Adventures in Advaita Vedanta, the philosophy and science of spirit. We are one you and I; are you curious why?..


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Hari OM
'Text-days' are for delving into the words and theory of Advaita Vedanta.

We now explore the Sri Adi Shankara text, "SadaachaaraH". To obtain your own copy, click here.

A question that is often asked is, 'are you happy?' This leads to speculation as to what constitutes happiness. Each must understand this for themselves. What is more, is there a possibility that happiness can be self-contained?

tpR[< SvsuonEv SveiNÔya[a< àtpR[m!,
Mansa mn AalaeKy SvymaTma àkazte.11.
Tarpanam svasukhenaiva svendriyaanaam pratarpanam,
Manasaa mana aalokya svayamaatmaa prakaashate ||11||
Tarpanam is verily the satisfaction of one's sense organs by the Bliss of the Self. Having perceived the mind by the mind, the Self shines by Itself.

Tarpanam is to 'fill one's eyes', to 'gladden'. You will recall that deva tarpanam was mentioned in regard to sandhyaa. We can also do tarpanam for our ancestors. It is an act of offering in remembrance. It honours what they provided for us, and the satisfaction of acknowledging that debt is pleasing to ourselves. We invoke their blessings and grace, and in the sandhyaavandanam, we are seeking the blessings of the deities. In doing so, we are also acknowledging the connectedness of nature and that, being part of it, we are also infinite and complete.

We forget it most of the time. Maya weaves her magic, and we think we are separate and alone. We feel, instead, incomplete, discontent, and seek to be more fulfilled. We undertake actions of trying to make others happy or gather objects to us. Any gain of pleasure from these things is temporary, and we again have to go through those actions and acquisitions to try and satisfy the deep need within us. Add in the varying moods and conditions of our mental and emotional states and even these transitory enjoyments will be different. We cannot consistently attain the type of joy we are desperate to achieve. Everything we do in life is ultimately about trying to obtain that abstract thing called 'happiness'.

Here, the Guru reminds us that all we require to do is honour our predecessors and focus on withdrawing our wild sense organs, bringing them instead to a focus upon the Higher. The mind's attention is turning to itself, to work on being quiet and steady. As thoughts gradually cease, slowly the illumination of consciousness that is the True Self starts to peek through. This is a delight, and we seek it more and more. If we are determined enough, we can break through to the Total Light and experience the Bliss of being full and complete. Hamsa so'hamiti.

True Knowledge is that which quietens the senses and stills the being. The thrill of life is the Self Itself and the world of OET is no longer required to justify being who we are.

It takes a lot of time and effort to break through to the Ultimate - but even dedicated, and honest attempts will bring lasting contentment that nothing of the objective world can ever do.

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Hari OM
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