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Tasting the joy of the self

As a result of withdrawal from multitudinous actions, the individual experiences the presence of the Self alone, which is of the very nature of bliss.

Published: 02nd May 2021 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st May 2021 07:15 AM   |  A+A-

Silhoutte, fredom

Representational image

We constantly engage in some activity only to experience happiness. No one will undertake any project that will not give them happiness in the end. In the Vivekachoodamani, Sri Adi Sankaracharya says that for the Jeevan Mukta, or one who has completely realised the truth and is hence free from bondage, the result is this.

In the world of experiences without and within, he experiences a state of bliss at all times. He tastes the joy of the Self at all times.

When he is free of identification with the body as the Self, it is a state of dispassion. The result of dispassion is clear knowledge of the Self. Once the knowledge of the Self is attained, then the individual withdraws from all unnecessary actions and focuses on his own work, and does it out of a sense of joy, rather than as a chore.

As a result of withdrawal from multitudinous actions, the individual experiences the presence of the Self alone, which is of the very nature of bliss. This experience leads to unalloyed peace where the mind does not break into waves of thoughts.

This knowledge cannot be seen and learnt through the five senses. It cannot be deduced too like seeing smoke and understanding there is fire. The scriptures point this out and the teachers explain them for us.

While the teacher here says that when the person has the right discriminative understanding of what is the truth and what is not, if dispassion towards objects that are not the reality is absent, then there is no use of gaining the right discrimination through knowledge.

When there is dispassion, but there is no Uparati - or focus on one's own designated work done without identification of oneself as the doer of the action and just for public good - then there is no experience of the Self. When there is no Self-experience, there is no peace too. In complete withdrawal is supreme satisfaction where the joy of the Self nonpareil is experienced. 

This is basically a back-to-the-basics programme devised by the teacher where he exhorts the student to get back to the four aspects of Sadhana enumerated in the beginning: Viveka (right discrimination), Vairagya (dispassion), Shama (peace of mind), Dama (control of senses), Uparati (performance of one’s duties), Titiksha (putting up with the pinpricks of life), Shraddha (faith in the words of the scriptures and the teacher), Samadhanam (absorbed mind), and Mumukshutva (an intense desire for liberation). 

The teacher repeatedly glorifies the results of this knowledge of the Self. Such an individual is no more affected by the evil of sorrow. As he faces the results of the actions done in moments of ignorance in the past, he now has no interest in. How will he repeat those actions, now that he knows the truth?



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