XIII. THE BLISS OF NON-DUALITY
1. The bliss of Yoga which was described earlier may be said to be the bliss of the Self. (Doubt): How can the bliss of the embodied Self which is in duality be identical with the bliss of Brahman (who is non-dual)? (Reply): Please listen.
2. As described in the Taittiriya Upanishad, the whole world, from Akasa to the physical body, is not different from bliss. Therefore the bliss of the Self is of the nature of the non-dual Brahman.
3. The world is born of bliss, it abides in bliss and is merged in bliss. How then can it be anything other than this bliss?
4. The pot made by a potter is different from him, but let this not create any doubt, for like the clay, bliss is the material cause of the universe, not like the potter the efficient cause.
5. The existence and destruction of the pot are never seen to rest in the potter, but its material cause, the clay. Similarly, according to the Shruti passages their (the existence and destruction of the universe) material cause is bliss.
6. The material cause is of three kinds: (1) the Vivarta, which gives rise to a phenomenal appearance, not materially related to the cause; (2) the Parinama which gives rise to an effect which is a modification or change of state of the cause; and (3) the Arambha which consists of effect being different from the causes. The last two (which presuppose parts) have no scope with reference to partless Brahman.
7. The Arambhavadins accept the production of one kind of material from another, as cloth from threads and they consider threads and cloth to be quite different.
8. Parinama is the change of one state of the same substance into another, as milk into curd, clay into a pot and gold into an ear-ring.
9. But Vivarta is mere appearance of change of a thing or its state, not a real change: like a rope appearing as a snake. It is seen even in a partless substance, e.g., the Akasa (which has no shape or colour) appearing as the blue dome.
10. So the illusive appearance of the world in the partless bliss can be explained. Like the power of a magician, the power of Maya may be said to bring the objective world into being.
11. Power does not exist apart from the possessor of power, for it is always seen as inseparable from him. Nor can it be said to be identical with him, for its obstruction is met with. If identical, in the absence of power, of what is the obstruction?
12. Power is inferred from its effect. When its effects are not seen we conclude that there is some obstruction to it. For instance, if the flames of a fire do not burn, we infer the presence of some obstruction, such as incantation etc.
13. The sages perceived that the power of Brahman called Maya is concealed by its own qualities. Many are the aspects of this divine power, which is manifest as action, knowledge and will.
14. "The supreme Brahman is eternal, perfect, non-dual and omnipotent", so says the Veda and Vasistha supports this.
15. 'With whatever power He means to sport, that power becomes manifest. O Rama, the power of Brahman which manifests itself as consciousness is felt in the bodies of all beings'.
16. 'This power abides as movement in the air, as hardness in stone, as liquidity in water, as the power to burn in fire'.
17. 'Similarly it abides as emptiness in Akasa and as perishability in the objects which are subject to destruction. As a huge serpent is latent in the egg, so the world is latent in the Self'.
18. 'Just as a tree with its fruits, leaves, tendrils, flowers, branches, twigs and roots is latent in the seed, so does this world abide in Brahman'.
19. 'Due to variations in space and time, somewhere, some times, some powers emanate from Brahman, just as varieties of paddy from the earth.'
20. 'O Rama, when the all-pervasive, eternal and infinite Self assumes the power of cognition, we call it the mind'
21. 'O Prince, first arises the mind, then the notion of bondage and release and then the universe consisting of many worlds. Thus all this manifestation has been fixed or settled (in human minds), like the tales told to amuse children'.
22. 'To amuse a child, O mighty one, the nurse relates some beautiful story: Once upon a time there were three handsome princes'.
23. 'Two of them were never born and the third was never even conceived in his mother's womb. They lived righteously in a city which never existed.'
24. 'These holy princes came out of their city of non-existence and while roaming saw trees, laden with fruits, growing in the sky'.
25. 'Then the three princes, my child, went to a city which was yet to be built and lived there happily, passing their time in games and hunting'.
26. 'O Rama, the nurse thus narrated the beautiful children's tale. The child too through want of discrimination believed it to be true.
27. 'Thus to those who have no discrimination the world appears to be real like the tale repeated to the child'.
28. By such entertaining tales Vasistha described the power of Maya. This power is now being described more fully.
29. This power is different both from its effect and also from its substratum. The blister (which is the effect) and the charcoal (the substratum) are cognised objects; but the power to burn is inferred from the effect (viz., the blister).
30. The pot with its properties of thickness, roundness and so forth, is the product of power acting on the clay with its five properties of sound, touch, form, taste and smell, but the power is different here (from both the pot and the clay).
31. In the power (that creates the pot) there is neither form nor quality; as it is it remains (even when it has produced the effect, it undergoes no change). It is therefore said to be beyond thought and description.
32. Before the creation of the pot, the power (of giving rise to a pot) is implicit in the clay. With the help of the potter and other means the clay is transformed into a pot.
33. People of immature minds confound the properties of the effect with those of the cause, the clay and speak of it as the pot.
34. The clay, before the potter worked on it, cannot be called a pot. But it is proper to call it a pot when it acquires the properties such as thickness, hollowness and so forth.
35. The pot is not different from the clay, as it has no existence apart from the clay; it is neither identical with the clay, as in the unmoulded clay it is not perceived.
36. Therefore the pot (a product of power) can only be called indescribable, like the power which produces it. Hence the product of power when imperceptible is simply called power and when perceptible it is called a pot.
37. A magician's power is not apparent earlier; it is only when he brings it into operation that it appears as an army of Gandharvas and the like.
38. Thus being illusive, in the scriptures, the products of power are called unreal whereas reality is predicated only of the entity in which the power inheres, e.g., of the clay in which the pot inheres.
39. A pot taken as a product of power is only a name composed of words; it is not a real entity. Only the clay that possesses sound, touch, form, taste and smell, is a real entity.
40. Of the three entities, the manifest (i.e., product of power), the unmanifest (i.e., the power itself), and the substratum in which they both inhere, the first two exist by turns (thus cancelling one another); but the third persists in both (and at all times).
41. A product of power though visible has no real substance, as it is subject to creation and destruction. When it appears, it is given a name by men.
42. When the product perishes, its name continues to be used by men. Since it is indicated only by name, it is said to be of nominal existence.
43. This form of the product (of power, like the pot) is not real like clay, because it is unsubstantial, destructible and a mere name based upon words.
44. The substance clay is said to be the real entity because by nature it is unchanged, substantial and indestructible at all times, before the production of the pot, after its destruction and even while it is manifest.
45. (Doubt): If the thing indicated by the three terms i.e., the manifest, the pot and the modified form is unreal, why is it not destroyed when the knowledge of its substratum (clay) dawns?
46. (Reply): With the knowledge of the substratum the pot is destroyed, for your idea of the reality of the pot is removed. This is what is meant by the destruction of the pot through knowledge; it does not mean that the pot would cease to appear.
47. Though a man appears head downwards when reflected in water, he is not so. No one would ever mistake it for the real person standing on the bank.
48. According to the doctrine of the non-dualists, such knowledge (i.e., the knowledge of the unreality of the superimposed thing, the world), gives liberation, the supreme goal of life. As the substratum clay is not rejected, the appearance of a pot in it is accepted.
49. In an actual modification of the substratum, when milk is turned into curd (for example), the former form, milk, disappears. But in the modification of clay into a pot or gold into an ear-ring, the substratum does not change.
50. (Doubt): When a pot is broken into pieces, they do not resemble the original clay, for broken pieces only are seen. (Reply): It is not so, for when reduced to powder they do. The persistence of gold in the ear-ring is very clear.
51. When milk is turned into curd, actual change of substance takes place. Milk ceases to exist as such and cannot be recovered from the curd. By this, the case of a clay-pot or a gold-ring (as examples of Vivarta) does not suffer.
52. According to the Arambhavadins, clay should have two sets of properties, viz., those of the cause and those of the effect, for they hold, the properties of the effects are different from those of the cause, which is, however, not the case.
53. The sage Aruni mentions the three examples of clay, gold and iron (only to show that all effects are only phenomenal). Therefore one should fix in mind the unreality of all effects.
54. Aruni holds that a knowledge of the cause implies a knowledge of all its effects. But how would a knowledge of the unreal effects arise from a knowledge of their real cause?
55. According to the common view, an effect, such as a pot, is a modification of its material cause, clay; the clay portion of the pot is the real substance. Therefore when the cause of the pot is known, the real portion of substance of the pot is also known.
56. The unreal portion of the effect need not be known, because its knowledge serves no useful purpose. A knowledge of the real substance is necessary for men, whereas a knowledge of the unreal portion is useless.
57. (Doubt): The statement that through the knowledge of the cause you arrive at a knowledge of the effect amounts to saying that by a knowledge of clay you acquire a knowledge of clay. What is there wonderful about it?
58. (Reply): The real substance in the effect (pot) is identical with its cause. This may not be surprising to the wise but who can prevent the ignorant being surprised at this?
59. The followers of Arambhavada and Parinamavada and ordinary men may find it puzzling to hear that a knowledge of the cause should give a knowledge of all its effects.
60. To direct the attention of the pupil to the non-dual truth, the Chandogya Upanishad teaches that by a knowledge of the one cause all its effects are known. It does not speak of the multiplicity of effects.
61. Just by knowing a lump of clay one knows all objects made of clay, so by knowing the one Brahman one knows (the real element of) the whole phenomenal world.
62. The nature of Brahman is existence, consciousness and bliss, whereas the nature of the world is name and form. In the Nrisimha-Uttara-Tapaniya Upanishad existence, consciousness and bliss are said to be the 'indications' of Brahman.
63. Aruni described Brahman as of the nature of existence, the Bahvirchas of the Rig-Veda as consciousness and Sanatkumara as bliss. The same is declared in other Upanishads.
64. After creating names and forms Brahman remains established in His nature, i.e., remains as immutable as ever, says the Purusha Sukta. Another Shruti says that Brahman as the Self reveals names and forms.
65. Another Shruti says that before creation the universe was unmanifest and that afterwards it became manifest as name and form. Here Maya, the inexplicable power of Brahman, is referred to as 'unmanifest'.
66. This Maya, which rests unmanifest in the immutable Brahman, subsequently undergoes numerous modifications. 'Know Maya as Prakriti (the material cause of the universe), and the supreme Lord as the Ruler (substratum) of Maya'.
67. The first modification of Maya is Akasa; it exists, is manifest and is dear to all. The special form of Akasa is space which is unreal, but its other three properties (derived from its cause, Brahman), are not unreal.
68. The spatial property does not exist before manifestation and ceases also to exist after destruction. That which is non-existent before creation and after dissolution is so even in the present (i.e., during creation).
69. Sri Krishna said to Arjuna: 'O descendant of Bharata, beings are unmanifest in the beginning, manifest in the present and unmanifest again at the end'.
70. Just as clay exists (in its modifications such as the pot) in all the three divisions of time, so existence, consciousness and bliss ever pervade the Akasa, when the idea of space is negated from Akasa, what remains is one's own Self-existence, consciousness and bliss (infinity).
71. When the idea of space is negated from Akasa, what remains of it? If you say, 'Nothing remains', we accept it and say that that which is represented by the word 'nothing' is revealed.
72. Because it is such that we must attribute existence to the remaining entity. Being productive of no misery, it is bliss, for the absence of both the favourable and the unfavourable is the bliss of the Self.
73. One gets pleasure from a favourable object and grief from an unfavourable one; but in the natural state, free from both, there is the natural bliss of the Self. There is never any experience of misery in that state.
74. The natural bliss of the Self is uniform and steady, but the mind due to its fickle nature, passes in a moment from joy to sorrow. So both are to be looked upon as the creations of the mind.
75. Thus in Akasa also we accept bliss, i.e., it is fundamentally existence, consciousness and bliss and similarly we can establish that the fundamental nature of all objects from air to the physical body is essentially the same.
76. The special properties of air have been determined as motion and touch; of fire, heat and light; of water, liquidity; and of earth, solidity.
77. Similarly the special properties of plants, foods, bodies and other objects can be thought of by the mind.
78. In the manifold objects, different in names and forms, the common element is existence, consciousness and bliss. Nobody can dispute this.
79. Both name and form are without any real existence because they are subject to creation and destruction. So know them as superimposed by the intellect on Brahman, just as waves and foam are on the ocean.
80. With the direct knowledge of Brahman, the eternal existence, consciousness and bliss, names and forms slowly come to be disregarded.
81. The more is duality negated, the clearer does the realisation of Brahman become and as realisation becomes perfect, names and forms come to be disregarded of themselves.
82. When through the continuous practice of meditation a man is established in the knowledge of Brahman, he becomes liberated even while living. Then the fate of his body does not matter.
83. Thinking of Him, speaking of Him and making one another understand Him - this is what the wise call 'practice of Brahman-realisation'.
84. The longstanding impressions of the world on the mind are loosened if this training of knowledge is constantly practised with earnestness for a long time.
85. As the power inherent in the clay brings the pot into existence, so the power of Maya inherent in Brahman creates many unreal things. This is illustrated by sleep and dream conditions of living beings.
86. Just as in the sleeping state a power inherent in the Jiva gives rise to impossible dreams, so the power of Maya inherent in Brahman, projects, maintains and destroys the universe.
87. In dream a man may see himself flying in the sky or being beheaded. In a moment he may live through the experience of many years. Or he may dream of seeing a dead son and so forth.
88. 'This is proper (possible) and this is not' such discrimination is not possible then. Whatever one perceives in dreams seems to be in the right place.
89. When such is the glory of the power of sleep and dream, what is there to wonder at the unimaginable glory of the power of Maya?
90. In a sleeping man various dreams are created; similarly the power of Maya creates diverse appearances in the immutable Brahman.
91. Akasa, air, fire, water, earth, the universe, the different Lokas (worlds) and animate and inanimate objects are appearances produced by Maya. Pure consciousness appears as a reflection in the intellects of living beings.
92. Brahman characterised as existence, consciousness and bliss is the common basis of both the animate and inanimate objects; they differ only in their names and forms.
93. Just as many objects are seen in a picture, so the various names and forms exist in Brahman. By negating both names and forms, one can understand that what remains is existence, consciousness and bliss.
94. Even though a man standing on the bank of a river sees his body reflected upside down in the water, he nevertheless identifies himself with his own body in the shore; similarly an aspirant after realisation of Brahman should know himself as Brahman.
95. Just as in day-dreaming, people see thousands of mental pictures, but in the practical world they disregard them all, so should names and forms be disregarded.
96. Different mental creations are formed every moment, while those which pass are lost for ever. The objects of the practical world should be looked upon similarly.
97. Childhood is lost in youth and youth is lost in old age. The father once dead does not return. The day which is past never comes back.
98. How do the objects of the practical world, which are destroyed every moment, differ from the forms created by the mind in imagination? Though they appear, the idea of their reality should be given up.
99. When the objects of the world are disregarded, the mind freed from obstacles rests in the contemplation of Brahman. Then like an actor, a wise man is engaged in worldly concerns with assumed faith (and so is not affected by them).
100. As the big rock lying in the bed of a river remains unmoved, though the water flows over it, so also while names and forms constantly change, the unchanging Brahman does not become otherwise.
101. As the sky with all its contents is reflected in a flawless mirror, so the Akasa with all the universe within it is reflected on the one partless Brahman, who is nothing but absolute consciousness and existence.
102. Without seeing the mirror it is impossible to see the objects reflected in it. Similarly wherefrom can there be any knowledge of names and forms without a knowledge of their substratum, which is existence, consciousness and bliss?
103. Having learnt of Brahman as existence, consciousness and bliss, one should fix the mind firmly on Him and should restrain it from dwelling on names and forms.
104. Thus Brahman is realised as existence, consciousness and bliss and devoid of the phenomenal universe. May all people find rest in this secondless bliss of Brahman.
105. In this third chapter of the section called 'the Bliss of Brahman', is described the bliss of Non-duality which is to be obtained by meditating on the unreality of the world.
XIV. THE BLISS OF KNOWLEDGE
1. Now is being described the bliss of knowledge experienced by him who has realised the bliss of Brahman through Yoga, discrimination of the Self and thinking of the unreality of duality.
2. Like the bliss arising from the contact of the mind with external objects, the bliss arising from the knowledge of Brahman is a modification of the intellect. It is said to have four aspects, in the forms of absence of sorrow etc.
3. The four aspects of the bliss of knowledge are: absence of sorrow, the fulfilment of all desires, the feeling 'I have done all that was to be done', and also the feeling 'I have achieved all that was to be achieved'.
4. Sorrow is twofold, that of this world and that of the next. The cessation of the sorrow of this world has been described in the words of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad.
5. 'When a man (Purusha) has realised the identity of his own Self with That (Paramatman), desiring what and to please whom should he allow his body and mind to be afflicted?'
6. The Self is spoken of as of two types: the individual Self and the supreme Self. The consciousness, through identification with the three bodies, thinks itself as the Jiva and becomes an enjoyer.
7. The supreme Self, who is by nature existence, consciousness and bliss, identifying itself with names and forms becomes the objects of enjoyment. When by discrimination it is disidentified from the three bodies and names and forms, there is neither the enjoyer nor anything to be enjoyed.
8. Desiring the objects of enjoyment for the sake of the enjoyer, the Jiva suffers, being identified with the body. The sufferings are in the three bodies, but there are no sufferings for the Self.
9. The diseases due to the disequilibrium of the bodily humours are the suffering of the gross body; desire, anger etc., are the suffering of the subtle body; and the source of the sufferings of both the gross and subtle bodies is the suffering of the causal body.
10. The knower of the supreme Self, while discriminating about it as mentioned in the Chapter on the 'Bliss of Non-duality', sees no reality in any object of enjoyment. What then should he desire?
11. When the individual Self is determined (to be identical with the immutable) through the methods mentioned in Chapter 12 on the 'Bliss of the Self', there remains no enjoyer in this body. So how can there be sufferings which are the result of identification with the body?
12. Anxiety regarding virtue and vice are the sufferings of the future life. It has already been told in Chapter 11 that such anxiety cannot affect the illumined man.
13. As water does not stick to the leaves of a lotus so after realisation future actions cannot stick to the knower.
14. Just as the cotton-like flowers of the Ishika reed are burnt by fire in a moment, so the accumulated past actions of the knower are burnt up because of realisation.
15. Sri Krishna says: 'Just as a blazing fire reduces the fuel to ashes, so, O Arjuna, the fire of knowledge burns up all actions'.
16. 'He who has no notion of I-ness and whose mind is not tainted by desire for results of action is not really a killer even if he kills people; he is not bound by his actions'.
17. In the Kausitaki Upanishad it is said that killing of parents, stealing, causing abortion and such other sins do not affect his illumination, nor is the colour (serenity) of his countenance marred.
18. It has been said in the Aitareya Upanishad that like the cessation of all sorrows, the knower achieves all the desired objects also: 'He becomes immortal, achieving all the desired objects'.
19. In the Chandogya Upanishad it is said that the knower of Truth may be seen laughing, playing, rejoicing with women, vehicles and other things but he does not remember the body. The vital breath, impelled by his fructifying actions keeps him alive.
20. 'The knower of Brahman attains fulfilment of all his desires'. For him unlike others, there are no enjoyments through rebirths and actions. His bliss is unqualified and immediate and devoid of sequence or degree.
21-22. Whatever bliss is attained by a satisfied king who is young, handsome, learned, healthy, strong of mind, who has suitable army and rules over the whole world full of wealth and as such is endowed with the totality of all human enjoyments, even that bliss the knower of Brahman achieves.
23. For both the king and the knower there is no attraction for worldly enjoyment and so their happiness and contentment are comparable. One has desirelessness because of enjoyment, the other because of discrimination.
24. The knower of Brahman knows through his knowledge of the Vedic scriptures the defects of the objects of enjoyment. King Brihadratha gave examples of those defects in some songs.
25. Thus Brihadratha described the defects pertaining to the body, the mind and the objects of enjoyment. As no one has liking for porridge vomited by a dog, likewise the man of discrimination also has no liking for the body etc.
26. Though there is similarity between the king and the knower of Truth in desirelessness, there was misery for the king in accumulating the objects of enjoyment and the fear of losing them in future follows him.
27. Both these miseries are absent for the knower; so his bliss is more than that of the king. Besides, the king may have desire for the bliss of the Gandharvas, but the knower has none.
28. One who has become a Gandharva, because of the particular result of his meritorious actions as a man in the present cycle, is called a 'human Gandharva'.
29. If one becomes a Gandharva in the very beginning of the cycle, because of his meritorious actions in the earlier cycle, he is called a 'celestial Gandharva'.
30. The Agnisvattas and others who dwell for a long time in their region are called the Pitris. Those who have achieved the state of deities in the beginning of their cycle are called Ajana-devatas.
31. Those who obtain the glorious position and are fit for worship by the Ajana-devatas by performing the Asvamedha sacrifice and other good actions, are the Karma-devatas.
32. Yama and Agni are foremost among the gods. Indra and Brihaspati are well known (and superior to them). Prajapati is mentioned as Virat and Brahma is called the Sutratman or Hiranyagarbha.
33. From the king to Brahma each desires the joy of the one higher than himself; but the bliss of the Self which is beyond the grasp of the mind and the senses, is superior to that of all others.
34. As the knower of the Vedas has no desire for all those coveted pleasures, the bliss of all creatures are his.
35. This is described as 'achieving all the desired objects'. Or it may be explained as the witness-consciousness of the knower experiencing the enjoyments of all the bodies, like those through his own body.
36. (Doubt): Being the witness-consciousness, even the ignorant man has this (universal enjoyment). (Reply): No, being devoid of the knowledge of himself as the witness he does not experience satisfaction. The Shruti says that he who knows the truth achieves all the desired objects.
37. Or he enjoys everything because he becomes all, as that famous passage which expresses his all-pervading selfhood sings: 'I am the food as well as the eater of the food'.
38. Thus are established the nature of both the absence of misery and the fulfilment of desires (experienced by the knower of the Self). His other experiences, viz., the satisfaction of having done all that was to be done and of having achieved all that was to be achieved may be seen elsewhere.
39. Both the topics have properly been dealt with in Chapter 7 on the 'Lamp of Perfect Satisfaction'. These verses quoted below should be meditated upon for the purification of the mind.
40. Before realisation one has many duties to perform in order to acquire worldly and celestial advantages and also as an aid to ultimate release; but with the rise of knowledge of Brahman, they are as good as already done, for nothing further remains to be done.
41. The Jivanmukta always feels supreme self-satisfaction by constantly keeping in view his former state and present state of freedom from wants and duties.
42. Let the ignorant people of the world perform worldly actions and desire to possess wives, children and wealth. I am full of supreme bliss. For what purpose should I engage myself in worldly concerns?
43. Let those desirous of joy in heaven perform the ordained rituals. I pervade all the worlds. How and wherefore should I undertake such actions?
44. Let those who are entitled to it, explain the scriptures or teach the Vedas. I am not so entitled because all my actions have ceased.
45. I have no desire to sleep or beg for alms, nor do I do so; nor do I perform the acts of bathing or ablution. The onlookers imagine these things in me. What have I to do with their imaginations?
46. Seeing a bush of red gunja berries from a distance one may suppose that there is a fire, but such as imaginary fire does not affect the bush. So the worldly duties and qualities attributed to me by others do not affect me.
47. Let those ignorant of the nature of Brahman listen to the teachings of the Vedanta philosophy. I have Self-knowledge. Why again should I listen to them? Those who are in doubt reflect on the nature of Brahman. I have no doubts, so I do not do so.
48. He who is subject to erroneous conviction may practise meditation. I do not confuse the Self for the body. So in the absence of such a delusion why should I meditate?
49. Even without being subject to this delusion, I behave like a human being through the impressions and habits gathered over a long period.
50. All worldly dealings will come to an end when the fructifying Karma wears out. If it does not wear out, thousands of meditational bouts will not stop the dealings.
51. To bring to an end your worldly dealings, you may practise contemplation as much as you like, but I know the worldly dealings to be perfectly harmless. Why should I then meditate?
52. There is no distraction for me, so for me there is no need of Samadhi too. Both distraction and absorption are states of the changeable mind.
53. I am the sum of all the experiences in the universe; where is the separate experience for me? I have obtained all that was to be obtained and have done all that was to be done. This is my unshakeable conviction.
54. I am associationless, neither the doer nor the enjoyer. I am not concerned with what the past actions make me do, whether in accordance with or against the social or scriptural codes.
55. Or, there is no harm if I engage myself in doing good to the world following the scriptural injunctions even though I have obtained all that was to be obtained.
56. Let my body worship God, take bath, preserve cleanliness or beg for alms. Let my mind recite 'Aum' or study the Upanishads.
57. Let my intellect meditate on Vishnu or be merged in the bliss of Brahman, I am the witness of all. I do nothing nor cause anything to be done.
58. As he has achieved all that was to be achieved and nothing else remains for him to do, he feels satisfied and always things thus:
59. Blessed am I, blessed, for I have the constant vision of my Self! Blessed am I, blessed, for the bliss of Brahman shines clearly to me!
60. Blessed am I, blessed, for I am free from the sufferings of the world. Blessed am I, blessed, for my ignorance has fled away, I know not where.
61. Blessed am I, blessed, for I have no further duty to perform. Blessed am I, blessed, for I have now achieved the highest that one can aspire to.
62. Blessed am I, blessed, for there is nothing to compare with my great bliss! Blessed am I, blessed, blessed, blessed, again and again blessed!
63. O my merits, my merits, how enduringly they have borne fruit! Wonderful are we, the possessors of this great merit, wonderful!
64. O how grand and true are the scriptures, the scriptures, O how grand and great is my teacher, my teacher! O how grand is this illumination, this illumination, O how grand is this bliss, this bliss!
65. This fourth chapter of the section called the 'Bliss of Brahman' describes the 'Bliss of Knowledge'. Until that bliss is attained a man should engage himself in the practice of the contemplation of Brahman.
XV. THE BLISS OF OBJECTS
1. Now, in this Chapter is described the bliss which is derived from (the contact of the mind with) external objects, which may be called a door to the bliss of Brahman and an aspect of it. The Shruti has established that it is an aspect of that bliss.
2. The Shruti says that this is the supreme bliss which is indivisible and homogeneous, it is Brahman Himself and that other beings (individuated by Avidya) enjoy only a fraction of it.
3. The mental modifications are of three kinds: serene (Sattvika), agitated (Rajasika) and dull (Tamasika). The Sattvika modifications are detachment, fortitude, liberality and so forth.
4. The Rajasika modifications are thirst and love for objects, attachment (to them as if they were real), greed and so forth. The Tamasika modifications are said to be delusion, fear and so forth.
5. The consciousness aspect of Brahman is reflected in all these modifications, but in the Sattvika modifications alone joy also is reflected.
6. The Shruti says that entering into different bodies the supreme Self assumes different forms. Vyasa, the author of the Brahma-Sutras, wrote the Sutra which illustrates the entry of Brahman into the bodies by the example of the sun (taking different forms) when reflected in different water-vessels.
7. (Another Shruti says): 'The supreme Self, though one only, exists in every object. Like the moon reflected in water, though one It appears as many'.
8. The moon which is reflected in water is faint in muddy water and clear in pure water. Similarly Brahman is two-fold according to the quality of the Vrittis (modification) of the mind.
9. Because of the preponderance of impurities of the Rajasika and Tamasika Vrittis, the blissfulness of Brahman is obscured; but because of their slight purity the consciousness of Brahman is reflected.
10. Or as in pure water when heated there is the transmission of heat of the fire and not its light, similarly in the Vrittis (in which Rajas and Tamas predominate) there is the manifestation of consciousness only.
11. But as in (a piece of burning) wood both heat and light are manifested, similarly in the Sattvika Vrittis both consciousness and bliss are manifested.
12. These two illustrations make it clear that it is the nature of things which determines what kind of manifestation they may give and it is by experience that these properties are established.
13. Neither in Rajasika nor in Tamasika Vrittis the experience of bliss is seen but in Sattvika Vrittis experience of happiness is seen to a greater or lesser degree.
14. When a man has desires for houses, lands and other objects then because of the agitated quality of this desire which is an effect of Rajas, there is no happiness for him.
15. There is misery in thinking whether it will succeed; in failure this misery increases; when there are obstacles to success, anger arises or if opposed, hatred.
16. If the opposition is too formidable to be overcome, there is despair; that is born of Tamas. In anger etc., there is great misery; indeed even the chance of happiness is remote.
17. With the acquisition of the desired object the pleasing Vritti is calmed and there is great happiness; and in actual enjoyment, the happiness is greater. Even in the prospect of acquiring it, there is some happiness.
18. But the greatest happiness is the outcome of detachment. This subject has been dealt with in the Chapter on the 'Bliss of Knowledge'. Like this there is happiness in fortitude as well as in liberality, because there are no anger and greed.
19. Whatever happiness is experienced it is Brahman alone because it is a reflection of the bliss of Brahman. When the Vritti is directed inward or is withdrawn, the reflection of bliss is unobstructed.
20. Existence, consciousness and bliss - these are the threefold nature of Brahman. In objects like clay, stone and so forth, only existence is manifest, whereas the other two are not.
21. Both existence and consciousness are manifest in the Rajasika and Tamasika Vrittis of the intellect and all the three are manifest in the Sattvika Vrittis. Brahman associated with the world including the Vrittis is thus described.
22. Brahman not associated with the world is comprehended by knowledge and Yoga. They have been spoken of earlier, the topic of Yoga in Chapter 11 and knowledge in the next two chapters.
23. The two, absence of consciousness and misery, and non-existence - these are the three forms of Maya. Non-existence is illustrated by such expressions as 'the horns of a man'; absence of consciousness is seen in such objects as wood, stone etc.
24. There is misery in the Rajasika and Tamasika Vrittis. Thus Maya is manifested. Because of His identification with the Vrittis of the intellect, which are Sattvika, Rajasika and Tamasika, Brahman is called 'associated Brahman' i.e., Brahman is associated with the world.
25. Such being the nature of Maya and Brahman, the man who wishes to meditate on Brahman should ignore the objects which have no existence (such as the horns of a man) and concentrate properly on other objects.
26. In stone etc., he should reject both name and form and meditate on existence; in Rajasika and Tamasika Vrittis he should reject the misery (which is associated with them) and meditate on existence and consciousness.
27. And in the Sattvika Vrittis he should contemplate on all the three - existence, consciousness and bliss. These three kinds of contemplation are successively called inferior, middling and superior contemplations.
28. Even for a man of dull intellect meditation on the characteristics of Brahman is good. To tell this only 'the Bliss of Objects' is described here.
29. After having had enough of enjoyments, when the mental modifications become indifferent to objects and become detached, the contemplation regarding the bliss of impressions arise, which is the highest. Thus are the four kinds of contemplation on Brahman described.
30. As in these four types of meditation there is an admixture of knowledge and Yoga they are not mere meditations; but should be considered as a (direct means of achieving) the knowledge of Brahman itself. The mind being concentrated by meditation, this knowledge of Brahman becomes steady.
31. In steady knowledge, existence, consciousness and bliss shine as a single homogeneous entity and not as separate entities, their difference having disappeared with the disappearance of their Upadhis or adjuncts.
32. It is said that the adjuncts creating difference are the Sattvika, Rajasika and Tamasika Vrittis. Through either Yoga or discrimination these disturbing Vrittis are removed.
33. When the associationless, self-luminous and secondless Brahman is grasped or known, there is then no triad of knower, knowing and known. So it is called infinite bliss.
34. In this, the fifth chapter of the section called 'the Bliss of Brahman', 'the Bliss of Objects' has been dealt with. Through this door enter (i.e., into the bliss of Brahman).
35. May the Lord who is both Hari and Hara ever be pleased by this 'Bliss of Brahman' and may He protect all creatures who take refuge in Him and are pure in heart.