The Garuda Purana, Part 8


Garuda, Kathmandu, Nepal

Jan 11, CANADA (SUN) — Garuda Purana, Chapters Fourteen and Fifteen.

Chapter Fourteen
An Account of the City of the King of Justice

1-2. Garuda said: what is the extent of the world of Yama? What is it like? By whom was it made? What is the assembly like, and with whom does Justice reside?

The righteous go by righteous ways to the mansion of Justice; tell me about those righteous ones and the ways, O Treasure-house of Compassion.

3-5. The Blessed Lord said: Listen, O Tarkaya, I will tell you about that shining city of Justice, which is accessible to Narada and others find is reached by the very meritorious.

Between the south and south-west is the city of the son of Vivaswata, all built of diamonds, resplendent, impregnable by Holy Ones or Demons.

It is declared to be four-angled, with four gateways, surrounded by high ramparts and measuring a thousand yojanas.

6-9. In that city is the very lovely dwelling of Chitragupta, which extends to the number of twenty-five yojanas,

Surrounded with shining ramparts of iron, up to ten [yojanas] heights, with hundreds of streets decorated with flags and banners,

Abounding in chariots, resounding with songs and music, decorated by skilful painters and constructed by divine architects,

Beautiful with gardens and parks, and sounding with the songs of various birds; habited in every part by celestial damsels and choristers.

10-15. Chitragupta, seated on his most wonderful throne in that assembly, considers the lives of men individually.

He is never mistaken in distinguishing between good and evil deeds, or by whom good or evil deeds have been done

And by order of Chitragupta he experiences all of them there. To the east of the abode of Chitragupta is the great house of Fever.

To the south are those of Rheumatism and skin diseases, and smallpox likewise. To the west are those of the Snare of Death, Dyspepsia, and Biliousness also.

To the north there is consumption and Jaundice likewise; to the north-west, Headache; to the south-east, Syncope.

To the south-west, is Dysentery; to the north-west cold and heat--with these and other diseases it is surrounded.

16-23. Chitragupta records the good and evil of men. Twenty yojanas before the abode of Chitragupta,

In the middle of the city, is the very resplendent mansion of the king of justice. It is shining with jewels, and splendid like lightning, flame and the sun.

It is certainly two hundred yojanas in extent, and measures fifty yojanas in height.

It is supported by thousands of pillars, decorated with emeralds, ornamented with gold, and is full of palaces and mansions,

Pleasing to the mind with cupolas of the splendour of the autumnal sky; with beautiful crystal stairways and walls beautified with diamonds,

And with windows of strings of pearls, decorated with flags and banners; rich with the sounds of bells and drums; and embellished with golden fringes,

Filled with various wonders; with hundreds of golden doors; beautiful with trees, plants and creepers without thorns.

With these and other embellishments decorated always--it was created by the architect of the Universe by the power of his own Yoga.

24-28. In that there is a divine assembly place which is a thousand yojanas in extent, splendid like the sun, full of light, and in every way satisfying;

With no extreme heat and no extreme cold; most ravishing to the mind with no sorrows and no old age there, and no trouble of hunger and thirst.

All there are in a condition of happiness, whether they be human or divine; the eatables are tasteful and plentiful, and enjoyable in every way.

The water, both hot and cold, are sweet; the sounds and other things there are pleasant; and trees always bear the fruit desired.

That assembly, O Tarkaya, has no bondage, is enchanting, is a fulfiller of desires, and was created by the Architect of the Universe by doing tapas for a long time.

29-30. Those who have done great tapas, are of good vows, truth-speaking, tranquil, renouncing, accomplished, and purified by good actions go there.

All there have bodies of light, and are adorned with shining garments, and remain there ornamented with their own meritorious actions.

31-33. There the Lord of Justice, on a throne pure and incomparable, ten yojanas in extent, bedecked with all kinds of jewels--

Sits, the Best of the Good, his head dignified with the regal umbrella, ornamented with ear-rings, prosperous, made splendid with a large crown.

Adorned with all ornaments, splendid as a blue cloud, and fanned by celestial damsels bearing in their hands fans of hair.

34-40. Multitudes of celestial choristers and numerous groups of celestial damsels, round about, serve him with songs, music and dances.

He is waited up by Mrityu with a noose in his hand, by kala still more powerful, and by Chitragupta, the recorder of fate,

Surrounded by various servants equal to him in prowess, bearing awful nooses and rods, ready to do his bidding,

Who are the Agnisvattha, Pitris, the Somapas and the Usmapas, the powerful Barhisads formed and formless, O Bird,

Aryamas and others, hosts of progenitors, and others having forms,--all these wait upon the King of Justice, with the sages:

Atri, Vasistha, Pulaha, Daksa, Kraturatha, Angiras, Jamadagnya, and also Bhrigu, Pulastya, Agastya, Narada,--

These, and many others in the assembly of the King of Progenitors, impossible to enumerate, either by their names or their deeds.

41-45. Those who expound with accurate commentaries, the Dharmasastras, serve the King of Justice by order of Paramesthin.

The kings of the Solar Race, also of the Lunar Race,--these knowers of righteousness wait upon the King of Justice in the assembly.

Manu, Dilipa, Mandhata, Sagara, Bhagiratha, Ambarisa, Anaranya, Muchakunda, Nimi, and Prithu,

Yayati, Nahusa, Puru; Dusmanta, Sibi, Nala, Bharata, Santanu, Pandu, and also Sahasrarjuna,--

These royal sages, meritorious, famous, well-read in the Vedas, having performed many horse sacrifices, are in the assembly of Righteousness.

46-47. Righteousness alone prevails in the assembly of the King of Justice. There is there no favouritism, no untruthfulness, and no jealousy.

All those assembled are knowers of the scriptures; all are devoted to righteousness; and in that assembly they continually wait upon Vaivasvata

48-49. Such, O Tarkaya, is the assembly of the great-souled King of Justice. The sinners, who go by the southern path, do not behold it.

There are four ways leading into the city of the King of Justice: The way for the sinful has already been described to you.

50. Those who go into the mansion of righteousness by the three gateways, eastern and others, are those of good deeds. By their merits they go into it. Hear about them:--

51-55. There is an eastern way, abounding in all enjoyments, covered with the shade of Parijata trees, and paved with jewels,

Busy with numerous chariots; splendidly lined with swans, bounded by trees and pleasure-gardens, having the essence of nectar.

By that go the holy Brahmin-sages, the stainless royal sages, and multitudes of celestial damsels, choristers, magicians and great serpents,

And worshippers of the deities, and the devotees of Siva, those who give rest-houses in the summer, and who give fuel in winter,

Those who shelter ascetics in their houses during the rains, and make them gifts; those who speak consolation to the mentally distressed, and certainly those who give a hermitage,

And those who delight in truth and righteousness; those free from anger and greed; those devoted to father and mother, those taking pleasure in the service of their Teacher.

Those who make gifts of land, of houses, of cows; those who impart learning; those who tell and listen to the Puranas;--are travellers on the path--

These, and others of good deeds, enter by the eastern gate. Skilful in goodness, and of purified intelligence, they go to the Assembly of Righteousness.

59-61. The second, the northern way, is filled with hundreds of great chariots and with palanquins, and is paved with yellow sandal-wood;

It is full of swans and water-fowl, and beautiful with Brahmany ducks, and there is there a delightful tank full of the essence of nectar.

On this way go those who are learned in the Vedas, also those who honour guests, those who are worshippers of Durga and Bhanu, and those who bathe at the sacred waters at the changes of the moon,

Those who die in the pursuit of righteousness, and those who die of vow of starvation, those who die in Benares, those who die in the protection of cattle, those who are accidentally drowned in the sacred waters;

Those who die for the sake of Brahmins, in the service of the master, at the sacred waters and on holy ground, by the will of the Shining Ones; those who die in the practice of Yoga;

Those who always honour the deserving, and those who delight in making great gifts,--these, entering by the northern gate, reach the Assembly of Righteousness.

65-73. The third, the western way, is beautified with jewelled mansions, and splendid with ponds, always filled with the essence of nectar,

Is filled with maddened elephants sprung of the family of Airavata and with jewels of horses sprung from Uchchaihsrava.

By this way go the self-reliant, those who contemplate the good scriptures, those entirely devoted to Visnu, those who repeat the Gayatri-mantra,

Those who turn away from injury to others, from the wealth of others, and from calumny; those faithful to their wives; the good; those who maintain household fires; those who repeat the Vedas;

Observers of the vow of celibacy; forest dwellers; the austere; devotees of the feet of Sri; those intent upon renunciation; those who look equally upon gold, stone and earth;

Those who have attained knowledge and dispassion; those intent upon the welfare of all beings; those who keep vows to Siva and Visnu; those who perform the rites of Brahma,

Those who are rid of the three-fold debt; those who always take pleasure in the five sacrifices; those who perform Sraddha for the forefathers; those who perform the Sandhya at the proper times;

Those who abstain from the company of the wicked, devoted to the society of the good;--these, accompanied by numbers of celestial damsels, ascend the best of chariots.

They drink nectar, and go to the mansion of righteousness, and entering by the western gate, go to the Assembly of Righteousness.

74-76. Yama, seeing them come, rising and coming forward, repeatedly bids them welcome.

Then, assuming his four arms, holding his conch, discus, mace and sword, he speaks and acts in a hind and friendly way to those who delight in meritorious deeds.

He offers them the throne, and bows to them; washes their feet, and then honours them with sandal-paste and other things.

77-81. "O’ You Assembled! Salute with deepest reverence the knower. He, departing from my dominion, will go to the world of Brahma.

"O, Best of the Wise, who avoid the pains of hell; you have by your merits attained divinity, the state of happiness.

"He who, attaining the human state, difficult to reach, never acts wisely, he goes to a dreadful hell. Who is more foolish than he?

"He who, in the impermanent body, amid perishable wealth and other things, stores up unchanging righteousness, he alone is a wise man. "Therefore should righteousness be accumulated, with every effort.

Go you to the holy place which abounds in all enjoyments."

82-85. They, having heard the words of Justice, and having saluted him and the assembly, and being honoured by the immortals and extolled by the leaders of the sages,

Go along the highest path, accompanied by multitudes of chariots; then those in that assembly of righteousness rise up with great respect

Having spent there some ages, and enjoyed superhuman pleasures, they obtain, as a result of their merits, holy human birth,

Wealthy and wise, expert in all the scriptures. Then again they go to the highest condition by their own good conduct.

86. All this about the abode of Yama has been told you upon your asking. The man who hears this with devotion goes to the assembly of the King of Justice.

Chapter Fifteen
An Account of the Coming to Birth of People who have done Good

1-2. Garuda said: The righteous man having enjoyed heaven, is born in a stainless family. Now tell me how he is produced in the womb of the mother.

I wish to hear what, in this body, the man of good deeds thinks. Tell me, O Treasure-house of Compassion!

3-4. The Blessed. Lord said: You have asked well, O Tarkaya. I will tell you that supreme secret, even by knowing which one becomes all-knowing.

I will tell you the real nature of that body which possesses the attributes of the universal Egg,--the object of concentration of Yogins.

5-6. Hear how the Yogins perform the meditation upon the six chakras within it, and likewise meditation upon the nature of Chit and Ānanda in the Brahmarandhra,

And how he of good deeds is born in the house of the pure and prosperous. I will tell you also about the rites and observances of the parents.

7-10. After menstruation the women should be avoided for four days. Their face should not be seen during that time, lest sin should arise in the body.

Having bathed, and washed her clothes, a woman becomes pure on the fourth day. From the seventh day she becomes fit to perform the rites of worship to the forefathers and the Shining Ones.

During the seven days the embryo continues impure. Here the sons gradually enter during the eighth day.

Sons are born on even nights, daughters on odd. Keeping away from, her during the first seven days, on even nights he enters.

11-12. Sixteen nights are declared to be common for women. On the fourteenth night the seed remains there certainly.

Then is produced the righteous son, a store of auspicious qualities. That night is never obtained by vulgar people.

13. On the firth. day women should eat sweet foods. Pungent, acid, astringent and hot things should be entirely avoided.

14-18. The husband, like a husbandman, having sown the seed of great potentiality in the field which is productive of grain, reaps a good harvest.

The man, having chewed betel, put on flowers and sandal-paste, and clean clothes, and with righteous thoughts in his mind, should unite with his good wife.

According to the thoughts in his mind at the time of union will be the nature of the one who enters the womb.

The intelligence joined with the seed remains always in the sperm, When desire, thought and sperm become united,

Then the man obtains semen, and in the interior of the womb the formation of ovum takes place, by the union of sperm and germ [cells]

19. The good son who enters the womb is the giver of the highest bliss. For him there are numerous rites, such as the Punsavana.

20-23. The meritorious soul obtains birth in a high family. At the time of his birth Brahmins receive much wealth.

He grows up in his parents' house, endowed with learning and modesty, becoming skilful in all the sciences, by association with the wise.

In his youth he is divinely handsome, wealthy and benevolent, arising as the result of great merit, austerities, and pilgrimages to sacred waters, formerly done.

Then he constantly strives to discriminate between the self and the not-self. By adhyaropa and apavada he meditates upon Brahman.

24. For the understanding of the dissociation of Brahman from that with which he is associated, I will tell you the attributes of earth and the others, which are of the genus "Not-self."

25-30. Earth, water, fire, air and ether--these are called the stable elements. This body is made up of the five elements.

Skin, bones, nerves, hair and flesh,--these are the five attributes of earth, O Lord of birds, declared to you by me.

Saliva, urine, sperm, marrow, and blood, the fifth,--are said to be the five attributes of water. Now hear those of fire:--

Hunger, thirst, sloth, sleep and sexual desire--are called the five attributes of fire by Yogins everywhere, O Tarkaya.

Bending, running, jumping, stretching and moving,--these are declared the five attributes of air.

Speech, thought, vacuity, delusion and mental instability--the five attributes of ether, may be understood by you with effort.

31. Mind, reason, individualisation, analysis--these four are called the Internal Means, and have the flavour of past karma.

32. Ears, skin, eyes, tongue and nose are the sense organs. The organs of speech, hands, feet, the organs of generation and of excretion are the organs of action.

33. Dik, Vata, Arka, Prachetas, the two Asvins, Vahni, Indra, Upeudra, Mitra, are declared to be the duties of the organs of sense and action,

34-35. Ida, Pingala, Susumna, thirdly, and also Gandhari, Gajajihva, Pusa, Yasasvini,

Alambusa, and Kuhu, and Sankhini, the tenth as well--are situated in the interior of the body, and are the ten principal Nadis.

36-39. Praba, Apana, Samana, Udana, and Vyana also,--Naga, Kurma, Krikala, Devadatta and Dhananjaya:--

In the heart, Prana; in the anus, Apana; in the navel, Samana; in the region of the throat, Udana; and distributed all over the body, Vyana:

Vomiting is called Naga; opening and shutting the eyes is known as Kurma; the cause of hunger is to be known as Kiikala; Yawning, Devadatta;

Dhananjaya, all-pervading, does not leave even the corpse, and carries all over the body the nourishment which is obtained by eating mouthfuls of food.

40-43. The air called Vyana carries the essential part in all the Nadis. Food, as soon as eaten, is split into two by that air.

Having entered near the anus it separates the solid and liquid portions, placing the water over the fire, and the solid over the water,

The Prana standing under the fire, inflames it slowly. The fire, inflamed by the air, separates the substance from the waste.

The Vyana air makes the essence go all over, and the waste, forced through the twelve gateways, is ejected from the body.

44. Ears, eyes, nostrils, tongue, teeth, navel, nails, anus, generative organs, head, trunk, hair--are called unclean places.

45. Thus the airs, having derived their power from the self, perform their own functions, affecting people, just as does the rising of the sun.

46. Now hear, O Bird, the two-fold nature of the body of man. One is Vyavaharika, and the second Paramarthika.

47-52. On the Vyavaharika there are thirty-five millions of hairs of the body, seven hundred thousands of hairs of the head, it is said, and twenty nails;

There are said to be thirty-two teeth usually, O son of Vinata; the flesh is said to be one thousand palas and blood one hundred palas;

Fat is ten palas; skin is seven palas, marrow is twelve palas; the "great blood" is three palas;

Seed is known to be two kudavas; ovum one kudava; and bones in the body are said to be three hundred and sixty;

The nadis, both dense and subtle, number tens of million; bile is fifty palas; phlegm is half of that;

The waste materials are not measurable, as they are constantly changing. The body which possesses these attributes is Vyavaharika.

53. All the worlds, mountains, continents, oceans, suns and planets are in the Paramarthika body.

54. In the Paramarthika body, there are six chakras in which are said to be located the attributes of the egg of Brahma.

55. I will tell you about these, which are the objects of meditation of Yogins. By pondering upon them one becomes the enjoyer of the nature of Vairaja.

56-59. Below the feet is called Atala; above the feet, Vitala; at the knees know it as Sutala; at the thighs Mahatala;

At the hips, Talatala; at the secret part Rasatala; at the loins Patala; these are declared to be the seven worlds:

Bhuloka, at the middle of the navel; above it the Bhuvarloka; in the heart, Svarloka; at the throat it should be known as Maharloka;

Janaloka, in the region of the mouth; Tapolaka, at the forehead; Satyaloka in the Brahmarandhra--these are the fourteen worlds.

60-61. Meru is situated in the triangle; Mandara is in the inverted triangle; Kailasa is in the right triangle; Himachala, in the left triangle.

Nisada is in the upper lines Gandhamadana in the lines on the right; Ramana in the lines on the left;--the seven great mountains.

62-65. Jambu is in the place of the bones; Saka is situated in the marrow; the Kusa continent is situated in the flesh; the Krauncha continent in the nerves;

The Salmali continent is in the skin; Gomeda, in the mass of hair; Pu?kara, in the place of the nails;--and next the oceans:

In the urine the Ksara ocean; the Ksira ocean in the milk; the Sura ocean is situated in the phlegm; in the marrow, the Ghrita ocean;

The Rasa ocean in the juices; the Dadhi ocean is known to be in the ova; the Swadu ocean in the region of the soft palate; you should know son of Vinata.

66-68. The sun is situated in the Nada chakra; the moon is in the Bindu chakra; Mars is situated, it should be known, in the eyes; Mercury is in the heart, it is declared;

Jupiter is in the Visnu-sthana, it should be known; Venus is situated in the seed; Saturn is in the navel; Rahu, in the face, it is declared;

Ketu is situated in the lungs;--in the body is the circle of the planets. In all these forms one should meditate on his own body.

69-71. Always at dawn, sitting steadily cross-legged, one should meditate upon the six chakras, in the order of the Ajapa.

The Gayatri called Ajapa is the giver of liberation to the sages; by merely thinking upon it one is released from all sin.

Listen, O Tarkaya, and I will explain the best method of Ajapa, by doing which the individual always gives up his separateness.

72-73. Muladhara, Swadhishthana, Manipuraka, Anahatam, Visuddhi and also Ājna,--are spoken of as the six chakras.

One should meditate in order upon the chakras, at the root of the generative organ; in the region of the pelvis; in the navel; in the heart; in the throat; between the eyebrows; at the top of the head.

74-75. The muladhara is four-petalled and resplendent, with letters from va to sa; the Svadhisthana resembles the sun, is six-petalled, and has the letters from ba to la; the Manipuraka is red in colour and has ten petals, from da to pha; the Anahata is twelve-petalled, from ka to tha, and is golden-coloured;

The visuddhi lotus is sixteen-petalled, with the vowels, and has the light of the moon; the Matra lotus is two-petalled, has the letters ha and ksa, and is red in colour; the one at the top of the head is the most resplendent, this lotus has a thousand petals, and is the seat of truth and bliss, ever auspicious, light-possessing and eternal.

76. One should meditate, in order, in the chakras, on Ganesa, on Vidhi, on Vishnu, on Siva, on Jiva, on Guru, and on ParamBrahman, all-pervading.

17-80. It is said by the wise that the subtle movements of the breath in one day and night number twenty-one thousand six hundred.

It goes out with the sound of "ha," and enters again with the sound of "sa." The individual is, indeed, always repeating the mantra. "Hamsa, hamsa,"--

Six hundred for Ganesa; six thousand for Vedhas; six thousand for Hari ; six thousand for Hara.

A thousand for the Jivatman; a thousand for Guru; a thousand or the Chidatman;--thus one should understand the respective numbers of the repetitions.

81-82. Aruna and other sages, who know the succession of Teachers, meditate upon the deities presiding over the chakras, who are rays of Brahman.

The sages, Suka and ethers, teach it to their pupils; therefore a wise man, after meditating upon the path of the Great Ones, should always meditate thus.

83. Having worshipped mentally in all the chakras, with unwavering mind, he should repeat the Ajapa-gayatri according to the instructions of the Teacher.

84-88. He should meditate in the Randhra, with the thousand-petalled lotus inverted, upon the Blessed Teacher within the Hamsa, whose lotus-hand frees from fear.

He should regard his body as being washed in the flow of nectar from His feet. Having worshipped in the five-fold way he should prostrate, singing His praise.

Then he should meditate on the Kundalini, as moving upwards and downwards, as making a tour of the six chakras, placed in three-and-a-half coils.

Then he should meditate on the place called Susumna, which goes out of the Randhra; thereby he goes to the highest state of Visnu.

Then he should always meditate, between four o'clock and sunrise, on my form, self-illumined, eternal and ever-blissful.

89. He should bring his mind to a state of steadiness, not by efforts alone, but under the instruction of a teacher, without whom he falls.

90. Having done the inward-sacrifice he should perform the outward-sacrifice. Having done the purificatory ablution, and the Sandhya, he should worship Hari and Hara.

91-94. For those who are attached to the body facing-inward does not come about. For then devotion is easier, and that gives liberation.

Tapas, and Yoga, and others, are also ways to liberation, but for those who are attached to the world of change the path by devotion to me is far superior.

This is the conclusion of the all-knowing Brahma and others, after having conned the Vedas and the Sastras for three periods.

Sacrifices and other righteous duties purify the mind. The devotion to me has a form of fruit from which the obtainer never falls away.

95. The good man who follows this, O Tarkaya, by the union due to devotion to me, goes to eternal liberation.

Chapter Sixteen
An Account of the Law for Liberation

1-4. Garuda said: I have heard from you, O Ocean of compassion, about the transmigrating of the individual, through ignorance, in the worlds of change. I now wish to hear about the means for eternal liberation.

O Lord, O Ruler of the Shining Ones, compassionate to those who seek refuge,--in this terrible world of change, in the unsubstantial, in all deep miseries,

The endless multitudes of individuals, placed in various kinds of bodies, are born and die--of them no end is known.

Always miserable in this world, no one is ever known to be happy. O Lord of Liberation, tell me by what means they may obtain release, O Lord.

5-7. The Blessed Lord said: Listen, O Tarkaya, and I will explain to you what you have asked, even by the hearing of which a man is released from the world of change.

There is a Shining One, Siva, who has the nature of Supreme Brahman, who is partless, all-knowing, all-doing, Lord of all, stainless and secondless,

Self-illumined, beginningless and endless, beyond the Beyond, without attributes, Being and Knowing and Bliss. That which is considered the individual is from a part of Him.

8-10 These, like sparks of a fire, with beginningless ignorance, separated and encased in bodies by beginningless karma,

Are fettered by forms of good and evil, giving happiness and misery,--with nationality of body, length of life, and fortune born of karma.

In every life obtained. They have also, O Bird, a higher and more subtle body, the linga, lasting until liberation.

11-13. The unmoving things, worms, goats, birds, animals, men, the righteous, the thirty-three deities, and also the liberated, according to their order,

Having worn and cast aside the four sorts of bodies thousands of times, one becomes a man by good deeds, and if he becomes a knower he attains liberation.

The embodied, in the eighty-four hundred thousands of bodies before attaining human birth, can obtain no knowledge of the truth.

14-16. Through millions of myriads of thousands of births some time a being obtains human birth, through the accumulation of merit.

He who, having obtained a human body, difficult to get, and a step to liberation, does not help himself over,--who in this world is more sinful than he?

The man who, having obtained this highest birth and superior senses, does not understand what benefits the soul is a slayer of Brahman.

17-19. Without a body, nobody obtains the object of human life; therefore should he guard his body as wealth and perform meritorious deeds.

He should always guard his body, which is the means to everything. Living, he should make every effort to protect it, in view of welfare.

A village again, a field again, wealth again, a house again, good and evil actions again--the body never again.

20-21. The wise always adopt means for the preservation of the body; even those afflicted with diseases such as leprosy do not wish to give it up.

It should be guarded for the sake of duty; duty for the sake of knowledge; knowledge for the sake of Yoga-meditation,--then he is soon released.

22-23. If he does not guard himself against harm who else will? Therefore should he look after his own benefit.

He who does not take precautions against the diseases of hell while here; afflicted with disease and having gone to a country where there is no medicine, what will he do?

24-25. Old age comes on like a tigress; life goes like water from a broken pot; diseases attack like foes. Therefore should he strive for the best.

So long as misery does not come, so long as calamity does not befall, so long as the senses are not decayed, so long should he strive for the best.

26-32. So long as the body lasts, so long should truth be pursued,--the stupid man digs his well when the corner of his house is already afire.

The time of death is not known by those who are variously embodied in the world of change. Alas! a man, between happiness and misery, does not know his own benefit.

Though seeing those just born, the afflicted, the dead, those whom calamity has befallen, and the miserable, people are never afraid, having drunk the liquor of delusion.

Riches are like unto a dream; youth is like a flower, life is fickle as lightning,--where is there a discerning one who is at ease?

Even a hundred years of life is very little, and half of it is sleep and idleness, and even that little is unfruitful owing to the miseries of childhood, disease and old age.

He does not do what ought to be done; when he should be awake he sleeps; where he should fear he confides. Alas! what man is not stricken.

How shall the individual who has taken a body, which is like foam on water and is attached to passing objects, be free from fear?

33-35. He who does not know what is good for him thinks the harmful beneficial, the impermanent permanent, and the evil good;

Though seeing, he falters; though hearing, he does not understand; though reading, he does not know; bewildered by the divine magic.

This universe is immersed in the boundless ocean of death,--though grasped by the crocodiles of death, disease and old age, he does not understand.

36-38. Time, though wearing away with every moment, is unnoticed, just as an unbaked pot placed in water disappears imperceptibly.

Air may be enclosed, ether may be split; waves may be bound,--life cannot be made permanent.

Earth is burnt away by time; even Meru is reduced to powder; the water of the ocean is dried away--what shall be said of the body?

39-41. The wolf of death forcibly slays the lamb of a mortal, who prates of "my offspring; my wife; my wealth; my relatives."

"This has been done; this is to be done; this other is done or not done." Him who is thus prating death overpowers.

"It must be done to-morrow; it must be done to-day; in the morning or in the afternoon,"--death does not consider whether it leas been done or not done.

42. Thou shalt encounter the enemy, death, whose, coming is shown by age, who has an army of dreadful diseases--wilt thou not see the saviour?

43-44. Death preys upon the man afflicted with the needles of thirst, bitten by the serpent of sense-objects, and baked in the fire of desire and repulsion.

Death attacks children, young men, the old, those in the embryo condition,--such is this world of creatures.

45-48. This individual, leaving his own body, goes to the abode of Yama. What is the good of association with wife, mother, father, son and others?

The world of change is verily the root of misery. He who is in it is afflicted with misery. He who abandons it becomes happy,--otherwise never.

This world of change, which is the source of all misery, the seat of all calamities, and the refuge of all sins, should be abandoned at once.

A man bound in fetters of iron or wood may be released, but from the fetters of son and wife can never be freed.

49-51. So long as the being makes attachments pleasant to the mind, so long shall the dagger of sorrow pierce his heart.

People are destroyed every day by the desire for great wealth. Alas! Fie upon the foods of the senses, which steal away the senses of the body.

Just as the fish, covetous of flesh, does not see the iron hook, so the embodied, covetous of pleasure, does not see the torments of Yama.

52-55. Those men who do not understand what is good and what is not good for them, who constantly pursue evil courses, and are intent on the filling of the belly, are destined for hell, O Bird.

Sleep, sexual pleasure, and eating are common to all creatures. Who possesses knowledge is called a man, who is devoid of it is called a beast.

Foolish men are tormented at break of day by nature's calls; when the sun is in the meridian by hunger and thirst; in the night by passion and sleep.

All those beings who are attached to their bodies, wealth, wife and other things, are born and die deluded by ignorance, alas!

56-57. Therefore should attachment be shunned always, It is not possible to give up everything. therefore should friendship with the great be cultivated, as a remedy for attachment.

Attachment to the good, discrimination, and purity of the eyes--the man who has not these is blind. How shall he not tread evil ways?

58. All those deluded men who turn away from the duties of their respective castes and orders, and do not understand the highest righteousness, perish fruitlessly.

59-60. Some are intent upon ceremonies, attached to the practice of vows; with self enveloped in ignorance the imposters go about.

The men who are attached to the ceremonial alone are satisfied with mere names, deluded by the repetitions of mantras, oblations and other things, and by elaborate rituals.

61-62. The fools, bewildered by My magic, desire to obtain the invisible by single meals, fasts and other restraints, and by the emaciation of the body.

Of those who have no discrimination, what liberation can there be by bodily tortures alone? What great serpent is killed by beating the anthill alone?

63. The hypocrites, putting on appearances, and wearing quantities of matted hair, and using antelope skins, wander about like knowers, and even delude people.

64. He who is attached to the pleasures of the worlds of change, saying "I am a knower of Brahman," and is devoid of both rites and Brahman should be shunned like a low outcaste.

65-69. Donkeys walk about among people, in forests and among houses, quite naked and unashamed. Are these free from attachment?

If men are to be liberated by earth, ashes and dust, does the dog which always live among earth and ashes become liberated?

The jackals, rats, deer and others, which feed upon grass, leaves and water, and always live in forests,--do these become ascetics?

The crocodiles, fishes and others, which from birth to death, dwell in the waters of Ganges,--do these become Yogins?

Pigeons at times eat stones, and Chataka birds do not drink water from the earth,--are these observers of vows?

70. Therefore this class of practices is a thing which makes pleasure for people, O Lord of Birds,--direct knowledge of the Truth is the cause of liberation.

71-73. Fallen into the great well of the six philosophies, O Bird, the brutes do not understand the chief good; bound in the snare of animalism.

They are tossed hither and thither in the dreadful ocean of Vedas and Sastras; caught in the six waves they remain sophists.

He who knows the Vedas, the Sastras and the Puranas, but does not know the chief good,--of that imitator all this is as the speech of a crow.

71-76. "This is known; this must be known,"--thus bewildered by anxiety they read the scriptures day and night, turning away from the highest truth.

The fools, decorated with garlands of poetry constructed of forms of speech, miserable with anxiety, remain with senses bewildered.

76-77. Men trouble themselves variously, but the highest truth is otherwise; they explain in different ways but the best purport of the Sastras is otherwise.

They talk of the highest experiences, not realising them themselves. Some have ceased preaching, being engrossed in egotism.

78-82. They repeat the Vedas and the Sastras, and argue with one another, but they do not understand the highest truth,--like the spoon the flavour of the food.

The head bears flowers, the nostril knows the smell. They read the Vedas and the Sastras, but find impossible the understanding of the truth.

The fool, not knowing that the truth is seated in himself, is bewildered by the Sastras,--a foolish goatherd, with the young goat under his arm, peers into the well.

Verbal knowledge cannot destroy the illusions of the world of change,--darkness never disappears by talking of a lamp.

Reading, to a man devoid of wisdom, is like a mirror to the blind; hence, for those who have understanding, Sastras are only a potter to the knowledge of the truth.

83-84. "'This is known; this must be known,"--he wishes to hear everything. If one lives for a thousand celestial years he cannot reach the end of the Sastras.

The Sastras are numerous; life is brief; and there are tens of millions of obstacles; therefore the essence should be understood,--like the swan taking the milk in the water.

85-86. Haring practised the Vedas and the Sastras, and having known the Truth, the wise man should abandon all the scriptures; just as one rich in grains abandons the straw.

Just as there is no use for food to one who is satisfied with nectar, so is there not use for the scriptures, O Tarkaya, to the knower of the Truth.

87-88. There is no liberation by the study of the Vedas, nor by the reading of the Sastras. Emancipation is by knowledge alone, not otherwise, O son of Vinata.

The stages of life are not the cause of liberation, nor are the philosophies, nor are actions,---knowledge only is the cause.

89-90. The word from the Teacher gives liberation; all learning is masquerade. Among thousands of woods the Sanjivana is best.

The non-dual, verily declared auspicious, is beyond efforts of action, and to be obtained by the word of the Teacher, not by the study of tens of millions of texts.

91. Knowledge is said to be of two kinds: study and discrimination. The study is of Sabda Brahman; Para Brahman is reached by discrimination.

92. Some prefer the Non-dual; other prefer the Dual but they do not understand the One Reality, beyond the Dual and Non-dual.

93-94. Two phrases make for bondage and liberation: "Mine" and "Not-mine." The being saying "Mine" is bound; saying "Not-mine" is released.

That is the karma that does not bind, that the knowledge that gives release; other karma is worrying, other knowledge is skilful chiselling.

95-97. So long as actions are performed; so long as the impressions of the world of change remain, so long as the senses are fickle; so long how can there be realisation of Truth?

So long as there is pride of body; so long as there is the sense of "mineness," so long as there is excited striving; so long as there is imagination of plans;

So long as there is not stability of mind; so long as there is no meditation upon the Sastras, so long as there is no love for the Teacher; so long how can there be realisation of Truth?

98-99. So long as one does not reach Truth, so long should he do austerities, vows, pilgrimage to sacred waters, recitations, oblations, worship and reading of the prescribed texts of the Vedas and Sastras.

Therefore, if one desires liberation for himself, O Tarkaya, he should every effort, always, and under all circumstances he attached to Truth.

100. One who is tormented by the three miseries and the rest, should resort to the shade of the tree of Liberation, whose flowers are righteousness and knowledge, and fruits are heaven and liberation.

101. Therefore from the mouth of the Blessed Teacher the Truth of the self should be known. By knowledge the being is easily released from the awful bondage of the worlds of change.

102. Listen! I will tell you now about the final actions of the knower of the Truth, by which he obtains liberation, which is called the Nirvana of Brahman.

103-107. His last days approaching, the man, rid of fear, should cut off, with the sword of unattachment, the desires connected with the body.

Courageously wandering from home, performing ablutions in the water of the holy bathing places, sitting alone on a pure seat prepared as prescribed,

He should practise mentally upon the supreme three-fold pure Word of Brahma. He should, with breath controlled, restrain his mind, not forgetting the Brahma Bija.

With reason for charioteer he should withdraw the senses from the sense-objects by the mind, and should fix his mind, drawn away by karmas, with understanding, upon the pure.

"1 am Brahman, the Supreme Abode; I am Brahman, the Highest Goal,"--having realised this and placed the self in the self he should meditate.

108. He who, when leaving the body, utters the one-syllabled Brahman, "Om," remembering me, goes to the Highest Goal.

109-110. The hypocrites, devoid of knowledge and unattachment, do not go there. I will tell you about the wise, who go to that goal.

Free from pride and delusion, with the evils of attachment conquered, always dwelling in the Higher Self, with desires overcome, released from the contracts known as pleasure and pain, they go, undeluded, on that eternal path.

111-114. He who bathes in the water of the Manasa, which removes the impurities of attraction and repulsion, in the lake of knowledge, in the waters of Truth,--he verily attains liberation.

He who, firm in non-attachment, worships me, thinking of no other, full-visioned, with tranquil self,--he verily attains liberation.

He who, expecting to die, leaning his home, dwells at a sacred bathing-place, or dies in a place of liberation, he verily attains liberation.

Ayodhya, Mathura, Gaya, Kasi, Kanchi, Avantika, Dwaravati, --these seven cities should be known as the givers of liberation.

115. This eternal way of liberal in al has been described to you, O Tarkaya,--hearing it with knowledge and dispassion one attains liberation.

116. Knowers of Truth attain liberation; righteous men go to heaven; sinners go to an evil condition; birds and others transmigrate.

117. Thus in sixteen chapters I have related to you the extracted essence of all the scriptures. What else do you wish to hear?

118-120. Suta said: Having thus heard, O King, these words from the mouth of the Lord, Garuda, repeatedly prostrating himself, said this, with hands folded together:--

"O Lord, O God of Gods, having heard these words of nectar I have been helped over the ocean of existence, O Lord, O. Protector!

"I stand freed from doubts. My desires have been completely fulfilled." Having said this, Garuda became silent and lost in meditation.

121. May Hari, the remembrance of whom removes evil, who gives the condition of happiness for the sacrifice of worship, and who gives liberation for supreme devotion to Him,--protect us.

This concludes our presentation of Sri Garuda Purana.


The Sun News Editorials Features Sun Blogs Classifieds Events Recipes PodCasts

About Submit an Article Contact Us Advertise

Copyright 2005, All rights reserved.