THE TENTH LIGHT (Chapter Ten) 10
Lord Shiva said: 1. I shall now make known to you a Yoga Teaching that is easily understood by all. Therein every Seeker shall find a Path to his heart’s desire and as taught by his Spiritual Guide. By means of this Teaching, My devotees see their Self, the Highest Lord, shining like the blazing Sun. The fire of Yoga quickly burns the fetters of ignorance and sins. Perfect Knowledge that leads to Liberation springs from this Yoga even as dawn springs from the Sun.
2. Verily, Knowledge arises from Yoga and Yoga functions by means of Knowledge. I, the Greatest God, am Delighted when one is devoted to both Yoga and Knowledge. Those who practise the Great Yoga of the Greatest God, either once, twice, three times a day or even constantly, are themselves to be known as Great Beings Divine.
3. First, let it be understood that Yoga is of three kinds. The first is called Bhava Yoga (the Yoga of Being), the second, Abhava Yoga (the Yoga of Non-Being) and the third, Maha Yoga (the Greatest Yoga), it being the greatest among all.
4. The Yoga whereby one’s own inner Self is meditated upon as a living Soul in the midst of mind, body and worldly possessions is spoken of as Bhava Yoga (the Yoga of Being). It leads to the realisation of one’s own individual Self, unencumbered by mental delusions. Being the Yoga of Phenomenal Existence, it should be practised by those who are attached to worldly life and who wish to remain in the World in this life and the next.
5. The Yoga, whereby one visualises oneself as infinite, eternally blissful and beyond the Physical World, is known as Abhava Yoga (the Yoga of Non-Being). It leads to the realisation of My Divine Transcendental Self and is higher than the former. Therein all manifested things are absorbed in the Original Source Whence everything comes and Whereto everything does return, even as thoughts come to rest in the emptiness of deep sleep and waves subside in the silence of the Ocean deep. It should be practised only by those who wish to leave the World behind and merge for ever in the Formless Being.
6. The Yoga, however, wherein one meditates upon oneself as identical at once with My Transcendental and Immanent Being, that I regard as the highest Yoga leading to true God- Realisation. It is called Maha Yoga because it is the Yoga of the Great Life (Maha Satta).
7. The Great Life is Greater than both Being and Non-Being. It is the Supreme Being (Para Bhava or Para Satta) Itself. It is Higher than, and at the same time contains within Itself, all other forms of being. Therefore the Yoga that leads Thereto is known as Maha Yoga (Greatest Yoga) and Arya Yoga (Higher Yoga). It is also called Shiva Yoga (the Yoga of Shiva) as it leads to Identity with Shiva Who is both God and the World in One. It is called in three ways because it is Three Times the Greatest among all.
8. This Greatest of all Yogas shall be practised by all who wish to attain Perfection in this very life. Verily, this Yoga is practised even by the Gods. For, thereby one obtains the Joys of Heaven even now.
10. But those followers of the Yogic Way (that is, of Bhava Yoga), who, even though they have brought their mind under control still consider themselves to be separate or different from the Lord, shall not perceive Me as One without a Second. Thus I, the Lord, declare. 106 SHIVA RAHASYA
11. O you who shine like the radiant Stars! Man is born of the Perfect One and unto Him he shall return: this is the Eternal Law. Let every man who desires to abide in Unity with Me, do that which is most profitable for his Soul, which removes all imperfections, and which makes him worthy of the Highest Heaven. It is called Spiritual Practice (Sadhana), it leads to the perfecting of the Soul and is of eight kinds.
12. Hear you now what the Eight Practices of Yoga are. Three Preliminary Practices which are called, Self- discipline (Yama), Spiritual Observance (Niyama) and Posture (Asana). And Five Advanced Practices which are called, Breath-control (Pranayama), Detachment (Pratyahara), Concentration (Dharana), Meditation (Dhyana) and Inward Absorption (Samadhi).
13. The Three Preliminary Practices (Prathamika Nityakarmma) or Yogas beginning with Self- discipline. Self-discipline is of five kinds: Truthfulness (Satya), Non-violence (Ahimsa), Not Stealing (Asteya), Right Sexual Conduct (Dharmacharya) and Disinterest in material possessions (Aparigraha). These five develop will-power and purity in the mind of men.
14. Truthfulness. Unswerving adherence to Shiva (Who Is the Highest Truth) and thinking, speaking and acting in conformity with His Eternal Truth, is Truthfulness. Since everything is based upon Truth, there is nothing that cannot be attained by the power of Truth.
15. Non-violence. It has been declared by the great Sages that Non-violence is the refraining from causing harm to any living being, whether in deed, word or thought. 16. In truth, there is no greater virtue on Earth than Non-violence. Nothing is more conducive to happiness than Non-violence. But that violence that is done in accordance with Dharma (moral and Spiritual Law), leads to Non-violence and is to be practised as such by the righteous without fear of sin.
17. Verily, violence that is done in defence of one’s own life or that of others or in defence of My Truth shall be regarded as lawful. For My Law is ever on the side of the righteous. He who acts in obedience to My Law shall not be touched by evil Karma. This is the Eternal Dharma.
18. Not Stealing. Taking what belongs to another, either through deception, stealth or force is called Stealing. Refraining from such is Not Stealing. It is a means of acquiring merit.
19. Right Sexual Conduct. Refraining from improper sexual conduct, whether mental, verbal or physical, in all circumstances, occasions and places, is called Proper Sexual Conduct (lit. conduct according to Spiritual Law, Dharmacharya). Abstinence from sexual intercourse in body, speech and thought is the right conduct for one who has taken the Vow of Chastity.
20. But enjoying physical union with one’s wife during her monthly courses or on holy days; or with a maiden who has not attained womanhood; or with another man’s wife; or with another man; or with a subhuman creature; or with one who is not a follower of My Law; these six are the deeds to be avoided by all righteous men.
21. Disinterest in material possessions. Non-acceptance of material gifts save when compelled by need and being mentally detached from the same, is called Disinterest in material possessions. This virtue must be carefully guarded.
22. Spiritual Observance (Niyama) is likewise of five kinds: Austerity (Tapas), Spiritual Study (Svadhyaya), Purity (Shaucha), Contentment (Santosha) and Worship of God (Ishvara-Pujana). These five bestow Spiritual powers (Siddhis) upon the Yogi who practises them.
23. Austerity. Fasting and eating according as the Moon wanes and waxes, developing endurance to heat and cold, insensitivity to pain, sleeping on the bare ground, dwelling at the foot of a tree, etc., is known as Austerity.
24. Spiritual Study. The hearing and repeating of, and the thinking on, My Word of Truth, is Spiritual Study. It develops the mental quality of intelligence and happiness (Sattva) in those who practise it.
25. There are three kinds of Spiritual Study: audible, inaudible and mental. Due to differences in their efficacy, they are regarded as inferior, medium and superior, respectively. 26. The Spiritual Study wherein the words uttered by the student are clearly audible to others, is called vocal.
27. That which involves the movement of the lips without audible pronunciation of the words, is called silent. It is of superior kind to the audible one.
28. The attentive contemplation of the Words of Truth as revealed by the Lord, without any movement of the lips is called mental repetition. It is to be regarded as the best of the three.
29. Purity, O noble ones! is that which is achieved by means of bathing (snana) and is of two kinds: outer and inner. Outer Purity is attained by such means as rubbing the bodily frame with water and clay, cow dung (on account of its antiseptic properties) or ashes. Inner Purity is attained by bathing in a holy river or temple bath, praying and adhering to pure thoughts. He who daily observes these two shall be free of sin. But that purity which is attained by means of Yogic Bathing which is steadfast concentration on Lord Shiva shall be known as supreme.
30. Contentment. The attitude whereby one accepts whatever comes to one without much effort, and is conducive to inner peace, is called Contentment.
31. Worship of God. Expressing respect and devotion to Supreme Lord Shiva through physical, verbal and mental activities such as bowing down before Him, singing His praises and remembering His Name, are known as Worship of God.
32. The five Self-disciplines and five Spiritual Observances have thus been made known to you. Listen now to what is called Physical Posture (Asana). It is that steady position of the bodily frame whereby calmness, stable-mindedness and happiness are attained.
33. The Physical Postures shall be known to be eighty-four in total or the same multiplied ten hundredfold. The most excellent among them are the following three: the Swastika, the Lotus and the Half-Lotus.
34. Sitting down with the soles of the feet placed between the knees and the thighs, is known as the excellent Swastika-Posture (the Posture of Well-being). Sitting down with each foot resting sole-up on the opposite thigh, is called the excellent Lotus-Posture (Padmasana). And that posture, wherein one sits cross-legged with one foot resting upon the opposite thigh, is known as Half-Lotus-Posture (Ardha-Padmasana).
35. Of sitting postures the Lotus shall be regarded as the best. For it drives away hunger, sloth and fatigue. By the regular practice thereof the Yogi reverses the effects of earthly life and overcomes disease, old age and untimely death. But of all postures that I call the most excellent and greatest wherein the Yogi rests within himself. By abiding therein he becomes a Great Hero, an Immortal and a God. Hear you now the practices that lead to perfection in the greatest of all postures (Mahasana).
36. The Five Advanced Practices (Kartagama Nityakarmma) or Yogas beginning with Breath- Control. Pranayama or the practice of Breath-Control. Prana is the air circulating within the body. Control is known as Ayama. Therefore, control of the breath is known as Pranayama.
37. Breath-Control is of three kinds: inferior, medium and superior. It may also be classified into two kinds depending on whether it is done with or without mental repetition of a Mantra (Mystical Formula) such as the sacred Sound OM: Sagarbha (with Mantra) and Agarbha (without Mantra).
38. The inferior kind of Pranayama is that practised for the duration of twelve time measures; the medium, for the duration of twenty-four measures; and the superior kind is practised for the duration of thirty-six measures. The time required for opening and closing the eyes is the measure of time (matra) called Twinkling (nimesha) by the wise.
39. As he advances in the practice of these three, the Yogi experiences perspiration, trembling and jumping, in due course. Success in the practice of Pranayama shall be judged by the bliss it produces.
40. Pranayama has three parts: inhalation, retention and exhalation. They are well-known to all accomplished Yogis. 41. Inhalation is called Puraka (Filling) and exhalation Rechaka (Emptying). The middle part is known as Kumbhaka (holding the air in, as within a Pot).
42. Restraining one’s breath, let one repeat three times the Prayer To The Divine Sun (Savitri) after duly reverencing the Primordial Sound OM, as well as Earth, Air, and Sky. This is known as breath-control.
43. The ultimate goal of Yogic Breath-Control is called Maha-Yoga, the Great Union (Maha Samyoga) wherein Perfect Harmony with Me, the Universal Being, is experienced. It is attained through suspension of the breath in conjunction with mental repetition of the Mantra as instructed by one’s Teacher (Guru).
44. The breath flows evenly through the left and right nostrils six times in a night and day. Know that to be the best time for the practice of Yogic breathing. At the meeting-place of Day and Night, when the hot Sun of exhalation moves upwards and the cool Moon of inhalation moves downwards while in the middle shines the Flame of Illumination; 45. Or, when neither the Sun nor the Moon are seen; for the Sun (of Knowledge) in the form of exhalation and the Moon (of the Knowable Object) in the form of inhalation together have merged into the Fire of Shiva’s Consciousness;
46. Then, the Spiritual Serpent Power (Kundalini) that enters into one’s body even while in the mother’s womb and lies dormant like a sleeping serpent in the energy centre (Chakra) at the base of the spine, is awakened through the Spiritual heat produced by Pranayama.
47. Thus awakened, it rushes up the spinal column like an effulgent flash of lightning to reunite itself with the Soul that resides in his luminous lotus-like abode at the crown of the head. Then Liberation is attained. This is called the Union of the Moon (Ha) and Sun (Tha) or Hatha Yoga. This, verily, O learned ones! is the essence of Yogic Breath-Control. He who realises this, obtains the fruit of Yoga Practice. 4
8. Now, Detachment. O excellent ones! the mind of the ignorant flows towards the objects of the World even as water flows from a pot with many holes. But when by means of breath-control the inner life-force is awakened, detachment arises therefrom. As a tortoise draws its limbs into the middle of its body, so the Yogi withdraws his senses from their objects and brings them back into himself. This is Sensory Detachment (Pratyahara).
49. Concentration. By abiding in the state of detachment, the Yogi attains to Concentration (Dharana) which is the focusing of the mind on certain places within the body, such as the top of the head, the forehead, the heart, the navel and so forth.
50. Meditation. By abiding in the state of concentration, the Yogi attains to Meditation (Dhyana). It is the prolonged, uninterrupted and undistracted concentration of the mind on a particular object. The highest meditation shall be known to be that which has My Divine Person as object.
51. Inward Absorption or Trance. By abiding in the state of meditation, the Yogi attains to Inward Absorption (Samadhi, lit., Unified Consciousness). It is the merging of the mind in the object of contemplation to the complete exclusion of everything else. The highest kind thereof shall be known to be Absorption in the Supreme (Shiva-Samadhi). Samadhi is that state wherein the winds of change are stayed and Changelessness is obtained. By becoming established therein, the Yogi attains the Great Nirvana and becomes One with the Supreme.
52. Twelve Pranayamas amount to Concentration; twelve times the duration of Concentration equals one period of Meditation; and twelve times the duration of Meditation constitutes Absorption (Samadhi). Having put away all imperfections by means of Yama and Niyama; having hardened his body by means of Asana and awakened his inner life-force by means of Pranayama; having stilled his mind by means of Pratyahara and Dharana; and having united his mind to his Soul and his Soul to the Supreme Self by means of Samadhi and Dhyana; having thus perfected himself by means of the Eightfold Sadhana, the Yogi attains to the Great Nirvana.
53. Verily, as a lamp shines without a flicker when placed in a spot that is free from wind, even so the Yogi who has merged with the Supreme knows neither suffering nor sin but is ever happy and serene. Such an one is never disturbed by outer perceptions nor by inner agitation; he ever abides in a state of Supreme Perfection.
54. O wise ones! an accomplished Yogi is not perturbed by time or space. But they who have newly entered upon the Path shall not practise Yoga at inappropriate times or in inappropriate places. The best time to begin the Practice of Yoga is in the seasons of Spring or Autumn, when Nature is not harsh but gentle, when the Stars are favourable and when the Teacher gives his blessings. no
55. He who desires success should not indulge in improper food, nor take that which has turned sour and stale, but eat what is wholesome and pure. Fried grains and flesh should be avoided, above all, that of humans, human-like beasts and the sacred cow.
56. But grains like barley, millet, wheat and rice, as well as nuts, pulses, roots, green leaves and fruit, eaten either boiled or raw; food that is not too salty, pungent or bitter; neither overcooked nor burned; which is pleasantly prepared, possessing nourishing properties and is agreeable with one’s constitution, that can be eaten to one’s heart’s content.
57. As for place, one should not practise near fire, in water or on dry leaves. Nor in places infested with vermin or full of insects, ant-hills, dilapidated cowpens and houses, crowded places, crossroads and border lands, the meeting-place of unbelievers (dharmatyagis) who reject My Law Eternal nor yet places sought by Spirits, ghosts and evil folk.
58. Nor should Yoga be practised when the body is ailing or the mind is troubled. Yoga is best practised at dawn when the body is strong and the mind is clear; otherwise it may be practised at dusk.
59. With a mind concentrated upon Me, let one practise Yoga in a land ruled by a righteous king, in a secluded place such as a forest, rock or mountain cave, on a river bank or open space, in a holy spot, a well-kept cowpen, a hut made of leaves or mud, in a graveyard or cremation ground, at the foot of a tree, in a place that is clean, tranquil and free of all vermin.
60. After bowing down to the Leading Yogis, their disciples, his human Guru and Me, let the Yogi commence his practice with a composed mind.
61. Firmly seated in any of the sitting postures, the Swastika, the Lotus or the Half-Lotus, with open or closed eyes, let him concentrate his mind by focusing upon the place between the eyebrows.
62. With a mind thus calmed and free of worldly desires, worries and fears, let one then meditate upon the Supreme Lord within one’s own self.
63. Let the Mystic Lotus or Chakra be conceived of as being at a distance of twelve finger- breadths from the top of the head. For thus it has been said, From one hundred and one channels of the heart, one leads to the crown of the head; going up by it, the Yogi attains Immortality.
64. Therefore, know that Mystic Lotus to be brilliant white in colour and exceedingly beautiful. Its root represents the Spiritual Law of the Universe, its stalk is Spiritual Knowledge and eight Divine Powers form its petals.
65. It has Detachment for its calyx. In the calyx of that Lotus, let one meditate on the golden pericarp. Within that, let one meditate upon Me as the Lord Who is Divine and Changeless, Who is All-Powerful, Who is expressed by the sacred Sound Om, Who is Unmanifest and surrounded by a halo of blazing rays.
66. In the heart of that Lotus, let him meditate upon that great Eternal Radiance, the Lord of Unmeasured Splendour, the All-Source and conceive himself as being One with That. He shall discard all other thoughts. This is the most secret of secrets. in
67. Having become One with the Cosmic Self, the Yogi shall then perceive the Self as living in and through all things. Thus he attains the Highest Vision Divine and the Goal of Maha Yoga.
68. Listen you now to another form of meditation whereby, having purified the body by means of the sacred Sound OM, one contemplates upon one’s own essential Self as the luminous twenty- fifth Life-Principle, beyond Material Energy. The Divine Self, the Light of all Lights and Bestower of Life Eternal, shall then be meditated upon within oneself, as one’s own true Self.
69. Verily, the physical body, man’s outer shell, is born at the beginning of earthly life, lives for awhile and then it dies. The mind also, rises like to a wave and then subsides. The Soul only, man’s true Self, ever shines like as the Sun. Therefore, he who meditates upon the Inner Sun becomes Immortal, like the Sun.
70. O you who shine like Suns in the Firmament of Stars! the Soul is known as having three different bodies, gross, subtle and originating. The Originating Body (or Source Body, Karana Sharira) consists of the Life-Principle Maya and Five Limited Powers. It is the first cover that envelops the Soul upon his birth into the Material World. Therein one abides in Dissolution and Deep Sleep, retaining it as a limiting cover, from birth to birth. Of this body, the other two are born. Hence, it is called Originating (Karana), being the material origin or source of these two.
71. The Subtle Body (Sukshma Sharira) is that whereby the Soul is covered during the Dream- State as well as (in the state) between death and rebirth. It consists of those aspects of the Soul that are hidden to the physical eye. Hence it is called Subtle (Sukshma) and also City-of-Eight (Puryashtaka), its elementary parts being eight: Reason, Thought of I, Lower Mind and the Five Mental Faculties of Knowledge or Action, according as one’s experience is active or passive.
72. The Gross Body (Sthula Sharira) is the third material cover. It envelops the Soul upon entering his future mother’s womb from whence, when the months of gestation have passed, he goes forth into the dim light of Earth. Therein the Soul abides in the state called Waking. Being made of the Material Qualities, Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth, it is known as Gross (Sthula). It dies upon departure from earthly life and is replaced by a new one upon rebirth on Earth. Its properties such as size, shape, skin colour, gender and duration are in accord to the Law of Karma.
73. Now, the Yogi who knows the Perfect Science of Spirit, having found a quiet and secret place away from the din of the World, seats himself upon a comfortable seat and, with quiescent mind, applies himself to the Great Practice (Maha Abhiyoga) of the Yogic Way.
74. Realising that he is not the Gross Life-Principles such as Earth and the rest, realising himself to be higher than these, he detaches himself from the Gross Body and enters the subtle City-of-Eight.
75. Therein, like a Great King in his Palace, like a Hermit in his Cave, like a God in his Heaven, with great devotion and a pure heart he reverences the following thought: I am not this bodily frame, I am not this mind, I am the Light within. I am greater than the Earth, greater than the Atmosphere, greater than the Sky, greater than all the Worlds. I am the Very Being Supreme. The Universe is My Own Creation.
76. Thinking thus, one quickly attains the Highest. Having attained the Highest, one does not return to worldly life. One soars in the Infinite Firmament of Consciousness like an Eagle in the Sky, thinking to himself, O wonderful! my Soul has been freed from the fetters of the World and I am United with Shiva, the Supreme Lord. Verily, indeed, I am Shiva: I am Pure Consciousness and Bliss.
77. One is then Liberated While Living. One is endowed with a body of light and lives like a God upon Earth. Upon departure from this World, one goes to Shiva’s Home Which is the Abode of Supreme Purity and Goodness (Shivalaya) and returns no more. He, verily, who knows this secret, becomes One with Me, the Highest God. Therefore, let one practise diligently, with devotion to Me and one’s Spiritual Teacher. Having begun this Perfect Practice, one should not give up.
78. Verily, as a young Swan stays at first close to his nest and then flies ever further and higher according as his wings gain strength, even so the diligent Yogi by the power of Meditation gradually reaches the Highest Goal.
79. O you who are most wise! the constant recitation of My Holy Name is known as Mantra- Japa and is of three kinds: voiced, whispered and silent, the last-named being the best among the three. When during Meditation the mind grows either sluggish or restless, Japa should be performed. And when the same (i.e., the mind growing sluggish or restless) occurs during Recitation, Meditation should be done again. Thus the Yogi steadily advances on the Path.
80. Looking within, one shall see a dark Cave, a great Void, or an inward Light shining like unto a swarm of Fireflies, grains of Camphor, a fluffy Cotton Flower, a white Lotus, a bright Cloud, a scintillating Mist, a Looking-glass of burnished silver or a Dish of (mother-of-) pearl, a flickering Flame of Fire, a snow-clad Mountain, a wave-less Pond, a Full Moon, a radiant Human Form, a blazing Sun and a Sea of Light. These shall be known as the Sixteen Signs of Progress on the Yoga Path. They are the road marks that tell the traveller that he is approaching the Goal even as the Morning Star heralds the approaching of Dawn.
81. O noble ones! pleasures born of the senses have a beginning and an end. They bring joy while they last and pain when they pass away. But the Bliss of the Lord has neither beginning nor end. As the Sun always shines in the Firmament even when his light is obstructed by clouds, night or dark blindness, even so I, the Supreme Lord, Eternally Shine in the Boundless Sky of Universal Consciousness.
82. As sunlight is obscured by various things, even so My Divine Bliss is obscured by many kinds of pain that afflict Souls who are bound to worldly existence. The suffering that severs bound Souls from My Undying Light and Bliss is of three, five, seven and of countless kinds.
83. The three-fold suffering is Spiritual, self-inflicted and divine. Spiritual suffering is born of ignorance of Higher Truth. Self-inflicted suffering is naturally created by one’s own actions done in the past, present and future. Divine suffering is that which comes about through divine intervention, as when one is struck by lightning, hit by a stray missile or is stricken with an illness or misfortune.
84. Spiritual Knowledge that flows from the Practice of Yoga is the only remedy to the first (kind of suffering). Right thinking, right intention, right action, right speech, right livelihood, right food and right medical treatment are the remedy to the second. Restraint of the mind, atonement, prayer, propitiation (of the God whose wrath one has incurred), magic incantations (mantras), auspicious observances, charitable gifts and solemn vows are the remedy for the third. Verily, these sixteen are the remedies for all kinds of suffering that afflict man. But of these, Spiritual Knowledge shall be known as the best and the remover of all pain.
85. Now, the five-fold suffering. It is that which consists of dullness, delusion, great delusion, darkness and blinding darkness. Dullness is vanity and self-pride; delusion is thinking that one is the physical body; great delusion is thinking that one is family or possessions; darkness is hating those who harm oneself or one’s family or one’s possessions; blinding darkness is being afraid of death.
86. Yet another, seven-fold kind of suffering is known to the wise. It consists of fear, attachment, greed, anger, sadness, lassitude and doubt. All these are impediments upon the Path. They are to be conquered by Spiritual Practice (Sadhana).
87. O Sages! how can he, who is punished even by the Gods, who is ignorant, fearful and who doubts, who is thus afflicted, advance upon the Path trodden by the righteous and the unafflicted?
88. Indeed, there is no end to the kinds of suffering that befall those who are separated from Me. But those who, by My Grace, have entered upon the Royal Road of Yoga, shall overcome all obstacles and enjoy the Bliss of Union with Me.
89. There are four limbs to the Yoga Path: Entrance (upon the Path), Becoming Established, Advancing and Arriving. When all impediments have been burned in the fire of Yoga and the Yogi, having discarded wrong knowledge, is well-established on the Path, the signs of progress begin to appear and he develops great Spiritual Powers such as the ability to hear, feel, see, taste and smell things unknown and divine.
90. The chief among these Powers is Pratibha, the Inward Flame of Illumination, whereby one perceives things that are hidden, subtle or far away; things that have been or are still to come. In truth, Pratibha is the Supreme Power Divine. There is nothing that the Yogi cannot know or accomplish thereby.
91. Whilst thought-based knowledge is a mere modification of the mind, the Sunlike Lamp of Inward Illumination is the Soul’s own Light. It is the Light of True Man’s Inner Wisdom and a Radiance Divine.
92. Inward Illumination is but the One Power of the Lord that abides in all living things. When kindled by His Grace, it flares up like as a flame that has lain concealed beneath the ashes, and at once enlightens the World.
93. He in whom the Flame of Illumination has been kindled, can enlighten other men if they be righteous even as the flame of a lamp kindles another flame. Verily, such an one shines like unto a Lamp, a Fire, a Star, the Moon or the Sun and enlightens the World according to the Grace of the Mighty One. As the Sun, the Moon and other things that shine bestow light upon all, so shall every man bring Light into the World, each one according to his means. This is My Supreme Command (Parama-Shasana).
94. When the Inward Radiance Divine dawns upon the horizon of the Yogi’s pure mind, then the Sun of Awakening shall not be far. For as the Morning Star announces the coming of the Rising Sun, so the first flashes of Inspiration herald the Dawning of the Great Illumination and Liberation of man.
95. O immortal ones! this is the Yoga of the Lord of all Creatures. It liberates the Soul from the bondage of worldly life. Verily, it is the Path taught by all true Teachers of Spirit and can be walked upon by all and everyone. It is the greatest Spiritual Truth and it bestows Union with Me (Sayujya) Who am the Truth.
96. Yet even before attaining Union with Me, My devotee shall enjoy the Bliss of Heaven. For he who practises Yoga diligently in a secret place, conquers Old Age and Death, and becomes Master of his own life. He becomes a Perfect One (Siddha).
97. He can understand the secret tongue of wild beasts, Spirits and Gods. He can traverse the Sky at will and congress with the Deathless Ones. He obtains the Eightfold Supernatural Power called Ashta Siddhi and becomes one of the Gods.
98. Verily and without doubt, by the Power of Anima, the Yogi makes himself small as an atom and perceives the inner workings of Matter; by the Power of Laghima, he makes himself weightless or rises up in the air; by the Power of Garima, he makes himself exceedingly heavy or impossible to move; by the Power of Mahima, he can stretch himself forth in space and see or touch even the remotest of things like the Sun, the Moon or the Stars.
99. By the Power of Prakamya, the Yogi acquires irresistible will-power; by the Power of Ishitva, he gains absolute power over body and mind; by the Power of Vashitva, he has control over all creatures and elements; and by the Power of Kama-Vasayitva, he can fulfil all his desires.
100. Endowed with Yogic Powers, My devotees shall ascend to the Celestial Regions wherein they shall enjoy all the pleasures known unto the Immortal Gods.
101. Provided with Celestial bodies, translucent, shining and imperishable like the best of gems, the Enlightened Yogis shall hear the most beautiful sounds. They shall enjoy the most exquisite tactile sensations, sights, flavours and scents.
102. All this they shall enjoy in the company of Celestial Beings of Light whose unsurpassed beauty is beyond what mortal man has ever seen; who shine like corals, diamonds and pearls; who are ever blissful, radiant and fragrant; and who gladden the hearts of all. Thus they shall abide in My Glorious Heaven to their heart’s content for countless Ages.
103. With Souls resonant with Divine Sound, with hearts satisfied to the brim and overflowing with Celestial Delight, they shall be fit to drink of My Infinite Ocean of Bliss Supreme. For otherwise, they would be overwhelmed and drown like flies in a milk jar.
104. Verily, they only shall enjoy Celestial Delight that have emptied their heart of worldly pleasures. And they only shall relish My Bliss Supreme who have fortified their senses in the Joys of Heaven.
105. But My devotee shall attain the Bliss of Heaven even in this lifetime. Turning his gaze within, entering the secret cave of his heart, he shall find the Luminous Path that leads to My Celestial Abode (Arya-Laya) wherein the Noble Ones reside.
106. But those who are not My devotees, who follow other paths, who are not thus guided by My Inward Light, shall go astray and wander in the dark recesses of their own mind. Verily, for countless Ages they shall wander in that darkness like travellers on a moonless night.
107. O Sages! I accept all who approach Me with a pure heart and reward them according to their sincere effort.
108. I, the Most Benevolent, Most Merciful God Shiva, the Embodiment of Goodness, accept even the greatest of sinners, regardless of what crimes or sins they have committed.
109. I accept all who accept My Word. For My Word shall work in those who accept It and not in the others.
110. To attain My Heavenly Abode, My devotee must first accept the Divine Word. It can be heard either from Myself, a Divine Guru, a Superhuman Guru (Siddha or Accomplished Yogi) or a human Guru.
111. Avoiding the Path of those who go astray, following the Path of the righteous ones, the devotee shall come across one of the four. For thus I have declared, Whensoever the disciple is ready, even then the Teacher shall appear: as the disciple, so shall be the Teacher.
112. O you who ever see the Truth! the Universe, resting upon Consciousness, is made of Knowledge. Knowledge is of two kinds: Awake and Dormant. When awake, it is called Knower. When dormant, it is called the Known. The Knower is he who has the power to know himself and others. The Known is that which is known to others, but itself knows not.
113. The Known is born of the Knower’s Knowledge, for what is insentient, like Matter, is born of what is Sentient, like Spirit. First there was Spirit and Matter was born thereof.
114. They who know not themselves and others, are like the knowable objects of the World. But they who know themselves and others are true Knowers. They are Possessors and Masters of Knowledge. Though living upon Earth, they abide in My Highest Heaven, for they are equal to Me, the Supreme All-Knowing Master.
115. Therefore, let him who would be a Master, be well-versed in Higher Knowledge. For he alone is worthy to be called a Master, who knows all things like to Myself.
116. It is knowledge of all things that constitutes the Perfect Knowledge of Enlightenment. He who has mastered the Perfect Knowledge of the Self, becomes a Universal Master, a Lord of the Wheel of the Universe (Chakravarti) and Supreme Sovereign like Myself.
117. Living Souls are of two kinds: those whose Wisdom is broad and deep like to the Ocean are called Masters; but those whose Wisdom is shallow and narrow like a mere Stream of Water are called disciples. Whilst a Master’s duty is to lead, the disciples’ is to follow even as rivers flow unto the Sea. Therefore, let him who is desirous of Knowledge be a disciple first. For only he can be a Knower and a Master, who has been sitting at his Master’s feet. One becomes a Master worthy of My Highest Heaven through association with the worthy and not in any other way.
118. Hear you now the qualities of one who is fit to be a Master. Him I call a True Master (Sat- Guru) who ever abides in unbroken awareness of God; who has attained Mastery of Magic Spells and Speech; who has Control over the elements; who has the Power of accomplishing all desired ends; who is a Knower of all Scriptures; and who has the Power of transmitting the Truth.
119. These, O Great Sages! are the six most excellent signs whereby a Yogi is known to have attained the Highest Truth. They are like to the six flavours, sweet, sour, salty, bitter, astringent and sharp, that bring perfection to a meal; like to the six quarters, sunrise, midday, sunset, midnight, upper and nethermost, that make the Sphere of the World complete; and like the six two-monthly seasons (which are) Spring, Heat, the Rains, Autumn, Cold, and the Dews, without which the circle of the year is never full. Such an one shall be regarded as an Incarnation of my Self Supreme and the Greatest Master of all.
120. Having by My Grace and good Karma encountered such a Guru who is an enlightening Source of Truth, let the devotee first listen to My Word with an open heart. This is known as Hearing the Truth (Shravana).
121. Having heard and listened to the Truth with an open heart, he shall then ponder over It with a pure mind and act according thereto. This is known as Thinking upon the Truth (Manana).
122. Having thus thought upon the Truth, he shall next let his mind become absorbed in That so that his entire life may be pervaded, enlightened and elevated thereby. This is known as Living in the Truth (Bhavana).
123. O you who are awake! these three steps only are needed to be taken by My devotee. The fourth and highest shall be accomplished of its own accord.
124. When the devotee’s heart has been purified by the practice called Living in the Truth, I, the Lord, shall appear unto him and grant him an actual Experience of My Supreme Self. This Highest State, which is a direct perception of Truth, is known as Shiva- Jnana (Direct Knowledge of Shiva), Shiva-Bhava (God’s Own Being) or Shiva-Samdhana (Union with the Supreme).
125. My devotees are of three kinds. First, those who wish to renounce the World and who have My Supreme Abode for their only Goal. Second, those who wish to remain in the World. And third, those who remain in the World solely for the purpose of propagating My Word, that is, for the purpose of functioning as Gurus (Spiritual Teachers).
126. For those who wish to renounce the World, who desire to devote themselves to the things of the Spirit and who have taken the Vow of Renunciation, the observances to be followed are these. Chastity, Non-violence, Compassion, Self-control, Contentment, Truthfulness and Faith. The non-observance of even one of these shall be seen as a violation of the Holy Vow.
127. Having renounced the World and dedicated his Soul unto Me, the Yogi shall apply ashes from the holy fires unto all his limbs as a mark of Renunciation while reciting the appropriate Mantras such as that of Fire or Sun. Then he shall meditate upon My Supreme Self in his heart.
128. With his mind concentrated upon Me to the exclusion of everything else, the renunciant shall abstain from much talking, eat for the upkeep of his physical body only, give up all other knowledge (than Yoga) and the company of worldly men. Indeed, such an one will quickly attain My Eternal Abode.
129. Even non-celibate Yogis, by wisely adopting the Yogic attitude of detachment, will before long attain perfection in the Path. 130. Practising in secret, abiding in the World but not having their heart in it, discharging the duties of their profession, caste or station for the sake of Me, they shall be free of sin.
131. Many Spiritually-minded mortal men, having cast off wrong knowledge, lust, fear and anger, and taken refuge in Me, were in the past purified by My Divine Knowledge and became One with Me.
132. Therefore, O noble ones! let all reverence Me, the Supreme Lord, by means of the Paths of Knowledge, Devotion or Detachment, each according to their abilities.
133. In this connection, know would-be Yogis to belong to one of four kinds, lowly, moderate, keen and supreme. 134. The lowly, being afflicted by ailments of body and mind, unstable, unreliable, selfish, unintelligent and given to the pleasures of the senses, shall attain success in twelve long years. They are to be taught the Path of Mantra (Mantra Yoga, the easiest) by the discerning Teacher.
135. The moderate, Spiritually-minded, kind and averse to extremes, shall meet their goal in nine years. Let the Teacher initiate them in the Path of Contemplation (Dhyana Yoga). 136. The keen are steady-minded, courageous, full of energy and faith. They shall attain success in six years and are fit for the Path of Effort (Hatha Yoga).
137. The supreme are intelligent, reliable, devoted to God and their Teacher, loving, well-bred, strong, talented and learned. There is no doubt that such Souls will succeed in merely three years and are deserving of being initiated in all Paths.
138. Those who, while still in this World, do not follow the Path of Yoga, live merely like beasts and cannot expect better even in the afterlife. The others, however, who follow the call of Spirit, they ascend high in this life and higher still in the next.
139. Thus I, the Lord, make a Path for all Souls and having assumed the form of a Teacher, I guide them homewards to My Heavenly Abode. I Myself, to re-establish the Eternal Law of Heaven and to save My devotees, appear in some quarter of the World, Age after Age.
140. He who is devoted to Me, who takes refuge in Me and who abides in My Truth, shall not perish. He shall not be harmed by evil Spirits, nor by beasts nor yet by men. He shall ever be endowed with life and afforded guidance and protection from all ills. For I Myself abide in him and illumine his World from within.
141. Through My Grace, through the practice of the Great Yoga and the Path of Devotion, My devotee shall attain the Highest Goal. Whether one be a God, a Demon, a Beast or Bird, a Worm or a Germ, one is liberated through My Grace.
142. Without doubt, a foetus in the womb, a newborn child, a boy, a youth, a young, old or dying man, a Soul in Heaven or Hell, one who is fallen or pious, a fool or a wiseman, is forthwith freed from imperfection when touched by My Grace Divine.
143. When pleased with their devotion, I, the Lord, remove the faults of My devotees even though they be unfit for the Spiritual life. As base metal turns to gold by means of a magic spell, so a mere mortal by My Grace becomes a Perfect Man. By the Power of My Grace My devotees shall be equal to the Gods and enjoy Eternal Life.
144. Know that My devotees’ devotion is due to My Grace and My Grace descends upon them due to their devotion. This is clearly understood by the Wise.
145. After many a lifetime, the seed of My Grace takes root, grows and blossoms in the heart of righteous men. Following the inner impulse of devotion, they turn to Me and attain the Great Perfection in the course of a few births.
146. Being pleased with them, I, the Highest God, awaken in My devotees the awareness that I exist. Due to this, they seek to approach Me by various means prescribed in My Gospels (Shiva Agama).
147. Due to Spiritual practices, their devotion becomes greater. As their devotion becomes greater, so My Grace also increases. Due to an increased Grace, Liberation is attained. Liberated Souls enjoy Eternal Bliss.
148. As seed brings forth a plant and the plant brings forth seed, just so Grace (Prasada) and Devotion (Bhakti) mutually generate and make grow each other. O Sages! let there be no doubt that through devotion even a man of mediocre virtue is liberated in three births.
149. Verily, Devotion is the highest human emotion. Some name it Love. And such it is. For Love is a feeling of unity between lover and beloved and so is Devotion, whether it be towards a fellow-human, one’s country or God.
150. The first sign of Devotion is Faith. He who believes even for the sake of appearances or feigns belief for the sake of some material gain, shall in the end be cleansed of his sins and drawn to the Path of Truth even as the bandit who became a Yogi through deceit.
151. Hear you how this came to pass. A great King desired to give his daughter in marriage to the most pious man in the land. He therefore let it be known to all, that he who could abide absorbed in My Contemplation for a full year, would be entitled to his Kingdom and to his daughter’s hand.
152. Hearing this, a Bandit who was famed for his misdeeds made up his mind to deceive the King through a cunning trick. Thus thinking, he disguised himself as a Yogi and mingling with the others sat down in meditation at the foot of a tree on the bank of the Holy River Ganges.
153. Though at first it was mere pretence, as the months passed by he began to meditate in earnest and before long entered into the deepest absorption. At the end of the appointed year, the King came to inspect the achievement of every contestant and perceived such great inner peace and happiness radiating from the Bandit’s person as he could find in no other. The King bowed down before him and with great reverence offered him his Realm and his daughter in accordance with his royal promise.
154. But the Bandit-become-Yogi opened his eyes and spoke with a gentle smile: With your gracious permission, O Great King! I shall continue to meditate upon the Lord of Yoga by whose Contemplation a man has all his desires fulfilled.
155. Having thus spoken, he fell back into meditation wherein he remains even now. Such, O pure ones! is the power of Devotion. It makes even the greatest sinner into the holiest of men. He who is devoted to Me even in his dreams shall assuredly attain Salvation.
156. But no Devotion is greater than that of Parvati, the Mountain Maiden who was the youngest among three sisters. On a bright morning in Spring, being bound homewards after having taken their daily bath in a gushing mountain stream, the young maiden and her mother passed a certain holy shrine that lay by a well in a grove of ancient trees. Many a time the righteous and the wise came there to offer prayers before a Likeness of My Person Divine.
157. And it came to pass on that day that as the two neared the shrine the first signs of womanhood appeared on her. Mindful of the fact that her married elder sisters had prayed at My Shrine for the fulfilling of their innermost desires, young Parvati wondered aloud who her future groom might be. Her mother being a pious Soul, answering said unto her: Lord Shiva Himself, my dear. He is the Lord and Husband of all Souls. He shall be your Chosen One!
158. Thenceforth, Parvati came to My Shrine every day with the rising Sun to anoint My Image with holy oil, to deck It with handsome flowers and to pray. When four years had passed in this way, on the night before New Moon, when she was about to enter her sixteenth year, a vision was sent by Me unto her in a dream.
159. A golden Serpent appeared from behind the shrine and carried her off to a cave under the Earth where, being all alone and undisturbed, she immersed herself in deep contemplation. When a great water flooded the cave, the maiden was carried across the waves by a Bull as white as the Moon’s rays. Having reached dry land, a Leopard took her into the forest. The forest was engulfed by flames and she mounted a Swan that flew to a mountain top beyond the clouds.
160. There she meditated upon the Sun by day and upon the Moon by night. And when neither Sun nor Moon were to be seen she meditated upon the Flame within. From that Flame My Own Spirit That dwells in all things that shine sprung forth and Parvati met the Soulmate after Whom she had long sought. As the two forms embraced, Light suddenly inundated the World and a great wave of Bliss transported them both through ever-higher Worlds to My Supreme Abode.
161. Thus in a secret place among the blue clouds, on that Moonless night I made her My Bride. For I, the Most Great and Merciful Lord, grant My devotees whatever their heart desires. But Parvati, moved by compassion for Mankind, descended down to her native land and built a Shiva Temple (Shivalaya) upon a mountain top with her own hand.
162. From that time she has been known as Mountain Maiden (Parvati) while I, her Divine Spouse, am known as Mountain Maiden’s Lord (Parvati-Pati) to the wise. Verily, to this day Mountain Maiden is remembered by all on every Full-Moon and New-Moon day. When the Moon is Full and Round her smile brightens the World but when the Sky is Moonless and dark she enters the secret chamber within the (World-Supporting) Mount of Heaven (Mount Mem) wherein she abides in Holy Union with My Self Divine.
163. Thus I reward all for their Devotion and make them a sign and a guidance from the All- Wise that the whole of Mankind may grow in wisdom and might. Verily, all obstacles are burnt to ashes by the Fire of Devotion that has been kindled by My Grace. For when a Flame has been kindled by Me, the Heavenly Fire, what in the Three Worlds could stand in its way?
164. O twice-born ones! know that the rendering of service unto Me constitutes the practical aspect of Devotion. It is threefold due to the means of body, speech and thought. Meditation upon My Form is mental devotion. Repetition of My Name (or Mantra) is verbal devotion. Ritual worship of My Image is physical devotion. This threefold devotion is called the Holy Rite of Shiva, which is the jewel of all Sacred Knowledge. By diligently following any of these three according to one’s natural inclination, one is sure to attain the Abode of Shiva, the Ultimate, the Higher than the highest.
165. Now there is another great secret to be known. The Soul, being made of Spirit, nay, being the Supreme Spirit Itself and Identical with Me, is eternally happy, all-wise and free. Yet as he descends at My Divine Command into this Material World, as he must in order to participate in My Creation, he passes through the dark veil of Maya, My Cosmic Magic. In the course of his descent, he becomes tainted by the Threefold Impurity called Mala.
166. Anava Mala, the Impurity of Imperfection, is the first product of Maya. Thereby, as in a dream, the Soul though being Identical with Shiva deems himself and everything else to be limited and imperfect. Impelled by this impurity, he desires limited and imperfect things. O you who are endowed with Wisdom! know this to be the seed of worldly existence.
167. The second, Maya Mala, is the Impurity of Delusion that develops from the first even as a plant sprouts forth from a seed. It causes the Self to see all things as different and separate both from each other and itself.
168. Karma Mala, the third, is the Impurity of Limited Action. Growing from the previous two, it is their fruit, as it were. Having been rendered imperfect and endowed with limited knowledge, the Soul acts in limited and imperfect ways. Having performed such action, the latent seed thereof comes alive in due course, binding him to this World and its endless cycle of death and rebirth. Thus the Soul is forced to enjoy the fruit of his imperfect actions, both bad and good.
169. In respect of impurity, know that the impure Souls are of three kinds. They are with one impurity, two, or three. Those with one impurity are the highest, those tainted by two are middling and those afflicted by all three, the lowest. Thus they are established on the scale of life, in due order, each as I have written in the Stars at the beginning of Time.
170. The Souls afflicted by all three impurities are under the leadership of those with two, and these in turn are led by those with one. Thus the Universe is arranged in different spheres according to the purity or otherwise of the Souls residing therein. I, Lord Shiva Himself, the Most Pure (Shiva means Pure), am the Lord of all, forever abiding in the Highest Heaven.
171. O noble ones! the Holy Sun casts his radiant light upon all lotus-flowers, impartially. Yet they do not blossom all at once. They do so according as they become ripe. Likewise, I, Lord Shiva, liberate those Souls whose impurities are ripe and not the others.
172. For those that are unripe are not ready for Liberation and must remain in a life of bondage until their time has come, just as unborn children must remain in the darkness of their mother’s womb until they are ready to see the light of the World.
173. Just as the food eaten by men is of two kinds, undigested and digested, even so is the Impurity. Verily, in Yoga as in worldly life, Spiritual Impurity is the real food to be digested.
174. For when undigested, one feels heavy and dull. One goes downwards on the scale of life. But when digested, one feels light and wide-awake. One moves upwards on the scale of life. Thus life depends on the degree to which the Soul’s impurity has been consumed. Listen you now how impurity comes to an end.
175. O immortal ones! it is for the sake of Purity, of Infinite Happiness, Wisdom and Freedom, that man takes recourse to devotion and renders service unto Me according to My Eternal Teaching (Shiva Agama). My Knowledge kindles the Fire of Right Belief, Right Knowledge and Right Action that consumes all impurities and sins.
176. Verily, the antidote to the disease of worldly existence, to which man is bound by the three impurities, is the Perfect Knowledge of Shiva and none other. I, Lord Shiva Himself, am the Supreme Physician fit to heal the afflicted Soul.
177. Therefore, let the Yogi who has discharged his duties and who is ripe for My Abode, renounce worldly activities, accept alms given voluntarily and, with a pure mind illumined by wisdom, reverence Me, the Lord, his Creator. He shall then attain Identity with Me. For thus I have declared, The Fool believes he is this body; the Wise thinks he is both body and mind; but the Yogi, beholding his true Self in the mirror of his heart knows, I am a Soul, a living orb of light.
178. Indeed, him I call a Yogi who thus knows that he is not the body, who understands himself to be a Soul, who sees others as Souls too, who hates not but is kind and friendly to all living Souls, who has cast off selfishness and who, self-controlled, devotes himself to Me.
179. Him I call a Yogi who knows that I Am the Highest Truth, who takes refuge in Me, who follows My Law and who has entered the Path leading to My Self.
180. Him I call a Yogi who has cast off false knowledge, false desire, false attachment, false cravings, false hope and false beliefs. 181. Him I call a Yogi who can discern what is good and what is evil and also what lies between.
182. Him I call a Yogi who consorts not with fools, sinners and men of ill faith, but cultivates the company of the truthful, the good and the wise.
183. Him I call a Yogi who harms not the World and is unharmed by the World, who remains even-minded in happiness as in distress and fear.
184. Him I call a Yogi who unperturbed by either fame or shame, unconcerned about any dwelling-place, silently accepts what is given him and, with a steady mind, devotes himself to Me.
185. Him I call a Yogi who expects nothing, who is pure, efficient, free from cares and troubles and performs his duties irrespective of rewards.
186. Him I call a Yogi who is ever mindful of his thoughts, mindful of his intentions, mindful of his words and deeds, who has subdued his lower self (ego) and is a master of himself.
187. Him I call a Yogi who delights in a quiet mind like as a dark forest where even bird (thought) and beast (anger, fear, desire) go not. 188. Him I call a Yogi whose mind is tranquil and clear like unto the water of a wave-less pool.
189. Him I call a Yogi who ever purifies his Self by the fire of Wisdom even as a smith purifies gold by the smelting of ore.
190. Him I call a Yogi for whom the thought of Enlightenment is like to a Magic Gemstone that fulfils his every wish.
191. Him I call a Yogi who has ceased to believe in delusions and has seen the One Who is the Only True; who having seen the One behind the many is distracted no more.
192. Him I call a Yogi who having calmed his thought, pacified his desire and silenced his tongue, abides in the cave of his own heart like in an impregnable fort.
193. Him I call a Yogi who is ever engaged in guarding My Law Eternal even as a Mighty Dragon guards a secret treasure in his mountain cave.
194. Him I call a Yogi who has attained perfect evenness of mind, who is ever peaceful, unshaken and firm, who is the very image of the World- Supporting Mount of Heaven (Mount Mem).
195. Him I call a Yogi who conquers anger with non-anger, evil with non-evil, not-giving with giving and untruth with truth. 196. Him I call a Yogi who is free from false pride but is ever compassionate, humble and kind.
197. Him I call a Yogi who like as a flower-garden in the breeze fills the Four Quarters with the sweet fragrance of his dharmic (righteous) deeds.
198. Him I call a Yogi who purifies his vision of the World with the radiant seeds of Yogic Wisdom even as water is purified by means of the seeds of the Kataka fruit (which cause impurities in the water to settle, leaving the upper portion thereof clear and fit for drinking).
199. Him I call a Yogi who having renounced the perception of things seen by the physical eye, abides in the state of the One Who Sees.
200. Him I call a Yogi who though residing in a body, is still One with the Supreme Lord; who though residing in the World is ever untouched by the World even as the Sun is ever untouched by darkness or clouds.
201. Him I call a Yogi who is ever awake, who forgets not his Self even in sleep; who has conquered both Sleep and Death and has taken his seat among the Immortal Ones in Heaven.
202. Him I call a Yogi who delights in silence, who has become tranquil, who has come to the end of his journey through the earthly World and has made the pathless Sky his permanent abode.
203. Him I call a Yogi who rejoices in the fate I allotted him, who rejoices in the performance of his duties, who is ever satisfied and full of joy, who brings Joy to the whole World.
204. Him I call a Yogi who is a vessel for navigating the River of Life and a ford for going beyond; who illumines the World like the Full Moon and a Great Star; who grants boons to supplicants like a Wish-Fulfilling Tree.
205. Him I call a Yogi who is far-seeing like the Sun, who knows his past, present and future; who with his inward Wisdom-Eye beholds the stream of existence from the beginning to the end of all the Worlds.
206. Him I call a Yogi who creates, supports and dissolves the World by the power of his will; who has attained the Supreme Perfection of Heaven (Parasiddhi) and is an All-Powerful One.
207. Him I call a Yogi who has polished the mirror of his heart with the thoughts, I am not this body, I am not this mind, I am a Free and Happy Soul; and who perceives himself as That.
208. Him I call a Yogi who as an arrow-maker makes an arrow straight, even so makes straight his body, his speech, his thought and his Path.
209. Him I call a Yogi who has discharged all his duties, who has put away all other states such as waking, dreaming and sleep and who abides in his natural state of Unity with the Supreme.
210. Him I call a Yogi who has renounced what is before, who has renounced what is behind, who has renounced what is in the middle and who has gone beyond.
211. Him I call a Yogi who thinks not, contemplates not, imagines not, but ever abides in his Natural State (Atma-Satbhava).
212. Him I call a Yogi who has no master and fears no one; who is free from all cares and has laid aside the burden of limited life.
213. Him I call a Yogi who fears not Hell nor hankers after the joys of Heaven, who rejects not nor craves anything, but who, immersed in the Effulgent Ocean of Unity with the Supreme, abides in his essential Self like an Elephant happily bathing in the cool waters of a lake in the midst of a blazing forest fire.
214. These, O you who are most wise! are the thirty-six excellent qualities of a Great Yogi. Such an one, having dedicated all his actions unto Me, gives up false hopes and Egoity and, taking refuge in Me, the Highest Goal, reaches by My Grace the Supreme Abode of Shiva.
215. Having cast off attachment to the fruits of action, ever content and free, he finds Enlightenment in whatever activities he performs in Unity with Me.
216. Verily, one who has brought his mind under control and has abandoned all possessions and vain hopes, shall reach the Highest Spiritual Plane while engaging in physical activities with a detached thought.
217. Remaining unaffected by the pairs of opposites such as heat and cold, pleasure and pain, happy with what he obtains without much effort, whatever actions he performs for My Sake, they shall bring him Liberation before long.
218. Let the Yogi concentrate his mind upon Me, be devoted to Me, render worship unto Me, become absorbed in Me. For I am his God, the Lord of Yoga, the Supreme Truth.
219. They call Me the Light of lights. For I am the light of Fire as well as Lightning, Stars, Moon, Sun and the Light of Knowledge, too. I am the Light of all things that shine. The Sun gives light unto the Moon and the Divine Fire in the Sky illumines the Sun. He who knows this, goes up from light to light and finally attains to the Light of lights Which is the Supreme Splendour that never dies.
220. By the Shining Lamp of Knowledge I dispel the darkness in those who are devoted to Me. Having seen the Light, it is every man’s duty to bring Light into the World, each one according to his means. Enlightening each other, thinking of Me, speaking of Me, thus they abide in Unity with Me.
221. They who concentrate their mind upon Me, honour Me, and bring My Light into the World, shall be given by Me all that they lack and what they already possess shall be increased by Me.
222. They who seek enjoyment and pleasure shall also be granted their wish according to their merits. Indeed, since I am all and all belongs to Me, I Alone am the All-Giver, the Wish- Fulfilling Lord of Justice. Even they who seeking to fulfil their desires worship other Gods, worship Me Alone, though they may know it not.
223. For thus I have declared, As waves from Water, as sparks from a Fire, as rays from the Sun, all life springs forth from Me, the Lord, the Source of all Life. Verily, the Gods are just diverse manifestations of Myself. I Myself am all the Gods.
224. Therefore, it would be better for My devotees to worship Me directly, for well it is known that water drunk from the source is purer and sweeter than that taken from further downstream. Resorting to Me, the Source of All, they shall go to the Abode Supreme.
225. Avoiding those paths that are crooked and following the straight path, casting off all other forms of knowledge and concentrating upon the Truth of Yoga, My devotee shall rise to the Stars and be a Lamp unto the World.
226. Abandoning too much attachment to possessions, family and friends, performing his duties only, let the Yogi worship the Highest Truth in this life and the next.
227. O you who are masters of your mind! Worship of My Divine Person shall be known to be of two kinds, outer and inner. That which is performed in the view of others and has as object a material Image or Symbol of My Divine Self, is to be known as outer worship. That which is performed in the secrecy of one’s own heart and has as object a mental Image or Vision of Myself, is to be known as inner worship.
228. As to which of the two is better than the other, let it be a matter for the philosophers and the logicians to debate. It behoves not a Yogi, who has entered upon the Path of Unity, to indulge in such disputes. Whatever action, whether physical or mental, brings one closer to Me, that very action is dear to Me. For whatever power brings two beings together, the very same is a manifestation of My Divine Power of Unity (Yoga).
229. I therefore declare unto you that inner and outer worship are each to be seen as equally efficacious, profitable to the faithful and pleasing to Me as the other.
230. As a man’s works are manifestations of his inner thoughts, just so all forms are manifestations of My Formless Self. They express My Unmanifest Glory. They reflect Truth even as a lake reflects the Sky.
231. My Image, when reverenced with a pure heart, enables the devotee to rise above himself and come closer to Me, the Supreme Lord. It is by My Divine Power that he does so.
232. Verily, outer, physical worship consisting of bowing down, ringing bells, chanting, offering incense and flowers and piously gazing upon a material Image of My Person, is but an expression of My Divine Power of Action with which I, the Lord, have endowed the human Soul for My Own Pleasure and out of compassion for him.
233. Likewise, inner, mental worship consisting of imagining Me in the secret chamber of one’s heart, contemplating, meditating upon Me and uniting one’s Soul with Mine, is but an expression of My Divine Power of Knowledge which I, the Lord, have infused into the human Soul for My Own Delight and out of love for him.
234. All these actions and powers are aspects of the Power of Yoga. By that Power I hold the Universe together. By the same, too, I bring the Soul closer to Myself.
235. Unto those who say that My inner worship is a hundred times more excellent than outer worship, reply that it is not easily attainable by all. For every action depends upon the capacity, physical, mental or Spiritual, of the agent.
236. But devotion makes every act of worship holy, O noble ones! In whatever way one worships Me with devotion, that I am greatly pleased with. Whether it be a prayer, a leaf, a flower, a fruit, gold or mere water, if it is offered unto Me with devotion by a faithful devotee, he is dear to Me.
237. For I am the Lord Who can see into the heart of My devotee. And the flame of his devotion shall fan the Fire of My Grace, without fail.
238. Know that devotion is the direct expression of My Grace and the power whereby I Myself elevate My devotee into My Presence. The question of inner or outer does not arise in Me, the Universal Consciousness, Who Hold all things within Myself.
239. Therefore, censure not one who is devoted to Me. For, whether he answers My Grace as a babe answers his mother’s caress or as a grown woman answers her sweetheart’s embrace, is all the same to Me.
240. Let no man harm or disparage My devotee for the fool who does so disparages Me, the Great Lord Who ordain the life and death of all creatures. He shall himself curse his own lack of faith when the time has come for him to meet Me face to face. But he who honours My devotee with devotion, that one honours none other but Me.
241. Whether one seeks Liberation or success in worldly life, let the wise one develop unconditional devotion for Me. For every man is rewarded according to his devotion, and not according to his expectations. I Alone determine what the reward shall be.
242. Therefore, let not the devotee be devoted to Me only for the sake of the desired fruit. Rather, let the wise one devote himself to Me for My Own Sake. For even the unbelievers and the unfaithful might become devotees for the sake of some desired object. But he is a true devotee who is devoted to Me irrespective of the reward. And if a man through devotion to My Divine Self obtains Me, Who am the Highest, what more can he desire?
243. Now, concerning the worship of My Image, it will be said by some, Lord Shiva lives in the heart of all beings; of what avail is the worship of an Image to those who know thus?
244. Well, My Form is both Subtle and Gross and so shall be My Image. The Flash of Lightning is at once a mighty fire and also one that is distant. Those who are far off cannot reach it and those who are too near cannot touch it. Even so it is with My Divine Splendour.
245. When wishing to make fire one takes not a flash of lightning or a whole blazing forest but the burning power is taken from the source to some combustible material by means of a firebrand. Just so My Divine Splendour cannot be brought down among the dwellers upon Earth, only an Image thereof.
246. If someone says, Bring me some fire, no one will seek to bring the whole fire, but only a burning twig. Likewise, the illumining power of My Divine Light is transmitted by means of artistic skill and imagination to a material likeness wherefrom it shall inspire and enlighten the devotees’ mind according to every one’s capacity and receptivity.
247. Those who can see Me without the help of an Image, shall do so in peace, without disturbing the others with too much useless talk. For so long as one cannot see Me one can only imagine Me, that is, see the thoughts one conceives about Me in one’s own mind. And an Image is an Image, whether fashioned by thought or by hand.
248. It is true, the power of the mind is greater than that of the hand. But what is fashioned by the mind is often unsteady, transitory and deceptive whereas a thing fashioned by the hand is steady, longer lasting and clearly visible to all.
249. And, has it not been professed by the wise that Shiva exists everywhere? How then do they say that I reside not in an Image? If they follow the Path of Unity, it becomes them not to speak words of disunity. If they find fault in the Worship of My Holy Image they shall be made to answer this, Do they believe in the One or in the Many?
250. To believe in the Many is to deny the Unity of Life. For Life is One and so is God. Everything is a manifestation of the One. The Many exist in Me, Who Am One. And I, the One, reside in the Many. Beware! they who say otherwise sin against Me Who am Almighty, All- Pervading and Free.
251. Naught would exist if I, the Lord, did not abide hidden therein. All things, whether vile or holy, exist by My Power Alone. They only differ in this, that those that are endowed with beauty, have greater power of manifesting My Glory.
252. I Am Shiva. I Am the One in Whom all things rest (Shi) and by Whose Power all things move (Va). Since I Am all and everything, each act of worship is but I Doing Worship unto Myself.
253. Verily, I, the Lord, am the Worshipper, the Worshipped and the Act of Worship too. Naught exists beside Me. He who knows this is a true believer in Unity and a faithful follower of Truth.
254. Such an one knows that as the Sun, though being one, is reflected differently in the water contained in different vessels, even so My Divine Light is perceived differently according to different devotees’ power of perception.
255. Therefore, let those who cannot see Me directly, see My Glory reflected in an Image of My Self. Let that Image be like a ladder whereby one ascends ever higher, closer to the Highest. For so long as one cannot fly, one cannot ascend without a ladder. And how many Earth-dwellers can fly? How many can ascend to My Abode and see Me face to face in this very life?
256. My Image shall be pleasing to the mind and reflect My Glory like a mirror. It shall be fashioned from silver, gold, precious gems, gilt wood, stone or some other suitable material. It shall be beautifully shaped to gladden the heart and render it receptive to My Beauty.
257. Then let the Yogi honour it, offer incense and flowers unto it and meditate upon it according to the Teachings of Shiva, the Lord of Yoga, and as instructed by one’s Teacher. Learning to see Me in My Image, he shall develop the power to see Me everywhere. Having developed the power to see Me everywhere, he shall see the World the way I Myself see it and thereby attain Unity with Myself. O you who are endowed with Wisdom! what more can a man desire?
258. Verily, they who have abandoned all attachment to sensual pleasures and devote themselves to the constant worship of My Image, shall reach the Highest Heaven within a single lifetime. But those who say that I reside not in the Image contradict themselves and sin against Me, Who am All-Pervading (Present Everywhere) and Ever-Free.
259. O noble ones! the uppermost World is Heaven and the lowermost is Hell. Heaven is inhabited by Great Beings who live in Truth. Hell is the abode of those who have chosen the Untruth. Between these two, there lies the World of Men, where Truth is mixed with Untruth in various measures.
260. The Astral World is the place wherein abide the Souls between one earthly life and the next. The Gurus are the Spiritual Masters who transmit My Truth to the World. They live in the Terrestrial, Astral and Celestial Spheres. I, the Supreme Guru, am above all.
261. In life, there are two Paths: one leads to Heaven, the other leads to Hell. Those who walk upon the upward Path, go to My Abode. Those who choose the downward Path, go astray. Therefore, as the hawk takes only one bird from the flock, let the wise follow one path. And let that path be straight and not crooked.
262. Verily, My Image is the guiding lamp that brings the Seeker to Myself. All other things lead away. Now, he who knows that I am the Highest Truth and that the worship of My Holy Image is the Path that leads unto Myself, shall proceed as follows.
263. Let him seek a clean and quiet place, wherein he shall be seated upon a soft cloth or deer- skin. Assuming the Lotus Posture he shall sit erect, immobile like a tree or a mountain and facing the Northern Sky which is the true Abode of Light wherein resides the Hidden Sun that is never seen by mortal man.
264. Having purified his mind by means of the appropriate prayers, he shall draw upon his forehead the holy Trilinear Sign of Shiva called Tripundra either with ashes from the sacred fire or with holy water. He shall then wear a rosary of Rudraksha beads and with a pure mind recite the following words in his thought.
265. OM! Adoration to the Three Worlds, Terrestrial, Astral and Celestial! Adoration to the 128 SHIVA RAHASYA Guru in the East, to the Gum in the South, to the Gum in the West and to the Gum in the North! Adoration to the Gum Above who is the highest Gum of all! Adoration to the Effulgent Lord of Light! May He enlighten me with His Spirit Bright!
266. O Lord of All! from Untruth lead me to Truth; from Darkness lead me to Light; from Death lead me to Eternal Life.
267. May the Veil of Your Mystery be removed for me; may Your Abode of Light be opened for me; may Heaven’s Way be cleared for me. O Master of the Greatest Secret! graciously accept my prayer and let success be mine.
268. Having mentally made obeisance to the Three Worlds, the Four Gurus and to Myself, and having put away all hankering after worldly things, all malice and all doubt, with body and mind well at ease, let him next enter the cave of his own heart and abiding therein meditate upon My Form as the Eternal Lord of Yogis, shining in the midst of My Disciples like the Full Moon in a circle of Stars.
269. Let him conceive My Divine Person as being light-blue in colour, like the Infinite Sky of Consciousness out of Which It graciously manifests for the salvation of the World. As being seated upon a royal seat, symbolic of Supreme Sovereignty, on the summit of Holy Mount Kailasa – the likeness of Mount Mem (Shiva’s Celestial Abode) upon Earth – and facing South. Having a youthful and beautifully shaped body. Having a radiant lotus-like face with a gentle smile and surrounded by a halo of brilliant sunrays.
270. Having three beautiful eyes, the third or middle one being the Inward Eye of Higher Knowledge. Wearing the Crescent Moon, symbol of Spiritual Awakening, upon the flame-like tresses. Wearing a tiger skin as a symbol of Spiritual Power. Making the fear-dispelling and wish-granting gestures with the two hands. And being endowed with the Eight Yogic Powers which eagerly fulfil his every desire like maidservants attending on their King. Having thus conceived My Divine Form in his heart, let him apply his mind to That until he can clearly perceive It with his inward sight.
271. Having meditated for a while upon My Manifest Form, the Yogi shall visualise It as being reabsorbed into My Formless Being consisting of the Infinite Light of Consciousness and concentrate his mind upon That. This shall be known as the worship of My Subtle Image.
272. Undoubtedly, if the Yogi meditates in the aforementioned manner, he becomes Divine. His lower body becomes the Earth World. His main body becomes the Astral World. His head becomes the Celestial World. His spinal column becomes the All-Supporting Pillar of the Universe. His four limbs become the Four Quarters of the Firmament.
273. His two eyes become the Sun and Moon. His hair becomes the lines of force that fill the All. His mouth becomes My Eternal Law. His breath, going out and in, becomes the Creation and Dissolution of the World. Assuredly, indeed, such an one becomes identical with Me, the Universal Being.
274. O you who are deserving of Eternal Life! know this to be My Highest Worship and the Highest Yoga leading to Union with the Supreme. This, truly, is the Path trodden by the Ancient Masters who, on account of their Spiritual achievements, are most dear to Me.
275. Verily, I say unto you, Whether gross or subtle, with form or formless, My Image is the Gateway to My Supreme Abode. My Image is in everything and everything is within My Image. They who have not mastered the Spiritual art of mental worship, shall therefore honour Me by means of a physical Image.
276. Although the highest Yogis see My Likeness in their hearts, It may be regarded as existing in Wood, Water, Fire, Sun or Sky, according to one’s heart’s desire. For I am present in all things.
277. They who honour Me in a material or subtle Image, be it by means of outer or inner devotion, unto them I shall grant success in Yoga and in life, without fail. So long as Spiritual Knowledge has not dawned, one shall continue practising with detachment, devotion and purity of mind, to the end.
278. One shall take up residence in the Holy City of Light (Kashi) or some other hallowed spot and, with a mind fully concentrated upon Me, remain there until death. By My Grace, upon their departure from this World, the residents of My Holy City shall go to the Supreme Abode. 279. As for those who, living in far-away corners of the Earth, are required by the custom of the land to honour other Gods, they shall do so while thinking on Me, the One True God. Thus doing, they shall be free of sin. For all worship is ultimately directed towards Me, the Unseen Self hidden in all things.
280. Verily, this is the Truth: As all rivers go to the Ocean, so indeed all acts of worship reach Me, the Ultimate Goal. Therefore, for the sake of appearances and if compelled to do so, let the Yogi visit any suitable place of worship in his native or adoptive land and, with a pure mind, pay obeisance to the Deity worshipped therein.
281. Having honoured the Deity of that place, let him address his mind unto Me, the Highest Lord and calling upon Me by My True Name, worship Me with devotion in his heart. For I am the One above the Many and everything ultimately depends upon Me. I am the Self-Effulgent Lord of Light. I am the One Who Outshine the Many even as the Sun outshines the Stars. There is no God but I.
282. If someone says, My friend, what is your faith? My devotee shall reply thus, My friend, I believe that so long as one has faith in God, the Lord Himself will show the Path.
283. But unto those who bear the pure and radiant mark of righteousness upon their brow, who are intelligent, pure and good, whom one deems trustworthy, one shall speak openly: I, my friend, am a traveller upon the Inward Path of Unity; if you will, let us walk together and meet the Lord in His Abode of Light. In such company the Yogi can gladly travel until his journey is done.
284. Therefore, let one seek that company which is profitable and edifying to oneself, to one’s fellow traveller and to the Community of Devotees (Sangham). If one be unable to find a like- minded companion, a fellow traveller or a Soulmate; if the company be unprofitable to oneself, to one’s fellow traveller and to the Community of Devotees, then let one travel alone, roaming the World like an elephant in the great forest. For better it is by far to walk alone than in the company of fools or foes.
285. Whether he be alone or in company, in the Holy Land (of India) or abroad, let the righteous ever keep to the straight path (satpatha). They who keep to the straight path shall not perish. Those who go astray will prevail only for awhile till their good Karma endures. But when that comes to an end, they are overcome by their evil deeds and destruction will be their fate. Only a few shall be saved to be a warning and an example unto others.
286. O noble ones! I never forsake any Soul. Some I guide directly, some I guide through others and some I guide through signs. Some I guide overtly and some I guide covertly. But My Guiding Light shines equally upon all, even as the Sun shines upon a field. Those who reject My Guidance have only themselves to blame. Hear you the plight of those who were unfaithful to Me.
287. A great Yogi lived in a village at the foot of a holy tree. Virtuous maidens were sent him with choice foods and handsome clothes in return for his wise words. But in the space of six years the village was afflicted by a flood, a famine and a plague. Many villagers perished and the survivors were dumbstruck with grief.
288. The villagers said to themselves, The holy man failed to save us from the afflictions that visited our homes; of what avail is offering him good food and shelter? In great anger they rushed to the Sage and said: Holy Sir! You have failed to protect us and our dear ones. This being so, it were better for you to depart from this place.
289. The Sage answered and spoke: If this is your wish, I shall depart at once. But beware! we shall meet again. And away he went, whilst the villagers returned to their homes. But in their heart they knew that they had sinned.
290. The Sage withdrew to a hill and watched the village from afar even as a father watches over his sons. And sure enough, whereas previously the village was struck by one disaster every two years, now it was struck by all three, flood, famine and plague, at once.
291. With shame and remorse in their heart, the villagers went to ask forgiveness of the Sage, who spoke: O people! it was only the doubters that perished. Faith was upon their lips and doubt in their hearts. Doubt is the door to the Abode of Discord. And that is where they went. Verily, no man can protect you against your own sins.
292. Do not follow in the footsteps of the weak-hearted. If doubt enters your heart, know that it is doubt itself that is to be doubted and not the Truth. The best protection is living in Unity with the One. Therefore, follow you the example of Yogis who ever abide in Harmony with Him. Having heard this, the villagers pledged obedience to him and thenceforth their village was spared.
293. Verily, faith is a man’s most precious possession. Faith is that which prompts him to seek Knowledge. When the Knowledge that comes from the One reaches a man, it kindles the flame of faith in him. By that guiding light he finds the Bridge of Knowledge and by passing over that he finds the One. Thus everything comes from the One and returns to Him in obedience to My Eternal Law.
294. Knower, Knowledge and Known (object) alone exist. The Known is made of Knowledge and Knowledge springs from the Knower. So long as man is not possessed of Knowledge, he is a mere object, tossed about by the waters of life even as a log by a river in flood.
295. But when by means of Knowledge he passes as over a bridge to the One Who Knows, he becomes One with Him and abides ever untouched by harm. Verily, when by means of Yoga the Soul has safely crossed the waters of separation and distinction, then he looks upon all things with the single Eye of Unity and becomes One with the All. This is the Eternal Truth.
296. O noble ones! as long as the Sun and Moon endure, you shall find no Revelation like Mine. My Revelation is the Path of all paths, the Royal Road of Heaven revealed by Me unto the Ancient Masters at the beginning of the World. He who follows the Path of Yoga shall find the True Teaching, the True Path, the True Guidance and the True God.
297. May he who knows this Secret Teaching practise it in a secluded place. But the best of all secluded places is the Yogi’s own heart. For the heart is the most secluded of all places and the true abode of all things secret.
298. Mindful of appearances, knowing that Truth in this World has many enemies, practising in secret, let the Yogi live happily in this World yet unaffected by the World. In this way he shall steadily advance upon My Path.
299. Let my devotee abide by the customs of his country of abode whilst keeping to the right path (satpatha) in his heart. But when the Shadow of Discord and Separation has been vanquished and the Light of Unity prevails on Earth, I, the One True God shall be worshipped openly by all. This is My Divine Command (Ishvariya Adesh).
300. Verily, My Word of Truth shall be kept secret that It may not be corrupted and distorted by the evil-hearted and deluded. In this World, Truth has many an embittered foe. But when the time has come It shall be openly revealed to all. For when the flame is only young it is easily extinguished even by a child. But when it has grown in strength, the dark forest of delusion comes to a swift end.