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Svetasvatara Upanishad



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Svetasvatara Upanishad

And they saw the Wheel of his power made of one circle, three layers, sixteen parts, fifty spokes, twenty counter-spokes, six groups of eight, three paths, one rope of innumerable strands and the great illusion:

Three layers – the 3 constituents of nature; light fire and darkness

Sixteen parts or segments of the rim of the Wheel – the 5 elements, 5 means to know, 5 means to do, and the mind

Fifty spokes – 50 states of consciousness as taught in the Sankhya wisdom:  5 kinds of error, 28 of weakness, 9 of joy and 8 achievement

Twenty counter-spokes – 10 senses and their 10 objects

Six groups of eight – forms of nature, constituents of the body, powers of Yoga, modes of feeling, god, and virtues

Three paths – the Yoga of light, love and of life

One rope of innumerable strands – desire of innumerable forms

The great illusion – the illusion which sees the ONE as two

They also saw the river of life impetuously rushing with the five streams of sense-feelings which come from five sources, the five elements.  Its waves are moved by five breathing winds and its origin is a fivefold fountain of consciousness.  The river has five whirlpools and the violent waves of five sorrows.  It has five stages of pain and five dangerous windings and turnings.

In this vast Wheel of creation wherein all things live and die, wanders round the human soul like a swan in restless flying, and she thinks that God is afar.  But when the love of God comes down upon her, then she finds her own immortal life

The source of the experience

Upanishads, the

Concepts, symbols and science items

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps