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Adhyatma Yoga (An Old and Rare Book)
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Introduction

The book' Adhyatma Yoga' was published in Kannada in 1963 for the first time as my maiden attempt in writing on Vedantic topics according to the Prastbanatrava Bhashyas. I was so much fascinated by the discourses of Sri Sri Satchidanandendra Saraswati Swamiji as well as his writings on this topic of 'Adhyatma Yoga' that I was inspired to publish a book, bringing out the unique feature and secret of this Adhyatma Yoga, namely, that this Adhyatma Yoga or Dhyana Yoga is Vastu Tantra (that is, the cognition of a thing as it is and not dependent on the will or wish of the cogniser) and not Kartru Tantra (that is, a meditation or anything else done according to the will or wish of the performer). Naturally, this Adhyatma Yoga does not belong to the category of doing something and achieving the result afresh. On the other hand, it is cognition of the real nature of the Self through a peculiar and unique precess of concentrated observation in keeping with the directives of the Shrutis or the Upanishads.

There are hundreds of spiritual institutions or missions in our country and abroad which prescribe various processes of meditation to the aspirants. By and large, these teachers of meditation fall into two groups. viz. those who advocate gaining mystic experiences and getting into a trance etc. through the means of meditation and those who teach meditations through which one has to achieve the experience of the Self just as a1ny other experiences like feelings, emotions etc. in the objective world. Both 'these groups, however, advocate the Kartru Tantra meditations, that is, something to be done and achieved afresh by the performer, and evidently this result will be time-bound and hence non-eternal. The subject dealt with here viz. Adhyatma Yoga, also known as Dhyana Yoga, Manonigraha Yoga, Samadhi Yoga and Nidhidhyasana, is treated these days as a Kartru Tantra Sadana.

But in the Shankara Bhashya throughout, this Adhyatma Yoga or Dhyana Yoga is treated as a Vastu Tantra Sadhana. What are the reasons for this deviation or departure from the Bhashya interpretation? This important question is answered conviningly in Sri Swamiji's monumental and revolutionary works like 'Mandukya Rahasya Vivruti, 'Gita Shastraartha Vivekaha', "Panchapaadika Prasthaanam' & 'Vedanta Prakriya Pratyabhijna' etc. in Sanskrit an d in his English books like 'Misconceptions about Shankara', 'Intuition of Reality', 'Some Clarifications about Certain Vedantic Concepts' and 'How to Recognise the Method of Vedanta' etc. as also in his several Kannada books.

The commentators on Shankara Bhashyas after Sureshwaraacharya like the Panchapaadika, Vivarana and Bnaamati etc. have misinterpreted this 'Adhyatma Yoga', connecting it with the process of Patanjali Yoga with its eight limbs. Though in Shankara Bhashyas the first five among these eight limbs are accepted as beneficial to Adhyatma Yoga, the other three, namely, Dharana Dhvana and Samadhi, are rejected totally. I have clearly elucidated the exact meaning and import of the words, 'Dharana', 'Dhyana' and 'Samadhi', which are used in Bhashyas in various contexts. Shankara has emphatically declared that Patanjala school is one teaching distinctly dualistic doctrines He says in his Sutra Bhashya 2-1-3: "But the iollowers of Sankhya and Yoga are dualists and they do not perceive the unity of the Self. Whereas, Bhaamati says: "Shravana (listening) and Manana (reflecting) are to be treated as 'Dharana,' meaning, one should fix his mind on the Self. The word 'Nidhidhyasana' is equal to 'Dhyana' of Patanjala Yoga, in which one should keep the flow of his mind continuously on the Self without any '-interruptions, The word 'Darshana' denotes the realisation or Saakshaatkara, meaning, the Sedhaka enters into Samadhi or trance through a one-pointed thought flow in which ultimately the mind itself ceases to exist." These types of interpretations are taken as authoritative for centuries now and all are confused in determining the true nature of Adhyatma Yoga, and the basic- or central truth of the nature of the Self was totally lost to' the world. The essential truth of it all is: 1. The self can never, become an object for the process of 'Samyama', that is, the combination of Dharana, Dhvana and Samadhi according to Patanjala Yoga. 2. The Vritti or concept of Saakshaatkara is, not an essential factor to I cognise or intuit the real nature of the Self,' whose nature is direct and immediate to the cogniser, because the concept of Saakshaatkara belongs to the meditator and hence it is Kartru Tantra it is true that in various Kartru Tantra Upasanas dealt with in the Upanishads, Saakshaatkara or visualisation or realisation is to be achieved or attained afresh. 3. Whereas, the nature of Nidhidhyasana or Adhyatma Yoga is Vastu Tantra. As the nature of the Self is immediate and direct, there is no necessity of Vritti like Saakshaatkara in order to prove or determine the nature of the Self. These three main reasons are adduced, by our Swamiji in his books for this misinterpretation.

A foreign disciple wanted to know the exact meanings of the words. 'Adhyatma' and' Adhyatma Yoga' and this treatise about both the words was prepared for his sake. Previously in the books in Kannada and Telugu only the' Adhyatma Yoga' was dealt with, but here along with 'Adhyatma Yoga' the chapter on 'Adhyatma' is included; besides, an appendix, in which the relevant topics of Shravana and Manana are treated in detail, is added at the end for the benefit of the aspirants,

I am happy that this edition is published by the Bangalore Branch of the Adhyatma Prakasha Karyalaya and is being distributed free to the public on the unique auspicious occasion of the birth centenary celebrations of my Guru, Sri Sri Satchidanandendra Saraswati Swamiji. The copyrights of this edition as well as the Kannada edition of 'Adhyatma Yoga' belong to the Sri Shantananda Vinayakaswamy Devalaya and Sri Dattaguru Shankara Vedanta Nilaya Trust of Yelahanka. I am glad that the Trust authorities have agreed to dedicate this English edition to the memory of our revered Swamiji.

I have to offer my thanks to the donors (who wish to remain anonymous) of this English edition for their kind help in its publication and free distribution to the public on this occasion. I am also thankful to my friend and ardent disciple of my Guru, Sri D. B. Gangolli, who helped me in preparing the manuscript of this edition. I pray to the Almighty and our revered Guruji to bless everyone who has helped in the publication of this edition.

 

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Adhyatma Yoga (An Old and Rare Book)

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Introduction

The book' Adhyatma Yoga' was published in Kannada in 1963 for the first time as my maiden attempt in writing on Vedantic topics according to the Prastbanatrava Bhashyas. I was so much fascinated by the discourses of Sri Sri Satchidanandendra Saraswati Swamiji as well as his writings on this topic of 'Adhyatma Yoga' that I was inspired to publish a book, bringing out the unique feature and secret of this Adhyatma Yoga, namely, that this Adhyatma Yoga or Dhyana Yoga is Vastu Tantra (that is, the cognition of a thing as it is and not dependent on the will or wish of the cogniser) and not Kartru Tantra (that is, a meditation or anything else done according to the will or wish of the performer). Naturally, this Adhyatma Yoga does not belong to the category of doing something and achieving the result afresh. On the other hand, it is cognition of the real nature of the Self through a peculiar and unique precess of concentrated observation in keeping with the directives of the Shrutis or the Upanishads.

There are hundreds of spiritual institutions or missions in our country and abroad which prescribe various processes of meditation to the aspirants. By and large, these teachers of meditation fall into two groups. viz. those who advocate gaining mystic experiences and getting into a trance etc. through the means of meditation and those who teach meditations through which one has to achieve the experience of the Self just as a1ny other experiences like feelings, emotions etc. in the objective world. Both 'these groups, however, advocate the Kartru Tantra meditations, that is, something to be done and achieved afresh by the performer, and evidently this result will be time-bound and hence non-eternal. The subject dealt with here viz. Adhyatma Yoga, also known as Dhyana Yoga, Manonigraha Yoga, Samadhi Yoga and Nidhidhyasana, is treated these days as a Kartru Tantra Sadana.

But in the Shankara Bhashya throughout, this Adhyatma Yoga or Dhyana Yoga is treated as a Vastu Tantra Sadhana. What are the reasons for this deviation or departure from the Bhashya interpretation? This important question is answered conviningly in Sri Swamiji's monumental and revolutionary works like 'Mandukya Rahasya Vivruti, 'Gita Shastraartha Vivekaha', "Panchapaadika Prasthaanam' & 'Vedanta Prakriya Pratyabhijna' etc. in Sanskrit an d in his English books like 'Misconceptions about Shankara', 'Intuition of Reality', 'Some Clarifications about Certain Vedantic Concepts' and 'How to Recognise the Method of Vedanta' etc. as also in his several Kannada books.

The commentators on Shankara Bhashyas after Sureshwaraacharya like the Panchapaadika, Vivarana and Bnaamati etc. have misinterpreted this 'Adhyatma Yoga', connecting it with the process of Patanjali Yoga with its eight limbs. Though in Shankara Bhashyas the first five among these eight limbs are accepted as beneficial to Adhyatma Yoga, the other three, namely, Dharana Dhvana and Samadhi, are rejected totally. I have clearly elucidated the exact meaning and import of the words, 'Dharana', 'Dhyana' and 'Samadhi', which are used in Bhashyas in various contexts. Shankara has emphatically declared that Patanjala school is one teaching distinctly dualistic doctrines He says in his Sutra Bhashya 2-1-3: "But the iollowers of Sankhya and Yoga are dualists and they do not perceive the unity of the Self. Whereas, Bhaamati says: "Shravana (listening) and Manana (reflecting) are to be treated as 'Dharana,' meaning, one should fix his mind on the Self. The word 'Nidhidhyasana' is equal to 'Dhyana' of Patanjala Yoga, in which one should keep the flow of his mind continuously on the Self without any '-interruptions, The word 'Darshana' denotes the realisation or Saakshaatkara, meaning, the Sedhaka enters into Samadhi or trance through a one-pointed thought flow in which ultimately the mind itself ceases to exist." These types of interpretations are taken as authoritative for centuries now and all are confused in determining the true nature of Adhyatma Yoga, and the basic- or central truth of the nature of the Self was totally lost to' the world. The essential truth of it all is: 1. The self can never, become an object for the process of 'Samyama', that is, the combination of Dharana, Dhvana and Samadhi according to Patanjala Yoga. 2. The Vritti or concept of Saakshaatkara is, not an essential factor to I cognise or intuit the real nature of the Self,' whose nature is direct and immediate to the cogniser, because the concept of Saakshaatkara belongs to the meditator and hence it is Kartru Tantra it is true that in various Kartru Tantra Upasanas dealt with in the Upanishads, Saakshaatkara or visualisation or realisation is to be achieved or attained afresh. 3. Whereas, the nature of Nidhidhyasana or Adhyatma Yoga is Vastu Tantra. As the nature of the Self is immediate and direct, there is no necessity of Vritti like Saakshaatkara in order to prove or determine the nature of the Self. These three main reasons are adduced, by our Swamiji in his books for this misinterpretation.

A foreign disciple wanted to know the exact meanings of the words. 'Adhyatma' and' Adhyatma Yoga' and this treatise about both the words was prepared for his sake. Previously in the books in Kannada and Telugu only the' Adhyatma Yoga' was dealt with, but here along with 'Adhyatma Yoga' the chapter on 'Adhyatma' is included; besides, an appendix, in which the relevant topics of Shravana and Manana are treated in detail, is added at the end for the benefit of the aspirants,

I am happy that this edition is published by the Bangalore Branch of the Adhyatma Prakasha Karyalaya and is being distributed free to the public on the unique auspicious occasion of the birth centenary celebrations of my Guru, Sri Sri Satchidanandendra Saraswati Swamiji. The copyrights of this edition as well as the Kannada edition of 'Adhyatma Yoga' belong to the Sri Shantananda Vinayakaswamy Devalaya and Sri Dattaguru Shankara Vedanta Nilaya Trust of Yelahanka. I am glad that the Trust authorities have agreed to dedicate this English edition to the memory of our revered Swamiji.

I have to offer my thanks to the donors (who wish to remain anonymous) of this English edition for their kind help in its publication and free distribution to the public on this occasion. I am also thankful to my friend and ardent disciple of my Guru, Sri D. B. Gangolli, who helped me in preparing the manuscript of this edition. I pray to the Almighty and our revered Guruji to bless everyone who has helped in the publication of this edition.

 

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