Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi     1531 posts


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OUR WHOLE TROUBLE IS THAT WE ARE CREDULOUS

A visitor had given Bhagavan a piece of paper on which he had scribbled in pencil a number of questions. When I went into the hall about 3 p.m., Bhagavan was trying to decipher them and turning round to me said, “Here is a question paper.”

Question : How to get rid of credulousness? The visitor’s problem was that he starts with some ideal recommended to him, but when others come and recommend other ideals, he feels inclined to believe them and give up his old ideals.

Bhagavan: Yes. Yes. Our whole trouble is that we are credulous. We believe in everything except the reality. We must give up all our false beliefs, and that is the only thing we have to do. Then the reality will shine by itself.

Question : I start with great keenness towards some ideal. But gradually I get slack. What should I do to prevent it, and what is the reason for this happening?

Bhagavan: Just as there must have been a reason for your keenness at one time, there must be a reason for getting slack also later on.

Question : There are a number of spiritual teachers, teaching various paths. Whom should one take for one’s Guru?

Bhagavan: Choose that one where you find you get shanti or peace.
Question : What is the meaning of ‘Om’?
Bhagavan: ‘Om’ is everything. It is another name for Brahmam.

- Devaraja Mudaliar in' DAY BY DAY WITH BHAGHAVAN '

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In the vast ocean of cause and effect, actions happen and impermanent results follow. If one takes them as ‘my’ actions the idea of having a free will gets stronger. This sense of personal doership gives rise to a feeling of guilt or pride and effectively blocks the spiritual understanding that everything happens according to the will of God.

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Every place is a place of arrival,
every place is true home for the practitioner.

There is nothing that is not deep and wonderful,
there is nothing that is not liberated.

The most noble person is the person who has nothing to do.
The only thing you should avoid is thinking
about what you are going to do.
All you need to do is be an ordinary person,
be sovereign wherever you are and
use that place as your seat of awakening.

You should live your lives in a very natural way.
Do not put on airs.
When it is necessary to walk, walk.
When it is necessary to sit, sit.

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The Self is like a powerful magnet within us. It draws us gradually to Itself, though we imagine we are going to It of our own accord: when we are near enough, It puts an end to our activities, makes us still, and then swallows up our personal current, thus killing our wrong personality. It overwhelms the intellect and overfloods the whole being. We think we are meditating upon It and developing towards It, whereas the truth is that we are iron filings and It is the Atman-magnet that is pulling us towards Itself. Thus the process of finding the Self is a form of Divine magnetism.

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You are perfect and complete, so abandon the idea of incompleteness. There is nothing to be destroyed. Ahankara, the individual 'I', is not a real thing. It is the mind that makes the effort and the mind is not real. Just as it is not necessary to kill a rope that one imagines to be a snake, so also there is no need to kill the mind. Knowing the form of the mind makes the mind disappear. That which is forever non-existent is already removed.

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This Self-awareness never decays. It is unrelated to anything. It is Self-luminous.

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D.: But the mind slips away from our control.

M.: Be it so. Do not think of it. When you recollect yourself bring it back and turn it inward. That is enough.

No one succeeds without effort. Mind control is not one’s birthright. The successful few owe their success to their perseverance.

A passenger in a train keeps his load on the head by his own folly. Let him put it down: he will find the load reaches the destination all the same. Similarly, let us not pose as the doers, but resign ourselves to the guiding Power.

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The idea of time is only in your mind. It is not in the Self. There is no time for the Self. Time arises as an idea after the ego arises. But you are the Self beyond time and space. You exist even in the absence of time and space.

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There is a state beyond our efforts or effortlessness. Until it is realised effort is necessary. After tasting such Bliss, even once, one will repeatedly try to regain it. It is as difficult for a jnani to engage in thoughts as it is for an ajnani to be free from thoughts.

Turn your vision inwards and the whole world will be full of the Supreme Spirit. The world is said to be illusion. Illusion is really Truth. Even the material sciences trace the origin of the universe to some primordial matter... subtle, exceedingly subtle.

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Ye who wish to celebrate the birthday, seek ye first whence was your birth. That indeed is one’s birthday on which one is born as the birthless and deathless Eternal Being.

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If a person overlooks the faults of others, and sees only their merits, and thus keeps his mind serene, his whole life will be happy.
To be unconcerned in all things, with the mind cool, free of desires and without hate, is beautiful in a seeker.

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'I am Brahman' (Aham Brahmasmi )is only a thought.
Who says it?
Brahman himself does not say so.

What need is there for him to say it?
Nor can the real 'I' say so.
For 'I' always abides as Brahman. So it is only a thought.
Whose thought is it?
All thoughts come from the unreal 'I', that is the 'I-thought'.
Remain without thinking.
So long as there is thought, there will be fear.

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REPEATING THE HIGHEST MANTRA

If you find the vichara marga [the path of self-enquiry] too hard, you can go on repeating 'I', 'I', and that will lead you to same goal. There is no harm in using 'I' as a mantra. It is the first name of God. (Day by Day with Bhagavan, 8th May 1946)

A housewife who complained that self-enquiry was too hard and that she had no time for meditation received a similar answer:

If you can do nothing more, at least continue saying 'I', 'I' to yourself all the time, as advised in Who Am I?, whatever you may be doing, and whether you are sitting, standing or walking, 'I' is the name of God. It is the first and greatest of all mantras. (Day by Day with Bhagavan, 28th June 1946)

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Even though the reality of the Self has been stated in many ways, it remains untold. The Self is known only by actual experience. That experiential Awareness of the Self is prevented by the mind due to the firmly established conviction that 'I am the body, ego/mind.'

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This ‘I’-thought is not pure. It is contaminated with the association of the body and senses. See to whom the trouble is. It is to the ‘I’-thought. Hold it. Then the other thoughts vanish.

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It is not the eyes that see. There is one who sees through the eyes.

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DON'T FIGHT - JUST WATCH

There is only one way to ovecome the ghost...to watch it. Do not fight, do not resist. Only try to watch it, quietly but ceaselessly. In other words, develop an unconcerned witness- consciousness towards men, things and happenings without, but particularly towards yourself within. It means to carry on the calmness of the mind gained in your meditation to cover your whole day. You will distinctly feel it as an undercurrent of peace and detachment.

Of course, as soon as you succeed, the ghost-‘I’ will immediately try to hide itself in this witness-consciousness at the feeling ‘I am the witness’. This again is only a thought. But to be the witness without any I-consciousness is the pure mind at the threshold of Reality.

While following the transformation of your personal ‘I’ into the impersonal ‘witnessing’, you cut at the root of all your ‘personal’ shortcomings, vices and weaknesses, your passions and evil habits, because the root of all this unpleasant ‘you’ is just that personal ‘I’. Try to imagine yourself in the mood of the ‘unconcerned witness’ described above, and you will see that in that state it is impossible to think or act in a negative way, because in that mood you are, though only momentarily, beyond the personal ‘I’. Your sadhana is to keep yourself permanently in the state of ‘detached witnessing’ of all and everything, including the personal ‘I’ when and wherever it should try to raise its head.
In the silent Light of being witnessed it cannot survive. Such ‘witnessing’ will soon grow into pure Awareness, aware only of Itself.

In the words of Ramana Maharshi: “The Truth is that the Self is constant and unintermittent Awareness.” (Talks, 454)


' Lucy Cornelssen, 'Hunting the ‘I’

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DIRECT PERCEPTION

Another devotee asked a similar question a little later and Bhagavan gave a similar reply:
Question: Why cannot the Self be perceived directly?
Bhagavan: Only the Self is said to be directly perceived, pratyaksha. Nothing else is said to be pratyaksha.
Although we are having this pratyaksha, the thought 'I am this body' is veiling it. If we give up this thought, the Atma, which is always within the direct experience of everyone, will shine forth.

Those who do not realise the Truth will be lost in the play of maya.

644 Swarupa, being-consciousness, exists and shines uninterruptedly in the Heart. Those who do not clearly realise it through subtle [inward] attention will tarry and be lost in play of maya through suttarivu, which is the rising of the ego, the onslaught of extreme delusion.

GURU VACHAKA KOVAI

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PLEASURE BORNE OF SENSE OBJECTS IS DUE TO DELUSION

Question- If the Self is always pleasing and so are sense-objects at the time of enjoyment, let them also be regarded as pleasing.

Shri Ramana Maharshi answers-

The delight in any object is not lasting but what is now delightful soon yields its place to another more so. There are degrees of pleasure and succession of the objects liked. The pleasure in objects is only wanton and not steady. This is possible only if the pleasure is born of one's own delusion and not of the intrinsic value of the objects. For example, see how a dog chews a dry, marrowless bone until blood comes out of the wounds in its mouth, fancies that the taste of its own blood to be that of marrow of the bone and will not part with it. Should it find another similar bone, it drops down the one in its mouth and takes the other. In the same way, superimposing his own joyful nature on the detestable objects of fancy, the man delights in them by mistake, for joy is not their nature. Owing to the ignorance of man the objects which are really painful by nature seem to be pleasing. This seeming pleasure does not remain steady in one object but often shifts to other objects; it is wanton, graded, and not absolute, whereas the Joy of the Self is not captious.Even when the body etc., are cast off, this joy endures in the Self for ever; it is also absolute. Therefore the Self is Supreme Bliss. So far the Being-Knowledge-Bliss nature of the Self has been established.

- Advait Bodh Deepika(by Sri Ramanashram)

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The state of being is permanent and the body and world are not. They are fleeting phenomena passing on the screen of being-consciousness which is eternal and stationary.

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Mourning is not the index of true love. It betrays love of the object, of its shape only. That is not love. True love is shown by the certainty that the object of love is in the Self and that it can never become non-existent.

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However evil-minded other people may appear to you, it is not proper to hate or despise them. Likes and dislikes, love and hatred are equally to be eschewed. It is also not proper to let the mind often rest on objects or affairs of mundane life. As far as possible one should not interfere in the affairs of others.

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A visitor asked, “What should one, who is an absolute beginner, do in this (i.e., spiritual) line?”

Bhagavan: The very fact that you put this question shows you know what to do. It is because you feel the want of peace, that you are anxious to take some steps to secure peace. Because I have a little pain in my foot, I am applying this ointment.

Visitor: What is the method to be adopted for securing peace?

B: The conception that there is a goal and a path to it, is wrong. We are the goal or peace always. To get rid of the notion that we are not peace is all that is required.

V: All books say that the guidance of a Guru is necessary.

B: The Guru will say only what I am saying now. He will not give you anything you have not already. It is impossible for anyone to get what he has not got already. Even if he gets any such thing, it will go as it came. What comes will also go. What always is will alone remain. The Guru cannot give you anything new, which you have not already. Removal of the notion that we have not realised the Self is all that is required. We are always the Self. Only, we don’t realise it.
The Asramam compounder asked some questions about his experiences during meditation. Bhagavan explained that the Self is the one reality that always exists and it is by its light all other things are seen. We forget it and concentrate on the appearances. The light in the hall burns, both when persons are present there and when they are absent, both when persons are enacting something as in a theatre and when nothing is being enacted. It is the light which enabled us to see the hall, the persons and the acting. We are so engrossed with the objects or appearances revealed by the light that we pay no attention to the light. In the waking state or dream state, in which things appear, and in the sleep state, in which we see nothing, there is always the light of consciousness or Self, like the hall-lamp always burning. The thing to do is to concentrate on the seer and not on the seen, not on the objects, but on the Light which reveals them.

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To all deep thinking minds, the enquiry about the ‘I’ and its nature has an irresistible fascination.

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