Ashtavakra Gita — Best Quotes

« Highlights »

Ashtavakra Gita is a short treatise ascribed to the great sage Ashtavakra. It was composed before the common era, most likely between 500-400BC. ...

The text is an instruction for achieving the self-realization and Oneness.


If you wish to be free,
Shun the poison of the senses.
Seek the nectar of truth,
Of love and forgiveness,
Simplicity and happiness. (1.2)

If you wish to be free,
Know you are the Self,
The witness of all these,
The heart of awareness. (1.3)

Set your body aside.
Sit in your own awareness.
You will at once be happy,
Forever still,
Forever free.

Know you are one,
Pure awareness.

Be happy!
For you are joy, unbounded joy.
You are awareness itself.
Just as a coil of rope
Is mistaken for a snake,
So you are mistaken for the world. (1.10)

You are what you think. (1.11)

The Self looks like the world.
But this is just an illusion.
The Self is everywhere.

The witness of all things,

Without action, clinging or desire. (1.12)

Your nature is pure awareness.
You are flowing in all things,
And all things are flowing in you.
But beware
The narrowness of the mind! (1.16)

Whatever takes form is false.
Only the formless endures.
When you understand
The truth of this teaching,
You will not be born again. (1.18)

As the air is everywhere,
Flowing around a pot
And filling it,
So God is everywhere,
Filling all things
And flowing through them forever. (1.20)

As a wave,
Seething and foaming,
Is only water
So all creation,
Streaming out of the Self,
Is only the Self. (2.4)

My nature is light,
Nothing but light.
When the world arises
I alone am shining. (2.8)

From me the world streams out
And in me it dissolves,
As a bracelet melts into gold,
A pot crumbles into clay,
A wave subsides into water. (2.10)

Two from one!
This is the root of suffering.
Only perceive
That I am one without two,
Pure awareness, pure joy,
And all the world is false.
There is no other remedy! (2.16)

I am not the body.
Nor is the body mine.
I am not separate.
I am awareness itself,
Bound only by my thirst for life. (2.22)

Knowing yourself as That
In which the worlds rise and fall
Like waves in the ocean,
Why do you run about so wretchedly? (3.3)

For have you not heard?
You are pure awareness,

And your beauty is infinite!
So why let lust mislead you? (3.4)

The man who is wise
Knows himself in all things
And all things in himself.
Yet how strange!
He still says, "This is mine.” (3.5)

Pure of heart,
He watches his own actions
As if they were another's.
How can praise or
blame disturb him? (3.10)

With clear and steady insight
He knows that whatever he sees
Is by its very nature nothing.
How can he prefer one thing to another? (3.13)

The wise man knows the Self,
And he plays the game of life.
But the fool lives in the world
Like a beast of burden. (4.1)

You are pure.
Nothing touches you.
What is there to renounce?
Let it all go,
The body and the mind.
Let yourself dissolve. (5.1)

Like bubbles in the sea,
All the worlds arise in you.
Know you are the Self.
Know you are one.
Let yourself dissolve. (5.2)

You are one and the same
In joy and sorrow,
Hope and despair,
Life and death.
You are already fulfilled.
Let yourself dissolve. (5.4)

I am the ocean.
All the worlds are like waves.
This is the truth.
Nothing to hold on to,
Nothing to let go of,
Nothing to dissolve. (6.2)

When the mind is attracted
To anything it senses,
You are bound.
When there is no attraction,
You are free. (8.3)

Nothing lasts.
Nothing is real.
It is all suffering
Threefold affliction!
It is all beneath contempt.
Know this.
Give it up.
Be still. (9.3)

In the shifting elements
See only their pure form.
Rest in your own nature.
Set yourself free.
The world is just a set of false impressions.
Give them up.
Give up the illusion.
Give up the world.
And live freely. (9.7)

Every good fortune,
Wives, friends, houses, lands,
All these gifts and riches. . .
They are a dream,
A juggling act,
A traveling show!
A few days, and they are gone. (10.2)

All things arise,
Suffer change,
And pass away.
This is their nature.
When you know this,
Nothing perturbs you,
Nothing hurts you.
You become still.
It is easy. (11.1)

God made all things.
There is only God.
When you know this,
Desire melts away.
Clinging to nothing,
You become still. (11.2)

Sooner or later,
Fortune or misfortune
May befall you.
When you know this,
You desire nothing,
You grieve for nothing.
Subduing the senses,
You are happy. (11.3)

The world with all its wonders
Is nothing.
When you know this,
Desire melts away.
For you are awareness itself.
When you know in your heart
That there is nothing,
You are still. (11.8)

First I gave up action,
Then idle words,
And lastly thought itself.
Now I am here. (12.1)

Meditation is needed
Only when the mind is distracted
By false imagining.
Knowing this,
I am here. (12.3)

Desire and aversion are of the mind.
The mind is never yours.
You are free of its turmoil.
You are awareness itself,
Never changing.
Wherever you go,
Be happy. (15.5)

In you the worlds arise
Like waves in the sea.
It is true!
You are awareness itself.
So free yourself
From the fever of the world. (15.7)

You are the endless sea
In whom all the worlds like waves
Naturally rise and fall.
You have nothing to win,
Nothing to lose.

You are in whatever you see.
You alone.
Just as bracelets and bangles
And dancing anklets
Are all of the same gold. (15.14)

My child,
You may read or discuss scripture
As much as you like.
But until you forget everything,
You will never live in your heart. (16.1)






Next Page »


* Translated by Thomas Byrom