Thursday, May 04, 2006

Panchadasi-Chapter 1-Verses 15, 16 and 17

Hari Aum

Prostrations to my Guru. Prostrations to All.


chid aanandamaya brahma pratibimba samanvitaa .
tamo rajaH sattva guNaa prakR^itir dvividhaa cha saa .. 15..


sattva shuddhy avishuddhibhyaaM maay aavidye cha te mate .
maayaa bimbo vashii kR^itya taa.n syaat sarvaj~na iishvaraH .. 16..


avidyaa vashagast vanyas tad vaichitryaad anekadhaa .
saa kaaraNa shariira.n syaat praaj~nas tatra abhimaanavaan.h .. 17..

Prakriti (i.e primordial substance) is that in which there is the reflection of Brahman, that is Pure Consciousness and bliss and is composed of satva, rajas and tamas. It is of two kinds.

When the element of sattva is pure, Prakrti is known as Maya; when impure (being mixed up with rajas and tamas) it is called Avidya. Brahman, reflected in Maya, is known as the omniscient Isvara, who controls Maya

But the other (i.e the Jiva, which is Brahman reflected in Avidya) is subjected to Avidya (impure sattva). The Jiva is of different grades due to (degrees of) admixtures (of rajas and tamas with sattva). The Avidya is the causal body. When the Jiva identifies himself with the causal body he is called Prajna.

Now Vidyaranya explains about the obstruction that he had told in the previous sloka. Brahman is of the nature of Pure Consciousness and Bliss Absolute. The Prakriti is composed of Sattva, Rajas and Tamas guna. Prakriti is not an independent entity and hence not Real like Brahman. According to scriptures, Brahman is one without the second. Prakriti is dependent on Brahman is only an illusion in the Reality and this is responsible for the creation of the world. Prakriti is of two kinds namely Maya and Avidya. Maya is the element of pure sattva and avidya is the mixture of all the gunas.

Reflection of Brahman in Maya is Isvara. Isvara uses the power Maya to create the world of names and forms. Isvara has the power of all-pervading and all-knowing. Isvara knows its identity with the Brahman and hence the upadhi of Maya doesn’t obstruct the Blissful Brahman. Isvara is never under the control of Maya, but controls Maya and hence controls the world.

Reflection of Brahman in Avidya is Jiva. Avidya forms the causal body for Jiva. Ignorance obstructs jiva from knowing ones own nature of Brahman. Because of ignorance of one own nature jiva always thinks that he is limited. The world appears to the Jiva as real and hence gets affected by the world and hence Jiva is under the control of Maya. When the Jiva identifies himself with the causal body he is called Prajna. Thus ignorance veils the Self from Jiva to know it. Veiling here doesn’t mean veiling really, but it as though veiling, if it is veiled really then even our existence will not be known.

As scriptures say Brahman alone exist, these reflections (jiva and isvara) cannot have its existence without the original Consciousness and hence they are also nothing but the Brahman alone. Maya and Avidya are not real and hence are only illusion in the Reality. Hence these don’t exist really but only seems to exist. When the knowledge dawns the ignorance of the Jiva vanishes and hence realizes that the world is only an illusion in the Reality and what exists in only Brahman. When the Jiva thus realizes, all his limitations are removed and thus knows only Bliss as the nature of the Self.

Prostrations to all

Hari Aum



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