Yoga Vashishtha: Part VII

Utpati (Origin)

All things are equally indwelt by intelligence, so at all times in every way the uncreated is all, the self of all. We use the expression ‘all things’: it is only a figure of speech, for only the infinite consciousness exists. Just as there is no division between a bracelet and gold, no division between waves and water, there is no division between universe and the infinite consciousness. The later alone is the universe; the universe as such is not the infinite consciousness, just as bracelet is made up of gold but gold is not made up of bracelet. In that infinite consciousness there is inherent non-recognition of its infinite nature. That appears to manifest as “I” and “the world”. Just as there is an image in a marble slab, even if it has not been carved, even so the notion of “I” and “World” exists in infinite consciousness. Even as in a calm sea the waves exist in their potential state, the world exists in its potential state in the infinite consciousness: and that is known as its creation. The word ‘creation’ has no other connotation. No creation takes place in Supreme Being or the infinite consciousness; and the infinite consciousness is not involved in creation. They do not stand in a divided relationship to each other.

The infinite consciousness regards its own intelligence in its own heart, as it were, though it is non-different from it even as wind is non-different from its own movement. At that very moment, when there is an unreal division, there arises in that consciousness the notion of space, which, on account of power of consciousness, appears as the element known as space or ether. That itself later believes itself to be air and then fire. From this notion there arises the appearance of fire and light. That itself further entertains the notion of water with its inherent faculty of taste; and that itself believes itself to be the Earth with its inherent faculty of smell and also its characteristic of solidity. Thus do the water and earth elements appear to have manifested themselves. The same infinite consciousness held in itself the notion of unit of time equal to one millionth of the twinkling of an eye: and from this evolve the time-scale right up to an epoch consisting of several revolution of four ages, which is the life span of one cosmic creation. The infinite consciousness itself is uninvolved in these: for it is devoid of rising and setting and it is devoid of a beginning, middle and the end.

The infinite consciousness alone is the reality, ever awake and enlightened: and with the creation also it is the same. That infinite consciousness alone is the unenlightened appearance of this creation: and even after this creation it is same as always. It is ever the same. When one realizes in the self, by the self that consciousness is the absolute Brahman, then he experiences it all – even as one energy dwelling in all his limbs.

The shakti (power or energy) of the infinite consciousness, which is in motion all the time; that alone is the reality of all inevitable futuristic events, for it penetrates all the epochs in time. It is by that power that nature of every object in the universe is ordained. The power is also known as “Mahasatta (The great existence)”, “Mahaciti (The great intelligence)” , “Mahashakti (The great power)” , “Mahadrsti (The great vision)”, “MahaKriya (The great doer)”, “Mahodbhava(The great becoming)” and “Mahaspanda (The great vibration)”. It is this power that endows everything with its characteristic quality. This power is not independent of or different from the supreme consciousness. The infinite consciousness becomes aware of its inherent power, even as one becomes aware of the limbs of his body: such awareness is known as niyati (the power of the absolute that determines nature). It is also known as “Daiva” or “Divine dispensation” .

The terrible goblin known as “Jeeva” arises as a reflected reality in the mind of the ignorant alone. No one, not even man of wisdom or sages can definitely say what it is: because it is devoid of any indications of its nature. In the mirror of infinite consciousness countless reflections are seen which constitute the appearance of the world. These are the “Jeeva” (Individual soul). Jeeva is like unto just a little agitation on the surface of the ocean of consciousness. When, in that slight agitation the infinitude of the infinite consciousness is veiled, limitation of consciousness appears to arise.  And that limitation of consciousness is known as the “Jeeva”.

Just as when a spark from flame comes in contact with flammable substance, it burst into an independent flame, even so this limitation of consciousness, when it is fed by latent tendencies and memories, condenses into egotism – “I-ness”. This “I-ness” is not solid reality but “jeeva” sees it as real. When the egotism begins to entertain its own notions, it gives rise to mind-stuff, the concept of an independent and separate Jeeva, mind, cosmic illusion, cosmic nature, etc.

The one never became many. When many candles are kindled from another, it is the same flame that burns in all the candles; similarly the one consciousness appears to be in many. When one contemplates the unreality of this diversity, he is free from sorrow.

“Jeeva” is nothing more than the limitation of consciousness; when the limitation goes, there is peace – even as for one who wears shoes the whole world is paved with leather. What is this world ? Nothing but an appearance. Even as drunken sees trees moving, an ignorant one sees movement in this world. When the mind drops the perception of duality, there is neither duality nor unity. When one is firmly established in the oneness of the infinite consciousness, whether he is quiet or actively engaged in work, then he is considered to be at peace with himself. Someone is free from this in one lifetime and someone is freed in thousand births. When there is movement of thought one does not see truth and there is feeling of “I am”. The world appearance is waking state of consciousness; egotism is the dreaming state; the mind stuff is the deep sleeping state and pure consciousness is the fourth or an uncontradicted truth. Even beyond this fourth state there is absolute purity of consciousness. One who is established in it goes beyond sorrow.

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