Unfolding The Name Samana
"Samana is not a name for i, me, mine, or a name which refers to an object. Samana is a word which refers to the Sameness, a pointer to that which simply IS, spontaneous Presence, and this is the Pure Subject." ~ Samana
The name Samana was offered to dissolution as an act of love, through a wise elder teacher, and resided in the apparent background until the self that lived at center dis-identified along with its name, and as the apparent background became the foreground, Samana arose.
Samana is one who has surrendered or been surrendered to conventional social and material life in order to have a way of life aligned with, in harmony with, and in tune with True-Nature. In Sanskrit, Samana is a monk or one who is contemplative, one who has renounced, or been brought to renunciation. A Samana bikkhu, monk, lives fully present to what arises. Samana lives the Dharma of a peaceful one, lives and points to The One. The name is given as respect and to honor ones' practice, clarity, pathless-path, and Presence.
The origin of the word has roots with the word Shaman. Shamans, like birds, are messengers and intermediaries between apparent worlds, heaven and earth, above and below, the spirit and human realms, the relative and the Absolute, and stand as the unifying principle of duality. A pointer. A Shaman is both a priest, artist, and physical - metaphysical doctor and healer, treating illness by direct means with and as Self, restoring balance and wholeness to the self and community. Shaman is derived from the words saman, which is derived from the verb 'scha', which means 'to know', and as such, 'one who knows'. This etymology is the link between early Buddhist monks, Hindu Yogis and Siddhis, and Shamans. The elder who offered the name was not consciously aware of Samanas' previous work and studies with indigenous traditional Shamans, or as an artist.
Samana is also one of the pranic vital airs of the subtle body which sustains the manifested vessel, as that which is circulated through the body systems as the breath called Samana. As prana, the role of Samana is to realize stillness and assimilate capacity. As such, Samana stimulates the spirit and knowing of discernment and flexibility as balance, which realizes equanimity. While superficially attributed to digestion, the deeper meaning and intention is true and total assimilation. As the agent of assimilation, Samana is the subtle fire, the flame, which ignites or digests patterns, tendencies, mind, and illuminates the darkness of illusion. Samana allows one to be conscious of the Divine, and the sanctity and Truth of life, which restores and awakens Being as True-Nature.
Of the masters and teachers who have recognized his Self-realization, or have blessed his meeting with others as teaching, as Satsang, it was Sri Brahmavidananda, principle of the Vedanta order in India, who re-blessed the name, and said, "from an Absolute standpoint, Samana is what is the same in all beings and stands as a pointer to Consciousness, as do you. From a relative standpoint, Samana has a similar word in the Bhagavad Gita, Samatvam, or simply put 'sameness' especially with regard to opposites - hot / cold, up / down. This is to be equanimous and balanced with respect to all that arises. Samana is born of living wisdom and being the present. Samana is that which you live to and by."
'Majestic utter sameness, that pure fact of Being, where mind and what appears primordially pure. This sameness is itself the deep experience of the inconceivable, fundamental dimension of Reality' - Longchenpa
The Sanskrit root sama means equal, equality, together and same, in tune, attuned, evenly distributed, to emancipate from karma, to point to, be as, equanimity. In the Upanishads it is written; 'Samana is so called because it distributes equally, namely the out breathing and the in breathing. It is the priest. Thespace between heaven and earth is Samana.' 'Sa is the radiance of the sun, ama is the darkness. As Samana, the radiance and the darkness are one.' Samana is to merge, the rejoining.