Bondage, Continued, Bhagavad Gita, Ch 14, Vs 5

The Three Gunas with Men Ensnared
Personification of the Three Gunas with Men Ensnared

Previously:
O Long Armed One, the gunas of Prakriti (Nature) — sattva, rajas and tamas — bind the Imperishable Embodied One to the body.”

  • Nature – All things visible and invisible, including people, that exist in the created world and the cosmos — the phenomena of the physical world collectively, including humans and human creations, plants, animals, the landscape and other features and products of the earth.

The gunas of Prakriti are the ways Nature acts that keep the partnership of our Selves and our bodies intact. We live in bondage to these three gunas, but we wouldn’t be here without them. Later we are going to learn how to free ourselves from these gunas while continuing to be in life, but first we need to understand their place in life and in this world. 

Like a house that is made of bricks but when we look at it what we see is a house, in the same way, Nature is made up of gunas but when we look at it what we see is Nature. We think of Nature as having gunas, but like the house, Nature doesn’t just have gunas, it is gunas. It’s a package deal.

What Are Gunas?

Characteristics of the Three Gunas
Characteristics of the Three Gunas

There are three characteristics of Nature’s movements, three ways that Nature acts. The three gunas are the three ways Nature acts in varying degrees and combinations. Like weather fronts that cause various kinds of actions in subtle and gross matter when they interact, the gunas cause various kinds of actions in the world and those who inhabit it.

You (purusha) experiencing Another (prakriti) and not seeing the Other as the same as yourSelf, but as different than you, create a dual situation. This moves you, a Divine Individual, from the Absolute to the Relative, and into being something other than what you really are. In this new situation in which you are being a Being, you can begin to find your way back to the Absolute situation, only now, with full consciousness.

Before, you realized your own existence, and now, after a journey through the relative realm of beings, you have the means to return with full consciousness: the Highest Knowledge of the Highest Yoga, and the Highest Action “by which all the sages have gone from here to param siddhi, the highest possible accomplishment.” You can go Home as your real Self, with full consciousness of everything.

  • parāṁ siddhi – the highest and ultimate perfection, the highest state

The Nature of Nature is to Move

All action occurs in Nature

I often say, “All action occurs in Nature,” but it might be more correct to say, “All action is intrinsic to Nature.” The gunas are three characteristics of actions, changes, or ways that occur in Nature. All action is, is gunas.

Nature with its gunas are Prakriti misperceived. If you take action out of the picture, the only thing remaining is Prakriti as She really is: God, You and Other Divine Individuals just like You. And now we have Brahman, the Absolute, all of Us. 

Action is intrinsic to Nature. The gunas are the different modes of Nature’s actions.

Transcending the Gunas

So now it is time to remember that, because you have power (you are a ‘god’, after all), you have the power to perceive, to know. This power has manifested as your senses. When your senses work without their organs your perception is direct and you perceive only the Real. This is something that becomes obvious through the correct practice of meditation.

Once you engage in ‘looking’, you have duality and action (looking is an action). When you have action, you have time (from a human perspective). So by transcending the gunas, you transcend all these modes of the mirage, and all that remains is Brahman, Absolute God, Prakriti, all of Us and your Real Self. Time continues but you have gone beyond it, and for this reason, you “do not experience dissolution, and are not born again at the time of creation” (verse 2). All these features of the mirage, these gunas, must be transcended to reach the Real.

When we (purusha) view prakriti (others), what we see is Nature with its gunas (modes of action). All action in Creation bears all three of these characteristic modes in varying degrees and combinations. Thus are sattva, rajas and tamas not only the modes of Nature, they’re a package deal, but they bind the Imperishable Embodied One (You) to the body. They were there for your embodiment in Nature, and now you’re stuck with them.

  • Transcend – to go beyond the range of something; to surpass.

This binding by the gunas is the only obstacle to liberation — one wants a body because of the influence of the gunas. Because we are still erroneously ‘looking’ for each other by means of the body and the senses, we keep this cycle going. It is our identity with these gunas of Nature that hooks us.

When you despair of ever being able to abandon desires (which is impossible), think instead of abandoning attachment to desired objects.

When you think you must somehow rid yourself of the gunas (which is impossible), think instead of ridding yourself of their influences, by abandoning your identity with them (casting yourself as the doer of actions).

In Nature there is always action. The fundamental characteristic of You however, is non-doing. And once again we are reminded, “What you really are does nothing.”

This realization is most effectively accomplished in meditation in which spontaneous action occurs and you realize that it happened without you — without will, for any purpose of your own, and therefore not creating any kind of karmic debt to hold you back. In that moment, you experience liberation. And even though you lose it later, you know what it’s like. And because you know what it’s like, it can continue to increase until you are truly free and united with Absolute God. You will have achieved Lord Krishna’s state, just as He said you would.

The bottom line is this: We find God and each other by not trying, by not using the will (choosing to choose). Using the will always stops things cold in the midst of the mirage. But we are looking for the Real, so we surrender our will to That (we choose not to choose), to Absolute God in meditation, in order to bring us to Absolute God, where we rediscover our Real Selves. 

Your Fundamental Inherent Power is to Choose or Not to Choose

To Be, or not to Be. That is the question.

  • Will – choosing to choose; to continue being the chooser.
  • Surrender to God – choosing not to choose; surrendering your will to God.

Thy will be done, O Lord, not mine.

Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of effortlessly reaching a true meditative state without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga: Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family

 

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Bondage of the Gunas, Bhagavad Gita, Ch 14, Vs 5

Michael Angelo - Creation

5
O Long Armed One, it is the gunas of Prakriti (Nature) — sattva, rajas and tamas — that bind the Imperishable Embodied One to the body.

  • Gunas – modes of Nature
  • Mode – the way or manner in which something occurs

  • Bondage – limited, enslaved, fettered, held, restrained
  • The Imperishable Embodied One – the Real You

The gunas bind You to the body in two ways: (1) they keep you in life as a Being being something you are not, and (2) they keep you in ignorance (unenlightened) by leaving you bound by their seductive attractions so that you miss the obvious: what you really are. It’s a case of bondage verses freedom. Which would you choose? Do you want to remain in bondage, or do you want freedom and the unending happiness of your True Self?

Freedom & Happiness

It isn’t that we look because there is something to see, but that there is something to see because we look. What an extraordinary power we have! We ‘create’ in every moment.

We have eyes because we can see, so we ‘see’ Nature, all the while ‘looking’ at Prakriti and perceiving Her as the world and its activities in varying modes (gunas). When we originally ‘looked’ to see if there was anyone else out there like ourselves, we ‘looked’ and Creation began.

It isn’t that we look because there is something to see, but that there is something to see because we look.

Our power as Divine Individuals to perceive, to know, is inherent.

We can create, but we have been told that creation is an illusion (not what it seems), so what’s the point? The point is, if we can create, we can also see what creation really is — we can see and know each other. To see is to know, and this is what we’ve been after all along, but we’ve been buying the illusion. We’ve become attached to it thinking that if it goes away, we will lose everything. But remember who we are — remember who and what You really are. You say you want to become Self Realized, to know the Real You. Well here’s your chance. But the Real will not come forth if you are hanging on to the un-real and are afraid to let it go.

Embracing the illusion hides the Real 

You, like most people, are attached to this phenomena of life and the world as we know it, and you can’t imagine anything else. But surprise! Nothing is going to go away. What is going to happen is that your own reality will shift and you will know it for what it really is … and you will know yourself for what You really are. Only then, can you truly know Others.

When you embrace the Real you will know Everyone

This power you have, this power to create, isn’t going to go away either. It can’t. It is inherent to the Real You. And if you can create this mirage, you can certainly un-create it and reveal the Real. 

It is at this point that the Real You emerges

Coming Together

We are all looking for each other in this mirage. In it, we have bodies with five senses and a mind, five ways to see what is other than ourselves, and a mind to comprehend these perceptions and store them. But what we don’t realize is that every time we engage our senses, we distance ourselves further from each other. Not in miles or meters, but in reaching the Real Others we seek to know. This happens because what we see is not seen for what it really is, so we never really get to the bottom of it. And this is the tie that binds us: we don’t want to stop looking; we believe that we need our sense organs to do it. But we are wrong — “we have eyes because we can see…”

‘Looking’ separates us because looking is what separated us in the first place.  

We have forgotten what we are: Divine Individuals that can never perish. We each have enormous power. Take your five senses for instance. You have been taught that you can see because you have eyes, that you can hear because you have ears, etc. But you have been taught incorrectly. It is the other way around. It is because you have power that you have the power to see, the power to hear, etc. These powers have merely manifested in this physical-material world of creation.

All you can perceive with your sense organs will always be only the mirage of the physical-material world in which they exist.

All of Us Coming TogetherIf you can imagine all of Us as divine, sovereign individuals that never die and are one big family, you are imagining Absolute God. If you can imagine yourself surrendering yourself to this Absolute God, every day in the privacy and seclusion of your meditation room, and if you can stick to it, you will discover that your imagination is not imagination at all, but the Truth you have been seeking all along.

When this ignites the divine joy and happiness of revelation, you will never turn back. It is a matter of Life and Death played over an over again until it drives you nuts and you finally pull the plug and are utterly free for good. And amazingly, the world is still there! But now you truly know it for what it is, and you are no longer bound.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of effortlessly reaching a true meditative state without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga: Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family

The Great Absolute Womb and the Seed-Giving Father – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 14, Vs 3-4

The Great Yoni and the seed-giving Father
The Great Yoni and the seed-giving Father

3
I, Mahat Brahman (the Great Absolute), am the Yoni, the womb from which all beings everywhere are produced.

  • yoni – female organs of generation
  • garbha – womb
  • Mahat Brahman – the self-existent ‘Great Absolute’

4
Of all that are born (‘all yoni issue’), Son of Kunti, in whatever form they are produced, I am the Great Absolute Yoni and the seed-giving Father.

Yoni - Sacred WombIt amazes me that these verses are consistently interpreted in such a way as to imply that the ‘seed-giving father’ is somehow at the center of things, when even Arjuna is being addressed with his mother’s name, Kunti. Here is an example of these two verses strung together in this manner:

(3) Material nature is the womb. In it I place the seed wherefrom all living beings come to be.  (4) Of all wombs, Brahman is the Great Womb, Son of Kunti, and I am the seed-giving father. From that all beings manifest.

If we look back at everything we have learned, we will be reminded that life, this world, and all of Creation, comes forth from the Absolute (Brahman), not as a deliberate action by some deity to create something, but as a spontaneous generation brought about by the awakening of Divine Individuals in the Absolute from their original state of peaceful bliss and perfection.

Our original state as Divine Individuals bears all the qualities commonly attributed to a separate God, but without awareness of these qualities. When we awakened, what we awakened to was our own existence (‘I am’). Like one might awaken from a lovely sleep, we became self-aware, aware of our existence. Once aware, our knowing of the existence of Others (do you see the duality here?) generated what we call “Creation.”

Creation came about by our not recognizing and accepting the sameness of the Others and ourSelves. It is by this difference becoming manifest that we have a World.

Yoni - Sacred WombThe Mother is Mahat Brahman, the Great Absolute, the Yoni, “the womb from which all beings everywhere are produced.” 

The Father is the first Divine Individual among Us who became self-aware and subsequently perceived and accepted all of Us as the same as himself. This individual is called Purushottama (purusha, the individual, and uttama, first and highest). 

The Seeds are all Divine Individuals, all of whom were accepted unconditionally by the ‘Father’. A seed is something in a potential state, so the seeds are each of us in the Absolute before Creation.

As Above, So Below

You are probably noticing the parallel between this concept of creation and birth. Birth takes place in the same way as the metaphor suggests. What is so in Truth has a parallel in Life. If you want to know something about Truth/God, and what It is, you can try looking for its parallel in Life (taking care not to expect its parallel to look exactly the same). You might be surprised at what you will learn … in any scripture of any tradition.Yoni - Sacred Womb

What is so in Truth
has a parallel in Life.

You now know that you have eyes because you can see, ears because you can hear, etc., and that you have a brain because you have a mind. It is not the other way around. It is the opposite of how you have been taught, but it is the Truth. Now that you know this, try looking at other teachings from this perspective and you will be amazed at what you find. 

Accepting Others

People generally want to be accepted by other people, but what they really want is to be accepted for what they really are by Real Others like themselves. It is this that drives them to seek acceptance within society.

To bring this about for ourselves, we are taught in scriptures to accept Others as the same as ourSelves … because they are. People are uniquely different from each other, but the Divine Individuals that they really are, are eternally the same. 

You may think that what you want is to be normal, but if you take these teachings seriously, you will not be normal. Others, who are used to going about things in the usual manner, will not appreciate your realizations.

Now that you understand this upside-down logic, you will be able to unravel a lot more from scriptures like this one, and make more discoveries, all of which will always be for your benefit, whether you are seeking Truth/God, or seeking to find acceptance among others and living a happier Life.

When you find bliss in God, you will find joy in Life.

Mother God with Child
Mother God

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of effortlessly reaching a true meditative state without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga: Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family