Mandukya Upanishad (Gaudapa Karika and Shankara Bhashya)

by Swami Nikhilananda | 1949 | 115,575 words | ISBN-13: 9788175050228

This is verse 4.47 of the Mandukya Karika English translation, including commentaries by Gaudapada (Karika), Shankara (Bhashya) and a glossary by Anandagiri (Tika). Alternate transliteration: Māṇḍūkya-upaniṣad 4.47, Gauḍapāda Kārikā, Śaṅkara Bhāṣya, Ānandagiri Ṭīkā.

Sanskrit text, IAST transliteration and English translation

ऋजुवक्रादिकाभासमलातस्पन्दितं यथा ।
ग्रहणग्राहकाभासं विज्ञानस्पन्दितं तथा ॥ ४७ ॥

ṛjuvakrādikābhāsamalātaspanditaṃ yathā |
grahaṇagrāhakābhāsaṃ vijñānaspanditaṃ tathā || 47 ||

47. As a fire-brand, when set in motion, appears as straight, crooked, etc., so also Consciousness, when set in motion, appears as the perceiver, the perceived, and the like.

Shankara Bhashya (commentary)

In order to explain the truth regarding the Ultimate Reality already stated, it is thus said:—As in common experience it is noticed that a fire-brand1 when moved, appears straight, crooked, etc., so does Consciousness appear as the perceiver, the perceived, and the like. What is that which appears as the perceiver, the perceived, etc.? It2 is Consciousness set in motion. There is no motion in Consciousness. It only appears to be moving. This appearance is due to Avidyā or ignorance. No motion is possible in Consciousness which is ever immovable. It has already been stated that Consciousness is unborn and immovable.

Anandagiri Tika (glossary)

1 Fire-brand, etc.—If a fire-brand be moved swiftly it makes a circle, a straight line, or a crooked line according to the movement. When the fire-brand is moved, it does not really make any figure. In reality, there is only a point which appears as various figures.

2 It is, etc.—Consciousness only exists. It is ever undifferentiated. Motion in Consciousness makes it appear as the perceiver, the perceived, etc. There is no motion, really speaking, in Consciousness. The ignorant only imagine illusory subjects and objects which are the basis of our sense-perception.

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