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00.04 - The Beautiful in the Upanishads
1.2.01 - The Upanishadic and Purancic Systems
2.07 - The Upanishad in Aphorism
3.2.02 - The Veda and the Upanishads
The Upanishads
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--- DICTIONARIES (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)


The Upanishads belong to the third division of the Vedas and are appended to the Brahmanas. The number of Upanishads hitherto known is about 170, though probably only a score are now complete without evident marks of excision or interpolation. These Upanishads belong to different periods of antiquity, some being of a much later date than others. Although the Upanishads are usually considered by modern scholars to be as a whole of later date than the Brahmanas, the original Upanishads were composed in an antiquity which anteceded that of the Brahmanas, and are probably coeval with the composition of the Vedas themselves.


--- QUOTES [27 / 27 - 113 / 113] (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)



KEYS (10k)

   21 Sri Aurobindo
   1 Yajnavalkya
   1 Sri Ramana Maharshi
   1 Satprem
   1 Nolini Kanta Gupta
   1 Anonymous
   1 Aleister Crowley

NEW FULL DB (2.4M)

   24 Sri Aurobindo
   10 Swami Vivekananda

   7 Anonymous

   4 Joseph Campbell

   3 Mahatma Gandhi

   3 Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa

   2 Will Durant

   2 Sri Aurobindo

   2 Prabhavananda

   2 Pavan K Varma

   2 Matthew Fox

   2 Huston Smith

   2 Frederick Lenz

   2 Erwin Schrodinger

   2 Bede Griffiths

   2 Awdhesh Singh

   2 Arthur Schopenhauer


1:Not for the sake of the wife, but for the sake of the Self is the wife dear to us. ~ Yajnavalkya, the Upanishads *which?,
2:All sentience is ultimately self-sentience. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
3:All variations resolve themselves into an unity. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
4:Where there is no limitation, there can be no pain. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
5:For the most part men are the slaves of their associations. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads On Translating the Upanishads,
6:There is nothing which is exclusively spirit or exclusively matter. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
7:The material world and the physical life exist for us only by virtue of our internal self and our internal life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Subject of the Upanishad,
8:Suicide is merely a frenzied revolt against limitation, a revolt not the less significant because it is without knowledge. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
9:It implies not life after death, but freedom from both life and death, for what we call life is after all impossible without death. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads On Translating the Upanishads,
10:In the Upanishad the sun is the symbol of the supramental Truth and it is said that those who pass into it may return but those who pass through the gates of the Sun itself do not; possibly this means that an ascent into the supermind itself above the golden lid of overmind was the definitive liberation. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II ,
11:Meditation here is not reflection or any other kind of discursive thinking. It is pure concentration: training the mind to dwell on an interior focus without wandering, until it becomes absorbed in the object of its contemplation. But absorption does not mean unconsciousness. The outside world may be forgotten, but meditation is a state of intense inner wakefulness. ~ Anonymous, The Upanishads ,
12:In men, says the Upanishad, the Self-Existent has cut the doors of consciousness outward, but a few turn the eye inward and it is these who see and know the Spirit and develop the spiritual being. Thus to look into ourselves and see and enter into ourselves and live within is the first necessity for transformation of nature and for the divine life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 2.28 - The Divine Life,
13:In the growth into a divine life the spirit must be our first preoccupation; until we have revealed and evolved it in our self out of its mental, vital, physical wrappings and disguises, extricated it with patience from our own body, as the Upanishad puts it, until we have built up in ourselves an inner life of the spirit, it is obvious that no outer divine living can become possible. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 2.28 - The Divine Life,
14:God is, is the first seed of Yoga. It is Tat Sat of the Vedanta. I am, is the second seed. It is So'ham of the Upanishads. God is infinite self-existence, self-conscious force of existence, self-diffused or self-concentrated delight of existence; I too am that infinite self-existence, self-consciousness, self-force, self-delight; this is the double third seed. It is Sachchidananda of the worldwide transcendental conclusion of all human thinking. Self-knowledge is the foundation of the complete Yoga. Affirm in yourselves self-knowledge. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Essays Divine And Human ,
15:Talk 15.A question was asked about the Upanishadic passage, "The Supreme Spirit is subtler than the subtlest and larger than the largest."M.: Even the structure of the atom has been found by the mind. Therefore the mind is subtler than the atom. That which is behind the mind, namely the individual soul, is subtler than the mind.Further, the Tamil saint Manickavachagar has said of the specks dancing in a beam of sunlight, that if each represents a universe, the whole sunlight will represent the Supreme Being. ~ Sri Ramana Maharshi, Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi Sri Ramanasramam,
16:At the base of all spiritual knowledge is this consciousness of identity and by identity, which knows or is simply aware of all as itself. Translated into our way of consciousness this becomes the triple knowledge thus formulated in the Upanishad, 'He who sees all existences in the Self', 'He who sees the Self in all existences', 'He in whom the Self has become all existences', -inclusion, indwelling and identity: but in the fundamental consciousness this seeing is a spiritual self-sense, a seeing that is self-light of being, not a separative regard or a regard upon self turning that self into object. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 2.10 - Knowledge by Identity and Separative Knowledge,
17:The Fire is to be quieted and silenced says the Upanishad. Then we come nearer, to the immediate vicinity of the Truth; an inner hearing opens, the direct voice of Truth - the Word - reaches us to lead and guide. Even so, however, we have not come to the end of our journey; the Word of revelation is not the ultimate Light. The Word too is a clothing, though a luminous clothing - hiranmayam pair am. When this last veil dissolves and disappears, when utter silence, absolute calm and quietude reign in the entire consciousness, when no other lights trouble or distract our attention, there appears the Atman in its own body ; we stand face to face with the source of all lights, the self of the Light, the light of the Self. We are that Light and we become that Light. ~ Nolini Kanta Gupta, The Approach To Mysticism ,
18:The Vedic poets regarded their poetry as mantras, they were the vehicles of their own realisations and could become vehicles of realisation for others. Naturally, these mostly would be illuminations, not the settled and permanent realisation that is the goal of Yoga - but they could be steps on the way or at least lights on the way. Many have such illuminations, even initial realisations while meditating on verses of the Upanishads or the Gita. Anything that carries the Word, the Light in it, spoken or written, can light this fire within, open a sky, as it were, bring the effective vision of which the Word is the body. In all ages spiritual seekers have expressed their aspirations or their experiences in poetry or inspired language and it has helped themselves and others. Therefore there is nothing absurd in my assigning to such poetry a spiritual or psychic value and effectiveness to poetry of a psychic or spiritual character. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II ,
19:It is a fact always known to all yogis and occultists since the beginning of time, in Europe and Africa as in India, that wherever yoga or Yajna is done, there the hostile Forces gather together to stop it by any means. It is known that there is a lower nature and a higher spiritual nature - it is known that they pull different ways and the lower is strongest at first and the higher afterwards. It is known that the hostile Forces take advantage of the movements of the lower nature and try to spoil through them, smash or retard the siddhi. It has been said as long ago as the Upanishads (hard is the path to tread, sharp like a razor's edge); it was said later by Christ 'hard is the way and narrow the gate by which one enters into the kingdom of heaven' and also 'many are called, few chosen' - because of these difficulties. But it has also always been known that those who are sincere and faithful in heart and remain so and those who rely on the Divine will arrive in spite of all difficulties, stumbles or falls. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - III Opposition of the Hostile Forces - I,
20:Therefore the age of intuitive knowledge, represented by the early Vedantic thinking of the Upanishads, had to give place to the age of rational knowledge; inspired Scripture made room for metaphysical philosophy, even as afterwards metaphysical philosophy had to give place to experimental Science. Intuitive thought which is a messenger from the superconscient and therefore our highest faculty, was supplanted by the pure reason which is only a sort of deputy and belongs to the middle heights of our being; pure reason in its turn was supplanted for a time by the mixed action of the reason which lives on our plains and lower elevations and does not in its view exceed the horizon of the experience that the physical mind and senses or such aids as we can invent for them can bring to us. And this process which seems to be a descent, is really a circle of progress. For in each case the lower faculty is compelled to take up as much as it can assimilate of what the higher had already given and to attempt to re-establish it by its own methods. By the attempt it is itself enlarged in its scope and arrives eventually at a more supple and a more ample selfaccommodation to the higher faculties. ~ Sri Aurobindo, TLD 1.08-13 ,
21:the first necessity; ::: The first necessity is to dissolve that central faith and vision in the mind which concentrate it on its development and satisfaction and interests in the old externalised order of things. It is imperative to exchange this surface orientation for the deeper faith and vision which see only the Divine and seek only after the Divine. The next need is to compel all our lower being to pay homage to this new faith and greater vision. All our nature must make an integral surrender; it must offer itself in every part and every movement to that which seems to the unregenerated sensemind so much less real than the material world and its objects. Our whole being - soul, mind, sense, heart, will, life, body - must consecrate all its energies so entirely and in such a way that it shall become a fit vehicle for the Divine. This is no easy task; for everything in the world follows the fixed habit which is to it a law and resists a radical change. And no change can be more radical than the revolution attempted in the integral Yoga. Everything in us has constantly to be called back to the central faith and will and vision. Every thought and impulse has to be reminded in the language of the Upanishad that That is the divine Brahman and not this which men here adore. Every vital fibre has to be persuaded to accept an entire renunciation of all that hitherto represented to it its own existence. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 1.02 - Self-Consecration,
22:There is the one door in us that sometimes swings open upon the splendour of a truth beyond and, before it shuts again, allows a ray to touch us, - a luminous intimation which, if we have the strength and firmness, we may hold to in our faith and make a starting-point for another play of consciousness than that of the sense-mind, for the play of Intuition. For if we examine carefully, we shall find that Intuition is our first teacher. Intuition always stands veiled behind our mental operations. Intuition brings to man those brilliant messages from the Unknown which are the beginning of his higher knowledge. Reason only comes in afterwards to see what profit it can have of the shining harvest. Intuition gives us that idea of something behind and beyond all that we know and seem to be which pursues man always in contradiction of his lower reason and all his normal experience and impels him to formulate that formless perception in the more positive ideas of God, Immortality, Heaven and the rest by which we strive to express it to the mind. For Intuition is as strong as Nature herself from whose very soul it has sprung and cares nothing for the contradictions of reason or the denials of experience. It knows what is because it is, because itself it is of that and has come from that, and will not yield it to the judgment of what merely becomes and appears. What the Intuition tells us of, is not so much Existence as the Existent, for it proceeds from that one point of light in us which gives it its advantage, that sometimes opened door in our own self-awareness. Ancient Vedanta seized this message of the Intuition and formulated it in the three great declarations of the Upanishads, I am He, Thou art That, O Swetaketu, All this is the Brahman; this Self is the Brahman. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.08 - The Methods of Vedantic Knowledge,
23:But usually the representative influence occupies a much larger place in the life of the sadhaka. If the Yoga is guided by a received written Shastra, - some Word from the past which embodies the experience of former Yogins, - it may be practised either by personal effort alone or with the aid of a Guru. The spiritual knowledge is then gained through meditation on the truths that are taught and it is made living and conscious by their realisation in the personal experience; the Yoga proceeds by the results of prescribed methods taught in a Scripture or a tradition and reinforced and illumined by the instructions of the Master. This is a narrower practice, but safe and effective within its limits, because it follows a well-beaten track to a long familiar goal.For the sadhaka of the integral Yoga it is necessary to remember that no written Shastra, however great its authority or however large its spirit, can be more than a partial expression of the eternal Knowledge. He will use, but never bind himself even by the greatest Scripture. Where the Scripture is profound, wide, catholic, it may exercise upon him an influence for the highest good and of incalculable importance. It may be associated in his experience with his awakening to crowning verities and his realisation of the highest experiences. His Yoga may be governed for a long time by one Scripture or by several successively, - if it is in the line of the great Hindu tradition, by the Gita, for example, the Upanishads, the Veda. Or it may be a good part of his development to include in its material a richly varied experience of the truths of many Scriptures and make the future opulent with all that is best in the past. But in the end he must take his station, or better still, if he can, always and from the beginning he must live in his own soul beyond the limitations of the word that he uses. The Gita itself thus declares that the Yogin in his progress must pass beyond the written Truth, - sabdabrahmativartate - beyond all that he has heard and all that he has yet to hear, - srotavyasya srutasya ca. For he is not the sadhaka of a book or of many books; he is a sadhaka of the Infinite. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 1.01 - The Four Aids,
24:Who could have thought that this tanned young man with gentle, dreamy eyes, long wavy hair parted in the middle and falling to the neck, clad in a common coarse Ahmedabad dhoti, a close-fitting Indian jacket, and old-fashioned slippers with upturned toes, and whose face was slightly marked with smallpox, was no other than Mister Aurobindo Ghose, living treasure of French, Latin and Greek?" Actually, Sri Aurobindo was not yet through with books; the Western momentum was still there; he devoured books ordered from Bombay and Calcutta by the case. "Aurobindo would sit at his desk," his Bengali teacher continues, "and read by the light of an oil lamp till one in the morning, oblivious of the intolerable mosquito bites. I would see him seated there in the same posture for hours on end, his eyes fixed on his book, like a yogi lost in the contemplation of the Divine, unaware of all that went on around him. Even if the house had caught fire, it would not have broken this concentration." He read English, Russian, German, and French novels, but also, in ever larger numbers, the sacred books of India, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, the Ramayana, although he had never been in a temple except as an observer. "Once, having returned from the College," one of his friends recalls, "Sri Aurobindo sat down, picked up a book at random and started to read, while Z and some friends began a noisy game of chess. After half an hour, he put the book down and took a cup of tea. We had already seen him do this many times and were waiting eagerly for a chance to verify whether he read the books from cover to cover or only scanned a few pages here and there. Soon the test began. Z opened the book, read a line aloud and asked Sri Aurobindo to recite what followed. Sri Aurobindo concentrated for a moment, and then repeated the entire page without a single mistake. If he could read a hundred pages in half an hour, no wonder he could go through a case of books in such an incredibly short time." But Sri Aurobindo did not stop at the translations of the sacred texts; he began to study Sanskrit, which, typically, he learned by himself. When a subject was known to be difficult or impossible, he would refuse to take anyone's word for it, whether he were a grammarian, pandit, or clergyman, and would insist upon trying it himself. The method seemed to have some merit, for not only did he learn Sanskrit, but a few years later he discovered the lost meaning of the Veda. ~ Satprem, Sri Aurobindo Or The Adventure of Consciousness ,
25:The Teachings of Some Modern Indian YogisRamana MaharshiAccording to Brunton's description of the sadhana he (Brunton) practised under the Maharshi's instructions,1 it is the Overself one has to seek within, but he describes the Overself in a way that is at once the Psychic Being, the Atman and the Ishwara. So it is a little difficult to know what is the exact reading.*The methods described in the account [of Ramana Maharshi's technique of self-realisation] are the well-established methods of Jnanayoga - (1) one-pointed concentration followed by thought-suspension, (2) the method of distinguishing or finding out the true self by separating it from mind, life, body (this I have seen described by him [Brunton] more at length in another book) and coming to the pure I behind; this also can disappear into the Impersonal Self. The usual result is a merging in the Atman or Brahman - which is what one would suppose is meant by the Overself, for it is that which is the real Overself. This Brahman or Atman is everywhere, all is in it, it is in all, but it is in all not as an individual being in each but is the same in all - as the Ether is in all. When the merging into the Overself is complete, there is no ego, no distinguishable I, or any formed separative person or personality. All is ekakara - an indivisible and undistinguishable Oneness either free from all formations or carrying all formations in it without being affected - for one can realise it in either way. There is a realisation in which all beings are moving in the one Self and this Self is there stable in all beings; there is another more complete and thoroughgoing in which not only is it so but all are vividly realised as the Self, the Brahman, the Divine. In the former, it is possible to dismiss all beings as creations of Maya, leaving the one Self alone as true - in the other it is easier to regard them as real manifestations of the Self, not as illusions. But one can also regard all beings as souls, independent realities in an eternal Nature dependent upon the One Divine. These are the characteristic realisations of the Overself familiar to the Vedanta. But on the other hand you say that this Overself is realised by the Maharshi as lodged in the heart-centre, and it is described by Brunton as something concealed which when it manifests appears as the real Thinker, source of all action, but now guiding thought and action in the Truth. Now the first description applies to the Purusha in the heart, described by the Gita as the Ishwara situated in the heart and by the Upanishads as the Purusha Antaratma; the second could apply also to the mental Purusha, manomayah. pran.asarı̄ra neta of the Upanishads, the mental Being or Purusha who leads the life and the body. So your question is one which on the data I cannot easily answer. His Overself may be a combination of all these experiences, without any distinction being made or thought necessary between the various aspects. There are a thousand ways of approaching and realising the Divine and each way has its own experiences which have their own truth and stand really on a basis, one in essence but complex in aspects, common to all, but not expressed in the same way by all. There is not much use in discussing these variations; the important thing is to follow one's own way well and thoroughly. In this Yoga, one can realise the psychic being as a portion of the Divine seated in the heart with the Divine supporting it there - this psychic being takes charge of the sadhana and turns the ......1 The correspondent sent to Sri Aurobindo two paragraphs from Paul Brunton's book A Message from Arunachala (London: Rider & Co., n.d. [1936], pp. 205 - 7). - Ed. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II ,
26:What are these operations? They are not mere psychological self-analysis and self-observation. Such analysis, such observation are, like the process of right thought, of immense value and practically indispensable. They may even, if rightly pursued, lead to a right thought of considerable power and effectivity. Like intellectual discrimination by the process of meditative thought they will have an effect of purification; they will lead to self-knowledge of a certain kind and to the setting right of the disorders of the soul and the heart and even of the disorders of the understanding. Self-knowledge of all kinds is on the straight path to the knowledge of the real Self. The Upanishad tells us that the Self-existent has so set the doors of the soul that they turn outwards and most men look outward into the appearances of things; only the rare soul that is ripe for a calm thought and steady wisdom turns its eye inward, sees the Self and attains to immortality. To this turning of the eye inward psychological self-observation and analysis is a great and effective introduction.We can look into the inward of ourselves more easily than we can look into the inward of things external to us because there, in things outside us, we are in the first place embarrassed by the form and secondly we have no natural previous experience of that in them which is other than their physical substance. A purified or tranquillised mind may reflect or a powerful concentration may discover God in the world, the Self in Nature even before it is realised in ourselves, but this is rare and difficult. (2) And it is only in ourselves that we can observe and know the process of the Self in its becoming and follow the process by which it draws back into self-being. Therefore the ancient counsel, know thyself, will always stand as the first word that directs us towards the knowledge. Still, psychological self-knowledge is only the experience of the modes of the Self, it is not the realisation of the Self in its pure being. The status of knowledge, then, which Yoga envisages is not merely an intellectual conception or clear discrimination of the truth, nor is it an enlightened psychological experience of the modes of our being. It is a "realisation", in the full sense of the word; it is the making real to ourselves and in ourselves of the Self, the transcendent and universal Divine, and it is the subsequent impossibility of viewing the modes of being except in the light of that Self and in their true aspect as its flux of becoming under the psychical and physical conditions of our world-existence. This realisation consists of three successive movements, internal vision, complete internal experience and identity. This internal vision, dr.s.t.i, the power so highly valued by the ancient sages, the power which made a man a Rishi or Kavi and no longer a mere thinker, is a sort of light in the soul by which things unseen become as evident and real to it-to the soul and not merely to the intellect-as do things seen to the physical eye. In the physical world there are always two forms of knowledge, the direct and the indirect, pratyaks.a, of that which is present to the eyes, and paroks.a, of that which is remote from and beyond our vision. When the object is beyond our vision, we are necessarily obliged to arrive at an idea of it by inference, imagination, analogy, by hearing the descriptions of others who have seen it or by studying pictorial or other representations of it if these are available. By putting together all these aids we can indeed arrive at a more or less adequate idea or suggestive image of the object, but we do not realise the thing itself; it is not yet to us the grasped reality, but only our conceptual representation of a reality. But once we have seen it with the eyes,-for no other sense is adequate,-we possess, we realise; it is there secure in our satisfied being, part of ourselves in knowledge. Precisely the same rule holds good of psychical things and of he Self. We may hear clear and luminous teachings about the Self from philosophers or teachers or from ancient writings; we may by thought, inference, imagination, analogy or by any other available means attempt to form a mental figure or conception of it; we may hold firmly that conception in our mind and fix it by an entire and exclusive concentration;3 but we have not yet realised it, we have not seen God. It is only when after long and persistent concentration or by other means the veil of the mind is rent or swept aside, only when a flood of light breaks over the awakened mentality, jyotirmaya brahman, and conception gives place to a knowledge-vision in which the Self is as present, real, concrete as a physical object to the physical eye, that we possess in knowledge; for we have seen. After that revelation, whatever fadings of the light, whatever periods of darkness may afflict the soul, it can never irretrievably lose what it has once held. The experience is inevitably renewed and must become more frequent till it is constant; when and how soon depends on the devotion and persistence with which we insist on the path and besiege by our will or our love the hidden Deity. (2) And it is only in ourselves that we can observe and know the 2 In one respect, however, it is easier, because in external things we are not so much hampered by the sense of the limited ego as in ourselves; one obstacle to the realisation of God is therefore removed. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 2.02 - The Status of Knowledge,
27:SECTION 1. Books for Serious Study Liber CCXX. (Liber AL vel Legis.) The Book of the Law. This book is the foundation of the New Æon, and thus of the whole of our work. The Equinox. The standard Work of Reference in all occult matters. The Encyclopaedia of Initiation. Liber ABA (Book 4). A general account in elementary terms of magical and mystical powers. In four parts: (1) Mysticism (2) Magical (Elementary Theory) (3) Magick in Theory and Practice (this book) (4) The Law. Liber II. The Message of the Master Therion. Explains the essence of the new Law in a very simple manner. Liber DCCCXXXVIII. The Law of Liberty. A further explanation of The Book of the Law in reference to certain ethical problems. Collected Works of A. Crowley. These works contain many mystical and magical secrets, both stated clearly in prose, and woven into the Robe of sublimest poesy. The Yi King. (S. B. E. Series [vol. XVI], Oxford University Press.) The "Classic of Changes"; give the initiated Chinese system of Magick. The Tao Teh King. (S. B. E. Series [vol. XXXIX].) Gives the initiated Chinese system of Mysticism. Tannhäuser, by A. Crowley. An allegorical drama concerning the Progress of the Soul; the Tannhäuser story slightly remodelled. The Upanishads. (S. B. E. Series [vols. I & XV.) The Classical Basis of Vedantism, the best-known form of Hindu Mysticism. The Bhagavad-gita. A dialogue in which Krishna, the Hindu "Christ", expounds a system of Attainment. The Voice of the Silence, by H.P. Blavatsky, with an elaborate commentary by Frater O.M. Frater O.M., 7°=48, is the most learned of all the Brethren of the Order; he has given eighteen years to the study of this masterpiece. Raja-Yoga, by Swami Vivekananda. An excellent elementary study of Hindu mysticism. His Bhakti-Yoga is also good. The Shiva Samhita. An account of various physical means of assisting the discipline of initiation. A famous Hindu treatise on certain physical practices. The Hathayoga Pradipika. Similar to the Shiva Samhita. The Aphorisms of Patanjali. A valuable collection of precepts pertaining to mystical attainment. The Sword of Song. A study of Christian theology and ethics, with a statement and solution of the deepest philosophical problems. Also contains the best account extant of Buddhism, compared with modern science. The Book of the Dead. A collection of Egyptian magical rituals. Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie, by Eliphas Levi. The best general textbook of magical theory and practice for beginners. Written in an easy popular style. The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage. The best exoteric account of the Great Work, with careful instructions in procedure. This Book influenced and helped the Master Therion more than any other. The Goetia. The most intelligible of all the mediæval rituals of Evocation. Contains also the favourite Invocation of the Master Therion. Erdmann's History of Philosophy. A compendious account of philosophy from the earliest times. Most valuable as a general education of the mind. The Spiritual Guide of [Miguel de] Molinos. A simple manual of Christian Mysticism. The Star in the West. (Captain Fuller). An introduction to the study of the Works of Aleister Crowley. The Dhammapada. (S. B. E. Series [vol. X], Oxford University Press). The best of the Buddhist classics. The Questions of King Milinda. (S. B. E. Series [vols. XXXV & XXXVI].) Technical points of Buddhist dogma, illustrated bydialogues. Liber 777 vel Prolegomena Symbolica Ad Systemam Sceptico-Mysticæ Viæ Explicandæ, Fundamentum Hieroglyphicam Sanctissimorum Scientiæ Summæ. A complete Dictionary of the Correspondences of all magical elements, reprinted with extensive additions, making it the only standard comprehensive book of reference ever published. It is to the language of Occultism what Webster or Murray is to the English language. Varieties of Religious Experience (William James). Valuable as showing the uniformity of mystical attainment. Kabbala Denudata, von Rosenroth: also The Kabbalah Unveiled, by S.L. Mathers. The text of the Qabalah, with commentary. A good elementary introduction to the subject. Konx Om Pax [by Aleister Crowley]. Four invaluable treatises and a preface on Mysticism and Magick. The Pistis Sophia [translated by G.R.S. Mead or Violet McDermot]. An admirable introduction to the study of Gnosticism. The Oracles of Zoroaster [Chaldæan Oracles]. An invaluable collection of precepts mystical and magical. The Dream of Scipio, by Cicero. Excellent for its Vision and its Philosophy. The Golden Verses of Pythagoras, by Fabre d'Olivet. An interesting study of the exoteric doctrines of this Master. The Divine Pymander, by Hermes Trismegistus. Invaluable as bearing on the Gnostic Philosophy. The Secret Symbols of the Rosicrucians, reprint of Franz Hartmann. An invaluable compendium. Scrutinium Chymicum [Atalanta Fugiens]¸ by Michael Maier. One of the best treatises on alchemy. Science and the Infinite, by Sidney Klein. One of the best essays written in recent years. Two Essays on the Worship of Priapus [A Discourse on the Worship of Priapus &c. &c. &c.], by Richard Payne Knight [and Thomas Wright]. Invaluable to all students. The Golden Bough, by J.G. Frazer. The textbook of Folk Lore. Invaluable to all students. The Age of Reason, by Thomas Paine. Excellent, though elementary, as a corrective to superstition. Rivers of Life, by General Forlong. An invaluable textbook of old systems of initiation. Three Dialogues, by Bishop Berkeley. The Classic of Subjective Idealism. Essays of David Hume. The Classic of Academic Scepticism. First Principles by Herbert Spencer. The Classic of Agnosticism. Prolegomena [to any future Metaphysics], by Immanuel Kant. The best introduction to Metaphysics. The Canon [by William Stirling]. The best textbook of Applied Qabalah. The Fourth Dimension, by [Charles] H. Hinton. The best essay on the subject. The Essays of Thomas Henry Huxley. Masterpieces of philosophy, as of prose. ~ Aleister Crowley, Liber ABA Appendix I: Literature Recommended to Aspirants,

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1:I go into the Upanishads to ask questions. ~ Niels Bohr
2:When thoughts become silent, the soul finds peace in its own source. ~ The Upanishads
3:Happiness for any reason is just another form of misery. —The Upanishads One ~ Marci Shimoff
4:The face of Truth is hidden behind the golden veil of maya, says the Upanishad. ~ Mahatma Gandhi
5:The Gita is a commentary on the Upanishads. The Upanishads are the Bible of India. ~ Swami Vivekananda
6:The Upanishads do not reveal the life of any teacher, but simply teach principles. ~ Swami Vivekananda
7:great difference between the priests and the Upanishads. The Upanishads say, renounce. ~ Swami Vivekananda
8:There is no book in the world that is so thrilling, stirring and inspiring as the Upanishads. ~ Max Muller
9:you are all bound by the law of Karma, the Upanishads admit, but they declare the way out. ~ Swami Vivekananda
10:All sentience is ultimately self-sentience. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
11:Not for the sake of the wife, but for the sake of the Self is the wife dear to us.
   ~ Yajnavalkya, the Upanishads, *which?,
12:All variations resolve themselves into an unity. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
13:Where there is no limitation, there can be no pain. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
14:The Gita is like a bouquet composed of the beautiful flowers of spiritual truths collected from the Upanishads. ~ Swami Vivekananda
15:For the most part men are the slaves of their associations. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, On Translating the Upanishads,
16:The Upanishads told 5,000 years ago that the realisation of God could never be had through the senses. ~ Swami Vivekananda from Jnana Yoga
17:There is nothing which is exclusively spirit or exclusively matter. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
18:When I read the Upanishads, which are part of Vedanta, I found a profundity of worldview that made my Christianity seem like third grade. ~ Huston Smith
19:Satyam jnanam, anantam Brahma: Knowledge is truth and Brahman is eternal, was what he proclaimed, and the Upanishads were the source of his jnana. ~ Pavan K Varma
20:The human intellect has not been able to conceive of anything more noble and sublime in the history of the world than the teachings of the Upanishads. ~ Sivananda
21:a husband's partiality for his wife got the better of his partiality for Truth. The face of truth is hidden behind the golden veil of maya, says the Upanishad. ~ Anonymous
22:If there is one word that you find coming out like a bomb from the Upanishads, bursting like a bombshell upon masses of ignorance, it is the word "fearlessness." ~ Swami Vivekananda
23:It is true that the Upanishads have this one theme before them: "कस्मिन्नु भगवो विज्ञाते सर्वमिदं विज्ञातं भवति - What is that knowing which we know everything else? ~ Swami Vivekananda
24:In the whole world there is no study so beneficial and so elevating as that of the Upanishads. It has been the solace of my life, it will be the solace of my death. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer
25:The material world and the physical life exist for us only by virtue of our internal self and our internal life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Subject of the Upanishad,
26:Such a person, the Upanishads stress, can actually shed the body voluntarily when the hour of death arrives, by withdrawing consciousness step by step in full awareness. ~ Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa
27:Lead us from the unreal to the real,” she read aloud. “Lead us from darkness to light. Lead us from death to immortality.” His skin felt smooth under her fingertips. “From the Upanishads. ~ Anonymous
28:Suicide is merely a frenzied revolt against limitation, a revolt not the less significant because it is without knowledge. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, The Philosophy of the Upanishads,
29:In the Upanishads they talk about the path of the sun and the path of the moon. The path of the moon is rebirth. The path of the sun leads to self-knowledge, from which there is no return. ~ Frederick Lenz
30:I call myself a Sanatani Eternal Hindu, because I believe in the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Puranas, and all that goes by the name of Hindu scripture, and therefore in avataras and rebirth. ~ Mahatma Gandhi
31:It implies not life after death, but freedom from both life and death, for what we call life is after all impossible without death. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Kena and Other Upanishads, On Translating the Upanishads,
32:As fire, though one, takes the shape of every object which it consumes, so the Self, though one, takes the shape of every object in which it dwells. (The Upanishads: Breath of the Eternal, pg. 35) ~ Prabhavananda
33:The Upanishads point out that the goal of man is neither misery nor happiness, but we have to be master of that out of which these are manufactured. We must be masters of the situation at its very root, as it were. ~ Swami Vivekananda
34:The multiplicity is only apparent. This is the doctrine of the Upanishads. And not of the Upanishads only. The mystical experience of the union with God regularly leads to this view, unless strong prejudices stand in the way. ~ Erwin Schrodinger
35:Consumer goods become enlightenment, relationships, anything! It doesn't really matter because infinity exists in everything. "Greater than the greatest, smaller than the smallest, the self dwells in the hearts of all," that is the Upanishads. ~ Frederick Lenz
36:How entirely does the Upanishad breathe throughout the holy spirit of the Vedas! How is every one who by a diligent study of its Persian Latin has become familiar with that incomparable book stirred by that spirit to the very depth of his Soul ! ~ Arthur Schopenhauer
37:As the sun, revealer of all objects to the seer, is not harmed by the sinful eye, nor by the impurities of the objects it gazes on, so the one Self, dwelling in all, is not touched by the evils of the world. (The Upanishads: Breath of the Eternal, pg. 35) ~ Prabhavananda
38:The first lesson that the sages of the Upanishads teach their selected pupils is the inadequacy of the intellect. How can this feeble brain, that aches at a little calculus, ever hope to understand the complex immensity of which it is so transitory a fragment? ~ Will Durant
39:he’d read the Bible, the Torah, the Koran, and heard the Upanishads were no different—it was clear the battle for justice was in the heart; each soul was precious. “The great religions teach us,” he said through tears, “that the loss of one soul affects us all.” Whispers ~ Michael Capuzzo
40:Sharp as the blade of a razor, long and difficult and hard to cross, is the way to freedom. The sages have declared this again and again. Yet do not let these weaknesses and failures bind you. The Upanishads have declared, "Arise ! Awake ! and stop not until the goal is reached. ~ Swami Vivekananda
41:I read with interest Max Muller’s book, India—What Can It Teach Us? and the translation of the Upanishads published by the Theosophical Society. All this enhanced my regard for Hinduism, and its beauties began to grow upon me. It did not, however, prejudice me against other religions. ~ Mahatma Gandhi
42:Hindu fundamentalism is a contradiction in terms, since Hinduism is a religion without fundamentals; there is no such thing as a Hindu heresy. How dare a bunch of goondas shrink the soaring majesty of the Vedas and the Upanishads to the petty bigotry of their brand of identity politics? ~ Shashi Tharoor
43:[the Upanishads and the Vedas...] they haunt me. In them I have found eternal compensation, unfathomable power, unbroken peace... ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, quoted in Londhe, S. (2008). A tribute to Hinduism: Thoughts and wisdom spanning continents and time about India and her culture. New Delhi: Pragun Publication.
44:The great scriptures of yoga ― The Bhagavad Gita, The Yoga Sutras, and The Upanishads ― clearly describe how the subtle causes of external war emanate from the internal world. The real causes of war lie rooted in the individual's unwillingness to listen to the voice of the heart, the inner conscience. ~ Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
45:the Upanishads suggest that so-called chaos may have an actual divine function, even if you personally can't recognize it right now: "The best we can do, then, in response to our incomprehensible and dangerous world, is to practice holding equilibrium internally-no matter what insanity is transpiring out there. ~ Elizabeth Gilbert
46:Lord Krishna is the topmost of all the gods. "He is the most esoteric aspect hidden in the Upanishads which form the essence of the Vedas. Brahma knows Him as the source of himself as well as the Vedas. The gods like Shiva and the seers of the ancient, like Vamadeva rishi realizing Him, ever became dovetailed in His service ~ Stephen Knapp
47:He chewed my head off about the "threadsoul," the "causal body," "ablation," the Upanishads, Plotinus, Krishnamurti, "the karmic vestiture of the soul," "the Nirvanic consciousness," all that flapdoodle which blows out of the east like a breath from the plague . . . he had worn himself out, like a coat whose nape is worn off. ~ Henry Miller
48:the Upanishads agree on their central ideas: Brahman, the Godhead; Atman, the divine core of personality; dharma, the law that expresses and maintains the unity of creation; karma, the web of cause and effect; samsara, the cycle of birth and death; moksha, the spiritual liberation that is life’s supreme goal. Even ~ Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa
49:In the Upanishad the sun is the symbol of the supramental Truth and it is said that those who pass into it may return but those who pass through the gates of the Sun itself do not; possibly this means that an ascent into the supermind itself above the golden lid of overmind was the definitive liberation. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II,
50:There is no kind of framework within which we can find consciousness in the plural; this is simply something we construct because of the temporal plurality of individuals, but it is a false construction... The only solution to this conflict insofar as any is available to us at all lies in the ancient wisdom of the Upanishad. ~ Erwin Schrodinger
51:Art. Its definitions are legion, its meanings multitudinous, its importance often debated. But amid the many contradictory definitions of art, one has always stood the test of time, from the Upanishads in the East, to Michelangelo in the West: art is the perception and depiction of the sublime, the transcendent, the beautiful, the spiritual. ~ Ken Wilber
52:Shankara commented on Krishna, on the Upanishads, on the Brahma Sutras. Ramanuja commented on the ancient enlightened people, Vallabha did the same. It has always been so in the East, because much dust gathers as time passes. Now, the Upanishads were written in a totally different world. That man has disappeared, that mind has disappeared, that world no more exists. ~ Rajneesh
53:Many verses of the holy books, above all the Upanishads of Sama-Veda spoke of this innermost thing. It is written: “Your soul is the whole world.” It says that when a man is asleep, he penetrates his innermost and dwells in Atman. There was wonderful wisdom in these verses; all the knowledge of the sages was told here in enchanting language, pure as honey collected by the bees. ~ Hermann Hesse
54:Meditation here is not reflection or any other kind of discursive thinking. It is pure concentration: training the mind to dwell on an interior focus without wandering, until it becomes absorbed in the object of its contemplation. But absorption does not mean unconsciousness. The outside world may be forgotten, but meditation is a state of intense inner wakefulness. ~ Anonymous, The Upanishads,
55:The composers of the Puranas are either accomplished yogis or seekers of Truth. The Knowledge and spiritual realisations obtained by their sadhana remain recorded in the respective Puranas. The Vedas and the Upanishads are the fundamental scriptures of the Hindu religion, the Puranas are commentaries on these scriptures. ~ Sri Aurobindo, in "Sri Aurobindo Writings in Bengali Translated into English".
56:In men, says the Upanishad, the Self-Existent has cut the doors of consciousness outward, but a few turn the eye inward and it is these who see and know the Spirit and develop the spiritual being. Thus to look into ourselves and see and enter into ourselves and live within is the first necessity for transformation of nature and for the divine life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, 2.28 - The Divine Life,
57:The ancient Vedic texts known as the Upanishads declare, “You are what your deepest desire is. As is your desire, so is your intention. As is your intention, so is your will. As is your will, so is your deed. As is your deed, so is your destiny.” Our destiny ultimately comes from the deepest level of desire and also from the deepest level of intention. The two are intimately linked to each other. ~ Deepak Chopra
58:The Upanishads trace these problems of the self to our sense of ‘Iness’ or ahamkara (literally ‘I-maker’) which is our subjective sense of identity and which has its origin in our consciousness (aham). In classical Sankhya philosophy, the empirical world of the senses and the mind emerges from the evolution of the aham, and liberation from this empirical existence requires the negation of ahamkara. ~ Gurcharan Das
59:I am Shiva-this is the great meditation of the yogis in the Himalayas...Hea ven and hell are within us, and all the gods are within us. This is the great realization of the Upanishads of India in the ninth century B.C. All the gods, all the heavens, all the worlds, are within us. They are magnified dreams, and dreams are manifestations in image form of the energies of the body in conflict with each other. ~ Joseph Campbell
60:The mind is not forced to believe in the existence of anything (subjectivism, absolute idealism, solipsism, skepticism: c.f. the Upanishads, the Taoists and Plato, who, all of them, adopt this philosophical attitude by way of purification). That is why the only organ of contact with existence is acceptance, love. That is why beauty and reality are identical. That is why joy and the sense of reality are identical. ~ Simone Weil
61:Knowing the elements, knowing the worlds, knowing all the regions and the spaces, adoring the first-born Word, understanding heaven, earth and air to be only He, knowing that the worlds, discovering that Space and the solar orb are He alone, he sees this supreme Being, he becomes that Being, he is identified in union with Him and completes this vast and fertile web of solemn sacrifice. ~ The Upanishad of the Universal Sacrifice
62:In the growth into a divine life the spirit must be our first preoccupation; until we have revealed and evolved it in our self out of its mental, vital, physical wrappings and disguises, extricated it with patience from our own body, as the Upanishad puts it, until we have built up in ourselves an inner life of the spirit, it is obvious that no outer divine living can become possible. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, 2.28 - The Divine Life,
63:In one of the Upanishads it says, when the glow of a sunset holds you and you say 'Aha,' that is the recognition of the divinity. And when you say 'Aha' to an art object, that is a recognition of divinity. And what divinity is it? It is your divinity, which is the only divinity there is. We are all phenomenal manifestations of a divine will to live, and that will and the consciousness of life is one in all of us, and that is what artwork expresses. ~ Joseph Campbell
64:This “vision” of the Self is described in the Upanishads as Liberation (moksha). It is a freedom, a release, from doubt, from uncertainty, from the fears attending ignorance, forever. All questions are answered; all desires and causes for sorrow are put to rest; for thereafter, a man knows the secret of all existence. All previous notions of limitation and mortality, all darkness of ignorance, is swept away in the all-illuminating light of Truth: ~ Swami Abhayananda
65:Homeopathy did not merely seek to cure a disease but treated a disease as a sign of disorder of the whole human organism. This was also recognized in the Upanishad which spoke of human organs as combination of body mind and spirit. Homoeopathy would pay an important part in the Public Health of the country along with other systems. Medical facilities in India are so scanty that Homoeopathy can confidently visualize a vast field of expansion. ~ Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
66:The true history of the world must always be the history of the few; and as we measure the Himalaya by the height of Mount Everest, we must take the true measure of India from the poets of the Veda, the sages of the Upanishads, the founders of the Vedanta and Sankhya philosophies, and the authors of the oldest law-books, and not from the millions who are born and die in their villages, and who have never for one moment been roused out of their drowsy dream of life. ~ F Max M ller
67:Human beings cannot live without challenge. We cannot live without meaning. Everything ever achieved we owe to this inexplicable urge to reach beyond our grasp, do the impossible, know the unknown. The Upanishads would say this urge is part of our evolutionary heritage, given to us for the ultimate adventure: to discover for certain who we are, what the universe is, and what is the significance of the brief drama of life and death we play out against the backdrop of eternity. ~ Anonymous
68:If I was asked what is the greatest treasure which India possesses and what is her finest heritage, I would answer unhesitatingly that it is the Samskrit language and literature and all that it contains. This is a magnificent inheritance and so long as this endures and influences the life of our people, so long will the basic genius of India continue. If our race forgot the Buddha, the Upanishads and the great epics (Ramayana and Mahabharata), India would cease to be India . ~ Jawaharlal Nehru
69:The Puranas are the most important among the “Smritis”. The spiritual knowledge contained in the Upanishads has, in the Puranas, been transformed into fiction and metaphors; we find in them much useful information on Indian history, the gradual growth and expression of the Hindu dharma, the condition of the society in ancient times, social customs, religious ceremonies, Yogic methods of discipline and ways of thinking. ~ Sri Aurobindo, in "Sri Aurobindo Writings in Bengali Translated into English".
70:Strength, strength is what the Upanishads speak to me from every page. This is the one great thing to remember, it has been the one great lesson I have been taught in my life; strength, it says, strength, O man, be not weak. Are there no human weaknesses? - says man. There are, say the Upanishads, but will more weakness heal them, would you try to wash dirt with dirt? Will sin cure sin, weakness cure weakness? Strength, O man, strength, say the Upanishads, stand up and be strong. ~ Swami Vivekananda
71:When we approach the Upanishads for an understanding of the Cosmic Mystery, we are coming to the very heart of the Hindu experience of God. This is what we want to try to understand, not with our minds, but with our hearts: to enter into the heart and continually remind ourselves that the Upanishads are intended to lead us to the heart. The Greek fathers of the Church used to say, "Lead the thoughts from the head into the heart and keep them there." This is to open to the Cosmic Mystery. ~ Bede Griffiths
72:There is a beautiful expression of this in the Chandogya Upanishad: 'There is this City of Brahman, (that is the body), and in this city there is a shrine, and in that shrine there is a small lotus, and in that lotus there is a small space, (akasa). Now what exists within that small space, that is to be sought, that is to be understood.' This is the great discovery of the Upanishads, this inner shrine, this guha, or cave of the heart, where the inner meaning of life, of all human existence, is to be found. ~ Bede Griffiths
73:I engaged - started engaging in yoga as a physical practice, but very quickly found out there was something broader to it, and that it was actually helpful for my pain, and started to get into meditation, started to study the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita and a lot of the scriptures associated with yoga, the Yoga Sutras, and very quickly came to this conclusion that this had a huge impact on my ability to lead, but, more importantly, the ability to control my sympathetic nervous system, which had a direct tie to the pain in my arm. ~ Mark T Bertolini
74:The division created by the English educated scholars who separate the Vedas and the Upanishads from the Puranas and thus make a distinction between the Vedic dharma and the Puranic dharma is a mistake born of ignorance. The Puranas are accepted as an authority on the Hindu dharma because they explain the knowledge contained in the Veda and the Upanishads to the average man, comment upon it, discuss it at great length and endeavour to apply it to the commonplace details of life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, in "Sri Aurobindo Writings in Bengali Translated into English".
75:Never during its pilgrimage is the human spirit completely adrift and alone. From start to finish its nucleus is the Atman, the god-within... underlying its whirlpool of transient feelings, emotions, and delusions is the self-luminous, abiding point of the transpersonal god. As the sun lights the world even when cloud-covered, “the Immutable is never seen but is the Witness; it is never heard but is the Hearer; it is never thought but is the Thinker; it is never known but is the Knower. There is no other witness but This, no other knower but This." from the Upanishad ~ Huston Smith
76:Heaven and hell are within us, and all the gods are within us. This is the great realization of the Upanishads of India in the ninth Century B.C. All the gods, all the heavens, all the world, are within us. They are magnified dreams, and dreams are manifestations in image form of the energies of the body in conflict with each other. That is what myth is. Myth is a manifestation in symbolic images, in metaphorical images, of the energies of the organs of the body in conflict with each other. This organ wants this, that organ wants that. The brain is one of the organs. ~ Joseph Campbell
77:Anyone who has had an experience of mystery knows that there is a dimension of the universe that is not that which is available to his senses. There is a pertinent saying in one of the Upanishads: When before the beauty of a sunset or of a mountain you pause and exclaim, ‘Ah,’ you are participating in divinity. Such a moment of participation involves a realization of the wonder and sheer beauty of existence. People living in the world of nature experience such moments every day. They live in the recognition of something there that is much greater than the human dimension. ~ Joseph Campbell
78:God is, is the first seed of Yoga. It is Tat Sat of the Vedanta. I am, is the second seed. It is So'ham of the Upanishads. God is infinite self-existence, self-conscious force of existence, self-diffused or self-concentrated delight of existence; I too am that infinite self-existence, self-consciousness, self-force, self-delight; this is the double third seed. It is Sachchidananda of the worldwide transcendental conclusion of all human thinking. Self-knowledge is the foundation of the complete Yoga. Affirm in yourselves self-knowledge.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, Essays Divine And Human [T9],
79:Talk 15.

A question was asked about the Upanishadic passage, "The Supreme Spirit is subtler than the subtlest and larger than the largest."

M.: Even the structure of the atom has been found by the mind. Therefore the mind is subtler than the atom. That which is behind the mind, namely the individual soul, is subtler than the mind.

Further, the Tamil saint Manickavachagar has said of the specks dancing in a beam of sunlight, that if each represents a universe, the whole sunlight will represent the Supreme Being. ~ Sri Ramana Maharshi, Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi, Sri Ramanasramam,
80:As per the Indian philosophy of the Upanishads, the source of evil is one’s ego-sense –Ahankara—which differentiates oneself from the other selves. A person, who visualizes himself independent of others, tries to guard or please himself at the cost of others. Evil is thus the tendency of a person to live a life that is not ‘in harmony’ with the rest of the world, but ‘in opposition’ to it or at best ‘in indifference’ to it. The good is to discover the unity in the diversity of ‘all selves’ and beings. Once unity in diversity is realized, every being becomes our own self and good deeds follow automatically ~ Awdhesh Singh
81:It is said in the Upanishads: ‘I am the Universe.’ If you ask a hundred people as to how they find the world, they are all likely to give different answers. For some, the world is beautiful and the people are good, while for others, the world is extremely bad, and the people are treacherous and sinful. Why the same world is different for different people? It is so, because the outer world is the projection of our inner world. Therefore, the only way to improve the world outside is to improve the world within. While we may not have any control over the outside world, we can change our world within and thus change the world outside. ~ Awdhesh Singh
82:At the base of all spiritual knowledge is this consciousness of identity and by identity, which knows or is simply aware of all as itself. Translated into our way of consciousness this becomes the triple knowledge thus formulated in the Upanishad, 'He who sees all existences in the Self', 'He who sees the Self in all existences', 'He in whom the Self has become all existences', -inclusion, indwelling and identity: but in the fundamental consciousness this seeing is a spiritual self-sense, a seeing that is self-light of being, not a separative regard or a regard upon self turning that self into object.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Knowledge by Identity and Separative Knowledge, 565,
83:The Village Atheist
Ye young debaters over the doctrine
Of the soul's immortality
I who lie here was the village atheist,
Talkative, contentious, versed in the arguments
Of the infidels.
But through a long sickness
Coughing myself to death
I read the Upanishads and the poetry of Jesus.
And they lighted a torch of hope and intuition
And desire which the Shadow,
Leading me swiftly through the caverns of darkness,
Could not extinguish.
Listen to me, ye who live in the senses
And think through the senses only:
Immortality is not a gift,
Immortality is an achievement;
And only those who strive mightily
Shall possess it.
~ Edgar Lee Masters
84:The significance of this discovery cannot be exaggerated. Since consciousness is the field of all human activity, outward as well as inner – experience, action, imagination, knowledge, love – a science of consciousness holds out the promise of central principles that unify all of life. “By knowing one piece of gold,” the Upanishads observed, “all things made out of gold are known: they differ only in name and form, while the stuff of which all are made is gold.” And they asked, “What is that one by knowing which we can know the nature of everything else?” They found the answer in consciousness. Its study was called brahmavidya, which means both “the supreme science” and “the science of the Supreme. ~ Anonymous
85:How does the idea of plurality (so emphatically opposed by the Upanishad writers) arise at all? Consciousness finds itself intimately connected with, and dependent on, the physical state of a limited region of matter, the body. (Consider the changes of mind during the development of the body, as puberty, ageing, dotage, etc., or consider the effects of fever, intoxication, narcosis, lesion of the brain and so on.) Now, there is a great plurality of similar bodies. Hence the pluralization of consciousnesses or minds seems as very suggestive hypothesis. Probably all simple, ingenuous people, as well as the great majority of Western philosophers, have accepted it. ~ Erwin Schrödinger, What Is Life? The Physical Aspect of the Living Cell
86:In sleep a person passes in and out of two stages, dreaming and dreamless sleep. In the first, consciousness is withdrawn from the body and senses but still engaged in the mind. In dreamless sleep, however, consciousness is withdrawn from the mind as well. Then the thinking process – even the sense of “I” – is temporarily suspended, and consciousness is said to rest in the Self. In this state a person ceases to be a separate creature, a separate personality. In dreamless sleep, the Upanishads say, a king is not a king nor a pauper poor; no one is old or young, male or female, educated or ignorant. When consciousness returns to the mind, however, the thinking process starts up again, and personality returns to the body. ~ Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa
87:The sages would say similarly, “Just for the heaven of it.” Just to reach for the highest. Human beings cannot live without challenge. We cannot live without meaning. Everything ever achieved we owe to this inexplicable urge to reach beyond our grasp, do the impossible, know the unknown. The Upanishads would say this urge is part of our evolutionary heritage, given to us for the ultimate adventure: to discover for certain who we are, what the universe is, and what is the significance of the brief drama of life and death we play out against the backdrop of eternity. In haunting words, the Brihadaranyaka declares: You are what your deep, driving desire is. As your desire is, so is your will. As your will is, so is your deed. As your deed is, so is your destiny. ~ Anonymous
88:Vedanta is the teaching of the Upanishads, a collection of dialogues, stories, and poems, some of which go back to at least 800 B.C. Sophisticated Hindus do not think of God as a special and separate super-person who rules the world from above, like a monarch. Their God is “underneath” rather than “above” everything, and he (or it) plays the world from inside. One might say that if religion is the opium of the people, the Hindus have the inside dope. What is more, no Hindu can realize that he is God in disguise without seeing at the same time that this is true of everyone and everything else. In the Vedanta philosophy, nothing exists except God. There seem to be other things than God, but only because he is dreaming them up and making them his disguises to play hide-and-seek with himself. ~ Alan W Watts
89:The Fire is to be quieted and silenced says the Upanishad. Then we come nearer, to the immediate vicinity of the Truth; an inner hearing opens, the direct voice of Truth - the Word - reaches us to lead and guide. Even so, however, we have not come to the end of our journey; the Word of revelation is not the ultimate Light. The Word too is a clothing, though a luminous clothing - hiranmayam pair am. When this last veil dissolves and disappears, when utter silence, absolute calm and quietude reign in the entire consciousness, when no other lights trouble or distract our attention, there appears the Atman in its own body ; we stand face to face with the source of all lights, the self of the Light, the light of the Self. We are that Light and we become that Light.
   ~ Nolini Kanta Gupta, The Approach To Mysticism,
90:This is a very Gandhian idea. Materialism reinforces a “paradigm of scarcity”: there is not enough to go around, so we are doomed to fight one another for ever-diminishing resources. Spiritual economics begins not from the assumed scarcity of matter but from the verifiable infinitude of consciousness. “Think of this One original source,” Plotinus said, “as a spring, self-generating, feeding all of itself to the rivers and yet not used up by them, ever at rest.” Or, as Gandhi put it, “There is enough in the world for everyone’s need; there is not enough for everyone’s greed.” The appearance of scarcity overcomes those for whom, as the Upanishad says, “the world without alone is real.” There is no scarcity of love, respect, meaning – the resources of consciousness. Such is the timeless wisdom of the Upanishads. ~ Anonymous
91:The etymological meaning of Veda is sacred knowledge or wisdom. There are four Vedas: Rig, Yajur, Sama, and Atharva. Together they constitute the samhitas that are the textual basis of the Hindu religious system. To these samhitas were attached three other kinds of texts. These are, firstly, the Brahmanas, which is essentially a detailed description of rituals, a kind of manual for the priestly class, the Brahmins. The second are the Aranyakas; aranya means forest, and these ‘forest manuals’ move away from rituals, incantations and magic spells to the larger speculations of spirituality, a kind of compendium of contemplations of those who have renounced the world. The third, leading from the Aranyakas, are the Upanishads, which, for their sheer loftiness of thought are the foundational texts of Hindu philosophy and metaphysics. ~ Pavan K Varma
92:Coomaraswamy also talks about Eckhart’s understanding of work and compares it to the teaching of the Upanishads: God “must do, willy-nilly,” according to his nature, without a why. In man this becomes what has been called the gratuitousness of art: “man ought not to work for any why, not for God nor for his glory nor for anything at all that is outside him, but only for that which is his being, his very life within him” (cf. Brhadaranyaka Upanisad, IV, 5, 6); “have no ulterior purpose in thy work,” “work as though no one existed, no one lived, no one had ever come upon the earth”; “all happiness to those who have listened to this sermon. Had there been no one here I must have preached it to the poor-box.” “I should do my works in such a way that they entered not into my will.…I should do them simply as the will of God,” “Above all lay no claim to anything. Let go thyself, and let God act for thee. ~ Matthew Fox
93:Then the well spoke to me. It said: Abundance is scooped from abundance yet abundance remains. This is a very Gandhian idea. Materialism reinforces a “paradigm of scarcity”: there is not enough to go around, so we are doomed to fight one another for ever-diminishing resources. Spiritual economics begins not from the assumed scarcity of matter but from the verifiable infinitude of consciousness. “Think of this One original source,” Plotinus said, “as a spring, self-generating, feeding all of itself to the rivers and yet not used up by them, ever at rest.” Or, as Gandhi put it, “There is enough in the world for everyone’s need; there is not enough for everyone’s greed.” The appearance of scarcity overcomes those for whom, as the Upanishad says, “the world without alone is real.” There is no scarcity of love, respect, meaning – the resources of consciousness. Such is the timeless wisdom of the Upanishads. –M.N. ~ Anonymous
94:Bede states that “the essential truth of Hinduism is the doctrine of the Brahman. The Brahman is the Mystery of Being, the ultimate Truth, the one Reality. Yet it also can only be described by negatives.…It is unseen, unrelated, inconceivable, uninferable, unimaginable, indescribable.” Yet it can be experienced “in the depth of the soul as the very ground of its being. It is the Atman, the Self, the real being of man as of the universe. ‘I am Brahman,’ ‘Thou are that,’ ‘All this [world] is Brahman.’ These are the mahavakyas, the ‘great sayings,’ of the Upanishads, in which the Mystery of being is revealed.” How similar these great sayings are to Meister Eckhart — who says we too learn, in the experience of “breakthrough,” that “God and I are one,” that “every creature is a word of God and a book about God,” that “God’s ground and my ground are one ground,” and that the Godhead “has no name and will never be given a name. ~ Matthew Fox
95:The Vedic poets regarded their poetry as mantras, they were the vehicles of their own realisations and could become vehicles of realisation for others. Naturally, these mostly would be illuminations, not the settled and permanent realisation that is the goal of Yoga - but they could be steps on the way or at least lights on the way. Many have such illuminations, even initial realisations while meditating on verses of the Upanishads or the Gita. Anything that carries the Word, the Light in it, spoken or written, can light this fire within, open a sky, as it were, bring the effective vision of which the Word is the body. In all ages spiritual seekers have expressed their aspirations or their experiences in poetry or inspired language and it has helped themselves and others. Therefore there is nothing absurd in my assigning to such poetry a spiritual or psychic value and effectiveness to poetry of a psychic or spiritual character.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II,
96:Max had a book with her and began leafing through it, looking for something. "There's a passage our conversation reminds me of ..."
"What?"
"In the Upanishads -- a series of Sanskrit works which are part of the Veda. Here it is Pol, listen: In this body, in this town of Spirit, there is a little house shaped like a lotus, and in that house there is a little space. There is as much in that little space within the heart as there is in the whole world outside. Maybe that little space is the realty of your you and my me?"
"Could I copy that?" I asked.
"Of course. I've been watching that little space within your heart enlarging all year as more and more ideas are absorbed into it. Some people close their doors and lock them so that nothing can come in, and the space cannot hold anything as long as the heart clutches in self-protection or lust or greed. But if we're not afraid, that little space can be so large that one could put a whole universe in it and still have room for more. ~ Madeleine L Engle
97:It is a fact always known to all yogis and occultists since the beginning of time, in Europe and Africa as in India, that wherever yoga or Yajna is done, there the hostile Forces gather together to stop it by any means. It is known that there is a lower nature and a higher spiritual nature - it is known that they pull different ways and the lower is strongest at first and the higher afterwards. It is known that the hostile Forces take advantage of the movements of the lower nature and try to spoil through them, smash or retard the siddhi. It has been said as long ago as the Upanishads (hard is the path to tread, sharp like a razor's edge); it was said later by Christ 'hard is the way and narrow the gate by which one enters into the kingdom of heaven' and also 'many are called, few chosen' - because of these difficulties. But it has also always been known that those who are sincere and faithful in heart and remain so and those who rely on the Divine will arrive in spite of all difficulties, stumbles or falls.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - III, Opposition of the Hostile Forces - I,
98:One peculiarity of our present [ethical] climate is that we care much more about our rights than about our 'good'. For previous thinkers about ethics, such as those who wrote the Upanishads, or Confucius, or Plato, or the founders of the Christian tradition, the central concern was the state of one's soul, meaning some personal state of justice or harmony. Such a state might include resignation or renunciation, or detachment, or obedience, or knowledge, especially self-knowledge. For Plato there could be no just political order except one populated by just citizens.... Today we tend not to believe that; we tend to think that modern constitutional democracies are fine regardless of the private vices of those within them. We are much more nervous talking about our good: it seems moralistic, or undemocratic, or elitist. Similarly, we are nervous talking about duty. The Victorian ideal of a life devoted to duty, or a calling, is substantially lost to us. So a greater proportion of our moral energy goes to protecting claims against each other, and that includes protecting the state of our soul as purely private, purely our own business. ~ Simon Blackburn
99:Sure, we can hear the reverberating echoes of the Big Bang. Yet that cosmic vibration tells us nothing about what was before the Big Bang, or what was before that, or how or why there was even a bang to be binged at all. This mostly wet ball full of ptarmigans, ponytails, and poverty is floating in space among a billion other balls, and there are galaxies swirling and there is a universe expanding, which itself may actually just be an undulating freckle on the cusp of something we can’t even conceive of, amid an endless soup of ever more unfathomables. And I find such a situation to be utterly, manifestly, psychedelically amazing—and far more spine-tinglingly awe-inspiring than any story I’ve ever read in the Bible, the Quran, the Vedas, the Upanishads, Dianetics, the Doctrine and Covenants, or the Tibetan Book of the Dead. So smell that satchel of tangerines and nimbly hammer a dulcimer or pluck a chicken and listen to your conscience or master a new algorithm or walk to work or hitch a ride. Because we’re here. And we will never, ever know why or exactly how this all comes about. That’s the situation. Deal with it. Accept it. Let the mystery be. ~ Phil Zuckerman
100:Therefore the age of intuitive knowledge, represented by the early Vedantic thinking of the Upanishads, had to give place to the age of rational knowledge; inspired Scripture made room for metaphysical philosophy, even as afterwards metaphysical philosophy had to give place to experimental Science.

   Intuitive thought which is a messenger from the superconscient and therefore our highest faculty, was supplanted by the pure reason which is only a sort of deputy and belongs to the middle heights of our being; pure reason in its turn was supplanted for a time by the mixed action of the reason which lives on our plains and lower elevations and does not in its view exceed the horizon of the experience that the physical mind and senses or such aids as we can invent for them can bring to us.

   And this process which seems to be a descent, is really a circle of progress.

   For in each case the lower faculty is compelled to take up as much as it can assimilate of what the higher had already given and to attempt to re-establish it by its own methods.

   By the attempt it is itself enlarged in its scope and arrives eventually at a more supple and a more ample selfaccommodation to the higher faculties. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, 1.08-13,
101:Questioner: How did you learn all that you are talking about, and how can we come to know it? KRISHNAMURTI: That is a good question, is it not? Now, if I may talk about myself a little, I have not read any books about these things, neither the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, nor any psychological books; but as I told you, if you watch your own mind, it is all there. So when once you set out on the journey of self-knowledge, books are not important. It is like entering a strange land where you begin to find out new things and make astonishing discoveries; but, you see, that is all destroyed if you give importance to yourself. The moment you say, “I have discovered, I know, I am a great man because I have found out this and that,” you are lost. If you have to take a long journey, you must carry very little; if you want to climb to a great height, you must travel light. So this question is really important, because discovery and understanding come through self-knowledge, through observing the ways of the mind. What you say of your neighbour, how you talk, how you walk, how you look at the skies, at the birds, how you treat people, how you cut a branch—all these things are important, because they act like mirrors that show you as you are and, if you are alert, you discover everything anew from moment to moment. Questioner: Should we form an ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti
102:NOTHING should more deeply shame the modern student than the recency and inadequacy of his acquaintance with India. Here is a vast peninsula of nearly two million square miles; two-thirds as large as the United States, and twenty times the size of its master, Great Britain; 320,000,000 souls, more than in all North and South America combined, or one-fifth of the population of the earth; an impressive continuity of development and civilization from Mohenjo-daro, 2900 B.C. or earlier, to Gandhi, Raman and Tagore; faiths compassing every stage from barbarous idolatry to the most subtle and spiritual pantheism; philosophers playing a thousand variations on one monistic theme from the Upanishads eight centuries before Christ to Shankara eight centuries after him; scientists developing astronomy three thousand years ago, and winning Nobel prizes in our own time; a democratic constitution of untraceable antiquity in the villages, and wise and beneficent rulers like Ashoka and Akbar in the capitals; minstrels singing great epics almost as old as Homer, and poets holding world audiences today; artists raising gigantic temples for Hindu gods from Tibet to Ceylon and from Cambodia to Java, or carving perfect palaces by the score for Mogul kings and queens—this is the India that patient scholarship is now opening up, like a new intellectual continent, to that Western mind which only yesterday thought civilization an exclusively European thing.I ~ Will Durant
103:Ironically, the best litmus test for measuring your vagabonding gumption is found not in travel but in the process of earning your freedom to travel. Earning your freedom, of course, involves work—and work is intrinsic to vagabonding for psychic reasons as much as financial ones. To see the psychic importance of work, one need look no further than people who travel the world on family money. Sometimes referred to as “trustafarians,” these folks are among the most visible and least happy wanderers in the travel milieu. Draping themselves in local fashions, they flit from one exotic travel scene to another, compulsively volunteering in local political causes, experimenting with exotic intoxicants, and dabbling in every non-Western religion imaginable. Talk to them, and they’ll tell you they’re searching for something “meaningful.”   And they say in truth that a man is made of desire. As his desire is, so is his faith. As his faith is, so are his works. As his works are, so he becomes. —THE SUPREME TEACHING OF THE UPANISHADS   What they’re really looking for, however, is the reason why they started traveling in the first place. Because they never worked for their freedom, their travel experiences have no personal reference—no connection to the rest of their lives. They are spending plenty of time and money on the road, but they never spent enough of themselves to begin with. Thus, their experience of travel has a diminished sense of value. ~ Rolf Potts
104:the first necessity; :::
   The first necessity is to dissolve that central faith and vision in the mind which concentrate it on its development and satisfaction and interests in the old externalised order of things. It is imperative to exchange this surface orientation for the deeper faith and vision which see only the Divine and seek only after the Divine. The next need is to compel all our lower being to pay homage to this new faith and greater vision. All our nature must make an integral surrender; it must offer itself in every part and every movement to that which seems to the unregenerated sensemind so much less real than the material world and its objects. Our whole being - soul, mind, sense, heart, will, life, body - must consecrate all its energies so entirely and in such a way that it shall become a fit vehicle for the Divine. This is no easy task; for everything in the world follows the fixed habit which is to it a law and resists a radical change. And no change can be more radical than the revolution attempted in the integral Yoga. Everything in us has constantly to be called back to the central faith and will and vision. Every thought and impulse has to be reminded in the language of the Upanishad that That is the divine Brahman and not this which men here adore. Every vital fibre has to be persuaded to accept an entire renunciation of all that hitherto represented to it its own existence.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga, Self-Consecration, 72,
105:Then there is the life-force, the Prana, that works in our vital being and nervous system. The Upanishad speaks of it as the first or supreme Breath; elsewhere in the sacred writings it is spoken of as the chief Breath or the Breath of the mouth, mukhya, asanya; it is that which carries in it the Word, the creative expression. In the body of man there are said to be five workings of the life-force called the five Pranas. One specially termed Prana moves in the upper part of the body and is pre-eminently the breath of life, because it brings the universal life-force into the physical system and gives it there to be distributed. A second in the lower part of the trunk, termed Apana, is the breath of death; for it gives away the vital force out of the body. A third, the Samana, regulates the interchange of these two forces at their meeting-place, equalises them and is the most important agent in maintaining the equilibrium of the vital forces and their functions. A fourth, the Vyana, pervasive, distributes the vital energies throughout the body. A fifth, the Udana, moves upward from the body to the crown of the head and is a regular channel of communication between the physical life and the greater life of the spirit. None of these are the first or supreme Breath, although the Prana most nearly represents it; the Breath to which so much importance is given in the Upanishads, is the pure life-force itself, - first, because all the others are secondary to it, born from it and only exist as its special functions. It is imaged in the Veda as the Horse; its various energies are the forces that draw the chariots of the Gods. ~ Sri Aurobindo
106:The thought of the Gita is not pure Monism although it sees in one unchanging, pure, eternal Self the foundation of all cosmic existence, nor Mayavada although it speaks of the Maya of the three modes of Prakriti omnipresent in the created world; nor is it qualified Monism although it places in the One his eternal supreme Prakriti manifested in the form of the Jiva and lays most stress on dwelling in God rather than dissolution as the supreme state of spiritual consciousness; nor is it Sankhya although it explains the created world by the double principle of Purusha and Prakriti; nor is it Vaishnava Theism although it presents to us Krishna, who is the Avatara of Vishnu according to the Puranas, as the supreme Deity and allows no essential difference nor any actual superiority of the status of the indefinable relationless Brahman over that of this Lord of beings who is the Master of the universe and the Friend of all creatures. Like the earlier spiritual synthesis of the Upanishads this later synthesis at once spiritual and intellectual avoids naturally every such rigid determination as would injure its universal comprehensiveness. Its aim is precisely the opposite to that of the polemist commentators who found this Scripture established as one of the three highest Vedantic authorities and attempted to turn it into a weapon of offence and defence against other schools and systems. The Gita is not a weapon for dialectical warfare; it is a gate opening on the whole world of spiritual truth and experience and the view it gives us embraces all the provinces of that supreme region. It maps out, but it does not cut up or build walls or hedges to confine our vision. ~ Sri Aurobindo
107:There is the one door in us that sometimes swings open upon the splendour of a truth beyond and, before it shuts again, allows a ray to touch us, - a luminous intimation which, if we have the strength and firmness, we may hold to in our faith and make a starting-point for another play of consciousness than that of the sense-mind, for the play of Intuition. For if we examine carefully, we shall find that Intuition is our first teacher. Intuition always stands veiled behind our mental operations. Intuition brings to man those brilliant messages from the Unknown which are the beginning of his higher knowledge. Reason only comes in afterwards to see what profit it can have of the shining harvest. Intuition gives us that idea of something behind and beyond all that we know and seem to be which pursues man always in contradiction of his lower reason and all his normal experience and impels him to formulate that formless perception in the more positive ideas of God, Immortality, Heaven and the rest by which we strive to express it to the mind. For Intuition is as strong as Nature herself from whose very soul it has sprung and cares nothing for the contradictions of reason or the denials of experience. It knows what is because it is, because itself it is of that and has come from that, and will not yield it to the judgment of what merely becomes and appears. What the Intuition tells us of, is not so much Existence as the Existent, for it proceeds from that one point of light in us which gives it its advantage, that sometimes opened door in our own self-awareness. Ancient Vedanta seized this message of the Intuition and formulated it in the three great declarations of the Upanishads, I am He, Thou art That, O Swetaketu, All this is the Brahman; this Self is the Brahman.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, The Methods of Vedantic Knowledge,
108:But usually the representative influence occupies a much larger place in the life of the sadhaka. If the Yoga is guided by a received written Shastra, - some Word from the past which embodies the experience of former Yogins, - it may be practised either by personal effort alone or with the aid of a Guru. The spiritual knowledge is then gained through meditation on the truths that are taught and it is made living and conscious by their realisation in the personal experience; the Yoga proceeds by the results of prescribed methods taught in a Scripture or a tradition and reinforced and illumined by the instructions of the Master. This is a narrower practice, but safe and effective within its limits, because it follows a well-beaten track to a long familiar goal.

For the sadhaka of the integral Yoga it is necessary to remember that no written Shastra, however great its authority or however large its spirit, can be more than a partial expression of the eternal Knowledge. He will use, but never bind himself even by the greatest Scripture. Where the Scripture is profound, wide, catholic, it may exercise upon him an influence for the highest good and of incalculable importance. It may be associated in his experience with his awakening to crowning verities and his realisation of the highest experiences. His Yoga may be governed for a long time by one Scripture or by several successively, - if it is in the line of the great Hindu tradition, by the Gita, for example, the Upanishads, the Veda. Or it may be a good part of his development to include in its material a richly varied experience of the truths of many Scriptures and make the future opulent with all that is best in the past. But in the end he must take his station, or better still, if he can, always and from the beginning he must live in his own soul beyond the limitations of the word that he uses. The Gita itself thus declares that the Yogin in his progress must pass beyond the written Truth, - sabdabrahmativartate - beyond all that he has heard and all that he has yet to hear, - srotavyasya srutasya ca. For he is not the sadhaka of a book or of many books; he is a sadhaka of the Infinite. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga, The Four Aids,
109:Mandana Misra was a great scholar and authority on the Vedas and Mimasa. He led a householder’s life (grihastha), with his scholar-philosopher wife, Ubhaya Bharati, in the town of Mahishi, in what is present-day northern Bihar. Husband and wife would have great debates on the veracity of the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Gita and other philosophical works. Scholars from all over Bharatavarsha came to debate and understand the Shastras with them. It is said that even the parrots in Mandana’s home debated the divinity, or its lack, in the Vedas and Upanishads. Mandana was a staunch believer in rituals. One day, while he was performing Pitru Karma (rituals for deceased ancestors), Adi Shankaracharya arrived at his home and demanded a debate on Advaita. Mandana was angry at the rude intrusion and asked the Acharya whether he was not aware, as a Brahmin, that it was inauspicious to come to another Brahmin’s home uninvited when Pitru Karma was being done? In reply, Adi Shankara asked Mandana whether he was sure of the value of such rituals. This enraged Mandana and the other Brahmins present. Thus began one of the most celebrated debates in Hindu thought. It raged for weeks between the two great scholars. As the only other person of equal intellect to Shankara and Mandana was Mandana’s wife, Ubhaya Bharati, she was appointed the adjudicator. Among other things, Shankara convinced Mandana that the rituals for the dead had little value to the dead. Mandana became Adi Shankara’s disciple (and later the first Shankaracharya of the Sringeri Math in Karnataka). When the priest related this story to me, I was shocked. He was not giving me the answer I had expected. Annoyed, I asked him what he meant by the story if Adi Shankara himself said such rituals were of no use to the dead. The priest replied, “Son, the story has not ended.” And he continued... A few years later, Adi Shankara was compiling the rituals for the dead, to standardize them for people across Bharatavarsha. Mandana, upset with his Guru’s action, asked Adi Shankara why he was involved with such a useless thing. After all, the Guru had convinced him of the uselessness of such rituals (Lord Krishna also mentions the inferiority of Vedic sacrifice to other paths, in the Gita. Pitru karma has no vedic base either). Why then was the Jagad Guru taking such a retrograde step? Adi Shankaracharya smiled at his disciple and answered, “The rituals are not for the dead but for the loved ones left behind. ~ Anand Neelakantan
110:Who could have thought that this tanned young man with gentle, dreamy eyes, long wavy hair parted in the middle and falling to the neck, clad in a common coarse Ahmedabad dhoti, a close-fitting Indian jacket, and old-fashioned slippers with upturned toes, and whose face was slightly marked with smallpox, was no other than Mister Aurobindo Ghose, living treasure of French, Latin and Greek?" Actually, Sri Aurobindo was not yet through with books; the Western momentum was still there; he devoured books ordered from Bombay and Calcutta by the case. "Aurobindo would sit at his desk," his Bengali teacher continues, "and read by the light of an oil lamp till one in the morning, oblivious of the intolerable mosquito bites. I would see him seated there in the same posture for hours on end, his eyes fixed on his book, like a yogi lost in the contemplation of the Divine, unaware of all that went on around him. Even if the house had caught fire, it would not have broken this concentration." He read English, Russian, German, and French novels, but also, in ever larger numbers, the sacred books of India, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, the Ramayana, although he had never been in a temple except as an observer. "Once, having returned from the College," one of his friends recalls, "Sri Aurobindo sat down, picked up a book at random and started to read, while Z and some friends began a noisy game of chess. After half an hour, he put the book down and took a cup of tea. We had already seen him do this many times and were waiting eagerly for a chance to verify whether he read the books from cover to cover or only scanned a few pages here and there. Soon the test began. Z opened the book, read a line aloud and asked Sri Aurobindo to recite what followed. Sri Aurobindo concentrated for a moment, and then repeated the entire page without a single mistake. If he could read a hundred pages in half an hour, no wonder he could go through a case of books in such an incredibly short time." But Sri Aurobindo did not stop at the translations of the sacred texts; he began to study Sanskrit, which, typically, he learned by himself. When a subject was known to be difficult or impossible, he would refuse to take anyone's word for it, whether he were a grammarian, pandit, or clergyman, and would insist upon trying it himself. The method seemed to have some merit, for not only did he learn Sanskrit, but a few years later he discovered the lost meaning of the Veda. ~ Satprem, Sri Aurobindo Or The Adventure of Consciousness,
111:The Teachings of Some Modern Indian Yogis
Ramana Maharshi
According to Brunton's description of the sadhana he (Brunton) practised under the Maharshi's instructions,1 it is the Overself one has to seek within, but he describes the Overself in a way that is at once the Psychic Being, the Atman and the Ishwara. So it is a little difficult to know what is the exact reading.
*
The methods described in the account [of Ramana Maharshi's technique of self-realisation] are the well-established methods of Jnanayoga - (1) one-pointed concentration followed by thought-suspension, (2) the method of distinguishing or finding out the true self by separating it from mind, life, body (this I have seen described by him [Brunton] more at length in another book) and coming to the pure I behind; this also can disappear into the Impersonal Self. The usual result is a merging in the Atman or Brahman - which is what one would suppose is meant by the Overself, for it is that which is the real Overself. This Brahman or Atman is everywhere, all is in it, it is in all, but it is in all not as an individual being in each but is the same in all - as the Ether is in all. When the merging into the Overself is complete, there is no ego, no distinguishable I, or any formed separative person or personality. All is ekakara - an indivisible and undistinguishable Oneness either free from all formations or carrying all formations in it without being affected - for one can realise it in either way. There is a realisation in which all beings are moving in the one Self and this Self is there stable in all beings; there is another more complete and thoroughgoing in which not only is it so but all are vividly realised as the Self, the Brahman, the Divine. In the former, it is possible to dismiss all beings as creations of Maya, leaving the one Self alone as true - in the other it is easier to regard them as real manifestations of the Self, not as illusions. But one can also regard all beings as souls, independent realities in an eternal Nature dependent upon the One Divine. These are the characteristic realisations of the Overself familiar to the Vedanta. But on the other hand you say that this Overself is realised by the Maharshi as lodged in the heart-centre, and it is described by Brunton as something concealed which when it manifests appears as the real Thinker, source of all action, but now guiding thought and action in the Truth. Now the first description applies to the Purusha in the heart, described by the Gita as the Ishwara situated in the heart and by the Upanishads as the Purusha Antaratma; the second could apply also to the mental Purusha, manomayah. pran.asarı̄ra neta of the Upanishads, the mental Being or Purusha who leads the life and the body. So your question is one which on the data I cannot easily answer. His Overself may be a combination of all these experiences, without any distinction being made or thought necessary between the various aspects. There are a thousand ways of approaching and realising the Divine and each way has its own experiences which have their own truth and stand really on a basis, one in essence but complex in aspects, common to all, but not expressed in the same way by all. There is not much use in discussing these variations; the important thing is to follow one's own way well and thoroughly. In this Yoga, one can realise the psychic being as a portion of the Divine seated in the heart with the Divine supporting it there - this psychic being takes charge of the sadhana and turns the ......
1 The correspondent sent to Sri Aurobindo two paragraphs from Paul Brunton's book A Message from Arunachala (London: Rider & Co., n.d. [1936], pp. 205 - 7). - Ed. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II,
112:What are these operations? They are not mere psychological self-analysis and self-observation. Such analysis, such observation are, like the process of right thought, of immense value and practically indispensable. They may even, if rightly pursued, lead to a right thought of considerable power and effectivity. Like intellectual discrimination by the process of meditative thought they will have an effect of purification; they will lead to self-knowledge of a certain kind and to the setting right of the disorders of the soul and the heart and even of the disorders of the understanding. Self-knowledge of all kinds is on the straight path to the knowledge of the real Self. The Upanishad tells us that the Self-existent has so set the doors of the soul that they turn outwards and most men look outward into the appearances of things; only the rare soul that is ripe for a calm thought and steady wisdom turns its eye inward, sees the Self and attains to immortality. To this turning of the eye inward psychological self-observation and analysis is a great and effective introduction.We can look into the inward of ourselves more easily than we can look into the inward of things external to us because there, in things outside us, we are in the first place embarrassed by the form and secondly we have no natural previous experience of that in them which is other than their physical substance. A purified or tranquillised mind may reflect or a powerful concentration may discover God in the world, the Self in Nature even before it is realised in ourselves, but this is rare and difficult. (2) And it is only in ourselves that we can observe and know the process of the Self in its becoming and follow the process by which it draws back into self-being. Therefore the ancient counsel, know thyself, will always stand as the first word that directs us towards the knowledge. Still, psychological self-knowledge is only the experience of the modes of the Self, it is not the realisation of the Self in its pure being.
   The status of knowledge, then, which Yoga envisages is not merely an intellectual conception or clear discrimination of the truth, nor is it an enlightened psychological experience of the modes of our being. It is a "realisation", in the full sense of the word; it is the making real to ourselves and in ourselves of the Self, the transcendent and universal Divine, and it is the subsequent impossibility of viewing the modes of being except in the light of that Self and in their true aspect as its flux of becoming under the psychical and physical conditions of our world-existence. This realisation consists of three successive movements, internal vision, complete internal experience and identity.
   This internal vision, dr.s.t.i, the power so highly valued by the ancient sages, the power which made a man a Rishi or Kavi and no longer a mere thinker, is a sort of light in the soul by which things unseen become as evident and real to it-to the soul and not merely to the intellect-as do things seen to the physical eye. In the physical world there are always two forms of knowledge, the direct and the indirect, pratyaks.a, of that which is present to the eyes, and paroks.a, of that which is remote from and beyond our vision. When the object is beyond our vision, we are necessarily obliged to arrive at an idea of it by inference, imagination, analogy, by hearing the descriptions of others who have seen it or by studying pictorial or other representations of it if these are available. By putting together all these aids we can indeed arrive at a more or less adequate idea or suggestive image of the object, but we do not realise the thing itself; it is not yet to us the grasped reality, but only our conceptual representation of a reality. But once we have seen it with the eyes,-for no other sense is adequate,-we possess, we realise; it is there secure in our satisfied being, part of ourselves in knowledge. Precisely the same rule holds good of psychical things and of he Self. We may hear clear and luminous teachings about the Self from philosophers or teachers or from ancient writings; we may by thought, inference, imagination, analogy or by any other available means attempt to form a mental figure or conception of it; we may hold firmly that conception in our mind and fix it by an entire and exclusive concentration;3 but we have not yet realised it, we have not seen God. It is only when after long and persistent concentration or by other means the veil of the mind is rent or swept aside, only when a flood of light breaks over the awakened mentality, jyotirmaya brahman, and conception gives place to a knowledge-vision in which the Self is as present, real, concrete as a physical object to the physical eye, that we possess in knowledge; for we have seen. After that revelation, whatever fadings of the light, whatever periods of darkness may afflict the soul, it can never irretrievably lose what it has once held. The experience is inevitably renewed and must become more frequent till it is constant; when and how soon depends on the devotion and persistence with which we insist on the path and besiege by our will or our love the hidden Deity.
   (2) And it is only in ourselves that we can observe and know the 2 In one respect, however, it is easier, because in external things we are not so much hampered by the sense of the limited ego as in ourselves; one obstacle to the realisation of God is therefore removed.
   ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga, The Status of Knowledge,
113:SECTION 1. Books for Serious Study
   Liber CCXX. (Liber AL vel Legis.) The Book of the Law. This book is the foundation of the New Æon, and thus of the whole of our work.
   The Equinox. The standard Work of Reference in all occult matters. The Encyclopaedia of Initiation.
   Liber ABA (Book 4). A general account in elementary terms of magical and mystical powers. In four parts: (1) Mysticism (2) Magical (Elementary Theory) (3) Magick in Theory and Practice (this book) (4) The Law.
   Liber II. The Message of the Master Therion. Explains the essence of the new Law in a very simple manner.
   Liber DCCCXXXVIII. The Law of Liberty. A further explanation of The Book of the Law in reference to certain ethical problems.
   Collected Works of A. Crowley. These works contain many mystical and magical secrets, both stated clearly in prose, and woven into the Robe of sublimest poesy.
   The Yi King. (S. B. E. Series [vol. XVI], Oxford University Press.) The "Classic of Changes"; give the initiated Chinese system of Magick.
   The Tao Teh King. (S. B. E. Series [vol. XXXIX].) Gives the initiated Chinese system of Mysticism.
   Tannhäuser, by A. Crowley. An allegorical drama concerning the Progress of the Soul; the Tannhäuser story slightly remodelled.
   The Upanishads. (S. B. E. Series [vols. I & XV.) The Classical Basis of Vedantism, the best-known form of Hindu Mysticism.
   The Bhagavad-gita. A dialogue in which Krishna, the Hindu "Christ", expounds a system of Attainment.
   The Voice of the Silence, by H.P. Blavatsky, with an elaborate commentary by Frater O.M. Frater O.M., 7°=48, is the most learned of all the Brethren of the Order; he has given eighteen years to the study of this masterpiece.
   Raja-Yoga, by Swami Vivekananda. An excellent elementary study of Hindu mysticism. His Bhakti-Yoga is also good.
   The Shiva Samhita. An account of various physical means of assisting the discipline of initiation. A famous Hindu treatise on certain physical practices.
   The Hathayoga Pradipika. Similar to the Shiva Samhita.
   The Aphorisms of Patanjali. A valuable collection of precepts pertaining to mystical attainment.
   The Sword of Song. A study of Christian theology and ethics, with a statement and solution of the deepest philosophical problems. Also contains the best account extant of Buddhism, compared with modern science.
   The Book of the Dead. A collection of Egyptian magical rituals.
   Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie, by Eliphas Levi. The best general textbook of magical theory and practice for beginners. Written in an easy popular style.
   The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage. The best exoteric account of the Great Work, with careful instructions in procedure. This Book influenced and helped the Master Therion more than any other.
   The Goetia. The most intelligible of all the mediæval rituals of Evocation. Contains also the favourite Invocation of the Master Therion.
   Erdmann's History of Philosophy. A compendious account of philosophy from the earliest times. Most valuable as a general education of the mind.
   The Spiritual Guide of [Miguel de] Molinos. A simple manual of Christian Mysticism.
   The Star in the West. (Captain Fuller). An introduction to the study of the Works of Aleister Crowley.
   The Dhammapada. (S. B. E. Series [vol. X], Oxford University Press). The best of the Buddhist classics.
   The Questions of King Milinda. (S. B. E. Series [vols. XXXV & XXXVI].) Technical points of Buddhist dogma, illustrated bydialogues.
   Liber 777 vel Prolegomena Symbolica Ad Systemam Sceptico-Mysticæ Viæ Explicandæ, Fundamentum Hieroglyphicam Sanctissimorum Scientiæ Summæ. A complete Dictionary of the Correspondences of all magical elements, reprinted with extensive additions, making it the only standard comprehensive book of reference ever published. It is to the language of Occultism what Webster or Murray is to the English language.
   Varieties of Religious Experience (William James). Valuable as showing the uniformity of mystical attainment.
   Kabbala Denudata, von Rosenroth: also The Kabbalah Unveiled, by S.L. Mathers. The text of the Qabalah, with commentary. A good elementary introduction to the subject.
   Konx Om Pax [by Aleister Crowley]. Four invaluable treatises and a preface on Mysticism and Magick.
   The Pistis Sophia [translated by G.R.S. Mead or Violet McDermot]. An admirable introduction to the study of Gnosticism.
   The Oracles of Zoroaster [Chaldæan Oracles]. An invaluable collection of precepts mystical and magical.
   The Dream of Scipio, by Cicero. Excellent for its Vision and its Philosophy.
   The Golden Verses of Pythagoras, by Fabre d'Olivet. An interesting study of the exoteric doctrines of this Master.
   The Divine Pymander, by Hermes Trismegistus. Invaluable as bearing on the Gnostic Philosophy.
   The Secret Symbols of the Rosicrucians, reprint of Franz Hartmann. An invaluable compendium.
   Scrutinium Chymicum [Atalanta Fugiens]¸ by Michael Maier. One of the best treatises on alchemy.
   Science and the Infinite, by Sidney Klein. One of the best essays written in recent years.
   Two Essays on the Worship of Priapus [A Discourse on the Worship of Priapus &c. &c. &c.], by Richard Payne Knight [and Thomas Wright]. Invaluable to all students.
   The Golden Bough, by J.G. Frazer. The textbook of Folk Lore. Invaluable to all students.
   The Age of Reason, by Thomas Paine. Excellent, though elementary, as a corrective to superstition.
   Rivers of Life, by General Forlong. An invaluable textbook of old systems of initiation.
   Three Dialogues, by Bishop Berkeley. The Classic of Subjective Idealism.
   Essays of David Hume. The Classic of Academic Scepticism.
   First Principles by Herbert Spencer. The Classic of Agnosticism.
   Prolegomena [to any future Metaphysics], by Immanuel Kant. The best introduction to Metaphysics.
   The Canon [by William Stirling]. The best textbook of Applied Qabalah.
   The Fourth Dimension, by [Charles] H. Hinton. The best essay on the subject.
   The Essays of Thomas Henry Huxley. Masterpieces of philosophy, as of prose.
   ~ Aleister Crowley, Liber ABA, Appendix I: Literature Recommended to Aspirants #reading list,

--- IN CHAPTERS (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)



0

  187 Integral Yoga
   8 Occultism
   6 Philosophy
   5 Yoga
   4 Psychology
   2 Mythology


  143 Sri Aurobindo
  110 Nolini Kanta Gupta
   21 Satprem
   14 The Mother
   13 A B Purani
   7 Aleister Crowley
   6 George Van Vrekhem
   5 Sri Ramana Maharshi
   5 Aldous Huxley
   4 Swami Krishnananda
   4 Sri Ramakrishna
   2 Joseph Campbell
   2 Carl Jung


   26 The Life Divine
   22 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 02
   20 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 07
   20 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 01
   19 Essays In Philosophy And Yoga
   18 The Synthesis Of Yoga
   17 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 04
   14 Isha Upanishad
   13 Evening Talks With Sri Aurobindo
   13 Essays On The Gita
   13 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 03
   12 Letters On Yoga II
   9 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 08
   8 Sri Aurobindo or the Adventure of Consciousness
   8 Letters On Yoga I
   7 Talks
   6 Preparing for the Miraculous
   6 Magick Without Tears
   6 Letters On Yoga IV
   6 Kena and Other Upanishads
   5 The Perennial Philosophy
   5 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 05
   4 The Study and Practice of Yoga
   4 The Secret Doctrine
   4 The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
   3 The Secret Of The Veda
   3 The Human Cycle
   3 Essays Divine And Human
   3 Agenda Vol 05
   3 Agenda Vol 02
   2 The Integral Yoga
   2 The Hero with a Thousand Faces
   2 On the Way to Supermanhood
   2 Letters On Yoga III
   2 Letters On Poetry And Art
   2 Hymns to the Mystic Fire
   2 Collected Works of Nolini Kanta Gupta - Vol 06
   2 Agenda Vol 07


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