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Essential Yoga Vasistha

V. Dealing with Dissolution (...continued)

Mastery of one's heart-mind

This cycle of birth and death
Is an interminable one
This maya will only cease when
There is mastery of one's heart-mind
Men of highly evolved consciousness
Can attain by appropriate self-effort
Whatever they mentally visualize
Such is the power of the mind
The mental illusions we see sometimes
Are also the self only—naught else
But when perceived by the unpurified mind
It appears as a sort of illusion
At times many people dream the same dream
Others experience the same hallucination
Oftentimes drunkards commonly experience
That the world is spinning round them
Live completely in the present
With consciousness slightly externalized
But without any effort or struggle
It must come naturally
When the mind stops linking itself
To the past and to the future
It becomes what is 'no-mind'
Soaring through space-time
Consciousness free from mind's limitations
Is known as the inner intelligence
It is the essential nature of no-mind
Not tainted by conceptual impurities
Abandon craving for pleasures
Anything that has been experienced
Or those that have not been experienced
As disuse gradually weakens the mind
A weapon is neutralized by another
Tranquilize the mind by itself
Abandon every form of mental agitation
Remain at peace within, amidst outer noise
The quiet mind is tranquility
Like a rock—it is immovable
Wide awake and fully aware of all
But free of conditioning's icy grip
Beings with just one sense-craving
Are pulled to ruin and destruction
The mind is victim to five temptations
How can it ever deliver happiness?
Investigate very carefully yourself
From the toes to the top of the head
See if you find anything that can say
'This I am'—so just who is this 'I'?
The delusion known as ego-sense
Is like the blueness of the sky
Better not to think about it
Best to abandon it ruthlessly
When thought and conditioning cease
The mind and body cease as well
Kill the mind beyond resurrection
Or it will continue when the body dies
When the inner kundalini awakens
You'll go beyond the realm of bliss
Gradually attaining perfect quiescence
Till you rise above birth and death
When all desires and hopes have ceased
Concerning any aspect of the world
One is free from all fear and sorrow
Supreme peace is had when the self rests in itself
The sky, the earth, air and space
Mountains and the rivers
Are all parts of the inner instrument
They only appear to be outside
The crystal of infinite consciousness
Reflects its own light of consciousness
Which is present in every atomic particle
Being self-consciousness and thinking 'I am'
Not till one renounces everything
Is self-knowledge gained
When all points of view are abandoned
What remains is the self
What remains is the sentient jiva
Involved in subject-object relationship
The object of knowledge of comprehension
Is not and can never be the self
A wise person lives his life masterfully
He is compassionate, and not contemptuous
Free of the play of opposites and jealousy
Without personal motivation but motivated
Knowledge of truth is the fire
That burns up hopes and desires
A desireless mind is samadhi
Not simply remaining silent
They alone are good company
And moments very well spent
That generate in one's heart
True dispassion and self-knowledge
Until all hopes and desires
Born of and in the mind
Have been destroyed completely
Happiness and peace cannot be had
The conditioned mind is itself bondage
Liberation is freedom from conditioning
This inner contact alone is the cause
For both bondage and liberation
Conditioning is of two kinds
Enslaving and useful
Enslaving conditioning is seen in fools
Useful among those seeking the truth
Mental conditioning is burning pain
It is attachment to the finite and perishable
But infinite expansion is the magic cure
It is devotion to the infinite
The self is consciousness pure and eternal
Self-luminous and free from change
The body is impermanent and impure
How can these two be related?
The supreme self which is the truth
Is in between the inert and intelligent
That alone creates diversity
And is known by all these names
All that is, is but the expansion
Of pure experiencing and its experience
Self-bliss is pure experiencing itself
It is known as Brahman the absolute
Adopt either of these two attitudes
Both are conducive to liberation
'I am the extremely subtle and transcendent self'
The other is 'I am all and everything'
If it is realized as an illusion
It does not attract the mind
Even as mirage does not delude
One who knows it to be mirage
One who is completely free of desires
Treats the world as a calf's footprint
This wide space as a small box
The three worlds as a blade of grass
There are the liberated among worms and insects
Stupid fools among the gods and divinities
The self is in all, it exists as the all
Everywhere, at all times and in all ways
Knowing the self directly
As infinite consciousness
Can bring all these about
Taking one beyond all wonder
Movement of thought in the mind
Arises from pranic movement
Pranic movement arises
Because of thought's movement
They form a cycle of mutual dependence
Like waves and ocean currents
Pranic control tames the mind
The mind can still itself too
The heart-mind of the self-realized
Is of the nature of pure consciousness
It is both inside and outside
And neither inside nor outside as well
When the mind dies—worries die as well
Ego-sense dies at the same moment
All this is possible in a simple way
By direct inquiry into the mantra
Inquiry and practice are essential
To bring an end to the finite mind
On reaching the other shore
The boat can be left behind
Having been nourished by the senses
The mind grasps objects once given up
Running like a demented person
After the abandoned and restrained
What is done with another's intelligence or energy
Is considered to be done by the latter
The sickle harvests with the farmer's energy
Hence the farmer is said to be the harvester
Your existence is identical with the self
Non-difference promotes happiness
Abide in the realization of your non-existence
Because it is foolish to neglect happiness

Sages' view

This world for liberated sages
Exists in all its purity and peace
They see neither bondage nor liberation
Only perfection—Brahman the infinite
The body is not worth reviving
Nor is it worth abandoning
It is the same to the sages
Whether abandoned or revived
Truth known—error remains error
Knowledge becomes clear knowledge
The real and unreal stay as they are
Dry impressions stay as such too
You've identified with the body long
It has helped in understanding transiency
Now snap the identification, knowing full well
From your experience of self-realization
Truth is full and overflowing
Consciousness and non-consciousness
Can be indicated only by negation
He became what is beyond description
Those in pursuit of pleasures
Acquire powers tainted by ignorance
Surely they are full of ignorance too
Sages do not adopt such a course


The very nature of the mind is stupidity
When the mind dies, there is no loss
Everything is gained as one sees
Purity and noble qualities abound
The tree known as the mind has two seeds
Which carries within it innumerable notions
First seed is the movement of prana
Second is blind clinging or obstinate fancy
When clinging to something obstinately
One abandons inquiry into the truth of things
Set completely on apprehending the object
Such apprehension is known as conditioning
Ideas and notions one has about the object
Are seeds for pranic movement and obstinacy
It is only when desire for experience arises within
That pranic movement and conditioning take place
This is how one binds oneself
Subjecting oneself to great sorrow
Attaining liberation in due course
Because of the nature of consciousness

Overcoming the mind

Knowledge of the self and holy company
The abandonment of conditioning
The restraint of prana or life force
These are the means to overcome the mind
When inquiry is preceded by dispassion
It attains stability by sincere practice
All noble qualities arise in one naturally
Like a well-fueled fire that burns high
Attachment increases one's conditioning
Making the mind more and more dense
By repeatedly experiencing pleasure and pain
In relation to people, objects and conditions

Main Page / Introduction / Prayer / Ch I / Ch II / Ch III / Ch IV / Ch V / Ch VI-1 / Ch VI-2