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Thread: Better Understanding of vasana's

  1. #1
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    Better Understanding of vasana's

    Hari Om
    ~~~~~~

    Namaste Sadhu,
    I thought to post this topic of Vasanas , or those impressions that are gained by the native life-to-life. These vasanas form the foundation of the individual, birth after birth. Some say they are the root cause for re-birth, as the impressions for unfulfilled desires are brought life-after-life to be fulfilled. Becoming enlightened stops this progression. Can you identify any of your own vasana's that you are aware of?

    I bring this up because as we gain deeper silence in the discovery of SELF, these vasanas have smaller impressions on us as our consciousness becomes clearer and we lose the clutter.

    Patanjali talks much of this in his yoga-sutras... you probably know vasana by another name, samskara, which is an approximation.

    Impressions From Actions We Take

    I was taught this analogy. In ignorance consciousness we receive impressions in chitta and its like a chisel making a line on a piece of granite. Its deep and it stays for a very long time. As one meditates/practices sadhana and gets clearer, the impressions are more like a stick drawing a line in sand. Its there, you see it, yet the sand falls-in on itself and the line is "captured" back into the sand. Then we meditate/practice sadhana a bit more, consciousness expands, more purity and the impressions are like a line being drawn in water. Its there and then its not. More more purity (sattva infusion) and now the impressions are like drawing a line in the air! subtly there, but then gone. No binding influence.

    As we progress, a few things arise:
    Sattwapatti or purity of mind. All mental modifications are reduced to identification with the Self.
    Asamsakti or detached state. Being unaffected by anything in the world, due to the knowledge of the Self.
    Subtly of Vasanas
    To form another perspective of vasana's, consider an ice-cube, which is solid. Obviously we can touch it, inspect it. Now, what is subtler then ice? Water. Water, as a fluid assumes the shape of its container. A more flexible substance. What's subtler then water? Steam. We can't hold steam in our hands, but we can see it, feel it. Steam is visible, then becomes invisible. What's subtler then steam? Humidity. Its in the air but we cannot see it.
    The vasanas are like the humidity in the air, subtlest of all. The vasanas undergo transformation at the level of the intellect into thoughts. The thoughts in turn undergo transformation at the level of the mind into desires; and the desires undergo transformation at the level of the physical body into actions. Like that - vasanas are so subtle yet are at the core of what we do and our actions....they are carried from birth to birth, so say the wise.
    So, what remains when one removes the binding influences of action? The only remnants is the thing called Lesh-avidya, or the remains (left overs or coloration) of ignorance just due to acting in this world.
    As you grow and progress note how you handle situations over time .This gives you a glimpse of how impressions are made into your circuitry. Are they deep, shallow? are you craving for things or do objects and desires have less hold on you? A good gage to consider the vasana impressions.


    fyi: the water-ice-humidity idea is from http://www.hinduism.co.za/ if you care to look around.



    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #2
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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Hello, Yajvan

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    Hari Om
    ~~~~~~

    Namaste Sadhu,
    I thought to post this topic of Vasanas , or those impressions that are gained by the native life-to-life. These vasanas form the foundation of the individual, birth after birth. Some say they are the root cause for re-birth, as the impressions for unfulfilled desires are brought life-after-life to be fulfilled. Becoming enlightened stops this progression. Can you identify any of your own vasana's that you are aware of?

    I bring this up because as we gain deeper silence in the discovery of SELF, these vasanas have smaller impressions on us as our consciousness becomes clearer and we lose the clutter.

    Patanjali talks much of this in his yoga-sutras... you probably know vasana by another name, samskara, which is an approximation.

    Impressions From Actions We Take

    I was taught this analogy. In ignorance consciousness we receive impressions in chitta and its like a chisel making a line on a piece of granite. Its deep and it stays for a very long time. As one meditates/practices sadhana and gets clearer, the impressions are more like a stick drawing a line in sand. Its there, you see it, yet the sand falls-in on itself and the line is "captured" back into the sand. Then we meditate/practice sadhana a bit more, consciousness expands, more purity and the impressions are like a line being drawn in water. Its there and then its not. More more purity (sattva infusion) and now the impressions are like drawing a line in the air! subtly there, but then gone. No binding influence.

    As we progress, a few things arise:
    Sattwapatti or purity of mind. All mental modifications are reduced to identification with the Self.
    Asamsakti or detached state. Being unaffected by anything in the world, due to the knowledge of the Self.
    Subtly of Vasanas
    To form another perspective of vasana's, consider an ice-cube, which is solid. Obviously we can touch it, inspect it. Now, what is subtler then ice? Water. Water, as a fluid assumes the shape of its container. A more flexible substance. What's subtler then water? Steam. We can't hold steam in our hands, but we can see it, feel it. Steam is visible, then becomes invisible. What's subtler then steam? Humidity. Its in the air but we cannot see it.
    The vasanas are like the humidity in the air, subtlest of all. The vasanas undergo transformation at the level of the intellect into thoughts. The thoughts in turn undergo transformation at the level of the mind into desires; and the desires undergo transformation at the level of the physical body into actions. Like that - vasanas are so subtle yet are at the core of what we do and our actions....they are carried from birth to birth, so say the wise.
    So, what remains when one removes the binding influences of action? The only remnants is the thing called Lesh-avidya, or the remains (left overs or coloration) of ignorance just due to acting in this world.
    As you grow and progress note how you handle situations over time .This gives you a glimpse of how impressions are made into your circuitry. Are they deep, shallow? are you craving for things or do objects and desires have less hold on you? A good gage to consider the vasana impressions.


    fyi: the water-ice-humidity idea is from http://www.hinduism.co.za/ if you care to look around.



    Nice post. The vasanas and samskaras, Buddha calls them "the builder of the house" in the Dhammapada.

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Namaste
    You replied to a six year old post! Luckily Yajvan is still around!

    Quote Originally Posted by ale84 View Post
    Hello, Yajvan

    Nice post. The vasanas and samskaras, Buddha calls them "the builder of the house" in the Dhammapada.
    satay

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Namaste,

    It is nice to know that some people do actually come to the forum to learn and take the trouble of sifting through the old posts for hidden gems.

    Pranam.

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Quote Originally Posted by Believer View Post
    Namaste,

    It is nice to know that some people do actually come to the forum to learn and take the trouble of sifting through the old posts for hidden gems.

    Pranam.
    I've tried many, many times in vain to understand Yajvan ji's messages. No doubt they carry profound meaning and would give a reader deeper perspective into the subject of discussion, but his language is too difficult for me to understand. I come from very ordinary schools, there had been no spoken English either, all my English comes from mere textbook learning (which were in English), so I find my English very, very short to understand his profound messages. Besides complicated, too long sentences confuse me. No offence meant to anyone!

    That being said, I would like to add that I quite understand this particular message on Vasanas from Yajvan ji.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Namaste Viraja,

    I understand both sides of the coin. On one hand if ideas are not presented at the level of an average person, they go to waste. On the other hand, well read people have trouble bringing their message down to the pedestrian level. I too have at times struggled with some of the things offered in the forum and then given up. Many decades ago, as a child, I read that Buddha's success was due to his decision/ability to communicate with ordinary people. He used Paali, the street language at the time, during his discourses and not Sanskrit, which was the preferred language of the elite 'pandits'. He very much wanted to communicate with the masses and wanted his message heard and understood by them. So, if a person wants to communicate only with people of his caliber and only in his style of writing, then you just have to read it, get what you can out of it, and move on. Some things are beyond my capability to comprehend, and I am sure, they are beyond some presenter's ability to dumb down to my level. We just have to learn to co-exist and learn whatever we can, from whatever format the posters bring their knowledge in. Remember, the only person I can control/change, is myself.

    Pranam.
    Last edited by Believer; 29 August 2014 at 08:09 AM.

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namasté

    Quote Originally Posted by Viraja View Post
    I've tried many, many times in vain to understand Yajvan ji's messages.
    I thought to offer this to the HDF reader...
    My words (at times) are not for everyone. Now why do I say that?

    Within this forum and within sanātana dharma ( some call ārṣa¹ dharma) there is plenty of entry level materials for one to pursue and keep one busy for quite some time. But as one grows and develops the materials change, the insights change, as do the conversations. One's questions are different as new doors are opened by knowledge and direct personal experience. It is my opinion that this ( small) group does not get the care & feeding that is due.

    So, one may say , yajvan, there are very few if any of these people within the HDF community. Yes , I know , but even if there is one or two that is enough. Their needs are different and what they have to offer will be great, so the nurturing should be there.


    I have been waiting for some time to participate with a small group of vinaya-s¹ and form a small-small satsang group on HDF. Where the conversation of uttara ( higher notions) are discussed as a matter of course ; that the celebration of Self is the daily activity, that one's knowledge continues to unfold and the ego is on the decline.
    This has been a goal for some 5 years and it has not come to be as yet. So, I continue to wait, and keep the conversations I offer ( as often as reasonable ) for these vinaya-s¹ to sense there is more to HDF then the entry level ( but no less important) questions on our most profound ārṣa¹ dharma.

    We will know these people as those that do not bicker on whose Supreme is more supreme; where there is little debate on whose behaviors are more virtuious or those with vice. Who are not stuck in self ( small 's') of 'me-ness' and are able to raise their self with their SELF.
    This has been an area of interest and my resort for some time, to work with and nurture this type of small group ... if during this time my posts are a bit convoluted for some to read I can understand it, as it may not be your time to 'get it' and that is okay.

    iti śivaṁ

    words
    Last edited by yajvan; 31 August 2014 at 11:18 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    Thank you for the clarification, Yajvan ji. Maybe it is not yet time for me to understand your profound messages, and it may not be the mere writing style, as I originally thought... it must be the subject matter in itself. Maybe that I am not that philosophically oriented...

    Anyway, I feel happy you mention about your notion of forming a small satsang within HDF and I wish this hope of yours materializes soon..

    I too agree those who denigrate others' chosen path, be it Shaiva or Vaishnava (or Shakta), or even the subsects therein, are neither helping their own SELF or that of others.

    Thanks and regards.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namast�

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    Within this forum and within sanātana dharma ( some call ārṣa dharma) there is plenty of entry level materials for one to pursue and keep one busy for quite some time. But as one grows and develops the materials change, the insights change, as do the conversations. One's questions are different as new doors are opened by knowledge and direct personal experience. It is my opinion that this ( small) group does not get the care & feeding that is due.

    So, one may say , yajvan, there are very few if any of these people within the HDF community. Yes , I know , but even if there is one or two that is enough. Their needs are different and what they have to offer will be great, so the nurturing should be there.
    I thought to mention just a few more items on this matter for those that have interest. The notion of readiness of the student (śiṣya) is found within our upaniṣad-s. I have talked of this readiness in other posts.
    It has been called out as that person being like gun powder, another like coal and for others like wet wood ; these are terms offered by ramaṅa mahaṛṣi. Other terms are offered by śrī nisargadatta maharāj as to the ripeness of the śiṣya and still others are offered by svāmī lakṣman-jū and therefore resides within kaśmir śaivism. The last one by ādi śaṅkara-ji come to mind, from his vivekacūḍāmaṇi , 16th śloka:
    medhāvī puruṣo vidvān ūhāpoha vicakṣanaḥ |
    adhikāryātma-vidyāyām ukta-lakṣaṇa-lakṣitaḥ ||

    this says,
    the person who has excellent/sufficient memory, is learned, possesses the power of comprehension and the ability to reason properly is alone considered qualified for the knowledge of the Self.


    Yet it seems the notion of a śiṣya's fitness can be grouped into 3:
    • the uttama adhikārī (some write adhikārin)
    • the madhyama adhikārī
    • the manda adhikārī
    The words give us a clue on the fitness of the aspirant:
    • adhikārī is that person with adhīkāra or with capability and with adhikāra or rank or office
    • uttama = the most elevated, best, excellent; uppermost
    • madhyama = middlemost
    • manda = slight; light, moving slowly.
    But what fitness is being suggested ? of what abilities are elevated/uppermost, middle, or light/slight ?
    We are informed by one of our greatest seers, yājnavalkya-ji, within the bṛhadāraṇyaka upaniṣad of 3 things on this fitness:
    • śravaṇa – that which is heard; acquiring knowledge by hearing , learning , study
    • mamana - thinking , reflection , meditation , thought, understanding; thoughtful and deliberate reflection
    • nididhyāsana – profound meditation ; practice. Note within this word nididhyāsana is dhyāna which is meditation.
      • We also have have ni + dhyai within this word; dhyai= meditative and ni = within. But what makes this word considered ‘profound’ meditation ?
      • It is ni which is also used for nis meaning entirely or thoroughly; and nis is associated with nī or ‘govern’ .
        So this meditation is thoroughly governed , entirely absorbed.
    So, yajvan what point do you wish to make ?
    Some people are ready to hear, some not. Some people 'get it' , others may not. But above all , if you know the ~formula~ you can make efforts to unfold more of one's comprehension abilities. But this too is bent on one's intent or fitness.

    iti śivaṁ



    words
    • ārṣa -belonging to or derived from our ṛṣi-s or seers, some also call kavi meaning gifted with insight , intelligent .
    • 'I don't get it' HDF post : http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/showthread.php?t=3730
    • vinaya - the one with subdued senses
    • formula = śravaṇa + mamana + nididhyāsana
    Last edited by yajvan; 09 September 2014 at 06:35 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: Better Understanding of vasana's

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namaste
    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post

    The last one by ādi śaṅkara-ji come to mind, from his vivekacūḍāmaṇi , 16th śloka:
    medhāvī puruṣo vidvān ūhāpoha vicakṣanaḥ |
    adhikāryātma-vidyāyām ukta-lakṣaṇa-lakṣitaḥ ||

    this says,
    the person who has excellent/sufficient memory, is learned, possesses the power of comprehension and the ability to reason properly is alone considered qualified for the knowledge of the Self.
    The word used by śaṅkara-ji for one of the qualifications¹ is medhāvī (shown above in the śloka). if disassembled it reveals some interesting characteristics.


    medhāvī can be viewed as medhā + vī or as medhā + āvī.
    • medhā = mental vigor or power , intelligence , prudence , wisdom . Memory comes in when this medhā produces thoughts , opinions
      • medha ( without the long ā ) is essence, marrow; sap
    • vī = to set in motion , arouse , excite ; going towards, eager for; to get or procure ;
    • āvī = to grasp , seize
    Hence the medhāvī puruṣo (puruṣa = person) has seized (āvī) that mental vigor/ power, or set in motion (vī) to procure this intelligence and mental power.

    So you see here on HDF both are welcomed. The āvī who has grasped this intellectual ability, or that puruṣa who has set in motion () those behaviors to unfold and blossom this essence (medha) in themselves.

    iti śivaṁ

    1. Qualifications is the notion of fitness; śaṅkara-ji is also known for the 4 prerequisites called sādhana catutaya that appear in the 17th śloka that aid one in their sādhana pursuits. Please read the śloka for the list of 4.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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