Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi     525 posts


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You should not give answers to the mind in the course of your enquiry. The reply should be allowed to come from within. The reply of the individual "I" is not real. Continue to enquire until you get the answer by the method of jnana-marga (the path of knowledge.) This enquiry is called meditation. The inactive, peaceful, full-of-knowledge experience that arises from this state is jnana.

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Fixing the mind in the Self alone so that the
unreal seed of delusion will die, is enquiry.

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The bubbles are different from one another and numerous, but the ocean is only one. Similarly the egos are many, whereas the Self is one and only one (Sri Ramana in Talk 146).

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‎'Being Still' is not an effortless state of indolence. All mundane activities which are ordinarily called effort are performed with the aid of a portion of the mind and with frequent breaks. But the act of communion with the Self (atma vyavahara) or remaining still inwardly is intense activity which is performed with the entire mind and without break. Maya (delusion or ignorance) which cannot be destroyed by any other act is completely destroyed by this intense activity which is called 'silence' (mouna).

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EKATMA PANCHAKAM ~~ FIVE VERSES ON THE SELF

When, forgetting the Self, one thinks
That the body is oneself and goes
Through innumerable births
And in the end remembers and becomes
The Self, know this is only like
Awaking from a dream wherein
One has wandered over all the world.

One ever is the Self. To ask oneself
`Who and whereabouts am I?'
Is like the drunken man's enquiring
`Who am I?' and `Where am I?'

The body is within the Self. And yet
One thinks one is inside the inert body,
Like some spectator who supposes
That the screen on which the picture is thrown
Is within the picture.

Does an ornament of gold exist
Apart from the gold? Can the body exist
Apart from the Self?
The ignorant one thinks `I am the body';
The enlightened knows `I am the Self'.

The Self alone, the Sole Reality,
Exists for ever.
If of yore the First of Teachers
Revealed it through unbroken silence
Say who can reveal it in spoken words?

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The essence of mind is only awareness or consciousness. When the ego, however, dominates it, it functions as the reasoning, thinking or sensing faculty. The cosmic mind being not limited by the ego, has nothing separate from itself and is therefore only aware. This is what the Bible means by "I am that I AM".

The ego-ridden mind has its strength sapped and is too weak to resist the torturing thoughts. The egoless mind is happy in deep, dreamless sleep. Clearly therefore Bliss and misery are only modes of mind; but the weak mode is not easily interchangeable with the strong mode. Activity is weakness and consequently miserable; passivity is strength and therefore blissful. The dormant strength is not apparent and therefore not availed of.

The cosmic mind, manifesting in some rare being, is able to effect the linkage in others of the individual (weak) mind with the universal (strong) mind of the inner recess. Such a rare being is called the GURU or God in manifestation.

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Ecstatic love ♥♥♥
*******************

Ramanatha brahmachari used to feed bhagavan with such love and devotion that bhagavan felt that he had been captured by his love.That is why bhagavan said on one occasion ," i am only afraid of two devotees,Ramanatha brahmachari and Mudhaliar paatti".It was not physical fear,it was more a feeling of helplessness.If a devotee has a strong ,burning love for his Guru,the Guru is compelled to do anything that the devotee asks."Bhagavan always felt apprehensive whenever ramanatha brahmachari appeared because he knew that he would be unable to resist any of his requests.Ramakrishna paramahamsa once expressed the same idea when he said: When you have attained ecstatic love you have found the rope to tie God with'.

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QUESTION: so would you say that Bhagavan was very tolerant of people who treated him badly?

ANNAMALAI SWAMY:

yes. He never responded in a negative way to criticism.Sometimes he would even laugh when people said bad things about him.He was indifferent to praise and blame.They didn't touch him.

When perumal swamy printed his insulting book about Bhagavan, Bhagavan simply said,keep the book in front of the ashram so that people can read it there.The good people won't believe it,but when the bad people read it,they will stay away and leave me in peace.'

This happened in the 1930s at a time when large crowds of people were started to come to ramanasramam.Perumal swamy did a good job of distributing the book himself,for many of the casual visitors from town stopped coming.It was a bit of a break for us because many people would just come at meal times,hoping to get a free meal. These free loaders were a disturbance for all of us.

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Concentration

Q: Is concentration one of the sadhanas (spiritual practices)?

M: Concentration is not thinking of one thing only. Rather, it is the putting off of all other thoughts, which obstruct the vision of our true nature. All our efforts are only directed towards lifting the veil of ignorance. Now it appears difficult to quell the thoughts, but in the regenerated state, it will be found more difficult to activate them! Why should we think of these things? There is the Self alone. Thoughts can function only if there are objects -- but there are no objects, so how can thoughts arise at all? Habit makes us believe that it is difficult to cease thinking. If this error were discovered, one would not be so foolish as to exert oneself unnecessarily.

Q: But the mind slips away from our control.

M: That may be so. Do not think of it. When you recollect, 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.

This message is from the book Conscious Immortality, Conversations with Sri Ramana Maharshi. Recorded by Paul Brunton and Munagala Venkartaramiah and published by Sri Ramanasramam.

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Visitor: Is the state of ‘being still’ a state involving effort or effortless?


It is not an effortless state of indolence. All mundane
activities which are ordinarily called effort are performed with
the aid of a portion of the mind and with frequent breaks.

But the act of communion with the Self (atma vyavahara) or
remaining still inwardly is intense activity which is performed
with the entire mind and without break.

Maya (delusion or ignorance) which cannot be destroyed
by any other act is completely destroyed by this intense activity
which is called ‘silence’ (mauna).

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Mrs Dhar desired to know how meditation could become steady.
MAHARSHI: What is meditation? It consists in expulsion of thoughts. All the present troubles are due to thoughts and themselves thoughts. That is happiness and also meditation.
DEVOTEE: How are thoughts given up?
M : The thoughts are for the thinker. Remain as the Self of the thinker and there is an end of thoughts.
Mr. Dhar asked Sri Bhagavan why Brahma, who is Perfection, creates and puts us to ordeals for regaining Him.
M : Where is the individual who asks this question? He is in the universe and included in the creation. How does he raise the question when he is bound in the creation? He must go beyond it and see if any question arises then.

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Q: People taking up meditation are said to be prone to illness. At any rate, I feel some pain. They say it is a test of God. Is this true?

Ramana Maharshi: There is no Bhagavan outside you and no test is therefore instituted. What you believe to be a test or a new disease as a result of spiritual practices is really the strain that is now put on your nerves and the five senses. The mind, which was hitherto operating through the nadis (a channel through which energy flows) in order to sense external objects, and had thus maintained a link between itself and the organs of perception etc., is now required to withdraw from the link. This action of withdrawal may naturally cause strain, a sprain attendant with pain. If you continue your meditation, your one thought being on understanding yourself or Self-realization, all these will go. There is no greater remedy than this continuous yoga or union with God or Atman.

The message is from the book Conscious Immortality, Conversations with Sri Ramana Maharshi. Recorded by Paul Brunton and Munagala Venkartaramiah and published by Sri Ramanasramam.

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Question : You say one can realize the Self by a search for it. What is the character of this search?
Ramana Maharshi : You are the mind or think that you are the mind. The mind is nothing but thoughts. Now behind every particular thought there is a general thought, which is the `I', that is yourself. Let us call this `I' the first thought. Stick to this `I'-thought and Question it to find out what it is. When this Question takes strong hold on you, you cannot think of other thoughts.

Question : When I do this and cling to my self, that is, the `I'-thought, other thoughts come and go, but I say to myself `Who am I ?' and there is no answer forthcoming. To be in this condition is the practice. Is it so?
Ramana Maharshi : This is a mistake that people often make. What happens when you make a serious quest for the Self is that the `I'-thought disappears and something else from the depths takes hold of you and that is not the `I' which commenced the quest.

Question : What is this something else?
Ramana Maharshi : That is the real Self, the import of `I'. It is not the ego. It is the Supreme Being itself.

Question : But you have often said that one must reject other thoughts when one begins the quest but the thoughts are endless. If one thought is rejected, another comes and there seems to be no end at all.
Ramana Maharshi : I do not say that you must go on rejecting thoughts. Cling to yourself, that is, to the `I'-thought. When your interest keeps you to that single idea, other thoughts will automatically get rejected and they will vanish.

Question : And so rejection of thoughts is not necessary?
Ramana Maharshi : No. It may be necessary for a time or for some. You fancy that there is no end if one goes on rejecting every thought when it rises. It is not true, there is an end. If you are vigilant and make a stern effort to reject every thought when it rises you will soon find that you are going deeper and deeper into your own inner self. At that level it is not necessary to make an effort to reject thoughts.

Question : Then it is possible to be without effort, without strain.
Ramana Maharshi : Not only that, it is impossible for you to make an effort beyond a certain extent.

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Talk 55.
D.: Can advaita be realised by japa of holy names; say Rama, Krishna, etc.?
M.: Yes.
D.: Is it not a means of an inferior order?
M.: Have you been told to make japa or to discuss its order in the
scheme of things?
Silence.

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Satsangh means association with Sat or Reality. One who knows or has realized Sat is also regarded as Sat. Such association is absolutely necessary for all. Sankara has said, “In all the three worlds there is no boat like satsangh to carry one safely across the ocean of births and deaths.”

"Gems From Bhagavan" - Chapter VII

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The following is verse 40 of “Reality in 40 Verses” by Sri Ramana Maharshi:

“If asked: ‘Which of these three is final liberation: - with form, without form, or with and without form?’ I say, ‘Liberation is the extinction of the ego which inquires ‘With form, without form, or with and without form?’”

Liberation is the extinction of the ego.
Liberation is the extinction of the ego that inquires.
Liberation is the extinction of the ego that speculates about what liberation is or is not.
Liberation is the extinction of the ego that wonders if the experience it has had is liberation or not.
Liberation is the extinction of the ego that imagines the Self has parts or qualities or aspects or form.
Liberation is the end of the ego that experiences.
Liberation is the end of experience.
Liberation is the end of the experiencer.

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SHOWING ADVAITA IN ACTIVITIES

84. Question: Sri Bhagavan has written that one should not show advaita (non-duality) in one's activities. Why so? All are one. Why differences?

Bhagavan: If you saw someone molesting a woman would you just let him go, thinking "All is one?" There is a scriptural story about this. Some people once gathered together to test whether it is true, as said in the Bhagavad Gita, that a jnani (realized being) sees everything as one. They took a Brahmin, (a member of the highest Hindu caste system), a cow, an elephant, and a dog to the court of King Janaka, who was a jnani. When all had arrived, King Janaka sent the Brahmin to the place of Brahmins, the cow to its shed, the elephant to the place allotted to elephants, the dog to its kennel. He then ordered his servants to take care of his guests and feed them all appropriate food. The people asked, "Why did you separate them individually? Is not everything one and the same for you?"

"Yes, all are one," replied Janaka, "but self-satisfaction varies according to the nature of the individual. Will a man eat the straw eaten by the cow? Will the cow enjoy the food that a man eats? One should only give what satisfies each individual person or animal. Although the same man may play the role of all the characters in a play, his actions will be determined by the role that he is playing at each moment. In the role of a king, he will sit on a throne and rule. If the same person takes on the role of a servant, he will carry the sandals of his master and follow him. His real Self is neither increased nor decreased while he plays these roles. The Jnani never forgets that he himself has played all these roles in the past."

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You need not aspire for or get any new state.
Get rid of your present thoughts, that is all.

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When Poonja met Ramana Maharshi, and asked him, "Have you seen God?" Maharshi replied, "Anything that you see cannot be God. Whatever you see must be an object of your senses. God is not an object of your senses. God is the one through whom all things are seen, tasted, touched, heard and smelt, but He himself cannot be seen because He is the seer, not an object of sight." This meeting with Ramana Maharshi ultimately led him to the profound state of awakening, Self-realisation.

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The Main indication to recognize a saint is total equality. In that word of equality itself you can feel the tone of differentiation. Equality does not mean not finding differences or partiality. It means, with practical experience, identification of that true self as an under current in all those differences and remaining with a balanced uniformed approach towards everything.

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Don't reach for bliss or speak of realization too quickly.

It is amazing how beautiful the the foreplay can be,

but it is all still in relation to a body.

It is the darkness that we must enter~

if we are to Awaken completely from this dream.

Death is the doorway.

Everything prior however subtly, is still about "me".

This teaching is for those who are really burning for Freedom.

While living, we must enter death itself.

The moth must kiss the Flame!

Death is the doorway.

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The yogis say that there is a nadi [?] called the jivanadi, atmanadi or paranadi. The Upanishads speak of a centre from which thousands of nadis branch off. Some locate such a centre in the brain and others in other centres. The Garbhopanishad traces the formation of the foetus and the growth of the child in the womb. The jiva [?] is
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considered to enter the child through the fontanelle in the seventh month of its growth. In evidence thereof it is pointed out that the fontanelle is tender in a baby and is also seen to pulsate. It takes some months for it to ossify. Thus the jiva comes from above, enters through the fontanelle and works through the thousands of the nadis which are spread over the whole body. Therefore the seeker of Truth must concentrate on the sahasrara [?], that is the brain, in order to regain his source. Pranayama [?] is said to help the yogi to rouse the Kundalini Sakti which lies coiled in the solar plexus. The sakti [?] rises through a nerve called the Sushumna [?], which is imbedded in the core of the spinal cord and extends to the brain. If one concentrates on the Sahasrara [?] there is no doubt that the ecstasy of samadhi ensues. The vasanas, that is the latencies, are not however destroyed. The yogi is therefore bound to wake up from the samadhi, because release from bondage has not yet been accomplished. He must still try to eradicate the vasanas in order that the latencies yet inherent in him may not disturb the peace of his samadhi. So he passes down from the sahasrara to the heart through what is called the jivanadi, which is only a continuation of the Sushumna. The Sushumna is thus a curve. It starts from the solar plexus, rises through the spinal cord to the brain and from there bends down and ends in the heart. When the yogi has reached the heart, the samadhi becomes permanent. Thus we see that the heart is the final centre. Some Upanishads also speak of 101 nadis which spread from the heart, one of them being the vital nadi. If the jiva comes down from above and gets reflected in the brain, as the yogis say, there must be a reflecting surface in action. That must also be capable of limiting the Infinite Consciousness to the limits of the body. In short the Universal Being becomes limited as a jiva. Such reflecting medium is furnished by the aggregate of the vasanas of the individual. It acts like the water in a pot which reflects the image of an object. If the pot be drained of its water there will be no reflection. The object will remain without being reflected. The object here is the Universal Being-Consciousness which is all-pervading and therefore immanent in all. It need not be cognised by reflection alone; it is self-resplendent. Therefore the seeker's aim must be to drain away the vasanas from the heart and let no reflection obstruct the Light of Eternal Consciousness. This is achieved by the
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search for the origin of the ego and by diving into the heart. This is the direct method for Self-Realisation. One who adopts it need not worry about nadis, the brain, the Sushumna, the Paranadi, the Kundalini,

pranayama [?] or the six centres. The Self does not come from anywhere else and enter the body through the crown of the head. It is as it is, ever sparkling, ever steady, unmoving and unchanging. The changes which are noticed are not inherent in the Self which abides in the Heart and is self-luminous like the Sun. The changes are seen in Its Light. The relation between the Self and the body or the mind may be compared to that of a clear crystal and its background. If the crystal is placed against a red flower, it shines red; if placed against a green leaf it shines green, and so on. The individual confines himself to the limits of the changeful body or of the mind which derives its existence from the unchanging Self. All that is necessary is to give up this mistaken identity, and that done, the ever-shining Self will be seen to be the single non-dual Reality. The reflection of Consciousness is said to be in the subtle body (sukshma sarira [?]), which appears to be composed of the brain and the nerves radiating from it to all parts of the trunk, chiefly through the spinal column and the solar plexus. When I was on the Hill, Nayana (Kavyakantha Ganapathi Muni) once argued that the brain was the seat of the vasanas, because it consisted of innumerable cells in which the vasanas were contained and illuminated by the light of the Self which projected from the heart. Only this set a person working or thinking. But I said, "How can it be so? The vasanas must be with one's Self and can never remain away from the Self. If, as you say, the vasanas be contained in the brain and the Heart is the seat of the Self, a person who is decapitated must be rid of his vasanas and should not be reborn. You agree that it is absurd. Now can you say that the Self is in the brain with the vasanas? If so, why should the head bend down when one falls asleep? Moreover a person does not touch his head and say `I'. Therefore it follows that the Self is in the Heart and the vasanas are also there in an exceedingly subtle form. "When the vasanas are projected from the Heart they are associated with the Light of the Self and the person is said to think. The
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vasanas which lie imbedded in an atomic condition grow in size in their passage from the heart to the brain. The brain is the screen on which the images of the vasanas are thrown and it is also the place of their functional distribution. The brain is the seat of the mind, and the mind works through it." So then this is what happens. When a vasana [?] is released and it comes into play, it is associated with the light of the Self. It passes from the heart to the brain and on its way it grows more and more until it holds the field all alone and all the vasanas are thus kept in abeyance for the time being. When the thought is reflected in the brain it appears as an image on a screen. The person is then said to have a clear perception of things. He is a great thinker or discoverer. Neither the thought that is extolled as being original, nor the thing, nor the country which is claimed to be a new discovery, is really original or new. It could not manifest unless it was already in the mind. It was of course very subtle and remained imperceptible, because it lay repressed by the more urgent or insistent thoughts or vasanas. When they have spent themselves this thought arises and by concentration the Light of the Self makes it clear, so that it appears magnificent, original and revolutionary. In fact it was only within all along. This concentration is called samyamana [?] in the Yoga Sastras. One's desires can be fulfilled by this process and it is said to be a siddhi [?]. It is how the so-called new discoveries are made. Even worlds can be created in this manner. Samyamana [?] leads to all siddhis. But they do not manifest so long as the ego lasts. Concentration according to yoga ends in the destruction of the experiencer (ego), experience and the world, and then the quondam desires get fulfilled in due course. This concentration bestows on individuals even the powers of creating new worlds. It is illustrated in the Aindava Upakhyana in the Yoga [?]

Vasishta and in the Ganda Saila Loka in the Tripura Rahasya. Although the powers appear to be wonderful to those who do not possess them, yet they are only transient. It is useless to aspire for that which is transient. All these wonders are contained in the one changeless Self. The world is thus within and not without. This meaning is contained in verses 11 and 12 - Chapter V of Sri Ramana

Gita "The entire Universe is condensed in the body, and the entire
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body in the Heart. Thus the Heart is the nucleus of the whole Universe." Therefore Samyamana relates to concentration on different parts of the body for the different siddhis. Also the Visva [?] or the Virat [?] is said to contain the cosmos within the limits of the body. Again, "The world is not other than the mind, the mind is not other than the Heart; that is the whole truth." So the Heart comprises all. This is what is taught to Svetaketu by the illustration of the seed of a fig tree. The source is a point without any dimensions. It expands as the cosmos on the one hand and as Infinite Bliss on the other. That point is the pivot. From it a single vasana starts, multiplies as the experiencer `I', experience, and the world. The experiencer and the source are referred to in the mantra [?]. Two birds, exactly alike, arise simultaneously. When I was staying in the Skandasramam I sometimes used to go out and sit on a rock. On one such occasion there were two or three others with me including Rangaswami Iyengar. Suddenly we noticed some small moth-like insect shooting up like a rocket into the air from a crevice in the rock. Within the twinkling of an eye it had multiplied itself into millions of moths which formed a cloud and hid the sky from view. We wondered at it and examined the place from which it shot up. We found that it was only a pinhole and knew that so many insects could not have issued from it in such a short time. That is how ahankara [?] (ego) shoots up like a rocket and instantaneously spreads out as the Universe. The Heart is therefore the centre. A person can never be away from it. If he is he is already dead. Although the Upanishads say that the jiva functions through other centres on different occasions, yet he does not relinquish the Heart. The centres are simply places of business (vide Vedanta Chudamani). The Self is bound to the Heart, like a cow tethered to a peg. The movements are controlled by the length of the rope. All its wanderings centre around the peg. A caterpillar crawls on a blade of grass and when it has come to the end, it seeks another support. While doing so it holds on with its hind-legs to the blade of grass, lifts the body and sways to and fro before it can hold another. Similarly it is with the Self. It stays in the Heart and holds other centres also according to circumstances. But its activities always centre round the Heart.

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The final obstacle in meditation is ecstasy; you feel great bliss and happiness and want to stay in that ecstasy. Do not yield to it but pass on to the next stage which is great calm. The calm is higher than ecstasy and it merges into samadhi.

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The attempt to destroy the ego or the mind through sedans(practices) other than atma-vichara(self inquiry) is just like the thief pretending to be a policeman to catch the thief, that is, himself. Atma-vichara (self inquiry) alone can reveal the truth that neither the ego nor the mind really exists, and enable one to realize the pure, undifferentiated being of the Self or the absolute. Having realized the Self, nothing remains to be known, because it is perfect bliss, it is the all.

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See whose thoughts they are. They will vanish. They have their root in the single `I'-thought. Hold it and they will disappear.

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The birth of the `I'-thought is one's own birth, its death is the person's death. After the `I'-thought has arisen, the wrong identity with the body arises. Get rid of the `I'-thought. So long as `I' is alive there is grief. When `I' ceases to exist there is no grief.

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