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 LXI - Meeting of suraghu and parigha

Argument. The praiseworthy deeds of good Princes.

Vasishtha said:—

1. O lotus-eyed Raghava! do you likewise act in the manner as Suraghu, and rely yourself in the sole existence of the Supreme one, for cleansing your iniquities, and for your getting rid of all sorrow in this world.

2. The mind will no longer pant or sorrow, when it comes to have this ecumenical sight in itself; as a child is no more afraid of dark, when it gets the light of a lamp in the room.

3. The discriminating mind of Suraghu found its rest in perfect tranquillity; as a fool finds his security by laying hold of a big bundle of straws.

4. Having this holy sight in your view, and by your preaching this light to others, do you continue to enjoy this uniform insouciance (Samadhi) in yourself, and shine forth as a bright gem before the world.

Rama said:—

5. Tell me O chief of sages, what is this uniform insouciance, and set my mind at rest, which is now fluttering like the plumes of a peacock discomposed by the winds.

Vasishtha replied:—

6. Attend therefore, O Rama! to the marvelous story of that enlightened and sagely prince Suraghu, and how he conducted himself by subsisting on the leaves of trees.

7. I will relate to you also the communication which went on between two princes, both of whom were equally enlightened in their souls, and situated in the same sort of uniform quietism.

8. There was a mighty king of the Plahvas (Persians) known by the name of Parigha; who was a victor of his enemies, and also the support of his realm, as the axle is the support of a carriage.

9. He was joined in true friendship with Suraghu, and was as closely allied to him as the god of love with the vernal spring.

10. It happened at one time, that a great drought occurred in the land of Suraghu, and it was attended by a famine, resembling the final desolation of the earth, brought on by the sins of men.

11. It destroyed a great number of his people, who were exhausted by hunger and debility; as a conflagration destroys the unnumbered living animals of the forest.

12. Seeing this great disaster of his people, Parigha was overwhelmed in grief; and he left his capital in despair, as a traveller leaves a city burnt down to the ground.

13. He was so sorely soul-sick at his inability to remove this unavertible calamity of his subjects, that he went to a forest to devote himself to devotion like Jiva the chief of devote. (Jiva is another name of Buddha, who betook himself to the forest on seeing the woes of human kind).

14. He entered a deep wood unseen by and unknown to his people, and there passed his time in his disgust with the world, and afar and away from mankind.

15. He employed himself in his austere devotion in the cavern of a mountain, and remained sober-minded, with his subsistence upon dry and withered leaves of trees.

16. It was by his subsisting on dry leaves for a long time, as fire devours them always, that he obtained the surname of the leaf-eater among the assembled devotees on that spot.

17. It was thenceforward that the good and royal sage passed under his title of the leaf-eater among the holy sages in all parts of Jambudvipa (Asia).

18. Having thus conducted himself with his most rigid austerities for many years, he attained the divine knowledge by his long practice of self-purification, and by grace of the supreme soul.

19. He obtained his self-liberation by his avoidance of enmity and the passions and affections of anger, pity and other feelings and desires; and by his attainment of mental calmness and an enlightened understanding.

20. He wandered ad libitum all about the temple of the triple world (composed of earth, heaven and the nether regions); and mixed in the company of the siddhas and sadhyas, as the bees mix with the company of swans about the lotus beds.

21. His peregrination led him at one time, to visit the city of Hema-jata, which was built with gemming stones, and shone as brightly as a peak of the mount Meru (which is represented to be composed of gold and resplendent stones).

22. Here he met with his old friend the king of that city, and saluted each other with mutual fondness. They were both delivered from the darkness of ignorance, and were perfect in their knowledge of the knowable.

23. They accosted mutually with saying, "O! It is by virtue of our good fortune that we come to meet one another".

24. They embraced each other in their arms and with joyous countenances, and then sat on the one and same seat, as when the sun and moon are in conjunction.

Parigha said:—

25. My heart rejoices to see you with full satisfaction; and my mind receives a coolness as if it immerged in the cooling orb of the moon.

26. Unfeigned friendship like true love, shoots forth in a hundred branches in our separation from each other;as a tree growing by the side of a pool, stretches its boughs all around, until it is washed away with its roots by the current.

27. The remembrance of the confidential talks, merry sports and idle plays of our early days awakes in me, O my good friend! those innocent joys afresh in me.

28. I know well, O sinless friend, that the divine knowledge which I have gained by my long and painful devotion and by the grace of God, is already known to you from the preachings of the sapient sage Mandavya to you.

29. But let me ask, are you not placed beyond the reach of sorrow, and set in your rest and tranquillity; and are you situated in the supreme cause of all, and as firmly as if you were seated upon the unshaken rock of Meru?

30. Do you ever feel that auspicious self gratifying grace in your soul, which purifies the fountain of your mind, as the autumnal sky clears the springs of water on earth?

31. Do you, O ruler of your people, perform all your acts, with a complacent air and steady mind, as you were discharging your duties for the good of mankind?

32. Do the people in your realm live in safety, to enjoy their prosperity and competence, and are they all free from disease, danger and anxieties of life?

33. Is this land plentiful in its harvests, and are the trees here bending down with their fruitage; and do the people here enjoy the fruit of their labour and the objects of their desire?

34. Is your good fame spread about in all quarters, like the clear and cooling beams of the full moon; and does it cover the face of this land, like a sheet of snowfall on the ground?

35. Is the space of all quarters of the sky, filled with the renown of your virtues, as to leave no gap in it; and as the roots and stalks of lotus bushes overspread the tank, and choke and check the course of its waters?

36. Do the young minds and virgins of your villages, street and walk about pleasantly over the plains and fields here abouts; and do they loudly laud forth your heart cheering applause (or their merry songs)?

37. Does all welfare attend on you, with respect to your prosperity, wealth and possessions and the produce of your fields; and do your family, children and dependents fare well in this city?

38. Do you enjoy your health free from all disease and complaint;and reap the reward of your meritorious acts done for this life and the next (such as sacrifices made for future rewards).

39. Are you indifferent in your mind with regard to temporary enjoyments, which appear pleasant for a moment, but prove to be our deadly enemies at last.

40. O! it is after a very long separation, that we come to meet again; it is my good fortune that rejoins me to you, as the spring revisits the dales with verdure.

41. There are no such joys here, nor such woes even in this world: which do not happen to the lot of the living in their union with, and separation from one another.

42. We are quite altered in our circumstances, during our long separation; and yet how we happened to meet each other in the same unchanged state of our minds, by a wonderful accident of destiny.

Suraghu replied:—

43. Yes, sir, the course of destiny is as crooked as that of a serpent; nor is there any man that can penetrate into the depth of the mysterious nature of destiny.

44. There is nothing impossible to destiny, which has after the lapse of so long a time, has reunited us in one place, from the vast distance of the two countries asunder.

45. O great sir! we are all in good health and prosperity in this place, and have been supremely blest by your graciousness unto us.

46. Behold us purified and cleansed of our sins, by your holy presence among us; and the arbor of our merits has borne the fruit of our peace and satisfaction at your sight.

47. O royal sage! we enjoy all prosperity in this our native city; and your presence here this day, has made it shoot forth, in a hundred off-shoots of joy and happiness.

48. O noble minded sir! your appearance and speech, have sprinkled this place with sweet nectarine drops, joy and holiness; because the company of the virtuous, is reckoned to equal the supreme felicity of man.