“What, O Kesava, is the description of that wise and devoted man who is fixed in contemplation and confirmed in spiritual knowledge? What may such a sage declare? Where may he dwell? Does he move and act like other men?”
“A man is said to be confirmed in spiritual knowledge when he forsaketh every desire which entereth into his heart, and of himself is happy and content in the Self through the Self. His mind is undisturbed in adversity; he is happy and contented in prosperity, and he is a stranger to anxiety, fear, and anger. Such a man is called a Muni. When in every condition he receives each event, whether favorable or unfavorable,with an equal mind which neither likes nor dislikes, his wisdom is established, and, having met good or evil, neither rejoiceth at the one nor is cast down by the other. He is confirmed in spiritual knowledge, when, like the tortoise, he can draw in all his senses and restrain them from their wonted purposes. The hungry man loseth sight of every other object but the gratification of his appetite, and when he is become acquainted with the Supreme, he loseth all taste for objects of whatever kind. The tumultuous senses and organs hurry away by force the heart even of the wise man who striveth after perfection. Let a man, restraining all these, remain in devotion at rest in me, his true self; for he who hath his senses and organs in control possesses spiritual knowledge.
“He who attendeth to the inclinations of the senses, in them hath a concern; from this concern is created passion, from passion anger, from anger is produced delusion, from delusion a loss of the memory, from the loss of memory loss of discrimination, and from loss of discrimination loss of all! But he who, free from attachment or repulsion for objects, experienceth them through the senses and organs, with his heart obedient to his will, attains to tranquillity of thought. And this tranquil state attained, therefrom shall soon result a separation from all troubles; and his mind being thus at ease, fixed upon one object, it embraceth wisdom from all sides. The man whose heart and mind are not at rest is without wisdom or the power of contemplation; who doth not practice reflection, hath no calm; and how can a man without calm obtain happiness? The uncontrolled heart, following the dictates of the moving passions, snatcheth away his spiritual knowledge, as the storm the bark upon the raging ocean. Therefore, O great-armed one, he is possessed of spiritual knowledge whose senses are withheld from objects of sense. What is night to those who are unenlightened is as day to his gaze; what seems as day is known to him as night, the night of ignorance. Such is the self-governed Sage!
“The man whose desires enter his heart, as waters run into the unswelling passive ocean, which, though ever fall, yet does not quit its bed, obtaineth happiness; not he who lusteth in his lusts.
“The man who, having abandoned all desires, acts without covetousness, selfishness, or pride, deeming himself neither actor nor possessor, attains to rest. This, O son of Pritha, is dependence upon the Supreme Spirit, and he who possesseth it goeth no more astray; having obtained it, if therein established at the hour of death, he passeth on to Nirvana in the Supreme.”
“… the man who only taketh delight in the Self within, is satisfied with that and content with that alone, hath no selfish interest in action. He hath no interest either in that which is done or that which is not done; and there is not, in all things which have been created, any object on which he may place dependence. Therefore perform thou that which thou hast to do, at all times unmindful of the event; for the man who doeth that which he hath to do, without attachment to the result, obtaineth the Supreme.
“Those who have spiritual discrimination call him wise whose undertakings are all free from desire, for his actions are consumed in the fire of knowledge. He abandoneth the desire to see a reward for his actions, is free, contented, and upon nothing dependeth, and although engaged in action he really doeth nothing; he is not solicitous of results, with mind and body subdued and being above enjoyment from objects, doing with the body alone the acts of the body, he does not subject himself to rebirth. He is contented with whatever he receives fortuitously, is free from the influence of the ‘pairs of opposites’ and from envy, the same in success and failure; even though he act he is not bound by the bonds of action. All the actions of such a man who is free from self-interest, who is devoted, with heart set upon spiritual knowledge, and whose acts are sacrifices for the sake of the Supreme, are dissolved and left without effect on him. The Supreme Spirit is the act of offering, the Supreme Spirit is the sacrificial butter offered in the fire which is the Supreme Spirit, and unto the Supreme Spirit goeth he who maketh the Supreme Spirit the object of his meditation in performing his actions.
Whoever in acting dedicates his actions to the Supreme Spirit and puts aside all selfish interest in their result is untouched by sin, even as the leaf of the lotus is unaffected by the waters. The truly devoted, for the purification of the heart, perform actions with their bodies, their minds, their understanding, and their senses, putting away all self-interest. The man who is devoted and not attached to the fruit of his actions obtains tranquillity; whilst he who through desire has attachment for the fruit of action is bound down thereby. The self-restrained sage having with his heart renounced all actions, dwells at rest in the ‘nine gate city of his abode,’neither acting nor causing to act.
“The illuminated sage regards with equal mind an illuminated, selfless Brahmin, a cow, an elephant, a dog, and even an outcaste who eats the flesh of dogs. Those who thus preserve an equal mind gain heaven even in this life, for the Supreme is free from sin and equal-minded; therefore they rest in the Supreme Spirit. The man who knoweth the Supreme Spirit, who is not deluded, and who is fixed on him, doth not rejoice at obtaining what is pleasant, nor grieve when meeting what is unpleasant. He whose heart is not attached to objects of sense finds pleasure within himself, and, through devotion, united with the Supreme, enjoys imperishable bliss.
“My devotee who is free from enmity, well-disposed towards all creatures, merciful, wholly exempt from pride and selfishness, the same in pain and pleasure, patient of wrongs, contented, constantly devout, self-governed, firm in resolves, and whose mind and heart are fixed on me alone, is dear unto me. He also is my beloved of whom mankind is not afraid and who has no fear of man; who is free from joy, from despondency and the dread of harm. My devotee who is unexpecting, pure, just, impartial, devoid of fear, and who hath forsaken interest in the results of action, is dear unto me. He also is worthy of my love who neither rejoiceth nor findeth fault, who neither lamenteth nor coveteth, and being my servant hath forsaken interest in both good and evil results. He also is my beloved servant who is equal-minded to friend or foe, the same in honor and dishonor, in cold and heat, in pain and pleasure, and is unsolicitous about the event of things; to whom praise and blame are as one; who is of little speech, content with whatever cometh to pass, who hath no fixed habitation, and whose heart, full of devotion, is firmly fixed. But those who seek this sacred ambrosia — the religion of immortality — even as I have explained it, full of faith, intent on me above all others, and united to devotion, are my most beloved.”
“Fearlessness, sincerity, assiduity in devotion, generosity, self-restraint, piety, and alms-giving, study, mortification, and rectitude; harmlessness, veracity, and freedom from anger, resignation, equanimity, and not speaking of the faults of others, universal compassion, modesty, and mildness; patience, power, fortitude, and purity, discretion, dignity, unrevengefulness, and freedom from conceit — these are the marks of him whose virtues are of a godlike character, O son of Bharata.
9. He may display it on himself but he has not merited the yellow robe who is not free from depravities, who disregards temperance and truth.
10. He indeed has merited the yellow robe who has purged away depravities and is well grounded in virtues, who is regardful of temperance and truth.
19. He who quotes the Sacred texts but is lazy and will not apply, he is like a cowherd counting the cows of others. He shares not the blessings of the Good Life.
20. He who forsakes lust, hatred and folly is possessed of true knowledge and a serene mind, craves not of this world or of any other, applies to himself the teachings of the Sacred texts he recites, even though a few in number—such a one shares in the blessings of the Good Life.
28. When the prudent man overcomes sloth by vigilance he ascends to the terrace of wisdom. Sorrowless he surveys the sorrowful crowd. The wise man regards the foolish as the mountaineer from his high peak looks at those who are dwelling on the plains.
76-77. If you see an intelligent man who detects faults and blames what is blameworthy, follow that wise man. Value him as a revealer of hidden treasure. He will be beloved of the good; by the bad he will be hated. Let such a man admonish, let him instruct, let him forbid what is improper.
83. Good people move onwards whatever befall. They do not prattle, nor yearn for pleasures. The wise are not elated in their happiness, nor are they depressed when touched by sorrow.
90. He who has thrown off the fetters and freed himself in all ways, he is free from sorrow; for him there is no suffering; he has completed his journey.
91. The thoughtful exert themselves. They do not delight in any abode. They leave their house and home as swans their lake.
92. Those who have no possessions, who nourish themselves according to knowledge and who realize the goal of freedom by perceiving that life is empty and transient, their path is hard to trace like the flight of birds through the sky.
93. He whose appetites are slain and who is indifferent to food, who has perceived the goal of freedom by realizing that life is empty and transient, his path is hard to trace like the flight of birds through the sky.
94. Even the gods envy him whose senses are subdued like the horses well tames by the charioteer, who is free from pride and free from depravities.
95. He who is patient like the earth, firm like Indra’s bolt, like a lake free from mud—for him there is no round of births and deaths.
96. Calm in thought, calm in speech, calm in actions is he who has obtained freedom through true knowledge. He has become tranquil. He is full of repose.
97. The man who is not credulous, who has severed all ties, killed all desires, for whom even occasions to act with like or dislike arise not, who knows the ever-existing uncreate, he indeed is exalted among men.
142. But he who is tranquil and serene and calm and lives a tamed and restrained life of holiness and has ceased to injure living things, though richly attired, he is a Brahmana, an ascetic (Samana) and monk (Bhikkhu).
172. He who was heedless but who now is restrained and reflective is like the moon freed from a cloud; he brightens the world.
173. he who by his good deeds transforms his evil acts is like the moon when freed from a cloud.
205. He who has tasted the sweetness of solitude and the flavour of tranquility, he becomes free from sin and fearless, and enjoys the ambrosia of the Good Law.
225. The sages who injure none, and who always control their body attain the changeless state; therein is no grief.
256. A man is not righteous who carried out his purpose by force and arbitrarily. He is wise who distinguishes both right and wrong.
257. He is wise and righteous who guides others not by force and violence by equitably. He is the guardian of the Law.
258. A man is not a learned pandit simply because he talks much. He is a real pandit who is tranquil, free from hatred, free from fear.
259. A man is not a pillar of the Law because he talks much. He who even though he had heard little of the Law but himself has discernment, who always considers the Law, he is the Pillar of the Law, he is established in the Law.
260. A man is not an elder simply because his hair is gray. His age is ripe but he is to be known as “Old-in-vain.”
261. He is called an elder in whom dwell truth, virtue, non-violence, restraint, and control, and who is free from impurity and is wise.
262-263. Not by mere talk, not by the beauty of the complexion does a man become saintly when he is envious, greedy and wicked. He in whom these three are destroyed, removed by the very root and who is free from guilt and is wise is to be called saintly.
264. No tonsure can make an ascetic of one who is undisciplined and given to lying. How can one who is full of desire and greed be an ascetic?
265. But he who overcomes sinful tendencies, be they small or large, he is called an ascetic. He has quitted all evil.
266-267. He is not a Bhikkhu because he carries the begging bowl. Nor even because he adopts the whole law outwardly. But he who is above good and evil, is chaste, who comports himself in the world with understanding, he, indeed is called Bhikkhu
268-269. He is not a Muni simply because he is silent; he may be foolish and ignorant. He who weighs in the scale of understanding, accepting the good and rejecting the evil, he is wise; for that reason he is wise. He who in silence reflects in the inner and the outer, he is to be called a Muni.
270. A man is not an Ariya, an elect nobleman, when he injures living creatures. He is the true Ariya, an elect nobleman, who practices ahimsa, non-violence.
271-272. Not only by discipline or moral principles, nor only by resolutions and vows; not only by much study, nor even by attainment in meditation, or in seclusion and solitude, do I release myself from bondage to Bliss. This is not attained by worldlings. O Bhikkhu, be not deceived in self-confidence as long as you have not reached the extinction of desire.
384. When a Brahamana reaches the other shore by meditation and insight he attains knowledge and is free of all fetters.
385. Him I call a Brahamana for whom there is neither this nor the further shore. Fearless and free, he is beyond both.
386. Him I call a Brahamana who is meditative, stainless, settled; whose duty is done and depravities gone; who has attained the highest end.
387. The sun shines by day; the moon lights up the night. The warrior (Kshatriya) is resplendent in his armour; the Brahamana in his meditation. But the Buddha shines day and night, radiating his glory.
388. Because he has driven away sin he is called a Brahamana; because he lives in serenity he is called a Samana; because he has put away worldliness he is called Pabbajita. …
391. Him I call a Brahamana who offends not by body, speech or mind; who is controlled in these three things. …
397. Him I call a Brahamana who has destroyed all fetters and has nothing to fear, who is unshackled and emancipated.
398. Him I call a Brahamana who has cut the straps of hatred, and the thong of craving, and the rope of heresies and its appurtenances of latent tendencies, who has burst the bar of ignorance and has awakened.
399. Him I call a Brahamana who though innocent of all offense patiently bears reproach, ill-treatment and confinement. Patience is his force, his own strength his army.
400. Him I call a Brahamana who is free from anger, devoted to duties, practices divine virtues, who is without craving and controlled. He wears his last body.
401. Him I call Brahamana from whom desires drop like water from a lotus leaf or mustard seed on the point of an awl.
402. Him I call a Brahamana who, even here, knows the end of his suffering, who has laid his burden and is detached.
403. Him I call a Brahamana whose wisdom is profound, who knows and discerns the right way and the wrong and who has attained the highest end.
404. Him I call a Brahamana who is not intimate with householders or monks and who does not frequent houses and who has but few wants.
405. Him I call a Brahamana who puts away his rod, who kills not, nor causes others to kill any creature, feeble or strong.
406. Him I call a Brahamana who is friendly among the hostile, mild among the violent, ungrasping among the greedy.
407. Him I call a Brahamana from whom lust and ill-will, pride and ingratitude have fallen away like a mustard seed from the point of an awl.
408. Him I call a Brahamana whose speech is truthful, gentle, instructive, which offends no one.
409. Him I call a Brahamana who takes nothing that is not given to him, be it long or short, small or large, good or bad.
410. Him I call a Brahamana who has no desire pertaining to this world or the next, who has no inclinations and is unshackled.
411. Him I call a Brahamana who has no desires, who has destroyed his doubts by knowledge and has plumbed the depth of the Eternal.
412. Him I call a Brahamana who here is above the bondage of merit and demerit, who is free from grief, free from poison and who is pure.
413. Him I call a Brahamana who like the moon is stainless, pure, serene and clear, and who delights not in existence.
414. Him I call a Brahamana who has gone beyond the miry road of rebirth and delusion difficult to cross and who has reached the other shore; who is meditative, who is without doubt, without attachment, who is calm and content.
415-416. Him I call a Brahamana who, in this world, giving up sensual pleasures, wanders about without a home, in whom all desire for existence is extinguished. Again, him I call a Brahamana who, in this world, giving up all craving wanders about without a home, in whom all craving for existence is extinguished.
417. Him I call a Brahamana who has cut the yoke of attachment to human things, has risen above attachment to heavenly things, has transcended all attachments.
418. Him I call a Brahamana who has done with likes and dislikes, who is cool, who for renewed existence is seedless; he is the hero who has conquered the worlds.
419. Him I call a Brahamana who knows the mystery of death and rebirth of all beings, who is free from attachment, who is happy within himself and enlightened.
420. Him I call a Brahamana whose real state gods (Devas) do not know, nor Gandharvasnor men; his depravities destroyed, he is an Arhat.
421. Him I call a Brahamana who has nothing of his own pertaining to the past, the present and the future, who is possessionless and detached.
422. Him I call a Brahamana who is fearless like a bull, who is pre-eminent and of dauntless energy, who is a sage-seer, who has conquered all, even death—the sinless one, the enlightened.
423. Him I call a Brahamana who knows his former lives, who knows heaven and hell, who has reached the end of births, who is a sage of perfect knowledge and who has accomplished all that has to be accomplished.
Tao Te Ching
… the Master
acts without doing anything
and teaches without saying anything.
Things arise and she lets them come;
things disappear and she lets them go.
She has but doesn’t possess,
acts but doesn’t expect.
When her work is done, she forgets it.
That is why it lasts forever.
The Master leads
by emptying people’s minds
and filling their cores,
by weakening their ambition
and toughening their resolve.
He helps people lose everything
they know, everything they desire,
and creates confusion
in those who think that they know.
The Tao doesn’t take sides;
it gives birth to both good and evil.
The Master doesn’t take sides;
she welcomes both saints and sinners.
The Master stays behind;
that is why she is ahead.
She is detached from all things;
that is why she is one with them.
Because she has let go of herself,
she is perfectly fulfilled.
The Master observes the world
but trusts his inner vision.
He allows things to come and go.
His heart is open as the sky.
The Master doesn’t seek fulfillment.
Not seeking, not expecting,
she is present, and can welcome all things.
The Master keeps her mind
always at one with the Tao;
that is what gives her her radiance.
The Tao is ungraspable.
How can her mind be at one with it?
Because she doesn’t cling to ideas.
The Tao is dark and unfathomable.
How can it make her radiant?
Because she lets it.
The Master, by residing in the Tao,
sets an example for all beings.
Because he doesn’t display himself,
people can see his light.
Because he has nothing to prove,
people can trust his words.
Because he doesn’t know who he is,
people recognize themselves in him.
Because he has no goad in mind,
everything he does succeeds.
The Master sees things as they are,
without trying to control them.
She lets them go their own way,
and resides at the center of the circle.
The Master does his job
and then stops.
He understands that the universe
is forever out of control,
and that trying to dominate events
goes against the current of the Tao.
Because he believes in himself,
he doesn’t try to convince others.
Because he is content with himself,
he doesn’t need others’ approval.
Because he accepts himself,
the whole world accepts him.
She who is centered in the Tao
can go where she wishes, without danger.
She perceives the universal harmony,
even amid great pain,
because she has found peace in her heart.
The Master doesn’t try to be powerful;
thus he is truly powerful.
The ordinary man keeps reaching for power;
thus he never has enough.
The Master does nothing,
yet he leaves nothing undone.
The ordinary man is always doing things,
yet many more are left to be done.
The Master views the parts with compassion,
because he understands the whole.
His constant practice is humility.
He doesn’t glitter like a jewel
but lets himself be shaped by the Tao,
as rugged and common as stone.
Ordinary men hate solitude.
But the Master makes use of it,
embracing his aloneness, realizing
he is one with the whole universe.
Teaching without words,
performing without actions:
that is the Master’s way.
The Master allows things to happen.
She shapes events as they come.
She steps out of the way
and lets the Tao speak for itself.
The Master arrives without leaving,
sees the light without looking,
achieves without doing a thing.
The Master has no mind of her own.
She works with the mind of the people.
She is good to people who are good.
She is also good to people who aren’t good.
This is true goodness.
She trusts people who are trustworthy.
She also trusts people who aren’t trustworthy.
This is true trust.
The Master’s mind is like space.
People don’t understand her.
They look to her and wait.
She treats them like her own children.
The Master gives himself up
to whatever the moment brings.
He knows that he is going to die,
and her has nothing left to hold on to:
no illusions in his mind,
no resistances in his body.
He doesn’t think about his actions;
they flow from the core of his being.
He holds nothing back from life;
therefore he is ready for death,
as a man is ready for sleep
after a good day’s work.
The Master’s power is like this.
He lets all things come and go
effortlessly, without desire.
He never expects results;
thus he is never disappointed.
He is never disappointed;
thus his spirit never grows old.
… the Master is content
to serve as an example
and not to impose her will.
She is pointed, but doesn’t pierce.
Straightforward, but supple.
Radiant, but easy on the eyes.
The Master never reaches for the great;
thus she achieves greatness.
When she runs into a difficulty,
she stops and gives herself to it.
She doesn’t cling to her own comfort;
thus problems are no problem for her.
Therefore the Master takes action
by letting things take their course.
He remains as calm
at the end as at the beginning.
He has nothing,
thus has nothing to lose.
What he desires is non-desire;
what he learns is to unlearn.
He simply reminds people
of who they have always been.
He cares about nothing but the Tao.
Thus he can care for all things.
The Master can keep giving
because there is no end to her wealth.
She acts without expectation,
succeeds without taking credit,
and doesn’t think that she is better
than anyone else.
The Master has no possessions.
The more he does for others,
the happier he is.
The more he gives to others,
the wealthier he is.
The Tao nourishes by not forcing.
By not dominating, the Master leads.
The Crest-Jewel of Wisdom
In soul-vision the wise man perceives in his heart a certain wide-extending awakening, whose form is pure bliss, incomparable, the other shore, for ever free, where is no desire, limitless as the ether, partless, from wavering free, the perfect Eternal.
In soul-vision the wise man perceives in his heart the reality free from growth and change, whose being is beyond perception, the essence of equalness, unequalled, immeasurable, perfectly taught by the words of inspiration, eternal, praised by us.
In soul-vision the wise man perceives in his heart the unfading, undying reality, which by its own being can know no setting, like the shimmering water of the ocean, bearing no name, where quality and change have sunk to rest, eternal, peaceful, one.
This sage, standing firm in wisdom, reaches Being and Bliss, he is changeless, free from all acts, for his Self is dissolved in the Eternal.
Being that is plunged in the oneness of the Eternal and the Self made pure, that wavers not and is pure consciousness alone, is called wisdom.
They say he stands firm in wisdom, in whom this wisdom steadfastly dwells. He in whom wisdom is firmly established, who enjoys unbroken bliss, by whom the manifested world is almost unheeded, is called free even in life.
He who with thought dissolved is yet awake, though free from the bondage of waking life, whose illumination is free from impure mind-images, he, verily, is called free even in life.
He who perceives that his soul’s pilgrimage is ended, who is free from disunion even while possessing division, whose imagination is free from imaginings, he, verily, is called free even in life.
He who even while this body exists, regards it as a shadow, who has no sense of personality or possessions–these are the marks of him who is free in life.
Whose mind lingers not over the past, nor goes out after the future, when perfect equanimity is gained, this is the mark of him who is free even in life.
In this world, whose very nature is full of differences, where quality and defect are distinguished, to regard all things everywhere as the same, this is the mark of him who is free even in life.
Accepting wished and unwished objects with equanimity in the Self, and changing not in either event, is the mark of him who is free even in life.
When the sage’s imagination is fixed on tasting the essence of the bliss of the Eternal, so that he distinguishes not between what is within and without, this is the mark of him who is free even in life.
Who is free from thought of “I” and “my,” in body and senses and their works, who stands in equanimity, bears the mark of one who is free even in life.
He who has discerned the Eternal in the Self, through the power of sacred books, who is free from the bondage of the world, bears the mark of one who is free even in life.
He who never identifies himself with the body and senses, nor separates himself in thought from what is other than these, bears the mark of one who is free even in life.
He who through wisdom discerns that there is no division between the Eternal and the manifested world, bears the mark of one who is free even in life.
Whose mind is even, when honored by the good, or persecuted by the wicked, bears the mark of one who is free even in life.
In whom all sensuous objects, put forth by the supreme, melt together like the rivers and streams that enter the ocean’s treasure house, making no change at all, since he and they are but the one Being, this sage self-conquered is set free.
For him who has understood the nature of the Eternal, there is no return to birth and death as of old; if such return there be, then the nature of the Eternal was not known.
When the saint rests in the Self, through understanding that the Self is other than its vestures, that the Self is the pure Eternal; then the myth of the reality of Works entered on no longer holds him, just as the myth of union with things of dream no longer holds him who has awakened.
For he who is awake no longer keeps the sense of “I and mine and that,” for his looking-glass body and the world that belongs to it; but comes to himself merely through waking.
Neither a desire for pursuing mythical objects, nor any grasping after even a world full of them, is seen in him who has awakened.
Thus dwelling in the supreme Eternal, through the real Self, he stands and beholds naught else. Like the memory of an object looked on in dream, so is it, for the wise, with eating or the other acts of life.
The Yoga Vasishta
Who ever remains as he is, (i.e. without any perturbation in his worldly course), and continues intact as vacuity amidst society: such a one is called the living liberated (Jīvan mukta).
Who so is employed in his intellection only and seems to be sleeping in his waking state, though while conducting his worldly affairs: such a one is called the living liberated.
Whose countenance is neither flushed nor dejected in pleasure or pain, (in joy or grief and such other reverses); and who remains contented with what he gets: such a one is called liberated while he is living.
Whose waking is as a state of sound sleep, and who is not awake to the accidents of the waking state, and whose waking state is insensible of the desires incident to it: such a one is called liberated in his life.
Who though actuated by the feelings of affection, enmity, fear and the like, is at rest, and as clear and undisturbed as vacuity within himself: such a one is called liberated while he is alive.
Who has not an air of pride in him, and is not conceited (with a notion of his greatness) when he does or refrains to do anything: such a one is called self-liberated in his life time.
Who at one glance or winking of his eye, has a full view of the whole creation and final destruction of the world, like the Supreme self (to which he is assimilated): such a one is said to be liberated in his life time.
Who ever is not feared by nor is afraid of any body, and who is freed from the emotions of joy, anger and fear: such a one is liberated in life.
Who is quiet and quietly disposes his business of this world, and who though he stands as an individual in the sight of men, attaches no individuality to himself; and who though a sentient being, is insensible to all impressions: such is the living liberated soul.
Who being full of all possessions, and having every thing present before him, remains cold and apathetic to them, as if they were useless to him: such a man is liberated in his life.
Vasishtha said:—Take my advise, Ráma, and strive to be an example of the greatest man in thy deeds, enjoyments, and bounty; and rely in thy unshaken endurance, by bidding defiance to all thy cares and fears. (i.e. Remain as a rock against all accidents of life).
Ráma asked:—Tell me sir, what is the deed that makes the greatest actor, and what is that thing which constitutes the highest enjoyments; tell me also what is the great bounty, which you advise me to practice. …
The lord replied:—He is said to be the greatest actor, who does his deeds as they occur to him, whether of goodness or of evil, without any fear or desire of fruition. (i.e. Who expects no reward of his acts of goodness, nor fears for the retribution of some heinous deed, which he could not avoid to do).
He who does his acts of goodness or otherwise, who gives vent to his hatred and affection and feels both pleasure and pain, without reference to any person or thing, and without the expectation of their consequences, is said to be the greatest actor in the theatre of this world.
He is said to act his part well, who does his business without any ado or anxiety, and maintains his taciturnity and purity of heart without any taint of egoism or envy.
He is said to act his part well, who does not trouble his mind with the thoughts of actions, that are accounted as auspicious or inauspicious, or deemed as righteous or unrighteous, according to common opinion. (i.e. Best is the man that relies on his own probity, and is not guided by public opinion).
He is said to perform well his part, who is not affected towards any person or thing, but witnesses all objects as a mere witness; and goes on doing his business, without his desiring or deep engagement in it.
He is the best actor of his part, who is devoid of care and delight, and continues in the same tone and tenor of his mind, and retains the clearness of his understanding at all times, without feeling any joy or sorrow at anything.
He does his duties best, who has the readiness of his wits at the fittest time of action; and sits unconcerned with it at other times, as a retired and silent sage or saint: (i.e. discharge your business promptly, but be no slave to service).
He who does his works with unconcern and without assuming to himself the vanity of being the doer of it, is accounted as the best actor, that acts his part with his body, but keeps his mind quite unattached to it.
He is reckoned as the best actor, who is naturally quiet in his disposition and never loses the evenness of his temper; who does good to his friends and evil to his enemies; without taking them to his heart.
He is the greatest actor, who looks at his birth, life and death, and upon his rising and falling in the same light; and does not lose the equanimity of his mind under any circumstance whatever;
Again he is said to enjoy himself and his life the best, who neither envies anybody nor pines for any thing; but enjoys and acquiesces to whatever is allotted to his lot, with cool composure and submission of his mind.
He also is said to enjoy every thing well, who receives with his hands what his mind does not perceive; and acts with his body without being conscious of it and enjoys everything without taking it to his heart.
He is said to enjoy himself best, who looks on at the conduct and behaviour of mankind, as an unconcerned and indifferent spectator; and looks upon every thing without craving anything for himself.
He whose mind is not moved with pleasure or pain, nor elated with success and gain, nor dejected by his failure and loss; and who remains firm in all his terrible tribulations, is the man who is said to be in the perfect enjoyment of himself.
He is said to be in the best enjoyment of himself, who hails with an equal eye of complaisance his decay and demise, his danger and difficulty, his affluence and poverty, and looks on their returns and revolutions, with an eye of delight and cheerfulness.
He is called the man of greatest gratification, who sustains all the ups and downs of fortune with equal fortitude, as deep sea contains its boisterous waves in its fathomless depth.
He is said to have the highest gratifications who is possessed of the virtues of virtues of contentment, equanimity and benevolence (lit. want of malice); and which always accompany his person, as the cooling beams cling to the disk of the moon.
He too is greatly gratified in himself, who tastes the sour and sweet, the bitter and pungent with equal zest; and relishes a savoury and an unsavoury dish with the same taste.
He who tastes the tasteful and juicy, as also the untasteful and dry food with equal zest, and beholds the pleasant as well as unpleasant things with equal delight, is the man that is ever gratified in himself.
He to whom salt and sugar are both alike, and to whom both saline as well as saccharine victuals are equally palatable; and who remains unaltered both in his happy and adverse circumstances; is the man who enjoys the best bliss of his life in this world.
He is in the enjoyment of his highest bliss, who makes no distinction of one kind of his food from another; and who yearns for nothing that he can hardly earn. (Happy is he, who does not itch beyond his reach).
He enjoys his life best, who braves his misfortune with calmness, and brooks his good fortune, his joyous days and better circumstances with moderation and coolness.
He is said to have abandoned his all, who has given up the thoughts of his life and death of his pleasure and pain, and those of his merits and demerits at once from his mind.
He who has abandoned all his desires and exertions, and forsaken all his hopes and fears, and effaced all his determinations from the tablet of his mind, is said to have relinquished every thing in this world, and to have freed himself from all.
He who does not take to his mind the pains, which invade his body, mind and the senses, is said to have cast away from himself, all the troubles of his mortal state. Because the mind only feels the bodily and sensuous pains, and its unfeelingness of them is its exemption from troubles).
He is accounted as the greatest giver (forsaker) of his all, who gives up the cares of his body and birth (life); and has abandoned the thoughts of acts, deemed to be proper or improper for himself. (These are the social, civil, ceremonial and religious acts, which are binding on worldly people).
He is said to have made his greatest sacrifice, who has sacrificed his mind and all his mental functions and endeavours, before the shrine of his self-abnegation.
He who has given up the sight of the visibles from his view, and does not allow the sensibles to obtrude upon his senses, is said to have renounced all and every thing from himself.
The Voice of the Silence
The Bôdhisattva who has won the battle, who holds the prize within his palm, yet says in his divine compassion:
“For others’ sake this great reward I yield”—accomplishes the greater Renunciation.
A SAVIOUR OF THE WORLD is he.
Know, Conqueror of Sins, once that a Sowanee hath cross’d the seventh Path, all Nature thrills with joyous awe and feels subdued. The silver star now twinkles out the news to the night-blossoms, the streamlet to the pebbles ripples out the tale; dark ocean-waves will roar it to the rocks surf-bound, scent-laden breezes sing it to the vales, and stately pines mysteriously whisper: “A Master has arisen, a MASTER OF THE DAY”.
He standeth now like a white pillar to the west, upon whose face the rising Sun of thought eternal poureth forth its first most glorious waves. His mind, like a becalmed and boundless ocean, spreadeth out in shoreless space. He holdeth life and death in his strong hand.
Yea, He is mighty. The living power made free in him, that power which is HIMSELF, can raise the tabernacle of illusion high above the gods, above great Brahm and Indra. …
Know, if of Amitabha, the “Boundless Age,” thou would’st become co-worker, then must thou shed the light acquired, like to the Bôdhisattvas twain, upon the span of all three worlds.
Know that the stream of superhuman knowledge and the Deva-Wisdom thou hast won, must, from thyself, the channel of Alaya, be poured forth into another bed.
Know, O Narjol, thou of the Secret Path, its pure fresh waters must be used to sweeter make the Ocean’s bitter waves—that mighty sea of sorrow formed of the tears of men.
Alas! when once thou hast become like the fix’d star in highest heaven, that bright celestial orb must shine from out the spatial depths for all—save for itself; give light to all, but take from none.
Alas! when once thou hast become like the pure snow in mountain vales, cold and unfeeling to the touch, warm and protective to the seed that sleepeth deep beneath its bosom—’tis now that snow which must receive the biting frost, the northern blasts, thus shielding from their sharp and cruel tooth the earth that holds the promised harvest, the harvest that will feed the hungry.
Self-doomed to live through future Kalpas, unthanked and unperceived by man; wedged as a stone with countless other stones which form the “Guardian Wall”, such is thy future if the seventh gate thou passest. Built by the hands of many Masters of Compassion, raised by their tortures, by their blood cemented, it shields mankind, since man is man, protecting it from further and far greater misery and sorrow.
The more thou dost become at one with it, thy being melted in its BEING, the more thy Soul unites with that which IS, the more thou wilt become COMPASSION ABSOLUTE.
Such is the Arya Path, Path of the Buddhas of perfection.