Reading the Upanishads: Part Six

I thought it would be nice to read along through some scriptures and discuss the passages. I have a translation of the Upanishads done by Eknath Easwaran, a teacher whom I deeply trust and love. In this book there is an introduction before each translation with some insight from Easwaran.

Here is a link to the Amazon page for the book I have:

The sixth verse of the Easwaran translation of the Isha Upanishad is…

Those who see all creatures in themselves

And themselves in all creatures know no fear

Another translation, this one by C.S. Shah  is

The sadhaka, who sees all beings in the Self, and the Self in all beings, feels no hatred by virtue of such realization.

I can definitely see how being able to see one’s self or God in every being would alleviate fear and hatred. So much of fear and hatred comes from thinking that we have to protect ourselves against others who are trying to harm us or take something away from us. If we are able to really believe that things being taken from us are also going to ourselves, it takes all the sting out of it!

Easier said than done, of course. I think it might even be really difficult to function within maya and play our proper roles when we truly believe this. I know when I was a kid I had a lot of trouble with constantly giving away everything that I had. In truth, it was all going from my Self to my Self, but within the play it was probably driving my parents crazy. And I guess what I missed as a kid was that the Self that is within me deserves a share too.

Anyway, that’s getting off on a tangent.

I think this verse is the basis for the exercise that I’ve been working on with seeing all the people around me as family members. I think doing that does get me to a point of a lot less fear and less hatred.

***

So my goal has been connected to spending time in my home altar but I’m finding it a bit too personal to talk about here. I guess I really value the privacy of my home altar and it feels like a violation of that to talk about it here. So I’m going to leave that one for now and move on to a new goal.

New goal is to celebrate Maha Shivratri this week!

This is the great night of Shiva and is traditionally spent in an overnight vigil with fasting. It’s extremely intense. The largest temple in the area is doing an event for it, so I’ll have to see if I am up to trying to go down there for it! I’m not sure if I can handle all night, though! Last year I celebrated quietly at home and I may do that again this time.

About Ambaa

Ambaa is an American woman of European ancestry who is also a practicing Hindu. She is fascinated with questions of philosophy, culture, and the meaning of life. Join her in the journey to explore how a non-Indian convert to Hinduism experiences her religion.

  • HARRY

    @ Ambaa

    I can see two great time in the event that you shouldn’t miss, one at 9.30pm on 9th and second at 7am on 10th. This is a good chance for some prasad ( Bhaang ). How can you afford to miss this being white. :) Happy days.

    HARRY

    PS Come on, don’t be a grandma. wink wink,

    • Ambaa

      lol. I do love prasad!

    • http://amarchotoprithibi.blogspot.com Andrea

      Somehow i feel bhang will not be part of this particular prasad as a key ingredient is illegal in most states … :D

      • HARRY

        @ Andrea

        What sort of world are we living in where one sort is legal and other is not only when it is in prasad form. I’ve never understood this about USA, and even the guns are legal.???? What’s that all about.

        Now, I’m not smiling anymore because of the news you gave me.

        HARRY

        BTW Are you following Hinduism?, or are you married to one? or are you just Curious? Would love to know. Mind you only in few words if it’s ok.

        • http://amarchotoprithibi.blogspot.com Andrea

          Marijuana is a controlled substance and isn’t authorized for use in religious ceremonies. There is another thing called peyote that is authorized in very strict circumstances for Native Americans to practice their religion but even though Shiva-followers and even Rastafarians use marijuana in worship, it is not allowed in the US. My state just legalized it but there will be court battles because of it since it’s still illegal at the national level. Don’t even get me started on the guns. It’s a weird culture.

          My personal beliefs are more nature-based. I’m married to someone from a Hindu family and as such we are culturally considered Hindu but a lot of the concepts are still beyond my grasp.

  • Drekfletch

    My translation, Oxford World Classics from ’96.
    When a man sees all beings
    within his very self,
    and his self within all beings,
    It will not seek to hide from him.

    The ‘it’ seems to refer back to the other verses and the Self. So this seems to be saying if you can see the oneness in aggregate, the oneness in cohesion will be apparent.

  • Pingback: Reading the Upanishads: Part Seven


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