Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi     1526 posts


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Actions form no bondage.
Bondage is only the false notion - " I-am-the-doer ".
Leave off such thoughts and let the body and senses play their role, unimpeded by your interference.

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The self cannot be found in books. You have to find it for yourself, within yourself.

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Persist in the enquiry throughout your waking hours. That would be quite enough. If you keep on making the enquiry till you fall asleep, the enquiry will go on during sleep also. Take up the enquiry again as soon as you wake up.

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Once the current of awareness of the self is set afoot, it becomes everlasting and continuous by intensification.

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Know that the eradication of the identification with the body is charity, spiritual austerity and ritual sacrifice; it is virtue, divine union and devotion; it is heaven, wealth, peace and truth; it is grace; it is the state of divine silence; it is the deathless death; it is jnana, renunciation, final liberation and bliss.

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The talk turned to various recipes suggested by various people about kaya kalpa [a medicinal preparation for longevity]. Bhagavan [Sri Ramana Maharshi] mentioned a few kalpas based on camphor, a hundred year old neem tree, etc., and said, "Who would care to take such trouble over this body? As explained in books, the greatest malady we have is the body, the disease of birth, and if one takes medicines to strengthen it and prolong its life, it is like a man taking medicine to strengthen and perpetuate his disease. As the body is a burden we bear, we should on the other hand feel like the coolie engaged to carry a load, anxiously looking forward to arrival at the destination when he can throw off his burden."

~ from 'Day by Day with Bhagavan', 18-1-46 Night

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D.: How to root out sexual impulse?
M.: By rooting out the false idea of the body being Self. There is no sex in the Self.

D.: How to realize it?
M.: Because you think you are the body, you see another as the body.

Difference in sex arises. But you are not the body. Be the real Self. Then there is no sex.

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All metaphysical discussion is profitless unless it causes us to seek within the Self for the true reality. All controversies about creation, the nature of the universe, evolution, the purpose of God, etc., are useless. They are not conducive to our true happiness. People try to find out about things which are outside of them before they try to find out 'Who am I?' Only by the latter means can happiness be gained.

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Your nature is Peace and Happiness. Thoughts are the obstacles to

realisation. One's meditation or concentration is meant to get rid of

obstacles and not to gain the Self. Does anyone remain apart from

the Self? No! The true nature of the Self is declared to be Peace. If

the same peace is not found, the non-finding is only a thought which

is alien to the Self. One practises meditation only to get rid of these

alien fancies. So, then, a thought must be quelled as soon as it rises.

Whenever a thought arises, do not be carried away by it. You become

aware of the body when you forget the Self. But can you forget the

Self? Being the Self how can you forget it? There must be two

selves for one to forget the other. It is absurd. So the Self is not

depressed; it is not imperfect: it is ever happy. The contrary feeling

is a mere thought which has actually no stamina in it. Be rid of

thoughts. Why should one attempt meditation? Being the Self one

remains always realised, only be free from thoughts.

You think that your health does not permit your meditation. This

depression must be traced to its origin. The origin is the wrong

identification of the body with the Self. The disease is not of the

Self. It is of the body. But the body does not come and tell you that

it is possessed by the disease. It is you who say it. Why? Because

you have wrongly identified yourself with the body.

The body itself is a thought. Be as you really are. There is no

reason to be depressed.

Ramana Maharshi in Talk 462 19 Feb 1938

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Abhyasa [spiritual practice] consists in withdrawal within the Self every time you are disturbed by thought. It is not concentration or destruction of the mind but withdrawal into the Self.

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That which should be adhered to is only the experience of Silence, because in that Supreme State nothing exists to be attained other than oneself. That which Is is Mouna (Silence). How can Mouna be explained in words? The highest form of Grace is Silence. The experience of Silence alone is the real and perfect knowledge.

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PRACTICE The unique ray that shines within the jiva as 'I' exists as the clue. If the jiva unflaggingly traces the source of that ray to the Heart, it will discover the Supreme and its bondage will cease. Know that the wondrous jnana vichara is only for those who have attained purity of mind by softening and melting within. Without this softening and melting away of the mind, brought about by thinking of the feet of the Lord, the attachment to the ‘I' that adheres to the body will not cease to be. Since it is through forgetfulness, which those who are strong in mind fear like death, that the illusion of birth ensnares us, what other means are there to abolish that birth other than the powerful enquiry into one's own true nature? If we perform sadhana to the limit of our abilities the Lord will accomplish for us that which is beyond our capabilities. If we fail to do even that which is within our capabilities, there is not the slightest fault in the grace of the Lord.
Verses from Sri Ramana Jnana Bodham, Padamalai p 186

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The ego is like one's shadow thrown on the ground. If one attempts to bury it, it will be foolish." (Talk 146)

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MORE TALKS WITH RAMANA MAHARSHI

Date: 16.9.42 Time: 10.15 A.M.

When I entered the hall a discussion was going on about self-enquiry. Bhagavan was in his usual posture with adorable countenance. A frequent visitor said:
“Bhagavan has said that self-enquiry is simple, direct and effective. Though
I try to follow the same I cannot say I have understood it. I put the question 'Who am I?' but there is no proper response from within. However, I am getting a sort of stillness. “

Bhagavan: "How can you get the answer in words? It is not a regular mental enquiry to elicit a concrete answer. It is only a tool to direct the mind back to its source."

Visitor: Yes, I follow. But the result is not clear to me. There is a short stillness which does not last.

Bhagavan: You should be steadfast in sadhana. By repeating the process you fix attention on the ego, the 'I'- thought. Whenever the doubt arises repeat the process and make the enquiry. Try to reach the source of the ego. Once you reach the source, by one-pointed effort, your peace will not be disturbed.''

Bhagavan Ramana has unravelled the mystery of the universal truth, the real behind the apparent. It is in this context his emphasis on self-enquiry assumes importance. The penetrating search within opens up awareness of pure consctousness.

Another time he said: "Effort is needed. If the mind becomes single-pointed it becomes a great force and can turn inward to the heart easily.''

"One's effort is essential. It is only the wise endowed with equanimity and renouncing the fruit of action who are freed from the shackles of birth and death. They concentrate exclusively on Self-knowledge."

Q: At times the meditation becomes easy, but that remains only for a short period- and it is again disturbed by unwanted thoughts.

Bhagavan: "Yes - may be - Resist the thoughts - you should have more will power to obtain steadfastness. Slight disturbances should be ignored, taking care to pursue further without break. Sustained effort wiil bring about results. Moreover, you may fix up a certain time for meditation as a daily routine which will go a long way for development!"

More Talks With Ramana Maharshi , NN Rajan

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Married or unmarried, a man can realize the Self; because That is here and now. If it were not so, but attainable by some effort at some time, and if it were new and had to be acquired, it would not be worth pursuit. Because, what is not natural is not permanent either. But what I say is that the Self is here and now, and alone.

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He is, even while working, in solitude. To engage in your duty is the true namaskar... and abiding in God is the only true asana.

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Dr. Syed: ,What is salvation? What did Christ mean by it?

M.: Salvation for whom? and from what?

D.: Salvation for the individual and from the sorrows and sufferings of the world.

M.: Whose are the sorrows, etc.?

D.: Of the mind.

M.: Are you the mind?

D.: I shall now explain how this question arose. I was meditating. I began to reflect on the Grace shown by Christ to some devotees who got salvation. I consider that Sri Bhagavan is similar. Is not salvation the result of similar Grace? That is what I mean by my questions.

M.: Yes. Right.

D.: The booklet Who am I? speaks of swarupa drishti (seeing the essence). Then there must be a seer and the seen. How can this be reconciled with the Ultimate Unity?

M.: Why do you ask for salvation, release from sorrow, etc.? He who asks for them sees them also.
The fact is this. Drishti (sight) is consciousness. It forms the subject and object. Can there be drishti apart from the Self? The Self is all - drishti, etc.

D.: How to discern the ego from the Perfect ‘I-I’?

M.: That which rises and falls is the transient ‘I’. That which has
neither origin nor end is the permanent ‘I-I’ consciousness.

D.: Will continuous thought on the Self make the mind more and more refined so that it will not think of anything but the highest?

M.: There is the peaceful mind which is the supreme. When the
same becomes restless, it is afflicted by thoughts. Mind is only
the dynamic power (sakti) of the Self.

D.: Are the sheaths material and different from the Self?

M.: There is no difference between matter and spirit. Modern science admits that all matter is energy. Energy is power or force (sakti). Therefore all are resolved in Siva and Sakti i.e., the Self and the Mind.
The kosas are mere appearances. There is no reality in them as such.

D.: How many hours a day should one devote to meditation?

M.: Your very nature is meditation.

D.: It will be so when ripe, but not now.

M.: You become conscious of it later. That does not mean that your
nature is now different from meditation.

D.: What about practice?

M.: Meditation must always be practised.

D.: A Persian mystic says: “There is nothing but God.” The Quran
says: “God is immanent in all.”

M.: There is no ‘all’, apart from God, for Him to pervade. He alone is.

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Having known one's nature one abides
As being with no beginning and no end
In unbroken consciousness and bliss.

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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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1. What are the marks of a real teacher (Sadguru)?

Steady abidance in the Self, looking at all with an equal eye, unshakeable courage at all times, in all places and circumstances, etc.

2. What are the marks of an earnest disciple (sadsisya)?

An intense longing for the removal of sorrow and attainment of joy and an intense aversion for all
kinds of mundane pleasure.

3. What are the characteristics of instruction (upadesa)?

The word ‘upadesa’ means : ‘near the place or seat’ (upa - near, desa - place or seat). The Guru who is the embodiment of that which is indicated by the terms sat, chit, and ananda (existence, consciousness and bliss), prevents the disciple who, on account of his acceptance of the forms of the objects of the senses, has swerved from his true state and is consequently distressed and buffeted by joys and sorrows, from continuing so and establishes him in his own real nature without differentiation.

Upadesa also means showing a distant object quite near. It is brought home to the disciple that the Brahman which he believes to be distant and different from himself is near and not different from himself.

-from CHAPTER 1: INSTRUCTION (Upadesa) of 'Spiritual Instruction

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There is no reaching the Self. If Self were to be reached, it would mean that the Self is not here and now but that it is yet to be obtained. What is got afresh will also be lost. So it will be impermanent. What is not permanent is not worth striving for. So I say the Self is not reached. You are the Self; you are already That.

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Look for it, the ego vanishes. The real Self alone remains.

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A subtle illumination will be experienced as ‘I-I’ which is no other than the Absolute, the Self, seated in the lotus of the Heart, in the city of the body, the tabernacle of God.

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ONE PATH AND DIFFERENT FORMS OF ITS expression

D: Which path is best suited to me? Won’t all help be
provided by God?


Bhagavan: Bhakti, Karma, Jnana and Yoga, all these paths are one. You cannot love God without knowing Him nor know Him without loving Him. Love manifests itself in everything you do and that is Karma. The development of mental perception (Yoga) is the necessary preliminary before you can know or love God in the proper way.

D: Can I go on thinking “I am God”? Is that right practice?

B: Why think that? In fact you are God. But who goes on thinking or saying “I am a man”, “I am a man”? If any contrary thought, for instance, that one was a beast had to be put down, then of course you might say “I am a man”. To the extent of crushing down the wrong notion that one is this or that, according to one’s erroneous fancies, to that extent the idea that he is not these but God or Self, may be indulged in, as a matter of practice but when practice is over, the result is not any thought at all (such as ‘I am God’) but mere Self-realization. That is beyond conceptual thought.

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The real state must be effortless. The effortless samadhi is the true one and the perfect state. It is permanent.

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Bliss comes to you by sweet grace,
through the self-surrender you perform
lovingly in the Heart.

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