Words of Ramana Maharshi #1 If you make your outlook that of wisdom, you will find the world to be God


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An individual has to choose the path according to his nature – since people are unable to rate themselves, the significance of the Guru comes here. The Guru instructs different disciples into different paths based on their nature. A Guru is the living embodiment of GOD. He doesn’t need to follow any rituals or any path – because he has merged into the Goal – the non-dual Self. But out of compassion of helping out people, like Adi Sankara who had realized the Self but came down to guide other mortals, he instructs various people in the path most suitable for them.


Interesting to note here is that Swami Chinmayananda was initiated into Sanyaas by Swami Sivananda. But Sivananda found out that Chinmaya was best suited to follow the path of Knowledge and hence send him to Tapovan Maharaj in upper Himalayas.


One needs to remember throughout this path that – there is nothing new to be gained, but the ignorance to be removed and the Ultimate Reality of “I am the SELF – blissful in nature” is to be realized.


Let the Almighty guide us all to realize the Self in this very birth and thereby overcome this vicious cycle of birth and death – happiness and sorrow.


PS: Please send a mail to me, Hariram_Subramonia@infosys, with subject "subscribe quotes" to get these quotes directly in your inbox. Send a mail with subject "unsubscribe quotes" to stop getting quotes in your inbox. 




Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #130

What one fails to know by conversation extending to several years can be known in a trice in silence, or in front of silence-e.g, Dakshinamurti, and his four disciples. That is the highest and most effective language.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



Silence is the best and easiest way to realize the Self and rejoice in the eternal bliss of the Self.

The silence meant here is not just restraining from speech. True silence is the silence of mind – the state of the mind that is free from thoughts.


As a person knows, thoughts are the foremost enemies to self-realization. A person gets diverted into thoughts and gets lost into the external world – and just because of this distraction, the real nature of the Self is forgot and the person gets into the unending cycle of thoughts and thoughts.


The mind when becomes thoughtless is the pure and eternal state of the Self. Such a mind (thoughtless one) is called Self.


Dakshinamurthy is the foremost of the Gurus who taught through silence.


Chitram Vadatharor Moole Vridha Sishyaah Gurur Yuva.

Gurostho Mounam Vyakyaatham Sishyaasthu Chinna Samshayaah”

It is amazing. There the youthful Guru is sitting under the banyan tree and the old disciples are sitting in front of him. He is teaching through silence and all the doubts of the disciples are expelled.


The story of Dakshinamurthy

Brahma created four sons namely, Sanaka, Sananda, Sanatkumara, Sanatana. He created these four sons in order to give the job of creation to them!!!! These four were not interested in action and wanted to know the Reality behind this World. They were pulled into this spiritual thoughts by Narada. Thus they were searching for a Guru. Out of compassion for these seekers of truth, Siva took the form of Dakshinamurthy and was sitting beneath a banyan tree. These four saw the glowing Dakshinamurthy and sat down under his feet. Dakshinamurthy was silent and into deep Samadhi. Due to his presence, these four also went into Samadhi and experienced the state of non-duality.


Such is the power of Silence – wherein there is nothing but pure Existence alone. Such a state is called Samadhi or Absorption in Vedas.


Words explain thoughts. But the same words can be interpreted in different ways. The interpretation and understanding will depend on the mental and intellectual state of the hearer or the disciple. Thus words can lead one to the wrong path and hence can be disastrous. Hence words have their limitations and the ultimate Reality can be experienced only through Silence.


As Vedas says “Yato vaacho nivartanthe Apraapya Manasa Sah” – where words don’t reach, the mind also cannot reach – that is the Self.


For an initial seeker, words are required in order to tell him the importance of spirituality and the practices thereof. But once a person gains purity of mind, silence helps one to expel the doubts rather than conversations with the teacher. This is the reason why teachers instruct the disciple to put whatever they have studied into practice – only through practical experience can a person realize his own real nature of Bliss – mere intellectual knowledge will be useless (this intellectual knowledge is what is being concentrated in the Western Philosophy).


Let me stop here and sincerely request everyone to go inwards and stop the thoughts of the mind – enter into SILENCE – at least for a minute when they read this mail.


Let the Almighty guide us all to realize the Self and abide in the pure blissful and non-dual state.


PS: Please send a mail to me, Hariram_Subramonia@infosys, with subject "subscribe quotes" to get these quotes directly in your inbox. Send a mail with subject "unsubscribe quotes" to stop getting quotes in your inbox. 

Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #131
The true state is the non-dual Self. It is eternal and abides whether one is aware or not.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



The true or natural state is the state of the Self – this state is called Sahaja or Natural.

The Self is of the nature of Absolute Existence, Consciousness and Bliss. It is that which is eternal and that which underlies the dual world of name and form.


The substratum of the Sea is Water. Sea is water alone. Even when there are waves and bubbles, but still water persists. Water is eternal part of the Sea, but the waves and bubbles are just temporary names and forms of water.


For the ignorant, the waves and bubbles are different from water in the sea – but to the intelligent and wise, waves and bubbles are also water only. They don’t see it as different from water.


There is a gold-necklace, gold-chain and gold ring. The normal person sees these as different but the goldsmith sees all of them as GOLD alone. That is the eternal and Ultimate Reality of this world. This world of names and forms are in reality Consciousness and has the Self as their substratum. It is the ignorance of the Reality that the world is seen as dual and of different things with different nature.


This is the reason why liberated Mahatmas see the world as GOD alone whereas the ignorant finds the world as full of sorrow and misery.


The Ultimate Reality is the non-dual Self – the one without a second. IT is the Consciousness that gives light to different things and becomes the different things as in dream, the Dreamer becomes the objects of dream world.


What if a person doesn’t realize this eternal Truth????

Maharshi here explains that even if a person is unaware of his real nature – still he is the Self only. If a person tells that I am not human, but dog – still he will be a human only. Similarly the Self is the real nature of every person.


If a person doesn’t realize this ultimate non-duality – he takes differences in the world and sees various things. Because of seeing this multitude, he gets deluded by them and gets attached to some and repelled to others. Because of this attachment and aversion, he becomes sad and happy – at different times. Hence he becomes a victim to the cycle of sorrow and happiness (temporary happiness).


One should remember that all through the states of happiness and sorrow – the “I” or Self is the same and remains unattached and unaffected by all these changes. Thus when a person realizes this, he doesn’t fall into the trap of dualities.


One should always try to have the thought that “I am the Self or I am Brahman” so that he is not at all affected by anything and rejoices in the eternal Bliss of the Self.


Nimeshardham Na Thisthanthi Vrittim Brahmamayeem vina” – The saints never (even for a second) remain without the thought of Brahman.


When a person thus repeats the thought of “I am Brahman” – he slowly gains knowledge about himself – which is required for elimination of the ignorance that “I am this body, I am the mind, I am not realized, I am so and so”. As the Vedic statement says “Brahmavid bramaiva bhavathi” – one who knows Brahman becomes Brahman.


When such a constant about the Self – pure and eternal Blissful nature – is kept, the person rejoices in the eternal and natural state of Bliss. At that time, all sorrows and doubts vanish.


Tarathi Sokam Atma Vit” – he who knows the Self overcomes sorrow.


Let the Almighty guide us all to realize the Self and abide in the pure blissful and non-dual state.


PS: Please send a mail to me, Hariram_Subramonia@infosys, with subject "subscribe quotes" to get these quotes directly in your inbox. Send a mail with subject "unsubscribe quotes" to stop getting quotes in your inbox. 


Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #132

That which appears will also disappear and is therefore impermanent. The Self never appears and disappears and is therefore permanent.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



Maharshi is here differentiating between the permanent and impermanent. The permanent is the Reality called Sat or Chit (Existence or Consciousness). The impermanent is called Jada or insentient.


The experiences of the world can be split into two parts – one the sentient part and the other insentient part. The differentiation between these is called as Discrimination or Viveka in scriptures and by Adi Sankara.


Adi Sankara defines Viveka in his work Viveka choodamani

Brahma Satyam Jagan Mithya Ithyevam Roopo Vinishchayah.

Soyam Nityaanitya vasthu Vivekah samudahrutah”


Brahma is the Truth and the world is illusory and therefore unreal – such a clear concept and conviction is called the Discrimination between real and unreal.


This discrimination is very essential for the seeker because when a person knows this, his mind doesn’t go after the unreal and he focuses on gaining and knowing about the Real.


As Yoga Vasistha says

Yad asthi iha Tadeva Asthi”

What exists only exists.


Gita says

Naasato vidhyathe Bhavo Na abhavo vidhyathe satah”

The unreal has no existence and the real never ceases to exist.


Thus the Real always exists whereas the unreal has no existence like snake seen in rope, water in mirage and the dream-world.


What is Real and unreal????

That which exists forever is real.

From the time of birth, till today – the “I” or Consciousness remains without any change. A person says “my age is 20”, “my body is strong” – here the age and body changes, but the “I” remains the same. A person can never say that the “I” or Consciousness at the age of 5 and “I” at the age of 20 are different. Both are the same. This “I” exists during the two worlds of waking and dreaming. All states and other things change, but “I” remains the same.


This is what Lord Tennyson says “Men may come, men may go – but I live forever”.


This “I” is the pure Consciousness – the Self. This Self remains forever and is eternal. This Self one already is but one is ignorant of this knowledge that “I am THAT”. Hence one starts off with the ignorance or avidya that “I am this body and I am the mind” – because of ignorance, he misidentifies the “I” to be body or mind – that is he superimposes this “I” or pure and eternal Self with the mortal body and mind. This body and mind ceases to exist in the state of dream and deep sleep – but still “I” exist. It is utter ignorance that has caused one to delude into the thought that “I am the body” – an intelligent or wise person will easily understand that “I am not this body, which undergoes changes. There must be a substratum for this changing body and that is the Consciousness that remains without change beyond time and space.”


One needs to get the clear conviction that this world – everything except the “I” – is unreal and changing like water in mirage. This “I” is not at all affected by the changes in the unreal and illusory world. Thus one gains a clear conviction about the Real and Unreal. When one gains this clear knowledge – he doesn’t gets deluded into the unreal and thereby seeks to realize the Real of the Self. This Reality if known bestows one eternal Bliss and immense pleasure that can never be got from the worldly things including wife or husband and children.


This is the ultimate goal of Vedanta and sayings of all great saints from time immemorial. One needs to get the clear conviction that the Self is the reality and it is non-dual and of the nature of Existence, Consciousness and Bliss Absolute. When thus one gets the clear conviction slowly the ignorance veils are removed and he rejoices in the eternal bliss of the Self.


Let the Almighty guide us all to realize the Self and abide in the pure blissful and non-dual state.


PS: Please send a mail to me, Hariram_Subramonia@infosys, with subject "subscribe quotes" to get these quotes directly in your inbox. Send a mail with subject "unsubscribe quotes" to stop getting quotes in your inbox. 

Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #133
Jnaana is “Ekam Eva Adviteeyam” – One without a second.

Yoga is “Samatvam Yoga Uchyate” – Seeing oneness is called Yoga.

Bhakthi is “Mam ekam saranam vraja” – take refugee in Me ALONE.

Karma is “Karmani eva adhikarasthe ma phaleshu kadachana” – do actions without any expectation of the fruits thereof.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



Maharshi is here explaining the different paths of yoga or different paths to realization according to the verses from the scriptures.

These four are the main paths that was given to the world by the great Swami Vivekananda. Even though these paths are mentioned in scriptures, but it was swamiji who brought these into light for the welfare of the world.


What is Jnaana?

Jnaana is the path of Knowledge wherein one sees the unlimited and eternal Self – the eternal Truth that one is. The Self is said as “Eka eva Adviteeyam” – one without a second.


Things in this world have three types of differences.

1. Swagatha or differences internal to the object – this implies various parts of the object. The tree has branches and roots which are the swagatha bhedas.

2. Sajatheeya or differences between the object and similar objects – this implies various objects of the same category. A tree is different from another tree.

3. Vijatheeya or differences between the object and other dissimilar objects – this implies various objects of a different category from the object under consideration. A tree is different from a stone.


The Self or Brahman is Nishkalam and Niravayavam or without any parts. Hence it has no swagatha bhedam. This is represented by the word “Ekam” in the sloka.


The Self is the only thing present – there is no comparison to it. There is no Brahman or Self similar to a Self – thus there is only ONE Self. Hence it has no sajeetheeya bhedam. This is represented by the word “Eva” meaning “only” in the sloka.


The Self has nothing different from it. Whatever is present, is only the Self or Brahman. Thus we find in the scriptures that Brahman is in the front, Brahman is in the back, Brahman is in the right, Brahman is in the left, Brahman is in the top and Brahman is in the bottom – or to sum up, Brahman is present everywhere and hence only thing present. Hence it has no vijatheeya bhedam as no object is there separate or distinct from it. This is represented by the word “Adviteeyam” meaning “without a second” in the sloka.


This is the path of Knowledge wherein one gets a clear intellectual conviction through the Upanishads (knowledge portion of the Vedas) that there is only ONE here and that is the non-dual Brahman. This path of knowledge has three stages of Sravana or listening to the teachings of the scriptures (mainly from the Guru), Manana or reflecting upon the mind the teachings that one has heard and Nidhidhyasana or contemplating upon the Truth mentioned in the teachings.


This path of knowledge is tough to follow as one needs to grasp the subtle theories of the Brahman and needs a sharp intellect to grasp the truths and put them into practice. For this sharp intellect, one chants the Gayathri mantra which states that “The person who is there in the solar orb, who makes the Sun shine and who is represented through the syllable of OM and who brings forth the trinity of worlds of Bhoo, Bhuva and Suvar – that effulgent person who is the creator, I concentrate on his bright rays – let those make me intellect strong and capable of studying the subtle sciences of the Self”.


What is Yoga or Raja Yoga?

Raja Yoga or Yoga, Maharshi defines as seeing Oneness everywhere. Patanjali says that Yoga is the removal of the mind-stuff and remaining as the pure and natural state of the Self.  Patanjali says the this yoga or goal of yoga is union of Self and Brahman and this is achieved through “Eka Tatva Abhyasah” – concentration on a single thing. This concentration need not be with closed eyes. If a person sees the same God everywhere, this is Meditation or Dhyaana. This is what is required in yoga. Patanjali agains says that this yoga or achievement of such a concentration has 8 steps called Ashtanga yoga of Yama (dos), Niyama (donts), Asana (posture), PRanayama (control of prana), pratyahara (withdrawal of sense organs), Dhyana (meditation) and Samadhi (absorption).


When a person reaches the level of meditation he tries to see oneness everywhere.

Krishna says in Gita chapter 6 (this sloka is also present in some of the main Upanishads).

Sarva bhootastham atmaanam sarva bhooteshu cha atmani.

Eeshathe yoga yuktatma sarvatra sama darshinah”

He who sees all beings in the Self and the Self in all beings – he is a yogi following oneness or seeing Oneness everywhere.


This path has been wrongly interpreted by people and they just quote the asana and pranayama which are just introductory in this path of yoga.


What is Bhakthi?

Bhakthi is generally translated as Devotion. But it is not just devotion. It is not devotion for 10 min a day, it is not devotion when you go to temple and pray God and after coming from the temple, forget God and all other things. Bhakthi means total and unconditional surrender to God. This devotion is attained only when one has constant thought of God. The thought of God should always be persisted even when one is doing any work or other things.


Sage Narada  defines bhakthi in his narada bhakthi sutras as

Tad arpita akhila aacharatha Tad vismarane parama vyakulatha cha”.

Offering all work and everything to HIM or GOD, and becoming sad when one forgets him.


One needs to yearn and cry – only as a result of such deep yearning does one realize the God in himself. When a person surrenders everything unto God, there is no problem of Ego arising – which can happen if one is following the path of Jnana (ego due to knowledge) and the path of Yoga (ego due to siddhis).


What is Karma Yoga???

Karma yoga is yoga of action wherein a person does all work but is not affected by the work or by its effects. He remains untainted by the work as the sun remains unaffected by all the activities occurring in the earth. It is really tough to do all actions without the sense of doership and without getting egoistic about the fruits that come from the work. When such a state is reached wherein one does all actions but remains unaffected by all the actions – he is said to follow the path of Action and scriptures proclaim that such a person is very near to liberation or eternal Bliss of the Self.

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