Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Sitting-Dhyaana: The Four Realisations
Having nothing to do with emotional longings
or with practices that are tainted,
But having to do with reason
and methodical investigation,
Born of discernment and possessed of joy and ease,
Is the first realisation, to which he then came.
The burning fire of longing released him,
And the ease that came with the realisation
caused him to feel sublime refreshment,
Like the pleasure of a heat-exhausted man
diving into water.
Again, he was like a deprived person
finding something of great value.
At this level, though, thoughts about one’s practice
And investigations into what is or is not good,
Are causes of mental agitation;
they are not inhibitory, on seeing which,
He decided to cut loose from all that.
For, just as waves induce rippling
Upon a river bearing calm, clear water,
So too do thought waves, upon unitary awareness.
It is thoughts that cause ripples
upon the water of the thinking mind.
When a weary man, lain down to sleep,
has gone out like a light,
Just as noises cause bother to him,
To one experiencing inner unity,
Thoughts, similarly, are bothersome.
So gradually dropping thought and deliberation,
Mind calm and clear, because of unity of purpose,
He realised a second level of joy and ease, born of balance:
He realised that realisation which is inner well-being.
And after coming to that realisation
in which the thinking mind is silent,
He experienced a joy deeper than he had ever felt.
But he also found a fault here, in joy,
Just as he had in thoughts.
For when a man finds extreme joy in something,
Paradoxically, suffering for him is right there.
So seeing the pitfalls there, in joy,
He carried on upward with practice directed beyond joy.
The ease enjoyed by the noble ones,
from non-attachment to joy,
He then knew fully, through experience, with his body.
Going well, he remained indifferent, mindful,
And, having gained the third realisation, steady.
Since the ease here is greater than any other ease,
There is no progression of ease beyond it.
Therefore it was called
the condition of resplendent wholeness.
The knower of the superior and the inferior
called it superlative,
in a friendly kind of way.
Then, even at this level of realisation,
he found a fault:
He understood the ultimate to be quieted,
without any movement at all,
Whereas his mind was moving cyclically
And, due to the circular progression of ease,
Wherever there is a flicker of emotion,
mental activity is going on in there,
And wherever mental activity is going on
there is suffering,
Which is why, insofar as ease is emotive,
Strivers who wish for quiet give up that ease.
Then, because he had let go of ease and difficulty
And of mind-work, which now belonged to the past,
He realised a lucidity
in which he was indifferent and fully conscious:
Such, beyond suffering and happiness,
is the fourth realisation.
Since in this there is neither happiness nor suffering,
And the act of knowing abides here, being its own object,
Therefore utter lucidity
through equanimity and mindfulness
Is specified in the protocol for the fourth realisation.
Consequently, with the backing of the fourth realisation,
He made up his mind to win the worthy state,
Like a king joining forces with a strong and noble ally
And then aspiring to conquer unconquered lands.