Thursday, May 04, 2006

Panchadasi-Chapter 1-Verses 12,13 and 14

Hari Aum

Prostrations to my Guru. Prostrations to All.


adhyetR^i varga madhyastha putra adhyayana shabdavat.h .
bhaane .apy abhaanaM bhaanasya pratibandhena yujyate .. 12..


pratibandho .asti bhaati iti vyavahaara arha vastuni .
tan nirasya viruddhasya tasy otpaadanam uchyate .. 13..


tasya hetuH samaana abhihaaraH putra dhvani shrutau .
iha anaadir avidy aiva vyaamoh aika nibandhanam.h .. 14..

A father may distinguish the voice of his son chanting (the Veda) in chorus with a number of pupils but may fail to note its peculiarities, due to obstruction viz., its having been mingled with other voices. Similar is the case with bliss. Because of obstruction, it is proper to say that the bliss is known yet unknown.

Our experience of the articles of everyday use is that they ‘exist’, they ‘reveal’. Now an obstruction is that which stultifies this experience of existence and revelation and produces the counter-experience that they are not existing, they are not revealing.

In the above illustration the cause of the obstruction to the voice of the son being fully recognized is the chorus of voices of all the boys. Here the one cause of all contrary experience is indeed the beginningless avidya.

The very nature of the Self is nothing but the Bliss Absolute. But since the nature of the Self is not known the happiness is seeked out in the worldly objects. Even that seeking of the object is for the happiness of the Self, hence it cannot be said that Self is completely not known. Therefore Vidyaranya told in the previous sloka that the Self is something which is well known but yet not known. In this sloka he explains the same by means of the example and thus explains the cause for not knowing ones own nature. In a chorus of students chanting Vedas a father can recognize the voice of his son because of the familiarity with the voice, but still find it difficult to hear the peculiarities of the voice. Though the voice is heard, it is unheard because of the obstruction caused by the chorus. The Self is of the nature of the Bliss. But there is something that obstructs one to know that the Self is of the nature of the bliss and desires come for the temporary happiness through the objects of the world which is anyway for the sake of happiness of the Self. This obstruction is nothing but the ignorance of ones own nature of Bliss. Therefore we can say the Self is known yet not known because of the ignorance.
Ignorance has got two powers,
veiling power
power of projecting opposite things

The ignorance has the power to veil the Self and projects other things. In the example also the chorus is the obstacle for the father to clearly hear the voice of his son. The chorus has veiled the voice of the son and projected as if not there. Veiling means not completely veiled but as though it is veiled.
In the similar way the Bliss which is the very nature of the Self is not known because of the ignorance. The ignorance veils the Self and hence projects the other things as the seeking of the happiness through the objects of the world. The objects of the world aren’t real but are temporary. Object that is temporary can give only temporary happiness. That which is permanent only can give permanent happiness. But even on more analysis we can find that the objects of world neither have happiness nor has sorrow. It is only the modification of mind which sees these objects which is the effect of ignorance of ones own nature. When the obstacle is removed then what will be experienced is only Bliss which is eternal.
The nature of ignorance is inexplicable. Ignorance doesn’t have any beginning but it has an end when the knowledge about the Self dawns. So the dualities that are experienced in the world are because of the ignorance of ones own nature. Anything that stays only for a particular period of time is nothing but an illusion. Illusions are inexplicable and hence cannot be spoken about the ignorance at all. But it is there as an obstacle for the eternal bliss.

Prostrations to all

Hari Aum



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