From the Yogavasistha: How old is Bhushandi?

In the Yogavasistha, when Rishi Vasistha asks Bhushandi, the immortal crow, to share his life’s experiences, Bhushandi replies, “When it is time for dissolution, I reach beyond the universe and establish myself in the Supreme Soul through a nirvikalpa samadhi. When Lord Brahma creates the universe, I enter the universe again and reach my nest on this divine tree on Mt. Meru.” Bhushandi continues, “I have witnessed the cosmic creation many times, have seen the universe without the Sun and the Moon, and remember events from thousands of cycles of yugas. I have seen the Samudra-manthan (churning of the great ocean) twelve times, can recall the Mahabharata, Ramayana and all the scriptures, and am also aware of the literature that you will learn in the future. I know that this is your eighth birth and was actually expecting you to visit me in this birth.”

Earlier, when Vasistha asks Bhushandi how it is possible for him to continuously remain unaffected by his surroundings, Bhushandi replies, “I am contented in Paramatama and therefore never get deluded. Free from all thoughts of sorrow, my mind remains fixed in peace. I simply spend time in my nest and observe the entire kalpa (aeon) through pranayam and yoga. Neither do I wish to live, nor do I wish to die; I know that I will live tomorrow, just like I am living in the present moment.” Towards the end of their talk, Vasistha has only one thing to say, “O Lord of the birds, I have seen many great seers. But I have never met a jnani like you.”

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