Vivekachudamani: The Crest-Jewel of Discrimination | 200-250
anāderapi vidhvaṁsaḥ prāgabhāvasya vīkṣitaḥ।
jīvatvaṁ na tato'nyastu svarūpeṇa vilakṣaṇaḥ।
saṁbandhastvātmano buddhyā mithyājñānapuraḥsaraḥ॥ 201॥
200-201. Previous non-existence, even though beginningless, is observed to have an end. So the Jīvahood which is imagined to be in the Ātman through its relation with superimposed attributes such as the Buddhi, is not real; whereas the other (the Ātman) is essentially different from it. The relation between the Ātman and the Buddhi is due to a false knowledge.
vinivṛttirbhavettasya samyagjñānena nānyathā।
brahmātmaikatvavijñānaṁ samyagjñānaṁ śrutermatam॥ 202॥
202. The cessation of that superimposition takes place through perfect knowledge, and by no other means. Perfect knowledge, according to the Śrutis, consists in the realisation of the identity of the individual soul and Brahman.
tadātmānātmanoḥ samyagvivekenaiva sidhyati।
tato vivekaḥ kartavyaḥ pratyagātmasadātmanoḥ॥ 203॥
203. This realisation is attained by a perfect discrimination between the Self and the non-Self. Therefore one must strive for the discrimination between the individual soul and the eternal Self.
jalaṁ paṅkavadatyantaṁ paṅkāpāye jalaṁ sphuṭam।
yathā bhāti tathātmāpi doṣābhāve sphuṭaprabhaḥ॥ 204॥
204. Just as the water which is very muddy again appears as transparent water when the mud is removed, so the Ātman also manifests Its undimmed lustre when the taint has been removed.
asannivṛttau tu sadātmanā sphuṭaṁ
tato nirāsaḥ karaṇīya eva
sadātmanaḥ sādhvahamādivastunaḥ॥ 205॥
205. When the unreal ceases to exist, this very individual soul is definitely realised as the eternal Self. Therefore one must make it a point completely to remove things like egoism from the eternal Self.
ato nāyaṁ parātmā syādvijñānaMāyāśabdabhāk।
dṛśyatvādvyabhicāritvānnānityo nitya iṣyate॥ 206॥
206. This knowledge sheath (Vijñānamāyā Kośa) that we have been speaking of, cannot be the Supreme Self for the following reasons - because it is subject to change, is insentient, is a limited thing, an object of the senses, and is not constantly present: An unreal thing cannot indeed be taken for the real Ātman.
syādānandaMāyāḥ priyādiguṇakaḥ sveṣṭārthalābhodayaḥ।
puṇyasyānubhave vibhāti kṛtināmānandarūpaḥ svayaṁ
sarvo nandati yatra sādhu tanubhṛnmātraḥ prayatnaṁ vinā॥ 207॥
207. The blissful sheath (Ānandamāyā Kośa) is that modification of Nescience which manifests itself catching a reflection of the Ātman which is Bliss Absolute; whose attributes are pleasure and the rest; and which appears in view when some object agreeable to oneself presents itself. It makes itself spontaneously felt by the fortunate during the fruition of their virtuous deeds; from which every corporeal being derives great joy without the least effort.
ānandaMāyākośasya suṣuptau sphūrtirutkaṭā।
208. The blissful sheath has its fullest play during profound sleep, while in the dreaming and wakeful states it has only a partial manifestation, occasioned by the sight of agreeable objects and so forth.
209. Nor is the blissful sheath the Supreme Self, because it is endowed with the changeful attributes, is a modification of the Prakriti, is the effect of past good deeds, and imbedded in the other sheaths which are modifications.
pañcānāmapi kośānāṁ niṣedhe yuktitaḥ śruteḥ।
tanniṣedhāvadhi sākṣī bodharūpo'vaśiṣyate॥ 210॥
210. When all the five sheaths have been eliminated by the reasoning on Shruti passages, what remains as the culminating point of the process, is the Witness, the Knowledge Absolute – the Ātman.
yo'yamātmā svayaṁjyotiḥ pañcakośavilakṣaṇaḥ।
avasthātrayasākṣī sannirvikāro nirañjanaḥ
sadānandaḥ sa vijñeyaḥ svātmatvena vipaścitā॥ 211॥
211. This self-effulgent Ātman which is distinct from the five sheaths, the Witness of the three states, the Real, the Changeless, the Untainted, the everlasting Bliss – is to be realised by the wise man as his own Self.
mithyātvena niṣiddheṣu kośeṣveteṣu pañcasu।
sarvābhāvaṁ vinā kiṁcinna paśyāmyatra he guro
vijñeyaṁ kimu vastvasti svātmanātmavipaścitā॥ 212॥
212. The disciple questioned: After these five sheaths have been eliminated as unreal, I find nothing, O Master, in this universe but a Void, the absence of everything. What entity is there left forsooth with which the wise knower of the Self should realise his identity.
satyamuktaṁ tvayā vidannipuṇo'si vicāraṇe।
ahamādivikārāste tadabhāvo'yamapyanu॥ 213॥
sarve yenānubhūyante yaḥ svayaṁ nānubhūyate।
tamātmānaṁ veditāraṁ viddi buddhyā susūkṣmayā॥ 214॥
213-214. The Guru answered: Thou has rightly said, O learned man ! Thou art clever indeed in discrimination. That by which all those modifications such as egoism as well as their subsequent absence (during deep sleep) are perceived, but which Itself is not perceived, know thou that Ātman – the Knower – through the sharpest intellect.
kasyāpyananubhūtārthe sākṣitvaṁ nopayujyate॥ 215॥
215. That which is perceived by something else has for its witness the latter. When there is no agent to perceive a thing, we cannot speak of it as having been perceived at all.
asau svasākṣiko bhāvo yataḥ svenānubhūyate।
ataḥ paraṁ svayaṁ sākṣātpratyagātmā na cetaraḥ॥ 216॥
216. This Ātman is a self-cognised entity because It is cognised by Itself. Hence the individual soul is itself and directly the Supreme Brahman, and nothing else.
jāgratsvapnasuṣuptiṣu sphuṭataraṁ yo'sau samujjṛmbhate
pratyagrūpatayā sadāhamahamityantaḥ sphurannaikadhā।
nānākāravikārabhāgina imān paśyannahaṁdhīmukhān
nityānandacidātmanā sphurati taṁ viddhi svametaṁ hṛdi॥ 217॥
217. That which clearly manifests Itself in the states of wakefulness, dream and profound sleep; which is inwardly perceived in the mind in various forms as an unbroken series of egoistic impressions; which witnesses the egoism, the Buddhi, etc., which are of diverse forms and modifications; and which makes Itself felt as the Existence-Knowledge-Bliss Absolute; know thou this Ātman, thy own Self, within thy heart.
ālokya mūḍho ravimeva manyate।
bhrāntyāhamityeva jaḍo'bhimanyate॥ 218॥
218. Seeing the reflection of the sun mirrored in the water of a jar, the fool thinks it is the sun itself. Similarly the stupid man, through delusion, identifies himself with the reflection of the Chit caught in the Buddhi, which is Its superimposition.
ghaṭaṁ jalaṁ tadgatamarkabimbaṁ
vihāya sarvaṁ vinirīkṣyate'rkaḥ।
svayaṁprakāśo viduṣā yathā tathā॥ 219॥
219. Just as the wise man leaves aside the jar, the water and the reflection of the sun in it, and sees the self-luminous sun which illumines these three and is independent of them;
dehaṁ dhiyaṁ citpratibimbamevaṁ
visṛjya buddhau nihitaṁ guhāyām।
sarvaprakāśaṁ sadasadvilakṣaṇam॥ 220॥
nityaṁ vibhuṁ sarvagataṁ susūkṣmaṁ
pumān vipāpmā virajo vimṛtyuḥ॥ 221॥
viśoka ānandaghano vipaścit
svayaṁ kutaścinna bibheti kaścit।
nānyo'sti panthā bhavabandhamukteḥ
vinā svatattvāvagamaṁ mumukṣoḥ॥ 222॥
220-222. Similarly, discarding the body, the Buddhi and the reflection of the Chit in it, and realising the Witness, the Self, the Knowledge Absolute, the cause of the manifestation of everything, which is hidden in the recesses of the Buddhi, is distinct from the gross and subtle, eternal, omnipresent, all-pervading and extremely subtle, and which has neither interior nor exterior and is identical with one self – fully realising this true nature of oneself, one becomes free from sin, taint, death and grief, and becomes the embodiment of Bliss. Illumined himself, he is afraid of none. For a seeker after Liberation there is no other way to the breaking of the bonds of transmigration than the realisation of the truth of one’s own Self.
brahmābhinnatvavijñānaṁ bhavamokṣasya kāraṇam।
yenādvitīyamānandaṁ brahma sampadyate budhaiḥ॥ 223॥
223. The realisation of one’s identity with Brahman is the cause of Liberation from the bonds of Samsara, by means of which the wise man attains Brahman, the One without a second, the Bliss Absolute.
brahmabhūtastu saṁsṛtyai vidvānnāvartate punaḥ।
vijñātavyamataḥ samyagbrahmābhinnatvamātmanaḥ॥ 224॥
224. Once having realised Brahman, one no longer returns to the realm of transmigration. Therefore one must fully realise one’s identity with Brahman.
satyaṁ jñānamanantaṁ brahma viśuddhaṁ paraṁ svataḥsiddham।
nityānandaikarasaṁ pratyagabhinnaṁ nirantaraṁ jayati॥ 225॥
225. Brahman is Existence, Knowledge, Infinity, pure, supreme, self-existent, eternal and indivisible Bliss, not different (in reality) from the individual soul, and devoid of interior or exterior. It is (ever) triumphant.
sadidaṁ paramādvaitaṁ svasmādanyasya vastuno'bhāvāt।
na hyanyadasti kiṁcitsamyakparamārthatattvabodhadaśāyām॥ 226॥
226. It is this Supreme Oneness which alone is real, since there is nothing else but the Self. Verily, there remains no other independent entity in the state of realisation of the highest Truth.
yadidaṁ sakalaṁ viśvaṁ nānārūpaṁ pratītamajñānāt।
tatsarvaṁ brahmaiva pratyastāśeṣabhāvanādoṣam॥ 227॥
227. All this universe which through ignorance appears as of diverse forms, is nothing else but Brahman which is absolutely free from all the limitations of human thought.
mṛtkāryabhūto'pi mṛdo na bhinnaḥ
kumbho'sti sarvatra tu mṛtsvarūpāt।
na kumbharūpaṁ pṛthagasti kumbhaḥ
kuto mṛṣā kalpitanāmamātraḥ॥ 228॥
228. A jar, though a modification of clay, is not different from it; everywhere the jar is essentially the same as the clay. Why then call it a jar ? It is fictitious, a fancied name merely.
kenāpi mṛdbhinnatayā svarūpaṁ
ghaṭasya saṁdarśayituṁ na śakyate।
ato ghaṭaḥ kalpita eva mohān
mṛdeva satyaṁ paramārthabhūtam॥ 229॥
229. None can demonstrate that the essence of a jar is something other than the clay (of which it is made). Hence the jar is merely imagined (as separate) through delusion, and the component clay alone is the abiding reality in respect of it.
sadbrahmakāryaṁ sakalaṁ sadevaṁ
astīti yo vakti na tasya moho
vinirgato nidritavatprajalpaḥ॥ 230॥
230. Similarly, the whole universe, being the effect of the real Brahman, is in reality nothing but Brahman. Its essence is That, and it does not exist apart from It. He who says it does is still under delusion – he babbles like one asleep.
brahmaivedaṁ viśvamityeva vāṇī
śrautī brūte'tharvaniṣṭhā variṣṭhā।
tasmādetadbrahmamātraṁ hi viśvaṁ
231. This universe is verily Brahman – such is the august pronouncement of the Atharva Veda. Therefore this universe is nothing but Brahman, for that which is superimposed (on something) has no separate existence from its substratum.
satyaṁ yadi syājjagadetadātmano
naitattrayaṁ sādhu hitaṁ mahātmanām॥ 232॥
232. If the universe, as it is, be real, there would be no cessation of the dualistic element, the scriptures would be falsified, and the Lord Himself would be guilty of an untruth. None of these three is considered either desirable or wholesome by the noble- minded.
īśvaro vastutattvajño na cāhaṁ teṣvavasthitaḥ।
na ca matsthāni bhūtānītyevameva vyacīkḷpat॥ 233॥
233. The Lord, who knows the secret of all things has supported this view in the words: "But I am not in them" … "nor are the beings in Me".
yadi satyaṁ bhavedviśvaṁ suṣuptāmupalabhyatām।
yannopalabhyate kiṁcidato'satsvapnavanmṛṣā॥ 234॥
234. If the universe be true, let it then be perceived in the state of deep sleep also. As it is not at all perceived, it must be unreal and false, like dreams.
ataḥ pṛthaṅnāsti jagatparātmanaḥ
pṛthakpratītistu mṛṣā guṇādivat।
dhiṣṭhānamābhāti tathā bhrameṇa॥ 235॥
235. Therefore the universe does not exist apart from the Supreme Self; and the perception of its separateness is false like the qualities (of blueness etc., in the sky). Has a superimposed attribute any meaning apart from its substratum ? It is the substratum which appears like that through delusion.
bhrāntasya yadyadbhramataḥ pratītaṁ
bhrāmaiva tattadrajataṁ hi śuktiḥ।
idaṁtayā brahma sadaiva rūpyate
tvāropitaṁ brahmaṇi nāmamātram॥ 236॥
236. Whatever a deluded man perceives through mistake, is Brahman and Brahman alone: The silver is nothing but the mother-of-pearl. It is Brahman which is always considered as this universe, whereas that which is superimposed on the Brahman, viz. the universe, is merely a name.
ataḥ paraṁ brahma sadadvitīyaṁ
nityaṁ sukhaṁ niṣkalamaprameyam।
jyotiḥ svayaṁ kiṁcididaṁ cakāsti॥ 238॥
237-238. Hence whatever is manifested, viz. this universe, is the Supreme Brahman Itself, the Real, the One without a second, pure, the Essence of Knowledge, taintless, serene, devoid of beginning and end, beyond activity, the Essence of Bliss Absolute – transcending all the diversities created by Māyā or Nescience, eternal, ever beyond the reach of pain, indivisible, immeasurable, formless, undifferentiated, nameless, immutable, self-luminous.
kevalākhaṇḍacinmātraṁ paraṁ tattvaṁ vidurbudhāḥ॥ 239॥
239. Sages realise the Supreme Truth, Brahman, in which there is no differentiation of knower, knowledge and known, which is infinite, transcendent, and the Essence of Knowledge Absolute.
aprameyamanādyantaṁ brahma pūrṇamahaṁ mahaḥ॥ 240॥
240. Which can be neither thrown away nor taken up, which is beyond the reach of mind and speech, immeasurable, without beginning and end, the Whole, one’s very Self, and of surpassing glory.
śrutyā tayostattvamasīti samyag
ekatvameva pratipādyate muhuḥ॥ 241.
aikyaṁ tayorlakṣitayorna vācyayoḥ
kūpāmburāśyoḥ paramāṇumervoḥ॥ 242॥
241-242. If thus the Śruti, in the dictum "Thou art That" (Tat-Tvam-Asi), repeatedly establishes the absolute identity of Brahman (or Ishwara) and Jīva, denoted by the terms That (Tat) and thou (Tvam) respectively, divesting these terms of their relative associations, then it is the identity of their implied, not literal, meanings which is sought to be inculcated; for they are of contradictory attributes to each other – like the sun and a glow-worm, the king and a servant, the ocean and a well, or Mount Meru and an atom.
na vāstavaḥ kaścidupādhireṣaḥ।
īśasya māyā mahadādikāraṇaṁ
jīvasya kāryaṁ śṛṇu pañcakośam॥ 243॥
243. This contradiction between them is created by superimposition, and is not something real. This superimposition, in the case of Ishwara (the Lord), is Māyā or Nescience, which is the cause of Mahat and the rest, and in the case of the Jiva (the individual soul), listen – the five sheaths, which are the effects of Māyā, stand for it.
samyaṅnirāse na paro na jīvaḥ।
rājyaṁ narendrasya bhaṭasya kheṭak
tayorapohe na bhaṭo na rājā॥ 244॥
244. These two are the superimpositions of Ishwara and the Jiva respectively, and when these are perfectly eliminated, there is neither Ishwara nor Jiva. A kingdom is the symbol of a king, and a shield of the soldier, and when these are taken away, there is neither king nor soldier.
athāta ādeśa iti śrutiḥ svayaṁ
niṣedhati brahmaṇi kalpitaṁ dvayam।
tayornirāsaḥ karaṇīya eva॥ 245॥
245. The Vedas themselves in the words "now then is the injunction" etc., repudiate the duality imagined in Brahman. One must needs eliminate those two superimpositions by means of realisation supported by the authority of the Vedas.
nedaṁ nedaṁ kalpitatvānna satyaṁ
itthaṁ dṛśyaṁ sādhuyuktyā vyapohya
jñeyaḥ paścādekabhāvastayoryaḥ॥ 246॥
246. Neither this gross nor this subtle universe (is the Ātman). Being imagined, they are not real – like the snake seen in the rope, and like dreams. Perfectly eliminating the objective world in this way by means of reasoning, one should next realise the oneness that underlies Ishwara and the Jiva.
tatastu tau lakṣaṇayā sulakṣyau
nālaṁ jahatyā na tathājahatyā
kintūbhayārthātmikayaiva bhāvyam॥ 247॥
247. Hence those two terms (Ishwara and Jīva) must be carefully considered through their implied meanings, so that their absolute identity may be established. Neither the method of total rejection nor that of complete retention will do. One must reason out through the process which combines the two.
sa devadatto'yamitīha caikatā
yathā tathā tattvamasītivākye
viruddhadharmānubhayatra hitvā॥ 248॥
saṁlakṣya cinmātratayā sadātmanoḥ
akhaṇḍabhāvaḥ paricīyate budhaiḥ।
evaṁ mahāvākyaśatena kathyate
248-249. Just as in the sentence, "This is that Devadatta", the identity is spoken of, eliminating the contradictory portions, so in the sentence "Thou art That", the wise man must give up the contradictory elements on both sides and recognise the identity of Ishwara and Jīva, noticing carefully the essence of both, which is Chit, Knowledge Absolute. Thus hundreds of scriptural texts inculcate the oneness and identity of Brahman and Jīva.
siddhaṁ svato vyomavadapratarkyam।
ato mṛṣāmātramidaṁ pratītaṁ
jahīhi yatsvātmatayā gṛhītam
viddhi svamātmānamakhaṇḍabodham॥ 250॥
250. Eliminating the not-Self, in the light of such passages as "It is not gross" etc., (one realises the Ātman), which is self-established, unattached like the sky, and beyond the range of thought. Therefore dismiss this mere phantom of a body which thou perceivest and hast accepted as thy own self. By means of the purified understanding that thou art Brahman, realise thy own self, the Knowledge Absolute.