What is Creation, Perception, and Interaction?
When we study self-development, we often feel as though it is imaginary, not real, but it is. Prince Arjuna is tired of feeling that his infinite potential is imaginary- he wants it to be his reality. The goal is to go from confusion to contentment
Philosophical question: What is Brahman? Answer — Brahman is all
Practical Question: What is Infinity? Answer — Life. Because of life, there is living
Philosophical Question: What is Adhyatma? Answer — What you are, your essence
Practical question: What is Self? Answer — Spirit, and the nature of the spirit is joy.
Philosophical question: What is Karma? Answer — Growth
Practical Question: What is work? Answer — The means to what you need.
Question 22 and 23 (Ch.8, V.1)
What is Adhibhuta? Prince Arjuna is coming to love Bhagavan Krishna more, and wants to know more of what He has to say. So he shifts to inquiring about that which is closer, not further away.
Answer 22 and 23: Ch.8, V.4
Adhibhuta is that which is kshara (perishable, ever-changing). Acharya Sankara describes it as that which is born- the elements, or prakriti. While Brahman is akshara (unchanging) and para (higher), Adhibhuta is kshara (everchanging) and apara (lower). That which is born will also die. The grosser an entity is, the faster it will die. So, don’t depend on that which is gross, or ever-changing, like articles, beings and circumstances, because it will die!
What is Adhidaiva? What is within me?
Adhidaiva is purusha. Acharya Sankara describes purusha as that which fills, or completeness. We know that names are on top of forms, forms are on top of presence. So without presence, there are no names or forms. The present is different from presence: present is still a condition of time, whereas presence is independent of time. Existence, Awareness, Joy do not need time.
Question 24 (Ch.8, V.2)
Who is living inside this body? What and who is this Adhiyajna?
Answer (Ch.8, V.4)
You (Prince Arjuna) are great, and what lives inside you is ME (Bhagavan Krishna). Acharya Sankara says that the purpose of this body is to know who is living inside it. We have yet to feel the longing, the mumukshutva, that what we are learning is not imaginary. In Vedanta, yajna is defined as Yajnovai Vishnu: Yajna is Bhagavan. The real yajna is service, and when we dedicate our life to serving, we have the right relationship with this body.
Philosophical question: What is adhibhuta? Answer — Names on top of forms
Practical Question: What is creation? Answer — Change
Reflection: How does recognizing the temporary nature of ABCs bring you closer to Bhagavan? If my nature is not change, all that is changing (external ABCs) is not who I am.
Philosophical question: What is adhidaiva? Answer — Presence
Practical Question: What is perception? Answer — Expression
Reflection: How will you evolve from being a slave to your senses to a master of your mind? As you get older, you learn less from your ears and more from your eyes. The solution, then, is to see less.
Philosophical Question: What is adhiyajna? Answer — God.
Practical Question: What is Interaction? Answer — Oneness
Reflection: How would the awareness that you are God playing the role of a human change your life? Once we realize that we are God, we feel complete, with no need for anything else. In essence, we become the drig (seer) instead of the drishya (seen). See more.
Our attachment to ABCs reinforces our temporary nature. Instead we must recognize that our nature is infinite. For example, as a child we feel like our parents will be there forever, but eventually we lose them too. Realizing that our higher, true nature is unaffected by life’s ups and down, we can constantly remember God. Additionally, the more you feel you are an individual, and not as a member of a larger community, the harder it will become to let go of ABCs.
God pervades creation as the cause, not the effect. All that can be experienced is creation. God pervades through creation like a thread through a string of pearls, and we are those pearls- we can’t see what inside of us. Interestingly, the Upanishads contain 64 creation theories, the highest of which states that there is no creation.
1. How can reflecting on how we currently live our life give insight into our vision?
It’s more sustainable to infuse what you normally do with meaning. Meaning means purity of mind, so everything you do must purify your mind, and let go of anything that doesn’t contribute to this purpose. If you don’t feel like you will be enlightened in this life, then this is a waste of your life.
2. What is purity of mind?
There are 3 gauges of purity: when the mind becomes more balanced, more focused and more reflective.
3. Is Karma Yoga the only method to give up your vasanas?
Karma Yoga is the initial step, but the process must be deeper. Light vasanas can be exhausted by experiences. Medium vasanas can be exhausted by substitution with a higher quality. Heavy vasanas must be let go completely. When you’re mind is full and deeply concentrated on what you’re doing, you never compare yourself to others.