dhyanam.
It is true – that Dharana on the same object will not be uninterrupted for the neophyte Sadhakas. It takes time – to gain the ability to fix this attention on one object for a continuous duration. But, success comes; and grows for the Devoted Sadhaka.
While performing Dharana on a single object, the Sadhaka must preferably not have any attachment to it. He must remain a non-judgmental witness to it.
Lord Krishna stresses this in vs.4. of Dhyana Yoga in Gita. Certain enabling conditions are also mentioned by Lord Krishna. He advocates moderation in food, sleep, recreation etc – and not swinging to either extreme in these matters.
One who has eaten too much or too little, can do neither Dharana nor Dhyanam. Likewise, one who sleeps too much or abstains from sleep too much – will be incapable of performing Dharana and Dhyanam.
One who is attached to (or hates) particular objects, ideals, persons etc also will be incapable. Non-attachment – neither like nor dislike – is the key to success in Dharana and Dhyanam. All desires born of Sankalpa, must be abandoned – else, our senses will start their outward journeys again.
Is your Dhyanam getting interrupted by distracting thoughts? Do not worry. It happens to all. When Dhyanam remains uninterrupted for a long time – it turns into Samadhi automatically. When it is periodically interrupted, it continued in Dhyanam stage. Continue Dhyanam – with all the interrupting thoughts. That is the purpose, process and technique of dhyanam.
Dhyanam will be so – until interruptions cease at some point of time time – we do not know when – and the Dhyanam turns into the blissful Samadhi.
Dharana is a short period concentration. But, Dhyanam or Meditation is continuous Dharana – but will have interruptions in it. Samadhi, is Dharana continued for a long time , which means it has become Dhyanam, which continues with interruptions for some time, and at some point of time, the interruptions will lose all their power and cease – ensuring uninterrupted meditation, which is Samadhi.
We will see more of Samadhi in next post.
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