Swami Dayananda Saraswati

Are you really seeking security or are you seeking freedom from insecurity?

“It is a very important question. Who wants crutches? Who is the person who wants crutches? The one who cannot stand on one’s own legs. As long as you are insecure on your legs, you want crutches, you need crutches. The one who is secure does not need them. Crutches are not a part of your outfit. You do not dress up nicely and don some crutches also! No. People need crutches only when they feel insecure on their own legs. The more you need crutches, the more insecure you feel. Tell me now, do you want crutches or do you want freedom from insecurity?

Nobody wants crutches. The more crutches you have, the more insecure you are. And there are many crutches. Finances are crutches, name is a crutch, fame is a crutch, power is a crutch, community is a crutch. All these are crutches. You want to become a member of a community so that you will feel good, which is why all cults will tell you, “You are special.” Somebody is there to keep you under their control, telling you that you are someone special, that it is you against many.

When we seek security, it means we feel insecure. There is nothing wrong or right here. We are only trying to understand what is going on. We are not making any judgement that this person is right and the other one is wrong. ‘Right and wrong’ is not the point. What we are trying to get at is, we feel insecure about ourselves. Being self-conscious, the human being is insecure. And there are definitely reasons for this sense of insecurity, but they seem valid according to the person.

We are going to analyse these reasons that seem to be very valid. We are going to question their validity by seeing thoroughly the fallacy of all those arguments that seem to support the sense of insecurity. If they do not have a standing, they fall apart; naturally, the insecurity also goes away along with them.

It is important to understand that you are not seeking security. You cannot stand being insecure. It means you are seeking freedom from insecurity. When you seek freedom from insecurity, should you seek security or should you question, “Why am I insecure?” When you seek security, you are taking youself for granted as someone who is insecure; you have already concluded that you are insecure.

Now, how real is this conclusion? What are the reasons for it? All these we analyse. That is the viveka here. “Am I really insecure, or is something else insecure which I take to be myself, and then feel insecure?”” – Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Tattvabodhah

‘Tattvabodha’ means knowledge, bodha, of reality, tattva.

“‘Tattva‘ means generally the ‘ness’, the essential nature of anything, the truth of it. Here it is used in the sense of the ultimate truth. When we say that tattva is the ultimate truth, there is a definitive meaning for it.

There is a truth, tattva, for everything. The pot has pot-ness as its truth because without the pot-ness there is no pot. And the pot-ness itself does not exist without a substantive, which, for a clay pot, is clay. So does the clay have pot-ness? Clay cannot have pot-ness as its truth; it can only have clay-ness. Therefore, pot-ness is an incidental attribute to clay. Clay-ness itself is an incidental attribute because clay cannot exist without being atoms. It being so, clay-ness is an incidental attribute to atoms, and those atoms themselves have atom-ness, which are incidental attribute to particals.

As we analyse the truth of something, we keep finding that it is not the truth of that thing. And if we arrive at a truth that is not an incidental attribute, which itself is the truth, then it would be the ultimate truth.” – Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Tattvabodhah

a relative puruṣārtha

“…freedom from limitation, freedom from insecurity, and freedom from being unhappy is the puruṣārtha. There is only one puruṣārtha that is sought after by all. Who is not seeking it? But there is no viveka. Even though everybody is seeking mokṣa, they do not know they are seeking mokṣa. And so, there is confusion.

The fallacy in the conclusion that I am insecure is not discerned. That I am seeking freedom from insecurity is not discerned, and because of that, I seek security. That I am seeking freedom from being unhappy is not discerned, so I seek myself as the happy person by manipulating the world or manipulating the mind. Somebody manipulates the mind, somebody manipulates the world – both of them are saṃsārins. One tries to manipulate the mind, but in fact, the mind manipulates the person.That one wants to manipulate the mind is dictated by the very mind. The mind makes the person manipulate the mind, really.” – Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Tattvabodhah


ISBN: 978-9380049434

“‘Tattvabodha‘ means knowledge, bodha, of reality, tattva. ‘Tattva’ means generally the ‘ness, ‘the essential nature of anything the truth of it. Here, it is used in the sense of the ultimate truth. When we say that tattva is the ultimate truth, there is definitive meaning for it. Tattvabodha helps you appreciate the beauty, profundity and vastness of the vision of Vedanta. Trust this will suffice.

I teach Tattvabodha as an introductory text in a long-term study program of Vedanta. With pithy definitions, the text completely covers the various terms and topics. As a book of Vedanta also Tattvabodha is an eye-opener in terms of human problems and their solutions” – Swami Dayananda Saraswati