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Panchadasi Teachings

Teachings from Panchadasi of Sage Vidyaranya

The ego is the patron, the sense objects the audience, the intellect the dancer, the sense organs musicians playing on their instruments; and the lamp illumining them all is the witness consciousness.

As a lamp reveals all objects while remaining in its own place, so does the witness consciousness, itself ever motionless, illumine the objects within and without (including the working of the mind)

When all forms have been destroyed, the formless space still remains. So, when all the names and forms are negated, what remains is the imperishable Brahman.

Just as the cotton-like flowers of the Ishika reed are burnt by fire in a moment, so the accumulated past actions of the knower are burnt up because of realization.

The Shruti says that entering into different bodies the supreme Self assumes different forms. Vyasa, the author of the Brahma-Sutras, wrote the Sutra which illustrates the entry of Brahman into the bodies by the example of the sun (taking different forms) when reflected in different water-vessels.

The supreme Self, though one only, exists in every object. Like the moon reflected in water, though one It appears as many.

The moon which is reflected in water is faint in muddy water and clear in pure water. Similarly Brahman is two-fold according to the quality of the of the mind.

When a man has desires for houses, lands and other objects then because of the agitated quality of this desire which is an effect of Rajas, there is no happiness for him.

There is misery in thinking whether it will succeed; in failure this misery increases; when there are obstacles to success, anger arises or if opposed, hatred.

If the opposition is too formidable to be overcome, there is despair; that is born of Tamas. In anger etc., there is great misery; indeed even the chance of happiness is remote.