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 XXXVII - Upasama: the sameness or quietism of the soul

Argument:—The sameness of the Spirit from its want of perturbation by worldly matters; and equanimity of the mind in all circumstances.

Vasishtha added:—

In this manner are these series of worlds, revolving in their invariable course, and repeatedly appearing and disappearing in the substantiality of Brahma.

2. All this is derived from the one self-existence, and have become the reciprocal causes of one another, by their mutual transformations; and again they are destroyed of themselves by their mutual destructiveness of one another.

3. But as the motion of the waters on the surface, does not affect the waters in the depth of the sea; so the fluctuations of the changing scenes of nature, make no alteration in the ever tranquil spirit of Brahma.

4. As the desert in summer heat, presents the waters of mirage to the clear sky, so the false world, shows its delusive appearances to the mind.

5. As the calm soul seems to be giddy in the state of one's drunkenness, so the essence of the intellect which is always the same, appears as otherwise in its ignorance.

6. The world is neither a reality nor unreality; it is situated in the Intellect but appears to be placed without it. It is not separate from the soul, although it seems to be different from it, as the ornament appears to differ from its gold.

7. Rama! that soul of yours whereby you have the perception of form and figures and of sound and smell, is the Supreme Brahma pervading all things.

8. The pure soul being one in many, and inherent in all external objects, cannot be thought as distinct from those, that appear otherwise than itself.

9. Rama! it is the difference of human thoughts, that judges differently of the existence and non-existence of things, and of their good and bad natures also; it judges the existence of the world, either as situated in or without the Divine Spirit.

10. Whereas it is impossible for any thing to exist beside the Spirit of God, it was the Spirit that "willed to become many". And as there was nothing beside itself, which it could think of or find for itself, it was necessary that it became so of itself, and without the aid of any extraneous matter. (Prose).

11. (Prose). Therefore the will to do this or that, or try for one thing or other, does not relate to the soul but to the mind. Thus the optionless soul, having no will of its own, does nothing except cogitating on what is in itself. It is no active agent, owing to the union of all agency, instrumentality and objectivity in itself. It abides nowhere, being both the recipient and content, or the container and the contained of everything in itself. Neither is the will-less soul actionless likewise, when the acts of creation are palpable in itself (karmaprasidhi). Nor is it possible that there is any other cause of them. (Nanyakarta dvitiryakam. Sruti).

12. Rama! you must know the nature of Brahma to be no other (vetara—non alter) than this; and knowing him as no agent and without a second, be free from all anxiety.

13. I will tell you further that:—Though you may continue to do a great many acts here, yet tell me in a word, what dost thou do that is worth doing. Rely on the want of your own agency, and be quiet as the sapient sage. Remain as calm and still, as the clear ocean when unshaken by the breeze.

14. Again knowing well, that it is not possible for the swiftest runners to reach their goal of perfection, how far so ever they may go. You must desist in your mind from pursuing after worldly objects, and persist to meditate on the spirituality of your inward and intellectual soul.