Celibacy/Abstinence/Bodhisattva Vow


Dear Sir,

In Mahayana Buddhism, there is a concept called the Bodhisattva Vow. This vow is a commitment to delay one's own final liberation from the cycle of birth and death to return to the world to work towards the liberation of all beings. The Bodhisattva puts off his own liberation until all beings have been saved from suffering. Is this an actual choice one can make? Would this choice be available to any individual regardless of one's spiritual path?


Ron D.

After the Yogi attains to 'Kaivalya' (self-realization), he becomes a 'Jivanmukta' (liberated, though occupying the physical vehicle). Then, the one who made choices is gone. The one who wanted or did not want something is gone. Pure cosmic consciousness, free from all desires alone remains. The Lord alone functions from such a body. Who then remains to return or make choices? {The Ego having vacated}. Where can HE go or not go, HIM occupying all space, time and beyond?

That which the Lord wills alone transpires through such a being, which may be called HIS seamless extension, for the purpose of understanding. If it is in HIS plan to stay in that body till dissolution of the cycle, for the benefit of mankind, it happens. Else, it does not.

If commitments are made by a 'Jiva' (however advanced it may be), it indicates that the entity making such commitments (Ego) is still alive (however minuscule be the degree). Therefore, it is to be known that such a being which exercises choices has not yet fully merged with the Godhead or attained the final state (call the state by what name one may), beyond which there are no other states.

The full blown realized soul is incapable of exercising any personal choice (there being no one to do so) and is hence a direct extension of the cosmic being. HE alone works from such a body.

ॐ तत् सत्
(That Supreme being is the absolute truth)  


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The term 'Yoga' is a derivative of the Samskruth verb 'Yuj' which refers to union. 'Yoga', also called 'Brahma vidy‚' is the eternal dissolution of the individual 'Aham' (Ego) into the Atman (self) for 'Mukti' (liberation). Mere indulgence in '¬sana' or physical postures is not Yoga. ¬sana is only one limb or 'Anga' of Yoga. The eight limbs viz. Yama, Niyama, ¬sana, Pr‚n‚y‚ma, Praty‚h‚ra, Dh‚rana, Dhy‚na and Sam‚dhi are the means to Yoga. Brahmacharya or spiritually based continence is one of the important components of 'Yama'. 'Brahmacharya':- "Brahmani charyathey ithi" - "To surrender one's Ego and go with the will of the Almighty."

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