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What is the real purpose of meditation in Kashmir Shaivism

What is the real purpose of meditation in Kashmir Shaivism

abhinavagupta’s tantraloka meditation soul May 13, 2024
In this excerpt from Abhinavagupta’s Tantraloka 14, Swami Lakshmanjoo reveals what the real purpose of meditation is.
JOHN: So then, when a person meditates what should be his thought? You say the thought should not be “that I’m going to gain something that I don’t already have.”

SWAMIJI: No, go on meditating and go in giving training, treatment, to your mind for gaining onepointedness. That is all. You have to gain onepointedness with this treatment. And when once you have gained onepointedness, then you can be able to understand the reality of . . .

BRUCE P.: You can’t gain onepointedness in shrunkenness?


BRUCE P.: You can’t become onepointed shrunken?

SWAMIJI: No, onepointedness will make you broad.

BRUCE P.: But that’s the feeling that there is something wider?

SWAMIJI: Because as long as onepointedness . . . you see, there is mind and atma; mind and soul are one. In real sense mind and soul are one. Mind is soul, mind is actually soul with various and differentiated thoughts. When these various differentiated thoughts are discarded from mind, this mind will change its form into soul–it will become soul. Mind becomes soul. Soul is mind . . .

DENISE: Mind is in differentiation.

SWAMIJI: . . . soul is un-minded mind, thoughtless mind. Soul is also mind, but thoughtless. When all thoughts and varieties are over, then soul remains, then soul appears. The treatment of mind is for soul, to treat soul, to take the soul to its original state.
What is the original state of soul? Un-minded state.

DENISE: Thoughtlessness.

SWAMIJI: Thoughtlessness.
And once thoughtlessness has been achieved by this mind in the state of soul, then he can understand what is universal soul. Otherwise, it is out of reach of understanding. We can’t . . . as long as we behave with varieties of thoughts, it is out of reach for us to understand these things.
So this is also a must. What? The treatment in meditation, and sadhana, and dharana, and pranayama, and cakrodaya, and “so’ham“, and ajapa all these things, they are treatments not for the achievement of Lord Shiva; these are treatments for gaining the ability of understanding.

(source: Abhinavagupta’s Tantraloka Chapter 14, revealed by Swami Lakshmanjoo,
from the audio archives of the Lakshmanjoo Academy.
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