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ThewakingStateandThe'why' ol the Samadhi-Plunge Whatis SamadhiorYogic Trance ? oI TheCJitlque theTrancesolution TheCrilioueotlh 'Jivanmukti-Solution'

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Thelssue: Statusol Dynamis Themind-Consciousness : Its Achievmnels Failures and 53 TheInwa.dization the Ascension and 71 TheConquest 93 Sureivara 105 TheWorks theAuthor theVartika of of Ih6 closeconnection between the BrahmaSiddhiandtheSambandhaVartika TheRaval Doctrines Examined the in SambandhaVartika Refutation Mandana's of Posilions the in Vartika TheTretment lhe Dockine of ot BhartrpraancatheVartika in Nretaphysical lgnorance Suresvara in Objections answers and onthesubject

of lvlelaphysical Ignorance by Thetrealment lgnorance Sri of Compared Sankara Suresvara and into Enquiry theseatof ignorance and withil conceals the objecl TheOperation ol ofthelvleans Knowledge Cancellalion lllusion ol Authority theVeda: ot Roleof NegativeTexls Preception, Cannol etc Contradicl theVeda Treatment theTopic Cause of of and Eifecl Thetrealment Universal of and Particular Thetreahent ol theDiscrimination of the FiveSheaths Teaching examinalion by olThe Dram and ThreeStates oJWaking, Sleep Dreamless Cantherebean Injunclion tor Knowledge Compaison SriSankara ol and on of Suresvara theTopic Hearing andthe Rests TheIniunclion Inne.andOuterConlrol lor andlhe other disciplines HowAction Mediiation and Relale Thereis noother Liberation Excepl Eradication lgnorance of All Duality lmagined is lhrough lgnorance Approved Thetormot Non-Duality in thevartika


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ol TheMasrery the Nighls 227 HowBestto Enter Stateol Sleep? ihe Howto Relaan Awareness the of Dreams ? HowtoGrowConscious Sleep in TheLureol theDream-Consciousness TheVisionotlhe DivineBody 237 of TheConquest Sleep 243 HowtoReduce Hours Sleep the of ? Howto Eliminate Necessity the ol Sleep ?

'12. Attemptsai'Kayasiddhi' and Reiuvenation 257 13. TheMystery Lifeand Dealh of Death theService Lile at of 14. Metaphysical Factors Dealh of 283 FirstFactor TheParlAgainst theWhole Second Factor The ParlAgainst AllOtherParts ThirdFaclor Aclion andReaction Fourth Factor LiletheConsumer FifthFactor Warollhel\rembers SixthFactor lmpertect Poise Consciousness ol andForce Sevenlh Faclor Thetntinite a Summation as of lhe Finite


ThePhysiology Senescence Death ot and fi/eiaphysics Lifeand Death ol


'why' TheWakingstateand The of the Samadhi-Plunge

Above us dwells a superconscientgod Hiddan in the mystery of his own light: Arcundus is a vastoI ignorance Lil by the uncartain ray ol the human mind, Below us sleeps the lnconscient datk ancl mute (SriAurobindo, Sayttr; BookVll, Cantoll, p.484) Since mind-consciousness lhe sole wakingstate posis sessed by mental baing, cannot otdina ly quile enter into another without leaving behind completely both all our waking existenieand all ou inwardmind.This is the necessity the of Yogictrance (sri Aurobindo, p.379). The Synthesis Yoqa, ol To enler into Sahadhi is to passinlo a state of whichno memoryremains awakening... on conscious When people speak ol Samadhi, I te them, "We , try to developyoul innerindividuality you can enter into these very and regionsinfull consciousness, with the delightof communionwith the highest rcgions without losing consciousnessfor thal and retuming with a zefo in,tead ol an expeience." Bu flhe N,lolher, etin,Vol.XlV, No. 3, pp. 43-45) Yes,they[a the states ol higherrcalisation]can be aftained even in lull activity. Tance is not essential. (SriAurobindo, p.744) Lettercon Yoga, A THOROUGHGOING psychological self-invesligalion lar kanscending present its artilicialbounds, occull-spirilual an exploralion the tolallieldol our boing,revals truththatwhat ot the we normally knowoi ourselves not all we are: il is no more is lhan'a bubble theoceanof our eristence,' on lndeed, apartfrom

Chaplef l

theveryinsigniJicanl restricled oJourwakrng parl and individual consciousness, arenormally we perlectly ignoranl thewhole of ol the restof our being, lhe immense " more', lhat lieshidden in apparenlly inaccessible "reaches beingwhichdescend of into lhe protoundesl depths lhe subconscient riseio highesl ol and peaksol superconscience, or whichsufiound littie the lieldol ourwaking witha widecircumconscienl self existence which ol o!r mrnd and sense catchonlya lew indications." As a matterof fact, following the ancientWisdomof the L.Jpanishads, can broadly we dividethe tolalityol our existence into provincesor states:the waking siate' \jagrat).the sublirninal lhe'dream-state' (syapna), superconscienl or the or the sieep-state' (sr/suptl and linally the statebeyond lhe or 'ultimate slate'(lurjia, Co(esponding lheselour stalesof our lo existence, havein us tour selvesor ratherlhe fourfold stawe lus ol the oneSelfthalis Brahman:the wakjng ot Vaisvanara. sell theWaker;the dream,se[ faiasa,ihe Dreamer;the or sleep-setf or P/e/,ia, Sleeper; the and tinallythe supreme absotute or selJ ot being,lhe Foutth (caturlha),he Incommunicable t (avyavahey@), Ooewilhoulsecond(adyaia),ot whichthe lhe threebetore derivations, are In less abstrlse and mysiicallerms, may statethat the we fourfoldscaleol beingdelineated aboverepresenls, to say, so lhe 'degrees the ladder being'that embodied must of ot an soul successively atiainil he wouldseekio clrrnb backhom hjs phenomenal and ignorant slf-view towardsthe supreme superconscience highest of the state hissell-being. what of But are lhe essenlial traits of theselour statuses? TheWaking State: waking Ow consciousness, theconsciousness lhal we normallypossssand that is dominated the by physical mind, a limping is surlace consciousness upin the shul bodylimitation wilhin conlines thelittle ol personal and ihe o{ bit mind. are ordinarily We awateonlyol our su ace selves and .what quite ignorant allthat ot lunctions behind veil. lhe Andvet

s on the surlace,whal we know or lhink we know ol ourselves and even believethat lhat is allwe are. is only a small part oi our being , and by lar the larger part lies hidden"behindlhe and knownonly by behindthe veil,occtrlt lrontalconsciousness an occultknowledge." a consciousness,rnanbecomes Whilein thisnormalwaking ised and gazes outward and rarely il ever inward rxlerna lparampasya nenlaralman). Hence the selt in this slalus ol has been described as wrse ol the oul_ exlernal v,/aketulness no spiiluallife or any higher watd (jegaritaslhe bahihprajfiah).No possible one remarns iettered to if becomes or deeprrea isalion lhrs wakrngslale the The Dream-Stab:fhisrepresents subliminacondtion realmol inlerior the exislence, largeluminous ol our conscrous and lo thal consciousness, corresponds lhe subller lile_plane planeor our being.ln mind planeand even a sublle physical our outer mind and lrleand deed. behindour outerexislence, Our arger be ngs sits behindcrypticwalls: 'hprp hrddenIn our unspFnparls are grealnesses Thal wait their hour to slep into liles konl: our inner Minddwellsin a largerlight, Its br ghtnesslooksal us throughhiddendoors; A m ghly lile-sei wilh lhe dwartishmodicumwe call life; Supports Our bodys sublleself aslhronedwilhrn dreams. In rts viewlesspalaceol veridical comprrses Inner our reachoJour berng Thus,lhe subliminal -oxrslence, thal s to say, our inner mind, inner lile and inner physica wilh lhe soul or psychicentitysupporling them all. lt ano s of lhe natureoi a secrelIntraconsctent clrcumconscrenl


awareness lullpossession a brillianl rn of mindoower. limoid a litetorceand un unclouded physical subtle sense things. ol It rs in th s subliminal realmof our interior existence. lhe ream of subllesubjective supraphysical experiences ot and dreams visions heavenly and and intimations, a vefltable d wor ol wondertul illuminations, our mindand vilalbeingretire that whentheywilhdraw inward-drawn by concentralton theirab, from sorpl In surlace on activties, It s because ils inward plunge ol bringing itsirain wealth n a ol nnerexperiences, dreams and visions, lhe selltn this that statLrs beentermed has the dream-self is wiseot lhe in, that ward lsvapnastheno' ntahpajfiah). The Sleep-State: This corresponds a still higher to s r p e r c o n s c i e n ll a l u s , a s l a t e o l p u r e c o n s c t o u s n e s s s pwe hyenandabhuk) pwe \prajhanaghana), blisslenandamaya and naslety lsatvesvara).T exalted his slateol seltabsorbed conscrousness called'sleep'becausemental sensory rs all or expeflences ceasewhen we enterthis superconscience. This 'dreamless sleepstate'{yatr supto... kafrcana na svapnam pasyall,), statusoJmassedconsciousness omnipotenl lhis and lnle )gerce(satvesvara saNajfta), canlains it "alllhe powers in ot being a 1compressed bul within itsetf concentrated and solely on lse I andwhenactive, thenactive aconsciousness in where 'sleep a I rs the self." is in thissuperconscienl lt state'thai we become "inherently intrinsically and conscious our sell and ot spirl, not as herebelowby a reflectton silenlmindor bV in acquisrtion lhe knowledge a hidden ol oi Being withinus; il is through through either super il, lhat of conscience, we can lhal passto a supreme status. knowledge experience." TheTuriya Slarc:fhis corresponds the higheslstatuslar to lranscending tirstthree, the being stalus puresell-existthe ol enceandabsolute being, where consciousness unconscious_ and nessas we acluallyconceive bothloselheir validily. is the ol lt supreme state Sachchidananda,'a ol superconscience ol state

in in ora absorbed its self-existence, a sl'.silenc self-ecstasy.' state, Mandukya the Aboutthe selfol thislourthortheTuriya sPeaks: Upanishacl inward-wise, oulward-wise, bolh nor nor "Hewho is neither norpossessed oulward wise, norwisdom seU-gathered, and inward H and nor of ol wisdom, unpossessedwisdom, whois unseen un , i n c o m m u n i c a b l e , s e i z a b l ef,e a t u r e l e s su n t h i n k a b l e , Whose essentialityawareness theSeliin is ol andunnameable, in dissolve, Who is exislnce, Whomall phenomena its single Whois OnethanWhom lhereis no oiher, Who is Good, Calm, He ot Himtheydeemthe lourth: is the Self,He is the object Knowledge." division the totalityot our existof Suchis lhen the fourtold that is to say,spiritualknowledge ence,and true knowledge, becomes aboulour seltbeingas well as aboutthe world-being to in a available us onlywhenwe succeed establishingconscious realms rapport with the subliminal the nowsuperconscient and oJ our being.But unforlunately wakingslate is blissfully our ignorant its connection ot with or eventhe very existence t o thesesupernal reaches. the goalof Yoga whichis essentially So an attemptat arrivingat an integrals6lf-knowledge, entire an conscrousness powerot beinganda supreme and Lrnion !nily or withSachchidananda, Existence-Consciousness-Bliss Abthe solute, be altained can onlyby a progressive ascension lhe ot m nd lo higher slilihigher plan6s degrees consciousand or oJ Butherea serious seemingley and insuperable presents hitch itseli. mindis thesolewaking For pos, consciousness aciLlally sessed rnanthe mental by being and thismindin its aclualily completely lails to remainawake,beyond certainline,in lhe a reallyhigherstatesof realisalion wherethe heightened inand tensilied spirilualexperiences ao nature thingssought. are the ot Inrsalmost absolute incompatibilily ourwaking of mentality with he highest ranges spiritualconsciousness ol is strikingly brought

out in thelollowing veryinteresling account Sri Ramakrishna,s ot repeated lailures hain remain physically to awake thesumon mrlsol reaiisation. Swami Saradananda, ol lhe closesl one direcl discipls SriRarnakrishna thewriter hisauthor! ol and of lative biography, reporling: is "ln howsirnpie lerms Thakur SriFamakr]shnal lhe [i.e. used lo expiarn L_ts lo theseaJstruse lruthsol sptrilual lile "'Well, something lrommyteelandclimbs rises towards the head. longas it doesnotreach heao,rera consctousSo the n ness; but as soon as it reacheslhere, an utter t'otgett'ulness ovenakes - lhenlhereis no moreseeing hearing, be me or lar il to speak _ oltalking.'Who would speakthen? Thevery sense oi l' and 'ThoLr' vanishesaltogether! often decidelo speak | everylhing yo!, all aboutthe visions to and experiences thal accompany ascension. longas thal hasreached lar lhis So so Ipointingto his heart)ot evenso lar (pointing his throat),jl to seemssomebody shutsmy mouth and I fajltocontrot lorcet_ mv tutnessl tPonlng to histhloat) whenone ascenos turiier stiti lhanihts level, sooner no lhanI conlemplate a mornenl ior to speakoi lhe visions and experiences there, mindimmedrthe atelyshootsupwards and no reportjng becomes mor-a anv oos''Oh, innumerable aretheoccaslons theThakur when sought to exerctse utmost lhe conkoloverhimsell lhal hecouldreporl so 10us about types experiences onehaswhen mind the ot lhat the transcends throal-cenlre eachtimehe failedl... dav the but One he emphaticallv stated: '''Today I mustspeak youeverythingnot a bil wouldI to , hide' and he started speak. coutdverywe speakatl to He about centres the uplotheheart andthethroal, thenpoinl. and inglo ihe junciion his eye-brows said,.Whenever mrnd ol he the ascends here, embodied hasa vjsion lhe supreme lhe soul of SellandgoesintoSamadhi. Thenthereexists a thintrans, bul parent veilbetween individual and the S!preme. lhe Sell And

in so therethe so!l experiences this way-'. Speaking lar, as the ot he soonas he startddtailing realjsation the Supreme, intolhe Samadhislate. Attercoming ol histrance oul state, went reporting again,bui againwntintoSamadhi. he recommenced repeatedattempts and lailurcsho spokoto us with Altetsuch tearsin his eves: ' lvy sons,my intontion to repo to you is everylhing wilhthe oui hiding l6astbit oi il: butlhe l\rother won'lallowme to speak Shecompleloly my mouthl' shut "Wewondered lhisandthought:'How at slrangel is appar lt enl lhal he is kyingto report and thathe is evensuffering becauseof his lailure do so, but he seems be altogelher lo lo in helpless thismaller - Surely Mother lhe musthavebeenvery naughty indeedlHe wantslo speakaboutholythings,aboutlhe vision God,andit is surely thalSheshould ol odd shuthismouth!' "Wedjd nol knowal timethatlhe mind's range indeed is very muchIrmited and thal, unless one proceeds farther then its iartheslreach,one cannotexpeclto havethe realisation the ol Supremel ourinnocence could ln we not.understand time ai lhal lhat out of sheerlovelor us lhe Thakur was attemotino the mpossiblel" SriRamakrishna himsell hls inimiiabte ernphas in style sed on more thanoneoccasion lactof lhe inability our mind this of consciousness to relain iis'power conscious oJ disceroment and defin experience' it rises thesuperconscient ng when to heights, '1esaid: Whathappens whenthe mindreaches seventh plane the . goesintoSmadhil Lano cannolbe described. Oncea boalenters the [black waters]ollheocean, doesnotrelurn. il Nobodv knows whathappens the boalallerthal.Theretore boatIi.e.Mindl to the udrlnol us anyInformalion grve about ocean, lhe ''Ofce a saltdollwentio measure depth theocean. ihe ol No sooner it enter water did the thanit melted. Now, whowould tell



the Beyandthe realmof thought,trcnscending domainol ity, leavingMaya with all her changesand fiodilications dual shinesthegloryoltheEtenalBrahman the far behind,.... in Nirvikalpa Samadhi. Knowledge, knowet dissolve in the mensttuumof One EternalConsciou'ness:bitth,growthand death vanEh in that infinite Existence:and love. lovet and meryeinthatunbounded beloved oceanol Supteme Felic, tty.. Breakingdownthe idge-polesol thattabenaclein which . the soul had made its abode lot untoldages-stillingthe body, calming the mind and drowning the ego, comes the joy sweet ol Brahman thatsupetconscious in state.Space disappears in nothingness, time is swallowedup in Eter nny... The [and] it is all stillnessindefinable.... Nivikalpa Sanadhi is the highest fliqht ol Advaita Philosophy (Llleof Sri Ramakrishna, Advaita Ashrcm, Almoa, p. 181) The acquisition the highest ol spiritual consciousness, at leastslatically nol dynamacally,the goal of all spiritual if is endeavor. as we havenotedbefore, sDaritual But, the reaches of conscrousness taabehindand aboveour notmalwaking lie mentality. lhe question is it possible possess Now is: lo the spirilual consciousness stillremaining while hbedded the in ordrnary menlal funclioning? otherwords, lhe normalunIn can regenerate sudac6 consciousness lhespiaitual beconand one comilant simultaneously and operative? Seekers allages an and clrmes, who have ihe necessary credentials pronounce to on this poinl,are universally agreedto denylhis possibility. So,broadly speaking, allernalives four mayopenout before hose whoasprre afterspiritualily: (i)Tocreate division, separation.dissociataon a a a of conscrousness to be spiritual and withinor above whilethe outer conscroJsness its ignorant and movemenls Indiflerenfly are walched felltobe and something intrinsically loreign drspaand 'ore lr s s thesolulion ol the Witness Consciousness . (rr) be satisiied To withthe indirect glories the spiriiual ot

howdeeptheoceanwas?" So it is seenthat jn the actualslate of our evolvedwaking realms our ol the and existence ascension entryintothehigher fartherand lar al only by rcceding beingbecomes all possible lher Ircm the wakingmentality,by vtilhdtawingfrom and losing life touchwilh the dynamic surface and iakinga plungeinlolhe And immobile ecstatic or lrancaof absorbed supetconscience. herein tor thespiritual lies seeker necessily eventhe inlhe or evilability the Yogiclrancestate,so much Fo that n is emol phalically means asserled Samadhi that is'notonlya supreme verycondition ot arriving thehighesl al consciousness, b!t...lhe ilself, alone it andstatus thathighesl of consciousness in whrch possssed enjoyed we while are in lhe can be completsly and divinisalion lifebeoi Butin lhal caseour goalotdynamic nowseewhether the comes foredoomed lailure. we must lo So into trancecanbe progressively transformed a wakingSamadhi in made and even ourwakandilsspirilualgains manilest aclive In9extstence, IS WHAT SAMADHI ORYOGICTBANCE? ln her owndepthsshehead the unuttercd thoughl Thatmadeunrealtheworldand alllife meant. 'Whoart thouwhoclaim'stthy crownor separale btrlh, Theillusion lhe soul'srcaity ol goclheacl an ignorantglobe Andperconal on In the animalbodyof impedect man? Onlythe blankEternal can be true All elseis shadow and flashin Mindbbrighl glass, and O soul,inventot man'sthoughts hopes. of Thyself inventian lhe moments'stream, the of centreor sublleapexpoint, illusions' cease." from vainexistence At lastknowthyself, ($ Aurabindo, Saviil.,BookVll, CantaVl,p 535

rh. Wak'ng slale and The


Chaplerl mavlunctlonin five dilferenllevelsor conditions(cilhbhhmayah). or are (i) Ksiptaor lrom down upwards lrom out inward, These. condition whichthe mindis acliveand in lhe dissipated resltess, and runs aller objeclsol varioussorts;(ii) mtidha externalsed condition whichhe mind underthe in_ in the or lorprd, stupelied Iluence ot an excessjve larnas gravitales downwards and wal(iii) towsIn the obscuredepthsol ignorance: v,ksrplaordistracled, pacilied relatively in whichlhe mindbecomes and at a condilron concentrated but lhrown out again outwards times somewhal (iv) ekagraorconcen. movemenls; becauseot lhe dislracting dominated sallvain whichthe mindis able by a tfated, condilion lor stretch iime to the exclusion ot ol to concenlfale a prolonged chosenobjector suba I olhef lhoughls,upon some particular jecl ol concenlration;and lastly (v) niruddhaor slilled. a condrceases lion n whrcheven the acl or r!nclion ol contemplation modilications the mind beingstopped. nothingwhal and.ail ol so ever s known or conceivedbv lhe latter. The ltrst lhree conditionsolthe mind enumeratedabove are ol caLtrse nol al all conduciveto lhe praclice ol spirituaiity lyogapaksena vartate)til is only the lasl two o ihal make possi. ble afy spiritual illuminalion. a matterol tacl,in the parlance As ol lhe Palanjali System,"ekegraor the state ol concentralion. when permanenilyeslablished,is calledsampfali eh Yoga lhe ot lranceol medilalion. whichthreis a clearand distinclconin scrousness the obiectof contemolation. is known also as of lt samepalei or samprain ta samedhi in as much as citla or lhe mrndis. in lhis stale, entirely pul inlo the objecl and assums Ine lorm of lhe obiect itsell. So also lhe state o, niruddha rs caled asampalnala Yoga orasampajneb samedhi... because Inrsis lhe lranceof absorplion whichall psychoses in and appearances objects o{ are stopped,,,,' generallerms we may say that Samadhr yogrc or rrarco s lhal slale of super consciousness which the asprrin anl.divingdeep or soaring high in the searchol ihe sout or the

ol in and as consciousness reflected rellacted lhe bosom oul 'spiritual menlal This normalmentality- is whal hasbeentermed reatsalron conscrousness and lrom (iii)To andwithdraw themenlal still This is whal can be called reaches. lo ihe supra-menlal relire the'lrance-solulionconscious(iv)To ol translorm nalure thenormalwaking the downlherelhe say,by bringing ness, divinise as we would to il so heighls, that its of fullest weath and splendor the spirilual rectil ed present maybe altogether and opacity relractorinss by envlsaged of'divine transliguralion'as This is the solulion ourYoga. and'spirilual_menlal Consciousness' Evidently the'Wiiness it slaled, onceagarn tar realisatioJall shorlol ourgoal; n' ol upon goalis no lessthanthe establishmentLiteDivine this Sachchidananda waking exislence embodying earth, dynamic a glories. in histu 1ymaniiesled is Butsincethe yogickanceor Samadhi so oilenheldup possrb e to means access lhe higher ol notonlyas a supreme and ol but'astheverycondition status spirilua consciousness il alone canbe com_ itselt, thalhighest consciousness in which we plelelypossessed and enjoyedwhile we are in the body," of the lor to musldigress here a while examine nature Samadhi ol in or andfindoul its utility olherwise the pursuit lhe Integral yoga. rS10 1ence. mind-Co'lsciousneSS Since a' Samadtu Yagtc slateot spiritual wrlh rnally lound be lncompalible thehighest to by yogaor union mustalmost detinit olr realisat a verrlable on, cessalion of all menlal lunctrons connote lhe or even (yogascittavrtlinirodhahl) ol themindilsell\manoneso as Now.1olollowthe terminology usedby Vyasa,lhe greal our slull Paianjali, rnind Aphorisms'ol the'Yoga commentatoron



sell,enlers, whenhis consciousness, through inward an concenlration, withdraws tromlhe surface worldas perceived ihe by sensesand reliresto progressively deeperinleriorrealmsof supersensus experiences.thisprocess inward In of withdrawal or upward ascension, consciousness enlersth 'dreamthe first e state'and thenproceeds th'sleeo-state'. jnthe to While dram, quiescenl slalae,the ouler mindol the Sadhaka becomes and his innar mind. separated lhe outerandno from longer covered upbyit, ranges lh.oughawondorlulworld richandvariegated ol Inner expenences. To obviate any possjble rnisunderstanding the nomenthat cialuredram-stale' or'sleep-state' may engender an unwary in spirit,we may{orthwithstate thattheyogic here dream,or sleepslaleshavenothing do wilhthe physical to stalesof dreamand "lnthe sleep. possession Yogic dream-slate...lhe mindis inclear physical ol itself, lhoughnot ofhte world, (is works coherently,... perlectlyl awake...not withthe out-going, withan ingalhered but wakefulnesswhich, in though immersed ilseli, exercises in it all In thedream-state thereis an infinite itself series deplhs o{ startjngwith thal tor whichthe worldol physicalsensesis almoslal the doorsthoughmomentarily out,and reaching shirt to depthsnot likelyto be brokenin uponby the impact or cattof the sensuousphysicalworld.As a malter ol Jact,"beyonda certainpointlhelrancebecomes complet and it is thenalmost quile impossible awakenor call back lhe soutthat has reto ceded them;ilcanonlycome into backby itsownwillorat most by a violentshock.olphysical appealdangerous the system to owrng lhe abruptUpheavalof lo relurn." Withthe incrasing depths heighls lhe degrees con, or of of sciousness altained the soul, experiences by the obtained becomeprogressively remole lessandlesscommunicable and to the wakingmind,unlilthe trancebecomes complete an utter in selfgathering the berng ol whenlhe central consc nessseparous

Then it becomes an of lrom the lasl vesting mentalityrates ot ortranscripls theexpefor impossibility anyrecords absolute waking conol to lhe lherein reach portals the normal r ences claimed lo of Nirvikalpa Samadhi Thls scio!sness. is lhe state and of attainmeni assidLrously status spiritual be the hlghest lrance. by seeker after after every sought existot lrance-state puresuperconscienl In lhrsultrmate being and immersion lhe infinite in thissupra-mental in ence. the oi space hence world and bliss, theuncondilioned timeand ol inlo allaction mentalaware' vanish noihing, land names forms abol_ is of or things allogether resswhelher outward ol inward Beyond up cosmic is and ished everythingdrawn inlothesuper trance, the this staleof Nirvikalpa Onceatlaining supreme agarn the to \,1/ell"nigh impossible, return lo sou l ndsrt diilicull, aclveIfe-consciousness,tor"illoseslheholdonthecord mainof b ndsil lo the consciousnesslife,andlhe bodyis leJl, bul nol ta ned indeed its sel position, deadby dissolution, in it." incapabie recovering ensolued whichhadinhabited lite ol the physiognomy Wehave in solaranalysed abskacllermsthe ol iheYogic nowlike we trance.Io complele accounl would the to reproduce brief concreie Uddalaka caiesof thesages in the andRamakrishnashowhowin laclthe consciousness withto draw inward passes progressively slaies ng deepening through 01be ng to rGpose finallyin lhe absolute siale of inrvikalpa Samadhi. Fjrstthe scripluralaccouniol the lrance of Uddalaka as oeplcted the grealwotk Yoga-Vasishtha into Mahanmayana: Theftanceaf lJddalaka:"One thesagedeliberaled:'When day wrllyou atlain eternalpeace reachingthe ot lo by slatus mindless' nes(.lo'sJchrsIndeed condrtron getting for lreedfromlhe the oondaqa reoealed ol sat brrlhs?' Thenhe Brahmin ... Uddalaka down concentrate withdraw mind. to and his But he couldnot sLcceeo olce . alta,nrng Samadhi al lor in state. hrs?nrnd, the


the tashionof a restless baboon, beganto tleet from objectto objeci... a lalerstag6,the mind-monkey At wouldat limesleave outsidecontracts and lelt eagerfor the enjoyment lhe inner ol Sattwic bliss;butthiswasindeed intermillent an mood.lor most ollenthe mindwouldrushlowards outward objeclsagain,as il it was stungby a wouldrushlowardoutward objoctagain,as if it was stungby a venomous snak6.Al times,his innerstatewas being cleared thoobscurity ignoranc Uddalaka ol of and visioned the glory of a sun; but in no lime his Chittabecameres ess againand flewoulwardin the manner a starfledbjrd.Again, of he withdrew inward and oxperienced limesa vacantspaceor al the Zerool an impenetrable darkness...Aswarrior bat e a in killshis enemies witha sword,Uddalaka slarleddestroying one by onealllhe vikalpas gone, thalwereappearjng conhe inhis sciousness. vikalpasl lhe 9on6,he saw into he innerspace a green-black butproceed Sun immediatly eradicate inky to this darkness.Then softness a massed the of greeted sage lustr lhe jn Uddalaka thattoo eliminated notimefotlowing way But he the ol an elephant calf that gets into a lotuspondand tears away anddevastates lotuses the allaround. Once thismassed splendourwasgone, Uddalaka's succumbed a spellof dseo mind to sleepjust manhighly as intoxicated loses sobriety then his and getsrntotorpor; thesagewasprompt but enough annullhis lo state sleep.Then mind of his waslilled withtheconscjousness ol vyoma;pul as thewindsweeps awaythedew-drops, iust he loo sweptawayfromhismindthisclearandstainless consciousnessof vyoma. But,following that,somesori of dazeddullness ovenook as if he was a heavily him drunkmanwho had just comeoutol his torpid slale.Even thistoo he vanquished. "Then, longlast,lhe sageUddalaka at reached slalusof the Nirvikatpa Samadhi, where the16 wasneither obscuritv anv nor anY ePhemeral luster." That, in the state of Nirvikalpa lrance,the body becomes immobile a paintedimage(citdrpjtamivacalah) evena lik6 and vrolenl sense-appeal to bringbackthe soullo the waking tails

oul brought by the lorcefully has consciousness beenequally ol ol accoilnt the Samadhi tollowing in Yoga-Vasishthalhe Shlkhidhvajal lherethe andlound wentto theforest Chudala "Thequeen lree, like saated, a sculptured in the staleol klngShikhidhvaja re'awaken I mustnow seekto deliberaled: lrance.she \rrvrkarpa the his bodyverysoon'Then he the king,otheruise willleav at shouted the bodyand the approached king's Chudala oueen This loudsoundand thenthe soundot lhe too oi her voice. but creatures' the lhe and frightened slartled sylvan trumpet lrom failedto evokeany response attempts queen'srepeated like and kanced immobile a gran_ romained body whose theking on laid ile mass.Chudalalhen herhands thebodyof Shikhidhvaja body the it.Thusshaken, king's agilating andslafledviolently but on and rolled the ground, eventhenhe did not lell down wonde'ed Thenthe queen consciousness his recove- waking to lo be an easypropostlron and lhought.'lldoesnol seem the gainol a desire my awaken KinglOnlyil he slillpossesses back will in hidden seed'lorm,lhat helphimto come somewhere ' wisecanhe bearoused In slale, no other again thewaking to we ol Si TheTrance-Experience Ramaki'hna:Now cometo caseol theSageol Dakshinesvara hislorical thevervaulhentic biog' in as depicled hisauthoritative whose trance-experiences we reproduce Orderitself published the Ramakrishn raphy by below: -Sr Ramakr,shna o' a covered widetange expe_ s Samadhi lo visions theannihilalion I ences of various fromhisDerceplion lt ot oi hismind theintinile consciousnessErahman. hadalso in powel,or'aworld of rnany into he forms....Thus entered a'world cofil_ He grandeur'... would of beauty', or'a worldof spiritual Incarnaor rnunewith isible rms inv beingsJo ol theDivinity Divine fons ot the pasl, ol "Such lo belong thedomain Personalily, visions however whlch notthelastwordin spiritual So experiences longas a is



sadhakais salisliedwith lhis kindol samadhi. a ainments his cannoibe side to be complele. has not reached He unlathomabledepths the ocean, of lhough undoubtedly hasgonelar he bhind sudace, the encouni6ring lormsol life abounding the lhere,but he has noty6t ransacked priceless th6 treasures oJ ihe deep, whichr6val themselves lo those only whohavethe courage diveandon tilltheyhave to touched om. bo "So we ,ind Sri Famakrishna takingup another course ot sadhana allogether dilterent lromhisprevious ones." Then, lewpages a luriher the biographer givesa vivid on, d6scription thefirstNirvikalpa of Samadhi-siateSri Ramakof rishnal passedintothe ineJfable "Sri Ramakrishna gloryof the Nirvikalpa Samadhi. ihal rapturous In estasythe sensesand mindslopped lhei lunctions. bodybecame The motionless a as corose. The universe rolled awaylrom h's vrson.even space itsellrnelted away. Everything reduced ideas was to whichlloated llkeshadows th dimbackground the mind. in of Onlylhe faint presently conscioLrsness ot'l'repeated itself dullmonotony. in thatloo stopped, whalremained Existence and was alone.Ihe soulloslitself the Selt, in andall ideaot duality, subject ot and objecl,waseflaced. Limitations weregone,andtinitespacewas onewithinfinile space. Eeyond speech, beyond experience and beyond thought, SriRamakrishna realised Brahman-had had the become Brahman. the "Tolapuri Ramakrishna's orthespiritual preceplorl Guru {Sri sal lor a ionglime,silently watching discipte. his Finding him pertectlymotionless, stoleout ot the roornand lockedthe he doorlestanybody should inkudewithout knowledge.Then his he awajled calllrom Ramakrishnaopen door.The the Sri to the daV passed thenight on, came. Another andstill day anotherthree passed days andlhrewas call. no Tolapuri astonished was and wenl to seewhatwas wrong. 'He opened the door and enteredthe room.Theresat Sri

in he in Ramakrihan theverysameposition which hadlelthim. of was no manifeslalion lile in the body,bul lhe counle' There He and radiani. sawthatthe disciple was calm,serene nance in world, mindabsorbed the his wasstilldeadio the objective steady!. Sell,w lhouta llicker-absolutely il determined lhe hearl "Withthe utmoslcare he lTotapuril kace of respiration or il there was lhe slightest was beating body.There disciple's corpse_like andagainhetouchedthe Again wasundoublof wasno signeither lileor ol consciousness....ll ol culmination Advaila Samadhi-lhe edy a caseof the Nirviklapa ''Tolapuri look immedialely stepsio bringthe mindol Sri of down Ramakrishna to lheworld phenomena. decideto Sri lell AflerTotapuri Dakshineswar, Ramakrishna 'Mine'and live conslanllyin withdraw trom lhe worldot 'l' and reveal' lollowed isverymuch then wilhihe Supreme.What unily into point viewandworth reproducing he sainfs of nglromour owninimltable words: ''Islayed thatineffable a at Jor in State six months a slretch, his statefromwhichan ordinary soul knowsno reiurn, body leaf dropping lifea withered froma treelTherewas no sense olj oi lhe passage lime,ol howthe daysandthe nighlswentbyl ol Flies ol andnostrils my and insects usedto getinlothe mouth no response bodyas J in thoseol a corpse, theyevoked but fromme.OJtentimes withoul involuntarily lwould easenalure berngn lhe leaslawareol itl trlybodywouldnot haveremalned viable long, would down dead, lor bul for have surely dropped it lhecircumstancelhearrivalat timeol a Sannyasin a wilh this ol heavystick in his hand.he realisedmy state at the very firsl glance iell lhat il thisbodycould be and somehow prserved, muchgoodwouldbe doneto the worldlhrough agency. li its thusso happened during he meal-iimes usedio beatmy thal oody glimmer wilhthestick nosooner hefindthata taint and did ol awareness come, would pushsomemorsels good ot had he


inlo the moulh.In this way,on some days,littlebit ol lood could reachmy stomachwhileon otherdays eventhat muchtailed. 'Six months rolled in by lhis wise.Then I heard the Mothers Voace:Come down a bit and stay in thdya-Samddl,i do stay in Bhava-Samadhi lhe weltare the world!'Then serious lor ol a disease assailedmy bodilylrame-blood-dysenlery wasl I had lhen it lrequent bouts ot gripingpains and unbearable cramps and wrenchesin the stomach!After I had sufferedlrom such in lense agony lor long six monlhs,my consciences couldcome down little by; lillle inlo my body and linally I regainedthe waking slate ol orindarv men," So we have seen what Samadhi means and how the stal ol NirvikalpaSamadhi is eulgisedaslhe spiritual slalus pat excel/ence,Now w proceedto showthal trance-experiences, howeverlollyor however deep,failto meelthe demands ourYoga. ol and at lhe sametime indicale howourgoalol dynamic divinisation ol lhe waking physical exislence can be realised.


The Critiqueof the Trance-Solution

The Voicercplied: "ls this enough, O Spirit? And whal shallthy soul say whenil wakesand knows The wo* was left undonetot whichit came? Ot is this a for thy being bon on earth Chatged with a mandato from eternity, Ta passand leaveunchanqed old dustylaws? the Shalltherc be no new lable6,no new Word, No greater light come down upon the earth Delivering from her unconsciousness, her Man'sspititlrcm unalterable fate? ls this then lhe rcporl that I must make, My head bowed with shame beforc the Eternal's sea!,His powet he kindled in thy body has failed, His labourcr rctuns, her taskundone?" Sayili',EookVll, Canlo ll, pp. 475-76) fsri Aurobindo, "l am concened wilh the eatth, not with wotlds beyondfor thetrown sake;it is a lartestial rcalisation I seekanc!not that a flightlo distantsummits." (Sri Aurobindo, Himsef.p. 124) On TRANCE-experiences areundoubledlygreat ot value lhe in pursurt the spiritual ol goalas ordinarily undersiood, the and Nirvikalpa Samadhitakenthespecific in in sense whjch term the rsused, doubt no represents a supreme height realisation ol that a seeker mayaspireafter.Naturally this enough, mostelevated trance-slale provesto be adequatsif the goal is to passaway lnlolhe Superconscient nol to bringdownihe Power and and



ol TheCrilique theTrance-Soltttion and cessaiion all modiflcalions, ol therers no relurn !ie Samadhi I r o m t h a t s t a t e ; a s t h e V e d a n t aa p h o rs m s a y s : a n a v l t t l Bul the AvaIarc cherish a few desires lor the good savdat........ lhe wa d. By taking hold of that thread they come down hom al ous to the conscious slale:' (ltalicsours) the superconsc his the Narralion own personalexperience Swamrsays in the same conlexl: ''| had lust a lrcce of the feeltng af Ego, so I could again (/bld., 139). p. retur,to ihe worldoi relatvily lrom the Samadhi." (lta cs oufs) (iv)ln a moregeneral way we may statethatii the enlry into the lr gherreachesoi our beingis elleciedonly in ihe absorbed staie ol trance,the experience superconscienl cannolbecorne realto the whole existence, beingvalid only for a remoleparl o l i l . T h , J si l m i l i l a t e sa g a i n s t o u r g o a o J t h e c o m p l e l e isalionof lhe tolalilyoi our existence, sprrlLra experiences {v) TheYogiclrancehelpsus to fix lhe spiritual rn our nner consciousness aloneiii cannotautomalically ead to the sp rilualsationol the outerwakingconsciousness. lor so {rswho a m al a lotal spirlual and supramenlal change,even, and In partcular,oi lhe outerpans of our Nalure,Samadhias an InslrLrmentat provesto be altogether on inadequale and fuI e. (v ) Becauseof the aforesaid tnability exercise 10 anything 0ul a re at ve and rnoderaie evation e influence lhe oulercon, on sc ousness,t so happens ihal when lhe Samadh ceases,lhe ihreadrs brokenand the sou relurns onceagainto the.,dislracI or ' l " ' o I p F . t l ci o n so l r h e o u t w a ' d l , As a rnalteroi fact,sinceone cannotcontinlaly reman in l h e t r a n c e - s l a l e , h i e l e a d i n g a n e m b o d i e de x i s t e n c e , w vyufthanaat 're|u.n" lhe lromthe superconscious slatebecomes unavoidable, wilh lh s vyuthana"lhe lawet conscousness and romwh ch lhe ascenttookp ace fallsbacklo whal it was, wilhe

G ory ol the Supercoscient o!r normal into waking consciousness.B!l Samadhi experiences cannot sulJice the leasttor in the objecloi ourYogaol TransJormation; our goaljs no less 1or, lhanthedynamrc divinisationo!r total ol xistence including the parts Pradriti.To more oulermost of be specilic, viewed fromlhe perspeclrve oulr off goal spirilual - lhe goalof embodying and manitesting highest lhe spiritualconscjo!sess uponearth here itseli- lhe kance-solution ihe actualimperie lor tionsof our world'ex stence sulJers, among others, Iromtheioliowing defi(i)Th. supreme trance-state represents slateol conscious, a nessor rather superconsciousness to which onlya rare can iew ordinarily aitain. Thus, hasgotnogeneral ii valldity faras lhe so goalol a wide-based terrestrial fealisation concerned. is (ii)Even when attained, thereis no return themajority for ot seekers fromlhissLlpteme heighl splrituat of consctousness. tt rsonlytheexceplionaily lswarakotis ,,divine gifted or souis,, who succeed coming in backto the waking state. CI. SwamiVivekananda, Camplete Wotks,Val.Vl, p. 4gg: "When once they[ordinary Sadhakas] somehow allain the to direclrealisalion Brahman, cannoi of they again comebackto plane rnaterial the lower perception. meltawavin Brah, of They rran .' A5,re niavat - likewareri. milk. So thequestion the divlnisation thewakinq ol ot existence becomes otiose and iftelevanl, (lll)Tradlionally,it is avefredthal evenlhose rareiew who happen return lo lromlhe supreme state do so on y through can lhe inlermediary a trace egoanddesires. ol of Hence cerlain a .lower ngol lhe key"becomes unavoidabte places at a which it remove lorrnlhe perfecl ne realisatlon aspire div we atter, Cl. Swami Vivekananda, Camplete Works, Vl, l p. 140: Val. "Theconclusion the Vedanta thatwhenthereis absoof is


TheCriiqueottheTr nc



onlytheaddition an unkept a remembered no longer of or bul dynamic experience," It rs because this persistence the disabilities the of o1 of wakingmentality even after attainment Samadhithat it is oJ somelimes asserted an absolute that eradication lgnorance of or a compiele ascension consciousness the "mortal of from mentality" become leasible ohlywhenthe bodyandthe bodily rfeceaseto lunction dealh.\Cf. Yoga-Shikhopanishad,l. at i63 pendapalena muktihse muktirna hanyate.) ya tu Theforegoing discussion makes clear il thaltrance,exper ences maybe all righlso lar as the traditionatYogas con, are cerned;ior, all,according themthetruebondage the after lo is veryprocess birthihe liability the individual rebirth o{ of 1o ln this"unhappy lransienl wo..ld" lokam). Libeta\anltyamasukham tionachieved through altainment the knowledge Reality the of of shoLrld therefore havelor its practical consiequence definilhe lrvesloppage lhis cyclic process birth-death-rebirth. oi off Andii thisis so,if the cessalion fromembod existence ed ls consrdered be the summum lo bonum,one needconcentrale onlyon an innerrealisaiion the innerDivine ol and not bother oneself thepossjbilily olhelwise an integral wilh or of terreskial rea sation. Also, body, the allhough initially necessary a instrumenl for the realisalion our spirjtualdesliny\sariramadyam ot khaludharmasadhanam), be allowed disintegrate may to once (Cf. thaigoalis achieved. Sfi Bamakrishna: oul thethorn "Take with the helpot a thorn"tand Yoga-Vasishtha: "Renounce ihat wrlh whichyou rcnounce" Iyajasitamtyala). lyena Butthiscan by no means our altitude the bodyand be 10 bodilylile. For the Integral Yogahas for ils objectve: (i)io make spiriiualexperiences thewhole reallo consciousnessincluding of the outerbeing; that (ii)toestablish highest possible the realisationthewakinq ln stateand makeit endure there;

velyand in ones lhe (ii ) not onlylo experience Truthsublecl a Consciousnessone, but to manliestt even in full acliv_ nneT

ity ol ( v) an inlegra possesslon the iniegra of the D vine n y beyond I lhe tfe ol this world and nol on 'lt ln short, in the words of Sri Aurobindo: is the obieclof downinto t the Light,Power iile myyogalo iransform by bringing This DivineTruthand its dynamiccerlitudes. and B iss of the but asceticism, ol d vine Yogals not a yoga of world_shunning nol and existence, as somelhng al ife . .il aLms a changeol liJe " oi subordlnate nc dental,but as a d stinctand centra oblect pointsout that "not on y musl the Sfi Elsewhere Aurobindo staiesout of itselllntoa higher r se in abnormal m nd be ab e to mentality also miust be entiely brl iIs waking consc oLrsness, a/ore Th s then s ourgoal, and hencetrance-experlences lhe lvoreover cannolhe p us much in ach evingour objeclive. greal realised sutierslrom anotrler Samadhstateas ordinarily as disablily which may not be considerer such when viewed goal oJth lrad tionalworld-sh!rnning lrom the standpoint the oi Yogas certainly from our pointof view.Thiss as regrads but so theabsence any conscious of memorj/ the tranceexperence of wl -r or " erLrns o lha wakrngmenlaL.IV 1. agd As a rnalterof factthe aim of the old Yoga stopassaway rnto Superconscient not to bringbackLls [iches lhe dynamic and 11r wakingouler existence the a with a view lo effectuate spi. ituallransformallon Hence, soonas theYogin goesabove ther. as Ine evel ol the spirtuai mind, he does not seek lo retarnany contnuilyof awareness he lhere;instead, passesintothe mysI c sleep ol Samadhi, slale of superconsciousness wh ch in a Ine humamrnrnd ils actually cannotremain condition in evolved awakeevenwith what has beentrmedthe " innerwaking" and nencepasses nto 'the blankincomprehension oon-recep and



tionoJslumber." as a resull,because the gull o, oblivion. And ot lhe spirjlualexpraences superconscrenr ol lhe rlance_stale lose all theirdynamjcvalu6lor the wakingconscrousness. Britthisdisability to be remedied. has Sincewe seeklo bring downlhe Superconscjent ournormalwaking into consciousnesswe mustsornhow bridge gur, heighten inlensify the and o[jr sp{,tuat awakentng inthenormally 6ven superconscienl reaches ol berng and trainour consciousness bringbackin lull the to ,,lrom dynamic memory the inner the outerwakjng.,, to ln thisconnectton leeltempted ,eprooJ tn we lo ce extenso wnarlhe Mother said In repty the stareo, lo the lrance Samadhi signol progress?, or a "Toenter inlo Saftadhi is to pass into a state ol whichno conscious memoryremains awakenirrg. on "ln ancient tirhesthjswas considereo a very hagh as . was eventhoughtthat it was the sign ot a jreai reatisa_ tion....-lhavereadin all kindsof so-caed spirituat titerratue rnarvellous thjngsaboullhis stateof tranceof Sarnadhi; il and happened I hadnever ihat hadit. I didnotknowiJit wasa sign A"9 *i"" herelarpondicherry]. ot riy one ::^it:.:1I larnved r,rs!questions Sa Aurob,ndo to was..WhalAo you tnrnr. 5amadnt. slateot lracewhichonedoesnol remembe.? oi this One enters a condition into which seems be blissrullbut lo whenone comes of il one never oll knows whathappened.,He looked at rrle,he sawwhal lmeantand loldme.,ll is unconsctousness, ...yes, enlers whatis called one into Samadhi, when onecomes outol one'sconscioqs beingandenters a pan ol one,s into being whichis completely unconscious ratherintoa domainwheri or one_has corresponding no _ consciousness one goesbeyond lhe fieldul one'sconscjousness entersinto and a i"gton ,ri"re one hasno morconsclousness. is in the impersonal One slale. Thatis why naturally one remembers nothing, oecause has one nor beenconscious anything'..... ol .So you havelh6 reply.The signof progress when there ts

is no morc unconsciousness,when you can ise to the same without enteing inlo a trance." regians At the time ot the publication thesTalk,the Molheradded ol remark: lhefollowing .Thereare peopiewho enterinto domains wheretheyhave but this conscious stateand their a consciousness, between wakeful consciousnes is a gap:lheirindividuality ihere normal th stateand th deeper state; doesnot existbetween waking pa66age lheylorgeL Theycannot ihenin the cafiy theconsciousthevhadthere theconsciousness becaLrse into here ness lhere s a gap belweenthe lwo. There is even an occult discipline in which consists building intermediary the fields, thal one so maybe able to remember things.' Buteventhisdoesnotsuffice ourgoal. lor Forwhat aim we al is nol the conscious nging back of the impressions, b the reprolrng back lo lhe wakingconsciousness, transcriptions in rnore lesspedect,whalon experiences statesal presenl or in superconscrent we wantinslead integral to al: an supramenlal lransformalion the waking ol existence itself. lhe luminous In words Sri Aurobrndo: ot "lt lhecontrol [th] of highest spiritual being to be brought is intoourwakrng theremustbe a conscious lile, heightening and wtderind inla mnensranges new being, of new consciot/sness. newpotentialitiesaciion, taking - as integral ol a up as poss - ol our pregenl ble being, consciousness, activities and a lransmulationtheminlodivine of values which would euecla Iransfiguratton human of our exislence. wherever radical For a lransition to be made, has lhere is alwaysthjstriplemovement, - ascenl, widening fieldand base,integration..." of So we see that anordertohavea divinely wakrngexrstence, ascension lhe trance-stale even and to or the oL dr^qup ot a conscrous bndge between andthe waking that slalersnolenoJghSomething muchmorerevolutinary needed: is


o ,,,|. =!

6 oc




I he Passaoe clescribes slale of consciousness lhe when one is alool frc; a thlngs even whenin lheh midstand allis lelt lo be unreal, an illusion. Therc arc then no prefercnces or desies becausethings are too unreal to desire orto prefer one But,at the sametime,oneloelsno necessity llee lo another. to kom the worldor not to do any action,because beingfrce lrcm the illusian,actionot livingin the wo d does not weighupan one, one is nol boundor involved. Lette6 on Yoga,pp.682-83) fSri Aurobindo, Whenone seesa mircgefotthefircttime,he mistakes lor it quench his thitst in it, leans a reality,and after vainly trying to lhat il is a miage. Eut whenever seessucha phenomenon he in luture,in spiteol the apparcntrcality,the idea that he sees a miage always preaonts itself to him. So is the wo d ol Maya to a Jivanmukta (the libeftted in life) (SwamiVivekananda, ected Wotks,Vol.Vl, p. 104) Co I am neitherthe doet nor the enjoyer. Action' haveI none, pasl or present or fulute. I possess ,o body nor does todylessness characteise state.Howcan I say whatis mine iry Avadhuta-G 1.66]l ita, lDattal(aya, We haveseenin lhe previous chapler theYogic why kance even it be of lhe supreme il sort,the Nirvikalpa fail Samadhi, to meetthe demands theYoga Transformalion. a matter ol of As of tactwhalwe envasage our goalis verymuchwiderin base, tor iar superior scope in andloJtier itsJlight in thanlhe attainments oflered ihe Nrrvikalpa bV In trance. Sri Aurolindo's words, own ''the realisaiion thisyogais noi lower higher oi but thanNlrvana

Chaoter-3 or N rvikapa Samadhi," we do nol wantto be satisfied For, with innerpsycho,sp rilLalexperiences alone,we seek loo the iotal ano cornptele reallsatron lhe Divinein lhe ouler;onscious, oi ness and in lhe life of acl0n. Bul rhe detractormay inlerjectat ih s po nt: .The waking realsalgon thai you are aimingal-has 1 nol beenalready pos, sessed by those who have been varously lermediivanmukta { beratedwh e slill leadinga bod|y tile').s/h/tapralta (,estab_ shed in the lrue Knowetdge Wisdom), and ativarnasrami(,beyond al standards conducl')ot brahmavid('one ol who has known and becomelhe BrahmanT - 1heimplicallon the question of )?" belnglhat there is aller al nothingesseniiaity new in lhe deal BLrt rit e ref ect on w I suffice showthat the Jivanmukti a io realrsatron realisalionS the Samegerr"e iar shori of the or of lall goal ol dividnised wakingphyslcal existence that is lhe object of our own Yoga.Alter all, who is a Jivanmukta? And what es_ sent ally characlerises comportmenl his vis-a-vts lhis world oi dynamtcmanJeslation? a suitableanswer et us lall back For uponthreec lalions,chosenai randomJromamongsta host ot olhersand culled trom ancient textsas well as lrom lhoseof our oay. F rst lrom the great lvlonislictexl yoga-Vasishtha Bamayana: "The Jivanmukia one to whose consciousness is only the und lterentialed Vyoma existsand this phenornenal world has lost ail realiiy, ahhoughhis organs may appearto tunctionas belore.... maintains bodywilh whatever e comesto it He his lit naiurally and effortlessly... is calleda Jivanmukta He who is no more awaketo the wotld oi sensesalthoughhis sense-organs appearto be awakeas ever,,.. who has transceaded ego_ He the senseanddoesnol gel involved actionis indeed Jivanmukta in a wfrelherhe is aclive or not.', ,,He NowfromSri Famakrishna: who has aiiained thisknowl,

of The Critique the J vanmukti'Solulion


wh liberated le livingIn the edge ol Brahmanis a Jivanmukta, righily underslandthat lhe Atman and the body are two body.He These two are separatelike the kerne and separatethinqs.... lhe shellof the coronulwhileits milkdriesup The Almanmoves, as it were, withinlhe body. The kernelof a green almondor lrom the shell;but whenlrreyare cannotbe separaled beleL-nut Irom lhe shell dries up and ihe kernelseparales rioethe luice ol ol Knouieldge Brahman'the'milk ol AJterihe altainment dires worldlv-mindedness uP. a Finally long excerpifrom Swami;Vivekananda: He has wantslo atiain;atd whichthe Advailist ihe perfection reached fall veil at thatmament...Ihe of ignorance awayirom him'and he Even in this liie, he wil leel thal he rs will teel his own nature. For a dme,as it were,ihe wholeoJthis one with lhe universe. whal for wiil ohenomenalworld disappear him,and he wrllrealLse he is- But so long as lhe Karna ol this body remains he wtll and yet lhe This siate,when the veil has vanished have 1o/jve. ca Jlvan ns tor some tlme, is what the Vedantist bodv rema li a man is deludedby a mirageior mukli,the livingfreedom. il sometime ano one daYthe miragedisappears_iicomesback again nexl day or ai some futurelime, he will nat be deluded Belore the mirageiirst broke,the man could not dlsiinguish belweenthe realilyand the deception But when lt has once broken, longas he has organsand eyesto work with' he will as on se lhe image,butwill no morebe deludedThal tinedislinct and the he and between actualworld the mirage, hascaught, the has lattercannoldeludehim any more.So when the Vedanllst for the wholeworldhasvanished him. /1 realised own naiure, his wilt come back again, bul no mare the same wo d. purpoding characiefise stathe to The abovethreeexcerpts prima facie tus oi a Jivanmukla make il abundantlyclear Ihal under Jivanmukti the specific sense in whichil is generally in slood can be" by no meansmeasureup lo our idealof the di_ vinelvdvnamictransformation the wholeol our wakingexist of

of The Cfltrque lhe J,vanmukh_Solulion ence. But belore we pass the finatjudgmentjt would be bellef lor us lo examine,in howeverbriel a manner,some ol lhe princioal lrails ol the Jivanmukti-realisation. Jivanmuktiand Videhaml,k i Jivanmuktiis neverconsidered lo be ihe goal in itselt;it is, so to say,no more lhan a slopgap arrangemenl,waysideinn, - the ultimategoal, the gaalpat exceL /erce, being always v/itehamuktlorthe liberationthat is attained with the dissolutionol the body.But this vjdehamuktiot disembodied liberation"is sorJghttobe eflected in two stages: the lirst slage, the penullimateatlainmenl as il were, is reached when throughthe gainingof ihe kue Knowledgeol Realityof one,sown beingas wellas ol lhe world-existence, propensitv futLlre the to brths In lhts phenomenal untverse al(ogether ts srampedoul; the secondand linal stagebeingthe dropping oll of the current body{ormation and the afiainmentto the stalus ol videhamukti_ Jivanmukti represents the status ol thal seeker who has at_ ready attainedSettKnowledge but is still leadingthe presenl bodilylifeawaiting day whenthis willceasetor goodand he the will become "liberatedjn bodylessness,' fyldehamukta) h follows thenihal the Jivanrnuktistatus the morevatued is the moreil approaches characterof lhe Videharnukti evenwhile the Siddha is sti'l is his body.So lhe divine transtormationol the bodrly exislence has here no relevance al all. As a mater ol lacl, lhe famous VidyaranyaMuni, one of the reputedaulhors of the l\ronislic Work Panchadashtwrote aJulllrealiseonJivanmukt , calledJivanmukti Viveka, only to proveat the end thal after all Videhamukti the sum mun bonum and Jivanmukti a is is slep towardsthissupremegoal. But il this so, lhe queslion arises: why, then, even after the allarnment Sell-Realisalion. of shoutd the Siddhaagreeat all to remarnlor some time in lhe body in the Jivanmukti-status and n0t pass immediately and direc y into VrdehamLrkti, when lhe lalteris the realobjeciive soughlalter?The answerthat is oenerallyolle'eo is in te.msof the Theoryof Karmawhrchwe ;ave


Karmas(lhal is l. in discussed Chapter SincePrarabdha already to say, lhose that have started bearing lheir rrujts) have pro' ducedour presentbody and sincethesecannotbe in kuciitied even on the al_ by exceptthroughtheirexhaustion sufferance, lo body may continue remainviable lhe ta nmenlol liberation, are Whenthe Prarabdhas lor sometime,bul lor sometime only. disintegrates ihe Jivanmukir and over,the body automatically stalusgives placeto Videhamukti. realisation appearsalmosias lhe vrrThus lhe Jivanmukti lhe waking physicalexistenceIn lhrs lue ol a necessilyand in phenomenal cannolbe considered ihis viewto be a universe worthyol spiritualisalion I eld specially the thalwe havemadeabove, In ordeflo substantiale points we adduce below a lew observalionsdrawn lrom dillerenl _...Alter lhe in that slate described lhe scrrplures, realising de_ sarnlses the Self in all beingsand in that consciousness voles h mself lo service, so thal any Karma that was yel lell lo be warked oul thought the body may exhausf /lse/i ll rs lhis ol by statewhich has beendescfibed the authors the Shaslras living'." (scriplures) Jivanmukti,'Freedom while as (llalicsours) Works, Vol.Vll pp ll2' Complete {SwamiVivekdnanda, 113). A Devolee:Doeslhe body remainevenaiterthe realizalion o'God? withsomeso lhal lhey may worK Masler:'The bodysurvives oi Ol out lheirPrarabdha Karmaor worklor the weltare others.... course,he ..escapesfuture births which would otherwisebe necessary reapng lhe results his pasl Karma.His presenl ol ior body remains is aliveas long as its momenlum not exhausted; but luture blrlhs are no longerpossible. The wheelmoves so



39 noi, in "When takes hisabode it, hegrieves butwhen he up ("anusheya na is set freelrom it, thatis his deliverance"l he panisad, V.l.) vimucyate" : Katha-U sacativimuktasca has in reality "TheJivanmukia, evenwhilehe is slillalive, :Shankat). asairatvan siddham" rc bodyalAll"\"jivato'pi body indeed is atthefalloflhe "Theliberailcn onegains thai be any for thlsliberation cannot negatived more" one, the highest ("pindapArcnaya muktih 6a muktina lu hanyate": isad, Yogasikhopan 1.163) ''At sell merges his supreme in Jheiall oi his bodytheYogi in justas the space inside earthenpoi vanishes the an be ng, (ghate and gone" great-cosmic whenthe pol is broken Space, talha yogi bhinneghaEkesa, ekaseliyateyathe,dehebhAve i6, Dallateya,Avadhuta'G 1.69\ svat upepatametnani": to there "Once attains toVidehamukti, is no morereturn one kaivalyam phenomenalwo(ld" \"punarevrtlirchitam ih s : i @tipadyale" Shankaecha rya, Vekyawtti). (tesem punatawftih": na "There morecoming backforthem" is Bthad Upanisad, 6.2.15). atanyaka " N o m o r e w h e e l i n gn t h i s h u m a nw h i r l p o o l( " i r r a m i " Upanisad,8.15). manavamavartam nevartante"C endogya I to ll is clearirom what goes beforelhat, contrary olr own ideal atltude thebody andphysical existence, Jivanmukti th to realisation does not altach much impoftance any terrestrial to as such;it onlytolerates bodily so longas il hasio be life lhe borne the andthuslries,if we maysayso,make beslol a bad bargain. how Butwhalever the nature the ideal be ol sought, doesa Jlvanmukta his waking stateis concerned? behave far as so Does dynarric salisly crilerion a divinely purposive his the ol life andactvephys exislence? Heretoothe answeris unambigan ical

long as the impulsethal has set t tn molion lasts.Then tt comes (talics urs) o (The Gaspelof SriRanakrishna,p.431 "The ullirnate liberation ffromthe cha]nof birthslis attarned w th the dawning ihe Knowledge of itsetl.l'('tiaar asamakabmutah k a i v a l y a m y e t i " r S h e s h a c h a r y a , P a r a m e r t h a s e r aa r Aryapafrcasili,Sl). " O n c e a J v a n m u k t a , n e h a s n o r n o r ef u t u r e b i r t h s , o 'bhhyajanmavinirmuktamjivanmuktasya l tanmanah : yogayesrsthaUpashama-Prakarana, 18). 90. has Knowledge...reaches goal whence he is that naI bam again"('yastu talpadamepno[i tu vasmrd bhRyo jeyate"r no Katha-Upanisad, ///.8). 'Even afteratlaining the stalusi Jivanmukia, conlinto one !es for a whie to remain in his body, merelyloexhauslthe mementum ihe Prarabdha" ol ('prerabdhakarmavegeraiivanmukto yadii bhavet. Kahcil kalamathetabd ha ka rm av and h asy a Shankaracharya,Vekyavrtti, 52). has to wait ffor h]s Videhamuktil only so long as he is not released trornhis body.A1the fall ofthe body he atiainsto the supreme status" ("tasya Evadeva clram yevanna yimakse aiha sampatsye":ChSrdagya-Upanisad, 14.2) 6. "Oncethe Prarabdhas expenenced are and gone ihrough, one acquiresthe supremeliberation'(bhogera tvitareksapayitve rarrpadydte: Vva.a,B2hmasnlra,4 1 19 . ''Oncethe bodygels consumed byTime,the Knowerleaves h i s s t a t u s o l J i v a n m u k t i a n d e n ne r s h e s t a l e o fi d e h a m u k t ' il tol V ljivanmuktapadam tyaktva svadehe kalasetkrte, vrsaiyadehamuktalvam": Yoga-VAslstha, I 14 ) ll. 'tle 'He that



'JivanmuKi-Solution The Critioue ol the


goalweenJivanmuktaand DynamicWaking the State:The is, visagefor our sadhana as we haveslressed manytimes so ignorant beiore, "notonlyto riseoul o, the ordinary is world' consciousness lhe divin into consciousness, lo bringlhe but powerol that divineconsciousness supramental downinlo lhe ignoranca mind, andbody, lranslorm lif of to them, manilest to lhe Divinehereand creata divinelite in Matter." is ihus allt mostanaxiomatic truthlhatYoga byworksshould Jorm indisan Densable of our sadhana an essential oart and element our ot realisation we wouldseeklo transplantthe iJ fullness the spirii ol in ihefield lifeandaclion., theJivanmukla ol But doesnotin the leastmanifest divine this dvnamis thusdoesnot measure and upto ourideal. As a matter lact he is altogether of indifferenl aclion lo kutvatah). although For, apparently in his body, sljll the \kurvato' Jivanmukia does not reallyparticipate any of iis workings. in Theworld appars still beforo him,buthe is no longer deceived by whalhe would its mry6.Indoed looksuponh s body call he "as if a corpseseparated fromhis Sell"('syavapuh kunapamiva drsyateyatasladvapu hvasta : Paramachmsa-Upanisad rapad m" ). The result that a Jivanmukta indilJereni his bodlly is is lo lile. Jusias a person inloxicaled liquor altogelher wilh is obliviousol theabsence olhelwise hisdress, tslheJivanm!ka or of so otlhe staltand location hisephemeral ol body. Whether body the remains stalionary a place qetsdisplaced al or lrom lhereor even sturnbles downis equal him." to Also, "lheBrahmavid does never remember body. continus be maintained the his ll lo by Lile brcalh,pfina-veyu,just as a trarned horsegoeson pulling thecaflas evereven when lhedriver withdrawnthisatienhas a lron.' Thusthebodily mechanisma Jivanmukta indeed ol may coniinue iunction 1o because thegalhered oi force Prakriti he ol and may apparently walk and speakand behaveas belore,but all thisis likean emplymachine no waysupported any par in by

spiritwilnesseslhese The consciousness. liberatd ticipating cesya (Seksyaham) nottakepartthem("ksiyante butdoes action lV45).There is no senseof per' Yoga-sikhoparisa4 karmeni: sonalaclion lno ku e napi kaaye) hencelor the Jivanmukta there is no bondageor responsibility sa mudhavallipyate; lna mamekatturaleqasYa). As a matlerof facl, it is ihe organso, senseand actionlhal ol maintenance for automalicallY aclive the conlinued become lhe body (cak suredindriyamsvalah pavatlate vahihsva he ) "in ol living allthewhile communaon himseif andtheJivanmukla eye 10 soems theoulward to be withtheTranscendent" oneness he as acting a somanbulist ). \suptabuddhavalFot''although has hasears,he actsas he allhough he eyes, actsas lhe eyeless; 'rF ea4ess: he he allhough has sDeech, aclsas lhe speech he less;and although has lile,he actsas the lileless."' purposive in action Thustherecannot any dynamically be if at Jivanmukta. pariicipates, all,onlyin simple He thelifeol a innocuous aclionmeanlsolelylor the upkeepof lhe body byhis seiam karma), in thosewhichareoccasioned or lkevalam prevlous ('lrurvacerakamegabm ecerumecannti" Samskaras ) aciions which are signilicant or at the moslin lhoseapparently initiation butonly through nollhrough personal his broughl about kutu (yathepreptam hikarlyavyam, theagency the Prarabdha of yathegahm). keryam shows unmistakably Jivanmukti lhat analysis Theloregoing to as traditionallv conceived cannot all be equated ourideal. at lrom lhis status radically dillerent Whatwe aim at is somelhing ol rnner liberation,

.9 E

f G


;o ()F

I havemet Spiritwith spitit,Seffwithself, BUII havelovedtoo the body ol my god, (Sri Aurobindo, Savltfi,BookX, CantolV p. 649) Natureshallliveto manildst secrctGod, The Spititsha lake up lhe hunan pla,, This earthly hfo becomelif6 divine (ibld,Book Canro p. 711) Xl, I, Elernal statusand etenal dynamb dt6 both true of the Bealtty which it9elf aurpassesboth status and dynamis; the immobileand the mobileBrahman both;thesameRealitv arc (SirAufobindo, Lile Divine, p.459) The possess consciouslythe activeBnhmanwithau! losingpossessionot the silent Se , Wehavea presetye the innet silence, tranquility,passivity as a foundation:but in place of an alool indilfercnce tha ti/orks th6actjveBrahman to ol we have ta arrive at an equal and ifipattial delightin them:in place ot a rclusaltoparticipate oul heedom le6t andpeacebe lost we navelo arriveat a conscious possession theacliveBahman ol whase of existence jay does not abrcgateHi6peace,not His ladship al atl workingsimpah Hiecatm lrcedom in the midst of p.389). The ol fSriAurobindo, Synthesis Yoga, Thediscussion lhepreceding in chapter mad point has the c earthalsince ourYoga aimsat the realisation the Divine ol in Iheouter consciousness lileas wellas in theinner and one, the Jlvanmukhwith his aiool inditferonco or al the best a beto nevolent lolerance lhe dynamic r,vaking lor oxistence never can oeouf ideal_


8ut what are atier all the essenijalditficulties spirilual ot realisalion lhe grossphysical plan? on Whyis the liie ol action andcreation viewed withso muchmisgiving mostol the kadtby lional. spirilual seekers? Whatmakes pre6enl our worldly exist, ence apparently incorrigibleitsnature to induce so in as evenSrl Krishna, propounderofthe the gospelof dlvine actton, almost to admitaltheendthatloshunthistransientand unhappyworld in perhaps after allthebestpossible solution? And what about that wonderfuldynamicsain Swami Vivekananda? he notat the snd givethe simileof a god,s Did tail In orderto represent impossibilily transformation? tho of Alas, slraighlen as muchas you like,but release andthe momeni il i! lbe after, wretched thing becomes curled again! looks lt almost an ironyof s'tuation personality that this dynarhic who did not flinchlo declarein the earlierpart ol his Yogiclite: "l havelost all wish lor my salvation, may I be born again and againand suffers thousands miserjes thal I maywor of so shiptheonlyGodthatexists, onlycod I betieve lhe sumth6 in, total allsouls,-and ol above myGodthewicked, cod ihe all, my miserable, Godthe poorof all races, all pecies the my of is specialobiet0f my worship." -should just two yearsbefore almostabdicate and confess his passing away: "l havebundled thing my andam waiting thegreat of deliv"Shiva,O Shiva,cafiy my boatto the othershore/ "AJler I am onlythe boy who usedio lislenwith rapt all, wonclermentthewonderlul to words Ramakrishna of under the Eanyan Dakshineswar. js mylrue nature:works acat That and goodand so forthareall superimpositions. I tivities, doing Now again hsarhisvoice: same voice the old thrilling soul. my Bonds are breaking-love dying,workbecoming tasteless- glamour lhe

s ofi life.Only the voiceol the [/aster is calling. | come Lord, I come.'Let the dead bury the dead,followthou me.'''lcome, l.iy be oved Lord, i come. .Yes,I come.Nirvana beforeme:I leelri at times-the same is a oceanof peace,withoula ripple, brealh..inllnite "The sweetesl moments of my life have been when I was dtillin$ I am difling agan-with the bright warm sun ahead and is in around-and ihe heat everything so massesoi vegetation _ in the warm still,so still,so calm-andlam driltinglanguidly heart ol the tivetl I dare not make a splash with my hands or feet-fat fear ol breaking the maryilous stillness,still ness ihal makes you Je6l sure it is an //usion, "Behindmy work was ambilion,behindmy love was person' alny, behind my putky was lear, behind my guidance the thirst and I dritl.I comel Molher,I forpowel/Now theyare vanishing, Thou takest comel In Thy warm bosom,floatingwheresoever I in the voiceless, the skange,inlohe wonder,and,comein me, a speclalor, no mote an actor.' elernents Arelhen actionsand creations such greatbinding as to be obligatorily oul al lhe end? Did not Sri Ramakrishna left give the image ol a pregnant dimin_ woman whose work-load ishesday by day? seekerin guard_ Bul the difficulty experienced a spiritual by ingthe peaceof the silenlSelfwhileengaged dynamics in activ_ ily is more incidenlal lhen intrinsic. arises oul of the menlal lt being's exclusive on concentration ils "planeol pule exislence in which consciousness at rest in passivilyand delight oJ is exrsienceal rest in peace ol existence."Because of lhis exclLr siveness, when the Mind seeksat timesto ally itselfto aclion, Ln absence adequate the inlo preparation plunges headlong il of Ine old obscuringmovemantof lotce insteadol exercisrng a conscious masleryover it,




It is because thisignorant of relapse brought aboutby the playihal lhe menlal dynamic Purusha so ready condemn is to all action and dynamism,. ils judgment, dynamism To all must be loreign ihe supreme to nalure whoseonlytrue otlheAbsolute and wholebringmuslbe a statussilentand immulable, fealureess and quiescenl. Thuscancelling dynamis Brahman, the of lhe Mindgoeson to asserl thallhissupreme Reality at all can be rea sed onlylhrough consciousness hasitselllalten a thal nonaclive silenl and and, "liberalion dostroy whatis more, musl all possibility mental bodily ot or living and annihiate lndithe vidual exrstence everin an impersonal for infinity." Butwe shallpresently that noneof the foregoing see assumplions absolulely is valid. a matter facl,all the ditfiAs of cullydisappears alongwiththe plane pureexistence if ot one can embrace planeol conscious lhe forceof exjslence, Chit the Tapas,of Sachchidananda. which"consciousness aclive in is as powerand wjll and delightis activeas joy ol exislence." Andlhis is possible. Eecause Brahman ilseltis integral, ll hasan acliveaspectas wellasaslaticone and bothare equally r e a l .T h e i n t e g r a r e a l i s a t i od e m a n d s h e r e a l i s a t i oo f l n t n Sachchldananda rnbothHisaspects, theaspecl whichH6 in ln is 'sovereign, lordot things, free, acting of an inalienable out pouring calm rlseltoul in inJinite actionand qualily ol an oul eternal seitconcenlration, one supreme the Person holding in himself lhisplayol personalily a vastequal all in impersonatity, possessing infinile phenomenon the universe lhe oi wilhoul atlachmenl wilhoul but any inseparable aloolness, a divine wilh mastery an innumerable and radialion his eternal of luminous sejf-delightas a manilestation whichhe holds,but by whichhe is notheld, which governslreely by which he and therelore is he -as nol bound." wellas in that in whichHe is "sjlenlpassive qui-.lisijc, absorbed, seif self-sufticient,, impersonal, without playof qualities,lurned lromlhe infinile phenomenon away ol theuniverse viewing wiihindillerence without or partici it and

palron. as ol We havesaidlhaltheelernalstalus being wellas lhe Flealily ol movemenl beingare bothrealol the supreme eternal question can lhese two stalusesco-erisl?Are arises: 8ut lhe one Or, lhese simultaneouslyrcalisable?rather, haslo withdraw so so the to in lromoneol lheslaluses order realise olher' much al oneconcenltales lhe on on lhal depending theslalus which ol to ol thesemayappear be lhe inerlia repose one momenl. repeiilion movement ot of the while olher inertia mechanical the sla' lhal atlirms the elernal realisalion spirilLlal An rntegral are dvnamis notonlybolh/ealbutlheyare lus andlhe eternal 'The and also simullaneous, statusadmitsol actionol dynamis "all the not abrogate status.'Thus lhai is in he the actiondoes is the the kinesas, movemenl, action, creation, theBrahman; lhe is of is the becomanga movement thebeing;Time a manilesta one one Consciousness All lion ot the Elernal. is one Being' il and evenin inlinitemultiplicily, thereis no needlo basect Inlo May-' Realily unrealcosmic and transcendent ol an opposition assededas a is Bul the dif{iculty that il is oftentrenchantly leaiureless is that experience the Reality indd lactol sDirituat aboul is ol and andimmutablo lhe universe mani{eslationbroughl this Allhough ol the l\,4aya'Power Suprome by the illlsionary Truthpos' Power lhe absolule onlvactive lhal assertion the and'dissolving' and illusion lalsehood is sesses lhatof creating is the lhemin lurn lacksin vraisimilitude, rejoinder madeihat or of thisis nol a question vraisemblanceno,nor is il an issue or validalion otherwrse' lhat can be seitledby meansot logical nollo he ol myslery Maya(aniNacaniye) lor this is the inetlable or comprehended reason mind. by the For, inded. whalever merlts is Andlhisposilion sound philosophl' points, a parlicular oi ordemerits, slrong weak or the lo lhal experience il seks repre_ cal iormulalion. spiritual the validandcanonlybe integrated senlremains ilselieiernally in



or Status Dynamis The lssue: tram lrto t beganto disappear a greaterSuperconsciousness and itself realisation to added realisalion But above. meanwhile At experience an earlystagette withthisoriginal fusedltself wotldgaveplaceto onein whichillusion of aspect an ittusionary Divine wilh is onlya smallsu{acephenomenon an immense it above andan Realily Divine il behind anda supreme Realitv thai in Reality the heartof everything hadseemed Divine lntense And or shape shadow. thlswasno /eim_ a onlV cinematic a1lrrst exorfalltromsupreme no in Drisanmenl the sense, dininution andwidening heighlening as perience,camralher a constanl it nol oi the Truthiil was the Spirilthat saw objects, lne senses' al' remained in keedom InJinity the Silence,lhe andthePeace, ln incidenl onlyas a continuous the wavs wlth wold or allworlds oi eternitY lhe Divine lhetlmeless ''..Nrrvana my liberated oLl turned Io be consciousness n a of the beginning my realisation, fist step towardsthe com' possible even a or ptetething,noi the sole irue attainment cuiminat finale." ng the is the is Theworld thusreal, Becoming as realas Be ng' tacl a is as ol lhe dynamls Sachchidananda rnuch spiritLlal as all doesnolcontain only Indeed, Divine the slatus. Hislmmobile He is theoneSelloJall' safconsciousness. n'a transcendent In nol saryam, merely He vabheantaretma. is Ihe All,vesudeva "All andforms names in the'unioue essence'bul the manifold of existence alllhalexisis Iis] vital, bodily thesoul-life, mental, who is the ol movemenl activity lhe Being and one ndivisible one one "All same ever." is oneBeing, consciousness, even for in inlinite mulliDlicilv,." oi in cannot theverynature lhings and Thusaction creation oJ be lncompaiible the pedectand total realisalion the Su_ wilh go lo preme; really cannot counier ihe allainliving dynamic a thatisin kinesis' lor of mentoi the supreme status being; "all is lhe movement.lhe the aclion, creation Brahman."

in thecompass another of expe encemuchmorewideandmuch morelofty. as SriAurobindo so forcelully For, pointed 'a has out, single decisive spiritLral experience undoa whole may edilice of reasoning conclusions and erecled thelogical by intelligence." So,instead engaging sterileintellectuaiebates, this ol in d in matterol lhe realily orotheMiseot the dynamis theAbsolute, of let us listen SriAurobindo to describing ownpersonalspirhis lualreal;sation: "Thesolulion the malter of mustrest not uponlogic,but upon growing, heightening, a ever widening spiritual experiencean experience whichmustof course include havepassed or through of Niruana Maya,othewigeit wauld be comthat nad not plete and wauldhave no decisive value. "Nowto reachNirvana wasthefirst radicalresultol my own Yoga. lhrewme suddenly a condition lt into above andwithout through, unslained anymentalor by vitalmovement; thefe was na ego,no real wo d- onlywhenone lookedthrough immolhe brle perceived boreupon sheer senses, something or ils silence a worldol emptyforms,materialised shadows,lithouttruesubslance-Therewas no One or manyeven,only just absolutely Thal,Iealureless, relationless, sheer, indescribable. unthinkable. yet absolute, supremely andsolelyrealfhis was no mentai teal realisalion something nor glimpsed somewhere above,_no abstracl,on,-it posilive, onlyposjtive was the reallty,alihough not physical a spalral wofldpervading, occupying rather or llooding and drowning semblance a physical lhis ol wortd, leaving no roomor space any reality itsell, tor but allowing nothing to else seemat all actual, positive substantial... it [lheexper! or What peace, stupendous encelbrought was an inexpressible a Si_ ence, infinity release freedom.lived thatNirvana an oi and I in dayandnight before began admit it to other things itsell into or modily ilself all,andthejnner al heart experience. of a constant memory it anditspower returnremained of to until in theend


Granled Brahman twoaspecls that has equally real, equally lrue: anaclive as wellas a passive Granted there one one, that jusljJication lhe two aspecls is amplelheoreilcal why can be question simuitaneously embraced realised. slillthe and Bul remains: Whyis il lhat "1r, expeiencewe lind thal...ilis, normally, a qubscence brings lhe stable lhat in realisation the eternal ol and the rnliniter is in silence quietude we leel most it or thal iirmly Something is behind world ihe that the shown us bVour to mind andsenss.?" ll isihusreasonedihat, nprucllceif intheory, not allaction, perception all creal alldelermining on, must n theirverynatufe mit andobscure stable lhe realisalion, hence and thesehave to diminish disappearwe would and if seekto enler rndivisthe ibleconsciousnessthe Real. oi Heretoo,as wellshallpresently the reasoning falla, see, s cious. Fcr it is not dynamism sLrch bindsand invotves as that the soulof lhe seeker; is lhe intrinsic it incapacity our rnindol conscrounsess is al the rootof lhe trouble. that


: its The mind-Consciousness and achievements Failures

A bldck veil has been lifted; we have seen ot The mighty shadou'| ths omniscientLord; But who has lifted up the veil ol light And who has seen the body ol the King? (SriAurobindo, Saviti Eooklll, Cantoll. p. 311) It is ce ain lhat you won'tbe able lo knowthe Atman through As haveto go beyondthemind. lhercis no tnstru' lhe mind.You mind-foronlythe Atmanexiststherclhetethe menlbeyondthe ol becomeslhe same as the instrument obiectof knowledge 'Viineadmere knowledge....ltis thereforethat the Shruti says, kena vijeniyetlhoughwhal are you to knowlhe ElrnalSubiect? (swamiVivekananda, Compldte Wo*s, vol.vll, p.142) be' lf the Mind6werethe lastwordand therewerenothing yond it except the purc Sphit, I wouldnot be avetse lo accephng il [Mayavad wilh its sole strcss on Nivana] as the only way out.. But my experienceis thal therc is somethingbeyondmind; is Mind is not the lasl t/od hele ol the Spirit...There a Trulh but Consciousness, staticonly and sell-introspective, also nol dynamic and creative... (SriAurobino, Himsel,P.1a3) On we haveseen thai for the seekerof the lnlegralYogalhe quiescenl realisationlhe'passive seltof 8lahman', thepure of be than lhe existence cannol more independentaliworld-play, ol in necessarvJirst an restwith ullerwilhdrawal basis.We cannol We consciousness ihe univetsal manileslation. muslinlrom sleadreturn and of and uponlhe world action creation seeklo


: The mind-Consciousness

repossess remould mind,lifeand bodywiththe lumiand our nousdynamis the'active Brahman'and identify ourselves, ot freeiyand in the infinite sel'-delight lhe Being, ol withall the oulpouringol Force, Chil-Tapas, ofConsciousness itscreative and inTime andin SpaceBut lhe goalis easierstatedthan realised. For,almoston generally universal evidence, greatstressol dynamism any obscureslhe innervision, bringsin a relalive lossof the Peace and Sllence the soul,and olherwise ol lndsto lower status the ol spiritual atlainmnl. But his disabiliiy to arisesfrom the lacl that attempls possessthe active haveso lar beenmadeexclusivelv Brahman lhoughlhe I\rind-consciousness. AndsinceI\,4ind, greatdiihe vider, suflers fromsomeintrinsic iffemediable and limitaiion lhese allemplshavebeenlore doomed lailure. to Bul thequestion be raised: in may sinceMind, lhe aclually possible evolved existence, the highest is inslrumeni available power andsince there noolherstillhigher is organised through which realise Sellor Brahman to oossess to lhe or divinelv lhe world, it not almosl is axiomatic lhe transformationour thal oi waking dynamic existence we envisage oursadhana an as in is proposition? impossible if is liberation Of course, lhe above assumplion correct,lhe and transformalion our embodied of exislence wouldbe impossiblenereuponea h, andinstead running of afietlhe jgnisfatuus pass ilwould moresensibleto awayinloSuperconscienl be and notto seekto bring down Superconscient thetield our lhe into of wakrng conscrousness, As a matler fact,thishasbeenso far ihe general trend. of For"intheordinary onlynecessary recognise is lo lwo planes ourconsciousness, spiritualand the malerialised menot the belween lhesetow viewsthem 1a1; purereason standing vrorld, bolh,culs lhrough illusions lhe phenomenal lhe ol explane, the mental seestherealjly thespir' oi ceeds malerialised

Purusha unilyingilsell ilual;and then lhe !,rillol lhe individual poiseknow;edge rieclslhe lowerand drawsbackto with thrs plane, dwells ther6, lossmindand body, sheds lh6 supreme ilselfin the supreme Purusha, delivis litetromil andmerges exaslence." eredkom individual Bui a deeperandhigher spiritual exploralion reveals lacl the is thallhe aboveassumption notcorfeclaftrall.Mindis notlhe principle cosmicetistence,wilh onlythe pure Spiril. highest ol Absolut beyond ilslf.As a matterottacl,there lhe lmprsonal principls transcending normal is a hierarchy superior ol lar the mind consciousness consequnlly present and al superconscienl lo il. A supreme Trulh-Consciousness, Rita-Chit, whichSri Aurobindo lermsas Supermind, the series and this is a lops Power rnerely not staticandintrospeclive supremely but dynarnic posandcrealive. is lhis Sup6.mind mustb consciously lt that sessed into out ea h-nature we would il and macle descend to havea translormed wakingexistence. Otherwise staticrleas remains solepossibilily lhe befor spirilual lhe seeker. l.Jnto(unately, knowledge the exislence thes6 lhe ol ot planes ourbeing been supernal ol has losl almosi to thespiritual memory lhe racewithall the adverseconsequences ol atlendanlupon ancint "inlheUpanishad (usually il.In lore. theTaillirya) thereare someindications lhesehigherplanesand lheir naof Iureandlhe possability gathering thewholeconsciousness ol up and risingintolhem-Bul thiswaslorgotlen afterwards peoand plespoke ol theBuddhias higheslthing thePurusha only the with or Se f jusl above, therewas no clearideaol lhese planes. but Now, longas lhesehigher planes lhe menlle so spirilual of being planeol Supermind not consciously and linally the are possessed and madeactiveand organised the norhal in conscrousnesstheembodi6d ol beino, longas thespiritualised so firind approaches Suprm the through direclly and notpassing thisTruth-Consciousness,supramonlal is bound lhe Gnosis, one lo expel|ence dilriculties fromth pointot viewol the realisation


: The m nd-Consciousness Buddhists,theTaooromnrpresenlard tr e _ hr src r!4adhyamrka Nihilby lhe Chinese, and as the indetinable and transcendenl nellab e Permanenl by the [,,lahayanists. llany Christiian mystics too, notably Sl. John ol lhe Cross wrth his doctrine of noche obscure, speak ol a complete igno, ' through whichthe spirtualsied lvlind rance, a divineDarkness' has to pass belore one can expect to attain lo the supreme And it s becauseof this incompalibility mindexperience. of Lvith ol consciousness the experience lhe Absolule thatso many svstemsof sprritual discipline have come to condemnthe cosp ay.As a matterot Jact. is this very incompatibility is mic il thal at th basis ol the lllusionist that "lakes such firm hold oi the humanm nd in ils highesloverleaping itsell." o{ li wlthoulany rnlermediale transilions, withoulawakening in the s!pernalreaches ourexistence, whichwe havealready of of spoken, Mindkies lo lake a short-cut the and passsuddenlV the 'gaies of the Transcendenf wherestands'themere and perlect Sprnt lhe inactive Brahman, transcendent the Silence, sense a ol utterunreality and illusory character all cosmicexislence o{ sezes il n a mosl convincing and oveRhelmingexperience. 'The unverseand all that is...appears(lthen] the mind as a to 0'au1 1 o'e Lnsubstantial than any dreamever seen or tmaglred. so tfLal even the worddreamseemsloo oositrve thinosto a expressts entireunrealiiyl' Bul h s universal lllusionism not a necessaryconcomitant is oi the supremespiritual experience. insleadol the mind'sabrupt ll Sa.nadhi-plunge the mysic sleep slate ol susuptithat is into now superconscient therefore and inaccessible il, one suclo ceeos n acquiring spirilualwaketulness ihe supernalstales in nlervenng betweenlhe lrind and the Spirit, one does not pass Inroughlhe perception an illusionary oJ Maya, bui ratherhas lhe experience ihe passage of fromMindto whatis beyondii so Inal our menlalslructLlre lhe universe of ceasesto be validand anotherreahlyoi 11 substituted the rgnorant is for mentalknowf

realioi ourgoal, bothin themind's ascent in itsattempted and Brahman. salion theaclive of Lel us havea bird's-eye view of sorneol the more salient dilliculties encounlered at the sametime,ot the achieveand, menls Mindas wellasof its failures. of TheAscentand lllusoiness.lJMindis takenlo be the highprinciple, is estpossible cosmic since Absolute notseizable lhe by lhe mind-consciousness, the seeker lhe lraditionalYogas of lriesto getaway fromthemorlalrailingsmind thesuper ol into conscient In{inite, shedding its activities formalions, by all flnd 'engulfingis in ihe Unmanitest,' making biank it andfinally ii a of Darcm awaktam. Inihis progressive wilhdrawal lrommind-consciounsess, the 'pure, slill, self' the sadhakcomesto realisethe Sad-Atman, peaceful, active, undisturbed awareexistence, undivided, one by the actionot lhe world." Although Sad-Atman theunique this is Origin Suslainer and beingitselfpassive, the oJeveMhing,saryari hyetadb@hma, onlyrelation appears havewiththrsworld manileslation it lo of n is lhat ot'a disinlerested Witness at all involved or alnot lected eventouched anyol its activilies. by Whenonepushes larther staleof conscious_ess lhis one 'an comslo realase alooland transcendent Exislence' Feal appearing haveno conneciion commerce all w th lhe to or at world-existence. When mental lo it the being seeks go stillbeyond, negales yet {urlherand arrivesal an Asal "a Voidof everything thal is peace here, Void unnameabl andextlnction all,evenol ol a ol whichis the impersonal basisol lhe Sal,evenof that Existent personality." thisAsatarrived by ll is individual universal or at of and theabsolute annulmnt mind-existence world-exrstence, or variously lermed T!riya featureless relaas and thathasbeen by the monistic Vedantins, Shunyarn the by tion lessAbsolute


: The mind-Consciousness

to il to edge.In lhis transilion is possible be arvake al lhe slates experelnce to and and unilied togelhefin a ha.monised of being Then we experience,as Sri see the Realityevery where."'z pul, that it is not an unrealor real' has so beaulilully Aurobindo but Realily, a on lhal is reposing alranscendent unrealuniverse and lran_ reposing a Realilyal once universal on real universe or scendenl absolule. For even beyond the avyaktam,the Unmanitest,beyond lhe divine Darkness,tamasahparcstat, is lhe SupremeOne Exist ence, ekam advaitam, the Para Purusha who holds in His vasl as Inlegra'Realrty lrulh ol cosmic consciousness well as lhe He Nirvana o, world_consciousness. is beyond the lhal of the duality and the non-dualily,paratahpanh and,s aclityavana tn conlrasl to ttie darkness o{ the Unmanitest. He is ihe light of lighls, jyotisam jyotih, and lies in a supreme golden sheath. hiranmaveparc kose.lndeed,"the sun in theYoga is the symbo is and the supermind the tirst power ol the oJ the slrpermind wherethe expenthe boader Suorerne whichone meelsacross condivine andthe unmodified mindceases enceol spiritualised Para sciousnessbeginsthe domain ol the supreme Naiure. Prakrlr. h is lhal Light of which the Vedic mystics got a glimpse ol darkness lhe Christian of and it is lhe opposite the interuening is all light and no darknessTo the mysiics,Ior the supermind mind the Supreme is avyaktatparcm avyaktam' bul il we follow the line leading to the supermind,it is an increasingaffimation ralher lhan an incrcasing negationthrcugh whichwe mave lhal We have so iar dwell upon lhe disabrhtres I;e m'no lo way ol ascensLon lhe sum_ sullersirom on its consclousness ousness or Tils o' spirlual consciousness ralher superco_sc that vitiateits at' Now lel us turn oLlrgaze on the limitations when rl ot at complelepossession the active Brahman, lempl and embracelhe lile oi action seeks10 returnJromthe summil The tncomplete possessionof the aclive Brahman: llls al

consciousness, at ils waking even co!rsetruelhat our normal can awareof Brahman moments, become lhrougha process ol But inwardconcentration. the pointto noteis that il is onlyihe aspeclof Brahman is thusapprehended, lhal slaleand passive nol its activeainddynamicside. Theresultis lhat intoreturnuponworld-extslence nental the Iinds a wall ot non-communication being between passive the Brahman all dynamic andtheactive and activity appears its lo consciousnss as a hallucinationa st lledandinaclrve eilhet or dream,or like a puppetshou or evenas a purelyrnechanical actionbroLight aboutby th8 playol Prakriti withoulany activee partiiicpation oi Purusha.The incommunicabilily maysometimes be so slrong, gulfseparating inner the the consciousness and lhe dynamic outerbeingso widethatlo all outward appearance the seekermy a "moveaboul likea thinginerl in the handsol Nalu /adayatlikea lealin the wind,or otherwisetinl slateol re, a purehappy freeirresponsibilityaction, and ot balayat... Theouter being[may] in a God-possessed live lrenzycareless itselland ol lhewotld,unmattavat, withan entkedisregard or whelherol the convenlions prop.ieties and offitting human action of theha. or monyand rhylhms a greaterTruth. actsas the unbound of lt vital lrerng plsacayal, divinemaniac elsethe divinedemoniac." the or Butthissorlot'stalic possession theSelf'or'the by unreguateddynamic possession the physicaland Nature,is why vital lar removed Jrorn goalof the lnlegralYoga, whatwe aim the for al s ihe 'mastery the Prakriti the Purusha ol by landlthesublimairon Nalure of power, intinite intoherownsupreme glothe nesot the ParaShakti.' Conlronted with this inabilityto participate aclivetyin the . qynam manilestalion c withoulat the sametime losingthe possessron thekeedomand peace oi oflhesilent Sel{, mental the oernggels lemptedto adootlhe aliitudeof an indiflerent and nactve witness the world-play at lhe beslallowhis oF ol and ga'< ol sense andmotor-act,on a freeplayof lheirwo1unsup.

: The mrnd-Consciousness on portedby any conscious initiation lhe part of the witnessing sell The rdealoi courseis 10 reduceactionto the barestm n oi wiih lhe maintenance ihe bodily mum possiblecompatible life. chorce possibility, alternalrve an thereis another Oi course, properdiscipline may come lo a slale where a one T5'oLgt a wllh periect o.lIe'dynamisn pelecr innerpassvity1\ayco-exlsl ol independent each olher' In this situaton it rs bul altogether thal mind in lhe Sadhaka n01the willedmotiveof lhe conscious inralherthe universal the activitv,but lniiialesand eiiectuates and usesthe livinginslrumenl and will of naturethal telligence to or trom centrssuperconscious sublimlnal works flawlessly lhe conscious mind. But thls loo js nol what we seek 1o realisein our Yogaol slatusol inner pas' Fo. dynamc divinisation. in this particular the mere organs, kevalair indriyair' sivitv and ouler aciion bV lor ot "lhereis an evident absence integrality; thereis stilla gulf' belweenthe pas unityor a lelt of consciousness an unrealised We have still lo possessconsive and lhe active Brahman. ol rouslytne aclrveBrahmanwilroul loslnglhe oossession s( tranquLlity, the haveto preserue innersilence, We ihe silentSelf. to passiviiy a loundalion; in placeol an aloofindifference bu1 as equal we lhe workso'lhe activeBrahman have lo arriveat a_ delightin them;in placeot a relusalto participate and mpartial lesl our freedomand peacebe lost,we have to alrive at a con_ ol scious possesslon the activeBrahmanwhose ioy ol exlstoi ence does noi abrogaieHis peace,nor His lordshlp allwork ings impairHis calmlreedomrn the midslol His works" But lhe n fo i n c r u c i a l q u e s t i os : i s i t a t a l l p o s s i b l e r l h em e n t a l b e g i n h i s stalus lo embraceat once, eq!ally and lully, actuallvevolved and boththe worldand the being,bothconsciousdess action? The lnlrinsic lncapacityi To answer the above quesllon we ol musl Iirst noie that belweenthe normalconsclousness man a lruly spinlJalsJprame'Ia co_s'iolrs_ Lqpmenlal bernga_d

d n e s s ,t h e r el e s a t h l c kv e i l ,a n a l m o s ti m p e n e t r a b l ie , mukham, and unlessthis veil is liftedand lhe satyasyapihitam lhereis no possibility knowing divine, be of lhe Jar id rernoved, is through arduit to attan to it. Butthedilliculty thisthateither or lromabove, when mental the ousTapasya by anactoJGrace in succeeds pLrlting veil, seesthe0ivine somelh' by il "as being beyond, around evenin a sense, ingabove, bulwllha gulfbet3nd that an or an ween being ourbeing, unbridged even unbridgeaJheteis thisintlnite eristence; it is quiteother but ble chasm. being whobecomes aware ii....There lhis of rs thanthe mental great, boundless, unconditioned consciousness iorce;but and a iorcestands )1, it, ourconsciousness apattltom evenil within m led,petiy, discouraged, disgusted itselJ lhe world, wiih and in brl unableto patticipate that higherthingwhichil has seen. Thereis th s immeasurable unslained and bliss;bul our own be ng remains sport a lower the of Nature pleasure pain oJ and anddullneutral incapable ils divine There sensation of delighi. is thrsperfecl Knowledge Will; ourownremains and but always the menlal deiormed knowledge limping incapable and will oi sharngin or even in tunewiththatnature Godheadl' being of Now, an attempl bridge chasm healtheriii,ihe in lo lhis and mentai being seeks risethrough Herculea lo all-iorgetting et a Iorlout oi lsell nlo lhe Inlinite "the above. in thisprocess But m nd hasto /eayeils ownconsciousness,Io disappear aninto olher permanently llse/i.- lhe trance andlemporarily or in lose of Samdhi." obvrous For reasons mindless lrancethis absolule slatecannot ourobjective (vide be V:TheCritique lhe ol Chap. Trance ution). aim is to iransiorm waking So Our the mentalily ilselJ, 10r possibilitv lo and thalwe have invoke lo another open t h em e n t a t b e i n g . As a matler fact,mindhasa greatreflecting of capability, rellecling whaiever knows it and contemplates. I ii paci Th{rs rrestsel{and callsdownthe divineinto itself. succeeds it in rellecting mageof ihe divlne lhe andgetiing spirituallsed. But


The nrind-Consciousness rid enterintothe absohasperforcetoget ot mindallogelherand lt lule mindless susupti. is for this reasonthat so manyseekers of the pasl have recommendedmanonasaot lhe annulmenl ol the Mind as lhe v,a/oyalto lhe supremespirilualexperience. "The knowledge ol declaring: thuswe lind Sri Flamakrishna ol Brahmancannotbe allainedexceptlhroughthe annulmeni me A Guru lold his disciple,'Give your mind and I shall [,4ind. giveyou knowledge."' "NowI haveawakened of The RajarshiJanaka old declared, I must kill it, musl scorch lhe and discovered thiefthat is l\.4indt il lo death.For lvlind the rootof this worldol rgnorance.' is a According lhe grealsageVasishtha, greal goodcomes 10 oul ol lhe deslruclion ol Mind, manaso'bhyudaya manonaso mahadayah and lhe Mind ol lhe knower ol the Truth verily gels The Yoga Shikhopanishadtoo annulled.lnantno nasamabhyeti. is that mindlessness the supremestalus. ,a marah declares lestimony, lhe ideal belorelhe Thus. almosl on universal seekeratler the Truth is 10 gel lo lhe slale ot mindlessness, amaraslawherelhe m nd losesall itsJaculties , yade na manule tnanah non'mind to say,unmanibhuyal. so andbeaomes alterthe freedom Whatis lhen the solution us who asprre Jor ol oi drvne aclionas well as the liberation divinerest? ll mind reachesproves conscousnessrnclus oi ils highestspiritual ve ils inadequacyas an instrumenland medium lof lhe divine possession our wakingexistence, whal othercosmicprincol p1e/s there that can help us to realiseour goal? For. lor the properlullillment our objeciive, "we have lo reviewand re' ol mo! d lhe lower livingin lhe light,lorce and joy ol lhe higher rea ly We have to realiselvlatler a sense-crealed mouldol as Sp r(. a vehicletor all manifeslation the light,forceand ioy o1 of Sachch ot al in conditions lerrestr be ng and dananda lhe highest aclivty.We have lo see Liie as a channe for the ni n te Force

the the troubleis that in this operation" minddoes not entirely possess divineor bscomedivine,but is possessed rl or by the rellection it so long at ils remansan... pure of by a luminous turbid momenl it becomes activemindbecomes oassivitv."The s aqain andthe rellection thedivrne losl. ol quielism Henceit is ollendclard an absolute lhat and lhe wayo!l of lhe cessalion allouler ol andinner aclion lhe only is the aboveimpasse. evidently ,ailsto satisfy demand But this soy lhe IntegralYoga. Whatwe seekas"a positive transformaquiescence waking mentalilionandnotmerely nogative a ollhe ly. Bul the basic dil{iculty the mind-conscaousness with is lhal rl is an invelerale and dividerol lhe indivisible dwellsuponone aspeclat a time lo the exclusion all others.For "mrndin ils ol whichmeas!res.lamits. essenceis a consciousness cuts oul tormsof lhingslrom lhe indivisible wholeand contains lhem as il eachwerea separale integer...Mind divide,mulliply, may add, sublract,bul it cannotget byondthe limitsol this malhematrcs.lJit goesbeyond tries conceive realwhole. loses and to a it rtsell a loreign in it elemenl; fallslromits wonfirmground into lheocean theinlangible, lheabysms theinlinite of inlo of where perceive, I caneilher concoive, sense dealwilh subject nor its lor creation enjoymenl....l\,4ind possess infinite, and cannot the rt can onlysuffer or be possessed il; it canonlylie blissil by tullvheioless under luminous the shadow theReal ol castdown on it lrom planesof existence beyondits reach." It is because lhis inherenlpropensity divideand ol lo overstress lhal lhe Mind cannothold at once Unityand Multiplicily. consciousness action, and beingand becomingt canit nol possesssimullaneously active and the passiveBrahlhe man.Andbecause Mind's inability possess Inlinite. ot lo the it golden instead being ol salisliedwilh the'luminous shadow', lid, hiranmayapatrc, wouldseekto realisethe uttef Real,one one

Chaple.5 divineand breakthe barrierofa sense-crealed mind-crated and larnessand division lrom it so lhat divinePowermay take possessionol and direcland changeallour life,aciivities untjlour vitality lransliguredceases in the end to be the limiled lile-force which now supportsmind and body and becones ljgureol the all-blissful conscious lorce ot Sachchidananda. have stmiWe laf y lo changeour sensational and emolional mentalily Into a play oi dlvineLove and universal Delight; and we have to surchargelhe inlellect which seeksto knowand will inus wilh the ght of lhe divineKnowledge-Will until it is translormedn1oa f gure ol lhai higherand sublime activily.', Such is thenour high ideal,bul how to realjseil rn practice, howto conquer spiritual penLtry our wakingphysical lhe of extstenceand embrace equally activeand passive the aspects the ot Divrne? Mindlails,what etseis therethat saveslhe siluation. li

: The mrnd-Consciousnoss


APPENDIX ASCENT FROi'THE MtND-CONSCIOUSNESS' '''Conseni be nothing none, work. dissolve Time's to and Cast otl thy mind, step back lrom form and name that Annualthyself onlyGodmaybe. voice, and lhe Thusspoke mighly uplilling mused shebowed headand her AndSavitriheardi inlo her Plunging deepregard herselt Night. in In hersou's privacy thesilent and backdelached calm, A looland standing A rrllressol the dramaof hersell, ol A student herowninlenorscene, passion and lhe loil ot lile She wafchedthe ol Andheardin lhe crowded thoroughfares mind of lreadandpassage herlhoughls. Theunceasing Al she allowedlo riselhat choseto stir; Calling,compellingnaughl,lorbiddingnoughl, in lormed Time Sheleltallto the process ol will. Andthefree nitlalive Nalure's Abovethe birih of bodyand ol thoughl in sell Ourspirit's truthlives lhe naked the Andlromthatheight, unbound, surveys world. Out of the mindshe roseto escapeits law deepshadow selt of Thalil might s/eep some in ol Or fall si/erl in the silence lhe Unseen. Thenall grewlranqullinherbeing's space, Onlysometimes aroseand fell smallthoughts Llfequielwaves sea upona silent
' f-rom Sr Alrobindos Sav l.i, Book Vll cantoVl, pp 538 49 ( la csours)



: The mind-Consciousness


passingoverlonely pool Or ripples a Whena straystonedislvtbils drcaming rest. Yetthe mind'sfactoryhad ceased work, lo There wasnosound ofthedynamo's throb There cameno calllrom stillfields lle. the ol There cameno callfromthe stillfieldoi liie,. Thenevcnlhosestiffing' rcse in her no more: Hermrnd nowseemed a vaslempty like room Or liea peacetul landscape without sound. This mencallgulelude and prizeas peace. Butto her deeper sightallyet wasthere, Elfervescing a chaos like underalid; Feelings thoughts and cried outlorword act and Bul foundno response the silenced in brcjn: Allwas suppressedbut yet nothing expunged; At every moment mighl explosion come. Thenthistoopaused;lhebodyseemed stone. a A I nowwas a widemightyvacancy, Bul slill excludedtom elernily's hutsh; Forstillwas {artherepose theAbsolute of Andlhe ocean Silence Infinily, ol Evennowsomethoughts couldcloss her soltlude: lhesesurged tromthedepths Jrom not within or Castup tromformlessnessseeka torm, to Spoke thebody's not neednorvoiced mind's call. These seemed bornnormade human not in Time,

immensity Shesawa spiritual and the Pervading ecnompassing world-space our As eiiher iransparent tangible air, il lranquillylhoughl. a Andthrough sailing glides shinearing a aporl, As smoothly ll came lo lhe bilenl city of the brain quay, il and Towards accustomed expectanl will, Bulmeta barring a blowof Force in Andsankvanishing the immensity pause Atler aiong vacant anotherappeared Andothers by onesuddenly one emerged, ,4ind's unexpected vislors fromlhe unseen lar'oflsialsupon lonely Lrie a sea. Butsoonthatcommercefailed, nonercachedmind'scoast then allgrewstill, nothing moved more: any lmmobile, seltrapt, timeless, solitary pervaded A silenl spirit silent Space.

lnlhal absolute stillness bareandformidable There wasglimpsed all-negaling supreme an Void thatclaimed mystic ils Nihil's sovereign right TocancelNaturcand denythe soul. Even nude the sense selfgrewpaleandlhin: ot lmpersonal, signless, ieatureless, ol lorms, void A blackpurc consciousness had,teplaced mind. the

Outol sone Jarexpanse seems come they dot As if carried vaslwings large on like whrle sails. Andwitheasyaccess reached inner lhe ear.

Yelst li her bodysawand movedand spoke; It understood wilhout aidot thought, the It saidwhatever needed be said, to It drdwhateverneededbe done to There wasnopersantherebehind act, the

As yettheirpathlaydeepconcealed light in thenlooking know lo whence inlruders the came



word: lhe fitting No mmdlhai choseor passed apt like AlLwrought an unerring machine. old As I contrnuing habilualturns, force And pushedby an old !nexhausted work for whichit was made: lhe enginedid the lookedon and look no parl; Her consciousness

lhe This seeingwas identicalwilh seen: al{thatcouldbe known, It knewwithoutknowledge ihe li saw imparilally worldgo by, gtance unmovrng But in the samesupreme Saw 1oo i1s abysmal unreaItY. It watched ligureoJihe cosmicgame, the seemeddead Bui the thoughland innerlifein Jorms of by her own collapse ihought; Abolished A hallow physical shell persisted,still.


The Inwardization and the Ascension

alivein brainand flesh Once sepulchred and She had risenup from body,mind lile; was no rnorea Personin a world, she She had escapedinto infinitY. ,., Only sone lasl annulmentnow remained, inable step" vagueindef Annihilation's

Hisknowledge inviewcaught an unlathomable, An outview no briefhorizons by cut: He thaught and feltin all, hisgazehadpower. (SirAurobindo, Sayll4Bookll, Canto p. 301) XV, Thethingto begained the binging in ol a Pawerat'Conis (the Supramenlal) yet oryanised activedinot sciousness or reclly in eatth-natute, even in the spirituallife, but yet to be and orcanised madedircctly active On {SirAurobindo, Hinself p. lag) Theaverhead ascension not indispensable the usual is for putposes,- but itisindispensable the putposesof spirilual far this Yaga. its aim is to becomeawarc of and liberuteand For transfamanduniteallthebeinginthe lightof a Trulh-Consciousnesswhichis aboveand cannotbe rcachedil tbereis no en ttrelyinward-going notranscendingand upward-going and movepp. (tbid.. t79-A0 I he l_le'gral Yoga nansformation lor hs objectrve ol nas nolmerely supreme lhe realisation Sachchidananda, Hls ol but 0lvne seli-expression, llawless the manifestationthe aclive of Brahman,ourdivinely in tansiigured embodied earthly existence. Bulthequestion howlo realise goalol ourYoga is: this and whalit is ihai my possibly bethe medium theserealising of ascensions world-possessing and descents? in the aclually For, elaborated evolullonary status human ol consciousness, rnind represenls highest principle power consc the cosmic and ol ous n e s ss o l a r o r g a n i s e id a m n t h e m e n t a b e i n g .B u 1t h s n l rnndconsciousness, in itshighest evn llights, no more is thana


and The Inwardizalion the Ascension


il is movemenl the lgnorance: nolinherentlyTruth-Consciousin or of incapable possessing evenal_ it And hence is allogeiher itselfand rest at to taining the Divine; bestil can immobilise sll of with satisfied Retlections the sunln waterc or wlh But ii is far kom our goalto be contented "bright lhat pholog of Reality" themrnd raphs films a disla0l or shadowy to for achieve us:we wantto ascend the supreme canat most glor ils and down dynamic es and in Realiiy iullawaireness bring playoi ourwaking siate. in splendours the experrbut Bul we cannot takenoteof the lact ot sp ritual ihal an immense oi encece ifiedby mosiseekers the Truth lhe hialus seems exisl to belween supramentalTrulh_Conscious_ we nessand the l\rind-consciousnessnormay knowol, And gulf belween the unbridgeable iniervening this unless seemingly torego dream our we io bridged, have two is satisfactorily Truth ihe plant earth living on worldthe homeof God. Or makeol lvlatter's thanto takea we In thatcase, shallhaveno otherchoice e station MindintotheUnknowab ol leap super-consclent lromthe conclulrenclrant willy-nilly thelollowrng to and beyond lo agree persuading abandon Savitrlio Darkness s on oi theincredulous herlaskoi world-translormationl the turn.lo Godmustleave word; He "vho would musigiveup life; live He whowould in lhe Spirit, selt. He whohasmetthe Sell,renounces routes mind of of Thevoyagers the m;llion to lhrough Exislence is end. Whohave lravelled s vasts, the exploring world'ocean Sages safe. the Have found extinction soleharbour both and as lndeed, ndfails an inslrument mediLrm forour m as as into ousascension the Iniinite weLl for thedynamic consc powersof Spiritthe of and descent manileslation the supreme ideniily the wilh al cannol arrive As hasbeenso wellsald,mind

it into il in a swoonor extinclionAbsolule, can only disappear DafknessoflhemyslicNight-' rnloSt.Johno{ the Cross's'divine and aclion,the mrnd Also, as a mediumof divineexpression planecannotin its very natureallowot the supremeworklngs natlveto the d ivineConsciousnessForce.'The m ind spiritualised, perfected purilied, liberated, withinits own limitsmay come as but-..this is near as possibleto a faithfulmentaliranslaiion, atter all a relatve lidelityand an imperfectperJection...The mind...can take iis llhe Inlinite's] suggestrons act ihernout and its own way, a way always fragmentary,derivative and subin but iect lo a greateror less deformalion, it cannotbe ilsellthe directand perlecl instrumenl lhe infiniteSpiritacting in its of ownknowledge." It becomesimperaiive then lor the fullillment our divine ot dest nv uoon earth thal man should be able to raise hrmsellmuch abovethe planeoi mindand normally and permanent{y, evenin his wakrngstate,live in the supernalheightsof the Sprril, also to manifesl and organise his embodied in existence new plances and powersof consciousness otherlhan and superior mind, io so that these may offer lhemseives ihe proper media and as insirLrmentalron throughwhichthe divineWill and Wisdomcan lreelvact and self-exoress, But betweenthe l\,,lind the Spirit,arethere other superior and p aces of spiritualconsciousness-not merelyslalic and ntrospeclive,bul creativeand dynamic-which man can possibly hopeto ascend? And is il al all possible manlo developand for o-o ,ricp hese supernalplanes his wakrng In conscioLs-ess so muchso lhat he may outgrowand lranscend presenimenla his statusand becomesomething morethan human? The anweiand hopelie in the process evoluiionary of on ol manifesied exislence here uponthe face of the earlh. The resullsso lar achieved Evolution indeedtruly slrikare by ng: rl is surelyalong march from the insentient N,4alter the io sell conscious mlndoJman,But who can savlhat the evolutton



zationand lho Ascension The Inward


of itsellwith lhe emergence man the ary nisushas exhausled courselelt tor the emmentalbeing,so thal the only possible bodiedsoul is how lo make an exit lrom lhis not loo perlecl a w o r l d - e x i s l e n c e n d t a k e t h e t r a n s c e n d e n lte a p i n i o i h e and Unknowable Unmanitest? oestrusis e'/en now As a maller o{ fact, the evolutionary very much at work and il is nol liableto annul itselfuntil and hereIn our is unless divineSachchidananda fullymanifesled the divine.' embodied exislence and'thisearthlylitebecomethe liJe is intended meaning crealion,lhis lhe ol For such is the original march.Thus Savitri sense of the evolulionary secrel spirituai oJ answered retulethe conjecture lhe sophislPowerol do!bt to and denial: How sayslhouTruthcan neverlightlhe humanmind And blisscan neverinvade lhe mortals heart Or God descendintolhe worldhe made? rose, Voidthe creataon ll in the meaningless ForceMallerwas bron, li frorna bodiless tree, ll Lifecou d climbin lhe unconscious breakintoemerald leaves li greendeLighl And its laughter beaulyblossomin the flower, of and ll sensecouldwake in lrssue,nerve cell, And Thought seizethe gregmatlerof the brain. lhroughlhe llesh, And soul peep {romits secrecy nameless lightnot leap on men, How shallthe powersemerge from Nalure's Sleep? And unknown Truthlike stats Evennow hintsot a luminous splednour 'gnorance; ol Afisein the mind-mooned Lover's touch we leel: Evennow the dealhless It the chamber's door is evena lillleatar, in Whatthen can hinderGod from stealing soul?' Or who lorbidhis kisson the sleeping thatthe pasl is no sure guide But the skeplicmay sti I rejoin So, lo to the tutureand plausibiltys neverequivalent cerlainly.

the ol aller establishing plausibility our goal ol divinetranslor poinlout we of the wakingexislence, musl now specially malion which lhis goal can be realised practice. in the slepsfollowing specula_ And lor this we must relt surelynot on philosophical bul I on or logicalsurmisings, solelyon the verdictol ihe everspiriiual exploralion our being of and ascending ever'deepening For, in and becorning- this alonehas any realvalidity lhjs tield. Now. lhere are two lypes ol movemenls oi our conscrousfor ness lhroughwhich il becomespossible us lo have access reachesof our being,a movemenl Io lhe deeperand sLrperior tnwardand an upward ascension. we By the firsi movementol inward penetration, seek to ou. selt from our breakasunderthe wall separating subliminal and existence. leavethe surlace conscrousness surface Dresent lLVe enlirelyin the realmol our innermind,innerlile, innefsub This in lle'physrcal and finallyin the in most soul ot our beingin moslsoulorthepsychic beingis the Purusha the secrethearl, hrdye guheyem, a potton of lhe Divine Sell supporting the indivrdualnature, ot Now,an enlargemenl complelion our aclualevolulronand ary slatus becomes the very lirsl consequenceot such an nwardizalion consciousness. our Innerberngis toundlo For, oi possess dynamismand potenlialities much superior those lo a ol our sLrrface mind and liJe and body.As a mallerot fact,"il rs capable of a direct communication wilh lhe universal forces, movements,objecls of the cosmos, a dircct feeling and openl9lalhefi. a direcl action on thernand even a wideningol lsell beyondthe limitsol the personalmind, ihe personal fe, the lhat il feels iiselfmore and more a universal being no onger limitedby the existingwalls oJ our loo narrow mental, vilal physicalexislence. This wideningcan extendilsell to a complele of Mind,inlounrly enlryinlolhe consciousness cosmrc w lh the universal Life,even into a onenesswilh unlversaMal_


and The Inwardization lhe Ascension


For, Butthisfirstresuli nolallthatcanbe deslred. howeis perfected dynamism, beingreand in our ver cosmic scope in cosmic lruth,if in mains embedded the lieldol diminished slill ll lranscend limitalhe notin totalcosmic lgnorance. we would status,we musl seek 10 betions of our presert evolulionary lo in what is now superconsceint us and ascome conscious presenl not accesslble cendto native the heights lhe Spiril at ol movemenl inconsciousness, "thepsychic Thus, to ourwaking by upwardio theinner being,...must compleled an openrng be wardto a supreme spiritualstatusl' more Now.lhis lhe second-andlrom pointol view,much is our For, inwardliving. momentous-consequence accomplished ot an realms ls sublimirlal il is loundthatoncetheentry inlotheinner pres_ being exerts growin9 a successfully underlaken, inner lhe lid constricling, hard andbight of mind,-mind sureonthe"strong 1(om the dividing separative" clouds superconscienl our and that ptessure comesin the end so waking consciousness, This be great and thin,opensanddisappear. thatthe lidol mindwears privileged havea vision the of to our consciousness becomes 1s Whatwe seebythisis upward openrng "aninsupernal things. Presence an inlinile Existence, an finity above an eternal us, or Sell, infinily bljss,-a ol boundless infinity coflsciousness, o{ an Ecslasy." Light,a bou|ldless Power, boundless a a boundless not awareness below'is suliicient. trom Buteven this'wide lo ol We mustmakean actual ascension the height the spirit or reabove,Fortunaiely, too is an alternative subsequent this consciousness up towards rises sultof lhe inward living. Our mental level. much beyond present the thereaches ourbeing, of and dilticulty supervenes unless But herea very serious one maybe verywellled remedied time, in thisis successfully ol awaylrom lhe palh of divinelransformation Natureinto the L,nmanilest and silenl immobility theTranscendent o1 at10 lndeed, sincethe heights whichour consciousness to are superconscient ascension in general tainsin its upward

our mind,the latierlailsto tema n awakethereand henceconblank Thus,our mind_ siderstheseascentsas only luminously and lake a a is consciousness lempiedto eflecluate short_cul On straght jump to the Transcendent. this line,"the firsl mosl ord nary resut is a discoveryof a vast staticand silenl Self may whichwe feel to be our realor our basicexistence...There aclivebeingand ot bothof our a be evenan exlinction, Niruana a t h e s e n s e o f s e l l i n t o a R e a l i t yt h a t i s i n d e f i n a b l e n d ls to posslble remainin a Nirvanaoi all ind all or, to v dualily, stop at a siaiic realisation regarding ihe cos_ play or illusion imposedon the movemenlas a superficial rn c and sient Se I, 10pass inlo somesupremeirnmobile lmmulabe statusbeyondihe universe, yth line Butforlunate s is notiheonlypossible of supernormal on from all pariicipat n lhe the spifllua experience: withdrawal and the immergenceor exlinctloninlo the wor d-ex stence for destjnydecreed lhe hu is Llnmanifest not lhe only spiritual Lnto f divinereturn romthe vergeoJNirvana mansou , A supreme possible is and thrswiththe und minished the world-play eqLrally wealihamasseda1 of splendors and potencies all the spiritual The choice is indeedhard and dlif cult For, lhe the summits. s and Eterrrily withdrawal the Infinite into u timateand definitive prospectto be easilyrejeciedby the ascending too a uring a birth'onemusl have soul.To have nstead'thesupernal narlowedge ..trodalongextinclion's Neafthe h gh vergesoi eternlly. ot between Th s doublealternative the dilJicull choosing and passage lowrng the two havebeen beautiiully depicledin lhe lo of Sri Aurobindo's Savlllrli She had risen up lrom body,mindand life; She was no morea Personin aworld She had escapedinto inlinity. Only same last annulmenlnow rematned,



and The Inwardrzalron the Ascension


indef inable stepi Annihilation's vague A memory being stillwas there of Andkeptherseparate fromnothingness: wasin Thatblt stillbecame That. not She so to Thisshadow hersolf close noughl of couldbe again seli'spoinld'appui live, lo Relurnout of the lnconceivable Andbe whalsomemysierious might vast chooseEven theUnknowable as dcred, Shemightbe noughtot new-becamethe All, Or if thecmnipolenl Nihiliook shape a Emerge someone redeem world. as and lhe Even, might learn whatthe mystic cipher held, she Thisseeming or closed ot all exit end passage from Could a blind be tenebrous screned sight, Herstaletheeclipsing shell darkened ol sun On its secretway to the Inetlable. Evennowhersplendid mightflame back being Out ot the silence lhe nullity, and portion lh alfwonderful, A gleaming of A powerof someall-affirming Absolute, A shining mirror the eternalTruth of To showto the One-in-all rnanitest its Jace, Tothesoulsol mentheirdeepideniity. quietude wakeinloGod's Or shemighl Beyondthe cosmicday and cosmicnight Andreslappeased hiswhite in eternity. we to Butonce setaside exit-solution noiconforming the as !n ourgoaland instead become lry to aware thoses!pernalreaims where could remain we not awake before, findthatourconwe where sc ousness rises those to ascending heighls theSpirit of greatly rtsimmobile for stalus butthe necessary is foundation a potenl luminous dynamism. thepower remain Once awake and to develops us,onc6we riseout ol the sphere mortal in mind of ol and ookdeepandhighandfar,we discover splendors a the

inlerof and graded series planes powers consciousness-an ol belween and as links bridges mind-range-serving spiritual venlng o l h e n o w n o r m a lw a k i n gm i n da n d ' t h e n a t i v eh e i g h l s l being. and supramental purespiritual the that"welindthe altitudes'of Spirit It is in these'radiant the of themeans thelransiiion, needed we secret are seeking, a for we perceive transJormaiion a ; steolowards supramental wlth gradualily ascent, communication a moreand more a ol lightand powerJromabove,a scaleot deep and lmmense siairin theascenas can inlensit which be regarded so many es is fromThalwhrchbeyond intoMind or sionof Mind in a descent

gradation which con_ our through ascending ln lhisincessanl Truth-Consciousness, lhe rises sciousness towards supramental Thesegradations maybe distinguished lour pr nc ple ascents of seriesof sublimaiions the described as'a mav be broadlv Higher has whalSriAurobindo lermed through consciousness' "there a suc_ is Intuition Overmind; and lVIind, Mind.lllumined of at the cesson ol selt'iransmutations summil lvhichliesthe In degrees Supermind Divine-Gnosis....Allthese are9nostlc or to at thefilsl we begin pass for and thelrorinciDle oower; even and In based an original consclence on lroma consciousness Knowledge-lgnorance lgnorance ina mixed or acting a general n Knowledge self'existent based a secret on to a consciousness grades grades energy'substance of are and..ln these lhemselves grades thesubstance of oJ oi lheSpirit...they domains being, are are whrch iieldsol existence being, andenergy the spiritual of tuting Force Consciousness- const each eve ol theuniversal a ol stage ihisas_ stat!s..Each andorganls itselfntoa higher ng oi centrsa general, nota tolalconversion thebeingntoa new if lrght power a greater exisience.' and of andthe dy' d Forthe characlerisatlon iourlo asceni ol this relered Chap' Ia namc'sorrtualimolicatons readeris thereof,the al ter XXV\, Book lwo ("The AscentlowardsSupetmind") Sti



and The Inwardizalion ihe Ascension ol exaclrelation truihto lruth.'Thus lighining rangein a brighlpack Intullion's 'lu-lrng all nrdden lrulhsout ol lheir lairs. absolule Its liery edge of seeang Cleaves inlo locked unknown retreatsoJsell, RJ.nmages skv-recesses the brain. the ol of Lighlsup the occullchambers lhe hearl; ictusol discovery lls spearpoinl Pressed lhe coverol name,lhe screenol torm, on Slripsbare the secretsoul ol allthat is sun-brighl eyes; Thoughllhere has revelalion's Voice, The Word,a mighiyand inspiriling EnlersTruth's inmostcabinol privacy And lears awaythe veiltromGod and lile.


Aurobindo's LifeDivine.Fo(1he The continuity our discussion ot we conlenlourselves with only some broadhinlsaboutthe nature ol thesefo!r highergradesof our being. The lirsi ascent out of our normal menlality is inlo a Highel M/rd ot automatic and sponlaneous Knowledge,where knowledge assumes lhe nalureof Truth-Thoughi. mosl characler lts slic movemenl "a mass idealion, systemor totality iruthis a of seerng al a srngleView;...this lhought is a sell-revelatlon ol elernaiWisdom, an acquired nol Knowledge. Beyond the Higher [4ind ol Truth-Thoughiis the Illumined M/rdol Truth-Sight, Mindwhere a thereafe vaslsol visionand eternalsuns, Oceanso' an im.rortallumrnoLsness, Flame-hills assaLrlllng heaven with theirpeaks, Theredwelling becomes blazeoJsight; all a A bufningheadof visionleadsthe mind, Thoughtlrailsbehindil its longcornetiail; The heartglows,an illuminale seer, and And senseis kindledinlo identi\,. powerof the illumined Thus the characteristic lvlnd is not Thoughlbul Visioni is the fieldol "theoutpourings massive ii of irghlning flamingsun-stull." on the dynamicside thereis of And here 'a goldendrrve,a lumtnous'enthousiasms'ot innerforce and power,...almoslviolent a lmf,elus rapidtransformalion.' ol Next in the order oJ ascension in the lntuttive Mind whose powr is an intimaieand exactTruth,perception characterislrc whichis muchmorethan sighland conceplion. Iniuition in us is ''a projecling blade,edge or point of a tar-olt superrnind light enterng inloand moditied someinlermediate by truth-mind subpowef.A oower ol stance above us,,,lntuiiion has a Jourlold revelalo truth-seeing, powerof nspiralion lrulh-hearing, ry a or a power of truth-louch jmmediate or seizingoJ signilicance,... a power of true and automalicdiscriminaiion the orderlvand ol

l\rindis a superconscrenl Beyondlhe planeol the Intuitive whichcarriesin rl of cosmicMind,a principle globalknowledge 'a delegated is Overmind lighltromthe supramenlalgnosis,'The and SupramentalTrulh-Consciousness in direciconlactwiththe ihe represents the'higheslpossible stalls-dynamis'of Spirit n cosmicempireol the Overmind' the spirlual-mindrange-'The linites lasl expanseand represenls boundless the Elernity, Trrne's butter slatebordering vasl lor lhe experience mans so!l: of Too Allhere gathersbenealhone goldensky: take The Powerslhal buildthe cosmosslalron possibility; n its houseof inlinrle worldi Eachgod irom therebuildshis own nalure's phalaniedlikea groupof sums; ldeasare Thoughlcrowdsin massesseizedby one regard; AllT me is one body,Spacea singlebook: gaze, Thereis lhe Godhead universal s And therethe boundaries immonalI\rind: ol The Overmindmay be considered be lhe delegaleoJ lo Superrnind lhe lowerhemisphere Knowledge-lgnorance; il ot to



The Inwardization the Ascension and penury. ihat suprememovemenl descent For diablyspiritual ol movemenl ascension ol and Heaven shouldlollowihe supreme shouldconsentto come down CHAPTEBXupon Earth.But is that al all possible? THE DESCENT OFTHE SUPEBMIND I know lhat I can lift man's soul to God, I know thal he can bting the immortal down Sav/lfi BookXl, Canlo l, p.687) lSriAurobindo, The integralperfectioncan come only by a mounlinqascenl of the lowest into lhe highest and an incessant descent of the highest into the lowest tillall becomes one at once solid block and plastic sea-stuff of the Ttulh infiniteand eternal (Sri Aurobindo, The Synlhesis ot Yoga,p. 478) There arc dilferenl staluses of the diwne consciousnessThere arc also dllerent statuses ol trcnslormation.Fitst ts the psychic trcnsfotnalian, in which all is in contact with the Divine lhraugh lhe individualpsychtcconsciousness.Next is lhe spirilual transformationinwhich is merged Divine in the cosmic all in cansciousness.Thirdis the supramentaltransformation whlch all becames supnmentalised in lhe divine gnostic consciousness. lt is only with the latter that thete can begin the complele tansformation of mind, life and body-in my sense of complele(Sr Aurobindo, HlmseL p. I I8) On In our attemplto chalkout lhe slepsfollowing whichan em' bodied his beinghereuponearthmay hopeto transligure waking existence muchso thal a divinely dynamic can llowerout lile so in lhe earthlygarden,we have come to lhe lindingthat an essentialpreliminary ascondrtions for our soul to consciously cendlo the supernal grades beingand powerot the sell-manio{ {estng spirit,lhat intervene betweenour normalmind and the TruthConsciousness Supermind. ol

linksthe lallerwiththatsupramental GnosisorTruth-Conscrous, ness, ...whileyetatthesametimewith brilliant goldenLid it ils veilslhe faceol the greatertuth fromour sight..This lhen is the occultlinkwe werelooking for;Thislhe Powerthat at oncecon, neclsand divides supreme the Knowledge the cosmiclgno, and rance. With the Overmindwe thus reach the line lhat paris and joins ihe lowerand the upper hemispheres exislence. of Here two possibililies open up beJore soul. Eitheril may seek lo the reachthe supreme supracosmic Sachchidananda direct lromthe sprrilualased mind-range and in that processdepart out oJ its c o s m i c f o r m a l i o n i n l o l h e e t e r n a l l Vs l a t i c o n e n e s s o f Sachchidananda ralher pure Sat (Existence), or absoluteand elernalor elsea pureNon-existence, absolute and elernal." But evidently this is nol our line.Sincewe seek to possess drvinelyourworld-being wella sourselt-being, muslcross as we pass inlothe upper hemisphere the borderhne, transcending even the highestreachot spiritual mindand seek to rea se Sachchidanandaon the planeof Supermind. For,supermindis Sachchida, "..power of selt-awarenessand wo.ld-awareness,lhe nanda's world being known as wilhin itselfand not outside..llt the isl Trulh'Consciousness whelheraboveor in the universe which by the Divineknows not only his own essenceand bring bul his manifestationalso. lts fundamenlalcharacter is knowledge by identity, lhal lhe Sell is known, DivineSachchidananda by lhe rs known, bul also lhe truth of manileslation known.because is lhis loo is That." Hence il becomesimperative the soul to pass lhrough ior jl, instead departing the supramenlal ralisation ol intotheTran, scendence, wouldsimullaneouslV in the lranscendnce rt live ol lhe supremeSachchidananda Dossess world-vew too. and tts Bul even thesesupremeascenisaccomplLshed tull sprF n rlualawareness not provesufficient our purpose. do for These cannotcureourwakingconsciousness its apparently ol irreme-


The Inwardizaiion the Ascensaon and


ascending these lo Of course, is truethatwilhout it actually planes permanently there, we living if and higher fitual sp mental and from to canopenourselves below theirknowledge splritual waking spirilualise normal our beinfluences, cansomewhal we in But change effected this ingandconsciousness. lhe spiritual prolound widein ils scope. louches lt onlythe way s never or In fr nge of our dynarnic existence, orderio havean entrre and oi ii indlspensaconsciousness power Being, s allogether ble that we gather our consciousness riseout ol the up and mindintothe radlant higher allitudes the of sphere gnorant ol Spiril. Andthese ascents mustbe made fullawareness not in and merelyin the immobile trance-siale absorbed of superconscience. in ihe latler For case, lhe relurn thewaking on to cononly sciousness thesetemporary lrom sojourns, an rndeterminatespiritual impression abidebut not muchol dynamic may elfect. orderto In havethe dynamis otthehigher spiritualgrades life,we mustfirst of beingactive and organised ourwaking in "a ellecluale conscious heighlening widening immense and into ranges newbeing, of newconsciousness, potentralities new of action." Butthisascension ourconsciousnessihesehigher oi to luplanes, m nous even permanently i{ does sufnol centred lhere, licefor thespiritual translormalionour being andnature. of the permanent ascent fromlhe lower the hrgher to consciousness process a permanent muslbefollowed thecomplementary by of descent the higher ol i,rlolhe lower. iransmutalion our The of present modes being ot andactivities spiritual into values leadinglo the trans{iguration waking ol our existence necessitates thennol merely ascension theplanes an 1o above even nor the pressure inlluence or] exert iromthereof an indirect and upon oLrr lower ngbulthebrining be down thePower L ghtof the ol and in iield ournormal supernal reaches thevery of being, conscious' proper ihespirilual For"lhere adynamism is nessandaction. lo c o n s co u s n e s sw h o s e n a t u r ei s L i g h t , P o w e r , n a n d a , A

Peace, Knowledge, infinite Wideness, that muslbe posand intothe wholebeing. Otherwise can se'sed and descend one get muktibutnot peiection ottnnsformation (except relative a psyc ho-spirilu change)." al potencies Thedescent ofthespirilual andforcsofths higher places (homthe Higher Mind theOvermind) thuslhethird to is necessary motion tollowing othertwo ascension permathe ol and nenlstaiioning above. thisprocess pe.colation, In of downpour "an or influx. occur rncreasing inflow fromabove, experience an ol reception retentlon the descending and of spiritor its powers and elemenls consciousness." of Whenthisphase moreor is less completed, saylhatlhe we being nalure undergone and has spiritualtransfotmation, lransformation a lhat links the manifestedexistence with whatliesbeyondand aboveit. Bui eventhis is not;nough for ou. goal.For,the process of spirtualisation brings about mostly subjective a transformation, theinstrLrmental Nature remaining beforefullof as many disabilities anddeficiencies. theOvermind, summil-reach Even the of our spiritual mind-range, lo eflecluale complte fails a change of Nature, this too is "subject limilaijons the working ior to in of the eflective Knowledge, limitations the working the Power in ol subiect a Dartial to and limited Truth." Forthe fullandradical transformation is indispensable whal isthedirectintervention the unveiled and action thesupramenof tal Gnosisin our earth-existence earlh-nature. lhat can and But come about onlywhena prior ascent lhe plane Supermind lo of rslolowed the supramental by descent thelieldol teffeslrial in manifeslation. Butwhal precisely the difticulties are offeredby our presnt berng and naturs,lhal cannotbe salisfactorily evenby the mel nlgnest powers? spiritual-mental Whalare the lacunaeir+velved in the processof spiritualtranstormation? esseniialdilfiTh6 culty comesfrom the lact that we are evolutionarv creatures. OLrevolLtion slarted has lromtheapparently blank bosom ln of



The Inwardrzalion the Ascensron and


is ol Nescience st con scrence and this dark herrtage orrginal we ghl ng very heavilyuponour nalure.Our normalbe ng is aloul and mostwhollyrnoLrlded of the Inconsceince "it s lhis sub nto lhat has10be_transformed a substace stanceol nescience and ol sLrperconscience, a subslancen whrchconscrousness a are alwayslhere even when lhey are nol spirtual awareness lhal aclive,nol expressed...Till is done,lhe nescence rnvades or encompasses even ceilsup and absorbsinto ts oblivrous or darkness thal enlers inlo it; il compelsthe descnding tht a to compromise wilh ihe iesserlght il enlers:thereis a mrxlure, a a diminut and iilution oi itsell,a drminution, rnodilcailon. on nconrp authentlcriy its lrulh and power.' ol an cte th ll s becauseol this blind opposingNecessrty, s dark y an e altach,nenl Ihe a readyestablshed seeming nexorab lo and Lavr's lhe ignorance lhe h ghersp rilua Lghls powers. o1 that even lhoseol lhe overmind,com ng down nto the obscunlyol po' our physrcalconseiousness muchot lheirtranslormrng Iose muliated,circumscfibed nol aland tencyand becomeinstead iogetherdynamically efiective. Thus a peffeci lranslguralon oi our lowernatureis a far cry f we u/ouldrely on the sp ritua menlalpowersalone.We may ll rndeed innerconsciousness our luminous and berated and w o e c s l a l i c ! 1 o u ro u t e r e i n g n dn a l u r e i l l s ll l g o o n n t h e i r l d b b a n l s u n f e g e n e r aw a y ,b r i n g g n p e r i o d s o l d u lo b s c u r a t o na n d le due to lhe play ol the guras The powerof !n\lanled reaclions d v ne y rllumirred mind may be rmmense compareow th ordipowers.bul t will st b sublecllo incapacily nary and lhere can be no perleclcorrespondence belweenthe force ol the elfectve w and lhe ght oi the dea which nsp rcs L The tnftntte Presence may be lhere tn slalus, but dynamis af the operatians of nal)rc stillbelangsta the lowerPruk lt. riruslfolow i1s1rple lorm 1o lhe modes oJ workingand cannol grve any aclequale greatness $ilhin il Ths is ihe lragedyol rn eilectv ty. ol ihe h , a l ! sb e l u / e e n e a la n d e i f e c i v e w r l .. d

Th s is the reasonwhy it has been alwaysJound thal a sub, on lectve spirtualty concentrated lh6 changeof the innerbeing a one, leavng the outernalureto go its old way,is mucheaster to accomplish lhan to objectivies spirituality lhe dynamic this in I|lecl a lree wor d,action. the courseol our Spirituat In Sadhana. our lola|ly of existence very soon and very easilydissociates nto iwo I elds,an innerone and an ouler one,The jnner being and nalure has always a much less letteredgait: it awakens as y enough, receives lreelythe higherspiritual iniluences and gels moreor lesstranslormed, ihe external Bul surface selj and natureare mosttymoulded the iorcesof the established by lgno_ ranceand the originalNescience. And hencethey are tardy in awakenrng, sluggish receiving in and impervious uninhiblted to ass mrlalion. is, for this reason,"alwayseasierto spiritualise lt the innerselt sullicient partsthan to transform ouler aclion; lhe perieclion introspective, a ot indwelling_..spiritualily trom atoot the worldor selt protected againstit is easierthan a perlection ol lhe wholenaturein a dynamic, kinetic spirituality objeclivised n the ie, embracing world,masterol jls environment, the sov_ e.e qn In ts comrnerce wath world-naiure.,' Bul whethereasy of fulfillment nol, this is what we have or p ace0 bel0reus as our goal:an inlegraltranslormation our ol culer betngand nalureas wellas thatof the innerone, entailing the drvnrsalton our wakingphysical oi existence and ot the dv_ .amic llleol aclion.And as lve have menlioned before,it is onlv lrreoverlintervention lhe divine of supermind our earlh-nature in lhal .an negativethe dark Necessity downwardpull ol our ol presenlevolulionary existence and usheranthe eslablishmenl oi the L fe Divine And for thal an ascenlout ot the lowerhemisphere topped by lhe Overmind ontothe planeol suprarnenlal Gnasisbecomes Ine I rs1necessily. For, the dynamicas well as the stalic reahsa1on oi Sachchidananda cannolbe inseparcbly and simultane.!s/v fad exceptthroughlhe Supermind, T.,Jth-Consciousthe f-as5.)l the drvineReality_ "The universeis uynamrsm. move-



The Inwardizatlon th Ascension and


menl-the essenlialexperienceSachchidananda of apartlromthe is slalic.The full dynamiclruth ol dynamrsmand movemenl Sachchidananda the universe and and its consequence cannol be graspedby any olher consciousness than the supermind, because inslrumentation ail olherllowerlplanesrs inlef or lhe in and there is thereJore disparity a betweenthe fuilnessof the stal c experience the ncompleteness the dynamc power, and ol knowledge, resultot the interior Ight and powerol otherplanes. this is lhe reasonwhy the consciousness lhe other spirlual of p anes,even if ii descends, can make no radicalchangein the earlh-consc ousness,I can only modilyor enfich t." So we see lhal th s sublirne ascenlfrom be ow. lrom out ol the sp ritualmrnd's p sphere,inlo lhe supramenlal ane oi being and consciousness, lhe lirsl radicalslep on the way to lhe is iullillment havebeen seekingin ourYoga. we Bul h s ascension rs nol enough:it has lo be completed a supremedescenl by irom above, ihe descentot lhe Supermind earth natufe For, in rl is only in the divineTrulh'Consciousness Supermnd lhat or lhe powerof dynamic lransformalion be integraland can absaAs a rnalterol fact, on y lhe supermind can lhus descend wnhaut lasing ils lull poweroi aclionifor ils action s a ways in trinsic and automatic, will and knowledge its idenlical al-ld lhe resull cornmensuratei natureis a self achieving ils Truth-conscrousness... y lhe supramenlal on Forcecan enlirclyovetcame d fticuI ol the fundarnenlal Nescience; with t entersan for [the] opposiie and luminous imperat Necessly whichunderlies ve all lhingsand is lhe or ginalandlinalseltdeterminrng trulh lorceol lhe se l-ex slenl Inlinile. This greaterlumtnous r l!a neces, sp s ly and rts sove.ergn imperative a/onecan dtsplace enlirely of penelrale. transform inlo ilse i and so iapracethe blfd Ananke " of lhe lnconscience So. this is lhe secondcap tal movemenl: descentol lhe ihe in Supermind earlh-exrsience earlh nalure B!l somelhrng and

much more has to be achievedbelore our goal of divineand dynamiclile upon earlh becomesa realised fact ot existence The involved Supermindas to emerge to meet the descendtng As a malterot iact, even now,the supramental principle is here secrellylodgedin a I existence, even behind lhe grossest is lhe S!perrnind that rs sustajning and governing lower worldsby its self-concealed ihis maniiested power and law ELrt present Supermind tnvolved hiddenbehlnd al lhe is and th s ower tflplicily mind,life and matter: cannotacl overlty ol it or in ils won nlrinsicpower,becauseoi lhe absenceof proper Instrumentat n lhe earth-nature. "powerveils 1tsell on lls and law worksunseen through shackled tations the ltm timpItsl and ng deforrnat ol lhe lesserruleof our phystcal, ons vilal,menla Nalrirel Now il the supramental changeot the who e substance ol our beingand ol all its modesand movements has al al to be made perlecl and integral, thls involvedSupermind Nalure in join m!sl [reI berated uponearth, withthe descending Superm nd, prepare ihe groundlor lhe divinedynamicplay oi Supernalure \.paraprakrti) and acI as "an overlly operattvepower n lh ler- n restra vr'orkings..., the sameway in whichlh nkingi\,4ind has 0eeneslabiished through humanevolut as an overllyop the on eratve powerrn Lile and Maller. This wou d mean lhe appearance n the evolulion a gnoslc beingor Purusha ol and a gnos1 c P f a k rI a g n o s l i c - N a t u r T . e r e m u s t b e a n e m e r g e n l eh sLrpramenlal Conscousness-Force lberatedand act ve withrn the lerrestria wholeand an organised s!pramenlaInstrumenlat.n cf lhe Sprrii n the lile and the body... It is n th s way thatlhe sp rilualpenuryot our wakingex stenceca4 be radrcally remeded and one can enjoya dlvrne Ie nereuponearlh tseif,even n the physcal embodied stence, ex w thoutany needto shun exislence plungeiniolhe ann htta or I on oj lhe spirtua Person some sell extrngu in shingNirvana,


o o) ct

*or :OF


The Spirit's topsand nature's baseshalldraw Neatto the secretof their'eparate truth And knoweachothetas one deity. the spiritshalllookout thtoughMatter's gaze And Maftershallrevealthe Spitit's lace Thenmanand superman shallbe at one And alllhe ea h becomea sngle lile. (SriAurobindo, SayltilBookXl, Cantol, p.7092) A manrtestation the Supermind of and its truth-conscjousnessis.,,inevhable:it musthaDDen thjswo d sooneror later. in But it has two aspecls,a descentfromabove,an ascentlrom below, self-revelation the Spirit,an evolution Nature a ol in (SriAurobindo. p.80) TheSupamental Manifestation, As the psychic change has to call in lhe spiritual to completeit, so thefist spiitualchangehasto callin thesupramental translarmatian complete to it...Thisthenmustbe the natureof thethirdand finaltnnslotmationwhichfinishes passage the af the soul thraughthe lgnorance and bases its consciousness, its life, itspowerand formof manifestation a comptete on and completely effectiveself-knowledge..So must be createdthe supramental spiitual beingas the firstunveiled and manifestattonal the truthol the Selfand Spirit the materialuniverce. in -18) (SrjAurobindo, LifeDivine, pp.917 The It, YY e have almos( cometo theendol our longo.sse,tal,oon howto remedy spiritual penury our waking physical the ot existence. an escape Not orattheleastaquientisttc withdrawal trom world-consciousness, lhe butralherthe integraland vlctoriousembracing the lifeof actionand creation andthe divlne of a IransfigLrration the wholeof our existence. whal we have of is


placebeloreus as our goal. Buta furtherpoint remains be elucidate lo here.Awellestablishedlineol spiritual exoerience showsthat whenever soul our gels involved action,it in losesholdand becomesnescient ils of passiveand so-called rmmobile, ttue slatus,whereasa withdrawallromdynamism and an involulion intopassivily makesit totallyoblivious it is activestatuswhich thus appears10 be of just a false supenmposition upon lhe lreedomand bIss ol the soul. Now,if this experience the only or the ullimateexpefi, is pertorce admitihat an acirvelife ence possible, lhenwe have lo cannotbe compalible withthe conscious experience enjoyand menioi ihe soul-status. fo unatelythis noi so.Thisallerna, Bui is lion in the nescienceof the activeand lhe passtvestaluses occursbecause ls only apartof our beingna dot lhe totality ii ot rt lhal shiits it cenlre and makes the alternattve movements. But in realitythereare not two distinciand separateslatuses: thereis instead only a unique dual slatus,a stalusembraces al lhe sametime boihthe aspects, staiicone and the dynamic the We haveakeadyspoken ofthe activeBrahman and the passive Brahman, thereare nol lwo independent bul realilies, one imrnobile, other mobile."The Fleality neitheran eternal the is passivilyof immobile Being nor an eternalaclivilyof Beirlgin movemenl,nor is il an alternalion Tirnebetweenihese lwo in ihrngs.Neitherin fact is the sole absolutetruth ol Brahman's rea ily...There not a passive is Erahman and an activeBahman, but one Brahman,an Existencewhich reserves lts Taoesin whal we cal passivily and gives itself in what we call its acttvily.Fort he purposes oJ aclion, there arc two poles of ane being or a double power necessary for creation,__Brahman does nol pass aliernately lrom passrvtly aclivityand back to passivityby to cessation its dynamic of forceo{ being....lntegral pos, Brahman passivityand the activity slmultareouslyand does sess Lolh the not pass alternately fromone1olhe other as from a s eep 1o a wakino."

here For, is of Theanalogy sleepandwakingaveryaptone aboul we state forget is normallyiind thatin ourwaking whatwe oblivi_ we in and sleep status while lhe sleep-stale become our a But exislence, ihisis so onlybecause small ousoi ourwaking belween and oscillales parto{ our beingmakes transition the And since this part cannotem' the lwo slales oJ awareness. ol nescient oneor il o{ the brace totality ourexistence,becomes station on depending ;tsparticular other thelwostatuses, ol the on sell-disciplinecanso wrden a proper ai lhelime.Butlhrough thal discernment onehasnomore conscious thescope one's ol bul change'over, can In_ and all-torgeiting thisabrupt lo make gaze sleadho d boththe stalesin a singleuninterrupted Aclion ol withtheexperience Brahman It is the same thrng lhe not neednotandshould externalise conscious_ andcreation Brah treedom thepassive of onelosethesilent nessandmake Brahman inbe of mannorshouid experience the immobile the statusThe of with compatible the tree possession ils mobile ordinarily iden' we arises lromlhe{actthat incapabilily apparent ves with only apart ol the totalityof our conscioustify ourse parl the ness-ihe mentalor at its highest spirituaLmental ol it parlalone through limited this the andseekto realise Divine consciousAnd sincethis iustaparland not lhe integral embrace theaspecls.Thus both ness, cannot simullaneously it and fromils awareness dynamis obliterates sellof status the passvitvloosens holdon lhe sellot aclion. Whenlhis pasiis falls so sivily enlire, mind-consciousness asleep, our becomes o{ or to say,enters the trance-state Samadhi elseis liberlnto Bul this atedinlo a spirilual silence. evidently is not the line from it For which would to lollow. "though is a liberation we like pariral il in ilsfluxof action, is earned theignorance the being oi Reality nescience the dynamic o{ by pltling on a luminoLls beingremains mental orauminous it: separationlrom thespiritual an slalusol exislence be_ seli-absorbed a silenlessenlial in lo or comes lhe incapable active consciousnessrepugnanl of is all activitvl'



The Conq!est

8ul our goalis the integral lultjllmenl our inteorat of existence, Inlegral simullaneous lhe and possesstonboth static ot tne and dynamicaspeclsol the Divine,as rs rne case wrth Sachchidananda Himself. this is possible But ontyif we possess lhe Inlegral consciousness. this integralconscious_ And nesscomesonly with lhe attainment the supramenlal ol Gno_ sis- For,as we havemenlioned belore,this cnosis is twolold Truth-Consciotisness, an inherent integral -knowtedge and self and al lhe sametimean intimate integral and consciousnessthe ot manilestation. a malter lact,Sulermind none As ol is other ihan Sachchidananda's powerof awareness world-awareness. sel, and andihusthe dynamically inlegral liberation futfimentthat and we are seektng aflercan be achieved in andthfough only this suptamenlalvijnanna, We haveseenhowto retainthe consciousness the oas_ of srve Brahman whileal the samelime parlropation lhe gtn consciousness the activeaspectof it. Bui thatdoesnol auto_ ol matrcally signily our nature-part distinct that as lromour inner soul-exislence alsogettransrormed be moulded the will and in irnage the Divine. thisis whalwe precisety of But needlor the lull llment our goal.For it isn,tmerely liberation our of the of soul, theliberation thedivine bLrl and transiiguration whole ot ihe ot our Nature, p,?kftirnuktj, pakit-rupantan, enabjing esthe tabljshment a LifeDivine of uponearth, thatis thetolatcontent ot our aim.Letus nowproceed showhowthisprakrili to tvlukti and Prakrili-Rupantara be integrally can achieved throuqh the Supermind. 8ul whalis meant soulor by Nature, purusha his by by and Prakrili? relatively Any prolound psycho-spiriiuat inquiry makes us awareol lwo elemenls ouf being, souland a Nalure. of a Purusha soul,individual universal, lhe observino or or is and erperiencing conscous exislence seentrgry Inactive bLt;nreation withitsbecoming, prakritior while Nature, again individual or universal,theprinciple thepowers thebecomrng, s and { ap_ peaflng an executive as Force an energy process or of which is

and lo drlve activities seen constitute, andg!ideallconcelvable formsvisiblelo andinvisible uselhem us and iocreate mVflad a flux suooorts lo incessanl ot aclion tor andcrealion." as slable Apparently, Purusha Prakrili and seemto be lwo differenl Principles. onlythal:in the ordinary Nol slalusol and drstrnct lhe and inlluence Prakriti ot seem conscious exislence, action of to ot As to bedeleterious theprogress thesoul. a maller lacl, put problem ol has as Sr Aurobindo so beautifully it,lhe whole liferesoves itsellinlothisone question: "What we to do wilhlhissoulandnature laceto face sei are this and activily, w th eachother, lhis Nature, personal cosmic conlrol, iiself uponlhe soul, possess, io wh ch lries1oirnpress it, determine andthisoulwhichfeelsthatin somemyslerious tot wayil has{reedom,control a overilself, responsibilitywhat a ils therefore turnuponNalure, own to t rs and does,andtries possess, rt en,oy, even, may or andthe world andto conlrol, s fromher? be,reiecl escaoe and ol lo ll is because lhisapparenl ol tendency the Purusha el the in th6obscuring action Prakrililhat ol nvolved selllost and if s6li'recovering soulleels sod oJalooldelachmenl noltotal a to backkom repugnance theplayot NaiLrre seks stand for and il anddestroy earthward tendencies thatil maysecurely so all possess slalic nfinity. ils Naiure more is appar Bulthisantagonism between Souland enl lhan real.lor in realily,lhey are not distinctand ditlerent Principles; lrenchanl in duality tictitious, represent is they t;he {acl, Two-in-One rather One-in-Two. lhe or lhe thus, ''There twoshowareOnce worlds: andplayin many are In Knowledge lgnorance have spoken met and and lhey interchange. Andlighlanddarkness theireye's are Thushavetheymade lheirplaywilhus Jorroles: Author actor as and wilhhrmsell scene,


He movestheras the Soul,a Nature she. This wholewideworldis onlyhe and she." Thus,lhe Purusha-Prakriti dualily, although separate ap. in pearance, in factinsparabl6. is Wherever lhereis prakriti, there is Purusha; wherever ih6ris Purusha, thre prakriti. is Evenin hisinactivity holds himself he in allherforce eneroies and readv lor projection: inlhdrjveol even heraclion shecarrr; withher all his obseNingand mandatory consciousness TO whole as supportandsenseol het creative ouroose." Bul why is thisso? Because, lheir6ssenlial in nalure and onginalaspecl, Purusha Prakritiarise ihe beincrol and trom di, vrneSachchidananda. a matter As aflecr,Se .conscro;s existence lheessential is natur the Being; is Saior pLrrusha: ol that lhe Powerof self-aware oxislence, whetherdrawninto itsetfor acting in the worksol ils consciousness force,its knowtand edge and its wiil, Chil and Tapas,Chaland its Shaklj,-that is Prakriti. Delight boing, of Ananda, theelrnal is truth theunof ionof lhisconscious being anditsconscious lorcewnether ab_ sorbed itsell lsdeployed theinseparable in or in duality iis ot lwo aspects, unrolling worlds the and vi6wing them,acting in themandupholding action, the execuljon works andgiving the sanctron without whichihe forceof Nature cannot act,executing and conlrolling knowledge the and the will and knowingand conlrolling delrminations th knowledge-lorce the of and welfares, ministering th6 njoyment enjoying,,the 1o and Soul possessor, observer, knower, ol Nature, lord Nature expressing thebeing, executing will,satislying setf,knowtedge, tho the min_ istering thedelight beingof lhe soul.There have, to ol we founded on lhe verynalureol being,lhesupteme and theunive5alrelation ol Prck ti with Purusha.Theabsolutejoy of thesout in itsetf and baseduponthat,lhe absolute of the soul in Nature joy arc divine lulfillmeni the relalion.' of Thuslheapparenl duality vanishes theTwo-in-One and re.

the or veaisHimselt Hersellin the divineSachchidananda, Sat is the con' Chit the lor Chilananda, Satis the Being, Purusha' lorce or Prakritiand Anandais the halo and executive scious union, ot aroma iheirindissaluble are andPrakrill union B!tthisessentialunityand ot Purusha -ot overly planes existence' lower the ol on real'sed lhe lower of planesol manifestation the Spirit.The tru inkinsicrelalion and division separalron and th16 a pramatic ha beenperverted along_ havedeveloped consequences all theirundesirable with srde. ot a plane exisl' of Alterall,whalis a plane consciousness, poise gneral or settled elsethan'a A ence? planeis nothing belween the Purusha Prakriti, and between world relations' ot involution sglf' or Nowwiththe progressive Souland Nalure. has concealment Sachchidananda, ensuedthe progressive of the ol Nature, tromheolher, reslll beone sell-hiding Souland svaraiya ingthatlhe self-possession the world-possession, and difficult achieve thesametime. lo at andsAmdjya,havebecom PrincipJe Now, depending the nalure thedominanl on of cosmic oi which Souland Nature the the decide andpower being around planes to weave we theirgame hideandseek, have of difterent ot consciousness existence. and Thus we have,in ascending order, malerialplane, a alife-plane theplanes mind. and of planes,the But even on the highestrangof spiritual-mind absolute harmony lhe unionof Purusha-Prakriti fully of is not recovered. even Thus lhough separate the lib6ration static and release thesoulbecome of feasible there, latter the cannotlreely possess Nature, become conscious its Lordand lransform il Into an etfectiveand flawlessinskumnlot divine manifestalion. Forlhatwe havelo reach planeol supermind,,Ihe the vij+and orgnosis Sachchidananda, is notonlylhe concentraled ot which consciousnessoflhe Essence, rnfinite and [but]also atthesame t meandiniinrle knowledg themyriad playol the Infinile. of


The Conq!est


In the gnoss lhe dualismoi purushaand prakriti, Soutand Nature d sappears their biuneunity, dynamicmysieryoi in the lhe occullSuprerne. Truth-being the Hara-Gauri lhe InThe is oi d an rconologrcal symbol (the biune body ol the Lord and his Spouse,lshwaraand Shaki, the rght half male, the ett hali iemae); ii s the doublePowermascultne born Jromand sup" pofledby the supremeShakliof the Supreme.,, Bul evenihen lasl po nl remans. FoT, do nol wanl lo a we w tirdraw lromthe matera planeof exislence ihe Supermrnd's inio sei-exisienlream: we want insteadthe supramenlaun on oi Sou and Naturein the very bosomoi the physcaly embodied exrslencehere upon earth. Thus, what js essentia ior the iuli lmenl ol our objectiveis not rnefelythe asceni nlo the supramental Gnosisbutthe evenlual lranslorming descenlof ts Conscrousness Forceintoour enlirebeingano naiureano a concom lant or subsequenl emergence the concealed ol Supermrnd al presenl nvolved here be ow,This tniluxirom aboveand lhe unveilng Irombelowwillbetween ihem remove whal s leitoi lhe natureol the Ignorance. The rule ot ihe inconscienl disapwtll pear:lor lhe e the In conscience be changedby the ouibursi will ol the grealersecretConsciousness withinlt, the hiddenL ght, n t o w h a t i t a l w a y s w a s i n r e a l i t y ,a r e a s o r r n e s e c f e l Superconscience". The supramental ng, the gnoslicsout,lhe Vijfianamaya be Purusa,lhrs appearing earlh-existence be lhe list unin wr ve ed manlieslation Sachchidananda the malerial ol in universe. Noi a self oblivion the lnfinite, an integrat in but seI possession and worldplssession the Infinite be its character rnove, rn will stic menl lt will be the I rsi to participate world aci on not only n in the Ireedom but in the powerand sovereignty the Terna. For ol t rec ves the iullness, has the senseof plenitude the God it oi head n ts act on t shares lorce,sp endidand roya marcho1 the the n|nile, is a vesse oi the orrginaknowledge, the mmacuate power lhe tnviolab bltss,iransmutes ie inlo the etere all

nalLrghl andihe eternalFire the eternalWinde the nectare. and of ll possesses infinite lhe Self and jl possesses infinile th of the ol Nalure... The gnostic soul is the child,butihe King-child; here rslhe royalandeiernalchildhoodwhosetoysarklheworldsand a un versal Natureis the miraculous gardenot the play that t res never....This biunebeingof Purusha,pfakriti as if a flam, is rng Sun anybodyoi DivineL ghts sellcarriedin its orbit by iis own nner consctousness poweral one with lhe universe, and atonewilh a supremeTranscendent,madness lts consciousness and powervibratng withan infinite senseof freedom and intenslty ln iis divineliie-movement....-a dance this also, a whirl ol m ghly energes, but the Masterol the dancehoidsthe handsot Hrs energes and keepsthem to the rhythmic order,the selftracedharmonic circes of His Rasa-Lila,,' Thus,wrthlhe supramenlattransforrnation beingand ot our nalure,lhrs earthly lie wiil flowerinto the Lrie divineand our wak ng phystcal stencewill be adivinised ex existence tnie, ol grarconsctousness dynamis, and Neither will one then have lo p unge Inlo tlre superconscient trance-state orderto experiin ence the AbsoluteExislence non -Exislence, to conlent or nor onesellwith the J vanmukti-status waitingall the whileior the linal releasein Videha-lVuktt. Because, then Nalureshal ve to rnanifest secretGod, The Sp rit shalltake up the humanplay, This earthlylife becomethe tifedivine. ln the wordsol lhe lvlotheri 'ln the supramental crealron therewillbe no more__.whal men n o wc a l g o d s . ''Thesegreat dlvtnebelngsthemselves be able lo parwtll Ircrpaten lhe new creation, lor ihat they us pul on what we bul may cal/ the supramenial substance earlh.And I there are on sorne!!irochooseto remain lheirworld,as lhey are, if lhey do in dec de not to rnanilesithemselves physically,Iheirrelattonwih lhe oiher beingsoflhe supramenlatworld earthwillbetela an



tion of lriends,of collaboralors, equalto equal,because ol the highestJivineessence willhavemanilested thebeingsol the in newsup@mentalworld earth. on "When physical th6 substance willbesupramentalised,be to bornon earthin a bodywill not be a causeof inleriority, rather whichcouldnotbe thecontrary, therewill be gaineda plenitude obtained otheNis6". going Butlhe question Whenis thisdivine is: Supermind to gointo descend the earlh-exislence orthe involved Supermind ing to emerge? Th answeris thal it is no longera question of when in lhe future,it is akeadyan established The divine fact. Supermnd descended the year 1956and a new world s has n already born,although yel manifest the grossphysical noi to consciousness man.The ol lrotherwhoalonewilhSriAurobindo has 'luminously laboured' d6cadesfor the descentof the Ior Supermind Hersell her vouchasafted this assurance: us "The greatest thingthat can ev6r be, the most marvelous thingsincethe beingof creation, mifaclehas happened". the "Themanifestation theSupramentalupon is no more ol earlh a promisebut a livingtact,a .eality. is at work here,and one lt day willcomewhgnthe moslblind, mostunconscious, the even the mostunwilling shallbe obligd recognize il." lo has nol yet ernerged. "The Only,the involved Supermind emergence lot the future, is but,ol course, now il is merely a of auestion lime:the orocessis naluraland inevitable."




The Works ol the Author ol the V6rtika We nowbeginthe examinalron theVeftika ot school. Allcntics a g r e e t h a t t h e V a r t i k a so n S r i S a f r k a r a ' s a l l i r i y a a n d T Cornmentaries were composedby Sri Suresvara, Brhaderanyaka as wel as ihe Narskarmya Siddhi. Our sludy herew ll thereiore lo Thecorn ntary lhe Daksinamurtl me on be confined iheseworks. [/anasollasa Slolraca ed the and the Balakar]da Commenlary cn Yejnavalkya Smrii,whichare saidto havebeencomposed by a personcalledv svafrjpaAcarya,cannolbe accepted be as onginglo the Vadika school,nol only becausescholarsare d vrdedaboullheir authenlrcity, also because but they advance vews n contradiclion with lhe teachingot the Varlikas The PairckaranaVArlikais also eft oul of accounttor the same feasonsTheretore shalllry to delermine we the natureo1the Varlrkatachingwith the help ot lhe earliestmenlioned lhree

The close connection betweenthe Brahma Siddhiand the Sambandha Virtika We havealreadymenlioned lhe beginning the chapler al oJ on [4andana(M.V.91) how, in lhe matterof the retutalion oj oppLrnenls'views, thereis much simila ly in !he lineol lhoughl of the BrahmaSrddhi and Suresvara's Varlika. This is especia ly lrrre n lho case oi the BrahmaSiddh and the nkoduclory portlonof SLresvara Brhadaranyaka s Vartrka, called Sarnbandha the Verrka.Thls ihemewill be developed lililelurlherhereto help a thosewho would like to make comparison the two schools. of Tfe co!rse .i try ng lo explain how lhe Absolute can onlybe anouN lhrou lhe Veda,sketches vanouslheoriesol the re, gh in





lalionbetween ritual-section the knoveledge-section the and ol the Vedaand .efutesthem.Thosesamelheoriesare also sumin mosllyon marrzed relutation the samewayin the Vertika, tor For lhe samewords. examole: of ofl \1j TheDoctine of theEliminalion the Univerce DesEverywhere the Vedalh6re is taughtlhe elimrin lirationsr Thus nation somedistinction ol somewhere. the ritualislic in iunctions heldlo be auxiliaries are towardsaplitudelor knowledge the Sell throuqh visibleresullot eliminatol the p.27;S.V (verss) ingdifferences. The B-Sid. 378-a3. refulalion: Sid.pp.28-30; 384,389,424-6. B. S.V is through 12)TheDoct ne thatPleasure-desie eliminaled ll /Ddulgercer is heldthatlhe ritualistic seclionol the Veda promotes aptitude knowledge the Sellby making tor ot every pleasure'desire p.27; 343-4.The available. B.Sid. S.V relup.30;S.V 345-54. lalion:B.Sid. ol ll \3) TheDoctine of the Discharye the ThreeDebts: is prepare torknowledge hed thatritualistic injunclions one ol the Selflhroughsecuring discharge the lhreedebis, ol wilh beginning lhatto lhe gods. Statemenl relulalion: and B. Sid.p. 36i S.V.436. of \4) VEw tha! knowledge the.Self entersthe Sphercol purilying pedo nerol Bitual:8.Sed-p.28. Ritual thtough the The reiutalion: Sid.p.31 S.V.427-35. B. ; with \5) The Dactine that the Whole Vedais concerned p.23 Three Actsto be Done:B.Sld. andthe wholeot Section pp. (Niyoga Kanda); S.V477-541. relutation: The B.Sid. 256: S.V 540-760. (6) Doctrine Ritualmay that helpthe Riseol Knowledge because its Results differ accordingto Motive with which it is perforned:B.Sid.p.27.AccepledS.V.322.Accepted with a oua ticatron. B.Sid. o.36.

(7) TwoViewsaccordingto which Ritualgarc eithet for Purificalion or else Patts of the Discipline ol Knowledge: Accepledat B.Sid.pp.27-8,36. Doclrine that rituals lor are lor knowledg, lhattheymusibe but awakening desire the given tortheactual lortheAbsolute:S.V14, up aliainmenl 322.Acceptance th doctrane rilualsare lo. purilicaof that t i o nS . V8 7 . 1 9 2 . 3 0 1 . : (8\ Relutation Differencei B.,Did. The wholeot Section of (TarkaKanda): S.V 917-86. Two where rival schools examare in these. andin olherplaces showa striking similarily, onlyof meannot ined, lwoworks the ingbul evenol words. Vattika The Rival Doctrines Examinedin lhe Sambandha lor Thelollowing a listol some is otherviews described purposes refutation theSambandha Vartika which nol noticed are oJ an in lhe Brahma Siddhi. (1)Thedoctrine symbolic are for that medilalions enjoined (2)Thedoctrine liberathat ihe sakeof liberalion. S.V20. soirl, in as tion,unde6lood abiding one'snature individual as formsol tromfitualistic action. S.V32. (3)Various arises lhe doctrine that knowledge actionare lo be combined and in lhreewaysfor liberation. 357. (4) Doctrine there thal S.V p e r t o r m r e p e a t e dm e d i t a t i o n is an injunctiono i (prasankhyana). that S.V761.(5)Thedoctrine knowledge is torthe sakeol meditation whichwil lurn leadto libera" lhat lion.S.V.438. Doctrine lhal knowledge all is lhe {6) (7) oneSelfis onlya piece symboiic meditation. S.V439. of waking Doctrine uppression the impressions the of of of (8) and olherslates. of S.V441-2. Doclrine ihe suppres_ sronof the mind. S.V443. Andthereareolherdoctrines thesameking.Why lrandana ol ooesnot relerto lhemwhileSuresvata clear. doesis nol





Relutationof Mandana'sPositionsin the Vartika The quesiion whetherMandana ol and Suresvara werethe person muchdisputed theywerebothAdvaitins same is that and lhaltheyeachquoted theirownworkthansamearguments for against dualists are lo b9loundin the worko1the other. the that It is also noticeable that in lrandana'sbook one occasionally linds the argumonts and evenlhe wordsof the reveredCommentator Sankara. Fromthis one may conjecture that the Advaitins been usingthesesameargumenis had with slight changes a longtim6. for Thencame Suresvara [s3.ya.whoaccepledandborrowed arguments the usedby N4andana other and lorerunners against olherschools whetesucharguments not did contradict ownsystem. he relutedthe contractions his But even of memberso, his own school if they did contradicthis own system.And it appears likelythat he did so at lhe comrnand oi hisGuru.This be substantiated a glance his Narskarmya can by at siddhi. (1) lt is anobdience lhe comrnand my curu that I to ol expound secretdoctrine the hiddenin lhe heartoi the Upanishads, whichendslransmigration takesone lo and awarethat il has also been explajned I by others. {N.Sid. l.3) This bookis writien neither gainfame,nor wealth, 1o nor delerential treatment, in orderto test lhe metalot my own but knowledge the touch-stone the God-realized al ol sages.(N.Sid. t .6 ) Froma considration lheselwo versesone mightconjecof ture lhal when AcaryaMandana's fame had spreadwide Suresvara Ac6rya composed independent an lreatrse calledthe Naiskarmaya Siddhi.lts name was a faithlul rellectionol ils contents, sinceit was writlento helppeopleto establish them, selvesin lhe actionless though Sell knowledge was composed also witha viewlo reluteMandana, who counselled

_ a ol to oi theonedesirous liberation practise combinationknow of (in affirmalion knowledgeand actlon ihe tormof repeated was [r.V meditaiion, 38,4,ad tn.).Therefutalion edgeihrough werein iotal and lhat by accomplished showing knowledge aclion conlradiction. in that combaled thiscon_ Tvpical theteachings Suresvara ol poinis. lrornwords derived two Knowledge textwereihe tollowing who liberation hasrisen and indireci, onlyheallains is ineviiablv meditalion other and ot awareness lhe Sellthrough to immedlate (lV.V. 5, nole);the that lalse appearances 101, ve measures act io be persisl knowledge offiheSelfcanonly broughl even alter allied visionof the reality on meditation one's an endby repeated (B duties Sid p.35, caste and ol 10pedormance sacrllices other by beencontradicled Sri Sankara, Thishadalready M.V. 100,1) lexi shows. as the Jolbwing comes (2)Theknowledge oneis (intruth)everliberated thal And knowl_ lrom no olhorsource. lromthe holyiexlsand first wlihoul of edgeo1the meaning a textis not possible words ll rs ol io calling mindthe meaning its component to oi certarn lhe meaning a wordis called mindon the that (in and basisof agreements dillerences the way one has for in the meanings whichit is heard wordusedand the knowoneselas lo In madelo sland). thiswaYonecomes painand actlonThe Seli, lhe puretranscendent boyond Seli of knowledge lhe inmosl fromol authoritative clearest arlses on (i.e. based identity-leeling) immediate awareness lhouart',justas it didlrom'Thou lromsuchtextsas'That XVlll.190-2 Nl.V59, 14).(U.S (verse) art the tenth'(cp. It was by quoting thesewordsof his Guruas his authority meditalion of thal Suresvare lhe reiLrtdd docirine repealed and thal (Prasankhavana N.Sid. 31-3; V 206-8) also lV S. Vada; in and knowledge ol liberation of action a lhrough combinaiion ol comthis hisVartika Naiskarmva re{ule doctrine Siddhi.To and VAdika, bination wrotesomeverses his Brhadaranyaka in he



beginning wilh on sayingthat onlyhe whowas without attachin mentfor lhe en,oymenl anything thisworldor the nextwas of a fil candidate liberation. for pleasures. (3)'Children alterextrnal run . .'(Kalha i.2) ll. pleasures dwells themis and again?He desires who and on reborn'(Mund. ii.2)andagain'He lll. who hasno desires. . . (beingnothing th6 Absolute, dissolvs the Ab: he in but solute', Brhad.lV iv.6). (Having thusdoclared lhal onlyhe who is indillerent the enjoyment objectsin this world to ol qualifis metaphysical for lgnorance, nothing andlhe next is required metaphyscial but knowledge, SriSuresvara conAnd tinues: ) To removemetaphysical knowledge. lo give riseto suchknowledg, nothing elseis required except ihe virlues beginning innerand oulercontrol. orderlo with In ol acquire thesevirtues,nothing required purification is but purificalion the mindnolhing required the mind,andfor is of butthe pedormance the obligatory ol dailyritualas a duty. Sincethoughl, wordand bodily deedarisosolelyfromignoranceof the Sell (readatma-ajnana), whenthal has ben canclled knowledge lhe S9lf,howcouldlherb d6by ol pendence action (8.8.V l. iii.97-100) on afteMards? One may nole lwo turtherdoctrines the BrahmaSiddhi of thatwerereluted Suresvaraby lvlandana argues asfollows. Every meaningful sentence communicalos a particular previously nol knownto the hearerIn the Vedic terts proclaiming Absolute, lhs 'catlse' the universal 'being' we findihe universal notion and nolion conveyed phrases by suchas'Thatfromwhich(these creatures (Taitt. (in areborn)' lll..1) and'Nolgross. .'.The6e . ideas themselves unrversal) acquire particular a meaning known not through olher means knowledg of whnthoiruniv6rsal meaning naris rowed downby themeaning olherwords the sentence, ol in eithr by wayof association of exclusion;and palticular or this meanp. ing is the burden the texl (B.Sid. 157,cp.M. V 99, 1).Or ol plurality maybe elfected through revelaagainthe elirnination of 'plurality' (readprapafrca-pdartha) tron-The meaninb the term of

is already known. And the meaning 'non-existence'also of is The is known. non'existence plurality the newlruthcommuof nicaledas a sentence-meaning the association by lhesejwo p. (B.Sid. 157,cp. M.V 99,1). word'meaning Theselwo lheoriesare tefutedby Suresvara. remarks He againandagainthatthereis noassocialion exclusion word' or ol in th meanings textsteaching idenlityof the true Seli withthe Absoluie. because inmosl lhe non-dualSelf cannol bethemean(N.Sid.lll.25, ingexpressed anysentence by 26;76. 902,909S.V 10;B.B.V iv.1406-8, L 1431; lll.iv. 29,33,46; 100,184,190). lll.v. (Brhad.Vi.1) remains In explaining text'TheInfinite, the verily, he expresses himself thus: (4) Reallity, whichdoesnotadmilof anydistinction between Godandthe individualsoul, appears through lgnorance to incl!dethisdistinclion. Whenlgnorance abolished is lhrough theknowledgo says"neitherthis that', that nor only Self the remains. Thereis seento be no association exclusion or ot word-meanings lorm a senlence-meaning,evena to no negation whenlgnorance, rootof all thesefalsenothe tions,is abulished through authoritalive knowledge derived (B.B.V fromthe Vedain the manner explained. Vi.21-2) The Treatmentol the Doctrine ot Bhartrpraancain the The Vartika We havespoken lar as il the principle so doctrine be relo futed theNaiskarmva ln Siddhi thetwoVerlikas lhatol and was lVandana [,4isra. il should remembred whathasbeen Bui be that described abovecouldequally wellhavebeenintended refule 10 Bharlfprapafrca. thereare somestrongreasons suppos' And Jor ingthisto haveactually beenthe case.Because Bhartrprapafrca was an exponeni the doctrine Dualily Nonduality, in he of of accepled doclrine the thatlhe meaning evonol the supreme texts oi the Veda was based on the mulualassocialion and exclusion the word-meaningsforma senlence-mearrng. o{ to




I t5

jusl quoledabove, Varlikasard'There lhe When,in lhe passage lo or s seen to be no associalion exc usionol word meanrngs (B.B.V 22) V iorrna sentence meaning, evena negation' nol ihat tolloweda lhal a occurredin the courseot a relulation interpretalion the lexl Thal is oi ol Bhartrprapaiica's summary n l i nt e . . . a on Likel\/landana, Bharlrprapaica advocaled combinal ol (l\,1. knowedgeandaclionfor liberalion v 87).AlsolikeMandana, there had lo be a new lorm ol he accepledlhal lor liberation ofaly by the mmediate knowedge,dilfereni lrom lhat conveyed lexts (lvl .v. 84). Again, it s lrue lhal Suresvararelers (as I lo speakrng ft/andana) lhe doclrne ol those who say The oi lexls knowedge I am the Absoule ar s ng lromthe upanshadrc depend son the assocaiion oi lhe meaningsof ts d tterenl to wordsand hencedoesnol penetrate the real{non component (N.Sid.l.67, prose inlro.).Neverlhedua ) natureol lhe Self less. he atlributes s leachlngto lhose who sel store on lhe lh knowedge of lhe injunct Once the w se man has acqurred on (Brhad V afirrmatron Seli alone.he shoud pracliserepealed take noliceol the allernat ve rv.2l ). And he does to anywhere rn to obedence to ihis lexl advocaled l\,4andana lhe words by 'Or allernatrvely cou d be mainlaned llral an iniunct would it on would be uselesshere,as lhe desirable end which it promlsed in broodng on somelhing one's alreadybe atla ned.Prolonged of m nd may grveriseto rmmediate apprehension rl and thal is p a fesull alreadyatla nabe in this very life'(B.Sid. 154, M.V 98.4). And lhere s anolherpoint. The wholelenor of Sri Sankara s tjpanishadis ior h m to cornmenlary the Brhadaranyaka on whilerel!ling lhal oi eslabish h s own methodol interpreialion lo Bhartrpranca.Thereeveryreason suspecllhalaccornplshis Lngthis was lhe main reasontor lhe composlion bolh ol the il. commenlary and of Suresvara Vartikaexplaining And we s V havedescrlbed engthin Chapter aboveon Bhartrprapaica at how both the commentary and lhe Verl ka estab|shthe r own

vrew oi lhe meaningol lhe lexl ot the Brhadaaranyaka aiter relutingthat of thartrprapaaca every slep. But we t nd no al elaborate relulalion IVandana this kind eitherin the corn ol ot menlaryor lhe Varlika. And we find lhe lollowing remarkrnlhe 'th relerring Bhartrprapanca: erefore, allthose who commentary, 10 are c everal thinkrng dillerenlinterpretatons lheVedaexp a l up oi the meaning lhe upanshadiclext diiierenlly. ol Evenso, I wou d accepl anylhrng that relexldillerenlly, Even so, lwould accepl anything lhal represented true meaning lhe Veda have the of n o t h r n g g a i n s t h e m p e r s o n a l y( B r h a dB h . l l . r i r . 6 ,c p . M v . a l . 1 0 , l l l , n o l ,p . 2 6 ) (l) They say (lhat is, Bharlrprapaica says,) One shoud alwaysmed lale ntensely the Absolute the rea . n ts on supremeformas the whole,bothas a collectrve wholeand parls'.somelimeshe speaks as a syslemoi nler-relaled ol the Abso utes constlutinga wholeas implying series a ol stales, alongwrlha cerlainbeingassuming thosestates, sometrmes describes Absoluiein lerms oi a cause he the assocraled wilh ils efiects.Sometimes the great lh nker descrbes il as a whole dividedinto dllierentparls. as a wheel s drvrdednto hub, fe y and spokes.Dd he learn Ihal, I wonder, the true tradilion? (B.B.V l. iv. 948-

s 0 ). .
greatexpertin the tradilion There s a (so-called) who ho ds, ior sooth,thal p uralily and |rnilyare one and the same.He sa d lhal name,lorm and aclionare bothditlerenl and non, dillerenlirom lhe Absolute(8.8.V.L v. 46) . . . And thereare rnorepassages this vetn,such as: There in is anotherol lhesegreatluminaries (Bhartrprapanca ) who e x p l a i n e h e f e l a l i o n s t o l l o w s . . ' ( B . B . Vl l . r2 1 ) . S l u d a . denlsmusl examine thesetwo views(those Sankara of and Bhartrprapaicaand accept chever wh seemsto thembest' ) iB.B V. ..255). A certainpersonwho regarded msellas h a greal -oxpeft inlheupan shadsinvenled inlerprelat an on




and spokeas iollows,qu le ol own, with great ingenuily, actually of any underslanding whal the Upanishads wilhout (brahmaAbsolulist is another mean'(B.B.Vll.ii.90).'There the example(of the spokes hub and vadin)who explains ll. fellyof a well givenat Brhadaranyaka v.15)diffefentlyn a orderto suit his own dogmasaboutthe Self constituting Here, a 11.v.67, N,r1.V.86,4) cp. forth'(B.B.V. whole and so taught, a specal pieceol wrsdom as certalngrealgenious lhai supp ed lree by Vaisvanara, a personis not I nallylib_ erated even when he has been liberatedfrom his lwo bodies thatlhe Abso "Theretore wholedoctrine (B.B.v. the lll.ii.41). lute s both one as a collectiveunity and many as the parts is a rneresuperstllronll may Dea spec al d fferentiated but preceol wisdomsupplied lree by Vaisvanara, il does n01 obeythe rulesol reason(8.8.V lV. ii.1187) Dependlng (not on reasonbut) on a free donationof wisdom lrorf on (B.B.VlV iv-391).This was lhe explanat Vaisvanara... sup givenby that augustsage,lhe greal Bharlrprapaaca, porledneither the Vedanor by reason(B.BV lV v 4l2) by ingenurty it He explained olherwisewith marvellous (B.B.V.V..28). as ol the In lhese and otherpassages, doctrine Absolutism thfougha plurality, of liberation and ihe doclrine nfectedwith and activilywere t relessy rnocked ot cornbination knowledge repeatedly When Suresvara in of and criticized hundreds ways. specifiedthe irue naiure ol the Self or Absolute as ne lher n had Bharlrprapahca he nor lranscendenl immanent probably the Absolulewas a un 1y mind-Bhartrprapaicawho heidthal ate who e and a pluralty as a systemol nterre ad as a colleclive 3 p a r l s ( B . B . Vl.. i v . 2 9 ,6 5 6 , 1 4 4 5 ;1 i . i . 8 8 ,6 1 ; l i i i i l 2 ; l l v l 8 ; 5 9 1 l l; ; i v . 4 1 1 , 4 7 3lil . i x . 1 5 6V . 1 . 3 6 81 V i v 5 6 9 , 8 4 6 - 7 , 1 2V 81 0 ) e it Puttinga this together, seernsmofe reasonab to sup poselhat Bhartrprapanca s ngledout as lhe chielopponent was And lhere is anotherrelatedpoint lhal requres to be refuted. was vrtti l{ Bharirprapa6ca's on the Brhadafanyaka investigatlon.

philoso' day,why is il that rneticulous so we I known n lviandana's pher drd nol so much as vouchsaleil a glance?As I am nol quesiion,ljust raise il and mysel able lo settlethis doubtJul and historians, whilewe ourselves wrllcarry oller t lo philoogists on wilh the malterin hand. Secause the unity and sole realily ol the sell expresses itself by nalure as awareness, il is self-evident pornted thal the Selfwas seli The revered Commentalor out He trevident. sad, The Sell is not a thing lhal a supersedes The and anylhng e se; tor il s self-eslablished sell-manitesl. be meanso{ knowledge ong lo it. ll does nol dependon lhem to (B.S.Bh.ll.iii.7, M.V.28,3).'We not base do eslablsh 1sexislence our doctrine the unilyand solerealitv the Sellon lhe aulhor ol of ilativemeans oi knowledge, since ihe Self is bare irnmediale awareness very nature. we shallshowlaterthal no means by so app y to t. The meansot knowledge lhemselves ol knowledge (N.SLd. resl in and dependon awareness'1hrs of Suresvara text .8S)shows thal h s teachrng iully agreedwilh sri sankaraon lh s po nt ln rnanyp aces in the Vartlkait is poinledoul lhat lhe presence and a so the absence meansof knowledge on y oi can be eslablshedby the seli as awareness, and lhat the sel s selt-ev dnt For instance ihereis the verseKrrowef, knowledge, on knownand cerlil!d a dependior their establshment the presence the Self On whal,lhen,cou d lhe Sel{depend rts lor cl Liv.870), thereare manyolher and o!^rn eslab shmeni?{B.B.V, s r n a r t e x t s ( e q . B . B . V 1 1 . i . 5 5 2l ,l l . i v . 9 1 ,l V i i . l 9 l 6 ,

r v . 8 9 1.) . .
llletaphysical lgnorancein Suresvara The revered Comrnentalor, is weil known,said: Superim' it post on lhus delind wrsecal lgnorarrce' Bh.l..l . ntro.. (B.S lhe c p l , / 1 . V . p . 1 9 ) . n d a n a ,l o r h i s p a i t , s p o k e o l n a l u r a l Ma melaphysical lgnorancen lhe ind vidualsouls {begnnrngless)





non-apprehenerther {B Srd.p.12).But he posedthe allernalive, (B.Sid.p.9),and then expressed a sion or false apprehension i.. p r e f e r e n c e b y s a y il n g o r a n c s p o s i t v e e r r o r ( B . Spd 1 1 , c p . gn e and the nd]' He [,4.V.92). aso said, Becauseboth lgnorance less,likelhe cycleol seedand sprout, v dua soul are beginning does not aase of argument il fo ows lhat the question circular (B.Sd. p.10,cp. M.V94,1).Bhartrprapaica said,'lgnorance is realize am all"' (l\, ses ol lts own accord, "l lt ia ure to 79, like desertp aces on parls ol the surlaceoi the eart (1v1.V.. l noreJ. The senlencesrcferredta in StiSankara'sCammentarywhen he was cansideringBhatttpnpahca's daclrtne have been given in very summary form here, But they are clearly reporled tn Suresvara's Vartika and quated in the sub commentaty there. 'lgnorance is a pawer of the Lard, even thaugh natural luncaused)".Thercfore,when it is manifest,it affects anly a part of the Lord and has its seat in this individualsoul' qfiandagirion B B.V. ll. iii.122).'As deserls and the like occupy same places an the earth only,and are nat universal attributeschanclerizing the whole surt'aceof the earth everywhere,sa Ignorancets nat a. at!.tbutcat ha <uptemePr'n 'pte t4nd'd"g', a" B.B.V lgnorancers however, says that metaphysical Suresvara, and the efiectsoi thal. lt is established absenceol knowledge nol rneans knowlof through ones owndirect experience, through throLrgh immedate experiedge or prooi.S nce it js established t ihe grip of the variousmeansol knowl' ence aLone, escapes 'established -"dge For I is only through lack ol rel eclron. Failure realise to thal one'sown Suresvara saysth s repeatedly. lts Seli rs the sole realilyis calledlgnorance. seal s the Self,as ll on. immedaie experlence. is the seed of transmigrat lts de(N.Sd. .7).'The consttuieslhe rberatron the soul' oi struction are only eilectsof lgnorance "established through uckol rellec' when lgnoranceisdeton'even likelgnorancetself.Thefefore, and rs turned inlo p!re slroyed,the whole world is deslroyed

.As Conscousr1ess' (B.B.V 1.iv.1329). metaphysical lgnorance is established throughtmmediate expenence only,jusl like lhe imrnediate experience am the Absolute,', when deslroyed "l so, throughthe 11se an authontalive ol cognttion, dissolves it and turnsintothe Seii'(S.V117). Thesetexisshowthat lgnorance is occasonallydeclared Suresvara be subject cancellation by to to through authoritative the means knowledge. shallhere of We quote some lurlher versesfrom the Vartikas throwlighton this. to (1)The sole causehere is impermanenl lgnorance, which means l do not know'.lt is established by any authori {nol talivemeansoi knowledge but)onlythroughone,sown ex_ pefience it, I ke the owl'sexperience nightof day. B.V ol of (f 176) The phrase'cause here'means the cause or appare limitationssuperimposedon the Self. oe-

(2) He who wouldwish to see lgnorance the sightpro, wit ducedby the authoritative meansol knowledge keone is hoprnglo see the darkness the depthsoi a cave w th a in lamp.Whatever appearshere in the worldas ,not_selt,is a resultof lgnorance. Henceit is also calledlgnorance. But knowledge has only one lorm, lhat of ihe SeJl.lgnorance has no othernaturebut failure apprehend Sell.lgno_ lo the rance s non-knowtedge' the sense oi.the oppositeol in s k n o w l e d g e ' s a ' n o n J r i e n jd ' t h e o p p o s i i e o ff r j e n d . T h e a, a conception alwaysbe intelliglble this sense.(T.B.V. wi in u.177-9) The nature of lgnoranceas not-self js simpty nan_perceptian af the Self. Non-perceptionol the Self is catted lgna_ rance (avtdya,Iiterally non-knowledge) becauseit is thecon tradictoryof knowledge(as'non-cat', in logjc, js the cantra dictory af'cat'). ,3 \or ca. lhe theorV rhal lgno.alceafisessponlanaoLs y from the supremeSell, ljke deserl placesappearing here


chapter.S and lhere on the surlaceol the earth, be correct.ll lgno_ Sell,lt wouldmeanthat lib_ rancearoselrom lhe supreme weredeslroyed, Or wouldbe impossible. it lgnorance eration ol the lhenon thislheoryit wouldirnply destruction lhe Selt., (B.B.V. ll.iii.130_1) of doclrine lhe Buddhisis. the erroneous Thesetwo verses werc compasedto rclule Bhartrprapaica.



Objections and answers on lhe subjeclof Metaphysical lgno' rance oi on In lhe courseol reilecting the lopic ol lhe cessalion lgno_ objeciionwas raised I the rance,the iollowinghypothelical Brahma iddh. S is ils the Absolute elernal, essencets ndeslrucl_ r 1) Srnce (which requires be deslroyed) lo lheretore, ible.lgnorance, canncl be of lhe nalureol the Absolute.lgnorancemust lrom the Absolule.ll it is not eilherbe or nol be diffefent diitereni, whai couldtherebe in it thatcouldbe deslroyed? ll is So lel us say that lgnorance mere non'apprehenslon. {romihe Abso ule. . . . difierent couldnol lhen be anything Bul knowledge whichputsan endto lgnorancers elernally preseniin the Absolute. And nothingelse aparl irom lhe lgnoAbsolule exisls.. lt, on the olher hand,metaphysical lhen how couldil wrongapprehension. rancewere posilive be broughlio an end? For we have now pointedout how be such a theoryhas defecls,whelherlgnorance laken as be ng olthe nalure oftheAbsouleornolol its nalure (B.Sid. pp. 8-9,summar zed) was as Iollows The answergivento ihis objeclion nor (2) gnorances nol partot the nalureoi the Absolute, rs unrea. I a secondthingover aga nst il, nor rs I a togelher M e n o r s i t r e a l . T h a ls w h yt h i sl g n o r a n c1 sc a L e d a y aa n d lhen. lf a Ialseappearance. il were lhe nalureol anylhlng. lromthal thingor nol,it wouldbe periectly dillerent whelher

rea and so would not be lgnorance_ il it were tolally But Ltnreat, a llowersupposed be growng in the sky, il trke to wouldnoi enterintoexperience. it is indelerminabte So (eilher as reat or unreal,LSid. p.9)...lf the matter is concervedthus, lgnorance may be taken as belonging the 10 indivdual souts,regarded dirtrent as lrom the Absolute, wrthoul deieciscomplained by the opponent, the ot (B.Sd. p.10summarized) , On the same lopic, an objection quotedlrom lhe Sloka is Vartlkaoi Kumarita. (3) ll rgnorance werelhe true natureoi anylhing, couldnot il be exlrrpated ever.For what exists naturally can only be deslroyed the advenlol some dilferent by externaitactor. Bu1lhose who claimlhat all is the one Seli cannoladmt the advenl oi any dillerent externatfactor (S.V. Sarnbandhaksepa PariharaSS,6;cp.tV.V95, inlro.) The relulalion the objecllon l\randana through of by is appea ro lhe rn delerminabilily lgnorance. ol But lgnorance never is lound reierredto as indeterminable anywherein Suresvara,s Varl ka. I rs lhereaccepled betngof the narure non appreas or nenson, expfessed the feellng,ldo nol know,. we musl as So if nk how lh s objection wouldhave been met by Suresvara. In r'r s aonneclon Ihe loilowtng verses are worthyol considera, l.lrThough th/smelaphys/cal ignorance nalurat, is mani is it festonlyon accounl the Selfas immedtate of rs ousledand destroyed knowledge, darknessis de by as slroyed by lhe riseol the s!n. Begrnningiess lgnorance rs seen lo be destroyed an instanlby metaphysicat in knowtedge u.hichhas begrnning time.We do nol acceptthal in (nowtedge sLJcn requires realfirmat Thoughhis our in_ on. nrosl Sel{ is thus self-uminousand is the Witnessof atl lnorance and ils eltects,yet it is not propery known bef o r e n r e t a p h y c a l k n o we d g e h a s a r s e n t h r o u g ht h e s


C h a p l e r8



ate experence disc pline,as our won rmmed upanishadic (S.V 1088-90) (ot ldo not know') ndicates. is Here rs what the passagemeans.lgnorance nalura, tor immedate experience'l not know. And we see do we havethe in how priorabsence knowedge s re ol everywhere experience knowedge,without movedonceand lor all lhroughadventitious there beingany questionol the need for re-affrrnatonoi such 'Howcou d there Nor knowledge, shouldone ra se the oblecton which is knowledge nature?' by in be lgnorance the Absolute, knowledgelhrough the For beiore lhe rise ol metaphysical texts as adm nrsiered a Teacher, by the Se I can !panrshadic one and as un lgnorance)both the ignoranl as appear(lhrough k r o w n . l h o u g hr l s e l t h e W i n e s s o f a 1 lk n o w e d g e n d l g n o i a lgnorance. eventhough rance Andso in lhiswayour metaphysica is lo nalural(andso beginningless), brought an end buy lhe admelaphys knowledge singfrom lhe Vedictexts. cal ar venlitrous How ca. lhis be so. f nolhNor shoLr one .aiselhe objection, d n! apart lrom lhe Absoluteexisis?'Forwe acceptall experiknowledge ence as lcomes beiorelhe riseof metaphysical could be Very wel . Bul how do we exp ain how lgnorance ate experience? And il t can be shown eslablshedby rmmed tiral t s so eslab shed, how coud il be lhat defclsare nol w and ftrodLrced Ihe Absolute into through contact th gnorance expe' ts ellecls?And how could t, i estab shed by immedrale we r ence,be brought an end?On thrssublect havelhe Io owto ng vefses, (5) Everyone, therrnatural lgno' evenchildren, I express w whenaskedaboulsomething rancebasedone experience wiLL oi whrchthey have no knowledge.They say. Ido nol know anylhrng aboul rl. . ln regardlo th ngs lhat are en like on t re y beyond rangeof experience. thrngs the rool the lhLrs d flerenlfrorn no Hrmalayas, wakingexperiences ol lhe il.lraamess sleep There s no break here n experlence sa i as $ie ha'/elhe experieace io nol ii.\'r Arrdlirhen

we see sornething tormerly drdnotsee, (theremusl lhal we have been experience nol seeingsince)we knowaller, of wards Formery I did not knowit'. (S.V.993, 995,6). ln lhings thataretolally beyondthe rangeof expeience, ane knaws from ane s own experienceof'lda not know'lhat they are not known.This is establishedlitst, and lhen suresvard gaes on ta shaw how a persan may say of samethinghe naw eyes, 'Up ta now, I did not knaw il . The idea ts the show that all ignoranceE e stabrshes by experience. t6 gnoranc. s e-ldblisqed one r own e\oerienca .ven by thoughthe Se I is free trom lgnorance. Belorethe rise ot lhe knowedge lhal all is the one Self.we have the exper e n c e l d o n o tk n o w '( B . B . V . l V . 2 l 6 ) . . l ln lhat tyhtch.because l6 of the very nalure cf immediale 2t',/ateness. lhere can be no lgnorance, there is nevertheless, ielore lhe rise of metaphysicalknowledgeof lhe Self the nation estabhshedthraugh immediale awareness l do rot knaw my l7) That pr nc ple (theSeli) s sell-revealed. Thereforet is everfreeirom lgnorance,Thatwh s everireefrom lgno ch rance s iree aso from the impurtes thal spfingfrom lhe a t l s r ( B B . V .l i v . 2 1 3 ) The neaning is lhat the Absolute is nol lauched by lgna rance at its effects because it is ever sell"evtdentta lself. (8) He who has knownlhe Seli n its lrue nalureknowsthat i1s connect with lgnorance on impossible past,presenl in or luture ll rs then seen lhat the nolionlhai the pre Sell was connectecj anylhing with through elsewas onlyestablished ack of retleclion. (B.B.V Liv.217) The enlighlenedone whoknows theSell in immed@ieexpeleFce hes the convictian lgnaranceis tmpassiblein me in pasl, p'Esenl fulurc-The nalionof connec onwi!h lanatance or \/as





eslablish only through lack ol rcllection - that is the meaning. Thefacttha! lgno?nce and itsellectsarc estabtished ontylhrough lack ol rcllection i6 often mentioned in the Varika, lor exampte in such places as: B.B.V. l.iu1170, 1529, t341: .iii.t92, 224: lll.iv.131; lll.viii.31; lViv.3O7. (9) Merelyhom the rise ol the correctidea kom the iexl 'Thal thou a 'one findthat lgnorance, together with ils eflects,neverexisted the past,does not existnow,and wtll in neverexistin the luture.And so il is not possble lo show by aulhorilalive meansol knowledgelhat lgnorance betongs lo the Self,or to explajnits natu.e or indicaleits source. For its sole exislenceis our experience it. He who is oi afflicled with lgnorance cannotdeterminethe lruth about that lgnorance, is only one who has experienced final lt lhe realiiywho can make the discovery, relerence that, by to 'lgnorance does not exils'.(S.V 1e3-4,179). The cessationof lgnoranceis onty intelligibleit lgnatance is seen to be established only thraugh lack af reftectjan. is anty (htough the vision of ane wha has knawn the Setf that ane can say, ll cloes to exist', because only after such visian will one have seen tha!, unlikethe Self, tgnoranceis not se| estabtished. And so, from he standpointof vtsionof the fjnattruth, questions such as'What is the nature of lgnorance?, ar ,Wheredjd it come fram?'are simply not raised (as it is known that Ignatance had ln the viewol Suresvara, lackof metaphysicat knowtedge is the causeoi lransmigfatory experience. erefore he lays il down: Th 'Failure to realize thai one s olvnSell is the sole realitys called melaphys lgnorance. seat is the Self as immediale cai lts expe, rence. lt s the seed ol lransmigration. deslruction lts conslitules lhe liberaiion the soul' (N.Sid.1.7)_ ol On th s proinl, M mamsakas lhe and othersraisean objec llon. Absenceof authorilalive knowLedge may assumeone ol

threeIorms- wrongknowledge, absence knowledae doubl. ol or [ro ol lFes6.{w,ongknowledge osubtj,b.rrg p;srtrverea I and lies,are explrcatrie due to somedelectin thetactors knowl, as of edge (Kumarila, S.V CodanaSutra54). Basing ths...1r...|1 th s texl from an acknowledged authorjiy,lhey that erronehotd ous knowledge, beinga positive reality, can functtons cause. a bul thalmere ackol knowledge cannot regarded the cause be as oi tranmigralory experience, becauseil is nol a postllve realily. Th s was probably reason lhe whyAcaryaMandana the ma; laid emphass on posttive erroneous knowledge lhe nature ol lq, as ' r o r o _ L er e m a r k g . N o n - a p p . e h e n s r o n . n b e i n ga n o n - e n r . i y (abhava).cannol be the cause ol anythjng' (|Vj.V.92. intro.i. Agd _srlhrs SsLresvara argJeoas Iollows. (l0) Afe you sayingthat,in the case of error, what is ne_ gatedby an authoritalive meansof knowedgeis rcality?ll realiiy were negated thus,whatwoutdbe tefitor an authorilalrve means of knowledge knou/?... lo How could fa se ? t o w e d g et o b e ' e d l t t yT l e l a t s es " o r t n p r a , t t ^ q n a - L -JJ; o, hnowlpdoe being lalse and 'l o"'"g ,"at,t;- lh; on y come irom a greatgeniuslike Kurnarila. Even ri the erfoneo!snottonot a snakeor lhe lk

were as rearity n*",ioll,inflt"l,"jr: raken a '" n""n,

pearance whenidentified the rope,and,as such,would with be contradjcled cancelled knowledge the latter.lf and by o, erroneous knowedge hada cause,as it doestn Kumanla,s tfreory, then he oughl to be able to stalethat cause. L he were lo say il was a real etlectbut had no cause. thal would be laughedoul of courl evenby children... iact is lhal The ,wrong n the tnad absence knowtedge,, ol knowtedoe,and 'doLol . absence( 425.7,1368) Wl at s arquedhercis thatetrons7us 4nsr1.^.a;.2n tt^rc.,t | ,L,st h^c t that non.ent y) ot knowtedge n", ,r"*nii i" canttadictedand cancel absenceedby authoriAtive "", knowledge. ntnce erroneous knowledge can anly a se as a resul! of ab-



Suresvara The reveredCommentalorSankarahad declaredopen y thal was of the sole purpose the Upanishads to pu1an end to super' ihe entireupanishadic leachingis besaying,'And imposition, gun lo communicate knowledge the sole realityot ihe one ol the Sell,and lhus lo put an endto thissuperimposition, causeol reversed this fin.) But Suresvara all evil'(B.S.Bh.l..'1, as righl his own viewvery clearly follows:'When viewand slaled absenceoi knowl arisesit cancelsand conlradicls knowledge thereis no neediorfurther that has beencancelled, edge.When cognition. The facl lhat a eiforts1o cancel posltve erroneous is can be cancelled only so becauseil lmp es fa se cogniilon harm us when How can ia se cognllton absenceof knowledge. (8. So is rool has beendeslroyed?' B-V Liv.437'8) the queston and I shallexplan whal appears ar ses whichview is between, to rneto be the truthin this maller, said that lailureto discrminale The reveredCommentator n o t - s e l fw a s t h e c a u s e o f t h e i r m u t u a l ihe Self and the wilh But superimposition. in sayingthis he was only concerned For experience. he ng the m nd funclion as the basisot empiricai one fromthe other(Sell the says,'through fa lurelo dislinguish based on and nol self)...there resulisthis worldlyexperience intro.). his Gila commentary In wrongknowedge'(B.S.Bh.l.l.1, whichis iniact(nota leal too,we i nd lhe words,'a "coniunction" of superimposilion ihe Fleldand conjunct but)a meremutual on wlththeirallribules, the Knower the Fie d (M.V p. 35) togelher oi by a superimpos on that is condilioned a ialiurelo discrimnate t l-26, lwo ullerlydistnct entities one ifom the othef (Bh.G.Bh.Xl tion superlmpos cp. Ml.V.251,6). ordinary worldlyexperience, In ol silveronio a piece oi shell occurs when there is lailureto d scriminale shellandsilver.When the belween lwo phenomena, iron the revered said lhat our mulualsuper,mpos Commenlalor of Sell and noi'seJ was condilioned a iailureto distrnguish by belweenthe lwo, he was assuming p!rposes ol exposilion for that lhe same lhing thal happensin the case oi the shellsilver error happensalso in ihe case ol that superimposition Self of

sence of knowledge,the Mimemsakas'obiection was incoffect. The treatmenl ol lgnorance by Sri Sankara and Suresvara Compared In the inlroduction his Brahma Sitra Comrnentarv. to Sri Sankaradeclares lhal erroneous cognition superirnposil is on. (Selfand nonHe says: ;'Andyet, thoughlhese two principles self.pures!bject and object) are utterly dislinclin nature, there s a failure dislinguish lrom the other,and each,logether io one wilh its atlribules. suDerimoosed and identified is on wilh ihe other. Andlromlhat thereresulis ihis natural worldly experience, basedon erroneous knowledge and involving synthesis the a of rea wlh the ialse, whlch expressesitsell as "l am this" and "Thisis mine" (N4.V 22,4).He also says'Superimposition oi is the natureoJ a lalse idea' (8.S. tin.).And he , deciares metaphysical lgnorance be thal very erroneous 10 cognition, synonymous with superimposition. ln Suresvara's Vanika,however, metaphysical lgnorance is said10be non-discriminalion,the nalureol lackot or absence ol oi knowledge, example, havei'Therelation For we belweenthe Self and lgnorance the Self is held to be that between the ol Sell afd 'beingconsliluted the Self withoutbeing awareof by lhe facl'.This lundamental lailureof discriminalion, calledlOnoranceot one'stfue Self,is said to be lhe causeof (theapparenl existenceof all) lhe creaturesof the world'(B.V Liv.381). A luriherversewas addedto indicale ihal absenceol knowledge 'Absence was ihe one core ol erroneous knowledge. of knowledge, constantlypresenl as il is, is identical with erroneous knowledge; causeand erfecl, as they are constant conemilanis' (B.B.V.Liv.386). he makes his view clear wiih the verse, An 'Fromdoubtwe deduceabsenceol knowledge. Fromwrongknowiedgewe deduce same.lf we are asked,'What the essence the is reply'Theiressenceis abol doubl and wrongknowledge?'we (B.B.V l.iv.440). sence ot knowledge'


Chapler 8

Suresvara n . s u p p o s i t r o n( B. . S B h . l . i . 1i , l r o a d J i n . ) ..


and nol sell lhal conditions empirical all experience- lhe two Bul casesare noi lhe same.In lhe case ol the worldlyexarnple, the one who saw lhe silverwas alreadyestablished indrvldual as empircal expefience belorehe saw il. In the caseof lhe mutual superimposition the Seil and not-self, oi however, Sell is nol the alreadyeslablished an individual as experence belorelhat super mposrtron nrade.The sell, ai thal slage is not (yel an rs ndivdua experiencer and so nto) yet in a posilionto'lail to d scrrminate Sell and not se l'. So we cannotspeakol any such {ail!rre discrimrnale the causeot the mulua supermposilo as t on ot Sell and not selt. For lhe teachingis that becoming an nd vrdu?l experencercan on y occurthrough sa d supenmthe posrlon. lt lo ows lhal (rnlhe caseof lhis in I al superimposilion that makesall olherspossible) was not inlended assertreal it to Iemporal sequence non-discriminalion superimpo belween and sition, onlylogical but sequence according the conceptions to oi lhe humanrnindlhe COnceplion superimpositlon of impliesthe priorcondilion. conceplon ol non-discriminalion rls ogically as As lor the objectron lhal lhere are no exceplions lhe rule to thalabsence knowledge lhe causeof all emp ical phenomeoi is na, becausewrongknowledges ts eilect-1h s obleclion may be answeredon srm aT nes as lollows. The whoe nolion ol causeand ellecl,we may say,lallswithinsuperimpos on. For t unirlsuper mposilion had lselfalready come nto being,il cou d n o t s e i u p l e m p o r a o r c a u s a ls e q u e n c ew h i c h d e p e n do n l , Hence our own view is that, n relalionto lhe Sef, all ap, pearancg non apprehension, of doubtand Wrong-apprehenston riseI superimposlt and thal in this conlexlthere s no occaon, sion to enquireintothe natureof its material eff crentcause. or as lhere mighlbe in lhe case of lhe rncidental superimposilions thatoccurin lhe course empiricalexperience. Ol Forthereversed (i.e.uncaused) Comrnenlalor says. Thus lhis natural beginnrng lessand endless supermposrt whjch s of the nalureol la se on,

And Suresvara accepts thissarneview,butexpressest n a presenl constantly dilierentway by sayrngAbsenceol knowledge, knowledge'(8.8.V,1.iv.386, as I s, s dentcal wilh erroneous p.31 cp. N.f.V. 1). So one should not supposelhat there is any tundamenlaldifference belweenlhe lwo systems lhrshead. on n Whenthe maller s exarn ed in lhis lght, il s Ia r to see trealmenl non-apprehension lalseapprehenot and Suresvara's form of the lheory sion as d rectedonly lo reiuting pariicular a lgnorance was erroneous cogntlon-lhe Iorm that metaphysica was advanced anolherschool(ihatol by n wh ch that doctrine Bul non-apprehension cloubl and Mandana). wrong apprehension, (r.e. experiencer w ihin can on y occur n lhe caseof an ndividual lhe realmoi superimposition). Such is our own view o{ the mal' ler. Enquiry into the seat ol ignorance and the obiect wilh it conceals who does nrela The Brahmas ddhi raiseslhe question'To physcal Lgnorance belong?'and answer'Wesay "it be ongs to p.10). We have alreadyexamined the indrvidual souls"'(B.Sid. a Bhartrprapaica held thal rneiaphysc th s v ew (M.V.94;95). gnorance y sprngs sponlaneoLrsfromthe Abso ute,and,modisou fy ng a pori on oi the latler,has ts seat in the indlvidual . lt s, however, characterisl oi the nofsef- Lislen now to lhe a c wordsol Suresvara. (1) Now,lgnorance cannolexislrn the void.ll musl always Furtherwe have lgnorance somecne ol aboutsomething. be exist,and on y lwo. already eslablished iwo calegories that Fromlhis it follows thatthe seatol the Selfand lhe not'selt. ailecls) lgnorance(lhe conscious beingwhich lgnorance cannolbe the nol-seli For the very nalureol the not'sef rs Even i lgnorance, cannolaf{ectlgnorance. and lgnorance it coLrld, whal dillerence wouldthe tiseot lgnorancen lgno


Chapler 8 rafce bringaboul(thatwe couldsay thal il was an eventat a l?l


Nor s the atla nmentoi knowedge possiblen the nol'sei, cthaton-a couldarguelhattheremusthavebeensomecontrad Furlher, not_ lhe in tory lgnorance the nol-sell(for it to negate). ll seii is born oi lgnorance. is absurdto supposethal wh ch is by ogrcalyand causaly pr or can only ex st supporled and de pendenton is own efiect.Nor,again,has lhe not se I any form wherebyil could ndependeni and d Iferenilrom lgnorance. of serveas ls seatand supporl. (wh ol Thesearguments ch retuleihe possibilily lhe nol sell showihal t cannotbe the serv ng as the seatoi lgnorar alsc, ce) the nol-selfls e objectconceaed by lgnorance lher.Therefore by nor ne ther the seato{ lgnorance the obleclconcealed lgno ve as Hencewe conclude, the only femaningallernat lhat i1 s the Seli a one wh ch is both lhe seat of and the obleclcon_ I A c e a e d b y l g n o r a n c e .l l o i u s h a v et h e e x p e r i e n c e d o n o l kfow . and in the Vdawe hear'l am on y a knowelol lfre man V 1 r a sm y c r d ;I d o n o l k n o wt h e S e l f ' ( C h a n d l l l . 3 ) . ,
l\or oo -.r'gLrenl.! tsrhle ?gain-l rF o q.rdssacl

per What.then. s the oblectconcealed this lgnorance by larning the Sei/The Selfis thal objecl. io Bll is rt nol a lacl lhal gnofance ncompat wilh the Seli,srncethe latteris ot lhe rs ble very natureo1knowedge,and is withoul (so differentlation thal t cannotserveas a seat lor lgnorance, whichwouldimp y a dlstincton belween seatand the thingseated)? the And is it nol lhe case lhai the Sell givesr se to knowledge, and s contradiclory to lgnorance olherway too? in To this oblecton we rep y that lgnorance compalible is with the Seli. For in reallty the Self remalnsund Ilerentialed.t ap pearsto become lfereniialed knower, d inio knowledge known and throughmere gnorance alone,jusl as il is throLrgh mere igno rancethat the rope appearsto becomea snake-the Seli and in the roperemainrng really quiteunaiiected. Hencewhen gforanceis shakenoll lhere s complete absence alllhe evilsof ol d L i a l i l lyN S d l l 1 n t f o . ) . AnciSuresvara'sview is lhat from lhe standpoint of the highest truth there is no lgnorancelor anyone. (21No.Thenotionihal lgnorance has ils seat in the Absoute anc!belongsto rt is itselfonly magned in gnorance. Fronr standpo oi lhe Absolute, the n1 lgnorance intoway can e xs t ( s . v r 7 6 j . Whal s heresaidis ihal lhere s no olhermiaphysicagnorance, wilh ls seatin the noi-selfoverandabovelhe lgnorance s,.eled the Se I thalobscures Self Bul lhis does not mean in the llral one can rlterprel Suresvara be sayinglhal there s no lo otlref gnorance the empifical at evel,suchas lgnorance she ol rnlhe shell s ver error. Thatwoulddrsagree with h s arguments menl ofed severalt mes jn the prevous secton (M.V112) and supporledwilh the usualexampleslike the rope-snake, aboul absen.e ol knowledge beinga iacior (andthe iundanrental iactcr) n error,over and abovelhe erroneous cogniltontsef But Iiori the stafdpo nt of the highestlruth lhere is on y one lgno

app y to the Seli.)TheSel{, ndeed. s not rdenlca1 01lgnofance [/oTeo !,r' gnoranc, nce its natureis pureConscousness. s th a ver, (lhe flse ol) gnorancen the Se f produces d fierence n ol And oi the formol an obstruction knowledge. atialnrnenl knowlpossble because oj knowedge the Se i s lhe source edge s oi Nor has the Se I the characlerlslic being an eliecl oi lgnof (which, we haveseen,prevented not-se iromiunc lhe rance, as t oningas ils seat):for t is rock ilrm and raisedh gh abovea And I na ly,the conscoLs Se i has a formand changeby nalure. whereby canserve ii lndependent lhoseoi lgnorance, o{ existence as a seat ior the laller.Hence we conc ude that t s ihe Sel a one that s aiiectedby gnorance.


8 Chapter



rance,which has the Self lor its seat and aiso lor the object kindsoi lg_ iwo dilferent whrchil conceas. Thereare not really Lsallhewishedtosay.Ths w be madeclear norance. And that We 1 at lvl.V T5 (wherehe deniesa realilylo lhe s ver ereor). on at have alreadyreferred [1.V.69,9 to his refutat ol the doc_ Thai was said in the courseot lfine o{ two klndsof lgnorance. Vadins(exponents ng ol inlroduc a refutation lhe Prasankhyana meditation repeated through the doctrine thatI beralon cornes ol iollows: on lhe lexts),whosedocirinewas as (3)They (the Prasankhyana Vadins)hold that thre are a The nat!ral and adventitlous. ad two k nds of lgnorance, venritious kind appliesto worldy obiecls,the naturalk nd disappears lhroughthe lgnorance lo the Self.Adventitious riseoi knowledge occurring once,as in lhe caseol the prince ler broughtup as a ioresl-dwe and th nking himsei to be he such.and who remembered was a pnncewftena mLnrs'Youare to a toresler, you are a pr nce . ter camelo 1e him, through these Nalura lgnorance, lhough t may be removed relurns, we as once,nevertheless oi knowledge occurring and see irom exampes of attachment olher deleclsarising lrom gnorance once more,even in the cas ol thosewho lV. truth.(B.B.V. v.881-3) have knownlhe metaphysical was This coni rms our thesis,as it shows lhat Suresvara and rejecled ii. oi awareof the dcctrlne two kindsof lgnorance Commentator In lhe sameway in the systemol the revered with supenrnposition, ls himseli,by whom ignorance dentltied jusl as lt s le I to b n practcal the Se f is the seatoi lgnorance experence ( n lhe Iorm'l do not know). Bul thereis no occaston for subte lheores about t, Fof the who e noi on ol knowledge to On and gnorance ilselibelongs the sphereol ignorance. thls \i/emightquotethe Iollowing. (4) li you ask'To whom does this lgnorancebeong?'we lf feply'To you who ask this queslion'. you lhen ask, But

does nol lhe Vedasay that I arnthe Lord?'werep y,']i you are awaketo this (you will see that)thereis no lgnorance iof anybody (B S.Bh.lV.i.3.) (5) ll may be asked,'Whose th s lgnorance"/The is replyrs, 'It belongsto him to whom it (Bh.GBh appearsio belong'.

x| 2)
(6) The Teacher says:You take that which rs the supreme I and which s notsubject transmtgration Se lo wronglyand have the conviclon 'l am subjectlo lransmigration'. You take lhat wh ch does not per'ormactionas a perlormer ol aclion,you take one who does not enioyemp rica exper. you -ance lhe emp r ca experiencer, takethatwh ch alon-o as y exisisas f I werenon existent.That melaphysica rea s lgnorance(U S. (prose) seclion5tl) Hef aso we see lhat the leachrngs Sr Sankaraand ol S!resvaraare esseniially same Bolhtakeabsence knor('1, the oi edgeand erroneous supermposrtion lundamenta o ne. as ly The Operationof the Meansol Knowledge The facl ol obleclsbeingunknowns not estab shed by !he means ol kno!|/ edge (perceplion, inlerence. reveation, elc. l it because is the invariab pre-cond belore means know, e tion a ol edge can be appled. li t couldbe eslablished a validmeans by ol knowedge that an objeclwas unknown, this wou C irnpy the absurdresut lhal the stateof a thingas unknov/n woLr persisl d ior everlwhereas knowthatlh ngsprevtoLlsunknown we y some t r f e s c o n r e1 0 5 e k n o w n c p . M . V 1 1 4 , 2 n d 3 ) F o r t h e s a m e a reason t cannolbe eslab shed by lhe valid meansol knovrledgethal tl ngs ar,o doubto. erroneously In (s represenled fcr va d kro\r edge rernovesIhe doubl and m srepresental crl S V.688). Indeed. meansol knowedgeonlyapJ:r 1ovrhai s the y i o l a l l y! f k n o w n 1 B . B . V ,v . 2 5 8 l P e r c e p l i oa n d t h e r e s t a r . L r meansof knovr'ledge precise because y pLri end to r!tIo an they



Su.esvara in rea ty.Hencelhe word be ng' on referto only one ent ty ancl t r s t h a t a n d l h a t a o n e w h i c h t s L r n k n o w n .h e i n d i vd u a l T experencerandthe means knowledge h1s sposal bolh ol at d are experencedas appearances a selJof uminous entily. And n ts that ent ty wh ch ts Be ng and (because is lhe on y realty) I s ii t h a ta n dl h a ta o n ew h c h i s u n k n o w nN . Sd . l l l . 7 - 8 ) . ( Aga n, a meansoi knowledge establishes obiecl, ke a an pieceof she lhat is already existent belorethalmeansot knowi edge is app ed. lt does nol estabtish existence anything the oj lolallynon ex sienl. But it wouldhave been wronglo have sa d tlrat the usory s vef for wh ch the she I was mislaknwas ex slentbut unknown,rkethe she was.And t wouldhavebeer ','/rong have saidthat the siiverwas elernalyex stentblrtunto knov/nirkelhe Selt Therefore is wrong,tn the case oi lusory it srlver, say that a meansof knowledge app ed io removea to is s p e c a l n c r e m e n l o ig n o r a n c c o n c e a t n gh e s i l v e ro v e ra n d e l . abovelhe ignorance that conceats Self (B.B.V. lhe lV.r|.j66-7). It is the !nknownshe ihat is wfongly nierpreted sIver.ln the as sameway the Selfis wrongy interpreted the not-seli lhose as by who have not gainedmetaphys knowtedge. the exampe cal In knowedgeol the illusory silveris not knowledge lhrougha va d meansoi knowledge, herethe ex slenceof silverindepend_ as eft of the illusorycognilon s never eslabtished. Nof is lhe si ver' I usionbasedon lhe app icatton a vaId meansof knowlol edgeto the she I as lgnorance lhe shell s not removed ol (B.B.V v v.904). In the caseot erroneous knowedgeof the Sell,lhe phenom enon that the srlver-lusionexampiewas intended illustrate. to no cognt on bearing the nofsell are examples the applca on ot t on oi va d cogn t on. The nol sell can nertherbe known ncr unkncwn any morethanthe illusory ver can lbecaLtse does sr t not-a exlsi).Nor can lhe Seli be knownthrough va d cognI on a beafng on the not,sef; ior a cogntionbearing the nol-sell | on \/ n.t deslroy ihe gnorance felatng to the Sett. Ffomthe emprfcal

te wh ranceof potsand otherobjecls, ch lalterare themselves oniy in and through(theSe I as) immediale vealedas unknown neverlrearon lne the experence Therefore meansol knowledge withoutalso bearingon the supremeSell (S V 1002) nol self Potsand otherwor dly objectsare known on y througnan au and meansoi knowledge, do not ose lhe r condition thoritative be without one.TheSelf,however, ng lhe seli of beingunknown to rea established lty, may be understood lose lts condilon of throughthe nreansol valid knowledge be ng unknowndirectly (the Vedc texl) and withoutan act of cognilionproducng as (S.V.1004). resutantcognition. Anandagiri explains this verse af Surcsvara diffetently He says: The Self cannot be knoatn wiihaut the help of a cagnilian thrcugh the meansaf validknawledge(i.e.theVeda) an account af its vety nature as inmost Self and realny. Far I E anly consclorsness in the farm of a cagnitton lhraugh a means ol vahdkno^tledge(as oppasedto the Self as pure Conscloustess/ in thatcontradrclslgnorance.Consciousness itspure larm does (since it co exists with il as its Witness) ta clasa This is nat in contradrctionwith the true teaching af the sys I lem. Nevertheiess, submit that what Surcsvarats rcally saying Pals and ather waldly objects h the present verse is as t'ollows. by established the empiricalmeansof knawledgedepend onthe self-luminouscognitianrcsulljng fram the meaus af valtclknorr'll-"(lge ta lase thetr state of being unknawn. The Selt',hawever' ].)ses il direclly thraugh lhe Vedic text (M.V.l16). lt does not depend on a self luminous resultantcognitian'fram lhe applrca tian al ane af the means of knowledge ta lase its slate cl being from right'knowledgeby nature unknawn. For it is non dift'erent cou d not even what was reallynol_self ln 1rulh,hon'ever, oi reachthe stageof be ng !nknown.Thegrealphilosophers al experence obiectslike pots are schoos hold thal in practical wh before r se ol the cogntionlhrough ch tireycome the -rfknown thereare nc d st nctrons 1obe known(B.BV lV.lii158) However



Sursvara neouscognttton and doubtcan no morebe knownthrough vaId cognition than ignorance can. (The rule,namey, that whatis braughfioan erdbya validcognilton cannotbe a, abtectrevealed lhal vatidcognition). by (A.B.VLiv.2S7). (5)Pats and otherobjeclsinthewo darc knownonlythrcugh the valtdmeans ol empitcal knowledgesuch as perceplion. elc Until they are so known, they remain unknown.But the Self becauseil is a self-evident realily,musrDecomeknown wtthautthe hetp at an act ol cognitian.(S.V1A0O4) (6)Thal (the Selt)withoLrt takingcognrsance whicheven oi the emptrical meansol knowlsdge couldnot righltydeleF mine lhe not-self-howcan the rilualtstsdeny lhal the Upanshadscan cornmunicate knowledge it? (S.V 551). ol (7) S nce everyobiectis unknown beiorethe idea01it Irsl ar ses in oLlrminds,and since(evenas unknown), exlsts il by the powerof lhe one reatity (sat),il is thal reatrty which rs {ullrmalely) lhing that is unknown. the The Sett,wh ch rs lne reartymanilesting itseltrnbolhthe knoweranorne means ol knowedge whenan ernpir cognilion be ng soLlghl, cal ts andwh ch s revealed ts own power- thatis (atways) by the ent ty concealed lgnorance by (N.S. .7,8) {8) In the case of the tttusory cognition s|ver rn whal is oi rea y a pece ol shett,the vald meansoi knowtedge ex, pressesils validriy reveaIngthe she and showrng by that lhe atter ex sted belorethe means of cognitton was app ed.BLltno validmeansot knowledge bearson rne s ver wn cTrrs nol st'town have existedat al. when illusory lo sl|verrs erroneousty perceved jn a pieceot she , there s no s ver be ng revealed valtd cognttion exisl n lhe by to same'r"/ay the shelldoes. thal Thereis no silveras a rea ty al a erlherprevio!slyunknown,like the shell.or prevr oos y kno\!n (though mperfectly) like the Setf. lhe rea. iBBVtv.166-7)

give rise the however, variousmeansol knowledge slandpoint, spheresThe app cationoi in to validknowledg theirrespective which, (pramd)' in results cognition a validmeansol knowledge is experience, ilsell it is ot the naturo ot immediate because In slandpoint the identicalwith Selt.Hence (fromthe empirical (ap meansol validcognitlon whichthey havethirplay)allthe ol knowledge lhal Selfwhich is revealed pearto) communicale neithercomes selt-established But in the Upanishads. that,being goes. lt does not stand in deed ol a valid meansol knowl_ nor in however, prac arelamiliar' edgetorevealit(lB.V 11.526).We 'l do nol know'inrelalion rl' ln lo wilhthe leeling ticalexperlence of ihis sensewe are ignorant il, andthe validmeansoi cognlion Thus whenlhe this lgnorance. us the Vedaliberates Jrom called causes praclicalexperienceol an Lndivdua lgnorancethat by has his experlencerand meansof knowledge beendeslroyed lhe meansol vahdcog lrom the Veda'all arising lhe knowledge And lhis meansrLe realrza nilionceaselo be such any longer' tionoi man'slrue end (S.V 162,10007) Here we subioina lew verseslrom the VaftlkasI uslrallng of lhe way Suresvara's of examining validrneans knowedge ( 1 ) T h e m e a n s o t v a l i d k n o w l e d g ed o n o t p r o d u c e ' u n k n o w n e s s ' o r t h e v e r y r e a s o nt h a i t h e y p r o d u c e 1 'unknonness !!ha1luncton 'knownnessil lhey produced . va ld knowedge fullll?1BB.V rv 295) woLrld samatlerol mmedlateaware' (2)Ourrgnorance anl,4hing oi \ta and ceases precedes d cognilion ness,and invariably oi by be thereiore, eslablished lhe rneans with t. ll cannol, (S.V.686). valldcognltlon. to of (3) li ignorance a thingwere accessible the ineansof a pol it wou d be real,and like knowledge, obiectssuchas ior wouldbe unknown ever whal was al any time u4known

statedlhe rulewhi'h showsthal erro (4) We havealready

Suresvara (9) The illusorysilveris only knownwhen ihe she ls nol known,In the same way,lhe not-seI can only 0e Known ls experience' nol known (ln when ihe Seli,as immediate cannotbe the objectoi a valld silver lllusory ils kue nature). unlikelhat ol lhe shell,cannot as cogniiion, iis exislence, by fromthe cognition wh ch il is known' apart be esiablished known in other circurnas since it is never eslablished does nol reveal silver-cognllion Sincethe illusory stances, oi lhe shellas an object validcogniion' it cannolbe a means al all, for lack of an object The llusofy of valid cognitlon lor cannotbe a meansot validcognition lhe sllvercogniiion as it does not cancel shell any more than it can for sllver' its of lgnorance the shellor assurne iorm And it shouldbe sllvercognthat,as in the case oi the illusory understood that bearon the meansol validcognition tion,all apparent al of cognilion allfromthe stand_ means nol seliare notvalid poinl ol the highesttruth) The only exceptionis thal (i-e iexls oi the Veda)wh ch bears the suprememetaphysical o_ rae innost Sell. A porsons inmost Conscou\ness is untll the herein worldas LJnknown he is enl ghtexperienced (appropriate) meanso{ knowledge(lhe supreme ened by the lV.iv.901-6) vedic texrs).(B.B.V. is ('10)But whereihe cognition (nol of the not-selibut) ot the {ormand natureof the Seli,beingpureConsclousness on all excluding else,there is no dependence any turlher rises,t neversels Onceihisknowledge meansoi cognilion. (r8. .526). iaught 1rle (11) lt is noi the case (that if the Upanishads Sell of sole reality the transcendent the Vedictexls enjorng Allvalid meansol knowl' wouldbe contradicted). in rituals oi validitytill knowledge lhe Se i' For all edge relainihek (S V162) in, culmllrate but end with' that. that (12)Thelgnorance givesriseio lhe wholeplayot knower'


and knowtedge knownis cancelled enlighlenment, by whichis of the natureoi identity withthe one inljnite Self,arisinglrom upa, nrshadrc lexls tike.Thalthou art,.(s.v 1006) (l3)Therelore Vedais a validmeansof knowledge the in that rl destroys lgnorance the Selt.And this is man,shigh;st goal. of Such is the view of the wise_ (S.V10OO7) CANCELLATION ILLUSION OF In 1necourseol refuting the (Mimamsaka) theorythai per ceptual,effors arise from failureto perceivea dislinction(akhyativada) Acarya[,4andana goesontostatehisown doctrine folas (1) Therecould not be the correcting_cogniiion ,this is not si vel tf errorhad beenmefe non_apprenenston, srncenolh_ ing.positive resultfroma non,apprenenston; can a non_ap, prehens cannotgive riselo any idea,as tr ts on a non-extsl_ ence.On lhe otherhanda positive erroneous cogniirori,re_ vealing'sitver, did not in iact exisl,In a nearbypercep_ that t ble object,or a cognition.fevealtng,(cltstance) silveras tl rrwere ctose,woutdgivea positive resuii(in ihe form of an dea subiect canceilation)... do not hotdthat to We lhe cor, rectrng js cognition.this not silver,merely negatesthe ex_ slenceol silveror of an objectIn coniactwiththe senseo, srght. hold that ti eiiherdentesthai the thing in We contacl !1/ the sense oj sight is silver,or else denjes th that il ts s ver thal ts rn contactwith the sense ol sight. A non apprehenston cannotsiand as the objectoi eiiher o, these negalons, :rom the mefe factoi beingno more tnan a tatt_ ure1oapprehend. one mustthereJore necessarily fesortto the theoryol positive erroneous cognition (vjrprita-khyati) if or e rs io accountfor the facl thai therels anything positive r o n e g a r e(.B . S i dp . j 4 3 ) . d rry'n6314 e3ni, r s a y sr n a l r e s h e . t ) . r e o D l e Lo t l h e , r - , -, r ' t s o u .rlvercoqnitron.



il (2) In erroneous cognition,is notin itstruelormas shell lor ol as lndl lhe shellstands obiect lhe srlver_cognrtron the shellwouldpromptno activityin its lrue Jorm lt stands up ol as in the formol silver, thereis an activity picking (8. Sid.P.147) on founded lhat. is Variklalgnorance laken as a non_enllly In Suresvara's posi_ percepl'on erroneous the (aDhava). Neverlheless, cloclnneol lorm, a under dilJerent is cognition clearlyapproved lrveerroneous 'The above ot beginning lhe versequoled at as is shown lhe ' (B B V is when shell nolknown the is rllusorv silver onlvknown t!4.V251,6). 1V.1v.901, on Mandana the ques' is Noclearstaiemenl forthcominglrom But exisis. there aclually silver lhe illusory or lionwhether nol is silver a mete thatlhe showing clearly in areverses theVartika anywherehas which no realexistence aooarition to not r3rThe nolionthissilver'does refer any realentily ol knowledge silver lt anywhere. lurnslherewas genuine In lhe shelland thal the silverwas lo a genuine exrstrng 'this'(nota genuine in existing trontol us) Some object nor neither'silver' because sayihat,in the silverillusion, 'ln,s (asassocrated silver) be sHown anywher lo can wrlh or elsethevmusiexislin theWitness in the mind Buthis oi also we denv There is no knowledge any object at all by caused talseknowleclge' mereapparition is here.There a (B.B.V. 1.iv.275-6). o'obiec' cannot ol anywhere a lalsenolion rne exrslence coglhe illusoryobjecl' illusory proved byvalidcognilron.The be and experiencer so on-alr thelndividual itself, lgnorance nilron, oLl means cognrtion by lhe oi not tnese e eslablished by valid a 'r redialee'(pe'|enca chanoeless consciousne5) o{ in arises the like (4) Therefore appearance a memory an ol experiences oI lhe lmpresslonsprevious m ndlhaibears changeless theelernal, only But silver. it manilesls lhrough

andunitary light thesupreme ol Self.In lgnorance lhreis onlythe individual experincor hisexpenonce_there and is no reatobjectof validcognition beyondthem.Hencelonorance and its indivrdual experincer obiects fh;im_ are ol med'ale apprehnsiontheWitness.There noteven ol could be an individual experiencer his empirical and experience wilhoutthe supportol pureconsciousness (samvit). jn For. theirtrue natur,lhe individual knowerand his knowledoe and its objects,whichtogelher constitule not-sef,a;e the nothing pureConsciousn6ss. but (B.B.V 1iv.279,02). Thus lor Suresvara pointof introducing example ihe the ol perceptual rllusions rllusory tike silver wasto show thatthewhote vision lhe world of wasa mereillusion.The illusory appearance oi theworldrisesup in the Selfwhen laherramatns lhe unKnown. Evenlgnorance cannotmanitest exceptthrough supportof the self-evidenl pureConsciousness. Suchmaniteslation occursin theabsence deepmotaphysical ol reflection. lhis pointthere On are the following versesin the Vartika. (5) Theretore our familiarity all with vajidempirical know! edge.with apparen?ly valid empirical knowledge anclwith invalid koowledge (error) as alsowjthmetaphysicat lgno_ rance-ts madepossibleby that specialmeansoJ knowf edge(theSelf)whichrequires nothing elseto ifiumin its objecl_ Thiswholeuniverse objeclsthatcomeinlo beino ol dndpassawaycanonlybe known through specrat this ini ternalverifjable principle, whichis self_svjdent indpend_ and entoi anyothermeans knowledge. o (B.B.V 1.iv.272_3) The intenal veiliabte principte is the 'Self-oot-yetknown,. ,Ananyamam' means,selt-established independent any and ol athermeans knowledge'. ol (6)This erroneous cognilion cannot correct be knowledoe , onesponding anyobjecl, il doesnolretate to as today o;. iec'ol vatidcognttron. Because is known, cannot il it said





perceived somenotlo exist all.Because is directly al it as present,il is nol admittgdto be a memory. thing actually (B.B.v. 1.iv.274) The erraneouscognition is not an iclea coftespondingto a real object, nor is it absence ol knowledge,hot is il a memory. phrase'lhefalse Theleaching thisverseis hke SriSankara's ol place of whathad previously beenseen al appearance one at memory' anolherplace,al lhe natureof (butnot identicalwith) ll.i. lB.S.Bh. 1. intrc..). Authoriryot theVeda:Roleot NegativoToxts ln thiswav.because Sell hasthus beenshownlo be the lhe it be as onlyentily thatis unknown, mustundeniably accepted phiThustheVedanta being onelhing lhe lhathas10be known. losophy has a seltledand well-demonstrated objectof enquiry, whileotherohilosoohies nol.Thefacl thal the Sell as immedo reality demonstraled all lhe is by d ale experience a verifiable is means cognition.Thal Consciousness isaccepted very which oi and as the resullanl-cognilion following uponperception iheother valid meansol knowledge beingappliedto exiernalobjectsthat veryConsciousnossaccepled the subject-mafler is as ot with the Upanishads, which theycommunicatethehearer ihe to aulhorilyof a validmeansof knowledge. ll is forthisreason we do nolaccept vedictextslo that the jusi be aulhoritarive because theyare Vedictexts. They are accepted authoritative as because doubtand wrongknowledge andso forlhareimpossible;n Selfas immediale the experience, knowledge which theyeffectively communicate. Srnce metaoi physical lgnorance ils effects onlyeslablished and are through lack ol deep melaphysical rerlection', can be removed it solely by knowledge arrsrng lhelexts. lrom Because Se'i ts ol lhe Norshould one rarse oblection, the lgnorance ils own on lhe nature knowledgecan eliminate ot il

Whatis lhe needot any fLrrther tactorsuchas Vediclexls?,For tgnorance? is atwaysa vatidrneansot cognrtr ::-"t..1:1:*. r,on. provides resullant.cognition rn whrch a whtch turn,emo;es rne uh(nowns ils object. the Sellrs notcontradiclory ot But to metaphysicallgnorance, conslant toras anoeternal awarenes s rl remains impermanent co_existence withlgnorance. what So destroys metaphysical tgnorance-and ttreontythtngtn;t it is destroys the Selfwhenit hasbeenimmecliately experi;nced in itstrueformthfough Veda means cognition. the as o, ,The Norshould think, one lrue nature the Seilhasto be of sellted lhrough iogical argumenlaiion, employing method lhe o, agreemenl driterence. appeat the and Why to Veda?.For rs rl onry retalton lgnorance theSelfappars In lo thal to rnanilesl as cause sffect. lrunalure and lt cannol otscoveredils manib in lestation eilheras effeclor cause.So logjcal enquiry the by method agreement djfference, ot and whichkeatsotefiectsand causes, notawaken to a knowledge will us ol thetruenalureof theSelf Agarn, Se[ is theAbsolute theAbsolute the anct is the Selt, . l"er'idenlrly t,respecial is thern6 theupanrshad,c ol te\ts, '" _0ra subjecl thatcanbe approached anyothermeans by ol Knowreoge tromthose aparl texls. should raise obNor one lhe leclon I themeani^gs ihe words .,Sett., of "Absotute,.and are w-t n hLr ancomorehenston,l means theymusr lnal oe .o'rnal a ownrnrough sorleolhe,means knowledge ot aparllromver. od .evetalonandlhenverbal revelatton could beanaulhonla. nol rve rreans knowledge-or themeanings ot etse o, nLsr -ormarhumancomprenension, lhewords !e oevond rn whichcasethe 'absoiute wo.Os ano"56l, woutd ine,lecttve tacK any be tor ot ,n"lr meanins. elher casetheirmeanins In ::::::11:::_ 1',1 Ld lo co_stlLle ttse

themeol the upanishadjc leacF,1g.. SJcn o ooleclro..s not righr Fo. infact meanrng the word.seJt. lhe ot ,drrrar,asreternng lhe to essence lrue natureol anylhtng. or ,-

rsramir,ar exp.g5s,ng as '| icgr',rroeA Ved,c ;::]i"^1"':.?.i^"""lexl can therefore very we emp,ovlhose

{rhe Absoture)

Suresvara nolmalhuman thatlranscends a meaning to words communicale and oJ identity theAbsolute lheSelt namelylhe comprehension, suporanothr andheaven of knowledg the deili6s We have texlsol the Vedain justihe same lhrough th matters nalural thouarl'and'l am we ln lhisconnection findtexlslike'That relation. pairs in ofwords subiect-predicat theAbsol!ie'having in o{ meanings the words each that Fromlhiswe conclude the ol qualilied qualilier. theprocess qualiBy and as suchoairsland ls expenencer) individual sullerer'(the ficalion element'th lhe 'thou', theelement and ol hom eliminated themeaning lheword 'notdirectly ol lrom known'is eliminated the meaning lhe word 'that'. these properly prepared lhrough siudnl acqukes Hnce the indicated Selt,indirecily of ol textsknowledge the identily ihe 'thous' and throlgh knowership of as the meaning the word with pointto lhe Consciousness the hearer), o, (which egohood ol meaning theword'1hat" indicatd ihe lhe Absolule, indirectly ol exporience that(transcendenl is Thisknowledge immediate (i.e which cannot dr' be ol principle) is which notthe meaning ealher it by) rectly denoted any sentence; is notcommunicated to lorma sen' of or bv lhe exclusion associationword-meanings oi Hero tence-meaning. lhereis no needof the applicalion any 'Jrrherreans ot knowledge lhe lext has beenptoperly {once as is reterence to Consciousness the Real, sincethe understccd), (alauis in and consciousness its tnle nature super_lerrestrral There awareness kika),and Realilyis of the natureol absolule quarter other lrom on canonlybedependence knowledge some Vedic lert in a casewherelhe otherthanthe or on sornething ot ol is ihe thinglo be known within scope someoiher means fromtheBlhadverses lhe In knowledge. thisconnection, following aranyaka Vartikaare relevant. which initially is to (1)Thaiwhich hasullirnately be known, and knower the and unknown whichtranscends individual - thatcan be known thls in and his knowledge its objects


(B.B.V. worldlrom lhe Vedaand from no othersource. tiv.339). (2)Thal which lo beknown has here, known and lhrough the is Upanishads th6 means valid as ot cogniiion, pureCon' whichmanilests as the resullanl-cognisciousness, also lionwhenthe empkical means cognition applied of are lo (s.v159). external obiects. (3)Nordo we maintain thereason taithin theVeda that lor is its ownstatement it is of suporhuman that origin(atBrhad. ll. iv.10); reason theimpossibilitythe usual the is of causes (human of invalidity slalments ol origin, whichimplies fallibilily, being accessible other to means knowledge, ot elc.) (B.B.V in the statements V6da. ol ll.iv.325). (4) N4etaphysicallgnoranceiis elfeclscannot proved and be wil to exist,eitheril take as idenlical the Absoluteor as Henewe say that it is only established all 'for ai diflerent. lackol reflection'. oplion Th lhat the etherof lhe sky is bluelikea lotus-petal dayandthenchanges become by lo like is accepied black thebelly a bumbl6-benighl only of al lor lackof rellection. should thallhe whole One see notion ils eltecls ot the existence metaphysical ol lgnorance and (B.B.V ls an illusion lhe samskind. 1.iv.332-3). ol and its affectsare So we see that nelaphysicallgnorance indeleminableeitheras the rcal ot as anything dilferent, and (accepted) theyarc established onlyfor lackof deepciticalreflec(5)Though lhe and enlghtened nalura, Selfaccepls iolby known, th6 ableto do so, erates being not being onlyentity sinceit is ihe onlyentity that is doesnot desiroy The lgnorance wilhout aidol a valid cognition. SelJ de' the onlhepedesstroys ownlgnorance its onlywhen mo!nted The ta ol a means validknowledge, notolherwise. of and In lgnorance, al ance means validknowledge of destroys


Chap]er-8 wrththe Se 1,when it bearso nreality. (B.B.V. lV. .181-2)



The Self as immediate experienceis not of itself in cantra, dictian with melaphysical lgnorance. Nor is a mere means al valid cognitianan ils own able ta conlradict lgnorance, unless tt ts applied ta ls object and issues in a rcsultantcognitian (cp. M.U 29,5). That is the meaning. (6) Because causeand elfectowe theiroriginto meTe TelaI ve cognition, cannot one findreallty eilherol them.Hence in reasoning agreement by and diilerence, whichoperates in ihe realm of cause and effecl,cannotlhrow tighl on lhe rea ty laught in lhe Upanishads. The linal rea ty can be knownonly through the upanishad texts,ihe sole means c {of knowing t. (B.B.v. lV.lli. 400-1) The Self is non-dual,so cause and et't'ect nol real. Hence are there cannal be knowledgeafthe Self thtcugh reasantngby the method of agreemenland differcnce, (7)The iactthalthe a lrue Se 1is idenlical withthe Abso ute and the Absoluleidenlical th lhe tfue Se { s the spec a w topicoi lhe metaphysicaltexts the [Jpanshadslike'That n thou art';and it cannotbe knownihroughany othermeans ot knowedge... The use ol lhe work 'se f'ts currentin the word and nol restricled that ol the metaphysicalerm to Seli'.Equally,iheideaol'magnrtude',conveyed bytheterm usedlor the Absoute (Brahman, lrom rool brh.lo swe l), is lam ar lrom cufient use,Thus the meaningsoi lhe nd vidualwordsof lhe texl'l am the Absolute'are knownlrom wor d y experience. What,then is the obstace to lhe iormalron ol a senlence'Tneaning lranscends thal sense experience lrom lhese wordsas jlxlaposed in a sentence the in Veda?Eventhe meanings suchlechnicaterms used by ol the r tua isis as Lrnprecedenled' the occLrlt ( .e. powerol the riiual),deily and'heaven'areknownirom wortdlyexperence. Bui in their case, loo, a specialmeanlnglhe kan,

scends sense'experiencelearn is tromlheVedic text.(B.B.V lViii.115, iollowed S.V 861-3) by (8) On our view,thal whichis nol lhe difeclmeaning any of sentence(ytz. the Selt or Absolule,which cannol be di rectlydenoted any sentence), knownthrough by is immediate apprehens as lhe meaning on of'thal'and'ihou'through the exc us on (ofthe mutuallyconiradrclory parts ol lhe wordmeanings) ihat arisesthroughthe words being placedin sublect-predicate is ihe same processas that 'Verily, e lher in wf|ch occursin the sentence lhe the pot s the same as the etherinto sky'. (N. sid. lll.9) 'The lhere in lhe pot is the same as the ethet in the sky . ln lhts senlence the words'pot elher' and 'sky-ethet' are placed in subject predrcale relatian, so that lhei meanings qua fy ane anather and the mutuallycontndictary elementsare eliminated. The sentence-meaning that results is a referenceby indirect indtcatonta bare ether (not limitedeithetas patotheror sky-ethe4. the text'That thou art'should be underctoadin the same way. 'Not the direcl meaning of any sentence' means that what the sentence indirectly indicates is (something infinite and) nol a sentence-meaning that arises frcm exclusionor assactalianand sa an (amonglhe ward-meanings inthe manneral nonalspeech dearng with finite defects). (9) the lact that the meaningoi the word'thou'is not the individual soul (lit-'thesuflerel) is conveyed ils being by qualified lhe Absoluie, as whichis the meaning the word of 'thaf; and the fact that the (lranscendeni) Absolute,the meaning the word'lhal',is intimately of knownas one'sin mosl Selt is conveyed the presenceof lhe word'lhou' by n e x tt o i t . ( N . Sd . l l l . 1 0 ) . Because al the mutual qualification of the meanings, the conlradiclary elemen!sare eliminated. (10) The Conscousnessand inferiority the Sell, raised of


Chaplr.8 hrghaboveall changelike a lixed mounlain peak, are not accidenlaicharacterislics introducedlrom without They are w h a t e n a b l e si h e s o u l l o l e e l i l s e l l a s a n i n d i vd u a l experiencerand ego.There{ore Selfis ind[ect]yindian the caled by appeal(through use of the word thou')to the the soul'ssenseof beingan individual expenencer an ego. and ( N . S i d .l l . 11 )



lhe realmot lhat whrchhaslo be negated. The upanishadic negation'neilher nor lhal', however, lhrs exlendsuniversally, ne, rl qates whaleveris found,excepllhe Absoluteor Selt,the Wii (B.B.Vll.iii/183-207) nessol all,whichlatlerpersists unlouched Butthe text'neitherthis norlhat'isalso exolained Suresbv vara in another way.On lhe secondview,allhough lhis lexl has the lorm ol a negation,I is not aclually negatlon. For before a the occurrence lhe texl'Andso thereis lhe teaching ol "neilher thrsnor that"'(Brhad.ll-rii.6), Absolulehad alreadybeenesthe tablished transcending gross and sublleelemenls(the as the entirerealmol the empirically knowable, M.V 79,1). cp. And in lhe texl 'There are lwo lorms of the Absolule (Brahad.ll.iii.1l. word'ol'imDlies the that lhe Absoluteis dilfer enl lrom (transcends) two lornrs. lhe Fromthe mereiact lhai the presenttogelherwilh ihe Self (e.9. n not-seliis noi regularly dreamless sleep),il on-exislence the Sell has alreadybeen in proved(so that the purposeoi the lexl'neitherthis nor lhal cannotbe a reDeal lhal Droof. which wouldamountlo a mere And thereare olher reconsideralion ch showlhal laulology). wh lhe lext neitherlh s nor thal'neednoi and shouldnot be laken Therers a sensein whichthe nol-sell, as a negalion. sinceil is eslabishedby percepiron another means va ld cogntion,canoi nol be negaled. Evenri we accepllhat in somesensert cou d be negaled. a mere negation is lhe itself lruilless. ll lhe terl (Brhad.l. .6)were lakenthus, rt wouldnol iuliilllts promiseol positive leaching(adesa), formalion lhe Abso ute. So the a of correctwas to analyses the meaningol'neli (= na + rti) rs lo lake na (not)as an rndirect reference self-eslablished (as lo Selt lhat n whLch empirical lhe knowei, knowledge known and are not present, B.V,l1iii.229), B and lo lake'lt'as hav ng lhe forceof dently 11g inmosl Selt wilh lhe Absolule(lherebybringrng lhe withinlhe scopeJorlhe possrble lhe Absolute expenence the ol h e a r e r l n h e s a m ew a v a s ' T h a t t h o u r l , B . B . Vl . . 2 3 3 ) . T h s t a rs Suresvara teachno al Brhadaranvaka Vartika | .214-34 s

Explanalion lhe IVechanism lhe Negative of of TexlGivenin the Varelrka Herewe may takeup the explanation givenin the Va ika ot lhe meaningol lhe wordsin the negative rnetaphysicaltexts oi the Veda.lnitially have an accountof a theme lound in Sri we Sankara commenlaries, theme,namely, s lhe thal all lhis realm ol name,lorm and aclionwill have to be negated. And lhts is lollowedby its actualnegationthroughthe word 'inot ln lhis contexl, shouldnol suppose we that onceform,elc., havebeen negaledol the Selftheymightpersist elsewhere, 'existence', as ior instance, whennegaled persist relalion of'pot'may in to'clolh'. This agreeswithworldly experience, whereno lorm is iound loo, lo subsrst separation rn fromthat oi whichit rs a torm.And when metaphysica lgnorance the supremeSell has been negated, ol none of ils effeclsand lound to persistanywhere Again,the things thalhavelo be negated notlnvariably present are togelher withone anolher, whereas presence the inmostSelfnever the ot lails.Henceit is tirsttaughtthat all thisworldol name,tofm and aclronrs erroneoLlsly superposed the Sell,and then its existon encein th Absolute denied, Absolute is lhe itselibeing(unenvi, ab e because)selleslablrshed immediate as experience.The word 'nol can on y negate whal has to be negaledon the basisof acceplrng existence ihe Sell. For the Self as pure Con lhe ot sciousness inseparable is lrom any negation. that has to be All negatedis dependent its (apparent) lor exisienceon the SelJ, whrchcannolbe negated. Negalion, therefore, does nol implv totalnon-ex slence anylhing, non,existence lallswtthin ol as itself





go Herewe quotea few moreversesrlluslratron theirpoints made in lhe Vartika. (10)Thatthe Absolute ditferent is kom the grossan subtle aspecisoi theworld (lhe'lwo lorms')has a ready beeneslab' positive (adesa, lished belore promiseof the teaching Brhad. ll.iii.6).Therefore teaching givento enable hearer is lhe lhis to havedireclapprehension he is the Absolule(B.B.V. lhat |.iii.214). The negatve text'neithef this nor lhat'is not pr mar y con(suchas the gross cernedwith negaling whal hasto be negated and subtleaspects lhe universe) wiih an rndrrect of bul method ol communicaling true nalureol lhe hearer. the lext merely li the negaledthe universe ils gross and subtleaspects,and the in Absolule were nol eslablished someotherposilive by cognition. the resullwouldbe a vold... iB.B.V ll.iii.2l5) 'na' (not) in 'na + iti = neti'indicates The element indireclly thalprinciple Conscrousness ol whichis seli establlshed without need oi a separalemeansol cognilion, wh ch the ind vidlal rn knower, knowledge his and its objeclsdo nol exist,and whichis k n o w n t h r o u g h a w a k e n i n gt o o n e s o w n l r u e n a l u r e . . (B.B.V..iti.22S). The word na (not)indicates thatwhichhas ultrmalely be to ( known(the Se f) is self-established its own power. t is thal by processes). word whichis /rol knownthrough the empirical The 'na (nol)is augrnenled by'ili'(this) lorm neti to showthatthe to Self s the Absolute. The Absolute here ndicaled lhe lerm is by 'it (because lerm 'lhis' lhe allied10not'negates lhe grossand sublle aspectsof the world which appearto characlerize lhe absolule, leavrng Absolute rls p!re torm denticalwilh the in lhe (B.B.Vll.iri.233). Wiiness' so Anandagiri). Hereit mightappearthatan objecion couldbe ralsed. lhe lf lwo lorms of lhe Absolute, subte and the gross aspectsol lhe the un verse,are denied, why souldI lhat be lhoughlto leavethe

Absolute void?The merefacl that it is bevond scooeot all a the otherfieans ot knowldge wouldnol render a void,sinceil it sell-revealed. though is self-revealed, we nolwonEven it might deril lheVedic textswould be needed cancel not to metaphysicallgnorance? the Vedic 8ul texl'netther norlhat',which this precisely thispurnegates thatis superimposed, all exists lor oose. Buthasnotlgnorance provd bea distinct principle, been to lhe cause whathasbeensuperirhposed,thatit cannot of so b thus negated? we do not accept No, lhis.Th6 method exlor pound the Absolute thatof negating ng is everything has that beenimagned in regard it. h is likecommunicaling irue lo the nature the ropeby negating snake ot the and all elsethathas imagined il.Knowledge in otlhelrue nature oftheAbsolute arises simu taneously lheunderslanding negations, wecanwith the so noladmil anylhing lhat furlher requires done knowledge tobe {or ol theAbsolute once negalions understood.To there. the any us, Iore,it seems be mereobslinacy claim lo to thatthererequires lo bespecral further negation lgnorance andabove of over nega, lionof wrong knowledge. O'agan. we could happrly concur Anandagirisosson wilh g Brhadaranyaka Varlika ll.iii.233, whenhe says,'the expression ''net s theproolto " show thaltheWiiness, indicated lheword by ''nol" .e.notlhe individual ( knower anyfaclor lhe empirical or in personality), Absolut'. enough allthese s the But ol subtleties; Alllhevafious waysheredtscussed toraccounting lorthevalidityol lhesuprerne negative lollow method lalsea ri texts the ol bulion followed subsequent retraclion, henceareaacby and
cepia0le. Percepiion, etc., Cannot Cont.6dict theVeda We have already menlionedabove (M.V 105) that, like N'landana, Suresara retuted the notionoi dilierence orderio in answerlhe objeclionlhat the melaphysical texts of the Veda



Suresvara reallyinlended say.No realexistence causeand eilectis tn to of admilted, a sl!dy of cerlainparts ot Suresvara's lacl as works would show.lndeed,he stales it openly,and also reluteslhe wholeconceplio,r causeand effect. of (l ) And lhe wholeuncritically accepted worldof dua ity is per se erdless,in lhat it restson barelgnorance lhe non ol dua Sell, as the lanciedSilverresls on lgnorance lhe ol shell Henceit is lgnorance the Se J whichrs ultrmalety 01 l h e c a u s e f a e v i l . ( N . S dl.. 1 , i n t r o . ) o Hete t mtghl appeat at firsl glance as thaugh lgnorance at' the Self were bejng taken as the malerial cause of duality. ln realily,hawever,il is clear from an examinatianof such lexls as l1narance, whrch means 'l nal know"' (TB.UIL176, M.U 11O, cp. 1 ) 222.1 nale thal lgnaratrceis a nonentity(abhava)and cauld nat posstbly a materialcause. be ( 2 ) F u r l h e rt.h e n o t - s e l1 sb o r no l l g n o r a n c eN . S r dl l . 1 , t (. l r n r f o .c. p .l ! . 4 . v 1 1 1 ) . 3, Here agatn,ane might make lhe mistakeof suppostngthat il was beitg said that lgnorancewas the maleflal cause of the nalsel{. 8u! infact the preceding senlence has clearly denied the :txtsl-ance any lgnarancecontradtcling ot knawledgetn lhe wards, Nar 's the attainmenl of knawledgeiasstble in the not-se]l thal a.e could atgue thatthere musl have been some contradrctoty lgnctance ttn the not-self lat such knowledge ta negate, cp. 1M13 1) (3)For 9norances nolhng butabsence knowiedge, of and, srncethe laller s a non-entily nature,t cannolstandas by llre causeo1lransmrgratofy experience. existenl The cannol spr ng irom lhe non'exislenl. (N.Sid.11.7, inlro.) Hete an oblectarsu99eststhatgnorance cannotbe lhe cause L:1) Srnce everyobject unknou/n is belore ideaot ils anses the n our mrnds, and since(evenas unknown) ex sts by lhe il

sinceihey means knowledge ol couldinlobe an aulhoritalive with of that stoodn contradiction othervalidmeans cognilion a ol Our conveyedknowledge duality. ownviewis lhatSuresvara when arguing position thebasis his on onlyraised objection lhis oihrs, elsewhere For concossions lhe viewoJ to ol deliberaie means in lhe thal ol he reiules clear terms doclrin6 lhe ditlerent (S.V. 1076'81r d. N.S knowledge one couldcontradicl anolher means ol lll.86). alsoreluies doctrine the various He the lhal knowledge could conlradict anolher thelopc ot lheunity one on realrty theSelf thecourse explaining in ol SriSankara's andsole of (B.B.V i.588-94;cp d. 11.96) N.S Erhadaranyaka Commentary ll. 'Suchan author nol lhallhemelaphysrca could seriously admii with textsoJthe Upanishads couldstandin conlradiclion the He o{ deliverances olhermeans knowledge. alsoheldthat ol ol even Veda the wasan authoritalive means knowledge the of it could negating lgnorance, that nol communr' Selfonlythfough Varlika 999. For, al cateit directly- as reexplained Sambandha of exoeriencer and hisviewwasthatthe exislence lheindividual his know along withtimeandolhercond' edgeanditsobjecls, experience supplied t ons,depended entirely ihe imrnediate on I in anyway? by the Sell.Howcould anyof themaffct Se lhe ' (Cp. NSID. lll.96,intrc.:'Wespeakthus (of lhe passibility of a canfliclbelweenVedictevelation and perceptton) lhe an we basisal a delibenteconcession. Otherwise, havemarethan that one meansof cagnilian cannotbe conlrconce remarked dictedbv anolher'. TN.) Treatmenlof theTopic of Causeand Elfect AsinSanka's Brahma Commenlarv,jn Suresvaras so SLrtra is BrhadaranyakaVartika, thesubjecl cause eiiect intraduce and onlyinorderlo notion causeand ol ettect.There reJute whoLe the areplaces theVarlika where Suresvara appears lakelgnolo in rance lhemater cause theworld, lhisis onlya superas al oJ bul i cialviewlhal mighloccurai lirslsightto one unable grve to S dueconsrderaiionwhaltheVartikas Naiskarmyaddhl 1o and

Suresvara which is ultlpowerot ihe one reality(sat),it is thal reality (N Sid lll.7, cp [l V mately the lhing lhal is Lrnknown. 114.7, ad init.) This verse is composed lo explain against the previous abpction, in which sense lgnorance is a cause althaugh ls a non-entity.The essence of lhe rcply is that the obectton ts bestde the poinl, because the actual cause is reality lhe Absalute as unknown, One should tgnorethe altetnattveexplanalrcnsay' tng The Selfi; concealed by lgnoranceas a pos ive t'orcedi' ferenl lram mere absenceaf knowledge'offeredby the cammen' tatorjfre naltam because in contradiclsSuresvaras meantn9 ior (5) lgnorance the Sell s the precondilion the appear_ of is andtheAbsolule ca led anceoflhis magicshowoidualty, alely lhroughthat.(B.BV 1rv 371) lhe causeirnmed Duahtyis here taken as a magjc show tn the sense al bein9 an erraneoussupeimposition. lgnoranceis its cause only in Ihe mannet above explained The Absalute alone ts Ihe cause thloughthe mediumof tgnotance;thatts lhe meanng Oneshould rccall here what has been said earlier about the sense in whrch lgnotance is lhe cause of etroneaus knowledge (M V. 111' 10: ol ll 112; 113,2, note; 113,3). is clear that lhe explanatrcn lhts verce gtven by Anandagttiin his sub'cammentary an thts verse gaes agajnst the originalmeaningwhen hesays"Duality which' hke a mass hymnodisls magtc shaw ts accepted as teal only musl have lor its cause samething whtchts far tackol ret'lection, nat a non entity (as a nan-enlily cannol lunctian as a cause) ll ta tequtresa materialcausecorrespanding ilseif (in realtty'gtade t e. tndetermnable reality'grade) and has one is metaphysrcal lgnorance. The Absatute slands as a cause (anly) thtough te' sort)nEto that . lor i6) Th!s causeand oiher such nolionsare set ou1only Seli ol the exislence ihe transcendenl the sakeol proving to make the SelJava lable as one wno They are a device knewttretrulhproclatmed (G.K.lll.15, tV.V.33,3;75,j0). cp. The negation all notionssuch as causedoes not suffce of lo establrsh non-d!ality. The negation itselfrequires negaledby the awakening the homogeneous to un(y and sole realrty the Seti.Firsltherejs a thorough ot demonstra Iron lhat al lhis appearance pturatily ol has Being for its lrue nalure.Then it is taught how Being (setf mettsinlo rnJrnily pre Consciousness. as (B.B.V 1i.27 9) Cause and effect and so forth are onty estabtishedprovj stanallywlh a view to establishthe unbon nan-duat self, which is netlhet cause nor effec! nor absence ol cause and ellect lt is nat tnlendedto establishcause and effect as realfrom the highesl potnt of view No is it intended lo say that non duatity is sitlplylhe absenceof causeand effect,For one becomesawake ta the sell-revealed principle which is dit't'erent t'rcm any nonentttylhrough negatingnegationtsetl, by awakeningto the setl estabhshedrealily that is its opposite. Fnst it is shown, by resorttng la the hypathesisof causation, that the real (sat) is the cause al all.Then even the notion af reality(sa va)is eljmnated rn the nan-dual homogeneouspinctple. So the teaching about cause and effecl is not forthe purpase ol atlirming the existence of cause and ellecl, (7)lgnorance, meritanddemerit the impressions past of End acltonstylng unevolved the elements in fire, waler,earlh and wind.and dtssolved ether,remaining exislenlbul in as nol manrlesl these, together withthe Se , iorm The Unde velopedPrinciple'.... is tgnorance lt that rnanifests the in lorm ol the objective universe maleriat of objects(visva). a s r l s l h e n a l u r eo t l g n o r a n c e o d o s o . H e n c e l h e t Upanrshad says,'This universe lhen (belore prolecas the t l o n o l t h e w o r l d )u n d j f f e r e n t i a t ( B r h a d . t i v . 7l)B . B . V ed |.',!2a5'7) Frsl the natute of'the Undevetoped'isexplained.Thenit rc declared lhat it is lgnorance only thal appears as the manit'est


8 Chaprr c o n s c i o u s n e s s 'T h r s i s c o n f i r m s d b y l h e V e d a ( a t . BrhadlV.v.3 and 4) where lhe text runs,havrng sent lhis body to'Avidya'(= unconsciousness)'. iB.B.V.1.iv.256). ln this verse Suresvarc declares that on-consciousnessis the essental natureof lgnoranceinorderto bring ou! how entightenmentand lgnoranceare contradiclorsas consciausnessand non consctousness.His idea is that the Vedaintended ta teach thal lgnorance was non-consciousness when it said, ,Having struck dawn fts ptevious body and sent it to unconsciousness, the saulpraceeds (after death) to a net/ body'. Here again, lgnorance ts cleatly tdentifiedwith the notse[. (11) Texislike 'Darkness(lgnorance) death (tightis im, is monal) (Brhad..l.iii_28) and'tn the beginning, unrverse this was watel Brhad.vv.l) showthat metaphysical lgnorance rs contrnually work,eilherin manifest uDmanilesl at or form. (B8.V r.ii.136). The text'Da*ness is dealh, ltght is immortat'(Brhad.l.tii2g) relers ta lgnarance, evolvedand manilestas natural knawledge an.l action.ln the text'ln the beglnning, this univercewas watet' (Brhad.V.v.1), wotd'watet' atso rclers to tgnorance.but thjs the ttme the referenceis to lgnorancein its unmanifestform.fhat is lhe meaning of the verce. One,annot hee accep! Ihe stalement Anandagnt.h ts ot Root lgnaHnce only that is referred lo by lhe wad "dakness'. used lo explatn the tem "death','.Fot it is saitl that lgnorance displays itself eithet tn manilest at in unmanifesst fatm. This tmpltesthal Root lgnorance,identifiedwith the Unmanifes!princrple is tlself a cteation of lgnorance. And the doctrine of Root lgna,ance as accepted by olher schoots ol Advala is nowhete found in the Verikta. The word Boot in the phrase'Roo! lgnotance djsplays itsetf' must have enteredthe rcceived text lhrougha misheanngan the pan al sameane in erroL who was evidenlly inlroducing his own peculiar lheary, paying no a enlion to the toud and clear state-

and the unmanifesl.Hence it is thal lhe UndevelopedPinctple in samelimescalled lgnorcnce in the ancienl texls and when lhe word lgnoranceis used in this special sense' matetial cau' saltty can be faund attributed ta lgnorance'.The natself, loa E analherlorm assumed by lgnoance. But herc lhe clue is given by the phrase'Hence it (nolself) is alsoca ed lgnoance (T B V use al the alsa is only a metaphotical ll 178.M.V251,6).This of (8) lf vewed lrom the standpoinl the linal 1rllir, lgno_ as ils eflectscannolbe established ex stlng el_ ranceand From ol powerorlhroughlhat anolher' ils lherthrough sown 10 relerred ljy it ol the slandpoinl lgnorance is somelimes on our expe' we lhe lerm lhe Undeveloped'.When rellected sleepwe say'l knewnolh tromdreamless nenceon waking 1n is ng. wh ch showslhat Consciousness rellected lgnool and gin,marnlenance dissolulion the world rance The or The Sel{ as in lake p ace Inlhe Sellas reJlected lgnorance ol bodreswhere is assocaled w lh lgnorance, the cause beingwhereConpredorninales ol conscious gnorance and are predominates such distinctions cond' All sciousness pasl thought, medilationand activ ly (B B V troned by 1v.340-2). ioLq'e5r df pe3 r'0 'l gnurar(e rs aon -: lor and Lnco^s( As the In lhe realily, se i, which s in trutheverenlLghtened are and unconscloLlsness tound Lnthe not sell conlusron lh s wholeworld s called'dealh'(B B V IV '157) as fhe !exl (al Brhad.lV.iii.T) spoken ol llrc forms al deatll' 'lgnorance' Earlier it had satd Darkness whete ctea!h means SuresvaBs pf-'se/llverse tlEnonnc-") death (Brhad.l.itt.28). E and uncansctausttessate lhe 1l)ii,rw,s from lhat. Cont'usian o/r And the factthalbothal theseappeateven t::lrt e cl lgnatance. haw tt)e al s 1t) t)a!.self an e^pressian death the verseexplaths 'ignaBnce come ta be appliedta the nat s'ii tl't' lrtrr j doesnot rneananvtlirig D!l ncnI 11l The term lgnorance'

Suresvara menls etsewherelhat noot lgnonnce was bul a particular farm assumed by lgnorance, namely the Unmanilest Principle Nei' thetwas anv atlentionpaid Io the descriptionaf lgnarancegiven in lhe words'lgnorance is lhe leeling "l do not know"' (cp TB.V .176). We may pass lhis by as incidonlal.qut the follawingshould herc be noled. Whercvet in lhe Vertika lhere is a telercnce la lgnarance as a material cause, this is predicated af lgnorance co4sdered as having assumed ls lorm as lhe non-conscious is not a refetenceto it in its awn charac letistic nalure as conlusion. For the whole conceplbn ol cause and effect is only mentioned in the Veriktaat all lo show thal ls is crealed by lgnoance. Frcmthe slandpoint ol practicalexperi' ence, on lhe otherhand, causalitycanbe accepteclwhere evet tl (12) Ths illusion(maya)which,lhough utterlyreal,manl iorm is called tesls as name.lorm and action- its subtlest 'Death'.(B.B.V l.iv.1 35). ' tgnorance displays itsell here in the world as name, a lorm and action. lts subtlestform, which may alsa be called Meya' is called Death'. lt had been said earlier in the Vedicpassage un' der commenL'This was covercd over by Death'(Brhad 'l ii 1) Here again, it is only lgnorance in its form as seed-state ol the nol-self consistingol name, form and action that is telerred to by the wotd'MAye'- And lhis agtees with numerous texts in Sn Sankara's commentaries,such as'Name and farm imagtnecJ thtough lgnoranceas iflhey were the very naturc of the omnis' cient Lord, indeteminable eilhet as the real principle or as anylhng chlletentlrcm iL ihe seed ol lrcnsmigrctoryexpctence and the diflercnliated $/orld,are spoken of in the Vedaand Smtti as "The Power ol Meya belonging to the Omniscient Lord"' (,cp. M.U45, 1). Anandagiri's rematk in hts sub' commentarv here,'The wotd Meey is introduced to refute thase who distnguish between lgnoranceand Meye" was nacle wtth'


oul a proper underclandingof the meantngof lhe verce an which ne was commenllng. (13) ln th s conlexl(of leaching thal the world-appearance ariseslrom absence knowledge the Absolule) iind of ol we the clearverseol Gaudapada, whichbegins, wellsupporled perceived... the dark by analoges,'As a ropeirnperlectly (in is variously inaginedas a snakeor a slreamoi waler or in olher ways, so s the Selt wrongy imagined this and as lhal (G.K 11.17, l\r.V23)cp. That whch as no name or lormmanifesled lhe beginning (al olthe world-perlod) through bare gnorance. (8.8.V Liv.389-90). Whal lhe aulhor ts saying is:'One the toptc of manlestatian proceedtnghom lhe Undevelaped Pinciple, ane should see t'rom given by Gaudapada.with examples, the explanalionof creatian thatthe notion of the worldandthe Absoluteas effect and cause must be intetptetedas agreeingin every way with the anatogyol the illusory snake misperceivedin lhe rcpe'. In lhe same way, the authot laler (B.B.U Liv.443)quo!es Bhagava9eda Sankara's UpadesaSehasi XVlll.46:'Justas the rope-snake, (thaughunrea4, possesses being by vittue ol lhe rope unltl dtscriminated lram it, sa alsa does the complex ol the Self, the ret'lecting me' dium and lhe teflection passessbeing by vittue al the changeless Self, (unlil it is discriminatedlrcm it', cp. M.v. 144, 10). (14)Transmigratory experience taughlto be an erroneous is superimposilion the Sell.And, according lhe genera on to wor dly view , lhere cannolbe erroneous superimpositton wilhoula cause.Therefore,lo explain whal is the cause.Sri Sankarasays hisbrhadaranyaka in Commenlary That(Se1) wh ch rs lhe causeol the wholeuniverse.. has not the Eut causealready beendeclared havebeenthe superimposrto tionon the Self,lhrough natural lgnorance, the notions oJ ol beingone who acls,alongwilh actionand its resulls? Yes. Bui the leachingls repeated a specialJorm intended in lo relulethe Sankhya (non-conscious doctrine thatNature and


Chapter-8 independent Spirit)is the malerialcause ol lhe world. ol lhroughlgno The causeol the world s lhe Se t, unknown (guna) mak ng up rance lt ls not the three constituents' (B.B.V 1 v.478-80) Nalurespokenoi by the Sankhyas



This is an explanalrcnof the passage in StiSankara's Com' menlary an the Brhaderanyaka ( ad init.) whtch begtns, 'This Self, for the sake of which all the tradtlional texts came tnta being, an which the notionaf being one who acts, along wtth that of actian and its results, are supeimposed through natutal lgnannce, that which is lhe cause af the whaleworld, that v/htch is the true nature of name any fatm..,',There is menlton here of Iransmigratian,cansistingof thefeeling that ane ts acttng,a and as assaciatedwith aclion and its resDlts, being supettmpasiion. is The watd 'superimpositian' used here lo mean lhe result at superimpasltian,not lhe act, according to the intetpretatian A superimpositrcn is what is superimpased'. The reference (tn Suresvara's verses) to (the worldly viev/ that thete must be) a ceuse af supenmpositionrefers tothe tealsubslratum an whtch an tmagtnedenttty must re9t. Suresvaratakes lhe phrase'throughlgnorance'ham Sri Sankares Cammenlary,interprels ll according to hts own sys tem as meaning absence of knawledge,and lhen refers to the objection thatmight be rajsed, Therc cannat be superimpositian withaut a (positive)cause'. On his awn view, lhe statemenl Ab' sence of knowledgeis lhe cause al allthe world'does nol refel to absence of knowledgealane as the independentcause. The cause is the Se/f as urknawn. This, at least, is my awn under' standing af the verses. And lhen the reply cones, saying that therc was na accasian fot the objectianthat was nised. On the system of the revercd Commenlatathimself,lhere is ptoblem abaut the falsity al lrcnsmigrattan,consEttng in the na feeltng that one is acting, associatedwlh action and its results Far he says, Transmigralian sel up lhtough nalural 19norance is in the form af erroneous knowledge'.Where he said,'That Selt

which is the cause of allthe universe', that was only ta show that because the whole universe ts merely imagined, the Abso, lute can anly be the cause in the sense ol being lhe realsubstra, tum an which the imaginationsare made. There is lo this extent a differencebelween lhe explanationsof lgnorance alfered by SriSankan and Suresvarc.Thetwo explanations agree basical ly, hawever,as we have aheady explainedat M.V.112. (15) li lhe etfeclwere taken as diflerenllrom the cause, how couldthey because and effecl? They wouldbe known as separate, unconnected enlilies,lke lhe Himalayas and ihe V ndhyamountains. if the effectwerelakenas nonBut difierent, lhen, sincethere would be identty, there could nol becaLrse eflect. and Whal is actronless cannotfunclion as a cause.Thatwhrch not ihe oblecloi aclionshouldnot s be calledan efiect.And lhal whlch s void oi aclioncannot be a factorof action. Time and aclioncouldnot be causes, as ihey lhemselves only exst throughthal (the Self) n whichthey are due lo d is evidentthat what can nol evenbr ng tself nio berng couldnol br ng anything else nlo be ng, whateverts efforts. (B.B.V11.i.399 402). Here the whale concepttanaf causally ts rejected as atianally indefensibie. few verses later Suesvara sums up.'And so A lhe creationsand withdrawalsofthe universedawn the ages arc imagtned,just as the disltncttonsof time and space are. When you have seen realtty,yau know that lhe creatian,maintenance and wtthdtat al of the universe ate lnpossible (B.B.U. 11.i.411, 14.v.129,8).And so Sresvara keeps lo thal lndttton of the ttue -.xperts in Vedanta,which says that the causality suppased ta praduce lhe watld ts tllusory, The Treatmentof Universaland Particular Thuslhe treatrnent causeandeiieclin Suresvafa's oi works rs not ntroduced show lhal lhe Absolute lhe causeol lhe lo rs \\ror ts purpose s aclua y to refutelhe who e conception d. ol

ChaplerS causality firstsuperimposing notionol causalily by lhe onlo lhe Selt in orderlo leach and existence lhe laller(lhe Sell,read ol almano slilvam), and lhen rellling caLrsality the lighl o{ the n Sel In ts lrue nature.Thecase wilh lhe teachingol universal and oarl cular is simllar. The firststeo is to teachthe ex stence ol lhe Sell by superimposing onlo ri lhe nolionlhal il is a univer' sa . n order, the end,lo be ableto denylhal il is characlerizabie in erlheras a universal as a particular, Here loo. Suresvara lolor lowslhe method lhe revered of Indeed,n the preCommentalor. I m naryialseattribulion lhe notions universaand parlicuof ol ar, he Io lowslhe method the Upanshadilse t, as we can now of see, As the parlicular bealsin a drum-roll cannotbe heardseparalelylrornthe drum'roll tsel{,even so lhe thingswhoseexrst' ence dependson lhe Sell cannotbe perceived lrom separately he Se f (B.B.V. ll.iv.267-8, Fisl one has the general condensed). perceplion, Thoseare the soundsoi a drum, or one rnayheaf them in a morespecific, stillgeneral, but lorm as Thosesounds arrsetromthe slriking a drum in a specraway' Bul any relaol live y speci|c sounds,or particriiar sounds,are only heard as pa( ol theiruniversal, generaldrum-roll B.B.V. (cp. the ll.iv.275genera indeterminate perceplion 80) Aga n. lirst one has the pot. aller ihat lhe specitication'is', yieldingexrslenl pcf. And so lhe ongina generalperceplion lurtherspectredinexper' is perceplion turther enceby sub general is specilied experience in parircular by subseqLrenl zation(having longspoul,existing a at place and time, etc.:B.B.V.ll. v.281). such and such a Again, eachiurtherspeciticat in our knowledge a !niversalandto on of the accornpan menl ol il. And, in the same way,everygenusor parl cularrs itself knownas accompanied Consciousness (cil) by rrnperleclly known.ll is superimposed lhe Sel{ lhfoughabon senceof knowledge lhe laller.Bll lhe inmoslSell does nol ol require any exlernal supporllo eslab sh ts own ex stence. The Sellbeholds nol-sell the onlywhenrtsputson ihe I very of belng anindvdual experience. il experiences B!i itsellas ndepend

Suresvara in ent Consciousness ils lrue stateonly.Examples such as lhe sounds ol lhe conch and lute are also given to tllustrate lhe drssoutron01all parliculars everywhere intothe one greal univ e r s a, ' B e r n g " And yet one musl rememberthat in realilyna distinctiantnto untvetsal and patticular exisls, For though the universal is invariably found tn lhe patticula, the particulars are not invanably found tnthe untversal. Butlhe unive6alcannol be perceived separatelyand withoutbeng in some way rclaled ta lhe pattrcularc. Even if ane admitted that universal somehow existed n tsolalian from patticulars, lhey would then become parlicularc lhemselves,like thal parlicularshort'homed cow'wi!hin the 9eneral species caw. And il ane cannot establish lhe existence al universalsone cannal establishthe existenceof particulars eithet When one cannat establish lhe existenceol either univer sals or particulars, tl ts vain to talk about a particular falltng wtthin a universal. Far the relation ol canlatnet and contained tmplteslwa terms. And na telatian ol distinctianor af any olher krn.l can be establishedas holding between universal and particular. This is the ltne taken by Suresvan in his retrcction. ln thrc connectian the follawingve6es are warlhy at' note. (1)The sound ol lhe drum in general mentioned exemis to p||lythe broad unrversal such.The drum,roll'reiers as to lhe partrculars conceved as the universai its other (r e. in parlicuarized)lorm. And lhe reference 'exlernalsounds' lo (Brhad.ll. reiers the ( mpossbil ty oi hearng the)par v.7) lo I cu aTs alone (conceived as somehow separcte from the unlversal). Theseare the threeexamplesthat lhe Upanishad gives (ta show lhal sound in a patticular form is dependent an saund tn a more genetallotm both ta exist and la be knatyn.sathat particular Being,also, dependson mare generalBetng bath la exisl and to be knawn). ( (2) Nothng wha,'ever can be established the meansot by

Chapter-8 oi oi va ld cognrtion independently lhe notion Be ng,whether concoml throughnvanable regarded lhe sameas Being as or Independence. as of irom t through tance,or as ditlerent therecannotbe anylhng non being,BecaLlse the nalureof separaieJromBeing,lhere cannoibe anything n re alron thal,whatevers lhe undersland wrlhdolng. And one should case with Being,exactlylhe same is the case w th the rn and does most Self,the realityol which is sell'revealed, meansol cognr_ by not havelo be established anyseparate tion. (B.B.V ll.rv.290-1 ) as No realityseparatefrom Being conceive.J a untversalcan be establlshedelher as tn canstantconcamitancewith Being al as independentcf Being,ar as non-being.Thisis whal the exam ple af Being conceived as the highesl univercal shows Sa the poinl ts praved by the example ol Belng concetvedas the highest univercal thal there cannotbe any rclation al Being with any lhing else takenas separale.Themeaningis lhat lhe same non' ..luality obtains inter case of lhe self revealed Self (whlch rc nat frarn the higheststandpoint,a universal). a (3)The pot is perceived ex stenl,as having longspout as place,as existing a certalnllme al as situated a certarn at eacht me thereis a furlherde No new obieclis pefceived l e r mn a l i o n ( B . B . V l l . i v . 2 8 1 . ). This is an example to show haw allthe latet delermtnattan arc cantainedimplicitlyin the firsl indeterminatepercepttan is 14)In the sameway,everylhng lhat is perceived super perceived as mposed pureConsciousness, it is nvariably on in by accompanied that. Everything lhe world whethera particular, lgnorance p!re Consclous ol has or universal a ll.iv.282). ness as ils cause-(B.B.V. ol (5) There is no other sourcelor the eslablishmenl the inmoslSe f tself nmostSe i aparllrom the (selt'revealed) ln the case ot the not self, means of valid cognlron are



reqlrred. Evenlhen,the noi-selfis only knownlhroughthe ndividLra knower, who dependslor his own existence on the Self.iB.B.v.11.1v.283, gloss). with The inmost Self is its own means of valid cognitian.The not self is only establishedat allthrcugh the Sellas means of cogni (6)The Sell can only beholdthe not-self when it does the very ol an ndrvidual ableact and experience. pureV, As sion rased above change,il does not beholditseli n lhe same way.The not sell, beingcomplex, knownlhrough is perception. Self,beingsimple, s knownthroughltsei The in ihe iorm of knowledge bearinginwards. B.V ll.iv284(B 5). The Self as an individualcapable of action knaws the not sell through applying one of the means of valid cognjtion. The Self in ils true transcendenceknows itself tn immedtateexpe recourselo any exletnalmeans.Moreaver,lhenol ence Attthout self as known by the jndividual knower through his means of knowledge is a camplex entity.But the Self does nat enler tnto compastton wtth any ather being. It is known through its awn Self n the forn of knawledgebearing tnwards. (7) (The whole conception universai ol and particulars is ,,v un ntelligibleThe universal can no rnorebe idenlcal ih ) the part cularsthanthey can w lh L But if lhe un versa;be takenas d slinctfrom ihe parliculars therecan be nc un! versal(andhenceno parliculars either). a un versalvrer lt laken per impasstble not being n constanla concorli as lanceu/ilhils partculars(andso as nol be ng denl:ca\ rith them),lhe unlversal and its part cularswould be dislinct, likean elephant and a ral. Bul thenwhal we ca I a universal parliculais, asho:t horned wouldb-o pari cu ararnong a ike ( c o w n a h e r do i o t h e r s B . BV l l . v . 2 6 97 0 . c p .N , l . V 1 3 0 . 3 1 'Among pa iculars - lhat is, it wauld eith-.r be a





sub-speciesamang species, ot a partlcular among parttculars Thetreatmenl ot the Oiscriminationolthe Five Sheaths in expressed his Varlikais lhal the The view ol Suresvara (cp.N/.v.39),10o, ntroduced rs leaching aboutthe FiveSheaths in lhe Upanishads orderto bringout the natureot the Sell as in to lhe Absolute by first attributing il possessionof the Five This blrtonly wilh a view to denyingthenrafterwards. Sheaths, as {ollows. may be brrefly summarized methodot teaching lhe The nolionthatwe are in deilicalwilh shealsis implanled ln lrom beginnnglesslgnorance. arising in us by an impresslons as are nitially accepled a devicethrough Vedanta, sheaihs lhe whLch introduce to lhe idea ot the inmosl Sell ex st ng wilhln The them (TB.V. 11.232'3). inmosl Sell, tholgh only one, appearsthroughlgnorance if limited lhe Five sheathsin two as by plans and on lhe cosmicplane ways, lhl is, on the individual with the sheathmade (T.B.V.11.234-5).The sheaths, beginning They each haveto be (thephysical are eJlects. body) up oi lood f rsl dissolved inlo their malerialcauses,food and so on.Then inlo the next in the each earlierone in turn has to be dissolved ca!se, and lhen even series,untiltheSelfis leftas lhe supreme ans_ by lhe nolionlhal ii is a causeis cancelled the knowledge il finallyremains overas lhe lexls,and ing lrom the upanishadic A6solute n its lrue lorm (T.B.V236_7). (Firsl ane must meditale one ane's own individual body as being nalhing avet and above'food , the matler ol lhe casmos, The Ltntil ts finally felt to be so (T.B.V 11.253). none must medt il tate ane s own vilal eneryy lill it is felt la be ane with the cosmic M.v.25,8)as (T.B.V 11.254), one'smind (manas, on vitalenergy ta casmrc mind (exprcssed as lhe Veda,T.B V IL3A6), on one s lntellect(buddhi,M.U25,8)as the cosmicintellect(hiranyagarbha the one wha'has'and rcaiizesthe ideas tn lhe casmic mind' f.), 1'.8 V. 11.306 and an lhe ioy arising lram the merit af ane s riluals and prescribed meditations (TB.V. 11.320'22:342'5)as

constttutinga sheath of lhe Absolute (ihe anandamaya-kasa) whtch is a false appearance ol the Absolute (TB.U ll.340-2), thaugh its tue nalute ts nothing other than the Absotute (T.B.V. u.341). T.N.) li (no accounlweretakenof the cosmicplaneand)ontythe sheathsoi lhe ndivdualp ane were dissolved, resullwoutd the be the knowledge a'seli' ndividualized ts own body and of by m nd. rnlhe manner the Sankhya ol (T teaching B.V 268).Each lalersheath thal s menlioned the seriesis spoken as some, in oi th ng separaletrom lhe earlierones,lt is regarded .anolher as rnlerna seli accordng to the formula'it(lhe precedng seti) s jilled by that (lhe later one)'.As the seriesprogresses, each sheathis said lo be illed by ihe next one followingt, whrch conslrlutes true'se l'. So we se6lhal the sheathmadeup of its iood s accompanies the remaining by four,beginning wth the sheathmade !p ot the vitalenergy. The shealhmade up ot the vrtalenergyis accompanied the remaining by lhree, beginning w th the sheathmade up ol mind (i.e.the sheathsmade up of rn nd intelect and bliss).On this basis,ail elfectshave to be d sso ved in the supremecause by not notingthat the taler sheathsare rn conslanlconcomitance with the earlierones of the series,while the earlierones are not inconstanl concom, lance w lh lhe laterones (T.B.Vll.263). The realilylhal has to be communicated this device s by lhe Absoute. lt ls laughtin the secondSectionol ihe Tait|riya Upanishad Ananda Brahmananda (the or Valll). thethirdSecAnd lron (BhrguVa i) explains how the exislence and natLrre lhe of Absoule has ear|er beenlaughtby poinling the mutLratcon, to comrlance non-concomtlance and amongsl varioLls the sheaths. sc lhal the two Sections agree.There is onty this sma I drifer-.ncethal In lhe lhird Sectionthe Absolute s taughl as being pure Eliss n ils lrue nalure throughthe negaiionol the Fve Sheaths ch are effecls lgnorance, is rmp cit in the lext wh of as fie had the knowledge "The Absolute bljss"' is (See lTaitt.lll.6).




T.B.V|L332-s). And,in the sameway,lhe meaning the lext'A person of (af becoFes non-xislenc he thinks the Absoluteto be non(Taitt.ll.6) loundto be th same.Foril saysthat il existence)' is a manthinks lhe Absolule, ol whichis in fact realas his own Sell,as being oneol the sheaths therelore and he unreal, becomes himsel{ unreal.The knowers theAbsolute thathe ol hold alone r6alwho is knows himsoll thereal as Absolule..bevond lhe The sheaths. refore should one ngate alltheshealhs, whichhave been imagined lgnonce realize oneis thesuthrough and lhal preme (lB.V 11.353-6). Sell,nolsubjct change to 'n thrsconlext, theseare lhe versesof lhe Taittlriya Varlika mostworlhyol Consideralion. (1)Themind become has deeply impregnated impres with sionsin thisbeginning realm lransmigralion. less oJ lt can, however, lurned towardslhe inmostSelf bV a device, be andso thisdevice nowselforlh.In kulh,theoneinmost is Self has no contactwith duality. only undergoes lt bifurcationInloinner andouler, subjecl objecl, wayof illuand by sronlhrough lgnorance. the subjective On side,ihereare lhetivesheaths beginning lhe sheath wilh made ot food up (thephysical body), along withthe inmosi Seilion the ob' jeclive side, there maleracauses arefood theremaining and (i.e. of ihe Iivesheaths earth, fire,aif andelher). water, Having ihe d;ssolved riveindividual sheaths theircosinio miccounterparts meditation, should by one medllale lhelive on cosmic counterparts the fivesheaths, ol laking eachsLlcceeding one as the inner'self'ol predecessor. its Having thls dis' soived whole lhe notion lhatoneis in anysense elfecl, an one restin the nolion should thatoneis thecause. Andthenlinally oneshould dissolve nolion that lhrough supreme the Vedic lexls, (T.B.V andattain ihe Absolute one's to as fealSelt. 11.233-7). (2)Thoughlhe Selicannot identical theFive be with Shealhs,

rl appearslo be so throughlgnorance. the rope,snake as ap, pears to be identical with the rope.And it appearsto suffertn tune wilh the sheaths. (T.B.V .250). (3) As each ettect in lurn is ol lhe natureof its material cause,ihe Absoluleis jnJjnite, and lhe sankhya duaiism belweenNatureand Spiritis avoided. Eachmaterialcause rn lhe seriesexistsindependen of its eflect,which prey cedes lt in lhe series(as the cosmtcvilal energy exists independentty food and is lhe sourceJromwhich food of proceeds).And yei it invariably jls accompanies ellecl. Henceour lhesisthal lhe eltectls nothjng over and above the malerialcause can be supporled argutng by trom indepen0ent extslence and invarjable concomilance (vyalireka and anvaya)... aillourol the other(andhighe, sheaths are presenl the shealh In madeup oi lood.The threeotherh gher ones are presenlin the vrtalenergy, rn lhe mrnd(tnteltwo recrand btiss),one (btiss)in ihe inte ect. (T.B.Vi1.268,9, 271). (4) The Absolutewas taughtin the secondSectron the ot Taitlifiya Upanishad_To explain method the how it hasto be rearned, thirdSection the Upanishad the of recounls (Tarll. ,Hotyonel ll.l. ,olc.) how Bhrgusaid to Varuna, Teachme BrahmanlWhen the goal has {irstbeen exptained, Ihen tt remarnslo explainthe means.The means are the Five Sheaths, one reaches Absolute tor the ihrough(meditat ng on) them {as taught).lt is ctear lhat they are the rneans, llecause the Seti is seen through lhem when Ihey are analyzed and meditaled according the tawsot univeron to salconcomitance (anvaya) Independent and exrstence (vya 1 i-.kal.(T.3.V. t1.333-5). After explainingStiSankarc'sinterprctation the ,\|ord'tapas of iaustenty) given in hB commentaryonTaittirjya 1.1.Suresvata adds hts o\vn. which runs:'Tapas is pondering accordtngto the laws ol .onslant cancamtlance and independent exislence:,

S!resvara (T.B.V.lll.1g).Theprcsenl passage should be underslaodin lhe light af lhat. wilh lhe shealhs'thinks (5) lJ a pe|son idenlilying himselJ in is that lhe Absolute 'inreal allhough facl't rs rearas l_s own Sell, he himseltbecomeslnreal in this world This _avebee_ shouldrlseabovethe shealhslnal throughlgnoranceOne shouldlake relugein the imagined endlessand nol subiectto supremeSell, beginningless, 356) (T.BV ll 353' modilicalion. and Objecl BelweenSubiect 121The Oistinction ol The Selfin iis lrue nalu as seenlrom lhe standpoinl lhe highesltruih is also laught by the melhod ol lirst talsely at_ sulliect experiencrng ol trib!lingto it the character an individual we For example, find the pure the and then felracting teaching the thal Consciousness constilutes lrue nalureoi the Sell frguthe rativelvrelerredto al variousplacesin the Upanishadsas perceiver' This and ol oerce;tion the individual as the individual as whichin itslrue natureis one,appears many ionsciousness, in And then Consciousness its true lorm as throughlgnorance, anging ' lhe consclousness withlhe empirical one is contrasted experiencer: ;and in this courseot ihe activityof the individual its lrLlenalu'e lo ln lorrr I rs telerredlo as ConscroJsness ensutelrle conlrasl. comes into beingand suffersthe consciousness Empirical qrowlh srx cnangesol slate lcomlng orlo belng exlslence by everylh'g In undergone declne, deslructlon) develop'renl. lne remporalreal/n.Bul it is pervadedat every stage by J_ in changingpure Consciousness its true lorm We have lfe 'The Absolute and rmme which is directly lexl, too, upanishadic presentwilhin all (Brhad lll iv2) dralelyevidentis lhe Self, mightsuggesllhal rl was tne Indr' The word directly'(evident) vrdua sublectwhich was belng relertedlo So tqF word\'ard thal lhe rel are irnmedlalely added1osel at reslany suspicion


wasto perceptual knowiedge fromthe division erence arising knowledge known. Inlo knower, and The details givenal are Vartika lll.iv.1 (seeM.V121,5 5-18 Brhadaranyaka below). Consciousnessitstruenature in onlyexists where divithe intoknower, knowledg known been sron and has transcended. Thesequel the passage'You to cannot the se6rof sseing' see (Brhad.lll.iv.2) thatlhe Sellis theWitness thecomplex shows of lormed the Individual by knower wiihhisknowledge itsoband jecis. rsnolilsell object cogniiion, we know li an ot and Jrom the (which verylactol rtsbeing realin itshue nature lhe transcends alldisinctions, including intosubjsct objecl). ihat and Thusit is perception. saidthatthe SelJ cannot an object empirical be oJ There exisls Witness thelighl which in a ol alone experience the 'l see'and 'l do nol see'is possibl. ThatWitness musl be ndetilied pure wlth Consciousness. only known ll can be through percep' ts own lght. ll cannot become ob,ecl empirical th ol tron.The individual knowerand knowledge iisobiects his and are non'consciorJs nalure. by Being complex, a theyexislfor lhe sakeof anolher {cp.u.S. (prose) a seclion 56).Theycannot provrde knowledge thevision theinmosl oJ of Witness.They cannoi evenknoweachotherunaided. Theydepend lhe conon sciousness the Witness establish ol to themselves all.How at could lheypossibly theseerot all? see On lh s sublecl,one should consider tollowing the verses. (1)ThalSeer(the Witness) iiselt sight. is notoneot is lhe ll in a complex aclors an actron, srght hereclaimed ol For is (B.B.V oi as a characlerislicthe Seer. lViii.1435) On accouniof the alt bulian al seeinglo the Seet as an essenttal prapetly (nol as a mare temporatyactivfiy)in the upanishadic phrase'(There nabrcakin)lheseeing the Seer' is ol v/eundersland seetng to be lakenasthe essentialnature lhal is al the Seer.So the Sell is not an agentcatryingoul an act ol seeing.

Sutesvala 172

Chapter (2) Consciousness one only every where. t s differenl is undergoes This one Consciousness frorn all the not-sell. in manydillerentlorms throughcauses illusorymanitestation lll.vii.60). of arisinglrom lgnorance it. (B.B.V. (3) Consciousness, which is actionless,assumesthis la' dividedinlo individua knowledge, miliarform ot empirjcal il' act of knowingand objecl.But consciousness subject, il is one and the sole Eecause self ls wilhoutthis division. onlyarisesas an appear empiricallorm reality, familiar lhe in by ance,everpervaded consciousness ils truelorm. i is In are and pervaded exhausted thatreonlywhenpervader In latianlhal we have peruasion the irue sense,as ln lhe by ol case ol the pervasion the rope-snake the rope.There pervasion the full sense betweenlhingslhat in cannolbe and by are dilterentiated spaceor lime, likethe Himalayan (B.B-Vlll.iv.96-8) Vindhyaranges.


imitations, theapparnt iike limitationsspac6 in introduced by the production apot(cp.M.V 27,1)(B-B-V ol lll.iv.gg100). (5) Andin caselhe characlerization'directly evidenl'suggesls an active seer,the phrase'ihmdiatelyevident'is (Brah.lll.iv.1)...phrase added prevent supposition io this The 'rmmedialely enl' (aparoksad) evid is usedto negatelhe dislinclion inlo individual subjecl,knownobject,and knowledge,and lo convey realaly is wilhout a that distinctions. Whenlhe disiincllon subject, itno objcland knowledge is negdled, self-revealed the Witness remarns alone overas established, revealed lhe characterizalion'immediately by (B.B.Vlll.lV.15,17-8). evidenl'. (6) ll is sald(bythe revered Commentator) sincethe that, rndv dualsubject hisknowledge itsobject and and onlyexisl relalrvelVoneanother, is thetrueandeternal to it nalure ol theSeltto be theWilness... withthatvision you lt, whereby are ableio say'l know'and'ldonotknow'you ableto are lurn roundand see lhal very visionitsell (as i, it were an 'then please oblect) speak (andluckto you!)... out Those whosaylhal,whentheWitness all the modilications ol ol the mindis esiablished sell-revsaled as experience, there slillremains something be brought to aboutby aclion, will haveihe diJliculty explaining whatinstruments ol with the perlorm aclionWilness could in B.B.v. lll.iv.82; 1.iv.320. 80; The operalian the validmeansol cognition ol depends on thepriat establishment the Con ciousness is Witness of lhat of all This, beingself-revealed, doesnot depend anything on else. No contribution lhat whichis the Witness naturecan be to by givenfat aclivities apprcptialeto thatwhich merely known. is lhe As the pawer af a lamp to shed llght cannot be increased byanvolh Lamp,so the lampof mmedale e^penence inca$ pable ol being increased any olhet immediate by expeience. Thisbeinglhe case, lhosewhosaythata immediate expeience

Becauge vision, as an action explicablethrough the faclars ol aclion, is invariably accompanied by Cansciausness in the lrue sense, which is not a t'actorin any action, we say that em' prtcalvision arises'pervadedby pure Consciousness,and lhts imphes tha! it is pervaded by it in the same sense lhal a rope' snake is pervaded by the rcpe. This alane is pervaston in lhe slricl sense. When we say, far instance, that the pol ts per vaded (encompassed)by the light ol a Lamp, lhal ts loose us' age. (4)Th s empirical on visiorr the part ol the Slfdependson iactors Butknow rndividual expereincer otherillusory and lhe is real n lhe high' ofthe inmost Self lhallhe Consciousness ol the est sense lt is onlylhrough presence realCorlsciousby ness,and peruaded it, thatthe empificavrson en joyed by the Sell comes and goes and solferslhe s x stagesoi lypicalol alliempcralbeing(comingrntobe' developnent Ing. etc., cp. above, Ivl.Vp.344) The mitatons thereby sness:r'o bul apparenl Consciot lmposed lhe universal on

f $ s
d f


Chapter-8 is samethingthal has to be brcugh! about by actian will have the difficult task of explaininghaw, with what instruments,and lor what end, immediateexperiencecould be praduced.That is lhe meantng. Whai hasbeensaidso lar hasbeensaidirornlhe standpont so ol talseallribut on, Now we begrn the corresponding retracpriorlo all activity t gn-The Sell's unconditioned Visronstands eilheroi seelngor of any is not subiect increase lo or diminution. is not a lactor in any is lhe Seli in lts ll true { becomesa Witnessonly lhroughassocialion wiih metaphysrcal lgnorance. Andthe very notron assocat on with ol lgnofance itselia creation lgnorance. ls true nature, is oi In the unconditioned Visionraisedaboveall changecan no rnoTe a be W t_eqslhan Ihe non-conscioLs can, PLreconscroLsness cannot be a Witness lackof a connection lor wrthany objeclcapable of beingwrtnessed, whrlethe non-conscious cannol be a Witness evenwhena connectron with such objeclsexisls. The supremeSefasConsciousness sthereforeonlyaWitnessthrough lhe rnedi!rnot its refleclion lgnorance. this view,a d lfi' in On cu ties can be solved. (7)The nmoslConsciousness stoodeiernally has without ever risingor selting,the priorcondilion the possibility lor ol the actlvity an individ!al of expereincer, itsellnot a factor _ dny act on. lransce-dent(relationles./. T'rq ,c r.e l'ue iorm of the SelJ, of the natureerther a causeor of an not of eilecl, eternally manifest, homogeneous, void of a dark ness and all distinclions. assumeslhe lorm of a lV tness lt only through connection with metaphys cal gnorance. And lhe noliongl conneclion with lgnorance itselldue only to is lgnorance. (B,B.V. lll.iv.83-5). (8)The unconditioned visionraised abovea I change can no rnore be a Wltnesslhan what s non-conscious can. The Lrncondilioned on has no conneclion Vis withany objectcapableof beingwitnessed: non-consc the ous is notcapabe

oi be ng wtiness evenwhensuchan object at hand There is torethe s!preme becomes Wilnessof ils own reflectton a n lgnorance the iorm of the tndivid!al (in knower, knowiedge and known).For the reltection Consciousness lgnoof in rance(rsan objeclcapable beingwttnessed, nce it) is a oJ s compound implytng retaiionship between eiiectand cause. ( B . B . V1 l l v . 8 9 - 9 0 ) . . 'Effecl'here means the intellectand so on/.'Cause means cansctousnessa5 unknown. (Whatevetis campounded(samhata) hasbeen brought tnta oetn9by another and exists for the sake ol anotherand is lhere tore an oblect capable ol being witnessed.An 'compaunded'in lhls sense, cp. U.S. (prose) section 56. TN.) (9) The Self has no secondthing over agarnstit, as t is raisedaboveallchangeand has only lgnorance ts apfor pareniconditioning adjunct. Neverthetess, talsetdeathal the il is a W tnessis superimposed uponil by densesoulswhose mrndshave been blindedby tgnorance. (B.B.VLiv.372). The nottan that it is a Wjtness is a fatse supenmpasn@n, candnDnedby the limiting adjunct al barc lgnarance. knower, {10)Theindividual stationed lhe intelecland iclen, in tiiied with t, convjnceshimselfol the presenceoj tgno rance and [s effectsin the Se1, though in truth ii s nol present, lhroughhtsown exlroverled gaze- as simple souls aitribule bluecoiour lhe co ourless to etherol the sky.(B.B.V .rv298) The only saurce of our convictionas lo lgnoranceis our own itrrnedtateexperience'l do not know . Even that experienceoc cuts anly through an extroverted gaze. gut if we took wnh a purely introvertedgaze, lgnarance does nat exst. tt is tikekthe case ot the blue calour expeienced when tookingat the ether of the sky.Even at ttme it is being experiencedit daes not actualy extst h ts the same wtth lgnorance.





Teaching by Examinatlon otThoThree Stelos ofwaking, Dram and Oreamless Sleep The exposition the lhree slates ol waking,dream and of dreamless sleep is nol aimed al teachinglhal those three states reallyexrsl. The purposeot the aulhorot the Vartikais only to communite vLrenalureof th Sell by tirstleachingI lhrough the supermposingon it lhe threestates,and then, by a cr lical exthe amination the latter,lo revealin immediateexperience ol elernalSelf Ireefrom all changing states. lorrealizingthe Fourlh' Brielly,the praclicalrnethodJollowed ([/.V. 23, intro.)or ljnal realityis this. Whjle slill in the stale where he rs subjectlo talse superimposition, studenlmusl lhe Indidty, nust then realize he the identilyof lhe body of lhe universew th lhe cosmicmldn (Hiranyagrabha). mustlhen disHe solve thal In the Sell as cause, calledPrajna.And linally,he m!st ernergein his own lrue nature,beyondcauseand effecl, as'neitherthis nor that'. The detailsof this orocessare exolained lhe Vartikaon in lhe sectlonol lhe Brhadaranyaka Upanishad dealingwith light (lyol h,Brhad.lV.iii.l The individual ft.). soul as the SpirI viewed predominaling (M.V 44, 5, note)is underadluncts wiih intellect he wakingexpeol the naiureof Ight. fhroughlgnorance enjoys rience whenlhe intellect awake,and when il is asleephe sees is ( d r a m s B . B . V V i i . 4 4 8 ) . T h i si n d i v i d u a l u l ,a f a s e a p p e a r ' l. so ance composedof impressions and consisting an individual of passintothedreamis subjecl and hismeans ofcognition, saidlo its slate whenlhe m nd becomes won objectas lighl,and in that dream-state ihe soulis selt-luminous only. in dreamalso liqhl Bui less sleep the only conditioning adjunctis metaphysical lgno' rance.The hereis lhe causewhich lalerproduce will waking Seli and dram as rts effecls (8.8.V lV iii.979).In the wakingstate lhe soul perlorms actions through bodyand organsand expeits r encespleasure and parn,ln lhe dream-stale, with the intellect lor condilioning adjunct,it sees dreams under the impulseoi

desire In dreamless sleepits adiunctis Ingornace atone, and it lhere standsas lhe causeol the nind and otherlaclorsoJlhe ndividual organism; between slatesol ihe ;thalis the diflerence dreamand dreamless sleep(B.B.VlViii.1528). ln this connection, Suresvarafollowsthe method of the lJpansiahd lhe reversed and Comrnentator usinglhe example in ol a greal lish. The fish slands,in his exposition, lhe Se J, tor diilerenlbolh fromthe bodyand the organsot the wakingstate, knownas'deaih', and trom the desireand activity that prompt lhe Jurther exrstence lhe physical ol body. And so it can be shown lhal lhe notionthat lhe Sell undergoes transmigralorf experience is due to melaphysical (B_B.VlV 148-51). lgnorance iii.1

In dreamless sleepthesoulstands as'lheSeliunknown'lhe causeot wakingand dreamexperience, and,beingvoidoJname a n d i o r m , i s v e r i i y l h e A b s o l u t e .F o r , a s r e m a r k e d a t Brhadaranyaka Varlikall.i.451,2. havethe upanrshadic we lexls 'All go ihesecreatures da ly lot he realmol lhe Absolule are bul caff ed away by de usionand do nol know it' (Chand.Vlll.iii.2) and Thus all thingshere returnlo lhe supremeSelf' (Prasna lV 7).The upanishadic givingthe example ihe hawk,too. texl of ( B r h a d . j V. 1 9 ,c p . M . V . 8 3 ,2 ,n o t e ) s i n i e n d e d t o e x p o L r n d l h e 1 i lrue natureol the Sellas eternally pure,conscious and liberaled (B.B.V lV.iri.1158). phrase folds its wings'referslo its reThe marnrng lgnorance. in The phrase'(isbornedown)to lhe nesl' relersio llle tacl thal n dreamless sleepeven the relleclion ol Conscousnessresisin lhe lorm ot pureSpirI (B.B.VlViii.l 172, 3) Thal.lheretore, which,in lhe lwo statesol wakingand dream was assooaledwilh lgnorance the senseol havingapparent in condilon ng adjunctsthat were eJlectsot lgnorance, now ln dream ess sleep stands separaled lrom lgnorance (B-8.V. V.iii.J174'5). This is the kue torm of lhe soul,Iree lrom lgno, rance,desireand action.But in wakingand dreamlhere is an extraneous condrlioning (B.B.V. adjuncl,caused by lgnorance V ir 1205-6). One musl, however, remberthe other point thal a though as explained, desiresceasewhenwakingand dream





lhev do remainin dreamlesssleep In lhe cease.neverlheless againin the case and Iorm o1a lalenlimpression, they manilest They are nevercompletely oi one who has awokenlrom sleep. knowledge the Sell dawns(B.B.V. ol till ellminated metaphysical Viv.378). by In dream,the Selfis deliled desireand meritand demerit. unrelaled the exlernalworld, lo because Yetit is oarllvluminous. the to and rt conforms and illumines objeclscreatedby menlal ol rmoressicns underihe imoulse desire.On lhe otherhand,in only as lhe the Sell slandsalone,conditioned dreamless sleep pedectiranquillity, dreamless eep s Hence cause,and assumes We B.B.V lViii.976-8). admit rs calledpertectpeace(sampraseda, sleep in a certainsense. in absenceof knowledge dreamless of Thereis absenceof internal knowledge the form'Thisam l , of of knowledge lhe lorm thesecreaand also absence external comesJrombeingin iden_ tures'.But lhis absence knowledge ol lt One'(prajna). s trtywrlh the supremeSell as the'conscious ge qultedilierenliromlheabsenceoJ rs dram knowled I hatoccu Ln adjuncts. And conditioning and waking, whichis due to apparent with the help of the exampleol this is iaught in the Upanishad lhe man embracing wite {B.B.V.lVili.1309'10). his indream' absence knowledge ol But howdowe knowthatthis and not to a naluralab_ less sleep rs due to allainingidentity, is, AbsenceoJ knowlege alter all,lhe senceot consciousness? 384) beings(B.B.V.lV.iii.1 typical characteristrc non-conscious ol that the Upanishad says,'Verily, It is to answerlhls objection whenthere(in the stateot dreamless sleep)he does not see,he s, verily, seeing, thoughhe does not see. For lhere is no break iii.23). n the seekingol lhe seer'(Brhad.lV and the like the nol lhe natureol Desire,aclion,ignorance tells us lhat lhe Seil, as Consciousness And the Upanishad is. in lhe soul is unattached and is nol tollowed wakingby the eti.15-6, cp. when dreaming(Brhad.lV. iects ol rts experiences lgnorance l\,,1.V40,3). relalion the Sell with melaphysical The ol

is begrnningless, the senseol limeless), doubt.But il is (in no accepted thal ts relation wilh such elfeclsof lgnorance posras live acls ol eroneous cognition, destres and so iorth has a be ginning(B.B.V. iii.1408-9). BLrlwhat is lhe connection one who is lhe victimof abol senceof knowledge and erroneous knowledge wiih the metaphysical teaching(B.B.V lViii.l4lO)? To answerthis queslion dreamless sleep is expounded a statelree lrom ignorance, as desireand actiorr. Evenin the dteam-state thesense-organs dtssolveinlo the vehicleof the impressions, we knowfrom the as lext,'Himseli sleeping, looksdownon ihe sleeprng not he senseo r g a n s ' ( B r h a d . l v . i i i . H 1 ) . c o u l di h e o r g a n sb e p r e s e n il n 1 ow dreamless sleepwhen not even their impressions presenl are (B.B.V. lViii.1416)? So, sincethe actionof seeingand ils Jac, lors and resullsare alikeimpossible, persondoes nol see in a dreamless sleep.And (in another sense)he does see, sincehe is Consciousness nalure(B.B.V. by lViii1417). Fromihe l6e rng'l did not see (anylhing)'on part ol one the who has woken up, we know thal, in dreamless sleep,the absenceol the lndividual subjectand his knolwege and il oblects has beendirectly experienced thal slateby Consciousness In in ils true nalure(8.8.V lV.iii.1420).therehad beenany breakin It the visionof consciousness wouldnot be awareof dream, one ess sleep, as it would nol have been experienced(B.B.V. lv.ii.1a38). The presentparliciple'seeing the phrase, . .al in thoughseeing,He does not see. For there is no break in lhe (brhad.lViii.23) seeing the seer...' of does not meanlhal there s an ind vidualsubjecl enjoying experience. Forthatis impossib/e in dreamless sleep, Youhavelo be conienlwiththe explanatron lhal the l-notionot dreamless slaep ('remembered'retrospec live y in subsequent wakingexperience) represents Seli in the rls lrue is ihe subjeclol lhe participle'seeing'in lhe samesort ot (meiaphorical) (noi implying sense action) thatwe speak af space as'givtng'rooms lB.B.V.lV.iii.l1442).





'Howcanthe SelJ see al Oneshouldnot raiselhe objoction, For all if it hasnofaclorsol actionat ils disposal?' evenin world we do nol se the factorsot actional work beforean aclion. 1o Whether therers action be doneor not, belorean action Whether lhere is actionto be doneor nol, laciorsol actionas a pre-condition be ruledoul in ilher case(M.V 122'15). can ii l\roreover, lhe casewhereseeingis constant, is impossible in belweenan aclion sequence a ot lo eslablish relation tomporal the toestablish existence and its thal it is imDossible (andhonce lo think theseeol impo6sible ol anndandmoans The B.B.VlViii.1449). dislinc' ingot theWilness an aclion, as his seer, seeof tionslhalsei upthe appearance an individual (B.B.V lgnorance to lhrough ingandils resulls shown arise are with tor on lViii.1450). Thre dependnce lgnoranc relation is or not-selt; there is no suchdependence but knowledge the oJ mereappearance orlhe lactorsol actionwhicharea lgnorance, thatonlythe Sell exists(B B V tromit, whenit is known deriving lviii.1451-2). lgno" ihrough the and waking Seltappears Thusin dram ot according ihe dislinclions name lo ranceloundergo dislinction so sleep, lhal in andlorm,Butthisis lo the casein dreamless In as thai slateone doesto see dualily, one doesin waking. has lhelormof thechangeveMhing assumed dreamless sleep, no. no lgnorance, ils efiecis, lessSell.Thereis thenneither for absence lgnorance, ther is then nothingapartfrom the of as Self tor th Sell to '6/itness its objecl(B.B.VlViii.1518-23) sleeplhe Sll knowsnolhing,without Theretore, dreamless in Thu ness. s alldifiicultherebygivingup its natureas Conscious lrescanbe explained. sleep dreamless about TheUpanishad ofthelinallruth sums passag sleep) see is one' the dramless in the bginning'(ln iniro.)Her lV.iii.32), M.V.44, cp like transparent water'(Brhad. sleep In is lhe moaning. Waleris pure. th statof dreamless ol there is no awareness causeand oflectbecauselgnorance

and its effects cannotp enetEtethatwhich eternalty is consciaus by nature. lt is one, without inlemal distinctions,and not itself standing as an individual within a clas6.That i6, it is one only, withouta second. It is not a seer (in the empidcal sanseol ona peioming the act ol seeing), Fot it is by nature void of the factots ol action, and there b nothingtot it to see. lt is atso nonclualbecause it tanscends ln lgnotunce and its effects (8.8.V iii. 1798-1806). is everimmediately h evident.The rcatmol the Ab'oluteis no,prcpe y speaking, eitherltanscendent tmmaot nent. It is that [6latel (oka) which is the Absolute. The imptication is that the trus nature of th6 Sell is the Absotute. This is knownfrcmlhe highest textsol the Upanishads, whercthe subject-ptedicate qLlalilication rclation the wotds,andlhe mutual ol givesriseto a sdntence ol lhe word-meanings whichcan only (andnotdenole definite express indjcation an a meaning, B.B.V lv.iii.l8'l9-21). is the highest this stat6 thsout, ol whichputs an end to all otherstates(B.B.V. lviii,1828).lt is his supreme possessaon, unsurpassable has slalo ol is the highest realmto which he can attain,lor it is indestructible. is his ll supreme For bliss. it exceEds oth6r all bliss, and'all other creaturessubsist a fraction tho bliss'(B.VV on of tViai. iB2B,-32, -40). 36, Thls troln an examination the stateso, wakrng, of dream anddreamless sleepwe caneslablish th sell is real,lhat it that kanscends aillhe not-self, thal it is unalloyed, its natureis that passable unsure bliss,lhat it is a pureunily, that it is Consciousnessand nothing elseand thal it is without second. a The moslimportant verses consid6r lhis regard the lo in are iollowing. (1)The6eeker liberation (having of identified himsell wilh Vaisvanara, Sellas associated the cosmos its the with in proceeds lromVaisvanara objective lorm,cp.M.V43,6), on andidentilies himsell hish6anwithitsinner in self, Taijasa or Hiranyagarbha 43,6).Then dissolves inro he this {M.V23;



ils innerself,the CosmicVitalEnergyThe term VltalEn_ ergy as used in ih s contexlmeansihe Self as cause(viz' lt lhe Self qua unknown). is ihe seed oi everyeiiectand rs v One' (prajia, l\'4 23 and as lhe Conscious also ;known dissolveanywhereexcept into lhelr 43). E{iectscannoi oi the rnalerial cause.Therefore,when seeker iberaion has proceed lo the Abso_ on the reached causeoi all,he should lule in ils lrue naiure,which ls nol a cause, by thrnkrng 'ne ther ihis nor that'.(B.BV lV li 82-4) (2) Just as, whenthe mind is awake'one dentiies onesell wilh it lalsey and feels'l am awake"so, when lhe mlnd rs thereis the lalse the and dreamlng oneis wlinessing dream, withlhe dream (B B V oneself one identilies ideawhereby lV.iir.448). (3) The Self as cause is indeedthe inmost princp e, bul viewedunder lhe adjunctof bare lgnoranceThe eilects are calledwakingand 0ream wh ch, as such,il produces (B.B.V. ri.979). lV. is (4) lgnorance the cause ol ihe mind The mlnd is the lt onlyin lhe realm of the individual condllon pleasure and pain.AII rs ol the body thai one experiences self. (B B V l\/.iii1528) of causedby lgnorance the inmost (5)The true lorm of lhe Selfas pureand conscous and so on s sel lorth an example(al ErhadlV ii 19) by lhe lse oi 'as a hawk'.(B.B.VlV iil l 158) the words ol (6) By the imageol the lolding the wingsthe upanishadic lhal lext leachesthal,even hereln thrsworld,the crealure (i e ln the of has sprungfrom lgnorance the Selfrestsin ts By sleep). the words'isbornedownto lhe Seli in dreamless form ol the inmostSell assumed nesl t reiersto ihe pLlre of by the retleclion ihe inmostConscousnessrn lgnorance e o s w h e n t h e o u l c o m eis t h ei n m o s t S e(fn d r e a m s ss e e p ) (BB.V lv.iii.1172-3).


(7) When a I the effectsol lgnorance, rnctud the rnrnd, ng are wtlhdrawn, relleclion Consctousness the of is alsow/ihdrawn,as the reileclion lhe sun in warerOtsappears ot wifh rne orsappearance the reilecting ol medi!m.Be,ofedrearnless sleep,lhe Consciousness associaied with lgnorance was identified with ihe efiectsof the talter(in wa-king and clream) The dislinction beiween Consciousness ils supand posedreflection arisesfrom tgnorance. (B.B.V lViii.j jT4

The true nature of the reflection of Cansciousness in the mtnd is the inmost lhe states other than oreamtesssleep, it appears to be djstinct rram lhe tnmost consc/ousress, Dut anly through lgnorance. ln dreamtess sleep, hawever,lhe case is olhen^/ise. Here it restsn itsown true na_ ture as pue Consciousness, lhe reflectionaf as thesun in watel retutns to its ongtnal, the sun, when the rellecting medjum js (8) This s the true torm of the soul thar rs heredescribed, Iree Irom lgnorance, desireand actionIn oreamless steep. One should knowtha he otherlormoitheso!1,undergoing waKtng an0 dream,is due lo an exlraneous cause, thal sole causebeingtgnorance the SeJl. ol (B.B.VtViii.j2OS-6). (9) lndreamlesssleep, whenwaking oreamhavedisapano peared.a rnen,s desiresdisappear wiih them.They jusl remainrn the form ol taientimpressiors. The upanishadtc texl (Brhad.lViv.7) specities desires,ro snow that, tor all immorlalily, even the latentirnpressions desirehave lo oi be neutrallzed. When lgnorance, causeot des re, has the b.en F dot.dreo. ate-, 'rnpressro, 1o rerra.,sover,o. d-yth ng elseetther, Ignorance the rooror everyphenom as ls enon in lhe emprlical world.(B.B.V. iv 378 S). lV It ts only fram the standpaint of empirrcalexperience. ac o d 'o lo Su ectaG. tha!tgnorance and $ elta.tsalp. io to
F 1|ta\<nn. teddng somckata-se<arva)


it is ol (10) Thenature the Sellis puroConsciousness: nol and ignorance lhe rest For (psychological) desire,aclion, llowed lhelexts'unattached'and'not (inwak trom we know dreaming)'iBrhad' that ingby its exporiencs it hadwhen Pu and lV. i 5)lhatdesiro the restare illusory reconsciousiii. is aboveatlchange, the truenaiureol the Self ness.raisd is lgnorance begrningless' with Its association motaphysical and olher e{leclsol lgnowilh while iis association desire a as is rance regarded having beginning' ol by Whenthesoulis alJlicld lgnorance the Sellandconse_ lo what quentposilive misconceplion, is the leaching whichI exThisthe Upanishad ol the truth? haslo turnlor knowledg there theslaleol oreamless when Verily, rt tln p,ains when says, he lhough doesnot seeing' he sleeo doesnotsee,h is,verily' (Brhad lViii/ of in is se6ilor there no break lhe seeing lhe seer' (B.b.vlv.iii.1 408-10). .23). Thetext(Brhadlviii230 syas"Hedoesol see'0e{1'1) ol be causelherecannot le tacolrs acloa ' dreamless to relalion the lruestale seeing'in ll sleep. says'although ConsciousoJ (namely presence theuniversal the ol aljairs (B.B.V lViii 1417). ness). on deoe'dence ones wrlhoul (12)(TheSeltcanbe known knowl' yielding empirical cognilion subiecl-objsct individual (in realily dreamless For il is atlerfirstbeholding edg3.) and knowledge by unattained the triadof knower, sleep), ol ol known. onealterwards aware t_ataDsence lhe lhat 0s see rino'earlpsss'eep) tdrd nol (then) lfiaoand)savs by is o{ Thisabsence seeinE wilnessed theSellin its pure just as whai is seenls also so lorm as Consciousness' isestablished Consciousness Seltas witnessed isothalthe and as constant elernal)(B.BV lViii 1420) in lt (131 lnetewereany brea^in lhe s'eing ol thPseer ol not onewould havethe leeling knowlsleep dreamless ol ihev sron tnesu onehadbeento sleepTherelore edoe

preme Setf is vord ertherol origin or dissolution. {B.BV l V .| 1 4 3 8 ) (14) As one may use the participleot a verb and fefer melaphorically the actionless to etherol space as ,grving space, so may one reier metaphorically the actionless to S e l ia s s e e i n g .( B . B . V V i i i . 1 4 4 2 ) l (15) BecaLrse iaclofof actionis foundal work no belorean ac1rs begun. faclors actions ot muslbe deerned universally inoperat at lh s siage...lj thereis no aclon lo be ve done. there can be no lactorsoi aclton.And even , there s an aclronto be done, lhe notionot faclorso, aclionleads to nr n te regress(as one wouldhaveto assumenew faclors oi actronlo sei lhe orgtnalonesin moitonand so lo nJrn t v) . tl rs thus hard lo show how lactorsof aciionoperale at all. Moreover n a case (tikethat ot the constant,seerng. of the Se 1) where rt s irnposs to establsha lemporal ble sequence belweenan act and its result,il ts impossible eslabtish lo the existence an endandmeans of eilherBul it lgnorance accepted rs is the cause.alt these diilic![ies becomeexplcabie. Everylhrng s a mere appearance resulting tronrtgnorance. There rs nothrngncorrecl. j448_50) (8.8.V tVtii.1444, The assertion that, even acceptjng lacorc ol act@ns fram . ire emptncalstandpoint,there is nothing wrang. appearsta be t1c mare lhan an artjrcjal augment based on an unnecessa.y .dncessrcr lo the apponent's case (because Surcsvan has slia\rn al lenglh thal lhere cannotbe t'actatsot actlan at wotk tn l.e case af the'seeing al the Seer).Hence one need to examne itrs atgument taa ctosety But sludenls may rno a passageat !he end af the jntraductorypart of Srj Sankara,s Commentiry to BhagavadGna XVttl.67 al begins No,tor that wauld 'Itake what dtd nat act into a perlotmer af aclian . (See tin G Bh xvllt.67. trans. l\,4ahedeva A sesttip.515)


ChapterS is not-sell taught, oJtheSelfwilhthe (16)where aconnection based on lgno_ is therelhe relerence to be a connection ol lorminglhe notion,basedequallyon lgnorance, rance, and ol factorsol actional his disableto acl, an individual posal,etc.But whenfor the man oi wisdomlhen notion"All idea is basedon realrly SelJ'arises.lhis is the (actionless) dependon lgno' il does nol. like the notionot a not-selJ, ranceand its eltcls.(B.B.V lViii.1451-2)



(as (17)Wherethereare distinciions in wakingand dream) (in o{ lhereis the appearance lgnorance lhe lorm oi'l do not In whatever dreamless known'. Butthereare nodisiinclions no sleep(and consequenlly ieeilng'l do noi know'and no lo belongs ihe mrnd' lgnorance cp.l\r.V122,19). lgnorance. found.ll does not belong as that s where it is consislently sleep(prana) in lo Consciousness the stateol dreamless raisedaboveall change ln lhe one undividedConsciousness ariseslhroughvlsionbasedon lg' distinction an (apparent) lhousandsol lur_ which comprises norance,a distinction d stinctlonsthrough name, form and aolion Bul n ther lhe sleep that dualilyis not lound lgnorance' dreamless for present.There thanno duality lhe is causeot evil, is not sublecl, inlo lndividual distinclion lhroL.lgh soul to pefceive and obiecls,as thereis in the wak ng knowledge emoirical and of speakoftheabsence lgnorance reamstates.To and ol altirmthe sole existerlce ihe Seli.eternal ils eflectsis lo and raisedaboveall change,as lhe only realilyTo alfirm sleep in of lhe soleexistence the Sell,lhe cause, dreamless (B s lo the exislenceof the elfect as a reality. B Vl\/.iii ol 1517-20).We now showthe method the negalon of the lh ree states. oi ignorance lhe Seli is nolhingreal Our cerltude as to rls ln nol lhal arises the ex slencerestsonlyonlhe{eeling'ldo knovv In (T 176) The sou ' cenlred ol course emplricalexperienceB V 11 lhe rrind and lookingnot inwardsbul ouiw3rds conv nces itsell ol onasel ol lhe blue oi its gnorance ihe Selt,as one convlnces

co olf oi lhe (colourless)elher ot the sky. But if it turns its gaze nwards,it tinds neilherignorancenordoubt norwrong knowledge n waking, dreamor dreamless sleep(B.B.V1.iv298,9). And one shouldnol raisetheobjeclion that one has to acceptthatlgnorance in was presenl dreamless sleep oneaccountotlhe memory'lknew noth ng lhal is supposedlo occurto no who has awokenirom it, For in dreamless sleeponedoesnoi in lacthavethe experience'l do nol know'. And il is not right to say thai the Jeeling'l did noi know (that comes to one after he has woken !p reDresents a nremory. When DevadattaremembeF'l knew that then', he remembers what he had previously experiencedaccording to its properdetailsol lime and place. But one cannct say that this sett Looksback over what il had previouslyexperiencedin this way. For.sincethe Sell is the Wilness time.spaceand causation, o{ it cannolundergodelermination byiime, spaceand causation(since il wllnessesthese as objectsand the.eforeas distinctlrom ilselt). lgnorance,again,does nol exist for its own sake. (That which exists for the sake of another is non-consc;ous, cp.U.S.(prose) seclian 71. That far whtchit existsmust be consciousand selfexstent, tn short the one Self taught in the Upanishads. What existsfor the Self has no exstence independent the Setl and is af rcducible to a temparary illusion arising on the substratum ol the Set, cp. (A)nandagirionB.B.V. 301, lVii.25.TN.) lgnoranceis Liu an illusron arising the Sell and appearing in beloreit, likethe illu, 5ronof a rope-snakeand so on. lt is lhus correcl to dismissii as nrerefa se imaginalion. As lhe rope,snakeis talsely imagrnedin the ropeand rs nothing otherthan rope,so lgnorance imag, the is ned in Consciousness, beingin its trlle natureConsciousand, ness.rnanllesls there. And whenthe eternalConsciou ness rarsed s :bo'/e a lch3nge is known,lgno.anceafld its elfectsare canceled 3.tsV l.,v300 6) li is tftrelhat ai Naiskarmya ddhi lll.58(prcseintrod!ction) S SLrresvara rrakesa caseforthe existence lgnorance dreamof in lcss s eep,sayrng,'ln dreamless sieepthere s presenithal ,rei/

188 ChapleFS


lgnorance lhe Sell lhat is the causeof all evil'- But there is ol nolhing wronghere.Forthiswassaici the assumption eveon thal accepts lgnorance ilsfacevalue at uniililis finally cancell6d ryone through metaphysical knowledge derjved fromthe holyiexls. Nor should think one thatlhis imp,ies thalthere noexperiencelhe is oJ Selfin dreamless sleep, which might imply, lLlrn, it didnol in that thenexist. Forwe haveio accept thatthe Conscio!sness which present enable to say'l knewnothtng dreamwa6iniallibly to us (in lesssleep)' in taci the Sell,of the natureol immediate is experience(B.B.V lll.iv.103). itstruenalure Sellis lolally In the devoid ol lgnorance, onlyin dreamless nol sleep inwaking dream but and as well. lt is noi active. lt is inlerior all. lt constitules lt is lo all. thetruenature iiselt ol anything both ot and else.SotheUpanishad was correcl saythatwhenil doesnotsee,in dreamless to sleep, yet il is seeingwhenit doesnol see, Brhad.lviii.23. no more ll sees(inthesense an activity) waking dream ol in and thanit does in dreamless sleep. And thereis no moreany breakin ils real Consciousness indreamless sleepthanthereinwaking dream is and (B.B.V iii.1493-5,1 tV 907-8). ll canbe proved reason thestatesof theSelJ talse by that are appearances. slateof wakingis a falseappearance The simply because its lorrnas waking oi experience, because has a and il (admittedly beginning anend,likelhe and (to illusory)appearance the dreamer) beingawakein dream.The eflects lgnorance ol oi thalliebetore areapprehended non-conscious, theyhave us as and no independent existonce theirown,likethe water ot seenin a (B.B.VlViii.1072-3). waking dream notpeF mirage Again, and do tainto lhelrueSell.Forlheyareonly{ound belonging theindito vidualsoul,as apparently delimiled the mind,itsellassociated by \,/th psychological ignorance desire.Theydo nol in anyway and belong lheinnerWitness individualsoul. lo oilhe FortheWitness, kom theveryfaclol being lheWitness, cannolbeorganicallycon; nected wilhwhatit witnesses (since subjecl the can neverbe the nor oblecl lheobjecl subject, B.B.VlViii.905). agarn, And allthe

are as one another not-selves lalse appeahnces, theyexclude like mulually, the snake,stick,trickleof water,elc.,lalselyimagAnd sleepand inedin the rope(B.B.V1.iv.1496-7), in dreamless exclude themsolvos mutually all combut) comalhey {notmerely pletely disappear lromview(B.B.Vll.iii.222). the Sellas ConBut is neverlosl(B.B.V sciousness ll.iv.126), it is theWitness as bolh 'l ll.iv.129). o1the feeling know'and'ldo not know(B.B.V Thus lromtheslandpoint thetinaltruih, of neitherwaking drearinor nor dreamless sleepbelong therelalion Sell.These to les6 states are expedences frommlaphysical lgnorance, like onlyillusory arising the experience the ropo-snako the rest(B.B.V11.i.264-6)ol and Thus in all circumstances S6lf is plre Consciousness. is the lt non-dual, doesnolundergo and ditferent stales. Thewhole doctrine lhe selfpassss that lhrough diflerenl slales (andthenlaterdeni6d) to bring howthesupreme is taught only out realityis free from such stales. lt is only lrom the te{s ol the Upanishads one can knowthat the supremerealityis freefrom that suchstates. lt is onlylromthe textsof the Upanishads one that canknowthatlhe supreme rality lheAbsolute, fromlogical is not investigation the implications the threestatesand kom that ol ol (B.B.V alone lViii.1112-S).That teaching is the oftheVartika. Here arethe chiefverses worthy considration thesetopics. ol on (18)lgnoranceofong's Selfisafals own apparance, in alike wakrng, dreamand dreamless sleep,lhat comsintothe Ueldof practical experience, wiln6ss6dbytheSeltlhatisself-revealed... It is onlywhenthe Conscious One,seated the mindand identiin liedwith lgnorance, turnsils gazoutwards it lailsto apprelhat hendits own true Selfand accptslgnoranco its efteclsas and real,likea childaccepting ralthe blucolourof the sky. lt as doesnotdo so through ownlru naturc. Butwhenits gazeis its lurnedinwards. lindsnithor it ignonce,nordoubtnorwrongknowledgeinwaking, (B.B.Viii.1293, dream ordreamloss slsep. I.iv.2989). (19)One whoawakens lromdreamless sleephasthememory


Chapler 8

Suresvara ( B . B . i i . 1 4 9s ) V 3


' drdnot know anything'. thalis nota genuine But cogntlion bearingon the slaleol dreamless sleep. nothing betongs lhe For thal lo Sell can periain to the past, since the Self is unditierentiated by rin e. spa,a or ol-er .aclors. B V t.rv300) {B (Farlhewhale notion'lgnorance residingnthe Self was expe nenced tn the pasl'makes na sense (since neither lhe Self nar metaphysical lgnotance lals within tine.) (20)The innermosl Sellis not accepted be ng louched as ei, ther by past lime or by luture time. Whateverexisls lor anotherexists an tllusion as appearing thesubslratum ihai on ol Whrch set-exislent. is Henceit is tradilionaliy laughlio be ialse rmaginatron. faci that a thing belongs the pasl The to cannot known be perceplion, ihe iactthata thing through and liesin lhe fuiurecannot known be through any means vatd oi knoweclge. Henceall notions pasl and lutureare false oi knowledge... lgnorance manfestsin the Sett,bul iI truihrt is onlyp!re Consciousness. Sincei1is dependent ihe nmcst on Sellra sedaboveallchange, tmagined ihts causecanbe canceled,togetherwilh ellects, its (lhrough realization a oJone,s -3,6) tr!e nature lhe inmosi as Seli).(8.B.VLiv.30l (21) I Consciousness iramediate as experience was not nvar afilypfesenl drearnless tn sleep, how do you explain how the onewhoawakens fromil canhavethe idea l knewnolhng in dreamless eep? (B.B.Vlll.i"103) s (22) The Selfin dreamless sleep'is seeing thought doesnol see because hasnoneol lhe taciors action, t ol because is it inieror lo all,because is a I, and becauser ts rne rTue it nalure ol all else. 11 does nol see in dreamless sleepfor lhe reas0nmentroned (namely thai it has noneol the jactorsot action,so that it is presentshiningbul does not perlormany act of seeing); one should but understand it doesnol see that n r,,ak anddreameilher,lorthe ng samereason. Andiustas Consciousnessunbroken s lhroughoul dreamandwak ng,so s I a l s o n d r e a me s s s l e e p , l o r l h e r e a s o n s g i v e

(23) This Se f has unbroken vision.This has a readybeen decaredlo be the casein dreamand waking.But t is truein lhe caseof dreamless sleepalso,as the iexi'Whentherein ihe slate oi rJreamless sleep....'8rhad.lViii.23 shows. And the of i!sl as the Selllranscends lactors acton in dreamless s eepasbareeternal conscio! nessraised s above allchange, so does il also transcendthe laciors of aclion in dream and wak ng. (B B.V.lVii .1907-8). (24) This stateol waking unreal, is simply account the on oi facl thal il is a staleol waking. For t has a begnn ng and comes an end,Ike lhe slaleol waking to (lo thalappears lh dreamer) occurin dream.The waking to slale s a mereappearance arising lrom lgnorance. objects ncetheyap lls (s pearbeiorethe Witness) are nvariably non-consc ous,and have no ndependent existence theirown, lke the water ol (B.B.V. seen n a rnirage. Vii.1072-3) (25) I is the mindthalacls,aliiicted ignorance desire by and S eepng andwakingbelongtothemind;theydo be onglo not theWrtnessof themind,pureConscousness. (B.B.VlVii.9C5) (26) Whena garland rnisperc6 as a snake, cannol s ved it be rnsperceived a stickor in olherways at tfie sarneI me. as Simiarly. whenthe nrnosl Sells m sperceived undergorng as 0_6ol l'. lh pF rldleso' wa(.ngd ea r andd .a'r e:. sreep. rtcannolbe m sperce ved as undergo oneol lhe othersat ng the sarne me. Even!nder metaphysrcaL 1 lgnorance. vari the ous not-se ves (areseenlo be unreal they)exclude because eachothermulualy. Howmuchmoreclearly theirLrnrea wrl 1y be reveaed when al lgnorance d ssolved is wilhoutrernainder the nrnosl n (B.B.V. v.l496-7) Self'1. L 127)The variousmanfestaiionsof the not-self(are knownto lreunrealbecauselhey)excludeoneanothermutualy. And n dreamess sleep,svroontranceand othersuch staleslhe



Suresvara CanThere be an Injunction for Knowledge


Sell as Witnessreveats compele disappearance the the ol notself'.( (28) ln dreamless sleepthe rndividual subject andh s knowf edge and tls objeclsd sappear,but pure Conscousnessdoes nolCrsappear. However, lotherthings theworld a in apartirom Consciousness exclude oneanother mulually disappear and allogether dreamless in sleep... Whenever therearisesthe notron I do not know', this s witnessed by the Seli. How muchmoreevidently ihisthe casewiththefeeling,l is know,? P u r e C o n s c i o u s n e s s t, h e r e i o r e , n e v e r d i s a p p e a r s . (,129) (29) The relatronless doesnol undergo Sell etlher dreamless steeporwaktng. could How itthen undergolheslareof drearn? Waking, dreamanddreamless sleeparebulnarurat (uncaused, beginningless)lgnorance the Self.The rmag of inationary ea id llraltheSelfis asleep orawake is dreamtng or belongs onlyto crealures asteepin the njghtoi lgnorance. s wholeuni Th verseconstsling the movingand the fixedis a mere illu_ of sion. The Supreme ils true nature, lhe ropeis the tfue is as nalureol lhe tllusory snake. (A.B.V11..264,6) (30) The notion thailheSellpasses througn rnetnree states oJwakrng, dreamand dreamless sleepa risesirornother(secuia, meansol knowledge. The vedc teaching appearing to connrmthe existenceof the three states(does nol constilute valrdauthortai/veteaching b!t)is onlygivento contorm with (fa se)knowledge derivedirom othersources (secuar expen_ ence). But the fact that the one who appearsto be passing thro!gh(repeated cycies ol)waktng, dreaming dreamless and sleep rs reallythe Absolutecan only be known from the upansftadtc iexts. Henceil ls lhatwhch theyare concerned ro communicate validknowledge. purport as The of,Thatthou art'and oiher rnelaphystcal texts of the Veda ts to leach that lfe truenature one'sown Selfis the Absolute, the lrue of and narure the Absolute ot one'sown Self. (B.B.VlV ii.l i 13,5)

Thereis atext in ihe section the Brhadaranyaka oi Upanishad givento N,4aiirey contaning the teaching which runsi'The Self, ndeed,shou d be seen,heardaboul,pondered overand subjected to sustainedmeditation,Maitreyr Verily,through seeing the Seli, through hearng aboulit,throughlhinking itandlhrough of knowing rt,all this(word) becomes known' Brhad.ll.iv5. Inthisconnection, question the whether nottheseetng or and phiososo on wereenjonedhasbeena subject dispule lor among phers. example, phrase "should For AcaryaIVlandana wrole:'The be subjectedlo sustained rnedtation"lspaftofone long connected passagethai begins"Forthe sakeolihe Sel{"and ends"Allthisis v5-6. The purpose but ihe Se f' Brhad.ll. ofthis passageis io phrases expound tfue nature the Slef.The the ng ii, ol occurr within "shouldbe seen","shouldbe heardabout"and"shoud besublected to sustainedmeditalion", thoughexpressed(in mpefalrve iorm) as gerund ves, are not separate injunctions, (belong the maln bul lo passageexpound the Absolute ng and) are rntended eulogy. for Forthegerundivetermination to haveolhermeanings is said apart (cp. Iromcommand, suchas ascribing worth value Panin or lll.iii.l69, quoledabove,lvl.Vp.19). The iexl thereioreonly rneans"The Se f is worthy berng of seen,eicl'). We havesuchexamples th s as of 'V gerundive) (it."should offered", sii! is worthyolbe ng olferer be the Upamsu Sacri ce"(, which occurs arnongst texts lhe aboul offering lhe Uapassu B.Sid.p.155; see also sabara,PM. B h a s y al . i i . 1 0 ) . l Suresvara,however,makes three d sl nclions n treatingth s probem.He saysthai'should seen'cannot be bean njunclon,as I relefsto knowedgeco.dilionedby realily.'Should heardabout' be and shoud be pondered inlunctions, over'are sincelhey refer10 actions wi to dependent the human l. "Should subjected sus on be ta ned medilation not an nlunction.For sustained is medilal on nididhyesana nal an actton bul lhal mmediaie experienceof is


Chapter 8



ones own true Sellthatconstiuies goaloi lhe Vedantic ihe spir, rlualdiscrp ine. 'll shoud be seen', then,is nol an injunction. not?In lhe Why phrase'TheSeli shouldbe seen'the work'Seli refersto one's nmosi Se i, and knowledgeof one's Sell rs already one's own by natureAgain,the knowledge expressed here by the verb'seen' cannot be enjo ned, as t is conditioned reality. by When the word '('owedge s Jseo to reler lo synboic med alo-s \sJah as 'Woman, Gaularn, O is the sacrlfic fire', ial Chand, 1.1) stands Vvi it lor something can be enjoined, symboic meditation not that bui is lhe lopic ot lhe presentpassage. Again,there ts no otherseer aparlfrornlhenrnoslSell. Andwhereiheseerandthatwhchhas to be seen are lhe sametherecan be no nlunclion the lorm'lt oi shoud be seen'. For therecannotbe an injunction an acl of to seeng where seer, the acting himsell, performerand on is objecl of the same act. Thereiore teachingAl thls (world) bLrt lhe is lhe Sell'(Brhad.ll.iv.6)givenby the Vedaafterit had f rsl usedthe is Iormulanetherthis nor ihat' (Brhad.ll.ii.6) negatethe notion to t h a t t h e S e hfa d a s s u m e d t h e t o r mh e n o f s e i . A n d s o t h e r e a l l t of lorceoi the apparenl injunclionlhe Selfshould seen' s to give be some nlormalion aboutsomelhing hearer the dld not previously know Th s s the gisi of Suresvara's refutalon 01the possibililyot tnefebe ng an injunction seeing. for Oblectionsra sed by opponenlsare disposecl as fo lows. of One shou d not objectthat the Vedictexts mak ng rnetaphysi cal stalements no rnoreaulhoriative are lhan casualworldlyremarkslke'Thereare fiveiruilson the riverbank'. Norshoutd one oblect lhal the wordscannot properly be interconnected iorrna io sentence ack of a verb. For the Vedawill be an authoritat ior ve meansolknowedgeii il canawaken anyoneto truthoi thesole lhe rearly of lhe one Seli,a truth naccess e lo any olhermeansof b knowedge.AndtheVedictext pedorm function can this evenwhen the connect ons of the wordswithlherrrneanrngs nol appreare hended, in the caseoi sentences awaken as thal sleepers. do Nor

lhe melaphyscaiiexts ever lack verbs,as forms of the verb'to be' can alwaysbe understood supplied, remark and The aboutthere beinglruils on the iver bankconcernsa matterwhich can be known Iromsources olherlhan the spoken word. lt does nol concern a maiterlhal can onlybe known lhrough verbal revelation, il was so an fie evanl exarnpte. Hereare lhe chiefverses consider. to (1) In the phrase'The thatshould seen'(Brhad.ll. Self be v.5) lhe word Sell'fefers lhe inmost to Self,as lhe Sell is invari' ablyexperienced lhal whichis inmosl.The words'should as be seen'relerto correct a knowedgeofthatthrough Veda. the It s trLe thal everyone s naturallyaware of lher own Seli Bu1 whaltheydo notknowis thal it is the Selfol all. ll is that deathal s alilrmed theVeda something by as newthathaslo be known.Thistext,however, couldonlybe an injunclion to acl f lhe knower andthe thingto be known weredifierenl In lhe present contexl lherecan be no injunclion acl,tor ack to ol any ditference betweenwhai was enjo ned and the one on whomlhe injuncl v,/as (B.B.Vll.iv.95-7) on laid. (The idea is that, becauseone does nat know that allthis is one's own Self, il is carrect lo suppase that this is whet the text affirms.But there js na cammandto perlorm any acl here since, allhaughlhe lexl assumeslhe grcmmaticalformol an lnpnctrcn, there is no distinclianbetv/eenwhatis enjoinedand lhe one on whom lhe niunctpn is laid. Whatwe have, rather,is the communicatian af a piece af hilhertounknowninformation.) (2) The idea'Alllhis the Self is validknowledge is conditroned by the objeclknown Only if it had been the idea ol somelhing l akeadylamilari.oin wor d y experience,ke f re,couldri havear sen ng rndependence lhe arbitrary of theindividualknow subjecl on will ( a n d o n l y s u c h a c a s e c o u L d i t h a v e b e e n l h e o b l e cnoua n n l l l nc for nstance injunclion rneditate, s mp icily lhe case an to as tion, fire', (Chand. n the lext Woman,O Gautama, the sacriiicial is . in V v i i . l , c p M . V p . 3 6 1 )S o l h e r e c a n n o t b e an i u n c t o n i o r m e l a -



Suresvara physical knowldge lhe Self,as il is not ideathatarisesin deot pendence the willol man. Butactions reasoning th on like over meaning lhe wordsol lh texlsby ihe method agreement ol ol an dilterence enjoined, are sinceihey are dependent the will ol on man. (B.B.V ll.iv.120-1) (3) Whensubjecl objeclaredifierent, and thereis pervasion ol lhe object the subjecl orderloknowil, as in the case by in pervade oi perception a pot. Bul the Selfcannot of actively itsellto haveknowledge ilsellin thisway.Therecannolbe of pervasion wh6rlhereis non-diflerence, the very reason for lhalperuader peruaded (B.B.V and would be already identical. ll.iv.135) Unlikea mateial obj1ct like a pot, the Self is not capabteol beingpeNadedlhroughthe activilyof the individualknowing6ubject in the lotm ot seeing. Not can the Sells own vision (act on and)peryadeilself. (4) Noris thereanyothersubject whocouldseethe Sell as an objecl,Iorlhis specitically is in denied thetext'There no is otherseer...brlt (8rad.lll.vii.23). indeed, do not He' And, we tindintheworld subjects playjng two between themtheroleof subject (B.B.V.ll.iv.1 andobject. 36) Whenthe Vedbtextsays'Thereis no otherseer...but He'it means thal,Ircmth6stdndpoint thehighestttuth, Selfis not of the an object that can be seen, Even frch the standpointol wo dly expe ence,onesubjectis nevet theobjectol the visionof anolher (5) lf theseefwereableto seeitsell. thatwouldbe a conlradiction thelawsof ac,tion. if (bysomestrange ol And chance) it coulddo so,it would always bedoingso,so thattheinjunctionto do so would rendered be useless. lB.B.Vll.iv.137) Thecontadblion ol th6laws ol actionwouldconsistin the lact oI the one doingan actionbeing himsef the objectof lhat action. Theimplication th6verceis thal therccannotbe an iniunctbn to ol


see oneb own Self,whethetsuchvisionbe ol the verynatureol the seeror whethetit be associated an individual with knowing subjec!. (6) Here.loo, in the Brhadaranyaka welt as in ihe as Chandogya, thelextaccepts thebasis common on of experience all lhal il hasnegated notbeingof the nalureot the as inmost in lh6 words'n6ithsr norlhat'(Brhad. Self lhis .iii.6) andatfirms'All (world) theSlf'(Brhad. lhis is ll.iv.6).....The injunclion her6'The should seen'(Brhad.ll.iv.5.6) Selt be is lherefore more no than communication th ol hitherto unknown inlormation (i.e.'The should seen'='See Sell be that,narnelv. you lam telling that, Setf as heretaught', the is cp.M.V.12s,2). The texf lhe Sell should sen'couldnot beintended bs as an injunction act addressed one not yet acting, to to as actionis impossibie the caseol the Setf. in (B.B.Vll.iv.104 and115) (7) lt is nolcorectto saythalallthetextsof the Upanishads have be,nlerp.eled injunclions, theground state, to as on that menlsol lacl are never authorilalive, sincetheydepend tor theirvalidily knowlodge on gained iromother sources. Forthe meiaphysical slatements lh lJpanishads an author of are italivemeansof knowldge, sincethey awakenone to the solereality lhe Selt,not knowable ot fromany othersource, as wordsare usedto awaken sleeper. (B.B.Vll.iv.148) a (8) Thereis no rulethata verbmLlst appear overtly a senin lencebeiore wordscan b6 connected. the metaphysithe ln caltexts, verbs like'art'and'am'canverywell beunderstood andsupplied evenwhennotovertly expressed. is truethat ll thereis dependence olhersources knowledge the on of in caseol thecasual remark'There fruilsonthe riverbank'. ate because lhere the thingsdenoted the words'fruits'and by 'riverbank'are accessible meansoI knowledoe. lo another -2) perceplion. namely (B.B.VlVii.161





mecrponderng and Sustarned lor CanThreebe iniunclion hearlng, talion? ponoenng' Innerano ouler It rs correcllo holdlhal hearing, can discipline be en_ contro and olhersuchparlsol the spirilual lhe as theylall withln scopeof humanwill,and are ndis_ loined, ol pensableauxiliarles that rationalexaminailon the mean ng ol to whichLs ollhe Upanishads lexts th wordsof the metaphysical As sri)Saakara oi tor necessary a cornprehensionthelrmeaning. Snhasi): sa d in h s ljpadesa comes thal 11) The knowledge one is (intruth)ever berated oi Vedic textsandlrom no othersource And knowledge iromihe lirst wiihout ca Ing to mindthe !s notpossible the meanng oi a text mean ng of its componentwords, lt is certainthal the meanrngol and dllferences a word is calledto mindon the basisol agreemenis lor {rnlhe way one has heardthe word usedand the meanlngs I to whichlt is madeto sland).Inthisway onecomes knowonese (U palnor actlon. S verse puretranscendent beyond Self, as lhe XVlll.l90 1, cp.N,4.V107,2) nlhe coniextln the Brhadaranyaka, nethisiurther Letus exarn be the words'rtshould head aboul'areaddedto showthat lhe one not (TheSeli)should beseen'do implythat shoud earherwods bul resorlto allihe valrdmeansof cognition, only to lhe textso! phraseit shouldbe pondefed As the Upanishads. lor the further ng ior varrous melhods determin lo ovef, this incudesresort the Six Formsoi by iexts, suchas testing lhe ot lhe meaning theVedic whh n (M.Vp.23), wellasreasoning consonance lhe as Evidence lo be On the otherhandthe phrase'itshould subjected sus experence to ihe irnnrediate is lainecimedltaiion' declaredlc reler oughlio culn"inateWhenthere ln wh ch hearng and pcndering de_ intuil of one'so\qntrue nalurs/hrch on that mmediate airses el! lhereis noth:ng thatone has pencls no externa iactor,lhen on as Se to {jo. Whentho non_dual f has beenperceived a resuI ol pondenng hasthe convc! of 'Theres no iurtfer ohe and hearlnq

knowedgelelllo arise,lhere no lgnorance is leftlhat hasnotbeen burnt up. One should not ralse lhe objection that the work 'n d dhyesana muslmeanmeditalton. Forthemeaning theterm of 'nididhyasana has been expressed the term,immediate by iniuiton, (vljiana)in the passage,'verily, through seejng Seli,through ihe heann9 aboutit, through thinking it and through of knowing (in il rmmedrate inluilion, viinana), this (world)becomesknown, all (Brhad.ll.iv.5). mediiation That (dhyina)is a prerequistie imme_ of drale ntuition not dened. Bui it is immediate is intuition, not and medrlat andthe reslof the discipline, is ullimatety on ihat required goalof liberation. to realizeihe Norshould oneobjectthai tiberation must be mpefmanenlli it is ihe resuli of immediateinluition.For rberation n lhe sense of being the one !niversal Self is always, and lof everyone, lact.Allthathasto be eliected tmmediate a by intuilion the practical is negation our lgnorance we are the ol that one universalSeli. Liberatiof jn no way distinctirom is irnmediale intuition the Sell. One shouldunderstand of that,i{ iberatonis spokenol as the result lmmediale of intuition, is onlya tigure this On lhis topc, the tollowing verses should noteci. be (2) So there cannoi be an injunclion metaphysical ior knowt_ edge of the Selt,as il is not an ideathatarisesin dependence on the wlllot man. Butaclions reasoning like overlhemean_ ng ol the words ol the texis by the rnethodoJagreement and drilerence enjoined, are sincetheyaredependent the wi on oi man. In the same way, a person can decide whether to carryoul hearng and pondering weil as lnnerand outer as contfo and ihe otherpads of lhe spiriiual discipline so a I thesepractices enjoined. (B.B.Vll.iv.121-2) are (3) One mlghtsuppose thai all lhe meanso{ va|d cognrtion fevea ed the Self in that the cognitionresultrng Iiom them dependedont intimately fortheirlight.Buiihe Brhadaranyaka Upanrshad says'll mustbe heardabout,, pointing thereby to lhe upanishadlc texts.(8.B.V||.iv.21 2)

Chapter8 One mighl supposethat the Sell should be seen thrcugh all lhe valid means of cognilion, because the Sell as Consciousness conslitutesthe resultant-cognition each. But lhe lorce ol of the words'lt must be heard about'ts to show that it is lhe upanghadtc texls that arethe authorilativesaurce of knowledge o{ the Self, since i! i only thraugh them tha! metaphysicallgnarance of lhe Self (readingetma-ajfrana)can brcughl to an end. be (4) lt is the application the Srx Formsot Evidence (Nl.V. oi p.23)lhat bringsoul lhe true lorce of the words.Then the texl says'lt (lhe Selt)mustbe pondered over'lo delermLne lhe lrue meaning lhe traditionai of communicaling lt it. texls pondered is clearirom lhe command'ltmust be over'that whal s being hereis realily ilslruenature.InWoman in taught s the sacriticral fire'(Brhad.Vl.ii.l3), do nol lind any we rnjunclion ponderover the meaning. (B.B.V ll.iv.214-5). lo He jusl tema*s in passing that the injunction saying lhat lhere has to be ponderingshows that thetext here is cancerned with final vision, not with pleliminary medttalton. (5)Feasoning coniormity the wordsol the Vedc lexls in with s also enjoined, this is whal enablesone to delermrne for accuralely what lhe words mean.(B-B.Vll.iv.2l6). Reasoningis of help, for inslance,ta ftnd aul how lhe meaning of the word 'Thou'in'That lhou att' must be lhe Witnessand cannat be anything else. (6)Awaken to imrnediale ng knowledge lhe supreme I ol Se dependng on no externaltactor calledNidrdhyasna. is is lt menl onedallerseeingand hearing showthata lhey culto rn nate n lhat.... Ones lirstknowledge lhe Sell is through of hearing, and then one pondersover whal one has heard. When heaf ng and pondering comp ete, one comesto are have immediate knowledge lhe Se f... Becausethe use ot ol lhe word Niddidhyasana'( sustained il medtalion) might leadlhe hearerto supposelhat meditalion was meant,lhe lntuition Upanshad deliberaiely uses lhe term'immediale



(vrlnana) a synonym il at Brhaderanyaka as for ll.iv.5,to snowthatmeditations heremeant. not lalready mentioned eartierhow meditation otherpractices a means and are to rmmedtale experjence. immediate But experj6nce doesnot exrst ihe sakeof anylhing lor else.ll is taughl be just lo 0 e r a ! o n ,a l t a i n m e no f t h e l i n a l g o a lo f a l l . ( B . B . v t |.iv.217 ,220 233-4J. , (7) Hearing lhe reslare lhe means and lo thatjmnediate inrurrion whichdepends nothrng on apart trofi ttselt. When rhrshas arisen. nothi4g,nore required is apartkom thal immedtate 6xperience th Sltalready of aitain6d... There s noolherresult knowledg ourSelfis thesole of lhat reat_ rryexcepl sradicaljon our ignorance the ol ol the fact.For rnrsrs everby nature truestale,,. one inmost our The selJ is rhe reatityof whichcauseand etfectare mere latseap_ 0earances. Whenthal56lfis known, howcould tgnorance 'artto be desroyo? Tell me,pray, howthe,6 coutd vefbe tgnorance the Sellagain. ot (B.B.V ll.iv.22t, 205,231). t have9tventhe totm.ajiena ( tgno.ance.) at he enoot the u\t ve'se ( tgnorance the Set ) fottowlng al Anandagitr. Bul lds woutd atsobetegtttmate) wod wercrcad asnena.(knowt. the edge), then we wouldhave.On accountof knowtedge ol the tnmostSelf, othetknawt1dge no neodsta baacqutled..The pas|.hen aSrce wnhhe endottheprccedng verca ::ge^:!ttd IB.B.u ', 'v.zrur. tyqtcn says lhercis (lhen)no knowtectge has not that oeenacqutred;there no lgnorcncethat is hasta been destrcyed,. C.ompa son ol S sankara and Suresvah on the Topicol Heatingand the Rests At ilrsts ghlthere appears bea cBrtain to disagreemeni be_ . IweenSri Sankara Suresvara and on th6 queslonot whether neafng and the resl can be the subjects ot an injunction. Sri rnxaramakes oppo an nentask,what theseapparenl do Inlunc( ons mean. texts|ke "Theself, verily, should seen,heard be

Suresvara l.i.4, so about-.-'and lorth?'(B.S.Bh cp [4 V68 3) On accounl thal it mighl seem injunctions, apparenl ol lhephrase o{ hisuse ol be hearing the resicould subjects and thal he did notadmit that io place seems admrl hear_ he a Bul iniunciions. al anolhor 'Repetilio thealJirn ol He can ingandlherest beenjoined. says: il oul mustb carried Why?Because is taughlrepeatmation aboul' like Seltm!si be heard teachings "The repeated edlv. the poinl meditation" to a to subjctd susiained pondered ad over lnto (B ot repetition the aflirmation' S.BhlVi.1) For he wolrld werean Iniunclron lhee had saythatanything to be doneunless in on the subject lh0Veda. lhe'eis no .eleron s Vadtka, lheolherhano. ln SUresvara Inlunc_ and lor lo ence iniunctions hearing lhe reslas apparenl lhat and emphatically he On tions. the conlrary, saysopenly person oecroe can in praclices enjoined, thewordsA are these so and out lo whelher carry hearing pondering... alllheseprac_ (B M are enioined' B.Vll.iv.122' V 124'2) lices point renceln SriSanis Andthere anolherapparent iordiffe be the Brahma SulraCommenlary, text'theSellshould kara's as (Brhad 5) is accepted ll.iv meditation' 1o subiected suslained as For lo re'erring a dutylhal haslo be pertormed iI s trealed (upasana) meditalion by the passage'And is an shown are (nididhyasana) saidlo constitute meditation andsustained (B.S Bh- lVi.1, cp. ['1V56, 8, repelition one acl that entails susthat tor Thereare grounds supposing he regaroeo note). of (nididhyasana) a species medltation as tainedmedilation ol as he in (upasanaJ because lhenexlpassage glves exanpres She on) on (oraltends hisGuru'and meditates it'Heassiduously on is dwells himfixedly' SAh lvi l) iB husband abroad whose 'awake lo nrng On the otherhand,in theVdriikao{ Suresvara on Sell of knowledge thesupreme oependrng no eximmediate oi clearlysaid to be the meaning the lerm lernaliaclof is 'nididhyasana' said And l\4 (B.B.V. 217, V 124,6). havLng thrs ll.iv denythat the term g S u r e s v a r a o e s o n i n t h e e q u a ll o
refers toan ac hat has to b pedormed.He aims to demonslratelhat the term .njdidhyasana'did referlo medi, not latron(dhyana) becausethe lext usesthe term.immediate intui_ t on (vijiana) as a synonymtor jl (B.B.V .iv.2gS M.V.124,6). Do the two systems, those ot Sri Sankaraand Suresvara. agree'ordotheycontradictoneanolheronthesepolnts? lf thev do ,n facrcontradict another. one whichts the be er? lt ,s a po,ni worlhconsidering. My own view is the lollowing.sri Sankaraspokeof the ao_ peardncoot an Injunclton a particular jn conlexl.His pr,roose wds to refutelhe Contenlton the authOrs the earlie,comOl of mentaries (vrtti)onthe Brhama Sutrathalthe metaphvsicaltexts o'rhe Upa- shadswereauthoritat,ve it regarded subordronly is nateto an injunction acquire to metaphysical knowledge.He did r s iry assertrngthat metaphysicalknowtedge something is conditioned reatity, by and dillerent trom meditatjon. Here is hi; text as he himseltset it out. (1)Theldealol lire,whenone is in the presence that ot wetl knownobjecl,rs not dependent an injunction, is it a on nor mere creatron the human mind. lt is in lact a piece of ot k odedge, condilioned bylhe nalureofthe obiectperceived. rt ts not an act. And it is the same with all objectsol the vaflousmeansol knowledge (suchas perception inference, etc.). s being so, knowledge lhe Self in its true torm Th of as the Absoluiecannotbe dependent an in iunction on to acl.l1 peralive and si.rtlarlormsapptted tt, evenr,-Vedtc lo lexls, lose lhere imperative lorce and becomeblunled,as razors oecome btuntedif used agajnsthard objecls tike slones.For here the objec o whichthey are appliedis somerh!ngnot subjectto rejecton or acquisition. (B.S.Bh_1.1.4. cp. lM.v 68.21 Thus a view is Ientatrvety advancedby an opponenl(and . r?juiedby Sri Sankara). According thisvievv Absolute 10 the can 'n didhyasana

Suresvara 204


Chapter-o ingol suchphrases realyis'Payattention', not,Acquire and a pieceof dirctknowledge'. Whenanyoneis in proximity with a knowable object,knowledge it sometimes ol arises andsometjmes doesnol.Therefore, anyone whowishesto acquaint someone anobiect with should showit to him. When it hasbeenshownto him,knowledge willariseaccording to the nature the objectandlhe means cognition ol ol applied. cp. {8.S.Bh. lll.ii.21, M.V 68,4). Thus lorceol theinjunctions' the apparently enjoining hearing and so on is not actually enjoin lo immediate knowledge lhrough these disciplines. force, therevered Th6ir as Comftentalorconcludes saying, to inculcale by is atlention the Sell. to Thereis noconkadiction whatis saidal Brahma wilh SulraCommeniary lVi.1,as it is taught lherethatit is justthis altention to the Seltthat hasto be repealedly practicod. Suresvara also maintains his Brhadaranyaka in Varikathat only that which is withinthe scope of hee humanwill can be enloined. doesnotinsiston He denying knowledge aise that can from one act ol hearingand so on. His wordsare'the actionof hearingand so on musl be continued here diligently until the rmmediate intuitionwe have spoknot arises in all its glory' (b.B.V ll.iv.218). lhereis no dilferencs So between twosysthe temsin regard the toaching hearing pondering to thai and are opens iniunclion, lo Suresvara doesgivth6 appearance sayingthat no on6 ol colld attaindirectand immediate intuition lhe Sell merly ol lromhearing. one ol the verses theVartika For ol beings'Acquaintance with the Self is first throughhearing, then one ad ponders overwhal one has h6ard'(B.B-V 11.jv.220, M.V124,6). On the otherhandSri Sankara saysin his Brahma SutraCom'Repeaiedresorllo hearing, menlary, pondering sustained and meditation wouldindedbe uselessin lhe case of the person who gainedimmediate experience lhe tact that his true Self ol was the Absolutemerelyfrom hearingthe texl That thou art"

involvingsome duly lo be only be taughtlhroughinjunclions done.But th6 wholetheoryis wrong.For there is also such a conditioned its true naby of thingas knowledg the Absolute gist of this passagein the commentary. it And ture-thatis the goeson to ask,'Bulwhatdo theseapparent injlnclionsmeans (wherelhe whichsaythaltheSellshould releronco to passages is so be'seen'or'heardabout'and on).The very facl thal this questionis raisedalso impliesthat knowledg cannotbe the ol Consider, the refutalion the oppoloo, subject an injunction. ol comes desire su_ to the nent. runs:'Bul lt whensucha person premehuman goal,lextslike"The Self,verily,is lo be seen"and so on lurn him awaytrom the naluralconcernwith the psychophysical organism its allairs,and engagehimin conlinuous and remembrance lhe inmostSell'(cp.M.V 68,3).lt doesnot say of hearinglandthe rcst areor are notable anything aboutwhether a to be enjoind, that is nol the question tissue(whichis lhe as No can refutalion theviewthalknowledge be enioined). doubt ot there is the implication lhere is also a certainelementol that like enioininga duly in placeswhere gerundiveexpressions 'should sen'or'should heard about'areused; onlyso tor be be -ya, in and-aniya, willthegerundive ending thesuffixes -tavya meaning. thisdoesnol Bul whichdenots dulyto act,having a lhatknowledge canbe also mean thatonohastheright insisl to is lo iniunction, the passage only tntended as the subjeclol an (namelylhe refLrtation lhe of strengthan argumeniin hand the Thereis an' viewthat knowledge be enjoined). can opponnt's passage SriSankara's the expresses other in Commenlarythat sameidea. (2)Texls lhetormol a command suchas'TheselJshould in dealingwilh ihe be seen',M/hich lound in the sections are lor hrghest knowledge. lundamentally lhe purposeol are ol ol turning hearerin the direction knowledge lhe Self" the to to as and are not primarily be regarded injunclions be' give real.Eveninlhe world, whenpeople comeawareol lhe mean' the here'or'Listenthis', lo and a command say'Look


Suresvara he al someplaces usesthe lerm'upasana'lo standfor it, as (upasane)aimd rightintuitive whenhesay'lvled itations at knowtedgehaveto be pe{ormed untilth6finalend is achieved, like pounding paddy extract rice'(B.S.Bh.lVi.12, the io the lvl.V56,8). And yel lhere is a cerlain difterence belwon'susiained (nididhyasana) meditation described Sri meditalion' and as by passage:'Considr lexts, Sankara th6lollowing in "Man, ih O Gaulama, thesacrificialfire" "Woman, Gautama, the is and O is sacriticial (Chand. lire" Vvii.1, Vviii.l). Here identilication lhe ol manor womanwath sacriticiallire a is an lhe is act owingits originsolelylo the iniunction medilate thus.ll to a is lherelorean action,and one thai is treelydiermined the by human (B.S.B.l.i.4). will' (nididhyasana) Sustained meditation as conceived Sri Sankara by dillersfrom medilalion described as abovein that it does not owe it originsolelyto lhe in,unction lo meditale. hearing For aboulthe Sell,pondering overil andsub, jectingit lo sustained meditation tor the sakeot sornething are which can experienced in his world, tor rsalizin here and one's dentity withlhe Self. Thisis shown sucha passage in as'The Sellcomes be seenthrough disciplines hearing, lo ponlhe of dering sustained and meditalion pursued. rsolutely Flight knowledgeof lhe Absolute the sole realityonlydawnswhenlhese as lhreedisciplines hearing, pondering suslain6d of and medilalion arelunded one, inlo andnotolherwise, torexample lhrough heafing alone'(Brhad.Bh.ll.iv.5). lt follows from passage:'Bui also ihe in anycasepondering becarriod by reasoning accordmust out in ancewithwhatis laiddownin the Veda. And sustained meditalronmustbe performed whathas beenpondered on reationally, on what has been ascerlained throughrevelalion and reason (Brhad.Bh.ll.v.1 Even intro-) though disciplin referred this is to , by thelerm'!pansana'it evidently is difterent suchmdilafrom llons those proscribed lhei6xisspeaking woman lhe as ln as of sacrilicial whicharefor the sakeof a resull to be per fire, not ceivedin ihe presentlife namelylhe accunulaliono{ spiriiual meril through meditation. ihe notion woman he sacriFor is thal

(B.S.Bh.lVi.2). could Spoken once' How lherebe sucha conlradiction? thiscase, In too,we reply, thereis nolhing more lhana superlicial appearance disagreement.For of Sursvara wrote in lhe Naiskarmaya Siddhi:'Ot (fourditferent lhe kindsof hearers ol lhe text 'Thatthousare"),thereis onewho knows"lhatwh'ch is nol the meaning any sentence" his inmoslSell. Forhim, ot in allihenot-selt come anand. all has has to As impediments have beendestroyed, thereis anhiscasenothing moreto be said.Nor is thereanything furtherto b saidaboutlhe one who acquired realization merely from hearing text (that is, wiihouihaving the lo reasonover it at all). He, also,is in possession some suol pe.nalural powe/(N.Sid. prose lll.64, intro.). Thuswhenit was saidin lhe Brhadaranyaka Vartika'One's knowledge the lirsl of Sell is lhrough hearing'and lorth,lhis was only said with so relerence lhosewhoare unabl apprehend meanding lo to the ot lhe textand realize theirownirue Sellis theAbsolute thal merely lhroughhearing once.Solhereis agreemenl it belween systhe lem ot SriSankara Sursvara maintaining and in that;mmediate know'edge arise car lhrough mere hearing. Lelus lheretore ourattention turn totheaDoarent contradictionon ihe subiect ol'sustained (nididhyasana). meditation' ln Sri Sankara's Brahma SutraCommenlary'sustained medilalion' (nididhyesana) seento bea kindot spirilual is praclace to be and enjoined. Speaking theterm'suslained of medilatio.n', instance, lor hesaysclearly when areusing we areHkingof an acl that we il (B.S.Bh.lVi.1. M.V56,8, note). lhal enlails repetition cp. And he saysalso,'Pondering sustained ad too, .meditation likehear ing,arelorlhesakeot direct experience'(8.S. th.l.i.4).Thus he refersto'sustained mediiaiion something difierent kom immedF ate jniuilion, something whichone has to applyoneselt as to for the sakeol immediale inluilion. we concludd lor him So thal susrarned meditation a kindol praclice was thal couldbe enjoined. alsoheldlhat sustained He (nididhyasana) medrtatibn was notdifferenl kindfrommeditation general in (upasan)For in

208 Iicialfireis not a notionbasedon the true natureol reatitv. rs ll 'o ned o_ y nroLgL obeytngt're injJnc on ro'redrlato o: tt s theme and it bringsits resultsnot here in lhis like tile but n olher worlds.(to be attalned afterdeath).Bui aller death).Bul trre case $7 sustained ih meditations ditferent. Thal which one s!bjecls to suslainmeditation one perceives here ln lhis very le. ll is a case ol sustained attention and nothinge se Thal is the d lfurence belween meditation (upasana) suslalns and medi tat on (n d dhyasana) the systemof Sri Sankara. in It swell knownthal words like'vison', 'knowledge, so and on may be loundused by Sn Sankara ie appropriatetV qu eilher to des gnateknowledge the realor elseto designale certain of a l o m o f d e b e r a t e a r b l t r a r y m e n l a t a c t i v i t y ; f o r t h eb e u s e d maV y n drliereni sensesaccordng to whether they are adclressed to i t c a n d r d a t e s f o r t h e h i g h e r o r l o r t h e l o w e r f o rn oo f l e d g e o f kmw lhe Absolute (thelatterbeingnot so muchknowledge ihe Abol so uteas medtatton il underprescribed on lorms,) And we should understand thal, in the same wav,phrases such as,one should nredtale or'one shouldpractice sustalned medilation,may eitlrer relerto lhe merecherishing a menial dea (bhavana) oi or eise to suslained attention previously to attarned rght knowledge - accordng lo the conlext. That is how we explan the use ol the lerm sustaned medilaton'in Sr Sankara,s system, Now lel us consider Suesv.ara's Vartika, says,'AwakenHe Ing to rmmedate knowledge the supremeSe f depending ot on n o e x t e r n a l a c t o ri s c a l l e dn i d i d h y a s a n a ' ( B . B .l V . v . 2 1 7 l , l.i M.V 124,6). Fromthis cleaT statement one deduces that for hrm the term nididhyasana cannotrelerto any activity the forrnol ol cherishing mentalldea(bhavana), a although does not denV he that meditation required a prelimlnary is as discip ne for right melaphysical knowledge. learnthisfromihe sequel, We whenhe says l already mentioned earlier how meditation otherpracand lices are a means lo irnmediate expenence,Blt immediate expenencedoes not exisl {or the sake oi anvthinqese, lt is



tairghtto be jlst liberation, attainment the iinat goal oi a , oi (B.B.V l. .234,M.V124,6).This showsthatthoughSri Sankara and Suresvara underslood tefrn'nididhvasana'indifferent the a sense,their syslemsagree in munching lhat medrtat is an on act v ty and a prel minarydiscipline knowedge. Howevef, for suresvaiadoes nsiston lhe polntlhat because the Upanishad u s e s t h e t e r m ' r m m e d i a t en t u i t i o n ' ( v i i R a n ia ) t h e s e q u a i n (Brhad.ll.iv.5) a synonymlor the'nididhyasana'referred as to jusl before,one shouldnot supposethal t had meanl'medta(B.B.v. tion by'nididhyasana' 11.iv.233, l\,1.V124,6). 'Nidd dhyasana'isplacedhefe n ihe Upanishad apposrin t o n w i l hh e a rn g a n dp o n d e r i n g o i l s p r o p e r t o s u p p o s e l h a l r i s, represents acl v ty.And we tind the equrva of 'v liana n an ent lhe form oi a verb usede sewhere denoleacl on lor the sake to ol immedate intuition, n'That one shouid nvesligate, is as thal what one shoud desireto know in immediate ntuition' (Chand.Vlll.i.l,vii.l;; [,4.V52,9 note).In the present cpand text ( B r h a d . l l . i v . 5 o o , w e c a n v e r y w e l l a c c e p tt h a t t h e l e r m t) 'nididhyasana' means rnedtation the sake of directv slon. ior For Suesvara himselfacceptssuch meditat as the causeoi on d r e c i v s i o n .A n d i l o n e l a k e s ' T h e S e l f s h o u l db e s e e n ' (Brhad.ll.iv.5) relerlo immedrate to exoerience conceived the as resultol seeing,then lhere would be nothingwrong in taking hearng pondefing (nididhyasana) and sustained medilalion as beinga lhreefod aclivilyenjoined the sake ol that resull. t for seems,therelore, lhal lhe revered Commenlator's exolanat on of lhe term'n didhyasana'is belter one.Oiherwise(i.e.on the view) it appearsihat uselessrepetiiion Suresvara's wou d be attributed ihe iJpansiahd to when it says'drastavya'(shou be d (interpreted SLrresseen) followedaier by'nididhyasitavya' by vara as 'shoud be seen in immediate inlution'),ln anv case. thereis no disagreement between two allhors on the questhe t on of whal are lhe meansio melaphysical lhal no sef ous diiiiculty ses. ar





the TheIniunction Innerand for OuterConlroland olherdis_ ciDlines glory theonewhohasreallzed is ol Thetexl'This theeternal means cp.l\.4.V.53,7) lhalthe per' the Absoute'(, glory reaof has enlightenment lhe eiernal sonwhohasgained this nor really as'neilher z ng the undillerentiated expressed lhe ol in thal. A verseouoted the texl expresses nature the person saying'He notlrained by g ory of ihe enlightened ls by aclion, whlchis evil''meaningthal the resultof his exalled merttor delhe slate s to placehim beyond 'tainl'ofkarmic who knowlhisstale SL]lesvara explains lerm'one lirst the in Commentary, lhengoes and l) {pada-v accord lo SriSankara's meaning the lermas 'onewho of on to suggesl alternalive an B.B.V knows meaning thewords'{padarlha-vii, l.,lV1190). the ot meantodiscoverlhe Onthisview,therewould an injunciion be lexls,and lhe ing ol lhe ndividual wordsol the metaphysical ot reward obeying wouldbea knowledge the meaning the Ior it ol sentences which lheycomposed. possessed ol The upanishadic conlinues,'Therelore, lext lor ends, nne andouter r abandoning action personal all conlrol, to and strenglhen himsell volunlary ng by resistance discomlort, ol concentratlng mind, seestheSelfherein themidst this his he (Brhad.lV.iv.23). lilein lhe present Suresvara explains that body' implles thispassage, conncted whatwentbetore, as with ths hewhoknows idea'Because knowledge thisresult, has therefore thusbecomes Dossessed lhe disciolines innerand outer of ol meanino oJihe word controland reslandcomeslo lhe knowlhe ''glory"' (B.B.V lViv.1 192-3). lt is saidthalsuchan one,possessed lhe lourtoid means of (discrimination, spirilual equiplo liberation dispassion, sixfold the p. 766)ment (seethequalities mentioned I\radhavananda, at anddesire liberalion), is,having lor inner andoulercontrol lhat prereqursrles. the a_o lhe olhersp,ritual havrng drslrngurshed

SelfJrom nol-self ihe lhroughreasoning bythe method agree, ol mentand diilerence, ,inally coftes to see'Allis ihe Self'(B.B.V. 1V.iv.1201 2). In ihe modernprinted editions Sri Sankara's of Commenlary '23). "'Possessed at lhis point we read (Brhad. Bh.lViv.1201 ol innercontrol" (sanla)means"desisling lrom lhe aclivities the ot exlernal sense-organs' "possessed outerconlrol" (danla) and of means"iree lrom menlalthirsl"'Onemusl presumethai these lerms (sanlaand danta)haveb6enwrilienlhe wrongway round due 10the carelessness sofie copyisl, ol For elsewhere lind we an explanalion runnn9 "'lnnerconlrol" "thecoming resi means to ol the mind"and"'outercontrol"means"thecoming of the rest to exierna senses"'(Bh-G. Bh.XVl.1). in line with this we tind An passage lhe Vartika.'Firsl Suresvara sayingin ihe presenl ol he becomespossessed outercontrol, ol then possessed inner ol control, and alte ards he wilhdraws trom all activitv for oer sonaleds.For!n interpreling sequence rational the lhe o.der in qualilies whichthe wouldhavelo be dveloped musttake prec, edenceover lhe literalorder in whichthey happento be mentionedin the lexl underconmenl'{B.B.VlViv.12034). 'Why Suresvaranext addresseshimsellio the question. shouldlhere be an injunction innerand outercontrol lor and the rest,whenlhe desire ou pursue ti themarises naturally? says He thal humanactions oliour kinds, are basedrespeclively transon gression lhe law.personaldesire, of unthinking instinct and duly (B-a.ViViv.1208). is clearlhal lhe seekerol ltberatlon ll cannot ind!lge rn the tirstlhree.Bul how coulda manof undersianding wantlo pursueevenduly whenhe seesthatil leadslo the same rebirth) non'perlormance it? (B.B.V evil(namely as of lViv.1213). Therelore, whena personis aclinglorduty's sakehis mindnatu rallybecomes purilied, and he comesto leel thal he musl g ve up evenlhis tormof aclion, lhal the desire lnnerandouter so tor control leading on to the capacily lor withdrawalfrom all aclion lor personalends arisesnaturally.We teaching the same lind lo elfectin the Smrti:'The wise personshouldapplyhimselfcon'



tinuouslyto the broad moral principle(yama,cp.Yoga Sutra ll-29.1.), h6 should applyhimself the particular but not to daily d!lies'(niyama,l\4anu 1V204). smrti lf you arguein this mannerand ask why innerconkol and restare enjoined, replyis that,evenlhoughthesepractics th prompted mighlbe naturally, function the otthe upanishadic texl is lo njoinlhem specilically mansto knowledge rality. as of Or again,il mighibihat the here ideaol withdrawal tromaclivity for personalend6mightarise naturally, withoutthe idea ot duty,expressed lhe feeling'l musl actuallycarry that within drawalo!t'. Thatdutyol carryingoul 10ihe practices whal is is enjoined here(B.B.VlViv.l220).Norwould be correct raise it lo theobieclion.'The mention innerand of outerconkolwouldhave been quitenough,sinceall actionis givenup throughthem. Whal was the needfor specifying withdrawal well?' For in as positive perlorm soundexegesis,lhe injunction to dailydutywill prevailovera meregeneralnegation, whichis alwaysopento exceptions, lhal the upanishadiclext so withdrawal enjoining has lo be supplied bringaboutthe delinitive lo abandonment the ol (B.B.V. dailyduties lViv.1 233-6). 'Hearing One shouldnot raisethe objection and cogilation and so on involvedisturbance the mindjust as muchas perot formance lhe dailyduiies.Why is no effoft madeto discourof agethem?' it would wrong givethem since For be to up, lheyare predominantly (B.B.V helpful the atlainment withdrawal to of lViv.1238). The disciplin strengthening of onesell through voluntary resistance discomlort to implies acquiring power endure the lo (h6atand cold,pleasure the pairsoJopposite and painand so forth). The upanishadic adds'concentraling mind'. lext his This is to enjointhe renunciation even ol lhose activaties, such as casualfanlasies, regardto whichman is not naturally in free. 'Wilhfaithful (sole) his walth'{Brhad.lViv.23, dhyandina Ma recension) enjoinsthe total renunciation all action (8.8.V of

lViv.1269). Thuswilh the helpof theseauxiliary disciplines person a should come seelheSelfeven io while alive ihe presenl in bodv, reasoning agreement dillerence.Thencomes by he through and (8.8.V. iv.1278).Thal meanto seeall as his ownSelJ lV is lhe observe in9 ol brhadaranyaka Upanishad lv.iv.23. should One verses Sutesvara, oJ thefollowing (1)Firstone should control, acquire oulerconlrol, inner then and tinally capacity withdrawal all activily the ror lrom for personal ends.Forthe logical orderin whichlhe qualilies (in haveto be developed lakes precedence inlerprelation) overtheorder which in theyhappen bementioned lhe to in (B.B.V comment. lViv.1203). lext under (2)Yes,it is lrue thatlherecan be no injunclion inner for controlandthe rest,sincetheyare prompted the natural in course. Theyare prompted naturally. is kue. Butwhatlhe it Vediclext does is to lay downaulhoritatively lhey are thal the specific means leading correct lo knowledge the in ol mostSelt.(8.8.V1V.iv.1218). (3) Or elsewe maysay thatthe ideaoJabandonment ol as aclioncomesnaturally, explained, lhal the noiion but ihal t is a dutythatone haslo carryoul (if one wishes to altainenIghtenmentdoesto arisenaturally. Hence is it ) (B.B.V. enjoined. lViv.1220). (4)The injunction perlorm dailyobligatory lo the ritual all powerlul liJe be aulhorily preand one's willcerlainly a moro (as vail. overany gereralinjunction giveup action lhe lo parlicular prevail injunctions kill at a sacriiice lo overthe genela/prchibition'One nolha.manyliving should being'). Forlhe injunction do lhe dailyobligatory lo ritual one's all (and to lileis onlyconcerned keeping with one's bodyalive passions)withminislering andencouraging egorsl,c to the to Sincethe gereralinjunclion innerand oulerconlroland





so on will not sufficeto annulthe injlnctionlo do the dailv rilualall one'slife,the texl takeslhe lurthersleo ol sr,eciflcal/yenjoining abandonmentallactions personal the ol lor ends{uparari). (B.B.V tViv.1225-6). (5) It the performanceol obligatory the dailyritualisprohib! tedbecause creates it distulbance, wandering abouito beg tor one'sfoodandotheraclivities the mon( atsocreatea ol greatdeatotdisturbanc6. are theynol prohabiled Why too? Hearing pondeting and overlheupanisnatc lexts,loo,cause a good deal of disturbance. Why are not these aclivities also prohibited the Veda, wellas the rituals?Butlhis by as objection is aclivities conlribuieto chief the goal.Wandring aboutto beg for almsand lhe resl are lo prohibiled iheyareengaged forthesakeol thal as in ooal. (B.B.V lViv.1235-7). ( 6 ) a n d n o w ,b y s a y i n g , c o n c e n t r a t hn s m i n d , t h e i ig , l]panashadac enjoins lext continual reduction a minimum to ol lhose actions whichone is not lree lo abandon entirelv. (B.B.V. lVrv.1246). Theremustbe the stictest controlover :Ll,ose activities ol lhe mindand the senses whichwe arc nol lreeto abandon enttrely, such as seeing, hearing, mentat lantasy and so forth. Whereconcenthtion eniojned, mean6thatone shoutdabjt is sorb the sensesin the mind and the mind in the Seff (through nol {7)Oneshoutd suppose thereading that (ottheMadhyand 'Wiihfaith in a recession) tor his (sole)weafth,is olisoe,on lhe groundthat total renunciation akeady been pre_ has scribed. the enlightened For person stillhassomeactionto pe orm rn the realmol perceptible objects(in the form o, maintaining bodyandso on).The lhe purpose the ghrase ol is to enjoin qu,shment anyteeting theretrng ol o,,mine,in regard the instruments maierjals iheseacts.(B.B.V to or ol lViv.1268).

Thepurposeol the text'Withlaithtot his(sote)wealth'isto enjointhe abandonment leelings possession of of eventowarcls like the beggingbowl. obiecE (8) Failhis his onlypossession. Because has nothing he ,One else, onewhohasabandoned the allactions called is who has taithtor his (sole)weatth'. (B.B.VtViv.1269). (9)Heshould se6lheSelfwhitheisyetinthebody, separaf ingit fromlhe wholmassol the notellthrough reasoning by agreemnl diiterenc and supporled byihespirjlualdisciplinesmentioned above. the reading Or may be just .He see....(B.B.VlV.iv.1 272-BJ. Torcad'He shouldsee...'would to lollowthe readinaol be theMad yandina traditio h n. Howactlon and Meditatioh Relat. Thereis a passage theVaritka ln whichexplains orderin the whichthe various disciplines leading the riseol metaphysical to knowledge have to be pfaclisedand describes mthodoi the thosepraclices. (1)Onlymetaphysical knowledge requked theerad! is for cataon metaphysical of lgnorance. Only innercontroland lhe otherspirilual disciplines areiequired metaphysical tor knowledge. Onlypurification the mindis required the ol tor acql] isilion jnnercontrol lhe oth6rspiritual ol and disciDlines_ Onlylheperformance thedailyobligatory of rjtualisrequired Ior the purification the mind,Metaphysical ol lgnorance of theSelfisthesolecaus ofaclion, menlal, vocalorphvsicaL Whenthat (melaphysical lgnorance) beencancelled has by knowledg th Selt,howcouldthreb6 any furtherdeof pendence aciion? (B.B.V on l.iii.98-100). It is alsosaidin lhe Naiskarmya Siddhi: From pe ormanceol the obligatorydaily rituals comes



ot merilihommerit comesdestruction (tho karmiceff6ctsot) this purity mind;lrom comesa correct ot comes sin:tromthis to lile;lromthiscomesindiffs16nce ol evaluation lransmigratory trom this comsthe it; lrom this comesdsirefor liberation; renunciatlon this to for search themans tiberallon:lrom comes (lhe sacrodthread' actionand its accessorios oJ all ritualistic ol this ofYoga;trom lhe locusing thiscomespractice etc.);kom ot ol this a knowledge the meaning the the mind withinifron this lhouart';trom the eradicalion like'That metaphysicaltexts own in one's flom lgnorance: thisestablishmenl ol metaphysical beingnothingbul the to Sell alone,according the txts''Verily, and in he Absolute. dissolves th Absolute'( 'Though (Kalha ii l) ll ires heacqu finalrolease' released, already it is proseinlro., M V 60'2 and 3) tvledilations' cp (N.Sid.l.s2, And just as the clear,eachhavethirstatedrewardlikeriluals. as enjoined prelimidaily performancetheobligatory ritualis of as or to theriseof knowledge. oven allrlUalis naru contributinq lor ol lard down a ;6ans to theawakening theoesire knowl_ as and devoledlo knowledge edge,so in the sectionof the Veda meansto preparare the meditation, meditations laiddownas a For Jit ing one to become lor knowledge we havetextslike' 'whenyouare reloased will where yougo?'(Brhad, fromhere, on are thatmeditations uselul the pathol lV.ii.1) we know And with arelaughlin conneclion the they because oradualrelease, see (OnthePathof theFlame, and iath of the Flame elsewh'te. 1912, chapterxxx T.N Deusssen, ) in of on as {3)Whatever laught the subjeci medilalions the Vedais onlylor lhe sakeol preol Knowledge-Sectionthe lhat lor parirgonesell the knowledge all lislhe one Self We where from are thetoxt'Whenyou released here knowJrorn the lVii go"/(Brhad l) andtromreJeronc-'rlo Path willyou are meditations not limitedin theif results that o{ the Flame promised them(bui may also lsad lo for lo the rewards betweon ihe correctly relation This releaso) shows oradual

th Rituals-Sectionandthe Knowledge-Sectionof theVeda, and thre are no grounds assedingany ditferent tor relation.(S.V329-31). Meditations:;Ihe referorce is to those meditationstaughtin the Knowl9dge-Section tha Vedadnd digsociated ol with the Path of the Flame and other teachingsabout rclaase by stages.The refercnce b not to all meditationsthtoughout the V6dain genpromised Notlimited lh6ir rosults in tol6 rewards forthem:/t means lhat theyarc notmerclyconcemed with meditation and wotship,but ara also a meansto knowladge.No aftentionstould be paid to the claim ol Anandagiri that thepuryo,e ol the meditations is liberation and that this putpose cannot be achieved exceptthrough 9uccession stages.Therc no grcunds a ol arc fol (4)WhatSriYaifiavalkya askedKingJanaka was(notabout eniry intolh6 worldof a deilyat dealhlhroughmeditalion, aboulwhichlhe king knew,but)'Whnyou leav6the first plane of exislence, what is th6 secondlo which you will go?'Thiswas to showlhat moditalion deitisand purilion praclices alsoa means cation oflhe mindthrough similar ar6 lo the (gradual) attainment knowledgo. ot SriYajidvalkya's question,'Why are roleaged you from here,wherewill you go?'reallymeant'Doyou believe that,in the caseof onefit tor the higheslknowledge, prescribd alithe mediiations in theUpanishads to liberation stages?'(B.B.V l6ad by lVii.1213,cp,M.V 83,5). A such meditations may rcsult in release by stages: the incidentalimplicationherc i6 that they rctain thehlower putpose for those who arc to lit lor immediate liberation. Fot it is only here.andtherc the Upanishads in thatthe teaching theAbsool lute in its highest lo n is exhibited,as indicated,lot instance,by certatnphrasesin the convercation betweenGaryya an



dAjebsattu, ot in thatbetweenKng Janakaand SiYajiavalkya' be suchas:"'ttcannot knownif lhercis no motekhowledgethan "Thenlet mo comelo yau as a pupil",said that'6aid Ajek'sattu. "l ( and ''Vetyv/ell',said SriYejhavalkya' Gergya' lhe king because will teltyou wh6rcyou will go (i.e. nowhere, lea)"' (Brhadlvii l; see had akeadyreachedthe slatebeyond B.B.v.lV.ii.3l ft.). Thereis no other LlbsratlonExcgplEladlcatlonof lgnoranc 'l which runs: am in There is a l6xt in the Brhadaranyaka path,having tinally ancienl lar'roaching touchwiththe subtl6, theAbsoit. discovered By thispalhlhe wisewhohaveknown lule go to lhe shiningrealm afier leavinghere, released' lrom is (Brhad.lV.iv.8). lhe knowr notditlerent theknown' Hore phrase'l in iouchwilh'isused(B B.V am so the Absolute, the 'scovered the loundit through leachit'means'have lViv.549). lurned (8 ingsol theVedaandtho ACarya' 8.V lViv 550) Having this path,and havingat' by theirbackson lgnorance following the whohaveknown Ab' they Absolute, go Those lo tained the of'gotolhe thisis them6aning in theAbsolute" solute'dissolve 'Aflerleaving (B. here' V lViv552) realm aft6rleaving shining here'doasnot implythat they haveto wait lor the dealhof the ot th iheyattain AbsoluteForlhe eradicalion meta' bodybelore experience, empirical of physical the lgnorance, cause illusory only'andfor noth_ knowl6dge lhey haveto waillor metaphysical wilh and conpassage agrees The ing else(B.B.Vlv.iv.554). but nothing theAb' being lext the firms othr whichruns'Verily, ld n s o l u t e h e d i s s o l v eis t h e A b s o l u t o ' ( E r h aV i v 6 ) , s a y s . on commnting a lator parl ol the text (B B V Ruresvara, lViv.560). versesshouldbe noled Thelollowing nol (1) Because would impossible theAbsolule !o tor be it wit lI me, rnclude therelore is sarolam in toucn lhe palh" has dscnbed, correlo me loscove'edil Thls oath,as

myselt, lottowjng teachings theVedaand the lhe of In Knowtedge theinmost ol Sell,thesubiecl notdiffer;nt rs tromthe objecl. (8.8.VlViv.55o). (2)This'shining realm'(the Absolute, not'heaven,) what was was rea y meantbetoreby the word.svarga,, evenin the phrase'He who wanissvarga should offersacritices,. For js thatwhrch established the knowledge by arisingkom the upanlshadic textscannot reached be through rjtuals. (B.B-V tv.iv.555). Even in the ea ier emark, 'He who wantssvarya shouldofter sactifices', rcal rcfetencewasIo the,Absotule a shinthe as tng reatm, not to'heaven'asa hapry any case,it is onlv lhe Absolutelappearing heaven)undera conditionino as adiunctthatcan be rcachectthtough uals. r i3)Thewordsvarga'is usedhere onlyto mean.the highest bliss'.Becauseil occursin the contextoJteachinalabera_ I'on. s something rl eternat. Hence itcannothere me;nwhat comse the result porforming as o, (B.B.V rituals. lViv.556). (4)Onthe(false) lheory thattiberation dependdon death the ol the body,it woulddepend dissolulion the cause. on in 8ut altertheeradication thecause all,enlightenmenl of ol superseoes aulomatically, nothing and else is needed. (B.B.VlViv.5s8). jn ll woulddependon dissolution lhe cause:/tmears d/sso_ luttantn the Absoluteas yet unknown,assumjngsome such atnetapparent formas the cosnic vitalenergy. Aiterlhe eradicalion theca!se of all: fhls means of alter the eradicalionof metaphysicaltgnorance. (5) Nooiherobstacle liberation admitied to is except lgno, rance. Accordingly, whenlgnorance beendesttoved. has then a person is liberated (nr) already thislileevenbe_ in lore he is tinally liberated irom rebi(hat the dealhol the bodyThe Upanishad already has taught earlier the this in





in he thing theAbsolute, disolves theAbsobut lext'Being passage, theretore, No lute'(8rhad.lViv.6) laterupanishadic on liberation depond thedeath lhat make believed !s could oi the body.(B.B.v lv iv.559-60). from one akeady...before is...liberated rebirih:thls Liberates Il.ii.1. reminiscence KathaUpanishad ol is a All Duality ia lmaglnedThroughlgnorance all In the systemol Suresvara, dualily is an elject oi nolhingelse to be denounce Thereis lherejore lgnorance. between lhe dislinclion lgnorance beeneradicated.The has knownand un' between the Selfandlhe nol-sell, distinclion real and unreal, distinclhe tho dislinction between known, knowing subject individual beingandnotbeing tionbetween Five shealhs' lgnorance. arisethrough all thesedislinclions cosm tive ths encasing individualand corrasponding c sheaths lgno_ only are standing lheircauses dislinguished through as like lhat betweenmanilestand rance.Olher distinctions ellectand cause wholeand parls,aclronand li unmanifesl, and res!lis aaealso sel up by lgnorance tacloas componenl and mainlenance wllh' crealion, The the alone. Witness. Lord. dream and the ol drawal the universe, threestatssol waking, ol dreamiess sleep,and,in a word,the very relallonship ihe alone itselJ, allthe workof lgnornace is Seli wilh lgnorance principle atlained is and inmost Therefore whenvisionol the to to lgnorance brought an end,all bondage transmigralory of The ceasesimmedialely. manileslalion lgno' experienc6 whatover the on haveno ettect ranceand its latereradication ol principle reality, morethanlhe imagrnation any of Sell,the ol thal imaginalion a snakein a ropeand tha latercessation _aveany eflecton lne rooe.Herealso,as In the syslen ol on'ollhe Com.nutator, rrclhodol ial'e allrrbut tne revered evelollowed retraciion consislenlly is by subsequenl oweo lo accePl. rywhere. This we have

(1) Clothed lhe liveryof bingan individual in knowng subject, Sell beholds not-selJ; it cannotbelhe lhe but holdthe Setfas an objeclin lhis way,as the Sell is lhe pure light of Consciousness nothing and else.(B.B.V Liv.734). (2)Thedislinction between known andunknown, disthe tinclionbetween appearing knowledge as lgnoas and rance, and the distinction between beingand not being an individual subject enjoying knowledgenoneol these distinctions beingto lhe SelJ. For they are not self,esrablished. Theydepend lh Witness. on {T.B.V. .666). (3)Texis (lgnorance) death, like'Darkness is (light imis ( m o r t a l ) 'B r h a d .i li . . 2 8 a n d ' l n t h e b e g i n n i n gh i s ! n i i ) t, versewas water'{Brhad-vv.1showlhal melaphysical ) lgnorance continually work,eilherin manifesl is al or u n m a n i f e sfto r m - ' E m e r g i n gr o m l h e s e e l e m e n l s f (Brhad.ll-iv.12), Lord, the though raised above change. all appears throughlgnornace the Knower ihe Field as ol p.35), ([,1.V. lhrough a illusory of appearance Himself oJ a s l h e n o t - s e l l(.B . B . V , . i i . 1 3 6 -c p M . V . 1 1 8 , 1 1 d 1 7, an (4)Thatwhichis neither causenor an ellectassumes a ihe appearance causeand dllecllhroughlgnorance. of Hencethe Vedaworkslor the eradicalion the latler... of lgnorance lhe Self manilests of everywhere cause as andeftect, though haslor ils lrue nature it lhat (theSell) whichis not eilhra caus6or an is witnessed (B.B.Vl.ii.130 as an object its ownlrue Self. by .1.jv.309)(5)The nolionwhichwe haveherein the worldol whole and parts blongs the planeof lgnorance the into ot mosl Sell. ll does not balongto the supremSelf. ih whichall lgnorance blindess) negaled (lit. is by'neither l h i s n o rl h a t . ( 8 . 8 . V . i i a . 2 6 9 ) l


Chapler'8 (6) True Being does not undergoand is nol a cause. lt appearsas a cause lhrough lgnorance,and also as aclion and all its componenl taclors and results. (B.B.V. t .i i . 1 8) . 2 (7) That supreme principleol reality,which is rndicaied by lhe negalrve lexls such as Nol gross... (Brhad.lll.viii.S), which in its true nalure lies divestedol l g n o r a n c e n d i t s e t t e c l sa p p e a r s s ' t h e W r t n e s s ' a n d a , a ' l h e I n n e rR u l e l w h e na p p a r e n l l lyi m i t e d by theadjunct o f l g n o r a n c e , l s o w n i l l u s o r ym a n i t e s t a t i o n(.8 . 8 . V . r Liv.15l). (8) And so the creationsand wilhdrawalsol lhe universe d o w n t h e a g e s a r e i m a g i n e dj ,u s t a s l h e d i s l i n c t i o no t s time and space are, When you have seen realily, you know lhat the creation,mainlenanceand wilhdrawalol the universe (B.B.V ll.i.41I , cp l\4.V1 18, are impossjble. 15 and nole) (9) The imaginaryrdea thal the Self is asleep or awake o r s d r e a m i n g e l o n g s n l y l o c r e a t u r e s s l e e pi n l h e b o a . n r g h lo l l g n o r a n c e(.B . B . V1 1 . i . 2 6 M,. V . 1 2 2 . 2 9 ) 5 (10)The indivjdualknower,stationedin the intellecland idenliliedwith it, convinceshilnselt ol the presenceol lgnoranceand its eltects in the Sell, lhough ln lruth il is not present,through his own exlravertedgaze - as simp1esouls altribule blue colourlo the colourlesselher ol l r e s h y .( 8 . 8 . V .1 . r v . 2 9 8 . . V . 1 2 1 . 1 ( . M



It shauld be underctoodthat certain verses lha! have already been quoted above in dift'etent contexts have been reintroduced in lhe prcsent section to show thal Suresvara approved the method al teaching through false allribution followed by subsequent rctraction.

The lorm of Non-Duallty ApprovodIn the Vartika The Varlikaol Surssvara accepts lhal the true lhe absolute, innon,dual. is accessible ll whenmetaohvsrcal l g - o ' a _ c e h es o u r c e l t h ew h o t em a g i n r yn e l w o r ; f d u l. i o a k alily, beeneradtcaled has through texts theUpanishads. lhe of T h r s i s w h a t o n e l e a r n sl r o m l h e s t u d y o J t h e V a r t i k a . Suresvaracarya relutd lhe exisling all systems Advaila of opposed his o',n. H did so on lhe authority Vedicrev_ lo oJ elation, backed r6ason by and his owndireclintuition, we as lravehad occasion noleat the poinlwherewe examined to the dilterent varielies the earlyperiod the teaching ol of (cp. M . V . 9 0i,n t r o . ) W h a v e l s oe x p l a i n h e r e n dt h e r e n t h e e a d a i presenl chapler someol lhe dilferences belween syslem the ol AcaryaMandana thatol ihe Varlika. and Various theories of Advaila accepted lolerated lrandana relutedby or by are Sursvara: mightreferlo the theories Non-Dualism we of ol lhe Word(Sabdadvaita, [/4.V cp. 102,3), Non,duatism Beof Ing, whereBeingis conceived a universal (sattadvaita, as c p . l \ 1 . V1 0 2 , 4 ) a n d N o n - D u a l i s m l p o s i l i v eB e r n o . o ' b l ^ a v d d v a rca ..M . V .t 0 2 . lp 5 ) .W e s h a l r t o s e h . sc h a p l e ; c t wilh a few verseson thesetopics. (l ) Thatwhichhas in trulh no nameor lorm manilested as name torm, and dep6nd solely lgnorance manilested ing on (i.e. atthebeginning world ofthe period). Statemenl,general, in is calied'name'(nama); stated, generai, caled ,Jorm, the in is (rupa).Through thesetwo categoris Lordis ableto mani_ lhe lesl Hirnself all crealures lor bornin the realm manilestaot I on; il He had staydin his unmanilest lormth s wouldnol possible. have (B.B.Vl. 390-2) iv For the Non-Dualsmol lhe Wod adoptedby Mandana,one shauld consult Behna Siddhipp.lT-19 potteL19A1, (cp. pp.3568).

224 Chaptr



(2)Thereforo bcauso (i.. monialrepetitions rated traditionally higherthan ol the ol oralrepetitions lhetexts) hue nature lhe Yajur Veda(andof all vedicl6xt6)is to be divineknowledge in In ol implanted lh mind. thigwayth6 eternalily theVedas pervades etemal Consciousness canberighlly oxphind(sinc il lhe mind.TheirDower communicatae beeslablished lo can words(butas ideas); iheyarenollakenas phy6ically spoken ittheirabgnce supoosd bethe is to it cannot established be (sphota) (assumed) iatent thespoken in word. etemalprincipl [.297-8). GB.V. For Mandanabviewson'SDhota', shouldconsulthis wo* one the Sphota Siddhi(seeBiAiogEW undetBiardeau). (3)Hereinth6upanishadic theterm'lhe Absolute'is txt usd in its direct msaning h ralily is neithr as that transcendent (B.B.V nor immanonl, ngithera universal a pariicular. nor tviii.1815). the TheAbsolute descibedih thegetefits thtoughout vadikd, b as at B.B.Vl.iu 656,745,1073,1272,446; .i,371; ll,iii.l2,240; ll.iv.l4: Liu38and so torth(cp.alsoM.V.119,6). Mandana But undersloodthe Ats<rute to be the univeBal called Being(saftit), see*ahnta Siddhip, 37 (M.U 102,4). (4)Theinmost principle, above rmains is allchange, conjtself in wittemplating as th light(lil.rsuh) ev6rycognition, nessing knowledge being all of andnon-being. is ilseltthat lt immediate expodonce is not experienced anotherAnd that by and so whenthe individual krowingsubjec{ his knowledge and itsellas its obiects ceas,lhen the inmostSell establishs power.When laclthai by the lhe soleexistgnt itsowninherent theindividual subject hisknowledgeand objects not and ils do thsn exislis established through awakening loon'st.ueSelt, the notionol 'not'indicates whichis etehallyluminous that (B.B.V and notknowabl arryextoriormeansol knowledge. by -9]'. .iii.227

Theimplication thi6b that thenotbn of'not'doesnot aDDi,e ol one ol non-gxislence. thisrclutesthe Non-Dualism posilive And ol Being(bhgvedvaka). Mandanaaccepld SeeBahna Siddhi But it,

'(At B. Sid. p4, cp. M.U 102. Maldana /'iaka9 5, an opponsnt rcna* dpl the Absotute can b6 assetaled * h ,oinw annbui!6 (e.9. btiss)an n,satite ainbubs (e.9. a$anca ol the wdd ot ot lqr,oa1ca). As Mah.hna .,Desnol cont adicl lhls, he \!as l*an by lalet autho$ as heing ac-cepted viewka! ke he A$olute coulal haw thenegallw atilbuls ot abenco ttta hiwrfet at cassa. ol tion ot lgnorcnc.' (cp. B.Sid.,ed. Kuwuswani, Englbhlnto. W xi-xv).]t is nonduath itsposltNeaspect(bh'vtdvalla), but tdarE!$ 3 kk.t ot datity k tEt it has negationot vaiotts ttitldsbt lE'negatl\E auwnes'. Bhtvedvatta,w dt rcslt on t\6 ffi ol .eilykg nagatiot aN! setfng hen W a3 a stange kind ol rcdity, s rcappearc in such latat Advalte aulho.s as VlnunAldan (.p. M.U 2U) and A@dabodha (cp. M.u 275).No st{;h rcltlcaddr ls lanf, k Suestnn. Fat hin tha wotd 'not'merelyldlcatad th6 Absotuta iE tua brn. TN.) in

o .c


o s





Sddhanacan go on in the drcam or sleep stateas well as in the wa4ing. p.1 (Sri Aurobindo;Le erc on Yoga, 481) To make use ot the nights is an excellent thing, it has a doubleeffect:a negativeeffect,it Nevents you trom la ing backward,losing whateveryou havegained- that indeed, is painlul - and a positive effect,you nake 6omaprcgress, you continue yourptogress. (TheNlotheL Bul/oLh, Xll, No.4,p.91) Vol. has lolal I he InlegralYogaSriAurobindo foritsgoallhe of liberation of ol iranstormation ournalu16aswellasthcomplete only But slale ourbeing. in ournormalwaking weareconscious ol a very restricled lield and actionof our nature,lhe resi ol il oursu ace remainingandfunclioningbehindtheopaqueveilof personalily. sinceall thatwe'become do and bear'in But, and and zones ourouterliteis prepard govemed bylhesoconcealed subconscient subliminalto and ourwaking awareness, ol activity imporlance a yoga whichaims al for alassumesan "jmmense th translormalion lite to grow conscious what goes on ot of lhesedomains, be masler to ther6and be ableto leel, within our knowanddealwithihe secrettorcsthatdetermine destiny ourinteinaland exlernalgroMh decline." or and Now,as we havenoledbelore, sledplikyogictranceopens worldsand allowsus an enlry into lhe gateto thesesubliminal il realms ofourexistence. although is a And lhe moresignifjcanl ness sialeot our conscious lacl that in the ordinary undeveloped ourcognition remains unknownto most oursleep-experience of surJace to and oventhe lillle that manages reachour recording ligures "notinlhat and and doesso inthetormol dreams dream



Thq Maslery lhe Nighls of


condilion whichmighlbecalledan innerwaking whichisthe and rnostaccessib form of the lrancestate," e througha properand .lelhodica self-disciplining nay g'ow n conscioLsness we in sleepitseiiso muchso thal in the end we may iollowin uninterrupted awardness passage our lhrough ous realms our invar ol journey " ner be ng and the return thereirom.At a certainpilchoi this innerwakefulness kind of sleep,a sleepof expeience this can replace ordinary the subconscrous slumber," It is thenthatwe haveveridical dreams, dream-experiences oi grealvalLre, conveying lruthsthal are nol so easylo gei in our ordinarywak ng staie.Thus problems are solvedin our dream consciousness, whichourwakingconsciousness couldnot possrblycope with;weare provide wiih warnings and premonitions and indicalions the fulure and wiih "recordsof happenings of seenor experienced us on otherplanes our own berng oi by ol or universabeinginiowhichwe enler." Our sleep-exisience, we are conscious il, rendersus ii in valuable another servicein the exploration our subconscient ol nalurethat conlainsmuch that is obscurein us bul not distinguishably pursuit the activein ihe wakingsiate.A conscious of sLrbconscient wanderings our sleep-consciousness of bringsto our notrce classoi dreamslhal "arise a lrom the revenge our of innerbeinglreed tor a momentfrom the constraint that we im poseon it.Thesedreamsojtenallowus lo perceive sorneof the tendencies, tastes,impulses and desires whichwe wouldnol ol otherwise conscious long as our will to rea rse our ideal be so heldlherndown,hiddenin some obscurerecessof our being." For ii is one ol the most disconcerting discoveries made n Sadhanaihat whai we have thoughilo have settledand done away wilh in lhe upper layersof our consciousness obstiare fate y relained our glutinous by subconscienl. just lor that And reason, SriAurobindo poinled as has out,thesedreamsprovide u s w i t h a u s e l ui n d r c a t i oln ,r " l h e ye n a b l e s t o p u r s u e h i n g s o u t and excisethem." io thelrobscurerootsin this unde|world

we y Hence seethai lhe iieldsof our sleepii proper cultl, valed cany e d us a great andeffective onourroad aid towards se l-knowledge seltmastery, ln the pursuit our naand also oi lure'lranslormatlon. howto acq!ire cognii of theactiviB!t a on tiesol ournighis? Howto transform nature ouf sleep? the oi may Theprocedure dealwih s eepandthedreamland be to ( the sard havelhreema n limbs: ) howbestto enter staleoi to ( conscious sleep in itself? (iii)how and sleep? ) how10remain to retain memory ourdream-experiences whenwe the oi even to awareness? comeback thewakrng In our quesllor the answers thistr ple query, whom to to we and the elsewould lurn lhanio Sri Aurobindo the lvloiher. jagrat, worlds our being, supreme rnasters the fourlold of of for svapna, susuptia^d llrya? so we makenoapology quoting n exlenso fromlhe r luminous writings an atlempi offer in to

How Bestto Enterthe State ot Sleep? "Yourrusl lie flal on yourbackafd relaxall the muscles and nerves...lo be ike whal lcalls pieceoi clothon the bed, noih' ing else remains. you can do that with the mind also,you get lf r d of all stupiddreamsthat make you moretiredwhen you get up than when you went lo bed. lt is the celluar activilyof the Therebrainlhal contnLeswilhoutcontrol, and lhat I res much. late a lotal rclaxatian,ak nd ol campletecalm, withauttension n whicheverylhng s slopped.But lhis ls only the beglnning. "Aileftards, a self-giving total as possible, all, lrom as of inmosi, and an eradcation lrom the oulsideto the lop io bottom, o{ aso as tota as possibe oi ail resisiance the ego, and you if beg n repeatng your mantra- your mantra, you haveone or Irom any otherword whichhas powerover you, a word leaping hearl, spontaneously, a prayerand lhal surnsup your ke lhe a asp rat on. Aiter hav ng repealed few t rnes, it you ale acclspass lrom that tranceyoLr lonredlo it, yau get inta lrance.And

naluas end quite ntosleep. kancelasts longas it should The 8ul you passinlosleep. whenyou come spontaneously rally, lhe everything' sleepwas backtromlhis sleep,you remember of but a cantinuation the tance. lhe ol "Fundamenlally solepurpose sleepis to enable lhe sftecto{the lranceso thal the effectmay the bodyto assimilate to everywhere, enablethe bodylo do its nalural be accepted the andeliminate toxinsAndwhenil wakes tunction lhenighl ol lhe whichcomefromsleep' thereis no lraceof heaviness Lrp, lranceconlinues. eftectoJlhe it good to in been lrance, Ls "Even those whohavenever for going intosleep But prayer before a a repeal mantra. word, a I theremuslbe a lilein lhe words, do not meanan intellectual And of nothing thalkind,bula vib@lion on the body signilication, vibrale and vibrate' itbeginslovibrale, ils eltect extraordinary: is you io go quietly letyourself asthough wanied get Inlosleep you moreandmoreandslillmoreanoawayyou Thebodv vibrales

of theAwareness Dreams? Howlo Retain the deal naiurally wrth should Theiii partot ihisdiscipline alL and, our dreams above to dlstingu_ quesllon nowlorecognise theyvarygreally noted beiore' tor them; as we have shbelween nlghl maynave we in Otlen thesame in lherr nalure quality. and and categorles tfrus to whichbelong dilterent dreams several whrch the Now, regards procedure as value. inlrinsic have dillerent ol memory o!r nightsLelus lislen the to we should adopt retain to thewords theMother: ot be' divergence a always considerabLe "....There almost is acllallyis andtheway n wh cn activity whatourmenlal lween v/e conthe perceive andespecially wayrnwhich remarf we il, whal determlnes vibra_ acllvily this scious it.Initsownsphere, oi up by lionsare lo be lransmitted repercussion lo the cellLrlar subte brain,lhe but ol syslem ourcerebralorgan, in o!r sleepy a can domain onlyaliect very vrbrations thesupersensible lfom

rntted nurnber cells;the inertraot rnostof ihe organicsLtpol portsol cerebral phenomena reduces number lheiracltve lhe ol e ernenls, rmpover shesthe mentalsynthesis and makesil unlil ro repfoduce act vity ol lhe inlernal lhe staiesolhet lhan by m ages,ottenesi very vagueand inappropriare_.., 'The cerebra rende ng ot ihe activities the night s al ot r mes so mucnd storled thata lorm js givenlo phenomena whtch ts the exact oppasite of the rcalily,.. '[8u1]it one knowshow to transtale inte]iectual in tanguage lhe rfofe of less inadequaie tmagesby whrchlhe brarnreproduces ihese { may learn many thingswhtch lhe too rrmrled physlcaliacullies nol perrnit to perceive. do us _Some even succeed, a specialcullureand lrarning, by rn acq!rnngand retatning consciousness the deeperactrvi ihe ot tles ol lhelr lnner being ndependenUyot'theircerebrat transcripto, and are able lo recalland knowihem in lhe waktngstatern all the plent!de ol lhelr taculties... 'How lhrs [lhenjto cutlivale iield of aclion?how lo acq!rrea cagntttcno out activjties ol the night?... 'fhe same disctplineaf concentralian wh ch enables a ntaf no ongerto remaina slranger his Inneractrvilies the wak to in ng state.a so furnrshes him with lh; rneansor removng lrre rgnorance lhose,slill richer, the diverseslatesof S eep ol ol 'Usuaty theseac|vities leaveonlyrareanoconrused merno, I nds however lhal at timesa fortuilous rcumstance. c an mpresslon recelved, word pronoLlnced enonghla reawaken a is suddenly ta cansciousnessthe whale al a long dream al whtch lhe monrenl beioretherewas no recol/eclio[ "Fromthis simple tactwe may tnlerlhal our consctous v act parlicpates very ieebtein lhe phenomena lhe steepng ty oi siale as n the normalstaieoi lhingsthey wou d rcrnaintostt'ar ever tn subconsctenlmemoty.. .One



dream memory a forgotten ol to "Onewhowishes recoverthe impreson fix firstplace hisattenlion suchvague in should lhe it behind andio low mighlhavelell trailing as sions the dream possible. as tracs tar as the indistinct everyday wouldlet him go tarther "Thisfegular exercise wherelhe lorgotobscure rclrcatol thesuconscient towardsthe ot ten phenomena sleeptake relugeand lhus ark oul a roule ol lhe between twodomains consciousness. easylo lollow of lrorn thispoint viewis to "Onepractical remark be made is ol thal the absence mmory veryotlendue lo abruptnesswtlh takes lo which return consciousness placeAt thismoment' lhe 0nve ol into lield consciousness, ihe break n fact.newactivities more make andatlelwards to all ouliorcible thatis foreign them lhe to necessary recall things dilficult workol concentration lhe cer_ whenever on This thusexpelled- is tacilitated, theconirary, lor precautions observed a are mentaland even physical lain to peaceful from transilion onestate anolner." can of slipping awayof thememory our nights be Thus,lhe backin memory ol greatly remedied a powerdeveloped going and coher io till fromstate state, a sufficiently io fromdream dream, up. lile oi enl knowledge our sleep is built as o, ol Butthislraining lh racullies memory, we shallpre' ot provesu{licient linkthe lotality our to see,doesnot sently to For awareness. lhalwe have with sleep-exislence ourwaking ilselt. of growconscious the state sleep in In llow to GrowConscious Sleep the back thread memory lollow lo Thetraining ourphysical of giveilsfulldividend thesinple ior lails of ourdream-activilies to to reasoa lhal n thiswaywe are"able ltanslorTnloconsciolJs werealready which those alone phenompna lhewaking stale oi duringsleep.For whele lhere was no il mosl fleelingly, so, be lheracan f'e no nemoty. consciolsness,

We should lherelore seek,in the second ptace, extend lo lheparticrpalionconsciousnessa greater ot lo number activi_ ol tresIn the sleeping stale.Now,.,the dailyhabilol goingwilh inlerest overlhe various dreams the njghl, transforminq of this ther vestiges by trt e inloprecise ttttte memories wellas thai as oi noling themdown waking veryhelpful on are lromthispoint of "By virtueol thesehabits, mental the lacultjes be in_ will duced adapt to theirmechanism thephenomena thisorder to ot and lo direct uponlhemtheira ention, curiositv oowefof and analvsrs. "ll wiil then produce a sotl ol inteltectuatisation of dream,achievingdouble lhe result interspersing conscious ot the aclrvtltes moreand moreinlimately the play, in hitheno disordered,ol the activities the sleeping ol stateand of augmenling pfogressrvely scopeotlheseactivitjes making the by lhemmore andmorerationaland instructive. "Dreams would thentakeonthecharactsr orecise ol visions and,at lirnes. dream of revelations," But alongwiththisparticipation mental oJ consciousness, tnrsrevetatory Inteilectualisation ot dreams, musltryto cuili_ we vatea stillhigher deeper and modeoI consciousnsssleep. in In lact,our sleep,life should as mucha partol Sadhana be as the waking one,andihe developing consciousness we at_ that tarnin our waking statethrough spiritual endeavor aspiration and should extend itself tullyand continuously alsoto sleep the state. ll is truethatat the beginning ior a longtime it becomes and difficull maintain consciousness same to lhe pitch night, al the al lor "thelrueconsciousness comes firstin thewakng slaleor at rn medilation. takespossession the mental, vital,the it ot the conscious physical, thesubconscious but vitaland ohvsicai re, marn obscrrra thisobscunty and comes whenlhereis sleep up or an rnerlrelaxalion_"Bul the grow,th an intense with ol Sadhana Inourwakrng stale, when develop inner we our beil|g, lromin Iive

by and penetrated is wrthouiand our subconscient enlightened oi and light, thisdisparlty ihis dislocalion conscious the l\,4otheis goeson in the dreamor sleep andour"sadhana nessdisappears, " stale as well as in the waking The Lure ol the Drcam'Consciousness we Al lhis poinl ol our djscussion would like lo addressa noteol warn ng lo ihe seekersaiterlhe masteryof lheir n ghls ot a Through propercultivation the fieldsoi sleep_exrstence lo begins deveop and along sleepconsciousness whenthe rnner dreams, fromordinary as experlences distincl w th t appeardream lo pull lhere is olten an irresistible on the consclousness w tn_ lts waklngsialus,go withinand lollowthe develop_ draw irorir menl ihere evenwhenthereis no ialigueor need ol sleep so so oi are ihe experiences dream-consciousness, overalluring is whelrning the charmthereoTl must nol be a lowedto of But thlsattraction the sleep_world 'wanl ng to get back to encroachon lhe wak ng hoursand ihe the and enthralng which accompanles somethrngnteresling curbed Olhelwise be etlectively shoud desre to Iall inlo sleep" 'a ol and decfease lhe e theremay be an Lrndesirabunbaancing ho d on ouler rea t es.'


The Vision of the DivineBody

TheLightnow distant shallgrcwnativeherc, power; TheStrenght thalvtsitsus out comrade Thelneflablesha finda secretvoice, Matter's screen burnthrough Thelnperishable godhead's robe Makinglhismorlalbody (SriAurobindo, ll, ll,p. Savltli,Book Canto 110) the Pastand goneare threemortalgenercIions: lourtltand willenlel last inta lhe Sun (Rig'Veda,V l.102.14) that ll the transformalion thebodyis complete, meansno ol - il doesnot meanthatonewillbeboundlo subjeclion death to keep lhe same body lor all time. One crcatesa new body fol oneselfwhenone wantsto change... (SriAurobindo, leltels on Yaga,p.1 1) on lo o' I hel- reg'alYogaSellTransformalas 'evedled nan has ndo by SriAurob andtheN,4other forilsaim,in contradistincthe in chapler, creamentionedthforegolng tionto theallempts of earth and matler. herein thecoaditions tionoi a d v ne body, witha clnmayadeha,or lranIt doesnoi wantto be conlenled nor body, in lhecaseof theVaishnavas, wilhlhe as scendenla 'pneumatic' ol Pauljne body conpossession a post'mortem of ceplion. exisl_ For,lhis YoSaaims not 3l a releasefrom embodied do lhe and ence{as even Tanira Vaishnavism at the end),al a worldol departureout ol the worldinlo some supElerrestrial lile of at a change earthly and andspiritual enjoyment, but bliss eadh,andthat, oJ ar lulfilment lifehereupon exlsience, a divine



The V s on ol the D v ne Eody


subordinate incidenla, as a ol but and thal too "notas something d stincland cenlral object". Also,"lhe obiectsoughlafter[in lhis ol lor Yogalis not an individual achievemenl divinerealisalion gainedtor lhe to lhe sake oi the individual, somelhing be bul here." earth-consciousness Now, in this irameworkol the goal of a divineiuli lmentol of obvious. For, terrestrial the importance lhe bodyis indeed life, Aurobindo himself has decared: as Sr "A total perfection is the ultimale aim which we sel beJore us, for our idealis lhe DivineLiie whichwe wishto crealehere, on its the lrteof the Spiriifulfilled earth,lifeaccomplishing own spiritual lransformation even here on earth in lhe conditions ol be unless bodvtoo underthe the material universe.That cannot goesa transtormation, unlessils aciionand lunclioning attain lo a supreme capacity''and the physicalconsciousness,and physi cal being.the suflusedwith a light and beautyand blissirom lhe Beyond and lhe litedivineassumea bodydivinel Elsewhere SriAurobindo soundsanoleofwarning:'lt is because he has developedot been given a body and brain capable menlalillumuinalron of receiving and servinga progressive lhal man has risenabovethe animal.Equally, can oniy be by deit veloping body or at_least iunctioning lhe physical a a of inslru. menl capableof receiving and servinga stillhigherilluminalion and realise, merelyin thought not that he will riseabovqhimself and in his internalbeing in life,a perleclly but divinemanhood. Otherwrse eitherthe promiseof Lile is cancelled, meaning its annulled and earthlybeingcan only realse Sachchidananda by abolishing itself,by sheddingfrom it mind, life and body and returning the pure Inliniie, elseman rs not the divlneinstruto o{ progressive ment, lhere is a destinedlimit lo the consciously power which dislinguishes him lrom all other terreslrial stex ences and as he has replaced them in the ironl ol things,so anothermusl evenlually replace him and assumehis heritage." But forlunaiely earth-lif for and for man neitherof these

altenatrves needbe envisaged, manhasconvjnclngly For shown by hrs pasl achievement ihat he is capablejn a parts of h s beingof exceeding adlrllrllumthe boundsol his actuality.Thus there s no inevitabilily logicwhy he himself oi shouldnot at the glonousprospectol divinemanhood, operjngal his memby bers,- h s menlaity,his life,and,ihe last but not the leasl,h s bodyiise l, - to the unveiled aclionofthe Supermind altow, and Ingthemio be integra moulded transiigured that'grealer ly and by term ol the Spifiimanriesling Nalure.' in For. rt shouldbe ciearlyborne in mind that the divrnebodv lhus envrsaged comeintoexistence can and ils physicalimmortalitybe achievedand assured,not throughthe pallry eitorts madeby scrence, northrough occull-spiriluralinlluences the lhat seek lo act upon Mtlerthrough soleagencyofthepowersol the conscrousness lar organised earth-nature, through so in bui lhe actronol lhe Supramental Power, lhe powerof "the lall TruthConsciousness the DivineNature". ol This Trulh-ConscioLls ness, rla-clt.the Supermln SriAurobindo as termsit, is a dynamic and nol only a slalic Power, onlya Knowledge. a Willaccordnot but inglo Knowledge,'lhat "manilest can directils worldof Ltghland Trulhin whichall is luminously basedon the harmony and unily oi the One, not dlsturbed a veil of lgnorance". by Also,whenthisSupramenial Power overtly intervenes the rn lield of body and Matter, wofkingwill be 'notan intluence its on lhe physica givingil abnormallaculties, but an enlranceand penetrat changing whollyintoa supramenlalised on physcal . il N o w , a s r e g a r d s t h e n a l u r e a n d c h a r a c t e ro t i h i s physcal making possible appearance, supramenta|sed the here upon earth itsell, ot a who ly iransfigureddivlne body, Sri has wrtten in greatdelailin lhe penultrmale Aurobindo chapler ol The Llfe Diviae and, more hrs last work Ihc Supramenlal Manifestationupon Earth. The mitedspan ol the present work does nol perrnit to us discuss n luli lhe natureol this apotheosrs the malerial body ol oi man, as env saged in ihe Yoga'Phllosophy Sri Aurobindo ol nor whai waythe and ihe Mother, can we ind caie howfor and.jn



problems lood and sleep, disfaiig!eand inerlia, insistent of are unregenerated impulses appetiles goanci ease anddecay, body appear time. io in ingto besolved theiransformed in divine one thetheme, Weconlent ourselves picking here theme, with up problem deathsn of we mightas wellsay,ol the Sphinx-like physical body. dissolution lhe individual's oJ For, have we assured SriAufobindo lheIVolher by and been Manileslotion achievement theSupramental of thatas a crowning physical con' uponEarih, therewillcomewillcomeaboul'lhe jmmoftal,ly', 'in the sensenot oJ quest death, earthly of an but altachmenl ot restriclion ourpresenl or to corporeallrame an body." "fromthe divine For, exceeding the lawo{ the physical ol Delight existence,the ol lmmorlalily o{ Lord Bhss, original the comespor]ring wine ol that Bliss, the the mysticsoma, inlo living matter; eiernal and beauliful, he therejarsof mentalised inlo ot for lranslorenters these sheaths substance theinleqral malion thebeing nature". of and yearning, "the Andthuswillbe realised manhisage-old lor of consummation a lripleimmortality, immortality lhe naol immodalily lhe Spiritand the ot turecompleting essenlial the psvchic will ol sufvival dealh," which be"thecrown rebirth ol indication the conquest the nalerial ol ol and a momentous Inconscience lgnorance and evenin lhe veryloundalion the ot regnof N,4aller,...atemporarsignollhespirit'svicloryhereover Dealh Maltel. ahd ot can ButbeJore vision theconquest Death, be realthis of necessiiy ils exisllor sed in the liJe man,lhe melaphysical ot enceandawayso far hasto be adequately andabrogated. met So ourtasknowis lo proceed thestudy lhe melaphysto oi necessarv lhe attaincs oi death andindicale condition the ior menlot a phys immortality. cal


The Conquest Sleep of

C h a p te r-11

Thtnets the shade in whtchvtsionsare made: sped bylhy hands lram celestiallands come lhe souls thal reloice fat evet. lnlo thy dream wa ds we pass ar laak tn lhy tnagrc glass, titen beyan(l thee we climb out af Space and Time lc th-.peak of dtvineendeavour. (Sri Aurobindo. Callected Paemsand P/ays. Vol ll.p 122r He has see, Gods slu/nber shape these magic vvorlds He has v.'aiched dumb God lashiontngMaltet s lra )-.. lhe Dreenng the dreans al ns unknowingsieep. And vatched the unconsctorisFotce lt)at bLrlt lhe starc. He has iearni lhe lncotisctenls wotkings and ns law l!s satnnolencefotnded the univerce Its abscure tuaktngmakes the world seem vatn He mus!cali lqht tnla tls dsrk abysms. lL'latte. sleep s Else never can TtuthconqLter Antt all eatlh laok inlo lhe eyes of God -Saydr/, BookVl Canloll, pp 4?19.50) lSr Aurobindo. y W" tlou" .""n n the courseol our slud at tangue h.:tten1-E nalufeand luncton of s cep lhal lh-"penol c spcl s of the occLrit \a oJdormancyof our body need nol pta'Je be an !navoillabe growlh. n anycas-o. phys our .v | .or.r han.icap 1oour spirrlLral meanan abeyancc consco!s ol dces nol /,.e;essaf//y ca sle-op b . n e s s o 1 t h - .r i h o l eo J o u r d y n a m i c e r n g n o r a n ( r h l y I n f r ) o t d o ' n . n o re v e na n f i e r r u p o n n t h ep u r s u r l l o u rS a d h a r aO n tl the s may be trafsJorrned,we krtowhov, l nto : s/eep a{ expe encesg v ng us an access1o lne nner dona ns ot oi.rr ng be



The Conquest Sleep of


stence, to may be the valueof the sleep-ex Butwhalever priceof the suspension our ol livein the dream-v/orld lhe at a achievement waking awareness cannolbeconsidered laudable ol in the Yogaoi Transformation Lile.We haveto br ng out and t l c a l l d o w n t h e r e a c h e s r o m o u r s u b l i m i n ad e p t h sa n d of height and makelhesean acquisition our superconscienl physical "spiriturally has waking lile.Our consciousness to be as conscrousnessin sleep." awake" "asopenin thewaking and oulat We havesomehowto "arrave a poinlwhenone remains in being hasal will and wardlyconscious yetlives lhe inner and orlhecutpoured condilion." lheindrawn bouts unconsciousol It is thusevident the irresistible that occasronally nessoi sleeplo whichour body's waking status in cannot beviewed a signof imperfectionthe but as succumbs prevailing Whatrsthennecorganisationour physical of being. an elemenl is essary lhat- andthismustconslilute essenlral - sleepm6l in the tolal lrans{iguration our bodilyexistence of be Gised ftom the level of necessilyto that of a free accept' absorplion our ol as arce,as and whenso willed, an indrawn be by Thusthemastery overournights should lollowed the Bul atlempl an absolute ai conquest sleep. is lhislotalvicol in human sleepat all feasible lhe present tory overphysical condilions have lhal to bodv? And.if not.whatarelhe essenlial lite lhis prospecl bodily enlersthe fieldof lor be met before possibilities? realisable queslions propose we to By wayoi answering lhesecrucial lwo related and somelentatrve Dutforward Droblems venlute solutions thereol. Howto Reduce Hoursof Sleep? the physical-vital plane, sleep hasIor ils essenOn the purely physical energies ol the oI lia lunclion restoraticn the nervous bodily system. Ioran eJieclive But fulfilmeni lhis ol ourlatigued should bo iunction, is absolutely it necessary oursleep-lite thal

andreposeful, relaxed luminous. veryrarely our and calm Bul do nights measure to thiscrilerion: up theseare,moreollenthan not,morefatiguing even dayslor reasons than our which ollen us. escape But the l\,4oihr warnedus that iJwe get up nol so well has refreshed the mornjng, is because a lormidable in it of mass of Tamas."lt isTamas whichcauses sleep.There twokinds bad are you heave, oJbadsleep: sieep lhe thal makes dull,as lhough yo! loseall lhe eflectoi lhe efforlyou put in duringthe precedyou ingday;andthesleep exhausls as if youwerepassing that yourtimein iiqht. "...Two lhingsyou musleliminate: Jalling lhe torpor into oi inconscience, allthese wilh the lhings lhe subconscienl of and you,enter you;anda ot theinconscienl rise!p, invade lhal inlo vitaland mental superactivity whereyou passyourtimein lighlingliterally terrible baitles. People comeoul ofthatstalebruised, as il they had received blows- and lhey did receive them,it is nol'as if'!" (A)Relaxation:Now, sincethe totaltimejnterval needed tor lhe recuperationourenergies in inverse of is raiio thequalily lo in ot repose we allain oursleep, verylirstprocedure that the we mustadoptto cut downthe duration our nightly of sleepis to practise artof conplele lhe relaxation body of andmind, short a period which proving bemore of to refreshing hours restthan of "Relax lesssleep, therecommendation Buddhisl In of a author: porlion thebody oi deliberately consciously; close and each lhen theeyesandlry lo visualise darkness. yoursell utter Fel floal. ing in a srlent void,and deliberalely emplylhe mindol every t h o u g h ta n d f e e l i n gb y i m a g i n i n g u c h a c o n d i t i o n s s a "Only etrnal an eternal in nightl'And the Swinburnes's a sleep concludes oncelhBproper thal, knack abundance is ol auihor tresh energy a clean-swept and invigorated mind. cannol Bethatas it may, negative lhis method felaxation ol to ot lt lakeus verytar on our road lhe conquest sleep, should

preliminary step lo a lor moreeltecive the from rather essenlial In one:to becomeconsclous our sleep beneficial and spirilually lor progress our nights utilise and deliberately (B) Conscious utilisatian of nights: Al this porni we would lhal like to dispeia possiblemisunderstanding may arise ln ul lor withthis suggeslion a conscious lsalionol our connection lear in some mindslhal lhrs at' lurking Theremay be a nights. of ternptat lhe cullivation the vast fieldsot our n ghts, Inslead a and in of bringing a morereposelul lheretore moreinvrgoraling wouidon the olher handallecl its deplh and delracllrom sLeep ol the efficacily our nightlyresl wh ch is so salularyand indishealth pensable our physical ior Bul thisfear and doubthavegot no basisin iacl lhe and uncontrollable us, Molherhas assured it is onlythe useless ln activities our sieep that make our and mosllysubconscious 'il lhan the day.On the conlrary our nLghl nightsmoreialiguing oi the qrantedus lhe acquisition new knowledge, solulron an oJ In our rnnerbeing conlact the ng absorb problem, eslablishmentoi with some centreol lile or of lighl,or even the accomplishrnenl we ol some usefulwork, shouldalwaysget up wilh a ieelingol well'being. is lhe hours wastedin doing nalhtng lt vigorrrand useful at' good that are lhe mosl latiguing lor o{ cultivation our sleep-exlslence reaprng Th s conscious fruiisior our innergrowthis then the secondesssnlraelemenl sleepa real re' lo of our endeavour rnakethe state01physical slorerof our energies. evenin thisway seemsto be lim ted in Bui the gainacquired ol ls scopeso lar as our main problem drastcallyreducng the For hoursol sleepis concerned, that we have 1obecomecon_ phenomenon our s eepol significant maslers another oi scrous ol "susupli01 Brahrnan lie: ihe poss b lity oi enlranceinlo lhe Brahmaloka. lC) Attainnent of SachchidanandatmmobilttyjOnce beiore to madea passingreference thlsslaleol luml_ we havealready

nous rest In steep.As a ma er of fact, for sleep to be at all worth the namelullillingits role of the restorerof energies, il muslbe eilher one"inwhich thereis a luminous silence,,or else one 1nwhich lhereis Ananda thecells."The ol oursleepin rest lile is an attemptat sleep,not quotelrom the Molhera passage whichwe haveaheadyreferred: to "Thereis the possibililyot sleepjn whichyou enterinloan a absolute silence, immobility peace allparts yourbeing and in of andyourconsciousness merges Sachchidananda. can you into hardlycall it sleepfor it is extremely conscious. thal condi_ In lion you may remainlor a few ninutes, bul theselew minutes qiveyou morc restand refreshment thanhouts of ordinarysteep." Sri Aurobindo has trealedthis topicon numerous too occasions. Thus,to quotelrom himonly one passage: "ln sleepone...passes from consciousness oeeoercon_ ro sciousness a longsuccesston In unlrlone reaches osvchic the andrests rhereofelsefrom higherlo higher consc iousnesuntil s one reachesrest in somesilenceand peace. The few minutes one passesin this rcst ate the rcal sleepwhichrestores, i, _ one doesnot gel it, thereis only a hall rest." But,as a matterof fact,this briefSachchidananda periodof ''luminous peacetill and dreamless resl"thal.givessleepall its reslorative value" cannotbe had 'by chance;it requires lono a lraini.g.tndeed, ordrnary our sleep, even whenrt is of thebesi vanety,s rnosllytakenup withour actualIrayel/ing towards this staleol Sachchtdananda immobility our return and Journev lo Itse wakJng av/areness. without often very eveireaching siare the atal. Andeventl we reach state sorne this on rareoccasions,,.it rsooneunconsciously it is, lf onewants do it consciouslv as to andregulale onehaslirstlo become L conscious sleep.,. in An; lhena onecanthe prospect possibly openup betore ol reduc_ us Ingthe hours sieep a bareminimum. ol to


The Conquesl Sleep ol


ol the eliminale necessily allogelher Buteventhiscannot physiological occuit-spirilual, and is The sleep. reason twofold, we consideralion nowlurn. lo whose Howto Eliminatethe Nacessityof Sleep? physico-physiological prccondition: the pi-rrely On Physicat response ils lo ptane, srnce sleepis the body'sunavoidable of expenditure lhrough ill-balanced an and overstrain exhaustion of o, is whalis needed thetotalannulmentallpossibility energy, problem of us lo lhe general And iatigue. ihisbrings ourbody's physical For' present organisation and of incapacily inertia our can or the it altho!gh is a facllhal"either yogic thevitalenergy physicalsystem' or at longkeep workan overstraineddeclining so is whenthisdrav/ing no longer easynol per' a timecomes longheldbacklrom mani' lhe hapspossible"and bad resulls ;nsues. breakdown a allatonceancl lestrng explode ' and sovedon has of So the problem incapacity to betackled lhe ptaneof the body ilsell.For'the body is the key,the body weakness ol and bolhof bondage ot rlease' animal thesecret andsouland power, thobscurationthemind ol of andot divine and to of ol theirillumination, subiection painand limllalion ot ot sellmastery, dealh andof immorlalily" ol tor reason lhislaligue ourbody? Bulwhatis the inherent tired?Whycan it systemget periodically our physical Whydoes wav? nol workin a continuous of latigue the bodycomes ot In lhewords the Mother:"The Theremay be manyolhet apparen! lrom an innerdisharmony. circumstance." r;abons,bul allamounlto that lundamenlal lies due Whatis thiswantof harmony to?Theanswer in ihe and oi theconfines a limited in life-force, lodged factof a limited vainwilhthe in conlending existence, individualised egobound to ihal seeksconsianily govern AllLile and All-Force universal and emergence developmenl it. In lhe evolulionary and master

of liiein malellal forms, is lruethatas consciousness it devel_ opsmoreandmore, thelight ils ownbeing "as of emerges trom lhe enerldarkness lhe involutionary ol sleep,lhe indivjduatexistence becomes dimlyawareol the powsrin it and seeksferst nervously ltrenmentally master, and enjoythe play.". and lo use Bul,even ourbest, mental at we beings bound bound are are by a poorandlimited power lile whichis allthatourbody canbear ortowhich cangive it scope. And" theconsequent in interchange and balancing between movement interactlon thevital the and ol energies normally workin thebody al andtheirint6rchange with thosewh ch acl uponit fromoulside, whether energies lhe ot olhers the general or Pranic forcevariouslv aclivein the environment, there rs a constantprecarious balancing and adj!stmenlwhichmayat anymoment gowrong"5 Thus, lhe verynalure things, individualised and In ol our life lorce in lhe body cannol masterthe AlfForce workingin the world.On the contrary lhe resistance which it ottersthrough blindignorance lhe movement the infinite lo ol universal Life ''wilhwhoselolal will and kend its own will and trend may nol rmmedialely agree",r subjects to the law oJincapacily it and tatlgue, one o{ lhe basiccharacteristicsindividualised diol and videdLifein lhe body. Hence cureou. physical to system all liability fatigue, ot lo the lirrilationof ego has to be totallyabrogated only in the not parlsol ourbeing, in theveryphysical inner but consciousness and the malerialorganisation the body.Our body has to be ol broughlinlo completeharmonywith the demandsot our own inner conscrousoess withlhe infinile and cosmic |hvthm. 'lhat means',ln lhe words Bul " of the [,4other, a work in eachcellof the body, eachsmallaclivity, eachmovement in in of the organs... haveto enterintothe disposition the You of js yourinner physical cells, organisation body lo answer if the to ihe Force lhatdescend.. mustbe conscious yourphysi You ol calce s, youmusiknow theirdifterent lunctions, degrees the AI


The Conq!rest Sleep ol


and whichofthemarein goodcondition which receptivity each, in with Butthiscannot altempled lhe helpol ihe lnsuillclent be mind'consciousness. onlythro!gh lt rs and inetficient ol lighl of Gnosis, and emetgence the divine thedescend concomilanl Becomrng, thal Supermind, inthemidsl theevolutionary here o{ Matterand materialbody can be rid ol their ineriia and between lifehe and established inconscience a properequation playing an individual formation the surges lhe and of energy in is All-Force. in lhe Supermind For "alone ihe con' embarking willand knowledge are unily alldiversilies; alone of there scious and harmony; therealone Consclousness equaland pedect in Force arrive lheirdivine at equation." ol our It is through supramentaltranslormation physica the Inconscience."4body,-thal "is slill a llower of the material down itsverycellsandJunclioning the lawoJincapacity io thal and fatigue be linally will abrogated wllhit the andconsequenl physiological compulsion sleep. for neces' the Butlhererernains finalhurdle, occull-spirlual a annulled the wilh sityof sleep, thattoo will be completely but gnostic exislence. transformalionourwaking 01 we Occult-sDirilual Drccondition: have seen ihal n iis esis lo ol sential nature body's our sleep theaesponse thedemand in the individual consciousnessgo inward awake planes to and awareness of existence at present not accessible thewaking to hall-sleep. unless So, whlch stillin thegripol an involutionary is is eliminated ailparts Jrom anduntil spiritual his slumber totally molher including veryphysical our consciousness, of thebeing into Nature constrainour to ialloccasionally theswoon will body lite of s umber thalthe podalsof the innerand higher can so open. whenSupermind Gnosis, Truth'Consciousness or lhe Now, to emerges ihe fieldof evolution in overtly ol Sachchidananda,

principle our embodied becomethe governing ol malerial sxisf e..e. r_c nanrfesledbeingwiL be in securepossess ot dn on nlegralConsciousness an integraS ght, so that therewill and be no morea slale of sleepin oppositron the stateof pefmato nenlwaking, norforthatmatteralineol demarcation separating the inner and outer domainsof existence. The evolvingbeing wil lhen be fuly aroused fromthe self-oblivion an Involulronary of sleepand,a ong withit, lhe spirilual compulsion behind sleep the ol our body wlll altogelher lose its occultsupporl. ln ihal loresbleGoldenDawn,the body will thrill w th lhe fu I menl of its destiny, will parlicipate tullawareness the it in in gloriesof a d vrnised upon earth.and law of the inexoralife the ble necessiiy sleepwill be 10rever lilledfrom its head. ol But ln the meantrme us notlorgel evenlor a momentlhe let greal rolethai sleepcan play in the present organisation our of liieand being; does it nol openlo us ihe doorsof the dream10r, land, the Yogicdream-world, we oniy know how to put it lo if And who can be litllelhe inlintle charmand beaulyand bliss ihat ihe [/otheroi Dreamsmay beslowupon us, if we only know how lo courl Her favour?


Th Conquesl Sleep ol


APPENDIX THEMOTHER DREAMS' OF SRIAUROBINDO Goddess supreme, Mother Dream, lhe ivorydoorswhen of by lhoustandesl, Whoare theythenthatcomedownuntomenin thy visions

troop,group upon group,down the path ol the shadows slanting? Dreamaller dream,they flashand lhey gleamwith the flame ol the stars still aroundihemi Shadowsat the side in a darknessride where ihe wild tires dance, stars glow and glanceand the radom meleorglistens; there are voies hat cry lo their kin who reply; voices sweel, at head they beat and ravishthe soul as il lislens. What then are these landsand these goldensandsand lhese

Holdest night thy ancient the in right, Mother divine, hyacinthine, witha girdle beauty of detended. Sworded tire,allracting with desire, linebourskingdom thy thoukeepesl, Starry-sweet, the moonat thy feet, now hiddennow with seen the clouds between gloom lhe andthe drjtlol lhy kesses. On y to lhosewhomlhy tancychose, thouheartJree il O is givento see thy wetchcraft and fell they caresses. Openthe gatewhere children jn theirworldol a lhy wait beauty undarkened, proud High-throned a cloud, on victorious, lhave espied Maghavan whenthe armies windare behind ride ol him; Food has been givenfor my tastingfrom heavenand fruit o{ rmmorlal sweelness; I havedrunkwineof the kingdoms divine and haveheard the change music ol strange Jrom lyrewhich hands a our cannol master; Doorshaveswungwide in the chambers p.idewherelhe ol Godsreside andthe Apsaras dancein theirckcles faslerand

""n Who are thosethat pace by the purplewavesthat race to lhe clifi-bound o, thy jasper floor shoreunder skiesin which myslery muses, Lapped moonlight ol our night plrnged sunshine in not or in that is notd urnal? Whoare theycoming theyOceans roaming wiihsailswhose slrands afe nol madeby hands, unearthly an windadvances? Why do theyloin in a mystic withthoseon the sands lin6 linklng hands s{range stately in and dances? Thouin the air,witha flamein lhy hair,the wh rl ol thy wonders watching,

more radiant earrn rhan


Thereal the gates the heavenly of states thouhasl planted lhy wandenchanted the headol theYogin over waving. Fromtheeare lhe dream and the shadows seemand that the lugitive lights lhat delude us; Thineis lhe shade whichvisions made; in are spedby thy hands lromcelestial lands comethe soulslhal rejoice for ever. Inlothy dream-worlds passor lookin thy magic we glass, thenbeyond the6we climboul of Space andTirneto endeavour. the peakol divine

For rhou she art whom tirsl we can *n"n *" o"lTlii """ bounds the mortal, of

E tt p


!utr ?o

9 EE




Then man was bom among lhe monstrous starc Dowercd with a mind and heart to conquer thee. (Sri Aurobindo, Savitri,Eook lX, Canlo ll, p. 594) The Ars magna,that royaland sacetdotal scienceof the alchemtsts, veily a scienceol rcgeneation... is Many a seeker on the ways of the Divine has und'ryone spiitual tegenenlion.But very few arc they who have knownthe mysteryol corporclrcnewal. (D.Eckhanshausen, Nuesure Le Sanctuaire) La Senescence naluraldealh,'lamott naturcl/d, are thus and seento be nol al allnecessary intrinsic and attribules oraccompaniments incarnate of life.Hencehavarisenon the part of planned manvariousdeliberately attempts the physical at and practised the modern in West,- this battlfor the vicloryover seniledecayand the body'sdeathis no longer considered be to problem tarcicaland tutile, but ratheras a veritable scienlitic andproposition. Already theyear1924, l4elalnikov lhe in S. of InstitutePasteur(Paris)wrote:'All elfortsof ihe biologisland medicalmen lo wagea successtul battleagainslthe onsel of youthto the agedand dcadent senescence restore and ought possible to be considered practically as and 6cientitically moti valed (prcjudgementpossibleset scientiliquementmotiveesf Herewe maybriefly statethema in attempts, bolhscientific and occull-spiritual, havebeenso lar madelorthe physical that conquest dealh. ol Prccedures. lndeed,in recenlyears,sc! \A) Rejuvenation in ence has procedod right earnestlo lacklelhe problemof fromlhe lowrend ol lhe rangeot our agingand dealh,starting being.



Atlemprs 'Kayas al ddhi


t has soughl1o tormulate lheories,and act efiectively, on physico-chemical the underlying iaclorsand processes that govern the phenomenon progressive of senescence the bodylocked oJ havetortheir ullimaleand inexo rableconseque nce soma-cells and the sornatic dealh of the individual ln time rnuch organism. oLrr va uabLe work has beenne in thisspecialized d of biology iie and publicalions the nterested readermay consultappropriate ior relevant rnlormalionIn brief,we may statethat manyare the theories that have been put forward explain onselol the phenomenon se' to lhe of nescence(e.9., those of l,4aupas, Hertwg, Mainol, Koltzoif, IVetchnikot, Weissmann havebeen and olhers),and numerous the altemptsto achieve rejuvenation the aging body and of lengthenthe span oi lilei by various surgicalaleralions of particularly essentiaorgansof certarned endocrinal organs, the ndeed,it hasoflenbeenthought thatagingis brought about by the tarlureof or1e other of the endocrineg ans and atlempts or have been made to rejuvenale aging body by grafting il an io glandsor injecling glandular appropriate inio it extracts. polntof v ew, lhese have by no But, lrom the fundamental meanssolvedihe problem ils base.For,on the one hand,no al as theoryof sinei declineso faf put loffiard can be regarded ent re y satisfaclory oras generally eslablished bylhe evidence. Also,"mostof them sufferfrom the logocal defecloi settingup some particular observed attfibute elemeniof the phenomor enon oi seaescence itsell, such as prolopasmic hysteresis, (meanrng only reduced slowingrale of melabolism essentially aclivity), etc as lhe cause of the whole". may havebeenthe immediale Onethe otherhand,whalever p h y s i c a a n d p s y c h o l o g i c ae f f e c t so l t h e p r o c e d u r e s f l o lo rejunvenation, thesehaveproved be no morethanlemporary enl he ghtening someglandaclivities, ol aliogether"trans resulls" is lhem.There as yet as one distinguished biologist hasiermed

no evidence whaisoevelh al thes medico-scientit r e c procedures specilc longev helplo increase any way ihe bas c polential in ty of the indivdlal. In the words of Prol.VernonT. Schuhardi, an authority lhe i e di in ''Aihoughloudly proclaimed,lhese procedures werenotwe I Ioundedin theoryand have not withstoodthe exacling lhe criticaltesls timeandconiirmalion. evidence been of No has d scovered lhat a ihe agingthe body as a r/holels depend' or ent on eilherlhe activily lhe tailureo the sexualglands, per se . . . The elfectswere lemporaryand did not oiiset the slowdec ine ol oldage.Indeed, somedanger involved is n such a one-sded stimulalion lhe senilesincethe oroJ ganismas a whole may nol be physically constituted to wthslandthe sudden and abnormalstress,,,The hormones may ater lhe background physiologica of reactons and rnodily thai structuralnlegrityol the cells and tissue,bu1 lhey have little lasting effect on the primary causes of aging Thuswhilethe germinal elements becomethe the ser,i//ty... nedto weaken, source poslerty, bodyseemspredesl of the grow o d and dle. And by the latler 1950'snomeanshave y been iound lo serious alterlhis decline." So we see lhal the scienlilic attempts preventing at devitalthe life'span man haveso lar sationand proionging individLral oi provedfut le and usive,and we on our parl venture asserl to lhese w ll proveequaly so even in the lulure;ior, the rool that of the ma ady ies somewhere else and is too deep and inscrulable lor sc ence to probe or to find the rernedythereof.To the ne ol suggesled solution, may siatetorthwith we anticipate or thal "even t Sc ence-physcal Science occultScience-were the necessary condilions meansior an indefnlte or lo discover survivalol lhe body,stlll,if lhe body could not adapl iise I so oi on as to becomea iit nslrument express for the nnergrolvth, il lhe sou wou d iind somewayto abandon and passon io a nev/ ol ncatnalon. Themate al or physicalcarses dealhare not ils inmost reasonls the spiriluaL soe or ts tTUecause; its true

262 necessity the evolution a new being." lor ol


Atlemptsat Kayasiddhi'


(B) Keyesiddhiprocedures;Leaving behind the iield ol scipass onnow lo a enlific achievements well as lailures,we as surrmary consideration some oi the attemptsfnadeby man, of starting frori the other.lhehigher, end ol the rangeol our being. These occull-spirilual attempisal dehasiddhl, atlainment the oi pedeclionof lhe material body ol man, have in the majolty oi cases come down to us in lhe lorm ol tradilions and a lore whose sourcessometimes have been lost n the obscureand remote past ol lhe race. Thus, in lhe words of lhe Mother,"in a very ancient lradilion, preceding eventhe VediandChaldean traditions, therewas already the questionol a glorious body whichwouldbe plasiicenough Io be conslanllyremodelled lhe deeperconscrousness, by a body expressing conscio lhis usness, herewas the quesljon T ol luminosityi matterconstituting body being able lo beihe ihe corneluminous atwill.There was the question a kind of light ol ness being possiblewhich would enablethe body to move about in lhe air by merewill-force someprocedure handling and of the rnnerenergyon so on.' Some Buddhist kadilionsspeakol lhe Buddha's lemporary victory over death, Mttyumata.Fhese are based on a Buddhist beliefthat usi as an arhalcan abandonthe'coeftic ents ot lile.' so he can also slop them (sthApayatr. "According lo the Varbhasikas, saintsays:'lVay the lthe acitonthat is to fipenlor me in enjoymentripeninglitel'By its nalure,lile is'ripening' lvipeka), and it can teplaceany enjoymenlwhlch normallyought lo ripenfrom a formermeril,and which the saint no longerdesfes and has escapedby his sainthood. this process,'vanquishBy ng death',the Buddhaprolonged lile three monthsfor ihe his salvation men, and the disciples of ernploy lhis to assurethe duralron the dtamma . This lerm of three monlhs seemsto ol be grvenas a maxrmum, as lhe mark ol the viotoryot the ad Brddha over Mrlyumera, 'l\rara, who is dealh'."'

Thrsqueslion a possible of maximum limltto the postpone menl ot deaihis very signilcanl and h ghlygermane lhe prob, to lem we havebeendiscussing. althoughtherehavebeen in For, the past seem ngly a lied ideasand ant crpalion-lhe perfecl ibrlity the race,certain ol Tantric sadhanas, iorl aftera cornthe plele physicalsiddhiby ceriain schoolsof yoga, " lhese have personal beenatlempted ihe mostpartas indiviudal lor achievemerits, mperlectand precariously maintained the help ol by Yogasiddhis, nol as a dharma,nalu'al law,oi the transformed and physcialnature.But mentalor vital occultpowel', warns Sr Aurobindo,can only bringsiddhisof the hgherplane nlothe indiviudal life- like lhe Sannyasiwho couldlake any po son withoulharrn. he diedola poison but afterall whenhe forgctloo observelhe condilions the siddhi." of Amongthe variousatlemptsin lhe pasl fallingintothiscategory. menlion may be made ot: (i) atlempts at dehasiddhilhtoughkebbaicara, conquestol Time, by cerlajnschoolsoJ Halhayoga; {ji) atlernpts at lhe attainme^l o1a rcsanayt taru, body with divinessence, lhe Raseswara by secl; (iii) attemptsat skandasiddhi made by certianl,4ahaya Tanlrc ni schoolsamonglhe Buddhislq; (iv) atlempts at keyesiddhiby Nathayogis like I!,latsyendra, Goraksha, Jalandharanaih others; and (v) attempts al the elaborai on 01 a bhavadeha by Saha)ya Vaishnavas. Siddhis Bul noneol theseattempted becameinlrinsrc the io As material bodyand hencecold nol be madelo endure. a mat"therecan ter of tacl,as we shallsee in lhe courseoi our study, salionilhe be no immorta ty of the body w lhout supramenlal polentralily therein the yogicforceand yogiscan livelor 200 is or 300 years or more, but there can be no real princp e ol lts withoutthe supramental."5


o o

o o o


Ch a p te r-1 3

Bitth is the filst spiritual myslety of lhe physical universe, death B the second which gives its doublepoint of perylexily to the myslety ol birth; for life, which would otherwise be a selt'evdenl fact of existence,becomes itsell a mystery by virlue af these lwo which seem lo be its beginningand ils end and yel in a thousand ways betray themselvesas neither of these things, but ralher intermediatestages in an accull processes ol life, (Sri Aurobindo, The Life ot Divine,p.742J Our mortalily is only justilied in the ligh! of our immoftality.. p.681) (lbid., lmmartal lile breathe in that monstrous death. p.43) (SriAurobindo, LastPoems, Although Death walks beside us on Lile's toad, A dim byslander at the body's statt... Other is the riddle ol its ambiguous lace: Death is a stair, a door, a stutublingstride The soul must take to cross frcm birth Io birth, A grey deleat Negnant with victory, A whip to lash us towatds our deathlessslale. {Sri Aurobindo,Saylfi', Book X, Canto l, pp.600-01) To make a terrct ol death Who smiling beckons us to larther life, And is a briCge for the persistent breath, |sl barn of fo y... (SriALrrobindo, p.18) Mofe Poems, W" no* to the qirestionof questions,prasnam "o-" problem utfamam, ultrmate thatall embodied has lo tace: lite the



The Myslery ol Lile and Dath

Whal rs ttie raisond 6lre of death,this crueland monstrous necesslly ol lest playedwith immortallife by some mysterious Power, some in lherrexasperaas thlngs,or by somediabolical tronwouldliketo declare? asked ol Nachikeias, youngaspiranl the Kathopanrshad, ihe ol Yamalor lhe solulion thisproblem dealh-Yamalhe knower to whach soul haslo rise the and keeperol lhe cosmicLaw through oJlmmorlality: Evenwhenasked by deathand litetotheireedom O Lordol Death:"Anolher boonchoose, Nachikelas; byYama.lhe imporlune nol, nor urgeme;lhis,lhis abandon,lhe seeking me "Thisol whichthey soul of Nachikelas stoodlirm and declared: lhus debate,O Death,declareto me, even thal which is in lhe grealpassage; lhanthisboonwhichentersin inlothe secrellhal is hrdden lrom us, no otherchoosesNachikeias. lore who sel out ol And Gilgamesh lhe ancientBabylonian Lile but la led in his on lhe quest afterthe Plantol Everlasling cry lo the departedsoul ot allempt.raisedthe same insisient me, my Friend,lell me, reveallo me, lhe myslery Enkidu:'Tell oi dealhl' Thrsques' is remarked:"Why lheredeath? As the Motherhas t on has been pul al leastonce in lheir life by all pefsonswhose in degree.In lhe deplh conscousness awakened lhe slightest is perpeludevelop, thereis sucha needlo prolong, of each being producesa shock, a recorl:In ate lite that conlactwilh death in beingsil produces horror, others,Indlgnatrcn. somesensilive One asks: What is this monslrousfarce in which one has lo il? lake part withoutwishingior il or Lrnderslandrng Why lo be lor lor efiortlor growth, progress, born,i{ ii rs to die?Why all this lhe dev.lopmeniof iacullies,I it s lo arriveal an rmpovensh_ Some submit menl and linaly al dec ne and decomposition?' passivey io a tale that seernsinexorable, others revolior, il theyare ess slrong,despair." and lhe and iuslilication the cu' Whiledrscussing necessily firnal on and self-fuliment of the processol death.we musl al

lhe very outsettry lo get rid ot a basicand besetling errorof perspective tends vitiate proper unbiased that lo a and evaluaphenomenon death. tionot lhe For,if we cancontemplate ol lhis phenomenon, fromthe limited necessarily sombre nol and dislortedangle vision lhe linileterrorstruck ot ego-bound indiol vidual,butfromlhe perspective cosmicBecoming, cannot we ol taillo discover dealh is thal anddissolution nolsuchan unmili' gated evilas it appears lirst sightto be. As a matterof facl, at dealh as death has no sepaate ot intrinsic reality: it is there solelyto servethe purposeol lite.Wecan evengo larlherand statethat deathis a orocess and ohaseol life itselfand thatlhe lalter,and by no meansdeath,is lhe fundamenlal all-pervading lrulhof existence. But whal is Life,what are its criteria?Biological sciences knowno delinite answerlothesequestions. a matterof fact. As the moreprofoundly menol sciencehavesoughlto probethe myslery lhe essence life,the moreit haseluded ol of theirgrasp, jmmanently so muchso that lile at timesappears themto be to presenl everywhere, overtmanifeslalion its depending uponsome lavourable conditions whichaloneSciencecan hopeto sludy and speciiy.To modernbiological thoughtlhere are no uriyersally validctiletiaol lile- Ballledwiththe lask of deliningwhat a living organism biology is, seeks times proceed a roundaat to in boul in the lollowing definilion offeredby Prof.George E. Hulchinson: ''The necessary sutlicienl and condition an object be Ior lo recognizable a living as organism, so to be thesubjecl and investigation, that il a discreet is massol mat' oi biological boundary, undergoing conlinual inlerter, with a detinite without change material withils surroundings manitest of alteratron properties overshoft periodsol time and, as ol with ascerlained of eitherbydirectobservations by analogy procother originating some by objecls thesameclass, of essot division fortification oneor two pre-exisling from or obiects lhe samekind.' ol


Chapter 13

The Myslery Life and Dealh ol


. To crle a few observalions reflectingthe sense ol biotogical predrcamenl belorethe task oJdeljmiting tieidof Liieand ot the lMrnd: (i) "Whilelhere is littledifficulty tellingwhethera higher in organism alive, ts thereis no agreement lo whal charas acleristics would be required the most primrtive lor organisms in order to call them living."(Prof. Stanley L.Miller.) (r) In recenlyears,the "studyol viruseshas becomeinten sive,leadtng a blurring the conceplion ihe ,vilal to of oi phenomena. is still doubtlulwhethera v rus can be ll described livingand,tndeed, to whal we meanby as as iiiing."(Prol.CharlesSinge0 In lacl, as the fainlglimmerings recentscientiirc ol research suggesl and spriritualexperienceand vision certity, Life reveals rtselt essentially sameeverywhere as the laomlhe atomlo man, thq atofi conlaining the subconscious stutl and rnovemeni ot beingwhichare released inloconsciousness the an mal.with in plant lile as a midwaystage in lhe evolution. Lile s reallya unrversal operation Conscious-Force oi actingsubccnsciously on and in lvlatter; is the ope.alion it that creales,mainlains. de, slfoys and re-createsforms or bodies and attempts by play of nerve-lorce,that is to say, by currents of interchangeol stimulatrng energyto awakeconscious sensation lhose bodies. In in this operation lhere are threestages; lowest s that in wh ch the lhe v brationis stillin the sleepol Matterentirelysubconsclous so as l0 seem wholly fiechanical; the middle stage ts thal in wh ch rl becomescapableol a response still submental on but lhe vergeol whal we knowas consciousness; higheslis thal the In whrch liJe develops conscious menlalily in lhe lorm of perceplible ame,ntally sensalron whichIn thtslransl on beco,r-es lhe bas s lor lhe developmenl sense-mtnd .-te ligence.ll ol and s In lhe middlestage lhal we catch the idea ol life as distingu shed trom Matterand lviind, in realityit is lhe same in all but

lhe slages.'Thus, "thereis no break,no rigidlineol demarcalion betweenthe earth and the meial tormed in rl or belweenlhe meta andlheplant and...there none eilherbetweenthe ele_ is menlsand alomsthal constitute earthor metaland lhe metal lhe or earlh that they constltule. Each step ol this gradedex sl in enceprepares nexl,holdsin ltselJ whal appears thatwh ch lhe or iollowsit. Lite is everywhere, secrelor manilest, organised im' bli all-pervading, elemental, involved evolved, universal. or perishable; only its tormsand organising dilter" 1 s this prana sarvAyusam"the omnipresent Lile lhal has rnaniiesled and nhabilslhe malerialuniverse"lhat Mother lhe has in view when she relets in one of her articleslo " a few lo lundamenlal nolions...needed help us n our endeavour: to conqueflhe fear ol dealh.As she says: "The lrst and the mosl importanlthing is to know thal ,te a one and immottal.Onlv the lorms, counllessin number,are This knowledge one musl eslablish transientand brittle. in securely and permanently the mind,and as lar as posswilh the lifeevone'sconscousness b e one nrustidentify iioi erlasting that s independenl any form but manifests givesthe indispensable psychological in a iorms.This sell basrslrom wherelo facethe problem. ''Lilethen does not die;bul the tormsare dissolve, and il is lears- And yel lhis dissolution physicalconsciousness lhat form changesconslanlly and there is nolhinglhal de' lhe Thispragressive barsthis changelrom beingprogressrve. changealone can make it possiblelhal death wouldna more be tnevttable. explore, Bul since,due to reasonslhal we shall presently physical progress beingof man, lhis changeoJlhe bodyand the responding fullyto the demandsmade upon it by the divineIn_ progressive cou habilaniin His inlinitely sili-bocomtng, d nol be and madelo play deathhasbeen puttorward so lar ellectuated. rts roe as an agent ol life ilself lo serve the ends al cosmtc

The Mysteryol Lrle and Death


of Deathat the Service lile

placed against curlain atemporary is Thatdeath nomorelhan ol - more januavilae- or thal dealhis butthe obverse elenallile has been l\,4ysleries, by the coinof Liie,as hinted the Osirian has knowledge the lhroughout ages.This the mystics known lo a ol expressions which lew repre_ given literary beenvariously onesmaybe citedhere: sentalive (i)"Death lifel'(Novalis) is is (ii)"Lileis deaih and Dealh lile" (Euripides) appears itsell is (iii)"AllDeath Nature Bi h, andin Dealh in ol visiblylhe exaltation Lite." {Fichle) the (iv) "Forbirthhalhin itself gern ol dealh. the haihin iiselJ germot birth ' Bul death yet Fortheyaretwain one,andDealhis Bitlh" "Odeto the SettingSun") Thomsoni (Francis one who relieve another (v) 'LiteandDeath- twocodpanions end ol theleading thesoulto ils journey's " in (PaulRichard) ol andDealh life" of (vi) "Liie[is]a figure death p Upatishads' 51-ln) Eight (SriAurobindo' makes bo_ that So we seethatthe opposition ourmenlality more than an error ol perspeclrve tween lite and deathis no by deceived the view by about thesuporficial of ihings brought to serve simply is oJ As appearances. a matler lacl,death there no ol substance lessthan purpose lile,anddisintegration ot the thanmalnlenance no changeoilom less nce, ren ewalof substa process lile itself Dealhis the vaullol ot lorm are the consiant pass to irombirth greater in that has ing-board life chosen orderlo willbe there when hourcomes birth,lilllhe the "Theend oi Death, deathof lgnorance (Savil]'t, BookXl' Canlol, P 708
I have given three thy awfulshape ol dread And lhy sharp sword of lerror and grief and pain To force lhe soul af man to struggle fot light On the brevily ol his half-consciousclays Thou arl his spur to grealness in his wolks The whip to his yeaning for eternal bliss His paignant need of immattallY. Live. Death, awhile, be slill my instrument Saviri, BookX' CantolV p 666l {sri Aurobindo, fhis world was built by Death lhat he night live Wilt lhou abaljsh death? Then tile loo will petish. Thou can nat abolish dealh, but thou may transformit into a grealer ltvtng' ]f Life alane were and not death' Ihere could be na immoral' becomes Life that is lmmartaltty ity... Death transt'ormed (Sri Aurobindo'fhaughts and Apharisms) When the earlh will not need ta die in order to progtess' lhere willbe no mate death. VoIXV No 3' p 47) (The Mother, Builelin, ' ! am lmmattality as well as Death. Gita , lX 19) (SriKrishna Bhagavad in servlngthe Inler_ instrumenl The bodys deathis a verilable perpelualyevo ving lile lndeed'as we shallsee in lhe ests ol course ol our st,jdy,given the imperlectand limitedselJ-cabined of andcapabliiyoJman,ihe process death capaciiy instrumental in its effect' as has becomenecessary a meansand salulary lo otlorm islhesole immortalily whrch "elernalohange beca!se can aspireand elarnalchangeol ex_ substance the Iin le lrving perence the sole inlinityto which the iinite mind involvedIn lo ot iiv ng body can attain.This change tormcannotbe allowed iorm_lype such rem;rn merelya conslanlrenewalol the same



The Myslery Lile and Death of


birthand dealh;lor unless as conslilulesour bodiiylilebelween the experlencing mrndis lhrown the lorm-typeis changedand placeand environinlonew formsin newcircumstances time, oJ whichthe very nament,the necessary variation experience ol cannotbe efJeclure ol ex stencein Time and Spacedemands, of and luated. And il is onlyihe process Deathby dissolution by absence ol lreedom. the devouring of life bV Life.ll is only the to lhe compulsion, struggle,lheparn,lhesubjectron some' the thing lhal appearsto be Nol-Selfwhich makes this necessary to andsalutarychange appear terrible undesirable our moralal and mentalilv ot ol So we see that the shole oersoeclive our discussion of andwe are ledto the concluthe problem deathhas changed, and sionlhat in lhe as vet imoerlect slatusol Lileso far evolved upon earth,deathcannolbe viewedas a denialol elaboraled Lile, in ils slill imperlecl Life,bul as a pfocessol Liie".Indeed, manrleslalion, requires lhe spuaof death in order lo evolveto progressively In higherand higherforms exislence. lhewords ol oi SriAurobindo: "Dealh rs the quesiionNalure puls conlinually Lile and lo ll her reminder it ihal il has not yet tounditself- lherewere no to wouldbe boundlor ever in lhe torm s ege ol dealh,ihe creature ol an imperfecl living. Pursued dealhhe awakeslo lhe idea by ot perfectlifeand seeksoui its meansand iis possib ly." As a matlerot iaci, death has provedlo be highlysalllary, of cerl?inlyto the evolution their types ol species,bul also lo lhe_ndividuals constituting speces, lhanks lo lhe spirilual the phenomenon soul-rebirth, ol Deathservesa beneficial forlhe individual role creature, bein lhe lattefsconcauseit is an indispensable means10awaken sciousness needol perfection lhe and progression.Indeed,"within wouldremain contented indelinitely lhe condroul lt, creaiures it tionwheretheyare,"and wouldhavebeenwel -n gh rmpossible "hisslow in hear"'and 1obreaklhe 'deadresistance the mortal's

inerla as ol livingslone," the luminous wordsol the Mother: ln "Opposiles lhe qurckesl are meansof andthe mosteftective lashron l\,4atter that it may intens iis manifeslalion... ng so 1y In v pn, o' lhrs. nere s evidel' y a- analogo expeience n 'ets specl ol whal one calls liie and death. li is lhis krndol'overshadowng'ol constant presence Deathand the possibiity ol ol death, as t is said in Sayilriryou have conslanl companon lhro!ghoulyour lourneyfrom cradleto grave;you are cease, lesslyaccornpanied the menaceor presence Dealh. And by ot alonqw th this there is in lhe cellsan ntensityof lhe call lar a Pawer of lernily which wouldnot be lhere but t'at this constant menace.Ihen one understands, one beginslo leel in quile a concrele manner that allthese things are only ways ol tntensit'yng lhe Malifestation, making it progress, making more and morepe ect. And if the waysare crude,it is because [/antthe lestationrlsell is very crude. And as it pertectsitselt,as il becomesmore lit 10 maniJesl progresthal which is eternally sive.crudermeanswillbe lefl behind subllermeansand lhe lor worldwill progress. wilhoutthe needol suchbrutalopposilions. This is so. simplybecause the worldjs stillin ils childhood and humanconscrousness is altogether ils childhood also in . poinlof viewtoo,the dispensalion Froma more practical ol 'nalural death comes indeedas a boon lo the lile-weary indi, vrdua In his presentslatusoi ego-bound ignoranlconscrous, ness. Did not the grandfather Edison ot iind lifetoo longaller a cenluryand drebecausehe wanledto? ll is onlyd vinisedconscrousness lilelhat caniind sources perpelua nterest and ot to keep lhem goingon. For lhe ordinary time-bound limlled'l'ol lhe ind vrdual the very prospect physrcal of irnmorlality would prove lo be a damnablecurse. In the picl!resquewords oi ''Think of lhe k nd of lifewhichthese mmortals wouldhave io ve. Centuryaiier cenlury, millennrum aftermil enniumlhey wouldsee lhe same everlasting laces,conlronllhe sameever



The Myslery of Life and Death


recurrng phenomena, engagein the same worn-oulexercses, or lounge dly in the same unchanging slagnalion. They have drained everyspr ng ol knowledge. They haveexhausled every sourceof enjoymeni.No dim marvels,no bou4dlesshopes,bckon lhem iowardsthe fulure,They haveno fulure.They havenoth Ing but neverending now The incessant repetllron, unmitthe galed sameness, the eternalmonotonyoi things would grow horrble and appalling lhem. The worldwouldbecomea hateto Iuldungeon,and lile an aMuldoom. What wouldthey not give lo migrateto some untriedexislencel They would be lhanktul even lo lie down lor ever in the attractive unconscrousness of lhe lomb. The process ol dealh has served the Inleresls nol merelyol lhe individuals individuals of the speciesas well. Was il as but nol Goethe who declared:"Dealh Nature's is experlcontrvance to get pleniyol lile"?lndeed, the dealhlessness lhe constilr.iol wouldprevent lrve Individuals othersol the same specieslrom being alive at all. A simple calculalion would show lhat lhe descendanls Adam,endowed oJ withphysical immorlalrty, would years and in that processprohave doubledeverytwenly{ive generations, duced,in lessthana hundred manylrillions huol man beingsso much so lhal theirbodies,packedlwo or three deep,and conglomeraied one solidmass,wouldhavecovinio eredrl_e enliresurlaceoI lhe planetl As a malterof facl. the remarkable truth that lhe natural ind vidualisa mrnorierm of beingand existsby lhe universal" and that "lhe individual is compeled,and used, lo secure life permanence raiherfor its spec es thanfor itsel" s borneout by and manilod. The b o ogicalevidences that havebeenspecilic opinion has evenbeenexpressed all liv ng matter ihal oncepospotential immortalilv sessed and deathas a condition, non-existenlin lhe beginning, was evenlually adoptedtor lhe s mple reasonlhal "juslsucha safetyvalvewas necessary permilol lo going ntoan !nnecesrace'.Insteadof the rperpetuationolihe sary elaboraiion lhe evolulionary ot evidences supporlol this in

hypothesis, may well quole Jromthe writingsol a lew sawe vanls,thus bringing lntofocuslhe consensus opinionheldby oi conlemporary men of science. "Liie was described Bichatas'the sum ot the funclions by whichresistdealh',bul this is a one-sided emphasis. For,while I rs charactefislic organisms oJ lhal they are conlinually work al n securingthe persrsience their specific of organizalion, s rl equallycharacteristic that they spend themselves securing in of the coniinuance thelrkind.(lnstead seeking avoiddealh. ol lo to speak metaphorically,they often rathet invite il, sacrilicrng in and providinglorlhe nexl generalion. themselves producing ''Fromlhe standpoint survivalvalueol lhe species,rl of s lor oi desirable the individuals todaylo give placeeventually lo those ol lo-morrow, becauseenvironing conditions are never periods, lor and it is onlyby giving the reproconslanl exlensive ductivevarianlsa changeihal new lilnessmay be established and prolonged sirrvival madepossible.Insurance the wel be of iare of lhe speciesls the all-important accomplishmenl.' _llwe couldproduce two socielies two groupsol an rnals, or individuals the olher and one ol them beingformedof immorlal oi individuas growrngold and being progressively aced rep dealh by new and younger through ones, il is wilhouta shadow ol doubllhatlhe secondgroupwouldbe the hardier andsirongef ol the two.' "Frorn pointof vlewof evolutionary lhe history, dealhhas nol il on been the primaryphenomenoni is ralhera late-comer the not scene,appeaflng so much as an intrnsic and absoluleneot as cessilyinherng in the very essence livingmatter, ihrough processol progressive'selection'in adaplalon lo the weliare a ind dealh A dreadfulevilforthe vidual, oi the species. hidousand srnce, thanksto rtsagency, for has provedsalLriary lhe species, rze renovale and revita tselflhrough lhe species can conlinually ol and rnorerobuslrndivdualsrep aclhe inlroduction younger rnglhe worn-oul ones.'


Chapter,t 3

The Myslery Lile and Dealh ol


We are herediscussing benefit lhe lhat accrueslo the species ihroughthe generalprocessol death of the constituting individuals. Bul modernbiological lhoughthas gone furtherto polential suggest astonishing the viewthallhe'speciiic lile-span' particular ol the individuals lorminga speciesdoes nol depend solely, even primarily, or factorsarising upon lhe physiological rnlhe individuals takenin isolation, is ralhergoverned the bul by globalnecessilyoflhespecies. Thus,in the viewof Prof.J.Arthur Thomson, naluraldealh is not to be thought as like lhe runof n ng down ot a clock. ll is morclhan an individualphysialogical prablem; it is adjusled in reference lo the welfare af the specres... Thereis goodreason regarding for occurrence deathat of a parlicular time as adaptive." Metalnikov expresses sameideawhen he declares lhe lhal ''the individual cells are as a rule polentially immoral,but the limitation thisprinciple immortality the caseof the higher of in of lorms oJorganisms apparently occursnol so much due to indivldualphysiological exigencies to some unspecifred as supra, ndividualcauses (causessurlndividuelles." Dr.J.A.V Butlerseekslo specity thissupra-indrvidua cause of naluraldecayand deathin the lollowing terms: ''Itwouid seem lhal the lite span is determined the interby play of two eflects,the necessity livrngong enoughlo start ol oll the new generation and, havingpertormed task,the fact lhe lhal a furlher Helime is unnecessary and, in many respecls, harmlullo lhe well-being and development lhe spectes. s ol lt quitepossible that mechanisms existin organisrns ch bflng wh aboulthis limitalion ihe lifeperiod, of whenthe biologically useful periodis over,bul we do nol knowwhal lhese mechanisms li these views represenled wholelruth ol lhings,lhere lhe couldbe no possibility whatsoever increasing lile-span ol lhe oJ prolonging life. Bul although man.nol to speakoJindefinitely his the aioresard biological conclusion probably is valid n the case

of all inlra-human sDecies. is nol at all so in the caseol man. it For,as has beennotedand commenleduponby someobservers,manis unique in a among living beings having dispropoF long, useless, tionately andJrom onepointof viewbiologically posl-reproduclive in thelile-cycle. implicationobphase is The vio!s:theindividual is noltheresolely fulfil inteiesls the man to of therace.lndeed, lheappearance manupon earthwilh of the changed process its and scenethe evolution docisively has wasel' ol evolllion bourse. lillth6 advent manthe organic Up lhe operation Nature of withoul conthe fected through automatic pafticipation any living bing, the {ormof its selfin scious ot 8!l will aspiralion endeavour. in manthe or aware or seeking, awakeandawareot livingcreature torthe firsttimebecome has himselt;he has felt that there can be a higherstatusol conaspiration exceed to andtranscend sciousness hisown;lh than a is'delivered arliculate'in ll hasthusbecome him. himself and praclicalproposition in mana conscaous evolutjon may re' lhal placethe subconscious subliminal and evolltionso far adopted by Nature. has Theappearance manonlhe earth-scene beonindeed ot of Becoming, and eventin lhe gralprocess cosmic a unique is verily capital. For,"tothe Life-Spirit, his rolein the universe is in centre pre"eminently the indivldua whomils potentialities capa' lt {\,4an, Purusha. is theSonol Manwhois supremely the the is thinker, God. ThisNlan the N,lanu,lhe bleol incarnating person soulin mindof lhe anPurJsha, menlal or Manomaya mammal he,bul a conceptiv is No cienisages, meresuporior bodyin Matter. is conscious He itself lhe animal on soulbasing formas a hediumthrcugh acceplrng utilising and Name Numen or whichPerson candealwithsubstance.' journey, lhe Also."lhe ascentto lhg divineLile is the human This alone is man's Sacrifice. Work ol works,lhe acceptable of andlhe iustilication hisexislence, realb{rsiness lhe world in amo!ng crawling olher without which wouldbeonlyas insect he mudandwalerwhich ot eohemeral insects a spock surlace on



The l,4yslery Lrfeand Dalh ol


es has managed iorm ltselfamidthe appallng mmensil oi ihe to physicaluniverse. lo And this adds lor man a new dimension the problemol we For,allhough haveseenthal dealhand earthlyimmortaliiy. lile opposilion are apl1omakebetween anddeath we the nalural of is an efior of the habilualmyopicconsciousness man, an "falselo innertruthlhoughvalid n surtacepractcal opposiiion experence", and also that "deathhas no realilyexceptas a pfocessoi fe", yel, the queslionremains:if death is not the as if lundamental trulhot experience, it is to be regarded a proc_ stillimpe ect statusof self'unloldess ol 1e lselfin the latter's ol ing, does nol man, so iar the highesternbodiment evo v ng ot lhal im' lile, possessthe capacty and capability outgrowing perlect the of andthusrendering process deathno longer status, and hence eliminab from his lndivdual e a practca necessily le? lhai needsio be accom Aiter all a rnovement progress oi p shed throughrepeated and radicalshuilling moltallorms, ol lhe of th!s necessitating appearance dealh, s nol a'game lhat conslruclive intrnsica y desrrabe. As the or s lundamentally Motherhas observed while discussing queston ol lhe nethe cessityol dealh: ''She lrials. lovesher meanderings, successive her [Nature] her hef deleals,her recoTnmencement, new invenlions, She joveslhe caprices lhe way,the unexpecledness the expeoi ot r ence One mighta most say lhat for her the ongef lhe time it 1akes, more il is amusing. ihe "B!l yougel trredevenwiththe besl ol games.Therecomes a iime when one has needlo chanqe. 'And yo! dreamo{ a game in wh ch 1' no langerbe nec essary to destray in order ta praqress. and the Mother by And sincewe are asslrred SrlAurobindo grventhe lullilment a certan sel ol cond t ons deathcan ol that.

be done away withinthe life oi the individual, and cosmlcLife progressive can lu I itsell n a contlnuously way,we seek lo f nd out lhe basicmelaphysical iactorsthat render adventoi the dath nevitable the lile o{ a humanbeing. And for thal we in may very well starl wilh the suggestive conc usionsarrivedat by contemporary in researches this field, not indeed scientific as probalive only as iliustrative the natureand process oi but of Lrleand Dealh. is not allogether Lnjusiilied; for Thrs approach a- S r Ar'oo oo l-d" so clearlypo nled oJI: "Science (whether and metaphysics Iounded pure intelon lectualspeculation as in India,ultimately a splritualvision or, on experience oi thingsand spiritual have each rts own province and methodol inquiry,Sciencecannoldiciateits conclus ons to metaphys any morethanmelaphysics imposeiis concs can c usronson Science- Slill if we acceptthe reasonablebeliel thal Beingand Naturein all theirstateshavea syslemof correspondences expressive a common of Truihunderlying them,it s perrniss to sLlppose lrulhs of the physical ble that universe can ihrow sornelight on the nalureas well as lhe processoi lhe Force thal is aclive in the universe- not a completelight,for physicalScienceis necessarily incomplete the range oi ls ir inqu ry and has no clueto the occultmovements the Force."' ol


,c o o

E (E




E-'6 6=

ocL ;(E


AlthaughGod madethe wo d for his delight, An ignorant Powettookchargeand seemedhis Will And Death'sdeepfalsityhas mastercdLife. (SriAurobindo, SayllrlBookX, Cantolll, p.629) Deathis the canstant denialby the AII of the ego'sfalse self limitatian in the individual frame ol mind, life and body. (SriAurobindo, p.1A3) lsha Upanishad, It was the conditions matteruponearth that havemade of deathindispensable.The wholesense ol afthe evolution Mattel grcwthfroma firststateaf unconsciousness an has beena la increasing consciausness,,, fixedfom was neededin order A thatlhe organised individual mighthavea slable consciousness And yet it is this lixity of the lo n that made death support. p. of lcanversations the l,4otheL 58) How couldthal escapedeathwhichlivesby death? (PaulFichard,The courage Chtist., p.1a6) af A. First Factor : The Part against the Whole wave lile, as and Theindividual emerging a tinite ephemeral is governing world, the has in the bosom lhe'AlljForce'that oi In impact lhe laller. order oJ to constantly bearthedisrupling to w to it tor secure oermanence ilsell, hasperforce contend th this it with its All-Force establish harmony it. Bulalthough is a and powet,veyurugni, and thal lhe growthol the fact that Life is increase the ot in individual brings itswakea corresponding life



MelaphysrcalFaclors of Dealh


power, in thenature things, is impossible "il individual for still, of a divided individualised and consciousness a divded.indiwith power v dualised therelore limited andwillto be master of and the All-Force; the Allwill can be thal and the ndividuai only only, at all,by becoming it again onewilhtheAll-Wlll thereand lorewiththeAll-Force. Otherwise, individual in lhe indthe lite vidual formmustbe always subiect the lhreebadges ils to of limilation, Death,Desireand Incapacity." B, Second Factor: The Parl againsl All Other Parts Thedivided individualisgd represenls onevorlex and life bul pul number similar vortices folthby the amongst countless a oi AllForce,sarva-kratu, manifesting intheunivelse. is no betler lt play to mainlhan"a particular ot enelgy specialisedconstilule, rtsulrlrtyfs tain.energise tinally dissolve and to when over. one of the myriad fo.mswhich serve, eachin ils ownplace, time all playof lhe universe. a^d scope. whole lhe jostling Now, thisweller rn!lually in lragmenled lilejorces, of theenergy lifeimprisoned a particular ot in indrvidualframe has constantly withsland mutlipronged to the altacks coming lrom all around. Indeed, eachindividual it lurnsout 1obe a tor lile ruthless battleof one againsl And the cosmicmovemenl all. wherclr, seemslo takethe formof acrcal{ungel mahebubhukse, eachseparate is tryinglo preyuponlhe energy olheraives liJe ol by leverishly seeking devour 1o and feedon them.Bul in the occult dispensationlhings, limiled of a exislence cannol an be 'eater,' anneda, the while, all without lhe sametrmeserving at as'lood'. anra lo others. Thus,"lheliteorganis6d lhe bodyis constantly in exposed possibility beingbroken up by the attack ol the lile to the of insullicient nol externallo or, itsdevouring il capacity being or properly served iherebeingno rightbalance or between lhe or capacity devouring the capacily necessily providing ol and ol to iood Jorlhe lile outside. is unable oroleclitselfand is it

devoured is unable renewilsellandtherelore or wasledaway to or brokeni hasto go through process dealhtor a new rl ol lhe conslTlrct oTrenewal." on C.ThirdFactor:Aclionand Reaction Lifeby its verynature sellexpansive the individual is and liteforms exception lhisrule. no though limiled in to Thus, even capacily deficient resources,altempts, and in il consciously or subconsciously, lo extend swayoverlhe environment. ils Bul this envrronmentnot a merevacuum, is it a masspasis nor yield to any pressure sively ng hom outside. Occultly viewed. thrs ookslikean arena swarming innumerable with and enlilies powers thalloo in theirlurn are constantly seeking sell-exto pand,and hencebecome "intolerant revollagainst atlack of, and the exislence whichseeks master lo therlr. ln lhrs way,a very adversereactionis sel up in lhe milieu againsl encroaching impacling lhe and individual and howIle everslrong mastering unless the lite, eilher is unlimited else it or succeeds establishingnewharmony in a with is environmenl, ii cannot waysresisi a and trilmphbul mustone day be over comeanddisintegaled." D. Fourth Factor: Lile the Consumer Whal rs lhe relalionbelween subslantial lorms and lhe lhe pervading lhatcreates mainlains lite In and them? thelanguage ol the Upan shad,the lije-lorce as ihe anna,lood,of the acl and as body, at thesametimeit usesupthe body iis ownfood. in creature conin olher words, lite-energylhe individual the provides necessary and malerials which with stuft tinually the and lhrough a theforms being are built maintained renewed up, process a reverse ofdynamic equilibrium. at thesame But in individual operalion, self-imprisoned the lile-energyihelimiled in drawsuponthe substantiai of its own creation, an alslutl its lemotio reolenish ownlund.



wletaphysical Faclors ol Dealh purs


Thus,in lhe matrixol the individual body,thereis a constant and conlrnuouslwo-way llow ol liJe{orcesupporling lhe physrcal stabrlly, and the material body supplying needsol lhe lile.But lhis is nol alwaysdone in harmony; ralher, and body lile oflen acl as "co-wives",sapahelivyedhino,6alllingagarnsleach olher to the delrirnent bolh.The aioresaid ol stale ol reciprocal maintenance consilules theretorea highly unslabe slate o1 eqdilibrlum, lo be easilydislurbed apt and brokenbecauseol lack ol innerharmonyand a so owingio the essenlial limr' th s tat on of ihe liie"energy lhe ego-bound in separativend vidual Now," i lhe balance belween lheselwo operalrons imperis playol the dijlerent lecl or rs disturbed if the ordered or currenls liiejorce rs lhrownout ot gear,thendiseaseand decayinlerol vene and commences processol disinlegration. lhe Over and abovethis,whenappeaGon lhe sceneand seeks lo grow and developin lhe individual frame,it createsan addilionalslrainon lhe body and the maintenance lile becomes oi proportionalely precanous, "thereis an increasing For, demand of ihe le-energy lhe lorm, a demandwhich is in excessoi on ihe ong nal systemot supplyand disturbslhe orig nal ba ance ol supp y and demand, and beforea new balance can be eslablished,many dlsorders are inlroduced inimlcal the harmony 1o and to the lengthot mainlenance the llie." ol E. Fifth Factor:War of the Members To a superficial view ol things,the individual man seems rndeedlo be a singlewhole, undivided consciousness in and nlegraled will.Bul a deeperproberevealslhe disconcerting in Iacl lhal, in lhe presentstateol his evolulionary developmenl, man'sbeingand nalurers nol all ol one kind,oJone piece,'but rathera complexand helerogenerous amalgamol manyelemenls, nol a I of them harmonised and co ordinated their urqesand in

Thus il is thal in lhe compassol an individual existence, thefe exislsan acutediscordand disparily the contrary sellin drlvesof the lhree evolulionary Lile formations,[,4atier, and Mind lnslead ot being anyonyabaddhabehu,each ollering lhe oihone ers its helping hands, and grhiakantha,all seized and governed by the divineLord inlhesupremely harmonious cosmicDance, fesarla,lhey to go theirown separate ways,in iotaldisregard lry ol lhe stresses and slrains lhey are apl lo intlictuponthe olher parls, in lheir whimsicaseparaieswirls. In partrcular,-and is very muchperlinenl our discusthis lo sion,-"the Lle rs at war with body; it attemplsio iorce I lo from satislylrle's desires, impulses, satisJactions demarlds and possible an immortal lo its limried capacilywhal couldonly be and drvinebodyi and lhe body,enslaved and lyrannised over. suifers and is in conslanldumb revoltagainstthedemandsmade upon rl by the Lile' The mind on its parl is engagedin war bolh againslthe lile of and ihe body.And lhe consequences ihis ballleof the members,this nternecine of attrition he being, war inlo cannolbul be mainlenance the embodied le. of dlsaslro!slor the prolonged F. Sixth Factor: lmperfecl Poise of Consciousnessand Force The ind vidualselfor berng in essence is one wiihthe Div ne y awareof ts divinepotentialilles. manifestation ln and s secret or beingsupporling il assumes aspeclol Purusha consclous the side ot Chil-Shakli. lhe Prakriti Nalurelhat is the executive or ilselfon each planeoi Thrsone and uniqueBeingprojects Prushaor beingthat is nature,inlo he lorm of a represenialive plane. properto that particular Thus, in man, lhere is a menlal to beingcorrespondrng the menlal nalure,a vital being corte_ beinganswering to sponding the vla natureand a physical io



l,{etaphysical Factors Dealh ol


the ohvsicalnalure, Now in the evolulionary emergence lar ellectualed so here upon earth,the dual aspectof chit-shakti-the aspectol consciousness and the aspeclof Jofce-have nol quitemarched in slep,lhuscreatinq adeleterious division between demand the ol the conscious being,Purusha, and the capacities the lorceol ol nature,Prakriti-Shakti. man,Jorexample, In there is not onty a d visionand conllictbelween the diversedemandsand pullsol lhe mental, vitalandthe physicalbeings, what is worse, the but each ol lhem is also dividedagainslitsell. Thus, "the capacity the body is lessthan the capacilyoi o{ lhe inslinctive soulorconscious bejng, physical the Prusha withjn il, lhe capacilyof lhe vital lorce less than lhe capacityof the rmpulsive soul,the vital conscious being or Purushawithinit, the capacily of the mental energylesslhan the capacity of the Inlelleclualand emotional soul,lhe mental Purusha withtn For it, the soul is the inner consciousness which aspiresto ils own completesell-realisation and theretorealways exceedslhe individuallormalion the moment, oi and the Forcewhrchhas laken rls poise inthe lormationis alwayspushed by its sout to that which rs abnormalto the poise,lranscendent it; lhus conof slanllypushedil has muchtroublein answering, modern evolv1g trom lhe presenr a greatercapacily lo Now lhe questionis: how lo solvethis probtem division of belween consciousness force?Mind,as it grows,triesin its and own limlted way lo resolve resultant the conflicts, mosllythrough a processot makeshilt compromise. this ad hoc solulions But no solr.riion all. and mind tails miserablyin the end. As a malter at of fact, lhe problem cannoibe solvedon lhe ptaneof the mind. lor essenlially this is a queslionot satislying full the nlinite in asp ralron an immorlal of being,-the secretgodhead, the embod ed Divine-lodgedin the contines a mortalliie and body. of Hence,the mind of man, baffledby the immensily ihe task, of g ves up the atlempt a moodof desperation in "either submisby

sionwithlhe materialisl lhe modaliiyof our apparent ng or lo be and withthe ascetic and the regionalist bythe rejection condem_ nationol the ea hly liie and wilhdrawal happierand easier lo tieldsof existences. G. Sevenlh Factor: The lnfinite as a Summalion of lhe Finite Now we come to the last lact,-indeed, the mosl crucial and the lundamenlaloJ all,-that necessitales justilies presence and ol oeath nlhe actual state ol evolutionaryprogression.For, il arises lrom the basic "necessity ol lhe nalure and objecl ol on embodiedlile itself,which is lo seek infinileexperience a linile basis." has Indeed, this slupendous cosmicBecoming Jorits secret purposeand goal the discovery in and enjoymeni, Spaceand beyond Time and Space.And in Time,of all that alreadyexisis this cosrnic D.ama, visvaJile, The soul is a figureof the Unmanifest, The mind labours lhink ihe lJnthinkable, lo The lile lo call lhe lmmorlalinto birth. the llliumilable. The body lo enshrine pos elaboralron evolulionary of But, in the as yet imperfect ihe sibrlilies, form and the basislhroughwhichand upon which the individual soul sourredbv its secrelsense of divineinfini' is lude seeksto build up its inliniteexperience, by its very or_ the ganrzation limltedand rigid,thus circumscribing posslbility preas al present ln ol ol experience, the conditions existence on this inliniteexperience a finitebasisbecomesat all vailing, and dissolLr_ assumptjon teaslbleonlVlhroughthe successive an inlinite seriesol forms ln the wordsof Srl Aurobindo: tion ol on itsellby concentratlng the "The soul,having once limited aga n by the momentand the field,is drivento seek iis inlinity to by princip ol succession, addingmoment momenland tflus e whichit callslls pasl;in lhatTime storingup a Time-experience



rt moveslhroughsuccessive Jields, successive experiences or lives,successive accumulations knowledge, of capacity, enjoynenl and all lhis rl holds in subconscrous superconsc'oJs or memoryas rts lund ot past acq!is lion in Time.To this process change of lorn rs essenlial, and ior the soul nvolved n ndlvrdualbody changeot lorm meansdissolution the body,", of We havecompleted studyoi lhe metaphysics Deathi our of vr'e have seen lhe necessity and juslificalion lhis processof lor Nature, indeedas a denialofLife,but as the process Liie not ol itseli.For lo repeatin part what we havequoiedbefore, "dealh rs necessary because elernalchangeof form is the sole immortalily lo which the ,rlle living substance can aspire and elernal changeof experlence sole infinilylo wh ch the linte mind lhe invalved in living body can allain." Such rs lhen the problem death;and once the problem ol is kncrvn rrs'undamenla' In nalure, solulton mustbe torlhcomlne ing inlhemarchof the spiril.Indeed, italjcised portions the lhe ot above crlaliona ready suggestthe possible clues lo tt.


The Physiologyof

Senescence Death and


On lile was laid the haun ng lingerof Death. (Srj Aurobindo, Savitti,Book , CantoV . o 203) A brcath of disillusionand decadence Corrupting watchedfor Lile,6matutity And made to rct the lull grain ol the sout: Progrcss becamea purveyorol Death llbid., Book , CantoV[, p. 204) "Thisis the scientific view of death. But it teavesdeath with allit mystery, withallils sacrectness; are not in the leas! we abte to theprcsenttimeto say what le is -stilltess, F)erhaps, what death is. We say of cettainthings-they are ative;of certain othe6 - they are dead;bul whatthe dillerencemay De,whatE essenllal thesetwo slat6s,science ulte y unable b u; to 6 lo at the prcsenItitne." (Dr.Minot,Age, Growth and Death) T I he phenomenon sentledecayand naluralctealhhas ol remained thisdatean insoluble lill riddle science. have to We willy.nilly cometo acceplthe tacl that all thingsbornmustljve grow with lor a while, old timeandeventually Butphysiology dje. knowsno reasonwhy lhe bodyshouldineluclably wear out in lhisway. Dr Maurice As Vernet so kenchany poinied has oul. "Biologically speaking and jn naturalcondations, is io sav. that accidenlal vrolence being excluded, lhereshould and need not not havebe endealhat all...Viewed ths aspect the bodv. from of dealhseems us to be altogelher lo meaningless ron-seas (un


waysby some in Thesameideahasbeenexpressed different authorities well:e,9,, as medical eminenl other reasonal the presentday why "Thereis no physiological William Hammond) A. diel'(Dr. menshould accidenlally frame, unless as "Sucha machine lhe human would by externalcause, seemiormed or injured some depraved (Dr. for perpeluity. GerDanMedicalProspectus) in \i) Lawof oryanisation-All life realises timeand n space conoJ whena characteristic lhe species organisation a specific under normal condilions, ol course cerned, has (ii) Lawof assimilation-A livingorganism lhe powerlo lhe to and lranstorm makesimilar ils ownsubstance naterials as that it borrowslrom its environmenl its nulrition ot hatever maybe the quanlrty lhe liii\ Lawof rcgulation-W sels up qualityof exchange operations that a livingorganrsm inlervenes lo regulation worldan incossant withthe surounding rhythms' ol equilibrium its in the maintain organisation lhe specific and tissuecomposition. founctions -Even living normal under being, (iv) Lawol reproduction itselfin possesses Powerto self-reproduce the conditions, enlicallY. lvJ Law of specilicity Every livingJormis, in ils lunda_ to (response), specifice the species whrch to mentalexcitability i1belongs. thereoc' lvi) Lawol revesibility Foreverynewexistence, and, cursa cyclicreiurnlo the stateol indiflerentiation, lhroughlocomeback a out the cou.seol lite,theremanifests tendency equitibrium ol the species slale lhe lundamenlal to Wilhoutseekingto elucidaletheselawso{ life in terms in' on readers,lel concentrale lhesecond us lo telligible non-screnlitic proves suliicient thal Iawalone.For,it is this lawol assimilation some a by ilseltto characterise livingbody,and it is perphaps

297 lacuna in the proper functioning of this particular law, that brings in the phenomenon of senescence and death. In fact, the physical universe is in a state of dynamic flux; it is the contending ground of innumerable physicochemical forces and reactions. Now, the essential difference between an inanimate thing and a living organism seems to lie in the -fact that while external influences, whether physical or chemical, wear out and ultimately destroy the former, changing it into something else, in the case of the latter the temporary disruption induced by the foreign intrusion is not allowed to go to its destructive term, but rather used as an agent to provoke some counterreaction in the living body that ultimately helps it in its self-reparative and self maintaining activity. The apparent fixity of form and stability of body of a living organism is a gross error and illusion of the senses. As a matter of fact, every single cell in a metazoan body as well as the total organization itself is continually undergoing a countless set of chemical reactions that form part of a simultaneously occurring double process: (i) the process of disruption, analysis, breaking down and running down (katabolism), and (ii) the process of construction, synthesis, building up and winding up (anabolism). Thus, "a living organism is never the same. It is changing from day to day, from minute to minute, from second to second of its existence. It instantaneous physiological state is the resultant of all of its antecedent states. Now, the characteristic feature of a living organism is a constant balancing of accounts so that the specific activity of each of its cells and of its correlated structure and organization continues. This "capacity of continuing in spite of change, of continuing, indeed, through chanage" is a fundamental attribute of life. The living organism has been sometimes compared to a clock, as it is always running down and always being wound up. But unlike a clock, it can wind itself up, if certain conditions are adequately fulfilled. The chemical processes are then so 298 correlated that "the pluses balance the minuses and the creature lives on." But unfortunately for the individual form, this miraculous vital capacity of self-repair and selfmaintenance is not unlimited. In course of time, in the process of continual exchange of energy with the environment, this power of active assimilation gets stunted and atrophied, the katabolic operation has the upper hand over that of anabolism, and as a result fatigue and senile decay set in, culminating in the phenomenon of death when all metabolic activity ceases in the organism, turning it into non-living stuff. As X. Bichat has so graphically described the onset of the process of natural death: "In the death which is the effort of old age all the functions cease, because they have been successively extinguished. The vital powers abandon each organ by degrees; digestion languishes, the secretions and absorptions are finished; the capillary circulation becomes embarrassed; lastly, the general circulation is suppressed. The heart is the ultimum moriens. Such, then, is the great difference which distinguishes the death of the old man from that which is the effect of a blow. In the one the powers of life begin to be exhausted in all its parts and cease at the heart, the body dies from the circumference towards the centre; in the other, life becomes extinct at the heart and afterwards in the parts, the phenomena of death are seen extending themselves from the centre to the circumference." But whence spring this circumscription of the capacity of an organism and he gradual corrosion of its metabolic functions, leading finally to the failure of life? Are we to suppose that a multicellular body ultimately dies because,in course of time, it somehow fouls its 'internal evironment] (milieu intirieur)? That ageing processes do occur even in a body kept in good surroundings, with adequate and regular supply of nutritional requriements and protected from the invasion of other predatory organisms, is a well-attested physiological fact. But it has so far been

299 very difficult to ascertain why organisms age in this way and what determines the specieslongevity. Various theories have been advanced from time to time to account for the phenomenon of senescence and death but none of these has stood the test of universal scientific validation. The more significant of these theories of ageing are as follows: (1) The life-span of the members of a species is in direct ratio to the period of time the individuals take to reach the stage of biological maturity. (Buffon). (2) The life-energy and the vital characteristic with which a living organism begins its career get used up with the passage of time. (Bichat) (3) The cells composing a multicellular body are in constant internecine fight for existence, whose final result cannot but be the wasting away of the whole. This is the theory of cellular anthropophagy (Cholodkowsky) (4) The conjunctive tissues undergo hypertrophy with time and by and by invade and overwhelm the more vital epithelial tissue. (Demagne) (5) The somatic cells cannot go on self-dividing indefinitely. for some reason or other, they progressively lose with time the power of self-fission, thus bringing about the phenomenon of senile decay. (Maupas, R. Hertwig and Mainot) (6) With the passage of time there occurs an increase in the protoplasmic mass of the cells at the cost of the nuclear material. Senescence is the natural outcome of this sprocess. (Minot) (7) Senescence is due to the pigmentation of nerve-cells. (Muhlmann, Ribbert) (8) The protoplasmic mass gets altered witht ime and exhibits a tendency towards flocculation. This is the collodial theory of ageing. (A Lumiere, Marinesco) 300 (9) A progressive induration and ossification taking place in the body are the causes of old age and natural death. (homer Bostwick, De Lacy Evans) (10 The intestinal contents are supposed to be full of millions of types of micro-organims secreting toxins or poisons whose reabsorption in the bodily system provokes the setting in of the process of ageing. (Metchnikoff) (11) Senile decay is due to the process of prgressive cellular differentiation. (Delage, Minot) (12) Senescence is mainly due to the destruction of the higher elements of a multicellular body by microphages (Metchnikoff) (13) The glands of internal secretion are the agents for the onset of the ageing process. (Horsley, Lorand) (14) There is an intimate connection between reproduction and death. The primary object of living is to bring ever new specimens of the species into being. Thus the body contains two types of protoplasm: germinative proteoplasm and somatic protoplasm: The former is essentially immortal and continues its existence in the offspring's body, while the latter is doomed to decay and persih some time after the animal has attained to reproductive maturity. (Weismann, Hansmann, Gotte, et. al). These are some of the theories of senescence' mentioned in their briefest outline. Most of the theories advanced so ar fail to take into account the real and fundamental underlying mechanism of senile decay; instead they try to bring into focus one or other of the factors that come into play as a result and not as the cause of ageing. it is amply clear that the scientific world as a whole has not arrived till this date at any definite conception about the real nature of the mysterious process of senescence and natural death. But, as far as can be judged from an external analysis, biological thought seems to list the following as contributory factors: 301 (1) The extreme complexity of the organization of a metazoan body rendering the task of selfrecuperation well-nigh impossible and forcing the organism to accumulate what has been termed

physiological arrears and biological debt; (2) lack the complete coordination and cohesion among the various elements of the bodily organization, giving rise to physiological disorders and malfunctionings of different sorts and eventually weaking out the internal organs and tissues; (3) exposure to environmental stresses and strains, unbearable for the organism beyond a certain limit, and thus inexorably leading to the ultimate breakdown and dissolution of the structure: (4) specialization of the somatic cells for diverse and specific functions, resulting in their loss of "embryonic versatility", so much so that the ogranism as a whole, wrong to the loss of plastic adaptability, fails to cope with the varying demands of the ever-changing situation and eventually falls an easy prey to death. The absence of internal harmony and co-ordination, the inability to withstand the shocks of the `not-self and a progressive loss of adaptability and plasticity these, then, are in the main the symptoms of the malaise as manifest on the biophysical plane. No doubt, they are suggestive and significant; but they reveal no more than the frontal aspect of the malady. And, then, what is it that becomes missing at death? What are the indubitable criteria with which to distinguish a dead body from the same body which was living a moment before? How to know that life has indeed ebbed away and the body has passed into the state of absolute death? Here, too, medical science finds great difficulty in pronouncing unequivocally. Indeed, some of the common signs and symptoms of death as ordinarily listed are: Cessation of breathing and of the beating of the heart; 302 insensibility by the eye to luminous stimulus; pallor of the body; complete muscluar relaxation; reduction of the temprerature of the body; rigor mortis or statue-like rigidity; etc., etc. But the curious fact that has come out of detailed scientific investigations is that none of these signs or symptoms are definitive and absolute; every single test of deathdeath in the sense that the body has irrevocably passed into the state of inanimate stuff and the vital functions cannot be brought back to activity again has proved to be utterly unreliable, with the single exception of putref active decomposition. But putrefaction sets in quite a long time after 'life' has actually 'departed' from the body. And even this process of decomposition can be prevented with the adoption of some preventive measures. Hence we come back to the crucial question: What is life and what is death? Prof. Joseph Le Conte emphasised this very point when he wrote: "...But death? Can we detect anything returned to the forces of nature by simple death? What is the nature of the difference between the living organism and a dead organism? We can detect none, physical or chemical. All the physical and chemical forces withdrawn from the common fund of nature and embodied in the living organism seem to be still embodied in the dead, until little by little they are returned by decomposition. Yet the difference is immense, is inconceivably great! What is the nature of this difference expressed in the formula of material science? What is it that is gone and whither is it gone? There is something here which science cannot understand." In order to seize the problem of life and death at the base, we must now turn to metaphysics founded on an integral vision of things. Metaphysics of life and Death 303 A Truth supreme has forced the world to be; It has wrapped itself in Matter as in a shroud, A shroud of Death, a shroud of Ignorance (Sri Aurobindo, Savitri, Book X, Canto IV, p. 658) Who thinks he sees difference, from death to death he goes.

(Katha Upanishad, 11.1.10) When every desire that finds lodging in the heart of man has been loosened from its moorings, then this mortal puts on immortality. (Ibid., 11.3.14) Forms on earth do not last ... because these forms are too rigid to grow expressing the progress of the spirit. If they become plastic enough to do that there is no reason why they should not last. (Sri Arobindo, Letters on Yoga, p. 1229) We have had occasion to mentioned before that, viewed through the eye of the spirit, life appears to be a "universal Force working so as to create, energise, maintain and modify, even to the extent of dissolving and reconstructing, substantial forms with mutual play and interchange of an overtly or secretly conscious energy as its fundamental character." But what is the basic nature of this Force whose other name is Life? In order to unravel the mystery of life and death, we must first comprehend the sense and significance of this great Cosmic Becoming. The Self-creation, tma-kriti, and a progressive unfoldment of a supremely transcendent and luminous Reality "with the multitudinous relativities of this world that we see and those other worlds that we do not see as means and material, condition and field",2 is the secret meaning of the universe. This transcendent Reality that has thus thrown itself into forms and is even 304 secretly present behind the appearances of the universe, being indeed "the origin, the continent, initial and the ultimate reality of all that is in the cosmos," is Sachchidananda, a triune principle of Existence-Consciousness-Blissan infinite and absolute Existence, an infinite and absolute Consciousness, an infinite and absolute Bliss, all rolled into one. Consciousness has a double aspect,aspect of absolute self-awareness, Chit, and an aspect of absolute self-force, Shakti, by which Being possesses itself whether in its static condition or in its dynamic movement. The creative action of Sachchidananda has its nodes in a fourth divine principle, turiya dhma, that has been given by Sri Aurobindo the suggestive name of Real-Idea or Supermind, and in which is "a divine Knowledge one with self-existence and self-awareness and a substantial Will which is in perfect unison with that kowledge." Thus, "Consciousness that is Force is the nature of Being and this Conscious-Being manifested as a creative Knowledge-Will is the Real-Idea or Supermind." This Supermind that is the divine Gnosis has created and arranged the cosmic order, but arranged it indirectly through three other subordinate and limiting terms, Mind, Life and Matter, which form by some sort of refraction in this lower hemisphere of existence a triple aspects of the divine quaternary, and work, "so far as our universe is concerned, in subjection to the principle of the One in its play of division and multiplicity... Mind is a subordinate power of Supermind, which takes its stand in the standpoint of division, actually forgetful here of the oneness behind though able to return to it by reillumination from the supramental; Life is similarly a subordinate power of the energy aspect of Sachchidananda, it is Force working out form and the play of conscious energy from the standpoint of division created by Mind; Matter is the form of substance of being which the existence of Sachchidananda assumes when it subjects itself to this phenomenal action of its own consciousness and force." 305 Life is thus seen to be the putting forth of the Conscious-Force, Chit-Shakti of Sachchidananda, which is in its own nature "infinite, absolute, untrammelled, inalienably possessed of its own unity and bliss." But the central circumstance of the cosmic process as it is constituted now, in the involution of the triune Reality in the apparent nescience of the material universe and in its slow evolution there from, is the dividing and darkening faculty of mind, itself obscured by ignorance. And since our Life is subservient to "the divided mortal Mind, parent of limitation and ignorance and the dualities2 it becomes in its turn "darkened and divided and undergoes all that subjection to death, limitation, weakness, suffering, ignorant functioning of which he bound

and limited creature-Mind is the parent and cause." This disabling perversion whose consequence for the individual being is a 'state of mortality', mrtyu, has its source and origin in the self-ignorance of the individual soul, because of which it suffers a "limitation and self-division from the One who is all and in all and beyond all", and has its idea of self-fixed to "a single formation in Time and Space of body, life and mind," thus excluding from its view "all that it verily is with the exception of a mass of experiences flowing out from and in upon a particular centre and limited by the capacities of a particular mental, vital and bodily frame..." Thus, through this essentially separative action of the ego-centre in the mind, the soul in its selfignorance considers itself as a separate self-existent individualityalthough in reality it is never so--and "regard all cosmic action only as it presents itself to its own individual consciousness, knowledge, will, force, enjoyment and limited being instead of seeing itself as a conscious form of the One and embracing all consciousness, all knowledge, all will, all force, all enjoyment and all being as one with its own." However, consciousness and force being essentially one, 306 we can expect to have some real power only over something with which we are one in our self-awareness. Hence, the separative ego, attributing to itself only a certain fragmented portion of the play of Consciounsess-Force, becomes into the process the possessor only of "a certain limited capacity of force of consciousness which has to bear all the impact of what the soul does not regard as itself but as a rush of alien forces;; against them it defends its separate formation of individuality from dissolution into Nature or mastery by Nature. It seeks to assert in the individual form and by its means its innate character of Ish or Lord and so to possess and enjoy its world." But in the very nature of things this cannot happen, since by the very definition of the term, the ego possesses but a limited capacity. And the difficult of the individual life arises from this original sin of the separative mind-ego. For the "universal life in us, obeying this direction of the soul imprisoned in mind, itself becomes imprisoned in an individual action. It exists and acts as a separate life with a limited insufficient capacity undergoing and not freely embracing the shock and pressure of all the cosmic life around it." But because of the inherent limitation of individual life cabined in the confines of a rigidly static material frame, the life-being in the poor individual existence cannot but succumb sooner or later to the inexorable nemesis of disintegration and death. We must try to be more specific and enumerate the different situations that the limited individual life has to confront and that have for their cumulative effect the inevitable decay and dissolution of this life.