Author Topic: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi  (Read 857 times)

srkudai

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Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« on: August 03, 2017, 05:31:51 PM »
OM!

This is an attempt to reconstruct the thoughts that went into an old thread on upadesha saram in which many of the forum members have participated. In a fit of disappointment I am guilty of spoiling that thread by deleting my posts. while what I did cannot be undone, here I would make an attempt to correct some of the damage done. This effort of mine is especially dedicated to sri DRPVSSNRAJU who is no more with us.

I request all the forum members  to participate by presenting their views on the verses. Lets  not engage in debates and arguments here. Debates may be done in another thread. :) The first person who starts a verse should make it a point to give the sanskrit verse with translation. And please write the verse number on the top of your comment for clarity.

Love!
Silence
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 05:29:22 PM by srkudai »

Ravi.N

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2017, 04:00:48 PM »
Udai,
Nice initiative...not sure of my continued participation in any sort of a study ...am prompted to open the account.
Namaskar

Ravi.N

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2017, 04:14:49 PM »
Verse 1:

कर्तुराज्ञया प्राप्यते फलं |
कर्म किं परं कर्म तज्जडम ||

kartur ājnyayā prāpyate phalaṃ
karma kiṃ paraṃ karma tajjaḍam

As Ordained by the Lord ,fruit (of act) is attained
Is karma (act) param(supreme)? karma, that which is insentient.

The whole saram or gist of Upadesa saram is in this very first verse...and all the verses that follow are only an expansion of what is stated tersely here...In his wonderful talk on nAn yAr,Nochur Sri Venkatraman brought out a beautiful point...referring to the small booklet 'nAn yAr' which sri Bhagavan himself recommended as an invaluable guide for aspirants...and that it should be made available at a very very subsidized price...Nochur Sri Venkatraman said that if one just reads the title of the book in an attentive manner,the content of the book is entirely contained in that!...this is the uniqueness of that 'book' and teaching.

Many of Sri Bhagavan's works are like that...the very opening is the ending or the completion...the introduction is the conclusion as well!

continued...

Ravi.N

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2017, 04:34:56 PM »
Verse 1:comments

Who is the Karta?Is it the person doing a particular act?

In the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna ,the master points out so simply:

1.Look here. If a man truly believes that God alone does everything, that He is the Operator and man the machine, then such a man is verily liberated in life. 'Thou workest Thine own work; men only call it theirs.' Do you know what it is like? Vedanta philosophy gives an illustration. Suppose you are cooking rice in a pot, with potato, eggplant, and other vegetables. After a while the potatoes, eggplant, rice, and the rest begin to jump about in the pot. They seem to say with pride: 'We are moving! We are jumping!' The children see it and think the potatoes, egg-plant, and rice are alive and so they jump that way. But the elders, who know, explain to the children that the vegetables and the rice are not alive; they jump not of themselves, but because of the fire under the pot; if you remove the burning wood from the hearth, then they will move no more. Likewise the pride of man, that he is the doer, springs from ignorance. Men are powerful because of the power of God. All becomes quiet when that burning wood is taken away. The puppets dance well on the stage when pulled by a wire, but they cannot move when the wire snaps.

The 'doer' is the Lord ...it is he who has ordained fruits for acts....Again the master says:

2.The feeling of 'I ' and 'mine' is ignorance. People say that Rani Rasmani built the Kali temple; but nobody says it was the work of God. They say that such and such a person established the Brahmo Samaj; but nobody says it was founded through the will of God. This feeling, 'I am the doer', is ignorance. On the contrary, the idea, 'O God, Thou art the Doer and I am only an instrument; Thou art the Operator and I am the machine', is Knowledge. After attaining Knowledge a man says: 'O God, nothing belongs to me-neither this house of worship nor this Kali temple nor this Brahmo Samaj. These are all Thine. Wife, son, and family do not belong to me. They are all Thine.'

continued....

Ravi.N

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2017, 05:06:43 PM »
verse 1:comments continued...

What Sri Bhagavan has tersely stated in the first verse...and what Sri Ramakrishna has so simply explained...we find in this fine verse by Thayumanavar (verse 1, Engu niRaiginRa Porul or The Pervasive Being):

அவனன்றி யோரணுவும் அசையாதெ னும்பெரிய
      ஆப்தர்மொழி யொன்றுகண்டால்
   அறிவாவ தேதுசில அறியாமை ஏதிவை
      அறிந்தார்கள் அறியார்களார்
மௌனமொ டிருந்ததார் என்போ லுடம்பெலாம்
      வாயாய்ப் பிதற்றுமவரார்
   மனதெனவும் ஒருமாயை எங்கே இருந்துவரும்
      வன்மையொ டிரக்கமெங்கே
புவனம் படைப்பதென் கர்த்தவிய மெவ்விடம்
      பூதபே தங்களெவிடம்
   பொய்மெயிதம் அகிதமேல் வருநன்மை தீமையொடு
      பொறைபொறா மையுமெவ்விடம்
எவர்சிறிய ரெவர்பெரிய ரெவருறவ ரெவர்பகைஞர்
      யாதுமுனை யன்றியுண்டோ
   இகபர மிரண்டினிலும் உயிரினுக் குயிராகி
      எங்குநிறை கின்றபொருளே

"Not an atom moveth without Him" -

If this great saying of the wise is realized,
Where then is knowledge?
Where then is ignorance?
Who are they that knew this?
Who are they that knew this not?
Who are they that in silentness sat?
Who are they that are loquacious like me,
My entire body turned into mouth!
Where doth the illusion, that is mind, come from?

Where is cruelty from?
Where is compassion from?
Why the creation of this universe?
Why the lordly functions arising therefrom?
Why these diverse elements?

Why truth and falsehood?
Why pleasantness and unpleasantness?
Why good and evil?
Why beneficient things to be?
Why the disasters to follow?
Why the patience and impatience?

Who are small?
Who are great?
Who are friends?
Who are enemies?
All, all none but Thee!
Oh! Thou the Pervasive Being
That is Life of life
Of this world and the Transcendent!

The whole essence  to be grasped is in this : "அவனன்றி யோரணுவும் அசையாது " (avananRi Or anuvum asaiyaadhu) -"Not an atom moveth without Him" .

If this is not grasped then,all the other practices are pointed out as per the maturity of the aspirant....it is not that one is 'superior' to the 'other'...and that one has to go for the best!...one has to take to anything that can be grasped through shraddha...and it is this shraddha that leads the sadhaka through various sadhanas...and leads him to the 'uttamam' or closer to Reality and dissolves him in this Reality.

To know this essence is karma,bhakti,yoga and Jnana...and it is shraddha alone that is born of grace that is the 'doer' of the sadhana.

One who knows this is not fooled by seeming distinctions...and will realize the fundamental unity of all teachings...He will not differentiate 'self enquiry by Sadhu X is different than 'neti neti' of Vedanta' or that both are different than the 'bhakti' of Sri Ramakrishna or the 'yoga' of another yogi',etc,etc...All these differentiations are on account of ignorance of the fundamental essence.

Now Why am I saying this? What is the relevance as far as verse 1 is concerned?

I am stating this to point out an erroneous view that is popularized by well known scholars of 'Ramana' ...that the initial verses represent the particular teaching of lord siva to those karma vadins...and that Sri Bhagavan's actual teaching starts somewhere from the middle or so!...To think that Bhagavan would cater to such fanciful stuff! ...We may clearly see the fallacy of such arguements,irrespective of the originator of such a thing.

So,it is better to look for the grace and light of Bhagavan in studying this work...and to approach it with a fresh and open mind...and derive the benefit.

Namaskar
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 05:09:38 PM by Ravi.N »

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2017, 05:29:41 PM »
Dear Raviji,
           :) Thank you for initiating this wonderful discussion.
I think there are deeper ways of looking at things and this is what you have done. most people stop with the elementary view that the first three verses are karma yoga. but Ramana , who said even Sravanam is really hearing to the "I" -"I", would definitely mean something far deeper than the traditional sense in which karma yoga is understood. My approach would be slightly different ... from the dream perspective !

I read through the entire explanation and really like your posts!

Love !
Silence

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2017, 05:38:09 PM »
OM !

INTRODUCTION TO UPADESHA SARAM: 


A few days ago I prepared a power-point presentation and showed it to my friend. It contained just pictures without any text. He saw that and was not sure what I was trying to convey. Later on as I explained each picture he understood the import. If someone else gave a totally different interpretation to those very same pictures he would probably get a totally different meaning from it.

In our lives too, various events take place and we look at them. They are like static pictures [or at best dynamic movies -- a movie is only a collection of pictures anyways] stored up in our memories with some "Interpretation" attached to each picture. When I was a kid if a dog had attacked me, there would be a picture of a dog with an associated interpretation "dogs bite" :). If as a kid I saw only a few cute dogs, then there would be "dogs are cute" interpretation. And these interpretations run into our subconscious mind. We surely don't know what all is there in the subconscious mind ... lot of interpretations and images stored in the memory and the subconscious. Totally unknown to us.

So when we look at the world and the various situations, we look at them with a certain interpretation which makes our world. The events "as they are" do not convey anything. Someone failed in an Exam, and he interpreted "I am not good for studies, I need to concentrate on sports where I am better". Another person failed in the same exam and concluded "I am a failure, fit for nothing". Yet another person may conclude "I need to work harder". So various interpretations, same event.

The world appears to us as it is, only because of our interpretation of the events. A person was chanting Srimad Ramayanam and a monkey came there , he interpreted it as Hanuman! Probably someone else might have interpreted the same monkey as a nuisance.

Its ultimately our interpretation that makes this world for us. Vedanta says that "God is everywhere"... and if for a few moments we take this to be true, then it means that we are constantly meeting this God every day, every moment. In fact there can be no moment we do not meet God, coz God is everywhere... right now... to our left, right , up , below, within and without !! As if embracing us ... now! But then we certainly "Miss" him all along, we think he is not here! We think he has to be found. So naturally it means we are missing God not because we lack his experience but because we interpret these experiences in our own ways. 

The same thing applies to ourselves too. Vedanta says "You are Ever Purna, Complete or Fulfilled". And we experience a sense of "emptiness", we feel we lack various things in life. We see that without some objects [or some people] our lives remain empty and unfulfilled. This is not what we experience ... this is really our interpretation of our experiences. The Events themselves, as we already saw, are dumb. The events do not come with a commentary. Right now if there is a huge calamity ... an earth quake or a tsunami ... it just happens. The nature does not say "This was bad", nor does it say "This is good"... its mute. The entire creation remains mute. Its only we who comment upon it and say "This is really a tragedy". Please note that I do not mean to say "this is not a tragedy". All I mean to say is that the events are not our experiences. Our experience is an "interpretation" along with the event. And that "interpretation" is our offering , our side of the story. Events are just dumb without our interpretation. So if Vedanta says we are ever fulfilled and lack nothing and we feel we lack lot of things ... where is the gap ? the gap is created by our interpretation of the events. The gap is in the way we look at the events and situations ... more particularly the gap is in the way we look at ourselves.So here is a question: What if we just "See", sans all interpretations / commentaries ? Just see ? We will return to this later...

in a simple poem called Kaupina panchakam,Sri Adi Shankaracharya paints a very nice picture of an enlightened saint. This picture is very much like Bhagavan Ramana's :). He says :
kaupinavantah kalu bhagya vantah ... a person with only a lion cloth is indeed blessed, he is indeed Lukcy. He has got bhagya, luck.
He is blessed not because he has a lion cloth :). Its indeed true that there are much richer people and more successful people ... but internally they remain unfulfilled while this person has nothing and yet is fulfilled.

Its also important to note that he is fulfilled not because he has only a lion cloth ... otherwise give him a nice dress and he would become unfulfilled. The simplicity is not in the external circumstances ... its within ... in the very way he appreciates or looks at himself. How does he look at himself ? What is his vision ? How does he look at the world ? what is it that makes such a person live a fulfilled life ? Shankara adds:
Vedanta vakyeshu sada ramayantah ... he always revels in the Truth revealed by the Vedanta. Which is not to say that he has memorized all the vedantic works and is therefore happy :). This is to say that he "Revels" as that which those words point to ! What is "That" ? Its his true nature -- its He as He truely IS, sans his "interpretations" and "conclusions" about himself. He therefore lives a blessed life. Shankara has presented us with a possibility ... we can remain extremely satisfied even when our possessions are minimal!This person is living a fulfilled life even when he has just a lion cloth while we have all the possessions in the world and yet we remain unfulfilled. Why ? Because we miss the truth revealed by Vedanta. The saint with a mere kaupina, lion cloth [Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi] has experiences very similar to ours. He too had tooth ache and various kinds of physical sufferings and yet he remained aloof and equanimous and we miss it not because we do not have some exotic experiences but because we have a tainted vision -- we see exactly what the saint sees but we miss the fulfillment which is our true nature and he does not. Thats the difference.

This gap can only be sealed through an upadesha - a teaching from a guru who has seen the Truth. This teaching is his vision, the vision that enabled him to remain untouched and aloof. This teaching is not yet another interpretation. This teaching simply dissolves all our interpretations about ourselves and the world , leaving us as we are. This text is an upadesha: its called upadesha saram ... meaning the "Essence of Teaching".In 30 verses Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi has consolidated the entire vedantic teaching.Upadesha Saram was written by Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi at the request of Sri Muruganar. Sri Muruganar was writing some puranic story about people who believed that Karma [Vedic Rituals, in the context] alone could lead to Moksha. In order to correct them, Lord Siva himself descends to earth. While writing this puranic story in poetic form, Sri Muruganar requested Bhagavan Ramana to write the part where Lord Siva taught the Truth to the rishis.


Love!
Silence
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 03:09:13 PM by srkudai »

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2017, 05:52:35 PM »
Quote
Verse 1:

Verse 1:
karturaaGYayaa praapyate phalam |
karma ki.N para.N karma tajjaDam ||
 
कर्तुराज्ञया प्राप्यते फलम्।
कर्म किँ परँ कर्म तज्जडम्॥

kartuh -- The Lord's , phalam -- the results or fruits , karma -- Action, param -- supreme ?
jadam -- are inert., aajnaya -- by orders, prapyate -- is gained , kim -- is it ?,tat karma -- that action.

"By the Orders of the Lord one receives the fruits of actions, are the actions supreme in themselves ? Those actions are just inert."


We look at this world as something real and as a result we think that our results are dictated by our action. As I sow, so I reap, is the common way of presenting this truth. While this is not entirely false, Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi did not look at the world as real. He often said that this world is no more than a dream. This being so, can we still hold that my actions are giving me results ? If in a dream I do something and get a particular result, is it the action that's responsible for the result or is it purely the imagination [or order, in a way :)] of the dreamer that shows up as the action and the result ?
 
Once king Janaka called his ministers and asked them a very interesting question: "Yesterday I dreamt that I was the king of a kingdom which was famine affected. Having woken up now, I ask you a question: Am I the king of a famine affected kingdom dreaming that I am prosperous or vice versa ?"


There is a similar Zen story of a monk who said "Yesterday I dreamt that I am a butterfly. Now please tell me, am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a monk or am I a monk who dreamt that he was a butterfly"

Lets try a simple experiment :) :

Please take a look at the following image:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Necker_cube.svg


you can see either one of two versions of this cube. Just focus on the rear face  of the cube and the version of cube you currently see will flip. Do we see this ?

Ok, now lets ask a question : When we look at it, we see one of these two cubes. when we do not look at it , which of these cubes exists there ?

do we get this question ? Does it sound like he zen koan, if a tree falls in a forest where no one is there, is there a sound ? [infact is there falling of tree or a tree in the first place? ] ?

The point is, there is no cube on a flat surface. A cube is a 3d surface and on a 2d paper or surface there cannot be a cube. That cube is our imagination.

If you are with me till now, let me add one more fact. Our retina is a flat surface, can there be any 3d object there ? :) ! Please ponder. Physics says that we are living in a holographic world - and for once it seems to be close to truth .

This world is a mental world, there is nothing physical out there !
Our ideas of karma and the theory of karma are perpetuated by our belief in the reality of this  physical universe. Karma theory is a gross approximation , like the newton's laws of physics ... it falls apart the moment we delve a little deeper. Yoga Vasishta goes so far as to say that all our causal relationships are only kakataliyam - a crow sits on a tree and a coconut falls and we conclude that the crow dislodged the coconut. Karma theory is  a very gross approximation. The mistake of the ascetics is of taking such a gross approximation to be the truth ! Before getting deeper into the verse, lets study a story from yoga vasishta :

 
« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 06:03:39 PM by srkudai »

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2017, 06:19:43 PM »
VERSE 1: (continued ... )

The story of Mind, From Yoga Vasishta:

There is a formidable and desolate forest in which there was a man. He was with a thousand hands and eyes. Apparently very confused, he would strike himself violently with iron bars and run about crying. Running about like that he fell in a dark well with a hidden way out.

It took him some time to find his way out and then he slowly got out of the well into a thorny forest. Then again, departing and beating himself often, running and laughing he managed to enter a cool forest of plantain trees.

but he did not remain there for long. There also he started beating himself and running, he fell into the same well again ! He was as though drunk or semi conscious!!

Vasishta ji says: Having seen this for a long time , i held him by force ... and jolted him to consciousness. I then asked him " What is this ? Who are you? Why do you run in vain ?", thus asked, he said:
"I am no body, i do nothing. You are my enemy. Having seen by you, i am lost! Then , laughing, he gave up his limbs all around"
Thus in that forest, many men like him dwell, wandering about. That forest is there even today.

Sri Rama: Sage! What is that great forest ? What is it that they are intent on doing ?

Vasishta replies:

In this great forest of worldly existence, minds indeed wander about. They are lead by me , by discrimination, to supreme tranquility. Some, by disregarding me, fall down into hells. The forest of plantains is heaven. the affliction by sorrow is the thorn. "I am lost", when he said this, it was the cry of ego ... the feeling of me and mine ! The beatings are the blows of fancies or imaginations. They are indeed caused by oneself. The mind is reduced to a state of bondage only by its own imaginations and impressions. Like a silk worm in the cocoon one binds oneself by one's own imaginations and super-impositions.

This story of mind has been narrated to you. Contemplate on it with the mind , using this discrimination observe the mind and reject the fancies or imaginations of mind.

Quote
prahaaraaH kalpanaaghaataaH kriyante svayameva hi |
sa.NkalpavaasanaajaalaiH svairevaayaati bandhanam|
mano liilaamayaiH bandhaiH koshakaarakR^imiryathaa ||

प्रहाराः कल्पनाघाताः क्रियन्ते स्वयमेव हि।
सँकल्पवासनाजालैः स्वैरेवायाति बन्धनम्।
मनो लीलामयैः बन्धैः कोशकारकृमिर्यथा॥

The beatings are the blows of fancies (or imaginations). They are indeed caused by oneself. The mind is reduced to the state of bondage only by its own net of impressions of imaginations, just as the silk worm in the cocoon confines itself by bonds with ease.


-------------------------------------

I related this story of yoga vasishta only to drive home the point that its mind which fancies all sort of events that happen in our lives !! There is no physical reality to all this that we see and live through. We imagine, imagine and finally land ourselves in all kinds of troubles.
This world that we live in is a dream. That is it ! Yoga Vasishta says :

Quote

dR^iDhabhaavanayaa ceto yadyathaa bhaavayatyalam|
tattatphala.N tadaakaara.N taavatkaala.N prapashyati ||
दृढभावनया चेतो यद्यथा भावयत्यलम्। ४-२१-५६
तत्तत्फलँ तदाकारँ तावत्कालँ प्रपश्यति॥ ४-२१-५७
(657 verse from : the vision of yoga vasishta, Sri Atreya)
what the mind imagines intensely with a firm conception and in what ever way, it perceives the corresponding result in that form and for that much period.



Please see the beauty of that verse. It says the results are experienced due to our firm conception, it does not say its due to karma. We give karma a lot of importance only because we think that karma is supreme - that is a very materialistic bent of mind ! Karma is really insignificant, its only the intelligence or the mind behind it that is causing the results. This is very important to understand.

Let me explain this a little more...
In a dream suppose I see that I have prepared very hard for an exam and I got good results. What links my good work with the good result and not a bad result ? The "Dreamer", i.e., me.Its me and my dream that ensures that "law" holds true. In my dream, the laws of the world that I have dreamt hold true only because of "me" the dreamer. In other words when I perform an action, its  really not the action that gave rise to the result, but my dreaming that gave rise to it. The order or the law is upheld by me... my dreaming. In my dream, I see myself preparing well for an exam and later getting good marks. These are merely distinct events, we see some connection only because we take it to be real. When we look at it as a dream, its really the "Dreamer's Order or Law" that ensured the result. Infact the law seems real and something unchanging because of our faith and firm conviction in its reality!

We will explore this a little more ...



srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2017, 03:37:05 PM »
(Verse 1 : Continued ...)
-----------------------------

The law of karma is a crude approximation based on a notion of causality. As long as we look from the lense of causality the law of karma appears to be very real. The moment we look deeply into the nature of things , more meditatively and with deeper insights the law of causality itself crumbles and along with it the law of karma crumbles too.

The Sristi-Dristi and Dristi-Sristi Vadas:


There are two approaches to looking at this creation. The first is called Sristi-Dristi vada, the world or creation is there (really out there) and therefore i see it, and the other is called dristi sristi vada : there is nothing out there  , i see whatever is imagined in my mind. These are very important stand points. There is a beautiful explanation about these two standpoints in the book : " yoga vasishta sarah ... Nectar of Supreme Knowledge , by swami Dhireshananda & translated by Swami Sarvadevananda, Ramakrishna mission" [This is a fantastic book, for all interested readers]
http://www.amazon.in/Nectar-Supreme-knowledge-Swami-Dhiresananda/dp/817823615X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1503049921&sr=8-1&keywords=nectar+of+supreme+knowledge

Let me quote the relevant portions from the book directly:

Quote
The world has a reality that is why it can be seen" - this is the view of aspirants of the lowest competence, who accept the absolute and the relative existence of the world and support the idea of creation and perception [sristi-dristi]. In this doctrine, the world is impermanent, but not unreal"

The world is observed, that is why it is there - this is the doctorine of perception and creation (Dristi-sristi). this is the practice of the aspirant of mediocre competence. According to this doctrine, the apparent existence of the world (pratibaasika) is accepted.

Again there is no world neither it can be Seen - The Brahman alone is there ... this is the doctrine of non-creation, ajata vada in the view of the aspirants of the best competence. In this doctrine even the reality of the apparent existence of the world is not accepted...

Then the book goes on to explain Dristi-Sristi Vada as follows :

Quote
According to this doctrine, the waking state is also a dream only. Therefore knowledge can be attained only by discrimination of two states. these two states are dream and deep sleep. Though in Vedanta,, the discrimination os three states is emphasized normmally, yet for the mediocre aspirants of competence, the discrimination between two states is enough.. It is one state (dream and waking) when the various scenes appear on the surface of the mind - this is the blossoming (unmesa) of the mind as it were. Another state of the mind (Deep sleep) when all visible objects are gone, is called the state of winking of mind (nimesa). Both these two states verily come and go. the Self remains undefiled and unchanged in all these conditions. This Self is verily the transcendental reality and nothing else.

Step By Step Guidance For Seekers

The vedantic teaching is a systematic approach to really go beyond and get rid  of all ignorance. So wherever we are, in what ever stage of life, we are  given an advice and a contemplation for that phase of life. It does not say "you should not have a certain feeling", instead it says "if you have such a feeling, this is what you are supposed to do" !! This is the reason why we have so many teachings. Lets see how a student is guided in a step by step fashion:

a) consider a materialist. Such a person looks at the world as totally real. so such a one is first taught the concept of a God who created the world. This is taught systematically and 5 elements etc are discussed.

b) now consider a person who accepts that there is a God who created the world. This person has already stopped treating the world as totally real, because there is God who can interfere and make things different. Such a person knows that if one is in trouble one may pray to God for help. This person is already prepared to see the world as a little unreal ... so such a one is taught the dristi sristi vada to get rid of the notion of reality of world altogether. This person learns to see the world as a dream now.

c) once a person can see the world as dream, its easy for such a one to see that there is no world in reality -- thus leaping into the ajata vada !

Thus a person is systematically lead into ajata vada. God Alone IS.

Linking Karma Phala To Karma : Materialistic View Vs Dristi-Sristi vs Sristi Dristi Views

Now lets see how a materialist links karma phala to karma ? For a pure materialist, the karma and karma phala are linked by laws of physics. There is no non-material object , nothing survives death. This is purely materialistic view.

The karma mimamsakas , for whom this verse introduces knowledge, are little better than pure materialists, because they agree there is a soul that transmigrates the body when we die but then they think there is a slightly modified law of karma that binds karma phala to karma.

The  Sristi Dristi vada would say, God links the karma phala with karma, not just some law. Even if the law is held, who ensures that it holds ? karma is insentient, how can it hold onto the person as he passes from birth to birth ? With this interpretation, the kartuh in the verse 1 is God.

The Dristi-Sristi Vada ,as we already discussed says its only a dream... its only because of our imagination and nothing more! there is no real world, no real doing nor any real result. when i involve in bad karma, the quality of my mind is impure and hence i fail to imagine a good life. when i purify my mind, the quality of my life also improves because all my imaginations improve. This is the position I have taken here for the verse.

Love!
Silence

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2017, 04:59:54 PM »
The first verse really questions the cause effect relationship that we feel to be very real in our lives. We have seen that the cause effect relationship in a dream is no more than an imagination and the same thing holds for this life of ours. This is about the first verse, where the attention is shifted to the one who imagines the whole thing up - namely the dreamer.

The second verse goes on to describe the plight of a person who takes this world to be real and tries to achieve something here. The plight of such a person is like that of a person who tries to acquire something substantial by setting a dream world in order. The dream world shall never settle. We try to settle things in the world and then pursue our spiritual endeavors, and if we try this we shall find that this world never settles. We patch it up at one place and it begins to give away at another place. Its been compared to a dilapidated house. These things wont last and its futile to try to make them perfect. Before I can make my worldly life perfect, life itself slips off my hands unnoticed!

In our endless struggle to correct and set the things of the world right, we loose life and with that an opportunity to seek the Truth too ! This does not mean we should neglect the world, rather it means we need to approach the world with certain attitude and clarity that would help us purify our minds and thereby lead us to moksha or liberation !

Lets now proceed to study the second verse of upadesha saram...

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2017, 05:18:07 PM »
VERSE 2 - UPADESHA SARAM


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VERSE 2:
kR^iti mahodadhau patanakaaraNam|
phalamashaashvata.N gatinirodhakam||
 
कृति महोदधौ पतनकारणम्।
फलमशाश्वतँ गतिनिरोधकम्॥

kriti maha udhau - in the vast ocean of actions.
ashashvatam phalam - transient results
patana karanam - the cause of downfall
(and ca)
gati-nirodhakam : (is) the restriction on progress.

This vast ocean of actions is a cause for downfall.
The fruits are impermanent and thus a person's progress is restricted.

In the first verse Bhagavan pointed out that the world is like a mirage and the cause-effect relationship which gives us an impression that its real is also like the cause-effect relationship we experience in our dreams. This second verse says the next obvious thing: if you try to fulfill your thirst with mirage water, you shall ever remain thirsty , running after mirages. This is going to be an unending journey.

If we look at life deeply , we shall discover that no matter where we live and what we possess, we shall experience problems and difficulties from time to time. This is just the way life is. Whenever we experience suffering in life , it just means : we are asking for something that the world cannot give us. We seek stability in life and the worldly situations of life - and it cannot give it to us. We seek happiness from the situations of life, it cannot really give that to us. Its the nature of the world to go wrong. Whether we meditate and live the life of a recluse or we involve ourselves in activities of the world, the situations shall remain toggling from positive to negative and viceversa. Things go wrong and thats the way this world is - because its a dream. There is no way to keep the dream stable.

We spend immense amounts of energy to stabilize the situations of life. We often think that certain "results or fruits " obtainable from certain actions of ours will make us happy and that is like running after a mirage. Our job here is not to ask for things that the world cannot give us. Our job is not to prod and push this world to make it just the way we would like it to be. Such a wish is never going to be fulfilled, since things will most certainly go wrong somewhere or the else and in trying to fix these gaps, we shall be running in an unending cycle ! There is no respite until we understand this and world is only a dream and leave it where it is. There is no respite until we let go our childish games of making this world stabilize to a fancy state. Even if we were to go to svarga , we cannot remain there for ever. such is the state of this world, its going to change - and that is why its called jagat. Its just the nature of the world to go wrong. Lets get this clear. Its the nature of the body to fall sick. its the nature of thoughts to change. its the nature of time to pass. The flower , no matter how beautiful it is today, shall wither away.

Bhagavan is here pointing out that our attempts to control and stabilize this world and discover happiness through the result of our actions are really like running after a mirage. There is no end to this. We keep running after one or the other mirage and get tired, exhausted, and yet the destination would seem to be as far away as it was when we started the chase. Lets simply stand back from our daily lives and see whether or not this is true.

In Tripura Rahasyam there is a very interesting argument presented. The argument is : if water were to fulfill your thirst, how come the thirst returns ?
This is really worth pondering over.

The results of our actions , are temporary and very limited in themselves. And the nature of world is to change and things will go wrong --- so this chase after a permanent and stable satisfaction through actions is really stupid. We need to change our attitude. There is nothing wrong in seeking to correct the situations of the world but to think that it shall remain stable or it is a solution to our sense of being an unfulfilled person is really stupidity. We look at ourselves as incomplete and unfulfilled and try to discover happiness by filling that gap with some worldly objects. That is incorrect logic. the objects cannot give it to us and so when we ask for something the object cannot give us, we are bound to suffer. The poor person thinks that the cause for his or her incompleteness is lack of money and yet is the rich person happy ? the rich person has other problems to sort out. these problems , at the level of the world are never going to end.

The solution is not to change the state of the world. when a poor person grows rich, he is more comfortable. Riches  give us comforts, not happiness. Lets clearly see the difference here. I can buy an A/C . I can go in a flight. These give me comforts. They cannot make me happy. Someone may be sitting with a lion cloth on the Arunachala Mountain without any money and be extremely happy, while someone else may be the owner of a huge island and yet extremely unhappy within. comforts do not make us happy. This is very fundamental.

Thus we can stop trying to correct the situations of the world. We do not try to run after a golden fleece , nor do we try to run away from sufferings or discomforts ... we allow things as they are, letting go the entire drama ... disengaging ourselves from this entire drama ... understanding that this is how the world is going to be ... and disengaging ourselves from this whole drama, a new dimension opens up for us ! As we let go and totally accept what is as it is, disengaging ourselves from this game of running after successes and running away from failures ... as we do this, we discover a new freedom. If there has to be a name for this freedom I would call it "Meeting the God". This is how we bring God into our lives. God is not some superhuman entity sitting on clouds deciding our future. There is this dream we are dreaming  and all the dream entities, and when we recognize it as a dream and let it be as it is ... detaching ourselves from it ... we stay with ourselves ... another name for that is "I AM" or God or Being. All this starts with the simple recognition that our worldly life is really like chasing a mirage.

Love!
Silence

Nishta

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2017, 02:23:23 AM »
Quote
Someone may be sitting with a lion cloth on the Arunachala Mountain without any money and be extremely happy
 
All this starts with the simple recognition that our worldly life is really like chasing a mirage.

Good post srkudai.

Maharshi lived in a cave without a cent and not knowing where the next meal will come from. Yet Peace is his nature. Ego wants more, and is never satisfied. Maharshi?s solution appears to be the most sensible, "Not letting the mind go out, but retaining it in the Heart".

There is no happiness in any object of the world. We imagine through our ignorance that we derive happiness from objects. When the mind goes out, it experiences misery.

When the world disappears, i.e. when there is no thought, the mind experiences happiness; and when the world appears, it goes through misery.
 

srkudai

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2017, 10:33:41 AM »
Dear Nishta,
       :) Thank you for your comments. Please feel free to present your understanding of the upadesha saram verses here.
It would be nice to have multiple views and make this a cumulative effort of the forum members.
I have seen some of your posts and they are very nice. Thank you for the simple nuggets of wisdom. :) Your writings remind me of Sri Nagaraj who used to be a forum member here and had a very nice way of presenting the Truth.

Love!
Silence
« Last Edit: November 09, 2017, 10:36:13 AM by srkudai »

Nishta

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Re: Upadesha Saram of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2017, 03:32:25 PM »
Dear Nishta,
       :) Thank you for your comments.

 Thank you for your supportive words Udai. I will certainly post if I can contribute something.