Today’s lecture is an excerpt from the Bodhapañcadaśikā [15 verses of wisdom] as revealed by Swami Lakshmanjoo. Here he explains the most important points of Kashmir Shaivism, beginning with the explanation of what “that One Being” is like.
These are fifteen ślokas, which were composed by Abhinavagupta, giving a brief exposition of the doctrine of Kashmir Śaivism.
Track 01b (01:40)
ॐ अनस्तमितभारूपस्तेजसां तमसामपि ।
य एकोऽन्तर्यदन्तश्च तेजांसि च तमांसि च ॥१
oṁ anastamita-bhārūpas tejasāṁ tamasāmapi /
ya eko’ntaryad-antaśca tejāṁsi ca tamāṁsi ca // 1 //
That One Being, ya eka, that One Being, whose glamour of light does not vanish in all external lights and in all external darknesses; external lights and external darknesses, in those. As the light of a candle expires in the presence of the light of the sun, the light of candle does not shine . . .
JOHN: It is overpowered by the light of the sun.
SWAMIJI: . . . it is overpowered. But whose glamour of light is not overpowered by all external lights, and is not overpowered by all external darknesses. And all external lights and all external darknesses reside in that Supreme light, in that Supreme light of consciousness.
And yad antaśca tejāṁsi ca tamāṁsi ca, and you will find all of these external lights and external darknesses are residing in that Supreme light of God consciousness.1
Track 02 (01:18)
स एव सर्वभूतानां स्वभावः परमेश्वरः ।
भावजातं हि तस्यैव शक्तिरीश्वरतामयी ॥२
sa eva sarva-bhūtānāṁ svabhāvaḥ parameśvaraḥ /
bhāva-jātaṁ hi tasyaiva śaktir īśvaratā-mayī // 2//
That Being is sarva bhūtānām svabhāvaḥ, that Being is nominated as Lord Śiva.2 And sarva bhūtānāṁ svabhāvaḥ, this is the Lord Śiva who is the nature of all beings, who is the existence of all beings. And this external collection of objective world, external objective world is tasyaiva Śaktir, is his energy, it is not beside [other than] his energy.
This external world is the expansion of his energy only, which is filled with the glamour of the glory of God consciousness.
So, it is decided that Lord Śiva is the energy holder and this universal state of the objective field is his energy, his Śakti.
Track 03 (01:26)
शक्तिश्च शक्तिमद्रूपाद् व्यतिरेकं न वाञ्छति ।
तादात्म्यमनयोर्नित्यं वह्निदाहिकयोरिव ॥३
śaktiśca śakti madrūpād vyatirekaṁ na vāñchati /
tādātmyam anayor-nityaṁ vahni dāhikayoriva // 3 //
Do you understand it? It is very easy!
Śaktiśca śaktimad rūpāt. Now if you distinguish between Śakti and Śiva, what is Śakti? Śakti is this whole universe. And from where this universe comes out is Śiva.
And this Śiva and Śakti, vyatirekaṁ na vāñcchati, does not recognize separation from each other. They are not separated from each other.
DEVOTEE: Śiva and Śakti.
SWAMIJI: Śiva and Śakti, i.e. Lord Śiva and this world.
Śaktiśca śaktimad rūpād vyatirekaṁ na vāñcchati, tādātmyam anayornityaṁ. So they are interconnected with each other, Śakti and Śiva. This state of Lord Śiva and the state of the universe is interconnected with each other. Vahni dāhakayoriva, just as the fire is connected with heat; heat is not separate from fire, fire is not separate from heat.
Track 04 (02:28)
स एव भैरवो देवो जगद्भरणलक्षणः ।
स्वात्मादर्शे समग्रं हि यच्छक्त्या प्रतिबिम्बितम् ॥४
sa eva bhairavo devo jagad-bharaṇa lakṣaṇaḥ /
svātmādarśe samagraṁ hi yat-śaktyā pratibimbitam // 4 //
He is the God Bhairava3, he is only God Bhairava, and jagat bharaṇa lakṣaṇaḥ, and he creates, he protects and he destroys and conceals and reveals his nature in the cycle of the world. So he protects, so he gives strength to this universe. So the universe and the universe holder, the creator of the universe, are one.
Svātmādarśe samagraṁ hi yat śaktyā pratibimbitam, but [when] this universe is created by Lord Śiva, it is not created in such a way that it is created, just as a woman creates a child separately from herself. It is created in his own nature. This whole universe is created by God in his own nature. Just as you find the reflection of the universe in a mirror.
So this whole universe is created just like as the whole universe you feel [see] in a mirror. It is just the reflection of Lord Śiva. This whole universe is just pratibimba4 [reflection], it is not in such a way created that it is separate from Lord Śiva. It is created as a city is found in a mirror.
BRUCE P: But there is no city separate from the mirror. There is only the city on the mirror?
SWAMIJI: City on the mirror, there is no separate city. In place of a separate city there is svātantrya5, i.e. by ‘his freedom’ he has created this whole universe in his own nature.
JOHN: Just like a reflection in a mirror.
SWAMIJI: Yes. And that which gives reflection is not the universe, it is the svātantrya of Lord Śiva. By svātantrya he has created this universe in his own nature.
Do you understand sir?
1 In Kashmir Shaivism, the light of the moon represents objective consciousness, the light of the sun represents cognitive consciousness, and the light of fire represents subjective consciousness. That light which is the source of these three lights is known as prakāśa – The Supreme Light of God consciousness.
See also: Self-Realization in Kashmir Shaivism, Chapter 3, page 55.
2 Here, Lord Śiva means Paramaśiva (supreme Śiva), who is one with the supreme Light of God consciousness.
3 Bhairava in Sanskrit means ‘bha’ who protects, ‘ra’ who destroys, and ‘va’ who creates. In this context Lord Śiva is also called Bhairava because he creates, protects, destroys, conceals and reveals the universe in his own nature. The monistic texts of Kashmir Shaivism are known as the Bhairava Tantras.
4 The theory of reflection (pratibimba vāda) is covered fully in Kashmir Shaivism – The Secret Supreme, Chapter 4.
5 Svātantrya means the ‘universal independent freedom’ of Lord Śiva.
Source: Kashmir Shaivism and the Transformation of Life. Six part online series featuring Swami Lakshmanjoo’s revelation of “Fifteen Verses of Wisdom” the Bodhapancadashika.
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