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Satchitananda

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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Satcitānanda, Satchidānanda, or Sat-cit-ānanda (Sanskrit: सच्चिदानन्द) "Existence, Consciousness, and Bliss", is a description of the subjective experience of Brahman.

This sublimely blissful experience of the boundless, pure consciousness is a glimpse of ultimate reality.


Etymology


The description saccidānanda comprises the three Sanskrit words sat-chit-ananda:


sat सत् (present participle); Sanskrit root as , "to be"]: "Truth", "Absolute Being", "a palpable force of virtue and truth". Sat describes an essence that is pure and timeless, that never changes.


    cit चित् (noun): "consciousness", "true consciousness", "to be consciousness of", "to understand", "to comprehend".
    ānanda आनन्द (noun): "bliss", "true bliss", "happiness", "joy", "delight", "pleasure"



"Sat-Chit-Ananda" or "Saccidānanda" is the Sanskrit compound form of the word,


    "Absolute Consciousness Bliss"
    "Consisting of existence and thought and joy"

Interpretation


Vaishnava philosophy


For the Vaishnava (devotee of Vishnu), saccidānanda is related to Vaikuntha, abode of Vishnu.



Gaudiya Vaishnavism



Gaudiya Vaishnavism (also known as Hare Krishna) is a Vaishnava religious movement founded by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486–1534) in India in the 16th century.

The focus of Gaudiya Vaishnavism is the devotional worship (bhakti) of Radha and Krishna, and their many divine incarnations as the supreme forms of God, Svayam Bhagavan.

Most popularly, this worship takes the form of singing Radha and Krishna's holy names, such as "Hare", "Krishna" and "Rama".


The Brahma Samhita is a Sanskrit Pancaratra text, composed of verses of prayer spoken by Brahma glorifying the supreme Lord Krishna or Govinda at the beginning of creation.

It is revered within Gaudiya Vaishnavism. Sloka 5.1 of the Brahma Samhita states:


Krishna who is known as Govinda is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin and He is the prime cause of all causes.


Tulsidas philosophy


To Goswami Tulsidas, his Lord Rama was Bhagavan , the Supreme Being or Absolute Truth, possessing a personality (a personal God).

Tulsidas regarded Lord Rama not only as an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, but also of Brahm, the supreme world spirit.

According to J. M. Macfie, one of the most beautiful expressions of Tulsidas's faith in God and in Ram as the incarnation of God can be found in the following statement


The Adorable (Bhagavan) is one, passionless, formless, nameless, unborn, existence, thought, joy (sachchidanand) , the supreme abode.

He pervades all things. He exists in all forms. He assumes a body and performs many deeds simply for the sake of those devoted to Him.

He is supremely merciful and full of love to His children, very affectionate to those who are His own, and in His compassion is not angry with them.

He is the restorer of that which is past, the protector of the humble, the sincere and powerful Lord.


Vedanta philosophy


The Vedantic philosophy understands saccidānanda as a synonym of the three fundamental attributes of Brahman.

In the Advaita Vedanta school of Hindu philosophy, a person who fully lives Brahman (24 hours a day) is called a jivanmukta.


Modern Hinduism



In Sri Aurobindo's evolutionary vision of the soul and the Universe, of which saccidānanda is the principal term, even though the soul is incarnate in maya and subject to space, matter and time, it maintains an ongoing and eternal oneness with saccidānanda or divinity.

This incarnating aspect or dimension of the human being, the spirit-soul, or the 'psychic being' or chaitya purusha, is the staple essence that reincarnates from life to life. This essence is of the energetic quality of saccidānanda.

Aurobindo holds that there exists a supreme power, the 'Supermind', which is the first emanation from saccidānanda and can be brought into play through the practice of yoga to yoke life,

mind and matter with sublime states of consciousness, being, delight and power and thereby manifest more of our inherent divinity.