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Attaining Samadhi


The third chapter of Patanjali’s ‘Yog Sutras’ is about the progress of the yog practice. Its third verse states: the meaning alone shines, empty of form and that is, verily, samadhi. What does it mean to be ‘swarupa-shunyam-eva’, empty of form? Everything in creation has two forms: external and internal. The external form is called ‘rupa’. It is never constant. It creates maya in the beholder’s eyes.

It is superficial, non-essential and shallow. The internal form constitutes the very substance of its nature which is called ‘swarupa’. It is the core, the kernel of a nut. It is real. The rupa may be equated with the content of mind that is Pratyaya, comprising past memories, images, intellect and so on. To realise the swarupa, one has to transcend the rupa that creates illusions that temporarily clouds the perceiver.

The swarupa is the residual consciousness of its own action. The word ‘shunya’ stands for the deep void, not emptiness in its negative sense. When the kernel of a nut is broken, it reveals nothing. Yet, it contains everything. This is the true nature of abeing.

Swarupa shunya can be experienced when the rupa comprising pratyaya is annihilated. When the intellect faculty ceases, a higher faculty comes into play to touch the inner core.

The higher faculty is deep insight or intuition that helps us experience the ocean of Consciousness. One who experiences becomes a Jnani, the one who is illuminated with real knowledge.



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