[Advaita-l] Shata-shlokI of Shankara - 33 TO 38 of 101: Dream Analogy
profvk at yahoo.com
Wed Jul 14 05:59:55 CDT 2004
[Important note: I am presenting the next six shlokas
below in one go, because all the six are about the dream
analogy. Since the present discussion on the main thread
of this month is now on Chittaranjan-jis beautiful thesis
on the dream analogy, I think these six shlokas may also
be relevant for the discussion. It is a providential
coincidence that the presentation of Shata-shlokI is
intersecting with the main thread of this month so nicely
at this point!]
bhunjAnaH svapna-rAjyaM sa sakala-vibhavo jAgaraM prApya
rAjya-bhrashhToham-itthaM na bhajati vishhamaM tan-mRshhA
svapne kurvan-nagamyA-gamana-mukham-aghaM tena na
bhunjAnaH : Having enjoyed
svapna-rAjyaM : a dream kingdom,
sakala-vibhavaH saH : one with all that glory,
jAgaraM prApya bhUyaH : on waking thereafter,
na bhajati vishhamaM : does not feel downcast
rAjya-brashhTaH ahaM ithaM : that I have been banished
from my kingdom
tat mRshAA manyamAnaH : knowing that it was all unreal.
na pratyavAyI : Nor (does one become) liable to be punished
agamyA-gamana-mukhaM aghaM : evil deeds such as adultery
and the like,
svapne kurvan : committed in a dream.
tadvat : So also (will it be)
akhilaM vyvahRtiM : (with) all activities
jAgrad-dashAyAM : (committed) in the waking state
vismaret cet : if (only) they are forgotten
svapnavad : as if (they were part ) of a dream.
Note: The meaning of vismaret cet (if forgotten) has to
be properly interpreted. I would think that it means: if
we remember that it is also sublated at a higher state of
svapnA-vasthA-nubhUtaM shubham-atha vishhamaM tan-mRshhA
jAgratyAM sthUla-deha-vyavahRti-vishhayaM tan-mRshA
itthaM mithyAtva-siddhA-vanisham-ubhayadhA sajjate tatra
satye tad-bhAsakesmin-niha hi kuta idaM tan-na vidmo vayaM
shubhaM atha vishhamaM : The pleasure or pain
svapna-avasthA-anubhUtaM : experienced in the dream state
tat mRshhA syAt : that becomes unreal
jAgare : on waking.
sthUla-deha-vyavahRti-vishhayaM : The objects towards which
the activities of the physical body are directed
jAgratyAM : in the waking state --
tan-mRshhA : they (become) unreal
svApa-kAle : during sleep.
itham mithyAtva-siddhau : Although unreality is thus
anishaM : with certainty
ubhayadhA : both ways
mUDhaH : the ignorant person
tatra sajjate : clings to it (the body-mind-intellect
asmin satye tad-bhAsake : although its very illuminer is
the True Self.
iha tad-idaM kutaH : How does this situation arise here?
vayaM na vidmaH : we dont know!
Note 1. It is interesting that the Acharya himself focuses
on our inability to pinpoint the cause of this colossal
error of the ignorant.
Note 2. Reality is that which exists in the three stages of
Time past, present and future.
jIvantaM jAgratIha svajanam-atha mRtaM svapna-kAle
nirvedaM yAty-akasmAt-mRtam-amRtam-amuM vIkshya harshhaM
smRtvApyetasya jantor-nidhanam-asuyutiM bhAshhate tena
satyevaM bhAti bhUyolpaka-samaya-vashAt satyatA vA
nirvedaM yAti akasmAt: One is filled with sudden grief
nirIkshhya : on seeing,
svapna-kAle : during a dream,
svajanaM mRtaM : the death of a relative
jIvantaM : who is alive
jAgrathi iha : in ones waking state, in this world.
harshhaM prayAti : So also does one feel happy
amRtaM vIkshhya : on seeing alive, (in a dream)
amuM mRtaM : one that was dead (in ones waking state).
smRtvA api : Although remembering
nidhanaM : the death, (in the dream)
etasya jantoH : of this person
tena sAkaM bhAshhate : one converses with him (in the
smRtvA api : Although remembering
nidhanaM : the death, (in the waking state)
etasya jantoH : of the (other) person
asuyutiM tena sAkaM bhAshhate : one converses with the
living him (in the dream state).
Evam sati : this being so,
satyatA : reality
mRshhAtvaM vA : or falsity
bhAti : depends on
bhUyaH alpaka-samyatvAt : the longness or the shortness of
Note 1. I am not very happy with the above translation of
mine. I would like to be told of a better way of
translating the verse.
Note 2. The general purport, however, seems to be clear.
The seeming reality of waking experiences and unreality of
dream experiences are probably distinguished only by the
difference in their duration. From the ultimate
standpoint, both are unreal!
svApna-strI-sanga-soukhyAd-api bhrsham-asato yA ca
sA dRshyA tadvad-etat-sphurati jagad-asat-kAraNaM
svapne satyaH pumAn syAd-yuvatir-iha mRshhaiv-AnayoH
prAtaH shukreNa vastropahatir-iti yataH kalpanA-mUlametat
svApna-strI-sanga-soukhyAt : From the pleasure, in the
dream, of having a union with a woman
bhrsham asataH api : though totally unreal
yA ca retash-cyutiH syAt : whatever discharge results
sA dRshyA : that is visible.
tadvat : In the same way
etat jagat: this universe
sphurati satya-kalpaM : appears as real,
asat-kAraNaM : even though it has sprung from unreality
(that is, mAyA).
svapne : In the dream
pumAn satyaH syAt : the man (dreamer) may be real
yuvatiH iha mRshA eva : however, the woman (of the dream)
is certainly unreal
anayaoH samyutiH ca : as well as their union;
prAtaH : In the morning
yataH shukreNa vastropahatiH : the fact of the soiling of
the cloth by the discharge
etat kalpanA mUlaM : is only having imagination as its
Note 1. The lesson is: This universe that appears is only
having imagination (kalpanA) as its source or root-cause.
Note 2: Another lesson is: The real may spring up from the
unreal. See Shloka #38 below.
pashyaty-ArAmam-asya prati-divasam-amI jantavaH svApa-kAle
pashyaty enaM na kashcit karaNa-gaNamRte mAyayA kRIDamAnaM
jAgraty-artha-vrajAnAm-atha ca tanu-bhRtAM bhAsakaM cAlakaM
no jAnIte sushhuptau parama-sukham-ayaM
amI jantavaH : All these human beings
pashyati : witness
asya AramaM : this sport of the Self
prati-divasam : every day
svApa-kAle : in the dream state
na kashcit : but no one however
enaM pashyati : sees this
mAyayA kRIDamAnaM : as flirting with mAyA
karaNa-gaNamRte : without any of the sense-organs;
no jAnIte kashcit : nor does any one realise (it)
bhAsakaM cAlakaM vA : as the illuminer and inspirer,
jAgrati : in the waking state,
artha-vrajAnAM : of all objects of perception
atha ca : as well as
tanubhRtAM : of all embodied beings
sushhuptau : (and) in the deep sleep state
parama-sukhaM ayam : as that which is full of supreme
Ashcaryam-etat. : This is wonderful, indeed!
Note: The punchline here, namely, Ashcaryam-etat reminds
us of the folloowing yaksha-prashna in the Mahabharata and
Yudhishtiras answer to the question:
Q: What is the most wonderful thing in this world?
A: Day after day there enter into the Temple of Death,
countless lives. Looking on this spectacle, the rest of
them, those who remain, believe themselves to be permanent,
immortal. Can anything be more wonderful than this.?
In fact, the whole shloka 37 is a deeper presentation,
befitting the fundamental advaitic base in all of Acharyas
writings, of the same idea as contained in Yudhishtiras
svapne mantro-padeshaH shravaNa-paricitaH satya eshha
svApnAd-eva prasAdAd-abhilashhita-phalaM satyatAM
satya-prAptistv-asatyAd-api bhavati tathA kim-ca
yenedaM bhAti sarvaM caram-acaram-athoc-cAvacaM
mantro-padeshaH : The transmission of a mantra
svapne shravaNa-paricitaH : acquainted by the ears in a
satyah eva : (becomes) real indeed
prabodhe : on waking.
svApnAt eva prasAdAt : As a result of benediction even in a
abhilashhita-phalam : the yearned result
satyatAm eti : is attained in reality
prAtaH : in the morning.
Satya-prAptiH tu bhavati : The real may thus spring up
asatyAt api : even from the unreal.
tathA : Further,
kim ca tat sva-prakAshaM : That self-effulgent Self
yena idaM sarvaM : by which all this
caraM acaraM : animate and inanimate
bhAti : is manifest
atha uccAvacaM : also all the variety of
dRshya-jAtaM : everything in the visible universe.
Note. The punchline is: satya-prAptistu asatyAd-api.
Therefore although all phenomena are illusory, the
realisation of brahman is not an illusion. This is a
key-point which must be emphasized.
PraNAms to all students of Adi Shankaracharya.
Prof. V. Krishnamurthy
My website on Science and Spirituality is http://www.geocities.com/profvk/
You can access my book on Gems from the Ocean of Hindu Thought Vision and Practice, and my father R. Visvanatha Sastri's manuscripts from the site.
Also see my webpages on Live Happily, the Gita Way at http://www.geocities.com/profvk/gohitvip/contentsbeach11.html
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