Ultimate Freedom ~ Poem Inspired by Śankara

Adi Shankaracharya

Civil liberties and freedom are a hot topic now due to the oppressive actions by authorities and the technocracy that are increasingly exposing itself.

Since these “dark and destructive forces” are anxiously stirring up the hearts of many individuals, I thought I would share a poem on Ultimate Freedom…

Ultimate Freedom ~ Poem adapted by Dylan Smith from Adi Shankaracharya

Though he possesses a finite body, he remains unified with the Infinite.
His heart knows no anxiety.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Good and evil appear to exist in the world.
Persons and objects seem to be distant and distinct from each-other.
Nevertheless, he regards everything from the standpoint of equality, for he sees Brahman [Absolute Totality] in all.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Good or evil fortune may come.
He regards them both with indifference, and remains unaffected by either.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Because his mind is continually engaged in tasting bliss of Brahman, internal and external experiences are undifferentiated.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Life flows by: he watches it like an un-attached spectator.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Through his transcendental vision he has realised that there is no difference between man and Brahman - for he sees Brahman in every man.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

Holy men may honour him, evil men may insult him - his feelings are the same.
That is how you may know the man who is free.

River flows into the ocean, but the ocean is not disturbed.
He lives in the consciousness of the one Reality.
He is free indeed.


I have adapted this poem based on illuminating teachings by Adi Shankaracharya (शङ्कराचार्य), from his Viveka-Chūdamani (विवेक चूडामणि / Crest Jewel of Discrimination).

Related reading: Poem to Tulsi (Holy Basil) – The Holiest of Herbs


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