Back of the Book
Dhyanasvarupam composed and commented upon by Swami Tejomayananda in a very simple way first explains the ‘principles of meditation’ by negating what is not meditation and then asserting what it is. Thereafter the ‘principle of the practice of meditation’ is explained. This is a very popular book and is a basic text for any course on meditation.
About the Author
Pujya Guruji Swami Tejomayananda is an outstanding teacher of Vedanta, with a profound depth beneath his simplicity and humility. He has a simple conviction-to fortify, strengthen and actualise the vision of his Guru, Pujya Swami Chinmayananda.
Swamiji has written commentaries on many texts of Vedanta and authored many original compositions on Vedanta and Bhakti (Devotion).
He is the current head of the Chinmaya Mission-a global spiritual organisation with more than 250 centres world wide.
It is a well known fact that we love ourselves the most. We may claim to love ‘this’ or ‘that’ even more than our life, but the fact remains that we love ourselves the most. There is nothing wrong with it and one need not feel guilty or shy of admitting it. This love manifests in every little action of ours. We stare endlessly into the mirror or any other reflecting surface, make voluminous photo albums, love to hear our own praises and can speak for hours about ourselves! Self-love manifests as the thought ‘May I always be, may I never cease to be.’ Hence we try to protect and preserve ourselves even at the cost of another’s life or loads of money! Do we not part with our lifelong savings for the sake of our life?
Love for the Self is the most important and interesting fact of life. Unfortunately we do not know our own true Self, and there lies the problem. We consider ourselves as a finite, perishing entity, the BMI (body-mind-intellect) and suffer. This identification with the finite makes us extremely selfish. But, suppose, one were to realise that ‘the Self in me is the Self in all’, there would be no trace of selfishness, but only love for all. This Realisation releases us from all bondages even while interacting in the world.
In the Brhadaranyaka Upanisad (II-iv-5) the Guru, Sage Yajnavalkya tells his disciple, his wife Maitreyi “atmanastu kamaya sarvam priyam bhavati” - All are dear to oneself for the sake of the Self i.e., we love ourselves the most. We love others only if they are a source of happiness to us. Therefore one should ‘see’ one’s true Self. (atma va are drastavyah). Generally to see any object we use our eyes. The Self being the subject can never be known as an object of perception. Hence here’ seeing’ the Self means ‘knowing’ It. We know of anything by hearing or reading about it. For example, you would not know, ‘this is such and such object’ if you were not told so, despite seeing it. Therefore to ‘see’ the Self, we should hear about It (srotavyah). When we hear about Self-knowledge, we may not understand or partially understand and therefore doubts arise. Our knowledge and experience may seem to contradict what the teacher says. Hesays, we are not the body and that, we are the source of all joy. We experience just the opposite. Doubts arise in the intellect, and have to be removed for a clear understanding of the Truth. These doubts can be removed only by reflection. Hence Sage Yajnavalkya says, “One should reflect (mantavyah) on the Self.”
Knowledge may be doubtless, and one may even gain a glimpse of the Self. But due to habitual error and impurites of the mind one may not be able to establish oneself in the Truth. One is, therefore, unable to enjoy the promised bliss of Self-realisation, to attain which the sage finally says, “one should meditate (nididhyasitavyah).”
In this text, we shall not speak about listening and reflection but only on meditation. Meditation is in vogue and many seem to be interested in it and practising it. In these days of instant coffee, two-minute noodles and jet-speed travel, people seek instant Realisation through quick means, by instant meditation. But, there is no short cut to meditation or Realisation. Many aspirants practise meditation but do not know what meditation is, the nature of the meditator and the Self meditated upon, the obstacles and the means to remove them, the result, and so on. When the mind is thus unprepared, sitting for meditation is of little use. Many sit in meditation and only experience agitation! Hence the underlying principle of meditation is now explained.
Presently many techniques of meditation are spoken of and one is asked, ‘What is your technique?’. Here the Upanisadika or Vedantika understanding of meditation is explained. It is nothing new, but a time- tested and an ancient method of meditation.
Brahma Sutras (81)
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