Tuesday, June 14, 2011

siddhAs lose themselves in divine impassivity - mantrA 127

srigurubhyO namahA |

In this, the 127th mantrA, the sage describes some of the different states of attainment of the siddars. As some of the terms (in the original tamil) are intended to be accurate or even technical in the manner in which they are employed, I have tried to provide an essence of the states of being / attainment which the sage speaks of. Though they are not entirely descriptive of these states, they will give those of us who are not trained in the classical/technical use and meaning of these terms a better idea of what is described.

There are many parallels of what is being said here, described in astonishing depth in the yOga vAsishtA. As part of his discourse to rAma, the sage vasishtA details the different states of attainment of the realised being. I could perhaps build the body of this post by quoting some verses from the text... But I resist the temptation to rabbit on and instead decide to focus on the text at hand!

இருந்தார் சிவமாகி எங்குந் தாமாகி
இருந்தார் சிவன்செயல் யாவையும் நோக்கி
இருந்தார் முக்காலத்து இயல்பைக் குறித்தங்கு
இருந்தார் இழவுவந்து எய்திய சோம்பே. I.1.15.127

Siddhas Lose Themselves in Divine Impassivity

In Siva they remained, seeing themselves in all,
Remained thus mutely gazing at Siva's works manifold,
In silence witnessing Time's three tenses,
They remained, lost,
While Divine Impassivity spread its sable wings. I.1.15.127

ComIn Siva they remained, seeing themselves in all, The siva siddars, having attained to the state of siva, remain thus – as pervading this universe as siva. Remained thus mutely gazing at Siva’s works manifold, they remain forever in a detached state; watching their own lives and everything around them as the work of siva, the supreme Lord. In silence witnessing Time’s three tenses, they stand unmoved, as witnesses to the changes in Time (i.e. the past, the present and the future). They remained, lost, While Divine Impassivity spread its sable wings. And all the while they remain still, without performing any actions for themselves.

# This mantrA provides a clear illustration of some of the states associated with the accomplished siddars. The term ‘engum thAmAgi irutthal’ or ‘seeing themselves in all’ refers to the state of mind where everything is perceived as sivaswarUpA – i.e. everything is seen as a manifestation of the same siva. This is where the all-pervading nature of siva is understood clearly. This state of being is known as sivaswarUpam; and also known as sivAnanda bOdhasAram. (the essence of the experience of the bliss of siva)

The term ‘ sivanseyal yAvayum nOkki irutthal’ or ‘mutely gazing at Siva’s works manifold’ refers to the state of mind where due to the clear perception of ‘reality’ without taint, the panchakritya niyathI (the fivefold actions of the supreme viz. creation, preservation, etc) as appropriate to the jivas is understood clearly. This state of being is known as siva darisanam.(the vision of siva - pls note that it is not a 'vision' one has of siva, rather it is the vision that siva has. That is, to 'see' with siva's eyes - as an uninvolved and unparticipating vouyer).

The term ‘ mukkAlathu iyalbai aridhal’ or ‘witnessing Time’s three tenses’ refers to the fact that the siva siddars after having achieved the state of siva darisanam (refer above) obtain the state of siva. This is a supreme state and is beyond death and destruction. Time on the other hand is not indestructible or even unchangeable – It is limited and also undergoes the three fold change (past, present & future). Hence the siddars who have reached the supreme state of sivadarisanam gain the understanding of the finite and limited Time.

The term ‘ izhivu vandhEidhiya sOmbu’ or ‘ they remained, lost, While divine Impassivity spread its sable wings’ refers to the state of mind where there is no fear or worry with respect to what has happened or what is happening or what will happen. This is because everything is (correctly) understood to be the will of siva. Thus the true siddars remain impassive and without getting involved with the flow of life. This state is better explained in the mantra 504.

The term ‘tarbhOdankedal’ or ‘impassivity’ refers to the state of being which is effortless (sahajA). For which no specific endeavour be it spiritual or physical is necessary. The above mantra clarifies that the siddars remain in the untainted plane of the self state (even) though they do not undertake any specific effort to be in that state. That they would have had to undertake tremendous effort in order to first reach such a plane of being is not being disputed here. But the sage conveys that even though it might appear as if the siddar is doing nothing (even those acts/karmAs that are prescribed for their stage in life), in fact he is never moved from the self state. Thus the true siva siddar is not one who has transgressed the prescribed rules of living, but one who has transcended them.

Thirucchitrambalam |

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

They walk into light of siva - mantrA 126

srigurubhyO namahA |

Continuing from where we left off some months ago, without preamble, I will proceed to the next mantrA in the text.

முப்பதும் ஆறும் படிமுத்தி ஏணியாய்
ஒப்பிலா ஆனந்தத் துள்ளொளி புக்குச்
செப்ப அரிய சிவங்கண்டு தான்தெளிந்து
அப்பரி சாக அமர்ந்திருந் தாரே. I.1.14.126

They Walk Into Light of Siva

Ascending thus the steps,
Thirty and six of Freedom's ladder high,
Into the peerless Light of Bliss they walked;
And Siva, the inexplicable, they saw--
Having seen, realized and so stayed. I.1.14.126

Com -Ascending thus the steps, Thirty and Six of Freedom’s ladder high, (The siddars) ascend high towards the final goal of mukthi or liberation using the knowledge of the thirty six (see previous mantrAs) tattvAs, that are enumerated in the AgamAs, as the ladder. Into the peerless Light of Bliss they walked; ascending thus they merge into the luminous plane beyond compare – that of endless sivAnandA or supreme bliss, And Siva, the inexplicable, they saw – (and there) they had the darshan / vision of the supreme siva, that supreme principle which transcends description by way of words, Having seen, realized and so stayed. And having seen the supreme, they realized the truth about their Selves (as siva) and the siddars remained so (as siva).

# The term ‘padi mukthi EniyAi’ in the original, refers to the fact that the siddars consider the thirty six tattvAs as the ladder to liberation. That is, they ascend the spiritual path through transformation while still being engaged with the tattvAs (i.e. the phenomenal world, the body, the mind etc). Unlike some other schools of thought which encourage (and expect) the aspirant to suppress or overcome the distractions by understanding all phenomena as unreal or illusory, the siddars are those whose philosophy is accepting of the various tattvAs. They are understood correctly to be the various modifications (parinAmA) of the one siva.

Thus the sage makes clear that the true siddars are those, who have reached the highest goal of liberation through the paths that use the thirty six tattvAs as the ladder to spiritual heights. And having reached such heights, the siddars remain in that self-state being verily like siva Himself.

thirucchitrambalam |