The Secret Sacred Tree of Light – Katha Upanishad

Basket of Tolerance “Great Tradition” Series


The Secret Sacred Tree of Light Katha Upanishad


SECOND ADHYÂYA
FOURTH VALLÎ
1. Death said: The Self-existent pierced the openings (of the senses) so that they turn forward: therefore man looks forward, not backward into himself. Some wise man, however, with his eyes closed and wishing for immortality, saw the Self behind.
2. Children follow after outward pleasures, and fall into the snare of wide-spread death. Wise men only, knowing the nature of what is immortal, do not look for anything stable here among things unstable.
3. That by which we know form, taste, smell, sounds, and loving touches, by that also we know what exists Beyond. This is that (which thou hast asked for).
4. The wise, when he knows that that by which he perceives all objects in sleep or in waking is the great omnipresent Self, grieves no more.
5. He who knows this living soul which eats honey (perceives objects) as being the Self, always near, the Lord of the past and the future, henceforward fears no more. This is that.
6. He who (knows) him who was born first from the brooding heat (for he was born before the water), who, entering into the heart, abides therein, and was perceived from the elements. This is that.
7. (He who knows) Aditi also, who is one with all deities, who arises with Prâna (breath or Hiranyagarbha), who, entering into the heart, abides therein, and was born from the elements. This is that.
8. There is Agni (fire), the all-seeing, hidden in the two fire-sticks, well-guarded like a child (in the womb) by the mother, day after day to be adored by men when they awake and bring oblations. This is that.
9. And that whence the sun rises, and whither it goes to set, there all the Devas are contained, and no one goes beyond. This is that.
10. What is here (visible in the world), the same is there (invisible in Brahman); and what is there, the same is here. He who sees any difference here, goes from death to death.
11. Even by the mind this (Brahman) is to be obtained, and then there is no difference whatsoever. He goes from death to death who sees any difference here.
12. The person (purusha), of the size of a thumb, stands in the middle of the Self (body), as Lord of the past and the future, and henceforward fears no more. This is that.
13. ‘That person, of the size of a thumb, is like a light without smoke, lord of the past and the future, he is the same today and tomorrow. This is that.

14. As rain-water that has fallen on a mountain-ridge runs down the rocks on all sides, thus does he, who sees a difference between qualities, run after them on all sides.
15. As pure water poured into pure water remains the same, thus, O Gautama, is the Self of a thinker who knows.
FIFTH VALLÎ
1. There is a town with eleven gates belonging to the Unborn (Brahman), whose thoughts are never crooked. He who approaches it, grieves no more, and liberated (from all bonds of ignorance) becomes free. This is that.
2. He (Brahman) is the swan (sun), dwelling in the bright heaven; he is the Vasu (air), dwelling in the sky; he is the sacrificer (fire), dwelling on the hearth; he is the guest (Soma), dwelling in the sacrificial jar; he dwells in men, in gods (vara), in the sacrifice (rita), in heaven; he is born in the water, on earth, in the sacrifice (rita), on the mountains; he is the True and the Great.
3. He (Brahman) it is who sends up the breath (prâna), and who throws back the breath (apâna). All the Devas (senses) worship him, the adorable (or the dwarf), who sits in the centre.
4. When that incorporated (Brahman), who dwells in the body, is torn away and freed from the body, what remains then? This is that.
5. No mortal lives by the breath that goes up and by the breath that goes down. We live by another, in whom these two repose
6. Well then, O Gautama, I shall tell thee this mystery, the old Brahman, and what happens to the Self, after reaching death.
7. Some enter the womb in order to have a body, as organic beings, others go into inorganic matter, according to their work and according to their knowledge.
8. He, the highest Person, who is awake in us while we are asleep, shaping one lovely sight after another, that indeed is the Bright, that is Brahman, that alone is called the Immortal. All worlds are contained in it, and no one goes beyond. This is that.
9. As the one fire, after it has entered the world, though one, becomes different according to whatever it burns, thus the one Self within all things becomes different, according to whatever it enters, and exists also without.
10. As the one air, after it has entered the world, though one, becomes different according to whatever it enters, thus the one Self within all things becomes different, according to whatever it enters, and exists also without.
11. As the sun, the eye of the whole world, is not contaminated by the external impurities seen by the eyes, thus the one Self within all things is never contaminated by the misery of the world, being himself without.
12. There is one ruler, the Self within all things, who makes the one form manifold. The wise who perceive him within their Self, to them belongs eternal happiness, not to others.

13. There is one eternal thinker, thinking non-eternal thoughts, who, though one, fulfils the desires of many. The wise who perceive him within their Self, to them belongs eternal peace, not to others.
14. They perceive that highest indescribable pleasure, saying, This is that. How then can I understand it? Has it its own light, or does it reflect light?
15. The sun does not shine there, nor the moon and the stars, nor these lightnings, and much less this fire. When he shines, everything shines after him; by his light all this is lighted.

SIXTH VALLÎ

1. There is that ancient tree, whose roots grow upward and whose branches grow downward;  that too indeed is called the Bright, that is called Brahman, that alone is called the Immortal. All worlds are contained in it, and no one goes beyond. This is that.
2. Whatever there is, the whole world, when gone forth (from the Brahman), trembles in its breath. That Brahman is a great terror, like a drawn sword. Those who know it become immortal.
3. From terror of Brahman fire burns, from terror the sun burns, from terror Indra and Vâyu, and Death, as the fifth, run away.
4. If a man could not understand it before the falling asunder of his body, then he has to take body again in the worlds of creation.
5. As in a mirror, so (Brahman may be seen clearly) here in this body; as in a dream, in the world of the fathers; as in the water, he is seen about in the world of the Gandharvas; as in light and shade, in the world of Brahmâ.
6. Having understood that the senses are distinct (from the Âtman), and that their rising and setting (their waking and sleeping) belongs to them in their distinct existence (and not to the Âtman), a wise man grieves no more.
7. Beyond. the senses is the mind, beyond the mind is the highest (created) Being, higher than that Being is the Great Self, higher than the Great, the highest Undeveloped.
8. Beyond the Undeveloped is the Person, the all-pervading and entirely imperceptible. Every creature that knows Him is liberated, and obtains immortality.

9. His form is not to be seen, no one beholds him with the eye. He is imagined by the heart, by wisdom, by the mind. Those who know this, are immortal.
10. When the five instruments of knowledge stand still together with the mind, and when the intellect does not move, that is called the highest state.
11. This, the firm holding back of the senses, is what is called Yoga. He must be free from thoughtlessness then, for Yoga comes and goes.
12. He (the Self) cannot be reached by speech, by mind, or by the eye. How can it be apprehended except by im who says: “He Is?”
13. By the words “He Is,” is he to be apprehended, and by (admitting) the reality of both (the invisible Brahman and the visible world, as coming from Brahman). When he has been apprehended by the words “He Is,” then his reality reveals itself.

14. When all desires that dwell in his heart cease, then the mortal becomes immortal, and obtains Brahman.
15. When all the ties of the heart are severed here on earth, then the mortal becomes immortal–here ends the teaching.
16. There are a hundred and one arteries of the heart, one of them penetrates the crown of the head. Moving upwards by it, a man (at his death) reaches the Immortal; the other arteries serve for departing in different directions.

17. The Person not larger than a thumb, the inner Self, is always settled in the heart of men. Let a man draw that Self forth from his body with steadiness, as one draws the pith from a reed. Let him know that Self as the Bright, as the Immortal; yes, as the Bright, as the Immortal.
18. Having received this knowledge taught by Death and the whole rule of Yoga (meditation), Nâkiketa became free from passion and death, and obtained Brahman. Thus it will be with another also who knows thus what relates to the Self.
19. May He protect us both! May He enjoy us both! May we acquire Strength together! May our knowledge become Bright! May we never quarrel! Om! Peace! Peace! Peace! Hari Om!

DA
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