Yogadrstisamuccaya of Haribhadra Suri (Study)

by Riddhi J. Shah | 2014 | 98,110 words

This page relates ‘Haribhadrasuri’s purpose of writing the Yogadrishtisamuccaya’ of the study on the Yogadrstisamuccaya: a 6th-century work on Jain Yoga authored by Haribhadra Suri consisting of 228 Sanskrit verses. The book draws from numerous sources on traditional Yoga. Three important topics are stipulated throughout this study: 1) nature of liberation, 2) a liberated soul, and 3) omniscience.—This section belongs to the series “Introduction to the Yogadrishtisamuccaya”.

Chapter 3.2 - Haribhadrasūri’s purpose of writing the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya

The benedictory verse of the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya talks about the direct and indirect purpose of the text itself. However, in the concluding[1] verse Haribhadrasūri mentions his purpose of composing the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya. In the same verse Haribhadrasūri also remarks on the general character of the present text. He says that the Yoga concisely presented with variety of dṛṣṭis in the present text, is drawn out of numerous texts on Yoga.[2] Haribhadrasūri compares the present text with fresh butter. He says that the content of Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya is extracted from numerous texts on yoga by analyzing them, just like butter which is extracted from milk.[3] This statement proves the authenticity of the present text. The variety of yogadṛṣṭis has not been presented only according to Haribhadrasūri’s intellect. He has derived the idea of various yogadṛṣṭis from the numerous texts on yoga of his predecessors. Moreover the above-mentioned statement made by Haribhadrasūri also reflects his extremely humble nature. Even after composing such incredible work, Haribhadrasūri is not willing to take its whole and sole authorship.

Apart from all these the purely non-sectarian spirit and broad-minded approach of Haribhadrasūri is displayed in his words:


Haribhadrasūri’s purpose of writing the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya–the purpose is to recall the experience of his own soul.[5] In other words we may say that Haribhadrasūri has composed the present text with an intention to stay in touch with his soul. It implies that Haribhadrasūri has written the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya for his own spiritual benefit. A modest scholar like Haribhadrasūri does not want to establish his superiority by saying that I have composed the present text for obliging people in their spiritual journey. Therefore, Haribhadrasūri mentions that the primary object is to memorize his own soul. Another purpose behind writing this text is to cause spiritual welfare of kulayogin as well as pravṛttacakrayogin.[6] Haribhadrasūri says that the kulayogin and pravṛttacakrayogin,who are more dull-witted than Haribhadrasūri, will benefit by listening this work of mine.[7] It is so because these two types of yogins are capable of developing a feeling of inner inclination for yoga by hearing the present text.[8] The enumeration of four types of yogins is dealt with in the next sub-point of the present chapter.

Haribhadrasūri further explains the afore-mentioned two types of yogins’ inclination for (pakṣapāta) Yoga. Eventhough a kulayogin and a pravṛttacakrayogin may not perform spiritual activities, they have developed an intense inner inclination for matters on Yoga. The real feeling of partisanship for yoga is far better than the action performed without true involvement of psyche. Haribhadrasūri compares the earlier one with the sun and the latter one with a glow-worm.[9] He says the light of a glow-worm is meager and perishing while that of the sun is of the opposite kind. The light of the sun is tremendous and lasting.[10]

The feeling of partisanship for Yoga, generated in the afore-mentioned two types of yogins by listening the present text, strengthens the seeds of yoga in them.[11] This is how the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya causes spiritual welfare.

Moreover, Haribhadrasūri states that the men of virtuous disposition are themselves always on the lookout for a great jewel, just like that to the competent persons I need not address a request that they listen to my work.[12] They themselves grab the opportunity of hearing the present text. It is so because they own real desire to listen such a sacred text[13] . Therefore, for doing spiritual welfare of competent ones (here kulayoginandpravṛttacakrayogin) Haribhadrasūri does not have to request them. They themselves come to hear the present text with an intention of gaining knowledge about Yoga and experiencing self-realization.

Footnotes and references:


evaṃ prakṛ tamabhidhāya sarvopasaṃhāramāha
   –An Avataraṇikā of verse 207 of the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


anekayogaśāstrebhyaḥ, saṃkṣepeṇasamuddhṛtaḥ|
dṛṣṭibhedena yogo'ya
-..................... || 207 || 
   –Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


samuddhṛta-stebhyaḥ pṛthakkṛ taḥ, navanītamiva kṣīrāditi|... || 207 || 
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


See, an auto-commentary on verse–207 of the Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya,pg: 63, line: 10, 2010.


.......................- mātmānusmṛtaye paraḥ || 207 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


ku lādiyogibhedena, caturdhā yogino yataḥ|
ataḥ paropakāro'pi
, leśato na virūdhyate || 208 ||
   –Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


ku lādiyogināmasmā-nmatto'pi jaḍadhīmatām|
śraṇātpakṣapātāde-rūpakāro'sti leśataḥ ||
222 ||


kimityāha-śravaṇāta-्śravaṇena, pakṣapātādeḥ pakṣapātaśubhecchāde... || 222 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


kaḥ pakṣapātamātrādapu kāra ityāśaṅkāpohāyā''ha
tāttvikaḥ pakṣapātaśca, bhāvaśūnyā ca yā kriyā|
anayorantaraṃ jñeyaṃ
, bhānukhadyotayoriva || 223 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


khadyotakasya yattejaḥ __________, tadalpaṃ ca vināśi ca|
viparītamidaṃ bhāno-riti bhāvyamidaṃ budhaiḥ ||
224 || 
... | iti-evaṃ bhāvyamidamadhikṛ ta-pakṣapāta-kriyādikaṃ budhaistattvanītyeti || 224 || 
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


upakāro'sti leśataḥ tathābījapuṣṭā (ṣṭyā) || 222 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


śravaṇe prārthanīyāḥsyurna hi yogyāḥ kadācana|
yatnaḥ kalyāṇasattvānāṃ
, mahāratne sthito yataḥ || 225 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).


na hi yogyāḥ kadācana, śuśrūṣābhāvenasvataḥ pravṛtteḥ|...., pakṣapātāderapi janmāntarāvāptiśruteḥ || 225 ||
   –Auto-commentary on Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya (2010).

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