Jnana Yoga Sadhana
by Swami Sivananda
Whatever has beginning or end is unreal. That which exists in the past, present and future is real. Brahman only exists in the three periods of time. Hence Brahman alone is real. A real thing only can be eternal, unchanging, beginningless, endless. Anything which is nothing in the beginning and in the end, necessarily does not exist in the middle also.
The reality underlying all names and forms, the primal one from which everything originates is Brahman or the Absolute. Brahman is the ultimate source of all joy and bliss.
Brahman is the inner reality or essence. The five sheaths are the outer husk. The body, the senses, the mind and the intellect are merely the outer covers which conceal the inner permanent Reality. These sheaths are the manifestations of Brahman. They are grounded in Brahman.
Brahman or the Eternal transcends the phenomena. Production and destruction are only phenomena. They are the jugglery of Maya or mind. In reality there is nothing produced or destroyed.
Brahman is infinity. Brahman is eternal. Brahman is Immortality. Infinity must be one. There cannot be two infinities. That which is unchanging, indivisible, non-dual, beginningless, endless, timeless, spaceless, causeless can be infinite. If there are parts in Brahman there will be plurality. There cannot be differences or distinctions in Brahman. Brahman is self-luminous, self-existent, self-contained, self-established, self-revealed. Brahman is birthless and deathless, because He is infinite, bodiless and timeless. Brahman is not a negative blank such as you have in deep dreamless, sound sleep, because He is pure consciousness, knowledge absolute. In Brahman you have perfect awareness, pure intelligence. Brahman or Absolute is Satyasya Satyam. It is the Self of all selves.
The objects seen in the waking state are as real as the objects seen in the dreaming state. All objects are unreal. The witnessing subject only is real and eternal. Life is a waking dream. How can a thing which changes be eternal and real?
The individual souls and the world are all unreal. Nothing save Brahman or the Absolute is eternal.
The mental world is as much objective or unreal as the material. The only reality is Brahman or the Atman. The world vanishes in sleep. The objects of the dream vanish as soon as you wake up. Hence the world of experience and the dream world are unreal. Beyond the three states is the Atman or Brahman. This Brahman is the basis of the three states. It is the silent witness or Sakshi. Brahman alone is Turiya or the fourth state.
Moksha is the Life Eternal. Realisation of the oneness of Self is the high water mark of Perfection. Realise this Brahman through hearing of Srutis (Sravana), reflection (Manana) and constant meditation (Nididhyasana) and attain freedom or the final beatitude.
Realisation of Brahman is regarded as the highest of all knowledge. A strong and wise man who is endowed with the four means only can attain Self-realisation. Rebirth can be stopped only through the realisation of Brahman. He who truly realises his unity with Brahman realises immortality.
Withdraw the senses, look within and search your heart. Dive deep into the deepest recess of your heart through deep meditation on the innermost Self. You will doubtless realise your identity with Brahman and get to the heart of the Infinite joy and bliss.