Author Topic: Ramana Maharshi’s actual experience is ajata  (Read 1984 times)


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Ramana Maharshi’s actual experience is ajata
« on: May 17, 2010, 01:33:01 PM »
Sri Bhagavan says : ‘Without the seer, the seen, be they worlds or gods, cannot exist. All those objects of sight depend upon the seer. The purpose of all objects of sight is only to point to the seer. The purpose of all creation is verily to get at the creator.’

Sri Bhagavan clearly concluded his explanation in favour of simultaneous creation by saying: ‘Without the seer, the seen, be they worlds or gods, cannot exist. All those objects of sight depend upon the seer.’

The debate revolves around two Sanskrit terms, srishti-drishti vada and drishti-srishti vada. Srishti-drishti vada means the theory of gradual creation, that is, the theory that God created the world and the soul.

According to the theory of parinama vada, Brahman does not appear as the world and the soul, as a rope appears to be a snake, but undergoes a change and becomes them in the same way that clay becomes a pot. This theory maintains that Brahman has actually (and not merely apparently) undergone transformation and change. It also maintains that the effects, namely, the world and the soul, are as real as their cause, Brahman.

Drishti-srishti vada means the theory of simultaneous creation, and is also known as the theory of false appearance. According to this theory, Brahman is the sole reality that never undergoes any change, and the world, the soul and God are false appearances that rise into existence simultaneously with the seer. This theory maintains that all objects depend for their apparent existence upon the seer. Whereas in gradual creation, objects are seen because they have been created, in simultaneous creation, objects are created because they are seen.

The question of which creation theory is taught in Ulladu Narpadu has been answered by Bhagavan himself in verse 83 of the Garland of Guru’s Sayings.

Through the venba verse that begins, ‘Because we perceive the world...,’ Guru Ramana – who teaches the one true beneficial attainment [jnana] that is needed by the people of the world – declared, out of his love for us, the doctrine of illusory appearance to be the truth that bestows the ultimate benefit, avoiding the consideration of other doctrines.

In this verse Bhagavan states that since he wrote Ulladu Narpadu, it is understood that he teaches only the doctrine of false appearance, or simultaneous creation, and that he has set aside all other theories. It should also be clear from reading the text of Ulladu Narpadu that Sri Bhagavan is teaching that the seer and the seen rise together.

In verse seven it states, ‘Although the world and the mind rise and set together, it is by the mind alone that the world shines’ and in verse twenty-six it states, ‘If the ego comes into existence, all else will come into existence. If the ego does not exist, all else will not exist.’

Although Bhagavan taught the theory of simultaneous creation, this theory should not be elevated to the status of an absolute truth. Sri Bhagavan’s actual experience is ajata, which is a denial of all creation theories, simultaneous or otherwise, since it is the experience that neither the world, the soul nor God has ever come into existence. Ajata is the final experience, not a theory that can be taught, for there is no room in this experience for such differences as a teacher and a person to be taught.

Bhagavan’s teachings assume that we are aware that the world rises and sets with the rising and setting of the seer. The first words of Ulladu Narpadu are ‘Because we see the world’, and this assumption that we see the world becomes the basis for this teaching on creation. If he was intending to attempt to teach ajata, he would not have admitted the existence of the world at all, and if he had intended to teach gradual creation he would have said, ‘Because the world is created’.

Although Sri Bhagavan sometimes used to speak from the standpoint of gradual creation while replying to questioners, in his main works (for example, in Who am I?, in verses 6, 7, 14, 23 and 26 of Ulladu Narpadu, and in verses 6 and 7 of Arunachala Ashtakam), he clearly teaches only the theory of simultaneous creation. As he has explained in Self Enquiry in the answer to question 10, the theory of gradual creation is taught only for immature aspirants, while the theory of simultaneous creation is taught to mature aspirants. The same idea is expressed by him in Day by Day (15th March 1946) and in Talks no. 651 where he concludes: ‘But the true seeker can be content with yugapat srishti, instantaneous creation.’

The Ulladu Narpadu selection has been translated by Robert Butler, while the two Arunachala Ashtakam verses have been taken from Sri Arunachala Stuti Panchakam, Sadhu Om and Michael James’ translation of and commentary on Bhagavan's Arunachala poems:


The world is of the form of the five senses. It is nothing other. Those five senses are perceived through the five organs of sense. Since the mind alone perceives the world through the medium of the senses, can there be a world apart from the mind? Speak!


Although the world and the mind arise and subside together, it is through the mind that the world shines forth. That which is the perfection that shines without appearing or disappearing, as the place where both the world and the mind appear and disappear, is the Real.


If the first person exists, the second and third persons [you, he, she, it and they] will also be in existence. But if, upon one’s investigation into the reality of its nature, the first person is destroyed, the second and third persons will also cease to be, and one's own nature, shining alone, will be verily the state of the Self.


This body does not say ‘I’. And no one says ‘When I am asleep I do not exist’. After the ‘I’ arises, all else arises. Investigate with a keen mind whence this ‘I’ arises.


If the ego arises, all else will arise. If the ego is not, nothing else will exist. The ego, truly, is all. Know that simply to enquire what it is, is to renounce everything.

Arunachala Ashtakam 6

You, the Heart, the light of consciousness, the one reality, alone exist! A wonderful sakti exists in You as not other [than You]. From [it a] series of subtle shadowy thoughts [rise and] by means of [the reflected light of] consciousness in the whirl of prarabdha are [simultaneously] seen [as] shadowy world pictures, both inside [on] the mirror of the thought-light and outside through the [five] senses such as the eyes, just like a cinema picture which exists [by being projected] through a lens. O Hill of Grace, whether they [the world pictures] stop [appearing], or whether they continue [to appear], they do not exist apart from You.


If the thought ‘I’ does not exist, no other thing will exist. Until that [moment when the ‘I’-thought ceases], if other thoughts rise [one should enquire] ‘To whom do they rise?’ To me. [Then, by scrutinising] what is the rising place of ‘I’, merge [within]. Diving within [in this manner], if one reaches the Heart-throne [one will become] verily the Sovereign under the shade of one umbrella. [There] the dream known as ‘inside and outside’, the two karmas, death and birth, pleasure and pain, and darkness and light, will not exist, and the limitless ocean of the light of grace, called Aruna Hill, which dances motionlessly in the court of the Heart, alone [will exist].



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Re: Ramana Maharshi’s actual experience is ajata
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2010, 10:43:34 AM »

Dear prasanth,

Excellent post.  Bhagavan Ramana's Ajata Vada, which He not
only described in Sri Arunachala Ashtakam and ULLadu Narpadu,
is also shining example of this experience of Ajata Vada.  He
is the direct representation of Gaudapada and Sri Sankara.  Some
Western devotee calls Him as the Lone Star of the Galaxy.  He
is really the Lone Star, the bright shining example of Ajata Vada.

Bhagavan Ramana says in Sri Arunachala Ashtakam, Verse 2,
which sums up His experiential ajata vada principle:

Enquiring within "Who is the seer?"
I saw the seer disappearing and That alone stands for ever.
No thought arose to say "I saw".
How then could be the thought arise to say, "I did not see?"
Who has the power to explain all this in words?
When even You alone conveyed this of yore?
And in order to reveal (by silence) Your state transcendent,
Now You stand here, a Hill resplendent soaring to the sky!

Today incidentally, is Sri Sankara Jayanti.

Arunachala Siva.   


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Re: Ramana Maharshi’s actual experience is ajata
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2010, 12:46:33 PM »
Yes sir,i came to know yesterday that today is Sankara jayanthi.

Glory to Adi Shankara garu to single-handedly revived Sanatana Dharma and introduced Advaita Vedanta.

Many thanks once again for Writting Sankara Vijayam in this forum Subramanian Garu.