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 XCVI - Establishment of immortality

Argument:—Proof of the Erroneous conception of the World, and the Truth of the Intellectual and Immortal soul.

Vasishtha resumed:—

O intelligent Rama! I have now related to you at length the narrative of the stone, which shows you plainly how all these created things, are situated in the vacuity of the Divine Intellect.

2. And that there exists nothing whatever, at any time or place or in the air; except the One undivided intellect of God, which is situated in itself, as the salt and water are mixed up together (or as One is self same with the other).

3. Know Brahma as the Intellect itself, which presents many sight shows of itself in the dream, which are inseparable from itself. (The manifestation of the unchangeable nature of the Divine Mind as the creation, is no more than its vivarta-rupa or expansion of itself, as that of our minds in the various imageries seen in the state of our dreaming).

4. God being the universal spirit, and the creation full of particularities, it is not incongruous to the nature of the universal and immutable soul, to contain the endless varieties of particulars in the infinite vacuity of the Divine Intellect, without any variation in itself. (The universal and infinite God, contains the particular and finite world in itself).

5. There is no self born creative power (as Brahma), nor its creation of the world; which is but a production of the dreaming intellect, and is situated in our consciousness, as the sights of dreams are imprinted in the memory.

6. As the city seen in your dream, is situated intellectually in yourself; so the entire universe is situated in the Divine Intellect, ever since its creation to its annihilation (or as the world without its end).

7. As there is no difference between gold and the gold mountain of Meru, and between the dreamed city and the mind; so there is no difference whatever, between the intellect and its creation. (Both being of the same kind).

8. There is the intellect only which exists, and not the world of its creations; as the mind is existent without the gold mountain of its dream.

9. As the mind shows itself, in the form of the formless mountain in its dream; so the formless Brahma, manifests itself as the formal world, which is nothing in reality.

10. The Intellect is all this vacuum, which is increate, unbounded and endless; and which is neither produced nor destroyed in thousands of the great makakalpa ages. (i.e. It is both eternal as well as infinite).

11. This intellectual vacuum is the living soul and lord of all, it is the undecaying ego and embraces all the three worlds in itself (as the air comprises all existence in it).

12. The living body becomes a lifeless carcass, without this aeriform intellect; it is neither broken nor burnt with the fragile and burning body, nor is there any place to intercept the vacuous intellect there from.

13. Therefore there is nothing that dies, and naught that ever comes to being; the intellect being the only being in existence, the world is but a manifestation or disclosure of itself to the mind.

14. The intellect alone is the embodied and living soul, and should it ever be supposed to die; then the son would be thought to die also by the death of the father, because the one is but a reproduction of the other. (The text says, the soul of the father is reborn in the son, and if the former should die, the latter must die also.)

15. Again the death of one living soul, would entail the wholesale death of all living creatures; and then the earth (nay even the whole world), would be void of all its population. (Because the one universal soul is the soul of all and every individual being).

16. Therefore, O Rama, the sole intellectual soul of nobody, has ever died any where up to this time;nor was there ever any country devoid of a living soul in it. (The world is full of life proceeding from the eternal life of God).

17. Knowing hence that I am one with the eternal soul, and the body and its senses are nothing mine own; I know not how I or any one else, can ever die away at any time.

18. He who knows himself to be the purely intellectual soul, and yet ignores it and thinks in himself to be dying as a mortal being; is verily the destroyer of his soul, and casts himself into a sea of troubles and misery.

19. If I am the intellectual soul, undecaying and everlasting, and as transparent as the open air; say then what is life or death to me, and what means my happiness or misery in any state.

20. Being the vacuous and intelligent soul, I have no concern with my body; and any one who being conscious of it, forgets to believe himself as such, is verily a destroyer of his soul.

21. The foolish man who has lost his consciousness, of being the purely vacuous soul; is deemed a living dead body by the wise (who know the One universal soul to constitute the whole).

22. The knowledge that I am the intelligent soul, and the bodily senses are not essential to me; is what leads me to attain to the state of pure spirituality, which neither death nor misery can deprive me of.

23. He who remains firm, with his reliance in the pure intellectual soul; is never assailed by calamities, but remains [immune] to woes, as a block of stone to a flight of arrows.

24. Those who forget their spiritual nature, and rely their trust in the body; resemble those foolish people, who forsake the gold to lay hold on ashes.

25. The belief that I am the body, its strength and its perceptions, falsifies my faith in these and destroys my reliance in the spirit; but my trust in the spirit, confirms my faith in that by removing my belief in these.

26. The belief that I am the pure vacuous intellect, and quite free from birth and death; is sure to dispel all the illusions of feelings and passions and affections afar from me.

27. Those who slight the sight of the vacuous intellect, and view their bodies in the light of the spirit, deserve the name of corporeal beasts, and are receptacles of bodily appetites and passions only.

28. He who knows himself to be infrangible and uninflammable, and as the solid and impregnable stone in his intellect, and not in his unreal body; cares a fig for his death (which destroys the unsubstantial body, but has no power over his indestructible soul).

29. O the delusion! that overspreads the sight of clear-sighted sages; who fear for their total annihilation at the loss of their bodies (which are but component and superficial parts of themselves).

30. When we are firmly settled in our belief, of the indestructible nature of our vacuous intellect; we are led to regard the fire and thunder of the last day of destruction, in the light of a shower of flowers over our heads.

31. That I am the imperishable intellect itself, and naught that is of a perishable nature; therefore the wailing of a man and his friends at the point of death, appears as a ridiculous farce to the wise.

32. That I am my inner intelligence, and not the outer body or its sensation, is a belief which serves as an antidote, against the poison of all griefs and sorrows.

33. That I am the vacuous intelligence, and can never have my quietus or annihilation; and that the world is full of intelligence, is a sober truth which can never admit any doubt or controversy (Lit.—which you can never doubt).

34. Should you suppose yourselves, as any other thing beside the intelligence; then tell me, ye fools, why do you talk of the soul in vain, and what do you mean by the same.

35. Should the intelligent soul be liable to death, then it is dead with the dying people every day; tell me then how ye live and [are] not already dead, with the departed souls of others?

36. Therefore the intelligent soul, doth neither die nor come to life at any time; it is a false notion of the mind only to think itself to be living and dying, though it never dies (being immortal in its nature).

37. As the intellect thinks in itself, it beholds the same within itself; so it goes on thinking in its habitual mode, and is never destroyed of itself (or) without being ever destroyed in its essence.

38. It sees the world in itself, and is likewise conscious of its freedom; it knows all what is pleasurable or painful, without changing itself from its unalterable nature at any time or place.

39. By the knowledge of its embodiment, it is liable to delusions; but by knowledge of its true nature, it becomes acquainted with its own freedom.

40. There is nothing whatever, that rises or sets (i.e. is produced or destroyed) at any time or place; but every thing is contained in the sole and self-existent intellect, and is displayed in its clear and vacuous sphere.

41. There is nothing, that is either real or unreal in the world; but every thing is taken in the same light, as it is displayed unto one by the intellect.

42. Whatever the intelligent soul thinks in itself in this world, it retains the ideas of the same in the mind. Every thing is judged by one's consciousness of it, as the same thing is thought as poison by one, what is believed to be nectar by another.