The word God mostly come with Religions. The real philosophers accept the fact that; Indian Philosophy is godless. To dig deeper into Hiranyagarbha Yoga Darshana, let’s understand a few facts.
There lies a strong misconception by scholars regarding Hiranyagarbha Yoga. They have inferred Hiranyagarbha to be a person or a god (deity). It is not the proper stuff to consider. Ancient metaphysical texts of the Upanishads didn’t focus on multiple Gods. Hiranyagarbha is not one of the gods.
The concept of ‘Bhagawan’ and Devta came into existence in Puranic Time. But, due to political and religious influences, the majority of Indians see things through western lenses and say we have multiple Gods. Bhagawan means, the luckiest one or the blessed one, and Devta means beings living in the plane called ‘Dhyu Loka’.
The praise for Devtas, Brahma, the creator, Vishnu the preserver, and Rudra the destroyer is another fact in Puranas. However, in Puranas when sages used to ask them, you people are always in meditation, whom do you meditate. Without any doubt, they used to say its cosmic mother, or Nirgun Brahman (Adi-Parashakti). This itself has a great relation with Hiranyagarbha Yoga of understanding reality.
Nirgun literally means ‘Without Multiplication’, so how come the relationship between multiplication and meditation manifests? It’s confusing, right?
No, not at all. When people listen to others without questioning that is nothing more than ‘Andha Bhakti’ or ‘Blind Faith’. It is common with maximum westerners, easterners, and also so-called modern liberals too. The Nirgun points to the thing/not-thing which stands still without any dualities and cannot be multiplied further. As per the Sankhya, there are three Gunas namely, Sattwa, Rajas, and Tamas. Sattwa means, acceptance, Tamas means Rejection/Ignorance, and Rajas means the bond without acceptance or rejection, like politics or which stands naturally in the environment. These three multiply in people through the ‘Maya (cosmic illusion)’. This Maya is the main thing that makes you grow, live, and die in a similar pattern.
As a human being, when there is no ‘Maya’ in person, only one thing exists that is ‘A Child inside the mother’s womb or Garbha’, a Nirgun form without any dualities and without the feelings of three Gunas.
Now, this is the metaphor used for Hiranyagarbha Yoga. Let’s see how?
It’s in the form of an egg and when it comes out, Maya envelopes the child. In reality, the egg is getting mature through the multiplication of consciousness like Acceptance or Sattwa (you accept, you are male-female and many more), Ignorance (You ignore various things because you don’t understand many kinds of stuff), and Rajas (you enjoy through the use of sense organs).
This is consciousness that slowly matures in Space and Time. However, it slowly reverses back and you start losing all the consciousness because of old age. There is eventually death. Post-death, the consciousness, and collected body dissolve into the mother earth and cosmos.
Combinedly, mother Earth and the cosmos is the Hiranyagarbha where you, your mother, and everyone matured through Hiranyagarbha itself. See, the video of the egg story below. This Hiranyagarbha is the mother of all, the whole system of intelligence and the universe also called Brahm-Anda (Egg of the Brahman). However, as per the Upanishadic principle of ‘Brahman’, from which Brahm-Anda arises, there is an inference; within every object which had ever manifested in past, present, and future, there exists the same Principle
This idea is hard to grasp but, if you think in the sense of ‘Reality’ of Indian Philosophy, you can grasp the context. Let’s understand more.
The Hiranyagarbha Yoga Darshana is a perception of metaphysical reality. As an adult, the perception of reality varies with an individual. This perception is the main reason for which we see the world. Some cells in the eyes capture the light and make us see, is the object we see reality? Something in Skin captures the touch sensation, is the object we touch a reality? Some object in the ear captures the sound sensation, is the sound which we hear the reality? Something in the tongue captures the taste, is the taste a reality? These are the perceptions of our sense organs.
So there exist only particles and laws of physics in the reality or the principle of ‘Tatvam Asi’ of the Upanishads. This again makes an inference in the sense of ‘Tattwas’ or the Physical Particles so that ‘Tatvam Asi’ translates to a phrase ‘that is a particle’ which holds great meaning. It can be known through Upanishads and Vedas.
However, this idea rises to ‘Nihilism’, where the existence of human beings becomes useless. It is only the manifestation of the same principle. This principle itself is ‘Nirgun’ or no form. This is certainly the base and ‘Hiranyagarbha Yoga Darshana’
The characteristics within an individual arise only through sensations caused by ‘Indriyas’ (Senses) which is personified as Lord Indra. In Puranas too sages tried to present this through stories. Puranas says, by avoiding the ‘Apsaras’ (angels) sent by Indra, sages used to achieve the final destination of reality i.e. truth or the Hiranyagarbha Yoga ( Union with Hiranyagarbha). These Apsaras are pleasures of the senses which needs to be avoided in spirituality. Naturally, it is tough, however personally as per my experiences I would say the ‘Vipassana’ technique of Buddhism works in controlling the senses. It is an idea where you understand the senses to avoid them for spiritual gains.
Beyond Indriyas there is a realization that the world in which we live is nothing but growth and destruction, this multiplies by Maya but is the same in all. This Maya keeps things in a similar pattern such that an electron revolves around its leader nucleus, a planet revolves around the leader star and beings revolve around their leader. On the finer scale, these all multiplications occur through Maya and the thing that is multiplied is ‘Tattwa’.
The basic idea of Hiranyagarbha Yoga in Indian Philosophy is to keep the perception of Hiranyagarbha or Reality only because the perception of Maya will rise to multiplication which itself is another Maya. To keep a balance between Maya and Brahman, there is a concept of Dharma. You can visit Scientific Monk to read more stuff.
Disclaimer: The inferences on Hiranyagarbha Yoga are solely made by the author based on the facts and philosophy.
Video of Egg Story: Credits Given below.