The Bhagavata Purana

by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 780,972 words | ISBN-10: 8120838203 | ISBN-13: 9788120838208

This page describes Discourses on the Maya and the means to Transcend it which is chapter 3 of the English translation of the Bhagavata Purana, one of the eighteen major puranas containing roughly 18,000 metrical verses. Topics include ancient Indian history, religion, philosophy, geography, mythology, etc. The text has been interpreted by various schools of philosophy. This is the third chapter of the Eleventh Skandha of the Bhagavatapurana.

Chapter 3 - Discourses on the Māyā and the means to Transcend it

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

[Full title: Discourses on the Māyā, the means to Transcend it, the Brahman and the Path of Action]

The King (Nimi) said:

1. We are anxious to know the (nature of the) Māyā (the Will Power) of the Supreme Lord Viṣṇu which deludes those (gods like Brahmā) who themselves are endowed with such deluding powers. May your worshipful sires be gracious enough to enlighten us (about Māyā’s nature).

2. I am a mortal being scorched by the fever (afflictions) of Saṃsāra. I do not feel satiated while listening to your speech describing the nectar-like sweet stories of Hari, which are an antidote against the fever in the form of miseries in Sāṃsāra.

[Bhāgavata Candrikā’s text adds here the above four verses but the Bhāgavata Vidyā-pīṭha (Ahmedabad) edition gives only the commentary of Bhāgavata Candrikā on these verses and not the original text. From what can be gleaned from the commentary, the above appears to be the contents of those verses.]

Antarīkṣa said:

2.1. The glorious Lord wishing to become many through his Māyā, created this universe. Though Jīva is pure spiritual essence, free from three guṇas, Māyā invested him with a body controlled by guṇas. The identification of the soul with one’s body is the delusion of Jīva (jīva-bhrama).

2.2. This Jīva-bhrama (delusion of the Jīva) is explained with reference to the waking, dreaming and the sleeping states of the Jīva (tat-prayukta-jāgrat-svapna-suṣupti-rūpāvasthātraya-sambandhān ca vadan bhramaṃ prapañcayati /) The waking state is the misapprehension with reference to external sense; the dreaming state is with relation to the mind; in the sleeping state, the memory is dormant, unmanifest- like seeds; and the fourth slate is the Jīva’s condition in relation to paramātman. In this stage the Jīva is separate from the body which is the product of Prakṛti and that is the liberated state (prakṛtipariṇāmaka-śarīrā'bhāvaḥ muktyavasthā iti /).

2.3. The Jīva is pure consciousness untainted by passions etc. and free from states like dreaming, sleep, etc. He appears through Māyā to be possessed of those stages.

2.4. When the jīva realizes the transitory nature and futility of three forms of Māyā, he desists to work for trivial pleasures and becomes serene (upa-saṃyāti, bahiḥ, kṣudra-sukhārthavyāpārān nivṛtto bhavatīti).

Antarīkṣa explained:

3. It is for the sake of enjoyment of objects and liberation of the embodied souls, his own rays, that the ancient-most Prime Person, the cause of all creation (or the Indwelling soul of all beings) evolved these great and small bodies, out of the five gross elements, O mighty-armed king.[1]

4. In this way having entered as the inner-dweller (for the well-being of all the Jīvas) into beings which are created out of the five elements,[2] God divides himself and appears as one (in the form of the mind), and ten (in the form of five cognitive and five conative senses), and enables them to enjoy the guṇas or objects of senses.

5. The master of the body—the Jīva enjoys the objects of senses by means of sense-organs illumined (by the knowledge or activated) by the Inner Controller. He misapprehends this created body as himself and gets attached to it. (This is due to Māyā.)

6. The jīva who is conditioned with a physical body, performs with his sense-organs acts, as motivated by the tendencies resulting from acts done in the previous birth. He experiences both the pleasant and unpleasant fruits of karmas and revolves in this Saṃsāra.[3]

7. In this way, going through various corporeal existences (in consequence of his Karma) which carry with them innumerable evils and miseries, the jīva, being helpless, experiences repeated births and deaths upto the dissolution of the universe.

8. When the dissolution of the gross elements is impending, the beginningless and endless eternal Time-Spirit[4] forcibly withdraws this manifest universe consisting of gross substances and their subtle guṇas into its unmanifest cause (the mūla- prakṛti).

9. (When such dissolution is imminent) at that time a severe draught—absolutely rainless—will devastate the earth for one hundred years. And the scorching sun with its heat enhanced by the (destructive) Time-Spirit shall completely consume the three worlds by its heat.

10. Huge flames of fire emanating from the (thousand) mouths of the (serpent goḍ) Śeṣa and burning the nether-world from its bottom, soar up high, burning down every thing and helped by the wind, they envelop the universe on all side.

11. The clouds of deluge called Saṃvartaka with each line of drop as thick as the trunk of an elephant, will pour down for one hundred years incessantly and the whole universe is sub-emerged in cosmic waters.

12. God Brahmā the Person (Deity) presiding over the universe leaves his conditioning universe (which has been now dissolved), enters the subtle Unmanifest like the fire entering into the unmanifested principle of fire, when the fuel is completely consumed.[5]

13. The earth being deprived of its distinguishing characteristic—smell is transformed into water and the water being divested of its special property, viz. liquidity, is changed into fire.

14. Deprived of its property of colour by the Sāṃvartika (universe-ending) darkness, fire merges into air and air (vāyu) deprived of its special characteristic touch, is lost into the ether (or the sky). The ether in its turn, being divested of its characteristic property, viz. sound, by the Supreme Soul in the form of Time-Spirit (Kālātman) the ether gets merged into the ātman i.e. Tāmasic Ego.

15.[6] Sense-organs and Intellect enter the (rājasika) Ego while the mind along with the presiding deities of senses merges into the (sāttvika) Ego. And this Ego, with all its (sāttvika, rājasika and tāmasika) characteristics, merges with the Mahat which in its turn enters the Prakṛti.

16. We have now described to you the Māyā of the glorious Lord, characterised by three colours (i.e. guṇas such as sattva, rajas and tamas) and which brings about the creation and carries out the maintenance and destruction of the universe. What more do you wish to hear?

The King Nimi submitted:

17. O great sage! Be pleased to expound the way whereby persons who have identified their ‘I-ness’ (soul) with the gross (physical) body, will easily cross over this Lord’s Māyā from which it is very difficult to get liberation by persons with, uncontrolled minds. Is there any path other than bhakti which has already been mentioned (supra 11.2.37).

Prabuddha explained:

18. Persons leading a householder’s life (living as husband and wife) and following the path of Karma for the removal of miseries and attainment of happiness, should observe and consider how contrary results are met by them.

19. (They should also consider:) What pleasure is derived from wealth which is so very difficult to obtain and which (when obtained) entails nothing but miseries—a veritable death of one’s own? Or what happiness one can get after acquisition of houses (properly), children, relatives and cattle which are so very transient.

20. One should know that in the same way (as in this world), the other (celestial) world, attained by performance of karmas is transient (and full of miseries). There is rivalry with the equals, jealousy towards the superiors and the fear of destruction (and terrnination of the period of the stay in celestial regions)[7], as we find it among the dependent princes (under an emperor), here (on the earth).

21. A person desirous of knowing the highest good, therefore, should resort to a pi'eceptor who is expert in logical exposition of the Brahman couched in words (i.e. Upaniṣads and Śrutis) and has realized the Supreme Brahman and (the sure index of which is that he) is well-established in the serenity of mind (and detachment).

22. Regarding his spiritual preceptor as his own self and his Deity (Hari), he should, by rendering sincere and devoted service to his preceptor, learn (and practise) the duties and ways of life of Lord’s votaries, so that Lord Hari who is the soul of the universe and confers self-realization (on his devotees), becomes pleased with him.

23. In the initial stage, one should learn (and practise) to detach his mind from everything (such as wife, children, property) and attach his mind to the pious persons (devoted to the Lord), and also should cherish mercy (to the subordinate and inferior beings), friendliness (with the equals) and modesty (towards the superiors) accordingly.

24. He should further imbibe the virtues of (mental and physical) purity, practise penance or religious duties, cultivate forbearance, observe silence (i.e. avoid unnecessary wastage of words), study the scriptures, practise straight forwardness, celibacy, non-violence and balanced attitude of mind under the stress of contradictory conditions (e.g. pleasure and pain, respect and insult, etc.).

25. He should realize that the Soul, as an intelligent existence, has pervaded the world and is the (omnipresent) Lord, the controller of the universe; and he should live in solitude, should not cherish any attachment to his house (property, relatives, etc.,), wear washed rag-cloth or bark-garment (as dress) and remain contented with whatever one gets.

26. He should entertain firm faith in the scriptures glorifying the Lord, but should not denigrate scriptures of others. He should control his mind (by breath-control—prāṇāyāma), speech (by silence) and deeds (by non-attachment) should speak the truth and control his internal organ (the mind as well as the external senses.

27. He should always listen to, glorify and meditate on the incarnations, deeds and excellences of Lord Hari of miraculous deeds, and learn to dedicate all his acts (including performance of sacrifice and such other religious acts to him.

28. He should also learn to resign unto the Supreme Lord all his performances of sacrifice, worship, charitable gifts, penance performed, muttering of sacred syllables or names of God, his activities and whatever is dear to him such as (scents, flowers, etc.) and dedicate[8] to the service of the Lord wives, children, houses (property) and his very life itself.

29. Thus he should entertain friendly relations to persons who have realized Lord Kṛṣṇa as their very Soul and as their protector or as the controller of all jīvas. He should adore the Lord as abiding in both the mobiles and immobiles[9] especially in men, and chiefly in the righteous men who observe their religious duties and out of them, specially in the devotees of the Lord.[10]

30. He should learn how to discuss with each other and sing of the sanctifying glory of the Lord. And in this way, in association with these, he should (forget rivalry, jealousy, etc. and) find spiritual joy, happiness and complete freedom from all miseries.

31. Remembering themselves and reminding each other of Hari who annihilates the mass of sins instantly, their devotion is developed unto Love divine and out of the thrill of ecstasy of this divine Love, the hair all over their bodies stand on their end (and this spiritual delight of the disciples, gives the spiritual preceptor the highest delight[11]).

32. Devotees (who have reached such a stage) behave in an unconventional manner. They sometimes weep (out of anxiety to visualize him), some times burst out into laughing and feel delighted (at his remembrance), some times they go on talking (about his sportive acts), some times they dance (in ecstasy), some times they sing of him and imitate his acts. In this way, coming to realize him and attaining the Supreme bliss, they remain silent.

33. He who thus learns (and practises[12]) the duties and the way of life of the devotees of the Lord, develops Love divine and thereby becomes absolutely devoted to (and absorbed in) Lord Nārāyaṇa, and easily crosses the Māyā which is otherwise very difficult to transcend.

King Nimi asked:

34. As you are the foremost among those who have realized the Brahman, it behoves you to propound to me the nature of Brahman or the Supreme Soul which is also designated as Nārāyaṇa (Do the terms Brahman, Paramātman. and Nārāyaṇa denote the same attributeless entity or imply any special feature?).

Pippalāyana replied:

35. O lord of kings I Please do understand that to be the Supreme Reality, which (as Nārāyaṇa) is the cause of the creation, sustenance and dissolution (of the universe) but (being eternal and beginningless) is himself un-caused (and indulges in the above activity without any cause or motive); which (as Brahman) exists persistently in three states namely those of wakefulness, dream and deep sleep as also in the fourth supra- conscious) state, both during Samādhi (trance) as well as outside in other states also, animated by which (as Paramātman) the body, senses, vital breath and the mind carry out their own function (The three aspects[13] viz. Nārāyaṇa, Brahman and Paramātman constitute one and the same Reality?

36.[14] Even as sparks of fire can neither illumine nor burn the fire, (their source) neither the mind, speech, the power of seeing, intellect, the vital breath and the sense-organs can enter (i.e. reach and comprehend) the Brahman. The word (i.e. the Vedas) which is (regarded as) authoritative in matters relating to Ātman indirectly hints at it by inference, as it denies itself the power to describe it directly in positive terms. But in the absence of Reality, no negative description is possible.

37.[15] At the beginning (before the creation of the universe) there was one (Brahman) which came to be known as threefold Pradhāna consisting of the attributes Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. By the predominance of Rajas or its active creative power, it is called Sūtrātmā or Hiraṇyagarbha and with the dominance of Sattva or the power of knowledge it is termed as Mahat. When the condition of Avidyā is invested, it is called Jīva (Individual Soul) or Ahaṃkara (Ego). This one Brahman becomes many and shines as deities (presiding over senses), the cognitive and conative senses and objects of senses as well as the resulting fruit, (viz. the experience of pleasure and pain, etc.) through his immensely powerful Māyā. The gross (i.e. the effects) and the subtle (i.e. their causes) are both (caused and) illumined by Brahman which is beyond the reach of both.

38.[16] This soul (Ātmā) was not born and shall not die; He neither grows nor does he decrease; He is the knower—the witness—of the times of the different states (such as youth, old age) of all bodies (just as the seer is different from the body). He is all-pervading, eternally unchanging pure consciousness-cum-existence. As in the case of Prāṇa, this consciousness-cum-existence appears as many, unḍer the influence of senses.

39.[17] In whatever category of body—whether born of eggs or from wombs or from seeds or from sweat—the jīva is born, the vital force (prāṇa) follows him (himself remaining the same, unaffected by the category of the body), (similarly) when all the sense-organs (which are active in wakefulness) and the Ego (which functions in the dream state) remain oblivious (as in a deep sleep), the soul being devoid of conditioning states, alone persists in that stage as can be inferred from our remembrance (of having enjoyed a sound sleep).

40. If with intensive devotion generated through desire for seeking the feet of the lotus-navelled God, a person, by his own mental efforts, cleanses all the dirt and impurities dogged on his heart due to three guṇas and acts (resulting in merit or sin), the Soul (which pre-exists there) directly reveals himself in that extremely pure heart like the light of the sun become visible to clear eyes.

The King requested:

41. Be pleased to describe to us that Path of Action (Parama Yoga) being purified by which a man quickly shakes off all Karmas and attains the supreme knowledge attainable only through disassociation from all actions.

42. Formerly, I asked this very question to Sages (like Sanaka and others) in the presence of my father (Ikṣvāku). But those (mind-born) sons of god Brahmā did not answer it. (Pray be pleased to explain to me the reason of their silence.

Āvirhotra replied:

43. The classification of Karma into Karma (duties enjoined by Vedas), Akarma (acts prohibited by Vedas) and Vikarma (omission of Karma and commission of Akarma) belongs to the sphere of the Vedas and not within the range of ordinary- parlance of men.

As the Vedas are the revelations from God, even wise sages stand confounded in their interpretations. (The sages whom you questioned were omniscient. But then you were of pre-mature age and could not have understood their explanation. Hence their silence then).

44. The Veda implies something deeper and different from what appears to be the superficial interpretation of the text. Just as a child is tempted with something sweet to make it swallow (the unpalatable) medicine (the object of the medicine being restoration of the child’s health and not the sweet thing that the child gets immediately after gulping down the medicine), similarly, the real object of the Veda is to liberate one from the bond of Karma and its consequence, for which Karmas are apparently prescribed.

45. (One should not indulge in dereliction of the prescribed Vedic duties from the beginning, prematurely thinking that liberation from Karmas is the real object in life). If a person being himself ignorant and having no control over his senses, does not perforin the duties prescribed by the Vedas, due to the Adharma (the course of unrighteousness) in which he is involved by Vikarma (non-performance of the prescribed act and commission of the acts prohibited by the Veda), he goes from death to death (as he remains entangled in Saṃsāra).

46. He who performs acts prescribed in the Veda but has no attachment to the fruits thereof and dedicates them to the Supreme Ruler, attains to that state of accomplishment[18] (i.e. Mokṣa) in which Karma or its fruit does not bind him. The promise of fruits of Karmas is meant to create interest in the Karma.

41. Whoever is desirous of instantaneously cutting as under the knot (of egotism) of the heart of his self which is Brahman himself, should, in addition to the Vedic rites, perform the worship of Lord Keśava in the manner prescribed in the (Pāñcarātra) Tantra.

48. After getting oneself initiated (in the Tāntrika path) through the grace of the spiritual preceptor[19] and being shown the technical method of worship by his guru, he should worship the Supreme Person in the form of (whatever) image (of the Lord) that he likes the best.

49. In a thorough clean state of the body, he should sit in front of the idol of God. He should cleanse his body (internally) by means of breath-control and other practices. He should armour himself by assigning the protection of various parts of his body to different deities[20] and worship Lord Hari.

50-51. He should first purify the articles of worship (like flowers by removing insects if any and sprinkling water), the ground (by sweeping and washing), his ownself (by Nyāsa and concentration of the mind) and image of god (by removing the previous coating of sandal-paste and other articles). He should then purify, by sprinkling with water, his own seats and keep ready at hand articles of worship (such as water for washing the feet of Deity and other materials of worship). With his heart serene and concentrated, he should invoke the Lord (in the image, mentally). Performing the six nyāsas from the heart onwards, he should chant the mūla-mantra (the sacred syllables or names received by hirn from the preceptor) and worship the Lord with the available articles of worship as abiding both in the image and in his heart (wherein he should also instal him).

52-53. He should perform the worship of the image of the Lord including the various limbs of his persons, and the arms and emblems lie holds (such as the discus Sudarśana and others) and the attendant deities (like Sunanda, Garuḍa). He should worship each form of the Lord chanting the sacred Mantra peculiar to it, offering water to wash his hands, feet and for ācamana (rinsing the mouth), etc. He should bathe the Deity and decorate it with cloth ornaments. According to the prescribed rites of worship, he should worship the Lord with sandal- paste, flowers, Akṣatas[21] (unbroken grains of rice to be applied to the Deity’s fore-head only), garlands, he should burn scented incenses before him and wave lights before him and offer food. After eulogising the Lord with appropriate hymns, he should prostrate himself before the Lord (i.e. Lord’s image).

54. He should worship the image of Hari (before himself) contemplating himself as being one with Hari. He should then place the relic of worship (such as flowers, etc.) on his own head, and deposit the image of Hari in its proper place and Lord Hari in his own heart.

55. He who worships the Lord, the Supreme Soul as present in the fire, the sun, the water, etc., in the guest (who arrives unexpectedly) and in his own heart, is liberated (from Saṃsāra) before long.

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

Bhāvāratha Dīpikā states that Māyā, being indescribable, only its effects, viz. creation of the universe, etc. can be described. But according to EK. Māyā is unreal (mithyā), non-existent like the son of a barren woman, the sky-flower, ‘water-catering centre’ of mirage, etc. The term avidyā means that which never exists.—EB 2.32-52.

[2]:

EK: God enters his creation in the form off essential characteristics such as liquidity of water. Similarly, he devided himself in the sense-organs by becoming their essential function such as ‘seeing’ of the eye, ‘taste’ of the tongue. That we can enjoy an object through our senses is due to the particular capacity of the sense which (the capacity) is God.—EB 2.86-129.

[3]:

This verse explains why a jīva is not liberated after enjoying the objects of senses but suffers unending revolutions in SaṃsāraBhāvāratha Dīpikā

[4]:

It is eternal Viṣṇu who as Kāla withdraws, etc.—Padaratnāvalī

[5]:

Bhāvāratha Dīpikā: After the termination of his office, god Brahmā should merge into Prakṛti like all jīvas, if god Brahmā be not a devotee of God, But he being a devotee of the Lord, is absorbed into Brahman. Padaratnāvalī also accepts the merging of god Brahmā into paramātman. Bhāgavata Candrikā takes the sing. Vairājaḥ puruṣaḥ as representing all jīvas withdrawn into the mūla-prakṛti and the illustration of fire shows that their knowledge is narrowed down in that merged state. EK quotes Bhāgavata Purāṇa 10.2,32,33 and emphasizes that bhakti (devotion) is the precondition of mukti (liberation). Merely the office of Brahmā is not enough for mukti.

[6]:

Padaratnāvalī: The process of dissolution is as follows: Ākāśa into the Tāmasic Ego; senses, mind, intellect with their presiding deities into Taijasa Ego. The threefold Ego and its products into the Mahat which in its turn merges into Ātman. The Virāṭ puruṣa withdraws all effects into their causes, and he enters into the subtle Unmanifest.

[7]:

Cf. Yatheha karma-cito lokaḥ kṣīyata evamevāmutra puṇya-cito lokaḥ kṣīyate.
  —Chāndogya Upaniṣad 8.1.6.

[8]:

EK. explains that this dedication implies complete nonṛattachment to wives, children, etc. —EB. 3.565.

[9]:

Ubhayatra: He should try to worship the Lord as abiding in the heart but if the Lord cannot be visualized within in spite of meditation, he should worship the images of the Lord which are both mobile and immobile. The chief images at ancient sites like Dvārakā or Pandharpur [Pandharapura] are the “immobile images” while the images on worships at home are “mobile”.—EB. 3.569-571.

[10]:

Under mahatsu EK. includes guru or the spiritual preceptor as the most important person to be served, as the guru and Brahman are identical—nay the guru is superior, as he introduces us to Brahman. And everything should be dedicated to the guru.—EB. 3.576-581.

[11]:

EK. vide EB 3.576-614.

[12]:

EK. emphasizes that one should resort to a spiritual preceptor and under his guidance learn and practise the duties and way of life of the Bhāgavatas.—EB. 3.615.

[13]:

Although Bhāvāratha Dīpikā distinguishes the three aspects of Reality, viz. as the creator etc. of the universe (Nārāyaṇa), eternal existence in all states of consciousness, Samādhi, etc. (Brahman) and the animator of the body, vital breath, etc. (Paramātman), EK says that it is all Nārāyaṇa and to facilitate the realization of Brahman, he puts forth the Paramātman aspect and emphasizes that- that which is within man as animator is the Brahman and Nārāyaṇa and that Paramātman, Brahman and Nārāyaṇa are one.—EB 3.630-646.

[14]:

Padaratnāvalī: The terms mind, speech etc. indicate their presiding deities such as Rudra, Sarasvatī, Sūrya, Brahmā, etc. These deities cannot comprehend the Paramātman. Lakṣmī the presiding deity of Veda cannot do it. The Veda conveys him negatively by eliminating what is not Paramātman. The goddess Lakṣmī indirectly conveys him to her cause.

Bhāgavata Candrikā: (The gist):

Flames are attributes of fire. Just as fire cannot be the object of cognition of flames, Brahman cannot be cognised by the mind, senses or the jīva. The Word (Vedānta or Śruti) conveys Brahman as its purport or implication. If the Brahman were non-existent, the statement of inability of senses or the mind to cognise it is meaningless. Denying the senses, etc., the power of cognition means that Brahman does exist and that the Veda is the only means of knowing the Brahman.

[15]:

EK: At the beginning there was only the Brahman Om. It became threefold in its three mātrās, A-U-M of the nature of the three attributes, viz. Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. When these attributes are all in a balanced stage, it is called Pradhāna.—EB. 3.703-701.

Bhāgavata Candrikā: (The gist only) Pradhāna is the common thread of Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Mahat, Ahaṃkāra and Jīva are its products. The Jīva experiences the fruits of his acts—pleasure and pain through his senses. The Brahman is different from them and the intelligent and unintelligent creations constitute his body.

Padaratnāvalī: The verses summarise different views which identify Brahman with the Jīva, etc. These views are not correct. Brahman is distinct from and greater than what is known as cause and effect, (tayoḥ kārya-kāraṇayoḥ paraṃ vilakṣaṇaṃ bhinnaṃ brahma iti.

[16]:

Bhāgavata Candrikā (The latter half): In every category of life (such as in the bodies of god, sub-human beings, etc.) the soul is always connected with Prakṛti, till he attains liberation (ā-mokṣāt-prakṛti-sambandhavān) though essentially it is pure intelligence and knowledge (Jñāna-mātra-svarūpa). It is through the influence of senses that he appears to be divided and transformed, while he activates the body.

Padaratnāvalī quotes his authorities and states that Brahman is always present as unmodified essence & unmixed consciousness, in all things which are subject to birth, death, change, etc. Just as the vital breath is called by the sense through which it functions, Brahman is described differently.

yathendriya- gataḥ prāṇas teṣāṃ śaktyā vikalpate /
evaṃ sad-rūpakaṃ brahma tat-tacchaktyā vikalpyale //

ekam eva mahā-śakti-prāṇasyāpi bala-pradam //

[17]:

Bhāgavata Candrikā (The latter half): When we become oblivious of our body and the activities of the sense-organs, the Ego and the mind remain in abeyance (as in deep sleep), we jīvas realize the existence of the self (.,..dehāva- bhāsaṃ vinā yathāvad ātmā svarūpa-prakāśo bhavati.)

EK. In deep sleep, the Ego lies dormant in Avidyā; hence we cannot visualize ātman. It is after the elimination of Avidyā and Ego that the self—or Brahman is revealed.—EB. 3.733-35.

Padaratnāvalī: (The gist only)

In the various categories of bodies Jīva enters through the medium of Prāṇa and Paramātman. If Paramātman were absent, Jīva could not have any memory of his state of deep sleep mṛti-supti-prabodhāder niyantā harir ekarāṭ.

[18]:

Bhāvāratha Dīpikā explains; Just as a child is tempted to gulp medicine by offering ‘the fruit’ of sweet-meats, the promise of heaven to a sacrificer is for persuading a person to perform the Vedic Karma. He quotes Bṛhad. Up. and shows that Karma is an accessory of spiritual knowledge and the performer of Karma realizes it and loses the zest and attachment for Karmas. This non- attached pure state of mind leading to the realization of Brahman is attained by him. Bhāgavata Candrikā thinks that such a person gives up all Karmas leading to Saṃsāra and attains Mokṣa.

EK. defines naiṣkarmya as the Karma dedicated to God and such Karma leads to realization of Brahma.—EB. 3.793-802.

[19]:

Bhāvārtha-dīpikā-prakāśa insists on the selection of proper guru. Quoting a number of Purāṇic and other texts, he asserts that the spiritual preceptor should be a Brāhmaṇa householder possessing spiritual qualities, etc.

[20]:

Nyāsa:—Assignment of the various parts of one’s body to different deities which is usually accompanied by prayers or pronunciation of some sacred symbolic syllables and corresponding gesticulations.—ASD. P. 306.

[21]:

As Bhāvāratha Dīpikā notes the akṣatas are to be used for application on the forehead of Hari and not elsewhere in the worship. He quotes an authority which prohibits the use of akṣatas in Viṣṇu-worship and the Ketakī (flower) in Śiva’s worship.

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