Chapter 1 Verse 2
Sri Ashtavakra answers - If you wish to attain liberation, give up the passions (desires for sense objects) as poison. Practice forgiveness, simplicity, compassion, contentment and truth as nectar . ॥1.2॥
As we have seen in the last verse, King Janak asks Astawakra about Liberation, Non-Attachment and Knowledge. The answer given by Astavakra constitutes this verse and next few verses. Here astavakra answers about Liberation. In a way these three words Liberation, Non-Attachment and Knowledge are related each other. Once we attain the non-attachment, we will attain liberation automatically and once we know the way to attain these two, knowledge of that way is nothing but the knowledge. The knowledge to attain happiness.
To attain liberation we have consider longing to sense pleasures as poison. This is in a way detachment. And practice the things like forgiveness, simplicity, compassion, contentment and truth. Practicing these things is equivalent to non-attachment or it gives rise to non-attachment.
The big question arises here if I practice non-attachment, isn't it equivalent to longing to non-detachment. Here it seems like a vicious loop, vicious cycle. Longing for non-attachment gives rise to attachment, defeating our very purpose of non-attachment.
In fact there is way to practice non-attachment, to practice anything for that matter. Here the concepts of attached karma, detached karma and non-karma comes into the picture. Attached karma is karma with expectation, detached karma is karma without expectation. And non-karma is no karma at all.
Therefore the key is practicing detached karma for non-attachment. But again the question arises how? How to practice it?. Further in this book in upcoming verses that "How"is answered. For the time being when we undertook karma as a Person - It is attached karma. When we undertook Karma as an impression, as a whole it is detached karma. Karma with doer is attached karma, karma with expectation. Karma without doer is non-attached karma, karma without expectation. There concepts are explained in detail in the future verses.