Q: What is the experience of Samadhi which you are targeting?
Sh: Well, it is a direct experience of death and what happens after that. Well, you die physically and then you end up in a spirit and you have so many experiences and the knowledge comes. Then you come back to life again and the body is again alive.
Q: What is the word «Samadhi» itself, what does it mean etymologically?
Sh: «Samadhi» and «death» are synonymous.
In Gita Krishna is saying to Arjuna: “I am death”. Death is the nearest to any human being. It is very easy to explain that: the gopis are like immortal souls. And when death calls them, they leave everything what they do and run to meet death.
Q: So Krishna is death?
Sh: Well, he himself is saying «I am death». You see life is ever in love with death. That’s why we are running towards meeting death.
Q: May be death is one of the aspects of God but when Krishna enters relationships with gopis he is not coming as death but he is coming as love.
Sh: Well, then I just said the gopis are immortal souls, the spirits: they leave the body when death calls, they run to meet it.
There is a poem in Hindi; it says the destination of life is death and there is no other way. Life is always running to meet death. And I say that the moments of meeting are always beautiful. There is a story in Indian mythology that when death was created She was the most beautiful lady. When she was told of her beauty she left it: it had a very bad name. And the creator told her: You will never be blamed for anybody dying. They will blame something else. And you just see: he died of cancer, he died of a heart attack, he died of an accident. Nobody say that he died because death came to take him away. Indian romantic language is revolving around the word “death”. When they say that a boy fell in love with a girl, the common slang in India is “he dies of her”.
We have the fear of death, and the fear of death means no breath so we are worried about that. It is not so simple to return.
I think this is inherent, everybody is afraid of death.
Every yoga practice before attaining Samadhi always revolves around the breathe. The Bible also says: “He breathed the breathe of life into his nostrils”. That means the breathe belongs to God. It also says that the spirit is God. That is inside you which is connected with breathe. And I think you can call breathe a spirit because it is coming from God. If you worship any spirit and it is either breathe or it is connected with breathe. If you practice there is something with your breathe. It is a directly associated with God because spirit is the God.
The only way you can worship God is via your breathe. It is very direct.
When you know all the secrets of breathe, it will make you free from this mundane world, from the limitations of your body and mind also. You will get beyond that. That means being one with God or being one with the spirit because you will realise that your true nature is spiritual, not physical.
It is believed in the yoga that the respiration affects the mind. If you still the mind the breath will stop automatically and vice versa because suddenly no one can directly stop his mind. So we go by our breath. We try to still our breath, we still the mind and when mind is still your breath stops and you are ready to dive deep inside your own mind.
So when you become absolutely still, you will realize the spirit inside which is God.
But the yogic point of view on the stillness is when your mind has reached a very high field of activity it will appear to be still to others. When you are flying from Moscow to India, for example, and the plane is flying at a very high altitude, with nothing in contrast, though you know that your plane is moving, if you look outside the window, the plane will appear as if it is still. So when your mind is moving at a very high speed, and there is no contrast to judge that, the mind will appear as completely still.
It will be just like that: you are just sitting somewhere, thinking about your job, or work or life in general and somebody just comes to you and begins to talk: “Oh, I thought you were sitting here without doing anything, so I just came to talk”. He will never understand where your mind was moving but you will appear extremely still.
Q: Is it so that when the mind works with such a speed, it is unidirectional?
Sh: Yes. There is concentration. See a gymnast display. Everyone would think how easily they are doing it and how beautifully. But you see the level of concentration which goes into it is a physical thing. Only then, with the concentration, perfection comes.
Do you know Batu? He is a world champion. Because he is an accomplished man he has tuned his mind and body together. So whenever you look at him he will be still. No unwanted movement of the body you will ever see in Batu. But a person whose mind is not so powerful will keep on doing physical movements. You see the point here is that the more powerful the mind is the more still a person will appear. Still water runs deep as the saying is. When the water is still that means it is very deep.
Total stillness is not possible. And even if you become like a stone even then you will not be still. There will be eternal movements inside all the time.
When something is moving in a very fast speed, it appears like still. So the stillness is not stopping — it is attaining the maximum speed.
You can explain it very easily from physicians’ point of view: when a person is going at a speed of light, his body goes into the condition of some total rest, his breath will stop, his heart will stop, he will appear as still. That means when you are going to the maximum speed, your body will become absolutely still. I think this is what yoga means also. When your consciousness is moving at a very high speed, your body appears as still.
When a person goes to Samadhi, he will see every incident happening on earth at this very moment. You will see murders being committed, people dying, taking birth, working, there are so many things.
Q: At the same time.
Sh: Yes, you are connected with the universal consciousness.
Q: And this development of mind to this level, does it relate to the development of the physiological brain or are these different things?
Sh: The physiological brain is the seat of the mind. It will definitely develop so the mind will come into full play.
Q: But if a yogin died without achieving Samadhi?
Sh: His practice will continue even after his death. And here I will mention that the real practice of pranayama begins when you will be in the air body, in the Vayu Sharir.