Ashtavakra (aSTAvakra) (Story From mahabharata)
- aSTAvakra samhitA (gItA) : The Conversation between Ashtavakra and Janaka : ( Links to previous posts)
Janaka said :
- svAsthya – the state of being in one Self comes from the fact that nothing else in fact exists (akincanabhavam). This state is hard to get even in kaupInatva – the state of giving up everything and having only in a loin cloth. Therefore, there I have given up ‘giving up etc’ and I am happy as I am.
- In some places there is distress to the body and in some places to the tongue and in some to the mind. Having given up that, I comfortably stay in puruSArtha ( the purpose of the puruSa or divinity).
- Nothing ever is really done. Thinking thus, whatever comes my way, I do that and live happily.
- yOgins who stay in the body (not in the Self) have conditions of what to do, what not to do etc. I am happy as I am, free from the ideas of samYoga and ayOga (good union and non-union).
- By moving, standing still or sleeping there is neither artha nor anartha for me. (meaning/purpose/wealth or the lack there of). Therefore I am happy as I am even as I stand, stay or sleep.
- Sleeping causes me no harm and striving brings me no achievement. Having given up loss and enthusiasm, I am happy as I am!
- I am happy as I am giving up the idea of s’ubha and as’ubha (auspicious and inauspicious) because I have repeatedly observed the principles and form of happiness (sukha) in things/beings.
When I was younger I observed that by dharma or karmaphala you are forced to do what has to be done by you. You are welcome to do charity or have your purse picked – OR you are welcome to do your homework or have elders sit on your head and make you do it. The easier (read lazier) option is to do it the first time. Then I found that the more you do easily the more you are made to do. karma is never ending. I learned that the more difficult you make it for others to use you as their tool, the less they try to use you for. For this you must become immune to the stick they are waving at you – disapproval, punishment, witholding rewards and recognition and so on. Once you no longer care for what people can do for you or to you, you become free of their control. You might still observe yourself being nice to people for reasons that are internal to you – but it won’t be out of fear or greed. It maybe out of (misplaced) compassion or genuine love or some inner compulsion. I observe that it makes very little difference to the fates of others. I started feeling that I was like sort of a ghost – doing things that had no effect on/or for others. I still do things – cleaning, cooking, writing, listening, talking, chanting, sleeping, dreaming etc., since it is clear that things concerned with me only get done if I do them. eg my floor stays unswept unless I sweep it – and I like clean floors.