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Hari Om!


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: Jivan Mukta...by Acharya Sadananaji  ( 2505 )
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« : January 28, 2010, 07:41:01 AM »

Jivan Mukta
tat tvam asi - IX...by Acharya Sadanandaji

We have discussed how the knowledge takes place. Existence-consciousness that I am, who is all-pervading, (as though) illumines the mind (or more correctly the mind gets illumined in the presence of all-pervading consciousness) as saakshii. Since the process is occurring on the platform of muula avidya, which is same as maayaa, the mind, which is a material product of maayya, appears to gain sentiency which is otherwise inert. Since saakshii and the mind are ontologically different, they do not or cannot affect each other in this process.  It means saakshii does not undergo any modification by the apparent process of illumination. The light of consciousness - as though - gets reflected by the mind to make the mind a) knowable b) transactable and c) an agent for subsequent transaction (ego or ahankaara). The relation between the saakshii and the mind is called reflector and reflected or avabhaasya-avabhaasika sambandha, which is a relation-less relation. This is in contrast to the relation between a quality and object (guNa-guNi) which are inseparable as in a blue-cloth, where blueness is insuperable from cloth-ness, which Nayyayikaas call as samavaaya sambandha. The light of consciousness that is getting reflected by the mind and makes it known is called chidaabhaasa. This is also called aham vRitti, or 'I- thought' or ahankaara (Sureswara calls this as 'idam vRitti', Naiskaryma Siddhi, III-60). The essential point is, it is a vRitti or similar to a thought since mind forms an object for reflection of consciousness. Reflected light is not really distinct from the original light other than the fact it makes the object, i.e, the mind, known. We have discussed the fact that without getting reflected, the all-pervading light of consciousness cannot be known since it cannot be an object of knowledge. Hence, even the existence of consciousness cannot be established without the mind and its reflection, just as the existence of light cannot be established without an object reflecting it. The object is not the light but the object makes the light known. On the other hand the object cannot be known without the light. Whether the objects exists when they are not known, is an academic question only. The question is similar to - Are there unknown objects existing in a pitch dark room? We will never know whether they exist or not unless I perceive them by turning the light on. Thus mind is essential for knowledge to take place.

The reflected light from the mind gets further reflected by the thoughts or vRitti that arise in the mind, as one perceives the world of objects. The objects thoughts become idam vRitti or these thoughts. Hence knowledge process involves a) first mind getting reflected by the light of consciousness and b) the reflected light from the mind further reflecting the thoughts of objects of the world that arise due to sense-input. These thoughts of the worldly objects become - my thoughts- with an associated stamp of ownership, resulting in mamakaara. Thus ahankaara is chidaabhaasa the original reflection of the mind by saakshii and the mamakaara is subsequent reflection of the reflected light from the mind by the worldly thoughts. The relation between the mind-and the objects thoughts of the world is not only the reflector-reflected relation, but in addition the thoughts get coated with likes and dislikes due to vaasanaas. Hence unlike the saakshii and the mind, the mind and objects are ontologically in par and therefore get mutually affected by these likes and dislikes.  Hence the world of objects can be perceived as source of happiness or unhappiness depending not on the object, but based on my likes and dislikes.

A better way of looking at this process is that as saakshii using the mind illumines the thoughts of the world, similar to seeing the microorganisms using a microscope. In this out-look, I am not giving that much importance to the intermediary agent, the mind, other than as necessary tool, but giving complete credence to the source of light, the saakshii, in whose original light of consciousness alone everything gets illuminated or known. The mind is reduced to a necessary instrument for saakshii. This shift in understanding is the self-realization. This is similar to the understanding that the Sun via the moon making the objects visible during a full-moon night, since moon does not have light of its own and sun cannot be seen directly during the night. In order for me to recognize the presence of the sunlight as I see the objects getting illumined during the full-moon night, I need to understand clearly that it is the sunlight that is getting reflected, and I should be able to shift my attention to the original light from intermediary reflected light from the moon, as I know that moon does not have light of its own. Hence any knowledge of any object occurs due to the consciousness getting reflected from the vRitti of the object. Thus in any perceptual knowledge there are two things that come into contact to make the knowledge possible: a) the existence of the object in the form of the vRitti or a thought with attributive content of the object, and b) the light of consciousness that I am getting reflected by the vRitti. This is expressed as perceptuality condition by Vedanta paribhaasa as the existence of the object and consciousness of the subject get united for me to be conscious of the existence of the object.

This is also the essence of the sloka chanted during Vedic aarati:

na tatra suuryo bhaati na chandra taarakam
nemaa vidhyuto bhaanti koto2yam agniH|
tamevabhaantam anubhaati sarvam
tasya bhaasaa sarvam idam vibhaati|

Neither the sun, nor the moon, nor the stars, nor the electricity illumine you, how this silly lamp can illumine you. You are the self-existent, self-luminous entity and in your light only all things get illumined either directly or indirectly. Thus the existence of every object in the world is known only by the light of illumination by the consciousness that I am, that includes my mind and via the mind the other objects in the world.

Hence realization is seeing the fact clearly and vividly. I am the self-conscious and self-existent entity and illumine the mind through the mind the objects in the world. In the processes of illumining the mind, I lend both the existence and the consciousness to the mind. Anything is known only because I am conscious entity and in the light of my consciousness only everything gets illumined. In the deep sleep state, I exist all by myself as saakshii, since mind is folded and therefore not available directly for illumination or indirectly for illumining the objects of the world. As a saakshii illumining the mind I am unaffected, but as ahankaara where I am using the mind to illumine the world of objects, the impurities (raaga and dweSha - likes and dislikes) of the mind can affect and get affected by the world of objects. It is like the sunlight is directly illuming the mirror but the reflected light from the mirror can illumine other objects -but that intensity and abrasions of the reflected light depends on the quality of the mirror. Cleaning the mirror helps to improve the reflection of the sunlight.  Similarly cleaning or purifying the mind helps the beam, the light of consciousness to reflect fully with all its glory or vibhuuti.

Self-realization is seeing the presence of oneself in every perception and in every transaction with the world since without the light of consciousness illumining the objects the knowledge of the existence of the objects cannot occur. This is termed as aatma kriiDa or playing with myself in and through every transaction with the world. This is meditation while transacting with the world of objects. However, when I withdraw myself from the world of object just see myself as the witnessing consciousness that is getting reflected in the mind as chidaabhaasa, I am reveling in myself as myself - called aatma rati.  This is meditation on himself. Thus jiivanmukti involves realization of oneself in everything as the self of all and realization of everything in oneself as all pervading existence-consciousness. The continuous modification of the world of objects including the BMI forms a vibhuuti or glory of that sat-chit-ananda that I am or that of Iswara. One, who abides in this knowledge without getting lost in the superficial changing world of objects that are getting illumined during the transactions, is called jiivanmukta.  That is shifting our attention to the sunlight using its reflection by the mirror as well that reflected light getting further reflected in other objects.

Jiivan mukta is unique in advaita. Dvaita and vishiShTaadvaita do not subscribe to jiivan mukta.  For them liberation is attained only after leaving this body. One can never be independent of the Lord as they depend on Him for their very existence and survival. Any notion of independence is due to ignorance due to maayaa or delusion. Knowledge or jnaana is therefore recognition that one is eternally dependent on Him and He is the controller, sustainer and annihilator of the whole universe. By surrendering to Him only, one can overcome the maayaa which is of divine origin, says Krishna. Their often quoted sloka is:

daiviima yeshaa guNamayi mama maayaa duratyayaa|
maama evaye prapadyante, maayaam etaam tarantite||

Arjuna, this maayaa of mine is of divine origin. It is indeed difficult to cross this ocean of samsaara; but it can be crossed over by completely surrendering to Me; says Krishna. This sloka is often quoted by vishiShTaadvaita to emphasize that SharaNaagati is the only way for attaining moksha. Moksha is attained by going to VaikunTa which is called divya vibhuuti where one can enjoy the infinite happiness along with Narayana and with the other liberated souls, while serving the Lord. Only thing that the liberated soul cannot have is the power of creation and power of giving liberation -Narayana alone can do that and not even other Gods. Therefore for moksha it is useless to go after other Gods.  Of course, in VaikunTa, you will continue to serve Him as you did to gain that liberation. There the jiiva-jiiva, Jiiva-Iswara, Jiiva-jagat (called divya vibhuuti) and Iswara-jagat differences in VaikunTa also.  Remaining finite in size one enjoys the infinite happiness being with the Lord as part of his total virat shariira or cosmic body. How? That is how.

It is in advaita only that liberation can be achieved right now and right here, since it is the recognition that one is never bound and is ever free and both space and time are notions in the mind. The bondage as well as liberation both are part of delusion, since one is eternally free, nitya miktaH.  Gurudev Swami Chinmayanandaji used to tell a story. In Himalayas the pahaaDies, the local citizens, who are simple and make their living by selling and buying while transporting their merchandise using mules. One such pahaaDi was travelling with his mules carrying his merchandise. As he was passing through a Himalayan pass, it started snowing. He decided to take rest for the night and leave the next day morning when it becomes clear. He looked around to see if there any shelters that he and his mules can rest.  He found an ashram of a swami. He went to the swami and having prostrated requested permission to take rest in his ashram. The Swami happily consented asking him to tie his mules, feed them, have a bath and have something to eat before he goes to bed.  The pahaaDi was happy and went to tie the mules.  To his surprise he realized that he forgot to bring pegs to nail to the ground and ropes for tying the mules to the pegs. He was forcing them to lie down on the ground but they refused to lie down. He rushed to the swami and described the problem in hand. Swami suggested to him to pretend that he has those pegs and the rope and pretend to nail the pegs and go through all the motions of tying them with the imaginary ropes. He could not believe that it would work but with full faith in the swami's words he went through the complete motion of tying them by the imaginary ropes to the imaginary pegs nailed to the ground.  To his surprise the mules lied down without any protest. He thanked the swami and took rest for the night. Next day morning he took leave from the swami and tried to make the mules to get up. But they would not, however much he tried. Again he rushed to swami who asked him whether he untied the mules. PahaaDi said, maharaj, there were really not tied, there were no ropes and pegs. They are just lying down.  Swami said, that is your knowledge, but the mules think they have been tied to the pegs and they have to be untied. You have to untie them removing the imaginary ropes and the pegs that were used in the night. He did that and mules immediately got up and recognize that they are free of the ropes that tied them and were now able to move forward. We are essentially like the mules who feel that we are tied down life after life and we need to go through the process of getting untied. Teaching by other philosopher further reinforces that the bondage is real. In order to overcome this misunderstanding our minds need to be cleaned of wrong notions.  For that we need the four fold qualifications to prepare our mind to recognize that we are ever-free, even when we were thinking that we were bound. Thus according to advaita, both bondage and liberation are only the deep rooted notions in the mind.  That they are notions and not real can only be established only when one knows the reality behind the notions or have a knowledge that both subject and object or the whole universe is pervaded by the existence - consciousness that I am.  This knowledge should be firm and abiding irrespective of the changing external world or the BMI. The only proof of the pudding is that the reactions or relations between the mind and the world of objects will have no bearing since the attention of the jiivanmukta is shifted to the saakshii level or to the original light of consciousness that is never affected by nature of the reflecting media. The actions at the mind level are not motivated by individual BMI likes and dislikes but by vibhuuti or glory of the all pervading reality that can spread all over the world without any contaminations.  This we call as loka kalyaanam.

Hari om!
« : April 06, 2015, 12:59:49 PM Dr. Sadananda »
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