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 XII - Reasoning on the doubts of the living liberation

Argument: Investigation in the doubts respecting living liberation.

Vasishtha said:—

1. Great minded men that are certain of these truths, are purified from their sins, and finding their tranquillity in the reliance on truth, enjoy the delight of the even equanimity of their souls, both in their prosperity and adversity. (Truthfulness and equanimity are god-like attributes).

2. So the wise men of perfect understandings, being evenly dispassionate in their minds; feel themselves neither glad nor sad, either in the enjoyment or deprivation of their lives (which are alike to them, because death is but the beginning or continuance of life in another state or world).

3. They remain as unseen and marvelously mighty, as the arms of Narayana (god);and as straight and firm and yet as low and fragile as the body and broken rocks of mount Meru on earth.

4. They roam about at pleasure in woodlands and over islands and amidst cities also, and like the gods of paradise they wander about the beautiful groves and sceneries of nature.

5. They roved in flowery gardens shaken by the playful breezes, and also in the romantic forests on the skirts and tops of mountains.

6. They conquer also their enemies, and reign in their realms with the chouri and umbrella ensigns of their royalty; they enjoy the various produce and wealth of their kingdom, and observe the various customs and usages of their country. (The wise man freely enjoy all things without being bound into them).

7. They follow all the rules and rites, established by the laws of their countries; and inculcated as duties for the observance of all.

8. They do not disdain to taste the pleasures, that would make the beauties smile at; nor are they averse to the enjoyment of luxuries, that they can rightly use and enjoy.

9. They smell the fragrance of mandara-flowers, and taste the sweet juice of mango-fruits; they regale themselves with the sweet songs of Apsaras, and revel in the arbours of Nandara or pleasure garden.

10. They never disregard the duties that bind all mankind to them, nor neglect to perform the sacrifices and observe the ordinances that are imperious on domestic life.

11. But they are saved from falling into dangers and evils of all kinds, and escape the danger of falling under the feet of murderous elephants, and avoid the uproar of trumpets and the imminent death in battle-fields (i.e. Wise men avoid the dangers to which the ignorant are liable).

12. They abide with those that are afflicted in their hearts, as among the marauding plunderers of the country; they dwell among the oppressed cowardly people, as also amongst their oppressors. Thus they are conversant with the practices of all opposing parties, without mixing with any one of them.

13. But their minds are clear of doubts and free from errors unaffected by passions and affections, and unattached to any person or thing. They are quite discrete and disengaged, free and liberated, tranquil and serene, inclined to goodness reclining and resting in Supreme spirit.

14. They are never immerged in great dangers, nor are they ever involved in very great difficulties. But remain as the boundary mountains, remaining unimmersed amidst the water of a circumjacent lake.

15. They are never elated with joy, at the fluctuating favours of fond and fascinating fortune; nor are they swollen, like the sea at the increasing digits of the moon.

16. They do not fade away under sorrow or sickness, like plants under the scorching sun beams, nor are they refreshed by refreshments, like medicinal plants under the refreshing dews of night.

17. They are employed calmly and without anxiety in the discharge of their duties and in the acts of fruition karma, and neither long for nor relinquish the fruition, which is attendant upon them (i.e. They do what is to be done, not for reward but as a matter of course).

18. They are neither elated with the success of their undertakings, nor are they depressed by the mishap of their efforts, they are not joyous at their joy and hey-day, nor do they sink under in danger and difficulty.

19. They do not droop down under despondence, nor are they dejected in despair, they are not merry in their prosperity, nor do they wail and weep in their adversity.

20. They discharge their customary duties as prescribed by law and usage, but their minds remain as firm and unmoved, as a mountain at all the efforts of the body.

21. Now Rama! Remove your sight for thy own egoism, and keep it fixed on the true ego which is a destroyer of all sins; and then go on with your ordinary course of conduct as thou mayest like.

22. Look at these creations and their various creatures, as they have existed in their successive stages and phases; but do you remain as firm as rock and as deep as the sea, and get rid of your errors. (i.e. Your observation of nature can only remove your errors).

23. Know this grand whole as the reflection of one sole Intellect, beside which there is nothing as a reality or unreality, or as some thing or nothing. (Jo kuch hai ohi hai, nehinaur kuch'he. Whatever there is, is he himself, and there is nil beside his ens or self).

24. Rama! have thy greatness as the great Brahma, and preserve the dignity of human nature about thee; reject all whatever as unworthy of thee, and with an unattached heart to every thing, manage thyself with gentleness every where, and thus pass the days here. (As an heir of eternity).

25. Why dost thou weep with thy heart full of sorrow and grief, and why dost thou lament like the deluded, and why rovest thou with thy wandering mind, like a swimming straw to the whistling eddy.

Rama replied:—

26. Verily sir, the dart of my doubts is now rubbed out of my mind, and my heart is awakened to its good senses by thy kindness, as the lotus is enlivened by thy rising sun-light.

27. My errors are dispersed as the morning fog in autumn; and my doubts are set down by your lectures; which I will always adhere to.

28. I am now set free from the follies of pride, vanity, envy and insensibility; and I feel lasting spiritual joy rising within me after the subsidence of all my sorrows. And now if you are not tired, please deliver your lectures with your clear understanding, and I will follow and practice them without fear or hesitation.