Thursday, April 19, 2007

Answers to Quiz on DHYAANA


Prostrations to all.

The following are the scores for the quiz on dhyaana:

Aparna - 9.5
Rajesh Kumar - 9.5
Mallika - 9.5
Neelakantan - 6

Scores really dont matter but what matters is participation which is instigated by desire to know and understand things. :)Aparna was the first to reply to the quiz and that too on the same day the question was raised. Special thanks to her for the same.

Hope at least a few of us would have been benefitted by this quiz. The answers below:

1. Patanjali is the saiva sage who wrote the Yoga Sutras which forms the basis for the Yoga darshana of the shad darshanas.

2. Sankhya-Yoga is the pair. The other pairs are Nyaaya-Vaisheshika, Mimamsa-Vedanta. Sankhya is very similar to yoga except for few differences (which is out of the scope of this mail). Sankhya is based on three works -- Sankhya Sutras of Kapila Muni, Ishwarakrishna's Sankhya Karika and Tattva Samaasa of Kapila Muni (sankhya sutras that is available today is considered to be a newer version written by somebody and hence is not considered that authentic whereas Ishwarakrishna's Sankhya Karika is around 2 BC also having a commentary titled Tattva kaumudi of Vachaspathi Mishra on it. Sankhya Sutras basically have two commentaries on them - one by Aniruddha and the other by the great Vijnaana Bhikshu)

3. Tatra pratyaya ekathaanathaa dhyaanam (3.2) - there (on that focus of concentration), perception becoming one-pointed is called meditation.

4. Dhyaana yoga is the 6th chapter which is titled different by Sankara bhashya and other works. There are 42 verses in total authored by Krishna in the chapter.

5. Many defined it as concentration on Lord etc. but the correct definition in Gita itself is: Sidhyasidhya samobhootva samatvam yoga uchyatheA person who is equal to both good and bad -- samatvam or equanamity of mind to environment, situations and conditions is called Yoga. Thus Yoga = Samatvam or Sama Bhaavana. Which Krishna himself later defines as seeing the Self in all and all in the Self. Interesting that none got this answer right (though were granted mark because all answers were right based on normal word of Yoga but not right based on Krishna's yoga definition).

6. Patanjali is famous for Yoga Sutra and the Mahabhashya on Panini's vyaakarana sutras (only this work is called mahabhashya among all other sanskrit commentaries).

7. Dhyaana is meditation which has many pre requisites and is part of karma whereas nidhidhyaasana is contemplation which doesn't have any conditions and is part of jnaana.

8.Astanga yoga -- everybody already knows it and hence am not going into the details.

9. Vedantic samadhi is savikalpa and nirvikalpa. The two similar samadhis that Yoga accepts is samprajnaatha and asamprajnaatha -- in the first there is prajnaa or perception of an entity different from oneself whereas in the second there is no such prajnaa or vritti at all. Asamprajnaatha is to be aspired which is devoid of all vrittis and is the culmination of yoga (chitta vritti nirodham)

10. Tattva vaisharadhi is the name of the sub-commentary of Vachaspathi Mishra on Yoga Sutra bhashya of Vyaasa. Once again, thanks to all those who have replied to this question.

Prostrations to all.

Let a moment not pass by without remembering God

Wednesday, April 11, 2007



Prostrations to all.

First of all – we haven’t decided the next topic of the week. Do reply back so that we don’t lose another day choosing the topic.

Here goes the quiz on “Topic of the week – Dhyaana”. Questions might require research or googling and might be out of syllabus as wellJ.

1. One of the shad darshanas defines Dhyaana as a sadhana and the darshana has been established by a Siva bhaktha who is said to have witnessed the Tandava of Siva. Which is the darshana and who is the person establishing the darshana?
2. Shad darshanas are known in pairs of two. Which darshana pairs with the darshana mentioned in 1?
3. Quote the Sanskrit sutra defining Dhyaana in the darshana (along with chapter, sutra number and translation in English).
4. Which is the dhyaana yoga chapter of Gita and what is the total number of slokas from Krishna’s mouth in the chapter?
5. Define Yoga as per Krishna.
6. Patanjali is famous for two of his works. Name the works.
7. Differentiate Dhyaana (yoga dhyaana) and Nidhidhyaasana.
8. Name the astangas of Yoga and define each in brief (max 2 sentence for each).
9. What are the two main types of Samadhi of Yoga and Vedanta (the answer will be four names in total)?
10. What is the name of the sub-commentary of Vachaspathi Mishra to the commentary of Vyaasa on the Yoga Sutras?
11. (Optional) Which type of yoga dhyaana have you practiced and your experiences on the same (irrespective of whether those are obstacles or mystic experiences).

Do reply back with question number and answer.

The quiz will be open till Thursday morning IST (if people require more time, we can have it till Friday EOD).

Prostrations to all.


Let a moment not pass by without remembering God