[Advaita-l] [advaitin] What is Samadhi?

Vikram Jagannathan vikkyjagan at gmail.com
Thu Feb 1 00:37:19 EST 2024

Namaskaram Shri Archarya ji,

Definitely not a scholar, merely sharing some thoughts; hoping to receive

I certainly believe that there is a far more nuanced acceptance of Yoga in
Advaita Vedanta than mere outright rejection of all of Yoga in its
entirety. Shri Vidyasankar ji’s chapter in the book “Yoga: The Indian
Tradition” is an excellent reappraisal on this topic.

Here is my current understanding:
Vedanta sadhana of shravana, manana, nidhidhyasana of maha-vakyas, by a
qualified seeker, leads to the formation of akhandakara vritti in the
antahkarana. Akhandakara vritti is a type of chitta vritti wherein the
object of the vritti is chidabasa itself. Since the chidabasa of sattvika
antahkarana is akhanda, the corresponding vritti is akhandakara. As the
akhandakara vritti vyapti matches the chidabasa itself, there is no need
for an additional chidabasa vyapti (phala vyapti). At this point, the
antahkarana directly recognizes (as vritti jnana) the true nature of
chidabasa and consequently realizes the true nature of Chaitanya itself.
This vritti jnana is considered as the self-knowledge (atma-jnana) or
knowledge of oneness (Brahman-Atman-ekatvam). This knowledge is said to be
the one that overcomes ignorance. Ignorance is misunderstanding the nature
& qualities of chidabasa and antahkarana. The knowledge of oneness brings
about the correct understanding of their nature & qualities, revealing the
object chidabasa as it is. The experience in this state is the experience
of abundance of bliss. With this correct understanding, desires are subdued
as well, since desires are only manifested as particular vritits and with
experience of abundance of bliss, there are no more any desires
originating. With the lack of desires to fuel the antahkarana, this
one-pointed akhandakara vritti itself gets extinguished, subduing the
entire antahkarana itself. With the antahkara subdued, chidabasa itself is
subdued and all that remains is pure Chaitanya alone. This is called

1. In this state akhandakara vritti, though there is a vritti in
antahkarana, the vritti is one-pointed, pointing to the object akhanda
chidabasa, and is called self-knowledge
2. This one-pointed state makes clear the object - chidabasa - as it is and
not intermixed with functionings of antahkarana
3. It destroys the ignorance manifested at the antahkarana level by
overcoming the misunderstanding or superimposition of the chidabasa &
4. With this, the desires and desire prompted thoughts in the antahkarana
are removed as well.
5. This state of self-knowledge, still a vritti jnana, automatically
results in the extinguishing of the entire antahkara and its vrittis
6. In the absence of any vrittis, that state itself is called as the state
of no-mind or as transcended the mind or as absolute chitta vritti nirodha
(complete cessation of all chitta vrittis) or aparokshanubhuti

Based on the definitions in Yoga Sutra, its bhashya and corresponding
vivarana, it is seen that:
a. The state of akhandakara vritti, knowledge of oneness, matches the
description of samprajnata samadhi, with the object being chidabasa
b. The state transcending the knowledge of oneness, after extinguishing the
akhandakara vritti and antahkarana itself, matches the description of
asamprajnata samadhi or complete chitta vritti nirodha
c. Aligning with Swami Sankaracharya’s bhasha in BU-1.4.7, the
self-knowledge automatically leads to chitta vritti nirodha. Thus the
self-knowledge (atma-vijnana) is the sole / direct means (ananya sadhana)
to chitta vritti nirodha

Further we see the bhashya for YogaSutra-1.1 describing the samprajnata
samadhi as “the samadhi in the on-pointed mind makes clear the object as it
is, destroys the taints, loosens the karma-bonds, and brings the state of
inhibition into view; it is called samprajnata.” This exactly matches the
summary 1 - 6!

Also, in YogaSutra-1.2, Yoga (asamprajnata samadhi) is defined as chitta
vritti nirodha. This includes all possible means (sadhanas) on how this
state is reached. But Advaita Vedanta sadhana says that
vedanta-vakya-janita akhandakara vritti jnana alone, and always,
automatically leads to this total chitta vritti nirodha state without any

Therefore, while the Yoga definitions of the terms ‘samadhi’ (as
samprajnata samadhi) and ‘chitta vritti nirodha’ (as asamprajnata samadhi)
are too broad, as it could pertain to any object, the Advaita Vedanta
sadhana limits these same yoga terms to ‘akhandakara vritti’ and
‘aparokshanubhuti’ respectively.

Open to feedback and ready to stand corrected.

with humble prostrations,

On Wed, Jan 31, 2024 at 9:24 PM 'Kuntimaddi Sadananda' via advaitin <
advaitin at googlegroups.com> wrote:

> PraNAms to all.
> There is lot of confusion in the Facebook discussion groups - many coming
> from Ramana Maharshi groups -1. Samadhi is required for Self-Realization
> and 2) the mind needs to be eliminated to attain Samadhi for
> self-realization (mana vinasha). Many quote from the books that have
> question-answers sessions Ramana Maharshi had with disciples. There are
> also many disciples of Ramana Maharshi who further endorse the above
> statements. There are also JK groups that denounce all methods as they all
> condition the mind.
> Some even quote Vivekachudamani sloka 447 or something that says the mind
> is a problem and one has to have a thoughtless mind for self-realization.
> 1. What do you think is samadhi?
> 2. Is a thoughtless mind required for self-realization?
> 3. What do you think is involved in self-realization?
> 4. Is akhandaakaara vrutti involves thoughtless state?
> I am posing these to get input from all the scholars here.
> Hari Om!
> Sadananda
> --
> You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups
> "advaitin" group.
> To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an
> email to advaitin+unsubscribe at googlegroups.com.
> To view this discussion on the web visit
> https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/advaitin/46047575.1994153.1706757866436%40mail.yahoo.com
> <https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/advaitin/46047575.1994153.1706757866436%40mail.yahoo.com?utm_medium=email&utm_source=footer>
> .

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list