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Spandanirṇaya (Spanda Nirnaya) Section I (aphorisms 6 to 10) - Non-dual Shaivism of Kashmir
This is the third set of 5 aphorisms out of 25 aphorisms constituting the first Section (dealing with Svarūpaspanda or Spanda as one's own nature). As you know, the entire work is composed of 53 aphorisms of Spandakārikā-s plus their respective commentaries.
Of course, I will also insert the original aphorisms on which Kṣemarāja is commenting. Even though I will not comment on either the original sūtra-s or the Kṣemarāja's commentary, I will write some notes to make a particular point clear when necessary. If you want a detailed explanation, go to "Scriptures (study)|Spandanirṇaya" in Trika section.
Kṣemarāja's Sanskrit will be in dark green color while the original Vasugupta's aphorisms will be shown in dark red color. In turn, within the transliteration, the original aphorisms will be in brown color, while the Kṣemarāja's comments will be shown in black. Also, within the translation, the original aphorisms by Vasugupta, i.e. the Spandakārikā-s, will be in green and black colors, while the commentary by Kṣemarāja will contain words in both black and red colors.
Read Spandanirṇaya and experience Supreme Ānanda or Divine Bliss, dear Śiva.
Important: All that is in brackets and italicized within the translation has been added by me in order to complete the sense of a particular phrase or sentence. In turn, all that is between double hyphen (--...--) constitutes clarifying further information also added by me.
एवमुपपत्तिपरिघटिततत्त्वप्रत्यभिज्ञानाय साभिज्ञानमुपायं निरूपयति
यतः करणवर्गोऽयं विमूढोऽमूढवत्स्वयम्।
सहान्तरेण चक्रेण प्रवृत्तिस्थितिसंहृतीः॥६॥
लभते तत्प्रयत्नेन परीक्ष्यं तत्त्वमादरात्।
यतः स्वतन्त्रता तस्य सर्वत्रेयमकृत्रिमा॥७॥
तन्निर्णीतं तत्त्वमादरात् श्रद्धया प्रयत्नेन च
इति शिवसूत्रप्रतिपादितेन सर्वभेदोपसंहारात्मना निजौजोवृत्तिस्फारणरूपेण परिपूर्णान्तर्मुखस्वरूपसेवनात्मना भैरवरूपेणोद्यमेन परीक्ष्यम्। यत इयमिति सर्वस्य स्वसंविदिता तस्य शङ्करात्मनः स्वस्वभावस्याकृत्रिमा सहजा स्पन्दतत्त्वरूपा स्वतन्त्रता सर्वत्र जडाजडविषये स्फुरन्ती स्थितेति शेषः। किं तत्तत्त्वमित्याह यत इत्यादि लभत इत्यन्तम्। अयमिति लोकप्रसिद्धो गोलकादिरूपो न तु शास्त्रितस्तस्य नित्यपरोऽक्षत्वेनायमिति निर्देशाभावात्करणवर्गस्त्रयोदशेन्द्रियाणि विशेषेण मूढो मायावशाज्जडाभासीभूतोऽणोर्मूढादप्यधिकं मूढत्वं प्राप्तोऽमूढवच्चेतनवत्स्वयं प्रवृत्तिस्थितिसंहृतीर्लभते विषयोन्मुखीभवति तत्र रज्यते ततश्च निवर्तत इत्यर्थः। कथं सहान्तरेण चक्रेण इहान्तरं चक्रं करणेश्वर्यो नान्तःकरणानि तेषां वर्गशब्देन स्वीकारान्न वक्स्यमाणं पुर्यष्टकं तत्स्थस्यान्तःकरणत्रयस्य वर्गशब्देनैव गृहीतत्त्वात्तन्मात्राणां च वासनामात्ररूपाणामुपदेश्यमयोगिनं प्रति साक्षात्प्रवृत्त्यादिकर्तृत्वेनासिद्धेर्योगिनस्तु साक्षात्कृततन्मात्रस्य स्वयमेव परतत्त्वपरिशीलनावहितस्योपदेश्यत्वाभावात्तस्मादेतदेकीयमतमसत्। विमूढोऽमूढवदित्यनेन करणवर्ग एव सम्बन्ध्यो नत्वान्तरमपि करणेश्वरीचक्रं तस्य चिच्चमत्काररूपत्वात्। एवमभिदधानस्यायमाशयो यदयं शङ्करात्मा स्वस्वभावोऽतिदुर्घटकारिणः स्वातन्त्र्याद्युगपदेव संवित्तिसारं च करणेश्वरीचक्रं जडाभासरूपं च करणवर्गमेकतयैव निर्भासयन् प्रवृत्तिस्थितिसंहृतीः कारयति येन भगवत्यः करणेश्वर्यो यथा तत्तद्भावसृष्ट्यादि विदधति तथा करणवर्गो जडोऽपि तत्कारीव लक्ष्यते। यद्यपि रहस्यदृष्टौ न कश्चिज्जडः करणवर्गोऽस्त्यपितु विज्ञानदेहाः करणेश्वर्य एव विजृम्भन्ते तथापीह सुप्रसिद्धप्रतीत्यनुसारेणोपदेश्यः क्रमेण रहस्यार्थोपदेशेऽनुप्रवेश्य इत्येवमुक्तम्। एवं च गोलकादिरूपकरणवर्गप्रवृत्त्यादिक्रमेण तदधिष्ठातृरूपं निजमरीचिचक्रं चिन्वानेनैव तदुभयप्रचोदकं श्रीमच्छङ्करात्मकं स्वस्वरूपं परीक्षणीयं यतस्तत्प्राप्तौ तदीयाकृत्रिमा स्वतन्त्रतास्य योगिनः स्यादित्यप्यनेनैवोक्तं भवति। तदेतदेव परीक्षणार्हं परमोपादेयत्वादेतदेव च परीक्षितुं शक्यमुक्तयुक्त्या सुखोपायत्वादत एवादरेणाभिलषितविषयोपभोगानिरोधात्मना बहुमानेन। अत्र परीक्षणस्येहत्योपदेशानुसारेण प्राप्तकालता। यथोक्तं रहस्यगुरुभिः
निजनिजेषु पदेषु पतन्त्विमाः करणवृत्तय उल्लसिता मम।
क्षणमपीश मनागपि मैव भूत्त्वदविभेदरसक्षतिसाहसम्॥
इति। परीक्ष्यमित्यर्हे शक्ये प्राप्तकालतायां प्रैषादौ च कृत्यः। अथ च जडः करणवर्गो यद्बलादमूढवत्प्रवृत्त्यादि लभत इति सर्वस्यानुभवसाक्षिकमभिदधदिन्द्रियादिचैतन्यवादिचार्वाकमतमप्यनेन व्युदस्तवान्॥७॥
Evamupapattiparighaṭitatattvapratyabhijñānāya sābhijñānamupāyaṁ nirūpayati
Yataḥ karaṇavargo'yaṁ vimūḍho'mūḍhavatsvayam|
Sahāntareṇa cakreṇa pravṛttisthitisaṁhṛtīḥ||6||
Labhate tatprayatnena parīkṣyaṁ tattvamādarāt|
Yataḥ svatantratā tasya sarvatreyamakṛtrimā||7||
Tannirṇītaṁ tattvamādarāt śraddhayā prayatnena ca
iti śivasūtrapratipāditena sarvabhedopasaṁhārātmanā nijaujovṛttisphāraṇarūpeṇa paripūrṇāntarmukhasvarūpasevanātmanā bhairavarūpeṇodyamena parīkṣyam| Yata iyamiti sarvasya svasaṁviditā tasya śaṅkarātmanaḥ svasvabhāvasyākṛtrimā sahajā spandatattvarūpā svatantratā sarvatra jaḍājaḍaviṣaye sphurantī sthiteti śeṣaḥ| Kiṁ tattattvamityāha yata ityādi labhata ityantam| Ayamiti lokaprasiddho golakādirūpo na tu śāstritastasya nityaparo'kṣatvenāyamiti nirdeśābhāvātkaraṇavargastrayodaśendriyāṇi viśeṣeṇa mūḍho māyāvaśājjaḍābhāsībhūto'ṇormūḍhādapyadhikaṁ mūḍhatvaṁ prāpto'mūḍhavaccetanavatsvayaṁ pravṛttisthitisaṁhṛtīrlabhate viṣayonmukhībhavati tatra rajyate tataśca nivartata ityarthaḥ| Kathaṁ sahāntareṇa cakreṇa ihāntaraṁ cakraṁ karaṇeśvaryo nāntaḥkaraṇāni teṣāṁ vargaśabdena svīkārānna vaksyamāṇaṁ puryaṣṭakaṁ tatsthasyāntaḥkaraṇatrayasya vargaśabdenaiva gṛhītattvāttanmātrāṇāṁ ca vāsanāmātrarūpāṇāmupadeśyamayoginaṁ prati sākṣātpravṛttyādikartṛtvenāsiddheryoginastu sākṣātkṛtatanmātrasya svayameva paratattvapariśīlanāvahitasyopadeśyatvābhāvāttasmādetadekīyamatamasat| Vimūḍho'mūḍhavadityanena karaṇavarga eva sambandhyo natvāntaramapi karaṇeśvarīcakraṁ tasya ciccamatkārarūpatvāt| Evamabhidadhānasyāyamāśayo yadayaṁ śaṅkarātmā svasvabhāvo'tidurghaṭakāriṇaḥ svātantryādyugapadeva saṁvittisāraṁ ca karaṇeśvarīcakraṁ jaḍābhāsarūpaṁ ca karaṇavargamekatayaiva nirbhāsayan pravṛttisthitisaṁhṛtīḥ kārayati yena bhagavatyaḥ karaṇeśvaryo yathā tattadbhāvasṛṣṭyādi vidadhati tathā karaṇavargo jaḍo'pi tatkārīva lakṣyate| Yadyapi rahasyadṛṣṭau na kaścijjaḍaḥ karaṇavargo'styapitu vijñānadehāḥ karaṇeśvarya eva vijṛmbhante tathāpīha suprasiddhapratītyanusāreṇopadeśyaḥ krameṇa rahasyārthopadeśe'nupraveśya ityevamuktam| Evaṁ ca golakādirūpakaraṇavargapravṛttyādikrameṇa tadadhiṣṭhātṛrūpaṁ nijamarīcicakraṁ cinvānenaiva tadubhayapracodakaṁ śrīmacchaṅkarātmakaṁ svasvarūpaṁ parīkṣaṇīyaṁ yatastatprāptau tadīyākṛtrimā svatantratāsya yoginaḥ syādityapyanenaivoktaṁ bhavati| Tadetadeva parīkṣaṇārhaṁ paramopādeyatvādetadeva ca parīkṣituṁ śakyamuktayuktyā sukhopāyatvādata evādareṇābhilaṣitaviṣayopabhogānirodhātmanā bahumānena| Atra parīkṣaṇasyehatyopadeśānusāreṇa prāptakālatā| Yathoktaṁ rahasyagurubhiḥ
Nijanijeṣu padeṣu patantvimāḥ karaṇavṛttaya ullasitā mama|
Kṣaṇamapīśa manāgapi maiva bhūttvadavibhedarasakṣatisāhasam||
iti| Parīkṣyamityarhe śakye prāptakālatāyāṁ praiṣādau ca kṛtyaḥ| Atha ca jaḍaḥ karaṇavargo yadbalādamūḍhavatpravṛttyādi labhata iti sarvasyānubhavasākṣikamabhidadhadindriyādicaitanyavādicārvākamatamapyanena vyudastavān||7||
(Now Vasugupta, the author,) defines (nirūpayati) the means (upāyam), together with tokens of recognition (sa-abhijñānam), for the recognition (pratyabhijñānāya), (if you will excuse the repetition), of the (Spanda) principle (tattva) which has thus been dealt with (in the commentaries on the previous stanzas) (evam... parighaṭita) by (the use of) conclusive argument (upapatti) --i.e. the Spanda principle was already absolutely proved by means of solid evidence--:
That (tad) principle (of Spanda) (tattvam) should be inspected (parīkṣyam) with care (prayatnena) (and) respect (ādarāt), by which (yatas) this (ayam) group (vargaḥ) of organs or instruments --intellect, ego, mind, powers of perception and powers of action-- (karaṇa), (though) insentient (vimūḍhaḥ), (proceeds) as (if it were) (vat) sentient (amūḍha) by itself (svayam), (and) together (saha) with the inner (āntareṇa) group (of Karaṇeśvarī-s or goddesses of the senses) (cakreṇa) enters (labhate) into the states of "Pravṛtti" --i.e. to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti), "Sthiti" --i.e. to maintain those very external things for a while-- (sthiti) (and) "Saṁhṛti" --i.e. to dissolve those things in one's own Self-- (saṁhṛtīḥ), inasmuch as (yatas) this (iyam) natural (akṛtrimā) Freedom (svatantratā) of Its (tasya) (exists) everywhere (sarvatra)||6-7||
That (tad) principle (of Spanda) (tattvam) being investigated (nirṇītam) with respect (ādarāt), faith --śraddhā-- (śraddhayā) and (ca) care --prayatna-- (prayatnena) should be inspected (parīkṣyam) such as it has been established (pratipāditena) in the Śivasūtra-s (śivasūtra):
"Bhairava --Supreme Being-- (bhairavaḥ) (is) a sudden flash or elevation of divine Consciousness (udyamaḥ)"
(In other words, it should be inspected) as being a sudden flash or elevation (udyamena) whose nature (rūpeṇa) is Bhairava --the Supreme Self-- (bhairava), viz. as the cessation (upasaṁhāra-ātmanā) of all (sarva) the differences or dualities (bheda), as the expansion (sphāraṇa-rūpeṇa) of one's own (nija) vigor or power (ojas-vṛtti) (and) as the act of applying oneself to (sevana-ātmanā) the perfect (paripūrṇa) (and) inner (antarmukha) essential nature (sva-rūpa)1 |
(The expression) "Yataḥ... iyam" —inasmuch as this— (in the aphorism) (yatas iyam iti) (implies that) the akṛtrimā (akṛtrimā) (or) natural (sahajā) Freedom (svatantratā) of that (tasya) Śiva (śaṅkara-ātmanaḥ) —one's own (sva) essential nature (sva-bhāvasya)—, whose form --the form of such a Freedom-- (rūpā) is the principle (tattva) of Spanda (spanda) (and) which is known (saṁviditā) to everyone (sarvasya) as their own Self --everybody experiences that Freedom as being their own inner Being-- (sva), continues shining forth (sphurantī sthitā) everywhere (sarvatra). (The phrase "sphurantī sthitā" or "continues shining forth") is to be supplied (to the seventh aphorism) in order to complete the sense (iti śeṣaḥ)|
"What (kim) (is) that (tad) principle (tattvam iti)?", (the author) described (It) (āha) beginning with (ādi) "yatas" (yatas iti) (and) ending in (antam) "labhate" (labhate iti) --the entire sixth aphorism and the first word of the seventh one--|
(The word) "ayam" (in the sixth aphorism) (ayam iti) (refers to) this which consists of (rūpaḥ) eye-ball --i.e. power of seeing, not the mere physical organ-- (golaka), etc. (ādi) --i.e. the karaṇavarga or group of organs or instruments--, well known (prasiddhaḥ) to people (loka), and not (na tu) the one that is treated in the scriptures (śāstritaḥ) --viz. the karaṇeśvarīcakra or group of deities of the senses--, because (the karaṇeśvarīcakra), being always invisible (tasya nitya-parokṣatvena), cannot be indicated (nirdeśa-abhāvāt) as "this" (ayam iti) --it is not an object like the organs or instruments of the senses, mind, ego and intellect--. The group of organs or instruments (karaṇa-vargaḥ), composed of thirteen indriya-s or powers (trayodaśa-indriyāṇi) --five powers of perception, five powers of action, mind, ego and intellect--, (is vimūḍha) or particularly (viśeṣeṇa) insentient (mūḍhaḥ), (that is,) it appears (ābhāsī-bhūtaḥ) as inert or insentient (jaḍa) on account of (vaśāt) Māyā --Ignorance, the sixth tattva or category in the process of universal manifestation-- (māyā). (And,) though (api) (the group of organs or instruments) reaches (prāptaḥ) a state of inertia --absence of consciousness-- (mūḍhatvam) greater (adhikam) than (that of) a bewildered (mūḍhāt) limited being (aṇoḥ)2 , enters (labhate), as if (vat) it was not insentient (amūḍha), i.e. as if (vat) it was sentient (cetana) by itself (svayam), into the states of Pravṛtti, Sthiti and Saṁhṛti (pravṛtti-sthiti-saṁhṛtīḥ). (In other words,) it becomes oriented (unmukhī-bhavati) to the objects of the senses (viṣaya) --to go toward external things--, it feels attracted (rajyate) by that --by the objects of the senses-- (tatra) --to maintain those very external things for a while-- and (ca) it withdraws (nivartate) from that (tatas) --to dissolve those things in one's own Self--. This is the meaning (iti arthaḥ)|
How (katham) (do they do that)? (They do so) together (saha) with the inner group (āntareṇa cakreṇa). Here (iha), the inner (āntaram) group (cakram) (is) the deities or goddesses (īśvaryaḥ) of the senses (karaṇa) --the powers that make the senses work-- (and) not (na) the inner (psychic) organs --intellect, ego and mind-- (antaḥkaraṇāni) since they are included (teṣām... svīkārāt) by the word (śabdena) varga or group (varga) --viz. mind, ego and intellect are already included in the abovementioned karaṇavarga, the group of senses or instruments--. (The "inner group") is not (either) (na) the puryaṣṭaka --the subtle body formed from intellect, ego, mind and five Tanmātra-s or subtle elements-- (puryaṣṭakam) to be described subsequently (vakṣyamāṇam), because the triad of inner (psychic) organs --intellect, ego and mind-- which resides in it --in the subtle body-- is included (tad-sthasya antaḥkaraṇa-trayasya... gṛhītattvāt) by the word (śabdena) varga or group (varga) --the same story in this case, as mind, ego and intellect are already included in the abovementioned karaṇavarga, the group of senses or instruments--. (The Tanmātra-s are not the inner group either), because it cannot be proved or established (asiddheḥ), with regard to (prati) someone who is (still) to be taught —viz. who is not a Yogī (yet)— (upadeśyam ayoginam), that (these) subtle elements (tanmātrāṇām), being mere (mātra-rūpāṇām) latent tendencies (vāsanā), are the authors in person --the direct authors-- (sākṣāt... kartṛtvena) of (the acts of) Pravṛtti --to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti), etc. (ādi)3 . (Besides,) because instruction is not necessary (upadeśyatva-abhāvāt) in the case of a Yogī (yoginaḥ tu) who has directly perceived the Tanmātra-s (sākṣāt-kṛta-tanmātrasya) (and) is attentively applied to (avahitasya) come into contact (pariśīlana) with the Highest (para) Principle (tattva) by himself (svayam eva), therefore (tasmāt) this (etad) partisan or partial (ekīya) viewpoint (matam) is not true (asat)4 |
(And it is again) the karaṇavarga --the group of senses or instruments-- (karaṇa-vargaḥ eva) (which) is connected (sambandhyaḥ) with this (phrase occurring in the sixth stanza) (anena): "(though) insentient (vimūḍhaḥ), (proceeds) as (if it were) (vat) sentient (amūḍha... iti)", and not (na tu... api) the inner (āntara) group (cakram) of deities or goddesses (īśvarī) of the senses (karaṇa), because the nature of this (group) (tasya... rūpatvāt) (is) the Delight or Bliss (camatkāra) of Consciousness (cit) --in short, this group of goddesses is "innately" sentient like Consciousness Itself, and not "insentient but proceeding as if it was sentient"--|
Thus (evam), this (ayam) (is) the sense (āśayaḥ) of what is said (between "Yataḥ" and "Labhate", which comprises the entire sixth aphorism and the first word of the seventh one) (abhidadhānasya): To wit (yad), this (ayam) one's own (sva) essential nature (sva-bhāvaḥ) that is Śaṅkara --Śiva-- (śaṅkara-ātmā), through (His) Absolute Freedom (svātantryāt), which carries out (kāriṇaḥ) what is very hard to be accomplished (ati-durghaṭa), manifests (nirbhāsayan) simultaneously (yugapad) as one --as a unity-- (ekatayā eva) the group (cakram) of goddesses (īśvarī) of the senses (karaṇa) whose essence (sāram) is Consciousness (saṁvitti), and (ca... ca) the group (vargam) of senses or instruments (karaṇa), which look like (ābhāsa-rūpam) inert (jaḍa), (and) makes (them both) perform (kārayati) Pravṛtti, Sthiti and Saṁhṛti --to go toward external things, to maintain those very external things for a while and to dissolve those things in one's own Self, respectively-- (pravṛtti-sthiti-saṁhṛtīḥ). In consequence of which (yena), according as (yathā) the glorious (bhagavatyaḥ) goddesses (īśvaryaḥ) of the senses (karaṇa) bring about (vidadhati) manifestation (sṛṣṭi) of various (tad-tad) objects (bhāva), etc. (ādi), so (tathā) the group (vargaḥ) of senses or instruments (karaṇa), though (api) inert (jaḍaḥ), seems to be --lit. is perceived as if-- (iva lakṣyate) doing (kārī) that (tad) (as well)|
Even (api) if (yadi) according to the secret viewpoint --only fit for advanced students-- (rahasya-dṛṣṭau) there is no (na kaścid... asti) inert (jaḍaḥ) group (vargaḥ) of senses or instruments (karaṇa) but rather (api tu) (it is) just (eva) the goddesses (īśvaryaḥ) of the senses (karaṇa), whose bodies (dehāḥ) (are made out of) Consciousness (vijñāna), who expand (vijṛmbhante) in that way --in the form of the group of senses or instruments-- (tathā), nevertheless (api), here --in this world-- (iha), it has been said (uktam) so (evam): "(At first,) one is to be instructed (upadeśyaḥ) in conformity with (anusāreṇa) the very well known (su-prasiddha) beliefs (pratīti), (and then,) gradually (krameṇa), he is to be conducted (anupraveśyaḥ) to the teaching (upadeśe) of secret (rahasya) matters (artha... iti)" --therefore, one is firstly taught that there are two different realities known as karaṇavarga (group of the senses or instruments) and karaṇeśvarīcakra (group of deities or goddesses of the senses), but as one advances —in a spiritual sense—, he is finally taught that, as a matter of fact, the former is only the expansion of the latter and NOT something existing separately--|
Thus (evam ca), in the succession (krameṇa) of Pravṛtti --to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti), etc. (ādi) (performed) by the group of senses or instruments (karaṇa-varga) composed of (rūpa) eyeball --i.e. power of seeing, not the mere physical organ-- (golaka), etc. (ādi), by investigating (cinvānena eva) one's (nija) group (cakra) of goddesses of the senses --lit. rays of light-- (marīci) --in short, marīcicakra is synonymous with karaṇeśvarīcakra in this context-- which presides (adhiṣṭhātṛ-rūpa) over that --over the succession of Pravṛtti, etc.-- (tad), one's own (sva) essential nature (sva-rūpam), that impels (pracodakam) both --karaṇavarga and karaṇeśvarīcakra-- (ubhaya) (and) that is (ātmakam) the venerable (śrīmat) Śaṅkara --Śiva-- (śaṅkara), should be inspected (parīkṣaṇīyam). By this --by the previous teaching-- (anena), it is (bhavati) also (api) said (uktam) (the following): "(Why should one inspect one's own essential nature?) Because (yatas) on the attainment (prāptau) of that (essential nature) (tad), the natural (akṛtrimā) Freedom (svatantratā) belonging to it --to one's own essential nature that is the Supreme Self Himself-- (tadīyā) happens (syāt) to this (asya) Yogī (yoginaḥ... iti) (too)"5 |
On that account (tad), only (eva) this --the principle of Spanda-- (etad) is worth (arham) being inspected (parīkṣaṇa) because it is the highest one can receive (parama-upādeyatvāt). And (ca) only (eva) this (etad eva) can (śakyam) be inspected (parīkṣitum), because the means (upāyatvāt) is easy (sukha) according to the aforesaid reasoning and argument (ukta-yuktyā). Hence (atas eva), (it should be inspected) respectfully (ādareṇa), viz. with a great regard (bahumānena) leading to the unhindered (anirodha-ātmanā) enjoyment (upabhoga) of the desired (abhilaṣita) object (viṣaya) --i.e. that conduces to the unhindered enjoyment of Absolute Freedom--|
In this matter (atra), (there is) a right time (prāpta-kālatā) for (performing such an) inspection (parīkṣaṇasya) in accordance with (anusāreṇa) the teachings (upadeśa) to be found here, (in this book) (ihatya)|
As (yathā) has been said (uktam) by the guru (gurubhiḥ) of the secret (doctrine) (rahasya) --i.e. Utpaladeva--:
"(Let) these (imāḥ) joyful (ullasitāḥ) sense-activities (karaṇa-vṛttayaḥ) of mine (mama) fall (patantu)6 on their (nija) own (nijeṣu) objects (padeṣu)!, (but,) oh Lord (īśa), let there not be (mā eva bhūt) the temerity --the reckless act-- (sāhasam) of losing (kṣati), even (api) for an instant (kṣaṇam) (and) even (api) slightly (manāk), the Nectar (rasa) of the unity (avibheda) with You (tvat... iti)!"||
The kṛtya affix (kṛtyaḥ) in (the term) "parīkṣyam" --whose meaning is "should be inspected"-- (parīkṣyam iti) (denotes) worthiness (arhe), practicability (śakye), timeliness (prāpta-kālatāyām), command (praiṣa), etc. (ādau ca)7 |
Moreover (atha ca), by declaring (abhidadhat) (that) "the inert (jaḍaḥ) group (vargaḥ) of senses or instruments (karaṇa) enters (labhate) into the states of Pravṛtti --to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti), etc. (ādi) by the power (balāt) of That --Spanda-- (yad... iti)", which is witnessed or perceived (sākṣikam) in the experience (anubhava) of everybody (sarvasya), (the author of Spandakārikā-s --i.e. Vasugupta--) has also (happened to) reject (api... vyudastavān) by this (statement) (anena) the view (matam) of the Cārvāka-s (cārvāka), which attributes (vādi) consciousness (caitanya) to the indriya-s or senses (indriya), etc. (ādi)8 ||7||
1 The author used the name Bhairava to designate the Absolute for a special reason I will show you now. The literal meanings of the word "Bhairava" are "frightful, terrible, horrible, formidable", but in Trika the acrostic meaning is preferred to the literal one: Bhairava is the Absolute in the sense that He performs bharaṇa (maintenance), ramaṇa (dissolution or withdrawal) and vamana (manifestation or emission). This triple act is generally with reference to the universe: He maintains, withdraws or dissolves and manifests or emits the universe; but in this context the author is not referring to the universe but to the states He brings into existence in the case of a great Yogī. Look:
- the cessation of all the differences or dualities —withdrawal or dissolution
- the expansion of one's own vigor or power —manifestation or emission
- the act of applying oneself to the perfect (and) inner essential nature —maintenance
The order of these processes is not at random: The great Yogī experiences the emergence of Bhairava (the Lord) by firstly undergoing a state of dissolution of all dualities (he sees unity in all). Next, as a foreseeable consequence of such a condition of unity, he is not any longer bothered by anyone/anything at all. At this point, he is able to perceive how his own vigor and power expands as do proportionally diminish the time and effort he devoted previously to avoiding unpleasant situations, unpleasant people, unpleasant objects, unpleasant environments, etc. When all that disturbance replete with dualities (pleasant vs. unpleasant) ends finally, he feels his full vigor and power at maximum. With the experience of such a Supreme State (his essential nature indeed), his only purpose is continuing to experience his own Self, viz. his essential nature full of Absolute Freedom. It is in this sense that the Lord appears in such a great Yogī as "maintenance of the realization of his own essential nature". So, because the Supreme Self manifests Himself in all those ways in a perfect Yogī, He (the principle of Spanda, the Lord) is known as Bhairava, and He should be inspected with respect, faith and care by means of this knowledge I have passed onto you.
2 The sage said that because the stage known as "limited being" arises when Puruṣa (tattva or category 12) is manifested by Śakti or Power of the Supreme Self. The karaṇavarga or group of organs or instruments consists of intellect (tattva 14), ego (tattva 15), mind (tattva 16), powers of perception (tattva-s 17-21) and powers of action (tattva-s 22-26). As the members of karaṇavarga are manifested "after" Puruṣa, they are grosser, viz. more inert or insentient. Read the Tattvic chart for you to fully understand what I have just explained to you.
3 In case you are "someone who is still to be taught" about these elementary matters such as Tanmātra-s, inner psychic organ and so on, read well Trika 5 and Trika 6. The Yogī-s, being greatly experienced and learned, do not need to study that really. Kṣemarāja will say the same thing soon. It is to be noted that by the word "Yogī" neither I nor Kṣemarāja is referring to people merely practicing Yoga. NO, we are speaking about "real masters". In short, people who have attained Self-realization to a certain degree and are well versed in the scriptures. They are not people still making their way in Yoga. Good, now it is clear!
4 Summing it up: According to Kṣemarāja, the āntaracakra or "inner group" is the group of deities or goddesses of the senses (Karaṇeśvarī-s), and not mind, ego, intellect, subtle body or even Tanmātra-s. It is the Karaṇeśvarī-s who make the inert/insentient organs of the senses work as they should and carry out the acts of going toward external things, etc. This is the purport.
5 The subject looks complicated, but it is very simple. The only obstacle always around is that the sage Kṣemarāja is such a great Master that only a powerful disciple can duly follow him. The level of the teacher should not be too high or the disciple will not be able to understand him. If the teacher is quite a Master like Kṣemarāja, he will need disciples of great caliber or his teachings will never be understood as they should. It is not just about Sanskrit knowledge but also about Self-realization. Due to his exalted position, Kṣemarāja describes experiences and realities that most aspirants are still to experience. Well, if you are one of these aspirants still making his/her way, I will attempt to fill the gap somehow with my own explanations of his teachings. Let me explain to you in detail now:
The principle of Spanda or Primordial Vibration is none other than Śakti, and Śakti is the Power of the Supreme Lord (viz. Śiva). Despite the "apparent" difference and separation between Śakti and Śiva, this is so just in the world of the words and not in the facts. Both realities are one and the same Reality, and there is no doubt about it! If you attain one of them, you attain both. Good!
So, this Spanda firstly "appears" as the karaṇeśvarīcakra or group of the goddesses/deities of the senses. This group is also called marīcicakra (lit. group of the rays of light). This group of goddesses is in direct contact with Spanda, with the Supreme Consciousness, and therefore is "never" insentient. Karaṇeśvarīcakra is composed of the glorious Karaṇeśvarī-s or goddesses of the senses, who are "not" tattva-s or manifestations, but the adorable Śakti appearing in that form. That is why when you investigate these goddesses of the senses you can attain Śakti Herself (i.e. Spanda), and when you attain Śakti you attain automatically Śiva too. And, following this logical reasoning, as Trika formulates that the Supreme Lord (Śiva) is the Self or essential nature in everybody, if you attain Him, this "amounts" to attaining your own essential nature or "svarūpa".
On the other hand, when these very goddesses expand and assume more and more limitation, they become "insentient" (as it were!) and form the celebrated karaṇavarga or group of senses/instruments (five powers of perception, five power of action, mind, ego and intellect, i.e. the tattva-s from the 14th down to the 26th). So, as a matter of fact, there are NOT two realities: karaṇeśvarīcakra and karaṇavarga, because the latter is just a manifestation of the former... but it is "convenient" to verbally divide the things in that way in order to understand how the whole thing works. In this way, it is said that karaṇeśvarīcakra presides over the states/acts of Pravṛtti (to go toward external things), Sthiti (to maintain those very external things for a while) and Saṁhṛti (to dissolve those things in one's own Self), which are performed by karaṇavarga or group of senses/instruments. Very good!
And when should you investigate the goddesses of the senses? Simple: At the moment the senses are working. For example, your eyes work on account of these goddesses. Mere flesh is insentient, but when it is endowed with life, acts as if it was sentient. This is the mystery. As you investigate the power behind your organs of the senses, you reach Spanda sooner or later. Spanda is your own essential nature, i.e. the Supreme Lord (Śaṅkara or Śiva). But why should you take all that trouble involved in investigating the goddesses, etc.? Because when you attain Him, you also attain His Absolute Freedom. And, since He is your own essential nature, when you attain His Absolute Freedom, you are also absolutely free!
There is a common illusion here: Most people suppose that they are free. For this reason, they see no point in taking the trouble to make enormous efforts for investigating their own essential nature and getting His Absolute Freedom. This illusion of "being already free" is pretty usual, and it is the explanation of why this world is not full of great Yogī-s. By this word I mean "great beings, great sages, people spiritually eminent" and not mere men or women practicing Yoga. Trika postulates that the Lord resides in everybody and IS everybody, but, at the same time, NOT everybody has realized this Truth yet. It is in this sense that searching for His Absolute Freedom makes sense. If not so, what would be the point of writing scriptures, explaining them, translating them, etc.?, because nobody would need instruction then.
But this is not the case really, as most human beings have not realized their essential nature and consequently they are not completely free like the Supreme Lord. They are slaves to their minds, bodies, external objects and the like. They do not have a "real I" but a "false one". As the external circumstances change, as their bodies change, their minds change accordingly and such people, being fully identified with their bodies and minds, are absolutely unable to remain in a equable state. So, they cannot remain undisturbed constantly, because their minds, bodies and external circumstances "still" can alter their inner state. A person that cannot remain equable in the face of happiness, sorrow, pain, pleasure, etc. is NOT free. Such a person CAN be free, but it is not "cheap" but "super expensive" (not in money but in effort). Someone is completely free, in the full sense of word, who has realized his real "I" (his own Self) and is able to retain this experience constantly (i.e. who has become stabilized in such an experience).
According to Trika, nobody can realize his essential nature without His Grace. It is only the Supreme Lord who can bestow Absolute Freedom on an aspirant. No ego can get that, but Absolute Freedom is always His gift to the seeker that has proven he is worth receiving it. This gift is extremely costly despite it is a "gift". It is not about coming, taking it and that is it. NO. The aspirant will generally have to make tremendous efforts for years (or even his entire life), except he is very advanced, spiritually speaking, from his very birth, which is not seen frequently.
After years and years investigating his own essential nature and performing colossal efforts, an aspirant can reach His Freedom finally. When this happens, he experiences "camatkāra" or "amazement", because he is absolutely amazed at the fact that he is so free! In the ordinary state of consciousness (vyutthāna), i.e. in bondage, the states of pleasure and pain are ignorantly associated with the "I". In other words, an ignorant person feels that "it is him" who is feeling pleasure and pain, and in this way pleasure and pain fully affect him because they are regarded as associated with the Self. That person cannot help it, i.e. it is not purposely but because he has not realized that his own Self or I is NOT associated with pleasure and pain or anything else related to body, mind, etc. But in the case of a great Yogī, since he has a real "I" (not a false one!) due to his state of Self-realization, the states of pleasure and pain are felt like external (read Śivasūtravimarśinī, III, 33).
The Self is the real "I" that resides in everybody all the time, but when this Self becomes identified, as it were, with body, mind, objects, etc., a false "I" appears. It is not even an "I", in the right sense of the word, because it just consists in an ignorant identification. As I said before, most of people have a false "I" and not a real one --or better said, they have no "I" but only false identification--, and this is the reason why they are constantly in trouble. The cause of the troubles is NEVER something external or body or mind, etc. NO, it is always the absence of a real "I". When an aspirant realizes his true "I", his own Self, all his troubles are gone immediately. And yes, most people will think that this is impossible, because the troubles are "obviously" outside or in the body o in the mind, etc. NO, the troubles persist only because one has not realized his own Self. When one realizes Him, the troubles are not any longer "troubles" but facts occurring to the body, mind, etc. but not altering one's peace. They never touch the real "I". This is what an enlightened Yogī perceives from his state of Absolute Freedom. I am speaking the truth.
When Self-realization appears, the mind/ego is "transferred" to somewhere else. It is like people being in the same room as oneself and then all these people are transferred to another room. One hears their voices, but they are felt "distant". Likewise, a Yogī who experienced Self-realization feels his mind distant and therefore is not affected by it at all. His physical body is felt like a mere shell and not like the "I". Thus, he is not affected by his body either. All the rest (external things, external circumstances, etc.) cannot reach him, because he is not identified with mind and body. He is only identified with his real "I" (his Self) who being the Subject (and never an object) cannot be touched by any object (body, mind, objects, etc.). This is always so in "everybody", but the great Yogī has an actual apprehension of such a state. This is the difference!
So, this Yogī who has attained and become stabilized in His Absolute Freedom, is completely invulnerable in the sense that he is not affected by anything. His body can die or live, his mind can be full of thoughts or empty, his life can be a success or a failure, but he remains the same under all circumstances. He has his center in his Self (his real "I") and not in somewhere else (mind, body, external objects, personal life, etc.) like the rest of people. So, he will no more fall victim to ignorance and its progeny. His state is inconceivable and absolutely astonishing. What else could one say about him then?
Anyway, when an aspirant is trying to become stabilized in his own essential nature characterized by His Absolute Freedom, prays like the sage Utpaladeva will soon do. Keep reading.
6 This is intended for students of Sanskrit grammar: The word "patantu" means "let them fall!" (3rd P, plural, Imperative Mood), but I had to move that "let" to the beginning of the sentence for keeping a legible structure in English and displaying a word for word translation that is helpful in your studies. The other possibility was to include "let" along with the rest of words between "let" and "fall": "Let these joyful sense-activities of mine fall (patantu imāḥ karaṇa-vṛttayaḥ ullasitāḥ mama)!", but if I had done it, this would have rendered the method of translating word for word useless, because there are too many words in parentheses, as you can see. Hopefully you understood me, hehe.
7 In the word "parīkṣya" (should be inspected), the verb is "parīkṣ" (to inspect, examine, etc.) and the affix is "ya" but derived from "kyap" and not from "yat" or "ṇyat" (other two possible affixes). The three affixes "kyap", "yat" and "ṇyat" result in the same word in the end: "ya". However, the way in which the "base" is formed varies [read Affixes (1) for more information about all these technical terms]. For instance, if the affix was "yat" or "ṇyat", the final word would be "parekṣya", which I have never seen, and not "parīkṣya". There is an enormous pile of rules and exceptions too, of course (Sanskrit is anything but simple, as always, hehe). Another example: the root "kṛ" means "to do, make, practice, etc.". If I add the affix "ṇyat" to it, I have to replace final "ṛ" in "kṛ" with "ār". So, the base is: "kār". Now I add the affix "ya" (derived from "ṇyat"): kār + ya = kārya (to be done, made, practiced, etc.). But if I want to add the affix "kyap" to the same root (i.e. to "kṛ"), I must add "t" to the root in order to form the base, like this: "kṛt". Now I add the affix "ya" (derived from "kyap"): kṛt + ya = kṛtya (what should be done, made, practiced, etc.). Oh, kṛtya is exactly the name of the affix mentioned by Kṣemarāja... what a coincidence!, hehe. OK, the topic dealing with affixes is a terrifying portion of the Sanskrit grammar. We could be months or years discussing all the possible combinations and possibilities of the huge pile of Sanskrit affixes. There are so many words derived from adding affixes to verbs that you could not believe it. Just some more examples: vidyā (knowledge, wisdom), kriyā (activity), bhogya (object being enjoyed or perceived). The mountain of words could fill the entire outer space. Therefore, just trust me then: the affix is "ya" derived from "kyap". Very well!
Now, "parīkṣya" appears in the stanza as "parīkṣyam" because it was declined or inflected in Nominative case, singular, neuter gender. The gender is neuter because the word being qualified (i.e. "tattva" or "principle") is also neuter: "tattvam". Check the aphorism if you are still doubtful. Good!
The sage indicated that the affix denotes "worthiness" because the principle of Spanda is "worth being inspected". What could be more important than the Core of Reality? What could be more important than Absolute Freedom? Nothing else could. If one does not realize his essential nature or Spanda, he is only bearing a false "I" and not a real one. In this case, he is just a limited being, and due to the presence of that false "I", he will be at the mercy of almost everything outside and inside. It is not necessary a world war to disturb the "apparent peace" of someone without a real "I", since just some mosquitoes would do the trick easily. In fact, as there are plenty of limited beings around him, the possibilities of more disturbances increase exponentially. No need to have an entire gang breaking into his house to disturb him... just a little defamation is enough for making him lose his cool for days!
OK, if you are reading this, you already know the "delights" of being a limited individual at the mercy of mosquitoes, lice, diseases, bad weather, calumnies, gossiping, wars, etc. on the outside, as well as, wrath, lies, depression, disappointment, distraction, foolishness, the ever-present attachment, etc. on the inside. If you are fed up with being a universal laughingstock, with your happiness always dependant on "something/someone else", then, sooner or later, one way or the other, you will become a spiritual aspirant searching for a way out. The state of universal laughingstock, also known as "bondage" (read Śivasūtravimarśinī I, 2), is not your "real" state. Your essential nature is Absolute Freedom and this is what you should attain at all costs. While bondage is seen as the Play of the divine Lord in the eyes of an enlightened being, it is not a desirable condition in the eyes of a limited being. All in all, while you do not have an "actual" realization of your real essence, you will feel that bondage is not good and enjoyable. Of course, after attaining Final Liberation, you will see all as the Play of Consciousness, but this is true only in the case of the ones who achieved such an exalted state. For the rest of people, bondage is exactly that: limitation, contraction, restriction, lack of Freedom and so on. The attainment of Liberation makes sense only if bondage is like that, because if bondage was a desirable state it would be Liberation then. Good, hopefully you understood my point. So, nothing else here is more worth being inspected than your own essence, than your own Self, and there is no doubt about it. If you still have doubts about the importance of inspecting your own essential nature, you are not mature enough, spiritually speaking. There are stages on the spiritual way, but there must be a point when Liberation becomes the most important thing in one's life. If this does not happen, no Liberation will occur. By the most important thing in life I do not mean that one has to push aside all the rest. NO. However, one will notice that "all the rest" becomes secondary in comparison with the achievement of Spanda. After achieving and becoming stabilized in Absolute Freedom, one can do whatever he wishes because the goal of life was already accomplished. This is the sense.
Next, the affix also denotes "practicability". This means that "it is possible to inspect one's essential nature or Spanda". It is very difficult to "fully" accomplish it despite the means is easy, as the sage said before, but "it is completely possible to do it". Liberation is a matter of an instant, but it "generally" takes plenty of time to attain it for the first time. Subsequently, it takes plenty of time to become stabilized in that experience of Absolute Freedom. Well, it will not be "a piece of cake" but "oh my God, this is such an ordeal!" in the vast majority of the cases. Of course, ignorance will not give up just like that. So, it is no surprise that you will have to make a tremendous effort to overcome your own impurity, but Final Liberation is possible and attainable within a lifetime if one is "serious and sincere" in his efforts.
The affix indicates "timeliness" as well. When should one inspect his own essential nature or Spanda? If you read the present aphorism, you will find the answer easily: "When the senses and instruments are working". As they are working all the time, you have the entire wakefulness (about 16 hours, right?) so as to inspect the origin of both the group of senses/instruments and the group of goddesses of the senses (karaṇavarga and karaṇeśvarīcakra, respectively). Easy answer!
Finally, the affix points out "command". Why? Because you need knowledge enough in order to inspect your own essential nature properly. And this knowledge can only come from a guru or spiritual preceptor. As a result, what the affix is denoting is that your inspection should occur under the command and special instructions of your own spiritual teacher. OK, now everything is crystal clear, isn't it?
I have been recently said that some translators explain the teachings in a difficult manner. And this is true in certain cases. Anyway, if you read what the sage Kṣemarāja said about the affix kṛtya in his commentary, it is completely obvious that he did not intend to reach the masses. My work as a translator is receiving the food in a crude way, and then regurgitating it into your mind. Yes, the example was a little disgusting but effective in figuratively describing my task. I have to read and study all this extremely difficult text for months only for passing knowledge onto you, hehe! Well, this has been a huge note of explanation. Hopefully I made this abstruse subject very clear to you.
8 The Cārvāka-s are the followers of the Cārvāka system also called Lokāyata. This school is something like the Indian materialism. It postulates that the body is the Self and that the only goal in life is satisfying the senses. You can read a bit more about this doctrine in First Steps 2.
अथ कथमुक्तं ततस्तत्त्वाच्चेतनतामिवासाद्येन्द्रियाणि स्वयं प्रवृत्त्यादि लभन्त इति यावतायमेव ग्राहक इच्छया दात्रादीनीव करणानि प्रेरयति। यदप्युक्तं तत्तत्त्वं प्रयत्नेन परीक्ष्यमिति तदपि कथं यतोऽस्माकमिच्छा बहिरेवानुधावति न तु तत्त्वपरीक्षायां प्रवर्तितुमुत्सहत इत्याशङ्क्याह
न हीच्छानोदनस्यायं प्रेरकत्वेन वर्तते।
अपि त्वात्मबलस्पर्शात्पुरुषस्तत्समो भवेत्॥८॥
अयं लौकिकः पुरुष इच्छैव नोदनं प्रतोदस्तस्य प्रेरकत्वेन करणप्रवर्तनार्थव्यापारणाय यस्मान्न प्रवर्तत अपि त्वात्मनश्चिद्रूपस्य यद्बलं स्पन्दतत्त्वात्मकं तत्स्पर्शात्तत्कृतात्कियन्मात्रादावेशात्तत्समो भवेदहन्तारसविप्रुडभिषेकादचेतनोऽपि चेतनतामासादयत्येव। ततस्तत्तत्त्वं न केवलं करणानि यावत्तत्प्रेरकत्वेन शङ्कितं कल्पितमपि प्रमातारं चेतनीकृत्य स्वयं प्रवृत्त्यादिपात्रं करोति येनास्यायमभिमानोऽहं करणानि प्रेरयामीति। स्पन्दतत्त्वानुवेधं विनापि तु स एव न किङ्चिदिति करणानां ग्राहकस्य च स्वरश्मिचक्रप्रसरानुवेधेन चेतनीभावापादकं तत्त्वं परीक्ष्यमिति युक्तमेव। यदि पुनरिच्छाख्येन प्रतोदरूपेण करणान्तरेण करणानि प्रेरयेत्तदपीच्छाख्यं करणं प्रेर्यत्वात्करणान्तरं स्वप्रेरणायापेक्षेत तदप्यन्यदित्यनवस्था स्यात्। यत्तूक्तम् अस्माकमिच्छा न तत्र प्रवर्तितुमुत्सहत इति तत्राप्याद्यं श्लोकार्धमभ्युपगमेन परं तूत्तरतया योज्यम्। सत्यं नायं पुरुषस्तत्त्वपरीक्षार्थमिच्छां प्रवर्तयितुं शक्नोति नेच्छया तत्त्वं विषयीकर्तुं क्षमस्तस्याविकल्प्यत्वादपि तु विषयाननुधावन्तीमिच्छां तदुपभोगपुरःसरं प्रशमय्य यदा त्वन्तर्मुखमात्मबलं स्पन्दतत्त्वं स्वकरणानां च चेतनावहं स्पृशति तदा तत्समो भवेत्तत्समावेशात्तद्वत्सर्वत्र स्वतन्त्रतामासादयत्येव यस्मादेवं तस्मात्तत्त्वं परीक्ष्यमित्यर्थः। शक्तिभूमेः स्पर्शप्रधानत्वादात्मबलस्पर्शादित्युक्तम्॥८॥
Atha kathamuktaṁ tatastattvāccetanatāmivāsādyendriyāṇi svayaṁ pravṛttyādi labhanta iti yāvatāyameva grāhaka icchayā dātrādīnīva karaṇāni prerayati| Yadapyuktaṁ tattattvaṁ prayatnena parīkṣyamiti tadapi kathaṁ yato'smākamicchā bahirevānudhāvati na tu tattvaparīkṣāyāṁ pravartitumutsahata ityāśaṅkyāha
Na hīcchānodanasyāyaṁ prerakatvena vartate|
Api tvātmabalasparśātpuruṣastatsamo bhavet||8||
Ayaṁ laukikaḥ puruṣa icchaiva nodanaṁ pratodastasya prerakatvena karaṇapravartanārthavyāpāraṇāya yasmānna pravartata api tvātmanaścidrūpasya yadbalaṁ spandatattvātmakaṁ tatsparśāttatkṛtātkiyanmātrādāveśāttatsamo bhavedahantārasavipruḍabhiṣekādacetano'pi cetanatāmāsādayatyeva| Tatastattattvaṁ na kevalaṁ karaṇāni yāvattatprerakatvena śaṅkitaṁ kalpitamapi pramātāraṁ cetanīkṛtya svayaṁ pravṛttyādipātraṁ karoti yenāsyāyamabhimāno'haṁ karaṇāni prerayāmīti| Spandatattvānuvedhaṁ vināpi tu sa eva na kiṅciditi karaṇānāṁ grāhakasya ca svaraśmicakraprasarānuvedhena cetanībhāvāpādakaṁ tattvaṁ parīkṣyamiti yuktameva| Yadi punaricchākhyena pratodarūpeṇa karaṇāntareṇa karaṇāni prerayettadapīcchākhyaṁ karaṇaṁ preryatvātkaraṇāntaraṁ svapreraṇāyāpekṣeta tadapyanyadityanavasthā syāt| Yattūktam asmākamicchā na tatra pravartitumutsahata iti tatrāpyādyaṁ ślokārdhamabhyupagamena paraṁ tūttaratayā yojyam| Satyaṁ nāyaṁ puruṣastattvaparīkṣārthamicchāṁ pravartayituṁ śaknoti necchayā tattvaṁ viṣayīkartuṁ kṣamastasyāvikalpyatvādapi tu viṣayānanudhāvantīmicchāṁ tadupabhogapuraḥsaraṁ praśamayya yadā tvantarmukhamātmabalaṁ spandatattvaṁ svakaraṇānāṁ ca cetanāvahaṁ spṛśati tadā tatsamo bhavettatsamāveśāttadvatsarvatra svatantratāmāsādayatyeva yasmādevaṁ tasmāttattvaṁ parīkṣyamityarthaḥ| Śaktibhūmeḥ sparśapradhānatvādātmabalasparśādityuktam||8||
Now (atha), how (katham) is it said (uktam) that "the senses/instruments --more exactly, the karaṇavarga or group of senses/instruments which was explained previously, viz. five powers of perception, five powers of action, mind, ego and intellect-- (indriyāṇi), having obtained (āsādya), in a certain manner (iva), consciousness (cetanatām) from that principle (of Spanda) (tatas tattvāt) enter (labhante) into the states of Pravṛtti --to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti), etc. (ādi) by themselves (svayam... iti)", inasmuch as (yāvatā) (it is) this (ayam) experient or knower (grāhakaḥ) himself (eva) (who) directs or moves (prerayati) at will (icchayā) (his) senses/instruments (karaṇāni) as if they were (iva) a scythe (dātra), etc. (ādīni)?|
It has also been said (api uktam) that (yad) "that (tad) principle (of Spanda) (tattvam) should be inspected (parīkṣyam) with care (prayatnena... iti)". How (katham) (is) that (possible) (tad api)? Because (yatas) our (asmākam) desire (icchā) moves (anudhāvati) only (eva) outward (bahis) and is not able (na tu... utsahate) to engage in (pravartitum) the inspection (parīkṣāyām) of (such a) principle (tattva). Having so objected (iti āśaṅkya), (Vasugupta, the author of the Spandakārikā-s) said (āha):
This (limited individual) (ayam) does not (na hi) direct or drive (prerakatvena vartate) the goad (nodanasya) of desire (icchā). But yet (api tu), by getting in touch (sparśāt) with the Force or Power (bala) of the Self (ātma), (that) person (puruṣaḥ) becomes (bhavet) equal (samaḥ) to That (tad)||8||
(The word) "ayam" or "this" (ayam) (denotes) a common (laukikaḥ) person (puruṣaḥ) --i.e. a limited individual--, (and) the desire (icchā) itself (eva) (is) "nodana" (nodanam) (or) goad (pratodaḥ). Because of which --in short, "because he is a limited individual"-- (yasmāt), he does not direct or drive (na pravartate) that --the goad of desire-- (tasya). (In other words,) he does not (na) engages in (vyāpāraṇāya... pravartate) the matter (artha) of moving (pravartan) (his) senses (karaṇa) (toward their respective objects). But yet (api tu), by getting in touch (sparśāt) with That (tad), viz. with the Force or Power (yad-balam) —which is (ātmakam) the principle (tattva) of Spanda (spanda)— of the Self (ātma) whose nature (rūpasya) is Consciousness (cit), (that is to say,) by a penetration (āveśāt) of little importance (kiyanmātrāt) performed (kṛtāt) by That (tad) --by the Force or Power of the Self--, (that person) becomes (bhavet) equal (samaḥ) to That (tad)1 . (Likewise,) even (api) that which is insentient --the inert karaṇavarga or group of senses/instruments-- (acetanaḥ) becomes sentient (cetanatām āsādayati eva) by sprinkling (it) (abhiṣekāt) with the drops (vipruṣ)2 of the Nectar (rasa) of I-consciousness (ahantā) --the mere presence of the Lord and His Power in the form of the real "I" in oneself is enough to make these inert senses/instruments completely sentient, this is the meaning--|
Consequently (tatas), that (tad) principle (of Spanda) (tattvam) not (na) only (kevalam) sets the senses/instruments in motion (karaṇāni... prerakatvena) but even (yāvat) him --the limited being who appears to be moving the senses/instruments-- (tad), (and) by infusing consciousness (cetanīkṛtya) into the supposed (śaṅkita) artificial --i.e. invented-- (kalpitam api) experient or knower (pramātāram), (the principle of Spanda) makes (karoti) (him) capable (pātram) of performing Pravṛtti --to go toward external things-- (pravṛtti) etc. (ādi), hence (yena) this (ayam) erroneous conception (abhimānaḥ) of his --of the artificial experient-- (asya): "I (aham) set the senses in motion (karaṇāni prerayāmi... iti)"3 |
Nonetheless (api), he himself --the limited individual or artificial experient-- (saḥ eva) (is) nothing (na kiñcid) without (vinā) the penetration (anuvedham) of the principle (tattva) of Spanda (spanda). In this way (iti), it is appropriate to say that (iti yuktam eva) the principle (tattvam) conferring consciousness (cetanībhāva-āpādakam) upon (both) senses/instruments (karaṇānām) and (ca) the (artificial) experient (grāhakasya) by the expansive penetration (prasara-anuvedhena) of Its own --of the Spanda-- (sva) group (cakra) of rays of light (raśmi) should be inspected (parīkṣyam)4 |
Nevertheless (punar), if (it is maintained that) (yadi) one directs or drives (prerayet) the senses/instruments (karaṇāni) by another (antareṇa) sense/instrument (karaṇa) whose form (rūpeṇa) is a goad (pratoda) called (ākhyena) desire (icchā), then (tad api) the sense/instrument (karaṇa) called (ākhyam) desire (icchā), since it is directed or driven (preryatvāt), would require (apekṣeta) another (antaram) sense/instrument (karaṇa) for its being set in motion --for its being directed-- (sva-preraṇāya), (and) that (tad) (would) even (require) (api) another (anyat). Thus (iti), there would be (syāt) an endless series (anavasthā) (of senses/instruments directing other senses/instruments)|
With respect to (yad tu) what was said (in the objection) (uktam): "Our (asmākam) desire (icchā) is not able (na... utsahate) to engage in (pravartitum) that --viz. in the inspection of the principle of Spanda-- (tatra... iti)". In that case (tatra api), the first (ādyam) half (ardham) of the stanza (śloka) is to be used (yojyam) as an admission (of this view) (abhyupagamena), (while) the last (half of it) (param) (is to be used) as the answer (uttaratayā) indeed (tu)5 |
True (satyam)!, this (ayam) person (puruṣaḥ) cannot (śaknoti) set (his) desire or will in motion (icchām pravartayitum), nor (na) is he fit (kṣamaḥ) for taking possession (viṣayīkartum) of the principle (of Spanda) --i.e. for experiencing it as if it was an object-- (tattvam) at will (icchayā), because That --viz. Spanda-- is inconceivable (tasya avikalpyatvāt)6 . But yet (api tu), when (yadā tu), after calming down (praśamayya) (his) desire (icchām) which runs after (anudhāvantīm) objects (viṣayān) by firstly letting it have --lit. preceded by-- (puraḥsaram) its (tad) enjoyment (upabhoga), gets in touch (spṛśati) with the principle (tattvam) of Spanda (spanda), that is the inner (antarmukham) Force or Power (balam) of the Self (ātma) and (ca) that confers consciousness (cetanā-āvaham) upon his own senses/instruments (svakaraṇānām), then (tadā) he becomes (bhavet) equal (samaḥ) to That (tad). (In a nutshell,) by entering (samāveśāt) into That (tad), he obtains (āsādayati eva) Absolute Freedom (svatantratām) everywhere (sarvatra) like (vat) That (tad). Since (yasmāt) this is so (evam), therefore (tasmāt) the principle (of Spanda) (tattvam) should be inspected (parīkṣyam). This is the meaning (iti arthaḥ)|
It has been said (in this eight stanza) (uktam) "by getting in touch (sparśāt) with the Force or Power (bala) of the Self (ātma... iti)", because there is predominance (pradhānatvāt) of "touch" (sparśa) in the stage (bhūmeḥ) of Śakti (śakti)7 ||8||
1 Kṣemarāja is speaking the "whole" truth here. The word "kiyanmātra" (of little importance, a trifle) is very significant! What the sage is affirming is that the Liberation of a limited individual (whom I called: "universal laughingstock" in a previous note) is a trifle to the Supreme Lord. By merely getting in touch for an instant with His Power (with His Spanda or Śakti), by merely being penetrated by His Force for a moment, such a limited person can become Śiva, i.e. he can realize his real nature in a twinkle. This is no problem for the Supreme Lord, because He is extremely immaculate. In spite of manifesting the entire universe as a Play, His Power is always "full", not undergoing any decrease at all. If an ordinary person in bondage is hardly touched by Spanda, he realizes his own Self immediately. When someone experiences His Freedom, he cannot believe his eyes, as the well-known saying expresses. What one perceives "at that moment" is absolutely inconceivable! Amazing! It is the Highest Reality! Hence the delight of His Freedom is known as "camatkāra" or "astonishment". The Yogī who achieved That says "camat!" (an interjection indicating surprise), no doubt about it.
The sage is mentioning this for showing the sovereignty and pre-eminence of His Power and NOT for encouraging people to abandon their spiritual practices since... well, it is just an instant and that is all one needs! Because the question still remains: "Why should the Supreme Lord touch a limited individual in the first place?". It is because of this that searching for Liberation makes sense, because through different practices (whatever they may be), one accumulates merit. Through this accumulated merit, when it is enough, one is worth receiving His Freedom forever. Well, one will never be so worthy as to receive That, but the Lord is so compassionate, you know. Anyway, despite His causeless Compassion, one should keep making efforts to attain Final Liberation as soon as possible. Beyond my "dualistic" explanation, this is the process the vast majority of people will have to experience if they want to be absolutely Free like Him. If I had to speak in a strictly "non-dualistic" way, there would no limited individual in the first place... so, the entire aphorism the sage is commenting would be as good as useless. OK, this is wholly true too, of course, but while a person be unable to realize his non-dual nature, to speak to him in a strictly "non-dualistic" way is also practically useless. The sage said something like that in his commentary on the two former aphorisms, when he spoke about the esoteric viewpoint: "(At first,) one is to be instructed in conformity with the very well known beliefs, (and then,) gradually, he is to be conducted to the teaching of secret matters". Now it is clear!
2 The original word (the one to be found in a dictionary) is "vipruṣ" (drop), but it forms the Nominative case (singular, feminine) in this way: "vipruṭ". By a simple rule of Sandhi or combination, that "ṭ" changes to "ḍ" before "a" (in "abhiṣekāt"). I am informing you of this subtlety because if you are a Sanskrit student and want to find "vipruṭ" in the dictionary, you will find nothing, at least if you use the same dictionary as myself, hehe.
3 The artificial experient or knower is the false "I". And it is the real "I" or Self who infuses consciousness into that false "I", making him so capable of move his own senses/instruments. Then, this false "I" feels he is the one moving the senses/instruments. Due to this erroneous notion regarding doership, he becomes responsible for all that his senses/instruments do. The law of Karma (cause and effect) is born from this "apparently" little error. So, by becoming "responsible" for all his senses/instruments do, he also becomes the receiver of the fruits of the good and bad actions performed by those very senses/instruments. This is the starting point of the Play of the Supreme Lord as well as the beginning of the tragedy for the limited being. This is the way by which the wheel of Transmigration or Saṁsāra (i.e. bondage) is set in motion. Just a little misconception!
4 The artificial experient or knower (in my own case: Gabriel) is nothing else than the result of the penetration of Spanda in an inconceivable way. It cannot be conceived in the sense that no word can describe "exactly" how this process occurs. In turn, even if it could be described "precisely" in words, no ordinary mind, being a manifestation of That, can understand the One who manifested it. A common mistake would be to think about a inert body being penetrated by the Force of God and thus being endowed with life. But this is only something very approximate, because as a matter of fact, the penetration carried out by the Force of God manifests everything simultaneously: space, body, artificial experient, senses/instruments and the rest. This description is more approximate but "still" not thoroughly precise because there is no manifestation at all, at least not in the manner the ordinary mind conceives it. Well, just believe me then, hehe.
Next, since this Spanda (the Force of God) "manifests" (for want of a better word) and gives consciousness to both senses/instruments and the supposed experient by Its own rays of light, It is certainly worth being inspected carefully. In fact, It is the most important thing to be inspected always and everywhere. Nothing could be more important than examining the Cause of all that exists, because, first, It is the real Owner of all, and second, because Its very inspection brings about Final Liberation. Excellent!
5 The first part of this eighth stanza agrees with the position of the objector: "This (limited individual) does not direct or drive the goad of desire".
In turn, the last part of it constitutes a reply to such a position: "But yet, by getting in touch with the Force or Power of the Self, (that) person becomes equal to That".
6 The sage is speaking about the impossibility of experiencing Spanda or I-consciousness as if it was an object. This is not possible because That is avikalpya or inconceivable, i.e. It is beyond the sphere of vikalpa or thought. One's own I-consciousness (the real "I"), being the Supreme Subject, cannot ever be experienced as an object. Additionally, this implies that It cannot be experienced at will either, because That is free. Now, it is time to go deep at the teachings, gradually, dear reader. Listen to me carefully: A "common" conception is thinking that the spiritual aspirant, having realized his state of bondage and so on, "goes toward" the Supreme Self. Well, this is a way to teach the things to beginners, because otherwise the truth would not be understood properly by them. Anyway, as the reader has probably been reading for long by now, it is time to speak in a more "exact" manner:
It is not true at all that one (the limited individual) goes toward God. NO. It is Him who approaches the limited being. The Superior cannot be caught by the inferior ever! When the conditioned being cannot experience Him at will, how will he manage to approach Him then? My teaching could turn out confusing or even annoying, but I am speaking the truth. To say that "one goes toward Him" or "in search of Him" is just a way to explain that, as a matter of fact, "He is approaching oneself". It sounds "weird", right?... "Oh, He is approaching me!"... instead of "Oh, I am going to Him!". The latter sounds more "normal" or something. Well, human vanity is so vast that it sounds so: "normal". The real truth is that He comes near the limited individual and not vice versa. He does so whenever He wishes, because He is completely free. Even the practices that the limited individual performs in order to please Him occur due to His own Will or Desire. How could the Universal Self, endowed with Absolute Freedom and Power, be taken by assault by someone whose peace can be disturbed by a few mosquitoes? Joking apart, use the expressions "to go to Him" or "to go in search of Him" only like a manner of describing something that happens exactly in the opposite way, specially if you are a teacher instructing beginners in these matters. Good, now it is clear!
7 Always remember that Spanda is another name for His Śakti or divine Power. Spanda is one's own I-consciousness, one's own essential nature. And yes, as the sage affirms, all that is related to Śakti is always related to "touch". This is well-known among the Yoga practitioners, but generally by practice and not by theory. If you want a little theory, read my explanation of the ninth stage (called Śakti) in Meditation 6, which provides a clue to why She (Śakti) is predominantly associated with "touch".
ननु चायं क्षेत्री परमेश्वरमयोऽपि किं न सदा पारिपूर्ण्येन स्फुरति कस्मादन्तर्मुखात्मबलस्पर्शमपेक्षत इत्याशङ्क्याह
यदा क्षोभः प्रलीयेत तदा स्यात्परमं पदम्॥९॥
निजा स्वात्मीया स्वस्वातन्त्र्योल्लासिता येयं स्वरूपाविमर्शस्वभावा इच्छाशक्तिः सङ्कुचिता सत्यपूर्णम्मन्यतारूपा अशुद्धिराणवं मलं तन्मलोत्थितकञ्चुकपञ्चकाबिलत्वाज्ज्ञानशक्तिः क्रमेण भेदसर्वज्ञत्वकिञ्चिज्ज्ञत्वान्तःकरणबुद्धीन्द्रियतापत्तिपूर्वमत्यन्तं सङ्कोचग्रहणेन भिन्नवेद्यप्रथारूपं मायीयं मलमशुद्धिरेव क्रियाशक्तिः क्रमेण भेदसर्वकर्तृत्वकिञ्चित्कर्तृत्वकर्मेन्द्रियरूपसङ्कोचग्रहणपूर्वमत्यन्तं परिमिततां प्राप्ता शुभाशुभानुष्ठानमयं कार्मं मलमप्यशुद्धिः तयासमर्थस्य पूर्णज्ञत्वकर्तृत्वविकलस्य तत एव कर्तव्येषु लौकिकशास्त्रीयानुष्ठानेष्वभिलाषिणोऽभीष्टानवाप्तेर्नित्यमभिलाषव्याकुलस्य तत एव क्षणमप्यलब्धस्वरूपविश्रान्तेर्यदा उक्तवक्ष्यमाणोपपत्त्यनुभवावष्टम्भतोऽभिलाषविवशग्राहकाभिमानात्मा क्षोभः प्रलीयेत अनात्मन्यात्माभिमाननिवृत्तिपुरःसरमात्मन्यनात्माभिमानोपशान्तिपर्यन्तेन प्रकर्षेण लीयेत तदा परमं स्पन्दतत्त्वात्मकं पदं स्यादस्य प्रत्यभिज्ञाविषयतां यायादित्यर्थः। न तु तदैव भवति तस्य नित्यत्वात्। उक्तं च विज्ञानभैरवे
मानसं चेतना शक्तिरात्मा चेति चतुष्टयम्।
यदा प्रिये परिक्षीणं तदा तद्भैरवं वपुः॥
इति। निजाशुद्धिशब्देन मलं नाम द्रव्यं पृथग्भूतमस्तीति ये प्रतिपन्नास्ते दूष्यत्वेन कटाक्षिताः॥९॥
Nanu cāyaṁ kṣetrī parameśvaramayo'pi kiṁ na sadā pāripūrṇyena sphurati kasmādantarmukhātmabalasparśamapekṣata ityāśaṅkyāha
Yadā kṣobhaḥ pralīyeta tadā syātparamaṁ padam||9||
Nijā svātmīyā svasvātantryollāsitā yeyaṁ svarūpāvimarśasvabhāvā icchāśaktiḥ saṅkucitā satyapūrṇammanyatārūpā aśuddhirāṇavaṁ malaṁ tanmalotthitakañcukapañcakābilatvājjñānaśaktiḥ krameṇa bhedasarvajñatvakiñcijjñatvāntaḥkaraṇabuddhīndriyatāpattipūrvamatyantaṁ saṅkocagrahaṇena bhinnavedyaprathārūpaṁ māyīyaṁ malamaśuddhireva kriyāśaktiḥ krameṇa bhedasarvakartṛtvakiñcitkartṛtvakarmendriyarūpasaṅkocagrahaṇapūrvamatyantaṁ parimitatāṁ prāptā śubhāśubhānuṣṭhānamayaṁ kārmaṁ malamapyaśuddhiḥ tayāsamarthasya pūrṇajñatvakartṛtvavikalasya tata eva kartavyeṣu laukikaśāstrīyānuṣṭhāneṣvabhilāṣiṇo'bhīṣṭānavāpternityamabhilāṣavyākulasya tata eva kṣaṇamapyalabdhasvarūpaviśrānteryadā uktavakṣyamāṇopapattyanubhavāvaṣṭambhato'bhilāṣavivaśagrāhakābhimānātmā kṣobhaḥ pralīyeta anātmanyātmābhimānanivṛttipuraḥsaramātmanyanātmābhimānopaśāntiparyantena prakarṣeṇa līyeta tadā paramaṁ spandatattvātmakaṁ padaṁ syādasya pratyabhijñāviṣayatāṁ yāyādityarthaḥ| Na tu tadaiva bhavati tasya nityatvāt| Uktaṁ ca vijñānabhairave
Mānasaṁ cetanā śaktirātmā ceti catuṣṭayam|
Yadā priye parikṣīṇaṁ tadā tadbhairavaṁ vapuḥ||
iti| Nijāśuddhiśabdena malaṁ nāma dravyaṁ pṛthagbhūtamastīti ye pratipannāste dūṣyatvena kaṭākṣitāḥ||9||
An objection (nanu ca)!: Why (kim) does this embodied being not (ayam kṣetrī... na) shine (sphurati) always (sadā) in all his perfection and fullness (pāripūrṇyena), even though (api) he is identical (mayaḥ) with the Supreme (parama) Lord (īśvara)? Why (kasmāt) does he require (apekṣate) the touch (sparśam) of the inner (antarmukha) Force or Power (bala) of the Self (ātma)? Having so objected (iti āśaṅkya), (Vasugupta) said (āha):
When (yadā) the agitation (kṣobhaḥ) of that (limited individual) who is incapacitated (asamarthasya) by his own (nija) impurity --aśuddhi-- (aśuddhyā) (and) who wishes --abhilāṣī-- (abhilāṣiṇaḥ) to do actions --i.e. to act-- (kartavyeṣu) thoroughly dissolves (pralīyeta), then (tadā) the Supreme (paramam) State (padam) occurs (syāt)||9||
(The word) "nija" (nijā) (means) "one's own" (sva-ātmīyā). This (iyam) Power (śaktiḥ) of Will (icchā) which (yā) is caused to come forth (ullāsitā) by His (sva) Absolute Freedom (svātantrya), when assuming contraction or limitation (saṅkucitā satī) (and as a result) its nature (sva-bhāvā) (consists in) non-examination (avimarśa) of one's own essential nature (sva-rūpa) --i.e. when one stops realizing his essential nature, at the beginning of the process of limitation--, (becomes) the impurity (aśuddhiḥ) known as Āṇavamala (āṇavam malam) characterized (rūpā) by the notion (manyatā) of imperfection (apūrṇam). The Power (śaktiḥ) of Knowledge (jñāna), because it is polluted (ābilatvāt) by the five (pañcaka) Kañcuka-s or Sheaths (kañcuka) arisen (utthita) from that (tad) mala or impurity (mala) --viz. from Āṇavamala--, gradually assumes --lit. by gradually assuming-- (krameṇa... grahaṇena) contraction or limitation (saṅkoca) —firstly (pūrvam) it reaches the state (āpatti) of limited knowledge (or Vidyākañcuka) (kiñcid-jñatva) since omniscience (sarvajñatva) (entered into) bheda or duality (bheda); (and) finally --when the contraction is complete-- (atyantam) (it transforms into both) the inner (psychic) organ (antaḥkaraṇa) (and) the Buddhīndriya-s or Powers of perception --also known as Jñānendriya-s-- (buddhi-indriyatā)— (and in this way becomes) the impurity (aśuddhiḥ eva) (called) Māyīyamala (māyīyam malam) whose form (rūpam) consists of an expansion (prathā) of different (bhinna) objects (vedya). The Power (śaktiḥ) of Action (kriyā) gets limited (parimitatāṁ prāptā) gradually (krameṇa) (as well) —firstly (pūrvam) it assumes (grahaṇa) contraction (saṅkoca) in the form (rūpa) of limited activity (or Kalākañcuka) (kiñcid-kartṛtva) since omnipotence (sarvakartṛtva) (entered into) bheda or duality (bheda); (and) finally --when the contraction is complete-- (atyantam) (it turns into) the Karmendriya-s or Powers of action (karma-indriya)— (and in this manner becomes) the impurity (aśuddhiḥ) (known as) Kārmamala (kārmam malam api) consisting in (mayam) performing (anuṣṭhāna) good and bad actions (śubha-aśubha)1 . For that very reason (tatas eva), in the case of (the limited individual) who is incapacitated (asamarthasya) by that (impurity) --by Āṇavamala, which gave rise to Māyīyamala and Kārmamala-- (tayā) in his being deprived (vikalasya) of omniscience and omnipotence (pūrṇa-jñatva-kartṛtva), (and) who wishes (abhilāṣiṇaḥ) to do actions (kartavyeṣu) —wordly (laukika) acts (anuṣṭhāneṣu) (as well as) those prescribed in the scriptures (śāstrīya)—, since he does not obtain (anavāpteḥ) what he wishes (abhīṣṭa), he is always bewildered (nityam... vyākulasya) by the desires (abhilāṣa), (and) for that very reason (too) (tatas eva), he does not rest (labdha... viśrānteḥ) on his own essential nature (sva-rūpa) even (api) for an instant (kṣaṇam). (However,) when (yadā), by having recourse (avaṣṭambhataḥ) to (both his) experience (of the Self) (anubhava) (and) the argument (upapatti) —mentioned (before) (ukta) (and also) to be mentioned later on (vakṣyamāṇa)—, the agitation (kṣobhaḥ), which is (nothing but) (ātmā) an erroneous conception (abhimāna) of a experient or knower (grāhaka) who is helpless (vivaśa) due to desire (abhilāṣa), pralīyeta (pralīyeta) (or) thoroughly (prakarṣeṇa) dissolves (līyeta) --pralīyeta in the stanza amounts to "prakarṣeṇa līyeta"-- firstly by means of (puraḥsaram) the cessation (nivṛtti) of the misconception (abhimāna) of the not-Self (an-ātmani) as the Self (ātma), (and) lastly by means of (paryantena) the cessation (upaśānti) of the misconception (abhimāna) of the Self (ātmani) as the not-Self (anātma), then (tadā) the Supreme (paramam) State (padam) whose nature is (ātmakam) the principle (tattva) of Spanda (spanda) occurs (syāt), i.e. It comes within the range or sphere (viṣayatāṁ yāyāt) of recognition (pratyabhijñā) of this (limited individual) (asya) --the limited individual can realize It--. Such is the meaning (iti arthaḥ)|
But (tu) It --the principle of Spanda-- does not come into being (na... bhavati) at that time (tadā), because It is eternal --lit. because of the eternity of its-- (tasya nityatvāt)|
(That) was also declared (uktam ca) in Vijñānabhairava (vijñāna-bhairave):
"Oh dear one (priye)!, when (yadā) the group of four (catuṣṭayam) (composed of) 'mind full of ideas and desires (mānasam), ascertaining intellect (cetanā), vital energy (śaktiḥ) and (ca) limited experient (ātmā)' is completely dissolved (parikṣīṇam), then (tadā) that (aforesaid) (tad) vapus or essential nature (vapus) (known as) Bhairava --the Lord-- (bhairavam... iti) (arises)2 "||
Those (te) who (ye) are convinced (pratipannāḥ) that by the expression (śabdena) "one's own (nija) impurity (aśuddhi)" (the author of the present aphorism suggested that) "there is (asti) a separate (pṛthak-bhūtam) substance (dravyam) called (nāma) mala (malam)", have been indirectly censured (dūṣyatvena kaṭa-akṣitāḥ) (by the entire commentary on this aphorism)||9||
1 I could have written quite a mammoth note explaining all the sage spoke about, but it would have been wasted time, because I already did so in Trika 1, Trika 2, Trika 3, Trika 4, Trika 5 and Trika 6. Go read those documents in case you need a detailed description of the processes of the universal manifestation.
2 The stanzas in Vijñānabhairavatantra are generally hard to translate because the Sanskrit being used in that book looks involved and obscure. I do not know exactly why, but there are scriptures composed in a way that is very difficult to translate. They are quite a nemesis even for advanced Sanskrit students. Rookies in Sanskrit, of course, are always advised to dodge them at all costs, or their ship will be wrecked very soon, hehe. Vijñānabhairavatantra is one of this kind of scriptures specially designed to kill translators' egos, hehe. So, translating it is really not great fun but a journey to "error", even for experienced Sanskrit translators if they do not have at hand the respective commentaries written by great sages. Anyway, my translation of this cryptic stanza is right, and I can prove it by quoting a little portion from the looooong commentary by Śivopādhyāya and Kṣemarāja on this stanza (the 138th). Right at the beginning of the commentary it clearly reads: "मानसं सङ्कल्पात्मकं चेतना बुद्धिः शक्तिः प्राणाख्या आत्मा एतदुपहितः परिमितप्रमातैतच्चतुष्टयं यदा परिक्षीणं चिच्चमत्कारमापन्नं तदा तत् पूर्वोक्तं भैरवं वपुरन्तः स्वानुभवानन्दा इत्यादिकम्।" - "Mānasaṁ saṅkalpātmakaṁ cetanā buddhiḥ śaktiḥ prāṇākhyā ātmā etadupahitaḥ parimitapramātaitaccatuṣṭayaṁ yadā parikṣīṇaṁ ciccamatkāramāpannaṁ tadā tat pūrvoktaṁ bhairavaṁ vapurantaḥ svānubhavānandā ityādikam|" - "Mānasa is that which consists of ideas --viz. mind--, cetanā (is) intellect, śakti (is) that whose name is prāṇa --viz. vital energy--, (and) ātmā" (is) the limited experient connected with this --with mind, intellect and vital energy--. When this group of four is completely dissolved, i.e. when the Delight --camatkāra-- of Consciousness takes place, then that previously described essential nature (known as) Bhairava (arises in the form of) inner Joys of the Self-experience, etc."
Now you can understand why I translated in the manner I did.
ननु च ग्राहकाहम्भावात्मनि क्षोभे क्षीणे निस्तरङ्गजलधिप्रख्यमस्पन्दमेव तत्त्वं प्रसक्तमित्याशङ्कां शमयति
तदास्याकृत्रिमो धर्मो ज्ञत्वकर्तृत्वलक्षणः।
यतस्तदेप्सितं सर्वं जानाति च करोति च॥१०॥
तदेत्युपदेश्यापेक्षया अकृत्रिमः सहजो धर्मः प्राङ्निर्दिष्टस्वतन्त्रतारूपः परमेश्वरस्वभावो ज्ञत्वकर्तृत्वे सामरस्यावस्थितप्रकाशानन्दात्मनी ज्ञानक्रिये लक्षणमव्यभिचारि स्वरूपं यस्य तादृक् तदा क्षोभोपशमेऽस्य पुरुषस्य स्यादभिव्यज्यत इत्यर्थः। कुत एतदभिव्यज्यत इत्याह यतस्तदा परमपदप्रवेशसमये सर्वमीप्सितमिति यद्यज्जिज्ञासितं चिकीर्षितं वास्य तत्प्रविविक्षायामभूत् तत्तज्जानाति च करोति च। चकारावत्र यौगपद्यमाहतुः न तु यथैके चकाराभ्यां ज्ञानक्रिययोरैकात्म्यं सूचयतीति तद्धि ज्ञत्वकर्तृत्वलक्षण इत्यनेनैवैकधर्मविशेषणेन सम्बन्धिनिर्देशेन वास्तवस्वरूपाभिधायिनोक्तम्॥१०॥
Nanu ca grāhakāhambhāvātmani kṣobhe kṣīṇe nistaraṅgajaladhiprakhyamaspandameva tattvaṁ prasaktamityāśaṅkāṁ śamayati
Tadāsyākṛtrimo dharmo jñatvakartṛtvalakṣaṇaḥ|
Yatastadepsitaṁ sarvaṁ jānāti ca karoti ca||10||
Tadetyupadeśyāpekṣayā akṛtrimaḥ sahajo dharmaḥ prāṅnirdiṣṭasvatantratārūpaḥ parameśvarasvabhāvo jñatvakartṛtve sāmarasyāvasthitaprakāśānandātmanī jñānakriye lakṣaṇamavyabhicāri svarūpaṁ yasya tādṛk tadā kṣobhopaśame'sya puruṣasya syādabhivyajyata ityarthaḥ| Kuta etadabhivyajyata ityāha yatastadā paramapadapraveśasamaye sarvamīpsitamiti yadyajjijñāsitaṁ cikīrṣitaṁ vāsya tatpravivikṣāyāmabhūt tattajjānāti ca karoti ca| Cakārāvatra yaugapadyamāhatuḥ na tu yathaike cakārābhyāṁ jñānakriyayoraikātmyaṁ sūcayatīti taddhi jñatvakartṛtvalakṣaṇa ityanenaivaikadharmaviśeṣaṇena sambandhinirdeśena vāstavasvarūpābhidhāyinoktam||10||
An objection (nanu ca)!: When the agitation (kṣobhe) whose nature (ātmani) is I-ness (aham-bhāva) in the limited experient (grāhaka) dissolves (kṣīṇe), (then) the (Supreme) Principle (tattvam) (would) become as a result (prasaktam) devoid of vibration --i.e. activity-- (aspandam eva) like (prakhyam) a motionless (nistaraṅga) ocean (jaladhi). (Vasugupta) removes (śamayati) (that) doubt (āśaṅkām) in this way (iti):
In that case (tadā), his (asya) innate (akṛtrimaḥ) nature (dharmaḥ) characterized (lakṣaṇaḥ) by knowledge (jñatva) (and) activity (kartṛtva) (appears), by which (yatas) (that person) then (tadā) knows (jānāti) and (ca... ca) does (karoti) all (sarvam) that is desired (īpsitam) (by him)||10||
(The term) "tadā" (tadā) (means) "as regards (apekṣayā) the one to be instructed --i.e. the disciple-- (upadeśya)". (The expression) "akṛtrimo dharmaḥ" (akṛtrimaḥ... dharmaḥ) (means) "innate (sahajaḥ) nature (dharmaḥ)", which has been previously pointed out (prāk-nirdiṣṭa) as (rūpaḥ) Absolute Freedom (svatantratā) (and) whose essence (sva-bhāvaḥ) is the Supreme (parama) Lord (īśvara). (The phrase) "jñatvakartṛtva" (jñatva-kartṛtve) (means) knowledge and activity (jñāna-kriye) whose essence (ātmanī) is Light --Śiva-- (prakāśa) (and) Bliss --Śakti-- (ānanda) remaining (avasthita) in a homogenous state (sāmarasya)1 . (The term) "lakṣaṇa" (lakṣaṇam) (indicates) something whose nature (sva-rūpam) is invariable and constant (avyabhicāri) --in short, it indicates a "characteristic". Now, the meaning of the entire compound "jñatvakartṛtvalakṣaṇaḥ" in the stanza is: "that endowed with the invariable characteristic of knowledge and activity whose essence is Light and Bliss remaining in a homogenous state". And that is nothing but a description of "akṛtrimo dharmaḥ" or "the innate nature" of the disciple--. (The second) "tadā" --lit. then-- (in the stanza) (tadā) (implies that) such (an invariable characteristic) (tādṛk) of which --of the innate nature of the disciple-- (yasya) appears (syāt), i.e. becomes manifest (abhivyajyate) to this person (asya puruṣasya), at the moment of the cessation (upaśame) of the agitation (kṣobha) --"then" = "at the moment of the cessation of the agitation"--. This is the meaning (iti arthaḥ)|
"From where (kutas) does this (characteristic) become manifest (etad abhivyajyate iti)?". (Vasugupta) said (āha): "By which (yatas) then (tadā) —at the time of (samaye) the entrance (praveśa) into the Supreme (parama) State (pada)— all (sarvam) that is desired (by him) (īpsitam... iti)", i.e. all that (yad yad) was (abhūt) desired to know (jijñāsitam) or (vā) desired to do (cikīrṣitam) at the moment of his desiring to enter (asya... pravivikṣāyām) That --the Supreme State-- (tad), that is exactly what (tad tad) he knows (jānāti) and (ca... ca) does (karoti)|
The two particles (kārau) "ca" (ca) here --occurring in both the aphorism and the above commentary-- (atra) express (āhatuḥ) simultaneity (yaugapadyam) and not (na tu) as (yathā) some (eke) (postulate): "By the two particles (kārābhyām) 'ca' (ca) (the author of Spandakārikā-s) indicates (sūcayati) the identity or unity (aikātmyam) of knowledge and activity (jñāna-kriyayoḥ)". Because (hi) that --i.e. such an identity or unity-- (tad) is (already) declared (uktam) by this (anena) only "differencer" (viśeṣaṇena) —viz. "characterized (lakṣaṇaḥ) by knowledge (jñatva) (and) activity (kartṛtva... iti)"— (that qualifies) "dharma" or "nature" (dharma), by indicating (nirdeśena) that with which it --i.e. dharma or nature-- is connected (sambandhi) (and) expressing (abhidhāyinā) its real nature (vāstava-sva-rūpa)2 ||10||
1 That teaching indicates that the nature or "core" of knowledge and activity in such a disciple who has realized his Self is a state where Śiva and Śakti "have the same taste" (samarasa). As the former is the Subject while the latter transforms into all the objects, "sāmarasya" (the state of samarasa) implies the absence of Subject and objects. Both realities remain blended homogeneously and there is no duality at all. This is the Highest Reality or Paramaśiva (the Supreme Śiva), but this name is just for the sake of somehow designating That which is indescribable.
If you realize That, you will find "within That" the entire manifestation in a potential mode. All that has been manifested, all that is being manifested and all that will be manifested is "right here", in the Core, waiting for you. This is why when you realize That, you are no longer affected by anything at all. When you can behold "in awe" that Core, how are you supposed to be interested in something else? This absolute disinterest is a mark of Absolute Freedom. Anyway, as you have "everything" at your disposal, you can know and do whatever you wish, by simply resorting to this Core. So, due to the overwhelming greatness and majesty of That (the Highest Reality), a wise person should, with all his heart, strive to realize the Highest Reality. The rest is secondary and only serves the purpose of Self-realization.
2 The phrase "characterized by knowledge (and) activity" in the 10th aphorism being studied works like a "viśeṣaṇa" or "differencer". This is a technical term used in Sanskrit grammar to designate a special word or phrase acting as an adjective that particularizes or defines another word (which is known as "viśeṣya" or "the word to be differenced or qualified"). So, the expression "characterized by knowledge (and) activity" qualifies the word "dharma" (nature), showing that "nature" is connected with knowledge and activity, and also expressing its real nature or characteristic. As the sage commented, "knowledge and activity" are to be interpreted here as having the nature of Light and Bliss remaining in a homogenous state. This is a clear expression or description of "dharma" or "nature" of the disciple, i.e. of the limited individual who is about to attain Final Liberation by his entrance into the Supreme State.
Even though the Supreme State is a constant and invariable Reality, Its realization on the disciple's part is "new" and absolutely mind-blowing (for want of a better word). When people speak about the Supreme State, the Lord, the Core of Reality, etc., they very often forget the dimension of That they are talking about. An example: Just as you would be seriously worried if you knew that the very "sun" in person is making His way to your home, imagine the act of realizing that the Reality who manifested all that exists is "actually" coming directly to you, so to speak, not like a mere philosophical theory but as a undeniable fact. No show, no business, no pretension, none of the lights and audiences that plague this world like in a comedy... only you realizing your own Real Self. This is why an aspirant must be trained for so many years before receiving That. Besides, he must accumulate merits to be worth receiving such an Absolute Freedom.
When that Supreme Self appears, the little song of your ego finally comes to an end, along with your ideas about what you are, together with all your conceptions about the universe, about the rest of people, and so on. All that will be gone and replaced with Reality. Even your physical body could be gone too, since there are two kinds of Enlightenment, one known as "Jīvanmukti" in which you retain your physical body, and another called "Videhamukti" in which you discard your physical body. All this is not under the control of any ego, of course. Anyway, the perception of "retaining or discarding the physical body" is only in the eyes and minds of the rest of people around the liberated one and not in himself (in the one becoming liberated), since all differences (life and death included) are completely removed at that time. From that time on, whether he retains or discards his physical body, he remains the same forever, completely unaffected by anything at all.
This document was conceived by Gabriel Pradīpaka, one of the two founders of this site, and spiritual guru conversant with Sanskrit language and Trika philosophy.
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