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 CLXV - On the similarity of waking and dreaming

Argument:—The steadiness of the Intellect in waking and Dreaming, which are alike to one another.

Vasishtha continued:—

1. In the state of waking dream the dream passes under the name of waking; and in the state of dreaming wakefulness, this waking goes by the name of sleeping.*

* Note.—Each of the three states of waking, dreaming and

sound sleep admit of three conditions viz. waking wakefulness, waking dream and the waking sound sleep; again dreaming watchfulness, dreaming dream and dreaming sleep; and lastly the sleepy waking, the sleepy dream and the sleepy sound sleep (see the scholium of Sureshvara for instances of every Kind).

2. The dream terminates into waking, and the waking man rises from his dreaming, and falls back into it again; so one awakened from his dream like waking, falls afterwards to his waking dreams.

3. The dream of the waking dreamer, is to be called a dream also, as the waking dream of this world; and so the waking (or consciousness) of the sleeping waker, is to be styled his waking state.

4. Therefore that wakefulness (or consciousness) of one, [who] remains in his dreaming state, is to be called his waking likewise and not his dreaming; so also the waking dream (of the existence of the world), and the imaginations of airy castles while one is waking, is to be designated his dreaming and never as his waking.

5. Whatever lasts for a short while, as a temporary delusion or flight of imagination, passes under the name of a dream even in one's waking state; and so the short watchfulness of consciousness in the state of dreaming, is known as dreaming and never as waking.

6. Therefore there is no difference whatever, between the two states of waking and dreaming, beside the absence of one of these two in the other (i.e. the absence of shortness in waking, and that of durability in the dream). Again they are both unreal, owing to their blending with one another (i.e.i.e. dreaming blended with the view of the phenomenals in waking; and the wakeful consciousness blending with dreaming).

7. The waking dream of the world, vanishes under its unconsciousness in death; and the consciousness of dreaming is lost, under the knowledge of its being an airy nothing. (The world recedes; it disappears; Heav'n opens on my eyes. Pope).

8. The dying person that does not come to perceive the vanity of the visionary world at his death-bed can have no sight of the state of his waking (or resurrection), in the next or future world.

9. Whoever believing himself as alive, among the varying scenes of this vacuous world, lives content with them; he can never come to the sight of the visions, which await upon him.

10. As the intellect displays its wonders, in the exhibitions of the various scenes of worlds, to the sight of one in his dream; so doth this universe appear before the minds of men, at the time of their waking.

11. These creations which are so conspicuous to sight, are at best but nothing in their transcendental light and all the forms of things, are as the empty shadows of them appearing in our dreams.

12. As the world with all its varieties of visible objects, appear in its inane and shadowy form in the dream; so it is seen in its vacuous and intellectual form only, in our waking state (although it seems to be tangible body).

13. It is the nature of the vacuous Intellect, to show the form of the world in its own firmament; so doth this earth appear unto us, amidst the spacious atmosphere, like the orbs of light in the skies.

14. It is the wondrous display of the Intellect, that shines before us under the name of universe; and these wonders are as inborn and innumerable in itself, as the watery and earthly particles, are connate with, and diffused throughout nature.

15. What thing is there in it, which you can mistake for a reality in this unreal world; that is situated as a vacuous body in the infinite womb of vacuity.

16. The words recipient, receipt and reception, or the percipient, perceived and perception (i.e. the subject, object and attribute), are all meaningless with regard to this vacuous world; and whether it is a reality or unreality, we have no perception of it. (Because the presence of everything is lost, at the absence of its properties, which are adscititious only).

17. Whether it is so or not or be it anything otherwise (as others may have it); yet why [you] should mistake it for anything at all, in whatever light you take it, it will amount to your mistake of an empty ball for a fruit (so says the vedanta:—[Sanskrit: jagabrahma svarupasvat pragabhava tatha praschamsabhava evam anaranra bhava-nama durniruparatvat kevalatantabhavisti])