The Mother Divine
Change Font Size 
By Sitaramdas Omkarnath

Once upon a time the gods said to Brahma, the lord of all creatures, “O Lord, please explain to us clearly the nature of Paramatma who is identical with Pranava and is smaller than an atom, i.e., the most subtle of all subtle things.”

Having heard this, Prajapati (Brahma) said, “Very well”, and then began to deliver a discourse on Pranava.

The letter ‘Om’ is the Paramatma who is constituted by existence, consciousness and bliss, who is full of bliss, the very essence of whom is the highest bliss. He is the entire perceptible world, gross or subtle. We can express his greatness clearly by saying that the whole world which came into existence in the past, which exists now and which will come into existence in future is nothing by Omkara, and everything that goes beyond the past, present and future, i.e., transcends all time and is entirely different from the world of our experience is also nothing but Omkara.

The entire world of our experience is Brahman, this soul is Brahman. You should identify the soul with Brahman after uttering ‘Om’. You should then feel this unity as the one single Omkara which lies beyond old age and death, which is essentially immortal, free from all fear and a conscious reality and then perceive by means of intellect that the entire empirical world with its gross, subtle and causal body has been super-imposed on that single reality, or that Paramatma-Omkara above is real and that the world in its gross, subtle and causal forms has been imagined in it. You should then conclude firmly that this world is nothing but Omkara, which is identical with Paramatma who is essentially existence, consciousness and bliss. After this, you should meditate on the truth that the soul with its gross, subtle and causal forms is nothing but Paramatma with its three forms which are super-imposed on it.

That soul Omkara, which is different from the gross world and the enjoyer of that world, that which is Bliss itself and the enjoyer of that world, has four legs (i.e., parts or sections or phases).

He whose range of enjoyment extends over the waking state and the entire world indicated by it, i.e., the body, who envelops the entire world, whose seven limbs are the seven regions viz. Bhuh, Bhuvah, Swah, Mahah, Jana, Tapah and Satya lokas, who has nineteen mouths, (i.e., organs of experience) in all, viz., five organs of knowledge (viz., the five senses of hearing, touch, sight, taste and smell, five organs of action, viz., tongue, hands, feet, the organ of excretion and the genital organ, five winds, viz., Prana, Apana, Samana, Vyana and Udana; Mind, Intellect, Determination, Egoism (Ahamkara) and the inner sense (Antahkarana), who is the enjoyer of the gross world, whose real nature is constituted by the four supreme objectives of life, viz. Morality (Dharma), Wealth (Artha), Fulfilment of Desire (Kama) and Release from Bondage (Moksa) or who manifests himself through four forms viz., the Gross, the Subtle, the Cause and the Witness and who takes men (naras) through various stages of life is known as Vaisvanara. That Vaisvanara is present in each single thing of the universe, and the universe.

He whose field of enjoyment is the dream-state and the subtle world indicated by it, whose knowledge is concerned more with the inner subtle world than with the external world, he who possesses the above mentioned seven limbs and nineteen mouths, who perceives and maintains the subtle reality of the subtle world, has four souls and four forms, viz., the gross, the subtle, the cause and the witness like the former one, who is Taijasa in the single thing and Hiranyagarbha in the totality of all things is the second leg (part) of the Supreme Brahman, Paramatma or Para-pranava. He is Pradyumna in the Chaturvyuha.

The state in which the man who is sleeping does not desire to enjoy any object and does not dream at all is the state of sushupti (the state of deep, dreamless sleep). He whose abode or body is the state of sushupti and the chaotic condition of the entire universe (i.e., the state in which the entire universe replaces into the primeval causal condition) which is indicated by that state, or he who resides in the totality of the world-cause, who always exists as One, whose essence is concentrated knowledge, who is all bliss and nothing but bliss, whose mouth is self-revealing consciousness, who performs all his movements in dream as well as the waking state by means of consciousness alone (without depending on any physical organ) or for whom consciousness alone is the source or cause of all mental states arising in the waking or dream-state, who is manifested through four essential forms, viz., Ota, Anujnatri, Anujna and Avikalpa, who enjoys the bliss which constitutes his essence, who is without a second, who is Prajna in the individual and Ishwara in the totality of existence is the third pada of the Supreme Pranava, the complete Brahma or Supreme Brahma. He is Aniruddha in the Chaturvyuha. The Supreme Soul thus described possessing the three ‘padas’ is the lord of all, omniscient, controller of our inner life, the cause of the whole world and the sole reality out of whom living beings originate, in whom they exist and into whom they get finally annihilated.

The empirical world indicated by the waking state, the dream-state and sushupti are indeed of the same nature as the world of sushupti, because no man whose mind is infatuated by this world can acquire knowledge of the real nature of anything. The three worlds distinguished in this way are indeed like the dream-world since it is not a fact that in this world the knowledge of objects is always in conflict with the knowledge of real objects. Since something or other is perceived in these states (worlds) they are all illusory. The Supreme Soul (Paramatma) is different from all these since this Supreme Soul is, in essence, Consciousness itself, Bliss itself. The fourth Turiya pada which lies beyond the third pada has four forms since four different aspects, viz., Ota, Anujnatri, Anujna and Avikalpa can be distinguished in it. These four forms of the Turiya pada are also as illusory as the other padas, viz., the state of deep dreamless sleep and the dream-state, since the Turiya which is the ultimate reality, devoid of every change and difference is the Supreme Soul (Paramatma). He is Consciousness itself, Bliss itself.

The gist of this can be expressed in the following manner: All objects of nature and states of happiness which can be perceived in the waking state, the dream-state and deep dreamless sleep (sushupti) are effects and the Turiya (the fourth state of the soul) is their cause. Since the effect can be imagined only in the Cause (i.e., cannot be conceived apart from the Cause) it is the Cause alone which is real. There is an observer of the Cause, viz., the Supreme Soul (Paramatma) whose essence is constituted by Existence, Consciousness and Bliss in a concentrated form. He covers the Cause at some places as Sat (Being or Existence), at some places as Chit (Consciousness), at some places as Ananda (Bliss) and at other places as Sat, Chit and Ananda combined together. To meditate on the Supreme Soul (Paramatma) as pervading the entire Cause in this way is to practise Ota.

On the strength of the argument that the being of what is pervaded is determined by what pervades it we can say that the (primeval) Cause pervaded by the Supreme Soul (Paramatma) has no being of its own, it is completely dependent on the latter.

A thing which is imagined or falsely perceived in or superimposed on something else has no existence apart from its substratum. We can understand that it is essentially the substratum itself. Hence the cause super-imposed on the Supreme Soul is not different from It (or Him), but is essentially the Supreme Soul Itself (or Himself). The practice of meditating in this manner is known as Anujna-yoga. The three modes of meditation presuppose the knowledge of the Cause and hence they are inherent in the Cause. Hence their separate existence has been regarded as belonging to the stages of dream and deep dreamless sleep or illusory.

When enjoyed, all these are merged or annihilated in the Cause. That in which the annihilation takes place is the transcendent Paramatma. For this reason, all these should be called an aspect of the transcendent (reality). It is Paramatma who is the absolute transcendent reality referred to as “the Immutable”. The passage beginning with “Athayamadesah” etc. suggests that the Sruti has hinted at the nature of Paramatma as He is in Himself.

(excerpt from Brahmanusandhan of Sri Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath)