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 CI - Admonition of chudala

Argument: Obligation of the Prince for the instructions of his Monitor. And his attaining the Jivan-mukta emancipation in lifetime.

Vasishtha said:—

1. After the prince had so far attended to the lectures of Kumbha, he remained for some time in silent and deep meditation of his soul as if in a state of trance.

2. He continued with his intent-mind and fixed eyes and quite speechless all the while, and resembled the figure of a silent sage, and a carved statue without its motion and sensation.

3. And then as he awoke after a while with his twinkling eyes, he was thus accosted by Chudala in her disguised form of Kumbha the Brahman youth.

Kumbha said:—

4. Say prince, how you enjoyed yourself in your short lived trance;did you feel in it that sweet composure of thy soul, as the yogis experience in their bed of steadfast meditation and unshaken hypnotism?

5. Say, were you awakened in your inmost soul, and set at large beyond the region of error and darkness; say, have you known the knowable one, and seen what is to be seen?

Sikhidvaja replied:—

6. O Sir, it was by your good grace, that I have beheld a great glory in the most high heaven of heavens.

7. I have beheld a state of bliss which is full of ambrosial delight, never yet known to mortals, and whose sight is the most ultimate reward of the wishes of the best and most intelligent men, and of saints and mahatmas of great and high souls.

8. It is in your society today, that I have felt a delight, to which I have never experienced in my life before.

9. O lotus eyed sage! I have heretofore, never enjoyed such a degree of spiritual bliss which knows no bounds and is a sea of ambrosial delight.

Kumbha said:—

10. The mind becomes composed and tranquil, after subordination of its desire of enjoyments, and its indifference to the taste of sweet and bitter, and its full control over the organs of sense.

11. There arises a peace in the mind, which is purer than any earth born delight; and is as delightsome as the dew drops falling from flowers under the bright beams of cooling moonlight night.

12. It is today, O prince, that your bad desires like the bitter taste of bodies, are bettered by your advancement in knowledge.

13. It is by your holiness, O lotus-eyed prince, that the filth of your person is purged out; like the fruits of trees, falling off after they are ripened.

14. As the desire of the impure heart, becomes purified by reason it is then only capable of receiving the instructions of the wise, as the pipe draws the water inside. (Else, advising the fool is folly or spreading pearls before swines).

15. After the bitterness of your disposition, was tempered by my lectures; you have been awakened today to your spiritual knowledge by me.

16. You are just now cleansed from your impurity, and immediately purified by your pure knowledge; even now it is that you have received my admonition, and have been instantly awakened to your knowledge.

17. You are purged today, from the merits and demerits of your good and bad conduct; and it is by the influence of good society, that you have got a new life in you.

18. It was before the midday of this day, that I have come to know the edification and regeneration of your soul to spiritual light.

19. I find you now, O prince, to be wakened in your mind, by your taking my words to your heart; and having now got rid of the feelings of your mind, you are awakened to your spiritual knowledge.

20. As long as the mind has its seat and operations in the heart of man, so long does it retain its companion of ignorance by its side; but no sooner doth the mind forsake its residence in the heart, than pure knowledge comes to shine forth in it as the midday light.

21. It is the suspense of the mind between unity and duality, that is called its ignorance; and it is the subsidence of these that is known as knowledge, and the way to the salvation of the soul.

22. You are now awakened and emancipated, and your mind is driven away from your heart; you are now the reality and rescued from your unreality, and are set beyond this world of unreality. (The spiritual state is held to be real and all else as unreal).

23. Rest in the pure state of thy soul, by being devoid of cares and anxieties; forsaking all society and relying your soul in no body and in nothing here; and by your becoming as the devout and Divine and silent sage or saint or muni.

Sikhidvaja said:—

24. So I see sir, that all ignorant people rely mostly on their minds;but the few that are awakened to the knowledge of God, do not mind their minds (i.e. they are not led away by the inclinations of their minds).

25. Now sir, please tell me, how the living liberated men conduct themselves in their lifetime in this world; and how do these unmindful men like yourself, manage yourselves herein.

26. O! tell me fully and dispel by the lustre of your glowing words, the deep darkness that is seated in my heart.

Kumbha replied:—

27. All that you say prince, is exact and incontrovertible truth; the minds of the living liberated men are dead in themselves, and like blocks of stone, never vegetate nor sprout forth in the wishes.

28. The gross desire that germinates in its wishes, which become the causes of the regeneration of men in some form or other, is known by the name of mind; and which becomes altogether extinct in men, knowing the truly knowable one.

29. The desire which guides the knowers of truth, in this life of action (or the active life) in the world; is known by the name of goodness (satva), and which is unproductive of future birth.

30. The great-souled and living liberated men, being placed in their quality of goodness and having their organs under control; do not place any reliance in their minds.

31. The darkened mind is called the mind, but the enlightened one is known as the principle of goodness; the unenlightened rely in their minds, but enlightened men of great understanding confide in their goodness only.

32. The mind is repeatedly born with the body, but the nature of goodness is never reborn any more; the unawakened mind is under perpetual bondage, but the enlightened soul is under no restraint.

33. Now sir, you are become of the nature of goodness, and deserves the title of the forsaker of all things; and I understand you to have quite got rid of the propensities of your mind.

34. I find you today as brilliant as the full moon, freed from the shadows of the eclipse;and your mind to have become as lucid as the clear firmament, without any tinge in it.

35. You have got that equanimity, which is characteristic of the consummate yogi; this is called that total renunciation of all, which you exhibit in yourself.

36. The enlightened understanding is freed from the trammels, of its desire of heaven and future rewards, and its observance of austerities and charity, by means of its superior knowledge. (The divine knowledge is called the superior or paravidya in opposition to the worldly or aparavidya).

37. All austerities and mortifications, serve but to procure a short lived cessation of pain; but the happiness which is wholly free from its decay, is to be found only in one's equanimity and indifference under all circumstances of life. (The original word is samata or the sameness or evenness of disposition at all times).

38. That thing must be truly good, which is different from the enjoyment of temporary bliss of heaven, and altogether different from an existent pleasure, which is both preceded as well as followed by pain.

39. We are all doubtful of the happiness, that most await on us hereafter in heaven; and what are our religious acts, but for the purpose of procuring some happiness to those, who are unacquainted with the consummate felicity of their souls, derived from their spiritual knowledge.

40. Let them use their ornaments of brass, who have no gold ornaments for their persons;so let the ignorant adhere to their ritual and not the wise who are quite happy in their knowledge. But you, O prince, have happily come both to your knowledge and happiness in the company of Chudala and others.

41. Why therefore are you devoted in vain, to the observance of your austerities; because the mortifications and penance of asceticism, are prescribed for the expiation of the prior misdeeds of men (and neither for their salvation or eternal felicity of the souls).

42. The beginning and end of asceticism are both attended with pain, the middle alone promises a short and temporary happiness; and as mortifications are mere preparatory to the purification of the soul. (it is better to acquire this purity by divine knowledge, than by the painful practices of hermitage).

43. Remain steady in that pure knowledge, which is said to be the result of penitence; and the purity of the soul being had with the clearness of the intellectual sphere, all things and thoughts will be as perspicuous to view as in the clear light of the sky.

44. All things are seen to rise and disappear in the vacuous sphere of the divine intellect, and the thoughts of our good and bad actions, are as the drops of rain which mix with the waters of the immeasurable ocean of the Divine soul.

45. Therefore, O Sikhidvaja, abandon the barren soil (of rituals), and resort to the abundant field (of divine knowledge); and ask of me to know your best good, as men desire to know of their best friends.

46. As a wife that requires her husband, refrains from asking petty things of him; so should you refrain from asking of trifling blessings from thy God, if thou dost require thy communion with him. And know the objects of thy desire, are not always for thy good. (Therefore let his will be done and not theirs).

47. As no wise man runs to grasp the sun, in his reflection in the water;so should you never pursue after the pleasures of heaven or felicity of liberation, after thou hast found him in thy own spirit. (Better to posses the whole God than pray for a partial blessing).

48. Forsake what is unstable, though it may appear as stable to thee;and thou always stable, by leaving the unstable to perish by itself. (i.e. All adscititious properties are unstable).

49. Knowing the instability of things, preserve the stability of thy mind, because the motionless mind perceives no fluctuation of its thoughts, nor the changes and motions of things (as in sound sleep).

50. All our evils proceed from the acts of our bodies, as well as from the thoughts and action of our minds;these two are main springs of the miseries of men, in all places and times.

51. Curb the fickleness of your mind, and be ever calm and quiet; if you desire to enjoy the happiness of quiet and rest.

52. Know all motions and its want to dwindle into perfect rest, in the mind of the truly wise men; hold them therefore in equal light and be happy forever.

Sikhidvaja said:—

53. Tell me sir, how can the motion and force of a thing be one and the same with its immobility and rest; and you who are the remover of my doubts, will I dare say quickly clear this point to me.

Kumbha replied:—

54. There is one thing only, which also the all and whole of this universe; it is as the water of the sea, and is agitated by its intelligence, as the sea water is agitated into billows.

55. The immensity of Brahma, which is named the only essence and is of the form of the pure intellect; is beheld in the shape of the formal world by the ignorant.

56. The agitation of the intellect is all in all in the world and constitute the moving principle of the universe (or the main spring of the cosmos).

57. The agitation of the intellect being concomitant with the divine spirit, it is alike to its stillness, and the unity of these two forms the spirit of God called Siva or Zeus.

58. The agitation of the divine spirit in the work of creation, vanishes before the sight of perfect understandings; though it appears to be in active operation to the ignorant, who view it as they do a false snake in the rope.

59. The intellect is ever busy and active, from which it derives its name (chit—intellect). But the inactive spirit which is all pervasive, is both inexpressible as well as inconceivable, owing to its devoid of all attributes (turiyatita).

60. It is by long study of the sastras and association with the wise, as also by continued practice of yoga, that the light of the supreme spirit dawns in the inner soul, like the rising moon with her benign beams.

61. The supreme spirit is only to be perceived by our understanding, from the benign rays which it spreads over it; and this says by the wise to be the light of the holy spirit.

62. You have now known the essence of your soul, which is without its beginning, middle and end, and must for ever continue in it as your real and true state; there is no other distinct form of the great intellectual soul, wherefore know this as yourself, and remain from all sorrow and pain.