Daily Readings from the Works of Swami Venkatesananda

Insights & Inspirations (Daily Readings Vol 2) - The Dance of Siva-Shakti

February 21, 2019

The Dance of Siva-Shakti

     Another day. A mild breeze rustled the leaves of a nearby tree, They shook with a graceful swinging motion. So does the pendulum in the grandfather clock.  So does everything in the Great Grandfather's universe.  Sunrise, sunset, birth, death, construction, destruction - are these merely oscillating movements?

     Life seems to take no notice of our individual opinion or feelings.  One has only to look around oneself: there is life everywhere. Life comes into being, life lives.  Life flows on unconcerned. Life does not demand that we rejoice over some changes and grieve over others; and it is not difficult to see that all these changes are inevitable in unchanging life.

     You are born. You grow up, till you reach your own half-life according to your own inbuilt biological clock.  Then you swing back to where you started - people do not see this and think you are growing old, to die. The plant grows into a tree; and then, as the gardener says, "It goes to seed." It goes into the seed - just like a wave which rises and falls at the same spot, though to an observer it looks as a sort of straight-line movement.

    There is no straight-line movement. Such movement is an optical illusion. There is only swinging.  The whole universe is swinging. Thought arises in consciousness. It stays for a moment in consciousness - whether that moment is known as a moment or an epoch (It is thought that thinks of such temporal distinctions anyway!), then it returns to consciousness. Creation. Evolution. Dissolution.


          The life-spans of different creatures seem to differ, but only in comparison. When the half-life is reached, the resolution begins, the return movement begins. Soon the creature returns to the starting point, for the beginning and the culmination are the same factor Consciousness-Energy (Chit-Shakti). Sunrise and Sunset! Oscillating, swinging universe. The dance of Shiva-Shakti, Chit-Shakti! He who knows this is neither born nor does he die.

      Now, all that the yogi asks is stop there and look - look at what the self is doing. When you are enjoying something, the self is fast asleep, but the moment you investigate this, the self wakes up because you are 'pouring' awareness into it. The awareness was distracted, the self was asleep and the awareness was flowing towards something else, and because the self was asleep, you thought there was happiness. When this awareness strikes, the self is withdrawn into it - that is called pratyahara. That is, you do not project anything anymore. Everything in the world is exactly as it is.    

     This is the other form of self-forgetfulness, which is marvelous when you go right down to the core of your centre, you pierce the thing called 'self' and enter into yourself. There you are completely centered but 'self-forgetful'.

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