Chapter 2: Attaining Real Eyes
The sage Sankriti once visited Adityalok, the abode of the sun god,
and bowing to him he worshipped him with what is known as
Aum, salutation to the sun god who illumines the organ of vision!
Salutation to the sun who is a great warrior!
Salutation to the sun who represents the three conditionings:
tamas, rajas and sattva (dark, red and white)!
O Lord, from untruth lead me to truth, from darkness lead me to light,
and from death lead me to the eternal. Salutation to the sun,
the son of Aditi, who is the light in our eyes.
And we dedicate all that we have to the sun who rules the universe.
Much pleased with being worshipped with chakshusmati vidya,
the sun god said:
A Brahmin who recites this vidya - knowledge - every day will not suffer from eye diseases, nor will anyone in his family ever be struck blind.
The power of this vidya is obtained if it is taught to eight Brahmins,
and knowing it one achieves greatness.
Man is blind. He cannot see that which is. We have eyes, but we can see through them only that which is illusory. Only the appearance is seen, not the real - the real is missed. That’s why those who have known have called man blind.
Jesus goes on saying to his disciples, “If you have eyes, look; if you have ears, then listen.” Of course, his disciples were not blind, nor were they deaf. They were as with eyes as we are, they had all the senses we have got. Then he must be referring to some other eyes, to some other senses.
These eyes which can look only outwards, which can only look into the without, are blind unless they also become capable of seeing within. If you cannot see yourself you are blind, and one who cannot see himself, what else can he see? And whatsoever he sees, whatsoever his knowledge, it remains based on a deep blindness. Unless you become self-seeing, unless you turn within, unless you can have a look at the reality that you are, whatsoever you encounter in the world is going to be just the appearance. The same will be the proportion: the more you penetrate within the more you can penetrate without, because reality is one.
If you are not acquainted with yourself, all your acquaintance, all your knowledge is just false. Without self-knowledge there is no possibility of any knowledge. You can go on knowing and knowing; you can go on collecting more and more information, but that information will remain information - dead, borrowed. It will never become a knowing eye.
How to attain those eyes which can penetrate the illusory and can encounter the real? This is going to be the base of this whole Upanishad. In the old days it was called chakshusmati vidya, the wisdom through which eyes are attained. But the first thing to be constantly remembered is that as we are, we are blind; as we are, we are dead; as we are, we are illusory, the stuff dreams are made of.