Dhyana in Yoga practice

Dhyana or meditation is defined by Patanjali as the uninterrupted flow of concentration of the mind on the object of concentration. The state of dhyana is an extension of dharana. There is a fine difference between dharana and dhyana. In dharana the mind continually tries to think of things other than the object, and the practitioner has to bring the awareness back to the object; distractions still exist in one form or another. In dhyana, however, the mind has been subjugated and is totally and continually absorbed in the object. It is in meditation that the deeper aspects of the object start to manifest themselves. The depth of concentration in dhyana is far greater than in dharana. It is through the regular and continual practice of concentration that dhyana spontaneously manifests itself.

Dhyana or meditation can be initiated in sitting in one pose and fixing the mind on an object, sound or breath. This leads to the free flow of thoughts, visions, memories etc. from the unconscious realms of mind and to probe the lower mind to remove the undesirable contents. When the lower mind has been fully explored, one can start to explore the superconscious realms to access the storehouse of knowledge, wisdom and energy within.

One can develop active meditational state in visualising, listening, reading and writing by regularly performing meditation in day to day yoga practice. This is in fact is the aim of yoga, to allow one to meditate while being involved in worldly activities. It does not mean that the activities will not be done, or not done with enthusiasm. In fact the work or external activities will be performed with more efficiency and energy.

Dr. Mahesh Chandra Panda
Yoga Practitioner


About drmcpanda

Dr. Mahesh Chandra Panda, M.B.B.S.,M.D. Date of Birth:29.02.1948 Retd. (29.02.2008) Chief District Medical Officer Bargarh Orissa India
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11 Responses to Dhyana in Yoga practice

  1. drmcpanda says:

    I have referred the books ‘Light on Yoga’ authored by B K S Iyengar and ‘Meditations from the Tantras’ authored by Swami Satyananda Saraswati in drafting the article Dhyana in Yoga practice.

  2. A well written article on Dhyana.

    Whenever I have tried to meditate, I have always been in state of dharana, as termed here.I have never been able to put a check on flow of thoughts, though I try to bring it back to object of focus.This has been my frequent try to focus myself on the visual of God/Goddess, I am trying to worship at that particular moment;but I do get distracted in my thoughts.

    One of the basic rule in psychology is that we don’t have a control on our thoughts. Content of thought is partly determined by what we have been doing and thinking in past 2 months.It is possible that if a person is consistently thinking only of one subject for quite some time that he is able to get focussed as defined in meditation.

    Mental exercises have also been defined and do improve brain function.Our brain has very complex set of functioning. Only a fraction of its working is known to scientific world. A lot more is being investigated with newer set of investigative tools.

    Meditational effort by any individual is a great peace generating tool.

  3. Vinod Varma says:

    In my experience, Dhyana or meditation is a means to get close to divinity with oneself.Thoughts arise; These thoughts are like waves on surface of ocean. As we seek within, we see an infinite world of tranquility deep within.

  4. Satya says:

    Thanks for wonderful article doctor,

    Dhyana is a wonderful tool which transcends you into a different dimension of who you are…am sure you will enjoy reading the article addressed by Swami Satyananda Saraswati:

    here is the link….


  5. A very good article where lay man like me can understand difference of Dhyana and Dharana.According to Swami Vivekananda:”Meditation is the direct service to human being”.

    I enjoy by reading your article as well as comments of Dr Madan Goyal and Mr Vinod Varma.

  6. Respected Panda Sir,
    Thank you for intimating me regarding your recent article.

    I got some extra knowledge regarding the subject. Very nice combinations of letters to word, words to sentence, sentences to meaning, meanings to knowledge, knowledge to self-empowerment presented by a good writer and it clearly reflects from your each and every article.May Saibaba bless you for presenting these kind of articles by you for us uninterruptedly.


  7. V. Nageswar Rao says:

    Dear Sir,

    Very Nice Article, Well Written,Much Clarity about the difference between Dharana and Dhyana.The article must be useful to any one to know more about Dharana and Dhyana in Yoga and Spirituality.

    Thanking You,
    With Regards

  8. drppanda says:

    Meditation while performing worldly activities in
    Gruhasthashrama is most difficult Yoga.

  9. Tapas says:

    When I was working under your administration at Bargarh, you have advised me to concentrate in one work and never carry on another until the first one is not completed. I used to start 3-5 assignments at a time and often I could not be able to finish even one out of the same. I have practiced your advice and could be able to make myself to work with an organisation of U.N.

    Thanks a lot to change my professional lifestyle..


  10. We all feel the impact of ego , the sense of ‘I’ within us. All through our waking hours ‘I’ keeps asserting itself every now and then. If we look deep, we shall understand that ‘I’ is at the centre of every thought, every feeling we have. Now, can we focus our awareness on ‘I’ in stead of on breath. Breath is a gross thing, just a stream of air. ‘I’ is much subtler than breath and consequently, much deeper into our essential being. Hence, awareness of ‘I’ , in stead of breath, should be more effective a way of attaining the much-sought-after thought-free, no-mind state. You may please give your feedback in this respect after applying this in your meditation. 🙂 🙂

    • Rising above petty worldliness to the sphere of sublime spirituality is a mere matter of raising one’s eyes from the ground level to the level of the sky. One just needs to shift focus from the objects lit to the source of light proper. I understand MEDITATION as just this- to shift focus from thoughts lit through Awareness to Awareness proper.

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