Kaivalya Upanishad, Class 4


Greetings All,

In mantra #1, Sruthi introduced Ashvalayana and his teacher Brahma. The student with appropriate qualifications asks for Brahmavidya with humility, also called Pariprashnaha.

Having seen the student as well qualified from his approach, Brahmaji agrees to teach him. Brahma addressed the student and gave him instructions on the instruments or Sadhana to be practiced.

The Sadhana’s are:

  1. Direct means or Sakshat Karanam and
  2. Indirect means known as Sahakari Karanam.

Citing an example, from a seed a plant sprouts, however, it also needs good soil, water, air and sunshine to continue to grow. While seed is the direct cause, other factors are also required for its growth and are indirect causes.  Even with medication, one needs other disciplines to be followed, such as control of type of food, time etc. Thus the medicine is called aushadham while supporting regimen is called Pathyam.

The three sadhanas prescribed by Brahmaji are:

  1.  Shradha Yoga, also called Vedanta Sravanam
  2. Bhakthi Yoga, also called Mananam Yoga
  3. Dhyana Yoga also called Nidhidyasanam yoga

These three together are known as Gyana Yoga.

Sravanam: is a belief in Vedas and the Acharya. It removes ignorance.

Mananam: is focusing the mind on teaching of the guru and reflecting upon it, just like a cow chewing the cud. This focused reflection removes doubts and develops conviction. It removes intellectual obstacles.

Nididhyasanam: is internalizing the teaching to such an extent that it sinks into my personality. Soaked in Brahmavidya, your every word and action should reflect the teaching learnt. It should result in a transformed person. It removes all emotional obstacles. It removes Vasanas. It removes our tendencies towards anger, jealousy, etc.

Shloka # 3:

Brahmaji says the sahakari karanam or contributing factors are the Sadhana Chatushtaya Sampathi. Only in the presence of Sadhana Chatushtaya Sampathi can Gyanam fructify. Without it all sravanam, mananam and nididhyasanam will not work.

Brahmaji highlights one Sadhana Chatushtaya. He says Vairagyam or freedom from emotional attachment (to people, things, position, name, fame) or freedom from psychological weakness is essential. This can also be considered Sanayasa.

There are two types of Sanyasa. 1. Bashya or external Sanyasa and 2. Internal Sanayasa.

In Bhashya Sanyasa one renounces formally and physically. One wears a Kashaya Vastram This is external sanyasa.

Internal renunciation is: I prepare myself to lose anything in life at any time. Things are still normal around me, as always. How to do this? Upanishads do not provide guidance on this. However, now, I function in this world with a different attitude.

Swamiji, offering guidance, says one approach is to have Viveka. Remembering the fact that whatever I possess, including relatives, are temporary gifts of God sent to educate me. Everyone belongs to God. Let me make use of them to love and share and then finally returning them to God with thanks.

For this we have to train from early on. Surrendering things to God reduces Ahamkara and Mamakara. This is Viaragyam or Thyagam. Gyanam and Raga do not go together.

Gyanam and Vairagyam are both necessary for liberation. No other method will give you liberation.

Karma cannot give gyana or moksha. Karma is not a Pramanam. Karma, sacred or secular activity, is not a means to knowledge. This is because its results are always produced in time. Whatever is produced in time will die while Moksha is Poornatvam.

This however does not mean Karma is useless. It is very useful in purifying the mind for use in Gyana Yoga.

What about children? They too cannot give one freedom. They are here to fulfill their Prarabhda Karma. I alone have to work for Moksha, nobody else can do it.  This is not selfish. Do your duty, both to others as well as your Self.

What about money? Money too cannot get us moksha.

Swamiji says Tyagam is essential. Citing an example: A child learns to walk using a training wheel. The mother after some time removes the training wheel so that it can walk on its own. It will fall, but it will also start walking on its own. This falling is called withdrawal from psychological dependence. Drop the prop, the psychological props. This is called Sanyasa. This can be physical Sanyasa or inner renunciation. Inner renunciation that “ I am ready to lose anything at any time as willed by God, through my wisdom and devotion. “

Few people have attained moksha. People do not want to take the risk of completely trusting God. Thus, many are not ready to drop their props.

Now comes the Phalam. What is the benefit of BrahmaVidya?

Sanyasi, one who has performed internal or external renunciation (Yatihi), such a person merges into wisdom through wisdom.

What type of Brahman?

One that is superior to heaven. It is also called painless pleasure. Brahma is beyond heavenly pleasure. The Vaikunta is in the heart of every one. It is in the heart as witness conscious. It is as though hidden.

Guha means our heart is like a dark cave and in wise mind it is ever evident in mind as consciousness.  Into this one he merges into. Brahma Aikyam is the benefit of Brahmavidya.

The Brahmavidya is a life long learning project, says Swamiji. There are no short cuts to it.

Swamiji concluded mentioning that a Grihastha often uses Shloka # 3 to welcome a Sanyasi.

With Best Wishes,

Ram Ramaswamy