[Advaita-l] Yoga Vasishtha Sara - The Essence of the Yoga Vasishtha - CHAPTER II (UNREALITY OF THE WORLD)

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Thu Oct 20 13:38:39 EDT 2022

(Continued from previous post)
1. Just as the great ocean of milk became
still when the Mandara Mountain (with
which it was churned by the Devas and the
Asuras) became still, even so the illusion of
samsara comes to an end when the mind is
2. Samsara rises when the mind becomes
active and ceases when it is still. Still the
mind, therefore, by controlling the breath
and the latent desires (vasanas).
3. This worthless (lit. "burnt out") samsara
is born of one's imagination and vanishes in
the absence of imagination. It is certain
that it is absolutely unsubstantial.
4. The idea of a (live) snake in a picture
of a snake ceases to be entertained when
the truth is known. Similarly samsara
ceases to exist (when the Truth is realized),
even if it continues to appear.
5. This long-living ghost of a samsara
which is the creation of the deluded mind
of man and the cause of his sufferings disappears
when one ponders over it.
6. O Rama, maya is such that it brings
delight through its own destruction ; its
nature is inscrutable ; it ceases to exist even
while it is being observed.
7. Dear boy, wonderful indeed is this
maya which deludes the entire world. It is
on account of it that the Self is not perceived
even though it pervades all the limbs of the
8. Whatever is seen does not truly exist.
It is like the mythical city of Gandharvas
(fata morgana) or a mirage.
9. That which is not seen, though within
us, is called the eternal and indestructible
10. Just as the trees on the bank of a lake
are reflected in the water, so also all these
varied objects are reflected in the vast
mirror of our consciousness.
11. This creation, which is a mere play
of consciousness, rises up, like the delusion
of a snake in a rope (when there is ignorance)
and comes to an end when there is
right knowledge.
12. Even though bondage does not really
exist, it becomes strong through desire for
worldly enjoyments ; when this desire
subsides bondage becomes weak.
13. Like waves rising up from the ocean
the unstable mind rises out of the vast and
stable expanse of the Supreme Self.
14. It is because of that which always, of
its own accord, imagines (everything)
quickly and freely that this magical show
(of the world) is projected in the waking
15. This world, though unreal, appears to
exist and is the cause of life-long suffering
to an ignorant person, just as a (non-existent)
ghost (is the cause of fear) to a boy.
16. One who has no idea of gold sees only
the bracelet. He does not at all have the
idea that it is merely gold.
17. Similarly towns, houses, mountains,
serpents, etc. are all in the eyes of the
ignorant man, separate objects. From the
absolute point of view this objective
(world) is the subject (the Self) itself ; it
is not separate (from the Self).
18. The world is full of misery to an
ignorant man and full of bliss to a wise man.
The world is dark to a blind man and bright
to one who has eyes.
19. The bliss of a man of discrimination,
who has rejected samsara and discarded all
mental concepts, constantly increases.
20. Like clouds which suddenly appear
in a clear sky and as suddenly dissolve the
entire universe (appears) in the Self and
(dissolves in it).
21. He who reckons the rays as nondifferent
from the sun and realizes that they
are the sun itself is stated to be nirvikalpa
(the undifferentiated state).
22. Just as the cloth, when investigated,
is seen to be nothing but thread, so also
this world, when enquired into, is (seen to
be) merely the Self.
23. This fascinating world rises like a
wave in the ambrosial ocean of consciousness
and dissolves in it. How then can it be
different from it (consciousness) in the
middle (i.e. when it appears) ?
24. Just as the foam, the waves, the dew
and the bubbles are not different from
water, even so this world which has come
out of the Self is not different from the
25. Just as a tree consisting of fruits,
leaves, creepers, flowers, branches, twigs
and roots, exists in the seed of the tree, even
so this manifest world exists in Brahman.
26. Just as the pot (ultimately) goes back
to mud, waves into water and ornaments
into gold, so also this world which has
come out of the Self (ultimately) goes
back to the Self.
27. The snake appears when one does
not recognize the rope ; it disappears when
one recognize the rope. Even so this world
appears when the Self is not recognized ; it
disappears when the Self is recognized.
28. It is only our forgetfulness of the
invisible Self which causes the world to
appear just as (the ignorance of the) rope
(causes the) snake to appear.
29. Just as the dream becomes unreal in
the waking state and the waking state in
the dream, so also death becomes unreal in
birth and birth in death.
30. All these are thus neither real nor
unreal. They are the effect of delusion,
mere impressions arising out of some past
(To be Continued)

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