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Yoga Vasistha in Poem

Chapter III (...continued)

13. Vasistha's Instruction Continues

The Appearance of Diversity

All that you see emerges from Brahman
Just as waves manifest in the ocean
Existing in the mind of Brahma
The creator and the cosmic mind
Diversity is but an appearance
Events happen quite accidentally
Just as when a crow sits on a tree
And a coconut drops at the same time
Expression leads to experience
Thus cause and effect do come about
By desire—the cause of all this
Bringing rise and fall in evolution
Such is this forest as world appearance
Cut its very root completely, O Rama
With the axe of inquiry, persistently
Till total freedom is attained
Some arrive at the understanding sooner
Some longer—depends on one alone
Inner quality is most important
Now hear of this a little further

Different Types of Being

The foremost of all are naturally good
Devoted to being good in every way
Full of purity and light called sattva
They reach liberation in a few lifetimes
The middling are full of dynamism
Desires or rajas and some sattva
Exhausting rajas and increasing sattva
They move slowly towards liberation
The third are sunk in darkness or tamas
Rising and falling in the cycle of samsara
Thousand births do not much change
They take very long towards liberation

Individual Action and Cosmic Action

Diverse beings arose with the cosmic mind
Rising from and within the cosmic mind
Which arose in pure consciousness
But beings somehow feel separateness
Since action is movement of energy
Energy is movement in consciousness
Action must inevitably bears its fruit
As action is movement in consciousness
When action motivated by separateness
Comes to end—so does the mind
As cosmic action does not require
The individual mind of separateness

Same Thing Acting Different

Mind is the only perception
Perception is movement in consciousness
Therefore what the mind doth think
Materializes instantly as experience
What is called illusion or maya
Is a word without any substance
Infinite consciousness is the only reality
In which all concepts are conceived to exist
By accidental coincidence did concepts arise
So too diversity arose quite the same way
Veiled by nescience diversity appears real
This is what is known as the mind
That which has firm conviction
Of certain perception is called intelligence
Which when it imagines separateness
Becomes what is known as egotism
When egotism abandons consistent inquiry
It allows itself to get entangled by many thoughts
That come and go like the winds in space
And is known as individualized consciousness
Action without an independent doer
Is pure action—movement in consciousness
But when fruition is pursued
It is called karma—one is then bound
Memory of past enjoyments
Become triggers for action
As latent tendencies that await
Conditions for their enactment
Recalling memory constantly
Breathes life into them powerfully
Once opportunity for action is seen
They burst forth in ignorance
When the same mind turns round
Looking within to inquire
As to this seeming inner division
It is what is known as knowledge
When it moves the wrong way
Getting involved deeply in false fancies
Greater is the self-forgetfulness
It is what is known as impurity
When it entertains with sensations
It is known as senses or indriyas
When unmanifest in consciousness
It is what is known as nature
When it creates confusion
Between what appears to be
And what is the only reality
It is known as illusion or maya
When it dissolves in the infinite
There is freedom—liberation
When it thinks 'I am bound'
There is what is called bondage

Threefold Space

Threefold is space, O Rama
Infinite space of consciousness
Finite divided space of the individual
And physical space of the material world
Undivided consciousness is infinite space
'Tis that which exists in all and everything
Inside, outside—'tis the pure witness
Of the real and all that appears to be
The finite space of individual consciousness
Is what creates the divisions in time
It pervades all beings and is interested
In the welfare of all beings as well
The physical space does contain
All elements like air and such
All exist in infinite space
Without existence of their own
Whatever be the mind's origin
Free it from all latent tendencies
Direct it towards liberation instead
And self-knowledge through self-effort
Pure mind is free from latent tendencies
It can therefore attain self-knowledge
Since the universe is within the mind
Bondage and liberation are within it too
Listen carefully to an ancient legend
In this connection—most insightful
I heard this from the creator himself
'Tis called 'Story of the Great Forest'

 


 

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