Sanyasa vs samadhi

Hare Krishna prabhujis and matajis,



What is the difference between sanyasa and samadhi?

Can you please elaborate through examples.




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  • Hare Krishna Surabhi Mata ji,

    Sanaysa is fourth order of life that renunciate order. There are 4 ashramas in a life of any person. 1. Bramcharya ( student life)., 2.Grihastha ( house holder)  3.Vanaprastha ( forest dweller, retired).,4. Sanyasa ashramas.

    Sanyasa Ashrama doesn't actually be taken up only after 70 yrs of life. Any person who wants to give up all material desires, control the mind and senses, and to fix the mind on the Supreme can take up Sanyasa order of life. he adorns Saffon clothes and he is totally surrendered to Supreme Lord. totally detached from material and worldly things. Now many have understood that it is just after 70 yrs when we totally retrie from all our duties of marriage, children, grandchildren etc. But actually if someone doesn't want to take up all these duties in the first place can be called as sanayasi or sanyasini .. but the thing is they should have firmness in the decision. It is not just for fun sake you got some sudden idea you took sanayasa and then when you suddenly felt like marrying you cannot break the vows of sanayas and take up marriage and other material responsibilities. This decision is not like coming from just by seeing some  saffron clothes sayasa and getting attracted to the idea and taking up sanyasa and then .. feeling internally bad that.. I have not enjoyed life at all. So it must be taken up usually when you are perfectly ready only. Majority cases, that is why we see people take up sanayas only in the end when they have completed all the obligatory duties in life. When they feel their mind now can focus on one single thing completely that is Supreme Lord.

    But doesn't mean that rest all ashramas are non devotees. They are devotees in all ashramas. But Sanaysa order of life the focus is high and has only one point goal that is to reach Supreme Lord and get HIS mercy nothing else.  Here in other ashrama lives we may have some momments of stilness and concentration on Lord but we our minds are not capable to hold attention on one thing only. We have so many things on mind. Out of 10 min that we sit to chant we may at max be with Lord for 1 min or less then that or few seconds only.

    That is why meditation is not the aim of Krishna consciousness. To run to fix mind is not so easy. There is another method to fix our minds. That is.., Seeing Krishna Himself and remembering Krishna in all activities we do.  That is best method and easy also.

    Let me tell you a story for highlighting this point:-- Story of how Narada Muni was taught a lesson By Lord Vishnu:--

    One time Narad Muni felt pride that he is greatest devotee of Lord as he chants 24/7, 365 days Lord's name " Narayana, Narayana". He goes to Vishnu and asks Lord, tell me who is the greatest devotee of all. Thinking in his mind that Lord will surely tell his name only. But Lord after acting like thinking for a moment said.. Hmm.. Narada, Let you first do a small work of mine while you finish the work, I will find who is my greatest devotee and let you know. Narada immediately said sure Lord. He was very sure that Lord is testing him by entrusting a task and so he immediately accepted in doing the errand. Lord asked narad muni ji to take the bowl filled to the brim with oil all around the three worlds and come back without dropping even single drop. Narad immediately acts upon it. Narada muni roams all the three worlds all the time foucussing on the bowl and thinking he must do the job perfectly and cutiously and shealthly walking and seeing that not a drop falls out of the bowl came back to Vaikuntha and proudly said Hmmm.....Oh Narayana I have completed the task which you gave me perfectly, now tell me who is the greatest devotee?? 

    Lord said Oh, Narada How many times during this entire period of time did you chant my name..while you were doing this task? Narad muni was in a fix, he said. Oh Lord all the while I was focussed only on how to not to spill even a drop out, but I totally forgot about chanting. Lord smiles and says that is why I think My greatest devotee is that poor farmer who is working in the fields.

    “But Lord…”he argued”it was your errand…..I was doing the work you wanted me to do….it was your work…..” said Narada.

    “Narada…..that farmer is also doing the work I have picked for him….he is living the life I gave him…..dealing with all the circumstances that I give….and inspite of all this…..he takes time out of his busy routine to remember me and that is what makes him my greatest devotee!”

    So, conclusion is In every order of life ( in any ashrama) one can remember Lord in all walks of life. Need not postpone to sanayasa order of life only. 
    Krishna consciousness means... to be conscious of Krishna in all activities which we do. 

    One more example:-

    When Uddhava came to explain about Meditation and taking up samadhi that this to gopis' in vrindavan. the Gopis simply laughed and said., Uddhava ji tell us how to do meditation?

    Uddhav said--- Just fix ur mind on the Brahaman. You people are seeing Krishna in his bodily form and thinking Krishna is limited to this body only. You take ur consciousness high up and fix ur mind on the nirakaar, nirguna form of  Lord.

    Gopis- said Uddhava ji but we have only one mind isnt it.. we don't have 2-3 minds. and that one mind your friend Sri Krishna took away with him. Where from we can get another mind to fix on Brahman now?

    See such great teaching given by Gopis to Uddhav. Uddhava was thinking mind should be focussed on something.. self or some brahman, but they already have fixed on Lord.. for them everything which the do... became a Krishna conscious activity then what else is needed?  They are already in stage of samadhi.

    Samadhi means fixing one's mind on self.  If one sits in samadhi.. there is no longer a difference between the seer and the seen. 

    Do you understand what is perciever and percieved.

    perceiver is the one who is witness to the actions ( that is Lord)., and Percieved or seen is the Soul. There is no longer the diference in samadhi they become one.

    In yoga ( which means exactly Union). Union of what? union of the self with Brahman.  In yoga there are 7 stages. the final stage is Samadhi stage.

    Sama =same ( samana). when there is total union between soul and supersoul that stage is called samadhi.

    Mahasamadhi is term used when there is conscious leaving of the soul out of the body and merging into the Brahman.

    Consious merging  the term which is very important.

    See, when we sit to do meditation.. first of all mind is too much active.. It is either in the past or future but never in the present.. If at all in the present momment.. and focussing may fall into sleep. you may not be active and conscious also. Being aware at the same time focussing on self  is samadhi state.

    A person who is in samadhi.. even if you prick him with thorn his samadhi state is not broken. .. Unless he himself willing to exis of the samadhi state. He cannot be disturbed by any external stimulus, Because he lost touch with the surroundings..

     The three common states of consciousness are: waking state, dreaming state, and dreamless deep sleep 4th stage is the Turiya state of consciousness.

    Turiya is beyond all the three other states. We all attain turiya for some time ( every night)  Turiya is the so called Samadhi state. We all have expereince of it .. But we don't know that it is called samadhi.

    But it is just for few moments after we experience the deep sleep state.

    If that state of Turiya is prolonged it becomes a deep samadhi state.

    1. Waking state-- there is wakefulness, you are aware of urself, your mind is working, senses are working., sense are engaged with sense objects, intellect is working. Ego is there.  that which refers to "I" is there. you say.. " I can see" I can touch. , I can walk, I can talk, I can breathe, I can smell.  This is waking state.

    2. Dreaming state:- Here you lost touch with ur senses.. Senses are not running after some external sense objects.. senses are turning inwards .., the information you got from sense objects in the waking state., you are able to use it to see dreams in colors. Senses are turned inwards now. Mind is active, intellect is active. you can manipulate dreams that is why there is REM sleep and dreams and lucid dreams phase.

    3. Deep Sleep state of consciousness:- There there is nothing , even mind is inactive, there is no senses working , no activity of intellect. Intellect activity is judging, analysing, manipulating. The activity of senses lost, mind lost, intellect lost.

    4. Turiya State:- This state is just after your deep sleep stage, your senses, mind, intellect + ego is also gone totally dissolved. This state there is simply pure consiousness and bliss.  This state is called Samdhi state.

    usaully this every one of us experiences in our daily night sleep, first few hours we have waking state, then REM state, then deep sleep state and next stage is Turiya. where is the ego is also lost  but it is very small fraction of time during every night which we experience this stage of consciousness.

    But those who are in Samadhi state., they are wakefully getting into this stage. unlike us who go into samadhi ( turiya stage) during sleep or after deep sleep stage.

    See, when you start initially meditation.. first you experience is.. some itching here and there in body, you keep changing positions because some restlessness, you can smell things , you can hear things which are happening, you can sense movement of things which are going nearby. But after a few minutes.. you stop ur senses, mind chattering is also there simultaneously, mind thinking of past, and future. You let is do chatter for some more moments.. Then slowly it will settle down.. Now ur senses are shut down no long you can hear things feel things, smell things, but you know your mind is still active so it can make dreams which uses all those senses and experiences you had and make vivid colorful cinematic dreams.. then slowly mind also stops.. intellect also manipulating things slowly dies down.. EGO is the last one to go. EGO ( this stage is tough) very very tough. You lose ego means you become one with Sat Chit ananda or Brahman. You will experience bliss tanscendental bliss.

    Many can go from waking state to deep sleep state where there is loss of senses, mind, intellect ( this stage till here is called SAVIKALPA SAMADHI)  but when we lose ego.. we touch brahman ( that is ). but it ( NIRVIKALPA SAMADHI) is broken immediately. But those who can keep this positon for long time can maintain samadhi state for some periods.  So, that is why when they lose samadhi or when samadhi is broken they return back to normal state. Once you keep practising it and you get divine blessing also added to it. Then you can become Jeevan mukt. That is you be in this shareeera or body but yet you got mukti. He will experience  unity with super consciousness. at this point. Once your soul merges with the Super consciouness then.. You can feel, touch and expeirence pain and pleasure of every being on earth. You can hear what birds talk and undestand the language of animals., experience the pain of disease, and feel what others also are experiencing. You will become so much Samvedhanasheel ( Sensitive to everything).  Aura extends beyond the universe and that time you are called a Self realized soul. You can see that your soul is in continuium with the all the souls of the universe. 

    But it is very tough not impossible. Lord Narayana is always in yoga nidra.. But not deep sleep HE iS in wakeful sleep, that is Turiya. He can experience even slightest mind thought which we have. As He is Parmatma seating in all hearts of all beings. Each and every thought also can be heard and read by HIM. Just like that a person in Samadhi stage ( self realized being) His aura is so huge that .. he starts to feel and things of all beings even ants also. He can understand what they are feeling. That is not so easy.

    This all is tough for us in Kaliyuga that is why Just surrender to Krishna and say we don't know all these procedures., all we know is YOU, pls. kindly take us back. Thats all. Lord will do whatver is needful to us. He will give us all that is needed for going back to HIM. Simple. no ashtanga yoga that this required. Arey.. HEHEHE,... to tell simply what is samadhi .. only simply it takes so much time  to do.. I dont know one life is not enough maybe for me. I don't know about you.

    Hare Krishna.


  • Sevak

    Hare Krsna 

    Sannyasa as per varnashrama system is a final stage of life. It is also known as renounced order of life. It may last for many years till till death.

    Samadhi is a state of mind or consciousness. It can be from a few moments to many hours for astanga yogis. Even bhakti yogis can be in samadhi but they have samadhi of seva. 

    Lord Sri Krsna gives the formal definition in BG 

    arjuna uvāca
    sannyāsasya mahā-bāho
    tattvam icchāmi veditum
    tyāgasya ca hṛṣīkeśa
    pṛthak keśi-niṣūdana

    Arjuna said: O mighty-armed one, I wish to understand the purpose of renunciation [tyāga] and of the renounced order of life [sannyāsa], O killer of the Keśī demon, master of the senses. (BG 18.1)

    śrī-bhagavān uvāca
    kāmyānāṁ karmaṇāṁ nyāsaṁ
    sannyāsaṁ kavayo viduḥ
    prāhus tyāgaṁ vicakṣaṇāḥ

    The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: The giving up of activities that are based on material desire is what great learned men call the renounced order of life [sannyāsa]. And giving up the results of all activities is what the wise call renunciation [tyāga]. (BG 18.2)

    śruti-vipratipannā te
    yadā sthāsyati niścalā
    samādhāv acalā buddhis
    tadā yogam avāpsyasi

    When your mind is no longer disturbed by the flowery language of the Vedas, and when it remains fixed in the trance of self-realization, then you will have attained the divine consciousness. (BG 2.53)

    Srila Prabhupada has given a very simple understanding of Samadhi 

    Samādhi means “fixed mind.” The Vedic dictionary, the Nirukti, says, samyag ādhīyate ’sminn ātma-tattva-yāthātmyam:“When the mind is fixed for understanding the self, it is said to be in samādhi.” ( BG Purport 2.44)

    Hare Krsna 

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