SAMADHI PADA

In Samadhi Pada, Patanjali teaches us how to see the complete picture by shifting our perspective from one of partial or blocked view to that of possibility through clarity. He introduces us to what clouds our image - our own self-imposed obstacles and the mind's power when we remove these limitations and clear the fog. This new vantage point helps us to unlock our potential. The sutras help us to step away from these obstacles and approach our goals in a direction that is clear and specific through discipline and willpower. 

Samadhi is a state of being where one sees the soul face to face. 

After explaining the causes of fluctuations in mind, Patanjali shows us how to overcome them by means of Abhyasa (practice) and Vairagya (renunciation). 

Abhyasa is a dedicated, constant and unswerving practice in a chosen field , pursued against all odds, for indefinitely long periods of time, despite repeated failures. Abhyasa builds confidence and refinement. It demands four qualities from the aspirant:

  • Dedication

  • Zeal

  • Uninterrrupted awareness

  • Long duration

Vairagya is the cultivation of freedom from passion, abstention from worldly desires and appetites and discrimination between the real and the unreal. Vairagya eliminates whatever hinders progress and refinement. It demands four qualities from the aspirant:

  • Disengaging the senses from action

  • Avoiding desire

  • Stilling the mind

  • Freeing oneself from cravings

When the mind takes the Seer on an outward journey of pleasure accompanied with pain, leading to attachment, the same mind with the practice of Vairagya intervenes and is able to bring the Seer back to the origin.

 

Practitioners are also of four levels:

  • MILD - Slow, indefinite, undecided practice - state of Annamaya Kosha (the physical self)

  • MEDIUM - Methodical, Disciplined practice - state of Praanamaya kosha (physiological level, understanding the inner functions of the body)

  • KEEN - Scientific, meaningful, purposeful and decisive practice - state of intimate knowledge linking Annamaya kosha and Praanamaya kosha, leading to Manomaya kosha and Vigynyanamaya Kosha 

  • INTENSE - Religiousness and purity in practice - state of Anandamaya kosha (practice with consciousness and surrender to the Supreme Soul)