V Subrahmanian, Friday, December 23, 2016 8:16 pm

S?tasamhit? Ch?ndogya Upani?at – Part 18

Part 18

The discussion on verse 146 where Lord ?iva demonstrates the message of the Ch?ndogya Upani?at: ‘All this created world is verily Brahman.’

What is experienced during the state of Ved?ntic enquiry is none but the world that is superimposed on Brahman, just as the various things such as a snake, a water line, a crack on the ground, a garland, etc. that people superimpose on a rope that is the substratum. Upon knowing the truth that the substratum is nothing but the rope, one realizes that what all was superimposed is verily the rope and nothing other than it. Similarly the world of objects, living beings, events, etc. is realized to be none other than ?iva, the substratum. The world has no existence of its own apart from Brahman. It is figuratively said that the world lapses into Brahman since the world is no longer spoken of as an independent entity. A well known statement from the Ved?ntin, ?r? Sure?var?ch?rya in this regard is:

?????????????? ?? ???? ????????????? [The annihilation of the imagined object is nothing but its remaining over as merely the substratum.] Thus what is ‘all this’ is not this but verily ‘I’ the Pure Consciousness, ?iva. This equating the superimposed with the substratum is called ‘b?dh?y?m s?m?n?dhikara?yam’ where the equation happens only on the sublation of the imagined entity by realizing the substratum. The Vedic statement ‘idam sarvam yat ayam ?tm?’ [‘All this is verily this Self’] (B?.Up.2.4.6) too has this equation alone for its purport.  

Verses 147 – 171

These verses describe how Brahman is manifest in the entire cosmos as everything that we experience. The huge variety seen in the world consisting of differences, relationships between persons, cause-effect differences, etc. are all to be realized as so many expressions of One Principle, Brahman. Everything that is at the body-mind level and what all is grasped from the world are all part of this universe that is only an expression of Brahman, through the power called m?y?.   The Ch?ndogya Upani?ad , Chapter 7, teaches Brahman through the conversation between the Preceptor Sage Sanatkum?ra and the disciple Sage N?rada. The verses can be accessed here:


The first and the last of the verses above are:

??? ???????? ?????????????

     ????? ???????????? ??????? ?

??? ? ????????????????????

     ????? ???????????????????? ? ????

??? I am ??? always ??? below ? and ??? the way ???? I am ??????? above ?? indeed ??? I am ????????? in front  ???? I am ?? alone ??????? behind ??? I am ? also ????????? other than left (south) ???????? O Aspirants! ??? also ??  indeed??? I am ??? always ?? alone ??????? north ????????? and middle

The Lord says that whatever is experienced in all directions is nothing but Brahman alone, being the manifestations thereof. 

????????????? ?????????????

     ??????????????? ?????????????? ?

?????????????? ?????????????

     ???????????? ?????????????? ? ????

????????????? as the variety of observed ??????????established ??? I am ??????????????? as the different observers ?????????? established ????  I am ?????????????? as the witness self ?????????? established ??? I am ???????????? as everything ?????????? established ???? I am

The observer-observed-observing triad is also none other than Brahman, for the entire gamut of the world, the experience thereof, is only a vivarta, transfiguration of Brahman. 

Verse 172

???????????????? ??????

     ????????????????? ??? ?

??????????????? ? ??

     ?????? ?? ? ????? ??????? ? ????

???????????????? words as ‘existing’ and ‘non-existing’ ?????? spoken of ????????????????? meaning of ‘shining’ ??? and ??????????????? ‘not shining’? as well ?? My ????? form ?? alone ?? indeed ? no  ????? doubt ??????? anywhere

In the world we refer to things that are not known as ‘not existing’. And those that are known are termed ‘existing’. Further, when something is not experienced, we call it ‘it does not shine’, that is, it does not become an object of my senses. And that which is available for our senses are referred to as ‘it shines.’ This dual-category is called ‘asti-bh?ti’, existence and shine with respect to every object. Lord ?iva, Brahman, says that whatever objects are referred to by these terms in the world are all Me alone and nothing other than that. In other words, all these terms are used only in respect of the created world. When an object is created and thus available for our experience, we say ‘it is.’ When, however, that object is destroyed and no longer experienced, we say ‘it is not.’ Both these categories pertain to the world alone and thus are only manifestations of Brahman. These categories belong to the relative realm of experiences through the mind-body apparatus. Brahman, however, transcends this relative realm and cannot be called as either ‘sat’, existing, or ‘asat’, non-existing. ‘Bh?nam’, shine, of objects and its absence too, are no more than manifestations of Brahman alone.

Verse 173

??????????? ?????? ???

     ?????????????????? ?

????????? ?????? ??????

     ??????????? ????????? ?? ? ????

??????????? as known through words ?????? exists ??? forever ?????????????????? as not known through words ??? that ?????? exists ??? that ???? I ?? alone ?????? forever ???????? in intellect ??? too ???? knowledge ???? thus ?? alone ?? indeed

Whatever is experienced in the world, there is a name, a word, assigned to it by people. It is stated by the Vy?kara?a ??stra that a word can be used when there is (a)  j?ti, genus, (b) kriy?, action, (c) gu?a, attribute and (d) sambandha, relationship. Everything in creation has these four and we use words such as a ‘cow’ (a member of that species), a ‘teacher’ who performs that function, a ‘black cat’, an attribute of the cat and a ‘landlord’ signifying a person who possesses the landed property. However, when it comes to Brahman, none of these conditions of genus, action, etc. apply since Brahman is not of any genus, has no action, etc. since Brahman is no individual entity. So, words cannot really be used with regard to Brahman. Those words are used in the scripture regarding Brahman, are, however, only an aid to point to Brahman. When one has grasped Brahman truly, then there is no more need for words, even of words such as ‘Brahman.’   

Verse 174


     ???? ????????? ????? ???? ??????? ?

???? ?????????????????

     ??????? ?? ?????? ????? ? ????

?????????????????????????? eternal pure consciousness liberation  ???? whose ??????? forever ??? thus ????? says ???? word ??????? of the veda ???? his ????????????????? truth-bliss-consciousness form ?????? Real ?? alone ?? to me ? not ????? there ????? doubt

When the ?ruti declares that the genuine liberation that a person secures by direct realization of his own self of the form ‘eternal pure consciousness’, there is no doubt at all that such a realization is true. Such a person experiences real bliss that is non-different from Consciousness.

Verse 175

?????????????????? ???

     ???????????????????? ?? ?

???? ????? ?? ???????? ???

     ???? ????????? ??????? ?? ? ????

??? that ???????? true nature ????????? as ‘I’ ??? and ??? that ???????? true nature ????????? as ‘this’ ?? alone ?? however ???? shines ??? that ?? indeed ?? My ???????? Essential Consciousness ??? forever ???? shines ? not ?????? any other ??? thus ??????? conviction ?? Mine

The entire world-experience can be stated to be happening on the basis of a two-fold division: One is the experiencer consciousness and the other is the experienced inert world. The first one is known by the name ‘I’ (ego-ahank?ra) and the second one ‘this’. Every world-experience is of this dual nature alone. However it is to be understood that there is no ‘two’ in this but only ‘One’. The One Pure Consciousness, Brahman, alone appears two-fold. That Brahman am I, free of the ego-sense. Such a conviction alone is conducive to liberation. The absence of such a conviction is what is called ‘sams?ra’, bondage.

Verses 176

??? ?????? ?? ????? ?????

     ? ????????????? ????????? ???? ?

??? ?? ??????????????????

     ??????????? ? ??????????? ? ????

??? I am ?????? everything ?? ????? apart from My form ????? different ? not ????????  anything ????? exists ??? thus ????????? firm conviction ???? is made ??? by Me ?? however ????????????? by vedic passages ?????? directly ???????? by Brahm? ??? as well ? too ?????? truth ?????? stated

Brahman alone is everything and nothing apart from It exists. Such a conviction is essential for liberation to ensue. This truth has been made clear by the Lord ?iva as well as Lord Brahm?. 

Verse 177

???? ?????????????????

     ?????? ?? ??????????????? ?

???? ????????????? ???????

     ???????????????????? ? ????

???? in this matter ???????? the doubting one ???????? perishes ??????? fallen ?? alone ??????????????? from the Supreme vision ???? in this matter ?????????? the firm knower ?? however ??????? freed ???????????????????? from the trammels of the bondage that is sams?ra

This Supreme vision has to be free from the defects of non-perception, doubt and wrong perception. Only such a perfect knowledge is conducive to liberation and not any indecisive understanding.

Verse 178

??? ???? ?

?????????? ??????? ?????? ?????????? ?

?????????? ?????????? ??????????? ?????? ? ????

??? S?ta ????  said:

???? thus  ??????? stated ??????? Mah?deva ?????? S?mba ?????????? redeemer from bondage ?????????? embraced ?????????? Mah?vi??u ?????????? Brahm? ??? as well ?????? affectionately

S?ta said: Having thus declared, Mah?deva, the consort of the Universal Mother, P?rvat?, embraced affectionately Mah?vi??u and Brahm?.  

[Part 19 coming soon] 

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