Yoga Vasistha [English], Volume 1-4

by Vihari-Lala Mitra | 1891 | 1,121,132 words | ISBN-10: 8171101519

The English translation of the Yoga-vasistha: a Hindu philosophical and spiritual text written by sage Valmiki from an Advaita-vedanta perspective. The book contains epic narratives similar to puranas and chronologically precedes the Ramayana. The Yoga-vasistha is believed by some Hindus to answer all the questions that arise in the human mind, an...

Chapter LXVI - Meditation of the subjective and objective

Argument. Origin and Nature of Duality and the Manner of its Extinction.

1. Thus Rama! there is one true essence, which appears many by our mistake;and this variety is caused by the production of one from the other, as one lamp is lighted from another.

2. By knowing one's self as nothing as it was before its coming to being, and by considering the falsity of his notions (of his reality), no one can have any cause of grief (at its loss). (The Sruti:—The knower of the true-self, is above all grief and sorrow).

3. Man is but a being of his own conception, and by getting rid of this concept, he is freed from his idea of the duality of the world (as a distinct existence); just as one with his shoes on, perceives the whole earth he treads upon, to be covered over with skin.

4. As the plantain tree has no pith except its manifold coats, so there is no substantiality of the world beside our false conceptions of it.

5. Our births are followed by childhood, youth, old age and death one after the other, and then opens the prospect of a heaven or hell to our view, like passing phantoms before the flighty mind.

6. As the clear eye sees bubbles of light in the empty sky, so the thoughtless mind views the firmament full of luminous bodies (which are but phantoms of the brain).

7. As the one moon appears as two to the dimsighted eye, so the intellect, vitiated by influence of the senses, sees a duality in the unity of the supreme spirit.

8. As the giddiness of wine presents the pictures of trees before the drunken eye, so does the inebriation of sensation, present the phantoms of the world before the excited intellect.

9. Know the revolution of the visible world, to resemble the revolving wheel of a potter's mill; which they turn about in play as the rotatory ball of a terrestrial globe.

10. When the intellect thinks of another thing (as matter) beside itself, it then falls into the error of dualism; but when it concentrates its thoughts in itself, it then loses the sense of the objective duality.

11. There is nothing beside the Intellect except the thoughts on which it dwells; and its sensations are all at rest, as it comes to know the nihility of objects.

12. When the weak intellect is quiet by its union with the Supreme, and by suppression of its functions, it is then called sansanta—or quiescent or insouciant.

13. It is the weak intellect that thinks of the thinkables, but the sound understanding ceases from all thoughts; as it is a slight intoxication that makes one rave and revel about, while deep drinking is dead to all excitements.

14. When the sound and consummate understanding, runs in one course towards its main reservoir of the supreme; it becomes divested of its knowledge of the knowables, and of its self-consciousness also in the presence of the one and no other.

15. The perfected understanding finds the errors, to which it is exposed by its sensation of the sensibles; and comes to know, that birth and life and all the acts and sights of the living state, are as false as dreams.

16. The mind being repressed from its natural flight, can have no thought of any thing; and is lost in itself; as the natural heat of fire and motion of the wind being extinct, they are annihilated of themselves.

17. Without the suppression of mental operations, the mind must continue in its misconceptions, as that of mistaking a rope for a snake through ignorance.

18. It is not difficult to repress the action of the mind and rouse our consciousness; in order to heal our souls of the malady of their mistaken notion of the world.

19. If you can succeed to suppress the desires of your restless mind at any time, you are sure to obtain your liberation even at the very moment and without fail.

20. If you will but turn to the side of your subjective consciousness only, you will get rid of the objective world, in the same manner as one is freed from his fear of snake in a rope, by his examination of the thing.

21. If it is possible to get rid of the restless mind, which is the source of all our desires; it is no way impossible to attain to the chief end of liberation to any.

22. When highminded men are seen to give up their lives as straws (in an honorable cause), there is no reason why they should be reluctant to abandon their desires for the sake of their chief good of liberation.

23. Remain unfettered by forsaking the desires of your greedy mind; for what is the good of getting sensible objects, which we are sure to lose (some time or other).

24. The liberated are already in the sight of the immortality of their souls and of God, as one who has got a fruit in his hand, or sees a mountain palpable before him.

25. It is the Spirit of God alone, that abides in everything in these phenomenal worlds, which rise to view like the waves of the waters of the great deluge. It is his knowledge that is attended with the summum bonum of liberation, and it is ignorance of that supreme Being, that binds the mind to the interminable bondage of the world.