What Is Samadhi?



A.C. BHAKTIVEDANTA SWAMI PRABHUPADA – Having acquired a good sitting place in a secluded environment, the yogi begins to purify the atma—body, mind and soul. The yogi should not think, “Now I will try to achieve some wonderful powers.” Sometimes yogis do attain certain siddhis, or powers, but these are not the purpose of yoga, and real yogis do not exhibit them. The real yogi thinks, “I am now contaminated by this material atmosphere, so now I must purify myself.”

We can quickly see that controlling the mind and body is not such an easy thing and that we cannot control them as easily as we can go to the store and purchase something. But Krishna indicates that these rules can be easily followed when we are in Krishna consciousness.

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The Science of Being Who You Are

Some time ago we talked about how the Vedas, the ancient teachings of India, describe us ultimately as spiritual beings (the post is called ‘The Science of Knowing Who You Are‘). The non-material self is called atma and is separate from our body. Atma does not die when the body does – atma is by nature eternal and full of bliss and knowledge. At death the atma moves on to another body, according to its karma and desire.

For many this realization sounds very natural. Actually, I saw a poll in a newspaper recently saying that 82% of Americans believe in some form of an afterlife. I’ve met many people who told me that they intuitively knew they were not their body since they were a little kid. But many are also confused as to what they should do with this knowledge and how to apply it in their every day life.

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Television Is Chewing Gum for the Eyes

In almost every house we’ve been
We’ve watched them gaping at the screen.
They loll and slop and lounge about,
And stare until their eyes pop out.
(Last week in someone’s place we saw
A dozen eyeballs on the floor.)
They sit and stare and stare and sit
Until they’re hypnotised by it,
Until they’re absolutely drunk
With all that shocking ghastly junk.

So please, oh please, we beg, we pray
Go throw your TV set away,
And in its place you can install
A lovely bookshelf on the wall.

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An Awareness of What Is Best and Most Beautiful

During May 1974, the noted Irish poet Desmond James Bernard O ‘Grady visited Srila Prabhupada at his quarters in Rome, and the two had a lengthy and lively discussion. Among other things, the spiritual leader and the poet discussed personal identity and individual duty, putting an end to war, modern education and its problems, life beyond time, and the essential nature of love.

The Realization That Brings Peace

Mr. O’Grady: Your edition of the Bhagavad-gita is very nice.
Srila Prabhupada: It is the fifth edition in two years.
Mr. O’Grady: In which country has the Hare Krishna movement been the most successful?
Srila Prabhupada: Everywhere. In Africa, America, Canada, Japan, China. But actually it has been most successful in America. Many Americans have taken to Krishna consciousness.
Mr. O’Grady: What about here in Rome? Have you had problems with the police?
Srila Prabhupada: We have problems everywhere. Police sometimes harass us, but usually they become tired and eventually don’t do anything. [Laughter.]
Mr. O’Grady: The system give up? That’s marvelous. I feel very tired of the system myself. Something is wrong with the present state of affairs. Maybe you can give me some advice on how to beat the system.
Srila Prabhupada: You Irish people! You are never tired of fighting.
Mr. O’Grady: No. [Laughter.] It’s inside us.
Srila Prabhupada: Actually, the fighting has been going on constantly.
Mr. O’Grady: Well, what do you suggest we do about it? I mean, is it morally correct for me to be sitting here…
Srila Prabhupada: As long as we remain illusioned by the bodily conception of life, thinking we are these bodies, one man thinking “I am Irish,” another thinking “I am Italian,” “… American,” “… Indian,” and so on–as long as this goes on, the fighting will go on.

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Quotes on Illusion and Enlightenment

“As sunlight maintains the entire universe, so the light of the soul maintains this material body. As soon as the spirit soul is out of this material body, the body begins to decompose; therefore it is the spirit soul which maintains this body. The body itself is unimportant.” Bhagavad-gita As It Is, purport to 2.18

“Illusioned by the material energy, people are so engrossed in subject matter for sense gratification that they have very little time to understand the question of self-understanding, even though it is a fact that without this self-understanding all activities result in ultimate defeat in the struggle for existence. Perhaps one has no idea that one must think of the soul, and also make a solution of the material miseries.” Bhagavad-gita As It Is, purport to 2.29

“A sleeping person imagines an alternative reality for himself and, seeing himself as having various names and forms, forgets his waking identity, which is distinct from the dream. Similarly, the senses of one whose consciousness is bewildered by illusion perceive only the names and forms of material objects. Thus such a person loses his memory and cannot know You.” Srimad-Bhagavatam, 10.84.24-25

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Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare  ॐ हरे कृष्णा हरे कृष्णा कृष्णा कृष्णा हरे हरे। हरे रामा हरे रामा रामा रामा हरे हरे॥ ॐ