Thursday, March 5, 2009

March Monthly Theme:
Dhyana & Samadhi

The monthly theme for March brings us to the last two limbs of Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga, Dhyana and Samadhi.

From the previous limb or Dharana, we learned the importance of single pointed concentration. It is the foundation for the next limb, Dhyana, or meditation. It is at this point that there is uninterrupted flow of concentration. It is a fine distinction but at this point the mind has quieted and in the stillness it produces few or no thoughts at all. One is aware without focus. One has actually merged with the object of concentration. It has often been compared to rain drops falling. The rain drops themselves represent, dharana, or intermittent moments of focused attention. When they fall to Earth and create a river, there is a merging of the individual raindrops into one stream, like dhyana, or meditation.

The final limb is Samadhi, or enlightenment or super consciousness. Here we lose all attachment and are one with the meditation. Samadhi is the state in which we no longer experience reality through our own filters. Instead we experience reality directly. It is the state in which you are aware on a cellular level of the underlying oneness of the universe. Judith Lasater says ” Samadhi is a state of being intensely present without a point of view.” It is believed that we can achieve this in our everyday lives but is seems we need the journey of yoga to discover what was present inside us all along.

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