Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Vairaagyam - Part 10 of 15


In the very beginning of Gitopadesha, when he talks about the characteristics of a ‘sthita-prajna’, he mentions as the first characteristic: *prajahAti yadA kAmAn sarvAn pArtha manogatAn*. This itself is nothing but vairAgyaM.

In the last chapter, when he talks about what should be done in the jnAna path, after having attained success in the path of karma, he says *nityaM vairAgyaM samupAshritaH* (XVIII – 52) – “Dispassion to be practised uninterruptedly”. vairAgyaM is the distaste in everything that you see or hear. This is Acharyal’s statement (in Vivekachudamani).

Of these, putting aside ‘the seen’, the Lord says in the Gita, as I told you already, two things “what is heard, and what is to be heard”. Now in the same Gita when the Acharyal is doing the bhashya for *nityaM vairAgyaM samupAshritaH*, he says “The absence of a thirst of desire in both the seen and the unseen’ -- *dRRishhTA-dRRishTeshhu vishhayeshhu vaitRRishhNyaM*. What does he mean by deisre in the unseen? It is the desire for experience of heaven and in things like the post of Indra, etc.

If one goes through the regimen of veda-ordained karmas as if they are an end in themselves, one obtains such pleasures of the divine world. But they are not visible to our perception now, so they are called *adRRishhTaM*. *dRRishhTaM* means what is seen. The unseen is *adRRishhTaM*.

Thus we see ViarAgyaM from three different angles. One: The abandonment of the desires in everything that we see or hear; two: the abandonment of the desires in what we have heard or what we are going to hear; and three: the abandonment of desires in the seen and the unseen.

[Note by Ra. Ganapathy: In Gita XIII – 8 the word ‘VairAgyam’ occurs. When the Acharyal is commenting on this, he explains: “In the senses like sound etc. , a desireless attitude towards the experiences seen and unseen” .The etc. connotes all that can occupy the mind through the senses – just as the Mahaswamigal would want us to understand.]

Putting all this together we get the meaning for *sarvAn pArtha manogatAn*, that is, any desire that can occupy the mind has to be tabooed; that is what vairAgyaM is.This is a very important part of SAdhanA.


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