Dhyana and Yoga (Part 5)

(Part 1)(Part 2)(Part 3)(Part 4)(Part 6)

The Working of Chinta and The Three Fold Manas


Article from "Four Essays in Suddha Raja Yoga" - Published by Sri Janardana, The Third initiatory Authority of Suddha Dharma Mandalam

6. The working of Chinta

But, all these are possible and depend on the capacity of the aspiring Jiva to investigate. And it is with a view to augment this capacity or Shakti in one's self that men resort to reflection or, Chinta as a first step, through-study end other similar means. This Shakti or power, aimed at through Chinta to start with, goes by the, name of Yoga-Shakti in its highest condition, and is worshiped in the form of Yoga Devi by the aspirants; for Without the aid of this Shakti nothing whatsoever is attainable in the various planes of being of man, and hence the importance of invoking this. Shakti addressed as Ma or Divine Mother, and eulogized by various names.

The reflection or Chinta that is resorted to for the purpose of acquiring this Shakti is said to take a general five-fold direction. As was already pointed out, Chinta belongs to the category of Nivritti or subjective functioning, and tending as a rule to conserve and increase one’s powers and energy, even as Pravritti dissipates them. It is because of this perpetual decrease and wearing away of the powers and capacities of men during their evolutionary life, that they are advised to voluntary resort to Nivritti as set-off to compensate the loss. Sleep is one such process enforced on men by nature, helping to maintain the balance day to day, but never helps to stop the losing powers as a whole, as the age advances. Reflection or Chinta, on the other, is the first step to arrest this losing nature and increase one’s powers and also to acquire fresh ones. This is easily verifiable in experience, by one and all. But this presupposes proper knowledge

In those that resort to Chinta or refection, the five fold direction it take is thus (1) Vi.bhooti-chinta aimed at sukha or happiness of various kinds such as prakrita or material, Atmeeya or spiritual, or Suddha or transcendental; (2) Gnana Chinta is that which related to the acquisition of the knowledge of that science facilitating sukha, (3) Sankhalpa-Chinta is directed towards the performance of actions motivated by one’s own desires, (4) Karma chinta is that in which a plan of action for yielding a particular result is chalked out, and (5) Brahma-chinta envisages all these vivifying and energizing them all being focused on the great Root source Brahm. And it is this Brhamachinta that goes by the name of Dhyana or meditation. Through a constant reflection and meditation on this Root-source, and engaging in pursuits congenial thereto for a time, men recover the memory of their lost divine status gradually, which, not only stimulates in turn one's buddhi, helping, a healthy functioning in the world-process, but also generates what is known as dhriti or the collective shakti or Yoga-shakti, by which the Paramatmic status is contacted for higher functioning.

7. The Three fold Manas

Before an explanation or the actual process of Dhyana as such, let us look a little more into the nature of Manas, the vehicle in which meditation is conducted. It is divided into three parts, viz. (1)Asuddha or impure Manas, (2) Suddha or pure Manas, (3) Brahma or transcendent Manas. This division of Manas also has three-fold perceptual basis already explained. Through Saguna-dhyana, the Saguna form is contacted in the Asuddha- Manas through Nirguna-dhyana, the Nirguna form is contacted in t the Suddha-Manas through Suddha-dhyana, the transcendent Paramatmic form is contacted through Brahma Accordingly, the Samadhi or the meditative equability or entrancement is savikhalpa (form full) or Nirvikalpa (immanent) or Suddha (transcendent) respectively; the movement of the revolving Jiva correspond in general as Pravritti or Nivritti or Suddha and the resulting joy or Ananda is either Pravibhakta – separated, alternating with pain or Karanananda Atmic joy or Suddhananda - transcendent ecstasy.

In the realization of these results pertaining either, to the material, spiritual, or transcendental factors, the firmness or purpose for chalking out a line of action in regard to such realization, is effected in this Manas plane only and hence, so far it is only through the agency of this Manas that all actions are urged, and results are achieved, it is termed as the Ishwara itself. But, these results depend on the extent of the purity of Manas, for, it is then only that mental firmness gets established, and correspondingly activations arise.

The purity of Manas, mentioned herein, should not be confused with that, that was already termed as Suddha-Manas, since the latter refers too that vehicle generating that kind of enjoyment got as a result of the contact of the Nirguna level of the Divinity, while the former is in respect of engagement in a particular line of actions irrespective of the fact, whether it is sat or asat, i.e., personal or impersonal, or daivic or asuric. Herein, the attitude of mental firmness is caused by the purity of Manas, as opposed to the vacillating flickering and doubting natures who are incapable to make up their minds to engage in a line of action - a state of mind similar to what happened to Arjuna on the eve of battle, and as such termed asuddha or impure. This kind of purity of Manas in respect of whatsoever action it may be, but for action alone, depends on the extent, of knowledge one has acquired in respect of the doing of the said action. But that kind of purity has nothing to do with the realization of transcendent divine beatitudes of Saguna, Nirguna and Suddha got by Dhyana. Thus, the purity of Manas in respect of action and the purity of Manas for the purpose of divine realization are two different phases and they should be carefully noted and differentiated.