Chapter 62 — King Suraghu Describes His Samadhi

Vasishta related:—

King Parigha then resumed his personal speech, expressive of the affection he formerly bore to Suraghu. Parigha said, “Whatever acts of goodness are done in this earth of strife by men of well governed minds, they all redound to their happiness. But not so the evil deeds of ungoverned minds. They lead to their misery.”

“Sage, do you rely on that state of perfect rest which is free from desire? Do you rest in that state of subtle samadhi that is described as transcendental coma or trance?”

Suraghu replied:—

Tell me sage, what do you mean by the abandonment of all desires? What is meant by that perfect lethargy which they call transcendental coma or trance? Tell me, O high minded sage, how can a man be called not entranced who is enrapt in his supreme intelligence and at the same time attends to his worldly concerns? Men of enlightened understandings, however they are employed observing their usual worldly affairs, are said to be in bliss with their knowledge of the unity of the Supreme Soul. Simply sitting in lotus posture with palms folded cannot endow supreme bliss if the mind is not subdued and one’s nature is unconquerable.

The knowledge of truth which burns away all worldly desires like straw is called samadhi, the true trance of the soul. Samadhi is not secluded devotees staying in one place and observing silence. The wise describe samadhi as the repose of the soul, always gathered in knowledge attended with continued rest and self-content, which gives an insight into the nature of things. 10 The wise say samadhi or stillness is the mind unaffected by pride or hatred. The mind is as unmoved as a fixed rock against the howling winds of the passions. 11 The mind is also said to have its stillness in samadhi when it is devoid of anxious thoughts and cares, when it is acquainted with the natures of its wished for objects, and yet remains free from its choice of and aversion to the objects of its liking or dislike. This is also said to be the fullness or perfection of the mind.

12 The mind of the magnanimous, joined and acting with its understanding, is said to stand in its stillness of samadhi or quietism. 13 But this pause of samadhi, if stretched too far to become a standstill, is liable to break down by itself, just as a boy’s hand pulls the fiber of a lotus-stalk too long. Dead and dormant quiescence is the opposite extreme of conscious quietism.

14 As the sun does not cease giving his light to the other side of the world after he sets from this part, so our consciousness continues to glow even after it has run its course in this life. 15 As the course of a stream never stops in spite of its constant currents, so the course of our thoughts does not suspend from knowing further truths. 16 As the ever continuous time never loses the sight of fleeting moments, so the everlasting soul is never in abeyance to mark the fitting thoughts of its mind. 17 As the ever current time never forgets to run its habitual course, so intelligent understanding is never remiss to scan the nature of the mysterious Consciousness which guides its course.

18 When the mind wanders at random and is not settled in the sole object of its meditation, its thoughts run as quickly in succession as the continued rotation of the parts of time. 19 As the lifeless soul has no perception of any external object, so the soul unconscious of itself has no knowledge of the course of time, as in the state of sleep, delirium and unconsciousness. 20 As there is no skillful man without some skill or other in the world, so there is no intelligent being without the knowledge of his soul and self-consciousness.

21 I find myself to be enlightened and wakeful and pure and holy at all times. My mind is tranquil and my soul at its rest on all occasions. 22 I find nothing intercepts the sweet repose of my soul which has found its anchorage in my uninterrupted communion with the divine spirit. 23 Hence my mind is never without its quiescence at anytime, nor is it unquiet at any moment, it being solely resigned to spiritual meditation. 24 I see the all pervading and everlasting soul in everything and in every manner. I know not whether it be the rest or unrest in my soul which has found both its quiet and employment in its perpetual meditation of the Divine Spirit.

25 Great men of quiescent spirits always continue in an even and uniform tone and even course of their minds with themselves. Therefore the difference between the rest and restlessness of the soul is a mere verbal distinction and bears no shade of difference in their meanings.