Sāṃkhya as an inquiry into the Yoga of Spirit and Matter

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What is it that weapons do not cleave?
That fire does not burn?
That waters do not wet?
That wind does not whither?
– Commentary on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Two verse 23

The previous post offered a meditative reflection on this Śloka (verse).
Expanding further on this Śloka from notes from my 121 studies over 4 years of this Sacred Scripture with my teacher allows us to consider more deeply the context for and meaning within the Śloka.

The context for this Śloka is Chapter Two, entitled ‘Sāṃkhya Yoga’ or the Yoga of Cause and Effect, or Spirit and Matter, or Animate and Inanimate.

Sāṃkhya proposes a permanent solution to suffering.
If we look and see.
And see what produces what we see.”
TKV Desikachar Madras November 24th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Thus the Śloka needs to be contested within a philosophy that urges a profound personal inquiry into:

Sāṃkhya postulates what appears and what causes it to appear.”
TKV Desikachar Madras November 24th 1979 on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

Thus Sāṃkhya is a Sādhana or spiritual practice towards a state of Vijñāna or special inquiry into the nature of Nature.

“Primordial Nature is uncreated and yet creates.
Awareness is neither.”
Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa Śloka Three

In this particular Śloka this is the focus by considering what is matter and what isn’t matter or ne’iti ne’iti – not this or not that. From a Sāṃkhya perspective matter is seen as being composed of elements, such as Earth, Fire, Water, Air.

Hence the symbolic linking of each section of the Śloka to each of the four elements:
Earth – What is it that weapons do not cleave?
Fire – That fire does not burn?
Water – That waters do not wet?
Air – That wind does not whither?

Thus this Śloka is a meditative reflection on the transitory nature of the elements that constitute matter and what is it within our sense of being that remains unaffected by this constant flux or Pariṇāma

Sāṃkhya is about living more within that which doesn’t change,
rather than living more within that which does change.

Students may be interested in exploring further for their personal Sādhana, small group study options such as the:
Module One & Module Two – The Art of Sāṃkhya Philosophy  Seeing your World
Module One & Module Two – The Art of Gītā Scripture  Searching your Heart

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