Stages of Samadhi

Samadhi – equanimity, a uniform state of mind, union (yoga) with God, fulfillment. 

The First stage of samadhi — sabija, savikalpa, samprajnata.

The Highest samadhi — nirbija, nirvikalpa, asamprajnata.

Raja Yoga

Raja Yoga begins when Kundalini makes her home above the throat chakra, making the highest form of samadhinirbija (without-seed), possible. This is also called nirvikalpa (without-difference) samadhi. Prior to this, one experiences sabija (with-seed) samadhi, also called savikalpa (with-difference) samadhi.

These different names for the same things, arrived at by different people of different lineages, in different locations and times over centuries, provide us with multiple clues for understanding samadhi.

The First Stage of Samadhi

Direct experience of Truth.

‘Seed’ refers to desire in a dormant state. A seed is something in a potential state that is not manifest. So in sabija, with-seed samadhi, a seed of desire is present, and makes the experience one in which there is a distinction between the individual and what is being experienced: savikalpa. Another term for this samadhi is samprajnata samadhi, ‘with-a-knowable’.

Sabija – ‘with-seed’. Dormant desire is present.
Savikalpa – ‘with difference’. Differentiation between the individual and the experience.
Samprajnata – ‘with a knowable’. An object of knowledge is present and knowable, perceptible.

The Highest Samadhi

Absorption into The Absolute, unfathomable bliss and independence without separation.

As samadhi develops, the next stage, in which difference is not present, is nirbija, nirvikalpa, asamprajnata samadhi. There is no difference because there is no desire, not even a desire in a potential state—there are no desires at all. There is no sense of self, no object to know, to perceive, and no experiencing going on. The knower, the knowing and the known are differences that are not present with this highest samadhi. It is asamprajnata, absorption into the Absolute.

Nirbija – ‘without-seed’. Without desire.
Nirvikalpa – ‘without-difference’. Without distinctions.
Asamprajnata – ‘without-a-knowable’. Absorption.

Kundalini & Samadhi

Before Raja Yoga beginsthe first stage of samadhi may be experienced even though Kundalini has not yet made her permanent home at the sixth chakra. This happens when, with sufficient purification, the energy shoots up into the head but falls back to the first chakra (do not underestimate the importance of this chakra).

Although this may happen very quickly, a mere fraction of a second, it can last for several minutes, or even hours, and will go through changes until Kundalini is able to move house and retire to the the sixth chakra. At this point, Kundalini takes a new name: Maruti, Goddess of the Wind. Now the evolutionary force is fully awake, and She means business.

Durga Ma


The Seventh Chakra

At the seventh chakra is the Window of God, from which a brilliant clear white light can be seen.

One mystical writing, the Shiva Samhita, describes this light as having the brilliance of tens of millions of suns and the coolness of tens of millions of moons. Strictly speaking, this chakra is outside the physical body, but when you get there, you can ‘see’ through this ‘window.’ A brief moment at this place destroys misfortunes. Staying here destroys death itself.

The Window of God
From Living the Mysteries, ©1999, Durga Ma and Terry Anne Preston, Ph.D. 

In deep meditation I once found myself taken into a three-story house by my Guide. In the center of this house was an elevator. We stepped into the elevator and went up to the top floor without stopping. We stepped out of the elevator into large, bright room. In the center of the room was a divan where there lay an infant sleeping. My attention was drawn to the infant, and as I watched, fascinated, this child, whose appearance resembled my own, woke and grew to maturity before my very eyes.

I looked around the room and was attracted to a bright light coming from a window. A woman was standing at the window looking out. She had fair skin and raven hair. I assumed it was the child’s mother, though she didn’t look like my own mother, the mother of this body. I could only see her from the back, so I walked over to where she stood. It was the Divine Mother whom I had met on my balloon ride to Heaven (siddhaloka) with Swami Kripalu. She directed me to look out the window. It was both exhilarating and frightening. I couldn’t take my eyes off of what I was seeing. We were in the midst of a brilliant light and traveling through space at the speed of light, and yet we were completely motionless at the same time.

I was in my own house, the body, and the elevator was the sushumna. The child had been me coming to higher and higher consciousness. The Divine Mother was God. The window was the brahmarandhra, the Window of God.


The brahmarandhra, the Window of God, is the seventh chakra, the sahasradalpadma, the ‘thousand-petalled lotus’. This chakra is associated with the central nervous system with its multitude of nadis and functions, and is beyond senses and elements, and of crystal brilliance. With mastery of the seventh chakra, you attain knowledge of Truth and are never born again. 

Large numbers, especially thousands, are interpreted as an unspecified vast number. The ‘thousand petaled lotus’ represents the multitude of us, all divine individuals. Upon unconditionally accepting everyone, one merges with the Absolute. This is nirbija (seedless) samadhi (equanimity), the highest samadhi. Because you have accepted everyone as they really are (divine, like you), you become a ‘savior’—anyone whose unconditional acceptance includes you, has accepted everyone through you. It is taught in Christianity that one is ‘saved’ by accepting Jesus. This is true, for Jesus had accepted everyone.

All misfortunes are destroyed and immortality is attained. You are no longer someone being conscious. You are not someone who is being conscious of someone or something other than you, not even yourself, not even God. You have merged with Absolute God, paramatman, and your sadhana is compete.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma

Apply for Remote Shaktipat
Surrender Meditation, Shaktipat Intensives

Go to the list of posts on KUNDALINI and the chakras.

Divine Sound

The Sixth Chakra, Continued. 

One of the most exciting, inspiring and reassuring things that can happen to you in Surrender Meditation is the experience of Divine Sound.

The experience of Divine Sound (nada, in Sanskrit) is an experience of direct perception that occurs spontaneously in Surrender Meditation when your inherent power manifests as your ability to perceive without the aid of the senses. Through this experience you discover something important: you begin to understand that you really do have power and can access it, and that the sense organs that you have thus far been limited to and dependent upon are the result of this power—you have eyes because you can see, ears because you can hear, and so forth with all five senses. Scientific tradition will tell you that this is backwards, but you will come to know the truth through your own experience of nada.

Normally, it is the vibrations of a medium, such as air, water or earth, that produce audible sound. With nada however, there is no medium, yet sound is heard. There is no medium because you are perceiving directly. 

With the experience of nada there is the perceiver, you, and there is something to perceive, something other than you. If you think of this as you in relationship to another individual, you have a situation in which there is something happening between the two of you. What is happening is energy, energy in a state of motion—vibration, oscillation—producing subtle sound that cannot be heard with the physical ears.

The Word of God

“In the beginning is the Word…”. The Word is OM (aum), the fundamental Divine Sound that manifests all forms. The vibrations of energy flowing between each of us is the Word, is this created world and everything in it. This is why the world is said to be an illusion (maya)—because we see it as stuff when what it really is is us and our relationship. And it all began with a song. The song is OM.

The Sound of OM
From Living the Mysteries, © 1999, Durga Ma and Terry Anne Preston, Ph.D.

While meditating in my hut, I sometimes heard groups of people walking by. This disturbed my solitude, so, one day I  decided to end my meditation and have a look to see what was  going on. There was no one there. Only the sound of people passing. Their voices trailed off as they went on into the  distance. I don’t know what that was. It was very strange. Perhaps groups of people had once walked that trail before and left residuals of their passing. I got used to it and  eventually it no longer disturbed my meditation.

One day when I was meditating and in a very deep meditative state, I heard what I assumed was this ghostly sound, so I didn’t really pay much attention to it at first. But  the sound changed.  

I perceived the vibrations of the sound at the base of my spine and ‘heard’ the sound in every cell of my body, even though the sound seemed to be coming from outside at the  same time. It became very loud and rumbled like the lowest note you could imagine on a big pipe organ in a big  cathedral. This rumbling sound turned into a tone of definite, but very, very low pitch. It shook my very foundations—literally. 

As it continued, the tone became more and more refined as it made its way up the central core of my body. This was  very real. I could ‘feel’ it, though not in the same way we feel the body being touched by something. The vibrations of the  sound were quite perceptible and changed as they rose higher and higher in my body at higher and higher frequencies. I  went from surprise, to fascination, to delight.  

I could hear it, I could feel it, and I could even see it. As its color finally changed into a pale, light-bright violet blue, the sound began to cease being a sound. The vibrations flat-lined and then complete silence prevailed. The colors became pure light. Delight turned to joy and then to ecstasy. 

What was remarkable was that, while all this was going on, I was again experiencing the paradox of Divine Sound … only this time it was in its pure form—all  pitches simultaneously (a ‘pitch’ is the highness or lowness of a tone), no single one more than any other, and yet, only a  single tone.


The next time you see something in one of my blogs, or a mystical text, having to do with sound, words, music, etc., remember nada, Divine Sound, the Song of God. See the “Resources” below.

Namaste (I bow to the Divine One that you really are),
Durga Ma


“On Music & Dance” by Swami Kripalu”
A search on this site for “OM” will get you several more articles.

Mystical Text:
Start with something simple and easy to read and digest: The original Bhagavad Gita, “The Song of God”.

Surrender Meditation:
Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga Meditation — Apply for Remote Shaktipat
Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga Meditation — Book a Shaktipat Intensive

Go to the list of posts on KUNDALINI and the chakras.