SHWETASHTAROPANISHADA

SHWETASHTAROPANISHADA

PEACE- INVOCATION

AUM SAHANAVAVATU SAHANAO BHUNAKTU|
SHHAVIRYAM KARVAAVAHAI| TEJASVINAVADHITA MASTU|
MA VIDVISHA VAHAI|

FIRST CHAPTER
BRAHMA'S CURIOSITY

Curious people started discussing amongst themselves- O sages! We have read in the Vedas that Brahma is the cause of this universe. So who is that Brahma? What are we born from and what is the essence of life? Who is the protector and convenor of this universe?
The Vedas speak about many a reasons which are responsible for the evolution of this universe. At some place it is either time, nature, action or a sudden incident and at some places, the cause mentioned is either the five elements or the living being.
That is why we want to come to a consensus as to what is the cause? On contemplation, we realize that neither time nor the five elements are the things that led to the creation of this universe. Neither independently nor unitedly can they be accrued as the cause of this universe. All these aforesaid elements cannot work voluntarily. Although the living being is conscious, he cannot be the reason thereof because he is also subjected to time and fate. Hence the reason is something other than all this.
REALIZATION OF THE Cosmic ELEMENT BY MEDITATION
When all these scholars and sages could not come to a consensus on the reason behind the universe, then they realized the Cosmic element by meditation and penance- which seems to be embellished by merits but in reality is beyond merits. They opined that all the reasons mentioned from time to the soul are protected by the divine Cosmic soul who is all mighty and all pervasive.
THE WORLD AS AN ENDLESS CYCLE
These sages saw that formless nature was the wheel of this universe. The three qualities are the three forces of this cycle of nature. In this wheel- the mind, intellect, ego, space, air, earth, radiance, water (these small elements) and the eight concrete forms of this are the sixteen ends. This wheel has fifty dimensions which are the fifty types of impulses of the inner mind. The ten senses, the five objects and five pranas are the assisting 'Aras' (dimensions). In this wheel, six articles are divided into eight chunks respectively. There is one noose which ties down all the living beings to this world. There are three paths- Devayana, Pitruyana and the path that leads from one birth to another birth. Goodness and sin are two factors responsible to turn this wheel. The navel is the hub of the wheel, similarly ignorance is the centre of this world.
THE WORLD IN THE FORM OF A RIVER
The scholars realized in meditation that this universe is in the form of a huge river, the flow of which is tremendous. Those who fall into it have to bear the pain of death. It is difficult to transcend this river.
FREEDOM BY AVAILING TO THE HELP OF SUPREME GOD
To maintain all the creatures and their life, the supreme God in his gigantic form transmigrate individual beings from one birth to another according to one's actions. Until the individual soul does not realize the convenor and does not liberate himself from this world cannot be emancipated. He becomes the loved one of God and attains immortality.
THE FORM OF THE SUPREME GOD AND THE BENEFITS OF KNOWING HIM
By the union of the ephemeral world and the indestructible soul, supreme God nurtures and nourishes the universe. The supreme God is all pervasive, is the creator, protector and preserver of this universe. The unredeemed being gets entangled in the web of nature and eventually cannot free himself. When he attempts to realize God and goes towards it, he gets liberated from the shackles of materialism. After the body ceases, the soul attains bliss and an exalted position. He becomes 'purna karma' by exhausting and then transcending all his desires.
THE INTELLIGIBLE ELEMENT- THE SUPREME GOD
The Supreme God dwells within us. We do not need to go anywhere to realize him. We should try to realize Him. There is nothing greater worth than realizing Him.
Just as one cannot see the form of fire hidden in wood (kashta) but the presence of it is considered inevitable, similarly the supreme God is not conspicuous or palpable but is a factor or element worth realizing. By reciting the 'Aum' mantra, one can realize this Cosmic spirit in the body itself. The Supreme God resides in the body just as the oil of 'til' (sesame) is within the sesame seeds or purified butter is in milk.
SECOND CHAPTER
THE PRAYER TO THE SUPREME GOD

The prayers offered to God with the aid of the first five mantras of the second chapter are- O creator of All! Instill the sense of self-realization by initiating the mind and the intellect and by encouraging us towards you and by seeing the brilliance of the gods seated in various senses, help us to transcend all the worldly things and orient our senses towards higher goals.
May our mind be totally devoted in the propitiation of the Supreme God. May we tirelessly work towards the realization and experience of God.
May we meditate upon God so that we realize him. Enlighten our mind, intellect and the senses in the right direction. May we always sing the glory of the all pervasive supreme God.
O mind and intellect! May the greatness described by me spread in the world and may all those divine sons of god residing in divine world listen to this.
THE MEDITATIVE STATE TOWARDS GODHOOD
By concentrating upon the Cosmic spirit and by reciting and contemplating on the names and by controlling the prana Vayu (breaths) one can experience the beauty of divinity. In this state, the mind becomes pure and chaste and all the accumulated action (past karma) do not become obstacles. In this way we should meditate upon God by making the body, the breath, the mind and the Aasan (seat) pure.
THE INDICATION OF SUCCESSFUL SPIRITUAL PRACTICE
While practicing spiritual penance, sages often get to initially see objects like mist, smoke, sun, air and agni and objects like fireflies, lightning, crystals, gems and the Moon afterwards. In Dhyan Yoga or meditation, all the five elements are sublimated. One attains five forces or energies because of this and such a Yogi does not need to fear ailments, old-age and death.
By gaining control over the senses, the Yogi acquires novel powers other than the present energies, remains healthy, light and free from all ailments. He becomes detached from this worldly attachments. He becomes radiant and his speech becomes soft. In this way by meditation a Yogi attains a state of 'Kaivalya bhava', by which all his miseries are eliminated for ever and he becomes immortal.
We prostrate before thy Lord who is all pervasive, present in fire, water and is in all the worlds, the medicines on earth and everything possible.
THIRD CHAPTER
THE DIFFERENT DESCRIPTIONS OF GOD

The all mighty, all pervasive divine Cosmic soul has created this universe and is reigning over it. He is capable to create and expand the universe as he wishes. His devotee, who realizes Him, also becomes immortal. The Rudra form of the Supreme God is one and only one. At the time of final dissolution, this supreme God can merge into the entire universe and become one. He is the one who witnesses every action and thought of this universe. He embellishes every position and creatures with some special and peculiar characteristic.
The supreme God Rudra created all gods alike Indra and expanded them. He is the one who shall do good to one and all.
THE EXPERIENCES OF THE SCHOLARS
The scholars say: " We know He who is the greatest divine Cosmic soul. He is beyond ignorance and is as brilliant as the Sun. By realizing Him, one can break away from the shackles of birth and death. There is no other way than this which can lead to realization.
The supreme God is as small as a finger and is seated in the heart of one and all. He is the master of the mind and can be realized by having a pure mind.
The divine Cosmic spirit is engaged in the divine play which is performed in the outside world and the human body which has 9 doors or openings.
Despite having no senses or organs, He can see and listen everything. He knows all of us but we do not know him. Scholars refer to Him as the noble soul or 'Mahapurush'.
He is the infinitesimal and infinite simultaneously. By the divine blessings, man can realize the greatness of the supreme God. He is devoid of decay and mortality. He is the beginning of everything and is the soul of one and all.
FOURTH CHAPTER
THE PRAYER TOWARDS GOD

That formless God who is devoid of colour and form and who has assumed many forms at the beginning of the universe for a specific purpose and in whom the entire world fuses at the time of final dissolution, that divine spirit is second to none and may He bless me with good intellect.
He is the embodiment of all elements, gods present. His forms are endless and at times intangible. You face all the directions simultaneously. The animate and inanimate world around is your expression.
THE FORM OF NATURE
Nature in the presidentship of her creator; the Supreme God alike herself creates innumerable creature embellished with 3 qualities that is 'Sat', 'Raja', 'Tama'. Satva's colour is white, colour of Raja is red and the colour of Tama is black.
The unredeemed body becomes attached to the nature and falls in the trap. The scholars realize the dangers and detach themselves from these worldly attachments.
THE FORM OF THE UNREDEEMED BODY
This human body is like a 'pipal' tree. God and the unredeemed body both sit on this tree. Both are like friendly birds. The unredeemed body in the form of a bird eats the fruits on the tree and as a result undergoes a wale of sufferings. On the contrary, the Divine Spirit does not attach itself to anything. It merely becomes an onlooker and remains so eternally.
When the Supreme God takes pity on the unredeemed body and as a result the Jiva realizes the essence of divinity, it becomes liberated from suffering and grief.
THE STATE OF THE SUPREME GOD
The supreme God resides in the super celestial region with all the courtiers serving him. All the councilors are in reality, the Vedas themselves who serve the Supreme God.
A person who does not know the Cosmic spirit but understands the concept behind him assumes an exalted position. All the Vedas, Prosody's and Yagyas speak the glory of the supreme God. No human can liberate himself unless he realizes the supreme truth.
THE NATURE IS THE DELUSION CREATED BY THE SUPREME GOD
The power protected by the supreme God in the universe is referred to as Maayaa or delusion and the supreme God is the Mayapati or the one who reigns over this delusion.
It is the nature of the supreme God to engage in the divine play. O Rudra! We experience your beauty and sing your glory. You are capable of protecting us from delusion, please do not become angry on your devotees. Always protect our children and our wealth.
FIFTH CHAPTER
THE SUPREME GOD RULES KNOWLEDGE AND IGNORANCE

The supreme God is even greater than Brahma. Both knowledge and ignorance reside in Him, which means that both are dependent on the supreme God.
Initially it was this supreme God who had given the first sermon of knowledge to Brahma. He created different forms and elements such as intellect, the space and at the time of final dissolution, all these elements merged into Him. Just as the Sun gives light to the entire cosmos similarly the supreme God reigns on all the creatures in the universe.
Even the Vedas also speak about supreme God. Firstly Brahma realized Him and subsequently many gods and sages have realized Him. They all were absorbed into that embodiment of divine happiness.
THE FORM OF THE INDIVIDUAL SOUL (JIVA)
The individual soul dwells in the heart of a human being. The factual characteristic of the soul is that it is as brilliant as the Sun. The soul is devoid of the darkness of ignorance. As this Jiva attaches itself to ephemeral worldly objects it has to undergo transmigration. The Jiva is very minute but it is equally infinite. It is confined to one state only because of the merits of intellect that is the resolution and the ego.
The Jiva is neither a male nor a female and neither a neutre gender. It assumes form according to the body it merges or impregnates into. It is devoid of titles but has to bear the fruits of its actions by taking birth in different Yonis (forms)
THE METHOD TO LIBERATE ONESELF FROM LIFE AND DEATH
Due to the actions performed, the body has to undergo transmigration and as a result a wale of sufferings. Humans can liberate themselves only when they realize the eternal truth and the supreme God in their heart. That supreme God is formless but can be attained by devotion, faith and pure love. A person who realizes him becomes immortal and is freed from the vicious cycle of life and death.
SIXTH CHAPTER
SUPREME GOD IS THE CAUSE OF THE UNIVERSE

Some scholars refer to time and some scholars refer to nature as the reason behind genesis of the universe. In reality these people are hypnotized by the glory of the Lord and are not able to perceive the evident reason behind the universe. That supreme God is the one that initiates this process of the universe. He is omniscient and has created this universe made up of five elements.
The Supreme God first created the five elements of nature and by uniting the animate with the inanimate, He created this strange world which can be experienced in different forms.
LIBERATION BY KARMAYOGA (SELFLESS ACTIONS)
Those Karma Yogis, who perform all their duties coveted to the Varnashram and according to the situations, who renounce their desires and attachments, destroy all their accumulated actions as by surrendering them to the supreme Lord and the Karma Yogi is no longer associated with the Karmas.
Such people attain divinity and transcend all the worldly ephemeral and material attachments which are merely a delusion.
LIBERATION THROUGH WORSHIP / PROPITIATION
Only the supreme God is worth praising. The supreme Cosmic soul is beyond time. He is the reason behind the union of nature and the Jiva. The person who has indomitable faith in the supreme God and propitiates Him out of devotion and respect undoubtedly is freed from the shackles of misery and heads towards godhood.
LIBERATION THROUGH KNOWLEDGE
It is that supreme God that regulates the universe. He is the one who destroys evil and propagates peace, dharma and happiness. He is the protector of all comforts and is the base of this entire universe. He is present within us, in our heart. By realizing all these things the scholars attain godhood.
The supreme God or the Cosmic spirit is the God of all gods and is venerable for all the gods. He is the embodiment of divine knowledge, light and is the master of all protectors.
THE PRAISES OF THE SUPREME GOD IN DIFFERENT WAYS
The supreme God is omnipresent and omniscient. He is all pervasive and all mighty. He is the embodiment of divine knowledge and love. He is attainable by knowledge, actions and devotion. Even the Sun loses his brilliance before the supreme God.
By realizing Him the unredeemed soul is liberated for eternity. There is no other way one can realize divinity.
THE FORM OF GOD
The supreme God is beyond time and is the embodiment of divine knowledge.
He, who seeks the refuge of the Supreme God, attains salvation.
CONCLUSION: This story is famous that as a result of penance, a sage named Shwetashwatara renounced all worldly happiness. He practiced restraint and meditated on the divine Cosmic spirit. On realization, he gave sermons to the people who are devoted and are devoid of ego. In this way, this knowledge is narrated in the Upanishad.
This knowledge should be given to only a disciple who has patience and is calm. According to the faith in the supreme God and the faith towards the Guru, the curious disciple realizes many truths. Hence, devotion and faith are the things that are imperative for realization of the divine Cosmic spirit.

PEACE INVOCATION
AUN SAHANAA AVATU SAHANAO BHUNAKTU|
SAHAVIRYAM KARUAAVAHAI| TEJASVINAVADHITA MASTU MA VIDVISHAA VAHAI|