Author Topic: Chapter VI and VII of Chandogya Upanishad  (Read 1713 times)


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Chapter VI and VII of Chandogya Upanishad
« on: April 26, 2009, 02:31:58 PM »
Svetaketu again pleads to his father, that he has not yet understood.
His father did not lose patience.  [ I am reminded of devotees pestering Bhagavan Ramana, again and again about their doubts.]
If the Guru or teacher loses patience, then he is not a guru. 

Uddalaka Aruni asks his son to put a lump of salt into a pot of water
and then see it in the morning and again come to him.  In the morning, the father says:  "Bring me the salt that you had put into water."  Svetaketu says that it has dissolved in water.  The father then bids him to drink the water and the son finds it salty.  Then
the father says that in every part of water, the salt is there, because
it is saline.  But you cannot see it.  Similarly, you cannot see the Self
inside the body and it is all pervasive like salt."

Why we are not able to see the Self?  Like the seed and the banyan tree, like the salt and water, the Self is all pervasive but cannot be seen.  It can only be 'experienced'.  It is like 'experiencing' the salinity in water.  The process of 'seeing' involves 'seer' and 'seen'.
But the Self is the only One, how can it be seen?  Bhagavan says in
Sri Arunachala Ashatakam, verses 1 and 2:  "I came here thinking that it is a big one.  I then understood it is non moving.  How can I
say I saw it?  How can I say I did not see it?  This Arunabhutaram
is the Only one and I am That."

The son says even now he does not understand.  Why, here is where
a Guru is needed.  Uddalaka Aruni says: "As when a person is brought
blindfolded from the Gandhara country and left in a deserted place,
he turns sometimes to the east, sometimes to the north, sometimes
to the west and sometimes to the south, shouting: "I have been blindfolded, I have been blindfolded.."  And as someone may remove that person's blindfold and say, "Gandhara is this way.  Go this way.
And the intelligent man goes from one village to another, asking his
way and relying on the information people give, until he reaches Gandhara.

Similarly, a person who gets a guru attains self knowledge.  His delay is only as long as he is not free of his body [blindfolding].  After that he becomes merged in the Self, by going in the way that guru has said.

The son says he has still not understood.  Uddalaka Aruni says:
"When a person is critically ill, his relatives sit around him and ask: 'Do you recognize me?  Do you recognize me?'  So long as his speech does not merge with his mind, his mind with prana , his prana with his heat in the body, and the heat with the Supreme Self, he will be able to recognize them. So also is the person who still thinks that he is the body-mind complex, cannot experience the Self."
Uddalaka Aruni further says:  "Suppose a man is brought with his
hands tied, and they say, 'This man has stolen something.  Heat up
an axe for him.'  If the man has committed the offence, then surely he will proves himself to be a liar.  Being dishonest and trying to hide under the cover of falsity, he will be burned when he grasps the hot axe.  The offender will then be executed."

[This example also comes in Vivekachoodamani]

What is liberation?  Liberation is the state in which I know I am the
Self -- I know that I am never born and will never die.  When I know that I am free, then I am fully satisfied. There is nothing more to achieve, because nothing more exists outside of myself.  If there is something outside myself, then I might think, "oh let me have that".  Therefore, the test for your attaining  Self knowledge, is your feeling that you will not burn in this world.  You have experienced the Truth and therefore the hot axe [the world] will not burn me.

Self Knowledge is an experience.  Like feeling unharmed with the hot axe.

Arunachala Siva.