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The meaning of the word Upanishad

The meaning of the word Upanishad

Hindus believe that the texts were received by scholars direct from God and passed on to the next generations by word of mouth. Vedic texts are sometimes called shruti , which means hearing. For hundreds, maybe even thousands of years, the texts were passed on orally. The Vedas are made up of four compositions, and each veda in turn has four parts which are arranged chronologically.

Knowledge and ignorance

The Upanishads were so called because they were taught to those who sat down beside their teachers. These texts developed from the Vedic tradition, but largely reshaped Hinduism by providing believers with philosophical knowledge.

The major Upanishads were largely composed between BCE and are partly prose, partly verse. Later Upanishads continued to be composed right down to the 16th century. Originally they were in oral form. Whilst the priests brahmins had previously been the ones who, through ritual and sacrifice, had restricted access to the divine, now the knowledge of the universe was open to those of the high and middle castes willing to learn from a teacher. The Bhagavad Gita, or "Song of the Lord" is part of the sixth book of the Mahabharata, the world's longest poem.

It is one of the most popular Hindu texts and is known as a smriti text the remembered tradition. This is considered by some to be of less importance than shruti the heard text, such as the Vedas. It has, nevertheless, an important place within the Hindu tradition. The Bhagavad Gita takes the form of a dialogue between prince Arjuna and Krishna , his charioteer. Arjuna is a warrior, about to join his brothers in a war between two branches of a royal family which would involve killing many of his friends and relatives.

He wants to withdraw from the battle but Krishna teaches him that he, Arjuna, must do his duty in accordance with his class and he argues that death does not destroy the soul. Zaehner, a well-known Western scholar, has remarked, "As with almost every major religious text in India, no firm date can be assigned to the Gita. Menu Search. Cart You have no items in your shopping cart. Search: Search.

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The Introduction to the Bhagavad Gita. By Atman one obtains strength, by Knowledge, Immortality. Brahman alone is real; the world is the appearance.


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Brahman is one, without a second. Sarvam khalvidam brahma. The most powerful mantra of all Vedantic literature and the essence of all Vedanta is in the Mandukya Upanishads.

Turiya is not that which is conscious of the inner subjective world, nor that which is conscious of the outer objective world, nor that which is conscious of both, nor that which is a mass of consciousness. It is not simple consciousness nor is It unconsciousness. It is unperceived, unrelated, incomprehensible, uninferable, unthinkable and indescribable. The essence of the Consciousness manifesting as the self in the three states, It is the cessation of all phenomena; It is all peace, all bliss and non—dual. This is what is known as the Fourth Turiya. This is Atman and this has to be realized.

After describing Consciousness using "Neti-neti" approach, what it is not: " It is unperceived, unrelated, incomprehensible, uninferable, unthinkable and indescribable.

Summary of Hinduism

Imagine three ornaments: — ring made of gold 1 , — bracelet made of gold 2 , — necklaces made of gold 3. It is called 'the Fourth' but it's not something separate and independent. Turiya is — Asanga — 'nonattachment'; not attached to anything. It is unattached because you are Consciousness, like light. Appearance cannot affect Reality. Shankara used the example of the rope. Walking down a darkened road, a man sees a snake and he is very frightened. Once the illusion Maya breaks, the snake vanishes forever.

Self-Realization

Similarly, ignorant man thinks he suffers and is in bondage. On 'closer inspection' and study he acquires new knowledge and realizes he is Brahman.

[The Highest Human Wisdom] The Upanishad (Chandogya), Audiobook

Ekam sat vipra bahudha vadanti. Chandogya Upanishad 3. The flower, the table, the human being, the feeling exist. Everything exists, everything IS. SAT is the "is-ness" in everything.

Everything borrows existence from SAT. Aitareya Upanishad 3. The core of Yajnavalkya's teachings in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is that Brahman, or Atman, is the knowing subject within us. This is your Self, that is within all; everything else but This is perishable. The image of an object is carried to the brain by a sense-organ, for instance the eye. After passing through various sheaths kosas , it reaches at last, according to the Hindu psychologists, the sheath of the intellect.

There the light of Brahman, or the Self, which is reflected in the intellect, illumines the mental state regarding the object, and thus one becomes aware of it. The mental image of the object is transformed into knowledge of the object. But this mental state is impermanent; therefore the consciousness—which in reality is Brahman— associated with the mental state appears to be impermanent. There is no bliss in anything finite.

Only the Infinite is bliss. One must desire to understand the Infinite.