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Ramana Yoga Sutra

SriKrishnaBikshu

Extractedfrom
http://www.arunachala.org/newsletters/2011/marapr
andsubsequent
newsletterstillNovDec.

TableofContents

Introduction
I.atmanishthobhavainhereintheSelf
II.hridivisaentertheheart
III.pavanachalanarodhatbycontrollingthemovementofthebreath
IV.satatapratyavekshanatbyconstantwatching(ofthebreath)
V.manasasvamchinvatasearchingforonesSelfwiththemind
VI.majjatavabydippingin
VII.sakshatbhatidirectlyexperienced
VIII.ahamahamitiasII
IX.brahmamatramonlyBrahman
X.kevalamonly
Epilogue

SriRamanaMaharshigavethese"TenSutras"attherequestofsomedevoteestobenefit
theirsadhana.SriKrishnaBikshu(VorugantiVenkataKrishnaiah)wasoneoftheearlyand
ardentdevoteesofBhagavan.Henotonlymadeadeepstudyofmostthescriptures,healso
practisedthem.HelivedintheAshramwithBhagavanformanyyearsandwroteRamana
Leela,thelifeofBhagavaninTelugu.

Followingdiscoursesonthe"RamanaYogaSutras"bySriKrishnaBikshuattheRamanaSat
Sang,Hyderabad,someofthemembersdesiredtohavetheseSutraspublishedinTelugu.It
wasdonein1973.ThisledtoadesiretogetthefullTextinEnglishwithacommentary,which
waspublishedin1980.

Introduction

1.The"sutra"isaformofAryanscientificliterature.Itisastatementoftheessentialpointofa
doctrine,inthefewestpossiblenumberofwords,enunciatedinaclear,unambiguousand
comprehensiveway,touchingalltheaspectsofthepointinquestion.Instudyingasutra,
therfore,notevenalettercanbeomitted.

Inancienttimes,adisciplewouldgototheMasterandrequesthimtoteachhimtheVedanta.
Thedisciplewasrequiredtopossessaninitialbasicethicaltraininganditwasalsorequired
thatheshouldhaveturnedawayfromalltheaffairsoftheworld.Aswritteninthe
Brahmanicaltexts,heshouldhavehadthefourrequirementsofmind,andthesixethical
qualities(inSanskrittheyarecalled"sadhanachatushtaya"and"samadishatkasampatti").

TheRamanadoctrinerequiresnososuchinitialequipment.Itisintendedforall,manor
woman,ofwhateverraceorclime.AnybodyfollowingtheRamanapathwill,inthecourseof
hissadhana,acquireallthisequipmentautomatically.

Wehavesaid,thesutrabeingsoshort,notalettercanbeomittedinitsinterpretation.Why?
Theguru,afterelucidatingaphilosophicalpoint,wouldcasttheentireteachingintheformof
asutrasothatthedisciplecouldrememberiteasily,andbythelawofassociation,theentire
doctrine.

2."Yoga"literallymeansunion,thatis,ofthesadhakaandthethinghestrivesfor.Theexact
Englishequivalentis"religion".Incommonparlance,yogasignifiesthedoctrineof"Hatha
Yoga",orcontrolofthebreathbyusingforceofseveralkinds,adoptingvariousasanas,etc.
Butherethewordisusedinageneralsense,asamethodofsadhanaonly.

Inancienttimes,thevariouswaysofenlightenmentweretermed"vidyas".IntheVedas,only
theterm"vidya"isused.FromthetimeoftheGita,thetermyogahascomeintovogue.Vidya
emphasizestheaspectofknowingtheUltimate.Thewordyogasignifiestheunionofthesoul
withtheDivine.IntheRamanadoctrine,therealemphasisisonKnowledgeandinherencein

It,butthecommonlyknowntermyogahasbeenemployedthroughoutthistext.Sothat
RamanaYogameansthedoctrineofRamana,orthewaytoattaintheUltimate.

3.Isitreallyforall?Inaway,yes.Itisespeciallyforthosewhoarewallowinginthemiseries
ofsamsaraforthosewhowishtogetawayfromthatbondage.Alsoforthosewhohavehad
enoughoftheworld,evenoftherichesandthesweetfruitsofsamsara(thetermusedin
Sanskritforthispointorviewis"alambuddhi",or"enoughidea").TheRamanadoctrineis
alsoforthosewhowanttoknowtheTruth.

I. atma nishtho bhava - inhere in the Self

1."Atman"denotesthebody,theprana,themind,thebuddhi,theindividualandtheUltimate.
Buthere"Atman"isonlyusedtoindicatetheUltimate.NormallytheSelfisthewordusedto
indicatetheUltimateandtheself(lowercase)isusedtoindicatetheindividualentity.Already
wearefirminthenotionofourindividuality,anditrequiresnoteachingfromtheMaster.The
MasteremphasizesthattheaimshouldbeinherenceintheUltimate.

Byimplication,theMasterInsiststhatthesadhakashouldturnhisfaceawayfromallthe
affairsandideasoftheworld.Hemustbeliterallydeadtoit,sothathemaybereborninthe
Divinerealm.TheMasterteachesthatweshouldstrictlyabandonallactivities,contactsand
socialfunctionsoftheworld,whethergoodorbad,whetherforindividualorforsocialbenefit.
Theaspirantshouldbea"nissanga"(nonattached).Heshouldnotallowhimselftobecarried
awaybysuchpropagandasuggestingthat"livinginsocietymeansparticipationinitforthe
goodofsociety",orforthatmatter,foranyportionofsocietyorevenforindividuals.Heshould
benonattachedeventohisindividualmatters,includingattainmentofmysticpowersorbetter
worlds,called"heaven"intheChristianandMohammedanreligions,"svarga"intheHindu
andBuddisticreligionsandtheseverallokasofIndra,Agni,Varuna,etc.(Indra,Agniand
VarunaarethedevasordeitiesmentionedintheVedas.Theyhavetheirownworldsor
lokas).IntheRamanadoctrine,thereisnoGodorgods,angelsorarchangels,powersand
hoststorelyuponforattainingthisstateof'Self'inherence.

2."Nishtha"comprisestwoideas."shtha"indicates"beingin""nish"means"firmly,neverto
comeout".Theuseof"nish"indicatesthatintheRamanadoctrine,onceoneattainsthe
higheststate,thereshouldbenocomingback,ordown.IntheYogaSastrathesadhaka
comesdowntoearthagainevenfromthestatesofhighestsamadhi.Whenthepowerofhis
concentrationslackens,herevertstohisnormalstateofconsciousness,thatis,jagrat.
Ramanadistinguishesthisstateasthestateofpracticeandnotastateofattainmentofthe
goal,whichhecallsthesahajastate,thatis,thenativestate,theoriginalstate.Accordingto
him,itisonlywhenheforgetshispristinestatethatthenotionsofhimself,theworldandthe
Lordoftheworldoccur.

3.ThisaphorismdefinesthegoalitmustbenotedthatinRamana'sopinionallother
activities,eventhedivinationoftheworld,arefutilewithoutwhichknowledgeonecannever
understandhisrelationtotheworldandtothelord,northelesseraimofperfectingtheworld,
whichwillnotandcannotbesuccessfullydone.

II. hridi visa - enter the heart

1.Theword"heart"hereisusedinitsverbalsense.Itmeans"thatwhichcarriesaway","that
whichengulfs","thatwhichdigestseverythingintoitself".Themeaningisthattheworld,and
consequentlyideasofit,submergeintotheheart.Logically,theideasoftheworldmust
submergeintothatfromwhichtheyoriginallysprung.Ineffect,thebaseonwhichthoughts
ariseandintowhichtheyfinallysubsideistheheart.Reallyitisindefinable,foradefinition
meansasignificantdistinctivestatementofthecharacteristicsofathing.Alltheseare
includedintherealmofideaswhichdonotappearthere,wheretheheartaloneis.

Therefore,theheartmentionedhereshouldexcludethefollowingdefinitionsoftheheart
giveninvariousschoolsofphilosophy:

a)itdoesnotmeanthebloodpumpingorganinthebody

b)itdoesnotmeanthe"anahatachakra"mentionedinYoga.IntheYogaSastraitissaidthat
thereisaconduitpipefortheflowofthevitalpranainsidethespinalcolumnconsistingoftwo
canalsandcontainedinasheath.Throughoneofthem,the"purvasushumna",thekundalini
powerflowsfrombelowupwardswhenforcedbythepracticeofYogatothesecentres.And
whenthepowerinheresineachchakra,variousmysticpowersareattained.Thefourth
chakraupthesushumnaiscalledthe"anahata"andisataboutthelevelofthesternum.
Evidentlythisisnottheheartmentionedorintendedhere

c)NeitherisittheAtman.Bhagavanexplainedthehridayamasconsistingoftwowords:"hrid"
plus"ayam".Thisisthe"hrid"thatistheAtman.Itissaidaboveinthefirstaphorismthatto
reachtheAtmanonemustentertheheart

d)norisittheheartmentionedbyBhagavanasbeingontherightsideofthechestbetween
thetwonipples.ThatisthepointaccordingtoBhagavanwherefirstthe"Chitsakti"
(knowledgepower)entersintothebodyofabeing.Thatpowergoestothehead(sahasrara
throughtheAmritanadi,andcomesdownthroughthesushumna,givingustheexperiences
ofthevariousworlds)

e)itisnottheheartwhichsignifiesthe,centerofemotions.
Allthesedefinitionsmustbeeschewedbeforetheexactsignificanceoftheword"hrid"is
comprehended."Hrid"reallymeansastateofconsciousnessandforce.Itisfromthisseaof

consciousnessthatduringthewakefulstatethoughtsarise,andintothisthattheyagain
subside.

3.SomesaythatthoughtlessnessitselfisthestateofPage3Atmarealization.Surelynot.We
havenothoughtwhenweentersleeporwhenexperiencingafit.Surelythosestatesarenot
thestateoftheAtman.Buddhacallsthisstateonly"sunyata",orvoid.ButAtmanisapositive
conception.

HinduphilosophyexplainsthattheDivinehasanindefinablepowercalledmaya.Mayashould
notbeequatedwithillusion.Thesetwoarenotthesame.Mayahastwopowers:itactsasa
sheathtotheAtman.Thispoweriscalled"avaranasakti".Thereisanothercorrelatedpower.
Thisisthepowerofmanifestation,ofbecomingmany.Thatpoweriscalledthe"vikshepa
sakti".Now,insleepwearenotincommandofourownmind,thatis,ofthetotalityof
thoughts.Ourwilldoesnotfunction.Wearesaidtobeinastateoftamas.

4.ToattainRealizationwemusthaveawareness!Wemustbewakefulandgetthe
experience.Wemusthavethesattvaguna.

Thestateofthevoidiscalled"tamasi"bytheAdvaitins,ormaya.Buddhistscallitthe
sunyata.ModernIndianphilosophershavemadeatotalconfusionbetweenthetwo.They
mistakenlyproclaimthatsunyataistheBrahman.No.Onemayormaynotgetthesunyata
statebeforeRealization.TripuraRahasyasaysthattherearesixdifferentstatesbefore
attainingthefinalrealization.

5.Inyogaalso,innirvikalpasamadhi,onegetsastateofthoughtlessesspracticallytheglory
ofAtmarealizationisexperiencedthen.Theonlydifferencebetweenthatstateandthestate
ofAtmarealizationadvocatedbyBhagavanisthatintheformeroneslipsbacktothenormal
consciousnesseventually.ButwhenonceRealization,oratmanishthaisattained,onenever
departsfromit.

III. pavana chalana rodhat - by controlling the movement of the


breath

1.Bhagavanexplainshowonecanentertheheartorthestateofthoughtlessness.Hesaysit
canbedonebycontrollingthemovementsofthebreath.Itissaidthattheword'pavana'here
isusedinatechnicalsense.Itmeans'prana'orthevitalforce.Thevitalforceinthebody
worksmainlyinfiveways,andalsoinanotherfivewaysthataresubsidiary.Thefirstfive
movementsarecalledthepanchapranas.Thefirstforcemakesonebreatheinandthe
secondenablesonetotalk.Anotherenablesonetoexpelthingsoutofthebody.Stillanother
aidsdigestion,andthefifthspreadsalloverthebody,keepingitalive.Thepavanaofthevital

forcehereintendedisthatwhichmakesonebreatheinandout.Itiscalledthe'mukhya
prana.'

2.Whenthebreathisheld,itisobservedthatthethoughtsalsodecreaseandfinally,when
thebreathmovementisbroughttoastandstill,thethoughtsalsocompletelysubside.Thisisa
practicaltipgivenbyBhagavan.Heexplainsthisrationaleinacoupletof"UpadesaSaram"
wherehesays,"Forcedividesintotwobranches.Oneisthemindandthesecondisthe
prana."[Verse12]Theyareliketwohorsesharnessedtoacarriage.Whenthereinsofone
areheldtight,itnaturallyhastostop,therebyrenderingtheotherunabletoproceed.

Contrarytowhatmedicalsciencesays,stoppageofbreathdoesnotresultinanincreaseof
carbondioxideintheblood,whichshouldweakenone.Yogishavebeensaidtoprolongtheir
livesforhundredsofyearsbycompletelystoppingtheirbreath(byadoptingwhatiscalled
'lambikayoga').Now,completelystoppingthebreathisnotpossibleinthebeginningitisa
matterofpractice.Certainotherthingsarehelpful(suchasremainingfixedlyinanasana)for
effectingcontrolofbreath.

Bycontrollinganyonepranaitisseen,inpracticallife,thatyoucontroltheotherpranasalso.

3.Whenthemovementsofthevitalforcearecontrolled,thisvitalforcenolongergivesany
scopeforthesenseorganstoreachouttowardsworldlyobjects.Consequentlythevitalforce
fillsthebodyandreturnstoitssource,theAtman,wherethemindalsodissolvesatthesame
time.Itis,sotospeak,asifadamwereraisedacrossarushingtorrent,whichwould
inevitablyreversethedirectionofitsflow.

4.Itissaidthatifonestopstalkingforadozenyearsthemindwillberenderedfairlycalm,at
whichtimethesilencingofthethoughtsaltogethercanbepracticed.Withadozenyearsof
practiceofthelattervariety,thesilenceattainedwillbeprofoundanddeep,andthatisthe
stateofsamadhi.SriRamaYogi,awellknowndiscipleofSriBhagavan,practicedthesilence
ofthefirstvarietyandtheprogresshemadeisdescribedinPaulBrunton'sbook,ASearchin
SecretIndia.

IV. satata pratyavekshanat - by constant watching (of the breath)

1.Thereareseveralmethodsadvocatedinthepracticeofbreathcontrol.Themethodthe
Maharshiteachesisarareone:ifonemerelywatchesthebreathandnoattempttocontrolit
ismade,thebreathofitselfslowsdownalmosttothevanishingpoint.Thisisapracticaltip
andistheessenceofseveraltypesofyogasadhana.

2.Normallyinhathayogathenostrilsareclosedandopenedwiththefingersfordefinite
intervals.Somesaythatifthetimetakenforinhalationisoneunit,theretentionofthebreath
shouldbeforfourunitsandbreathingoutfortwounits.Thesadhakapracticinginthiswayis

fightingabattle,asitwere,withtheforceofthebreath.Werethisbattletobeconductedthe
wrongway,dangersordisastersmightfollow,particularlyifitweretobelost.Forcedeffort
mayendinvariouskindsofdiseasesitmayevencausemadness,andinsomecases,ifthe
kundaliniorlifeforcerisesuncontrolled,thebodygetsalmostburntupanddeathcanresult.
Sothispracticeneedstobedonewithgreatcareandcircumspectionunderthepersonal
supervisionofaMaster,adoptingeasytechniquesfromtimetotimeanddifferentrestrictions
astodiet,timeandposture.TheMaharshibidsusstrictlytoavoidthismethodofhathayoga.
Donotfightwiththenaturalflowofthebreath.Onlywatchitasifyouwereawitnesstoa
process.Thisiscalledthe'sakshibhava'inphilosophicalterminology,

3.TheadvantagesoftheMaharshi'smethodaremany.Itautomaticallyturnsthethoughts
awayfromtheideasandobjectsoftheworld,effectingaseveranceoftheworldandone's
self.Theworldofaffairswillamounttozeroforthepractitionerofthismethod.Allthe
tribulationsthatnaturallyfollowanycontactwiththeworldcease,sothatalldisturbingfactors
arebroughttoanabruptend.Notforhimaretheemotionalsurgesandfitsofdespairfoundin
thebhaktimarga,noraretheanxietiesofthekarmamargapresent.Thedangersoftheyoga
margawillnevertouchhimnoteventhetroublesofthepathofrajayogawillfacehim.Oneis
almosttheDivine,thekootastha,whoissaidtobethewitnessofthethreestatesof
consciousnessjagrat,swapnaandsushupti.

4.Theresultwillbetheslowingdownofthespeedatwhichthoughtsarisetheybecome
slower.Intheend,athoughtarisesandsinks,anintervalensues,andonlythenanother
thoughtarises.Thatmeans,sincethethoughtsariseinconsciousness,thethoughtssink
backagainintoconsciousness,andbeforeanotherthoughtensues,thereisonlythe
consciousnessfreefromthought.Inreality,oneisthatconsciousness,inwhichthereisno
ideaofthemanifestedworld,eithergrossorsubtle.OneisalmostinthestateofDivinity.Itis
the'hrid'stateofconsciousness,whichisthoughtless.Onehasreachedthehighestpossible
goalofindividualeffortinwhichthelittleselfisnotknownitisalmosttheattainmentofthe
Atman.

5.Thepracticeofthismethodneedsnoniyamas(observances)differencesintime,
circumstances,clime,personality,sex,raceandreligionareallextinguished.Themoment
youbeginthispracticeyouaretakenawayfromtheworld'sdualities.There,nomoresastras,
nomorediscussionstroubleyou.Othersneednotevenknowthatyouareasadhakaofthis
sort.Generallypeoplepraiseasadhakaforhisconsistency,goodnatureandhighspiritual
attainment.Thispraiseisthegreatestdangertoasadhaka.In"UlladuNarpadu"[Supplement,
Verse37]Bhagavanhasclearlypointedoutthisdanger.Inthismethod,eventhevanityof
beingasadhakaisgivenup.

6.Above,Isaid,"almosttheDivine".ThereasonforthisreservationisthattheSelf,evenin
thisstate,isshroudedbytheavaranasaktiofMaya.Noonecanremovethisshroudbytheir
owneffort.Forwhenoneisinthestateof'hrid',thereisnoindividuallefttomakeanyeffort
fortheremovalofthisveiling.Thenwhatistheway?NothingbutDivineGracecanhelpyou

now.Thestateof'hrid'containsinitselftheunmanifestedseedswhichlatermanifest.The
forceofthoseseedsisweakenedbytheeffluxoftimeandbytheexperienceoftheirresultsin
variousworlds,bothsubtleandgross.Whentheforceofthoseseedsbecomesnegligible,the
Atmanofitselfemergesinallitsglory.Thestateof'hrid'isanegativeexperience.Thestate
oftheAtmanisapositiveone,entirelydependentuponitsownGrace.Sosaythe
KathopanishadUpanishad:"TohimwhomItchooses,ItrevealsItself."

V. manasasvam chinvata - searching for ones Self with the mind

1.Theselfhereisonesself,nottheAtmanwhichisbeyondsearch.Onesselfisalittle
entitythesearchistoknowwhencethatideaofIarises,thatistosay,whoisthislittleself?
InUlladuNarpaduBhagavansays,TherealSelfdoesnotsayIthebodycannotsayIin
betweenthetwoarisesthisthoughtI,whichfirmlyclingstothebody.Ifyousearchforits
naturewhichisasaphantomdevil,itdisappears.Whenthoughtsdisappearintotheirsource,
eventhisthoughtIshoulddisappear.ThisIthoughtistheprimarythought,andtheother
thoughtscannotsproutwithoutit.

2.Thisenquiryissometimesbasedonthepreviouslymentionedpracticeofwatchingthe
breath.Normally,wearenotabletocatchupwiththespeedwithwhichonethoughtsucceeds
another.Itisasiftheseriesofframesonthecinemareelsucceedeachotherwithsuch
rapiditythatwegettheimpressionofonecontinuouspicture.Thereforeitisonlywhenwecan
slowdownthismentalprocessandareabletocatcheachsinglethoughtbyitself,thatwecan
enquireaboutit.Inslowingdownthoughts,wehaveusedtheprocessofwatchingthebreath.
(Wecanalsotaketheillustrationofaslowmotionpicturehere,say,ofhorseracing.)

3.WhenathoughtbyitselfappearsBhagavanasksustoenquire,withasearchingmind,to
whomitarises.Itisanintellectualaffair,notanegationofallthought,assomecontend.We
holdtothethoughtandtrytofollowitupbyaskingtowhomitoccurs.Obviouslyitoccursto
thenotionalI,fortherealIhasnothought.Bhagavanasksustoproceedandseewhence
thatnotionarises.Itmustnecessarilybetotheconsciousnessthatistosay,totheAtman,
whereeventheIthoughtdoesnotexist.Ifonerepeatsthisprocesscontinuously,without
anybreak,theprocessleadstotheAtman.Itisasifabrandburnsotherbrandsanditselftoo.

4.Thereisanotherslightmodification.Insteadofquestioningtowhomdoesthethought
occur,enquirewhencethethoughtarises.Wemeananythought,notthethoughtofIonly.
Allthoughtsmustarisefromtheconsciousnessandtheyaredirectedtowardstheworldand
allourideasconnectedwithit.Ifwetrytocutacrosstheconnectionwiththisworld,onlythe
consciousnessremainsitistheAtman.Inthisprocessthereisonlyonestep:whencedoes
thisthoughtarise?Inthepreviousparagraphwehavetalkedofaprocesswherethereare
twosteps:searchingforthesourceofeachthought,andsearchingforthesourceoftheI
thought.

5.TheseprocessesarecalledbyBhagavanthesaralamarga,orthestraightandeasypath.
Atanyrate,theyareeasyforthosewhocanturntheirmindsinwardandawayfromthe
objectsoftheworld.Butifone,asaprecedingstep,followsthefirstpathofwatchingthe
breath,itisquiteeasyforanybody.

6.Thepointtonoteis,wedonotnegateathoughtasdoestheSankaramethod.Sankara
says,Whenathoughtoccurs,dismissitimmediately.Herewedonotdothatweretainthe
thoughtandattempttoseekitssource.IonceaskedBhagavanhowitcouldbepossibleto
tracetherootofatreeallthewhilewithoutrememberingthetrunkofthetreehowcanwego
tothesourceofthethoughtwithoutholdingontothethought?Bhagavanreplied,Practice
andsee.

Bhagavancomparesthismethodtoeachenemysoldiercomingoutofthefortalone,whenhe
canbeeasilykilledifonethoughtcomesout,onecaneasilykillit.Ifallthewarriorsinthefort
rallyforthatonce,itwillbedifficulttorepulsethem.Therefore,slowdownthespeedofthe
thoughtsfirstcatcheachthought,andbyseekingitssource,destroyit.

InthesupplementtoUlladuNarpaduthereisaversewhichlendssupporttotheideathat
thisSelfenquiryisperformedwithoutthemind.Thematteriselucidatedintheexplanationof
thenextaphorism.Inthisaphorismitisclearlystatedthatitisthemindwhichcarriesonthis
Selfenquiry.

VI. majjata va - by dipping in

1.Inthepreviousaphorisms,Bhagavanadvocatedthedisciplineofmovingawayfromname
andformwhich,iftheyexist,formanobstacleonthepath.Inthisaphorism,thediscipline
taughtisauniqueonebecauseittakestheverynameandformusedtodenotetheDivinityas
stepstotherealizationoftheultimateDivine,theAtman.For,asitissaidin"UlladuNarpadu,"
"Bywhatevernameorformyouworship,orinwhateverwayyouworship,theworshipwill
leadyoutoThatwhichhasnonameorform."

2.Anameisbutanideaitremindsyouofaquality(guna),orofanaction(kriya),ofa
genesis(jati)orofasymbolhavingaparticularsignificance.AtleastthatissoinSanskrit.If
wesay'Siva',itmeans'goodtotheuniverse'.Sointhatword'Siva'anattributeisdescribed.
Ifwesay'Vishnu',thatmeans'Onewhoisomnipresent'.Beingeverywhereisanaction.Ifwe
say'theFormless',weindicatethegenesisofaform.AndifinMantraSastrawesay'A',we
areusingthesymbolfortheCreator.Therefore,theuseofallthedifferentlanguagesmeans
theuseofdifferentideas.Thebasisofalllanguagesissoundandthedifferentmanifestations
ofsoundareintheletters.Soundisthebasisofallcreation."Inthebeginningtherewasthe
Word,"saystheBible.TheWordcouldnothaveexistedwithoutanidea.TheWordshould
havebeencomprisedofdifferentdeflectionsofsoundanditwastheWordoutofwhichthe
worldarose.


3.TheworshipoftheDivinethroughwordsorideasgenerallymeansrecitationofthenames
oftheLordwiththehelpofhymns,songs,astutiormantra,thecombinationofwordsof
mysticalimport.

InthisaphorismBhagavanadvocatesstickingtothenameoramantra.Hesaysin"Upadesa
Saram":"Japaofmantrasisbetterthanhymnalpraiseandthementalrepetitionofthe
mantraortheNameismoreeffectivethantheoralutteranceorwhisper."Andthenhe
explains,"Ifyoucontinuestickingtothesoundortheideatherewillcomeastagewhenthere
willbeonlyasound,undifferentiatedevenintovariousletters."Asyougodeeperanddeeper,
eventhesounddissolves,andthatprocesshecalls'dippingin'.

4.Thereisalinkbetweenthis'dippingin'andthepreviouspathadvocated,thatof
Selfenquiry.Whenyourepeatanameormantra,Bhagavansaysthatyoushouldwatchthe
sourceofthesoundortheonethatproducesthesound,thatbeingtheAtmanalone.You
havetofollowthesoundtotheAtman.ThisisafinerpointofAtmavichara.Thatiswhathe
taughttoGanapatiMuni.HerewefindthereconciliationbetweenMantraSastraandVedanta.

5.Aswiththename,theprocessof'dippingin'canbecarriedonwiththehelpofaform.The
mostpopularformtakenupisthatofanidol,anicon,asymbollikeaswastika,ayantra,like
thesixpointedstar,orachakraintheformofaSriChakra.Holdontoanyoftheseforms.
Rememberthemeveryminuteofyourlife.Theformdisappears.Therewillbealightnotof
thisearth.ItwillbetheDivineLightandthatLightwilldisappearintothesunya,orthevoid,
the'hrid'(Centre).Intechnicallanguage,thenameisdefinedasnadaandthefinalformofthe
formisthekala.Bothdisappearintothebindu,thevastvoid,whereintakeplacethese
phenomena,orcreation.Inthismethodweseeclearlythatthoughtsareonlythoughts,forms
areonlythoughtforms.Thereisnoefforttoreachtheirsource,thesourceisreached
automatically.Negateallthoughtsofnameandformexceptthosewhichyouhaveadopted.
Withthisasyouraid,dipinorslipintoyourSelf.Rejecteveryotheridea.Atthesourceof
creation,youareyou,beingtheAtman.

6.Allsadhanasadvocatedinallthereligionsareincludedintheprocessof'dippingin'.
Clingingtoanameorformisbhakti.Worshippingaformornameiskarma.Knowingaform
ornameanditssignificanceisjnana.Keepingyourattentionfixedonanameorformtothe
exclusionofallothersisrajayoga.Allthereligionsoftheworldhavetheirbasisinthis:
clingingtotheOneand'dippingin'.AllmeetinthisRamanadoctrine.Thisisthemethodhe
hasadvocatedinthepreviousaphorismastherealVichara.In"UlladuNarpadu",hesays:
"Donotutter'II'aloudcollectallyourpranaanddipintoThat.ThatistherealAtmaVichara.

7.Itmaybeinterestingtonotethattheideathatsound,beingthesubtlestmediumthrough
whichwecandipintotheAtman,isalsotheopinionheldbyourgreatmusicianThyagaraja.
Hesaysthatwithoutknowledgeofmusic,theartofutilizingsound,andwithoutknowledgeof
thesoundinthemuladhara(soundasaconcept),onecanneverattainliberation.Hefollowed

thebhaktimargaandhispracticewasalso'dippingin',intothemusic,andmergingwiththe
primalsound.Healsousedthetechniqueofyoga,bythecontrolofthemovementofprana
throughthevariouschannelsandthroughthesahasrara.

VII. sakshat bhati - directly experienced

1.Inaphorismfive,nirgunopasanaortheworshipofBrahmanwithoutattributesisadvocated.
Inaphorismsix,thewayofsagunaBrahmanupasanaisexplained.Inthisaphorism,
Bhagavantellsusthatthefruitionofallspritualendeavourliesinthedirectexperienceofthe
Atman.

2.Therearetwokindsofexperiences,oneismediate,theotherimmediate.Whenwe
perceivebymeansoftheeyeandknowathingitismediateexperience.Whensuddenlya
thoughtflashesintuitivelyinthemind,itisimmediateexperience.TheexperienceofBrahman
canonlybeimmediate,andunlikeconventualexperienceswhichimplythetriadof
experiencer,experiencedandexperience,thisexperienceoftheAtmanisadirectand
immediate.Bhagavanusedtoadd:"Thinkofapersongoingdownintoawellinsearchof
somelostarticle.Heseesitandtakesitbutisunabletocommunicatethistothepeople
outsidethewellitself.Similarly,amanhavingtheexperienceoftheAtman(insamadhi)is
unabletospeakofitwhenheisinsamadhi.Unlikethefirstcase(mediateexperience),inthe
second,evenafterhereturnstonormalconsciousness,hecannotactuallyrevealhis
experienceinwords,forwordsonlycomeaftertheappearanceofphenomena,andin
Brahmanthereisnophenomenon.

VIII. aham aham iti - as I-I

1.Thedirectexperiencethatcomestoasadhakaasafruitionofhisendeavorsisthe
experienceoftheUltimateasII.Inthenegativeway,variousdescriptionshavebeengiven
ofthisexperience,e.g.,ItisneitherlightnordarknessitgiveslightsoitiscalledTheLight.
Itisneitherknowledgenorignoranceitgivesknowledge,soitisKnowledge(chit).Inmodern
languagetoo:Itisnotbeingnorbecoming,butitexiststhereforeitiscalledSat,incontrast
toallotherthingsthatdisappear.BhagavancallsthisexperiencetheIexperience.Inthat
stateonemusthavebeentheretoexperienceititmustbedevoidofanyotherexperience,
thenonlycanitbesaidtobetheSelfandnothingelse.

2.Somehavequestioned:Therebeingonlyoneexperience,whyshouldBhagavanhave
usedtwoIs(II)todescribeit?Oneexplanationis,thesecondIdoesnotindicatea
subsequentexperience,butisusedtoconfirmtheexperience.Otherssay,Innirvikalpa
samadhi,yougetasimilarexperience,butitisnotcontinuousliketheflashoflightning,it

appearsanddisappearssotwoIsareused.Finally,theexperiencebecomesacontinuous
one.

3.Wemayaddthatinthisexperienceofyogathereisaslighttingeofindividualityandthe
mindcanbesaidtoexistinavery,veryrarifiedstatecalledvisuddhasattva.Butinactual
experienceitmakesnodifference.Theexperienceissomethinglikeathrob.Thatiswhyit
maybecalledjnanaspanda(athrobofknowledge).

IX. brahma matram - only Brahman

PeopleknowledgeableofSastraswillquestionwhethertheAtmanexperiencedcanbereal
becausetheexperiencemaybeofonlyashortduration.Theyalsosaythatinthetextsthe
Atmanissaidtobeinfinitesimallythin(thanvi),butBhagavansaysItisbig,too.Howisthisto
bereconciled?Thetextsthemselvesgivetheanswer,whichBhagavanhasalsorepeated:
Smallerthanthesmallestandbiggerthanthebiggest...saystheUpanishad.

TheSrutisays,VerilyallthisisBrahman.Thencantherebenodifferencebetweenthe
AtmanandtheBrahman?IntheAtmanthereisthesuperimpositionofthemanifestedcosmos
whichaloneisapparenttoyouandwhichpreventsyourexperiencingtheAtmanasBrahman.
Inthestateofknowledge,thesuperimposedmentalknowledgedisappears,and,callIt
whateveryouwill,AtmanorBrahman,Italoneremains,withoutasecond.AstheSrutisays:
Ekameva(onlyone),Adviteedyam(nosecond).

X. kevalam - only

Philosophyexpoundsthreetypesofdifferences:sajateeya,thedifferencebetweenahorse
andanotherhorseVijateeya,thedifferencebetweenahorseandacowSvagata,the
differencebetweenthehandandthefootinonesperson.Bhagavansaysthatnoneofthese
typesofdifferencesexistinBrahman.Itislikeanoceanallsaltwater,thoughnottotally
likeanoceanbecausesaltexiststhereinastateofdissolution.Thereisnothingdissolvedin
theAtman.Itispure.

ThisaphorismisnecessarytocontrovertthepositionthatBrahmanissaguna(withform).
Otherwise,howcouldacosmoswithvariousattributescomeoutofIt?Bhagavansays,No,It
hasnoattributesItispurna,undefiledbyanyadmixture.Itis,inSanskrit,ghana,notgiving
scopetoanyotherthing.TheUltimateisanandaghana,notanandamaya.

Epilogue

TheseaphorismsaretheverywordsofSriBhagavan.Allbutoneofthemhavebeentaken
fromthefirstSanskritversehewroteinabouttheyear1913,thefamousHridayaKuhara
slokafoundinChapterIIofSriRamanaGita.Aphorismnumberfourhasbeentakenfrom
RamanaGitaitself(ChapterVI,v.5).Bhagavanhimselfgaveseveraloftheexplanations.The
resthasbeenculledfromotherphilosophicaltexts,sothattheauthorofthisbrochuremakes
noclaimfororiginality.NordoesheclaimthatBhagavansteaching,exceptinonepoint,is
original.Sofarasheisaware,Bhagavansteachingandexplanationsareintunewiththe
besttraditionalAdvaiticthoughtandtexts.