Excerpts from – Ashtavakra Gita


I lived bewildered,

In illusion.


But now I am awake,

Flawless and serene,

Beyond the world.


From my light

The body and the world arise.


So all things are mine,

Or nothing is.


Now I have given up

The body and the world,

I have a special gift.


I see the infinite Self.


As a wave,

Seething and foaming,

Is only water


So all creation,

Streaming out of the Self,

Is only the Self.


Consider a piece of cloth.

It is only threads!


So all creation,

When you look closely,

Is only the Self.

Like the sugar

In the juice of the sugarcane,

I am the sweetness

In everything I have made.


When the Self is unknown

The world arises,

Not when it is known.


But you mistake

The rope for the snake.



When you see the rope,

The snake vanishes.


My nature is light,

Nothing but light.


When the world arises

I alone am shining.


When the world arises in me,

It is just an illusion:

Water shimmering in the sun,

A vein of silver in mother-of-pearl,

A serpent in a strand of rope.


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.


I adore myself,

How wonderful I am!


I can never die.


The whole world may perish,

From Brahma to a blade of grass,

But I am still here.


Indeed how wonderful!

I adore myself.


For I have taken form

But I am still one.


Neither coming or going,

Yet I am still everywhere….


I am the infinite ocean.


When thoughts spring up,

The wind freshens, and like waves

A thousand worlds arise.


But when the wind falls,

The trader sinks with his ship.


On the boundless ocean of my being

He founders,

And all the worlds with him.


But 0 how wonderful!


I am the unbounded deep

In whom all living things

Naturally arise,

Rush against each other playfully,

And then subside.




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4 responses

  1. It’s a different text, I don’t know much about it. I only have a faint idea that it is teachings by a boy who was born grossly deformed, but he grew up to become very wise. But I’m not sure, that might be some other text. Google would have some good information 🙂

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