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Bhagavad Geeta Hridayam


Bhagawad Geeta is the spiritual message contained in Maha Bharata, and is its life - breath conveyed to the entire mankind. A unique aspect of Bhagavad Geeta is that it is as easy to understand, as it is difficult to truly and correctly comprehend. It seems to be easily graspable, but in reality needs considerable effort to explain the meaning of every single verse in it. What the Holy Bible is to the Christian, what Quraan-e-Shareef is to a Muslim, what Granth Saaheb is to a Sikh, what Zendaavesta is to a Parsee, similarly, Bhagavad Geeta is a revered scripture for a Hindu. There are Upanishad-s, Brahma Sootraa-s, and other great treatises like Yoga Vaasishta in the spiritual domain-But none of them have that much popularity and appeal as the Bhagavad Geeta. It is indeed amazing. Jagadguru Sankara Bhagavatpaada himself stated in his introduction to his Geetaa Bhaashya, that there is nothing to feel amazed about it.

''Tadidam Geetaa Sastram Samasta Vedaartha Saara Sangraha Bhootam''

The Bhagavad Geeta has in it the essence of all that is contained in the Veda-s, whether it is Karma Kaanda, or Upaasanaa Kaanda, apart from, needless to say, the Gnyaana Kaanda. Whatever sublime truths these three Kaanda-s reveal; - the secrets of Karma, Upaasana and Gnyaana -, in other words, ritualism, meditation and metaphysical reflection, the quintessence of these three is given to us, as nectar to be savored. Thus stated the great Seer Sri Sankara Bhagavat Paada over twelve centuries ago. However, the big problem is, he added, that it is 'Durvignay Yaartham' i.e., most unintelligible, which implies, however much we try, one cannot grasp its entirity, and, understand its spirit in all its comprehensiveness and fathom its full depth. Then, have we to give it up as an impossible endeavour, or, is there any way out? Sensing this, the Acharya compassionately adds :

''Tut ardha aavishkaranaaya anaykyhi vivrita pada padaartha vaakya vaakyaartha nyaayamapi''

''Innumerable religious heads and intellectuals have, in full detail, given meanings for word-to-word, and sloaka-to-sloaka of the text''

Before the arrival of Sree Bhagavat Paada on the scene, there were hundreds of explanations, commentaries and interpretations of this sacred text (Bhagavat Paada lived in Eighth Century A.D.). That itself indicates the vast popularity and importance given to Bhagavad Geeta. Inspite of this, he stated that the prevalent commentaries were 'atyanta virudhdha' i.e., extremely contradictory to one-another. That was the miserable plight despite so many commentaries. Hence the Acharya, 'Vivaykataha artha nirdhaaranaardham', i.e., in order to interpret the proper meaning and implication, with due discrimination', undertook to write afresh a new comprehensive Bhashya (commentary) to give a correct perspective of the scriptural text. In the Sanskrit language, in many cases, a word has different meanings depending on the context. For example, the word 'Sanyas' has different meanings in different contexts. The interpretation has to be done intelligently and aptly, to suit the context and the situation. Similar are the words 'yagnya', 'Aatma', and so on. There are so many of them, and the appropriate meaning has to be chosen with utmost caution and discrimination. Also, the Acharya added : 'Sunkshaypataha Vivaranam Karishyaami, He would render the explanation with utmost brevity.

However, a thought may still linger in one's mind how an extremely popular scripture such as Geeta can indeed be so difficult to understand. To illustate this, let the Vedantic study be considered as a three year degree course. The text books in the first year are the 'Upanishads'. For the second year, the texts are the 'Brahma Sootra-s'. In the final year, the text can be Bhagavad Geeta. To properly understand the second year texts, one must have mastered the first year texts. Similarly, unless one has a thorough knowledge of the second year texts, there cannot be a proper comprehension of the third year text i.e., Bhagavad Geeta. In general, the big mistake that is often being commited is that without any study of the Upanishads, or having any knowledge of them, and without knowing what Brahma Sootra-s are, one is jumping directly to the third year text of Bhagavad Geeta. It is clearly to be understood that without the prior knowledge of Upanishads and Brahma Sootra-s, if one were to take up Bhagavad Geeta, one would face many a problem. It would be an uphill task. The courses referred to above in the three years of study, are designated as 'Sruti, Yukti and Anubhava'. Sruti is hearing (doing sravana) in order to wipe out ignorance, and is facilitated through the study of Upanishads. This reveals the supreme goal of life. During this study, one would in general have many a doubt, many things needing clarification. An intensive critical study is bound to throw up many doubts which are to be cleared. This is achieved through the study of the Brahma Sootra-s, the second year text. This clearance of doubts is called Yukti, by means of reasoning. Thus, ignorance is dispelled, as also any doubts, before entering into the final year study of the Bhagavad Geeta. Though a theoretical and conceptual knowledge is by then gained, still, one has to 'live it', experience it. 'The proof of pudding is in the eating' as the saying goes. This experiencing involves interaction with the society at large. Unless the knowledge and widom gained is tested on the touch-stone of the world, it cannot serve the purpose. It has to be universalized. Such a life alone can be called 'Life Divine'. Mere academic understanding is not enough. It would indeed be narrow and limited. It is termed 'Solipsism' (the theory that 'self' is the only Reality, and that what one thinks is alone correct). But the knowledge, its legitimacy and accuracy has to withstand testing and verification, which occurs only in 'Anubhava' (experiencing it in actual life). This aspect of 'experience' is provided by the Bhagawad Geeta. But without going through the stages of Sruti and Yukti, this 'Anubhava' is well nigh impossible. That is the reason why Bhagawad Geeta while appearing to be so simple, turns out to be so complicated, especially without the prior study of Upanishads and Brahma Sootra-s. The language of Bhagawad Geeta (Sanskrit), and the terminology adopted, is of the epic style, the style of sage Veda Vyaasa, highly idiomatic, though appearing so simple. This is perhaps similar to the language of th Holy Bible, so simple and yet so lofty. Hence, to comprehend properly the message of Bhagawad Geeta, it needs the guidance and explanation of Sudguru (an enlightened Preceptor), besides a sound knowledge of Upanishads and Brahma Sootra-s. This is one aspect of the study.,

The second point : Bhagawad Geeta is a part of the great epic of Maha Bharata. It is in the context of a fierce battle, and is a dialogue betweeen Arjuna and Lord Krishna. It is often taken as a mere story, and a medley of conversations. However, Bhagavat Paada issued a note of warning in the begining itself that it is not a mere literary output but a science (Sastra). He was the first to declare it so. He calls it not just Bhagavad Geeta but Bhagavad Geeta Sastra. He always refers to it as a Sastra, implying thereby that one must view it as a science, to enable a proper understanding. Then only, one can catch its spirit. Geeta itself declares it so in the Purushoattama Praapti Yoga :

'Iti Guhya Tamam Sastram Ida Muktam'. 'This Sastra is the utmost secreet that I reveal.' Bhagavat Paada draws our attention to this aspect of it being a Science, and not just a story.


In the above context, it is well to remind ourselves of what our ancestors had specified as the four pillars on which a Sastra is supported. The four prerequsisites, or conditions, have first to be fulfilled, before anythong can qualify to be called a Sastra. These four are the answers to the queries begining with 'What, Who, Why, How?' These four are called 'Anubandha Chatushtayam'.

1. The 'What?' : What does the Sastra intend to convey ? What is its message, its subject matter, its 'Vishaya' ?

2. The 'Who?' : To whom is it addressed ? Who is eligible to read the Sastra ? Such an one is called an 'Adhikaari', one who is competent to study it.

3. The 'Why?' : Why is it telling all that is being told ? What is its practical use, the 'Phala' ?

4. The 'How?' : How the objective that it sets forth is to be achieved, the 'Maarga' ?

Unless these are first answered, a Sastra cannot proceed further. Thus, all the four aspects : Vishaya, Adhikaari, Phala and Maarga, have to be clearly evident in any Sastra. When these four do not exist, then, it is no more a Sastra (science) and deserves to be discarded. Actually, instead of the above four; we can effectually consider the two prerequisites of 1) Problem (samsaya), and 2) Solution (Parishkaaram). Any Sastra whatsoever first presents or reveals a problem to us. Then it has to indicate a solution to that problem.


Now, looking at Bhagavad Geeta from the above-mentioned standpoint, we can see that it does satisfy the requirements of posing a problem, and then rendering the solution. The problem is indicated in the first chapter, and the solution revealed in the last one. It is but natural that the Sastra should start with the problem, then proceed with the ways and means to tackle it, and finally end with the solution. Something analogous to the three stages of an ailment, viz diagnosis, treatment and full recovery. This is in medical science. Now, in the spiritual science, the universal ailment is 'Vishaadam' (sorrow), which none can totally escape. Thus the first chapter in Geeta is the 'Arjuna Vishaada Yoga' (the sorrow of Arjuna). The total cure for this is revealed in the last (eighteenth) chapter, 'Moaksha Sanyaasa Yoga' which name is a little misleading. It is not forsaking (sanyaas) of 'Moaksha' (Deliverance), but forsaking all that is the cause, and processing the growth, of the ailment of Vishaada, so that the sparkling health (Moaksha) is gained. Thus the two aspects of the problem and the solution, are clearly evident.

The problem of 'Vishaada' (sorrow) : What is the Vishaada that is indicated in Geeta? The sorrow in this context is 'Death'. The biggest problem in this universe, faced by all living beings, is the sceptre of 'Death', the ever lurking fear that one day or other, we are going to die. From the ignorant and the brute to the scholar and the highest intellectual, this fear of death is inevitable. As sage Valmiki states in Ramayana epic, "However eminent a person may grow to be, however great and accomplished one be, one day or other, everyone has to die". Just as in the gaint foortprint of the elephant's leg, are included the footprints of all smaller animals, so also, in the challenging problem of death, all the lesser problems of life are included. Well, one might say that this problem would prop up only towards the very end of one's life. But know that prior to the ultimate fear of losing oneself, the 'I', there are umpteem fears of the loss of 'Mine' ! Before the loss of 'Aham' in the final stage, there are the many losses of 'Mama' earlier to that. Critically considering, death implies 'losing once for all' anything, and not merely life alone. For anyone, whosoever it be, is eveything in life happening always favorably? No, the risk factor is ever haunting. That ever-lurking fear of losing things or beings that are 'mine', is itself in essence, 'death'. Finally of course, not merely losing 'mine', but 'I" itself. Thus from birth to death, from the cradle to the grave, it is a continous process of loosing something or the other, and hence 'Vishaada'. This is the key problem. Then, what is the solution to this ever-recurring problem? The answer is : 'Sanyaas' (Renunciation), and consequently Moaksha (Deliverance). Beware of the word 'Sanyaas'. It does not just mean becoming a mendicant, wearing ochre robes and growing a long bread ! That is a common but mistaken motion. The Sanyaas indicated in Bhagavad Geeta is quite different. The correct philosophical meaning of the word 'Sanyaas' is 'well-placed'. 'Nyaasam' means 'place'. Hence 'Sanyaas' would mean 'well-placed'. This means 'remaining in the place where one ought to be'. Presently you have not kept your mind at the place where it ought to be placed. You are keeping focussed on wife, childrem, family, possessions, wealth, joy and sorrow, pleasure and pain, likes and dislikes etc. Hence is one's mind wandering and fluttering about. Also, at the loss of any of the above listed, one feels oneself totally lost and torn. On the other hand, if one fixes one's mind on the Universal Self, then, the individual as well as the universe, become merged in that Universal Self, and consequently one's attitude radically charges. One would indeed be in 'Samaadhi'. 'Aadhi' means 'placed'. Thus 'Samaadhi' also means 'well-placed', as 'Sanyaas' meant. In contrast to Samaadhi, if the mind be where it ought not to be, then, it is 'Vyaadhi' (disease). Thus, with such a cultivated attitude of Sanyaas, one can taste the 'fruit of Deliverance'. Hence it is said that Bhagavad Geeta begins with the problem of 'sorrow' (Vishaada), and ends up with the solution of Moaksha or Deliverance.

This is revealed clearly in the following Sloaka in chapter 2 of Bhagavad Geeta :

"Asoachyaa Nanvasoachastwam

Pragnyaa Vaadaamscha Bhaashasay

Gataasoona Gataasoonscha

Naanu Soachanti Panditaaha

In the line 'Asoachyaa Nanvasoachastvam' (you are grieving for those for whom you ought not to grieve), the word 'soacha' i.e., grief or Vishaada, has been used, to indicate that grief alone is the problem. Thus the 'problem' has been identified and mentioned early itself in the text. Then, what about the 'solution'? For this, refer to the sloaka in eighteenth chapter.

"Sarva Dharmaan Parityajya

Maamaykam Saranam Vraja

Ahamtvaa Sarva Paapaybhyoe

Moaksha Yishyaami Maa Suchaha

In this sloaka, in the last line, is mentioned 'Maa Suchaha' i.e., 'grieve no more'. Thus, the grief (vishaada) has been eradicated, rendering the solution to the problem.

Next, naturally the question would prop up : To obtain the solution to the problem of Vishaada (grief), what is the method, the process ? What is it that we have to understand and do ? What did the Lord indicate ? The answer, to put it in a nutshell, is 'Bhagawat Tattva' which we have to grasp. The Lord Himself declared :

"Anityam Asukham Loakam

Imam Praapya Bhajaswamaam (9-33)

That is the Lord's declaration to the world. A message to the entire humanity, though addressed to Arjuna (Arjuna being a mere pretext). Said the Lord : 'Oh mortal, you have been thrown into this world which is full of 'Anityam' and 'Asukham'. 'Anityam' means transitory, impermanent, not long-lasting. 'Asukham' means unhappy. Thus life has been generalised by these two characteritics: short-lived and miserable.

Now, having come and stuck in such a miserable plight in this ocean of 'Samsaara', what is the way out ? How to seek redemption ? The Lord says : 'Bhajaswamam' i.e., 'Adore Me', i.e., understand 'Bhagawat Tattwa'. That will show you the path. At another place, the Lord declares :

"Maamupaytya Punarjanma

Duhkhaalaya Masaaswatam

Naapnuwanti Mahaatmaanaha

Sumsidhdhim Paramaam Gataaha (8-15)

"Having come to Me, great souls are not born again into this abode of sorrow with life transitory''.
And yet at another place :

"Asraddha Dhaanaaha Purushaa

Dharmasyaasya Paramtapa

Apraapyamaam Nivartantay

Mrityu Samsaara Vartmani (9-3)

'If you do not hold on to Me, this Samsaara of misery and death, is inescapable'. Samsaara ifself is the embodiment of death (mrityu roopa).

In another Place the Lord says

"Tayshaamaham Samuddhartaa

Mrityu Samsaara Saagaraat

Bhavaami Nachiraat Paartha

Mayyaavaysita chaytasaam'' (12-7)

'Whosoever turns to me with devotion, I shall bail him out of the Mrityu Samsaara Saagara (the ocean of mortal life)'.

In all the above proclamations, the words 'I' and 'Me' refer not to the embodied Vaasu Deva (son of Devaki and Vasu Deva), the physical being that is the charioteer in the battle field of Kurukshetra, but the Supreme Universal Consciousness Itself, the Omnipresent, Omnipotent Suddha Chaitanya, the Paramaatman.

Thus from all the above enunciations, it is clear that if one wants to bail oneself out of this life's ocean of distress and death, the only way is to get hold of Bhagavat Tattwa. That secret is being revealed by none other than the Bhagavaan Himself. It being a revelation from Bhagavaan Himself, it is called Bhagavad Geeta. The title is thus justified and apt. The solution to the basic problem lies only in holding on to Bhagavat Tattva. Just as for all patients afflicted with various ailments, it is the doctor alone that can diagnose and treat, so also, for all nara-s (humans) and their problems, it is Narayana alone that can reveal the above solution. Thus now it is pretty clear, we have to hold on to Bhagavat Tattva.


The next query would naturally be, what is the Bhagavat Tattva? Bhagavad Geeta dwells on and elaborates this in detail. It is not a relative science, or even a mere art. The spiritual science (Aadhyaatmika Vignyaanam) is the most basic and fundamental of all branches of knowledge. The Lord declared it as Raja Vidya (Royal Learning). The 'nara' is made to grow to the level of 'Narayana'. That process is revealed in the text.

Before learning about Bhagavat Tattva we have to first know about Bhagavaan Himself, who He is. It is said 'Bhagoasyaasteeti Bhagavaan'. One who has 'Bhagam' is Bhagavaan, just as one who has 'dhana' is 'dhanavaan. Now, what is this 'Bhagam'? It is said that Its six qualities or characteristies are : Gnyaana, Aiswarya, Bala, Veerya, Tejus and Sakti - these constitute Bhagam. 'Shannam Bhaga iti eerana' is stated in Vishnu Puraana. Actually, among these six, all of them are not quite needed. They can be finally reduced and simplified to two basic qualities : Gnyaana and Aiswarya. The latter word does not mean, as in ordinary sense, 'wealth'. It implies 'mastery or commanding nature'. It is 'keeping overall control of this entire Universe'. 'Aiswarya' is derived from 'Eeswara bhaava'. Thus the basic two aspects can, in effect, be stated as 'Gnyaana Sakti and Kriyaa Sakti'. In modern terminology, they are equivalent to 'planning' and 'execution'. Firstly, the Supreme Intelligence to fully evolve a plan for this Universe. Secondly, to have the ability and the equipment needed to execute that plan.

The planning as well as execution are of incredibly mammoth dimensions. To plan this vast universe of macro dimensions, from the inumerable galaxies, down to the tiny insects, to have the ability to create and control such a vast universe, can it be possible for any mortal, let alone an inanimate agency to create itself? Neither mortal nor matter can ever dream of it. That which is beyond this life and matter, that Supreme Divine Agency, that Godhead alone, is the source from which everything springs, everything blooms.

To explain in simple terms the meaning of Bhagavat Tattva, see what Bhagavaan Himself says in the Geeta :

"Avyaktam Vyakti Maapannam

Manyantay Maamabuddhayaha

Param Bhava Majaanantoe

Mamaavyaya Manuttamam" ((7-24)

'You are seeking Me in the three-dimensional world, whereas I am in the fourth. You view me as bound by 'guna-s' (qualities) whereas I am beyond all guna-s. Hence, you are not able to comprehend Me. I am 'Param Bhaavam' (Transcendental) and 'Avyayam' (Unchanging)".

Everything in this world is changing, being qualified by 'naama, roopa and kriya', i.e., name, form and function (as usually said), or better, idea, thing and activity. There is nothing in this creation which is devoid of these three. If at all there be any, it is the One which is 'Avyayam' and Anuttamam', the latter meaning 'great and superior'. Hence Bhagavat Tattva can be understood to be 'Transcendental, as also beyond, 'naama, roopa and kriya', and hence 'great and superior'. Then It becomes 'Nityaha, Sarvagataha, Sthaanuvu, Achaloayam and Sanaatana'. 'Nitya' means eternal and permanent. 'Sarvagataha' means All-pervasive. Omnipresent as the sky, present everywhere. 'Sthaanuvu and Achaloayam' imply 'fixed at a place i.e., motionless'. Because, when it is omnipresent filling everything, where is the question of, and scope for mobility? There is no 'other' place to go ! 'Sanaatana' means 'ancient'. It has been ever existing. These are all the characteristics of Bhagavat Tattva. Knowing these, one would be able to get some idea of the concept of Bhagavat Tattva.

Now, though some hazy idea about It may have been evolved, still, It is likely to be perceived yonder far away, as external (paroaksha), imagining It objectively, and not as a subjective experience. The query still remains regarding who the individual is; the basic query, 'Who am I?' To clear this up, the Lord proclaims:

"Ahamaatmaa Gudaakesa

Sarva bhootaasaya sthitaha
---------------------------------'' (10-20)

'I am not only externally present, but also within you and every being. I am you yourself'. At another place :

"Kshetragnyam Chaapi Maam Viddhi

Sarva Kshaytrayshu Bhaarata
---------------------------------'' (13-2)

'In all the bodies, in all beings, the individual Self is not different from Me. That which is Universal, is also the individual.'

Thus, Bhagavaan is not only all-pervasive like the sky, but also what one is subjectively feeling as 'I am'. The objective aspect is called 'Sut', and the subjective aspect the 'chit'. Sut means mere 'Existence' without 'Consciousness'. Chit means 'Conciousness'. Thus the Lord is declaring that He is not merely as Sut, but also as Chit in every being. He is Sunmayam as well as Chinmayam. Both insentient as well as sentient, both matter and life, as also the Eternal Witness of all matter and life. Life itself cannot witness matter. It is the Consciousness that witnesses both life and matter. Thus both 'Jagat' (universe) and 'Jeeva' (individual) are Bhagavat Tattva.

Now the query could be : What about all this glaringly visible universe, this material world which is so vividly evident before us? Hear what the Lord reveals :

'Bahirantascha Bhootanam Acharam Charamayvacha'... (13-16)

'Not only within and ouside of everything, I am the very Swaroopa (Essence) of all that is 'chara' and 'Achara' (the animate and inanimate).

In seventh chapter He declared :

'Asamsayam Samagram Maam

Yathaa Gnyaasyasi Tachchhrunu' (7-1)

'Hear from Me how without doubt you would know Me in entirity' :

"Bhoomiraapoe Analoe Vayuhu

Khum Manoe Buddhi Rayvacha

Ahamkaara Iteeyam May

Bhinnaa Prakriti Rashthadhaa" (7-4)

"Apareya Mitas Tvanyaam

Prakritim Viddhi May Paraam

Jeeva Bhootaam Mahaa Baahoe

Yayaydam Dhaaryatay Jagat" (7-5)

'Earth, water, fire, air, either, mind, intellect and ego_this is my eight- fold 'Prakriti'. This is my lower Prakriti. Then, there is my Higher Prakriti, My transcendental Nature. It is the very Life Element that sustains this world.'

'I have two Natures. One is the external nature. The other Internal. One that is evident outside, the other perceived inside. The former is called 'Jagat', and the latter 'Jeeva'. Both are My Natures only. And know that My Nature is just Myself.'

Thus the entire Universe is nothing but Bhagavaan. It may need many lives (births) for one to realize this Truth.

"Bahoonaam Janma Naamantay

Gnyaanavaan Maam Prapadyatay

Vaasudevaha Sarvamiti

Sa Mahaatmaa Sudurlabhaha" (7-19)

'After many many births, the wise man attains Me, realizing that all is Vaasudev (the Paramaatman). Such a Mahaatma is rare to find.'

Now combine the three enunciations : 'Firstly, I am All pervasive like ether (sky) and without 'naama-roopa-kriya'. This is 'Sut'. Secondly, I am the Consciousness (Chaitanya) within every being (jeeva). Hence in Sudroopa and Chidroopa (objectively and subjectively) it is 'I' alone. Thirdly, as animate or inanimate, the entire Prakriti is also 'I' alone. Thus in effect, the trinity of Jeeva, Jagat and Eeswara (the individual, the world and the Godhead) is all pervaded by Bhagavat Tattva. But, we may be under the gross misapprehension that these three are separate entities each of which is permeated by the Bhagavat Tattva. No. All the three are Bhagavat Tattva Itself. Everything is 'That' alone. Thus, the very essence of the individual, the very stuff of the universe, and, the very Nature of God Almighty, all the three, are no other than the Ultimate Reality Itself which alone 'Is'. The above mentioned three are but mere apperances. Thus the scope of the subject matter of Bhagavad Geeta, is clearly evident. Generally, any subject deals with a particular branch of study. Physical and Biological Sciences, Medical Science, Engineering, law, Commerce etc., deal with their respective specific field. Now, here we come across the spiritual study, the Brahma Vidya, which encompasses everything. The very word 'Brahmam' implies the 'biggest and the greatest'. That is the limitless scope of the Bhagavat Tattva, which alone is the solution to the mighty and challenging problem of the 'fear of Death', by which is caused the 'Vishaada' (sorrow). Basically, fear and sorrow exist because of our viewing the Jeeva, Jagat and Eeswara_the three, as distinctly separate. Then, there is our 'Dehabhimana' (body-identification) due to which we shudder to think of what would happen to us when death devours us. Hence, the solution lies in the eradication of this 'ignorance', and, a true understanding of the Bhagavat Tattva, which alone really exists. When all diversity is fully merged into the Unity, into the One Universal Consciousness, which is one's own Swaroopa, the Eternal Existence, - then, where is the scope for any fear or sorrow ? What a solace is the Lord's assurance !

"Natway Vaaham Jaatu Naasam

Natvam Nay May Janaadhipaa

Na chaiva Na Bhavishyaamaha

Sarvai Vaya Mataha Param" (2-12)

'At no time before, I ceased to exist. Even you never ceased to exist. Even all these Kings and Rulers never ceased to exist. And, in future too, all would never cease to exist.'

Thus, our existence has been continuing from the past, through the present, and would ever continue in future too. Hence our existence is eternal. We were ever before, now, and ever hence-forward, always been living. Thus, realizing everything, within and without, as Bhagavat Swaroopa, is alone the permanent solution.


Now, a theoretical or academic understanding of the problem and its solution, will not suffice, As an illustrative analogy, knowing the diagnosis of the ailment, and knowing the prescribed medicine will not cure the ailment. One has to 'take' the medicine. Similarly we have to 'attain' such a state of experience, such a realization as described above. We have to know the process by which such enlightenment occurs. We have to fully 'realize' that the true nature of our Real Self is Bhagavat Swaroopa Itself.

In this context, the scripture elaborates various aspects and answers many queries. However, have we to evolve or create that Bhagavat Tattva ? Such an act is in the domain of Karma Yoga. Have we to grasp It in some 'form' (as in Sagunoapaasana) ? That is Bhakti Yoga. Or, have we to sit quiet in contemplation brushing aside all thoughts, thus purifying our mind, and meditate upon Truth with full concentration? That is the Samaadhi Yoga. Or, without all these, whatever we may or may not be doing, is it just enough to be ever in Its Awareness ? The last one is Gnyaana Yoga. Then would arise the query : Are all the four methods to be followed independently or collectively ? Or, is it only one of them, and the others are of contributory nature, as tributories to the main river ? In that case, which is the main Yoga ? These queries need answers, and shall be dealt with in due course.

Bhagavat Tattva is beyond the limitations of time, place or attributes. It is All-Pervasive, Eternal and In-dwelling in all. Geeta itself states :

"Avinaasitu Tatviddhi Yena
Sarva Midam Tatam ---------------------------------'' (2-17)

'Know that That by which all this (universe) is pervaded, is indestructible'.

Besides this, the Lord also declared :

"Mayaa Tata Midam Sarvam Jagadavyakta Moortinaa ---------------------------------'' (9-4)

'This entire creation I am pervading. This universe is 'Moortam' i.e., manifest with names and forms. I am as Unmanifest in all that.'

Thus there are two aspects that can be inferred from these pronouncements :
1. Moortam (manifest with attributes) 2. Amoortam (Unmanifest)

Bhagavat Tattva has permeated both these. The Unmanifest is pemeated by Swaroopa, and the Manifest is the 'Vibhooti.' In the Swaroopa state, It is Gnyaanam (Awareness), and, in the Vibhooti state It is the Gneya (the known). The former is the Vishayi (the Subject, Perceiver), and the latter the Vishayam (the object perceived). The entire universe consists of these two categories. The Grasper is the Gnyaana, and, that which is grasped the Gneya. Now, ask not who is Eeswara, Aatma, Paramaatma etc., The above two categories cover all and everything. Normally, these two, the Gnyaana and Gneya (the knower and the known) appear to us as two separate entities. We think, 'I am perceiving. This universe is being perceived by me.' Every experience falls within the orbit of this classification, whether it is the waking state or the dream state. In the deep-sleep (Sushupti) state however, though the knower and known merge into One, they immediately appear on waking up. Our entire life is just full to the brim with these two, the Gnyaana and the Gneya. We cannot escape this. This is Dualism, 'Dvaita'. In the modern scientific parlance, this is Relativity, i.e., one is dependent on the other. The object and the subject, the knower and the known etc., Now arises the profound and thought provoking query : Is it because the 'knower' (Perceiver) is first there, then only the 'known' is being perceived? Or the other way, is it because the known (perceived) is first there, then only the 'knower' is perceiveing ? Which is first and which later? On the face of it, both look to be correct ! Is it not? Because, unless the object is there, how can one have its knowlege? Similarly, if I do not have the knowing capacity, how can I know (perceive) any object even if it be there? Now, which is the first? This is like the age-old puzzle : Did the seed come first or the tree? Without the seed, the tree cannot come. Again, withought the tree, the seed cannot be there ! Commonsense would say, first the 'cause', then the 'effect'. Even scientific, or religious, or any sense for that matter, cannot deny this. In any case, the basic riddle remains unsolved. In the western thought, this riddle whether the knower is first, or the known, troubled many a thinker, Some voted for the former, and some for the latter. Those who voted for the former, were called 'Idealists'. Those who voted for the latter (the known) were called 'Realists'. Thus the western philosophical concepts have been bifurcated into Idealism and Realism. In Eastern philosophy, one sect of Buddhists, called Vignyaana Vaadi-s, voted for Gnyaana (or Vignyaana) as the first or prior entity, and said that gneya appeared later. Another sect of Buddhists called Bahyardha-vaadi s believed that the universe was there at first and later come the knowledge about it. Thus this riddle had always remained. One notable fact is that as long as we are seeing both, there is no solution. This fact was always being overlooked. We could not lift ourselves up above them and then view. We have to realize that there is a third principle that decides the existence or non-existence of those two. That principle is called the 'Absolute', whereas the earlier two were 'relative'. If we ever have to clear the confusion, as for example, whether this cannot exist without that, or, that cannot exist without this, then, there must be a third thing which is self-existent (on its own), and witnesses those two. Such a witnessing principle is the Supreme Chaitanya (Consciousness) or the Bhagavat Tattva. That does not depend on any- thing for Its existence. It is 'Swataha -Pramaana' (Self-evident). It does not need an observer. This is analogous to an ocean in which a wave has risen up. On that wave was seen some foam, both coming towards the beach. If our perception is limited to these two entities only, the wave and the foam, then, queries would arise, such as whether the wave first started and then foam formed, or, whether foam was already there before the wave started, and merely transported by the wave. Or in short, whether wave first or foam first. As long as one sees wave and the foam as two separate independent entities, the problem would ever remain unsolved. The way out is, to shift the focus from these two (the wave and foam) on to another entity, which is the oceanic water, out of which sprung up both wave and the foam. Once it dawns that both are nothing but water, your mind quietens. The diversity merges into the Unity. That is the Advaitic approach. There is no solution to the problems arising out of relativity, unless viewed with the concept of the Absolute.

Now coming back to the original query whether the 'known' exists because the 'knower' is perceiving, or alternately, the known can exist even without knower, ....all such queries regarding knower and known, are like those concering the wave and the foam. Just as in that case one has to think beyound both, and develop a 'Jala-drishti', similarly here, one should rise above relativity and look from the 'Absolute' point of view.


'Gnyaana' is of the two types. One is the 'Saakshi Gnyaana (the Witnessing, spectator-like Consciousness, mere Awareness). The other is the Vritti Gnyaana (active Consciousness, the thoughts and ideas of the mind). We normally mistake the unending successive thought waves to be our Gnyaana. The Buddhists committed this mistake of calling the Vritti Gnyaana itself as the Real Gnyaana, the Absolute Consciousness. Hence they could not obtain a solution. They could not decide whether the Reality (Substance) was the first, or the thought (bhaava). Vedantists alone offered a tangible solution by stating that there exists Pure Consciousness (Suddha Chaitanya) which is a mere spectator, the Absolute, Self-existent, Swayambhu, Swatah - Pramaana, Divine Agency, in whose 'glow', all the thoughts in the mind arise, corresponding to which, all things in the world are being perceived. One should not focus one's vision on these 'ideas and things' only (naama and roopa), by which no solution can ever be obtained, because one would get stuck with the contradictions of relativity. Hence, one should try to comprehend the witnessing Pure Consciousness, and get identified with It, and realize that That Itself is your Swaroopa. After such a Realization then, look at everything calmly, including all your innumerable experiences...joy, sorrow, fear, wonder, lust, anger etc., and feel that they are all but waves, superficial and momentary. Imagine yourself to be the Ocean, observing its own waves from moment to moment. Develop a vision that, just as the successive waves are but drifting and passing over the ocean, your succesive thought-waves are passing over the ocean of your Gnyaana. Then you would realize that just as it was but water alone that permeated all waves, it is your Gnyaana alone that is permeating all your thoughts. You would then be a mere ' Witnessing Self', the glow of which has lighted up your thoughts, as well as the things of the material world. Without that glow, you cannot become aware of any of your experiences.

'Mayaa Tatam Idam Sarvam'. The Lord declared : 'I am pervading this everything'. 'Acharam Charamayvacha', 'the inanimate as also the animate.' Also, 'Gnyaanam, Gneyam, Gnyaana Gamyam, Hridi Sarwasya Vishthitam' (13-17). 'I am the knower and the known, an also the very goal of knowledge. I am the Consciousness, as well as the In-Dweller in all that is manifest.'

This is a bewildering statement that would baffle any scientist. Nowhere, in any branch of knowledge, can one come across such a daring statement. Metaphysics alone can propound such a revelation that the Absolute permeates all relativity, just as it is water alone (which is the substance of the ocean) that just assumes the form of the waves, bubbles and froth etc., Thus the entire universe is nothing but the solidified form of the Divine Consciousness. All _from the thoughts that sprout in one's mind, from one's sense-organs, the body and its activities, then the things and beings outside, the animate and the inanimate, and then the planets and the stars, this vast universe, extending even beyond those mammath galaxies and all _are but lumps of that Consciousness, that 'Suddha Chaitanya ! '

Lord Krishna further declared "This entire Universe that is manifest, is but one-fourth of My Nature. The remaining three fourth is in an Unmanifest state." The thoughts in the minds of humans, are the dynamic form. The externally perceived world is a solidified form. Lest one may think that the Jeeva (individual self) is a separate entity, the Lord states: "Mamyvaamsoe Jeevaloakay Jeeva Bhootaha Sanaatanaha...." (15-7). "These individual souls (Jeeva-s) in the universe, are none other but My own 'amsa' (part). Just like the Ocean stating that those waves are none else but itself manifesting with a form. So also are the vrittignyaana-s (thought waves) emanating from one's mind, nothing but the Pure Consciousness alone. Thus all the Jeeva-s (individual selves) have been merged by the Lord into Himself, the Universal Consciousness.

Then, regarding the Universe (Jagat) :

"Yeh chaiva Saatwikaa Bhaava

Raajasaas Taamasaaschayay

Matta Ayvayti Taanviddhi. . . . . . . . " (7-12)

'All these external things and beings , governed by the three qualities of Sutwun, Rujus and Tamas, are none else but Me, come from Me and are My Swaroopa.'

Thus the entire creation has been covered, The individual selves (Jeeva-s) are none else but His 'amsa' (a part). The external world is also a solidified form of that same Supreme Consciousness.

At another place, the Lord says 'Sudasatyaaha Marjunaa.' 'I am both Sut and Asut'. Both the presence of things, as also thier absence. This implies things and beings that are manifest, as also those unmanifest, like Gnyaana or Consciousness, which are unseen but experienced. Gnyaana is formless and hence cannot be seen. But surely it does exist, because without It your seeing itself is not possible. The Gnyaana within is in an unmanifest state, in the form of Awareness (the Swaroopa of Jeeva), whereas, externally it is in the form of the universe. Thus the subject as well as the object are nothing but the Paramaatman. Such a Bhagavat Tattva has been the topic of the scriptural texts. Such a Bhagawat Swaroopa is not only Pure Consciousness, but also the universe and Jeeva (as Its own Swaroopa). Thus the Triputi (the threesome) of Jeeva, Jagat, and Eeswara, has been merged into the One, the Pure Consciousness. We have to grasp such a Tattva. To know how and where It is, and how to experience It, is the task before us. Mere Knowing about It is not enough, until we realize It.


We have seen that Bhagavat Tattva is the only solution to our problem of 'Vishaada' (sorrow in life). Now, regarding the process for Its comprehension, should one take to the path of Karma Yoga, or Bhakti Yoga, or Samaadhi Yoga or Gnyaana Yoga? These four paths as given in the text, were mentioned earlier. The ancient sages of India, through the scriptural texts have revealed that it is not through Karma, Bhakti or Samaadhi Yoga-s that Realization dawns, but only through the Gnyaana Yoga. Gnyaana alone leads to Kaivalya (Moaksha or Deliverance) and none other. Now, some may question why it is being stated so emphatically that Gnyaana Yoga alone is being singled out in preferance to the other three which also were believed to deliver the goods ? One thing is to be noted. The path or process would depend on the nature of the experience that we are aspiring for. The means are determined by the nature of the end. Only that process is to be adopted that is directed towards the desired result. Presently, the goal to reach has been accepted as the Bhagavat Tattva. What is Its Swaroopa? It is all_pervasive being formless. There is nothing which It is not. 'Acharam Charamayvacha' (inanimate as well as animate). To grasp and experience such a Prinicple, one should think over a suitable path.

It is not difficult to rule out Karma Yoga as the means. What is Karma ? It is said to be of four types : 1) Utpatti 2) Aapti 3) Sumskruti 4) Vikruti. Outside the framework of these four, there cannot be any Karma (activity) in this universe.

1) Utpatti : Preparation or Production

2) Aapti : Transporting or bringing it near to you.

3) Sumskriti : Refinement, Removing any defects. Adding any desired qualities.

4) Vikruti : After some period of time, in due course, may be due to wear and tear, the product perishes.

Everything in the world would have these four characterstics. No material whatsoever it be, is permanent and eternal. Now let us see if these are applicable to the Bhagavat Swaroopa. Is it to be produced or manufactured? This would imply that It was not there earlier. Is it acceptable? When it is prominently being declared as 'Anaadi Madhya Laya' (without a beginning, an end or in between state), how can anyone even think of Its earlier absence? Besides this, if Bhagavat Tattva is to be manufactured or produced, who is to do it ? Can you produce It as you would do a pot or a pan? When everything and every being is but Bhagavat Swaroopa, where is the question of even It producing Itself? Is there anything apart from It, to engage in such an activity? It is like a wave telling that it intends to manufacture an Ocean ! As ridiculous as that.

Next is 'Aapti' i.e., to possess It, bring It near to oneself. This does not arise at all when it is not produced. Also, transporting anything from one place to another implies Its being brought from the place where It is, to a place where It 'is not'. Now, is there a place where Bhagavat Tattva is not there, it being Omnipresent ? Hence, It has no Utpatti or Aapti.

Third characterstic is Sumskruti i.e., rectifying any defect, or adding a new quality. This as well cannot be applicable to Bhagavat Tattva which is beyound 'guna-s' i.e., qualities, and is pristinely pure, and hence beyond defects or contaminations.

The fourth is Vikruti i.e., change, from one state to another. It can also mean total extinction. This cannot at all apply to Bhagavat Tattva which is changeless and indestructible (Avinaasi). When inanimate ether (sky) that is formless, is itself indestructible, how can it be for Bhagavat Tattva, the Supreme Consciousness ?

Hence, Bhagavat Tattva cannot be realized through Karma. Next to consider is the path of Bhakti. Bhakti means devotion, worshipping Divinity imbued with some 'form' (Saguna Bhakti). Now, does Paramaatma exist corresponding to your thoughts and mode of worship? Your worship corresponds to how you imagine Paramaatma to be. You just have a mental image of the Divinity in some form of your choice, and adore that form. You are under a delusion that Divinity should conform to that form which you are imagining That cannot be. Hence Bhakti also is not a proper process.

The third path is Samaadhi Yoga. This is however a negative process. Samaadhi implies driving away and eradicating all thoughts from one's mind. That is what is meant by 'Chitta Vritti Niroadhana,' i.e., stopping the flow of thoughts. When all the thoughts are emptied, there results a vacuum. To prevent a vacuum, you have to place something in it. What would you keep? Now, here are two mistakes that are committed. Firstly to think that thoughts are not Bhagavat Swaroopa, and hence indulge in driving them away. Did not Lord declare that all thoughts, whether Saatvic, Rujusic or Tamasic, are all His Swaroop? Then, to realize His Swaroopa, do you have to drive away aspects of His Swaroopa? Secondly, if you empty your mind of all thoughts, resulting in a vacuum, you have nothing to fill it up with. A suitable filling up of the purified mind is possible only in Gnyaana Yoga, and not in Samaadhi Yoga, which also thus is not the suitable path. Then it is obvious that there is only one and only one process (for Liberation) which is Gnyaana Maarga. This is well proclaimed by Bhagavad Geeta :

"Nahi Gnyaanayna Sadrusam

Pavitra Miha Vidyatay
.............................................. " (4-38)

"There is nothing equal to, or a purifier in this world, as Gnyanna'.

Again, towards the end of chapter 18 (in the Phala Sruti) it is said :

"Adhyayshyatay cha ya Imam

Dharmyam Samvaada Maavayoah

Gnyaana Yagnyayna Taynaaham

Ishtaha Syaamiti May Matihi" (18-70)

"Whosoever deligently studies this dialogue (pertaining to Dharma) between Me and You, such an one is verily performing Gnyaana Yagnya, and worhiping Me. This is my Opinion."

This definitely indicates that what is liked by and dear to the Lord, is Gnyaana alone. Again,

"Gnyaanam Tayhum Savignyaana Midam

Vakshyaamya Sayshataha

Yuj Gnyaatwa Nayha Bhooyoanyuj

Gnyaatavya Mava Sishyatay" (7-2)

"I am imparting to you Gnyaana, along with Vignyaana (experiential knowledge) in full. If you were to properly comprehend It, there is nothing else in this world which you need to know." Also, in another context,

"Idam Tuteh Guhya Tamam

Prapakshyaamya Nasooyaveh

Gnyaanam Vignyaana Sahitam

Yuj Gnyaatvaa Moakshasay Asubhaat" (9-1)

"I will now reveal to you, devoid of spite, an utmost secret. If you grasp this Wisdom (Gnyaana with Vignyaana) which is being told, you shall be delivered from the evil and sorrow of this Samsaara."

The Bhagwaan also declared :

"Chatur Vidhaa Bhajantay Maam

Janaaha Sukritinoe Arjunaa

Aartoe Jignyaasu Rardhaardhee

Gnyaaneecha Bharatarshabhaa" (7-16)

and,"Udaaraas sarva Ayvytay

Gnyanee Twaatmyva May Matam"
.................................................. (7-18)

"Four types of persons of virtue worship Me : those in distress, those who pursue truth, those who adore Me for wealth and fulfilling desires, and those who have Gnyaana as their goal. All these are indeed noble, but I consider Gnyaani to be My very Self." This is because Bhagavaan Himself is Pragnyaana Swaroopa. Hence, a Gnyaani alone is eligible to attain Him. This clearly establishes the supremacy of Gnyaana.

Besides this,"Bahoonam Janma Naamantay

Gnyaanavaan Maam Prapadyatay
............................................. (7-19)

"Even after innumerable lives, ultimately, in order to realize Me, a Gnyaani alone is eligible", implying that any other is not. This is an emphatic declaration.

From all these above enunciations, it is clear that in order to achieve Moaksha (Deliverance), there is no other means than Gnyaana. The reason is that our divisive outlook of diversity has been caused by Agnyaana (Ignorance), due to our cosmic nescience. What is referred to as the 'original sin' by the Christians, that 'ignorance' itself is the basic sin. It is due to ignorance alone there arises 'Kaama' (desire) which impels 'Karma' (action), leading to 'Janma' (birth), in which one again does Karma, thus resulting in a vicious circle. This is an endless cycle. In order to break this, the Lord declared :

"Ichchhaa Dvaysha Samutthayna

Dwandwa Moahayna Bhaarataa

Sarva Bhootaani Sammoaham

Sargayyanti Parantapa" (7-27)

"Oh Arjuna ! All beings since birth are deluded by the 'pairs of opposites' (dwandwa-s) caused by likes and dislikes, the source of which is ignorance."

Again, "Naaham Prakaasaha Sarvasya

Yoga Maayaa Samaavritaha

Moodhoayam Naabhi Janati

Loakoe Maamaja Mavyayam" (7-25)

"I am not manifest to all, because Yoga Maaya appears to have enveloped Me. Deluded by this, the ignorant are not able to cognize Me as birthless and changeless." Also "Maayayaa Apahruta Gnyaanaaha", "The Maaya (Delusion) has stolen the Gnyaana."

The problem is thus vividly revealed in so many lines. Avidya (ignorance) accumulated over innumerable lives, is the root cause of all ills. This is the diagnosis. Now, what is the treatment to the ailment? There should be no doubt that to dispel ignorance (Agnyaana), the only solution is Gnyaana (knowledge, wisdom), just as the only way to dispel darkness is to bring in light. 'Better to light a candle than keep on cursing the darkness' as the saying goes. No use of racking the brains regarding the 'why' and 'whence' of the darkness. It has already been seen that the solution lies not in Karma, Bhakti or Samaadhi Yoga-s, but by Gnyaana alone. Solution to Agnyaana is Gnyaana.

"Gnyaanayna Tu Tadagnyaanam
Yayshaam Naasita Maatmanaha
Tayshaam Adityavaj Gnyaanam
Prakaasayati Tut Param" (5-16)

"Whosoever acquires Gnyaana, and dispels the gloom of ignorance, to such an one, the Divine Effulgence of Paramaatma Swaroopa will become as clearly evident in every speck of this universe, as things in this world would be, when exposed by sun shining on them."


ow, accepting that Gnyaana is the solution to the universal problem, the query is, how Gnyaana brings this about, what Its process is.

Regarding this, Bhagwaan says :

Sarva Bhootayshu Yaynykam

Bhaava Manyaya Meekshatay

Avibhaktam Vibhaktayshu

Tuj Gnyaanam Viddhi Saatvikam" 18-20)

"In all the beings perceived (whether be animate or inanimate, static or dynamic, whatever they be) you must perceive only Unity (Aikya Bhaava), only one changeless Swaroopa. In all things divided and diverse, your mind's eye should become aware of the existence of only the Supreme Consciousness, the Undivided one, the one Brahma Tattwa." Just as when we critically look at the various utensils, the pots and pans, vessels and lids, all with different names and shapes - we see through all of them the one basic substance the mud, which alone assumed all those forms (or the gold which assumes all the various forms of its ornaments), similarly we have to develop the attitude and vision of perceiving Unity amidst all diversity. Actually, It is already there and nothing new. However, having forgettn that, one has to just recollect and regain the Truth. Then, what happens? The Lord says :

"Samam Pasyan Hi Sarwatra

Sama Vasthita Meeswaram

Na Hinastyaatma Naatmaanam

Tatoayaati Param Gatim" (13-28)

"The man of Realization perceives the Divine Consciousness, the Bhagavat Tattva uniformly permeating everything. Such anone has a vision of equanimity. Then, there would be no difference between Aatma and Anaatma, the subject and the object, the seer and the seen."

"Sarva Bhootastha Maatmaanam

Sarva Bhootaani Chaatmani

Eekshatay Yoga Yuktaatmaa

Sarvatra Sama Darsinaha" (6-29)

"When you comprehend with such a wisdom (Gnyaana), you will perceive your Swaroopa in all things and beings, as also all things and beings in your Swaroopa. Your Gnyaana alone flows through and appears in various forms. Just as the sugar concentrate, is molded into various shapes and forms, one has to similarly feel that the Juice (Rasa) of Pure Consciousness has molded Itself into all that manifests........the family and friends, possessions and properties, all things and beings in this world, and all with particular attributes and qualities. All beings and things are but Gnyaana. The perceiver of all things and beings is also Gnyaana. The formless Gnyaana is perceiving Itself appearing with forms (like in our dream- state, our own Gnyaana projects Itself into the dream-world, and views Itself. Like in a mirror you view your own face).

In chapter 10 of Gita, Arjuna exclaims :

"Swayamay Vaatma Naatmaanam

Vayttha Twam Purushoattama
........................................" (10-15)

"Oh Purushoattama! You are knowing yourself!" The 'yourself' implies the universe, and 'you' refers to the Chaitanya (Universal Consciousness). The former is the object, and, the latter the subject. Thus Gnyaana (Awareness) is looking at Itself. The teaching of Geeta is that the seeker has to adopt this approach, and experience similarly.

"Dhyaanay Naatmani Pasyanti

Kaychidaatmaana Maatmaanaa" (13-24)

"Some by meditation, have the vision of the Pure Consciousness in their minds, by virtue of their minds having been purified by meditation."

What is 'dhyaana' is explained here. Apart from 'pasyanti', there are herein three words : "Aatmani', 'Aatmaanam' and 'Aatmanaa'. This means 'oneself seeing oneself within oneself!'. This is Dhyaana, and this is Gnyaana. 'Within oneself' means within the all-pervasive one's own Gnyaana Swaroopa, i.e., in one's own space-like Consciousness. 'Seeing oneself' refers to whatever is being seen i.e., the things and beings, and the paraphernelia of this world, from one's thoughts within, to the yonder galaxies outside. These are being realised as but extensions of one's own 'Chaitanya Swaroopa'. 'Oneself' is the seer, the Chaitanya Swaroopa Itself, the subject. The limited knowledge should become the unlimited knowledge, with the notion of knowledge. This is the path shown by Bhagavad Geeta to realize the Truth (Wisdom, Gnyaana). The 'seer', the 'seen', as also the 'seeing', are all 'Gnyaana'. This brings to your experience the realization of the Brahma Swaroopa. Brahmam is explained as that which is beyond space, time and activity, that which is All-pervasive (like the sky), That 'Chaitanya' which is both 'I' and 'Mine'. Now, Gnyaana makes you realize that 'That' (Brahman) is your 'Swaroopa' alone. Thus, 'Saadhana' (the process of the seeker of Truth) is nothing but reminding you that you are 'That' Itself, which fact you have forgotten due to sheer ignorance. It is like forgetting the necklace you are wearing around your neck, but searching all over the house and getting frustrated that you are not able to locate it, until someone before you, after knowing your problem, points out that the necklace is around your neck itself ! No activity was involved in 'getting' the necklace back; it was just a realization that it was already there around your neck, and you just forgot about it. It was only a question of awareness, and no Karma (work) involved. Similarly, the moment you forget that the Universal Consciousness is ever present everywhere, then, overcome by ignorance, your hectic search for It begins, and your mind becomes agitated and restless. It is like enquiring about the sky, and everyone points up alone. Once wisdom dawns, you would realize that the sky (space) is not only above, but also below, around you and even inside you, and, you then contemplate on its Omnipresence. You then gain a mental tranquility and equipoise; you feel a sort of fullness. Even if you see things and bodies in the space, and doubt its presence in their place due to them, you would after some reflection reconcile to the fact that space exists in those places also, but molded into those shapes. Even from modern scientists point of view, originally there was just nothing but space, and later on the stars, planets, galaxies....all were 'formed' in and from space. Thus space itself became mass of those bodies. The formless space itself yielded those bodies with form. If you ponder over this deeply, it will not be difficult to believe that the Niraakara (formless) Chaitanya Itself appears to have molded Itself into things and beings, animate and inanimate, all with form. Then alone, the import of the Lord's statement :

"Sarva Bhootastha Maatmaanam

Sarva Bhootaani Chaatmani

Eekshatay Yoga Yuktaatmaa

Sarvatra Sama Darsinaha"

(referred to earlier) will be fully comprehended.

'Yoga Yukta' means one with the realization and experience of such Gnyaana. For such a Gnyaani, there prevails equanimity, and a uniform cosmic vision all around, an outlook of 'Saamanya' (Generality without any particularisation) "Vaasudeva Sarvam Iti" "Everything is but Existence - Consciousness" (Vaasudeva is not, in this context, a mere son of Vasudeva, but implies 'Vasati iti Divyati' (implying that That 'exists' and 'appears'). Also means 'Sut and Chit' as also 'Asti and Bhaati'. That is how the entire universe, within and without, has to be viewed. Actually it is so. But due to our ignorance, we have become unaware of It. The whole wisdom lies in regaining that awareness, and seeing perfect unity in all of the apparent diversity. That is the type of Saadhama that is needed.

Universe is not chaos but cosmos. Also, it is not mere gneya but Gnyaana. Not the waves, bubbles and froth, but the Ocean itself. So also, whatever you comprehend is but your Awareness. However, such a perception and comprehension is not surely that easy. Because, due to misconceptions and ignorance entrenched through many earlier lives, this world of differences and diversities, names, forms and 'guna-s' (qualities), is viewed as such. The Dvaitic outlook, the concept that the individual, the world, and God, are all distinct and different, got so deeply rooted in our minds, that it is not easy to pull out. Those 'Vaasana-s' (latencies) are so strong and almost invincible. Then again, it is said that the 'guna s' are acquired in birth itself, as per 'Praarabdha' (destiny). Hence, the only way is to set it right by a mighty 'Prayatna' (self-effort and trial) with steadfastness and determination. Just as one who is ignorant in childhood, is gradually educated and then strives to acquire knowledge, gets refined in the process, and evolves intellectually, so also, one has to, by 'Prayatna', strive towards Wisdom and Realization of Truth, and thus evolve spiritually, Learning from the Sastra-s and listening to the Guru, we have to first purify our minds, then cultivate and sharpen our intellect, and endeavour to grasp the Truth of Advaita. We have to develop 'Ananya Bhakti', i.e., realizing that there is nothing else except Brahma Swaroopa. What facilitates such a comprehesnion, is realizing that "Yut Pasyati, Yut Srunoati, Yut Sprusativa, Tut Sarvam Vaasudeva Yayva". "Whatever you are seeing, whatever you are hearing, whatever you are touching, (also is implied : whatever activities you are indulging in with your sense-organs, whatever you are thinking with your mind...) all that is Vaasudeva i.e., Existence-Effulgence only". Thus is explained "Vaasu Deva Sarvamiti". This is the teaching of Bhagavad Geeta to the entire world, to enable one to realize and experience Brahma Tattwa.

Now, how about the other three paths or Yoga-s (Karma, Bhakti and Samaadhi)? This needs a further and more compre hensive elaboration than rendered before.

Bhagavad Geeta is not exclusively extolling only the path of Gnyaana, with total exclusion of the other three. When you peruse the eighteen chapters of Geeta, you would find Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, and Raja Yoga as well, apart from Gnyaana Yoga. Now, what place have these first three? That needs to be answered. However, there is no need to take pains to discard those three. Not only that, they should not be discarded. They are not contradictory but contributory. Yes, they are even complimentary. These provide the preparatory ground. Though Gnyaana is finally the means to achieve Salvation, the first three paths function as intermediary stages to enable one to acquire Gnyaana. Their fulfilment lies in letting Gnyaana arise in our minds.

The first one is Karma Yoga. This brings about 'Chitta Suddhi' (purity of mind) which is very essential for progress in 'Saadhana'. There are two obstacles to 'Chitta Suddhi' : The 'guna-s' (qualities) of 'Tamas' and 'Rujus'. They are called 'aavarana' and 'vikshaypa'. The first envelops the mind, and the other distracts it. Unless these two are got rid of, the mind cannot be purified. Unless the mind us entirely pure, Gnyaana cannot sprout in it. It is said that :

"Gnyaana Mutpadyatay Pumsaam

Kshayaat Paapasya Karmanaha"

"Unless sinful Karma is wiped out, Gnyaana cannot arise'. Thus Karma Yoga comes in handy for mental purification. How this is brought about is clearly indicated in Bhagavad Geeta :

"Yataha Pravrittir Bhootaanaam

Yayna Sarva Midam Tatam

Svakarmanaa Tamabhyarchya

Siddhim Vindati Maanavaha" (18-46)

"By Whom this entire universe has come into being, by Whom this is being operated and put into action, and, what is permeating all this.....on 'That' keep your focus and awareness. Whatever you do, do it for Its sake i.e., with an 'Eeswara - arpana' attitude (all activities as an offering to the Divine)." Such an attitude implies that all works are being done as per the will of God, thus transferring the 'doership' from your limited ego to the Cosmic Ego, the Divine Agency. You just become only a mere medium for all acts, a part of the Divine Plan. Otherwise you would be bearing the doership yourself (the feeling of 'aham'). Once you accept doership, you have to bear the consequences i.e., accept the fruits of your acts. Thus in the Karma Yoga approach, by giving up the doership, the 'aham' (ego) aspect would be eliminated. Then, reconcile to the thought that you are not concerned with the fruits of your actions (Karma-Phala), whether they be favourable or unfavourable.

"Sukha Dukkhay Samay Kritvaa

Laabhaa Laabhou Jayaa Jayou
........................................" (2-38)

"Taking with equal grace either happiness or sorrow (profit or loss, victory or defeat, and such 'dvandva-s) all alike". This means being content with whatever befalls. If you practice such an approach, then, you would not be subject to stress and strain. Hence, "Nirmoahoe Nirahankaaroe". "The ego and desire vanish". This is the essence of Nishkaama Karma. This is the purport, the kernel of Karma Yoga, which washes off the twin pollutants : 1) The limitation of 'ahamkaara', and 2) The limitation of 'mamakaara'. Without these two restrictions, the mind broadens and blooms. Purity of mind is effected. Thus Karma Yoga is the Path of Purification.

Next consider Bhakti Yoga (path of Devotion). This affords concentration when the mind is distracted and wavering, dissipating itself, and, lacking a sense of direction. Such a mind is brought into focus, and enabled to concentrate on some 'Ishta Daiva' (chosen Divinity), may be with form or without form, or some symbol. In this context, Bhagavad Geeta states :

"Tayshaam Satata Yuktaanaam

Bhajataam Preeti Poorvakam

Dadaami Buddhi Yogam Tam

Yayna Maamupa Yaantitay" (10-10)

"Whoever is adoring me (even with form i.e., Saguna Bhakti) with devotion, I will grant them Buddhi Yoga (Gnyaana Yoga) by which they would be able to comprehend My Nirguna (Formless, Attributeless) Tattwa'.

Dealing with Karma Yoga, Bhagwaan had stated : With Nishkaama Karma,

"Siddhim Praaptoe Yadhaa Brahma Tadhaapnoati Niboadhamay"

"Karma Yoga does not lead one to Moaksha. After Karma Yoga, one would be able to attain Salvation only through Gnyaana Yoga".

Thus in both the above paths, viz. Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga, it is said that they would take one nearer to Gnyaana Yoga, though they by themselves do not lead to Salvation.

Next to be considered is the Samaadhi Yoga. The eighth chapter of Geeta entitled "Akshara Para Brahma Yoga" deals with Samaadhi Swaroopa. Bhagwaan states :

"Om Ityatkaaksharam Brahma

Vyaaharan Maa Manusmaran

Yaha Prayaati Tyajan Deham

Sa Yaati Paramaam Gatim" (8-13)

"Whosoever uttering the Pranava 'Om', the one-syllabled (that is Brahman) and reflecting on Me, breathes his last, such an one attains Salvation".

Thus, finally, one has to obtain Deliverance through Gnyaana only. It is said : "Sukhayana Brahma Sumsparsam Atyanta Sukha Masnutay" "Only if you get in Divine contact with Brahman (the Ultimate Reality) there is Moaksha (Deliverance).

Thus, from the previous paras, it can be inferred that Karma Yoga renders 'Chittasuddhi' (purification of mind), Bhakti Yoga concentration of the mind, and, Samaadhi Yoga brings the mind close to Paramaatma, giving scope for merger. When one has diligently passed through these three stages in sequence, certainly, one would secure the eligibility for pursuit of Gnyaana Yoga. Then alone further progress through the three stages of Gnyaana maarga (path) viz., Sravanam (listening), Mananam (reflection) and Nidhi Dhyasana (contemplation and merger of all thoughts into the Brahmaakaara Vritti i.e., the core Brahmic thought) is possible, and reaching the final goal, is facilitated. Thus the four paths are not mutually exclusive, or adversely affectiong one another.

Now, why is it said that the path of Gnyaana alone bestows Moaksha? Because, Moaksha is not something which has to be newly produced or created, or, apprehending It elsewhere as a different Entity, or, renouncing certain things and holding on to others. It is only to impress these aspects that it was said so, and not that the first three paths are futile. This is a synthesizing process. The first three help in the progress towards the fourth. Then, each merges into the suceeding one. Karma Yoga ripens into Bhakti Yoga which dissolves into Samaadhi Yoga, which directly leads one to Gnyaana Yoga. One need not get perturbed that a Gnyaani is averse to, or unconcerned with, Karma, Bhakti or Samaadhi. These three would merge into the Swaroopa of the Gnyaani. Just as a graduate in studies had inherently the knowledge of the high school and earlier stages, similarly is the situation regarding the four yoga-s, with each intermediate one having the knowledge and experience of the previous stage, but not the later stage. Hence, one has to evolve into the successive stages. Otherwise there would be stagnation, and the problem of 'Vishaada' cannot be solved. However this process of evolution should culminate as early as possible. Bhagavad Geeta itself says:

"Praak Sareerasya Moakshanaat"

"Before you cast off this mortal coil, if you can sense this process, then would deepen the anxiety to accelearate the pace of progress towards fulfilment."

Sage Patanjali stated :

"Teevra Vayganam Aasanna Tamaha"

"If one keeps fast pace, then, would one soon be well near the goal." If the pace slackens, one would be stuck in the earlier stage itself.


The topic under study is : Problem and its solution. We have seen that the solution to the problem of 'Vishaada (despair) is to comprehend and assimilate Bhagavat Tattva. Then we dwelt upon the means to attain that Tattva, the awareness that 'That' (Tattva) is all-pervasive and is our own Swaroopa itself. It was also seen that finally it is Gnyaana alone that would lead to the Truth or Reali-zation. However, one has to begin with, and adopt that particular Yoga with which one is comfortable, and capable of practising. It is indicative of where one is stationed. One may be attracted to Karma, and another to Bhakti. Yet another may directly by drawn towards Gnyaana Yoga, by virtue of having matured already in the earlier three paths. Thus it is not compulsory that one has to pass through all four stages.

That is why Geeta stated :

"Anayka Janma Sumsiddhaha

Tatoayaanti Parnatapa"

"For full comprehension, one must have passed through many lives." In each life, accumulating bit by bit, the asset grows. However, it may so happen that, in a particular case, the first three stages might have already been gone thru before entry into the current life.

"Bahoonaam Janma Naamantay

Gnyaanavaan Maam Prapadyatay

Vaasu Devaha Sarvamiti

Sa Mahatmaa Sudurlabhaba" (7-19)

"After many lives would one realize Me, comprehending that all is but Vaasudev (Existence-Appearance). However such great souls are rare". Thus, each individual would comprehend that much to which one is eligible by virtue of one's own 'Samskaara' (spiritual growth). It depends on the state and stage of the seeker. This is true even in cases of material sciences and arts themselves. How much more so would it be, in the process of comprehension in the spiritual field, in that Absolute Science of the 'Raja Vidya- Raja Guhya' ! That is why the Lord in the Geeta stated that He would bestow 'Gnyaana Vignyaana Sahita' i.e., Gnyaana together with Vignyaana, implying theoretical knowledge coupled with experiential. Then only the desired result would be obtained, the comprehension of the true nature of the Brahma Tattva. That Tattva has no concern with 'Samsaara' which is only for 'Jeeva'. That Tattva is Advaita Swaroopa i.e., That which has merged into Itself the 'Triputi' (threesome) of Jeeva, Jagat and Eeswara. Even if this Triputi is perceived, it would not be different from It, but as one with Itself. The Eeswara would be experiencing It not as an individual but as 'Sakti' (Energy) which is not different from Eeswara. Hence Eeswara has no concern and anxiety for this Samsaara. If the individual (Jeeva) also can grasp that Brahma Tattva (Divine Priniciple), then the individual also can be unaffected by this Samsaara. To achieve that, the one and only one way is the Gnyaana Maarga, as mentioned before, because that alone can counteract the Agnyaana (Ignorance) which is the root cause of this bewildering Samsaara. That Gnyaana lies in perceiving everything in this Universe as "Asti' and 'Bhaati' i.e., Existence and Appearance. In seeing every thing as 'Nirvikalpa' (Unchanging and without attributes). Nirvikalpa means without Vikalpa-s. These are essentially three viz., 'naama, roopa and kriya' (name, form and activity, or, more precisely, ideas, things and deliberations). Vikalpa-s are also called 'Visaysha-s' and 'Upaadhi-s', and also 'Guna-s'. If Bhagavat Tattva were to join hands and collaberate with these, it appears as 'sagunam', 'savisaysham', 'savikalpam' and 'soapaadhikam'. That is what that appears as Jeeva, Jagat and Eeswara, the entire creation and paraphernelia. As long as one goes on observing only these, there is no scope for Salvation but only Vishaada. Hence, one has to bid goodbye to these, for which the only means is Gnyaana. Because, by Itself, the Paramaatma or Brahma Tattva, alone exists (Svatassiddhi). The Jeeva-Jagat-Eeswara trio have no independent existence whatsoever. It is said: 'Ayka Mayvaa Adviteeyam Brahma' (Brahma is One without a second). If one can identify oneself with It, one would be free of shackles. Why then one is not able to do so? This has been analyzed by Bhagavad Geeta, which reveals : Agnyaana has engulfed us and caused 'moaha' (desire and delusion) in us. Moaha and its offspring 'Soaka' (sorrow), these two constitute our 'kaarana sareera' (casual body). These two came along, having been accumulated over many lives. From 'Sanchita' (the total content of the accumulated fruits of actions), a little has been drawn (as a small withdrawal from a bank account), called 'Praarabdha' (destiny) in the current life. There is just no escape from it, but to experience it. 'Praarabdham bhogatoe nashteth' (Destiny ends up only by experiencing it). The story does not end with Praarabdha. There still exists the 'Sanchita' from which again, in the succeeding life, something again is withdrawn as Praarabdha (another withdrawal from Bank), to be experienced (spent) again. Now, one may be tempted to assume that the problem will be fully solved, once all of it is withdrawn. Not at all, for, there is the 'Aagaami' freshly being produced in each life with its current activities, which again bear their fruit for the future. This would be credited to Sanchita ! A vertitable bank transaction indeed ! Bank ledgers ! This is a vicious circle, leading to cycles of birth and death. The solution lies in tackling the problem at its root, by counteracting that alone from which all this cyclic process developed. That indeed is 'Moaha' (desire/ignorance). Hence 'ignorance' has to be cut at its root. This entire paraphernelia is a play of Maaya (Delusion) or Prakriti. This has come out in three ways : 'Kaarya, Karana and Vishaya roopayna'. This 'Moola Prakriti' is Eeswara Sakti (Energy). The Lord proclaimed in Bhagavad Geeta that It is 'Mamamaaya', 'My own power, Sakti' under His control. The same confronts us as Agnyaana and Moaha. It has restricted us within the three_dimensional framework of 'Desa, Kaala and Kalanaa'. Desa is space, Kaala is Time. Kalanaa is activity/functioning. From these have sprung 'Kaarya, Karana and Vishaya'. 'Kaarya refers to the physical body (Sareera). 'Karana-s' are the sense organs (indriya s) which are twelve in number. Five Gnyaana-indriya-s (organs of perception), and five Karma-indriya-s (organs of action), and the remaining two being life-force (Praana), and the Mind. Thus the entire organism has been represented by Kaarya and Karana. The entire 'Pindaanda' (the individual body paraphernelia) is contained in these two. The third i.e., Vishaya, refers to the 'Brahmaanda', all that is perceived by Gnyaana. The entire objective world (the universal 'body'). Thus, Kaarya and Karana refer to the individual or Jeeva, whereas Vishaya refers to the external world i.e., Jagat. Thus Prakriti is manifested as Jeeva and Jagat. This Praktriti, as was said before, is His own Sakti. But It turns out to be Agnyaana for us. Thus we are born in Agnyaana. Even the so-called Gnyaana which we assume to be acquiring as we grow up, is also branded as Agnyaana by the scriptures. Until the Ultimate Truth is revealed, any knowledge is but Agnyaana. In the normal course of learning, only the 'apparent' Reality is being known, and not the 'real' Reality. We are at most perceiving the shadow of Truth, and mistaking it for Truth. It is like seeing the shadow of a flying bird. The shadow also has name, form and movements, i.e., naama, roopa and kriya. Still, would you call it a bird? Similarly, one mistakes the Pseudo- Self to be the Real Self. The former is 'Asut' and the latter 'Sut'. One is mortal and the other immortal. Then, why is there the Pseudo-Self at all? The answer is : It helps in pointing to you the Real Self. Thus, falsehood also is turning out to be beneficial to us, because it is showing the Truth, or rather leading to It ! Hence the entire paraphernelia of this world of 'naama and roopa', this space time-activity threesome, or say, this Kaarya-Karana-Vishaya trio.....all that is appearing, is unreal.

Bhagavad Geeta says :

"Naasatoe Vidyatay Bhaavoe

Naa Bhaavoe VidyataySataha
..............................................." (2-16)

"The unreal has no being or existence. The Real can never cease to exist." This implies that Reality can exist by Itself; but, the unreal cannot exist in the absence of Reality. Not knowing this, is 'Agnyaana' (ignorance), which in essence is not knowing that Reality. All the arts and sciences have the world as their arena. The basis of all intellectual creations and activities, is but this universe. Hence, strictly speaking, the knowledge of all arts and sciences does fall withing the orbit of Agnyaana. If asked about the authority on the basis of which the above sweeping statement is made, the emphatic reply is : The Knowledge of the Absolute Reality alone is Gnyaana. Any amount of knowledge about Its shadows and appearances, Its pseudo duplicates and illusions, _ all that is Agnyaana. The shadow of the bird, is not the bird. It cannot be the target for the bow and arrow. This entire universe is like the shadow bird. Paramaatman alone is the actual Bird. The Brihadaaranyaka Upanishad relates thus the anecdote of the bird:

"Puras chakray Dwipadaha

Puras chakray Chatushpadaha

Purasta pakshee Bhootvaa

Puraha Purusha Aavisatu"

"First the homosapien was created, with the town-like entity, the body, supported on two legs. Then the animal body (township) standing on four legs. Then the Paramaatman assumed the form of a bird. Then in all the above townships, the bird of Paramaatman entered. The moment He entered, His name got transfered into 'Jeeva'. While outside He was Paramaatman; while inside He became Jeevatman. Thus the two are not different. The same Bird plays the dual role. This Jeevatma Bird also has the two characteristics of the Paramaatman Bird, viz., 'Sut and Chit'. Like Christ decalring 'I am that I am', implying that He is beyond 'Visaysha-s, Vikalpa-s and Upaadhi-s'. 'Sut' is existence; awareness of the Existence, is Chit. It is Consciousness of Existence, or, Existence of Consciousness. The Visaysha (particular attribute) of Chit is Jeeva, whereas, the visaysha of Sut is the Jagat or the universe, which is called 'Sudvisaysha'. 'Sut Samanya' is the ether (sky), where all the particular existences have merged into the general or universal existence. Similar it is with Jeeva who is chid- visaysha. The endless thought-waves in the mind are like the dancing waves on the surface of the ocean of Gnyaana. The bundle of thoughts, emotions and concepts, is Jeeva. All these chid-visaysha-s have to be transformed into Chit samanya. In meditation what is done is to merge or melt the various thoughts into just one thought, or at least sedate them to experience peace and silence. It is told that a certain sage named Pashkali approached another sage Partha and entreated "Can you please enlighten me about Paramaatma, where and how He is?" There was no response except silence. Pashkali again and again implored for an answer, but the only response was silence. Pashkali lost his patience and shouted "Oh sage! I am going on asking, and you are not listening?". Pat came the response : "I am going on telling, and you are not listening!" "How is it? You are not opening your mouth! Where was the reply?" The sage said : "That is the secret. The asking alone is well heard. The answer cannot be heard. If you were to 'hear' the reply, it is not reply at all! What can I say regarding the Paramaatman who is All-pervasive and Omnipresent? Hence I was keeping silent. How can I open my mouth and say anything at all when He is everywhere? He is silence itself. Silence inplies 'devoid of Visaysha-s'. When all Visaysha-s have been fused into Universal Existence, how can It be expressed? If you express, It turns into a Visaysha. The moment you 'think' about It, there would arise a thought-wave which is 'particular'. Truth is beyound all particulars.

Hence, the Samanya Swaroopa of Sut and Chit, is Bhagavat Tattva. Everyone and everything is That. When you say "I am", you are Sut and Chit. If you are content with it, you are verily Bhagvaan. The problem is, you constantly wish to come out of It, and your thoughts begin jumping about. You got divided and restricted. Instead, if you were to view all and everything as 'Saamaanya', that is Moaksha itself. That is indeed Gnyaana that is Nirvikalpa, Nirvisaysha, Nirupaadhika, and Nirguna. Such a state should be sought to be attained.

Bhagavad Geeta says :

"Sarva Bhootayshu Yay Nykam

Bhaava Mavyaya Meekshatay

Avibhaktam Vibhaktayshu

Tuj Gnyaanam Viddhi Saatwikam" (18-20)

"All the elements (things and beings) are in a divided, fragmented state. These are many and diverse, whereas 'That' is 'Aykum' (One). When one sees tha 'sarvam' (all and everything), one should not view them as many, but as One. Those are ever changing, whereas 'That' is changeless. With an 'unchanging' vision, one must perceive the changing world. There ought to be some other Agency to see the ever-changing phenomena. That witnessing agency should not move or change. The Gnyaana in you that is changing, is your Vritti Gnyaana, the thought-awareness. The Real Gnyaana is 'Avyaya' (unchanging). That must be 'Eekshatay', seen (not heard). It should be a perception, not a conception. The difference between an ordinary person and a sage is, what the former sees as a form of thought, the latter views it as 'Vastu', a mere 'Existence', the Brahma Swaroopa Itself.

"Avibhaktam Vibhaktayshu". One must see as 'Undivided' all which appears as 'divided'. Such a Sakti (capability) is inherent in you. That is wisdom indeed. That Gnyaana is 'Saatvik' by nature, and realises "Vaasudeva Sarvamiti". All and everything is Vaasudeva, the Universal 'Existence-Appearance'. One must develop and practice such a vision. It is not impossible. There is nothing that cannot be achieved with right effort.

In the creation, there is Paramaatma's 'aagraha' as well as 'anugraha', i.e., anger as well as blessing. Aagraha as long as we roll in 'agnyaana' (ignorance). But the moment we retract, reflect and begin seeking the Truth, we would begin to experience His 'anugraha'. For 'saadhaka-s (seekers of Truth) this world is 'Vibhooti', a mere manifestation of the Divine. For the commoner (the uninitiated) this messy world itself is a reality. For the Realized Soul, this world is Brahma Swaroopa Itself.

From all the above, it is evident that firstly, the solution to our age-old problem of 'Vishaada' (sorrow) is the 'avagaahana' (perception, understanding) of the Bhagavat Tattva. Secondly, the means to achieve that is Gnyaana. Thirdly, for acquiring Gnyaana, there are auxiliary processes. These are the Karma, Bhakti and Samaadhi Yoga-s that help one on the path towards Gnyaana. Like the tributories to the main river. How they assist in a sequential process, is indicated by Sri Bhagawat Paada (Aadi Sankara) in his commentary on Bhagawad Geeta :

"Karma Yoga, Satva Suddhi, Gnyaana Praapti

Karma Sanyaasa, Gnyaana Nishtha, Moaksha Praapti"

This is like a 'six-point formula', six stages in our path towards Moaksha (Salvation). Note that these are not six independent paths. Such a possibility could be there for material objectives and goals (For instance, if one has to go from India to America, each of which is limited and defined by space, there is physically a journey to be undertaken, and there is scope for alternative routes, independent of one-another). But inorder to realize Bhagavat Tattva, beyond the limitations of 'Desa-Kaala-Kalana", such alternatives are not feasible. No scope for plurality at all. It is like undertaking a journey to reach the sky. How ridiculous? When sky is everywhere and all- around! The act of 'journey' is meaningless. The only 'journey' is to mentally realize the Omnipresence of sky, that the sky is within and without everywhere. So much so, if we realize that the Chaitanya Swaroopa, the Universal Existence-Consciousness is Omnipresent and All pervasive like the sky, that indeed is Gnyaana. That Gnyaana, that state of Existence-Consciousness Itself is Bliss, is Moaksha. It is said :

"Antaha Poornam Bahihi Poornam

Poorna Kumbhaiva Arnavay

Antaha Soonyam Bahihi Soonyam

Soonya Kumbhaiva Ambaray"

This is even beyond philosophy; this is Mysticism, the culmination of all knowledge, the ultimate in all sciences, in Mysticism. In Vedaantic language, it is 'Aparoakshaanubhooti', the 'Secret Doctrine' (Rahasya Vignyaanam, as per Aadi Sankara). Secret is always a self-experience. Because, you alone are experiencing it, and cannot hand it over to anyone else. The person even next to you does not have an inkling of it. For example, suppose you just ate a sweet. You experience the taste of it, and the person next to you, knows nothing of it, if he did not taste it. Your experience is thus a secret. If this is the case with such a petty limited experience, what an astounding secret would be that Experience of Self-Realization! The secret of secrets, a supreme secret. How it is to be experienced is being described in the above Sloka. Firstly,

"Antaha Poornam Bahihi Poornam

Poorna Kumbhaiva Arnavay"

Imagine a pot being dipped into an Ocean. If the pot itself were to tell its experience, it would say : "My entire inside is full of water. My entire outside is full of water. I am entirely in water and fully soaked. All is nothing but water". That would be the 'awareness' of the pot. Similarly,

"Antaha Soonyam Bahihi Soonyam

Soonya Kumbhaiva Ambaray"

Say, the same pot is kept out in an open yard. Its 'awareness' would be : "Inside me entirely is empliness. My entire outside is all emptiness. I am also emptiness. All is emptiness, and nothing but emptiness".

In both the above situations, the pot is the same. One is full of water, and the other 'full' of emptiness. In both the cases, there is 'fullness', one with water, and the other with space. Now, applying this to Bhagavat Tattva, it can be inferred that Paramaatman is full with 'naama and roopa' in one situation, (while as universe) and, in the other situation, full with mere (Niraakaara) Existence Consciousness. The former is 'Vibhooti', and the latter 'Swaroopa', both His. The former is 'Saguna' (with attributes) and the latter 'Nirguna' (without attributes). The former is 'Savisayshum' (with particulars) and the latter "Nirvisayshum' (without particulars). The former is 'Savikalpa" (with changes) and the latter 'Nirvikalpa' (changeless). The former is the visible 'Sudvisaysha' (particularised Existence) whereas the latter is 'Sutsaamaanya' (the invisible Generalised Existence). The Existence-Consciousness with 'Visaysha-s' (particularised qualities and attributes) is like the pot in the ocean. The Existence-Consciousness with the Visaysha-s dissolved into the Swaroopa, is like the empty pot in the open space. Both are the aspects of Paramaatma. That should be one's understanding, one's vision. Such a vision is Gnyaana. But such a Gnyaana cannot be obtained instantly in the very first attempt. It needs a training process, a course of 'saadhana'. From mortality to Immortality if one desires, then, one must take up and pursue only an Immortal Science which can deliver the goods. Not enough if one masters only the mortal sciences. A neem seed cannot yield a mango fruit. Persistent efforts, even through innumerable lives, in the Immortal Science of Gnyaana Maarga alone, can lead one to Immortality. One has to believe in continuity of life i.e., rebirth, a religious concept. For, are birth and death the only ends? How about before birth and after death? One has to consider the earlier lives already gone through, and the later ones yet to come. All these series of lives are indeed an exercise, attempts towards perfection. From the imperfect to the perfect. One's Gnyaana is not presently Sampoorna (full). If full, then no rebirth. This is possible only when the Existence-Consciousness overflows all limitations, and totally pervades all and everything, within and without, the 'Desa-Kaala-Vastu' (space, time and substance) in entirity. Bhagavat Tattva alone fully pervades all the three dimensions. Towards this goal, the life marches through various lives. The proof of perfection is the state of realization that 'Vaasudeva Sarvamiti' (Everything is but Existence-Appearance).

Now may arise an important query. How does this Gnyana come about? Where does it spring? The natural answer would be 'mind'. Because, any knowledge, whether it be of arts, science or religion, or any field whatsoever, springs only in the mind. Thus, even Brahma Gnyaana, Its awareness or realization, sprout in the mind alone, which is the seat of all knowledge. Though such a thought (Vritti) may sprout in the mind, how about the huge paraphernelia of the external world? Would there be any correspondence between the Divine Glow in the mind, and the 'Samsaaram', the universe outside? If no connection and correlation whatsoever, how can that Awareness, that Brahma Tattva, become all-pervasive? How can the inner experience be 'Paripoorna' (Total and Full)? For the experience to be 'Total', it should be the same within and without. It was this that found expression in the song of Annamaacharya : 'Bhaavamu Loanaa Baahyamu Nanduna' i.e., by way of thought and in the world outside. Otherwise it cannot be called 'Brahmaanubhava'. Know that the world is staring at you, the moment you open your eye. Viewing it as separate entity, is Dvaita or Bheda Drishti, and not a unified outlook. But whatever is peceptible to any sense-organ, should be transformed into that Brahmaakaara, and appear as such, with eyes either closed or open. If the unified vision were to just disappear on opening the eyes, then it is not worth. Sometime or other, one has to realize the experience that everywhere, all around, within and without, there is only one Universal Consciousness. Then only one would have the peace and contentment that whatever thought that sprouts in the mind, is Brahmam alone, the Suddha Chaitanya (Pure Consciousness). That fulfilment alone is Gnyaana Nishta (Established Wisdom), which alone leads to Moaksha (Deliverance). Otherwise, if It appears at only some places and absent elsewhere, only at one time and not at another, and, only when you close your eyes, and not while open, .......then, that is not Brahmic Experience. That would not be a solution to the basic problem.

One has to ask oneself : 'Can I be uninterruptedly established in Gnyaana Nishta? Can I declare that I need nothing else except Gnyaana?' However, the demands of the body have to be attended to

"Nahi Kaschit Kshanamapi

Jaatu Tishthatya Karmakrit

Kaaryatay Hyavasaha Karma

Sarvaha Prakriti Jairgunaihi" (3-5)

'Without doing any work whatsoever, none can rest even a moment'. Why? Because, it is involuntary; it is not in your hands. You are dependent on outward Nature and inward nature. Are the inhaling and exhaling going on on their own, or, are they at your beck and call ? How about Nature's calls, thrist and hunger? Even the Realized Soul has to drink and eat, rest and sleep, has to perform atleast some basic essential works. He is made to act by the compulsions of Nature. 'Avasaha Karma Sarvaha' : 'All, whosoever it be, have to perform Karma, as it is not in their hands to refuse'. Who is making the Jeevan Mukta to act? It is 'Prakriti Jair Gunyhi' (the Gunas of Nature). But, how is all this valid when everything is Paramaatman, Pure Consciousness which has no movement. (Achaloayam Sanaatanaha)? Why this movement (Karma) came about to this Un-moving Divinity? Listen to what Bhagavad Geeta says :

"Na Kartritvam Na Karmaani

Loakasya Srujati Prabhuhu

Na Karma Phala Samyoagam

Swabhaavastu Pravartatay" (5-14)

"In the world the Lord creates neither works, nor there is doership, nor bound by fruits of action, It is the Nature that acts"

But this looks like contradicting the prevoius statement "Nahi Kaschit Kshanamapi Jaatu Tisthatya Karma Krit". It is so paradoxical. There are innumerable such paradoxical enunciations in Bhagavad Geeta. That is why it is said that this should not be taken up for study before a through understanding of the Upanishads and Brahma Sootra-s. To list a few of such contradictions :

"Na Sut Na Asut Uchyatay...." "That is neither Sut nor Asut." However, in another context the Lord stated : "Sadasutyaaham Arjuna" "That Sut as well as Asut, I am, Oh Arjuna!" The two are thus diametrically opposite statements.

Again, another Example :

"Avyaktam Vyakti Maapannam Manyanteh Maamabuddha yaha". "I am unmanifest. I never had any naama and roopa. But the unintelligent view Me with naama and roopa". However, in Vibhooti Yoga (chapter Tenth) the Lord says : "I am the dazzling light and heat of the Sun; I am the silvery beams of the Moon..... Among the trees I am the 'Aswaddha' tree....". Confessing earlier that He is beyond naama and roopa, how can He be the Sun, Moon or the Aswaddha tree ?

At another place is stated directly :