Mandukya Upanishad, Class 67


Vedanta sara is now being established with the example of fire brand from verse 47 to 56.  First Gowdapadha explained the example.  There is a firebrand with a flaming tip which is advaidam.  When you move the flame brand, there is a variety of patterns.  We do experience these patterns but after analysis we find out that they have no substance.  The patterns do not come outside the fire brand and do not come from inside the fire brand.  When the patterns go, they do not go inside the fire brand; they do not go outside the firebrand.  We do not know how the patterns come but we do experience.  Similarly, consciousness alone is seeming motion because of that only we experience the universe.  At the cosmic level, the consciousness has seeming motion because of Maya, because of Maya there is the experience of prabanja.  At the micro level, I am the consciousness being and this consciousness has a seeming motion caused by thought at mental level. and this results in experience of plurality.  It is caused by thought because when the thoughts are present, there is experience of pluralistic experience of the universe, but in deep sleep, when there are no thoughts, there is no plurality.  One nondual entity in motion alone is experienced as plurality and there is no reality of plurality.  We only negate the reality of the plurality and not the experience of the plurality.  Without consciousnesses, you can’t discuss dwaida prabanja.

  1. Pluralistic world does not from outside consciousness
  2. Pluralistic world does not come from conscientiousness
  3. Pluralistic universe does not go outside the consciousness
  4. Pluralistic world does not go inside the consciousness

Verse 52

Superficially looking, firebrand seems to be karanam and patterns seems to be kariyam.  On inquiry, you can’t talk about kariya karana sambandha.  To talk about any relationship, we require two things.  If firebrand is one and patterns are the second, but there are not two substance.  The patterns are the same firebrand when in motion.  The firebrand and the patterns are the same substance; once you understand that the substance is only one, then you will drop the kariya karana sambandha.  This logic applies to clay and pot example as well.

Patterns do not have substantiality of its own.  The substantiality of the patterns belongs to the firebrand alone.  Similarly, the world does not have its own substantial; it is only non-substantial nama roopa; the seeming substantiality of the world belongs to one chaithanyam.  Since there are no two-independent substance, you can’t talk about any sambandha at all.  There is no cause effect relationship between world and brahman; world is another name for consciousness or brahman in motion.  How nontangible consciousness can become tangible when in motion?  The scientists also say the whole world and matter is nothing but energy.  If energy can become tangible, why can’t the consciousness be tangible.  Since you can’t explain how this world came (inside or outside) it is mithya or maya; it is experienced, but not logically categorical.

Verse 53

There is no cause effect relationship between Brahman and world.  Any relationship requires two things; Pot and clay are not two things; if they are, you can take away the clay and the pot will continue to exist.  There are two words, but not two substances.  Cause effect relationship is possible when the entities have independent existence.  The dream objects also appear to have substantial when you are in dream.  Similarly, the objects of this world appear substantiality but it is mithya.  Therefore, they can’t be counted as distinct entity as a product having a relationship.  World is not a kriyam and Brahman is not a karanam.  There is only a kariya karana vilakshanam which is explained in 7th mantra.  I am the kariya karana vilakshana Brahman, if I can say that with confidence, Mandukya Upanishad has done its teaching.

Verse 54

Nothing is born out of nothing.  Consciousness is not born of material and material is not born out consciousness.  Things and beings in creation are not born out of creation.  Brahman is not the cause of jiva or jagat; boktha or boktham; nor is the other way around.  Similarly, chaithanyam is not born out of matter.  Materialistic philosophy is that previously there was only matter before the big bang.  This matter has gotten condensed and gradually became stars etc. and life and consciousness came out later.  There is only consciousness mistaken as matter.  One who has understood this fact are wise people and understand that I am the Thuriyum and have negated viswa, the pradhama padha, Taijasa dwadia pada, and pragya the threithay padha, sthula, karana and kariya padhas.  The first two padhas are called kariyam and the third pada is karanam.  But I am kariya karana vilakshanam.  Cause and effect exist within time.  Cause and effect are one and the same substance, similar to seed and tree.  Transcending the cause effect is transcending time.  I am beyond time.

Verse 55

As long as a person does not know that I am thuriyum, he cannot escape from samsara.  This gyanam alone will give moksha.  This is not one of the methods of moksha, this is the only way to mokhsa.  If it is extremely difficult to comprehend, there is no other way.  You prepare yourself to understand by studying.  If I don’t know that I am the fourth pada, then I will mistake myself as viswa, taijasa or pragya.  The moment I became a viswa, then I became a kartha, boktha or pramadha.  Then I will feel finitude.  Limitation is inevitable; limitation will lead to kamaha.  Avidhya will lead to sense to missing things in life and that will lead to kama or desire.  Desire will produce karma; karma will produce palam; until that palam comes, I become anxious.  Whatever is the palam, I will not be satisfied.  Because finite plus finite is finite.  You are sucked in kala chakra; karma pala chakra; Unless you discover, you are thuriyum you will be viswa, taijasa or pragra and continue to suffer.  There are no other solutions; All other solution will never offer complete independence.  As long as you are obsessed with cause and effect of karma and palam, there will be continuous cycle of samsara.  You can drop the obsession only when you drop the abimana thrayam – sthula, sukshma and karna.  You need not destroy the sareera thryam, only give up the obsession.   The false obsession with body is because of the ignorance of the thuriya swaroopam.  Once you wake up from the dream, you don’t have obsession with swapna sareeram.  Similarly, when you wake up to Thuriyam, you will not have obsession to physical bodies.  This is indicated by chin muthra.  For a circle, there is no beginning or end.