This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

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Deep sleep or Prajna

We now enter the causal state (karana-sharira) which corresponds to the fourth envelope (anandamaya-kosha).

When the being who is asleep experiences no desire and is not the subject of any dream, his state is that of deep sleep: he [Atma itself in this condition] who in this state has become one, who has identified himself with a synthetic whole of integral Knowledge, who is filled with Beatitude, actually enjoying that Beatitude and whose mouth [the instrument of knowledge] is [exclusively] total Consciousness itself, that one is called Prajna (He who knows above and beyond any special condition): this is the third condition.[1]

The oneness of the being in the causal state of deep sleep is affirmed also in Taoism, which says: “All is one; during sleep the undistracted soul is absorbed into this unity; in the waking state, being distracted, it distinguishes diverse beings.”[2]

Remember that the term for this envelope means Beatitude, and Beatitude is formed of all the possibilities of Atma, which is to say the sum of the possibilities of the being in question. This is the realm of Prajna–being in its own plenitude.

This state must not be confused with anything of the psychic or psychological orders, which pertain to the subtle state, since Prajna belongs to the formless and has thereby transcended the individual. In this state Atma is beyond even the distinction of Purusha and Prakriti, and is thus identified with Mula-Prakriti or ‘Primordial Nature.’ Here the being has withdrawn from conditioned existence altogether to the level of pure Being.

Nonetheless, the objects of manifestation are not destroyed, but come to subsist in principial mode, in the ‘eternal present.’ Here we find the metaphysical meaning behind the theological doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, which is to say, we see here a picture of what is meant by ‘the glorious body,’ which is the body ‘transfigured’ and seen in its immutable state which was always transient during its conditioned existence.

It is this subsistence (without destruction) of the manifest during deep sleep that allows for return from this state.

To further understand this state, we can refer to the ternary group: Sat, Chit, Ananda. In Arabic we find a similar group: Al-Aqlu (Intelligence), Al Aqil (the Intelligent), and Al-Maqul (the Intelligable). Returning to the Hindu tradition, of these the first is Chit, or universal Consciousness; the second is Sat, its subject; and the third is Ananda, or its object. These three come together in the state of Prajna under the aspect of Being ‘which knows Itself by Itself,’ or Sachchidananda. This state is also called ‘serenity’ or samprasada, and knowledge there is by direct intellectual intuition without necessity of reflection through manas as happens in the individual states. And although this form of apprehension has been above referred to Buddhi, we note that then we were referring to the Higher Intellect as manifest, but here we are in the principial state, and so we do not refer this to Buddhi, but Buddhi is contained in Prajna as well, much like the poles of Purusha and Prakriti. If we placed these three in relation to each other, as a second ternary group, we could say that Purusha is the subjective pole of manifestation, Prakriti the objective, and Buddhi, which is Knowledge, is their result or ‘common act.’

This one [Prajna] is the Lord [Ishvara] of all [sarva, a term which here implies, in its universal extension, the aggregate of the ‘three worlds,’ that is to say of all the states of manifestation comprised synthetically in their principle]; He is omnipresent [since all is present to Him in integral knowledge and he knows directly all effects in the principial total cause, which is in no way distinct from Him]; He is the inward governor [antaryami who, residing at the very center of the being, regulates and controls all the faculties corresponding to the being’s various states, while Himself remaining ‘actionless’ in the fullness of His principial activity]; He is the source [yoni, matrix or primordial root, at the same time as principle or first cause] of all; He is the origin and the end of the universality of beings [being Himself Universal Being].[3]

Whenever we deal with knowledge in Prajna, we depart from knowledge as considered in the previous two states. This difference or opposition between the two kinds of knowledge is described as Prajnana or integral Knowledge and vijnana or distinctive knowledge. The latter applies to the formal (individual) realm. Likewise vijnanamaya-kosha is the term for the first envelope of the Self or Atma as it enters the world of forms as jivatma.

[1] Mandukya Upanishad, 1.5.

[2] Chuang Tzu, chap. 11.

[3] Mandukya Upanishad, 1.6.

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