Brain Waves & Meditation on OM[AUM]: An insight

Introduction:-

Please go through this simple content which is nothing but my experience only. Just as it is: Thought of sharing my experience. Please spare few minutes. 🙏😊❤️

IMPORTANCE OF MEDITATION:

Since ancient time function of brain and meditation have been linked.

We can understand the relationship between brain activity and meditation by the use of modern  technology such as EEG. Basically we are all vibrational beings living in the vibrational universe.

Frequency of vibration determines our experience of reality. The fundamental elements of our physical vibrations are known as brainwave frequencies. Frequencies are measured in Hertz. In brain mapping the frequencies are measured in Hertz which are typically in the range between 0.5 to 60Hertz. According to studies, published in different websites, during meditation a discernible brainwave patterns seen  on EEG.

In neuroscience, there are five distinct brain wave frequencies, known as Alpha, Beta, Theta , Delta and Gamma.

To  understand the function of brainwave frequencies, which affect our daily life following vibrational patterns are described in brief.

Delta(0.5-3.0 Hz): The deep sleep Wave.

The Delta frequency is the slowest of the frequencies and it is experienced in deep, dreamless sleep and in very deep, transcendental ,  meditation where awareness is completely detached. Delta is the realm of unconscious mind. It is the Gateway to the Universal mind.

Alpha(7.5-14 Hz): The Deep Relaxation wave:

Alpha brain waves are present in deep relaxation with the eyes usually closed and while day dreaming or during light meditation. It is an optimal time to program the mind for success. It is the Gateway to the Subconscious mind. It heightens imagination, visualization, memory, learning and concentration. It lies at the base of consciousness of human mind.

Theta (4-7.5 Hz): The Light Meditation and Sleeping Wave.

Theta brain waves are present during deep meditation and light sleep including REM dream state. It is the realm of Subconscious mind. It is also known as twilight state as it is normally experienced between Alpha (drift off to sleep)and Delta(arise from deep sleep).A sense of deep spiritual connection and with the Universe can be experienced at Theta. Voice of Theta is silence.

Beta(14-40Hz): The waking Consciousness and Reasoning wave.

Beta brain waves are associated with normal waking consciousness and a heightened state of alertness, logic and critical reasoning. Daily activities are performed in this state. Too much Beta can translate into stress, anxiety and restlessness. The voice of Beta is the little nagging chatterbox of inner critic.

Gamma(40-80Hz): The Insight Wave.

This range is recently discovered. Little is known about this state of mind. Gamma waves with the highest frequency can have a frequency of anywhere between 25 and 100 Hz. Initial research shows that Gamma waves are associated with bursts of insight and high level information processing. Gamma brain waves are fastest brainwave frequency with smallest amplitude. Feelings of Blessings with peak concentration has been reported by experienced meditators.

Neuroscientists believe that gamma waves are able to link information from all parts of the brain-the gamma wave originates in the thalamus and moves back of the brain to the front and back again @ 40Hz.This is the brainwave state of that feeling that any thing can be done.

Now we may draw analogy of the above topic with Mandukya Upanishads, which is shortest among all Upanishads. According to the Mandukya Upanishad, four conditions of Spirit can be described as below.

1)Waking condition: Perception turned outward.

2)Mental condition : Perception turned inward, known as dreaming condition. Self enjoys subtle matter.

3)Deep sleep condition: No desire, no dream. This is intellectual condition. Because of union with Self and his unbroken knowledge, one feels joy. He knows joy. His mind is illuminated.

ॐ~AUM

A~ Waking

U~ Dreaming

M~ Deep Sleep

Turiya: The Fourth condition of the Self which can be achieved through deep meditation that corresponds to “OM” as ONE , invisible Word. Self is Whole and beyond bargain.

The world disappears in HIM. SELF is one without a second.

This condition is known as #Turiya#

Please read Mandukya Upanishad in two parts to understand the topic which you will find inline with Brain waves pattern. Links are here:

1:MaNDukya Upanishad- The Nature of OM: – Part-1

2:MaNDukya Upanishad- The Nature of OM: – Part-2

Any decrease in mind clutter is an increase in our vibrational connection to higher Consciousness.

MaNDukya Upanishad- The Nature of OM: – Part-2

Introduction:

Mandukya Upanishad belongs to Atharva Veda. It is the shortest of all the Upanishads with only 12 verses and placed in the 6th position in the list of Ten Principal Upanishads.

This Upanishad teaches the significance of the sacred syllable ॐ~AUM (OM) and it correlates with four states of Consciousness. It describes the Turiya state, the state of transcendental Consciousness in which all the divisions and Duality disappears. The SELF alone exists in its pure state.

Among the Upanishads, the “Mandukya” may be regarded as the most important. It is said : ” mandukyam ekam eva alam mumukshunam vimuktaye”. For the liberation from bondage, for a seeker, the maNDukya alone is sufficient.

Upon meditating on the Mystic Syllable OM [AUM], mind can be trained to achieve freedom gradually to attain ultimate Reality.

Please read my previous post on Mandukya Upanishad, Part-1, where I have discussed up to 7th mantra out of total twelve mantras. 7th mantra is most important among the Vedic scriptures. This mantra describes the nature of Absolute reality~ Brahman. Please read first part of the post. Link is here:-

In this post, I will discuss the last five Mantras [from 8th mantra to 12th mantra].

माण्डूक्योपनिषत्

॥ अथ माण्डूक्योपनिषत् ॥

Mantra-8:- ॐ~AUM (OM) with four quarters:

“सोऽयमात्माऽध्यक्षरमोंकारोऽधिमात्रं पादा मात्रा मात्राश्च पादा अकार उकारो मकार इति “॥ ८॥

“so.ayamAtma.sdhyakSharamo~NkAro-adhimAtram pAdA mAtramAtrAshcha pAdA akAra ukAro makAra iti” – [8]

“The same Atman, (which has been described in 7th Mantra as having four quarters) is again, AUM, from the point of view of the syllables. The “AUM “with parts is viewed from the stand point of sound. The quarters the letters and the letters are the quarters. The letters here are A, U and M”.

According to Shankara, 7th mantra have concentrated on the abhidheya meaning ‘that which is being spoken of’, i.e. the thing named or denoted. OM [AUM], therefore, is effectively the abhidhAna-name or appellation. This means that Atman is equated to OM in the linguistic sense. The letters constituting OM are A, U and M.
Mantra-9:- The first mAtra of OM-akAraH: the letter “A” : vaishvAnara- the waking state.

“जागरितस्थानो वैश्वानरोऽकारः प्रथमा मात्राऽऽप्तेरादिमत्त्वाद् वाऽऽप्नोति ह वै सर्वान् कामानादिश्च भवति य एवं वेद “॥ ९॥

“jAgaritasthAno vaishvAnaro-akArah prathamAmAtra-a-apteraadimattvaadvA-a-apnoti ha vai sarvAnkAmAnAdishcha bhavati ya evaM veda”.-[9]

“He who is VaishvAnara, having for its sphere of activity the waking state is A, the first letter of AUM, on account of its all-pervasiveness or on account of being the first. One who knows this attains the fulfilment of all desires and becomes the first of all”.

prathamA mAtra: – The first mAtra of OM-akAraH: the letter “A” vaishvAnara- the waking state. AdimatvatvAt: being the first. Pervasiveness-“A” which pervades all sounds. “A” is the fundamental sound. We can not speak any word without opening the mouth and the sound thus produced is “A”. We can regard this sound as pervading every other sound. Similarly we we regard the waking state as having primacy. We only know of the existence of the dream state and deep sleep states when we are at waking state. Obviously we have to be awake in order to pursue this enquiry and to attain enlightenment.

In the scripture VaishvAnara is said to pervade the whole of the Universe. In Bhagavad-Gita, Ch10.33, Lord Krishna says: ” I am the letter “A”, describing himself as Ishwara. This mantra is advocating Upasana on OM, with specific attention on the first letter “A”.

One who understands this, gets all he wants; becomes leader among men.

Mantra-10:- The letter “U”, the second mAtra of OM is “taijasa”, the dream state

“स्वप्नस्थानस्तैजस उकारो द्वितीया मात्रोत्कर्षाद् उभयत्वाद्वोत्कर्षति ह वै ज्ञानसन्ततिं समानश्च भवति नास्याब्रह्मवित्कुले भवति य एवं वेद” ॥ १०॥ 

“svapnasthAnastijasa ukAro dvitIyAmAtrotkarShAdubhayatvAdvotkarShati ha vai j~nAnasantati-nsamAnashcha bhavati nAsyaabrahmavitkule bhavAti va evaM veda” -[10]

“The dreaming condition [taijasa], called mental condition, corresponds to the second letter “U”. It upholds; stands between waking and sleeping. He who understands, upholds the tradition of Spiritual knowledge. looks upon everything with an impartial eye. No one ignorant of Brahman is born into his family”.

The letter “U”, the second mAtra of OM is “taijasa”, the dream state, because both are regarded as superior and also are in the middle of their respective series. Whosoever knows this will become superior in knowledge and accepted by all. All members of his family will be wise. As a matter of fact, A being the first of all sounds is superior to all letters. But “U” coming after “A” may be said superior to “A” in all indirect way. as such the subtle taijasa is regarded as superior to vishva because subtle is superior to gross. Gross can be considered as the effect of the subtle cause. Gross equates to matter, subtle to energy. Mind is superior to physical body. State of mind makes us superior to the animals. Gross body returns to earth on death, but the subtle and causal body remains present for rebirth. 

Note:- At the macrocosmic level, at the end of the Universe[Pralaya], the entire gross creation [Virat] is subsumed into Hiranyagarbha. 

Mantra-11:- Deep sleep, the intellectual condition, called “Prajna” corresponds to the third letter “M”.

“सुषुप्तस्थानः प्राज्ञो मकारस्तृतीया मात्रा मितेरपीतेर्वा मिनोति ह वा इदꣳ सर्वमपीतिश्च भवति य एवं वेद” ॥ ११॥

“suShuptassthAnaH prAj~no makArastRRitIyA mAtra meterapItervA minoti havA idaM sarvamapItishcha bhavati ya evaM veda”-[11]

“Undreaming sleep, called the intellectual condition [prAj~no], corresponds to the third letter “M”. It weighs and unites. he who understands, weighs the world; rejects; unites himself with the cause”.-[11]

Sankara Explains:-

One who is prAj~no associated with deep sleep is “M” , the third letter{sound) of AUM. The key word “miti” in the mantra needs to be understood. “miti” means measure. As food grains are measured in utensils before use and that is filled again when it is reused on regular basis, which means grains reappear again. similarly, at individual level, the waking and dream states as though disappear in deep sleep, emerge again sometime later. Similarly, at the macrocosmic level, the gross[Virat] and subtle[Hiranyagarbha] worlds disappear at the end of creation into the causal state(Ishwara~antaryamin) and reappear at the next creation. This is analogous to the scientific theory of “Big-Bang & Big-Crunch”. In the same manner, while chanting OM (AUM), the sound “A” and “U” disappear when we close mouth and only sound “M” remains. And the sound “A” and “U” reappear again when the mouth is opened for chanting AUM. waking and dream states are merged in deep sleep. As we have seen in mantra-4 of this Upanishad, that they[ A= Vishva & U= Taijasa] become “mass of consciousness” (prajnanaghana)  in M (deep sleep state).

In deep sleep, all perceptions and cognitions converge into a single mode of the mind: It becomes mass of Consciousness[ ekibhutah]. There is no modifications of the mind[ due to absence of Vrittis].

The happiness of deep sleep is greater than all other forms of happiness. 

Therefore one who knows this, comprehends the real nature of the Universe. He realises himself as Atman and the cause of the Universe i.e. Ishwara.

Mantra-12:- “Amaatra”- The fourth letter: “Turiya”

“अमात्रश्चतुर्थोऽव्यवहार्यः प्रपञ्चोपशमः शिवोऽद्वैत एवमोंकार आत्मैव संविशत्यात्मनाऽऽत्मानं य एवं वेद “॥ १२॥

“amAtrashchaturtho-avyavahAryaH prapa~nchopashamaHshivo-Advaitaevamo~NkAra-atmaiva saMvishatyAtmanA-a-AtmaM ya evaM veda ya evaMveda”-[12]

“The fourth conditioned of the Self corresponds to OM as one, indivisible word. He is whole; beyond bargain. The world disappears in Him. He is the good; the one without a second. Thus OM is nothing but Self. He who understands, with the help of personal self, merges himself into the impersonal Self.”

The part less “OM” is the fourth quarter; It is beyond all conventional dealings; It is the limit of the negation of the phenomenal world. It is all- Auspicious, all-Blissful; It is One without a second; the Non-Dual Reality; This OM is verily the same as the Atman or Self within. The Self realises Itself through the Self; He who knows thus, merges himself  into the impersonal Self.

Conclusion:-

A) Individually( for Jiva), the waking consciousness is called Vishva. It is called Taijasa in dream and Prajna in deep sleep state. Correspondingly, from the view of Cosmic level, these are: Virat in waking, Hiranyagarbha in dreaming and Ishwara in deep sleep. 

B) The relationship between individual and the cosmic, between Vishva & Virat, Taijasa & Hiranyagarbha, Prajna & Ishwara is integral part of ONE [ Non-Dual Consciousness]. This realisation will put Jiva in Ishwratwa and make it  Omnipresent, Omniscient and Omnipotent.

C) The knower of Brahman, who has realised the highest Truth, will enter into the Self by burning away the Third state of latency[ the dormant Vasanas~ (causal) are burnt]. Henceforth, he is not born again, as there are no Karmas to cause a further birth.

D) AUM is realised when the illusion of DUALITY vanishes.

Recommended readings:

  1. Back to the Truth: 5000 years of ADVAITA by Dennis Waite.**
  2. THE TEN PRINCIPAL UPANISHADS: Translated by Shree Purohit** Swami and W.B.Yeats
  3. Brahma Sutra Bhasya of Sankaracharya: Translated by Swami Gambhirananda.**
  4. Commentary of Mandukya Upanishad: By Swami Krishnananda.
  5. MANDUKYA Upanishad By Swami GuruBhaktananda.
  6. The Mandukya Upanishad: with Gaudapada’s Karika and Sankara’s commentary: By swami Nikhilananda
  7. EIGHT UPANISADS -VOL-1 with commentary of Sankaracharya, Translated by SWAMI GAMBHIRANANDA.
  8. THE TAITTIRIYA UPANISHAD: SHIKSHAVALLI-ANANDAVALLI-BHRIGUVALLI with Sri Shankara’s Commentary By Sri Swami Satchidanandera Saraswati.
  9. A-U-M Awakening to Reality : By Dennis Waite***
  10. Information available on internet.

             It is my sincere request to the esteemed readers to share their opinion or queries if any. Suggestions to make the site attractive will be highly helpful for me. Readers are requested to read all the posts to have continuation of the topic from the beginning. My mail ID is :   arun7663@gmail.com 

Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-8C

Introduction: Eighth Chapter:

The ChAndogya Upanishad is part of ChAndogya Brahmana of the Sama Veda which is one of the largest important Upanishads with Eight Chapters (Prapathakas) with many Mantras(verses )including some stories as themes to gain Upanishadic knowledge. This Upanishad is placed in the 9th position in the list of Ten Principal Upanishads. The name of the Upanishad is derived from the word   “Chanda” (Rhythm~ poetic meter).

**This Upanishad directly deals with the true nature of Brahman, the Supreme Self, without a Second.

*Self is Atman; Atman is Brahman*

ChAndogya Upanishad consists of Eight chapters. The first five chapters forms the part of Karma Kanda[ rituals] and Upasana Kanda [worship and meditation]. Chapter- 6, 7 and 8 form the part of Jnana Kanda[profound Self-knowledge].

The essence of the Teaching is: – “Brahma Vidya”

Brahma Vidya: It is the knowledge of the ultimate Truth which results in Self realisation. The knower of this Truth remains untouched by any situation in life.

This chapter is especially intended for those who are unable to grasp the vastness of “Absolute”, the subject like Bhoomaa Vidya (Infinity), taught in the previous chapter. Though this chapter confines itself to the Heart of an individual, but that does not limit itself to the body of an individual. The heart here mentioned is used as symbol as the centre of the pure subjectivity in us and therefore heart refers to consciousness, which is apparently located within the walls of the body, but never limited to physical body.

A) Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-8A: Section-1 to Section-3  has been published. Here is the link.

B) Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-8B: Section-4 to Section-6  has been published. Here is the link.

A request to my readers: Please read my previous posts on ChAndogya Upanishad, especially 6th & 7th chapter. Links are given below:

  1. Chapter Six: Section-1 to Section-4(Khanda-1 to Khanda-4). The link is here:  Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-6A of 6
  2. Chapter Six: Section-5 to Section-8(Khanda-5 to Khanda-8). The link is here: Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-6B of 6
  3. Chapter Six: Section-9 to Section-16(Khanda-9 to Khanda-16). The link is here: Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-6C of 6[END OF 6TH CHAPTER]
  4. Chapter-7 : Section-1 to Section-6 has been discussed. The link is here:- Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-7A
  5. Chapter-7 : Section-7 to Section-12 has been discussed. The link is here:- Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-7B
  6. Chapter-7 : Section-13 to Section-22: The link is here:- Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-7C
  7. Chapter-7 : Section-23 to Section-27: The link is here:- Essence of ChAndogya Upanishad: Part-7D[FINAL PART]

This post is part-3[8C] from 8th Chapter of ChAndagyo Upanishad. Section-7 to Section-11 will be discussed here. 

Section-7 [Four Mantras]: 

Prajapati’s Instruction to Indra on the Real Self:

In this section we will concentrate on stages of Consciousness. In  Mandukya Upanishad we have seen three conditions of Self waking, dreaming and deep sleep.

On one occasion, Prajapati made an announcement in his celestial assembly hall. The gods and the demons both were present there and both heard the proclamation. He proclaimed the great Truth. The announcement made is as below:

Mantra-1: Prajapati said: ‘The Self is free from sin, free from old age, free from death, free from sorrow, and free from hunger and thirst. It is the cause of desire for Truth and for commitment to Truth. This Self has to be sought for and thoroughly known. The person who has sought for and known the Self attains all worlds and all desires’.

Mantra-2:  Both the gods and the demons came to know from people what Prajapati had said. They said: ‘ We shall search for the Self, by knowing which we can attain all the worlds and whatever things we desire.’  With this object in view, Indra among the gods and Virochana among the demons went to Prajapati, carrying fuel in their hands. But they did not let each other know their plans.

Mantra-3: Both of them spent 32 years with Prajapati by maintaining Brahmacharins (Austerities). One day Prajapati asked them: ‘For what purpose you are here?’ They replied: “The Self is free from sin, free from old age, free from death, free from sorrow, and free from hunger and thirst. It is the cause of desire for Truth and for commitment to Truth. This Self has to be sought for and thoroughly known. The person who has sought for and known the Self attains all worlds and all desires-Sir this is you message. We hope to attain that Self and therefore stay.’

Mantra-4: Prajapati said those two: ‘ That which is seen in the eyes is the Self.’ He also said: “This Self is immortal and fearless. It is Brahman.’ Then they asked: ‘Lord, we see something when we look in water and again when we look in a mirror. Which is it?’ Prajapati replied: “The Self is seen in all these’.

Section-8 [Five Mantras]: 

Mantra-1: Prajapati said: ‘Look at yourself in a bowl of water, come again if you do not understand the Self. They looked into the bowl of water. Prajapati said: ‘What did you see there?’ They said: ‘ We saw ourselves, our doubles; even with our hair and nails’.

Mantra-2: Prajapati said: ‘ Shave, put on fine clothes, fine jewels, look into water again.’ They did accordingly. Prajapati said: ‘ what did you see?’

Mantra-3: They said: ‘Lord! We saw ourselves shaven, dressed, adorned. ‘Prajapati said: ‘ That is Self. That is unalarmed, immortal Self.’ They both went away satisfied.

Mantra-4: Seeing them leave, Prajapati said to himself: ‘ They are going  without finding the Self, without knowing the Self. Who follows their philosophy, whether godly or godless perishes. Virochana, the king of the demons, went back to the demons happy in mind and explained to them the Upanishad.

Mantra-5: This is why in this world even today people say, ‘Oh, he is demon,’ if that person is devoid of the feeling of charity, is called godless; for that is the philosophy of godless. When a person dies, they decorate the body with all kinds of offerings, new clothes, and jewellery, for they think that by this, the person will conquer the other world.

In this section the teachings emphasize on the fact that there are some people who pays least importance in self-discipline. Such people are primarily interested in pleasures perceived by senses only. They do not believe in the higher knowledge. They do not care for humanity, charity. No faith in GOD. Busy in doing misdeeds to meet requirements of self only. The body is everything to them. Therefore, they believe in decorating a dead man with the hope that they will be treated same in the next world. This was the practice adopted in ancient Egypt. According to Vedanta philosophy, the Self is not the body. Body decays and perishes, but the Self never. Body must be given due importance such that Prana makes the body animating and body can perform all works that are needed to sustain life.

Section-9 [Three Mantras]: 

Mantra-1: Before reaching to the gods with the Teachings received from Prajapati, Indra thought himself that the reflection is well decorated when the body is decorated. When the body is in fine clothes, the reflection is also in fine clothes. When the body is neat and clean, the Self is also neat and clean. Again, suppose a person is blind, then the Self  is blind. If the body is lame, so will be the Self. If the body is crippled, Self would be crippled. If the body is dead, Self would be dead. But Self is never dead. Therefore, Indra felt inadequacy in the teaching.

Virochana was happy with the teachings. He went back without any doubt and explained everything he understood to the demons. Virochana taught that the Body was the Self, since he understood the teachings according to his own level, his own nature. But Indra was a god with higher intellect and spiritual qualities. Indra remembered what Prajapati said about the Self in the beginning. Prajapati said:The Self is free from sin, free from old age, free from death, free from sorrow, and free from hunger and thirst. It is the cause of desire for Truth and for commitment to Truth”. Therefore, Indra returned back to Prajapati to learn about True Self.

Mantra-2: Indra went back to Prajapati with folded hands. Prajapati said: Indra! you went away with Virochana, perfectly satisfied. What brings you back? Indra replied: when the body is adorned, so is its reflection. When the body is in fine clothes, the reflection is also in fine clothes. When the body is neat and clean, the Self is also neat and clean. Again, suppose a person is blind, then the Self  is blind. If the body is lame, so will be the Self. If the body is crippled, Self would be crippled. If the body is dead, Self would be dead. Therefore, I do not see good in this.

Mantra-3: Prajapati said: Indra! This bodily Self is like that. Stay for another thirty-two years, I will explain more. Indra stayed for another thirty-two years.

In the next section, Indra is introduced into an experience which is not conditioned by the characters of the physical body.

Section-10 [Four Mantras]: The Self in Dreaming state.

Mantra-1: Prajapati said: ” That which you see in the dreaming state, is the Self. That is Brahman, about which I am going to explain you. That Being which rejoices and is happy in the state of dream is the Self, which is fearless and Immortal. Indra then left satisfied. But even before returning to gods, a doubt arose in his mind. He thought: ” A person may be blind, but when he is dreaming, he is not blind. He may be lame, but when he is dreaming, he is not lame. There may be some defects in his body, but his dream body is not affected by them.

Mantra-2: Self is not killed when the body is killed. He is not crippled when the body is crippled, yet he is killed and chased in dreams. It may seem as if there is something unpleasant. He may even seem to be weeping. I see nothing good in this.

Mantra-3: Indra went back to Prajapati with folded hands. Prajapati said: Indra! you went away with Virochana, perfectly satisfied. What brings you back? Indra replied: “Lord, a person may be blind, but when he is dreaming, he is not blind. He may be lame, but when he is dreaming, he is not lame. There may be some defects in his body, but his dream body is not affected by them.

Mantra-4: Self is not killed when the body is killed. He is not crippled when the body is crippled, yet he is killed and chased in dreams. It may seem as if there is something unpleasant. He may even seem to be weeping. I see nothing good in this. Prajapati said: Indra! This bodily Self is like that. Stay for another thirty-two years, I will explain more. Indra stayed for another thirty-two years.

Section-11 [Three Mantras]:

The Self in Deep sleep:

Mantra-1: Prajapati said: ” When the man is sleeping, at peace with himself, happy, without dream, then that is Self. It is immortal and fearless”.  Indra went away satisfied, but before reaching to the gods, he found inadequacy in teaching. He thought within himself: Man in his sleep does not even recognise that he is Self; neither does he know any other creatures around it. It is like complete annihilation, as it were. How could this be Self? That which does not know its own Self , can not be Self.

Mantra-2: Indra again went back to Prajapati with folded hands.                    Prajapati asked: ‘Indra you went satisfied, what brings you back? Indra replied, “Revered Sir, indeed in deep sleep, this one does not know Himself as “I am He”, neither does he know any creatures. He is lost. I see no good in this.

Mantra-3: Prajapati said; ‘ Indra! you are right; yet where else you can find the Self? Stay for five years more; i will explain more. Indra stayed accordingly. That makes one hundred and one years and so with regard to that people say thus, ” Verily, foe one hundred and one years Indra lived with Prajapati, the disciplined life of a celibate student of sacred knowledge.” Then Prajapati said to him: —

                                                                           …to continue

Next part will be final part : section-12 to section-15 will be published soon.

Conclusion:

One hundred and one years of austerity was performed by Indra in the abode of Prajapati to acquire Supreme knowledge. Even now people say that lord Indra, such a powerful person with such a brilliant intellect, had to live a life of tremendous austerity for 101 years for the sake of this “Brahma Vidya”, knowledge of Atman.

So, one hundred and one years of tapas did Indra perform in the abode of Prajapati for the sake of this Supreme Knowledge. Even now people say: “Indra, such a powerful person with such a brilliant intellect, had to live a life of tremendous austerity for one hundred and one years for the sake of this Atman knowledge!”

Readers are requested to know more on “deep sleep” from my blog post on maNDukya Upanishad. Mantra-2 is most important which is given below:

Mantra 2:  (Mandukya Upanishad): All this is verily Brahman. (ब्रह्मायमात्मा ब्रह्म) ” Ayam atma Brahma” There is nothing that is not Brahman. The Personal Self is the impersonal Brahman. (सोऽयमात्मा चतुष्पात् ) It has four aspects (states), also known as four quarters.

Ayam atma Brahma” is one of the four mahaVakyas from four Vedas. It signifies the realization that who I am really is that same Brahman. The word “chatuShpad” (चतुष्पात् )refers to the four aspects of Consciousness. Three states of Consciousness: 1) Waking[GROSS], 2) Dreaming [SUBTLE] and 3) Deep Sleep [CAUSAL]. Fourth is the Reality which is the Background of all states. Details to be known from the following verses.

The link for reading text in Sanskrit is here:-   Chandgoya Upanishad 

Recommended readings:

  1. Back to the Truth: 5000 years of ADVAITA by Dennis Waite. **
  2. THE TEN PRINCIPAL UPANISHADS: Translated by Shree Purohit** Swami and W.B.Yeats
  3. Brahma Sutra Bhasya of Sankaracharya: Translated by Swami Gambhirananda.**
  4. Commentary of ChAndogya Upanishad: By Swami Krishnananda.
  5. ChAndogya Upanishad: By Swami GuruBhaktananda.
  6. ChAndogya Upanishad: Translated by Swami Gambhirananda.
  7. EIGHT UPANISADS -VOL-1 with commentary of Sankaracharya, Translated by SWAMI GAMBHIRANANDA.
  8. THE TAITTIRIYA UPANISHAD: SHIKSHAVALLI-ANANDAVALLI-BHRIGUVALLI with Sri Shankara’s Commentary By Sri Swami Satchidanandera Saraswati.
  9. A-U-M Awakening to Reality: By Dennis Waite***
  10. Panchadasi: Swami Vidyaranya:
  11. Information available on internet.

It is my sincere request to the esteemed readers to share their opinion or queries if any. Suggestions to make the site attractive will be incredibly helpful for me. Readers are requested to read all the posts to have continuation of the topic from the beginning. My mail ID is: arun7663@gmail.com

 

MaNDukya Upanishad- The Nature of OM: – Part-1

Introduction:

The Mandukya Upanishad, belongs to Atharva Veda. It is the shortest of all the Upanishads with 12 verses and placed in the 6th position in the list of Ten Principal Upanishads. This Upanishad teaches the significance of the sacred syllable ~AUM (OM) and it correlates with four states of Consciousness. It describes the Turiya state, the state of transcendental Consciousness in which all the divisions and Duality disappears. The SELF alone exists in its pure state. Upon meditating on the Mystic Syllable , OM , mind can be trained to achieve freedom gradually to attain ultimate Reality.

माण्डूक्योपनिषत्

॥ अथ माण्डूक्योपनिषत् ॥

ॐ भद्रं कर्णेभिः श‍ृणुयाम देवा
भद्रं पश्येमाक्षभिर्यजत्राः ।
स्थिरैरङ्गैस्तुष्तुवाꣳसस्तनूभिर्व्यशेम देवहितं यदायुः ॥

स्वस्ति न इन्द्रो वृद्धश्रवाः
      स्वस्ति नः पूषा विश्ववेदाः ।
स्वस्ति नस्तार्क्ष्यो अरिष्टनेमिः
      स्वस्ति नो बृहस्पतिर्दधातु ॥

ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥

Om! Shining Ones! May our ears hear the good. May our eyes see the good. May we serve HIM with the whole strength of our body. May we, all our life, carry out HIS will. Peace, peace and peace be everywhere.

Everything is OM

 ॐ इत्येतदक्षरमिदꣳ सर्वं तस्योपव्याख्यानं
भूतं भवद् भविष्यदिति सर्वमोङ्कार एव
यच्चान्यत् त्रिकालातीतं तदप्योङ्कार एव  ॥ १॥
First Mantra: Hari OM! OM ityetadakSharamidaM sarvam tasyopavyAkhyAnaM bhutaM bhavadH bhaviShyaditi sarvamoMkAra eva. yachchaanyatH trikAlAtitaM tadapyoMkaAra eva.(1) 

OM + ity + etad + akSharam => means This syllable is OM.                idaM sarvam => means This (OM) is all. tasya + upavyAkhyAnaM =>  Explanation begins with this Omkar.  bhutaM ( past) bhavadH ( present) bhaviShyat (future)  sarvam oMkAra eva. => Past , present future; everything is OM. yachchaanyatH trikAlA (three time periods) titaM tadapy + oMkaAra eva. ( even that too is OM which transcends three division of time).

Mantra 1. Hari OM! The Word OM is Imperishable. All this it’s manifestation. Past , present future; everything is OM. Whatever transcends the three divisions of time , that too is OM.

सर्वं ह्येतद् ब्रह्मायमात्मा ब्रह्म सोऽयमात्मा चतुष्पात् ॥ २॥
Second MantrasarvaM hyetad brahmAyamAtmA brahma so ayamAtma chatuShpAt (2) 

Mantra 2: All this is verily Brahman. (ब्रह्मायमात्मा ब्रह्म) ” Ayam atma Brahma” There is nothing that is not Brahman. The Personal Self is the impersonal Brahman. (सोऽयमात्मा चतुष्पात् ) It has four aspects (states), also known as four quarters.

” Ayam atma Brahma” is one of the four mahaVakyas from four Vedas. It signifies the realization that who I am really is that same Brahman. The word “chatuShpad” (चतुष्पात् )refers to the four aspects of Consciousness. Three states of Consciousness: 1) Waking[GROSS], 2) Dreaming [SUBTLE] and 3) Deep Sleep [CAUSAL]. Fourth is the Reality which is the Background of all states. Details to be known from the following verses.

The first pada: Waking state Consciousness.

जागरितस्थानो बहिष्प्रज्ञः सप्ताङ्ग एकोनविंशतिमुखः
स्थूलभुग्वैश्वानरः प्रथमः पादः ॥ ३॥
Third Mantra : jAgaritasthAno bahiShpraj~naH saptA~Nga ekonaviMshatimukhaH sthUlabhugvaishvAnaraH prathamaH pAdaH (3)

Mantra 3: First comes the material condition-common to all. Perception turned outward. Seven limbs*( सप्ताङ्ग = 7 limbs), Nineteen mouths**( एकोनविंशतिमुखः = 19 mouths), wherein the Self enjoys course matter. This is known as waking condition. Waking State~ jAgrat.  The individual is known here as vaishvAnara (Virat) who is in the waking state of consciousness(the gross world). Bahih PrajNa: (बहिष्प्रज्ञः) means the outward tendencies which is predominant in this state. The Seven Limbs: the macrocosm and microcosm are paired up and through 19 mouths, one enjoys the gross objects( स्थूलभुग्वैश्वानरः ) of this world.

*Seven limbs are: Heavens(he ad), Sun(eye) air(breath), fire(heart), water(belly), earth(feet) and space(body).

**Nineteen mouths are: 1) Five organs of senses- Hearing, Touching, Seeing, Tasting and Smelling. 2) Five organs of action- Speaking, Handling, Walking, Generating and Excreting. 3) Five living fires- Prana, Apana, Samana,Vayana, and Udana. 4) Four states of mind:  Discursive mind (Manas), Discriminative mind(Buddhi), Mind-Material(Chitta) and Personality(Ahangkara).  { 3×5+4 = 19}

The Second Pada – Dream state Consciousness.

स्वप्नस्थानोऽन्तःप्रज्ञः सप्ताङ्ग एकोनविंशतिमुखः
प्रविविक्तभुक्तैजसो द्वितीयः पादः ॥ ४॥
Fourth Mantra: svapnasthAno.antaHpraj~naH saptA~Nga
ekonaviMshatiMukhaHpraviviktabhuk taijaso dvitIyaH pAdaH (4)

Mantra 4: Dream State:  Taijasa~  the dreamer creates dream world out of his or her own mind. In the dream state, entire dream world seems to be as real as is experienced in waking condition, whatever be the time duration of the dream.
In dream, the person experience the subtle world  (pain or pleasure,  joy or fear) through dream sense organs, not the physical sense organs. In dream, mind reflects the impression left by waking state like a piece of canvas with the pictures painted on it. Dream state experience that as if it were like waking. Like in waking state, here the sphere of activity is inward. It enjoys the subtle objects (प्रविविक्तभुक्तैजसो ) of the mental world. Seven limbs and nineteen mouths also work here but INWARD. Here Anta prajNa is predominant. 

 

According to BRRihadAraNyaka Upanishad IV.3,9:
When he dreams, he takes away a little of the impression of this all embracing world (the waking state), himself puts the body aside and himself creates a dream body in it’s place, revealing his own lustre by his own light and dreams. In this state, the man himself becomes the light.

The Third Pada -Deep Sleep Consciousness      (Vyashti)

यत्र सुप्तो न कञ्चन कामं कामयते न कञ्चन स्वप्नं
पश्यति तत् सुषुप्तम् । सुषुप्तस्थान एकीभूतः प्रज्ञानघन
एवानन्दमयो ह्यानन्दभुक् चेतोमुखः प्राज्ञस्तृतीयः पादः ॥ ५॥
Fifth Mantra: yatro supto na ka~nchana kAmaM kAmayate na ka~nchana svapnaMpashyati tat suShuptam. suSuptasthAna ekibhUtaH praj~nAnaghana evAnandamayo hyAnandabhukchetomukhaH prAj~nastRRitIyaH pAdaH. (5)

Mantra 5:The Deep Sleep state (SuShupta~SU=Sundar/excellent +sUpta=Sleep) ~ prajNa and antaryAmin.
In this state, waking world and dreaming world temporarily ceases. We exist here in non dual state. Most refreshing state. A state of Bliss(with ignorance). In the waking and dreaming state, we are diverted from this state of bliss, though knowledge of our true nature is absent here. All the perceived limitations are removed in this temporary state but ready to spring forth as soon as we move to waking world.

In that sleep state, not for anything desirable does one have any desire.(यत्र सुप्तो न कञ्चन कामं कामयते).  Not the slightest trace of dream does it see in that state of deep sleep.(न कञ्चन स्वप्नं पश्यति तत् सुषुप्तम् ). In the sphere of deep sleep, there is just one ” homogenous mass of consciousness” alone (सुषुप्तस्थान एकीभूतः प्रज्ञानघन).  Because of his union with the Self and his unbroken knowledge of it, he is filled with joy, he knows his joy, his mind is illuminated (एवानन्दमयो ह्यानन्दभुक् चेतोमुखः). Such is the called third quarter called prajNa (चेतोमुखः प्राज्ञस्तृतीयः पादः).

The Ishwara State of Consciousness.

एष सर्वेश्वरः एष सर्वज्ञ एषोऽन्तर्याम्येष योनिः सर्वस्य
प्रभवाप्ययौ हि भूतानाम् ॥ ६॥
Sixth Mantra: eSha sarveshvaraH eSha sarvaj~na eSho.antaryAmyeSha yoniH sarvasyaprabhavApyau hi bhUtAnAm. (6)

Mantra 6: The Self is Lord of all. He is inner controller and inhabitant of the hearts of all. He is Omniscient, the source of all; creator and dissolver of  all beings. there is nothing He does not know.

The fruit of the process of “Negation”:

नान्तःप्रज्ञं न बहिष्प्रज्ञं नोभयतःप्रज्ञं न प्रज्ञानघनं
न प्रज्ञं नाप्रज्ञम् । अदृष्टमव्यवहार्यमग्राह्यमलक्षणं
अचिन्त्यमव्यपदेश्यमेकात्मप्रत्ययसारं प्रपञ्चोपशमं
शान्तं शिवमद्वैतं चतुर्थं मन्यन्ते स आत्मा स विज्ञेयः ॥  ७॥
Seventh Mantra: nAntaHpraj~naM na bahiShpraj~naM  nobhayataHpraj~nam  napraj~nAnaghanaM  na praj~nam nApraj~nam.
adRRiShTamavyavahAryamagrAhyamalakShaNamachintyamavyap adeshyamekAtmapratyayasAraM manyante sa AtmA sa vij~neyaH.(7)

 

Mantra 7: Negation Phase: He is not knowable by perception, turned inward or outward, nor by both combined. He is neither that which is known, nor that which is not known, nor is He the sum of all that might be known. He can not be seen, grasped, bargained with. He is undefinable, unthinkable, indescribable.

nAntaHpraj~naM = not the knower of the internal (subtle)

na bahiShpraj~naM = not the knower of the external (gross)

na bahiShpraj~naM = not the knower of both

napraj~nAnaghanaM = not the knower of deep sleep

na praj~nam = nor consciousness

nApraj~naM = nor unconsciousness.

Assertion Phase: The only proof of His existence is union with Him. The world disappears in Him. He is the peaceful, the good, the ONE without a second. This is the fourth condition of the Self- The most worthy of all. This is the Atman

This 7th mantra is most important among the Vedic scriptures. This mantra describes the nature of Absolute reality~ Brahman. 

Conclusion:

According to the Mandukya Upanishad, four conditions of  The Self (“Atman”) can be described as below :-
1) Waking condition: Perception turned outward.
2) Mental condition : Perception turned inward, known as dreaming condition. Self enjoys subtle
matter.
3)Deep sleep condition: No desire, no dream. This is intellectual condition. Because of union with Self
and his unbroken knowledge, one feels joy. He knows joy. His mind is illuminated.
ॐ~AUM
A~ Waking
U~ Dreaming
M~ Deep Sleep
The Fourth condition of the Self  can be achieved through deep meditation that corresponds to “OM” as ONE. Self is Whole and beyond bargain. The world disappears in HIM. SELF is one without a second. This condition is known as #Turiya#

Recommended readings:

  1. Back to the Truth: 5000 years of ADVAITA by Dennis Waite.**
  2. THE TEN PRINCIPAL UPANISHADS: Translated by Shree Purohit** Swami and W.B.Yeats
  3. Brahma Sutra Bhasya of Sankaracharya: Translated by Swami Gambhirananda.**
  4. Commentary of Mandukya Upanishad: By Swami Krishnananda.
  5. MANDUKYA Upanishad By Swami GuruBhaktananda.
  6. EIGHT UPANISADS -VOL-1 with commentary of Sankaracharya, Translated by SWAMI GAMBHIRANANDA.
  7. THE TAITTIRIYA UPANISHAD: SHIKSHAVALLI-ANANDAVALLI-BHRIGUVALLI with Sri Shankara’s Commentary By Sri Swami Satchidanandera Saraswati.
  8. A-U-M Awakening to Reality : By Dennis Waite***
  9. Information available on internet.

             It is my sincere request to the esteemed readers to share their opinion or queries if any. Suggestions to make the site attractive will be highly helpful for me. Readers are requested to read all the posts to have continuation of the topic from the beginning. My mail ID is :   arun7663@gmail.com 

“Ashtanga Yoga” [ Eight limbs of Yoga]~ Part-5

Disclaimer:

The article is purely based on my studies, my thoughts, my concept, my beliefs, my experiences and self realization. ☆I found some link between modern science and teachings of ancient sages as mentioned in Vedanta, regarding Universe, Supreme Consciousness or the Ultimate truth , the Ultimate Reality whatever we say. ☆ The term “MAN” wherever used in this entire text is intended to consider as “HUMAN” irrespective of gender differences. ♡ Having gone through the Vedanta/ancient texts, commentaries, translated by different writers, translators, publishers on the same topic, I have tried my best to share the subject matter as I understood and convinced too. My intention is to reach to you with the topic that I found very useful for human lives. I am not good in English literature. Please give your valuable suggestions for the improvement and valuable inputs to make the text beneficial for mankind.  ☆ The Spiritual context is purely based on ancient sacred texts. Sanskrit slokas are taken from books and websites. There may be little variation in the translations and commentaries. I have shared my own views and explanations according to my concept, gathered in the subject through experience and intuitions. There is no discrimination against any religion, race, cast or creed.  Your positive feedback will be highly appreciated. I am sure that the subject matter is highly logical and does not bring any conflict. Hope you will enjoy reading. Regards. NAMASTE.


Patanjali sutra 1.40 : ” paramanu paramamahattvantosya vashikarah” means=> Meditating mind becomes un obstructed from the atomic to the infinite.

Recap: In previous blogs “Ashtanga Yoga”  part-1 to part-4 , I have written on following topics(links included):-

Ashtanga Yoga Part1  Introduction to Patanjali Yoga sutras : It presents a holistic systematic approach towards the elimination of sufferings and attainment of spiritual liberation.  Maharshi Patanjali integrated and simplified the science of Yoga concisely in his Yoga sutras. There are 196 sutras presented in four sections know as PADA. Maharshi Patanjali  divided the path of Yoga, known as “Raja Yoga” into eight levels (Eight limbs) named “Ashtanga yoga”.

Ashtanga Yoga Part-2:  Samadhi Pada ,the first section of four Sections of “Patanjali Yoga Sutras” explained briefly.

Ashtanga Yoga Part-3:  In this part we have discussed on first five limbs of Eight limbs(Ashtanga Yoga), which are : 1. Yama – Restraints, 2. Niyama – Observances, 3. Asana -Physical postures, 4. Pranayama – Control of Prana (Breathing control), 5. Pratyahara -Withdrawal of the senses.  

Ashtanga Yoga Part-4:   Last three limbs of Eight limbs are Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi.  In this part-4, sutras from Vibhuti Pada  ,Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi have been discussed in details. Practices of samadhi unravel the mysteries of Yogic Life and the power of siddhis are thus acquired. 

Introduction: 

In the previous posts we have seen “Eight limbs of Ashtanga Yoga”. In this post we will discuss on “Vrittis” from “Samadhi Pada”. Mind has its dynamic nature (prakriti). As such mind has the capacity to express itself with modifications, various modes, which are known as ” Vritti”Vritti ” is a Sanskrit word. Vrittis are like innumerable waves as seen in agitated ocean of “chitta” (mind). Can we see bottom of an agitated sea? No, we can not. Similarly when mind is agitated, we can not see “purusha” which is our own and very true nature. Therefore, we need to isolate those Vrittis. Vrittis are mental modifications. We need to stop those modifications. Our aim is to follow the second sutra of Samadhi Pada. This is the essence of Patanjali Yoga Sutra: Yogas citta-vritti-nirodah” which literary means “Yoga is the stilling of the modifications of the mind” Target is to achieve the state of mind which is calm, tranquil and free of distortions. It is the control of thought waves in the mind. One must not have conflicts in the mind. We have to block Vrittis. In the following paragraphs we will know about different Vrittis. Sutra 1.5 onwards tells us about Vrittis.

sutra 1.5: " Vrttayah panchatayyah klistahaklistah" means => modifications of mind are fivefold; they are painful or not painful.

There are five kinds of mental modifications, means five types of “Vrittis” , which are either painful or painless.  In the following sutras ,we will learn one after another.

sutra 1.6 "Pramana viparyaya vikalpa nidra smrtayah" means => five folds of Vrittis are right knowledge, wrong knowledge, conceptualization, sleep and memory.

Let us now concentrate over the five fold Vrittis (modifications of mind) which  are  classified  in the sutra1.6:  Maharshi Patanjali explains all these five modifications in his sutras from 1.7 to 1.11.  All that we see, hear, and experience arise in our mind through senses and constitute consciousness in mind. Every mental state can be explained through these five mental modifications and can be said as manifestation of mind

  1. Pramana:  Right Knowledge : [sutra 1.7]
  2. Viparyaya: Wrong Knowledge : [sutra 1.8]
  3. Vikalpa: Delusion, imagination : [sutra 1.9]
  4. Nidra: Sleep : [sutra 1.10]
  5. Smritayah: Memories : [sutra 1.11]
sutra 1.7: "pratyakshanumanagamah pramanani" (pratyaksha + anumana + agamaha) Direct cognition, inference and testimony are the proof and right source of knowledge.

According to above sutra there are three types of right knowledge. 1. Direct perception or cognition , 2. Inference and 3. Authoritative testimony are the basic source of knowledge. Perception is gained through sense evidences. It is the product of sense organs. If the sense organs are optimally functional, then these can be the sources for right knowledge. (Not always true. Example:- mirage ,an optical effect sometime seen at sea or in the desert or over a hot pavement ). However direct perception is the initial reaction of stimulus on individual mind. When the mental function starts, pure and direct experience can be varied according to the limitations of thought process of that individual. Another point is lack of focus during the act of sense organs and focus of mind on the act. Like thinking something while doing something else. Knowledge gained in this way can be incomplete and differ according to the self ego known as “ahamkara”. Experiences gathered have the imprints of biased thoughts also. Perceptions include some factors like desires, aversions , fears, greed etc. Such perceptions when recalled ,mind becomes venerable  to the false impressions and incomplete memories. Such perceptions are also one form of mis-perception. Next sutra (1.8) will explain more on it. 

Anumana means Inference:  Inference is based on experiences. It  can be another source of right knowledge. 

Agamah: Testimony: Where no sense evidence is available, and there is no solid ground for inference, then we have to depend on testimony, provided it is authoritative testimony.  We can consider teachings of Guru and Scriptures are best testimonies.

sutra 1.8: "viparyaya mithyajnanam atadroopapratishtham " This means misperception is the result of false or incomplete knowledge.

If we split the sentence , Sanskrit words of the sutra, it would be easy to understand.  viparyaya (misconception) + Mithya (false)+ jnanam (knowledge)+ atad (not on that)+ Roopa (form)+ pratishtham(established).  One example will make the sense clear.  If someone mistakes a rope for a snake, it will be a false. To see a rope as a snake is misconception( Mithya jnanam). Such false knowledge should be corrected through right knowledge. viparyaya (misconception) is nothing but ignorance (Avidya) only. Now, how ignorance can be eliminated?   To understand what ignorance is, we may refer sutra 2.3 in brief.(2.3/Sadhana Pada):    “avidyasmitaragadveshabhiniveshah kleshaah”   means ignorance, egoism, attachment, aversion and clinging to bodily life are five obstacles. [sutra 2.3]

sutra 1.9: "sabdajnaananupati vastushoonyo vikalpah" means=> A kind of mental modification, which arises on hearing mere words having no objective reality. It is a verbal delusion only.

Here we will learn about “vikalpa” another kind of mental modification, a type of Vritti. Vikalpa is , a conceptualization ,verbal delusion, which arises on hearing mere words having no basis. We get angry on hearing some words ,when uttered by some persons. If we reason it out, we can manage ourselves without reacting, without being angry, without being miserable. The words are not objects, have no basis. It is just a mental modification due to vague notion. This vague notion is due to knowledge gained through conceptualization. In conceptualization, mind weaves basis through combination of memory and language, which may or may not be correct. 

sutra 1.10: " abhava-pratyayalambana vrittirnidra" means=> mental modification(Vritti) based on cognition of nothingness is sleep.

Here we will discuss the fourth type of modification of mind. This modification of mind is based on the absence of content and that is known as Sleep. During sleep a person’s mind remains blank. There is a feeling of voidness. There is no cognition in the field of consciousness. We will refer to maNDukya Upanishad regarding “Deep sleep” condition to understand this sutra. According to maNDukya Upanishad ,there are four states of self.  The Deep Sleep state also known as “SuShupta” is one of the four states.  SuShupta~SU=Sundar/excellent +sUpta=Sleep~ means prajNa and antaryAmin.
In this state, waking world and dreaming world temporarily ceases. We exist here in non dual state. Most refreshing state. A state of Bliss(with ignorance). In the waking and dreaming state, we are diverted from this state of bliss, though knowledge of our true nature is absent here. All the perceived limitations are removed in this temporary state but ready to spring forth as soon as we move to waking world. In Deep sleep condition self has no desire, no dream. This is intellectual condition. Because of union with Self and his unbroken knowledge, one feels joy. He knows joy. His mind is illuminated.                                                            This state outwardly appears to be the same as  citta-vritti-nirodah, where mental modifications are suppressed. However in Deep sleep, although there is no consciousness as is present in waking state, yet mental activity is transferred to subtle condition and comes back as soon as sleep is broken. Therefore, Sleep is one condition of mind which hides the knowledge of the external world. Thoughts are there but not present before mind. 

sutra 1.11: " anubhootavishayasanpramoshah smritih"

Sutra 1.11 is about fifth Vritti which is known as “smritih” (memory).  Memory is nothing but retention of past experiences collectively. Past experiences leave impressions in mind. All experiences impact the mind as Vrittis. As time passes, these Vrittis become subtler and then it become part of SamskarasSamskaras are subconscious impressions which lie dormant. It is active in the subconscious level and influence our conscious mind in the background. 

Normally we do not observe the movements of mind , the fluctuations of mind, carefully. But if we observe the movements of mind carefully, then we can stop its fluctuations. Mental modifications can be stopped ,if we concentrate on our thoughts appearing in mind. What ever we think in waking condition are included in five types of Vritti as mentioned above. Most of the time, the thoughts are found to be baseless and they are originated due to ignorance only. This ignorance is due to absence of knowledge of our real nature, true nature which is “purusha”.  Ignorance is removed by regular and persistent practice of Yoga. Ignorance is removed by gaining more insight into the nature of our mind and going beyond mind.

sutra 1.12: " abhyasavairagyabhyan tannirodhah"

” abhyasa (continuous practice) + vairagya (detachment) + abhyam ( by both) + tannirodhah ( modification of mind are stopped)”.

All mental modifications means five types of Vritti can be restrained by practice and non attachment. According to sutras of Maharshi Patanjali, combination of uninterrupted practice and non-attachment stop fluctuations and mental modifications in mind. In this respect we may refer four means of Salvation as stated in Vedanta. According to Vedanta, the study of scriptures helps in realization of truth, when one is equipped with necessary fourfold discipline:
1. Discrimination between real (Nithya নিত্য~ eternal) and unreal (anitya অনিত্য~transitory).
2. Renunciation of the unreal (Viraga~বৈরাগ্য)
3. Six fold qualities.
4. Longing for liberation (Moksha ~মোক্ষ প্রাপ্তি to escape from the cycle of births and deaths)

Sravana, Manana, Nididhyasana leads us to intuition (aparoksha anubhuti). In this way, “Brahma Kara Vritti ” is generated from ” Sattvic anta Karana ” after following four means of Salvation and teachings of Guru( Teacher). This ” Brahma Kara Vritti” destroys the mula-Avidya or primitive ignorance which is the root cause of all bondage, births and deaths. 

Conclusion!

In this part we have discussed five Vrittis, means mental modifications as mentioned by Maharshi Patanjali. Five Vrittis are 1)Right Knowledge. 2) Wrong Knowledge. 3) Imaginary Knowledge. 4) No Knowledge. 5) Past Knowledge. Next post  will cover first part of Sadhana Pada to know about “Kriya Yoga” 

Notes:-  Having gone through all the books listed below, I have composed this blog as a concise text for Ashtanga Yoga.  


Recommended readings:

  1. Patanjali Yoga Sutras: commentary By Swami Vivekananda.
  2. FOUR YOGAS OF SWAMI VIVEKANANDA :Condensed and retold by Swami Tapasyananda.
  3. Patanjal Yogasutra : Commentary , by Swami Premeshananda.
  4. Inside the Yoga Sutras- By Reverend Jaganath Carrera.
  5. Four Chapters on Freedom- By Swami Satyananda Saraswati.
  6. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali: Commentary on the Raja Yoga Sutras by Swami Satchitananda.

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