Ch. 4, v. 2, Haṭhayogapradīpika process (krama), bliss,
“And now I will tell you the best way to reach spiritual union (samādhi), which destroys death and brings happiness, the supreme bliss of Brahma.”
अथेदानीं प्रवक्ष्यामि समाधिक्रममुत्तमम् ।
मृत्युघ्नं च सुखोपायं ब्रह्मानन्दकरं परम् ॥ २ ॥
athedānīṁ pravakṣyāmi samādhikramamuttamam |
mṛtyughnaṁ ca sukhopāyaṁ brahmānandakaraṁ param || 2 ||
Rev. Dr John Dupuche is a Catholic priest, and Yogi Matsyendranath is from the Nath Yoga tradition. Father John and Yogi present teachings from their contrasting traditions, using as their starting point verses from the Haṭha-Yoga-Pradīpika.
These teachings are also made available by YouTube on http://www.melainterfaith.org and http://www.nathas.org/en
The whole purpose of Haṭhayogapradīpika chapter 4 is being presented in this verse. That chapter will go on to describe the steps that should be taken. However, there are many other schools in the Hindu tradition with many other suggestions on what steps to take to reach the highest goal of samādhi, which is defined as the ‘bliss of Brahma’ or ‘divine bliss’.
Indeed, all religions propose steps for reaching divine happiness, however it may be conceived. The various Indian schools compete with each other, each asserting that they have the easiest and quickest way of reaching the most intense bliss.
The result described in this verse is twofold: namely to destroy death and to bring happiness, which also is defined as ‘divine bliss’, something more than ordinary human bliss. The question is: what is the ‘bliss of Brahma’. Here too the different religions will answer differently.
For the Christian the krama is, paradoxically, the ‘royal road of the cross’, namely to follow Christ who is ‘the way the truth and the life’. (Jn 14:6) The process is further set out in the Bible, especially in the New Testament and in the whole history of Christian spiritualty. We cannot go into this vast field here.
What then is ‘divine bliss’ in the Christian view? It is set out, in a few words, in the First Letter of Saint John.
“Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. … for God is love. God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him … if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us.” (I Jn 4.7-9, 12)
In the Christian understanding, samādhi is found in the fullness of love, where we become love. The state of love is divine bliss. All is love.