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 III - On the unity and universality of brahma

Argument. said:—

Showing the identity of Brahma with the Mind, Living Soul, the body and the world and all things and extirpation of all dualisms, by the establishment of one universality.

Vasishtha continued:—

As the countless waves, which are continually rising and falling in the Sea, are no other than its water assuming temporary forms to view; so the intellect exhibits the forms of endless worlds heaving in itself; and know, O sinless Rama! this intellect to be thy very self or soul. (All personal souls are selfsame with the impersonal Self; because it is in the power of both the finite and infinite souls to produce and reduce the appearance of the worlds in them, which proves them beyond any doubt as the Chidatma or the Intellectual soul).

2. Say thou that hast the intellectual soul, what relation doth thy immaterial soul bear to the material world, and being freed from thy earthly cares, how canst thou entertain any earthly desire or affection in it. (The spiritual soul has no concern with the material world).

3. It is the Intellect which manifests itself in the forms of living soul or jiva, mind and its desires, and the world and all things; say then what else can it be, to which all these properties are to be attributed (if not to the eternal intellect).

4. The intellect of the Supreme Spirit, is as a profound sea with its huge surges; and yet, O Rama! it is as calm and cool as thy soul, and as bright and clear, as the transparent firmament.

5. As the heat is not separate from fire, and the fragrance not apart from the flower; and as blackness is inseparable from collyrium, and whiteness from the ice;and as sweet is inborn in the sugarcane, so is intellection inherent in, and unseparated from the intellect.

6. As the light is nothing distinct from the sun-beams, so is intellection no other than the intellect itself; and as the waves are no way distinct from the water; so the universe is in no ways different or disjoined from the nature of the intellect, which contains the universe. (The noumenon contains the phenomenon, and become manifest as the world).

7. The ideas are not apart from the intellect, nor is the ego distinct from the idea of it; the mind is not different from the ego, nor is the living soul any other than the mind.

8. The senses are not separate from the mind, and the body is not unconnected with the senses; the world is the same as the body, and there is nothing apart from the world. (The body is the microcosm of the cosmos [Sanskrit: shuddhabrahmananda]).

9. Thus the great sphere of universe, is no other than the unbounded sphere of intellect; and they are nothing now done or made, or ever created before (for whatever there is or comes to pass, continues forever in the presence of the intellect).

10. Our knowledge of every thing, is but our reminiscence of the same;and this is to continue for evermore, in the manner of all partial spaces, being contained in infinity, without distinction of their particular localities. (All spaces of place occupied by bodies, are contained in the infinite and unoccupied vacuity of Mind).

11. As all spaces are contained in the endless vacuity, so the vastness of Brahma is contained in the immensity of Brahma; and as truth resides in verity, so in this plenum contained, is the plenitude of Divine mind.

(Here Brahma the great means by figure of metonymy, the Brahmanda or vastness of his creation).

12. Seeing the forms of outward things, the intelligent man never takes them to his mind; it is the ignorant only, that set their minds to the worthless things of this world.

13. They are glad to long after what they approve of, for their trouble only in this world; but he who takes these things as nothing, remains free from the pleasure and pain of having or not having them. (So said the wise Socrates:—How many things are here, which I do not want).

14. The apparent difference of the world and the soul of the world, is as false in reality, as the meaning of the words sky and skies, which though taken in their singular and plural senses, still denote the same uniform vacuity. (So the one soul is viewed as many in appearance only).

15. He who remains with the internal purity of his vacant mind, although he observes the customary differences of external things, remains yet as unaffected by the feelings of pain and pleasure, as the insensible block of wood and stone (with his stoical indifference in joy and grief).

16. He who sees his blood-thirsty enemy in the light of a true friend, is the person that sees rightly into the nature of things. (Because the killers of our lives, are the givers of our immortality).

17. As the river uproots the big trees on both its sides, by its rapid currents and deluge; so doth the dispassionate man destroys the feelings of his joy and grief to their very roots.

18. The sage that knows not the nature of the passions and affections, and does not guard himself from their impulse and emotions, is unworthy of the veneration, which awaits upon the character of saints and sages.

19. He who has not the sense of his egoism, and whose mind is not attached to this world; saves his soul from death and confinement, after his departure from this world. (There is a similar text in the Bhagavadgita, and it is hard to say which is the original one and which is the copy).

20. The belief in one's personality, is as false as one's faith in an unreality, which does not exist; and this wrong notion of its existence, is removed only by one's knowledge of the error, and his riddance from it.

21. He who has extinguished the ardent desire of his mind, like the flame of an oilless lamp; and who remains unshaken under all circumstances, stands as the image of a mighty conqueror of his enemies in painting or statue.

22. O Rama! that man is said to be truly liberated, who is unmoved under all circumstances, and has nothing to gain or lose in his prosperity or adversity, nor any thing to elate or depress him in either state.