Thursday, September 24, 2009

So, What Do You Think?

I found this quote today, and I wanted to share it with my friends because the meaning is not immediately made apparent. Without the rest of the book nearby to garner context, we can make it our own. I like verses like these that make me put on my glasses of profundity. I'm very interested in hearing what this quote might mean to you. We can discuss it in the comments section.

"Yesterday I lived bewildered, in illusion. But now I am awake, flawless and serene, beyond the world. From my light the body and the world arise. So all things are mine, or nothing is."

- Ashtavakra Gita


mania said...

It seems you are quite much inspired with Indian literature.
For me, its like awareness of the soul after living a dark life of ignorance. Consciousness is the key message.

Surrender to God implies limitless freedom, while subservience to the self and our personal concerns guarantees endless slavery.

Its like in this quote, the soul has discovered its right path and its now free from earthly desires.

V said...

Our knowledge of the body, self image, and the world, nature and society, are nothing but thoughts. Everything is made up of thoughts. Our thoughts. They are not absolutely true. Therefore just illusions. Even science does not know absolutely what reality. It's all based on past knowledge, from our conditioning, experience, acculturisation, and education. What is true yesterday is no longer true today. To realize that is freedom from delusion. Then we can make our own.

And there is matter. And eneergy. What is it really made of? Mostly holes, space, and dark matter. Waht are electrons, protons, and neutrons? Packs of energy. And what is energy? The ability to do work? We still live in a mechanical universe. But it's also a mental or spiritual one. Made up of strings. But whose fingers are moving the strings?

V said...

Don't know, dont care, ...

Anonymous said...

The real self lives in a different world. It sees existance rather than stuff.

Sophia said...

Hi Mania,

I am much inspired by any literature that speaks of the True Self. :)

How I love how you've spoken of limitless freedom versus endless slavery. Put that way the choice to make is quite clear. :)

Sophia said...

V, yes, our world is what we make it. There are as many worlds as there are people.

And if we are thoughts, our thoughts are the thoughts of thoughts, thoughts within thoughts, a dream within a dream.

I am reminded of a poem by Edgar Allan Poe - I wonder what he meant, what he felt, when he wrote

A Dream Within a Dream

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep- while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

Sophia said...

Anonymous, by "stuff" I assume you mean all the false creations of the ego?

Sophia said...

I'm interested enough in this verse that I want to find the surrounding paragraphs. Curiosity compels me. Besides, it is very lovely. It spoke to me. But then more and more things do these days.

Sophia said...

P.S. The entire document is here:

Kathy said...

Thanks for that link!

Sophia said...

Hi Kathy, it was my pleasure. :)

V said...

The body is the only body you have. You cannot have body transplant. Or mind transplant.

The body has no past. Only scars. The mind has pains and suffering. Traumas and dogmas.

To realize that is Nirvana. Buddhahood.

V said...

The body is the Buddha.

Don said...

I think it's quite obvious. The speaker has discovered that the Global Brain is correct, and is rejoicing in it.

Sophia said...

V, "Your body is your temple."

Sophia said...

Don, I think a synonym for your Global Brain could be the collective consciousness of human beings.

Hope you're having a fine time, dear friend.

V said...

There is no soul in the machine.

The body, the mind, the self, the Self are one. The mind just keep thinking otherwise. Because it loves the idea of self and Self as being separate. It doesn't trust the body. It thinks it is vile and sinful.

What do you expect from centuries of brainwashing?

V said...

The human mind is hardwired to identify with the body. And rightly so.

That explains all the hipocrisy.

V said...

Where can you find the Kingdom of Heaven? Is it up there in the firmament, which is full of holes, so the water can come down. But the Heaven is within you. Why is there a need for Ascension? Where did the body go? To Venus or Mars? Or the nearest star?

Just a simple koan to ponder upon.

Don said...

It has many names, Sophia.


mania said...

thanks, do you read the literary work of Khalil Jibran?

mania said...

A site for you, if not

Tao1776 said...

The words of the Gitas......much to ponder. When I read such as these, I am reminded that reality, awakening, being pointed at. It is not contained by words; only hinted at. No one can say, here it is. This is it. Look here. Its like pointing at the wind.

Sophia said...

Ha ha, indeed, indeed, Don. Many different names. I have never seen that word before- polysemy, thanks.

Sophia said...

Hi Tao1776,

Yes, or as they say, it's only a "finger pointing at the moon".


The nun Wu Jincang asked the Sixth Patriach Huineng, "I have studied the Mahaparinirvana sutra for many years, yet there are many areas i do not quite understand. Please enlighten me."

The patriach responded, "I am illiterate. Please read out the characters to me and perhaps I will be able to explain the meaning."

Said the nun, "You cannot even recognize the characters. How are you able then to understand the meaning?"

"Truth has nothing to do with words. Truth can be likened to the bright moon in the sky. Words, in this case, can be likened to a finger. The finger can point to the moon's location. However, the finger is not the moon. To look at the moon, it is necessary to gaze beyond the finger, right?"

Source: Zen Inspiration

Sophia said...

V, perhaps the goal is to identify with more than just the body, mind and self, to go beyond and know that one is more. In that way it is not so much that we are denying the body or mind, but it's what we identify with. In other words, I am more than my physical body, I am more than my ego.

I think we can see that Heaven is right here on earth once this is discovered.

Sophia said...

Hello Mania, oh yes, I've heard of Khalil Gibran. He is very inspiring. I've read bits and pieces of his works and even sat down to record parts of The Prophet into podcasts. Now you have reminded me that this is a project I should finish. I like having little assignments. :)

Don said...


I took me a long time to hunt down the term for "a concept which has many different names". I like sharing it with people.

V said...

That's what probably inflates ego. Identification with something bigger or greater. Desire for power and glory. On the other hand a deflated ego is also not the right one. A deflated ego wants to inflate itself out of fear of being trampled down.

Perhaps that explains why all these enlightened folks tend to be megalomaniacal. ;) And love to hate your ego. They don't like competition.

V said...

"I am of the nature to age, I have not gone beyond aging.

I am of the nature to sicken, I have not gone beyond sickness.

I am of the nature to die, I have not gone beyond dying.

All that is mine, beloved and pleasing, will become otherwise, will become separated from me."

Don said...

I got that wrong, Sophia dear. "Polysemy" means a single name (term) which has multiple meanings.

Tao1776 said...

Yes, Sophia! I like Alan Watts spin on the finger pointing.....
"The common error of ordinary religious practice is to mistake the symbol for the reality to look at the finger pointing the way and then to suck it for comfort rather than follow it"

human being said...

i'm aware
that i'm part of a whole

this is what i feel in this quote...

sally said...

today i live bewildered in illusion
yesterday (or rather a few days ago)
i was more serene

i'm trying to remember
how to get back