Self-Realisation- Who Am I?


From Svetasvatara Upanishad
Translations by Swami Prabhavananda
Sri Ramakrishna Math

The Rishis (seers of truth) inquire within themselves:

What is the cause of this universe? Is it Brahman (the Supreme Reality)? Whence do we come? Why do we live? Where shall we at last find rest? Under whose command are we bound by the law of happiness and its opposite?

Time, space, law, chance, matter, primal energy, intelligence- none of these, nor a combination of these, can be the final cause of the universe, for they are effects, and exist to serve the soul. Nor can the individual soul be the cause, for being subject to the law of happiness and misery, it is not free.

The Rishis (seers of truth), absorbed in meditation, saw within themselves the ultimate Reality, the self-luminous Being, the one God, who dwells as the self-conscious power in all creatures. He is one without a second. Deep within all beings He dwells, hidden from sight by the coverings of the gunas – sattwa, Rajas, and Tamas. He presides over time, space, and all apparent causes.

Like oil in sesame seeds, butter in cream, water in the river-bed, fire in the tinder, the Self dwells within the soul. Realise Him through truthfulness and meditation.

Like butter in cream is the Self in everything. Knowledge of the Self is gained through meditation. The Self is Brahman (Supreme Reality). By Brahman is all ignorance destroyed.

Fire, though present in the firestick, is not perceived until one stick is rubbed against another. The Self is like that fire; it is realised in the body by meditation on the sacred syllable OM (AUM).

Let your body be the stick that is rubbed, the sacred syllable OM the stick that is rubbed against it. Thus shall you realise God, who is hidden within the body as fire is hidden within the wood.

He who is realised by transcending the world of cause and effect, in deep contemplation, is expressly declared by the scriptures to be the Supreme Brahman. He is the substance, all else the shadow. He is the imperishable.

The knowers of Brahman know Him as the one reality behind all that seems. For this reason they are devoted to Him. Absorbed in Him, they attain freedom from the wheel of birth, death and rebirth.

Matter is perishable. The Lord, the destroyer of ignorance, is imperishable, immortal. He is the one God, the Lord of the perishable and of all souls. By meditating in Him, by uniting oneself with Him, one ceases to be ignorant.

Know God, and all fetters will be loosed. Ignorance will vanish. Birth, death and rebirth will be no more. Meditate upon Him and transcend physical consciousness. Thus will you reach union with the Lord of the universe. But you must know this. Nothing further is there to know. Meditate, and you will realise that mind, matter, and Maya (the power that unites mind and matter) are but three aspects of Brahman, the one Reality.

To realise God ...

To realise God, first control the outgoing senses and harness the mind. Then meditate upon the light in the heart of the fire - meditate, that is, upon Pure Consciousness as distinct from the ordinary consciousness of the intellect. Thus the Self, the Inner Reality, may be seen behind physical appearance.

Control your mind so that the Ultimate reality, the self-luminous Lord, may be revealed. Strive earnestly for eternal bliss.

With the help of the mind and the intellect, keep the senses from attaching themselves to objects of pleasure. They will then  be purified by the light of the Inner reality, and that light will be revealed.

The wise control their minds, and unite their hearts with the infinite, the omniscient, the all-pervading Lord. Only discriminating souls practice spiritual disciplines. Great is the glory of the self-luminous Being, the inner Reality.

Hear, all ye children of immortal bliss, also ye gods who dwell in the high heavens: Follow only in the footsteps of the illumined ones, and by continuous meditation merge both mind and intellect in the eternal Brahman. The glorious Lord will be revealed to you.

Control the vital force. Set fire to the Self within by the practice of meditation. Be drunk with the wine of divine love. Thus shall you reach perfection.

Be devoted to the eternal Brahman. Unite the light within you with the light of Brahman. Thus will the source of ignorance be destroyed, and you will rise above karma.

Sit upright, holding the chest, throat and head erect. Turn the senses and the mind inward to the lotus of the heart. Meditate on Brahman with the help of the syllable OM. Cross the fearful currents of the ocean of worldliness by means of the raft of Brahman – the sacred syllable OM.

With earnest effort hold the senses in check. Controlling the breath, regulate the vital activities. As a charioteer holds back his restive horses, so does a persevering aspirant hold back his mind.

Retire to a solitary place, such as a mountain cave or a sacred spot. The place must be protected from the wind and rain, and it must have a smooth, clean floor, free from pebbles and dust. It must not be damp, and it must be free from disturbing noises. It must be pleasing to the eye and quieting to the mind. Seated there, practice meditation and other spiritual exercises. As you practice meditation, you may see in vision forms resembling snow, crystals, smoke, fire, lightning, fireflies, the sun, the moon. These are signs that you are on your way to the revelation of Brahman.

As you become absorbed in meditation, you will realise that the Self is separate from the body and for this reason will not be affected by disease, old age or death.

The first signs of progress on the path of Yoga are health, a sense of physical lightness, clearness of complexion, a beautiful voice, an agreeable odour of the person, and freedom from craving.

As a soiled piece of metal, when it has been cleaned, shines brightly, so the dweller in the body, when he has realised the truth of the Self, loses his sorrow and becomes radiant with bliss.The yogi experiences directly the truth of Brahman by realising the light of the Self within. He is freed from all impurities – He is pure, the birthless, the bright.

He is the one God, present on the north, the east, the south and the west. He is the creator. He enters into all wombs. He alone is now born as all beings, and He alone is to be born as all beings in the future. He is within all persons as the inner Self, facing in all directions.

Let us adore the Lord, the luminous one, who is in fire, who is in water, who is in plants and trees, who pervades the whole universe. At the periods of creation and dissolution of the universe, He alone exists. Those who realise Him become immortal.

The Lord is one without a second. Within man, and within all other beings, He projects the universe, maintains it, and
withdraws it into Himself.

His eyes are everywhere; His face, His arms, His feet are in every place. Out of Himself He has produced the heavens and the earth, and with His arms and His wings He holds them together.

He is the origin and support of the gods. He is the Lord of all. He confers bliss and wisdom upon those who are devoted to Him. He destroys their sins and their sorrows.

He punishes those who break His laws. He sees all and knows all. May He endow us with good thoughts!

This vast universe is a wheel. Upon it are all creatures that are subject to birth and death and rebirth. Round and round it turns, and never stops. It is the wheel of Brahman. As long as the individual self thinks it is separate from Brahman, it revolves upon the wheel in bondage to the laws of birth, death and rebirth. But when through the grace of Brahman it realises its identity with Him, it revolves upon the wheel no longer. It achieves immortality.

The Lord supports this universe, which is made up of the perishable and the imperishable, the manifest and the unmanifest. The individual soul, forgetful of the Lord, attaches itself to pleasure and thus is bound. When it comes to the Lord, it is freed from all its fetters.

Mind and matter, master and servant- both have existed from beginnigless time. The Maya that unites them has also existed from beginningless time. When all three- mind, matter, and Maya- are known as one with Brahman, then is it realised that the Self is infinite and has no part in action. Then it is revealed that the Self is all.

O Lord, Thou hast revealed Thy sacred syllable OM, which is
one with Thee. In Thy hands it is a weapon with which to destroy ignorance. O protector of Thy devotees, do not conceal Thy benign person.

Thou art  the Supreme Brahman. Thou art infinite. Thou hast assumed the forms of all creatures, remaining hidden in them. Thou prevadest all things. Thou art the one God of the universe. Those who realise Thee become immortal.

Said the great seer Svetasvatara:

I have known beyond all darkness, that great Person of golden effulgence. Only by knowing Him does one conquer death. There is no other way of escaping the wheel of birth, death and rebirth.There is nothing superior to Him, nothing different from Him, nothing subtler or greater than He. Alone He stands, changeless, self-luminous; He, the great one, fills this universe.

Though He fills this universe, He transcends it. He is untouched by its sorrows. He has no form. Those who know Him become immortal. Others remain in the depths of misery.

The Lord God, all-pervading and omnipresent, dwells in the
heart of all beings. Full of grace, He ultimately gives liberation to all creatures by turning their faces forward Himself.He is the innermost Self. He is the great Lord. He it is that reveals the purity within the heart by means of which He, who is pure Being, may be reached. He is the ruler. He is the great light, shining forever.

This great Being, assuming the form of the size of a thumb,
forever dwells in the heart of all creatures as their innermost Self. He can be known directly by the purified mind through spiritual discrimination. Knowing Him, men become immortal.

This great Being has a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, and a thousand feet. He envelopes the universe. Though transcendent, He is to be meditated upon as residing in the lotus of the heart, at the centre of the body, ten fingers above the navel.

He alone is all this- what has been and what shall be. He has become the universe, yet He remains forever changeless, and is the Lord of immortality.

Without organs of sense, yet reflecting the activities of the senses, He is the Lord and ruler of all.He is the friend and refuge of all. He resides in the body, the city of nine gates. He sports in the world and without in innumerable forms. He is the Master, the ruler of the whole world, animate and inanimate.

He moves fast, though without feet. He grasps everything, though without hands. He sees everything , though without eyes. He hears everything, though without ears. He knows all that is, but no one knows Him. He is called the Supreme, the Great One.

Subtler than the subtlest, greater than the greatest, the Self is hidden in the heart of all creatures. Through His grace a man loses his cravings, transcends grief, and realises Him as Brahman Supreme.

If the truth of these scriptures are meditated upon by a man in the highest degree devoted to God, and (devoted) to his guru (spiritual teacher) as to his God, they will shine forth. They will shine forth indeed!

Om… peace – peace –peace.

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Oldest Civilization

Oldest Civilization

Sunken City Off India Coast
7500 B.C.? 10 000 B.C.? 50 000 B.C.?

How to fix the date of the Mahabharata
A practical suggestion

The following text is taken from the Mahabharata.
The text in Section VI predicts the sinking of the City of Dwaravati. Section VII describes how the city of Dwarka was swallowed up by the ocean.  Geological expertise can help determine the period when the city of Dwarka was lost beneath the ocean waves.

Tsunami? (Earliest recorded event of Tsunami)

From The Mahabharata
Mausala Parva, Section VI
Translated by Sri Kisari Mohan GanguliVasudeva said:
This city of Dwaravati, after Arjuna’s
departure, will, with its walls and edifices, be swallowed
up by the ocean without any delay.From The Mahabharata
Mausala Parva, Section VII
Translated by Sri Kisari Mohan Ganguli

Vaisampayana said: The widows of the other heroes of the Bhoja, the Vrishni, and the Andhaka races, lordless now, that set out with Arjuna, numbered many millions.
That foremost of car-warriors, that conqueror of hostile towns, viz., the son of Pritha, escorted this vast procession of Vrishnis, which still abounded with wealth, and which looked like a veritable ocean.
After all the people had set out, the ocean, that home of sharks and alligators, flooded Dwarka, which still teemed with wealth of every kind, with its waters. Whatever portion of the ground was passed over, ocean immediately flooded over with his waters. Beholding this wonderful sight, the inhabitants of Dwarka walked faster and faster, saying, - "Wonderful is the course of fate! Dhananjaya (Arjuna), after abandoning Dwarka, proceeded by slow marches, causing the Vrishni women to rest in pleasant forest and mountains and by the sides of delightful streams.

Sunken City Off India Coast-
7500 B. C.?
© 2002 by Linda Moulton HoweFebruary 16, 2002Surat, India - A month ago in mid-January, marine scientists in India announced they had sonar images of square and rectangular shapes about 130 feet down off the northwestern coast of India in the Gulf of Khambhat (Cambay). Not only are their sonar shapes with 90-degree angles, the Indian Minister of Science and Technology ordered that the site be dredged. What was found has surprised archaeologists around the world and was the subject of a private meeting two weeks ago attended by the Indian Minister in charge of investigating the underwater site about thirty miles off the coast from Surat.An American who traveled to that private meeting was Michael Cremo, researcher in the history of archaeology for the Bhakti Vedanta Institute in India and author of the book Forbidden Archaeology. I talked with him today in India about the dredging operation, what the ocean engineers found and the implications of first carbon dating of artifacts at more than 9,000 years.

Michael Cremo, Researcher of Ancient Archaeology
and Author, Forbidden Archaeology

"Within the past few months, the engineers began some dredging operations there and they pulled up human fossil bones, fossil wood, stone tools, pieces of pottery and many other things that indicated that it indeed was a human habitation site that they had. And they were able to do more intensive sonar work there and were able to identify more structures. They appeared to have been laid out on the bank of a river that had been flowing from the Indian subcontinent out into that area.According to the news releases, they have done a radiocarbon testing on a piece of wood from the underwater site that is now yielding an age of 9,500 years which would place it near the end of the last Ice Age.Yes, those are the indications that are coming. There were actually two radiocarbon dates: one about 7500 years old and another about 9500 years old. The 9500 year old one seems to be the strongest one. That's the one they are going with. This was announced by Minister Joshi (Murli Manohar Joshi is Indian Minister for Ocean Technology) at this meeting I attended in Hyderabad, India. He said there is going to be more work going on. It's difficult because it's very difficult to see down there. There is a very swift current. So, it's going to have to be a pretty massive effort, but he said the government of India is willing to put the resources behind it to do whatever it takes to further confirm these discoveries.I also spoke in Hyderabad with an independent archaeologist not connected with the Indian government, but who has a deep interest in these discoveries and he says they are still going to have to send divers down there. Up to this point, they have not sent divers down. The information they have is based on the sonar readings and the dredging they have done. Eventually, they are going to have to find a way to get people down there to take a closer look at this. I think this effort is going to go on.

 Now, another American archaeologist, Richard Meadows of Harvard University, is proposing there should be an international effort here. On the surface that sounds like a good idea, but it also may be an effort of American archaeologists and others to control the project. I don't think they want to see a civilization being as old as it appears to be according to these new finds at 9500 years ago. So, I would hope the Indian archaeologists and government would be very cautious about letting outsiders in there who might have a different agenda and who might try to control what gets let out about this very important discovery. It could be quite revolutionary.

Cultural Background of People At Underwater Site?

Even if we don't know what the cultural background of the people is, if it does happen to be a city that is 9500 years old, that is older than the Sumerian civilization by several thousand years. It is older than the Egyptian, older than the Chinese. So it would radically affect our whole picture of the development of urban civilization on this planet.

 Now, if it further happens that additional research is able to identify the culture of the people who lived in that city that's now underwater, if it turns out they are a Vedic people - which I think is quite probable given the location of this off the coast of India - I think that would radically change the whole picture of Indian history which has basically been written by western archaeologists.

India's Vedic Culture - Was It Really Older Than 3500 Years?

The most archaic Sanskrit (Devanagari) is that of the Vedas, multiple books written in thousands of hymns and verses arranged in song cycles. The Vedas say that "God-men" brought Sanskrit to Earth men as a language of musical tones

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Indus Script
- the mother of all alphabetic scriptsAbove on the left is a comparison of the numerals 1 through 10 in Devanagari Sanskrit compared to Arabic. On the right are some examples of Devanagari vowels and diphthongs.Sources: The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th Edition © 1993 and Sanskrit Keys to the Wisdom Religion © 1968 by Judith Tyberg.Ever since the 19th Century, there has been a huge debate about the actual history of India. When the Europeans first came there, they noticed that the people in India who had the Sanskrit language as the main language of their literature - they noticed that the European languages were similar (in word concepts), so that meant the Europeans and East Indians had to be related. The 19th Century scientists also noticed that the Sanskrit culture or Vedic culture, as it is sometimes called after the ancient Indian literature, Vedas, which means knowledge, so sometimes the ancient Indian culture is called the Vedic culture or Vedic civilization. The literature is called the Vedic literature. So, the scientists noticed that it appeared to be older than the European cultures. Since the European languages were related to the Indian language Sanskrit of the Vedas that could only mean that the European peoples had to have come out of India somehow and then gone to Europe with their languages that differentiated into Russian, English, Spanish, German and the rest of them. The European investigators didn't like that idea because it would have given the Vedic culture a position superior to their own. So, these early cities in the Indus Valley like Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro have been identified by archaeologists such as Richard Meadows and others as being non-Vedic. They think the Vedic culture came into India maybe 3500 years ago.Isn't that inconsistent with the concept of the Vedas of the Krishna character who comes and says the universe is teeming with life and appears to have knowledge about other habitations in the cosmos and is talking from an age that would go back at least 9,500 years?In these ancient Sanskrit writings, there is no hint at all that the culture came from anywhere else.And if they are the prime source and if the Vedic literature can be taken literally, then it implies that there were cities there inhabited at least several thousand years ago.

Yes, and there has been other research going on in that area. For example, the Rg Veda, which is one of the earliest Vedic literatures, talks about a mighty river called the Saraswati that flowed from the Himalayan mountains down to the Arabian Sea, down in that area of northwestern India. And such a river doesn't exist there today. So, what happened is that people thought therefore the Rg Veda cannot be talking about India. It has to be talking about some other place outside of India where there was some kind of river.

But what happened that is quite interesting a few years ago is that archaeologists in India started studying the satellite photographs from American satellites like LANDSAT had been providing and they noticed there was a dry river channel that began up in the Himalayas, a huge river that went down almost to that Bay of Khambaht (Cambay) we are talking about (the location of the underwater city site). And then later, they found that on the banks of that river there were 800 to 1000 urban sites, archaeological sites.So, it does appear that what the Rg Veda was talking about, a mighty river lined with cities in India over 5,000 years ago - that has to be true. The last time that river had water in it was over 5,000 years ago?Is there a possibility that there could have been some sort of non-human co-habitation on the continent of India let's say 50,000 years ago that could explain all of the Vedas?

Yes. In Kashmir, the valley of Kashmir, it appears it was many years ago a lake. Now, there is an ancient Sanskrit manuscript that tells of a lake that existed in that area, so that account is there in some ancient writings. Now, according to modern geological reporting, about 40,000 years ago Kashmir was indeed a lake in the valley of Kashmir in northern India. It was covered by a huge lake and it was blocked on the southern end by a little range of mountains. And at a certain point, something happened and it broke open and the lake drained out. That happened about 40,000 to 50,000 years ago. So, it is interesting that you've got this ancient historical record that talks about this lake. And if it is to be taken literally, then it means that somebody must have seen this lake as it existed 50,000 years ago and wrote about it."

Harappan Civilization (ca. 3000 - 1500 B.C.)

Until the recent Bay of Khambaht discovery, one of the oldest, advanced urban centers in India investigated by archaeologists is Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro in present day Pakistan along the Indus River. Will anything in the Bay of Khambaht discovery resemble the structures of the very ancient and mysterious Harappan Civilization? Excavated walls of a Harappan urban city, one of the most mysterious cultures of the ancient Indian world more than 3,000 years ago. The people were literate and used the Dravidian Sanskrit language, only part of which has been deciphered today. The artifacts from Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro in the Indus Valley of Pakistan are extraordinary in beauty and detail.
Source:North Park University, Chicago, Illinois.

Some Details from Harappan Urban Site

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Mysterious white rings made of brick dot the landscape where Harappan people lived, but archaeologists do not know the function.
One guess is platforms for spreading and drying of grains.
Source: North Park University, Chicago, Illinois.The first objects unearthed from Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro were small stone seals inscribed with elegant depictions of animals, including a unicorn-like figure in upper left, and marked with Indus script writing which still baffles scholars.
These seals are dated back to 2500 B. C. Source: North Park University, Chicago, Illinois.This seal is a close-up of the unicorn-like animal found in Mohenjo-daro, measures 29mm (1.14 inches) on each side and is made of heated Steatite.
"Steatite is an easily carved soft stone that becomes hard after firing. On the top are four pictographs of an as yet undeciphered Indus script, one of the first writing systems in history." Image source Dept. of Archaeology and Museums, Govt. of Pakistan.Book: Forbidden Archeology
by Michael Cremo and Richard Thompson


NASA Images Discover Ancient Bridge
Between India & Sri Lanka

Space images taken by NASA reveal a mysterious ancient bridge in the Palk Strait
between India and Sri Lanka. The recently discovered bridge currently named as
Ram Setu (Adam's Bridge) is made of chain of shoals, c.18 mi (30 km) long.

The bridge's unique curvature and composition by age reveals that it is man made. The legends as well as Archeological studies reveal that the first signs of human inhabitants in Sri Lanka date back to the a primitive age, about 1,750,000 years ago and the bridge's age is also almost equivalent.

This information is a crucial aspect for an insight into the ancient epic  RAMAYANA, which was supposed to have taken place in treta yuga (more than 1,700,000 years ago)......

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The Suryasiddhanta speaks of the division of time.
According to it:

Kaliyuga  consists of 432,000 Years
Dvaparayuga   "    864,000 years
Tretayuga         " 1,296,000 years
Krtayuga          " 1,728,000 years

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Radhe-Krishna Bhajans

Radhe-Krishna Bhajans

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