SWAMI SHANKARATILAKA

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MEDITATION NIDIDHYASANA. PART 1.

by Swami Shankaratilaka1902903_10200539667293847_2076195805_n

There is one very important text in Vedanta which is called Tarka sangraha, which is used to understand the fundamentals of non-dualism. The concept of tarak in the Advaita means acquiring the pragnya, the understanding about what and who Brahman is through the nididhyasana.

Nididhyasana is the reflexive enlightening meditation of the Advaita Vedanta. It is not the deep meditation that we learn in the Yoga Darshana, nor the meditation in the Pranava, in the Om converted into vibration through the breathing that the Gita explains in the sixth dialogue.

This meditation has in common with the other two the state of bhavana or enstasy . This means the suspension of the senses, due to the fact that if the senses go on operating in the mind it is not possible a state of understanding of the transcendental truth.

Nididhyasana is the most difficult practice of all the teachings taught in the Veda. On the one side, it requires incisively listening to the teachings of the Guru with an absolute concentration, not the way as we are now: that, we don´t take notes, we don´t try to understand intellectually what is being said. It is required to be in asana, in the same position that the Gita and Patanjali describe, still, no movement, the breathing suspended like a thread, with all the senses concentrated in the ear, doing the pratyahara in this way, this is the sensorial restriction.

We already have asana, pranayama and pratyahara, and with the eyes half-open as Shri Krishna Himself describes in the Gita, but to avoid the disperse movement of the mind, the eyes have to be addressed towards nasagra drishti, towards the extreme of the nose to do a netra bandha, that is, an ocular blockage to avoid vikshepa shakti, the disperse movement of the mind. This is very important because there is a correlation between the mental dispersion and the ocular movement. Even the person who has dreams, moves the yes: his body may be still but his eyes moving.

The dharana comes next. We already have the still posture, perfect, the restricted breathing with little inhalation and little exhalation, giving space naturally in between. We already have the concentration of all the senses in the ear, and through the netra bandha in the nasagra drishti the dharana of fixation of the mental concentration is produced.

The vikshepa movement is natural in the mind, the mind moves, and for this reason Krishna says in the Gita that we have to avoid looking around, to any place of the four directions. Then the ekagrata dirshti happens.

The ekagrata drishti is a concept that Patanjali Maharishi mentions. Thus the mind is ready to do the dhyanam, the meditation. But due to the fact that we have the ear open to the word of the Guru that reveals the misters of the Brahma Sutra, then we are accomplishing a revelation that the Skanda Purana gives.

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