The Enlightened Person

swartz_essenceHere is an extract from the final chapter of James Swartz’s new book ‘The Essence of Enlightenment’. I haven’t read it all myself yet, but dipping into it at random shows that it is every bit as good as his ‘How to Attain Enlightenment’. It has, for me, his hallmark style of forthright, clear, informative writing, adhering to traditional teaching derived from scriptures and as interpreted by modern sampradAya-s. He has no qualms about bluntly (even brutally) exposing mistaken views but leaves the reader feeling uplifted, and with a much clearer understanding of even the most difficult topic.

Mandukya Upanishad – part 1

Here is Part 1 of a new, short series (5 or 6 parts) on the Mandukya Upanishad, from James Swartz.

This first part talks about the means for obtaining knowledge and the meaning of the word ‘limitlessness’, using the snake and rope metaphor.

(In case you are wondering about the photo, the title of the Upanishad is sometimes claimed to be derived from the Sanskrit ‘maNDa’, meaning ‘a frog’.)

Panchadashi series

Some of you may remember that I was posting a series of posts, presenting a new translation and commentary by James Swartz on the Panchadasi. Apologies for the long delay since the last post.

James and I had begun this collaboration on turning his lecture notes into a new written commentary on the text. But we have realized that this would require long-term commitment and we are both too busy at present. Accordingly, this is being postponed indefinitely. Meanwhile, he has given his permission for us to serialize some of his other writing, beginning with his essay on the Mandukya Upanishad. So see the next post!

Panchadasi Part 2

A series of posts, presenting a new translation and commentary by James Swartz on the Panchadasi. This was presented by James as a week-long course during July 2012 and was very well received.

This is Part 2 and contains the teaching on the pa~nchikaraNa (‘quintuplication’ of the elements),  macrocosm and microcosm, pa~ncha kosha (five sheaths) and the ‘elimination’ of these.