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 LX - Knowledge of the majesty and grandeur of god

Argument. said:—

Manifestation of mysterious magic of the one, uniform and pure Monad in multiform shapes, as a display of his all Comprehensive plenitude fullness.

Vasishtha continued:—

Such is the first great truth concerning the solidity or of the Divine Intellect, that contains the gigantic forms of Brahma, Vishnu and Siva in it.

2. It is by means of the greatness of God, that all people are as gaudy as great princes in their several spheres; and are ever exulting in their power of floating and traversing in the regions of open air. (This means both the flight of bird, as well as aerial rambles of Yogis).

The Taittiriya Upanishad says:—God has filled the world with joy, and the minute insect is as joyous as the victorious prince:meaning hereby, that God has given to every being its particular share of happiness.

3. It is by their dwelling in the spirit of God, that the earth born mortals are as happy as the inhabitants of heaven; (That have nothing to desire); nay they are free from the pain of sorrow and released from the pangs of death, that have come unto the Lord—(O death where is thy sting, O grave where thy victory? Pope).

4. Yes, they live in Him that have found him, and are not to be restrained by any body; provided they have but taken their refuge under the overspreading umbrage of the supreme spirit.

5. He who meditates for a moment, on the universal essence of all (as the ens entium); he becomes liberated in an instant, and lives as a liberal minded sage or muni on earth. (The sage that sees his God in all and every where through out all nature).

6. He does what are his duties in this world, and never grieves in discharging them. Rama said:—How is it possible, Sir, to meditate on the universal soul in all things, when the sage has buried his mind, understanding and his egoism and himself in the unity of God? and how can the soul be viewed in the plurality, when all things have been absorbed in the unity?

Vashistha replied:—

7. The God that dwells in all bodies, moves them to their actions, and receives their food and drink in himself, that produces all things and annihilates them at last, is of course unknowable to our consciousness (which is conscious of itself only).

8. Now it is this indwelling principle in every thing, that is without beginning and end, and inherent in the nature of all; is called the common essence of all, because it constitutes the tattwa identity (or essential nature or the abstract property) of everything in the world.

9. It dwells as vacuity in the vacuum, and as sonorousness in sound; it is situated as feeling in whatever is felt, and as taction in the objects of touch.

10. It is the taste of all tastables, and the tasting of the tongue; it is the light of all objects of sight, and vision of the organs of seeing.

11. It is the sense of smell in the act of smelling, and the odour in all odorous substance;it is the plumpness of the body, and the solidity and stability of the earth.

12. It is the fluidity of liquids and the flatulence of air; it is the flame and flash of fire, and the cogitation of the understanding.

13. It is the thinking principle of the thoughtful mind, and the ego of our egoism; it is the consciousness of the conscious soul, and the sensible heart.

14. It is the power of vegetation in vegetables, and the perspective in all pictures and paintings; it is the capacity of all pots and vessels, and the tallness of stately trees.

15. It is the immobility of immovables, and the mobility of movable bodies; it is the dull insensibility of stones and blocks, and the intelligence of intelligent beings.

16. It is the immortality and god-head of the immortal gods, and humanity of human beings; it is the curvedness of crooked beasts, and the supine proneness of crawling and creeping insects.

17. It is the current in the course of time, and the revolution and aspects of the seasons; it is the fugacity of fleeting moments, and the endless duration of eternity.

18. It is the whiteness of whatever is white, and blackness of all that is black; it is activity in all actions, and it is stern fixity in the doings of destiny.

19. The supreme spirit is quiescent in all that is sedate, and lasting and evanescent in whatever is passing and perishing; and he shows his productiveness in the production of things.

20. He is the childhood of children, and the youth of young men; he shows himself as fading in the decay and decline of beings, and as his extinction in their death and demise.

21. Thus the all pervading soul, is not apart from anything, as the waves and froths of the foaming sea, are no way distinct from its body of waters.

22. These multiformities of things are all unrealities, and taken for true in our ignorance of the unity; which multiplies itself in our imagination, as children create and produce false apparitions from their unsound understandings. (These as they change are not the varied god as it is generally supposed to be, but various workings of the intellect).

23. It is I, says the lord, that am situated every where, and it is I that pervade the whole; and fill it with all varieties at pleasure; know therefore, O high minded Rama! that all these varieties are but creatures of imagination in the mind of God, and are thence reflected into the mirror of our minds. Knowing this rest in the calm tranquillity of your soul, and enjoy the undisturbed solace and happiness of your high mind.

Valmiki said:—

24. As the sage was saying these things, the day passed away under its evening shade; the sun sank down in its evening devotion, and the assembly broke with mutual salutations to the performance of their eventide ablutions, until they reassembled on the next morning.