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


Thus, all the different paths leads one to the ultimate Self & merging of the mind & its thoughts into the Self or pure Consciousness

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Thus, all the different paths leads one to the ultimate Self & merging of the mind & its thoughts into the Self or pure Consciousness.
Yoga Vasistha says

Samastham Kalpana maatram idam”

Whatever one sees here is only an illusion created by the mind.
Mana eva manushyanaam kaaranam bandha mokshayoh

Bandhaaya vishayaasaktam Muktaih nirvishayam smritam”

Mind alone is the cause of bondage & liberation. When the mind is full of thoughts & craves for external sense objects, it is in bondage & when it is free from craving for external sense objects, it is in liberation.
Chit chetya kalitha bandah tan mukta muktiruchyathe

Chit achetya kila atmeti sarva Vedanta samgraha”

Consciousness when mixed with thoughts is bondage & removal of that thoughts is liberation.

Consciousness without any thoughts is called the Self – this is in short the essence of Vedanta or Upanishads.
Thus, all the efforts are to remove the thoughts & the ignorance & not to attain a new Self. The Self is ever present & one is already that. What one needs to do is remove the ignorance which causes thoughts & thereby realize that “I am the Self, one without a second”. At that time, there remains nothing but the Self alone & eternal bliss inherent in the Self.
As Sankara says in Bhaja Govindam

Yoga ratho va bhoga ratho va sanga ratho va sanga viheenah

Yasya brahmani ramathe chittam nandhathi nandhathi nandhathi eva”

Even though a Jnaani may indulge in yogic practices or enjoy sensual pleasures, he might be attached to things & people or detached to things & people – still the person whose mind resides in the Self or Brahman rejoices, rejoices, rejoices and rejoices only.

At that time, the ultimate reality about one’s own real nature is known & all the illusory world & its creations are removed.
Chidaananda roopah sivoham sivoham” – I am the auspicious Self of the nature of Consciousness and Bliss, I am that Self (Siva means auspicious being as well as self-effulgent which is only applicable to the Self).
As the pongal festival indicates rise of the water & rice in the pot, similarly let the inner bliss inherent (and blocked by ignorance) flow out & let one realize that there is only the Self and nothing else but pure Bliss alone.
Let the Almighty guide each one of us to realize the Self without wasting much time as each moment is uncertain and precious.
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Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #187
Realization implies perfection. When you are limited, your perception also is limited. Your knowledge is thus imperfect. Of what value is that imperfect knowledge?

                                                                                                                                                            - Upadesa Saram of Ramana Maharshi

Explanation:

Maharshi here gives the correct meaning of realization.
Realization is realizing the Self, realizing one’s own real nature.
What is the nature of the Self????

Brihadaranyaka Upanishad says


Poornam adah poornam idam poornaat poornam udachyathe”

This Self is FULL as it came from the FULL Brahman.
From full, partial can never come. From a perfect thing, an imperfect thing can never come.
Thus, the Self is FULL or PERFECT. Only realizing that “I am Full, I am perfect, I am devoid of ignorance and desires” is termed MOKSHA or liberation and called as realization, liberation, God-attainment and all.
Thus, a person is not imperfect but he is PERFECT. The ignorance that “I am perfect” is the main bondage and obstacle to realization. The thought of limitedness is created by the mind due to ignorance.
When the reality of rope is not known, the unreality of snake is superimposed on it. When the reality of dream is not known, dream is thought to be real. When a person doesn’t know his own real nature of Bliss, perfection and Consciousness, then he desires to become perfect. It is a real pity that the PERFECT thinks he is IMPERFECT and wants to become PERFECT.
The so-thought imperfect learns different things & tries to become perfect with these limited knowledge. When a person thinks that he is imperfect, it is obvious that knowledge from such a person will also be imperfect only. Thus the person thinks he is the body and mind. He creates desires and aversions. He thinks some people to be his and others to be enemies or with whom he has no relation at all. These differences (wrongly created by the mind) are the main causes for bondage & are the main obstacles for LIBERATION. Only when this ignorance about one’s own perfect nature is removed, can he become perfect.

An old woman was searching for her necklace which she thought she had left somewhere. She was searching here and there but could not find it. She became sad & started crying. A passer-by felt compassion & said to the old woman that the necklace is in your neck only. the old woman verified this & became very happy.

The perfection or bliss came only when she realized that she never lost the necklace & found out that the necklace is with her only. Similarly when a person realizes that “I am the Self of the nature of Existence, Consciousness and Bliss absolute” – then he becomes perfect, then he reaches the state of completeness, then there is nothing but Consciousness alone & therefore no sorrow or delusion.
The Upanishads start with the student asking the Guru

Kasmin u bhagavo vijnaathe sarvam idam vijnaatam bhavathi ithi”

O Lord tell me that by knowing which, everything else becomes Known.
Here the disciple wants to know about the absolute Knowledge which is the substratum for every other knowledge. This knowledge is that of the Self. This knowledge is one’s own real nature. Only when this knowledge is known or realized in oneself, there remains no thirst for external sense objects or for fame or for money or for anything else – because all these thirsts are due to IMPERFECTION (the person doesn’t know his own real nature of PERFECTION and hence wants to become PERFECT and HAPPY).

Maharshi here criticizes all other knowledge which are but imperfect & are not complete in itself. Let’s say for example the knowledge of computers. This knowledge is incomplete because even after gaining this knowledge, there are other things to be known. All such scientific sciences are but imperfect & are all partial knowledge. No branch of science, astronomics, physics, chemistry, mathematics, psychology – all can make one perfect because all these knowledge are partial and not complete in itself. But the knowledge of the Self is complete. WHY???? Because it is that by knowing which everything else is known – by knowing which all desires are rooted out – by knowing which the ignorance completely vanishes – by knowing which eternal bliss is rejoiced (the ultimate goal of any human be it Bill Gates or George Bush or Vajpayee).

This is the reason why Ramana Maharshi had just a loin cloth with him, but was complete & was happy always. He never had any desire or sorrow. This is the reason why Swami Vivekananda when he landed in US & lost his Visa – still he was happy. This is the reason why great saints forsake their families & renunciate & go to the himalyas and do meditation there. This is the reason why Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa was happy with whatever little possession he had. This is the reason why Sarada devi was happy even though she never got the attention of a husband from Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa.
Krishna says in Gita

Yad aksharam vedavidah vadanthi

Vishanthi yad yathayah vitharaagaah

Yad icchantho brahma charyam charanthi”
That immutable and eternal Self whom the knowers of Veda salute,

That which people attain after removing desires and attachment,

That desiring whom people follow Brahmacharya,

THAT IS THE SELF.
This Self is same as God, it is not different from God. If it were different from God, then God would be different from one’s Consciousness. Thus liberation would be attaining of God – any attainment will have its opposite of destruction and hence that God will die & will the liberation will not be eternal (liberation in itself implies perfection and eternality). This is not possible. Hence God is oneself. When the Self is known, God is known.
Krishna again and again tells in Gita

Iswarah sarva bhootanaam hridheshe arjuna thisthathi”

God resides in the heart of all beings – the heart represents the Self. This means that the Self is God.

Brihadaranyaka Upanishad proclaims


Brahma Satyam jagan mithya jeevo brahmaiva na parah”

Brahman is the absolute reality & the world is illusory and unreal. The Self is Brahman only and not different from it.
Neha nana asthi kinchana,

Sa mrityor mrityum apnothi ya iha nana iva pashyathi”

There is no duality here, not even little. He who sees duality (seemingly appearing duality as in dream where there is no duality but the same Self becomes dream world and its objects) goes from death to death. Here death refers to sorrow cessation of which is the main aim of each person.
Complete cessation of sorrow is possible only if the sorrow is a relative one and unreal. If sorrow be a real thing, there its removal will never be possible. Thus sorrow is only relative and not real. The removal of this unreal sorrow is the aim of knowledge of the Self.
This sorrow is unreal because it is not present in deep sleep where the person enjoys only pure happiness.
These point out that sorrow is unreal and a creation of the mind alone. This is created due to ignorance about one’s own real nature of Bliss. When one’s own real nature is known, then there is no sorrow as everything is only the Self (one without a second).
This is the ultimate aim of life. There is no other path than this to cessation of sorrow.
Kaivalya Upanishad says

Sarva bhootastham atmaanam sarva bhootaani cha atmani

Sampashyan brahma paramam yaathi na anyena hetuna”

When a person sees oneself everywhere & everything in the Self (that is he sees only the Self here which is the absolute reality as in dream there is only the Self but multitudes are seen), he realizes his reality with Brahman – there is no other path than this.

Taittiriya Upanishad says

Tameva vidhitva ati mrityum atyethi na anyah pantha vidhyathe anaaya”

Knowing one’s own Self, one crosses over death – there is no other path than this.
Chandogya Upanishad says

TAT TVAM ASI” – That Supreme Being of Brahman or God is YOU ONLY & not different from it.
Only this knowledge about one’s own nature is PERFECT & only by knowing this one knows everything else.
Sankara says in Viveka choodamani

Avijnaathe pare tatve saastradhithisthu nishphalaah

Vijnaathe api pare tatve saastardhithisthu nishphalaah”

Without knowing one’s own Self (and the identity of the Self with Brahman), all the scriptures are of no use.

After knowing one’s own Self also, all the scriptures are of no use.
Here scriptures implies all objective knowledge. All these are useless without knowing the Self because only when the Self is known, perfection occurs and complete cessation of sorrow occurs. But after knowing the Self, everything else becomes known & hence the scriptures and other objective knowledge are of no use (also because at that time, there is nothing different from the Self to know & only pure Consciousness, one without a second).

Maharshi here asks what is the use of imperfect and partial knowledge??? This doesn’t mean that one has to forsake all these knowledge. It just means that without trying to know the Self, all these are vain. The ultimate position that a person can attain is that of Bill Gates or that of Indra. Everyone knows that the mental state of these two people. Puranas speak that Indra is never happy because each moment he fears any demon snatching his kingdom and even his wife!!!!!!

But this doesn’t mean one should not have any money or one should not marry – What is required is the knowledge of the Self. If the knowledge that “EVERYTHING IS THE SELF ONLY” is known & this thought is added to all actions, the actions become pooja or sacrifice. Such a person never gets worried or sad about things because whom to get sad with & what to get worried about. Thus all external things are not obstacles to a seeker but the mind and its attitude surely is (if this ultimate knowledge is not added and always thought about).
Upanishad says

Nimeshaardham na thisthanthi vrittim brahma mayeem vina”

The saints, Narada, Sanaka, great saint Suka – all never remain a second without having the thought of Brahman and that “I am Brahman”.
Thus, Maharshi here clearly says that WHAT YOU DO is not a problem but HOW YOU DO IT, WHAT IS THE ATTITUDE matters. Maharshi also mentions that it is ignorance about one’s own nature that causes all problems, miseries and sorrow.
A seeker when he intellectually affirms that everything is but the Self only (as everything is the Consciousness only with a name and form as if Consciousness is not there, nothing is there at all), he slowly progresses towards removal of ignorance veil. Thus he realizes the Self shining as himself. He realizes that I am that Self of the nature of Consciousness and Bliss absolute, I am that Self which is perfect, immutable, eternal and infinte.
Chidananda roopah sivoham sivoham”

I am that Siva (Self-effulgent Self) of the nature of Consciousness and Bliss, I am the Self.
Let the Almighty guide each one of us to realize the Self without wasting much time as each moment is uncertain and precious.

Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #188

Realization is already there. No attempt is needed to attain realization. For it is nothing external, nothing new. It is always and everywhere here and now too.

                                                                                                                                                            - Ramana Maharshi

Explanation:

What is realization???
The very word realization means realizing what is already there.
Scriptures call realization as “Atma Jnaana” or “Brahma Jnaana”.
Brihatvaat ithi brahma That which is present everywhere & is very large and all-pervading is called Brahman.
Atman also has the same meaning – that which is present everywhere is the Self.
Such a Self which is all-pervading can never be realized because there is not even a single space or time when the Self is not present. This Self is of the nature of Consciousness. It is NITYA SUDDHA BUDDHA MUKTHA – ever pure, ever liberated and ever-enlightened. It is of the nature of Absolute Existence, Consciousness and Bliss. It is very easy to apprehend that there is not even a single space or time when Consciousness is not present, because everything depends on the Consciousness for its existence. If Consciousness is present, then all the worlds, its objects, the Gods and Goddesses are all there. If Consciousness is absent, then there is no world, no God and nothing. But even though the world and its objects are absent, Consciousness is present. This is being experienced by everyone during deep sleep where there is no external waking world, no internal dream world but still the Consciousness is present.

Thus it is easy to realize that whatever one sees or perceives depend on Consciousness. This is only possible if the objects that one see are Consciousness itself else this kind of dependency is not at all possible. Thus the scriptures proclaim that whatever was, whatever is, whatever will be is the Self alone.

The famous Rigvedic hymn of Purusha Sookta says

Purusha eva idam sarvam, yad bhootam yad cha bhavyam”

The Self is only present everywhere – now and whatever was there in the past and is going to there in the future is the Self only.
Mundaka Upanishad says

Bhootam bhavad bhavishyath ithi sarvam omkaara

Yatcha anyat trikaalaatitam tadapi omkaara eva”

Om, which symbolizes Brahman or the Self, is the past, present and future. If there is something beyond time, that also is OM only.
Adi Sankara says in Vivekachoodamani

Desha kaala vishaya ativarthiyad

Brahma tattvam asi bhaavayaatmani”

Contemplate on the truth that “I am that Brahman which is beyond time, space and causation”.
Thus, one should realize that Consciousness is the basis for the world & hence the world is nothing but Consciousness alone. As the water seen in desert is nothing but water only, as the dream world is nothing but the dreaming person only, similarly the world of duality is nothing but Brahman alone.
As there is nothing but Brahman alone, therefore no new realization is needed because Brahman is the only thing present. Thus realization is already there and always present. Not even for a moment, the Self remains not realized.
Then what is the cause of bondage and sorrows???

Scriptures proclaim that IGNORANCE is the cause for bondage and sorrow. This is due to ignorance about one’s own real nature, ignorance about the reality that I am realized. As when the truth about no water in desert is not known, water is seen and a person runs towards the water. When the water is not found, he becomes sad and cries. As the reality of rope is not known, a person sees snake in the rope and therefore thinks that the snake might bite him and runs away crying aloud with fear. Similarly since one’s own real nature of Self is not known, the body and mind are superimposed on the Self and therefore occurs all bondage and sorrow.

What a person needs to realize is that initially a person should realize that the Self is but a witness to whatever is happening in this world. The body is changing day by day. The mind and its thoughts are always fluctuating. But these fluctuating things require a constant thing based on which these change. That is the Self, the pure Consciousness. Even when the body changes, “I” remain the same. Even when sorrow comes, still it is “I” who am feeling the sorrow. Therefore I am different from sorrow. Similarly I am different from happiness. This takes us to the conclusion that “I” always remain the same and sorrow and happiness are only wrong illusions superimposed on the Self by the mind.
During the state of deep sleep, there is no mind and hence no sorrow. In that state, there is only pure Bliss. This Bliss is rejoiced because there one doesn’t perceive any duality. All the seemingly appearing dual things are not present. Similarly one should realize that “I” am different from whatever is present in the world. I am the Subject for the objects of mind, body and the objects of the world. Thus when a person realizes that “I am the witness to everything”, he slowly gets rid of the dual notions of sorrow and happiness. All the happenings in the world doesn’t affect him. Slowly he rejoices in the eternal bliss of the Self which is enjoyed only when a person removes the ignorance that “I am this body and mind”.
When a seeker further progresses, he realizes that the body and the mind are nothing but the Self alone. There is no different things as Subject and Object, but whatever is there is only Consciousness. Thus he realizes the ultimate reality of ONENESS which he enjoyed during the state of deep sleep but was unaware of it during that state.

This realization that “I am not this body, but I am the Self which is everything present” is not something new to be attained. A person is already the Self, but what is required is removal of the ignorance that “I am not realized”. This happens through removal of all wrong identifications of the pure “I” with the body and the mind. These wrong notions when associated with Consciousness (or superimposed on the Consciousness) is called the EGO. This Ego needs to be killed & then ignorance is completely rooted out & one realizes ones own real nature of pure Consciousness.

As Maharshi mentions, the whole process of liberation or realization is to remove the ignorance about one’s own nature & not gaining some new knowledge. The Self is the only thing present and one is already the Self. This Self need to be gained or attained fresh, it is always present as pure Consciousness. Only thing a seeker needs to do is realize this ultimate reality that “I am the Self”.
This realization of one’s own real nature is termed Moksha or Self-Realization or God-Realization.
Thus, God or Self is not something sitting amidst clouds or sitting in Himalayas or sitting in heaven or Brahma Loka. It is one’s own real nature. Unless this ultimate and absolute reality is known, a person gets deluded and jumps into the ocean of suffering and sorrow.
There is not even a single moment when the Self is not present or realized. Whenever a person sees water in desert, what the person is seeing is DESERT only. Similarly whatever is seen or perceived in the waking and dream state are nothing but the Self alone.
A person needs to be established in the Self at all times. Only through contemplation on the Self, the wrong notions, the ignorance vanishes and what remains is the eternal and abundant bliss of the Self. Until then, a person seems to get suffering and sorrow. The sorrow and sufferings in this waking state is like the suffering in the dream state where the person runs as if he is being chased by an elephant, as he is going to be murdered by a person and all. All these are but wrong notions arising out of ignorance. Once this ignorance is removed, everything goes off. The only way to remove this ignorance is by knowledge about oneself. There is no other path other than this to attain liberation or rejoice in the eternal bliss of the Self.

As Sankara says in Vivekachoodamani


Vadanthu sastrani yajanthu devan

Kurvanthu karmani bhajanthu devatah

Atmaikya bodhena vina vimukthir na

Sidhyathi brahma shatha anthare api”
Scriptures are being told or narrated. Actions are being done, Gods are being propitiated through sacrifices, and God is being sung through devotion – but without the Knowledge about the unity of individual Self and Brahman, one never attains liberation or cessation of sorrow even in the lifetime of hundred brahmas (almost crores of years).
Liberation occurs only when the reality about one’s own nature is known because all the sorrow and sufferings are there because of ignorance about one’s own real nature & this goes only through knowledge or realization about one’s own nature. There is no other path than this. Everyone is that only, only thing required is to become aware about this.
As Swami Vivekananda said “Realize the divinity in You”. As Bible says “The kingdom of God is in you”.
As Sankara says reality is nothing but realizing the meaning of the sloka “Chidananda roopah sivoham sivoham” – I am that auspicious and pure Self of the nature of Consciousness and Bliss, I am the Self.
 Let the Almighty guide each one of us to realize the Self without wasting much time as each moment is uncertain and precious.

Words of Ramana Maharshi -- #189


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