D: That is right, Lord. Here eyes should be taken as all the sense organs. Thus the Self is the illuminator of the whole world. Hence there is no world in reality – only the Self seen as the world due to ignorance. Only Self-Realization can make a person say that whether the world exists or not & what is the reality here. How can the Self be realized by its partial part – the Intellect????
Due to Guru’s grace and due to purification of the mind through contemplation on the mantras of the scriptures, the Self is realized. Mantras of the scriptures speak about the Self. When the intellect contemplates on the truth about the Self through these Sanskrit slokas – the Self is realized (as the saying goes “As the thoughts so the Person”). Let the Almighty help us all realize the SELF.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #24
On the devotee surrendering, God shows his mercy by manifesting as the Guru. The Guru, otherwise God, guides the devotee, saying that God is in you and He is the Self. This leads to introversion of the mind and finally to realization.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Explanation: Guru & God – These are two very important words & people that matter the most for a sadhak (person who is striving for Self-Realization). A Devotee sees God everywhere. He surrenders to God all his actions and the fruits of those actions. Sri Krishna gives three qualities necessary for a devotee in Gita, Chapter 12. 1. Fixing the mind always on Me.
2. Ever steadfast in remembering Me.
3. Taking the goal as Attaining Me.
Here Me means the Supreme Being or Brahman (with attributes). This is what is called God-Devotion. When God Devotion becomes firm, the God sends the Guru to the devotee.
What is the necessity of Guru?
Guru is one who dispels the darkness of ignorance and brings the shine of Knowledge of the Self. The Upanishads tell that “Acharyavan Purusho Veda”
The Self-Knowledge is gained only by one who has a Guru. A Guru is one who has already attained Self-Realization and can easily clear the obstacles in the path to Self-Realization. For a devotee, the God appears in the form of Guru to teach him Self-Knowledge.
The proof for this is Dakshinamurthy (an avatar of Siva).
Brahma first created 4 manasa putras called Sanka, Sanandana, Sanat-Sujata, Sanatkumara and told them to create beings.
They were very much dispassionate and searched for a Guru. Siva then appeared in the form of Dakshinamurthy and sitting under a banyan tree facing south, taught them through silence. The main teaching that a Guru gives regarding the Self is the great Mahavakya of “Tat Tvam Asi” – “That Thou Art”.
This explains to the disciple that the Supreme God or the Self that the disciple is in search is you only. It is inside you, but you are not aware of it.
Thus the Guru teaches and shows the Self to the disciple thereby making him Self-Realized.
One has to remember here that the Self has become the Guru through the grace of (Self in the form of) God to teach Self-Knowledge. Let the Almighty help us all to get a Guru to realize the Self.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #25
Everyone is aware of the eternal Self. He sees so many dying but still believes himself eternal. Because it is the Truth.
-- Ramana Maharshi
The Self is explained in the Upanishads as Kevala Sat, Chit & Ananda.
Ananda – Bliss Absolute Existence can never be without Consciousness. One is conscious of a material because of its existence. A person is conscious of himself because he exists. This Sat tells to the person always that “I exist, I exist” and “I am, I am”. No person can say that “I don’t exist”.
This existence needs no proof because it is not different from awareness. A person is always aware that he exists or he is conscious that he exists. This is what Maharshi says that everyone is aware of the Self because he is always aware of His existence. The only problem here is the misidentification of this “I” with the Body, Mind or the intellect. One doesn’t know or realize that this “I” is the Self and not the Body, Mind or intellect.
A person (the “I” in the person) sees people dying all around himself, but he knows that “I am eternal” or thinks “I am eternal”. This is because of the Truth or Satya that “I am the eternal Self which has no birth or death”.
The “I” in the person makes him believe that it is eternal because the “I” has no birth or death. Maharshi tells us that the “I” that makes one believe that it is eternal is the “Self” and not anything else. But people take the “I” to be the Body, in normal case. This world and its sorrows affect a person so long as he identifies himself with the Body. When one realizes the Truth that “I” am not the body, “I” am not the mind – but “I” am the one and only Self of the nature of Nitya Sudha Buddha Muktha. A person without realizing or knowing that he is the Self believes himself to be eternal. But this statement is true. But the only thing is “I” identified by a normal person as the Body is not the Body but the “Eternal Self”. When once the intellectual conviction that “I am the Self” comes – then one realizes the Self and enjoys the Bliss of the Self. Let the Almighty help us all to realize the Truth that I am the Self.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #26 Unbroken ‘I-I’ is the ocean infinite; the ego, ’I’- thought, remains only a bubble on it and is called jiva, i.e., individual soul. The bubble too is water; when it bursts it only mixes in the ocean. When it remains a bubble, it is still a part of the ocean.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Explanation: This quote of Maharshi can be said to Vedanta & World-concept in a nutshell.
The Supreme Being is called Brahman. It has no qualities, no form, no part and is full in itself. It’s nature is Absolute Existence, Absolute Consciousness, Absolute Bliss. This Brahman then with the help of its own power, Praakriti or Maya, thinks to itself that “let me multiply & let there be creation”. Thus the reflection of the Brahman through Maya brings forth “Avyaktam (non-descriptive) or Avyaakritam (undifferentiated)”. Eg: to this is – Brahman is the lamp & Maya its rays (thus in fact, Brahman and Maya are one and the same). This rays hit a screen & at that moment Avyaktam is formed (since it is pure only without any parts or forms, it is called Avyaktam or Avyaakritam). When this Avyaktam due to Maya takes a form – the first form is called Ishwara or Hiranyagarbha or Mahat Tattva. Thus the GOD that we call is only this Ishwara & Brahman is something even beyond that. This Mahat Tatva is also called Cosmic Mind and Vishwa Prana. Cosmic Mind is the putting together of all the individual minds. Thus from Ishwara was created Ahankara or Ego. Ego is nothing but reflection of the Brahman on the Chitta of the individual. From Ego, Five gross Elements of Ether, Air, Fire, Water & Earth was formed. From these all the beings are formed.
This creation occurs in the individual (microcosmic) level as well as in Macrocosmic level. In microcosmic level, Chitta is formed. From it the Intellect, Mind are formed. After this, the sense organs & organs of action are formed.
Thus with the sense organs & organ of action at the microcosmic level & the gross elements at the Macrocosmic level – the various physical forms are formed. This can be said to be Creation of the World from Brahman. Thus it is not difficult to understand that the World is nothing different from Brahman – but just a name & form attached to Brahman due to ignorance. We see different rivers. It is not difficult to intellectually come to the conviction that these are nothing but water with a name & form.
Gold-necklace, gold-chain are all nothing but gold with a name & form. Maharshi thus explains here that Brahman is ocean. In this ocean a bubble springs up & that is nothing but the Ego called Jiva. This Jiva is said in the Vedas as the reflection of Brahman in the Intellect. This Jiva is nothing different from water. When this Ego thought (limited-Ego) is merged with the Infinite-Ego – the bubble becomes ocean itself. The Bubble was not different from ocean at all times. It is due to the limited-Ego that it was thought to be different. Thus the Jiva which is the Atman residing in the Heart of all beings is not different from Brahman. If Brahman is infinite space, Jiva is the space inside a pot. The space inside a pot is not at all different from infinite space. But due to ignorance and the pot, it seems to limited. When the pot is broken – the realization occurs that there is only infinite space. Thus Jiva when rid of the Body, Mind, Intellect thoughts – merges with the infinite Brahman. This is the essence of All Upanishadic sayings that
“Tat Tvam Asi” – That (Brahman) Thou (You-Jiva) Art
“Prajnaanam Brahma” – Consciousness (Jiva) is Brahman
“Aham Brahmasmi” – I (Jiva) am Brahman
“Ayam Atma Brahma” – This Atman (Jiva) is Brahman. Thus contemplating on this meaning of any one of the above MahaVakyas – one can realize the Self or Brahman. Let the Almighty help us all to realize the Self through one of these MahaVakya.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #27
The consciousness was pre existent and will survive the body. In fact, there is no one who does not say ‘I am’. The wrong knowledge of ‘I am the body’ is the cause of all the mischief. The wrong knowledge must go. This is Realization.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Explanation: Consciousness is ever existing – It is the essence or nature of the Self. It was there before the body and will be there even after the body perishes. When the body perishes during sleep, Consciousness still exists. This Consciousness is that which tells to itself ‘I exist, I exist’. As Maharshi says, a person, to be living & to remember himself, need not tell to himself that ‘I exist’ or ‘I am’ – but that is the root thought of the mind. That is the root thought which helps other thoughts to appear and disappear. Even though, many thoughts come by – this thought ever remains the same. If a person has lived for 50 years, for each moment of the 50 years, his Consciousness remains the Same without any change. Only the body and other factors change.Consciousness is the Sun that illumines all other things in the world. But still it remains changeless amidst this changing world. Thus Consciousness is the changeless substratum and the witness to this Transitory World.
Keeping aside the Consciousness, nothing else remains. If Consciousness is there, World exists, if it is not there, there is no world. The intellectual conviction that “I am the Consciousness, ever pure” – Prajnaanam Brahma – makes one realize the Self or the Consciousness. That is what “I am”. But people tend to mis-identify the “I” with the Body. This is the main cause of all troubles, sorrows and pains in the world. When this wrong identification of the “I” with the Body is removed, then one realizes that “I am the Self of the nature of Existence, Consciousness and Bliss”. How can “I” be the Body because during sleep, there is no body but “I” exist????
Thus, when one enquires into “Who I am”, “Am I this perishable body”, “Ain’t I the Consciousness that illumines everything else”, “Ain’t I been the same as I was 50 years before”, “I did not have this body during sleep, but I was there” – thereby one finds the substratum of this world, the Self. Once the wrong notion of “I am the Body” is removed, what remains is nothing but the pure and eternal Self. This is realization.
Once the Self is realized – sorrows vanish as stars vanish before the Mighty Sun. Let the Almighty help us all to remove the wrong notion of “I am the Body” & get the notion of “I am the Self”.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #28
It is the nature of the mind to wander. Never mind the mind. If its source is sought, it will vanish leaving the Self unaffected.
-- Ramana Maharshi Explanation:
Mind is thoughts. As Swami Vivekananda mentions in more than one place that Mind is a drunken monkey. It’s very nature is wandering. If one thinks that pacifying or gratifying a desire will result in the end of the desire. It is very much wrong. Manu Smriti tells that “Removing desire through enjoyment of desires is like pouring ghee into fire”. It will only increase day by day.
That is the reason Lord Buddha told in his four teachings that Desire is the cause of suffering & suffering ends when desires are eliminated. How can one eliminate desires????
Maharshi says beautifully that “never mind the mind”. Finding out the source of the mind, find out the thing that illumines the mind – mind has to then disappear. This is as reaching the sun, the sun rays have to disappear. Mind is but a reflection of the Self – when the Self is sought, the reflection has no existence and hence vanishes by itself.
Mind or the reflection is seen only when one gets away from the Self. Subject and object occurs when you remain different from the subject. When one becomes the pure Subject & realizes that the Object is nothing but the reflection of the Subject – everything vanishes leaving behind the Subject. Thus cessation of the mind can be got only through seeking the Self. One may ask then what is the use of meditation????
Meditation is done only to seek the Self by removing all thoughts & concentrating on a single thought. When meditation perfects, it becomes Samadhi where even the thought vanishes and just pure “I” or the Self remains.
Meditation is done in order to remain with the “I” Consciousness. One need not do anything but just find out the source of the thoughts & be that source. Then everything else will vanish and pure Consciousness will remain.
If one is able to remain as the pure Consciousness, no Yoga, no Knowledge, no Scriptures, no Bhakthi, no Karma is required.
These all are nothing but paths to Be the Self. Let the Almighty help us all to cessation of mind through Be-ing the Self.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #29
Neglecting the modes of mind, look for the light illumining them. The mind becomes still.
-- Ramana Maharshi
The Atman or the Self is the illuminator of everything in this world. How do we know that Self illumines everything????
The world that we see is illumined by our sense organs, the eyes, ears, nose, tongue and the skin. These sense organs are not the eyes present in the outer body. These are present internal or inside the body.
This is because the sense organs are illumined by the Mind. Mind is that which drives you from a thought to another thought.
When these thoughts are reasoned and concentrated, it is Intellect working. Thus the Mind is illumining the whole world. The Mind is not self-illumining because in deep sleep, mind is not there and yet there is “I”. During meditation, people control the Mind – hence mind is under the control of the Self.The Self is that which illumines the Mind. The source of light is the Self.
“Na Tatra Sooryo Bhathi, Na Chandra Tarakam.
Na ima vidhyotho banthi kutoyam Agnih.
Tam eva bantam anubhati sarvam
Tasya baasa sarvam idam vibhaati”
“There (the place of Self) neither the Sun shines, nor the Moon and Stars. There lightning does not shine, so how come the Fire will shine?? The Self shines all the things in this world, and all other things follow it’s illumination” Gita says in Chapter 15
“Na Tad Bhaasayathe sooryo, na sashaanko na paavakah”
“There neither the sun shines nor the moon and the fire”. Once this source is sought, then the mind has no effect (because it is being given light by the Self). This is like telling once the Sun is sought, then the sun rays have no value & hence the whole world disappears. Similarly when one seeks the Self, the mind becomes still. This seeking of the Source is done by Yogis through Pranayama, Dharana, Dhyaana and Samadhi. Maharshi is telling in the simplest way and the simplest method of controlling the mind by seeking the Self.
When one seeks the Self, all the things that are illumined by the Self vanish & there remains the non-dual, ever-existing, pure and eternal Self. This Self is what different people call as GOD, Allah, Jesus, Brahman, Ishwara, Siva, Vishnu, Ganesh, Krishna and all. Let the Almighty help us all to seek the Self this very moment.
Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #30There is nothing new to gain. On the other hand, you must loose your ignorance. That is all.
-- Ramana Maharshi
Maharshi says in another place that “Whatever new you gain that will be lost. Whatever exists will exist forever”. Vedas and the Rishis who have realized the Self have said that “Self-Realization or Liberation is to be achieved here in this world & now itself. It is not something that one gains after leaving this body & entering another world”. This has been told by Maharshi in this quote. There is nothing new to gain. The Self is the substratum of this world. It is on which the world rests. Yet it remains ever pure & just a witness to whatever is happening. It is never the Karta(doer) or Bhoktha(enjoyer). It remains ever-liberated & ever-pure. It is pure as the Sun which never gets affected by a dog barking at it or children throwing stones at it. The “I” which is beyond the Body, Mind & the Intellect is the ever-pure & ever-liberated Self. Self-Realization is nothing but realizing or becoming aware that “I am the Self beyond all adjunctions of body, mind and intellect”. It is not called Self-Attainment whereas Self-Realization. When one realizes the Self, the ignorance of the Self is lost. When light is there, darkness is dispelled. In reality, there is no thing as darkness, but it is just absence of light. Similarly when the realization of the Self comes, the ignorance that “I am the Body or Mind or Intellect & that I am not the Self” is dispelled. One may ask how much time does it take for Self-Realization????
Maharshi says that “Self-Realization takes the time required for light to dispel darkness in a room”. In a dark room, when light is switched on, darkness goes off in a nano-second or much much shorter time than that. Only this much time is required for Self-Realization.
The moment one becomes aware that “I” am different from body, mind & intellect, He Becomes the pure Self. Upanishads tell “Brahma Vid Brahma Eva Bhavathi” – One who knows Brahman (Supreme Being which is same as the Self), he verily becomes Brahman. Whatever the mind thinks, the person becomes it. (It depends on the concentration on the object).
Thus when one concentrates on the thought that “I am Self, ever-pure & ever-liberated” – that moment itself He becomes the Self & gains Moksha or Liberation (not really gaining but realizing).