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Ashtavakra Gita Quotes

Unmoved and undistressed, realizing now that being, non-being and transformation are of the very nature of things, one easily finds peace.

Like waves, foam and bubbles are not different from the waters.

The desireless one has neither praise for the calm, nor even blame for the wicked.

Where is attachment and where is aversion for him, whose love for the body has vanished?

As we think, so we become.

Infinite as Space am I, and the phenomenal world is like a limited-jar.

The wise one, who has no motive in all his actions, moves like a child.

At peace, having shed all desires within, and realizing that nothing exists here but the Lord, the Creator of all things, one is no longer attached to anything.

While a man of pure intelligence may achieve the goal by the most casual of instruction, another may seek knowledge all his life and still remain bewildered.

Liberation is distaste for the objects of the senses. Bondage is love of the senses. This is knowledge.
You are not the body, nor is the body yours, nor are you the doer of actions or the reaper of their consequences. You are eternally pure consciousness, the witness, in need of nothing – so live happily.

Recognizing oneself in all beings, and all beings in oneself, be happy, free from the sense of responsibility and free from preoccupation with "me."

The body invested with the senses stands still, and comes and goes. You yourself neither come nor go, so why bother about them?

Realizing that misfortune and fortune come in their turn from fate, one is contented, one's senses under control, and one does not like or dislike.

Realizing that pleasure and pain, birth and death are from fate, and that one's desires cannot be achieved, one remains inactive, and even when acting does not get attached. Realizing that suffering arises from nothing other than thinking, dropping all desires one rids oneself of it, and is happy and at peace everywhere.

Realizing `I am not the body, nor is the body mine; I am awareness,' one attains the supreme state and no longer fritters over things done or undone.

Realizing, `It is just me, from Brahma down to the last blade of grass,' one becomes free from uncertainty, pure, at peace and unconcerned about what has been attained or not.

Realizing that all this varied and wonderful world is nothing, one becomes pure receptivity, free from inclinations, and as if nothing existed, one finds peace.

My dearest, you may recite or listen to countless scriptures, but you will not be established within until you can forget everything.

You may, as a learned man, indulge in wealth, activity and meditation, but your mind will still long for that which is the cessation of desire, beyond all goals.

When the mind is freed from such pairs of opposites as ‘I have done this,’ and ‘I have not done that,’ it becomes indifferent to merit, wealth, sensuality and liberation.

One of dull intellect, even without doing anything, is ever agitated by distraction; but the skilful one, even doing his duties, is verily unperturbed. 

Ashtavakra Gita

Quotes from Ashtavakra Gita on Bondage and Liberation

  • Bondage is when the mind longs for something, grieves about something, rejects something, holds on to something, is pleased about something or displeased about something.
  • Liberation is when the mind does not long for anything, grieve about anything, reject anything, or hold on to anything, and is not pleased about anything or displeased about anything.
  • Bondage is when the mind is tangled in one of the senses, and liberation is when the mind is not tangled in any of the senses.
  • When there is no ‘me,’ that is liberation, and when there is ‘me’ there is bondage. Consider this carefully, and neither hold on to anything nor reject anything.

Ashtavakra Gita - How to Attain Liberation or Moksha?

King Janaka asked: How is liberation to be attained?


Ashtavakra said: If you are seeking liberation, my dearest one, shun the objects of the senses like poison. Drink the nectar of tolerance, sincerity, compassion, contentment and truthfulness.

If only you will remain resting in consciousness, seeing yourself as distinct from the body, then even now you will become happy, peaceful and free from bonds.

You do not belong to the Brahmin or warrior or any other caste, you are not at any stage, nor are you anything that the eye can see. You are unattached and formless, the witness of everything – now be happy.

Burn down the forest of ignorance with the fire of understanding. Know ‘I am the one pure awareness.’ With such ashes now be happy, free from distress.

Your real nature is one perfect, free, and actionless consciousness, the all-pervading witness – unattached to anything, desireless, at peace. It is illusion that you seem to be involved in any other matter.

Meditate on yourself as motionless awareness, free from any dualism, giving up the mistaken idea that you are just a derivative consciousness; anything external or internal is false.

Ashtavakra Gita on Moksha

If you are seeking liberation, my dearest one, shun the objects of the senses like poison. Drink the nectar of tolerance, sincerity, compassion, contentment and truthfulness.

You are neither earth, water, fire, air nor even ether. For liberation know yourself as consisting of consciousness, the witness of these five.

If only you will remain resting in consciousness, seeing yourself as distinct from the body, then even now you will become happy, peaceful and free from bonds.

You do not belong to the Brahmin or warrior or any other caste, you are not at any stage, nor are you anything that the eye can see. You are unattached and formless, the witness of everything – now be happy.

Righteousness and unrighteousness, pleasure and pain are purely of the mind and are no concern of yours. You are neither the doer nor the reaper of the consequences; you are always free.

You are the one witness of everything, and are always totally free. The cause of bondage is that one sees the witness as something other than this.