Friday, August 14, 2015

Sri Adi Shankaracharya Sadācārānusandhānam Verses 31

It is a beautiful, rainy day here in Chamonix. Rain puts me in an introspective mood (more than the usual reflective mood in which I seem to be abiding lately.) This Adi Shankara​ verse of the day is quite appropriate. Thanks again to Vidyabhaskar(aka Rentsch Bhāskar Chris​) for the magnificent translation. 

Sadācārānusandhānam Verses 31

"In the bliss of reality,
in the sky of consciousness,
illusion is like a cloud
the mind is like lightning
the feeling of 'I' is like thunder
and thoughts are like the downpour of the rain.”

Śankara Bhagavatpāda, 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Hastamalakiyam - Sri Shankaracharya

An incredible Sanskrit scholar from Switzerland, Rentsch Bhaskar (Vidyabhaskarji), whom I had the pleasure of meeting a few weeks ago, thanks to Siddharthaji has been translating some of Sri Adi Shankaracharya’s lesser known texts. I have been fortunate enough to be gifted with some of these translations. The poems written by this great sage are breathtaking. They are so beautiful, I am surprised no one has taken the time or made the effort to translate them into English until now. 
Since Vidyabhaskarji has been so generous as to share them with me, I feel I must share them with all of you.
This next verse is Hastāmalakīyam, a rather difficult text that Vidyabhaskar ‘has been struggling with for a while’, as he told me. 
Here below is the background info he gave me about this amazing verse and the verse itself. I hope it moves you as much as it does me. 
Hari Om. 

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Eka Shloka Shankaracharya - Omkarananda Ashram Switerzerland

As suggested to me by my vedanta teacher, Siddharthaji, a couple weeks ago I went with a friend of mine to visit the Omkarananda Ashram in Winterthur, Switzerland. It is a beautiful place with some of the most amazing statues I have ever seen. Such a perfect place for meditation and inner reflection.
I had the great pleasure of meeting some interesting people there: Swamini Vivekanandaji, Vidyabhaskarji, his son Amar, and Swamini Padma Chaitanya. I am eternally grateful for their hospitality. 
Vidyabhaskar is of Swiss German origin however he is an exceptional Sanskrit scholar. His translations of Sri Shankaracharya’s poems are the best I have ever read. He manages to capture the essence of the words in English, which is not an easy feat considering the complexity and depth of the Sanskrit language and the profundity with which Shankara Bhagavatpada expressed himself. 
Vidyabhaskar gifted me with some translations he made of some lesser known works of Shankaracharya. Here below is one of them. It is so painfully beautiful, it brought a tear to me eye. 

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Mahabharata and me, 2

Mahabharata (and me, two) This is one of my favourites stories. In the great Indian epic the Mahabharata, of the five Pandav brother, Yudhishthir, is the embodiment of all good qualities. One day while living in exile in the forest, Yudhisthir finds that while attempting to drink water from a lake, all his brothers have been killed by a mysterious Yaksha (a celestial entity). When Yudhisthir arrives, the Yaksha challenges him to answer all his questions or else face the same consequences as his brothers. These questions-answers are like Vedic sutras. There are so beautiful in their simplicity, and so true. 
There are many more questions of the Yaksha Prashana (Yaksha’s questions) but I have listed quite a few here. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do and, above all, I hope they give you food for thought as they do to me.