Sunday, December 8, 2013

Bhavana Upanishad

Bhavanopanishad is one among the minor Upanishads listed under the category of Shaktha Upanishads viz. the Upanishads that delineate the tantric outlook and attempt to reconcile that with the Vedic approach. But it is a major text in the Sri Vidya - Sri Chakra tradition; and, brings out, very crisply, the symbolism of Sri Chakra and its upasana. The main purport of Bhavanopanishad is to establish a relation between structures of the human body and Sri Chakra. The Sri Chakra, in turn, is regarded as a projection of the essential characters of the universe. But the external worship here is a means and not an end.

Om. Peace and good fortune be to those who hear this!
1. Shri Guru is Shakti from whom all the elements are created.
2. Of this (Shakti) the body, with its nine orifices, is the form.
3. The Shri Cakra is of ninefold form.
4. Varahi is the father-form. Kurukulla, the mother, is the receiver of offerings. [The yantra is made up of four upward pointing triangles and five downward pointing triangles. Varahi, the devi with a sow's head, is father and contributes 12 kalas (4 x 3). Kurukulla, the menstruating devi, is mother and contributes 15 kalas (5 x 3). Together they give birth to an individual.]
5. The aims of mankind are the (4) oceans. [Dharma, artha, kama and moksha; doing what is right, acquiring wealth, sexuality and liberation.]
6. The body is the island of nine gems.(Chile, blood, flesh, fat, bone, marrow, semen; skin and hair ) 
7. Skin first, then the seven bodily elements and hair (are the nine). [Indian medicine says the human body is created from the
dhatus (bodily elements).]
8. Resolutions are the wish-fulfilling trees, Shakti the grove of  aeon trees.
9. The tastes sweet, sour, bitter, pungent, astringent and salty are the six seasons. [6 tastes in Tantra, 6 seasons in India]
10. Knowledge is the offering, the known is the oblation, the knower is the sacrificer. The meditation on knowledge-known-knower and on their non-difference is the worship offered to the Shri Cakra.
11. Fate, love, and the other sentiments are Anima and so forth (the other siddhis). [The upanishad begins to describe the 9 circles of the Shri Yantra. The Siddhi Shaktis are on the outermost line]
12. The nine adharas are the Mudra Shaktis. [The nine chakras. Innermost line of the enclosing square of the yantra.] 
13. Earth, water, fire, air, aether, ear, skin, eye, tongue, nose, speech, hands, feet, anus, penis, and mind's wavering are the sixteen Shaktis, Kamakarshini being the first. [The 16 petals.] 
14. Speech, holding, moving, excreting, generating, rejecting acceptance and apathy are the eight (entities) such as the flower of love, etc.
15. Alambusa, kuhu, visvodara, varana, hastijihva, yasovati, payasvini, gandhari, pusa, sankhini, sarasvati, ida, pingala and susumna – these fourteen arteries are the fourteen powers such as the all-exciting, etc.
16. The five vital breaths and the five minor breaths are the ten divinities of the outer spokes, (styled) Sarvasiddhiprada, etc.
17. The digestive fire becomes fivefold through distinctions based on its association with this pre-eminent breath. (They are) what ejects, what cooks, what dries, what burns and what inundates.
18. Owing to the prominence of the minor breath, these (fires) in the human body come to be styled as the corroder, the ejector, the agitator, the yawner and the deluder. They promote the digestion of the fivefold food: eaten, chewed, sucked, licked and imbibed.
19. The ten aspects of Fire are the ten divinities of the inner spokes, Sarvajna, etc.
20. The qualities of cold, heat, pleasure, pain, desire, sattva, rajas and tamas are the eight powers, vasini, etc.
21. The five, rudimentary sound, etc., are the flowery shafts.
22. Mind is the bow made of sugarcane.
23. Attachment is the cord (that binds).
24. Aversion is the hook.
25. The unmanifest, the Great, and the principle of Egoism are the divinities of the inner triangle: Kameshvari, Vajreshvari and Bhagamalini.
26. Absolute awareness, verily, is Kameshvara.
27. The supreme divinity, Lalita, is one’s own blissful Self.
28. Of all this the distinctive apprehension is the red glow.
29. Perfection (ensues from) exclusive concentration of the mind.
30. In the performance of meditation consist (various acts of) respectful service.
31. The act of oblation is the merger in the Self of distinctions like I, Thou, Existence, non-Existence, the sense of duty and its negation, and the obligation worship.
32. Assuagement is the thought of identity of (all) objects of imagination.
33. The view of time’s transformation into the fifteen days (of the half lunar month) points to the fifteen eternal (divinities).
34. Thus meditating for three instants, or two, or even for a single instant, one becomes liberated while living; one is styled the Siva-Yogin.
35. Meditations on the inner wheel have been discussed (here) following the tenets of Saktaism.
36. Whoso knows thus is a student of the Atharvasiras.
Om ! Gods ! With ears let us hear what is good;
Adorable ones ! With eyes let us see what is good.
With steady limbs, with bodies, praising,
Let us enjoy the life allotted by the gods.
May Indra, of wide renown, grant us well-being;
May Pusan, and all-gods, grant us well-being.
May Tarksya, of unhampered movement, grant us well-being.
May Brihaspati grant us well-being.
Om ! Peace ! Peace ! Peace !

Here ends the Bhavanopanishad, included in the Atharva-Veda.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Lalana ललना,

Saw some of your blogs (of course accidentally).

Reminds me of Panchatantra story wherein the the crocodile asks the monkey to give him his heart. "If you eat such good and sweet fruits, how sweet must be your heart?"

You understand what I mean. Please keep it that way.

God bless you.