Vedanta says that the World is nothing but God only. It is due to Maya or illusion that this World seems to be different from God. Wisdom or Jnana is seeing God in everything. This is also the same as Bhakthi (seeing God in everyone). Sri Krishna calls this Samadarshanam in Geetha. Jnana or Bhakthi will lead one to the fact that there is only God present and nothing else. This World is only a manifestation of God.
This is what all great acharyas have taught us -- "Purusha eva idam sarvam -- Purusha Sooktam", purusha or God is present here everywhere
The word Vishnu means Vyapanasheelam or omni-present (present everywhere).
When one gains this knowlege or wisdom of the Vedas (that only GOD is there), one will find only GOD everywhere, in each and every object in this world.
As one sees GOD everywhere in this world, what sorrow and hatred is there??? Sorrow occurs when you are dissatisfied with something. This occurs when you see duality -- two different things. But here, only GOD is there and hence there will be no sorrow and only BLISS.
May Almighty bless each one of us with this wisdom and hence the eternal BLISS. PS: Daily a quote of Ramana Maharshi and its explanation will be posted. These are words from a master, Ramana Maharshi, who taught mainly through SILENCE.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #2 Happiness is inherent in man and is not due to external causes. One must realise his Self in order to open the store of unalloyed happiness.
-- Ramana MaharshiExplanation:
Each person in this world is in search of Happiness. Happiness is the ultimate goal of everyone (maybe indirectly through money, fame and all). Adi Sankara says that the ultimate goal of each human being is two fold.
1. Sukha Prapthi (Gaining of happiness)
2. Dukha Nivritti (Removal of sorrow)
In our search for Happiness, we seek it in the sense objects in this world. We seek money thinking that it has Happiness. But this is wrong. Let's say, we have got money -- then we become happy. But if we don't get money -- we become sad. So this shows that Happiness is not in money (if it was so -- always it should give happiness). But Happiness is in us. It is in our mind -- the way we take things. If we don't get money, and also say to ourselves "I will be happy" -- u become happy. Let's test it out by experience that "Happinessis INHERENT in MAN".
In a day -- we have three states of experience.
1. Waking State -- Here we have the body, mind and the I or the Soul.
2. Dream State -- Here we don't have the body, but the mind creates another subtle body.
3. Dreamless Deep Sleep State -- Here we don't have the body and the mind. Only the "I" exists. How do we know that the "I" exists? Because after we wake up -- we say "I slept well". This also shows us that there was the "I" as well as "Happiness" which we could know even after waking from that state.
This in turn shows us that Happines is not in the world -- but in the "I" or the SELF. We have to seek the SELF in order to enjoy that true, everlasting Happiness.
PS: We will see how to gain that Happiness tomorrow.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #3
You see the objects on forgetting your own Self. If you keep hold of your Self you will not see the objective world.
-- Ramana Maharshi Explanation:
Let's see how to gain the Happiness that each and every person in this world is in search of. Maharshi says a real great fact in this quote.
The Mind is full of thoughts. In Yoga Vasistha (a part of the epic Ramayana), Vasistha says to Rama that there can never be a thoughtless-mind. Mind is almost a synonym for thoughts. At any moment of time, the mind will have some thought.
Let's say, at this moment I have THOUGHT A in my mind. To bring THOUGHT B to my mind, what do I do???? I just think about THOUGHT B. It is as simply as this.
Our thoughts are all in the outer direction. We keep on looking for the outer worldly things. To gain pure Happiness, also called BLISS, one needs to concentrate on the Self. One needs to bring in the Thought of Self.
Keeping hold of the Self thought always, even while working or drinking or sleeping, one gains the pure Happiness.
Eg:- You can never remove Darkness, you can just bring in Light and lo behold! Darkness vanishes.
Similarly, bringing in the light of Self Thought, the Darkness of Objective world vanishes. Always establishing oneself in the Self thought -- that I am Atman, pure one which has no birth, death and decay, always remains in full -- and performing all the actions like a great worker is called KARMA YOGA.(Yoga of action).
Sri Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 9)
Yad Karoshi, Yad Ashnaasi, Yad Juhoshi, Dadaasi Yad.
Yad Tapasyasi Kaunteya, Tad Kurushva Madarpanam Whatever u do, whatever you eat, whatever you drink, whatever you give away as alms and whatever austerity (Tapas) you do -- just do that action surrendering it to me, do it as an offering to me. Using this Karma Yoga, offering whatever one does to his beloved GOD (let it be Krishna, Vishnu, Siva or Devi or Jesus whose abode is inside our heart), he attains the eternal Happiness, BLISS inherent in Man.
Let each one of us, atleast try to do one action daily as an offering to GOD(who has given us this body and everything essential to live).
As a starting today, before eating let all of us offer the food (to be taken in) as an offering to GOD.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #4
Self-Realisation is the result of the Master's grace more than teachings, lectures, meditation etc. They are only secondary aids, where as the former is the primary and essential cause.
-- Ramana Maharshi Explanation:
Today we are seeing the two means to achieve Self-Realisation and hence ETERNAL BLISS. Self-Realisation can be achieved by two means.
1. Scriptures or Sasthras.
2. Guru -- and his sayings.
Scriptures are indirect knowledge. They speak of knowledge about the SELF and how that can be gained. These include all the sacred texts like Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, Mahabharata, even Bible.
But a Guru is a living example of that knowledge and its implementation. Hence a Guru and his teachings are Direct Knowledge.
A Guru's grace can make a lame person climb a hill and a dumb person speak.
Guru shows us the qualities and nature of the Self. Guru then shows us the way to reside in the Self. He also takes us to the Self. This can be seen from the life of various Saints in India.
Paramahansa Yogananada has said in his book "Autobiography of a Yogi" that his Guru, Sri Yukteswar Giri showed him how to attain that eternal BLISS of the Self and to always reside in that state itself.
Who is a Guru???
In Skanda Purana, there comes a part called Guru Gita or Song about Guru. In this Guru Gita, Siva explains to Parvathi about a Guru.
"Gukarascha andhakaro hi rukarastheja uchyate.
Ajnaana graasakam Brahma Gurureva na sanshayah""Guru is Brahman or the Self who destroys the Darkness of ignorance. The syllable Gu means Darkness. Ru means Light. So Guru means one who destroys the Darkness of ignorance by bringing in the light of Self-Knowledge."
Examples of living Sadgurus include
Sri Sathya Sai Baba,
Sri Sri Ravishankar,
Gurus can also be one of the living Saints (Sanyaasis) of any ashram. A Guru can also be a house holder.
Two main qualities for the identification of a Guru is
1. He should be learned in scriptures.
2. He should always reside in the Self (the eternal BLISS-ful state).
A Guru must be able to show and lead the disciple to that eternal BLISS-ful state. Following indirect knowledge of Book Study will lead one to Eternal BLISS after a long period only. But a Guru can lead a disciple to that state within a second. The study of materials on the Self and related topics, with due attention and interest, will in itself lead one to a Guru.So indirect knowledge, if pursued with due devotion and interest will lead to Direct knowledge.
Let the Almighty lead each one of us to a Guru so that we may attain that Eternal BLISS and be in that state forever.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #5 The Self is ever there, there is nothing without it. Be the Self and the desires and doubts will disappear.
-- Ramana Maharshi
The mind is full of desires. As Lord Buddha told in his four teachings.
1. There is suffering in the world.
2. The suffering has a cause.
3. The cause is desire. 4. There can be an end to suffering if desire is eliminated.
So the end of desire shows us the path to the Self and Self Realisation follows. Desire is very tough to conquer. One may think that desire can be eliminated by enjoying or pacifying it. But by this, it only keeps increasing.
Today one might want to become a lakhpati, tomorrow crorepathi, day after millionaire, after that billionaire. It goes on. Thus Desires have no bound, but they lead one to sorrow(and not Happiness or BLISS) as we have seen in Words of Ramana Maharshi - # 1 and as Lord Buddha says.
Maharshi says that Desire is caused by the Darkness of Ignorance. To Remove this Darkness, one needs to bring in the Light of Self into one's thoughts. When Light comes, Darkness vanishes. We can never remove Darkness, but only bring Light.
Similarly, if one concentrates on the Self thought -- the thought that only Self exists -- desires disappear.
Let the Almighty bless all of us to be the Self and hence eliminate the desires.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #6 Thoughts are projected from the Self. Find out wherefrom it rises. Thoughts will cease to rise and the Self alone will remain
-- Ramana Maharshi
Maharshi explains the way to Control Thoughts in this quote.
Thoughts give rise to Desires. And desires to sorrow. Once we know the way to control the Thoughts, then we can realise the Self which is full of BLISS. Thoughts are very tough to control. It is like rowing a boat in a sea full of tides.
Ramana Maharshi tells us that "follow the Thoughts back to their origin". This can be done by observing the thoughts occuring in the mind as a witness (remaining as a spectator to the thoughts).
Will this ensure a cessation of the Thoughts???
Yes, of course.
"Manasa mana alokya" says Upanishad meaning "See the mind with the help of the mind".
Once a person starts observing or watching the mind, the Thoughts vanish by itself. No Effort is required for this.
It is like telling -- some people become restless when watched by others while working and stop the work they are doing.
Usually Meditation , when done by starting this exercise of watching the mind, is very effective.
There are three different things for a worldly experience to take place.
1. Subject - This is always the Self.
3. The Act of Experience.
Here, Subject is the Self (Thinker), Object are the Thoughts and Act is Thinking.
Object and the Act of Experience always depend on the Subject (Self) for existence. If the Subject denies to Act -- then only the Subject exists.
Once Thoughts cease to rise, what remains is the Thinker (Self).
Let the Almighty bless each one of us to this cessation of thoughts
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #7 That which exists, exists for ever; that which newly appears is later lost.
-- Ramana Maharshi Explanation:
Ramana Maharshi here brings out the Supreme Truth, which is the substratum for the existence of the world, in very simple and understandable language.
What is the Supreme Truth which each one of us has to seek?
It is that which remains for ever. That which is independent and on which everything else depends.
Similarly that which is the substratum of this world, that on which the world depends for its existence is the Truth.
This has been called by the Upanishads as Sat or Existence.
This Sat or Existence is responsible for the existence of the world. “I” in you exists, hence the world exists. If the “I” in you ceases to exist, the world also disappears.
How does one know about this Existence?
A man is able to say that the sun exists because of his being aware or conscious of the sun. This consciousness or awareness is called Chit.
So, Existence and Awareness go side-by-side.
The Sun exists because of your awareness of its existence (its existence is in fact based on your existence,”I”). You are aware because you exist.
What is the nature of this Sat-Chit?
When a person is aware of the existence of a thing, it brings Happiness to him as there is no conflict in his being aware of that thing. This is called Ananda(BLISS). This is not Happiness that is got from worldly things, but pure Happiness and hence is called BLISS.
The Upanishad, hence, proclaim that the Supreme Truth is of the nature of Sat(Existence), Chit(Consciouness) and Ananda(Bliss). This is called as Brahman or Self or Atman (many names but one thing).
The Body is not real because yesterday (before birth), it was not there. Today, it seems to be there, and tomorrow it will not be there (after death). Hence it is not real. The body also keeps changing.
But during each stage of this body, child, youth, middle-age, old-age and all – there is the “I” which does not change. This “I” or the Consciousness or Self is which never changes and always exists.
The World that we see is unreal. Because this world disappears during sleep and the sleep-world disappears when we wake up.
As Maharshi says, since the body and this world are not real and newly appear during different states, hence they will vanish. But the Self that experiences the body, this world and the sleeping world is the real thing.
The Self is the substratum on which the whole world rests and is of the nature of Existence-Consciousness-BLISS. Let the Almighty give us the grace to realize the Self – that which only exists. Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #8 The mind is by nature restless. Begin liberating it from its restlessness: give it peace: make it free from distractions; train it to look inward; make this a habit. This is done by ignoring the external world.
-- Ramana Maharshi
The Mind is the sole cause and creator of this world. Mind is full of thoughts that are scattered in different directions. As Swami Vivekananda said - "Mind is a drunken monkey". An ordinary monkey will keep on jumping from a branch to another branch. So what to say of a drunken monkey!!!.
In Yoga Vasistha -- Vasistha says to Sri Rama
"Mind alone is the cause of Bondage and liberation.
Mind which is running behind sense objects (the world) is in Bondage,
Mind which has been turned away from the attraction of the sense objects is in liberation."
All the sufferings that we experience is due to the Mind in Bondage.
Swami Ramsukhdas says that the Sense objects (the external world) are more dangerous than poison. Because poison is harmful only if it is intaken, but even the sight of sense objects causes harm to humans (it may seem to give happiness, but in the long run it leads one to sorrow).
Here Ramana Maharshi gives a simple mechanism to bring the mind into control which in turn leads to the shining of the Self in the pure mind.
Once the mind is turned inward and concentrated on the Self, then obviously the external world ceases to create an impression on the mind. But this needs to be done on regular basis and then made a habit.
Mind can be easily made to concentrate on the Self by ignoring the world. This is because, on ignoring the world what remains is the Self (which is the experiencer of this world, Self is the Subject and world the Object).
The world can be ignored only when one knows about the harms caused by this world. When such a dispassion comes towards the world, the mind turns inward and concentrates on the Self. This dispassion is called Vairagya (one of the foremost qualities required for Self-Realisation).
Let the Almighty bless us all to turn inward and make the mind peaceful and under control.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #9 You give up this and that of 'my' possessions. If you give up 'I' and 'Mine' instead, all are given up at a stroke. Eagerness to do it must be equal to that of a man kept under water trying to rise up to the surface for his life.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Ramana Maharshi is giving an easy method to experience the BLISS of the Self (Self-Realisation).
Karma or Action causes Bondage (not self-less action, but action with expectations-selfish). When one is attached to Action, it creates Kama (love) and Krodha (hatred).
When a person is attached to some other person, this is Raga or Kama.
When a person shows a sign of hatred towards any other person, this is Dvesha or Krodha.
These qualities are caused only because we think that "I am so and so person" (I ego) and that only some people or things are "mine".
The sky gives shelter to everyone irrespective of name and form.
The Water satisfies the thirst of everyone irrespective of name and form.
The Tree gives fruits to everyone irrespective of name and form.
Only human beings have this attitude and thought of "I" and "Mine". When the small egoistic "I" is made universal, or when this Local Mind is made Universal Mind, all such aversions and attachments vanishes. This makes the mind pure.
When this is done -- the limited ego rises to the level of pure, eternal BLISS. When u remove the dirt off a mirror, u can see your own face. When one removes the egoistic "I" and "Mine", the pure Self shines.
How does one know that when "I" and "Mine" are removed, the Self is realised???
This is because, the "I" and "Mine" are illumined by the Self -- as the Sun illumines all other things in this world.
If one removes this Self -- then there is no "I" or "Mine".
One experiences pure BLISS in deep sleep because at that time there was no "I" and "Mine" but only the pure Self.
The "I" here meant is the ego and not the Self.
The earlier one achieves this removal of "I" and "Mine" -- the less he will have to suffer in this world of sorrow.
Maharshi gives an example as to how one must be yearning for this removal of "I" and "Mine" -- like a man trying to get some air for breathing and who has been kept under water. This is called "Vairagya" or Dispassion (towards the world).
This dispassion will instantaneously give a person the experience of the BLISS of the Self.
Lastly, a few quotes from scriptures --
Adi Sankara says in his work "Upadesa Sahashri"
"When a person loses the "I" and "Mine", the same moment he experiences the Self and hence is a knower of the Self".
Gita tells in Chapter 15-sloka 5
"One who isfree from illusion, false prestige, and false association, who understands the eternal, who is done with material lust and is freed from the duality of happiness and distress, and who knows how to surrender unto the Supreme Person, attains to that eternal kingdom. "
Let the Almighty help us all in removing this "I" and "Mine".
Let atleast today let us try to be universal and remove the thought of "I" and "Mine" and show similar attitude to everything in this world.
Note: This sloka will be posted in ITLFeatures tomorrow by Dhiraj.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #10
Men want absolute and permanent happiness. This does not reside in objects, but in the Absolute.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Ramana Maharshi brings out the ultimate need or aim of any person in this world -- in this quote.
We will see what is the ultimate aim that everyone is striving for.
What is the aim of an ordinary man???
It is ultimately to earn Money -- that is what everybody wants in life.
Why does everyone require money???
Because everyone wants to live happily.
What does a student need??
So that he/she gets a good job.
Why a good job???
Money or Mental satisfaction.
Because it makes one Happy (this is untrue and one thinks that this is true)
Hence the goal that everyone is striving for is Happiness (which gives peace of mind and satisfaction).
One believes that happiness is in the worldly things -- and hence pursues it. But this is a wrong notion. Happiness is not in the object, but in the Subject (the man) and his mind.
There are lot of people who have nothing or very few things and are happy -- gr8 saints are examples - starting from Jesus Christ to Adi Sankaracharya to Ramakrishna Paramahansa........
If objects give happiness, then the most happy person in the world will be Bill Gates or George Bush.
But are they really Happy????
Do they have peace of mind????
This is a question that one needs to ponder on.....
Happiness is not in objects, but in the Self. One gains this when one starts looking inward and finds out the answer to the question "Who I am?"
The answer to this question will lead one to the Self of the nature of Absolute Existence, Consciosness, Bliss.
Let the Almighty guide us all to the answer to this question & to Absolute Bliss.