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 LIII - Explanation of nirvana—anaesthesia

Argument:—Ascertainment of the source of cause of the visible world.

Rama said:—

How there is sensibility in sensible beings, and there is durability in time; how vacuum is a perfect void, and how inertness abides in dull material substances:—

2. How does fluctuation reside in air, and what is the state of things in futuro, and those that absent at present; how doth motion reside in moving things, and how doth plasmic bodies receive their forms.

3. Whence is the difference of different things, and the infinity of infinite natures; how there is visibility in the visibles, (i.e. how the visibles appear to view), and how does the creation of created things come to take place:—

4. Tell me, O most eloquent Brahman, all these things one by one, and explain them from the first to last, in such manner, that they may be intelligible to the lowest understanding.

Vasishtha replied:—

5. That endless great vacuum, is known as the great and solid intellect itself; but this is not to be known any more, than as a tranquil and self-existent unity.

6. The Gods Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva and others, are reduced to their origin at the last dissolution of the world; and there remains only that pure source whence they have sprung.

7. There is however no cause to be assigned in this prime cause of all, who is also the seed of matter and form, as well as of delusion, ignorance and error. (These being but counterparts of spirit and knowledge, are all mingled in Him).

8. The original cause is quite transparent and tranquil, and having neither its beginning nor end, and the subtile ether itself is dense and solid, in comparison with the rarity of the other.

9. It is not proper to call it a nullity, when it is possessed of an intellectual body; nor can it with propriety styled as an existent being, when it is altogether calm and quiet (and nothing imaginable).

10. The form of that being is as inconceivable, as the idea of that little space of time which lies in midst of our thought of the length of a thousand miles, which the mind's eye sees in a moment. (Its flash is quicker than that of a lightning and the flight of imagination).

11. The yogi who is insensible of the false and delusive desires and sights of objects, that intrude upon internal mind and external vision, sees the transient flash of that light in his meditation, as he wakes amidst the gloom of midnight.

12. The man that sits with the quiet calmness of his mind, and without any of joy or grief; comes to feel the pulsation of that spirit in himself, as he perceives the fluctuation of his mind within him.

13. That which is the spring of creation, as the sprout is the source of all vegetable productions; the very same is the form of the Lord (That he is the vegetative seed or germ of the arbour of the world. Sansara Briksa Brijankura).

14. He is the cause of the world, which is seen to exist in Him; and which is a manifestation of himself, in all its varieties of fearful forms and shapes (All which is the act of his illusion).

15. These therefore having no actual or real cause, are no real productions nor actual existences; because there is no formal world (in its natural form), nor a duality co-existent with the spiritual unity.

16. That which has no cause, can have no possible existence; the eternal ideas of God cannot be otherwise than mere ideal shapes.

17. The vacuum which has no beginning nor end, is yet no cause of the world; because Brahma is formless, but the vacuous sky, which presents a visible appearance, cannot be the form of the formless and invisible Brahma.

18. Therefore he is that, in which the form of the world appears to exist; hence the lord himself appears as that which is situated in the vacuity of his intellect.

19. The world being of the nature of the intellectual Brahma, is of the same intellectual kind with him;though our error shows it otherwise (i.e. in a material and visible form). All is one with the unborn and ever tranquil One, in whom all dualities blend in unity).

20. This whole world springs from that whole intellect, and subsists in its entirety in that entire One; the completeness of that is displayed in the totality of this, and the completeness of creation, depends upon the perfection of its cause. (Nothing imperfect proceeds from the perfect one).

21. Knowing that One as ever even and quiet, having neither its rise or fall; nor any form of likeness, but ever remaining in its translucent unity as the ample sky, and is the everlasting all; and combining the reality and unreality together in its unity, makes the nirvana of sages.