"CHAUTHAA PADA": FOURTH STATE The three-qualitied Maya permeates the whole world (i.e., the whole world is in Maya's influence); (under the spell of Maya, the man) acts in ego, and loses his honor. But one who becomes Gurmukh comes to realize the Chauthaa Pada, the Fourth state (which is beyond the influence of Maya); he finds Sukh (Peace, ਆਤਮਕ ਆਨੰਦ, etc.) through the Lord's Name ||3|| (sggs 604). <><><><> Mirage seen in the desert is nothing but rising hot air, which gives the seer an illusion of water. When we see mirage as a river of water, we do not perceive the rising hot air. However, the moment we perceive the mirage to be the rising hot air, we do not see water in the mirage anymore! In other words, it is only when the division between the seer and seen is given up, we see the two as of one substance; leading to the Realization that there is only One Truth, all else is illusion - Mithiya! While in the dreaming state, the dream appears to be true to the dreamer. However, on waking he realizes that it was just a passing dream! On account of conditioned consciousness (false ego), the mirage-like phenomenal world of names and forms appears in the living entity. Each person experiences within himself whatever his desires and fears (Vaasnaas, intoxication with Maya, etc.) has given rise to. In reality, this world appearance is nothing but a long dream, which appears to be permanent in the state of mental delusion. ਜੈਸੇ ਜਲ ਤੇ ਬੁਦਬੁਦਾ ਉਪਜੈ ਬਿਨਸੈ ਨੀਤ ॥ ਜਗ ਰਚਨਾ ਤੈਸੇ ਰਚੀ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਸੁਨਿ ਮੀਤ ॥੨੫॥ ਪ੍ਰਾਨੀ ਕਛੂ ਨ ਚੇਤਈ ਮਦਿ ਮਾਇਆ ਕੈ ਅੰਧੁ ॥ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਭਜਨ ਪਰਤ ਤਾਹਿ ਜਮ ਫੰਧ ॥੨੬॥ Jaise jal te bodbodaa upjai binsai neet. Jag rachnaa tesai rachee kahu Nanak sun meet ||25|| Praanee kashoo n chetaee mada Maya kai andh. Kahu Nanak bin har bhajan parat taahi jam fandh ||26||: Says Nanak! O my friend! Listen, as the bubbles in the water well up and disappear again, so is the (play of the) universe created (by the Lord). ||25|| But, blinded by Maya (from spiritual Life - ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਵਲੋਂ), the mortal does not think (about the spiritual Life - ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਬਾਰੇ) at all. Says Nanak, without the Lord's meditation, (such mortal) remains caught in the noose of Death (ਅਜਿਹੇ ਮਨੁੱਖ ਨੂੰ ਜਮਾਂ ਦੀਆਂ ਫਾਹੀਆਂ ਪਈਆਂ ਰਹਿੰਦੀਆਂ ਹਨ). ||26|| (sggs 1427). Time, space, action and matter are all but different aspects of the one Infinite Awareness, Waheguru. When we realize the diversity we see in us is illusory, then we understand that the one Infinite Consciousness which is alone is True. It is when we thus experience the real Truth Within, we become free of illusion. This state of Eternal Truth that lies beyond the apparatus of the body-mind-intellect is known as the Fourth State, Chauthaa Pada or Turiyaa Avasthaa (also spelt Turiya Avastha). ਤ੍ਰੈ ਗੁਣ ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹੁ ਪਸਾਰਾ ਸਭ ਵਰਤੈ ਆਕਾਰੀ ॥ ਤੁਰੀਆ ਗੁਣੁ ਸਤਸੰਗਤਿ ਪਾਈਐ ਨਦਰੀ ਪਾਰਿ ਉਤਾਰੀ ॥੨॥: Trai guna Maya moh pasaaraa sabh vartai aakaaree. Turiya Guna sat sangat paayeeai nadree paari utaaree ||2||: Attachment to the three-phased show of Maya pervades the world of objects. In the company of Sat (Truth), Turiya, the State of Supreme Awareness is attained; (Whosoever attains this Turiya Avasthaa) the merciful (God) carries (that person) across (from the world-ocean: ਸੰਸਾਰ-ਸਮੁੰਦਰ) ||2|| (sggs 1260). Literally, Chauthaa (or Chautha) means fourth or Turiya, and Pada means quarter, part, state, plane, etc. Thus, Chauthaa Pada means the Fourth State (of Consciousness or Absorption, ਆਤਮਕ ਦਰਜ, union with God, Higher Consciousness, the state that transcends Maya, etc.) It implies that there are three other fields of consciousness that precede the Fourth State. What are they? The materialistic philosophers, scientists or researchers generally have been reviewing life in one state of consciousness - the "waking-state". But, from a standpoint of Absolute Truth, the life and its experiences should be reviewed and interpreted in its entirety. To our amazement, the great ancient sages of India, Spiritual Masters, and their Word examine human life in its entirety as no philosophy in the past or present has ever done it. Their observations, experiences and findings help us dissect the whole of life and discover the Supreme Truth in it. Therefore, before analyzing the Fourth State, it is of utmost importance to understand the other three quarters of the consciousness. Otherwise, our understanding of this Fourth State of Consciousness will be absolutely incomplete. With the help of the Divine Guide of the Gurbani (SGGS), this Reflection will attempt to reflect on the following: Three states of consciousness Fourth state of consciousness Attaining the Fourth state Three States Of Consciousness For proper understanding of the totality of the subjective life of man, the ancient sages revealed that the human personality consists of "three bodies", namely the gross body (Sathul), the subtle body (Suksham), and the causal body (Karan). The gross body is made up of five elements, ten senses, the five vital airs (Praan), and four subtle inner faculties namely mind, intellect, consciousness, and egoity. The subtle body is made up of the mind, intellect, consciousness, egoity, and five elements. As the name implies, the causal body is the cause of other two bodies. Through Spiritual Inquiries (Vichaar), the ancient sages recognized that these three bodies are active in experiencing the outside world through the three facets of life, the state of waking (Jaagrat), the state of dream (Swapna), and the state of deep sleep (Sushupti). Even though the Aatmaan (ego, consciousness or Self) is the same in all states; but, due to material conditioning, we act differently in these states as though we in ourselves are three different entities. In other words, the Infinite Consciousness is one and the same, the Reality is one and the same, though it functions differently in the three planes of existence and, in these three states, it seems to gain three different sets of experiences. Accordingly, the waker in us seems to act different than the dreamer in us, and the ego manifesting through the sleeper in us seems to act different from both the waking and dream-state in us. ਚਾਰੇ ਬੇਦ ਕਥਹਿ ਆਕਾਰੁ ॥ ਤੀਨਿ ਅਵਸਥਾ ਕਹਹਿ ਵਖਿਆਨੁ ॥ ਤੁਰੀਆਵਸਥਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਹਰਿ ਜਾਨੁ ॥੧॥: Chaare beda kathahi vakhiaan. Teen avasthaa kahahi vakhiaan. Turiya Avasthaa satgur te jaan ||1||: The four Vedas describe the world of objects. They explain and expound three states of consciousness. The Turiyaa Avasthaa, the Fourth State of consciousness (union with the Lord), is known through the Satguru ||1|| (sggs 154). The first state called waking-state-ego, results from the false ego enjoying the expression of consciousness through the gross body. In the waking-state-ego, we are aware of our body, mind, and experiences gained in the external world of the sense-objects. To put it otherwise, in the waking-state the consciousness becomes dissipated through the mind and the sense organs in the external world of sense-objects and registers knowledge of them. That's all. To put it otherwise, while awake, the only enjoy known to man is these five fields of the objects of the five cognitive senses - forms, taste, sounds, smells, and touches. Hence, conditioned consciousness (false ego) confounded itself with the frame of the body, seeing through the ignorance of its own True Nature, perceives a world of sense-objects, and thus deluded by its own false perceptions, experiences the waking-state. Our knowledge of the world-of-objects in this state is the sum total of our perceptions gathered through our senses. The second field of consciousness, the dream-state-ego, results from the play of consciousness in the subtle body. When the same awareness playing in the outer world-objects withdraws and identifies itself with the subtle body, it creates a distinct personality called the dreamer, who has for its sphere of activity the world of dreams. In other words, the state of dreamer is created when the consciousness is withdrawn from the gross body and it functions through the subtle body. As the dreamer is unaware of the gross body, he functions in the world of dreams, because he is conscious only of the inner world of objects. The dream world is nothing but a mental creation of the dreamer himself. During the waking-state, the mind experiences the world of sense-objects and gathers impressions. During the dream-state, one part of the dreamer's mind observes these impressions in another portion of his own mind! In the third state, the deep-sleep-state-ego, the sleeper does not desire any sense-objects, nor does he see any dreams. It is the withdrawing of the consciousness from the gross (waking) and subtle (dream) bodies and functioning through the causal body that creates the state of deep-sleep. In other words, this state takes place when we are conscious of neither body nor the mind, therefore it is a state of living in which usual instruments of cognition are closed down! Here the Self identifies Itself with the causal body which is made up of nescience. The only thing we experience in deep-sleep-state is utter ignorance or negativity (void); for there is neither form, nor sound, nor smell, nor taste, nor touch. It illumines nothing in particular, except the one single idea: "nothingness". Here in the deep-sleep-state-ego, thus, the entire consciousness available in the human form is consolidated and conserved. As a result, there is no agitation in the mind, because none of the forces that create mental agitation and sorrows in the waking and dream states are present here. Therefore, in this state of homogeneous solid mass of Pure Consciousness, the Jeeva (individual being) experiences complete joy and bliss, by means of the subtle nescience. It is the gateway (cause) for the projection of consciousness into other two states of consciousness, the dream and the waking. For example, when the consciousness from the sleep-state is projected upwards, it illuminates the dream-state, and again, when the projection increases and come to the outer world, the same consciousness makes it possible for us to know the external world of sense-objects outside, in the waking-state-ego. The waking-state-ego and the dream-state-ego are conditioned by both cause and effect. Ignorance or non-apprehension of the Reality is the cause, and the resulting phenomenal world of names and forms is the effect. In the dream-state-ego, although we are unaware of the world of outer gross objects, but we are aware of the world of plurality or inner objects. The deep-state-ego is different than the waking and dream states in that it is conditioned by only the cause. Again, ignorance of the Self is the cause which gives rise to plurality, finitude, doubts, limitedness, and misunderstanding. There are no effects in the deep-sleep state as we are unaware of the multiple world of phenomenon. ਤੀਨਿ ਬਿਆਪਹਿ ਜਗਤ ਕਉ ਤੁਰੀਆ ਪਾਵੈ ਕੋਇ ॥: Teeni biaapahi jagat kaou turiya paavai koi: The world is in the grip of the three (qoalities of Maya); only a few attain the Turiyaa Avasthaa (Fourth State of Consciousness, union with God, etc.) (sggs 297). As we can see, it is relatively easy to understand the personality we are in a waking-state. With some conscious efforts, we can also grasp the personality of a dreamer in us. However, it is difficult for most of us to understand the sleeper in us. Because, in the deep-sleep-state neither the apertures of knowledge function, nor the knowledge acts. In it all experiences become unified or undifferentiated. The life thus include and incorporates in itself the waking-state, the dream-state, and the deep-sleep-state. Perhaps we can now appreciate the fact that if we analyze only the waking-state, as materialistic philosophers and scientists do, and try to understand the phenomenal world and our own nature in relation to it, we will be only trying to evaluate life by observing it partially. A wise jeweler will never buy a precious jewel before evaluating it from all its facets! All three states exist in the realm of Maya and its three Gunas or qualities - Saatav, Raajas, and Taamas. The combination of experiences of these three states of consciousness constitutes our individuality (Jeeva). The Divine Order (Hukam) enables man to go through these three states according to his Karma or actions. Just as the waves rise only to merge back into the ocean (Source), or water in the mirage disappears upon knowing its reality, similarly, when a devotee withdraws his false ego from the three states and engages in the deep meditation on the Divine Name of the Illuminating Principle, Waheguru, all three states fade out into the Turiyaa or Forth state.