Occult Science in India, by Louis Jacoilliot, , at sacred-texts.com
[From the twenty-third dialogue of the Second Book of the Agrouchada-Parikchai.]
VATU 1 (the Disciple).
Our ablutions have been performed, as prescribed. The regular sacrifices have all been accomplished, the fire slumbers upon the hearthstone. The pestle no longer resounds in the mortar as the young women prepare their evening food. The sacred elephants have just struck upon copper gongs the strokes that divide the night. It is now midnight. It is the hour when you commence your sublime lessons.
My children, what would you of me?
O thou, who art adorned with every virtue, who art as great as Mount Hymavat (Himalaya), who art possessed of a perfect knowledge of the four Vedas and of everything that is explained in the sacred word, thou who possessest all the mentrams (or formulas of evocation), who holdest the superior shades and spirits suspended
from thy lips, whose shining virtues are as brilliant as the sun, whose reputation is everywhere known, and who art praised in the fourteen heavens by the fourteen classes of spirits who communicate with men, let thy science flow over us, who embrace thy sacred feet, as the waters of the Ganges flow over the plains they fertilize.
Listen while the vile Soudra sleeps like a dog beneath the poyal of his abode: while the Vaysia is dreaming of the hoards of this world's treasures that he is accumulating, and while the Xchatria, or king, sleeps among his women, faint with pleasure but never satiated, this is the moment when just men, who are not under the dominion of their flesh, commence the study of the sciences.
Master, we are listening.
Age has weakened my sight, and this feeble body is hardly able to unfold to you what I mean: my envelope is falling asunder and the hour of my transfiguration is approaching. What did I promise you for this evening
Master, you said to us, I will unfold to you the knowledge of the immortal light, which puts man in communication with infinity and rules his transformations upon earth.
You will now hear a voice and that voice will be mine, but the thought that arises in my mind is not mine. Listen: I give place to the superior spirits by whom I am inspired.
The Guru then performs an evocation to the marîtchis, or primordial spirits. The following is a brief summary of his discourse.
Every man is conscious within himself of certain absolute notions, existing outside of matter and sensation, which he has not derived from education and which his reason has received from Swayambhouva, or the Self-existent Being, as a sign of his immortal origin.
They are the principles:
Through the principle of cause reason tells us that everything that exists is the result of some cause or other, and though the latter often escapes our notice, we still acknowledge its existence, knowing it to be a fact.
This is the source of all science: we study realities only to trace them back to their producer.
It is not enough to lay down the law of a fact. We must know whom the law proceeds from, and what maintains the harmony of nature.
Through the principles of identity and contradiction, man knows that his ego is not that of his neighbor. That two contrary facts are not governed by the same law; that good is not evil; that two contraries cannot simultaneously be predicated of the same fact.
Through the principle of harmony, reason tells us that everything in the universe is subject to certain immutable laws, and the principle of cause compels us to attribute to these laws an author and preserver.
No faculty of the soul is able to perform any act or motion, except in conformity with these principles, which regulate its interior and exterior life, its spiritual and material nature. Without these principles, to which all are necessarily obliged to submit, and which commend them-
selves to the reason of all men and people, without these principles, we say, which are the supreme law of all observation, of all investigation, of all science, no one can derive any benefit from tradition, or from the achievements of those who have preceded him. There being no other axiomatic foundation for scientific facts, there can be no science, for no two men will see, think, or judge alike.
Human reason, universal reason, guided by absolute principlesthat is the bright light, guiding and uniting all men in a common work for the benefit of all.
Such is a brief abstract of this dialogue, which covers fifty palm-leaves at least of the Book of the Pitris.
It would be impossible for us, as may well be imagined, in the present work, which is merely a brief history or description of the practices of those who have been initiated, and in which, in order to accomplish the task we have set before us, we are obliged to compress the substance of more than fifty volumes, to give any subject a disproportionate or undue importance.
With the help of the axioms laid down by the Guru, reason leads man to the knowledge:
First, of the Supreme Being.
Second, of the constitution of the universe.
Third, of superior and inferior spirits.
Fourth, of man.
We propose now to show what is the belief of those who have been initiated upon each of these matters.
113:1 This word in Sanscrit signifies novice or pupil; it is applied to any one, no matter what his age may be, who studies under the direction of a Guru.