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Sri Swami Sivananda











Published by





Distt. Tehri-Garhwal, Uttaranchal, Himalayas, India

www.sivanandaonline.org, www.dlshq.org






First Edition:                       1954

Second Edition:                 2007

Third Edition:                     2014

Fourth Edition:                 2021

[1,000 Copies ]


The Divine Life Trust Society



ISBN 81-7052-195-5


ES 42


PRICE: 80/-




Published by Swami Padmanabhananda for

The Divine Life Society, Shivanandanagar, and printed

by him at the Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy Press,

P.O. Shivanandanagar, Distt. Tehri-Garhwal,

Uttarakhand, Himalayas, India

For online orders and Catalogue visit : dlsbooks.org










Chapter I 11










Chapter II 19







Chapter III 22

GOD.. 22






Chapter IV.. 26

WORLD.. 26




Chapter V.. 30

MAN.. 30




Chapter VI 34







Chapter VII 41















PLATO.. 51






































This illuminating volume has been specially written for those who are soaked in Western philosophic thought and the scientific method of arriving at conclusions. These Essays in Philosophy are not based on mere belief or superstition, mere scriptural injunctions and declarations, but on good reason backed by the personal experiences of a living Sage of Self-realisation. As such, they are bound to appeal to, and transform, people of all shades of thought and opinion.


These essays were first serially published in the monthly Journal of the Durban Branch of the Divine Life Society, THE PATH TO GOD-REALISATION, and have had a very good reception in South Africa, especially in view of the fact that the use of Sanskrit technical terms, inevitable in most dissertations based on Oriental Scriptures, has been kept to the barest minimum.


We do hope that this presentation will appeal to the mind and the heart of modern English-educated youth of all nations.
















(Sri Swami Satchidananda)

There is an innate urge in everyone to attain Immortality, higher Knowledge and eternal Bliss. This gives the clue that Brahman exists.

In dream you are distinct from the physical body. In deep sleep you are distinct from the body and mind; and yet you enjoy peace independent of objects. This gives the clue that you are in essence Atma or the Imperishable, Immortal Self.

The Supreme Reality is Self-Iluminous, Self-contained. It is Sat-Chit-Anada. It is all-full. It is Perfect. By realising this Brahman alone you can attain Liberation.

The impure mind is the cause of bondage and the pure mind is the cause of liberation. It is the mind that creates the world. There is no world in deep sleep when there is no mind.

Sorrow has the body as its cause. The body has Karma for its cause. Karma proceeds from the notion of “I”. The idea of “I” has ignorance for its cause. The erroneous notion that “I am the body” is called Avidya or ignorance. It binds the man. “I am not this body, but blissful, all-pervading Atman”-this is called Knowledge. This will liberate you.

A life of right conduct is a necessary factor in the enquiry into and discovery of Atman or Brahman, the source and basis for this world, body and mind.

Righteousness forms the bedrock of all religions. Righteousness is the divine path. Dharma is the perfect pattern of life.

Serve, love, sing, give, purify, meditate, realise. Be good. Do good. Be kind. Be compassionate. Be honest. Be sincere. Be truthful. Be bold. Be pure. Be virtuous. Develop the Four Means. Enquire “Who am I?” Know the Self and be free. This is the essence of Sadhana.

Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga and Raja Yoga are the means to Jnana. Karma removes the impurities of the mind. Bhakti Yoga removes the oscillation of the mind and softens the heart. Raja Yoga steadies the mind. Karma, Bhakti, Yoga and Jnana do not mutually exclude each other. Bhakti is not divorced from Jnana; on the contrary Jnana intensifies Bhakti. Para Bhakti and Jnana are one.

Moksha or Liberation is not a thing to be attained. It is already there. You will have to know that you are identical with the Supreme Reality through intuition.

Samadhi is an experience in which the aspirant feels his oneness with Brahman or the Supreme Reality. Samadhi is intense awareness of the Reality. It is the Highest intuition. It is an experience of fullness. It transcends duality of all kinds. He who has experienced Samadhi becomes wise and illumined.

May you be established in Samadhi through discrimination, dispassion, serenity, intense yearning for liberation and the Grace of the Lord!


(Sri Sudarshan Sharma, M.A.)

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord.”

-Isaiah i, 18.

The ox knowns its owner and the ass its master’s crib but the children of Israel-even being human beings-became forgetful of God, their own Lord. Like the people of other nations, they persisted in folly and superstition. It tired the Lord very much and He spoke to the people through the vision of Isaiah, the son of Amoz-saying, “...when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.”

-(Isaiah, i. 15)

What will the Lord say if He were to speak once again to all of us? Have we washed ourselves clean of all iniquites or tried even to minimize them? Alas no. The history of the last so many hundred years testifies to all the wrongs done by man. It has proved the suspicion that the greatest danger to man and his civilisation is still from man himself. Believers and Unbelivers alike have proved unworthy of the Kingdom of God. Those among us who disbelieve in God do not with the same sincerity disbelieve in greed, pride, violence and exploitation. Those that love material prosperity, earthly pleasures, permanence of fame and preservation of name, do not, in the same vein, love justice, humility and equality.

They loved things; they got them. They loved civilisation with a breath-taking grandeur; they got it, this is all good and natural. But what is regrettable is that this edifice should be erected upon human skeletons, that poverty should be the prop of civilisation. This is the house that is built upon sands and would, very soon, fall down as a house of cards. So much for the Unbelievers. But the so-called believers are even worse. They too have not built their house upon the “rock” that Jesus gave. They affirmed God in words but denied Him in deeds. Fought and killed each other in His name without knowing what He is. They died for God but did not live for Him.

Why do men so mismanage their affairs and why do they make simple things complex, is a question which no thinking individual can avoid. Is it because they do not know their own true good? Or is it because of the innately depraved nature of man? Will the injustice and fear from man to man ever cease or will it continue in spite of ourselves? These are the questions that none can avoid. To ask such questions and to try to answer them methodically is philosophy. Some one may say that he does not want philosophy nor does he want to think any more about such disturbing ideas. He would live life rather than think about it. This is very well, if only it were possible. But unfortunately to live is to think. There is no choice so far as thinking is concerned. It is absolutely inseparable from life. The only choice is between correct and incorrect thinking. Let us hope that there is none among us who would prefer to think in the wrong way. To think correctly is philosophy. If we do not think for ourselves about our problems, then the only other way is to take readymade solutions suggested by market opinions, newspapers and such other unreliable sources. This is what converts people into a “mob.”

“Unexamined life is not worth living” said Socrates. And he was right. But it may be asked that science too is doing systematic thinking, then what is special about philosophy? Nothing very particular. Only the object of science is a part of a special aspect of the world while philosophy tries to know the nature of the world as a whole; the worth and value of existence and life as a whole. Is life only a “tale told by an idiot full of sound and fury signifying nothing,” or is there meaning behind the waxing and waning of moon, the changing of seasons and the million other things? Are we all here as on a darkling plain ignorantly stumbling against each other or there is a mission with each of us who exists; some purpose to be fulfilled? These questions are the subject matter of philosophy, not of Science. We can see how important the questions are!

Everyone asks these questions but everyone is not in a position to answer them. Why? It is partly because of capacity and partly because of the difficult nature of the questions themselves. But above all due to the absence of a proper method to arrive at a correct answer. So philosophy is also concerned to find out a method.

After a close investigation philosophers have discovered a few methods, good, if not perfect. Among them three are of great importance.

1.       Method of Reason (Rationalism)

2.       Method of Experience (Empiricism)

3.       Method of direct knowledge (Mysticism)

The first two are good to a great extent but they soon arrived at a limit beyond which they cannot go without being contradictory. For an answer to the ultimate questions concerning human death and fate they need to be supplemented by yet another method, namely that of direct knowledge. Some wise men, as the result of intense meditation into the hidden profoundities of the universe, have discovered the significance of life. But they do not tell us of that in language. Even if they tell, we will not understand because their meaning is not our meaning. But they give us the same wisdom in quite another way. By giving us a way of life governed by certain ethical principles. This is the way of wisdom. The eight-fold path of Buddha, Sermon on the Mount of Jesus are the examples. It would lead to the reality of life even without discussion. Gradually the meaning, quite of itself, will unfold before us. It is of the nature of a torch on a perilous path. Do not abandon it without giving it a fair trial. Believe that the wise ones did not come to mislead us but to save us from a myriad dangers that beset the earthly life. Jesus said, “I came to fulfill and not to destroy.” And it is true.

If we disbelieve, they do not leave us nor criticise us. But sudden rejection may not be safe. What is the other way except making curious guesses concerning the riddles of existence? All this will end, as in Omar’s case, with the conclusion

“Up from Earth’s Centre through the Seventh Gate I rose, and on the Throne of Satur sate, And many Knots unravelled by the Road; But not the Knot of Human Death and Fate!”






Chapter I



Sri Sankaracharya, the philosopher par excellence, the great apostle of the religion of Truth, the benefactor of humanity and the paragon of genuine spiritual heroes, stands ever as a never-to-be-forgotten ideal for all seekers on the path of Self-realisation.

Man does not live by bread alone; he lives by the Spirit within. Spiritual hunger continues even if this physical body may be cast off. Unless this innate hunger for knowledge and perfection is appeased, one cannot hope to have any rest. The saints, the sages and the Avataras purvey to man, now and then, the required spiritual food. Sankara is one such great feeder of mankind.

It was Sankara who finally and satisfactorily answered the perplexing questions of life, the questions concerning the inward, the outward, the above, and their mutual relations; the questions which embrace the entire existence itself in their scope. There is the seer, the seen and also something which cannot be either the seer or the seen on account of the necessity felt for believing in a reality which must be other than the individual who is the seer and the world which is the seen, both of which are experienced to be unreal due to their inherent character of changing, passing away and giving rise to something else.


Man exists because he feels that he exists and he has direct apprehension of his existence. But he also knows that he is not a permanent being, that death spares no man, that all men, animals and plants have an end. Man also knows that the world which he is in and which presents itself before him as an object of his knowledge, too, is subject to destruction and therefore not ultimately real.

What then is real? If man shall die one day, if all living beings shall die, and if the whole world, even the galaxy of solar system, shall not last, what is it that shall last? Though it is true that everything that is seen perishes, is it also true that there is nothing imperishable?

Sankara, the genius, comes forward and lifts the reason of man above by freeing it from the trammels of empirical vision when he boldly declares that if everything is impermanent, something should be permanent; if all shall come to a limit or end sometime or other, there must be something which does not have limit or end at any time. If the whole world is transient, God must exist and He alone can be eternal.

Sankara was not a dogmatist or a mere authoritarian, but very clear-headed and highly intelligent logical thinker. He establishes the reality of the existence of God, not simply on the ground of scripture or tradition, but on the unshakable basis of immediate perception and deduction therefrom. It is Sankara’s firm conviction that nothing can be said to be transitory unless something is enduring, that no appearance is possible without a reality underlying it.

The fact of the death of the individual, the changing nature of thought, and the fleeting behaviour of the world is enough to posit the existence of a great Reality which does not vanish with the individual or perish with the world. This supreme being is God and to know Him is to know the truth of all things in all forms, in time as well as in space.

The destiny of man is unity with God, for man is essentially inseparable from God. Man is a part of the world and the world is rooted in God; it cannot exist if God is not. The reality of the world is the reality of God. Whatever has any value in the world belongs to the nature of God. Sankara avers that God or Isvara is ultimately independent of all things and cannot be related to any externalised condition. But when He is thought to be so related, He is called the Creator, the Preserver and the Destroyer of the world. As He is in Himself, He is the Absolute Whole, Brahman, Satchidananda (Existence-Knowledge-Bliss Absolute). Man being only an appearance, his truth is in God, and man is, in the highest sense, God Himself; the Jiva, when it is completely disillusionised, is the same as Brahman. What, then, is the relation between the individual,

The world and God? Sankara would forbid any such idea or use of expressions even suggesting such a tripartite nature of existence. Only to man, the blinded individual, the world seems to be different from God and also from himself who too seems to him to be different from God. The moment the screen is lifted, it will be seen that what really is, is an ocean of pure consciousness, the boundless Absolute where the world and the individual are no more separate beings, but are united in its indivisible glory of Infinity and Immortality. This is the grand destination of life, the purpose of everyone’s existence, the goal of all aspirations and endeavours. Brahman alone is real; all else has no reality independent of Brahman.

The human being is asked to discipline and regulate his life so as to conform to the Eternal Reality of God, Atman or Brahman, the direct realisation of which alone is the aim of the activities in this universe. Sankara, teaches the religion for all mankind, the one and the only true religion for all mankind, the one and the only true religion of Brahmanubhava or Absolute experience. The practice of the eternal religion means, as the prerequisite thereto, the culture and nurture of the precious virtues of non-irritability, self-restraint, peace, fortitude, faith and collectedness of mind, which Sankara calls the “sixfold treasure,” which is to be carefully preserved with the aid of clear discrimination of the Truth and non-attachment to external objects and states. In the whole history of human race, very few indeed there were who preached with such an ardour of feeling and clarity of understanding the great doctrine of the highest Truth that in the realisation of the Immortal Atman alone does lie the real solace of the individual, and not in anything else.


Philosophy seeks to trace the branches of human knowledge to their first principles in the constitution of our nature. The problems of philosophy are the nature of being or reality, of God, of the world, of purpose, of causality, of mind. Philosophy embraces all the higher questions concerning beauty (aesthetics), value (axiology), goodness (ethics), knowledge (epistemology and logic).



Ontology is the science that treats of the principles of pure being. It is the part of philosophy which investigates, explains and treats of the nature and essence of things. It is the science of being or Existence. It corresponds to Brahma Vidya or the Science of the Soul of the Vedantins. It is the enquiry into the nature of Being (Brahman) and of its relations to its manifestations or appearances. Ontology is metaphysics.


Metaphysics deals with the presuppositions which underlie all experience, and tries to arrange these presuppositions into a system by showing that they are necessary deductions from one ultimate first principle. It seeks to trace the branches of human knowledge to their first principles in the constitution of our nature. It tries to penetrate into the world of appearances and to find out the supreme principle which shall explain human experience in all its sides.


Cosmology is the general science of the cosmos, in all its parts, laws, and operations so far as these can be known by observation and scientific inquiry. The totality of Space, Time and Matter make the cosmos; the universe as an embodiment of order and harmony, is cosmos. Cosmology is a theory relating to the structure of the universe and the laws which underlie it.

Cosmology, a branch of philosophy, bases its theories on the fact that cosmos is apparently made up of matter and its phenomena, and minds and their phenomena. Those philosophers who maintain that the cosmos constitutes both of Matter and Mind, are dualists; those who propound the sole existence of matter, are materialists; those who hold that mind is the basis of all things, that mind alone is, are idealists; those who advance the theory of the non-existence of both matter and mind as substances, are phenomenalists; agnostics speak to us of the unknowableness of both Matter and mind, and those who postulate the absolute non-existence of matter and mind, are the nihilists. This question of the nature and interrelationship of space and time, is only one of the many basic problems of cosmology.

Some of the main cosmological inquiries are: Is there an original ground of things, and what is its nature, and how does it change itself into particular things, into finite forms? What is the origin and nature of Life in the Universe? Is there a Purpose or Design in Nature? What was the beginning of the world, and what is its end?

The ancient Greeks looked upon water, air, etc., as the ultimate elements out of which the variety of the world is composed. The Upanishadic Seers of India, had, in their cosmological approach to the problem of Reality, said, that the world of phenomena suggests the existence of a world of noumena, the changing world implies a permanent background in which the changes inhere. That permanent background from which all changes come, in which all changes subsist and into which all changes are finally dissolved is Brahman.


That particular branch of philosophy which deals with the origin, nature, validity, limits and conditions of knowledge, is called epistemology. It is a study of the theory of knowledge, whose three main problems are: (1) How the content of knowledge is obtained? (2) What constitutes the truth or validity of that content? (3) How that truth or validity of the knowledge is again known? Epistemology is a synonym of theory of knowledge; both these terms are used interchangeably. Different schools of philosophy treat ‘epistemology’ differently. The materialists have their own theory of knowledge which is distinct from that of the rationalists. The type of position that skepticism advances in treating epistemology is altogether different from the one advanced by idealism. There are four ways of getting our knowledge: (1) from within, i.e., inborn knowledge; (2) from reason; (3) from special senses; (4) from direct insight or intuition. Much of epistemology overlaps logic. As a preliminary to metaphysical speculations, it investigates the possibility and limits of knowledge. The culmination of epistemological inquiry is the problem of truth.

Epistemology corresponds to Jnana Kanda of the Vedas or Paroksha Jnana or Para Vidya. This is the theory of knowledge which accompanies and is indispensable to a theory of Being.


Man is a thinking being; he has the power of thought, and thought is a process, and every process has its own laws, known or unknown. That active function of the mind by which impressions received from within or from without are described, classified, and compared, made reflective minds, who were capable of observing their own thought-processes, draw out rules and laws to which thought adheres with unfailing strictness. Thus we see that logic arises from the reflection of the mind upon its own processes, and he is a logician who is capable of declaring how he thinks. Our thoughts are formed by laws; and when we conceive, abstract, define, judge, and deduce, we put in practice so many ascertainable principles. Pure Logic is the science of the necessary laws of thought in their own nature: and applied Logic is the science of the necessary laws of thought as employed in attaining truth.

Logic is the science of the principles which regulate valid thought; it is concerned primarily with the validity of the process of reasoning. It sees if the materials of our knowledge are in agreement with reality; it takes into account of or examines whether the conclusion of an argument which is expressed in a judgment, is consistent with itself, and whether it expresses the relations existing between the things concerning which it is made.

Logic is a part of philosophy. It is a guard against errors in reasoning. It is a mental discipline that is used for developing and perfecting the reasoning powers.

Formal Logic is concerned with the self-consistency of thought; material logic with its objective truth. By the Matter of thought is meant the thing thought about; form of thought is the way the matter is considered. In so far as the distinctions of language correspond with the distinctions of thought, logic is related with language, and there is a rudimentary relation between logic and metaphysics, logic and psychology, logic and rhetoric. Logic is widest in its scope.

Many are the names of Logic, viz., (1) the Architectonic Art; (2) the Instrument (or Organon) and the Instrument of Instruments; (3) the Art of Arts; (4) the System of Systems; (5) the Key of Wisdom; (6) the Head and Crown of philosophy; (7) the Art of discovering Truth; (8) the Cathartic of the Mind. These pompous titles bestowed on the science of logic, should not mislead us into exaggerating the value of logic. It has its own limitations and has only an instrumental value.

The three laws of thought are: (1) the Law of Identity, and the simplest statement of this principle is the formula, A is A, (2) the Law of Contradiction, and is stated as A is B and B cannot both be true, and the (3) the Law of Excluded Middle-A is B or A is not B.


Definition of the Term: Ethics is the term we give to the science that treats of the nature and grounds of moral obligation; it is the study or discipline which concerns itself with judgments as to the rightness or wrongness, goodness or badness, virtue or vice. The science of conduct which Ethics is called, offers us systematised principles that should govern all the activities of life. It endeavours to show the manner in which human beings should behave towards each other as well as towards other living forms. Ethics is the moral philosophy which teaches men their duty and gives the reasons for it. To determine what is to be sought, what is to be done by us, and what ways of life or courses of action we need to pursue, is the proud province of ethics.

Importance of Ethics: Without ethical life one cannot progress on the spiritual path. Ethics is the foundation of Yoga, the cornerstone of Vedanta, the strong pillar on which the edifice of Bhakti Yoga rests. Good conduct is the root of material and spiritual prosperity. It increases one’s fame, prolongs one’s life and destroys one’s evils and brings happiness. Improper action, thoughtless action without discrimination gives rise to all misery. The development of a sensitive conscience and positive admiration for the goodness and nobility play a great part in finishing ethical development.

Foundations of Ethics: Religion gives us the ultimate data upon which ethical science may be built. The first thing you learn from religion is the unity of all selves. One Atman or Self abides in all beings. Universal love is the expression of the unity. Universal brotherhood has its basis in the unity of Self. All human relations exist because of this unity. Yajnavalkya said to his wife, Maitreyi: “Behold, my dear, not indeed for the love of the husband is the husband dear; but for the love of the Self is the husband dear. And so with wife, sons, property, friends, worlds and even Devas themselves. All are dear because the one Self is in all.” If you injure another man, you injure yourself. If you help another person, you help yourself. There is one life, one consciousness in all beings; one life vibrates in all beings. Life is common in animals, birds and human beings. Existence is common. This is the emphatic declaration of the Upanishads or Srutis. This primary truth of Religion is the foundation of Ethics.

The relative value of Codes of Conduct: Rightness or wrongness, goodness or badness are relative terms. What is good for one man may not be good for another. What is good at one time and at one place may not be good at another time and at another place. “Right” and “wrong” are always relative to the surrounding circumstances.

Ethical Thought in World’s Religions: Every Faith has its ethics. Sermon on the Mount and the Ten Commandments embody ethical teachings for the uplift of man. The Noble Eightfold path of Lord Buddha is the essence of ethics. Yama, Niyama of Patanjali Maharshi constitute ethics. Manu Smriti, Yajnavalkya Smriti and Parasara Smriti contain the codes of conduct for man. The three kinds of austerity of Gita are nothing but ethics.

A Comparative Study of Eastern and Western Ethics: The Ethics of Hindus is subtle, sublime and profound. All religions have taught ethical precepts such as: “Do not kill; do not injure others; love your neighbour as yourself,” but they have not given the reason. The basis of Hindu ethics is this: There is one All-pervading Atman or the Self. This is the inmost soul of all beings. This is the common, pure consciousness. If you injure your neighbour you really injure yourself. This is the basic metaphysical truth that underlies all Hindu ethical codes. Hindu Ethics is based on the sublime philosophy of Vedanta which propounds the doctrine of oneness of life and the unity of consciousness. Hindu Ethics is the dynamic aspect of Hindu Philosophy: being moral or doing good to others is a direct result of the feeling of oneness of all life; and this moral life further strengthens one’s inner spiritual life. Through the practice of cosmic love, the Hindu feels that all bodies are his, all hands are his, all feet are his, that the whole world is his home. Gradually he becomes one with the soul of the universe, one with the Over-soul. Hindu ethics leads eventually to Self-realisation. The ethics of Western philosophers is superficial. Their ethics is mere surface ethics.


Good and evil are matter of personal whim. They are relative terms. What is good for one person is evil for another. What is good at one time becomes evil at another time. What is good for one caste or order of life is evil for another.

Good and evil are only human ways of looking at things. From the Absolute viewpoint there is no such thing as evil; everything is as it ought to be. There is neither good nor evil from the transcendental point of view.

Evil too is negative good. Good often cometh out of evil. A heavy storm is an evil but it sweeps away germs and dust and makes the place conducive to health. Evil exists to glorify good. Good and evil are mental creations. Good and evil are the obverse and reverse sides of the same coin or thing. Evil can be transmuted into good. Then the whole world will be a paradise. For a sage there is no evil on this earth.

People expect that this world must contain good and good alone. How could this be? There cannot be absolute good alone on this earth. Absolute good is found only in the Eternal Being. Our world is a world of opposites. It is a world set up by the three modes of nature.

If there is absolute good on this earth, people will be quite satisfied with mundane life and never attempt to live a full and vigorous life of battle against all human shortcomings and limitations.

According to Christianity, Satan is the Lord of evil. According to Zoroastrianism Angara Mainyush is the Lord of evil. Satan and Angara Mainyush work for the downfall of man. But they can be destroyed by spiritual power and meditation. Zoroaster attacked Angara Mainyush and obtained victory over him. Lord Buddha conquered Mara through his power of Yoga. All the saints have conquered the tempting evil forces. The Devas put obstacles on the spiritual path of Yogic students. You all know how the sage Uddalaka was tempted by Satan. He subdued all temptations through his power of meditation.

Some ignorant persons put the question, “If God is really All-powerful, why does He tolerate so much evil and sin on earth? If His nature admits of no evil, then the existence of evil is due to some other agency. If such an agent exists, as can give birth to evil in spite of God, surely we have a definite limitation of God’s power.”

Evil in this world cannot bring limitation to God. He is above good and evil. Good and evil cannot touch Him in the least. The products of jugglery cannot affect the juggler. The defects of the eye cannot affect the sun. The poison in the mouth of the snake cannot affect the cobra. Even so, good and evil, which are the product of Maya, cannot affect in the least, the Lord God.

Evil too is a manifested aspect of the Lord. Lord Krishna says: “I am the gambling of the cheat.” Lord Siva is the Lord of thieves Taskaranam Patih’.


Eschatology is the doctrine of the last of final things as death, judgment, the state after death. This is in other words Paratrika Vidya or Antima Sastra in Indian philosophy.

Eschatology is that part of dogmatic theology which deals with the last things, that is to say, death, life after death, the day of judgment, hell and heaven. It is a doctrine which concerns itself with the treatment of final things, as the end of man, the end of the world, the nature of life in paradise, and so on. Many are the interesting and incredulous theories that it advances concerning the ultimate end of mankind on our planet, the final disintegration of our physical universe.

Many are the dead. Do the dead still exist? If so, where? And what exactly is the nature of the Place? If you say ‘Heaven’, is there something corresponding to it that is reserved for the evil doers? Who are the gods? Can we meet our ancestors after our death? It is to such question that eschatology provides answers.

Hindu eschatology tells us that Bhishma had death at his command; Savitri, through the power of her chastity, brought back Satyavan, her husband, to Life; Markandeya conquered death through worship of Lord Siva.

The conception of heaven of the Hindus is different from that of the Christians or of the Mohammedans. Heaven of the Hindus is a place where the departed souls go to reap the fruits of their virtuous deeds. They remain there for sometime till the fruits of their virtuous actions are exhausted. Then they come back to the world. In heaven they eat the divine feasts of the shining ones, move in celestial cars. Every wish of one is fulfilled here.

 The Christians, Mohammedans and Zoroastrians believe in heaven of all kinds of sense enjoyments. The departed souls pass through the bridge Al Sirat according to Mohammedans. The Mohammedan conception of paradise is that of a beautiful garden, furnished with springs, fountains and rivers flowing with water, milk, honey and balsam. The Paradises of the Zoroastrians are known by the names, Bihisht and Minu. The Jews and the Parsis believe in seven Heavens. The heaven of the Eden is composed of precious stones. There is a resemblance between the garden of Eden and the paradise of Zoroastrians. Christians and Mohammedans speak of eternal hell. The Hindu Puranas speak of hell as a place of torture. The Jewish belief in a future life in Heaven and Hell coincides in all its detail with what we find in the Zend Avesta and is borrowed from it. There is a similarity in the Parsi and Jewish accounts of hell and its sevenfold divisions.

Resurrection, judgment by God, reward or punishment are the three important tenets of Mohammedanism, Christianity and Zoroastrianism. Ancestor worship is one of the fundamental doctrines of Hinduism. He who has done meritorious actions on this earth-life, becomes united with his ancestors in the Pitru-loka, and lives happily with them.

Thy essential nature is existence eternal. Immortality is thy very birthright. Birth and death, life here and hereafter are just fleeting phenomena to which thou art unaffected Witness.

The Self is birthless, imperishable and permanent Existence-Knowledge-Bliss. Know this and banish all fear of death. Realise the Self and for ever soar beyond death.


Teleology is the science or doctrine of the final causes of things. It treats of the end or design for which things were created. It is the study of final causes (Nidana Shastra or Moola Hetu Vidya). This is the science or theory of the end or purpose of things. It discovers the final purpose which man and nature serve.


















Chapter II



The business of science is the generalisation of phenomena; it is the function of philosophy and Yoga to explain it. Religion is the practical aspect of philosophy; philosophy is the rational aspect of religion. The scientist tries to answer the “how” of the problem; the philosopher and the Yogi the “why” of it. It is a mistake to say that such and such an event occurs because of certain laws of nature. The laws of Nature do not give any real explanation of the phenomena. It is simply a statement in terms as general as possible of what happens under given circumstances in his expression of an observed order or uniformity in a natural phenomena. Science differs radically in its outlook from philosophical musings. Science is concerned only with the phenomena. Science shows a marvellous harmony of Nature; but it is the problem of philosophy and Yoga to solve the “why” of nature’s harmony.

In a wider conception, the functions of science are great. Science is not an enemy of religion; it is an enemy of superstitions. Both science and religion are engaged in the search for Truth. Their attitudes are essentially the same; but the fields of application vary.


Science is not an enemy of religion. Science is an enemy of superstitions. Both science and religion are engaged in the search for Truth. Their attitudes are essentially the same. But the fields of application vary.

Raja Yoga is an exact science. Its methods are very scientific. A scientist is an external Raja Yogi. Hindu Rishis, seers and sages have recognised the harmonious relation between science and religion. The divorce of science from religion is the cause of confusion and conflict. Science is religion as applies to the investigation of Truth, in the finite nature outside, the objects. Religion is science as applied to the realisation of the Infinite, the Truth that underlies all objects-the Subject.


Scientists possess partial knowledge of the universe. They have not understood the whole code of Nature’s laws. They have no knowledge of the occult side of things of the astral, mental and higher planes such as Brahma-loka. The unseen world is of far greater importance than the sense universe which is visible to the naked eye. A fully developed Yogi can function in all the planes and so he has full knowledge of the manifested and the unmanifested Nature. Scientists have no knowledge of the subtle rudiments of matter. Life will become fuller and richer, when one develops the inner eyesight by the practice of Yoga. The knowledge of the scientists is only fragmentary or partial, whereas the knowledge of the Yogi is full and perfect.

Science is partially unified knowledge. A scientist observes the laws of Nature, experiments in his laboratory, investigates, infers and draws exact conclusions from his observations. He understands the outward surface and the physical aspects of Nature and knows nothing of the origin, the occult intentions and destiny of Nature. The scientist does not know as to what made and bestowed upon the ultimate particles their marvellous power of varied interaction? On the other hand, the Yogi gets inner divine realisation, sees with his Yogic vision the subtle rudiments of matter, has an intimate experience of the Supreme Power and Being behind all Nature. He gets control over the five elements, clearly understands the whole mystery of creation through direct intuitional knowledge. While science is experimental knowledge, Yoga is completely unified knowledge.


Real religion is not divorced from philosophical wisdom or alien to the spiritual science of the Self. If the Self is an established fact, and the knowledge of it is true, the way to it also is true and established. This established way is religion.

Many religions appear on the surface when they are not strictly based on the general reality of all. When religions are founded on non-essentials, on classes, climes, sentiments, idiosyncrasies and the practical needs of a particular society of a limited part of humanity, they are bound to be cut off from each other. But, when it is known that man is not merely a body, that his ultimate demands are not peculiar to his personality alone, that the essential calls of the inner reality are similar to those in others too, it will be found that the views of life cannot finally diverge and that, if all aim at a common experience of reality and perfection, their conduct in life can only be a preparation for that Supreme Experience Whole. This preparation is the religious life, though it may have many appellations and may pass through the moulds of temperamental peculiarities.

Let it not be thought that religion is a dogmatic, other-worldly, pet tradition of blind believers or irrational emotionalists. Religion is the most rational science of life itself, which no one can gainsay, the science of man as he essentially is, not merely as he presumes himself to be. Religion is the way to the realisation of the highest perfection. If perfection is a possibility, religion is real and it is the only method befitting the human ideal.

Man can never live without God, for God is the Whole and man is only a part. Man’s religion puts him in consonance with Truth. Religion is the form taken by the relation that is between man and God, the link between the lower and the higher natures in oneself. Man’s own Higher Nature is God; his essence is the Real; his existence is universal and immortal. Religion is the way spiritual, the way to God. Religious life is spiritual life; a religious man is a spiritual man, for it is not possible to be religious without reverencing the Spirit that is one.

Philosophy has its root in the practical needs of man. Man wants to know about transcendental matters when he is in a reflective state. There is an urge within him to know about the secret of death, secret of immortality, the nature of the Soul, of the Creator and of the world. Philosophy helps him to know all these things. Philosophy is the self-expression of the growing spirit of man.

Philosophy is the rational aspect of religion. It is an integral part of religion in India. It is a rational enquiry into the nature of Truth or Reality. It gives clear solution to get rid of pain and death and attain immortality and eternal bliss.

Hindu philosophy is not mere speculation or guess work. It is lofty, sublime, unique and systematic. It is based on mystic spiritual experience. The seers, sages and Rishis who had direct intuitive perception of the Truth are the founders of the different philosophical systems in India.

Religion and philosophy are twin-sisters, the relationship between them is very intimate. Most of the problem of philosophy are the problems of religion. While philosophy struggles to gain an intellectual understanding of the real nature of world, of man and of God, religion dynamically experiences the very Essence of all Existence. Philosophy is man’s mental movement towards God or Truth or Reality, and religion is his heart and soul movement. Philosophy knows God; religion lives and moves in God. Philosophy is for ever searching, inquiring, questioning; religion is sensing, realising, experiencing.


Religion is not a dogma or a comfortable fancy or a hobby of a certain group of people. Religion is the expression of the universal impulse which none can resist.

Every person thinks differently, and yet, thinks towards the one Supreme Being. Differences are in the roads and the ladders; not in the city reached or the roof climbed over. It is the human aspiration but not the subhuman propensity that ravages the very values of life through contempt for alien temperaments and hatred towards other inhabitants of earth, ultimately resulting in religious wars, poverty, grief and restlessness. Modern civilisation despises religion because it understands by religion an outburst of the irrational spirit. Far from it! Religion is the Light that enlivens the most rational life, the manifestation of the eternal glow of intelligence that peeps through even the mightiest genius of the world. There can be no civilisation without religion, and there is no worth in religion if it is destitute of spirituality. There is no Asiatic or American or European, no Hindu or Christian or Muslim, but there are sons of God, worshipping Him in the Temple of the Universe.









Chapter III



In the philosophical system of Aristotle, God is not an anthropological Being seated in Heaven, as the King of the universe. God, for Aristotle, is primum mobile immotum, a prime mover unmoved, the One, the source of the unity of the world process.

God is not the Maker but the Mover of the world. Everything in the world is a moved mover, and God being perfect and eternal, is the unmoved mover. Nothing moves Him, for nothing is superior to Him. He is indivisible, spaceless, sexless, passionless, immortal Being. God neither creates the world nor is interested in the world, for He is not imperfect, He has no desires, no will, no purpose. He is the essence of all things, the source of all action, the instigator of all thought.

God, according to Aristotle, is the First Cause, the eternal unmoved first mover. Everything in the universe is caused by something; in the world, one moves the other. The brain moves the hand, and the hand moves the pen, that is to say, the cause of every motion is the result of some other motion. But motion must have its source; someone or something must have created it. That something or someone is God, and God, if we are to avoid an infinite regress must be treated as an unmoved Mover. God is the final cause of all activity. He influences the world and sets it in motion not by mechanical impulse, but by virtue of the perfection of his being. God’s static perfection moves the world. A great saint is passing by us. His gaze is fixed upon the ground; he does not talk, does not see, is not excited. But we see him; his very presence has turned our eyes towards him, inspires awe in us, sets our hearts in convulsions of emotion, excites our love and admiration, moves our natures. Such is the nature of God, the causeless Cause, the Unmoved Mover, the Being whose Perfect Beauty, without being moved itself, produces motion within all of us by being loved.


There is a living, unchanging, eternal Conscious- ness that underlies all names and forms, and that holds all together, that is God. God is the unseen Seer, the unheard Listener, the unthought Thinker, the unknown Knower. Unseen, He helps you with faithful hands. Unheard, He hears your speech. Unknown, He knows your thoughts. He is Absolute Power and Infinite Awareness. He is the Eternal behind all instabilities, the Supporter of all functions and phenomena.

God’s will expresses itself everywhere as Law. The laws of gravitation, cohesion, relativity, cause and effect, the laws of electricity, chemistry, physics, all the psychic laws are expressions of God’s will. Whatever reality is in existence by which all this universe of appalling immensities subsists is God. Beauty, Wisdom, Love, Goodness, Peace and Bliss are the attributes of God. He is Light and Truth, the fountain-Source for all Energy. Meditation on the Omnipotent Lord is a dynamic method for augmenting one’s energy, strength and power.

Whether one accepts the existence of God or not, He always exists. He is at once immanent and transcendent, manifest and unmanifest. He is closer to you than your breath and nearer to you than your hands and feet. Realise we must the supreme fact of the Lord’s Omnipresence in sound, colour, form, taste, smell and in every inch of His creation.

God is beyond the reach of the senses, but you can realise Him, know and feel Him, here and now. The taste of an apple can never be made known to one who has not himself tasted it; even so, the nature of God cannot be known without direct intuition or realisation. Knowledge of God is the ultimate cure for all evils and sufferings of life. God is the supreme panacea for all the weaknesses, limitations and unhappiness of man. He is boundless Grace and illimitable ocean of Mercy, the rock-basis and goal of all beings. Seek Him. Realise Him. Only then can you be Perfect and Free.


The Ontological Proof: You always feel “I exist”. One can never deny one’s existence: can one? So, denying one’s existence is quite absurd and illogical. In denying one’s existence, one denies one’s own self. Existence is God or one’s own inner immortal Self. Though one is encaged in this finite body, though one is imperfect and mortal on account of egoism, one can think, “I am Infinite, Perfect, Immortal Being.” Though one is finite, one is capable of having an idea of the most perfect Being which fills all space, which contains every thing, beyond which nothing can be conceived of and where all desires come to infinite fulfilment. This idea of Infinity can arise only from an Infinite Being. Hence the Infinite Being or God exists.

The Subjective Proof: One can deny one’s own self; one can deny the existence of God, doubt the existence of one’s own self and God. But the doubter or denier always exists. The existence of the doubter or denier is God, Brahman or the Absolute.

The Teleological Proof: Everything is changing in this world. There must be a substratum that is unchanging. One cannot think of a changing thing without thinking of something which is unchanging. Forms are finite. One cannot think of a finite object without thinking of something beyond, without thinking of the Infinite.

The Cosmological Proof: In this world of phenomena there is cause for everything. The law of cause and effect operates. There is the cause, father, for the effect, child. There is the cause, seed, for the effect, tree. There is the cause, potter, for the effect, pot. A branch of a tree moves. The blowing of wind or the sitting of bird is the cause for the movement of a branch of a tree. One sees this world. There must be cause for this world, the effect. But one may say that this cause of the world may be the effect of some other cause. But you cannot stretch this kind of argument without ending it in infinite regress. A causeless ultimate Cause must be admitted in order to avoid logical fallacy. That causeless Cause is God or the Creator.

The Theological Proof: There are beauty, intelligent beings, luminosity, law, order, harmony in spite of apparent disorder and disharmony. There must be an Omniscient, Omnipotent and Omnipresent Being who governs and controls this vast universe.

Proof by Appeal to Faith by Reason: There is a display of intelligence in every inch of creation. The Divine Hand is operating everywhere. Can my brother, the psychologist, manufacture a mind? Can the scientists explain whence the laws of nature are? It is obvious that ever since the beginning of creation some miraculous and mysterious power has been at work. One may call this “Mysterious Power”, or “Father in Heaven”, “Jehovah”, “Allah”, “Substance”, “Essence”, “Brahman” “Ahur-Madza.”


The nature of the Reality is indescribable. Reality is beyond the reach of the mind and the senses, beyond even the intellect. Mind cannot think it; intellect cannot understand it; speech cannot express it. Senses cannot perceive it. Nothing is a light to it; it is the light of all else. It is a wonderful Being. It is the infinite Subject if speech can be permitted to express in that manner. It is an experience and not a perception. To be it is to know it. Reality is the Unconditioned, the Absoluteness and is therefore beyond the conception of duality and pairs of opposites. The greatest blessedness is to know That.

The Neo-Hegelian idealist Thomas Hill Green says concerning the Absolute that “we can only make negative statements.” The Rig Veda tells us, “The One Being the wise diversely speak of.” And we see how the Absolute is variously conceived by different philosophers: Plato speaks of the absolute reality as the Being, the Idea of Good, the final cause of all occurrence and phenomena, that guides the stars in heavens and the affairs of men on earth; while the new Platonism terms it the One, the Stoics call it the World Reason; Kant’s term for the Supreme Reality, the Ideas of Reason, the thing-in-itself, the absolutely unconditioned Ground becomes in the brain of Fichte the Absolute Ego; for Schelling the Absolute is the Primordial World Ground, a spiritual unity behind all logical and ontological oppositions, the self-differentiating source for both Mind and Nature; Hegel declares it to be the All and conceives it to be a timeless, perfect, organic whole of self-thinking Thought. To Herbert Spencer it is the “Unknowable”. Introducing a distinction between finite and infinite substance, Descartes said that Substance, an existing thing which requires nothing but itself in order to exist, is God; for Spinoza also the Reality is Substance, a thing which is in itself and is conceived through itself. To Berkeley, Reality is composed of spirits and ideas, he argues the existence of a universal mind (i.e., God), of which the content is the so-called objective world. Nicolas Malbranche conceived the Reality as God who works in all things and is the only cause of events. The Energy of materialism, the Space-Time of realism, the Pure Experience of phenomenalism, are all different conceptions of the Nature of the Reality.

Reality is that which is permanent in things that change. It is attributeless for the positive and the negative natures react one another and get fused in it. It is spaceless and timeless, for space is a special mode of particularisation in Being and time is closely connected with space and Brahman or Reality is without any particularisation whatsoever. Space and Time are individualised objectifications which are born of the self-limitation of a centre of consciousness. Hence the changeless Reality which is ever Self-satisfied is beginningless and endless.

Reality is formless for form belongs to a being which is defined by space. The senses cannot reach Reality because they are objective forces which try to run away from the Centre of Existence. The more they begin to function in their realm, the farther they find themselves from the Reality. Hence the Reality is considered colourless, odourless, etc., as these sensual character- istics are not of the essential nature of the Fullness of Brahman. To think Reality is to reduce It to the world of experience.

The Supreme Reality is indescribable because description always catches parts and can never include the whole in its judgments. When Reality is said to be like “this”, there is an automatic exclusion of the “not-this” aspect or the “that” aspect of It. The exact nature of the Reality can only be experienced as such and can never be given expression to. We have to admit or are constrained to admit the failure of the intellect in determining the nature of the Reality and at attempt at a discovery of a higher faculty in human consciousness that could bring us the experience of the Reality.


Human consciousness at once presupposes the authenticity of the existence of the personal being, which is the root of this consciousness. The very meaning of human consciousness is objectivity which sets in opposition a subject or the self against the non-subject or the ‘not-self. Individuality of the subject and the object is the necessary condition of all forms of perception or knowledge in the world. Individual consciousness and individual are inseparable. The very first factor that the individual is faced with inexperience is the awareness of the existence of something which it cannot consider as the self. This is the starting point of active thinking and action.

The individual is confronted with the urgent need of developing a relationship with the vast universe which stares at it as the ‘non-self. This need marks the nature of the struggle of life as a whole, -its purpose, method and goal. The need for external relation, however, is the outcome of a practical want in oneself, a want of thoroughness and genuineness in one’s own being. This is the hypothesis upon which is constructed the edifice of philosophical speculation. Self-consciousness refuses to rest blind and idle. It stimulates mental and physical activity, a postulate which demands no reason. The value of life is determined by the characteristics of the effects of this activity. The sense of value is based on the extent, the depth and, consequently, the longevity of the experience of conscious satisfaction in the self. The worth and the righteous nature of all activity is, therefore, dependent on how far it nears the most supreme form of happiness which is the standard set by the results of the computation of perfection as determined by irresistible urge for completeness for one’s existence. The nature of this happiness, however, remains to be found out.

The acts of life show that the individual consciously and voluntarily acts because of the joys which are experienced by the self as a consequence of those acts. An action is a transformation from one condition to another, which, naturally, is the effect of the inability to rest eternally, in a particular condition. It is observed that all actions, mental as well as physical, have a special characteristic of being directed towards some or the other of the forms in which the ‘not-self’ appears. The impossibility to withhold conscious action leads us to the conclusion that there must be an intimate and permanent connection between the subjective conscious being and the vast objective existence. The fact that the vaster this objective existence included in the self’s relation and the nearer it is to the self the greater is the intensity of happiness experienced by the self points the way to the true nature of the ultimate Reality. Logically the highest bliss must be the result of a self-merging of the unlimited existence in Self-consciousness. This means the dissolution of the ‘not-Self in the consciousness of the Self, the disappearance of the hallucination of objectivity in Self-identical, objectless, absolute, Awareness merely, which exists not only including but transcending the entire realm of objective existence in quality as well as quantity.

Chapter IV



The world of experienceable things Kant calls the world of phenomena or appearances. The real world is the world of noumena or things-in-themselves. Phenomena is appearance; the Noumena is the Reality. The unseen is the Real; the seen is the appearance. All sensuously observable states of affairs constitute the world of appearance. Francis Herbert Bradley, the dialectician extraordinary of British philosophy, who had by virtue of his great originality poured a new life into modern metaphysics, in his Appearance and Reality advances many brilliant arguments to show that the web of our universe is full of puzzling contradictions and discrepancies, and it is these that reduce the phenomenal world into a mere appearance of reality. Bradley finds that all the categories and relations of thought abound in contradiction. Inherence, predication, quality, identity, causality, unity, space, and time are full of contradictions. The question of the self and its reality too abounds in contradictions. Nothing real can be self-contradictory: and all these contradictions that swarm around every phenomenon make it a mere appearance. Nothing which is not consistent can be regarded as real. The contradictory nature of the world shows that it cannot be real. Reality must be at least intelligible; but the world of nature is unintelligible. There is no object in the world which does not involve some relation; and the nature of relation being contradictory, all objects must necessarily be unreal, that is to say, they are mere appearances of reality.

The Ultimate Reality does not involve any relation; it is not self-contradictory; there are no discrepancies in it. The Reality is self-consistent; it is the complete whole bereft of internal and external conflict and disharmony.

Anything other than the Absolute Reality cannot exist. Duality cannot be eternal. Therefore, the universe, being other than the Absolute or the self in its basic nature, must be a dream-like perception and cannot be a reality. It must be so unreal as a mirage appearance in the desert, for it cannot be given any substantial value in the region of truth due to the inconsistency of its existence with the enduring Truth.


The entire mass of worlds, with everything associated with them, is the universe. It is Space-Time-Manifold. By the universe is meant the complete natural world; all created things viewed as constituting one system or whole. The whole mass of all things constitutes the world of the universe.

The world is made up of names and forms, it is a flux; everything flows. Everything in the world is characterised by change. Nothing in the universe is independent and self-existent. Every experience on earth is relative and impermanent. The universe is a multiverse, and discord is its nature. Diversity and change are made possible on earth by space and time; and space and time are the subtlest aspects of all physical manifestation.

The phenomenal world is set up by space, time and causation; and everything in it is a network of relations. The Purusha Sukta says that one-fourth of the Supreme Reality appears as the universe and that three-fourth of it is exalted beyond the earth as the glorious Immortal.Lord Sri Krishna declares in the Gita that the whole universe is sustained by a part of Himself and that He pervades the whole universe without any remainder.

According to Sankara, the world is relatively real, while Brahman is absolutely real. The world is the produce of Maya, a mysterious indescribable power of the Lord, which hides the real and manifests the unreal. And Maya is real and unreal; real because it exists till knowledge of the Self is gained; unreal because it disappears when one experiences the Real. For Ramanuja the world with its variety of material forms of existence and individual souls is a real part of Brahman’s nature. The world is the body of God and is controlled by His Will. Matter, a non-conscious substance, is real and undergoes a real evolution. World is eternal but ever dependent on the Lord. The world is neither good nor bad; it forms the object of experience of the individuals and becomes a source of pleasure or of pain according to the nature of their Karma. Madhva, in opposition to Sankara and Ramanuja, tells us that the world is neither an illusion or relatively real nor a body of God. For him the distinction between God and the world is absolute and unqualified. Prakriti or Nature is the material cause of the world; it evolves the visible universe. When God energises Prakriti through Lakshmi, there is the creation, the manifestation of the phenomenal world.

Various are the theories concerning the origin and nature of the universe. During the Vedic Age, temporalism advanced the theory that time is the cause of the universe; naturalism maintained that nature is the cause of the universe; while Fatalism said that Fate is the cause of the universe, the Chance theory proclaimed that the world has proceeded from a chance or a blind caprice; Materialism asserted that the world has come from a fortuitous combination of material elements; the Syncretic theory held that the origin of the world is due to the combination of all or some of the causes mentioned by the various cogmogonic theories. Concerning the nature of the content of all phenomenal things, the Chhandogya Upanishad tells us that while Uddalaka held that the earth was the substratum of things, Prachinasala held that it was the heaven which was so; Budila and others held that water, space and air were respectively the substrata of things, and Satyayajna said that the Sun or the celestial fire was the substratum of all things. In modern times the sciences of astronomy, mathematical physics, and astrophysics have been steadily increasing the width of our knowledge concerning the nature of the physical Universe.


Maya is a distorting force that spreads round individuals the experience of manifoldness where there is only the One homogenous Being; it is the finitising principle that apparently reduces formless to forms. That power which obscures Reality, is Maya and it is overcome only by intuiting Reality.

The two main functions of Maya are to screen the Real and to lend temporary reality to non-existing unreals. It is a juggling power that preys on the minds of men; it distorts their vision and envelops them in complete darkness and ignorance.

Maya is also called the energy of Isvara; and it is by means of this that the Lord creates the world. Maya is the realm of phenomena; it is an appearance. Many are the senses in which the term Maya is used. Sometimes the inexplicability of the relation between the unmanifest Absolute and the cosmic process, is brought out by resort to the term Maya. Sometimes Maya is made to represent the self-contradictory nature of all finite things it is made to stand for their limited and incomplete nature. Sometimes Maya is called Prakriti or Nature.

Maya is the deceptive and indescribable appearance which not only makes the individual forget the Unity of Brahman but in addition to it presents an unreal distractive phenomenon of diversity. Intellect which is rooted in egoism is the distracting factor in the individual and the sheath of ignorance is the veiling factor. Maya is, therefore, a beginningless play of cosmic imaginative force which apparently divests the Eternal Nature of its indivisibility and makes it put on a variety of forms in its own being and further gives way to the dissension into strong attachment of such egoistic centres of consciousness to their particular forms and experiences. Maya is termed in many ways, appearance, power, force, phenomenon, and the like, which all go to point to its unreal character and its untrustworthy behaviour. Every thought, therefore, is an activity in the realm of Maya, for all thoughts spring from individual consciousness which is itself the effect of the diversifying nature of Maya. All individuals, right from the supreme Isvara, down to the insignificant creature of the netherlands are within the boundaries of Maya, differing only in the degree or the extent to which each is influenced by it.

Maya transcends human comprehension, it stands above all ratiocination; it controls even the reasoning capacity of the individual. The degree of intelligence of a person is proportional to what extent he is freed from stupefying influence of Maya. It is hard to withdraw oneself from its clutches for it originates from and is based on the Eternal Brahman Itself. That which is based on the Infinite Reality must therefore be a hideous power difficult to win victory over. To extricate oneself from the hypnotic effect of this Divine Illusion the individual has to dehypnotise himself into the consciousness of Self-Illumination and absoluteness.

The nature of Maya is Anadi-bhava or beginningless existence and is inexpressible by speech. The origin or ignorance cannot be found out, but it is well-known that sages who have realised the Eternal Brahman free themselves from the effects of Maya. One can only tell how to free oneself from Maya, but one cannot say why Maya creates a universe. The spiritual seeker overcomes Maya through meditation on Brahman and negation of worldly propensities. The Truth-centred Sage possess the wealth of imperishable wisdom and is ever in unison with the One Whole Being of Brahman. The terrible sport of Maya appears as real to the worldly person, as indescribable to the aspirant and as mean to a man of Wisdom of the Self.

Then, why, what and how of Maya can be known only by one who has transcended Maya and has entered the Glory of the Self. Others can only speculate over it, but cannot solve the riddle. Man’s highest faculty of knowledge is the intellect which is itself a creature of self-limitation and hence it is impossible for the human being to determine the nature of the Power that supersedes him in extent and subtlety. It is only the intuitional light comprehends in itself the totality of existence that can step above Maya and behold the majesty of the Self. Only then can the illusoriness of Maya and the eternity of Brahman be realised in completeness.

The five rudimentary principles of sound, touch, colour, taste and smell and the five gross elements of sky, air, fire, water and earth are born of the distracting power of Maya, which projects thereby the world of objective existence. Constant change within itself is the natural tendency of the force of Maya. Maya does not rest in itself. It is a vigorous active agent whose sole purpose is to transform itself into the phenomenon and Noumenon through evolution and involution of diverse bodies. Disintegration and integration are two aspects of the destructive and constructive powers of Maya. Individuals are thrown into Being or Becoming by this gigantic Power according to the extent of the process of development undergone by each individual.

The existence of Maya is inferable through the universal workings of nature. The main action of Maya is diversification and Unification. The existence of Maya is felt by the perception of something which cannot belong to the Eternal Reality. Birth, growth, change, decay and death are the common phenomena which are seen in the daily life of every individual. These fivefold modifications are the essence of egoistic life. Creation, preservation, destruction, love, hatred, exhilaration, pain, are certain factors in the evolution of the universe. Such activities as these cannot belong to what is absolutely permanent. Activity is a struggle to overcome the existing defect. An untainted being which has no reason to wish for anything else, which is in itself full and perfect, changes not and acts not, for there is no purpose whatsoever in modifying itself into something else. Therefore, the bustle of universal life and the daily cry and strife of individuals must be Maya. Moreover the existence of individuality itself proves the existence of Maya. Individuality is not permanent, for it is limited and finite. A finite being cannot be everlasting. Therefore, individuality is a negation of absoluteness: Hence individual existence must be Maya.

Maya is centred in the individual consciousness in the form of mind. Whatever Maya does, that the mind also does. Mind is miniature-Maya. The veiling and distracting activity of Maya is undertaken by the mind in the form of nescience and egoism. Nescience is seated in the innermost sheath or the Anandamaya Kosha of the soul and the ego is seated in the intellect.

There are different degrees in the manifestation of Maya. The power of disfiguring Reality is not of the same degree everywhere. Maya is more manifest and works more powerfully in inanimate beings than animate, more in brute nature than in refined, more in the uncivilised than the civilised, more in an aspirant than in a saint. Maya is manifest in a progressive evolutionary basis on one hand and as a steady concealing of Reality on the other hand. In other words the whole process of appearance is in the domain of Maya.

The seed of Maya is the Mind which sends forth branches of it objectifying force through the channels of the organs of sensing. The mind hankers after the objects of the senses, including the intellect and the ego. The craving for objects is the effect of the desire of the individual consciousness to flow with the process of self-multiplication and self-preservation as laid in the scheme of the workings of Maya. The very meaning of phenomenal existence is preservation of the egoistic individuality and reproducing oneself into manifold forms. The senses are projected by the mind of the individual in order to effect this process of Maya. The functions of the mind, day and night, are in accordance with Maya’s law of diversification and preservation of the diversified forms through attachment to such forms and further through additional external urge to reproduce oneself and strive to maintain individual life. This whole mad process of the mind constitutes the life of man on earth. When these functions of the mind are inhibited through the force of conscious effort on the part of the discriminative consciousness, the play of phenomenal existence is stopped in its further progress, and when the seed of the mind is burnt by spiritual knowledge, Maya takes to its heels and the tree of phenomenal life is cut off root and branch.

Chapter V



Man is not merely a biological phenomena. There is in him a psychical apparatus packed with latent potentialities, powers and possibilities; saints, prophets and Yogis are a living proof of this fact. A philosophical insight into the psychical being or man drives us into believing in the reality of the Cosmic Consciousness, of the Divine Life Force as the basis, as the life of psychical entities. We need to understand man not only at his biological and physical but at his psychical and spiritual levels.

The saying that man is the measure of all things is perfectly true. Man has a many-levelled being and has various sheaths which conceal his real personality. He may identify himself with the gross physical body and look to its needs as an animal does, or he may identify himself with the self-conscious reason, or he may feel his oneness with his Real Self which is the eternal witness of both. The vital aims, however valuable they may be in their own place, cannot take control of the spiritual being for a long time without complete disorder to one’s personality. In the modern man, self-conscious intellect, with all its natural limitations takes the highest place, and suicidal scepticism is the result.

Intellect can move only in a vicious circle of possibilities and probabilities. It hovers round an object: deeper, it can never go. It cannot enter into, and he is one with it; and, be it noted, without complete identity knowledge is impossible. Intellect accepts the evidence of the senses and the results of inference, but it rejects as spurious the deepest subjective intuitions. Profound insight tells us that there is something more in man than is apparent in his ordinary consciousness: something which originates all thoughts and emotions, a finer spiritual presence which keeps him ever dissatisfied with mere earthly pursuits. The doctrine that the ordinary condition of man is not his final state, that he has a deeper self, an immortal Spirit, a light that can never be extinguished, has the longest intellectual ancestry.

All the great thinkers of the world unite in asking us to know this Self in man. While our bodily organisation undergoes change every moment, while our thoughts gather like clouds in the sky and disperse again the Real Self is never lost. It is all-pervading though distinct from all. It is the source of the sense of identity through numerous transformations. It remains itself though it sees all things. It is the one constant which remains unchanged in the multiple activities of the universe. Our limited personality is conscious only by fits and starts. There are large gaps in it. Even if death overtakes a man, the seer cannot die.

Nothing on the objective side can touch the subject. This ever-persisting self which is the eternal subject, is not capable of proof, nor does it need any. It is self-proved. It is the basic substratum of every act of knowledge, and vivifies every organ and faculty. This universal self becomes confused with the empirical self owing to mental limitations and impurities. When we break through the ring of the smoke round the self, unwrap the sheaths which cover it, we achieve here and now, in the physical body, the destiny of our being. The “I”, the “Atman”, which is infinitely simple and is a trinity of transcendent Reality, Awareness and Freedom.


On carefully scrutinising the waking, the dreaming and the deep-sleep states, it is observed that the Self is different from the physical body, the psychological organs and ignorance, which are respectively manifested in externality, internality and nihility of consciousness. Further, consciousness must necessarily be an essential constituent of the Self, for without consciousness existence itself is valueless. This at first leads us to conclude that the self must be a conscious witness of the physical, the psychological and the ignorant conditions. But, being a witness means existing as an unconcerned observer of certain phenomena which exist apart from oneself. This compels us to make the self an individual perceiver with its rival, the percept.

Metaphysically, individuality is the opposite of eternity, for eternity means changeless self-existence which is synonymous with completeness and infinitude. Nothing that is dependent is eternal and nothing that is finite or individualised is independent. The subject cannot hope to exist eternally and at the same time be a relative of some external existence. To be eternal, the subject must be absolute, which is the fusion of the totality of existence in the subject or the Self.

In order that it should be Real, the subject must at the same time become all objects, the entire existence, in which case the subjectness of the subject sacrificed to or rather swallowed by a large infinity of being where the subject and the object are not separated even in the least. Hence, if the Self is eternal it cannot be something existing apart from the three empirical bodies which are objects of the witness-Self. And, the Self must be eternal, for at no time is it possible to deny the existence of the conscious Self.

Now we are led to a twofold quandary. The Self cannot be called a differentiated witness of three bodies, objective consciousness and individuality vitiate self-existence and eternity. At the same time, the three bodies cannot be included in the Self itself, because, they disclose their character of being devoid of consciousness and also being absent at all times. Reality is that which exists without break in time and space. This test rejects the three objective conditions of waking, dreaming and deep sleep from inclusion in the Self.

This philosophical difficulty has resulted in the different realistic doctrines which posit the existence of cosmic eternal Prakriti or Power of Consciousness, a world of material creation, a body of God, a Maya! But the problem ever remains unsolved. A Purusha or an Isvara who is different from Prakriti, a Paramatman who is the possessor of an objectified Sakti, a Creator who projects out an external world, a God who transforms Himself into a universe, a Brahman who gives rise to a real Maya of objective unconscious existence, are all simply the magnified conceptions of the same Self which is cut off as a separated being from the three bodies, and states. All these theories unconsciously make their conscious reality a transient being by distinguishing it from some external existence. Either philosophy has to admit its failure in its attempt to determine the nature of Truth or close its eyes to the stern appearance of the unconscious body and the world and boldly assert the sole existence of an infinite objectless consciousness. The word “Maya” does not suggest the existence of some eternal material being, but only indicates the inexplicability of the relation of Reality to appearance.


Varying are the notions of ‘personality,’ and few seem to understand and emphasise the subtle distinction that exists between the terms, personality and individuality. More often than not, these two terms are confused even by eminent thinkers. Personality is not a representative of the individual in man; it is more a mask of the individual than the individual. Personality is the outward mental, moral and material expressions of the individual, and individuality is the state of being an individual.

The totality of mental traits and the sum of other moral, artistic or physical characteristics masking the individual makes one personality. It refers to the conduct, character, or appearance of some person. Personality may be dual or double; individuality is always single, an individual being one who subsists as one indivisible entity. Personality may be split, not individuality. In the statement, “You John, you are not the man you were,” the term you refers to the individual that is the ever same principle in man, and ‘being what one was not’ refers to personality. And in the sentence, “Fred, you have become Thomas,” the term you refers to the never changing individual, and becoming something else or being at the same time two persons indicates personality. In all men there is a double element: one is the inward and spiritual identity called the individual and the other an outward changing phenomena called personality. Personality is a formation on individuality; it is a surface building on the individual. When we say that the other one is a personality, and this one no personality, we do not mean that this one is a dead being; this one is as much alive as the other individual, but this one has no personality about him. A wealthy man is a personality, a professor is a personality, an actress is a personality, the President of a State is a personality; but a poor man is no personality, even though he is an individual.

Some people think that personality is individuality and individuality is personality. That which distinguishes a person from a thing or one person from another is personality. Personality in common parlance refers to the body. When a man is tall, has good complexion and beautiful features, when his face has a fine cut, we say that Mr. So and so has a charming personality. When one is able to influence others, people say that such and such a man has a strong personality. When one is timid, shy, we say that such and such a man has a weak personality, and also add that he must develop his personality. Individuality is not a thing for development, it is the fact of existence. Personality counts much in society, for success in life. In all fields of human relations, personality is of great importance.

The term personality comes from the Latin persona, the mask, that which an individual puts on. Personality is that individual consciousness which concerns the physical body or the mental make-up. Mr. Or Mrs. Miss so and so is a personality. Physical beauty, height, stature, all refer to the personality. This one is a business magnate; that one is a writer; here is an athlete. He is a doctor. All these concern the personality.

Death destroys the personality but it cannot annihilate the individuality. Individuality is separate and distinct existence. It is something beyond our physical self, beyond our intellectual self. It has no relation to one’s personality. The ‘T’ in a person is the individual; and his or her me is the personality. Individuality is the sense of I. It is a continuous current. It is the continuity of the one thought, the thought of I. All other thoughts are centred round this I. I was a boy. I am a man. I was a doctor. I ate. I drank. I spoke. I talked. I went to America. I bathed in the river. I saw the picture. The same I has gone through all these experiences. I is the dweller in this body. It is the same in childhood, youth and old age.

Personality changes but individuality, the sense of I, can never change, because the sense of T’ always continues to exist with one, under whatever masks one may be. Even in dreams one never loses hold of One’s sense of I. Even in deep sleep we are conscious of our ‘1’; unless we have this sense of ‘I’ in deep sleep, we would not be able to recollect that we slept soundly.

When the human mind is enlightened through protracted spiritual discipline, the individuality merges in universality, and one realises the real nature of one’s inner Self.





















Chapter VI



The ultimate source of all proofs is direct apprehension. Neither the scriptures nor the spiritual souls can give us the intimate knowledge and experience of the Reality. The Indian philosophic thought tells us that it is only the inner Self in us that sees Itself when the mind is undisturbed, unprejudiced, calm and pure. “The absolute,” says Bergson, “can only be given in an intuition.”

Kingsland in his Rational Mysticism writes, “The deepest secrets of nature, the great structural facts of the universe are not matters of physics and chemistry. They are living facts, fatefully connected with the life of each individual by and for himself. They are matters to be experienced rather than to be demonstrated not by an intellectual apprehension of truth merely but by a living and vital contact therewith.” And pervaded by logic Walter Grieson is constrained in his Conclusions of Modern Science to say, “However vague and vast and sentimental, we cannot resist the inference that in personal intuition, we have an insight into the depths of Truth unplumbed by science.”

Among the Greek philosophers, for Plato neosis is the highest kind of knowledge, immediate and super- intellectual, and he believed in the conversation of the soul with itself; and Aristotle speaks of the Absolute Self-knowledge of God, a pure activity, which knows no law and no end outside itself.

Plotinus and the Neo-Platonists were convinced that logical knowledge alone is inadequate. All intellectual analysis is for Bradley, a falsification of the real, as it breaks up its unity into a system of separate terms and relations. This subtlest intellectual British philosopher goes on to say, “The unified structure of Reality is revealed more in feeling than in thoughts, in the higher unity in which thought, feeling and volition are blended into a whole.” Again Bradley writes, “However inside the ‘what’ may extend, it can never embrace the whole of existing reality.” Bergson also suggests intuition for intellect as the proper organ of absolute knowledge. Croce is of opinion that logical knowledge takes us away from the individual, while intuitive knowledge gives us an insight into the individual. Bradley, Bergson and Croce in different ways urge that intellect succeeds in stiffening life and binding it in concepts. “A man only considers discursively that which he does not yet possess. Perfect reason no longer seeks, it rests upon the evidence of that with which it is filled.” (Enneads).

“The West is prepared increasingly to recognise the existence and validity of the faculty of intuition as a supplementary mode of cognising Reality.” “It is direct and immediate in its operations. It is its own authority.” “Instead of standing outside, intuition enters into its object and becomes by sympathy one with it.” “It is finally and pre-eminently the faculty which assures us of the meaning and significance of things, of a divine meaning and personal significance.” Thus writes Joad in his Counter Attack from the East.

The great illustration of intuitive knowledge given by Hindu thinkers is the knowledge of the Self Self-knowledge is inseparable from self-expression, self-existence. It is the only true and direct knowledge All else is inferential. It is the presupposition of every other kind of knowledge. It is the basis of all proof. An T is implicit in all awareness. The ‘I am’ of Descartes is akin to the ‘I am of the ancient Indian seers. Even Locke concedes the reality of intuition. He says, “as for our own existence we perceive it so plainly and so certainly that it neither needs nor is capable of proof.” In Kant, the 1 think’ accompanies all representations. It is the vehicle of all concepts in general. Fichte holds the view that the knowledge of the Self is due to intuition. Schopenhauer says we become aware of something which is more than phenomenal in our inner experience. Bergson says we attain to awareness of reality through the immediate consciousness. “Can we really think of omniscience apart from omnipotence? If I knew another individual person through and through I should be that person.”-wrote Ritche.

Theophrastus declares that “they who seek a reason for all things do utterly overthrow reason.” Bosanquet says, “Truth is normal to mind and error is the exception. If you can get the mind’s thought pure you must possess in it a true characterisation of reality. Its doing so is not conceptional. It is inherent.” “The voice of the inner man” counted more for Socrates than external perception or logical reasoning. Plato gives this faculty the designation of “Recollection”. Plato tells us that all learning is a process akin to remembering, as all truth is at once new and old, cognition as well as recognition.

Aristotle’s ‘nous’ represents the intuitive apprehension of the first principles. His interrogation was, “How can there be a science of first principles?” Their truth is evident to everyone. We know them by ‘nous’, by direct contact.

“To know the essence of things, as God does from within, we need the higher grade of knowledge, intuition.” He draws a clear line of demarcation between imagination, reason and intuition. He says in the short treatise, “Intuitive knowledge does not consist in being convinced by reason but in an immediate union with the thing itself.” “It is one of direct revelation of the object itself to the understanding.” “The highest peace of mind arises from intuitive vision.”

Pascal says, “Reason itself concedes that there is an infinite region beyond reason.” “The mind”, said Pascal, “thinks in two ways, the mathematical way and the finer way. In the latter case, we feel the Truth.” Both intellect and intuition are faculties of the same mind. There is no break of continuity between them. Intuition does not contradict reason. It fulfils it. They are not exclusive of each other. Intuition gives the cognition of the whole. Intellect can only have a conceptual knowledge of the whole. Intuition has direct knowledge of the whole and intellect gives us analysis of parts. Intuition is wisdom, the ‘nous’ of Aristotle, the all-embracing intelligence of Dante. Pratt in the Religious Consciousness affirms, “the mystic ecstasy is cognitive in form. It seems to reveal reality to the mystic quite as much as does his sight or hearing.” “His experience is one of intuition. It is the sense of being face to face with the Reality.”


Intuition is direct supramental knowledge of Atman through direct Self-realisation. There is no reasoning here. Intellect ceases to function here. There is no sensation here. Intuition is beyond relativity.

This is an inner spiritual experience which cannot be adequately described in words. Language is imperfect; it cannot express this whole, ineffable, transcendental experience. Words are merely conventional.

You can realise God or Atman, only through intuition. In intuition everything is clear. All doubts vanish in toto. Intuition is immediate knowledge, in contrast with mediate-knowledge. Through intuition the aspirant perceives the truth of things without reasoning or analysis.

Intuition is knowledge from within. First there is the flash of intuition. Thereupon the aspirant is established in his own Atma or Self. Intuition is immediate knowledge of the Absolute through the eye of wisdom as opposed to knowledge of the objects through the senses and intellect. It is truth obtained by internal apprehension without the aid of perception or the reasoning powers. It is the direct perception and apprehension of the divine reality underlying the manifested and the unmanifested universe.

Intuition transcends reason, but is not opposed to reason. Reason can give you only conceptual knowledge and conceptual knowledge dose not give you knowledge of the Reality in its whole, in its totality, but it divides, fragmentises and breaks things into pieces.

The mind and senses require time and space to function but the Reality which is beyond this temporal, spatial and causal order of things, can only be grasped and apprehended by intuition. The knowledge of God would have been lost to mankind but for the intuition and revelation of the seers and sages.

The sage in his flights of intuition ascends to that supramental region where he experiences the Divine Reality or the Absolute. The superconscious experience is very vivid, vital and vibrant. It is intensely real to the sage. He lives in it, moves in it and breathes in it. The intuitive Experience-Whole is grand, sublime and profound.

Intuition is the only way by which the Absolute can be realised and experienced in all its totality and integrality. These mortal limited senses and the finite intellect cannot comprehend the all-pervading Reality.

The Indwelling Soul of this material universe is pure consciousness. Indian sages and seers have intuited this Reality in all its integrality and have given to mankind the rich and precious pearl of the wisdom of the Self.

Instinct is present in animals and birds, intellect in human beings, intuition in adepts or Yogis or illumined sages. Pure reason or Visuddha Buddhi takes the aspirant to the door of intuition. Intuition does not contradict reason. It transcends reason. The eye of intuition opens when the heart is purified through the practice of Yama, Niyama, when the mind, intellect and the senses stop their functioning.

Sanjaya had this eye of intuition through the grace of Sri Vyasa. Arjuna also had the eye of intuition through the grace of Lord Krishna and experienced Visvarupa Darsana.

Bergson won recognition for intuition as the possible method of knowing the transcendental ‘1’ and the Thing-in-Itself. But his work is merely a theory of the method of intuition. It is purely methodological. He could not say how that method could be developed in a way as to give practical results. In a word he could not show the path that leads to the “Self” or the “Thing in-Itself.”

It was left to Bergson to declare man to be a geometrician. Man’s consciousness has adapted itself to understanding the world in terms of time and space. If it were freed from keeping busy with the perception of the outer world and focussed upon a world of ‘Noumenon’ it would transcend time and space and adapt it to perceiving Noumenon in a special way. This way he calls intuition which is distinguished from sensuous perception. But to free it from the world of phenomenon, it is left for the Indian Yogic method of developing intuition through Dharana (concentration), Dhyana (meditation) and Samadhi (Superconscious state).

Intuition is the only method of science of Yoga or the science of the Soul (Brahma Vidya). Yoga as practised by the Indian Yogis is essentially scientific. It is capable of uniform application and guarantees uniform results to the average man who trains himself on the method of intuition.

The goal of life is intuitive realisation of the Self or Atman which is the substratum for everything, which is the cause for everything and which is the soul of everything. What is the goal of life? What is the summum bonum? What is the supreme purpose for which we are born in the world? Western philosophers give no certain answers. Whatever answers they give are in terms of the physical sciences which are themselves formulated by a living being.

The important point to remember is that the solution of the problem of religion, philosophy and science is one, namely, the development of intuition as in the sages of the Himalayas. The goal of life which these sages indicate is Truth itself. The goal has been discerned in the clear perspective of complete knowledge, immediate and direct (aparoksha anubhuti or aparoksha Brahma-jnana). It involves no guess or conjecture or inferences. Intuition opens up new and difficult regions to conquer. No pursuit is far more glorious than the prizes of war.

In the light of developed intuition all other philosophies seem to be interesting table-talks, funny essays. There are also lower forms of intuition. Really they are not intuition. The creative power of the unconscious mind is such that sometimes the rational activity of the mind will go on below the subliminal level. It will go on far below the threshold of consciousness in sleep and dream very often. It will yield ready forms of rational thought. Coleridge composed “Kubla Khan”, an originally long poem in dream. The problem of proper needle for the sewing machine was symbolically solved for its inventor in dream. Shelly poured out ready forms of poetry. Mathematical geniuses give ready calculations but none of these are intuitional in the sense of the spiritual science. These activities do not permit conscious willing except in the limited forms in which they manifest. Also they brook no encroachment by reason. But intuition as developed by the spiritual science widens the scope of reason and makes conscious willing possible in the highest possible degree in every direction.

Indian philosophy by developing intuition fulfils the highest aspirations of the Western philosophy. Without the philosophy of intuition, as it is practised in the East, the philosophy of the West is similar to that of science before the telescope, the microscope and the special instruments of science were invented. It was not possible to know what the microbes were before the invention of the microscope. Any attempt to form a conjecture of the microscopic cells of life or matter must, obviously, have been perfect failure. To philosophise before developing all the latent powers of observation that are there in a man is not really scientific. It cannot engage serious men of action. It can never yield any tangible results. The proverb of the philosopher running after a black cat in a dark room while the cat is not there must continue to hold its own, unless intuition is developed.

Intuition is the golden key of blessedness. Intuition is the science of success. It is the science of Truth. It enables man to get eternal bliss and infinite knowledge. It opens up regions of beauty and blessedness and gives the method to conquer those regions. It gives man wonderful powers to move the world if he likes. Above all, it enables the intellect to cognise Reality and to build its concepts for the purpose of communication.


Unlike reason, intuition is a direct apprehending power of Consciousness. It is that power in the higher reaches of mind which perceives the truth of things  immediately, and without reasoning and deduction. The direct and immediate apprehension by a knowing subject of itself, of its conscious states, of other minds, of an external world, of universals, is intuition. That knowledge which is non-inferential, non-sensuous, immediate, intimate and direct, is intuitive knowledge. While reason conceptually constructs, intuition immediately apprehends. Reason studies the superfices of things, analyses and categorises the external nature of things; intuition experiences the very heart and truth of things. While reason reasons about things, speaks to us of things as they appear, intuitive apprehension recognises and experiences the very heart and life of things, brings us an awareness of the things as they are in themselves in their essential nature.

In Sanskrit terminology, intuition is called Divya Chakshu, Prajna Chakshu, Jnana Chakshu, through which the Yogi or the Sage experiences the supreme vision of the all-pervading Brahman. It corresponds to the Brahmakara Vritti of the Vedantins. It is the third spiritual eye of the Yogins. It is the eye of wisdom through which the sage clearly discerns in everything the unseen presence of the Reality. It is an active inner awareness of the Immortal blissful Self within.

The age of the Upanishad was an age of intuitional perception. It was an age when intuitional experience was the guarantee of Truth. But the modern age is an age of questioning and criticism. Today the guarantee of truth is the test of sensual perception. That which man can perceive through his sense-organs that he accepts as the reality. That which the senses cannot perceive he rejects as unreliable. Thus many a precious factor in our ancient cultural heritage has been rejected and set aside as superstition.

Intuition, intuitive discernment, in fact is the only touchstone of philosophy. The method of intuition is the only method of discerning the Truth ultimately. Without developing intuition the intellectual man remains imperfect and blind to the Truth behind the appearances. In the light of developed intuition all other philosophies seem to be interesting table talks, funny essays, humorous attempts in the game called “Blindman’s buff.”

Of all modern philosophers of the West, Bergson emphatically suggests intuition for intellect as the proper organ of absolute knowledge. For Bergson “intellect is characterised by a natural inability to understand life.” Rational function can only enumerate; it cannot feel Feeling is the function of the intuitive self in man. The intuitive self is also called the creative intellect. It is the “enduring within-ness” of our life, our own profound sense of our unlimited depths, it is an intellectual sympathy. The rational philosophers had rejected ‘intuition’ as the chief instrument of superstitions; and it was left to Bergson to regenerate the dignity of intuition and point out its great role in procuring for us the very meaning of the essence of life, mind and matter, and it was he who was the first to attempt to give the term intuition a scientific basis.

But Bergson is not only not definite in his description of the nature of intuition, but also does not give us any technique of exercising this faculty of intuition. He approaches the problem of intuition from a negative, rather than a positive point of view. The Indian view of intuition is highly satisfactory, and the method it hands us for making intuition a normal, operative, dynamic faculty in us, is very scientific and perfect.


What one person established through reason can be refuted by another, more intelligent and ingenious than he or she. Even a sage like Kapila is refuted by other sages like Kanada. The conclusions of reasoning can never be uniform. Hence reason has no sure basis. It cannot upset the conclusions of Vedanta which are based on the Srutis which are infallible and authoritative.

What one logician endeavours to establish as perfect knowledge is demolished by another, who in his turn is treated alike by a third. How, therefore, can knowledge which is founded on reasoning and whose object is not something permanently uniform, be perfect knowledge?

Perfect knowledge has the characteristic mark of uniformity, because it depends on accomplished actually existing things. Whatever thing is permanently of one and the same nature is acknowledged to be a true or real thing. Knowledge about Soul or Self-knowledge is termed perfect or true knowledge.

In the case of perfect knowledge a mutual conflict of men’s opinions is not possible. But those cognitions or knowledge founded on reasoning do conflict. How, therefore, can knowledge which is founded on reasoning, and whose object is not something permanently uniform, be perfect knowledge?

Logic has no fixity or finality. Owing to the differences of the brains of men, their reasoning powers are also different. The deductions of one reasoner are overthrown by another. We see arguments which some clever men had cogitated with great pains are shown by people still more ingenious to be fallacious and how the arguments of the latter again are refuted in their turn by other men. Hence it is impossible to accept mere reasoning as having a sure foundation on account of the diversity of men’s opinions.

Even if there is to be any finality of reasoning, it will not bring about any finality of doctrine in regard to the Soul because the Soul cannot be experienced by the senses and neither analogy nor syllogism can apply to it.

In matters transcendental such as the existence of God or Brahman, of after life, of final release, etc., the pronouncements of human intellect can never be perfectly free from doubt because these are matters not within the scope of intellect. They are beyond its scope. Brahman is inconceivable and consequently unarguable. The Kathopanishad declares, “This knowledge is not to be obtained by argument, but it is easy to understand it, O Nachiketas, when taught by a teacher who beholds no difference.” The Smriti also says, “O Rishis, the sages with their body, senses and mind tranquil realise that Truth, but when it is overwhelmed with dry reasoning, it vanishes.”

The intellect is finite and frail. It is conditioned in time, space and causation. It cannot know things which are transcendental. Intellect cannot work when there is delirium, fear. It cannot function when one is under intoxication, when one cannot get his food for two days, when one gets pain or when one is suffering from a disease.


The intellect which is the seat of logical conclusions has got its defects, since it functions on the wrong basis of the assumption that the results achieved by the process of the distinction of the knower, the knowledge and the known are supremely trustworthy. There is no logic without this difference; with difference there is no eternal truth. The complete synthesis of knowledge would be a union where reason is abolished altogether, where the intellect is transcended and differences are cancelled. This is not possible as long as the seeker rests in the human consciousness. But the practical moral urge points to the existence of perfection which is unlimited in every way.

This urge is corroborated by direct intuitive experience. It is heard from such sources that the Supreme Reality is free from the functions of thinking, the notion of individuality and the perception of external existence. It is all unlimited, spaceless, timeless, non-dual, pure Consciousness. It is called Super- Consciousness, for, it is greater than the ordinary consciousness experienced in life. This does not contradict the pure reason and since reason has nothing better to say, it has to accept the trustworthy character of what is heard from those who have reached the kernel of existence. Logic may scrutinise, reason may verify the validity of these declarations. And since they are found to be agreeable to logic and reason and as they also ratify the practical moral urge, they have to be taken as the torch in the quest after the Truth.

Intuition includes and transcends intellect. Intuition is the eye of wisdom; intellect is the eye of worldly knowledge. The Brahmakara Vritti that proceeds from the pure mind or the higher mind, pertains to intuition. In intuition, the consciousness moves upwards, towards Atman and its Illumination. In intellect the commonsense moves downwards towards the world of illusory objects.

Intuition bestows full transcendental wisdom; intellect confers the knowledge of external objects. Intuition is infallible, intellect guesses, believes, desires. Intuition is a flash and illumination; intellect is a struggle with glimmering. Intuition in time becomes eternity, space becomes infinity, no dimension; in intellect there are the past, present and future, space and the three dimensions, length, breadth and height.









Chapter VII



The state of Cosmic Consciousness is beyond description. It induces awe, supreme joy and unalloyed felicity. This state of cosmic consciousness is below the absolute consciousness (Nirguna Brahmic conscious- ness) wherein the seer, sight and the things seen, or the knower, knowable and knowledge or the subject and object become one. In cosmic consciousness there is yet the seer and the seen.

Cosmic consciousness is perfect awareness of the oneness of life. The Yogi feels that the universe is filled with one life, that there is no such thing as blind force or dead matter and that all is alive, vibrating and intelligent. He experiences a sense of universality, a consciousness of Eternal Life. He who has cosmic consciousness feels that the universe is all his. He is one with the Supreme Lord, with the Universal Knowledge and Life. He gets the eye celestial and experiences bliss beyond understanding and description.

A Yogi of cosmic consciousness develops the cosmic sense and has universal understanding. He is conscious of being in the immediate presence of God. During Illumination the floodgate of joy breaks and he realises that the deep, everlasting fountain of joy exists in every heart, that the immortal life underlies all beings, that this eternal, all-embracing, all-inclusive love envelops, supports and guides every particle, every atom of creation. Sin, sorrow, death are now but words for him, words without meaning. He feels the elixir of life, the nectar of immortality flowing in his veins. His face shines with a radiant light. His eyes are lustrous. They are pools of joy and bliss. He feels that the entire world is bathed in a sea of satisfying love, which is the very essence of life. He feels that the whole world is his body, that all hands and all feet are his. Chair, table, tree have a cosmic significance. He could never feel strange or alien to any place.

Cosmic consciousness is an inherent, natural faculty of all men and women. It is inactive, or non-functioning in the majority of human beings. Yogic training and discipline are necessary to awaken the exalted blissful state of Cosmic Consciousness.


The realisation of the true substratum of life is attained through a withdrawal of the multiplicity of the mental rays, which are dissipated in recognising false dualism and the vagaries of unreality. Egoism or the idea of separateness is a strong rampart that shields the cosmic Truth from the approach of the individual soul. The collected form of the dissipated rays of the internal psyche is made use of in penetrating the wall of egoism and disintegrating it into the freedom of Infinite Existence.

The process lies through cultivating the sense of selflessness which is developed by negating the idea of doership, and a burning spirit of renunciation.

Renunciation, which is the foremost requisite of all spiritual attainments, does not necessarily imply discarding of garments and an austere abandonment of the necessities of life, or seeking solitude in wilderness with an uncleansed mind. Renunciation is an expanded state of the mind, which, through the restraint of the outgoing senses, develops a power to lift up the individual consciousness from its separated tabernacle and allows it to find its real Self in the infinite manifestation and not merely in a particular idol, or an individual body, be it one’s own self.

This is the reason why sages of wisdom are not attached to any physical sheath, in particular. For all bodies are theirs. This leads to an indifference to separate existence, which is swept away by the breath of universal life. Those who feign to be indifferent to their body need not necessarily possess this infinite Consciousness: for they are cheated by an arrogant attachment to the limited external pleasures derivable through asceticism. It is another form of worldliness, rather a more formidable appearance of it, which is very difficult to transform. Aspirants have to be warned against such self-deceit and failure to progress through ethical perfection and selfless service.

Selflessness is not merely self-denial or service done without reward. The experience of selflessness is achieved through beholding the one Self in each and every being, including the wicked and the ungrateful. Such an expansion of the self leads to the glory of the manifestation of the real Essence. Selflessness is the kernel of all conscious efforts directed towards Self- realisation. It is a pressing of the lower consciousness of separate individuality in order to raise up the other side of the balance, the higher consciousness of the Absolute, and thus bring in the levelling condition of Nature into a state of immobile eternity.

Different forms of social service, personal service to the sick and the suffering, negation of the superiority complex through self-denial, menial labour and fraternisation with those whom the society will not grant equality, are all different fields for cultivating selfless- ness and breaking open the barrier of separateness.

When the consciousness of the true selflessness is established life becomes a continuous, positive meditation on the Reality. There is an intense and continuous affirmation of the indivisible Existence.

The science of selflessness embodies in itself the methodical process of the entirety of the systems of all Yogas. A truly selfless service needs nothing at all in particular in space or time. It is a natural outflow of Truth itself. It is a service not meant to enjoy the gratification of the person served, or the usefulness of the service done; it is not meant to win for the server any terrestrial comfort or egoistic enjoyment. But it is a singular process of transformation of the individuality of the server and the served into one, homogeneous whole.

None save the one who serves should be conscious (not in the egoistic way) of the selfless act that is done; not even the one who is benefitted need know who has done it. The whereabouts and the particulars of a really selfless Sevak should not be disclosed unlike the names and designations of many munificent donors such as can be found in the marble slabs of different philanthropic organisations. This need apply only to the seekers of Nivritti, not to each and everybody, for evidences of such munificence are also necessary to serve as an inspiration to others. Such an attitude as prescribed for the Nivritti student, particularly a neophyte, is compulsory. Otherwise, the server may enjoy the gratefulness of the person served and thus lose the full benefit derivable through the selfless act. That other person should not know it goes without saying. Such stored up feelings of selfless satisfaction effected through selfless service, which would otherwise have been dispersed and spread out externally for the purpose of selfish enjoyment derivable through the contact with objective entities, act as a powerful spade to dig out the depths of the ego.

Every act in common parlance is directed towards the achievement of an end particularised in time and limited by space. But truly unselfish act done for no particular object in view is a challenge for the separative ego which cannot live without relating itself to something that is marked in space and time. Such an act which does not feed the individual self-sense with its diverse requirements compels the relative self-interest to dissolve itself in interest Absolute. It soars high above all limitations and engages itself in its establishment in the perfect satisfaction and the uncontradicted experience of the Reality.

Such an establishment in the state of the Self unimpeded by the phenomenal laws or separative restrictions is of an infinite rejoicing in the free flow of the law of the spirit in life divine. Divine homogeneity is the highest state of the fullest freedom of existence, and the forces that try to hinder such an expansion of truth and try to keep up the network of opposing and relative factors are, therefore, undivine. Such being the ideal of acts and experiences, the means of approach to it cannot be detrimental or opposed to the natural essence of the ideal. The Absolute has to be approached with the spirit of the Absolute. Oil does not mix with water and heterogeneous forces do not form a union. To realise the state of Absoluteness, the relative individual is required at first to be hypnotised into absolute faith and then led into the absolute path which leads to the absolute Experience.

All spiritual efforts, whether belonging to the active, emotional or the intellectual aspects of man, have to be equipped with the common and the necessary expanding of the individualised sense into infinite Consciousness. Without such a knowledge or consciousness of the fundamental fact of existence, life becomes intense with conflict and war between the opposing forces. It is impossible for the individual to blossom into Infinity in the midst of such a heated strife among disturbant powers of nature without reconciling and pacifying them in a higher expansive consciousness, where they disclose their inner truths, which melt into the bosom of the Reality with a paternal embrace.

The awareness of this true and undying law of the Spirit becomes the foundation upon which are raised the four pillars of Karma, Bhakti, Yoga and Jnana. The pillars cannot fail to support the roof of attainment, for they are grounded in Truth and held firm by the unfailing law of it. The beginning and the end of Sadhana have to imperatively manifest identical natures, though the one is only a thought and the other an exact experience. A theoretical thought of Truth ends in its practical experience, for thought is not an entirely different form but is a shadow of the Truth. The shadow gives an idea of its substance, though not satisfactorily. The illusion has to be pierced through illusion itself, for it is a self- expression of its Substratum. The rays advertise the nature of the sun. The physical world gives out the nature of the mental world, which in turn reflects the nature of the Reality of which the lower manifestations are only imperfect modifications.

The method of approach to the Absolute, however low in standard should therefore reflect natures which belong to the essential reality of Existence. Such conscious effort produces a very quick effect and there then hails the revelation of Experience-Whole. Otherwise there is a failure of the ego-sense in its infinite pursuits and a painful continuation of the vain struggle for perfection in separative and conflicting ignorant consciousness. A supreme knowledge of the Eternal Truth, above all such miserable plights, is Divine Life, a life in the central, limitless, bliss, and brilliance of the heart of Infinity.


The progress of the Thinker in man from his present condition of limitedness to the state of the unlimited Self, constitutes evolution. Progress of the Thinker means improvement and growth of mind through which he thinks. In the physical plane, all vegetable and animal bodies develop out of the life-germ, the unit cell. The embryonic cell sometimes divided itself into two or more cells and sometimes, as in the case of the lower forms of life, becomes associated with new cells drawn from outside. In any case, development of the embryo implies multiplication of the cells drawn from. Mere multiplication of the cells again cannot make a living body. Along with it, there is also the widening or expansion of the life within so as to control all the cells together. Similarly, a man’s mind is said to grow or expand when his thoughts extend beyond his physical body and beyond his limited personality. As the original unit cell is the earliest and lowest state of the physical body, thoughts of one’s own interests alone belong to the lowest state of the mind. The mind grows when the interests of others are also considered, as the physical body grows up packing together of more cells. As there is connecting life for all the cells together, selfless thoughts or thoughts of others interests should be bound up together by a connecting and unifying knowledge that all are only the Self. The end of the evolution of the Thinker is reached when the evolving mental life becomes by expansion identical with the all-including life, the universe Self. If, however, his thoughts and actions are directed exclusively towards personal and selfish ends, his mind contracts more and more and is receding more and more from the path of evolution. Man should therefore think only such thoughts and do only such actions as may widen his mind and raise him up in evolution. The mind has to expand and expand until the limiting mind-covering, becoming very thin, is torn asunder when, the limitations of the Thinker ceasing to exist any longer, his Inner Self shines in his infinitude of existence, consciousness and bliss, for it was only he, the One and Real Self that was appearing till then to be enclosed in a covering made of mind-stuff.














KANT: With regard to Kant, he thinks that the world as perceived by us is partly determined by our organs of perception, viz., the intellect and the senses. Kant is undecided whether to call the external world real or unreal. Spinoza reduces it to an illusion. Plato makes it a realm of shadows. Kant believes that to understand the Truth, we must transcend the subject-object relation. Kant also said that Time, Space, Causality, etc., are a priori forms of thought and have no independent existence. Kant made this matter very clear but could not show clearly how to transcend time, space and causality. This was done by subsequent thinkers.

HEGEL: His principle is the principle of identity of opposites. He says, the object is distinct from the subject yet identical with it. In the Absolute idea there is the identity indifference of subject and object. This is something like Bheda-abheda-vada of Nimbarkacharya, or Sri Gauranga. Therefore, Hegel deduces the world from the Absolute. His universe is not empty like Sankaracharya’s. It carries its own negation or opposite with it and we can deduce a higher entity by a com- bination of both. Being contains non-being. By combining both we arrive at Becoming which is a higher category. Becoming is similarly treated as the next thesis from which an anti-thesis is developed and by combining the thesis and anti-thesis, a new category is obtained which is called the synthesis till we reach the higher category, viz., the Absolute idea. Hegel's defect is that he cannot give reason why opposite notion, i.e., evil, etc., have come from his Absolute which is joy. That is the defect, in all Vaishnava religions. If God became perfect and happy after manifestation, he was imperfect and unhappy before manifestation. This difficulty has been overcome in Sri Bhagavata at many places by Suka giving the example of dream state to Parikshit.

SCHOPENHAEUR: He openly declares his approval of the oriental thought. His theory is the Theory of Will. According to him a concept is passive. The motive power is in volition directed by feeling. He says a merely intellectual philosophy of life is hollow and superficial, therefore will, feeling and concept work together. In proposing the unity of these three he dragged the spiritual into the empirical arena in which time, space and causality reign supreme. Therefore Schopenhaeur also cannot overcome the opposition of evil, ignorance, etc.

His defect is that he attributes action and change to the first principle or identifies it with the Will. Therefore his Will is not Absolute. The Brahman is Perfection itself and requires no effort by which to attain to that perfection. Its willing and developing into a universe is accepted only in a secondary sense, i.e., by Maya. This is the doctrine of Sri Bhagavata and Sri Sankaracharya.

Nearly all the English philosophers accept the experience of the waking condition as the basis to start with, whereas highly developed Indian philosophers accept the experience of the waking, dream and sleep to start with. If Western thinkers have done any good work, it is the discovery of the “Theory of Relativity” by Prof. Einstein in 1905 which was further developed in 1915. After that, the present Western philosophers are now considering the experience of dreams also. The new thinkers during the last twenty years consider the world as Maya as in dream or as explained by Sri Sankaracharya or as explained in the Srimad Bhagavata.


1. Thales, the father of Greek philosophy, was keen in his search for the prima materia for all things and found it in water; Anaximanes found it to be air; Diogenis of Appollonia found it to be soul, which was not only Force but also Intelligence.

2. Pythagoras taught that numbers were the cause of things, and called the invariable existences, the All.

3. Anaximander of Miletus found the prima materia of all things to be the Infinite.

4. Xenophanes turned his eyes upwards at the immensity of heaven and declared that the one is God.

5. Xenophanes describes God as the self-existent, immortal, intelligent Infinite.

6. Pythagoreans believed in the doctrine of transmigration. Plato expounded the theory of reincarnation and maintained that the soul has had an ante-natal condition and is going to have a post-mortal state.

7. According to Plotinus the final destiny of the soul is its merging in the Absolute.


Western system of philosophy is not really perfect like that of Sri Sankara. It does not contain much that is really very useful to the spiritual aspirants. A study of the western philosophy is interesting and intellectually stimulating and refreshing; it expands and gives a good food for the intellect.

Some of the western philosophers have indeed worked very hard in their investigation of Truth and in trying to solve the riddle of life and of the Soul and the Absolute. Some like Spinoza and Schopenhaeur actually led the divine life. They were not mere impractical armchair philosophers.

Spinoza’s “Substance” is nothing but the Vedantin’s Brahman. His philosophy is very near to the Advaita Vedanta philosophy. He declared, “Abandon the mode and attribute. Merge the soul in the Substance. You will be ever blissful and attain Immortality. This is the goal of life.” Is this not Vedanta? Vedanta says, “Give up name and form. Merge the soul in Brahman. You will attain Kaivalya or Independence or Atma-swarajya.” “Mode” of Spinoza is form.

Eckhart’s philosophy is good. Bergson has done some good. It is he who brought recognition to ‘intuition’ which transcends reason. But his intuition is not the same as the Vedantin’s Jnana Chakshu or the Eye of Wisdom.

Some western philosophers said, “The Absolute is the supreme good.” They recognised the one auspicious aspect of Brahman. It corresponds to “Sivam, Subham” of the Vedantins. Some said, The Absolute is all Beauty.’ They recognised the one Beauty aspect of the Brahman. It corresponds to “Sundaram” of the “Satyam Sivam Subham Sundaram Kantam” of the Vedantins.

Western philosophy is only tinsel, something sparkling or shiny. It is a false glittering. It is superficial. It emits a false lustre. There is no real substance in it. It is more theoretical and hypothetical. It tries to postulate transcendental Truths from inference drawn through observation of external phenomena. They are not in the way of bold declaration and authoritative assertion made with the perfect confidence of direct intuitive perception or Aparoksha Anubhuti. Because it is the product of the intellectual gymnastics or of acrobatic feats of some philosophers. It is not the outcome of direct intuitional experience as in the case of Eastern philosophy of the Seers, Sages and Rishis. It cannot appease the thirsty aspirants. It does not prescribe practical Sadhana or clear-cut methods for achieving the Absolute. Everything is vague. It is all some conjecture or musings. The western philosophers had no realised Brahmanishtha Teachers to show them the way to realisation. They themselves did not practise any rigorous discipline, ethical austerity and constant contemplation with purity, self-reatraint and introspection in seclusion. They did not practise Tyaga and Tapas, renunciation and austerity. Hence they could not show the direct path to the aspirants.

Any neophyte in spiritual path should not read western philosophy to start with. If he starts with the western philosophy, he will be entangled in its meshes. It will be entangled in its meshes. It will be very difficult for him to get rid of them. He will become the victim or wrong Samskaras. One should study the Prasthanatraya first: Bhagavadgita, the ten classical Upanishads and the Brahma Sutras under the guidance of a Brahmanishta Guru. One should take one’s seat on the bedrock first. Then he should study the other systems of philosophy. You cannot be shaken. You will understand well the other systems. You will know the shallowness of the western philosophy.

For some western philosophers the ‘Absolute’ is unknowable. If the ‘Absolute’ is unknowable what is the earthly use of studying this system of philosophy? In the Western world “personality” and “Individuality” are very great things. They cannot renounce anything. They are terribly afraid of Tyaga. Possession and position is their goal. That is the reason why they cannot take recourse to Sadhana, Tapas, seclusion and meditation.


The external objects are real: this is Realism. There are no external objects; Ideas only are real: this is subjective idealism or Vijnana Vada. There is neither object nor idea; there is only Void: this is Nihilism of Buddhists.

There is no world in the three periods of time; Brahman alone exists: this is absolute idealism of Gaudapada. Brahman is non-dual: this is monism of Sri Sankaracharya. The Jiva is not identical with Brahman, but it is a ray of Brahman, it is similar to Brahman: this is qualified Monosm of Ramanujacharya. Jiva is ever separate from Brahman; this is dualism of Madhvacharya. The goal is one: Self-realisation. Defferent paths are necessary to suit different stages of evolution.


The theory known as determinism is a system of philosophy which denies liberty of action to man; it maintains that man’s actions are invincibly determined by motives acting upon his character. According to this doctrine all things are determined or limited by causes, and the will of man is not free. Necessitarianism and fatalism are synonymous terms of determinism. Fatalism is the doctrine that all events are subject to fate and happen by unavoidable necessity. Necessitarianism is the theory that every event in the universe is determined by causal necessity.

While the philosophy of determinism holds that everything in the physical universe and in human life, is absolutely dependent upon and conditioned by its causes, the doctrine of free will ascribes freedom to the human will in more than one sense. The doctrine of the will insists upon its essential freedom and points out that will is free to control thought and discipline desire.

Free-will is the power of directing our own actions without by necessity or fate and freedom refers to the absence of compulsion or restraint or constraint by any external power. Man has got a power to choose between the alternatives which fate brings before him. In choosing between them man may either follow his tendencies produced by his past actions or struggle against them. This faculty of choosing is termed will. When one says “my will”, this freedom of choice and action is implied. The will of man is ever free.

Freedom in the light of Vedanta: The subject whether how far man is a free agent of his actions must be intelligently studied in the light of Vedanta. Only then can one get a satisfactory answer and solution. In the West various competent men have discussed this matter from various standpoints. Determinists say that the will of a man is as much bound by the law of causation as the rest of the phenomena of the universe. Ethics will fall down to pieces if there is no freedom for a man. There cannot be surely any moral responsibility where there is no freedom. How could a man be made to account for his actions, unless he is a free agent of his deeds? How could reward or punishment be meted out with justice to a man if he has done an action out of compulsion, but not out of free choice? Man will be like an automaton or block of wood, his hands and feet being chained down tightly. The Self-consciousness makes a man feel that he is ever free. This idea of freedom is ingrained in the mind of every man. It is hidden in Self-consciousness. Though he has nothing to eat, though he is in very adverse circumstances, there is a peculiar instinct in man that prompts him to think that he is always free. Because the Nitya-Mukta, ever-free, Atma is at the back of his mind, sentiments and feelings. He knows he is bound, that he is encased in this tabernacle of flesh, that many of his thoughts and deeds are determined for him; he knows that he is a victim of Avidya; yet there is something within him that tells him that he is free. He has a double feeling, because in essence man is the all-pervading Wisdom; he gets these glimpses or flashes of freedom even while he is labouring under straitened circumstances. There are the encouragements for the struggling soul that come from within. Though a man is in a dying condition, though doctors have pronounced his case to be absolutely hopeless, yet there is a shrill, inner voice from within him that says: “I am immortal. I am free.” He cherishes an inherent feeling: “I am free though I appear to be apparengly bound. This bondage is not totally real.”


The law of causation is a universal law that keeps up the inner harmony and the logical order of the universe; and, all the phenomena of Nature are governed by this one important law. Man’s deeds are as much subject to this law as the events and occurrences in this physical plane. Karma is a Sanskrit term that comes from the root ‘Kri’ meaning to act and signifies action or deed. Any physical or mental action is Karma, Reaction that follows an action is also Karma. It is a broad term Attraction, repulsion, gravitation, breathing, walking, seeing, eating, feeling, thinking, all the actions of the body, mind and senses are all Karma. Karma includes both cause and effect. All other laws of nature are subordinate to this fundamental Law. The sun shines, the fire burns, the rivers flow, the wind blows, the buds blossom, the mind thinks, and the kidneys work in harmony and in strict obedience to this grand law of cause and effect. This grand law operates everywhere in the physical and mental planes. No phenomenon can escape from the operation of this mighty law.

The seed has its cause in the tree and the seed itself becomes in turn the cause for the tree. The cause is found in the effect and the effect in the cause. The effect is similar to the cause. This is the universal chain of cause and effect which has no end. No link in the chain is necessary. This world runs on this fundamental, vital law; it is inexorable and immutable.

Scientists are carefully observing the phenomena of nature and are trying to find out the exact causes for all that take place in nature. The astronomer sits with his long, powerful telescope in his observatory and watches the map of the heavens, studies the stars and planets very carefully and the phenomena that takes place in the astronomical world. He tries to find out the exact causes that bring about the phenomena. The reflective philosopher sits in a contemplative mood and tries to find out the cause for this world, the cause for the pains and miseries of this Samsara and the cause for the phenomena of birth and death.

No event can occur without having a positive definite cause at the back of it. There is no such thing as blind chance or accident. The cause is hidden or unknown if you are not able to trace out the cause for the particular accident.

All the physical and mental forces in nature obey this grand law of cause and effect. Law and the Law-giver are one. Nature and Nature’s laws are one. The laws of gravitation, cohesion, adhesion, attraction and repulsion, the law of like and dislike on the physical plane, the laws of relativity, contiguity, the law of association on the mental plane, operate in strict accordance with this law of cause and effect. From the vibration of an electron to the revolution of a mighty planet, every event is the effect of some invisible force that works in happy concord and harmony with the law of cause and effect.




(490-430 B.C.)

He was the disciple of Parmenides

He defended the doctrine of his master

That only changeless Being’ is real.

By indirect proof, exposing the logical

Absurdities, involved in the opposite view

Namely that plurality and changes are real.

Zeno’s famous arguments

Against the possibility of motion

Were intended as proofs

That motion was full of contradictions

And that it could not therefore

Serve as a principle

For the explanation of all phenomena,

 As the atomists, Heraclitas,

Empedocles and others had taught.

Glory to Zeno of Elea.

My salutations unto him.




(470-390 B.C.)

He was one of the most influential

Teachers of philosophy.

He was the distinguished Greek philosopher.

He was the son of an Athenian Stone cutter

Named Sophroniscus and of a mid wife.

Socrates learnt his father’s trade

But in a sense practised his mother’s.

He assisted at the birth of ideas.

He served in the military also.

In 406 B.C. he was made

One of the Senate of five hundred.

He remained in Athens all his life.

He enjoyed mystic experiences.

He spent much of his time in philosophical discussions

He was charged in the Athens’ Citizen Court

With being irreligious and corrupting the young

He was found guilty.

He drank the poison

Which ended his life.

He wrote nothing.

Socrates taught

That virtue is knowledge

And that knowledge is only true

When it reaches the stage of definition.

Plato’s dialogues idealise him

And develop the Socratic philosophy

Fa r beyond the original thought

Of his master.

Glory to Socrates.

My adorations to him.




(427-347 B.C.)

He was the renowned Greek philosopher.

He lived in Athens.

He distinguished himself

 By his lectures and writings.

He was Socrates’ disciple

And Aristotle’s teacher.

His ‘Dialogues’ and his ‘Republic’

Are his greatest works.

They embody a philosophical system

Which has served for admiration

And discussion in all succeeding ages.

His real name was Aristocles.

He founded his school of mathematics

And philosophy in Athens in 387 В.С.

It became known as the Academy.

Here he taught with great success

Until his death at the age of 80.

According to Plato

“At the top the most noble of all

Is the idea of the Good.

It dominates the other ideas.

Beauty, sympathy and truth

 Are high ranking ideas.

At times they are placed on a par

With the Good.

There are below these other ideas

Such as those of the major virtues

Viz., wisdom, temperance, courage,

Justice and piety.

The human soul is an immaterial agent.

Superior in nature to the body

And hindered by the body

In the performance of the higher

Psychic functions of human life.”

The immortality of the Soul is clearly taught by Plato.

According to Plato

Wisdom is the greatest virtue

Fortitude and temperance are

Necessary virtues of the lower parts of the soul

Justice is the harmonious co-operation

Of all parts under the control of reason.

Glory to Plato.

My salutaitions to him.




(384-322 B.C.)

He is the most famous

Of all the Greek philosophers.

He was a disciple of Plato.

He was the tutor of Alexander, the Great.

He established the Peripatetic School of Philosophy

At Athens, which exercised

Great influence upon the expansion of thoughts.

He was born in the Greek colony of Stagira.

His father was physician of King Amyutas.

The works of Aristotle cover almost

All the sciences known in his time.

They are characterised by subtlety of analysis,

A wide mastery of empirical facts

Sober and dispassionate judgment.

Collectively they constitute one of the most

Amazing achievement ever credited

To a single mind.

He wrote on logic, physical science,

Biology, psychology, metaphysics,

Ethics, politics, rhetoric and poetry.

He says

“The Eternal is the Source

 Of the unity of the world process.

He is without matter, without extension.

He is perfect.

He is the supreme object of all knowledge

But also the ultimate object of all desires.

The highest good for man

Is found not in the political life;

But in enquiry and meditation on Truth.

This alone brings complete and continuous happiness.

Glory to Aristotle.

My adorations unto him.





He was an Italian philosopher and martyr.

He entered the Dominican order At Naples in his 15th year.

He was accused of heresy.

He fled from his convent And roamed over Europe.

In 1592 he returned to Italy.

He was arrested by the Inquisition.

After 7 years in prison He was burnt at the stake in 1600.

A statue to him was erected In the Campo dei Fiori in 1889.

For Bruno God and the world

Were two names for one and the same Reality

Considered now as the creative essence of all things

Now as the manifold of realised possibilities

In which that essence manifests itself.

As God, the Real is the whole, the one

Transcendental and ineffable.

Ultimately the human soul returns to

God Whence it came and is reabsorbed in Him.

The world process is an everlasting

Going forth from itself and return

Into itself of the divine nature.

The soul searches for the one in the many,

Unity in Diversity and the changeless and eternal

In the changing and temporal

And realise the changeless one eventually.

This marks the reverse movement

Of the soul re-entering itself

And regaining its primordial unity,

Homogeneity and changelessness.

Glory to Bruno Giordano.

My adorations unto him.





He was Lord Verlam and Viscount St.Albans.

He was one of the greatest of English Philosophers

 And Statesman too.

He was Attorney General to Elizabeth.

He became Lord Chancellor under James I.

His political career was tainted

By certain acts of corruption

For which he paid the penalty.

But his writings were marked

By keen insight, brilliancy of language

And a depth of thought

Which place them in the first rank

Of philosophical literature.

His Novum Organum and the essays

Are splendid monument of learning and wisdom.

There is the Baconian method of inductive logic

As advanced by Francis Bacon.

The purpose of the method is to enable man

To attain mastery over nature

In order to exploit it for his benefit.

The mind should pass from particular facts

To a more general knowledge of forms

Or  Generalised physical properties.

It prescribes the extraction of the essential

From the non-essential and the discovery

Of the underlying structure or form

Of the phenomena under investigation

Through a comparison of instances

Study of concomitant variations

And exclusion of negative instances.

Glory to Francis Bacon

My salutations to him.





He was the famous French philosopher,

 Mathematician and author

The basis of Cartesian philosophy is summed up

In the words “Cogito ergo sum”

“I think, therefore, I exist”

He completed his education

At the Jesuit college at La Fleche.

He spent the years 1612-1621

In travel and military service

The remainder of his life

Was devoted to study and writing.

He died in Sweden.

His principal works are

“Discours de la methode”,

“Meditationes de prima philosphia”,

“Principia philosophiae” etc.

He is justly regarded as one of the founders

Of modern epistemology.

Descartes’ God was All-good and all-powerful,

He was not confined either to space or time

His existence can be known clearly.

His nature cannot be known adequately

By men on earth,

He is the God of Christians,

Creator, Providence and final cause of the universe

God is the first cause of all motion

 In the physical universe

Sensation is a function of the soul

He believed that man is responsible

To God for the courses of action

That he may choose

A virtuous life is made possible

By the knowledge of what is right

And the consequent control

Of the lower tendencies of human nature.

Descartes is one of the fathers

Of modern philosophy.

Leibniz, Spinoza and many others

Spread Cartesianism throughout Europe

At present German Phenormenology

French spiritualism and Positivism

Bergsonism are offshoots of Cartesianism

Glory to Descartes

My adorations unto him.





He was Bishop of Cloyne.

He was the propounder of the philosophy

That the only things that are real

Are our ideas or what is presented

To our senses.

In support of this philosophy

He wrote several works of great ingenuity

Of argument.

Alciphron or the Minute Philosophy

Is his chief book.

His other books are

“Treatise on the principles of Human knowledge”

“Three dialogues between Hylas and Philonus”

“De Motu” (critique of Newtonian Mechanics)

He is a Pluralistic Idealist,

Reflecting upon the spatical attributes

Of distance, size and situation.

According to Berkely

“Matter” stands for complexes

 Of experienced qualities.

Nothing can be said to exist

Except mind and mental content (ideas)

He admits of the existence

Of a universal mind (God)

Of which the content

Is the so-called objective world.

Matter is non-existent.

The physical aspects of the world

Are reducible to mental phenomena.

Finite spirits are created by God.

Reality is composed of spirits and ideas.

Glory to Berkeley.

My adorations unto him.





He was born in 1711 in

Edinburg He was a famous historian

His History of England Held a chief place In

English Historical Literature.

His other works are

“A treatise of human nature”

“Enquiry concerning the human understanding”

“Enquiry concerning the passions”

“Enquiry concerning the morals”

“Natural history of religion”

“Dialogues on Natural Religion.”

His philosophical writings

Were also very famous

And widened the sphere of philosophical thought.

He finds the sources of cognition

In impressions of sensation and reflection

All simple ideas are derived

From and are copies of simple impressions.

Glory to Hume David,

 My adorations unto Him.







He was a German Scientist and philosopher.

He published his critique of Pure Reason in 1781

This became the subject of fierce discussion.

It involved him in trouble

With the Prussian Government

As to his religious belief.

His speculations and the transcendental theories

Revealed a marvellous capacity of mind.

His works had an immense influence

In shaping the philosophical thought

Of the 18th and 19th centuries

He was born and died in Konigsberg

 He scarcely travelled 40 miles

From Konigsberg in his life time.

In 1770 he obtained the Chair of Logic

And Metaphysics at the University of Konigsberg.

He went for his daily work

With clock-like regularity.

He was an interesting conversationalist.

He studied the Leibniz-Wolffaian

Philosophy under Martin Knutzen.

He had a versatile, analytical mind.

His philosophy is called transcendentalism

Or transcendental idealism.

He elaborated and extended

The natural philosophy of

Newton In a metaphysical context

Drawn from Christian Wolff

And indirectly from Leibniz.

Glory to Immanuel Kant.

My adorations to him.




Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich

Was born at Stuttgarh in 1770.

He died at Berlin in 1831.

He was a famous German philosopher and professor.

He propounded a system of his own

In which he claimed That whatever is real is rational

And whatever is rational is real.

He studied theology, philosophy

And the classics at Tubingen 1783-93.

He was a professor at Jena in 1805.

He succeeded Fichte

At the University of Berlin.

His collected works in 19 volumes

Were published in 1832-40

By a group of his students.

Shortly after his death his lectures

On the philosophy of religion

The history of philosophy and aesthetics

Were published from the lecture notes

Of his students.

Glory to Hegel.

My salutations to him.





He was a German Philosopher

Of a pessimistic cast of mind.

His mysticism partakes somewhat

 Of the higher Buddhism.

His chief works are

“The World considered as Will and Idea”

And the “Two Fundamental Problems of Ethics.”

He was a brilliant, manysided philosopher

At times caustic.

He makes compassion

The foundation of ethics.

He upholds the Buddhistic ideal

Of desirelessness as a means

For alleying the Will.

His book “The World as Will and

Idea” Starts with the Thesis

That the world in my idea

A primary fact of consciousness

Implying the inseparableness

Of subject and object

(Refutation of materialism and subjectivism).

Glory to Arthur Schopenhauer,

My adorations to him.





He was the great American

Psychologist and philosopher.

He was the brother of Henry James, the novelist.

He became Professor of philosophy

At Harvard University, in 1882.

He was the founder of the philosophical system

Known as Pragmatism.’

He became widely known

As a brilliant and original lecturer.

His reputation was greatly enhanced in 1890

When his ‘Principles of Psychology’

Made its appearance.

He wrote also on moral, religious and metaphysical problems.

His other main works are

“A study in human nature”

“The Will to believe and other essays”

“The Popular Philosophy”

“Varieties of Religious Experiences”

“Essays in Radical Empiricism” etc.

Glory to James, William.

My adorations to him.





He is an extraordinary Dialectician

Of British philosophy

His variety of Absolute Idealism

Bases itself upon no scheme of categories

Though owing much to Hegel.

He repudiated the Hegelian system as such.

His works are: “Ethical Studies”

“Appearance and Reality”

“The principles of Logic”.

He attached the inadequate assumptions

Of Redonistic ethics.

Golry to Bradley, Francis Herbert

My adorations unto him.





He was one of the outstanding

Philosophers of his time.

He was an able exponent

Of the theory of vitalism.

He was Professor of Philosophy

At the college of France in 1900-21.

He was the author of “Matter and Memory” (1896),

“Creative evolution” (1907).

He was the first to try to give

The term intuition a scientific basis.

Bergson says, “Infinite knowledge is not limited

To the favoured few, but is a general

Property of all thinking minds.”

His philosophy is not anti-intellectualism.

It was a completion Rather than a rejection of reason.

The phrase “élan vital” sums up His vitalistic doctrine.

“There is an original life force.

It has passed from one generation

Of living beings to another

By way of developed individual organism

There being the connecting links

Between the generations.”

Glory to Bergson.

My adoration to him.





He was a British Philosopher.

He was Professor of Philosophy

At the Victoria University,

Manchester (1893-1924).

He is the author of Moral order and progress,

Art and the material,

And many papers on philosophical subjects.

He is an English thinker

Who developed a non-psychic

Neo-realistic metaphysics and synthesis.

According to Alexander Samuel

Materiality, secondary qualities,

Life, mentality are all emergent

Modifications of proto-space-time.

Mind the nervous system blossoming out

Into the capacity of awareness.

Glory to Alexander Samuel.

My adorations to him.




He was a Franciscan monk

Of great learning and piety

And a leading school-man.

He was called the “Seraphic Doctor”

He was born at Bagnorea, near Veterbo.

His name originally was John of Fidanza.

He joined the Franciscans in 1238

He studied at the University of Paris

Under Alexander of Hales

And took his licentiate in 1248.

He taught theology in Paris for 7 years

And received his Doctorate in 1257

In this year he was made Superior-General of his order.

His philosophy is Augustinian

With some Aristotelian modifications.

In his theory of intellection and matter and force,

But his Divine Exemplarism,

llumination theory and tendency to stress

The psychological importance of the human will

Derive from St.Augustine.

His chief works are

Commontaria in IV.L, Sententiarum,

Itinerariuns mentis in Deum

Questioner Disputatae.

Glory to Saint Bonaventure.

My adorations unto him.





He was a Swedish Philosopher,

Scientist and mystic.

He claimed that his soul

Had been permitted to travel into hell,

Purgatory and heaven.

He announced that Divine authority

Had been given to him to explain

Natural and spiritual evidences.

His publications are

“The true Christian Religion”

“Four preliminary Doctrines”

“The Apocalypse Revealed”

“Areanna Coelestia.”

He propounded a new Theology

In which there was much, sound, wisdom.

The philosophy arising from Swedenborg

Is called Swedenborgianism.

Swedenborg claimed direct spiritual knowledge.

Swedenborgianism was launched

In London in 1783

And is often called The New Church.

He recognised “Three degrees of being in God”

“Love the celestial, spirit or the God;

The wisdom, the spiritual or soul, cause

And finally the degree of use,

The Natural and personal,

The realm of effects.

Glory to Swedenborg.

My salutations unto him.





He was a French Essayist

Of worldwide reputation.

He is regarded as the inventor

Of the essay form.

He had a great influence

On English writers.

He was a keen observer

Of the frailities of human nature.

There are crowned masterpieces

Of insight and delight among his essays.

He doubts the possibility of certain knowledge

And recommends a return

To Nature and Revelation.

His essays are famous for his tolerance

Study of himself and through himself

Of mankind as a whole.

Glory to Montaigne Michel De.

My adorations unto him.





He was a D.Sc., F.R.S.

He was principal of Birmingham University (1900-1919)

He was a great scientist

He was interested in psychical research.

He was one of the first

To demonstrate the possibility

Of wireless communication.

He was Professor of Physics

In University College Liverpool (1881-1900)

He was President of British Association, (1913-14).

He is the author of Faith and Science, etc.

Glory to Sir Oliver Lodge

My adorations unto him.





He was an Austrian Physician

And Psychologist.

He was a pupil of Dr. Sigmund Freud

Until 1913.

He founded the school of Individual Psychology

In Vienna in about 1912.

In contrast to France

He minimized the role of sexuality

And placed greater emphasis on the ego.

He investigated the feelings of Inferiority

Resulting from organic abnormality

And deficiency and described

The unconscious attempt of the ego

To compensate for such defects.

He extended the concept of ‘Inferiority Complex’

To include psychical as well as

Physical deficiencies,

And stressed the tendency of compensation

To lead to over-correction.

Glory to Adler, Alfred.

My adorations to him.




In 1929 Sir Alexander Fleming

Discovered Pencillin.

He was the Professor of Bacteriology

In St.Mary’s Hospital, London.

He had been for many years interested

In substances produced by living organisms

And tissues which are inimical

To the growth and welfare of other organisms.

These are now known as “Antibiotics”

In 1929 Fleming found that

A plate culture of healthy colonies

Of staphylococci had been contaminated

By an unknown mould around which

The staphycoccus colonies had become transparent

And were undergoing lysis.

He suspected that a bacteriolytic substance

Was produced by the mould.

Sub-cultures of the mould were grown

On the surface of a broth medium

And infiltrates of this were found

To possess strong anti-bacterial action

On pyogenic cocci

Glory to Sri Alexander Fleming

My adorations unto him.




He was a reputed Philosopher.

His “Provincial letters” exhibit

Remarkable wit and genius.

He was a distinguished Mathematician.

He invented an ingenious arithmetical machine.

He is a Scientist too.

He conducted scientific researches

Including experiments on atmospheric pressure.

He made brilliant experiments

 In Hydrostatics and Pneumatics.

He paid much attention

To the study of man and his spiritual problems

He found faith as a sounder guide than reason.

Glory to Pascal, Blaise.

My adorations to him.





He was a renowned German psychologist.

He was Empiricist in Science,

Theological idealist in philosophy

Theist in religion,

Poet and artist at heart.

According to Lotze

“The ultimate, absolute substance God

Is the good and is personal.

Personality being the highest value,

And the most valuable is also the most real.

Unity of law, matteer and force and all aspects

Of being produce beauty.

” His main works are “Metaphysics, Logic, Psychology” etc.

Glory to Lotze, Rudolph Hermann.

My adorations to him.










1. Get up at 4 a.m.daily. This is Brahmamuhurta which is extremely favourable for meditation on God.

2. Asana: Sit on Padma, Siddha or Sukha Asana for Japa and meditation for half an hour, facing the East or the North. Increase the period gradually to three hours. Do Sirshasana and Sarvangasana for keeping up Brahmacharya and health. Take light physical exercises such as walking, etc., regularly. Do twenty Pranayamas.

3. Japa: Repeat any Mantra as pure Om or Om Namo Narayanaya, Om Namah Sivaya, Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya, Om Sri Saravanabhavaya Namah, Sita Ram, Sri Ram, Hari Om, or Gayatri, according to your taste or inclination, from 108 to 21,600 times daily.

4. Dietetic Discipline: Take Sattvic food, Suddha Ahara. Give up chillies, tamarind, garlic, onion, sour articles, oil, mustard, asafoetida. Observe moderation in diet (Mitahara). Do not overload the stomach. Give up those things which the mind likes best for a fortnight in a year. Eat simple food. Milk and fruits help concentration. Take food as medicine to keep the life going. Eating for enjoyment is sin. Give up salt and sugar for a month. You must be able to live on rice, Dhal and bread without any chutney. Do not ask for extra salt for Dhal and sugar for tea, coffee or milk.

 5. Have a separate meditation-room under lock and key.

6. Charity: Do charity regularly, every month, or even daily according to your means, say six paisa per rupee.

7. Svadhyaya: Study systematically the Gita, the Ramayana, the Bhagavata, Vishnu Sahasranama, Lalita-Sahasranama, Aditya Hridaya, the Upanishads or the Yoga Vasishtha, the Bible, the Zend Avesta, the Koran, the Tripitakas, the Granth Sahib, etc., from half an hour to one hour daily, and have Suddha Vichara.

8. Brahmacharya: Preserve the vital force (Veerya) Very, very carefully. Veerya is God in motion or manifestation-Vibhuti. Veerya is all power. Veerya is all money. Veerya is the essence of life, thought and intelligence.

9. Prayer Slokas: Get by heart some prayer Slokas, Stotras and repeat them as soon as you sit in the Asana before starting Japa or meditation. This will elevate the mind quickly.

10. Satsanga: Have Satsanga. Give up bad company, smoking, meat and alcoholic liquors entirely. Do not develop any evil habits.

11. Fast on Ekadasi: Fast on Ekadasi or live on milk and fruits only.

12. Japa Mala: Have a Japa Mala (rosary) round your neck or in your pocket or underneath your pillow at night.

13. Mouna: Observe Mouna (vow of silence) for a couple of hours daily.

14. Speak the Truth: Speak the truth at all costs. Speak a little. Speak sweetly.

15. Reduce your wants: Reduce your wants. If you have four shirts, reduce the number to three or two. Lead a happy, contented life. Avoid unnecessary worry. Have plain living and high thinking.

16. Never hurt anybody: Never hurt anybody (ahimsa paramo dharmah). Control anger by love, Kshama (forgiveness) and Daya (compassion).

17. Do not depend upon servants: Do not depend upon servants. Self-reliance is the highest of all virtues.

18. Self-analysis: Think of the mistakes you have committed during the course of the day, just before retiring to bed (self-analysis). Keep daily diary and self-correction register. Do not brood over past mistakes.

19. Fulfil duties: Remember that death is awaiting you at every moment. Never fail to fulfil your duties. Have pure conduct (Sadachara).

20. Surrender to God: Think of God as soon as you wake up and just before you go to sleep. Surrender yourself completely to God (Saranagati).


This is the essence of all spiritual Sadhanas.

This will lead you to Moksha.

All these Niyamas or spiritual canons must be rigidly observed.

You must not give leniency to the mind.















Born on the 8th September, 1887, in the illustrious family of Sage Appayya Dikshitar and several other renowned saints and savants, Sri Swami Sivananda had a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta. Added to this was an inborn eagerness to serve all and an innate feeling of unity with all mankind.

His passion for service drew him to the medical career, and soon he gravitated to where he thought that his service was most needed Malaya claimed him. He had earlier been editing a health journal and wrote extensively on health problems. He discovered that people needed right knowledge most of all; dissemination of that knowledge he espoused as his own mission.

It was divine dispensation and the blessing of God upon mankind that the doctor of body and mind renounced his career and took to a life of renunciation to qualify for ministering to the soul of man. He settled down at Rishikesh in 1924, practised intense austerities and shone as a great Yogi, saint, sage and Jivanmukta.

In 1932, Swami Sivananda started the Sivanandashram. In 1936 was born The Divine Life Society. In 1948 the Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy was organised. Dissemination of spiritual knowledge and training of people in Yoga and Vedanta were their aim and object. In 1950, Swamiji undertook a lightning tour of India and Ceylon. In 1953, Swamiji convened a ‘World Parliament of Religions’. Swamiji is the author of over 300 books and has disciples all over the world. Belonging to all nationalities, religions and creeds. To read Swamiji’s works is to drink at the Fountain of Wisdom Supreme. On 14th July, 1963 Swamiji entered Mahasamadhi.

ISBN 81 7052195-5

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