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To: soc.religion.eastern
From: Bill Kish (
Subj: Samadhi (0000.samadhi.bk)
Date: unknown

Quoting: |cy717@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Jai Maharaj) 

|Technically, Samadhi is any state in which the mind gains
|identity through concentration with the object of meditation.
|For Yog:, however, it is that state, of which there are
|various grades, in which the individual mind, freed for a
|time from all material limits, takes the form of supreme,
|omnipotent, and omnipresent mind and gains enlightenment.
An alternate definition can be found in the glossary of His
Eminence Kalu Rinpoche's "The Gem Ornament":

"Samadhi - This describes a one-pointed involvement in meditation where
the object of meditation and the practitioner are experienced as
inseparable and indistinguishable.  While there are many kinds of
samadhi, it is important to note that the term does not infer anything
about the practitioner's realization or accomplishment."

I think this last point is noteworthy for two reasons: 

1) It is not often stated explicitly and tends to be obscured in long
lists of adjectives. 

2) It implicitly warns that attachment to samadhi can lead to an
extended visitation to a god realm or a formless realm, which is not
the same as liberation.

        Another valuable point with regard to samadhi is its
relationship to samatha/vipassana practice.  The following quote is
from page 11 of "The Treasury of Knowledge" by Jamgon Kongtrul I
[1813-1899] and translated into English by the most recent incarnation
of Jamgon Kongtrul (the Great):

"Identifying The Samadhi to be Practised

        One should gain certainty in both shamatha [sic] and
vipashyana [sic], which comprise the ocean of samadhis of both the
greater and lesser vehicles."

        The "Sutra of Unravelling the Thought" states: << 

"As the Bhagavan has said, one should know that the many types of samadhi 
of the Sravakas, Bodhisattvas, and Tathagatas are included in shamatha
and vipashyana."

  Thus, since it is said that shamatha and vipashyana comprise all the 
samadhis of both the greater and lesser vehicles, and since it is 
impossible for anyone striving for samadhi to fathom the great number of 
divisions, this ocean of samadhis should be classified into just shamatha 
and vipashyana.  Therefore, one should first gain certainty in these two.  
This is necessary because, as stated in the same Sutra, all qualities 
ensuing rom the practice of the greater and lesser vehicles, whether 
mundane or supramundane, are the fruit of shamatha and vipashyana.  

Also Maitreya has said: 

"One should know all mundane and supramundane virtues of the Sravakas, 
Bodhisattvas or Tathagatas to be the fruit of shamatha and vipashyana."

Sorry for such a repetitious quote, but I think the point is worth
saying a few times, especially when descriptions of samadhi start to
get lost in lofty heights.

        Please, no flames about the Sanskrit transliterations used
here - I realize most people like to use "samatha" and "vipassana",
but the phonetic transliterations used here are perfectly valid and
often found in Kagyu writings which have been translated into English.
His Eminence Kalu Rinpoche and both Jamgon Kongtrul's are all highly
esteemed tulkus in the Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.

Yours in Dharma,

UUCP : {ames,att,harvard}!uunet!rutgers!!kish

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