“The paths leading man to god or Truth are said to be many. I will speak only of the shortest. It is to recognize God as the Self in you and then to find Him out. What is the distance then between you and God, between you and yourself? Ah, there is no distance at all, a full Zero! Yet, how dare you say to find God and Truth is hard?’’ 

The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam & Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

  • Jñāna Yajña USA | 30 Aug - 25 Sep 2017 18-08-2017

    Poojya Swamiji accompanied by Nutan Swamiji and Mā Gurupriyāji will travel to USA for the 2017 Jñāna Yajña. Poojya Swamiji and Mā will start on 02 Sept and return to Ashram by 28 Sep. Nutan Swamiji will start on 25 Aug and return to Ashram by 15 Sep.

  • Brahmavidya Classes Online 02-09-2017

    In line with the mission of Sampoojya Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha Ji of lokasaṅgraha classes based on the scriptures, Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads and the like, are being webcast live from Narayanashrama Tapovanam.

  • Enlightened Living | Jamshedpur | Oct 2017 08-09-2017

    Swami Nirviseshananda Tirtha Ji will conduct a residential course "Enlightened Living" from 15th to 29th Oct. Participation requires prior registration. There is no charge for participation.

Practical Guidance

Prabhaata Rashmih talks by Poojya Swamiji
  • PR 07 Feb 2016 - Yoga is Attainment of the Intelligence
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    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

    Yesterday I told you about our tradition, so many different types of practice etc. Our scriptures or sastras are wonderful. The people who evolved the sastras always had a very, very catholic mind. They embraced the whole of humanity and they also took into consideration the assorted nature of mankind. We cannot argue with anybody saying, “Why are you thinking like this? Why are you thinking like this? Why are you like this?” Who will explain? One has got a thieving tendency; another does not have. Who will have what tendency - Who determines this?

    In a very good family, sometimes you will find a mischievous child born. And in a mischievous family, sometimes a very good child also will be born. We cannot explain the varietal expression. But one point I generally emphasize is that nature is abounding in variety and the expression of variety of nature will be there in all fronts. In the human beings, it becomes most complex. An elephant is supposed to be “elephant-ly;” a squirrel is supposed to be only “squirrel-ly.” A deer “deer-ly.” We don’t expect a deer to change into a lion or a lion to change into a deer. But in the case of man, he has the option of changing from anything to anything. Our success lies in improving and becoming better and better. Sometimes this does not happen.

    A society which has become very innocuous, good, and benign – if it continues to be like that, after sometime it will decline. It is just like the pendulum, from one extreme to the other; from that extreme to this. If there is movement, the movement cannot be always in a straight line. Suppose you make a road. You will have to make a road in the existing terrain, and whatever the terrain allows, that you will have to make. So, there will be a number of curves, bends etc. Without them, if you want to make a road, you may not make it at all, because the land should be available, the expenses should be considered; many factors are there. So our sastras, dealing with all these things, understanding these things, they embrace all people. And that is why you will find a number of rituals are there – each ritual, enjoined with a certain result or objective. And only because of the objective, people perform the rituals and they want to. So, the sastras allow them to perform.

    But you will find the sastras also make an analysis of the rituals and their rewards. When they make the analysis, they are very, very critical, extremely critical. These rituals serve no purpose at all; anyone who follows them will not have the intelligence level and clarity; if you want to have clarity, you have to approach the subject in a different manner. So, so many things are there.

    So in Srimad Bhagavatam, at one point it says: Karma mokshāya karmāni. (Srimad Bhagavatam 11.3.44). Karma mokshāya karmāni. The very purpose of doing karma, action, is to get free from actions. The purpose of doing karma is to grow indifference to the very karma, and then, leave it in the end. Karma moksha, redemption from karma is the very goal of karma. When I said this, one of the listeners, he became so curious and so involved that he wanted to know more about it – “Swamiji, where is it? What is it?” Etc. He came here with one or two people for a discussion; spent a few hours.

    In Bhagavad Gita, in the second chapter, when Sri Krishna explains who is a man of stable mind, stable-minded man, stable-intellected man,” he concludes it saying that

    श्रुतिविप्रतिपन्ना ते यदा स्थास्यति निश्चला ।
    समाधावचला बुद्धिस्तदा योगमवाप्स्यसि ॥ २-५३ ॥
    śruti-vipratipannā te yadā sthāsyati niścalā |
    samādhāv-acalā buddhis-tadā yogam-avāpsyasi || 2.53 ||
    (Bhagavad Gita 2.53)

    That is the level of yoga attainment where, (mark my words), where śruti-vipratipannā te buddhi – your intelligence which is now assailed by the conflicting and crisscross statements and declarations of the sastras, the buddhi which is now unsettled by, shaken by, the crisscross and conflicting or plural statements of the saastras; when that buddhi becomes stable and poised; when that buddhi, at present shaken by the conflicting versions of the sastras takes to its own solid position and is able to remain unflickering, unassailed, still, and poised; that poise of the intelligence with its own clarity and depth, that is called yoga.

    So, yoga is an attainment of the buddhi, intelligence where it remains firm, stable, and poised. There are many things to shake up the intelligence. For a seeker, ultimately, it is various statements about seeking, progress, attainment etc. So you will find, the sastras are quite capable of shaking your intelligence. When that unsettlement dissolves in your own source and you are able to feel poise and the clarity of poise or poised clarity – that is called yoga. I think this is a statement a good seeker will have to reflect upon very seriously and apply it to himself.

    At another point he says, just like the flame of a lamp placed in a windless place will remain unflickering, this is the nature of a Yogi and Yogi’s inside.

    Yoga is not anything like an attainment of something away from you. It is nothing to be attained different from you, away from you as a goal, walking towards it, getting it, like going to a shop and purchasing an article, or walking a distance and reaching a destination, producing by a process a raw material into a product. No, no, no, no! It is like the universal space, inter-penetrating and surrounding everything. The soul in you is even more all-pervading. If that is the case, what do you have to attain? Nothing! Then what is attainment? The attainment is the unflickering nature of your own intelligence, which is normally given to a number of fluctuations and undulations. Because, interactions with the world are bound to unsettle you.

    यथा दीपो निवातस्थो नेङ्गते सोपमा स्मृता ।
    योगिनो यतचित्तस्य युञ्जतो योगमात्मनः ।।
    yathā dīpo nivāta-stho neṅgate sopamā smṛtā |
    yogino yata-cittasya yuñjato yogam-ātmanaḥ || 6.19 ||
    (Bhagavad Gita 6.19)

    This is from the sixth chapter of Bhagavad Gita. At another point in the sixth chapter he says, in meditation also, what do you ultimately have to do? Na kinchit-api chintayet. Do not think of anything. Think, but nothing. These are considered to be the supreme attainments according to our own sastras. But our sastras also have a preceding facet where these rituals and ritualistic involvements are discussed. A good and a wise man will approach them and find out, if such supreme truth they have disclosed, what is the relevance of these rituals? Actually this is what everybody should ask. But nobody asks. Nobody asks. And after asking, what should he do? He should become indifferent to everything. What is everything? Indifferent to his interactions with the world on the one hand, and even the rest of. Everything is interactions within the world.

    Then the question arises – after such indifference, what will a man do? Now, that is the question – how will a man of self-realization live and move in this world? To have realization is one, to live with that realization is another. It is like science and technology. That is where our sastras are very, very clear and vociferous in explaining how it should be. Actually Bhagavad Gita excels in this explanation. But one has to spend time, read it, understand it. Invariably you may not be able to understand it yourself. You will have to go to a sadguru and he will explain to you. At least, if he cannot explain, he will say, “I don’t know.” At least that much he will say.

    Even now there are some points in our sastras for which no authentic description can be given. But it is mentioned there. So they will say, it is there; we are not going to say “yes” or “no” about it, but they are there. But we are not concerned about it. Our pursuit and fulfillment take place in spite of anything about them. In this way, it is a very, very interesting process to process oneself through the scriptural revelations.

    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

  • PR 06 Feb 2016 - Self-Knowledge is Equal to Evenness of the Mind
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    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru. 

    You know, I am repeatedly thinking about why the people associated with us including the inmates here, they are not able to progress in the manner in which they desire in this wonderful path of self-delightfulness. I am repeatedly thinking about it. Naturally, a number of innovative thoughts come to my mind. I have been speaking about mind and its role, importance, for many, many, many days, weeks, months and perhaps even years. Even then, I don’t think my listeners have got a clear idea as to what is meant by this mind and how it becomes important. In any living being, in any living being, naturally more so in the case of human beings, mind is the sole focus of life.

    It is true that we have a body and the body is born into the earth. The earth is surrounded by a number of physical entities like celestial bodies. We have the basic panchabhutas also. When you open your eyes and look at, instantly it is this physical world and physical presence that come to your mind. But mind you, they come to your mind! Not that your body goes to them. None of the existences leaves its place. We are experiencing everything within our body in the level of the mind. This mind is the sole fulcrum, pivot and everything of life.

    When you think of a circle and its center, think of a paper or a boat, put a dot there, now you decide to draw a circle using that dot point. Then it becomes a center. And with an equal distance, you draw a line from the center, automatically it becomes the circumference. The point is there on the paper. The circle you draw, the effort is also on the paper by your hand and the formation of the circle is also on the same paper. So the point is external there. Your hand is external, gross and physical. The line you draw is also physical and the circle formed is also physical. Very good. But when it comes to a question of our experiencing anything, then nothing external is there.

    The mind is within the body. The mind decides to see and the mind feels that the eyes have to be opened. So the eyelids are open. This decision is in the mind. The process that follows also is in the mind. That is where all people are deluded. “Swamiji, is not the process outside?” they will ask. I don’t know whether the process is outside or not, but I feel and experience it inside. The decision “I have to see, so I will open my eyelids.” The decision is mental, you will agree. Thereafter, the process that follows is also, so far as we are concerned, equally mental.

    How do you know that you have eyes? How do you know that you are opening the eyelids? How do you know that the eyes are seeing? The eyes do not tell you. The external objects do not speak to you. As the decision is mental, so the process also is. As the decision is an inner process, the process that follows, seemingly externally is also cognized and felt by the mind inside. There is no difference between the decision making and the opening of the eyelids and seeing the objects. That the eyes are being open, that the objects are being seen, and we see, the whole thing is equally mental!

    This mind is the sole focus. When will you understand this? You cannot escape it. Once it is explained to you and you are able to understand, then after understanding, it is for you to mentalize, mentalize, mentalize everything. Don’t give me any statement at all, “Swamiji, but I have intellectually understood it. Thereafter I am not able to.” What is this “intellectually understanding”? I cannot understand what is “intellectually understanding”.

    A sleeping man walks. Somnambulism is a disease. When the sleeping man walks, does he know he is walking? What is the point in walking? The other day, a carpenter came here, our ‘X’. He tells me that a relative of his, at night, he only knows that he was sleeping. But sometimes, something happened and he fell from the verandah, up below. He says “I don’t know. I don’t know about any verandah or my going, walking or anything. I only know after having fallen.” You tell me now - Did he not walk? Yes! For the others who are wakeful, if they had looked at him, they would have seen that he was walking, but his wonderful mind did not know it was walking! So you tell me, is a physical action as such important or its cognition by your mind inwardly is important? What further example do you want?

    Why I am saying this? Today also we will have a discussion on Bhagavad Gita. That is why I told you. Krishna presented the soul first and thereafter he transits into the experiential life. He relates the self-knowledge solely to the mind, solely to the intelligence, solely to wakefulness. That is the beauty of Bhagavad Gita. Self knowledge is supposed to be something that you should win by meditation. Forget about the whole world, sit in a place and contemplate upon. So it is an inner mento-intellectual process and people go on meditating, meditating, meditating, meditating, meditating, meditating and after thirty-forty years of meditation, still they do not know the truth! They are not contented.

    “I want to go more inward.”, one devotee tells me. “Swamiji, I want to go deeper, deeper, deeper.” How many kilometers inside the body you want to go in? One hundred kilometers? What is meant by deeper? How much of distance is there? I think this is an area where somehow there is a catch. So, Krishna says that this self knowledge is equal to the sublimity of the mind, purity of the mind, evenness of the mind. That evenness of the mind is really the self knowledge and self realization. Then people can understand.

    सुखदुःखे समे कृत्वा लाभालाभौ जयाजयौ ।
    ततो युद्धाय युज्यस्व नैवं पापमवाप्स्यसि ।। २-३८ ।।
    sukha-duḥkhe same kṛtvā lābhālābhau jayājayau |
    tato yuddhāya yujyasva naivaṁ pāpam-avāpsyasi || 2.38 ||
    (Bhagavad Gita 2.38)

    Arjuna was visualizing the war and he felt so afraid that it was a colossal scene. Krishna says, “You adopt this even attitude towards sukha and duhkha - inner, profit and loss - outer, victory and defeat - outer. Have this same evenness towards this inner sukha duhkhas and external causes. Then, the so-called religious sin you are attributing to this great colossal war completely is mitigated and wiped off.” He doesn’t bring the self here. He does not bring anything. He only dwells on the mind and then says that “This evenness of the mind practiced all-fold will be a full redress for the so-called sinfulness, colossal sin you attribute to this war.” I am wondering whether you will be able to think properly and relate the statement and apply it.

    Where is self now? He simply refers to the mind and the mind’s normal state, undulating state of the mind and he says “This is what you have to handle and bring about an evenness and a harmony.” This harmony is all that you want.

    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

  • PR 05 Feb 2016 - Infusional Introspection is the Secret of Spiritual Sadhana
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    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

    The one point I would like you to understand is that (I have said it many times, but this fact never goes home to people) the whole creation is nothing but matter and energy. But both of them are inert. Matter and energy could not have come from matter and energy. Then I would say, I am asking you the source of that matter and also energy.

    So, whenever we think of finding out a source of anything, that source has to be definitely different from the effect, the outcome. So, is there anything other than matter and energy which we can think of or we experience? Yes - The consciousness in our body which keeps it animate and active.

    This consciousness has only three expressional notes. Mind - It is more a functional name than a substantial name. It is called mind because of mentation. It is called intelligence or intellect because of intellection. It is called ego or ahankara because it produces the ‘I’ feeling. All these are different functional notes of consciousness itself! When the mind is functioning, intelligence cannot function. When the mind and the intelligence are functioning, that ego functioning will not be there. It is like the legs not walking while running, not running while standing, not standing while sitting, not sitting while lying. So anything can do only one function at a time.

    This consciousness is the only third factor, the other two being matter and energy. And this consciousness is the source of all matter and energy. It is also capable of creating matter and energy, a fact that we are able to understand from our dream. This consciousness itself makes our body felt and animating, activating the body, it precipitates the wakeful state. In the same manner, at the end of the wakeful state, it wipes off everything and goes into sleep. So it causes as also wipes off. But itself, it never disappears. It always remains.

    It is something like a man living in a house with three rooms. He will either be in room number one or two or three. He cannot be without any room and he can only be in one room at a time. But there is somebody called the man resident other than the rooms. He goes on transiting from one to the other. But at every point of time he will be in one room. But he will leave one and go to another, thereby indicating that he is separate from the three. This is how you find out by application of anvaya, the Turiya, the Atma, the soul.

    This consciousness alone, alone, alone, alone is there. Everything is a production, display, manifestation, creation, expression of this consciousness. Now can you understand it first? Can you pursue it next? Can you realize it in the end? This is the simple question before everyone.

    Bhagavad Gita, by a beautiful conversation, Krishna is trying into instill in Arjuna the process of truthful and infusional introspection. We are all employing our intelligence and doing intellection. But that intellection is only applied to the matter-energy world, to the external, objective, gross activities and wonderful results are there. We are travelling in the air, travelling in water, travelling on road, we are sending drones, we have send satellites to survey the whole of the earth, we can go to Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, anywhere. It is all the outcome of our intelligence.

    So our intelligence has got untold potential. Use the same intelligence to do something called truthful and infusional introspection as a result of which whatever the intelligence thinks will be able to bring about a salutary effect in the mind, to sublimate the mind and take away all kinds of tension, stress, tension and stress, make the mind more moderate, more peaceful, more poised, make the intelligence more perceptive, apply the intelligence on subtle and subtler things and the subtlest is the soul.

    When the intelligence starts introspecting on the soul, its perceptional ability will be manifold. It will be almost like the Self in the end. “To know God is to become God” is a celebrated proverb. In India we say “Brahmavid Brahmaiva Bhavati”. To know Brahman, the truth is to become the truth. So much is the effect of knowledge when it is applied in an infusionally introspecting manner. This infusional introspection is the secret of the entire spiritual sadhana. But I am sorry people don’t understand the effect of introspection. It should be infusional and the effect should be on the mind itself.

    Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.



Poojya Swamiji says that the real focus

  • of devotional practices is not God, but the devotee's own mind and behaviour;
  • of karmayoga is not action but the attitude of the mind with which an action is performed;
  • of knowledge is not knowledge, but the purification and expansion of the seeker's mind.

Swamiji's Teachings


Poojya Swamiji says that the real focus

  • of devotional practices is not God, but the devotee's own mind and behaviour;
  • of karmayoga is not action but the attitude of the mind with which an action is performed;
  • of knowledge is not knowledge, but the purification and expansion of the seeker's mind.


NSJi-HmPgSwami Nirviseshananda Tirtha

Swami Nirviseshananda Tirthaji, a renunciate disciple of Poojya Swamiji, is known for his scientific expositions which are a source of inspiration to seekers.  Read More...


Ma Gurupriya

A disciple of Poojya Swamiji, Ma is the loving mother of Poojya Swamiji's devotees around the world. Devotion and service remain the predominant forces shaping Ma's life.  Read More...

The dialogue now takes us to the fourth chapter, marking a significant phase in the whole text. Whatever Krishna had to convey as an eternal message, a timely instruction for what Arjuna – or any one for that matter – should do when faced with an interactional crisis as in Kurukshetra, has all been stated with clarity, precision and persuasiveness. Krishna now wants to conclude the dialogue by relating the source and lineage of the instructors, who embodied and imparted the message right from the beginning. Narrating thus the parampara (the lineage of instructors) marks the finale of instruction, according to tradition.

But in the course of divulging the message, as is unique with whatever Krishna does, he reveals some lofty dimensions of his perception, thereby bestowing a note of eternality and beginninglessness to what he says. This is, in fact, characteristic of real Knowers of Truth of this land. Only in the jnanins, Knowers, one can find this kind of an ageless identity. It makes them and their message ancient and unnegatable as the very creation itself, as true as the Supreme Reality.

Apart from what many regard Krishna to be, he was verily a unique Self-knower, a matchless Teacher of Yoga. This human excellence of Krishna should not be missed. Only then both Bhagavadgita and Sri Krishna become accessible and actualizable to the seekers and students.

इमं विवस्वते योगं प्रोक्तवानहमव्ययम् ।
विवस्वान्मनवे प्राह मनुरिक्ष्वाकवेऽब्रवीत् ।।
एवं परम्पराप्राप्तमिमं राजर्षयो विदुः ।
स कालेनेह महता योगो नष्टः परन्तप ।।
स एवायं मया तेऽद्य योगः प्रोक्तः पुरातनः ।
भक्तोऽसि मे सखा चेति रहस्यं ह्येतदुत्तमम् ।।

I alone imparted this instruction to Vivasvan, the Sun. Vivasvan instructed it to Manu (the first man), Manu handed it down to Ikshvaku. From Ikshvaku dynasty of Treta Yuga, it was in succession imparted to those of Dvapara Yuga. Thus the great bequest was always held by the Seer Kings (rajarshayah), as an inevitable complement to their ruling skill and excellence. Due to the passage of Time, the all-powerful, this great possession went out of vogue. It is the same generally hidden, Brahmavidya, Yoga, that I have imparted to you today, considering you to be a devotee as well as an intimate friend.

Why does Krishna refer to Sun as the first recipient of Brahmavidya from him? Can this be a merely eulogistic reference? Or, is there enough of depth and purpose in what Krishna states?

Normally any human lineage or heredity will be traced up to the first human. Whereas Krishna, not stopping even with mother earth from which mankind as well as the rest of the beings have emerged, goes back to the Sun and claims his identity to be as old and ancient as to be the Instructor for the Sun! Is he merely driving home how ancient is Brahmavidya, or is there something more for the seeker to reflect upon?

Spiritual words and expositions always have a hidden, profound import. Spiritual truths are experiential, realizable. Thus, what exactly is the experiential link in Krishna’s enunciation is something that we cannot afford to miss.

The only subject exposed in Bhagavadgita is Brahmavidya. Whether explained as sankhya-yoga first and karma-yoga next, or dhyana-yoga subsequently and bhakti-yoga still later, the theme Krishna discusses in all chapters is essentially the same, namely Brahmavidya. That is why all the chapters carry the colophon “Brahmavidyayam yoga- sastre……”. What is this Brahmavidya? Where lies its source?

Brahman denotes the Supreme Reality. Vidya means knowledge. Brahmavidya is that unique knowledge which relates solely to the Supreme Reality. Even though the knowledge is conceived and expressed by humans, the fact remains that Brahmavidya is not restricted to any particular creature or to any specific age or period.

Thus, when Krishna conveys to Arjuna that he first imparted this Brahmavidya to Vivasvan (Sun), he apparently wants to impress on Arjuna that the source of Brahmavidya, if properly reflected upon, is not any one person in particular. Man’s personality itself, is not something bhautik, physical; it is completely spiritual. Sushupti (deep sleep) is a regular instance, when everyone verily experiences extinction of his body, and instead feels the presence of something else. In fact during deep sleep, the Real Subject is realized by all doubtlessly. The experience of deep sleep, wherein bodily existence ceases to be, is obviously not had by the body or its part. It is an experience that the Subject alone gains, all by itself, without any object medium whatsoever. Body is actually an object, which the Subject experiences, in wakeful hours alone.

Even a bacterium has its experience and knowledge or awareness. Or else how does it move and react? It may not have the mouth and tongue to speak. Speaking and expressing are a pronounced display of Consciousness which goes inseparably with existence. It is the self-revealing property of existence. In fact, any form of existence is but a becoming or manifestation of Consciousness itself.

Rigveda, the oldest of Vedas, reveals this truth in its mahavakya (cardinal statement): “Prajnanam Brahma”. This means “Brahman, the Supreme Reality or Ultimate Existence, is no other than Knowledge itself”. That Knowledge is the ultimate source of existence itself, is a unique revelation. Whether anywhere in the world a similar revelation has been made either in religious literature or even in the field of science, remains to be seen.

It is this truth – “Prajnanam Brahma” – that Krishna too discusses as Brahmavidya in the whole dialogue. Krishna wants Arjuna to grasp this fundamental point. Arjuna should not think that Krishna has discovered something new or is imparting an altogether new message, with a view to somehow appease and embolden the listener’s enfeebled mind. The message is the only truth of life, or existence, at any time. It is the only knowledge worth gaining, and which, when gained, will wipe off all psychological ills. As for the authenticity of this Brahmavidya, Krishna wants Arjuna to understand that it is as ancient as existence itself.

“Ajo nityah sasvato’yam puranah” (unborn, eternal, ever-the-same, ancient) were the words he had used in the second chapter (verse 20) while describing the Self. Brahmavidya rests upon Brahman itself, the only Subject in creation, not on any object at all. As is heat inseparable from fire, brilliance from the sun – the independent luminary nearest to earth – so is this Brahmavidya inseparable from Brahman, from existence as such.

People generally think that sentience is evolved from the earth alone, as we find sentient beings only upon the earth. In beings, we generally recognize only the evolution of materiality. The panca-bhutas are combined and evolved into beings, which display a certain sequence, order and gradualness. But even behind this orderliness or evolution, there is the power and presence of original sentience, but for which the insentient matter would not have been animated and organized into any viable, sustainable biological process or aggregate.

Our earth, when we look at it, seems to be insentient, judged on the basis of the sentient-insentient division of existence. But is that so? Think deeply about its place, potential and nature. Then the initial idea is bound to change. On the earth so many sentient beings have emerged and have been surviving. Being the cause and support for all these, can it, the causal source, be insentient? So sentience goes back to the earth, and for the same reason further beyond.

Sun is a luminous body. Its luminosity is inseparable from itself. That brilliance is a becoming of the Consciousness, which Brahman is. Self is Consciousness. Whoever realizes his identity with Consciousness, becomes verily the essence of the Sun’s brilliance (chapter 10, verse 21). The words revealing that he had taught Brahmavidya first to Vivasvan (Sun) are to be understood in such a perspective. Instead of tracing the antiquity to some human in Krtayuga, or even to a sage of the Vedic period, Krishna confidently asserts that any one can go back to any length of time and evolution and identify the source with anything in the universe. You will find that every existence carries knowledge in its core. In fact, Brahman, in other words Prajnanam, is the only Source, the causeless Cause.

At no time can knowledge of any kind emanate from any object whatever. When Newton saw the apple fall and began to wonder why it did so, was it not the Subject in this body that made the enquiry, and that too into its own within? And the answer that he finally found was also not from the apple or its fall, nor from the air or earth around, but from his own Consciousness, Prajnanam. To seek or search is the Subject’s task and to get illumined in the process is also its own fruition. The source, medium and the outcome are all unmistakably the Subject itself.

Does not Krishna say later, in chapter 15: “I alone am the source of memory, forgetfulness as well as wisdom – mattah smrtir jnanam- apohanam ca”? Is this not a clear reference to the Self of man being the real source of all processes of experience as well as knowledge? Whether it is existence or knowledge, or the expression of either or both, understand that Brahman, which is Prajnanam (knowledge), is the source, content and expression. The Teacher-taught relationship is only relative and occasional. There are many instances of original discoveries in science. Is there any Teacher as such in those cases, coming in the actual discovery? The searching individual, his consciousness alone, acts as the enquiring part first, and thereupon as the enlightening counterpart next, to become the discovery and discoverer ultimately.

This impersonality of man, along with the sentient nature of the whole existence, is the one ultimate message of Brahmavidya. In asserting “Aham Brahmasmi”, the Yajurvedic mahavakya meaning “the ‘I’ alone is the Supreme Reality”, is not such an absolute, indivisible, unnegatable position made clear? A seeker of Brahmavidya will complete his seeking and become a knower of Brahman only when he traces Consciousness as the only source, content and medium of whatever he is, irrespective of what he encounters during his life of experience and interaction. And this Consciousness is not alone in the beings of the earth, like cells, animals, birds or mankind. It is there far beyond. It was still earlier, in fact ever and ever.

Krishna wants the Bhagavadgita students to break all the barriers in their perception and visualize the singular subjective fullness of the whole creation. Knowledge is the only content of this fullness. Brahmavidya stands to represent and convey this and this alone.

The reference Krishna makes to the line of heredity and Maharshis equally calls for special attention. Krishna reminds Arjuna that the heritage of Brahmavidya rested specially with the Raarshis. A Raja (King) will become a Rishi (Seer) only when he possesses Brahmavidya and is enriched by its power and lustre. This confirms again that the ascetic sages were not the only custodians of spiritual wisdom of the land. The administrators or rulers were also equally well versed in this knowledge. In fact, to sit on the throne verily meant the compulsion to gain the treasure of spiritual wisdom.

The righteous ruler’s mind must have the sharpness of a sword as well as the softness of butter. He must be as stern with the wicked as he is kind to the virtuous. To punish the cruel and to reward the virtuous, remaining free of either weakness or pride, the royal mind should display exemplary vastness and impersonality.

To rule a whole multitude of people, even today, calls for immense self-control. Self-pity or carelessness has no place in a King’s life. One who is watchful about his own thoughts, actions and behavior can alone be so with regard to the ways and movements of his subjects. How many mutually opposite qualities together must adorn the throne to make it worthy of its task! When Krishna enumerates the spiritual qualities of the seeker and Knower, do they not aptly fit in with those of the throne?

Thus the great rulers of this land took special pains to gain spiritual wisdom and be under its unique grace. Janaka was an illustrious King of this great dimension. Ikshvaku dynasty had preserved a distinguished spiritual heredity, says Krishna. But in Dasaratha was a gloomy contrast. His son, Sri Rama, like Sri Krishna himself, excelled in the merits of spiritual wisdom, shining always with his timely resolve, wholesome resignation and stunning renunciation, whereas his father in crucial moments crumbled with indecision, attachment and possessiveness, the noted curses of ignorance.

Dasaratha was equally present when Sage Vasishthadeva instructed Sri Rama, sitting in the palace of Ayodhya, about the science of the Immortal Soul. But it was of no avail to the elderly King! When Kaikeyi, his Queen, claimed the boons promised to her by him in the past, the King lost his heart and mind, fell on the ground, drenching himself in tears and showering abuses on Kaikeyi!

In utter contrast, when the step-mother confessed her heart to Rama, the prince with no doubt or remorse instantly resolved to abandon the palace and live in the forest for any length of time. Who won in the encounter and who lost? Unable to resist the evil counsel of Manthara, Kaikeyi presents a more illustrious contrast in front of Bharata, her son. Bharata condemned his mother, refusing to imbibe her wicked heredity.

Are these not enough instances to make any one think of the truth of what Krishna states? The great heritage was available to all, but some neglected its bounties altogether.

Krishna points out that such deviations are havoc worked by time. Time, the inexorable force, is noted to cause sometimes grave deviations or even perversions in whatever is present. Even the great legacies prove no exception to the invasions of Time. Thus the good is forced to change into bad in the powerful hands of Time. Sri Rama, when called upon by Vasishthadeva to relate the sufferings of his heart on looking at the complexities of the world, says, in Yogavasishtha Ramayana, that the course of the world is immensely intriguing. He states: “prakrtah prabhrtam yatah, sarvamavartyate jagat – the undeserving rustics suddenly become lordly and resourceful; everything in the world is given to cyclic changes.”

In fact, the nature of events that overtook the Kuru dynasty resulting in the unprecedented Kurukshetra war leading to the emergent scene that evoked the Bhagavadgita dialogue, is itself immensely revealing. Was it not under the same great Bheeshma, with his self-imposed life-long celibacy as well as matchless spiritual wisdom, that the Pandava and Kaurava brothers grew up alike? While the Yudhishthira brothers wanted to be scrupulously governed by the resolve of righteousness and sacrifice, why did the Duryodhana brothers insist on following the accursed path of greed, possessiveness and stealth? Did not both of them have the same great legacy? The conflict and confrontation only grew in intensity as decades passed.

Krishna was equally related and available to both the groups; but his greatness was spurned by Duryodhana. Instead of welcoming him and listening to his wise words when he arrived in Hastinapura with the message of a peaceful pact from Yudhishthira, Duryodhana wickedly hatched a plot to bind Krishna and take him a captive. What except the sheer ravage of Time is at the back of all these developments?

Though Arjuna was righteous and moral in his thoughts and views, he still lacked Brahmavidya, which his grandfather and other elders were amply gifted with. Krishna significantly points out that what he was instilling in Arjuna was thus the same vision and strength which the best of rulers in his own clan had gained and which he failed to imbibe in time.

The effort Arjuna should have made earlier, in a quiet atmosphere of study and seeking, he was now forced to undertake in total haste and strife. Even then, better late than never. As Krishna has already clarified in the last verse of the second chapter: “sthitvasyam anta-kale’pi brahma-nirvanamrcchati – even if one is able to stabilize himself in this knowledge at the fag end of his life, he will still be benefited by its grace and merits, and enjoy the relief and ecstasy they offer”.

Krishna brings in another dimension in the dialogue. He says: “bhakto’si me sakha ceti rahasyam hy-etad-uttamam – you are devoted to me, and you are equally an intimate friend; that is why I disclose to you this highest secret.” What does he highlight in these words? Is not spiritual wisdom, like any other knowledge meant for man, to be openly laid before the seeker? What secrecy does Krishna allude to in imparting it? Where comes the relevance of devotion in receiving the message?

To impart the Soul-science is not a commonplace task. Nor is it easy to do so effectively. The atmosphere calls for the most sensitive response from the bestower as well as the receiver. Krishna emphasizes that it means disclosing or divulging a great secret from its guarded source. The message will have its destined effect only when the giver and the receiver have a full bond of fondness, trust and confidence. It is meant to lead man to the very core of his being – the impersonal, neutral and unaffected identity that he verily is – lifting him away from the sensory and sentimental ties and relationships.

The supreme reliance which adorns the mind and heart of a devotee, the unshakeable trust and confidence which governs the relationship between him and the Teacher, will alone make true spiritual instruction wholesome, powerful and ready to assimilate.


(From Essential Concepts of Bhagavad Gita - Book 2)

Recordings of Poojya Swamiji's Talks

Bhagavad Gita : A Topic for Research - 1

Bhagavad Gita : A Topic for Research - 2


Vicharasethu is a monthly journal in English and Hindi, edited and published by Poojya Swamiji. It is also published in Malayalam by the name Vicharasarani. With Articles, Correspondance, Guidance for Sādhana and News updates from the Ashram, these monthly publications are a great guide for the earnest sādhaka. 

Devotees hold periodic meetings at their own locations wherein the teachings and messages of Swamiji are heard, read and discussed with a view to comprehend and arrive at their essence and make it a functional note in their life. This section provides resources to facilitate the proceedings at such gatherings. Read More ....

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