[Advaita-l] Sleep, tamas and brahman

Ravi Kiran ravikiranm108 at gmail.com
Sun May 20 08:53:54 EDT 2018

Namaste Venkatraghavanji

On Thu, May 3, 2018 at 2:15 PM, Venkatraghavan S via Advaita-l <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> Namaste Kalyan ji,
> I had the good fortune of revisiting these bhAShya portions yesterday
> following your references. In fact, I read the whole brAhmaNa and bhAShya.
> It appears to me that the purpose of the teaching here is to talk of the
> nature of Atma - of it being self effulgent, one without a second, free
> from misery etc, because such a knowledge is key to liberation.

Agreed, as such teachings/discussion (based on paramArtha dRSTi) being more
conducive for
attaining samyak jnAna..

There is related discussion of deep sleep in BSB 3.2.7 to 3.2.9...

तदभावो नाडीषु तच्छ्रुतेरात्मनि च ॥ ७ ॥

some snippets taken from Sw. Gambhirananda's translation ..

Without the association with the limiting adjuncts, the soul (Atman) cannot
have any natural
encasement, since it is ever established  in its own glory owing to its
identity with Brahman.

The statement, He attains his own Self, is made, because in dream and
wakefulness, the soul
seems to assume another's garb under the influence of the limiting adjuncts
with which it remains
associated, where as in sleep, that garb falls off, so that in comparison
with the earlier stages, sleep
is spoken of as the state of assumption of the real nature. From this it is
clear that it is improper to say
that in sleep the soul sometimes becomes unified with Existence and
sometimes not ....

deep sleep as consisting in the cessation of particularized perception
...it is but logical, that a soul,
merged in Existence, should not know anything just because of non-duality,
as stated in Br. II.4.14


It has been shown more than once that Existence Itself comes to be called
indirectly a soul, because of the intervention of limiting adjuncts..

That very same set of adjuncts persists in sleep and wakefulness on the
of seed and seedling, so that the reasonable position is that the self-same
sould wakes
up from sleep.


> To convey this understanding of the Atma to Janaka, Yajnavalkya takes him
> through each of the three states in sequence. In each instance, the states
> are used as experiential bases to understand the nature of Atma. Like any
> good teacher, Yajnavalkya starts off with the things that the student has
> personal experience of, and uses that to teach something about the Atma.
> Looked at from this perspective, the nature of deep sleep, where one
> experiences no duality, no misery, no ignorance is used to highlight not
> the nature of deep sleep (for that is universally known)  but to point out
> that that is in fact the nature of Atma.

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