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Yoga Vasistha in Poem

Chapter V: Section Dealing with Dissolution

3. On the Inner Intelligence

Ignite the Wisdom's Inner Light

Janaka reached perfect understanding and peace
He functioned as king but without delusion
The light of self-knowledge shone bright in his heart
He beheld all existence within cosmic-power
By his very own inquiry he attained supreme peace
All can attain the blessed state as well
Exert, inquire to the furthest limits
Stop not till the final goal is reached
Guru, study and good works are helpful
But cannot give you self-knowledge
Self-inquiry and company of holy ones
Are sure means to knowledge of self
Be alert—the inner light must be kept alive
You have to be the light on your own path
With this blazing inner light or wisdom
All difficulties and trials can be overcome
Those devoid of wisdom's inner light
Are overcome by smallest difficulties too
They react to every little change helplessly
Like straw that is knocked about by winds
So attain first wisdom's inner light
Company of holy ones will surely aid
Pursue at the same time self-inquiry
Both these will rub and ignite the flame
Thinking and living in a worldly way
Douses and soaks the logs that must ignite
Avoid the company of dull-witted ones
Remove all traces of dullness from within
This inner light of wisdom is most precious
Through it the world is seen as it really is
Neither good fortune nor bad can touch one
Who has the flame of wisdom's inner light within
The inner intelligence is one's best friend
Best guide on the path is the inner light too
Difficulties and even storms can be overcome
By the blazing flame of wisdom's inner light
Defects, desires and evils cannot touch
One who ignites and fans this inner light
Things like good fortune and misfortune
Do not exist for those with inner light
Darkness, gloom and veils are burnt
By the flame of wisdom's inner light
Purify your mind by cultivating wisdom
By kindling the flame of wisdom's inner light
Inquire into the self just as Janaka did
Gods, rituals and wealth are of no use
Self-knowledge alone can dispel darkness
World-appearance will then never delude
Firmly establish in supreme wisdom
See the self by the self alone
Ignite wisdom's bright inner flame
And leave delusion's diversion behind
It seems Janaka's lofty attainment
Of self knowledge was an act of grace
Self-effort of past lives is never seen
Making it appear to have fallen in his lap
Abandon feelings of 'I am so-and-so'
Inner intelligence cannot awaken with this
As wisdom's inner wisdom is indivisible
And feelings of i-dent-ity are a fragment
The mind's activity must come a standstill
Anxiety and worry are darkness not light
For this all cravings for acquisition must end
Rejection of its opposite—must be set aside too
The twin urges of acquisition and rejection
Are the storms that disturbs the mind
How can peace and tranquility prevail?
When storms are being stirred within
Again and again bring to the mind
Brahman alone exists—oneness is Truth
All expectations must be abandoned
They are contrary to unity’s truth
Fearlessness, steadfastness, equanimity
Non-attachment, non-action and goodness
Wisdom, courage, endurance, friendliness
Contentment and gentleness are good friends
Restrain the mind's downward flow
By the mind itself that knows better
Having reached purity, abide in it
Doing what needs to be done without volition
Equanimity is the root for the tree of life
From it do ensure that all life's actions grow
Realize you are the knower of all—the self
Unborn, non-different from pure existence
See objects of perception within the self
And go beyond the defects of joy and grief
Be firmly rooted in infinite consciousness
Self-control is itself peace and tranquility
Be a yogi—free of all concepts
Deal with reality—that which is
Concepts are the veil that hide the truth
Without them truth is ever revealed
Identifying with body and then with concepts
You have forgotten your true nature over time
Thinking and acting on notions and ignorance
Ignite wisdom's lamp within and know the self
Without awakening the inner intelligence
You live without knowing self or reality
Though the mind appears intelligent
It is but borrowed light that is very fragmented
This mind cannot point the way to peace
It is ignorance—itself not peaceful, you see
A lost person cannot be helped on the way
Awaken the indivisible wisdom that lies within
The movement of life-force is not the mind
'Tis intelligence that has become identified
With notions of 'this I am' and the like
And is apparently caught up in its own web
In truth there is no mind nor intelligence
Self alone exists at all times—it is the all
Most subtle is self so it is always hidden
Within it reflections seem to be real
The individual is a thought in consciousness
Consciousness does not change due to thoughts
When consciousness is free of all identification
Consciousness rests in itself—called liberation

On Life-Force

Control of life-force restrains the mind
As a shadow ceases without the object
The movement of life force springs memory forth
Which surge as thoughts—most eager to act
Life-force can be restrained in many ways
By dispassion and the practice of pranayama
By direct inquiry into its movement's cause
Or by direct experience of the supreme truth
Though the mind appears quite intelligent
It is ignorant—intelligence belongs to consciousness
Though the mind appears to have movement
It is inert—movement belongs to life-force
Presenting itself as intelligent and alive
The mind's claim is a dance of ignorance
It is all imagination only like a ghost story
The infinite can never be affected by the finite
This truth has to be seen in direct experience
Then false imaginations will come to an end
When perfect understanding arises within
All misunderstandings are set at naught

On the Mind

The mind has no existence—it is not real
Yet, all the havoc is caused by it
The mind itself has no body
Yet, it consumes so many bodies
Living beings strengthen this non-entity
Defending it and destroying others by it
If one is unable to conquer the mind
He is unworthy of hearing this teaching
There is no point in instructing one
Who continues to be befuddled by the mind
Unable or unwilling to persevere
Conquest of mind with sincerity
Just as millions of insects come and go
In a twinkling of a moment in time
Dull witted fools come and go too
On life’s stage without self-knowledge
The foolish cannot be instructed
They've chosen to be tethered to the mind
Unwilling to loosen ignorance's ropes
Living miserably though they think they're fine
The wise endeavor to remove sorrow
Of those who have conquered lower instincts
Well underway to mind's conquest
Ripe to undertake self-inquiry
When objectivity arises in consciousness
Conditioning and bondage inevitably result
Abandon all objectivity ruthlessly
Being mindless is indeed liberation
Between the self as the seer
And the world as the seen
You are the seeing—pure sight
Remain in this realization firmly
When the inner intelligence identifies
With anything other than the self
That is indeed the root of all sorrow
Face the inner light and experience bliss
Craving for objects or experience has to cease
For divine qualities and virtues to enter the heart
When craving of any sort flows within
It flows downstream always to lower depths
Abandon craving, notions and concepts
The mind cannot exist without these
The ego-sense is the source of all sin
Cut at the very root and be ever free

Abandoning Notions, Not Life

There are two types of abandonment
First is based on perception of truth
Second is based on contemplation
Listen attentively to more on these
When there is direct experience of non-duality
One abandons ego-sense quite naturally
Notions of 'I' and 'mine' dissolve instantly
This is the first type of abandonment
When one feels he somehow belongs
To people, groups of any sort or objects
Intense investigation by a tranquil mind
Will lead to the second type of abandonment
Some attain by direct self-inquiry
As it requires a mind free of impurity
One has to rise above body-consciousness
Becoming liberated—one with Brahman
Janaka and others followed the second path
Contemplating to uproot seeds of duality
But intense and relentless has to be effort
Everything must pass scrutiny's flame

A Sage

He is a sage who is never swayed
By all that is desirable or undesirable
Living and functioning untouched inwardly
Seeming to function in the world normally
Natural desires may arise in the sage
But these are free of any and all craving
Hence he is never bound—remaining free
Craving for contact of any sort is bondage
Craving's impurity never enters the sage
He is ever still like the deep ocean
Knowing the self is beyond any change
Established in this truth by direct experience

Feelings that Arise in the Heart

First: I am this body, born of my parents
Second: Minute and subtle am I—different from body
Third: Eternal principle am I in all diversity
Fourth: All that I see including myself is illusory
The first of these four leads to bondage
The other three—lead to freedom
Best of all is when the feeling arises
'I am the self of all'—there is naught else
Not emotional or intellectual are these feelings
But something unmistakable in the heart
These feelings must respond to life—not the mind
With its shrewd calculations to suit its convenience
Resort to the understanding of non-duality
Plant this seed deep within your heart
Let all actions sprout from this seed
Water it well with unremitting vigilance
You will realize consciousness as the sole reality
And be a liberated sage—while still living
Leave behind those that choose to be bound
Reaping pain and sorrow is their own choice

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