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Garuda Purana Quotes - Teachings from Garud Puran

Death is certain for those who are born, and birth is certain for the dead. This is inevitable and therefore a wise man should not grieve over it.

Nobody should form an excessive attachment to anybody; the body is only a dream, what then of other persons’?

As a traveler, taking resort in shade, rests awhile and then departs again; so is the coming together of beings.

The good things eaten in the morning are destroyed by evening; how can there be permanence in a body which is sustained by these foods? (Chapter 9)

The evil are ever prone to detect the faults of others, though they be as small as mustard seeds, and persistently shut their eyes against their own, though they be as large as Bilva fruit.

Unhappiness comes from the sense of “I” and “mine”. As long as these feelings are there, true knowledge is impossible. Eliminating these means the elimination of one’s ego.

Those who are learned chop down the tree with the axe of knowledge. It is such people who can unite with the Brahman and it is such people who become truly free. As long as one is ignorant, one confuses the physical being (jiva) with the soul (atman).

What really is knowledge? That which removes ignorance is knowledge.

Teachings from Garud Puran

Symbolism of Tree and Life in Garuda Purana

If one thinks of ignorance as a tree, the seed and the trunk of the tree are formed by the ego. Houses and land are the tree’s branches, wives and children smaller branches and material wealth the tree’s leaves.

Papa (sin) and punya are the tree’s flowers, and happiness and unhappiness fruits. People get tired of the hurly bury of life and seek comfort under the tree’s shade. But these are transient comfort and transient happiness. 

True happiness and true comfort come when one recognizes that the tree itself is an illusion.

Teachings from Garud Puran on Yoga

Yoga is the union of the atman with the Brahman. Before the union can be achieved, the intelligence, the mind and the senses have to be controlled and concentrated on meditating on the Brahman. There are six techniques of yoga. These are known as pranayama, japa, pratyahara, dhyana, dharana and Samadhi.

Pranayama is the control over breath.

Japa is the repeated chanting of a mantra or any of the names of God.

Pratyahara is control over one’s senses.

Dhyana is meditation on an object. The object of meditation can be the image of a god.

When dhyana is continuous and focused, it becomes dharana.

Samadhi is the final stage. This happens when the object of meditation is seen everywhere. There is a complete sense of union between the atman and the Brahman.

There is a tremendous sense of freedom when this knowledge is attained. One feels as if one had been asleep earlier. It is realized that the atman has nothing to do with the happiness or unhappiness in a worldly life.