Isavasya Upanishad

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Summary of Isavasya Upandishad given at Chinmaya Mission Boston - Newton center on Sundays (2016)

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UPANISHADS - INTRODUCTION ANAND S. RAO

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VEDAS COME FROM THE WORD VID OR TO KNOW VEDAS MEAN REVEALED KNOWLEDGE

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FOUR VEDAS • Rig Veda • YajurVeda • SamaVeda • AtharvaVeda

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UPANISHAD – SITTING DOWN NEAR OR AT THE FOOT OF THE TEACHER

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WHY STUDY THE VEDAS OR UPANISHADS

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Jeeva Brahma Aikyam – This Self and the Lord are the Same The Upanishads tell us that there is a Reality underlying life which rituals cannot reach next to which things we see and touch in everyday life are shadows. They teach that this Reality is the essence of every created thing and the same Reality is our Self so that each of us is one with the power that created and sustains the Universe. They testify that this oneness can be realized directly without the mediation of priests or rituals or any of the structures of organized religion not after death but in this life and that this life is the purpose for which each of us has been born and the goal toward which evolution moves. - Eknath Easwaran The Upanishads

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ISAVASYA UPANISHAD

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SHANTHI PATH – PEACE INVOCATION That is Whole this is Whole from the Whole the Whole becomes manifest. From the Whole when the Whole is negated what remains again is the Whole

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SHANTHI PATH – PEACE INVOCATION That is Whole this is Whole from the Whole the Whole becomes manifest. From the Whole when the Whole is negated or removed what remains again is the Whole That is water this is water from the ocean the waves becomes manifest. From the ocean when the wave is negated or removed what remains again is the ocean

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“If all the Upanishads and all the other scriptures happened all of a sudden to be reduced to ashes and if only the first verse in the Isavasya Upanishad were left in the memory of the Hindus Hinduism would live forever” – Mahatma Gandhi

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Isavasya Upanishad • Wave-1: Path of Renunciation – Verse 1 • Wave-2: Path of Action – Verse 2 • Wave-3: Pain and Darkness – Verse 3 • Wave-4: Goal of Life – Verses 4-8 • Wave-5: Knowledge Action – Verses 9-14 • Wave-6: Glory of Immortal Self – Verses 15-17 • Wave-7: Prayer to the Supreme Self – Verse 18

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PATH OF RENUNCIATION WAVE 1 –VERSE 1

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PATH OF RENUNCIATION –VERSE 1 All this whatsoever moves in this universe itself moving is clothed inhabited or pervaded or enveloped by the Lord. Enjoy nature as the gift from God but with a spirit of renunciation. Do not be attached to them and do not covet the wealth of others.

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‘VAS’ IN ‘VASYAM’ MEANS ‘CLOTHING’ ‘INHABITING’ ‘ENVELOPING’ OR ‘PERVADING THE LORD INHABITS ENVELOPES PERVADES THIS UNIVERSE THE LORD WEARS THIS UNIVERSE AS HIS CLOTHING.

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Renunciation and Detachment 1. Renounce the false notion of ‘Duality’ to enjoy the bliss of ‘oneness’ 2. Renounce the notion of ‘doership’ and ‘enjoyership’ to accept the results of your actions as ‘Prasad’ from the Lord and enjoy the bliss 3. Renounce the multiplicity of ‘names’ and ‘forms’ of the universe to enjoy the bliss of ‘oneness’

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Bhagavad Gita • Bhagavad Gita – III.7: One who begins to control the senses by the mind O Arjuna without attachment and engages his working senses in Karma Yoga is superior • Bhagavad Gita – X.41: Whatever you see – greatness beauty or glory O Arjuna know that to be a bit of my glory.

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PATH OF ACTION WAVE 2 –VERSE 2

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PATH OF ACTION –VERSE 2 Only by working or acting this way may you live a hundred years. Thus alone will you work in real freedom. Action never clings to a man following this path. kurvann eveha karmāṇi jij īvi ṣet śata ṁ samāḥ | eva ṁ tvayi n ā ny atheto’s t i na karma lipyate nare ||2||

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Bhagavad Gita 1 1 2 3 4 Selfless performance of actions leading to inner detachment Selfless performance of actions leading to purity of mind Inner detachment leading to renouncing worldly possessions and activities and purity of mind Renounce the notion of doership and realize the non-doer Self 2 3 4

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Why do we do the things we do TEDxYouth

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Fix your mind on Me Only place your intellect in Me then thereafter you shall no doubt live in Me alone Verse 8 If you are unable to fix your mind steadily upon Me then by the ‘Yoga-of-constant- practice’ seek to reach Me O Dhananjaya Verse 9 If you are unable to practice Abhyasa Yoga be you intent on performing actions for My sake doing so you shall attain perfection Verse 10 If you are unable to do even this then taking refuge in Me self- controlled renounce the fruits-of- all-actions Verse 11 Bhagavad Gita Yoga of Devotion 12

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PAIN AND DARKNESS WAVE 3 –VERSE 3

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PAIN AND DARKNESS –VERSE 3 Sunless are those worlds and enveloped in blindening gloom to which all those people who are slayers of their own Souls go departing from here. asury ā n āma te lok āh andhena tamas ā v ṛtāḥ | t āg ṁs te prety ābhi-gacchanti ye ke c ātma-hano janāḥ ||3||

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DO THEY GO TO HELL AS ENVISIONED BY DANTE IN HIS WORK ON DEVINE COMEDY

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OR ARE THEY BORN IN A DARK WORLD WITHOUT A SUN

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PUTTING DETACHMENT AND SELFLESS ACTION INTO PRACTICE 1. … 2. … 3. …

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FIRST – LET’S AVOID SELFISH ACTIONS REACTIONS

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When someone gets in your way or cuts you off in traffic you get irritated because you think they should not be in your way. Maybe everyone should watch for where you’re going and clear a path zenhabits.net

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When someone doesn’t clean up after themselves you get irritated because you think you’re entitled to everyone acting the way you want them to act being clean and considerate zenhabits.net

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We always think of ‘What is in it for me’ and not ‘What good will it do for someone else’

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When someone irritates you your “self” is angry because they aren’t acting the way you want them to act. You think you’re entitled to quiet entitled to being treated fairly or with respect entitled to have the world behave the way you want it to behave zenhabits.com

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GOAL OF LIFE WAVE 4 –VERSES 4-8

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MOTIONLESS – YET SWIFTER THAN THE MIND MOVING – YET UNMOVING NEAR – YET FAR INSIDE – AND OUTSIDE NATURE OF SELF

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GOAL OF LIFE –VERSES 4 5 The Self is the motionless one swifter than the mind. The devas senses could not overtake. It ran before them. Sitting It goes faster than those who run after It. By It Matarisva the element Air supports the activity of all living beings. 4 The Atman moves and It moves not It is far and It is near It is within all this It is also outside all this. 5

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MOTIONLESS…YET SWIFTER THAN THE MIND

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MOVING…YET UNMOVING

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NEAR… YET FAR…

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AIR WITHIN… …………………...AIR OUTSIDE

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HE WHO CONSTANTLY SEES EVERYWHERE ALL EXISTENCE IN THE SELF AND THE SELF IN ALL BEINGS AND FORMS THEREAFTER FEELS NO HATRED FOR ANYTHING 6 GOAL OF LIFE

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SEEING ALL EXISTENCE IN THE SELF…

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SEEING THE SELF IN ALL BEINGS…

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LITTLE ACTS OF KINDNESS

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GOAL OF LIFE –VERSES 6-8 He who constantly sees everywhere all existence in the Self and the Self in all beings and forms thereafter feels no hatred for anything. 6 When to the knower all beings have become one in his own Self how shall he feel deluded thereafter What grief can there be to him who sees oneness everywhere. 7 He the Atman is all-pervading bright bodiless scatheless without muscles pure unpierced by evils wise omniscient transcendent and self- existing. He alone allotted their respective functions duties to the various eternal yearsCreators. 8

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WHAT ARE SOME PRACTICAL WAYS OF SEEING THE LORD IN EVERYONE 1. … 2. … 3. …

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Stop stereotyping people…

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Healing power of hugs…

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VIDYA AVIDYA WAVE 5 –VERSES 9-14

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KEY MESSAGE KARMA UPASANA MEDITATION BHAKTI TOGETHER LEAD YOU TOWARDS KNOWLEDGE ULTIMATELY LIBERATION EITHER ONE ON THEIR OWN DOESN’T GIVE YOU LIBERATION

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THEY WHO WORSHIP AVIDYA ALONE VERILY ENTER INTO BLINDENING DARKNESS • Avidya is  Performing ‘Rites’ or ‘Karma’  Worshipping the Prakriti Un-manifest God

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THEY WHO WORSHIP VIDYA ALONE VERILY FALL AS THOUGH INTO AN EVEN GREATER DARKNESS • Vidya is  Performing ‘Meditation’  Worshipping the Personal Manifest God

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THEY WHO WORSHIP VIDYA AVIDYA TOGETHER OVERCOME DEATH ATTAIN IMMORTALITY

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AVIDYA VIDYA AVIDYA + VIDYA • He who knows at the same time both Avidya and Vidya overcomes death by Avidya and obtains immortality by Vidya 11 • He who worships the Personal God and Impersonal Godhead together overcomes death through the worship of the Personal and obtains immortality through the worship of the Impersonal 14 • Those who worship Vidya meditation verily fall as though into an even greater darkness 9 • Those who devote themselves to the Manifested Hiranyagarbha enter into greater darkness 12 • Those who worship Avidya rites alone enter into blinding darkness 9 • Those who worship Unmanifested prakriti fall into blindening darkness 12

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ACTION AND KNOWLEDGE – VERSES 9-11 They who worship Avidya rites alone enter into blindening darkness and they who are engaged in Vidya meditation verily fall as though into an even greater darkness 9 One thing they say is verily obtained from Vidya another thing they say from Avidya thus we have heard from the wise who explained that to us 10. He who knows at the same time both Vidya and Avidya overcomes death by Avidya and obtains immortality by Vidya 11.

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ACTION AND KNOWLEDGE – VERSES 12-14 They fall into blindeing darkness who worship the Unmanifested Prakriti but those who devote themselves to the Manifested Hiranyagarbha enter into greater darkness 12. One thing they say is verily obtained from the w the manifest. Another thing they say from the worship of the Unmanifest thus have we heard from the wise who explained that to us 13. He who worships the Impersonal Godhead and the Personal God together overcomes death through the worship of the Personal and obtains immortality through the worship of the Impersonal 14.

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GLORY SALUTATIONS WAVE 67 –VERSES 15-18

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GLORY OF IMMORTAL SELF – VERSES 15-17 The face of Truth is covered by a golden lid remove O Sun that covering for me the practitioner of Truth so that I may behold It 15 O Pusan Sun Nourisher O Sole Seer O Controller of All Surya Son of Prajapathi disperse Thy rays and gather up Thy burning Light… I behold Thy glorious form…. The Purusha within Thee He am I 16 Let my Prana merge into the all-pervading air and now let this body be burnt by fire to ashes. Om O mind Remember remember what you did 17

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PRAYER TO THE SUPREME SELF – VERSE 18 O Agni Lead us on to ‘wealth’ by a good path as Thou knowest O God all the many ways. Remove the crooked attraction of sin from us. We offer thee our best Salutations 18

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ISAVASYA UPANISHAD SUMMARY

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Glory of Immortal Self 15-17 Path of Renunciation 1 Vidya Avidya 9-14 Path of Action 2 Goal of Life 4-8 Pain Darkness 3 Prayer to the Supreme Self 18 Shantipath Isavasya Upanishad 18 Shantipath That is Whole this is Whole from the Whole the Whole becomes manifest. From the Whole when the Whole is negated or removed what remains again is the Whole . Path of Renunciation This entire universe is clothed inhabited pervaded and enveloped by the Lord. Enjoy nature as the gift from God but with a spirit of renunciation. Do not be attached to them and do not covet the wealth of others. Glory of Immortal Self O Sun Lord remove the golden lid covering the Truth so that I can experience your Glory and declare ‘He am I’. Let my prana merge into the all- pervading air and my body burnt to ashes. Prayer to the Supreme Self O Sun Lord lead us to liberation and remove our attractions to things that bind us. We offer Thee our Salutations. Vidya Avidya Karma Action Upasana Meditation and Bhakti Worship together lead you towards Knowledge ultimately Liberation Moksha. Any one of them on their own is insufficient to achieve Liberation. Goal of Life The Goal of Life is Moksha or Liberation by a constantly seeing everywhere all existence in the Self and b the Self in all beings and forms Path of Action Only by working or acting this way may you live a hundred years. Thus alone will you work in real freedom. Action never clings to a man following this path. . Pain Darkness Those who fail to follow either the Path of Renunciation or the Path of Action will be condemned to be born again in this or other worlds.

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kurvann eveha karm āṇi jij īvi ṣet śata ṁ sam āḥ | eva ṁ tvayi n ā ny atheto’s t i na karma lipyate nare ||2|| Only by working or acting this way may you live a hundred years. Thus alone will you work in real freedom. Action never clings to a man following this path. Om īśāv āsyam ida ṁ sarvam yat ki ṁ ca jagatyāṁ jagat | tena tyaktena bhuñjitha ma g ṛdha ḥ kasyasvid dhanam ||1|| This entire universe is clothed inhabited pervaded and enveloped by the Lord. Enjoy nature as the gift from God but with a spirit of renunciation. Do not be attached to them and do not covet the wealth of others. yas tu sarv āṇi bh ūtani ātmany ev ānupa śyati | sarvabh ūte ṣu catm āna ṁ tato na vijugupsate ||6|| He who constantly sees everywhere all existence in the Self and the Self in all beings and forms thereafter feels no hatred for anything. ISAVASYA UPANISHAD – VERSES TO CONTEMPLATE UPON

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