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Advaya Taraka Upanishad

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Advaya Taraka Upanishad is otherwise known as Advayatarakopanishad. It is the 53rd Upanishad of Muktika Order. Also, it is one among the 19 Upanishads of Shukla Yajur Veda and one among the 20 Yoga Upanishads.

Moreover, it contains both prose and poetic verses, unlike other Upanishads which are poetic verses only.  

Advaya in Sanskrit indicates the oneness or the non-dual.  Besides, Taraka means rescue, liberate, or deliver. Hence, Advaya Taraka Upanishad means the Upanishad of the non-duality that liberates.

Furthermore, it is for the sake of the aspirant who has controlled his senses and has the six qualities of Sama (mental equilibrium), Dama (Self-control over actions), Uparati  (tolerance),  Titikaa  (happiness), Samadhana (one-pointedness)  and Shraddha (unconditional faith). 

Let us have a look at Advaya Taraka Upanishad.    

What is Taraka?  

Taraka is named as such because it enables one to dispel the fear of being stuck in the cycle of prenatal existence, birth, old age, and death. Abnegating all perceptible things by rejecting them as “not this”, and “not this”, at last one arrives at a final remaining. That final remaining is the Non-dual Brahman. Then comes the realization that Jiva and Isvara are the results of illusion.

Modes of Attainment

Three ways are available for the attainment.  

Internal Focus  

Sushumna Nadi which is the Nadi of Brahman exists in the middle of the body with the radiance of the Sun and the moon. It originates from Muladhara and extends up to Brahma Randhra. Somewhere in the midway between the two, the celebrated Kundalini exists with the radiance of the multitudes of lightning and in a tender form like a thread of a lotus stalk.

The mere sight of it through the mind will make the yogi free from all the sins. If it is visible during the exercise of Taraka Yoga through Ajna Chakra constantly, he becomes a Siddha or an adept.

When the two ear holes are blocked by the tips of the forefingers, a sound resembling “poo” is generated. If the mind is attuned to this and his internal sight is directed towards the center of the eyes, he sees a blue radiance there. Having seen this, he succeeds in internal Focus which results in the bliss of wonderful quality. Likewise in his heart.

This is how the internal Focus is put into practice by the yogi who is seeking liberation.  

External Focus  

If one sees the color of blue with a bordering of indigo, then, blood red and orange at the ethereal space in front of his nose at a distance of four, six, eight, ten, and twelve Angulas, he becomes an adept.  

When he directs his sight toward the ethereal sky or casts his eyes sideways, an adept yogi can see the beam of radiance in resemblance to molten gold in his range of vision.  

When such sight is fixed at a distance of 12 Angulas, he becomes immortal. Wherever he is, the radiance is seen over his head.    

Intermediate Focus  

Here comes the intermediate Focus. At daybreak, the yogi sees the disc of the sun with multicolored beams of fire and the mid-ethereal region without these. He stands with a form identical to mid ether region.

By constant practice of this, the ether devoid of qualities ensues. The deep darkness of the ether comes into the lightening radiance of Taraka form. The ether radiates and shines like a cascade of fire. It shines like the effulgence of thousands of suns.

Then the five others, both external and internal, are visible to the Focus of the Taraka Yogi. On seeing it, he gets freedom from the qualities like that of the ether. Hence this Focus of Taraka makes the yogi attain non-mindedness.  

Kinds of Taraka  

Taraka consists of two stages. The first is with the mind and the second one is the without mind.  

It can also be said that this type of yoga is two-fold based on methods used and goals reached. The former one is Taraka and the latter one is the Amanaska or non-mindedness.

(Note: Focus is not possible without the mind. We know, that Taraka involves three types of Focuses which result in Non-mindedness. We have to use the mind to attain non-mindedness.)

The Sun and the moon in the universe are reflected in the pupils of the eyes. These two pairs of solar and lunar discs as reflected in the eyes should be contemplated as the same as the Sun and moon of the universe.

With such contemplation, it is not possible for the play of the senses. Hence Taraka is possible only with the focus of the internal Sun and Moon with external Sun and Moon.  

Another classification of Taraka is Murti-Taraka and Amurti Taraka. That which involves the sense is Murti-Taraka and that transcends the eye-brows is Amurti Taraka.

(Note: Murti Taraka involves the mind and senses whereas Amurti Taraka involves the mind alone).

In both cases, the mind is involved. With Tarakas, the Sat Chit Ananda or the Brahman is found. Hence Brahman is knowable using Focus with the help of the eye of the mind. It holds good for Amurti Taraka also.

With mind only it is possible to know about Dhakarasa and other minute types of ether. Only by the eyes and mind along with Atman, these subtle perceptions, internal or external, are achieved. Hence Focus with the aid of mind is the prerequisite for the manifestation of Taraka.


Radiance manifests when one focuses the sight in between the eyebrows.  This is Taraka. By conjoining the mind with the radiance, he should carefully lift the eyebrows a little above. This is Murti-Taraka.    


Above the root of the palate, a great effulgence of light is there. This should be meditated upon by the yogis which bestow with supernatural powers like Anima and the like.

Shambhavi Mudra  

In both of the Focuses, the eyes are devoid of the power of opening and closing. This Mudra is Shambhavi Mudra (Mudra of Sambhu or Lord Siva). Being the residence of yogis assuming this Mudra, the Earth has become holy.

By their mere look, all the worlds become holy. Those who have had the opportunity of worshipping such yogis become liberated.    

The outcome of Internal Focus  

The radiance of the Internal Focus is of its own (non-dual) Form. By the instructions of the competent Guru or Acharya, the Internal Focus becomes the radiance of the thousand-petalled lotus (Sahasradala Padma) or the effulgence of Cit (glory of consciousness) hidden in the cavity of Buddhi (Intelligence part of the mind) or the Turya- Chaitanya (the fourth consciousness) abiding in the sodasanta.

(Note: Sodasanta is the sixteenth end which is situated at the sixteenth Angula from the Crest wherein Turya-Chaitanya resides).

It depends on the grace of the Guru.    

Who is a Guru or Acharya?  

A guru is well-versed in Vedas, is a worshipper of Lord Vishnu, is free from spiteful qualities, knows yoga, stands on the path of yoga, is always in yoga, is a pure one, has the devotion to his Guru and has special knowledge of Purusa.  

The syllable “Gu” indicates darkness and “ru” indicates dispeller. Guru, who is the dispeller of darkness, is named as such.

Guru is Brahman only. He alone is the Supreme goal. Besides, He alone is the wisdom that transcends. He alone is the last resort.   Moreover, He alone is the limit at the end. He alone is the greatest wealth. For the reason that he teaches THAT (the non-dual Brahman), he is considered as being greater than all the Gurus.    

Benefits of studying this Upanishad    

One, who causes to read this Upanishad even once, is delivered from the cycle of births and deaths. At once, all of his sins accumulated over the births are destroyed.

The desires of his heart become a reality. Hence, he who knows this attains the ultimate aim of human existence.

Thus ends Advaya Taraka Upanishad.

Om Tat Sat!

Sanskrit Text Reference

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