Srimad Bhagavat Geetha – Chapter 6 – ध्यान योगा – Yoga of Meditation (part 13)

While discussing Geetha Sloka (4.26) ( ) we discussed about the latent impression of व्युत्थान.

These latent impression of व्युत्थान are two sets called (a) क्षिप्त (scattered), मूढ (stupified), विक्षिप्त (restless) and also (b) the impressions originating from the सवितर्क, निर्वितर्क and सविचार समाधि that persist even in the state of एकाग्र (one pointedness).

So how can ऋतम्भरा प्रज्ञा, which is attained through the purity of the mind resulting from perfection in निर्विचार समाधि, become established in a mind that is moved by those impressions?

तज्जः संस्कारोऽन्यसंस्कारप्रतिबन्धी॥५०॥ (Yoga Sutra 1.50) Patanjali says: “The impression arising from that ऋतम्भरा प्रज्ञा opposes the other impressions.”

The impression formed by that ऋतम्भरा प्रज्ञा, being powerful on account of having been born of the insight into reality, obstructs, renders ineffective or destroys, the impressions that are born of व्युत्थान (i.e. born of the states of क्षिप्त (scattered), मूढ (stupified), विक्षिप्त (restless) and of the states of समाधि  (viz. सवितर्क, निर्वितर्क and सविचार). since they are weak on account of having been born of the knowledge of unreal objects.

When those impressions are overpowered, then the perceptions arising from them cease to occur.

From that comes समाधि; from that the insight (प्रज्ञा) born of समाधि; from that the impressions (संस्कार) arising from insight.

Thus the store of the newer and newer latent impressions increases.

From that, again, arises insight (प्रज्ञा); and from that, (newer) impressions (संस्कार) again.

Now let’s consider an objection.

(Objection:) Well, granted that the impressions (संस्कार) of व्युत्थान , which arise from the knowledge of unreal objects, are obstructed by the impressions created by the insight gained in the संप्रज्ञात-समाधि which relates only to reality.  However, since these later impressions do not have anything to obstruct them, therefore there can occur सबीज-समाधि in the plane of एकाग्र itself, not, however, निर्बीज समाधि in the plane of निरोध (full restraint).

In answer, let us see what Patanjali says. तस्यापि निरोधे सर्वनिरोधान्निर्बीज: समाधिः॥५१॥ (Yoga Sutra 1.51)

“On the resraint of even that (संस्कार of संप्रज्ञात-समाधि), there follows the निर्बीज समाधि (the seedless समाधि) as a result of the elimination of all impressions (संस्कार).”

On the restraint, on the elimination through a special effort of the yogi, of that संस्कार of संप्रज्ञात-समाधि which orignates in the plane of एकाग्र–the word ‘even’ implies ‘of the संस्कार of the क्षिप्त , मूढ and विक्षिप्त states as well’–, there follows the निर्बीज, objectless, असंप्रज्ञात-समाधि, as a result of the elimination of all, of the संस्कार of संप्रज्ञात-समाधि as well.

And that निर्बीज समाधि together with its means, has been stated in the Sutra: विरामप्रत्ययाभ्यासपूर्वः संस्कारशेषोऽन्यः॥१८॥ (Yoga Sutra 1.18).

(असंप्रज्ञात-समाधि is the) other (type of समाधि) (अन्यः ) that is preceded (पूर्वः ) by the practice (अभ्यास ) of stopping or rejection (विराम ) of the mental fluctuations (प्रत्यय ) (which is the natural fruit of the highest वैराग्य  or Renunciation, but that) it (still) contains a residue (शेषः ) of latent impressions (संस्कार).”

The other i.e. असंप्रज्ञात-समाधि is that in which only the संस्कार remain and which is preceded by the practice of the means of rejection of mental activity.

विराम, rejection, stands for that through which the rejection is achieved;  So it means the giving up of the mental activities in the form of वितर्क, विचार, अस्मिता etc.

The प्रत्यय, the means of that which is पर-वैराग्य, supreme detachment.

Or the meaning of विराम-प्रत्यय is that it is a विराम, rejection, and also प्रत्यय, a particular form of mental modification (i.e. rejection which is a particular form of thought.)

The अभ्यास, practice, of that विराम-प्रत्यय means getting it repeatedly fixed in the mind.

So the alternative translation of the Sutra is: “The other is that in which only the impressions remain and which is caused by the practice of fixing the thought process in the form of ‘rejection of mental activity’.

That of which that very thing viz. विराम-प्रत्यय-अभ्यास is the पूर्वम्, cause, is the अन्यः, other, which is distinct from सबीज-समाधि  mentioned before.

That is to say, it is the निर्बीज-असंप्रज्ञात-समाधि, संस्कार-शेष:, in which only the संस्कार, latent impressions, remain (शेष); it is totally without any mental modification.

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