Does any extant tradition claim that the unity of samadhi and prajna^ is actual from the beginning of the bodhisatva path, so that it is available to the neophyte - just with less power of something similar to more advanced bodhisatvas?

^e. g. Chinul:

Samadhi being prajna, it is quiescent and yet always knowing.

or Platform Sutra:

To argue whether prajna or samadhi comes first would put one in the same position as those who are under delusion... a lamp and its light.

So you can see, they are one, yet - perhaps - not everyone realizes this in their practice?

Just asking because I think it may be the meaning of human life etc..

  • Inhaling and exhaling are both part of one breath. The former requires the latter and vice versa, but they employ completely different modalities.
    – user19511
    Commented Aug 25, 2020 at 18:04
  • i maybe agree ha @user19511
    – user2512
    Commented Aug 25, 2020 at 18:12

4 Answers 4


Of course it is. You can't have prajna without samadhi. Think of a shovel versus a backhoe. With a little shovel you can clear away a little debris and dig little holes. With a backhoe, you can move mountains. So to with concentration and wisdom. Your samatha practice is the tool that allows you to clear away your own obstacles and access insight and wisdom. And just like in the shovel example with the little samadhi of the novice comes little prajna; with the big samadhi of the adept comes bigger prajna.


Noble Eightfold Path is further summarised into three main categories namely Sila, Samadhi, and Panna. Noble Eightfold Path should be practiced as a whole. You can't practice only a selected limb and called it "Noble" Hence all three Sila, Samadhi and Panna should be practiced together in NEP.


Good householder,

If by "Bodhisatta-way", the path of the Buddha, the path of release from stress and wandering on, is meant "being (satta) after bodhi (awakening)", then there is a different for a either student nor finished and a student. To reach the path developing right view, pañña, straighten it, comes before concentration, while one on the path focuses on concentration to reach refined pañña and knowing and vision.

If by "Bodhisatta" ideals of certain sects, which desire for reasoning for useless wandering on and continue harm for themselves and others, is meant: it's by nature of this that in all ways right view, right samadhi, pañña is avoided since the path of the Buddha would bind one toward release and unbound. So in short, since there is no different between an ordinary worldling and a "Bodhisatta", neither is there right view nor right concentration present and easy recognise-able by lack of right Right Resolve and going after confused resolve, harmful, unwise, attached.

The unite of concentration and wisdom arises, can be developed after having gained path, having completed the purification of virtue after right view had arosen. It is therefore a "unite", path-section only accessable for Noble ones till the ten-fold path of the Arahat.

[Note that this hasn't been given for stacks, exchanges, trade for wandering on, bond to it, but for escape and release from this wheel]


We don't call it "samadhi" when it's partially distracted and we don't call it "prajna" when it's partially confused.

In other words, whether something of the kind may be available to a beginner, it's not qualified to be called those two terms.

You might ask: ok, even if the case, is there a unity of aiming at prajna and samadhi?

-- Yes, and that's what's known as the unity of Samatha and Vipassana - also known as the practice of meditation.


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