Yoga Vasishta Sara
Chapter Two (excerpt)
15. This world, though unreal, appears to exist and is the cause of life- long suffering to an ignorant person, just as a (non-existent) ghost (is the cause of fear) to a boy.
16. One who has no idea of gold sees only the bracelet. He does not at all have the idea that it is merely gold.
17. Similarly towns, houses, mountains, serpents, etc. are all in the eyes of the ignorant man, separate objects. From the absolute point of view this objective (world) is the subject (the Self) itself ; it is not separate (from the Self).
18. The world is full of misery to an ignorant man and full of bliss to a wise man. The world is dark to a blind man and bright to one who has eyes.
19. The bliss of a man of discrimination, who has rejected samsara and discarded all mental concepts, constantly increases.
20. Like clouds which suddenly appear in a clear sky and as suddenly dissolve the entire universe (appears) in the Self and (dissolves in it).
21. He who reckons the rays as non-different from the sun and realizes that they are the sun itself is stated to be nirvikalpa (the undifferentiating man).
22. Just as the cloth, when investigated, is seen to be nothing but thread, so also this world, when enquired into, is (seen to be) merely the Self.
23. This fascinating world rises like a wave in the ambrosial ocean of consciousness and dissolves in it. How then can it be different from it (i.e. consciousness) in the middle (i.e. when it appears) ?
24. Just as the foam, the waves, the dew and the bubbles are not different from water, even so this world which has come out of the Self is not different from the Self.
25. Just as a tree consisting of fruits, leaves, creepers, flowers, branches, twigs and roots, exists in the seed of the tree, even so this manifest world exists in Brahman.
26. Just as the pot (ultimately) goes back to mud, waves into water and ornaments into gold, so also this world which has come out of the Self (ultimately) goes back to the Self.
27. The snake appears when one does not recognize the rope; it disappears when one recognizes the rope. Even so this world appears when the Self is not recognized ; it disappears when the Self is recognized.
28. It is only our forgetfulness of the invisible Self which causes the world to appear just as (the ignorance of the) rope (causes the) snake to appear.
29. Just as the dream becomes unreal in the waking state and the waking state in the dream, so also death becomes unreal in birth and birth in death.
30. All these are thus neither real nor unreal. They are the effect of delusion, mere impression arising out of some past experiences.