I am not the body – Ashtavakra Samhita 11.6; 15.4

नाहं देहो न मे देहो बोधोऽहमिति निश्चयी ।
कैवल्यमिव संप्राप्तो न स्मरत्यकृतं कृतम् ॥ ६ ॥

nāhaṃ deho na me deho bodho’hamiti niścayī |

kaivalyamiva saṃprāpto na smaratyakṛtaṃ kṛtam || 6 ||
Realising, “I am not the body, nor is the body mine.
I am awareness”, one attains the supreme state and no
longer remembers things done or undone.

How many times have our spiritual teachers reminded us, “You are not the body. You are not the mind. Here is the way to realise your true nature.” And with that ringing in our ears one last time, we get into the taxi that is waiting to take us to the airport for our flight home. Our course has come to an end and so has our memorable stay at the yoga ashram in India. Prashanti Kutiram is a very special place where science and the spiritual co-exist in total harmony. Scientific research is ongoing to document the efficacy of yoga while Vedantin monks perform a very necessary role in ensuring we base our yoga sadhana on the right foundation.

न त्वं देहो न ते देहो भोक्ता कर्ता न वा भवान् ।
चिद्रूपोऽसि सदा साक्षी निरपेक्षः सुखं चर ॥ ४ ॥

na tvaṃ deho na te deho bhoktā kartā na vā bhavān |

cidrūpo’si sadā sākṣī nirapekṣaḥ sukhaṃ cara || 4 ||

You are not the body, nor is the body yours, nor are you the doer of actions or the reaper of their consequences. You are eternally pure consciousness the witness, in need of nothing – so live happily.

How fortunate to listen to it all again. Swami Sarvapriyananda has chosen Chapter 15, verse 4 and his erudite explanation helps to deepen our aspiration for self-realisation, if possible, in this lifetime. To realise the ultimate truth for ourselves, that we are Pure Consciousness. Aham Brahmasmi.

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