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 CLXXIX - The doctrine of pantheism or the one as all

Argument:—The intellectuality and incorporality of the World, preclude the idea of its materiality.

Vasishtha continued:—

Now as the triple world is known, to be a purely intellectual entity; there is no possibility of the existence of any material substance herein, as it is believed by the ignorant majority of mankind.

2. How then can there be a tangible body, or any material substance at all; and all these that appear all around to our sight, is only an intactile extension of pure vacuity.

3. It is the emptiness of our intellectuality, and contained in the vacuity of the Divine Intellect; it is all an extension of calm and quiet intelligence, subsisting in the serene intelligence of the supreme One.

4. All this is but the quiescent consciousness, and as a dream that we are conscious of in our waking state; it is a pure spiritual extension, though appearing as a consolidated expanse of substantial forms.

5. What are these living bodies and their limbs and members, what are these entrails of theirs, and these bony frames of them? Are they not but mere shadows of ghosts and spirits, appearing as visible and tangible to us. (Or very likely they resemble the phantoms of our dreams, and the apparitions that we see in the dark. gloss).

6. The hands, the head, and all the members of the body, are seats of consciousness or percipience; where it is seated imperceptible and intangible, in the form of the sensorium or sensuousness.

7. The cosmos appears as a dream in the vacuum of the Divine Mind; and may be called both as caused and uncaused in its nature, owing to its repeated appearance and eternal inherence in the eternal Mind.

8. It is true that nothing can come out from nothing, or without its cause; but what can be the cause of what is eternally destined or ordained in the eternal mind. (Predestination and Preordination being the uncaused cause of all events).

9. It is possible for a thing to come to existence, without any assignable cause or causality of it; and such is the presence of every thing that we think of in our minds (and so also is the appearance of this world in its intellectual light).

10. If it is possible for things, ever to appear in their various forms in our dreams, and even in the unconscious state of our sleep; why should it [be] impossible for them to appear also in the day dream of our waking hours, the mind being equally watchful in both states of its being.

11. Things of various kinds, are present at all times, in the all comprehensive mind of the universal soul; these are uncaused entities of the Divine Mind, and are called to be caused also, when they are brought to appearance.

12. As each of the Aindavas, thought himself to have become a hundred in his imagination; so every one of these imaginary worlds, teemed with millions of beings—the mere creatures of our fancy.

13. So is every body conscious of his being many, either consecutively or simultaneously at the same time; as we think of our multiformity in the different parts and members of our bodies. (Or as the king Vipaschit viewed himself, as dilated in the sun, moon and stars, so also one man thinks himself as many, in different states of his life).

14. As the one universal body of waters, diverges itself into a thousand beds and basins, and branches into innumerable channels and creeks, and as one undivided duration, is divided into all the divisions of time and seasons (so doth the one and uniform soul become multiform and many). (As the sruti says:—aham-bahu-syam).

15. All compact bodies are but the airy phantoms of our dream, rising in the empty space of our consciousness; they are as formless and rarefied, as the hollow mountain in a dream, and giving us a void notion of it.

16. As our consciousness consists of the mere notions and ideas of things, the world must therefore be considered, as a mere ideal existence; and it appears in the sights of it and observes in the same light; as the fleeting notions of things glide over the void of the intellect. (The mind is conversant only with the ideas and not with the substance of things).

17. Our knowledge and nescience of things, resemble the dreaming and sleeping states of the soul; and the world is same as the intellect, like the identity of the air with its breeze.

18. The noumenon and the phenomenon, are both the one and same state of the Intellect; being the subjectivity of its vacuous self, and the objectivity of its own intellections and reveries; Therefore this world appears as a protracted dream, in the hollow cavity of the sleeping mind.

19. The world is a non-entity, and the error of its entity, is caused by our ignorance of the nature of God from the very beginning of creation. In our dream of the world, we see many terrific aspects of ghosts and the like; but our knowledge of its non-entity, and of the vanity of worldliness, dispel all our fears and cares about it.

20. As our single self-consciousness, sees many things in itself;so does it behold an endless variety of forms, appearing in the infinite vacuity of the Divine Mind.

21. As the many lighted lamps in a room, combine to emit one great blaze of light; so the appearance of this multiform creation, displays the Omnipotence of one Almighty Power.

22. The creation is as the bursting bubble, or foam and froth of the mantling ocean of omnipotence; it appears as a wood and wilderness in the clouded face of the firmament, but disappears in the clear vacuous atmosphere of the Divine Mind; and there is no speck nor spot of creation in the infinite ocean of the Supreme Intellect.