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"Language is only a medium for communicating one's thoughts to another. It is called in only after thoughts arise; other thoughts arise after the "I-thought" rises; the "I-thought" is the root of all conversation. When one remains without thinking one understands another by means of the universal language of silence. Silence is ever-speaking; it is a perennial flow of language; it is interrupted by speaking. 

These words obstruct that mute language. There is electricity flowing in a wire. With resistance to its passage, it glows as a lamp or revolves as a fan. In the wire it remains as electric energy. Similarly also, silence is the eternal flow of language, obstructed by words. What one fails to know by conversation extending to several years can be known in a trice in Silence, or in front of Silence - e.g., Dakshinamurti, and his four disciples. That is the highest and most effective language.

 

Silence is never-ending speech. Vocal speech obstructs the other speech of silence. In silence one is in intimate contact with the surroundings. The silence of Dakshinamurti removed the doubts of the four sages. Mouna vyakhya prakatita tatvam (Truth expounded by silence). Silence is said to be exposition. Silence is so potent.

For vocal speech, organs of speech are necessary and they precede speech. But the other speech lies even beyond thought. It is in short transcendent speech or unspoken word, para vak." ~Ramana Maharshi

 

Edited by neti neti
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Beautiful. Sri Sri Ravishankar expounds on this too --

 

https://www.artofliving.org/wisdom-q-a-8-may-2013-qa-2

 

Gurudev, it is said that speech is of four types: Para, Pashyanti, Madhyama and Vaikhari. What is their significance in Sadhana (spiritual practices)?

 
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: 

This conversation that we are having now is what Vaikhari is.
Human beings are capable of interacting only by using this Vaikhari mode of speech.
It is said,¬†‚ÄėChatvaari vaak parimitaa padaani taani vidur braahmaanaa ye manishinaah. Guhaa trini nihitaa neaengayanti turiyam vaacho manushyaa vadanti.‚Äô¬†(Rigveda Samhita (1.164.45))¬†
So human beings speak to each other using the fourth type of speech. The other three: Para, Madhyama and Pashyanti are used in communications which are at a much deeper level, where no language is used. 

A state in which no language is used, yet the entire essence is understood completely is called the Para Vaani. 

After death, when a person leaves his body, he also drops his ability to communicate using language. At that state, he simply observes all that happens, and by observation he gains knowledge. This is called¬†Pashyanti(derived from the Sanskrit word¬†‚ÄėPashya‚Äô meaning to see or observe).¬†

The Madhyama mode of speech is in-between the states of Para and Pashyanti. 

Many times it happens that someone is speaking in a language that you do not know, yet you are able to understand what they are trying to say. Madhyama is such a state.
For example, when the child is in the mother’s womb, neither has the child seen the mother, and nor has the mother seen the child. Yet they understand each other completely. There is no exchange of language in that state, then too, communication happens that is beyond language. This is Madhyama. 

That is why this entire creation is called as the Hiranyagarbha (meaning the Golden Egg or Golden Womb). We are all present inside this Cosmic Womb and do not know what exists outside it. 

Just like how the mother knows the child within her womb but the child does not know the mother; in the same way God knows us yet we do not know Him. That is why He is referred to as Agyeya (that which is ever-present but is unknown). You can never know the Divine, but you can experience it. And how can you experience it? By reposing in yourself.
So Para Vaani is that speech in which no language is used, and it is also beyond feelings. In Pashyanti we communicate using our feelings also.

When we go into deeper levels of Consciousness, every sense organ of our body becomes capable of performing all functions. That means the functions of all the five senses happen through one organ. 

So in such a state, by a single touch you are able to feel, see, taste and also gain complete knowledge about the object. 

So every organ becomes capable of performing all the functions of the five senses (see, smell, taste, hear, and feel). So when the Panchendriya (five senses) dissolve and become one (sense organ), then that state is the state of Para-Chetna (pure Consciousness). That is the speech of Para Vaani. 

That is why it is said,¬†‚ÄėJaanat tum hi tum hi ho jaaye‚Äô (when the knower, knowledge and the known all become One). That is why we say, one who is deeply devoted to the Lord becomes the Lord himself.
Similarly, one who has attained the knowledge of the Brahman becomes the Brahman. In such a state, the lover, the beloved and the love are not separate from one another. They all dissolve and become one. This is the state of Para Vaani. 

When you think of language, then there has to be one who speaks and another who listens. Two are needed for this (meaning a sense of duality). This is where you need Vaikhari. Vaikhari means the diversity that is present all around you. That is why there are so many languages in the world, and not just one. But there is only one Para Vaani, and everything is contained in that. 

In Para Vaani, even before a word is formed you have instantly understood the meaning. So words are not needed at all.

All this appears very technical to understand. So when you have a scientific outlook, then it is easy to understand.

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One Rishikesananda of Sri Ramakrishna Mission,visited Bhagavan Ramana on 21st November 1945.  He was asking about characteristics of a Jnani.  Bhagavan said that they  are all described in books, such as the Bhagavad Gita, but we must bear in mind that the Jnani's state being one which
transcends the mind, cannot be described with the help merely of the mind and that all description therefore must be defective.


Only silence can correctly describe their state or characteristics. But silence is more effective than speech. From silence came thought, from thought the ego and from the ego, the speech. So if the speech is effective, how much more effective must its original source be.

Bhagavan then narrated the story of Tattvaraya.  He had composed a 'bharani' [a kind of poetic composition in Tamil] in honour of his Guru, Swarupananda.  He convened an assembly of poets to hear the work and assess its value.
The great pandits who came said:  'Bharani' is sung only in honour of a king who had killed a thousand elephants in the battle, and how can an ascetic be compared to a king of such valour?  Tattvaraya then took the pandits to his Guru, Swarupananda, and told the guru about the purpose of their visit.

 

The Guru sat silent and all the others also remained 
in mouna.  The whole day passed and then the night and like that several days and nights without a word.  After some days, the Guru moved his mind a bit and thereupon the assembly regained their thought activity!  Then they all declared:
"Conquering a thousand elephants is nothing beside the Guru's power of silence to conquer the rutting elephants of all our egos put together.  So certainly he deserved a bharani upon his honour and glory.  The pandits prostrated to Swarupananda
and left with contentment.

(Source: Day by Day entry of 21.11.1945.  Also Talks
entry dated 1.10.1936.)

Arunachala Siva. 

 

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"The sound of a word, the idea behind the word, and the object the idea signfies are often taken as being one thing and may be mistaken for one another. By self-control over their distinctions, understanding of all languages of all creatures arises." ~Patanjali Yoga Sutras, 3,17

 

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Nice article on the web -- https://auromere.wordpress.com/2009/07/09/vedic-vak-four-levels-of-sound/

 

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This is a simplified explanation of the Vedic theory of Sound (Vak, whose root is¬†Vach¬†which means ‚Äúto speak‚ÄĚ and corresponds in Latin to the word is¬†Vox) using some examples as well as the words of the Mother of the Aurobindo Ashram.

 

A variety of ancient scriptures speak of the Universe created by sound or cosmic vibrations.

  • The Rig Veda 1.164.45¬† says¬† ‚Äúcatvari vak parimita padani tani vidur brahmana ye minishinah, guha trini nihita neengayanti turiyam vaco manushya vadanti‚ÄĚ (i.e. The cognoscenti know of the Vak that exists in four forms .¬† Three are hidden and the fourth is what men speak) .
  • The Sanskrit grammarian,¬†Bhartrhari, states in his Vakyapadiya 1.112: ‚Äúvageva viswa bhuvanani jajne‚ÄĚ (i.e. It is Vak which has created all the worlds).
  • Similarly, in Tantra, it is said that the Universe was set in motion by the primordial throb (adya-spanda) and that all objects of the Universe are created by sound ‚Äď ‚Äúartha-srsteh puram sabda-srstih‚Ä̬†(sound precedes the formation of objects).
  • Lastly, we find in the Bible the verse, ‚ÄúIn the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God‚ÄĚ [John 1:1]

The rhythms of cosmic vibrations issue forth from four levels which correspond to the various levels in manifestation:

  1. Para-Vak is the highest form of sound. It issues forth from the Supernal Ether (paramam vyomam) where all the sound vibrations that build the various worlds pre-exist in an undifferentiated state.
  2. Pashyanti¬†is the sound vibration heard in the Causal worlds.¬†Pashyanti¬†in Sanskrit means ‚Äúseeing speech‚ÄĚ. A sage whose consciousness is concentrated in the causal body is able to ‚Äúglimpse‚ÄĚ a Truth in a vision or a revelation. Knowledge is acquired in the inner mind by sight without the use of the reasoning faculty or sensory data.
  3. Madhyama (Middle)is the sound as perceived in the subtle or the Pranic world. A good example of this would be the thought-forms held in our mind.
  4. Vaikhari is the lowest form of sound and it signifies outward expression. This is the spoken word emerging from the our throat.
Type of Vak Phenomenological equivalent Corresponding world and body sheath
Para Eternal Cosmic Vibrations Maha Karana/Supreme Causal
Pashyanti(i.e.seeing speech) Sight or Vision seen at highest level of the mind as a result of spiritual illumination Karana/Causal
Madhyama(i.e. middle) Thought forms in the human mind Sukshma/Subtle
Vaikhari Spoken word Sthula/Gross

Illustration of Madhyama, Pashyanti, Para

Mother: Ideas have a higher origin than the mind. There is a region of the mind, higher than the ordinary mind, in which there are ideas, typal ideas (this is Pashyanti Vak), really prototypes; and these ideas descend and are clothed in mental substance¬†(this is Madhyama Vak). So, in accordance with ‚ÄĒ how to put it?‚Ķ the quality of the receiver, they either keep all their own qualities and original nature or become distorted, coloured, transformed in the individual consciousness. But the idea goes far beyond the mind; the idea has an origin much higher than the mind. So, the functioning is the same from both the universal and the individual point of view; the individual movement is only representative of the universal one. The scale is different, but the phenomenon is the same. Of course, these are no longer ‚Äúthoughts‚ÄĚ as we conceive thoughts; they are universal principles (this is Para Vak) ‚ÄĒ but it‚Äôs the same thing ‚ÄĒ universal principles on which the universes are built.

The universe, after all, is only one person, only one individuality in the midst of the eternal Creation. Each universe is a person who takes form, lives, dissolves, and another takes shape ‚ÄĒ it is the same thing. For us, the person is the human individual; and from the universal point of view the person is the universal individual; it is one universe in the midst of all the universes.

The Mother, Questions and Answers (1956): 7 November 1956

Applying Vedic Vak to demonstrate three ways of thinking

In the following dialogue, the Mother Mirra Alfassa gave a practical demonstration of Vedic Vak when she asked teachers in the Ashram school to begin thinking with ideas instead of words. She gave the illustration of a tower (i.e. human being) where the visitors (i.e. ideas or Madhyama) which came in at the top are then translated into words (i.e. Vaikhari) at the storeroom at the base of the tower.

In the Mother’s example,

  • Thinking with words is¬†Vaikhari.
  • Thinking with ideas is¬†Madhyama.
  • Thinking with (spiritual) experiences is¬†Pashyanti.

Question: Sweet Mother,¬†You have asked the teachers ‚Äúto think with ideas instead of with words‚ÄĚ. You have also said that later on you will ask them to¬†think with experiences. Will you throw some light on these three ways of thinking?¬†

Answer: Our house has a very high tower; at the very top of this tower there is a bright and bare room, the last before we emerge into the open air, into the full light.

Sometimes, when we are free to do so, we climb up to this bright room, and there, if we remain very quiet, one or more visitors come to call on us; some are tall, others small, some single, others in groups; all are bright and graceful.

Usually, in our joy at their arrival and our haste to welcome them, we lose our tranquillity and come galloping down to rush into the great hall that forms the base of the tower and is the storeroom of words. Here, more or less excited, we select, reject, assemble, combine, disarrange, rearrange all the words in our reach, in an attempt to portray this or that visitor who has come to us. But most often, the picture we succeed in making of our visitor is more like a caricature than a portrait.

And yet if we were wiser, we would remain up above, at the summit of the tower, quite calm, in joyful contemplation. Then, after a certain length of time, we would see the visitors themselves slowly, gracefully, calmly descend, without losing anything of their elegance or beauty and, as they cross the storeroom of words, clothe themselves effortlessly, automatically, with the words needed to make themselves perceptible even in the material house.

This is what I call thinking with ideas. When this process is no longer mysterious to you, I shall explain what is meant by thinking with experiences.

When you think with words, you can express what you think with those words only. To think with ideas is to be able to put the same idea in many kinds of words. The words can also be of different languages, if you happen to know more than one language. This is the first, the most elementary thing about thinking with ideas.

When you think with experience, you go much deeper and you can express the same experience with many kinds of ideas. Then thought can take this form or that form in any language and through all of them the essential realisation will remain unchanged.

To be convincing when you speak, think not in ideas but in experiences.

The Mother, On Education: Teaching

See Also

  1. The early part of this essay is derived from Kapali Sastry‚Äôs book ‚ÄúSidelights on Tantra‚Ä̬†which has an essay ‚ÄúVak of the Veda and Throb of the Tantra‚Ä̬†in which he compares the Vedic and Tantric theory of Creative Word.
  2. Andre Padoux. Vac, The Concept of the Word in Selected Hindu Tantras. (amazon) (Google books)
  3. Janhava Nitai Das. The Vedic Conception of Sound in Four Features
  4. Vladimir Iatsenko.  Vedic Linguistics pdf
 

 

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On 7/11/2017 at 4:58 PM, neti neti said:

Language is only a medium for communicating one's thoughts to another. It is called in only after thoughts arise; other thoughts arise after the "I-thought" rises; the "I-thought" is the root of all conversation. When one remains without thinking one understands another by means of the universal language of silence. Silence is ever-speaking; it is a perennial flow of language; it is interrupted by speaking. 

These words obstruct that mute language. There is electricity flowing in a wire. With resistance to its passage, it glows as a lamp or revolves as a fan. In the wire it remains as electric energy. Similarly also, silence is the eternal flow of language, obstructed by words. What one fails to know by conversation extending to several years can be known in a trice in Silence, or in front of Silence - e.g., Dakshinamurti, and his four disciples. That is the highest and most effective language.

 

Silence is never-ending speech. Vocal speech obstructs the other speech of silence. In silence one is in intimate contact with the surroundings. The silence of Dakshinamurti removed the doubts of the four sages. Mouna vyakhya prakatita tatvam (Truth expounded by silence). Silence is said to be exposition. Silence is so potent.

For vocal speech, organs of speech are necessary and they precede speech. But the other speech lies even beyond thought. It is in short transcendent speech or unspoken word, para vak." ~Ramana Maharshi

Wow that quote explains exactly what it's like for me. No thoughts,silence as communication. Wow

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"Mouna is the utmost eloquence. Peace¬†is utmost activity. How? Because the person remains in his essential¬†nature and so he permeates all the recesses of the Self. Thus¬†he can call up any power into play whenever or wherever it is necessary. That is the highest siddhi.‚ÄĚ ~Ramana Maharshi

 

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The Heart language is truly the only language we should be speaking.

Sri Ramana's quotes always bring me massive joy into the already present-joy.

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On 7/12/2017 at 5:58 AM, neti neti said:

"When one remains without thinking one understands another by means of the universal language of silence. Silence is ever-speaking; it is a perennial flow of language; it is interrupted by speaking."

 

On 7/12/2017 at 5:58 AM, neti neti said:

In silence one is in intimate contact with the surroundings.

 

On 7/18/2017 at 2:50 AM, neti neti said:

From silence came thought, from thought the ego and from the ego, the speech. So if the speech is effective, how much more effective must its original source be.

 

On 7/31/2017 at 1:07 PM, Hancock said:

Wow that quote explains exactly what it's like for me. No thoughts, silence as communication. Wow

 

On 8/23/2017 at 9:06 AM, Nothingness said:

The Heart language is truly the only language we should be speaking.

 

On 7/12/2017 at 5:58 AM, neti neti said:

"... For vocal speech, organs of speech are necessary and they precede speech. But the other speech lies even beyond thought. It is in short transcendent speech or unspoken word, para vak." ~Ramana Maharshi

 

 

Hi All,

 

SILENCE is the Heart Language?

 

- LimA

Edited by Limahong
Enhance ...
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