Saturday, December 17, 2022

Svetaketu and Tstvamasi

 Svetaketu and Tatvamasi

There is a story of Svetaketu in Chandogya Upanishad. He was a son of Sage Uddalaka (Aruni). He returned home after studying Vedas and scriptures and was a meritorious scholar. He had a great pride of his knowledge. His father saw the son in that state and asked him a simple question. Dear Son, you have come full of knowledge and information but do you know the knower of the knowledge? Your consciousness is full of knowledge and information of the scriptures what is that consciousness? Do you know, who you are? 

Svetaketu was stunned with the question and explained that it was not there in his study. 

Uddalak thereafter explained the concept of Brahman as तत् त्वं असि (तत्वमसि: thou art that). 

He gave three examples: earth, seed of banian tree and salted water. The way one knows all the earthen vessels by knowing the earth, one may know the base element (चैतन्य) of all creations. The way a baniyan tree comes out of the seed the universe came out of the pure consciousness. The way salt is experience in each drop of salted water similarly the consciousness is present in everything. The father explained the knowledge to his son nine times till it was righty absorbed (ह्रदयंगम). 

It’s a journey from ignorance to knowledge, knowledge of the self, the truth. 

One may read, understand, experience but shall not leave the focus from the knower, the experiencer. One day the  limited self, the experiencer will rest into the infinite ‘pure consciousness’. 

We are that pure consciousness, all time, always, whether we know it or not. 


13 October 2022


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