The Way to Liberation
273. The beautiful smell of aloe wood which is
masked by a bad smell through contamination by water and such things
becomes evident again when it is rubbed clean.
274. Desire for one's true self which is veiled by endless internal
other desires becomes pure and evident again like the smell of
sandalwood through application with wisdom.
275. When the mass of desires for things other than oneself obscuring
the contrary desire for one's real self are eliminated by constant
self-remembrance, then it discloses itself of its own accord.
276. As the mind becomes more and more inward-turned, it becomes
gradually freed from external desires, and when all such desires are
fully eliminated self-realisation is completely freed from obstruction.
277. When he is always poised in self-awareness the yogi's thinking
mind stops, and the cessation of desires takes place as a result, so see
to the removal of all ideas of additions to your true self.
278. Dullness (tamas) is removed by passion (rajas) and purity (sattva),
desire is removed by purity, and purity when itself purified, so
establishing yourself in purity, see to the removal of all ideas of
additions to your true self.
279. Recognising that the effects of past conditioning will sustain
the body, remain undisturbed and work away hard at seeing to the removal
of all ideas of additions to your true self.
280. "I am not the individual life. I am God." Getting rid of all
previous misidentifications like this, see to the removal of all ideas
of additions to your true self created by the power of desires.
281. Recognising yourself as the self of everything by the authority
of scripture, by reasoning and by personal experience, see to the
removal of all ideas of additions to your true self whenever they
282. The wise man has no business concerning himself with the
acquisition or disposal of things, so by adherence to the one reality,
see to the removal of all ideas of additions to your true self.
283. Realising the identity of yourself and God by the help of
sayings like "You are That", see to the removal of all ideas of
additions to your true self so as to strengthen the adherence of
yourself in God.
284. Eliminate completely your self-identification with this body,
and with determination see that your mind is devoted to the removal of
all ideas of additions to your true self.
285. So long as even a dream-like awareness of yourself as an
individual in the world remains, as a wise person persistently see to
the removal of all ideas of additions to your true self.
286. Without giving way to the least descent into forgetfulness
through sleep, worldly affairs or the various senses, meditate on
287. Shunning the body which is derived from the impurities of your
mother and father and itself made up of impurities and flesh as you
would an outcaste from a good distance, become Godlike and achieve the
goal of life.
288. Restoring the self in you to the supreme Self like the space in
a jar back to Space itself by meditation on their indivisibility, always
remain silent, wise one.
289. Taking up through your true self the condition of your real
glory, reject thoughts of a divine universe as much as of yourself as a
reality, as you would a dish of filth.
290. Transferring your present self-identification with the body to
yourself as consciousness, being and bliss, abandon the body and be
291. When you know "I am that very God" in which the reflection of
the world appears, like a city in a mirror, then you will be one who has
achieved the goal of life.
292. Attaining that Reality which is self-existent and primal,
non-dual consciousness, and bliss, formless and actionless, one should
abandon the unreal body taken on by oneself, like an actor doffing his
293. All this experienced by oneself is false, and so is the sense of
I-hood in view of its ephemeral nature. How can "I know everything" be
true of something which is itself ephemeral.
294. That which warrants the term "I" on the other hand is that which
is the observer of the thought "I" etc. in view of its permanent
existence even in the state of deep sleep. Scripture itself declares
that it is "unborn and eternal" (Katha Upanishad 1.2.18). That true
inner self is distinct from both being and not-being.
295. The knower of all the changes in changing things must itself be
permanent and unchanging. The unreality in the extremes of being and
not-being is repeatedly seen in the experience of thought, dreaming and
296. So give up identification with this mass of flesh as well as
with what thinks it a mass. Both are intellectual imaginations.
Recognise your true self as undifferentiated awareness, unaffected by
time, past, present or future, and enter Peace.
297. Give up identification with family, tribe, name, shape and
status which depend on the putrid body. Give up physical properties too
such as the sense of being the doer and be the very nature of
298. There are other obstacles seen to be the cause of samsara for
men. Of these the root and first manifestation is the sense of doership.
299. So long as one has any association with this awful sense of
being the doer there cannot be the least achievement of liberation which
is something very different.
300. Free from the grasp of feeling oneself the doer, one achieves
ones true nature which is, like the moon, pure, consummate,
self-illuminating being and bliss.
301. Even he who, with a mind under the influence of strong dullness,
has thought of himself as the body, will attain to full identification
with God when that delusion is completely removed.
302. The treasure of the bliss of God is coiled round by the very
powerful, terrible snake of doership which guards it with its three
fierce heads consisting of the three qualities (dullness, passion and
purity) but the wise man can enjoy this bliss-imparting treasure by
cutting off the snake's three heads with the great sword of
understanding of the scriptures.
303. How can one be free from pain so long as there is there is any
trace of poison in the body? The same applies to the pain of
self-consciousness in an aspirant's liberation.
304. In the total cessation of self-identification and the ending of
the multifarious mental misrepresentations it causes, the truth of "This
is what I am" is achieved through inner discernment.
305. Get rid forthwith of doership, your self-identification, that
is, with the agent, a distorted vision of yourself which stops you from
resting in your true nature, and by identification with which you, who
are really pure consciousness and a manifestation of joy itself,
experience samsara with all its birth, decay, death and suffering.
306. You are really unchanging, the eternally unvarying Lord,
consciousness, bliss and indestructible glory. If it were not for the
wrong identification with a false self you would not be subject to
307. So cut down your enemy, this sense of being the doer, with the
great sword of knowledge, caught like a splinter in the throat of
some-one having a meal, and enjoy to your heart's content the joy of the
possession of your true nature.
308. Stop the activity of the false self-identification and so on,
get rid of desire by the attainment of the supreme Reality, and practice
silence in the experience of the joy of your true self, free from
fantasies, with your true nature fulfilled in God.
309. Even when thoroughly eradicated, a great sense of doership can
revive again and create a hundred different distractions, if it is once
dwelt on again for a moment in the mind, like monsoon rain-clouds driven
on by the wind.
310. Overcoming the enemy of the false self, one should give it no
opportunity by dwelling on the senses again, because that is the way it
comes back to life, like water for a withered citrous tree.
311. He who is attached to the idea of himself as the body is
desirous of physical pleasure, but how could some-one devoid of such an
idea seek physical pleasure? Hence separation from one's true good is
the cause of bondage to samsara since one is stuck in seeing things as
separate from oneself.
312. A seed is seen to grow with the development of the necessary
conditions, while the failure of the conditions leads to the failure of
the seed. So one must remove these conditions.
313. The increase of desires leads to activity, and from the increase
of activity there is more desire. Thus a man prospers in every way, and
samsara never comes to an end.
314. To break the bonds of samsara, the ascetic should burn away both
of these (desire and activity), since thinking about these and external
activity lead to the increase of desires.
315-316. The increase of these two is the cause of one's samsara, and
the means to the destruction of these three is to see everything as
simply God everywhere, always and in all circumstances. By the increase
of desire for becoming the Truth, these three come to an end.
317. Through the stopping of activity there comes the stopping of
thinking, and then the cessation of desires. The cessation of desires is
liberation, and is what is known as here-and-now liberation.
318. When the force of the desire for the Truth blossoms, selfish
desires wither away, just like darkness vanishes before the radiance of
the light of dawn.
319. Darkness and the mass of evils produced by darkness no longer
exist when the sun has risen. Similarly, when one has tasted
undifferentiated bliss, no bondage or trace of suffering remains.
320. Transcending everything to do with the senses, cultivating the
blissful and only Truth, and at peace within and without - this is how
one should pass one's time so long as any bonds of karma remain.
321. One should never permit carelessness in one's adherence to God.
"Carelessness is death" (Mahabharata 5.42.43) says the Master (Sanatkumara)
who was of Brahma's son.
322. There is no greater evil than carelessness about his own true
nature for a wise man. From this comes delusion, from this comes
misconceptions about oneself, from this comes bondage, from this comes
323. Forgetfulness afflicts even a wise man with harmful mental
states when it finds him well-disposed to the senses, like a woman does
her infatuated lover.
324. Just as the algae cleared off water does not stay off even for a
moment, so illusion obscures the sight of even a wise man whose mind is
325. When the mind loses its direction towards its goal and becomes
outward-turned it runs from one thing to another, like a play-ball
carelessly dropped on the steps of some stairs.
326. A mind directed towards the senses dwells with imagination on
their qualities. From imagining finally comes desire, and from desire
comes the way a man directs his activity.
327. As a result, there is no death like carelessness in meditation
to the wise knower of God. The meditator achieves perfect fulfilment, so
carefully practice peace of mind.
328. From carelessness one turns aside from one's true nature, and he
who turns aside from it slips downwards. He who has thus fallen
invariably comes to disaster, but is not seen to rise again.
329. So one should abandon the imagination which is the cause of all
ills. He has reached fulfilment who is completely dead while still
alive. The Yajur Veda (Taittiriya Upanishad 2.7) declares there is still
something to fear for anyone who still sees distinctions in things.
330. Whenever a wise man sees the least distinction in the infinite
God, whatever he has carelessly perceived as a distinction then becomes
a source of fear for him.
331. When, in spite of hundreds of testimonies to the contrary in the
Vedas and other scriptures, one identifies oneself with anything to do
with the senses, one experiences countless sorrows, doing something
prohibited like a thief.
332. He who is devoted to meditating on the Truth attains the eternal
glory of his true nature, while he who delights in dwelling on the
unreal perishes. This can be seen even in the case of whether someone is
a thief or not.
333. An ascetic should abandon dwelling on the unreal which is the
cause of bondage, and should fix his attention on himself in his
knowledge that "This is what I am". Establishment in God through
self-awareness leads to joy and finally removes the suffering caused by
334. Dwelling on externals increases the fruit of superfluous evil
desires for all sorts of things, so wisely recognising this fact, one
should abandon externals and cultivate attention to one's true nature
335. When externals are abandoned there comes peace of mind. When the
mind is at peace there comes awareness of one's supreme self. When that
is fully experienced there comes the destruction of the bonds of samsara,
so abandonment of externals is the road to liberation.
336. What man, being learned, and aware of the distinction between
real and unreal, relying on the scriptures and seeking the supreme goal
of life, would knowingly, like a child, hanker after resting in the
unreal, the cause of his own downfall.
337. There is no liberation for him who is deliberately attached to
the body and such things, while there is no self-identification with
such things as the body for a liberated man. There is no being awake for
some-one asleep, nor sleep for some-one awake, for these two states are
by their very nature distinct.
338. He who knows himself within and without, and recognises himself
as the underlying support in all things moving and unmoving, remaining
indivisible, fulfilled in himself by abandoning all that is not himself
- he is liberated.
339. The means of liberation from bondage is through the one self in
everything, and there is nothing higher than this one self in
everything. When one does not cling to anything to do with the senses,
one achieves these things, and being the one self in everything depends
on resting in one's true self.
340. How is not clinging to the senses possible when one's basis is
self-identification with the body, and one's mind is attached to
enjoying external pleasures, and on doing whatever is necessary to do
so? But it can be achieved within themselves by those who have abandoned
all objects of rules and observances, who are always resting in
self-awareness, who know the Truth and energetically seek the bliss of
341. Scripture prescribes meditation for realisation of the self in
everything to the ascetic who has fulfilled the requirement of listening
to scripture, saying "At peace and self-controlled" and so on (Brihadaranyaka
342. Even wise men cannot get rid of the sense of doership all of a
sudden when it has grown strong, but those who are unwavering in
so-called imageless samadhi can, whose desire for this has been
developed over countless lives.
343. The outward-turning power of the mind binds a man to the sense
of doership by its veiling effect, and confuses him by the attributes of
344. To overcome the outward-turning power of the mind is hard to
accomplish without completely eliminating the veiling effect, but the
covering over one's inner self can be removed by discriminating between
seer and objects, like between milk and water. Absence of an barrier is
finally unquestionable when there is no longer any distraction caused by
345. Perfect discrimination, born of direct experience establishing
the truth of the distinction between seer and objects, severs the bonds
of delusion produced by Maya (the creative power, which makes things
appear to exist), and as a result the liberated person is no longer
subject to samsara.
346. The fire of the knowledge of the oneness of above and below
burns up completely the tangled forest of ignorance. What seed of
samsara could there still be for such a person who has achieved
347. The veiling effect only disappears with full experience of
Reality, and the elimination of false knowledge leads to the end of the
suffering caused by that distraction.
348. These three (the removal of veiling effect, false knowlege and
suffering) are clearly apparent in the case of recognising the true
nature of the rope, so a wise man should get to know the truth about the
underlying reality if he wants to be liberated from his bonds.
349-350. Like fire in conjunction with iron, the mind manifests
itself as knower and objects by dependence on something real, but as the
duality that causes is seen to be unreal in the case of delusions,
dreams and fantasies, so the products of natural causation, from the
idea of doership down to the body itself and all its senses, are also
unreal in view of the way they are changing every moment, while one's
true nature itself never changes.
351. The supreme self is the internal reality of Truth and Bliss,
eternally indivisible and pure consciousness, the witness of the
intellect and the other faculties, distinct from being or not-being, the
reality implied by the word "I".
352. Distinguishing the real from the unreal in this way by means of
his inborn capacity of understanding, and liberated from these bonds, a
wise man attains peace by recognising his own true nature as
353. The knot of ignorance in the heart is finally removed when one
comes to see one's own true non-dual nature by means of imageless
354. Assumptions of "you", "me", "it" occur in the non-dual,
undifferentiated supreme self because of a failure in the understanding,
but all a man's false assumptions disappear in samadhi and are
completely destroyed by the realisation of the truth of the underlying
355. An ascetic who is peaceful, disciplined, fully withdrawn,
long-suffering and meditative always cultivates the presence of the self
of everything in himself. Eradicating in this way the false assumptions
created by the distorting vision of ignorance, he lives happily in God
free from action and free from imaginations.
356. Only those who have achieved samadhi and who have withdrawn the
external senses, the mind and their sense of doership into their true
nature as consciousness are free from being trapped in the snare of
samsara, not those who just repeat the statements of others.
357. Because of the diversity of the things he identifies himself
with, a man tends to see himself as complex, but with the removal of the
identification, he is himself again and perfect as he is. For this
reason a wise man should get rid of self-identifications and always
cultivate imageless samadhi.
358. Adhering to the Real a man comes to share in the nature of that
Reality by his one-pointed concentration on it, in the same way that a
grub is able to become a wasp by concentration on a wasp.
359. A grub achieves wasphood by abandoning attachment to other
activities and concentrating on the nature of being a wasp. In the same
way an ascetic meditates on the reality of the supreme self and achieves
it through his one-pointed concentration on it.
360. The reality of the supreme self is extremely subtle and is not
capable of being experienced by those of coarse vision, but it can be
known by those worthy of it by reason of their very pure understanding
by means of a mind made extremely subtle by meditation.
361. As gold purified in a furnace loses its impurities and achieves
its own true nature, the mind gets rid of the impurities of the
attributes of delusion, passion and purity through meditation and
362. When by the effect of constant meditation the purified mind
becomes one with God, then samadhi, now freed from images, experiences
in itself the state of non-dual bliss.
363. The destruction of the bonds of all desires through this samadhi
is the destruction of all karma, and there follows the manifestation of
one's true nature without effort, inside, outside, everywhere and
364. Thought should be considered a hundred times better than
hearing, and meditation is thousands of times better than thought, while
imageless samadhi is infinite in its effect.
365. The experience of the reality of God becomes permanent though
imageless samadhi, but not otherwise as it is mixed with other things by
the restlessness of the mind.
366. So, established in meditation, with the senses controlled, the
mind calmed and continually turned inwards, destroy the darkness of
beginningless ignorance by recognising the oneness of Reality.
367. The primary door to union with God is cutting off talking, not
accepting possessions, freedom from expectation, dispassion and a
secluded manner of life.
368. Living in seclusion is the cause of control of the senses,
restraint of the mind leads to inner stillness and tranquillity leads to
mastery of self-centred desire. From that comes the ascetic's continual
experience of the unbroken bliss of God. So the wise man should always
strive for the cessation of thought.
369. Restrain speech within. Restrain the mind in the understanding
and restrain the understanding in the consciousness that observes the
understanding. Restrain that in the perfect and imageless self, and
enjoy supreme peace.
370. Body, functions, senses, mind, understanding and so on -
whichever of these adjuncts the mind's activity is connected with, that
becomes the ascetic's identity for the time.
371. When this process is stopped, the wise man knows the perfect joy
of the letting go of everything, and experiences the attainment of the
overwhelming bliss of Reality.
372. Internal renunciation and external renunciation - it is the
dispassionate man who is capable of these. The dispassionate man
abandons fetters internal and external because of his yearning for
373. The dispassionate man, established in God, is indeed capable of
abandoning the external bond of the senses and the internal one of
selfishness and so on.
374. As a discriminating person realise that dispassion and
understanding are like a bird's wings for a man. Without them both he
cannot reach the nectar of liberation growing on top of a creeper.
375. The extremely dispassionate man achieves samadhi. A person in
samadhi experiences steady enlightenment. He who is enlightened to the
Truth achieves liberation from bondage, and he who is truly liberated
experiences eternal joy.
376. I know of no higher source of happiness for a self-controlled
man than dispassion, and when allied to thoroughly pure self-knowledge
it leads to the sovereign state of self-mastery. Since this is the gate
to the unfading maiden of liberation, always and with all eagerness
develop this supreme wisdom within yourself in happiness.