Created by Jijith Nadumuri at 02 Apr 2010 08:07 and updated at 02 Apr 2010 08:07
MAHABHARATA, BOOK 12: SANTI PARVA
CCLIV Vyasa said, There is a wonderful tree, called Desire, in the heart of a man. It is born of the seed called Error. Wrath and pride constitute its large trunk. The wish for action is the basin around its foot for holding the water that is to nourish it. Ignorance is the root of that tree, and heedlessness is the water that gives it sustenance. Envy constitutes its leaves.
The evil acts of past lives supply it with vigour. Loss of judgment and anxiety are its twigs; grief forms its large branches; and fear is its sprout. Thirst after diverse objects that is apparently agreeable forms the creepers that twine round it on every side. Excessively greedy men, bound in chains of iron, sitting around that fruit-yielding tree, pay their adorations to it, in expectation of obtaining its fruit He who, subduing those chains, cutteth down that tree and seeks to cast off both sorrow and joy, succeeds in attaining to the end of both That foolish man who nourishes this tree by indulgence in the objects of the senses is destroyed by those very objects in which he indulges after the manner of a poisonous pill destroying the patient to whom it is administered A dexterous person, however, by the aid of Yoga, forcibly teareth up and cutteth with the sword of samadhi, the far-reaching root of this tree One who knows that the end of all acts undertaken from only the desire of fruit is rebirth or chains that bind, succeeds in transcending all sorrow. The body is said to be a city. The understanding is said to be its mistress.
The mind dwelling within the body is the minister of that mistress whose chief function is to decide. The senses are the citizen that are employed by the mind upon the service of the mistress. For cherishing those citizens the mind displays a strong inclination for acts of diverse kinds. In the matter of those acts, two great faults are observable, viz, Tamas and Rajas Upon the fruits of those acts rest those citizens along with the chiefs of the city viz, Mind, Understanding, and Consciousness The two faults already spoken of live upon the fruits of those acts that are accomplished by forbidden means. This being the case, the understanding, which of itself is unconquerable by either Rajas or Tamas, descends to a state of equality with the mind by becoming as much tainted as the mind that serves it. Then again the senses, agitated by the stained mind, lose their own stability. Those objects again for whose acquisition the understanding strives regarding them to be beneficial become productive of grief and ultimately Meet with destruction. Those objects, after destruction, are recollected by the mind, and accordingly they afflict the mind even after they are lost.
The understanding is afflicted at the same time, for the mind is said to be different from the understanding only when the mind is considered in respect of its chief function of receiving impressions about whose certainty it is no judge. In reality, however, the mind is identical with the understanding The Rajas productive of only sorrow and evil of every kind that is in the understanding then overwhelms the Soul itself that lies over the Rajas-stained understanding like an image upon a mirror It is the mind that first unites in friendship with Rajas. Having united itself, it seizes the soul, the understanding, and the senses like a false minister seizing the king and the citizens after having conspired with a foe and makes them over to Rajas with which it has united itself