Hari Om! Namaste!!
As you already know, our main theme of Rudraksha Yoga is the Highest Knowledge. So, we are starting this important series of articles that deals with the teachings of the Highest Knowledge in our Great Scriptures, the Upanishats(Also, Upanishads). For all beginners, there is a need for some introduction and elaboration on Upanishats.
First of all, we need to clearly understand the meaning of the title of this series – Great Upanishat’S peaks. What is special about it?
Vagartha of Great Upanishat’S peaks
As usual, there are many meanings. 🙂
- Meaning #1: Great Upanishat’s Peaks : Great Upanishat’s Highest teachings(peaks). This also implies that our Upanishats themselves are Great and their teachings are also Great like peaks of knowledge.
- Meaning #2: Great Upanishat Speaks : In other words, our Great Upanishat speaks to us on(or teaches) the Highest Knowledge. Here the word Great qualifies Upanishat.
- Meaning #3: Upanishat’s Great Peaks: It deals with Great Peaks of Highest Knowledge taught in the Upanishats. In this arrangement, the adjective Great qualifies Peaks or teachings. In other words, the article deals with great teachings picked from our Upanishats.
What are Upanishads? Why are they regarded as the Greatest Scriptures, all over the world?
Our Great Scriptures Upanishats are the store-houses of the Highest Knowledge. They are the last parts of our Holy Vedas. Hence, they are sometimes referred to as Vedanta(end part of the Vedas).
Upa-nishat is a Sanskrit word which literally means “sitting closer” to listen attentively to the teachings on the Highest Knowledge by the Realized Masters(Maharishis). They discuss pure non-dualistic philosophy(Advaitha) which says our Individual Self is same as the Universal Self. In other words, our real us in us is nothing but God!
Upanishads are 108 in number. Out of them, ten upanishads are considered as principal upanishads on which our Great Master Shri Shankara Bhagavatpadah has written commentaries to clarify their meaning.
In most of the Upanishats, the teachings are delivered in a conversation between a Great Master and worthy disciples in a story line. The Upanishads teach us only the Highest Truths in a lucid manner without getting into religious rituals etc. Therefore, they appeal to every human being who is in search of the Ultimate Truth. That is why they are great and are highly respected around the globe, irrespective of their cultural or religious affiliations.
Who are the teachers of the Truth in the Upanishats?
The teachers are our Great Realized Masters. They are referred to as Maharishis(Great Sages). They are omniscient(all-knowing) Masters who have climbed the greatest peaks of the Highest Knowledge and speaking from the Highest level of knowledge. In some cases, deities like Lord Yama(God of Right path and Death), Lord Jatavedas(Holy Fire God) themselves teach the Greatest Truths to us. Can you ask for more?
The Great Masters talk with authority and command from their own experience. They deal only with the Ultimate Truth. They have already walked the talk. In our Upanishads, they are just talking the walk on the journey to the Ultimate Truth to help other travelers.
They speak only the Truth. So, whatever they speak naturally comes true or it is the Truth. They share these Highest Truths only with qualified and worthy people. If the disciples are not ready yet, the Masters ask them to go back and prepare themselves to receive the Highest Knowledge!
Who are the Students?
They are the genuine seekers of the Ultimate Truth with extreme urge and curiosity to know the Truth. Simple answers do not convince them. So, they ask very intelligent questions to the Great Masters about the Truth. The Masters give them the final authoritative answer. Not only that, they challenge the disciples to test these truths for the validity before accepting!
Hats off to the knowledge of our Great Masters! Let us pay our humble and respectful salutations to them. May they bestow their Grace and great knowledge to us.
Fine. Come along and learn! Let us taste the nectar of teachings from our Great Scriptures Upanishads.
Are you still awake? If not, it is time to wake up now! Just kidding 🙂 Get ready to take the your call. OK?
The Wake up Call
Uttishtata! Jagrata! Prapya Varaan nibodhata !
Kshurasya dhaaraa nishitaa duratyayaa durgam pathah tatkavayo vadanti || – Katha Upanishat 1.3.14
Meaning: Arise! Awake! Approach venerable teachers to know the Ultimate Truth. The wise men say: The path is like a razor’s edge; tough to walk.
Exposition: It is a wake up call from our Upanishat to know the Ultimate Reality. It also suggests us to learn from Realized Masters. Since the road is like a razor’s edge and difficult to travel, we need to take the guidance and support of Realized Masters.
Esoteric Meaning: First of all, why that wake up call? Because our Kundalini is sleeping! The words Wake up, awake indicate awakening of Shridevi Kundalini. How do we go about it? By the Grace of the Realized Masters.
Prapya varan nibodhata means go to the Realized Masters to awaken your Mother Kundalini by their Grace. “Road is like a razor’s edge“ indicates that the path of Kundalini Yoga is intrinsically risky and difficult to travel. So, we definitely need the Grace and guidance of a Realized Master.
It is very abstract. I am unable to understand. What is your suggestion?
Just reading these will not give you the right understanding! Experience it and convince yourself. As Upanishats themselves declare: approach a Sadguru to get the Grace. You can understand everything by that Grace.
In Shrimad Bhagavadgita also Lord Shrikrishna echoes the same:
Tadviddhi pranipaatena pariprashnena sevaya|
Upadekshyanti te jnanam jnaninah tatva darshinah | – Gita 4.34
Meaning: (Arjuna!) The Realized Masters give you the knowledge of the the Ultimate Truth. Know that Truth by respecting, serving and asking them!
In any case, we suggest you to read all the articles in this series, even if you do not understand fully. Don’t be discouraged. If you are genuinely interested, since the teachings are the powerful divine Truths, they will mystically guide you to the right path to understand them when the time is ripe sometime in your life.
Is it clear? Go it now?
Om Namah Shivaya ||