From the Book:
Nirvana Shatakam, otherwise known as Atma Shatakam, is a composition of Bhagawan Shankaracharya. Although we call it a composition, it is actually a declaration of his own direct and intimate experience of the Absolute Bliss of Self-Realisation. As such, this is not a text to be discoursed upon, but is something to be meditated upon and directly experienced by every sincere seeker and student of Adwaita Vedanta.
Nirvana Shatakam means a bunch of six verses on the state of Absolute peace, tranquility, freedom and joy nivritti. Atma Shatakam means six verses on the nature of the Self. One who is familiar with the Sanskrit language can well grasp the literal meaning of these verses because of their simplicity. But to experience and revel in the Truth revealed therein, one has to go through many lives of Sadhana.
"After many lives of Sadhana, people attain the supreme Brahman." Man (the Jeeva) has to evolve slowly through endless aeons (yugas) of sincere study and devoted Self-application. Then, in one particular life, he gets totally purged of his ignorance and delusion. Such evolution culminates in the highest state of perfection-Self-realisation (Brahmi Sthiti). He becomes a "Perfect man." As these six verses represent the direct and intimate experience of such a Perfect one, they will make an immediate impact on the purified minds of sincere seekers who have acquired a deep insight into Vedanta. As such seekers have the wealth of discrimination (Viveka), dispassion (Vairagya) and capacity for reflection on the Self (Atma Vichara). They can, by reading directly appreciate their implications and, in their deep meditation, experience, the subtle truths of these verses.
In the practice of meditation (Dhyana Abhyas) the Sadhaka just listens, understands and appreciates the meaning of the words and sentences of the Teacher. No intellectual enquiry or analysis is done, as the teacher unfolds the words. As the deep import of the words is appreciated, the words becomes the feeling (Bhavana ) of the Sadhak, his mind will firmly abide in the Truth. This is "Samadhi."
However, other aspirants at earlier points in their spiritual path, can also benefit by drawing inspiration from this text, this being the vision of the ultimate reality from the stand point of a Man of Realisation. They can, in their daily meditation (Dhyana Abhyas) reflect on the meaning and significance of these verses and slowly imbibe the Truth in them. Meditation alone is the Means to the great Experience of Truth (Samadhi). For the benefit of such seekers these verses are explained here.
Before going into the text, it will be useful if we remember some of the basic concepts in Vedanta Sastra, and some of its technical terminology.
Item Code: IDG956 Author: Swami Tejomayananda Cover: Paperback Edition: 2017 Publisher: Central Chinmaya Mission Trust ISBN: 8175971789 Language: (Text, Translation and Explanation) Size: 5.4" X 4.5" Pages: 33 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 25 gms