Chandogya Upanishad (Madhva commentary)

by Srisa Chandra Vasu | 1909 | 169,805 words | ISBN-13: 9789332869165

The English translation of the Chandogya Upanishad including the commentary of Madhva called the Bhasya. This text describes in seven sections the importance of speech, the importance of knowledge and the journey towards salvation.. It is one of the largest Upanishads and is associated with the Sama Veda. The Mundaka Upanishad is variously spelled...

Eight Adhyaya, Eleventh Khanda (3 mantras)

Mantra 8.11.1.

1. ‘When in deep sleep, in perfect rest, he sees no dreams, this is the Self, this is the Immortal, the Fearless, this is Brahman’ thus said Prajāpati.

Then Indra went away satisfied in heart. But before he had reached the Devas, he saw this difficulty:—‘In this dreamless state, I do not know the Self as my refuge, nor does the Self reveal Himself to me as “this am I,” nor do these creatures know the Self in dream state. If the Jīva has entered the Lord in this state, he has done so without the consciousness of joy. I do not see any good in this.—572.

Mantra 8.11.2.

2. Taking fuel in his hand, he went again to Prajāpati. Prajāpati said to him ‘O Indra you went away satisfied in your heart, for what purpose have you come back?’ He said ‘Sir I do not find, in this dreamless state, that Self, as my refuge, nor does the Self reveal Himself to me as ‘this am I.’ Nor do these creatures know the Self, in that state. If the Jīva has entered the Lord, in this state, he has done so without the consciousness of joy. I do not see any good in this.”—573.

Mantra 8.11.3.

3. “So it is indeed O Indra,” replied Prajāpati; “but I shall not explain this to you, unless you have passed some further period of Brahamcarya [Brahmacarya?]. Live here another five years.” He lived there for five years more, this made in all one hundred and one years, and therefore, it is said, that Indra Maghavan dwelt one hundred and one years, as Brahmacāri with Prajāpati. Then Prajāpati said to him.—574.

Madhva’s commentary called the Bhāṣya:

Being thus addressed by Indra, Brahmā told him of the Lord presiding over the state of deep sleep. When in the Lord, the Jīva enters in deep sleep, and does not know that he has so entered, that state was described by Brahmā. When Brahmā taught him the Lord called Prājña, the maker of the state of deep sleep, Indra said:—“I do not know myself in this condition of deep sleep any one separate from me; I do not realize that I am supported by Him or any one is supported in me. Nor does the Supreme Lord show Himself to the Jīva and tell him, “I am the Lord.” Nor do the creatures see any body in this condition. If in deep sleep the Jīva entered into the Supreme Self or the Supreme Self entered into the Jīva, even then also the merging is without any perception of happiness.

Note:—When Prajāpati taught Indra, that the Lord was the Maker of the condition of deep sleep also, Indra objects to it saying: “in this condition one does not know cither one’s own self or the Supreme Self. Nor docs the Lord show Himself to the Jīva in this condition: telling to the Jīva “here I am.” If it be said, that there exists no Supreme Self, the support of the Jīva in the condition of deep sleep, because He is not perceived, that is wrong. In the condition of deep sleep, the Jīva and the Supreme Self merge into each other, and that is the reason why one does not perceive the container and the contained, the supporter and the supported. This answer, however, is not right because, if that were the case, that the Jīva and the Lord, had merged into each other, then it ought to be a condition of Vināśa [Vināśam], i.e., joylossness; (Vinā = without, Sam = joy). If the Jīva had merged into the Supreme Self, then it would be so merged without any perception of joy, just as people who go to another’s house, do not feel comfortable there, as much as they feel in their home. The Jīva, however, perceives joy in deep sleep, for on arising he remembers “I slept very soundly and happily.” This shows that there is a perception of joy in deep sleep; consequently, it is not a condition of Jīva entering into Brahman, in the sense of being merged into it. If on the other hand the Supreme Self be merged in the Jīva, in the condition of deep sleep, then He also would become without joy; for the same reason that going into another’s house is always a state of discomfort.

But this would contradict all scriptural texts, which say that the Lord is always full of joy and joy is His essential nature. Therefore, it follows, that the deep sleep is not a condition in which either the Jīva merges (Apīta) into the Lord, or the Lord merges into the Jīva. This also refutes the doctrine of the Advaitins who hold that in deep sleep, there is a dissolution of Ahaṃkāra and all psychic activities; and who hold that the word Vināśa means annihilation, and that the deep sleep is an annihilation of personality.

The whole thing depends upon getting a clear idea of merging. If a lower consciousness could ever merge into a higher, it could do so only on losing its separate consciousness. A lower consciousness can never merge into a higher and still retain its own consciousness. But the Jīva retains its consciousness in deep sleep, for he remembers on waking that he had slept well. Therefore in deep sleep the Jīva does not merge into the Lord. Nor does the Lord merge into the Jīva. For when a higher consciousness merges into a lower—if there could be such a thing—then it would lose its higher nature and become the lower. Thus the Lord would be no Lord but become a Jīva.

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