Samadhi is a very advanced and powerful spiritual state of consciousness. To attain Samadhi is very rare. A beginner to meditation should not concern themselves with techniques trying to attain Samadhi. It is like a young child at Kindergarten expecting to be able to write a phD. However to know about the summits of meditation can be of tremendous inspiration and encouragement to meditate. It is a reminder of the ultimate goal of meditation, which is liberation or nirvana. When one can attain a state of Samadhi one can experience a true consciousness of bliss. The problem with trying to describe Samadhi is that the consciousness far transcends the domain of the mind. To attempt to describe Samadhi is like trying to describe a painting of Van Gogh to a blind man. In an attempt to explain Samadhi spiritual teachers have often turned to poetry, although even poetry is merely like a finger pointing at the moon. Sri Chinmoy wrote this poem called The Absolute.
‘No Mind no form I only exist Now ceased all will and thought The final end of nature’s dance I am it whom I have sought.’
The Absolute (Extract)
In the scriptures such as the Upanishads it is said there are different grades of Samadhi. The first Samadhi is known as Savikalpa Samadhi. In this state a person has a different state of consciousness in which time and space appear quite different. In savikalpa Samadhi it is not possible for thoughts to affect you. The next level to savikalpa Samadhi is known as nirvikalpa Samadhi. In nirvikalpa Samadhi there is no mind and no form, only an endless, infinite consciousness of bliss and peace. To enter into nirvikalpa Samadhi involves losing all sense of identity; you become merged with the divine, transcendental consciousness. Sri Chinmoy in trying to describe nirvikalpa Samadhi explains it like this.
‘In nirvikalpa Samadhi there is no mind; there is only infinite peace and bliss. There nature’s dance stops, and the knower and known become one. There you enjoy a supremely divine, all pervading self-amorous ecstasy.’
In the hoary past there have been quite a few experiences documented where aspirants who attained nirvikalpa Samadhi did not want to, or were unable to return to the ordinary world. The bliss of nirvana was so powerful they did not want to return to the ordinary world of pain and ignorance.
In nirvikalpa Samadhi one is unable to operate in the world. However there is a state of Samadhi higher than nirvikalpa Samadhi and that is known as Sahaja Samadhi. In sahaja Samadhi one can maintain the consciousness of nirvikalpa Samadhi but also be able to operate in the world. This experience of sahaja Samadhi is quite rare and only spiritual masters of the highest calibre and granted this experience.
When a seeker can attain Samadhi it is said you cannot help but look at the world in a different way. In Samadhi you see the underlying oneness of humanity and God’s creation.
Samadhi and God Realisation By: Sri Chinmoy
- The Three Samadhis
- by Sri Chinmoy