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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Vasudeva here doesn’t merely mean Krishna or his form (as Krishna himself says in Gita that they are ignorant fools who thinks me as embodied). Vishnu purana says that Vasudeva is one who is present everywhere (Vasathi sarvatra ithi vasudeva). What is present everywhere is the pure Consciousness or Self alone.


Hence what a seeker needs is to realize the Self through seeing oneness everywhere. When oneness is maintained, there is no limitations of “I and mine”. He doesn’t have any attachment or aversions and thereby he gains purity of mind and such a pure mind realizes its own real source of Self – absolute bliss alone.

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 -- #140
Maharshi: The ego-Self does not exist at all.

Question: Why does it give us trouble?

Maharshi: To whom is the trouble? The trouble also is imagined. Trouble and pleasure are only for the ego.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



In Reality, there is two-ness only pure and absolute Consciousness, the Self. It is called Self because it is the most intimate or it is the person himself.


The Upanishads and all scriptures proclaim that there is nothing but the Self alone.


Sad eva soumya idam agra asit ekam eva adviteeyam”

Truth or existence alone was there before, One without a Second.


Whatever is, whatever was and whatever will be is only the Self. Thus the Self is beyond even time and space. The concepts of time and space are only mental thoughts because we experience them only during the states of waking and dreaming whereas they are absent during deep sleep.


When this Self is not known, all illusions and misapprehension occurs. When the reality of rope present in a room in darkness is not perceived, snake is superimposed on the rope. The snake has no existence at all but it seems to exist for the time being. Similarly there is nothing but the Self alone but due to ignorance of the Self, the other things are taken as the Self. This limited body and mind are considered as the Self and this causes sorrow and pleasure.


When the real Self is not known and it seems to get limited by the body consciousness – it is called Ego or individuality. This Ego thinks that I am so and so, I have such relatives, I love such people, I hate others, I know this, I don’t know that and all. When such limitations occur, the problems and troubles for “My people” becomes mine. Thus I get deluded and became sad when they are sad. When this body gets health troubles, “I” or Ego also gets pain and cries for the same.


Even this Ego has no reality of its own – it is just imaginary limitations of the limitless Self. When the Self is now known, the limitations come up. The Ego is shortlived and imaginary because it was not there during deep sleep. As in dream, there is nothing but the dreamer and the dreamer creates a dream world and imagines that he is affected by them and gets deluded that the duality is present. But in reality, when the dreamer wakes up, he realizes that there was none other than dreamer alone and he himself became the dual dream world and got deluded and sad in his own creation of dream world.


Similarly the waking Self or Ego thinks that there is the dual world – it is only its own creation and thereby gets deluded over them. Even this Ego is like the reflection of the sun in a bucket of water. It has no existence, because whatever is only the pure Consciousness. Even when the Ego thinks that “I have such name and form” – the pure “I” just remains a witness to these. The Consciousness is not affected by it – if it were to get affected, there would be a sad-consciousness and happy-consciousness which is not there. Consciousness or Self is but one – only when this reality is not known all dualities come up starting from the egoistic “I”.


This Ego is not present in deep sleep and the result is pure and eternal bliss inherent in the Self. But when the Self, the substratum for all the names and forms of the world is forgotten, then the dual world arises and along with it comes the Egoistic I.


When this Egoistic I which is similar to the son of a barren women and like the horn of a hare is eradicated by proper and real knowledge of the Self, the seeker finds that there is nothing but the Self only.


Sri Krishna says to Arjuna in Gita

Ashochyaan anvashochastvam prajna vaadaascha baashashe.

Gataasoon agathaasoon cha nanushochanthi pandithah”

O Arjuna, you are getting worried and sad over that for which one should get sad or worried and you speak like a KNOWER or knowledgeable person. Know that great and wise people never get sad over things which appear and disappear.


As Maharshi himself tells, whatever appears should also disappear. Because of its transient nature, hence it cannot be real. The real is that which is constant and without changing and ever present.


The pain and pleasure that one seems to get from worldly things is only for the Egoistic I. Because even in pain and pleasure there is the constant factor of “I” – one who seems to enjoy those.


Does a person really enjoy pain and pleasure??

No, never – says the Upanishads and great Mahatmas.


A great and renounced person like Swami Vivekananda did not cry when he lost his Passport and was stranded on the foot path of US. He was as strong and the same like in India.


Ramana Maharshi was not at all sad when he left the house and stayed in caves without even a meal a day.


Thus it is not the Self or real I which enjoys the dual pain and pleasure. But it is the Egoistic I as well as the mind that gets affected by pain and pleasure. When a person knows the ultimate reality that I am the Self and there is only the Self, then he has nothing to get happy about or get worried or sad about. He always remains in the eternal and inherent bliss of the Self. Such a person’s mind is like an ocean without waves. There may be thoughts in his mind, but the thoughts cannot do him any harm because he has fully realized and has completely known that all the things in the world are in the mind and hence it can affect the mind only and not the Real “I” – 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 -- #141

In sleep one is centred within. Simultaneously with waking one’s mind rushes out thinking this, that and all else. This must be checked.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



Vedanta or Upanishads, the knowledge portion of the Vedas speak about the three states that a person goes through in a day and equating this, they take the seeker to the ultimate Reality or Truth of absolute Self.


Maharshi thus here explains about these states.


The three states that a person passes through in a day are

  1. Waking state – here there is the mind, the body and the dual world.

  2. Dream state – here there is no gross body or the gross world, but the mind creates a subtle dream body and dream world due to the impressions created during waking state.

  3. Deep sleep state – here there is no mind at all and hence nothing is perceived here. This does not mean that it is voidness or sunya of Buddhist. There is the witness or the Self that was present during these states. This Self is the same witness to all the three states. When a person wakes up, he says that “I slept well”. This remembrance is possible only if the person was present during that state. Hence it was the Self who had enjoyed the bliss inherent during the state of deep sleep.


Vedanta says that it is the Self that which is the witness to all the three states and remains without any change in all the three changing states.


In the deep sleep, there is no mind and hence there are no thoughts. Because of this thoughtlessness, the bliss inherent in the Self is enjoyed – but there is a veil of ignorance that is present during that state which obstructed a person from being aware of enjoying the Bliss.


Thus the state of thoughtlessness is the inherent state of the Self. One can easily know why Yogis and great Tapasvis meditate and try to ward off all thoughts in the mind. When all thoughts are eradicated or removed, what remains is the thinker or the seer or the Self.


When the Self is not known correctly, all thoughts creep up – these thoughts make one think that he is not perfect, he requires these and that things and all. But when through intellectual conviction a person realizes that there is only the Self – one without a second, then it becomes easy for him to ward off thoughts and when the thoughts are warded off, what remains is the ever-present and self-luminous Self.


Thoughts occur because a person perceives duality, but for a person who sees oneness everywhere – there is nothing different to see or perceive. Thus such a person easily wards off the ripples of the water, which is the mind and thereby sees or realizes the bottom of the lake which is the inherent nature of Self.


Krishna says in Gita, chapter 6

Vidhya vinaya sampanne brahmane gavi hasthini.

Shuni chaiva svapaake cha panditaah sama darshinah”

That person is called Wise who having got the qualities of Knowledge and Humility sees the same thing in a Brahmin, a cow, an elephant, a horse and in a chandaala or tribal person. He thus realizes the oneness and therefore doesn’t suffer at all.


Sarva bhootashtam aatmaanam sarva bhootani cha atmani

Ishathe yoga yuktatma sarvatra samadarshanah”

A real yogi sees the oneness everywhere, he sees the Self in all and all in the Self.


Ishavasya Upanishad says “Tato na vijugupsathe” – he who thus sees oneness everywhere never gets hatred or becomes sad.

Tatra ko mohah kah shokah ekatma anupashyatah” – He who sees oneness everywhere, what is there for him to get deluded to get sad.


But we see Krishna again mentioning in chapter 6

Asamshayam mahabaaho mano durnigraham chalam

Abhyaasena tu kaunteya vairagyena cha grihyathe”

O Arjuna, it is doubtless that the mind is tough to control. But it gains control through practice and dispassion.


When a person knows that there is some higher truth available and a higher and eternal bliss available – he will not at all fall a trap to the temporary happiness of the sense objects that only lead one to sorrow – when a person knows this, he puts all effort into realizing or gaining the higher happiness. Slowly he strives forward to realize the Self – the Self which is of the nature of Bliss alone. This Bliss that which one gets during the state of deep sleep, which is full in nature and without a single taint of sorrow at all. Thus with the help of practice and dispassion, a person strives and realizes the inherent bliss of the Self.


When thus with the help of practice a person wards off all thoughts and concentrates on a single thought of God or Brahman or any other thing – slowly his mind becomes focused and slowly even that thought is eradicated thereby making him realize his own real nature of Self.


Patanjali says in Yoga Sutras

There are different types of obstacles to Samadhi – wherein the vrittis or modifications of the chitta or mind is removed.

Tat prathishedaartham eka tatva abhyasah

In order to overcome the obstacles one should practice “oneness”.


When oneness is practiced, slowly with further effort, all the thoughts vanish and the mind becomes like an ocean without waves. This is the state of thoughtlessness – in such a state there exists nothing but the Self alone.

Sankara says

Nistaranga jala raasi nischalam” – ocean without waves.


One should realize that in all the stages to realization, nothing new is gained – only the ignorance and the thoughts of the non-existent mind is removed. Self is already realized – nitya suddha Buddha mukta (ever realized, pure and enlightened). But this has been forgotten and because of forgetting one’s own real nature of Self – the mind comes into play and creates the dual world that one sees external to oneself. Thus when a person strives to realize the Self through practicing oneness and through the triple steps of Sravana or listening, manana or reflection and nidhidhyaasana or contemplating on the Ultimate Reality of God or Brahman or Self – all ignorance is completely removed and he rejoices in the inherent bliss of the Self.


This Realization is not something to be had after the fall of this body or during old age – if a person doesn’t get this here and now, then when can he get it????

Vedas proclaim that the Self is already realized and the awareness of the Self can be had here and now itself and the person gets the inherent bliss of the Self and rejoices as the non-dual Self. At that time, there is no body, no mind, no world but only Self.


Dattatreya says in Avadhuta Gita

Atmaiva kevalam sarvam bheda abhedo na vidhyathe

Asthi naasthi katham brooyam vismayah prathibhaathi me”

There is only the Self – there is no difference and non-difference. It seems perplexing to think that people tell that “self exist” and “Self doesn’t exist”.


This is the natural state of each person – the state of non-duality, the state of eternal bliss, the state of peace. Each one has to realize this and until he realizes there will be the imaginary and illusory mind and its creations. All this vanishes when the reality of the Self is realized like snake vanishes when the reality of rope is known.


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 -- #142
Question: Is there any genuine difference between dream experience and waking state?

Maharshi: Because you find the dream creations transitory in relation to the waking state there is said to be a difference. The difference is only apparent and not real.

                                                                                                                        -- Ramana Maharshi



Maharshi is explaining the similarity between dream and waking state.


We can find Vasistha explaining to Rama in Yoga Vasistha that

Vipra Prithvyaadi manastham na bahyastham kadachana.

Swapna brama padaartheshu sarvair eva anubhuyathe”

O Brahmin, the world created by the five gross elements of Earth, Air, water, fire and ether are in the mind only and not external. Everyone experiences this during the state of dream and during illusions like snake seen in rope and mirage seen in desert.


The Dream state consists just of the dreamer alone. The Dreamer “I” creates the dream world with the help of mind – thus this state is called subtle state. Only when the dreamer wakes up he realizes that there is no dream world but only the Dreamer alone.


Maharshi here says that the dream world is considered transitory and illusory only with respect to the waking state. Since we wake up, we realize that there is only the dreamer and the dream world created was just an illusion like the magic of a magician.


Isn’t this waking world real and hence different from Dream???

As Maharshi says the difference between dream and waking state is only apparent and not real – because both these states are transient in nature and depends on the Seer or Subject.


Two people see the same world and things – but one feels the world as heaven whereas the other feels it as hell. Hence we can know that this waking world that we see is not real. Also, when we go into sleep, there is no waking world or other things. This shows that these are not real and the real thing is the SELF, the Seer of all transient experiences. And also when a person enters the state of deep sleep, there is no dream or waking world – whatever is present is only the Subject. Since in this state there is no mind, there is no creation and because of this reason, one enjoys the real and inherent bliss of the Self. Thus he says that “I slept well” – but he is unaware of it during that state and realizes it only after waking up. Hence there is a veil of ignorance that presents the person to be aware of the experience of the inherent bliss.


For changing things there must be changeless substratum that remains without any change. The changeless substratum for the changing states of waking, dream and deep sleep is the Self, the seer of the nature of Absolute Existence, Consciousness and Bliss.


Adi Sankara says in his work Dakshnimurthy ashtakam

Viswam darpana drishya maana nagareetulyam nija antargatam

Pasyan atmani mayaya bahir iva udbhootam yatha nidraya

Yah sakshaatkuruthe prabodha samaye swatmaanam eva advayam

Tasmai sri gurumurthaye nama idam sri dakshinamurthaye”

This world is like a reflected image of a town which is present in a mirror (one knows that the image created is not external but in the mirror alone) & here there is no external town but only the town inside the mirror. This reflection of the town is seen internal in the Self (like superimposition of snake over the rope) but seen as if external similar to dream experience. He who realizes the eternal and non-dual Self after gaining knowledge of Realization, I offer my prostrations to that Dakshinamurthy who has taken the form of a Guru.


Sankara again says

Balyadishu api jagraadishu sarvaasu avasthaasu vyavrittasu

Anuvartamaanam aham ithi antah sphuranam sada”

The Self remains changeless amongst all the changing states of dream, waking and deep sleep, during stages of childhood, youth and old age as also during the six steps of Birth, Existence, Growth, Change, Decay and Death. It is that which always pulsates as “I” – “I”.


No one needs any proof of one’s own existence – because the seer can never be proved only the objects can be proven. Thus the Self is already realized but everyone remains unaware and ignorant of it like the woman who had the necklace in her neck and was still searching for it as also the story of Kuchhu’s glasses which we all have learnt.


Vidyaranya swamigal says in Panchadasi

Lokyathe Anubhooyaat ithi lokah”

That which is perceived and experienced is called World.


Maharshi says

Drishtim jnaanamayeem kritva pashyathe brahma mayam jagat”

Once a person gains the outlook of Knowledge, he sees the Brahman everywhere.


The world never comes to a person to tell that “I exist” – because it is insentient in nature. Whatever a person sees are jada vasthus and don’t have consciousness of their own. Even a person seeing another human being, the other human being is just a creation of the mind alone.


There can never be two seers as then their characteristic of subject will go off – as both will become subject as well as object which is not possible. Hence Seer or Subject is one only.


But then the other conscious beings that I see – aren’t they real???

They are never real. Whatever is real is only the Self or Absolute Consciousness. If a person is conscious, there is the world and other human beings. But when the person is unconscious, there is nothing for him, no world or other beings.


Hence whatever real is there is only the Self alone.

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