prashaantaatmaa vigatabheerbrahmachaarivrate sthitaha |
manaha saiyamya macchitto yukta aaseeta matparaha || 14 ||

 
One whose personality is calm, fearless and established in the vow of renunciation, with a restrained mind, the seeker should sit with his mind focused on me, regarding me as supreme.
 
prashaantaatmaa : calm personality
vigatabheehi : fearless
brahmachaarivrate : vow of renunciation
sthitaha : established in
manaha : mind
saiyamya : under restraint
macchittaha : mind focused on me
yuktaha : the seeker
aaseeta : should sit
matparaha : regarding me as supreme
 
This shloka continues the topic of the method of meditation. Once we have made all the physical preparations and are ready to begin meditation, the question comes up: what do we meditate upon? What should be the object of our meditation? Shri Krishna has a simple answer. He says – meditate upon me. He asks us for two things: to focus our mind on him, and to regard him as the highest goal to be attained.
 
For beginning seekers, the notion of meditating upon the abstract aatmaa or self is difficult. To that end, he asks the seeker to choose any one form of Ishvara that the seeker takes delight in. Unless the seeker learns to take delight in one form of Ishvara, he will need a lot of effort to focus his mind on Ishvara. The seeker needs to put effort in making Ishvara his goal. This is why Shri Krishna repeatedly urges us to detach from sense pleasure and attach ourselves to something higher. Otherwise, if we love food for example, we will begin to meditate on food since it will be the first thing that pops into our mind when meditating.
 
What are the other prerequisites of a meditator? His personality or aatmaa is prashaanta. In other words, he is a calm, quiet and deep person. Only when the seeker’s mind becomes extremely quiet is meditation possible. In fact, if the mind is disturbed, even worldly things such as studying for an exam cannot be accomplished. Even though the mind is not quiet throughout the day, the meditator should take care that the mind is quiet at least during meditation time. It will take 10 minutes or so for the mind to calm all its thoughts, hence the meditator should plan on sitting for at least 15-20 minutes.
 
The next prerequisite is that the meditator should be vigatabheehi which means fearless, one from whom fear has completely gone away. The biggest fear that the meditator harbours is that he will lose his worldly identity, that he will drop his worldly life. That is why the meditator has to have prepared himself, following the instructions given so far, to give up his individuality. Another way of looking at this is that we fear of duality. We are scared to think that we are separate from other people, objects and situations. But one who has learned to see the sameness in everyone has eliminated this fear, because he sees his self in everyone.
 
Another prerequisite is that the meditator should be established with the vow of renunciation. Colloquially, the word brahmachaari means celibate. Here it means one who casts off all roles and dons the role of a seeker when he sits for meditation. He has no other pursuits in mind, no other roles in mind. He is not someone’s boss, employee, son, husband, brother and so on. If he associates with any of these roles, thoughts associated with that role will enter his mind during meditation. The only role to be assumed is that of a saadhaka or a seeker.
 

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