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 XI - Subjection of the mind

Argument. Janaka's Discharge of his Daily Rites, and Admonition to his Mind.

Vasishtha related:—

Having thought so, Janaka rose up for performance of his daily rites as usual, and without the sense of his agency in them.

He did his duty in the same manner as the sun rises every day to give the morn, without his consciousness of it.

2. He discharged his duties as they presented themselves to him, without any concern or expectation of their rewards. He did them awaking as if it were in his sleep. Gloss:—He did his acts by rote, but wot not what he did in his insensibility of them; and such acts of insensibility are free from culpability or retribution.

3. Having discharged his duties of the day and honoured the gods and the priests, he passed the night absorbed in his meditations.

4. His mind being set at ease, and his roving thoughts repressed from their objects, he thus communed with his mind at the dead of night, and said:—

5. O my mind that art roving all about with the revolving world, know that such restlessness of thine, is not agreeable to peace of the soul;therefore rest thou in quiet from thy wanderings abroad.

6. It is thy business to imagine many things at thy pleasure, and as thou thinkest thou hast a world of thoughts present before thee every moment. (For all things are but creations of the imaginative mind).

7. Thou shootest forth in innumerable woes by the desire of endless enjoyments, as a tree shoots out into a hundred branches, by its being watered at the roots.

8. Now as our births and lives and worldly affairs, are all productions of our wistful thoughts, I pray thee therefore, O my mind! to rest in quiet by abandonment of thy earthly desires.

9. O my friendly mind! weigh well this transient world in thy thoughts, and depend upon it, shouldst thou find aught of substantiality in it.

10. Forsake thy fond reliance on these visible phenomena; leave these things, and rove about at thy free will without caring for any thing.

11. Whether this unreal scene, may appear to or disappear from thy sight, thou shouldst not suffer thyself to be affected by it in either case.

12. Thou canst have no concern with the visible objects (phenomenal world); for what concern can one have with any earthly thing which is inexistent of itself as an unsubstantial shadow?

13. The world is an unreality like thyself, hence there can be no true relation between two unrealities. It is but a logomachy to maintain the relation of two negatives to one another.

14. Granting, thou art a reality and the world is unreal, still there can be no agreement between you, as there is none between the living and the dead, and between the positive and negative ideas.

15. Should the mind and the world be both of them realities and co-existent for ever, then there can be no reason for the joy or sorrow of the one at the gain or loss of the other.

16. Now therefore avoid the great malady of worldliness, and enjoy the silent joy in thyself, like one sitting in the undisturbed depth of the Ocean, with the rolling tide and waves above his head.

17. Do not consume like a puppet in pyrotechnics with the fiery remorse of worldliness, nor be burnt down to the darkness of despair in this gloomy scene of the world.

18. O wicked mind! there is nothing here so good and great, whereby thou mayest attain thy high perfection, except by the forsaking of all frivolities and dependance on thy entire resignation to the unchangeable One.