Mind & Happiness 18

Mind & Happiness 18

The only thing whose reality we cannot doubt is our Consciousness of our own Existence – our Non-Dual Self-Consciousness, “I exist”.  Other than this Non-Dual & fundamental Consciousness “I exist”, everything that we experience is open to doubt. Hence we cannot reasonably avoid doubting the reality of all Duality, & suspecting that in fact the only Reality is our Non-Dual Consciousness of our own Existence, “I exist”.

By what standard can we determine whether or not something is real ?  A thing can be truly said to be real only if it is absolutely, unconditionally & independently real, & not if its reality is in any way relative, conditional, or dependent upon something else.  Therefore, according to Sri Ramana, something can be called real only if it satisfies 3 essential criteria: it must be:

1) Eternal,

2) Unchanging, &

3) Self-shining.

If something is not Eternal, though it may appear to be “real” for a certain period of time, it was not real before it came into existence, & it will not be real after it ceases to exist, so in fact it is unreal even while it appears to be real.  Because it is confined within the limits of Time, its seeming reality is relative & conditional.  That which is Absolutely & Unconditionally Real must be Real at all times, & cannot be limited in relation to anything else.

Moreover, if something undergoes Change during the course of time, it is one thing at one time, but becomes another thing at another time, & hence it does not exist Eternally as any one thing. Being impermanent, that which changes is not real.

However, the most important criteria by which we can determine something as Real is that it must be Self-Shining. By the term “self-shining”, Sri Ramana means “self-knowing” or “self-conscious”, that is, knowing itself by its own light of Consciousness. That which is Absolutely & Unconditionally Real need not depend upon any Consciousness other than itself to be known.  If something depends upon something else in order to be known as existing or real, then its reality depends upon the reality of the Consciousness that knows it.  Since it does not know itself to be real, it is not real at all, but merely appears to be real so long as it is known by the Consciousness that knows it.

Measured by this standard, the only existing Reality is our fundamental Consciousness “I exist”, because among all the things that we experience or know, it is the only thing that is permanent, the only thing that never undergoes any Change, & the only thing that knows its own existence without the aid of any other thing.

Unlike this Consciousness “I exist”, our Mind is impermanent, because it appears in the States of Waking & Dream, & disappears in Deep Dreamless Sleep.  Even while it does appear to exist, our Mind is constantly undergoing Change, thinking of one thing at one moment & another thing at another moment.

And though our Mind appears to know itself by its own power of Consciousness, in fact the Consciousness by which it knows itself & all other things is only our basic Consciousness “I exist”, which it seemingly usurps as its own, but which is nevertheless independent of it.  Our Mind is distinct from our essential Consciousness “I exist”, by the light of which it seemingly knows the existence of itself & other things, because our Consciousness “I exist” can exist in the absence of our Mind, as in Deep Dreamless Sleep.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 17

Mind & Happiness 17

Moreover, our Mind does not always identify the same Body as “I”.  In Waking, the Mind takes one Body to be “I”, but in each Dream it takes some other DreamBody to be “I”.  Since it can identify itself with different bodies at different times, it cannot really be any of those bodies.

By identifying itself with a Body, our Mind deludes itself into experiencing our Consciousness “I exist” as being something confined within the limits of a Body, & a Body composed of unconscious Matter as being something that is endowed with Consciousness. If our Mind did not delude itself in this manner, it would not exist as a separate entity called “Mind”, but would remain as pure Consciousness, undefiled by any form of limitation.

Because the very nature of our Mind is to delude itself into experiencing that it is what it is not, Sri Ramana said that our Mind itself is māyā, the primordial power of Delusion, Illusion or self-deception the power that makes what is Real appear to be unreal, & what is unreal appear to be Real.

In Dream our Mind projects an imaginary Body, which it identifies as “I”, & through the 5 Senses of that Body it perceives an imaginary World.  So long as our Mind continues to be in that State of Dream, it takes the Body & World that it experiences in Dream to be real.  However absurd some of the things which it experiences may appear to exist, still our Mind deludes itself into believing that those things are real.  So long as our Mind experiences itself as a Body, it cannot but experience all that it perceives through the Senses of that Body as real. But when we wake up from a Dream, we cease to experience the DreamBody as “I”, & we simultaneously cease to experience the Dream World as Real.

Thus from our experience in Dream, & our contrasting experience on Waking from Dream, we can clearly understand that by the power of its imagination our Mind has the ability to create a World of duality & simultaneously convince itself that that World is real. When we know that our Mind has this power of simultaneous creation & self-deception, we have to doubt whether all the duality that it now experiences in the Waking state is anything other than a product of its own self-deceiving power of Imagination.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 16

Mind & Happiness 16

However, in addition to knowing its own Existence, our Consciousness sometimes seems to know other things also.  When our Consciousness thus appears to know things other than itself, we call it our “Mind”.  What exactly is this “Mind”, this Consciousness that knows otherness & Duality ?

Is it the true form of our Consciousness, or merely a false super-imposition upon our real Self-Consciousness “I exist” ?  Is it real, or is it merely a false appearance ?  Whenever our Mind rises, it rises in conjunction with a Body, with which it identifies itself, feeling “I am this Body”.

Without identifying itself with a Body, our Mind cannot rise.  Once it has risen, identifying itself with a particular Body, through the 5 Senses of that Body it perceives the World.  Thus our Mind’s Identification with a Body is fundamental to its ability to know the World.

But how does this Identification with a Body arise ?  Our Mind is a form of Consciousness, whereas this Body is a physical form composed of unconscious Matter.  By identifying itself with this Body, our Mind is confusing 2 different things as one.  It is confusing Consciousness, which is not physical Matter, with the physical form of this Body, which is not Consciousness.

Therefore our Mind is a confused & spurious form of Consciousness, a phantom which is neither our real Consciousness “I exist”, nor the physical form of this Body, but which mixes these 2 different things together, feeling “I am this Body”.  Though our Mind usurps the properties of both our Consciousness “I exist” & this physical Body, it is in fact neither of these 2 things.

Since the Body appears & disappears, & constantly undergoes change, it is not our Real Consciousness “I exist”, which neither appears nor disappears, but exists & knows its own Existence at all times & in all states without ever undergoing any change. And since our Mind is conscious, it is not this Body, which is unconscious Matter.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Reality 79

Reality 79

 

Reality as It is (continued):

Consider what is taken to be real & how you determine what is real.  In an external sense, you may seem to gather facts about things, but do you really  ?   Or do you have a series of Sense Perceptions, some of which are True & some of which are False  ?

Everyone has had the experience of seeing an optical illusion or such, & the vast majority of information comes by word-of-mouth anyway.  Somebody else tells you, or you read something, or you construct a viewpoint.  You construct a viewpoint of the World regarded as real based primarily on your own ideas, or opinions, or the opinions of others, which when repeated often enough are considered to be real.  How much of what you know about the World, about others, etc., is merely ideas & opinions created out of your own thinking & the words & thoughts of others ?    How much of it is actual experience  ?

This is looking at it at the most relative, basic level.  How much of it is just thought of in the Mind & survives as an idea primarily due to one not undergoing actual experience of any of those things, which might prove one’s idea to be completely different  ?

Apply this point in a deeper way to the Mind & Real Existence.  How much of what you consider to be real is merely an idea, a thought, perhaps an oftenrepeated thought ?   Conversely, how much is actual experience of pure Existence undefined by any thought  ?

Whatever we regard as your Identity determines what you are using to determine Reality.  Consequently your view of what is true likewise depends upon your Identity. How are we to see Reality truly as it is, & not as it is imagined to be  ?   Why should we do so  ?

As countless ancient Sages have testified, & as taught by Sri Ramana Maharshi, if you know Reality as it is, yours is inexpressible Peace & Bliss prolonged without any termination whatsoever.  It is like awakening from a long Dream.  If you do not know Reality as it is, there will be Bondage & is consequent Suffering.

The above themes & 2600 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through:  

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

or directly at:

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 

for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Reality 78

Reality 78

Reality as It is (continued):

If we want to know Existence as it is, as Sri Ramana Maharshi says, we have to give up “the Objective outlook”.  Until we give up the Objective outlook, there is no use wrangling in the Mind, let alone arguing with one another, as to what is Real, what is unreal, what is 1/2 real & unreal, what is both real & unreal, what is neither Real nor unreal, or any other logical combination you can manage to imagine.  Such serves little purpose, & so in Non-Dual texts and in the writings of Sri Ramana Maharshi, those kinds of concepts are discarded. You give up the Objective outlook, lose the sense of Ego, & then you find Reality as it is.

What does giving up the Objective outlook mean ?  What you experience as Reality is determined by what you used to determine that Reality. What you consider to be Real depends entirely upon the instrument you’re using to determine what is Real, & that instrument is very much woven together with where you take your “stand”, with what you identify.

For example, if one misidentifies with the physical form, a Body, in most circumstances such a person would use the Senses as the determination of Reality & will see or cognize only that which is perceived by the Senses, regarding what is, not a senseperceived, as “not there” or as unreal.  Otherwise one thinks that if it is Real it is “beyond his experience”.

However, if the “stand” would change so that you would no longer identifies merely as a physical Body, correspondingly he would no longer take the Senses as being the determinants of Reality.  Then what would be Real for you ?  If you consider that all that comes through your Senses is not the Reality, or is only a partial “perception” of Reality, or is a mis-perception of Reality, such considerably expands your spiritual horizons.

Of course, this makes it much more possible for you to come to the Realization of Absolute Truth, because Formless Existence, Perpetual Consciousness, is not something that will come to you through your Senses.  Consciousness is realized by a different kind of Knowledge.

The above themes & 2600 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through:  

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

or directly at:

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Reality 77

Reality 77

[The “Mind & Happiness” series will be interspersed for a while with insertions from the previous “Reality” series, picking up at this “Reality 77”.]

Reality as It is:

There is One, which dwells in all of us, which is All, & which utterly transcends all. That One is the Real Self, the Abiding Truth, the Non-Dual Reality.  By your own Self-Inquiry & Knowledge of yourself, you come to realize Reality, that is, you come to know the Truth.

Nevertheless, we express a Teaching that points to the Truth, that points to the way to realize it, and then you go within an know it first-hand in a way that is beyond words & beyond thought beyond an individual Knower & an Object known.

Reality as it is pure, un-mixed Existence. It is not “existence” as merely a “thing”, nor as many things, nor even as all things put together, but just Existence without the superimposed notion of anything objective, without form, free of limitations of for  without division, & having no parts.  There is nothing else to divide Existence, to divide Reality.

Reality may also be said to be pure Consciousness without limitation, without individuality, impersonal, without a Subject & an Object, & free of all kinds of division. Reality is also Bliss, which is why when a person realizes the Truth, or finds Reality that person has a Happiness which endures, which does not depend on any cause, which is without conditions, & which is without end.

How you to find the Reality, if your spiritual search is to find the Ultimate Truth, the Absolute Reality ?  How we to find Reality when you yourself are the Reality ?  The attempt to find Reality as if it were an Object, is somewhat like a dog or cat chasing around in a round after its own tail.

Reality is homogeneous Existence, this un-limited Consciousness.  Yet if this is not your own experience, why is that so ?  To tell the truth, there is no valid reason why that is so.  Because there is no valid reason, we say, it is because of “Ignorance”.  The nature of Ignorance is Illusion, which is something unreal.  While it is not possible for the unreal which has never come to be, to veil or diminish Reality.  Reality always exists, yet a seeker tries to realize Truth, & there seems to be something that hides the Truth.

What seems to hide the Truth ?  What seems to make the division ?  What seem to give rise to a split where, in truth, there is only Non-Dual Existence ?  What seems to hide the Truth is whatever we regard as “this”.  By this is meant anything Objective.  Primarily this appears as what we take to be “things” & what we take to be thought.

For someone who is accustomed to meditating in a profound manner & who realizes the World to be within the Mind, the “things” & the thoughts will be regarded as of the same substance. A person seems to be separated from that Absolute Reality, the Supreme Self, though the True Nature of the Self is for Mind, or God.  One seems to be separated from the Absolute by this by the objective definitions, which pertain to “things” & thoughts.

The above themes & 2600 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through:  

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

or directly at:

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 15

Mind & Happiness 15

All words are open to interpretation & misinterpretation. This is particularly true of words that speak about the Spirit the Reality that lies beyond the limitations of physical matter, & that therefore cannot be perceived by the 5 Senses, or known as an object of Consciousness.  All interpretations of such words fall into 2 distinct categories interpretations that are strictly non-dualistic, admitting no division of the One & only Reality, & interpretations that are either completely dualistic, or that at least concede that within the One Reality there are divisions & distinctions that are real.

Ultimately the interpretation that we each choose to accept depends not upon the Truth itself – because the nature of the Truth cannot be proved objectively but upon our own personal preferences. Most people whether they hold religious beliefs or cherish a more materialistic outlook on Life prefer to take a Dualistic view of Reality, because such a view assures them of the reality of their own Individuality, & of the World they perceive through their Senses, & (if they choose to believe in God) of God as a separately existing entity. Therefore the only basis for a Dualistic view of Reality is the attachment that people have to their own Individuality, to the World that they think gives them Happiness, & to their idea of a God who they believe will give them the things that will make them happy.

There is no way that a Dualistic view of Reality can be proved to be correct & valid.  All our knowledge of Duality is obtained by our Mind & exists only within our Mind.  If our Mind is real, then Duality may be real.  But the reality of our Mind is open to question & doubt.

If we are not overly attached to our existence as a separate Individual, we can begin to question & doubt the reality of our Mind.  If we do so, we will be led unavoidably to a Non-Dualistic view of Reality.  Of all the knowledge we know, the one Knowledge whose reality we cannot reasonably doubt is our own essential Consciousness “I exist”.  Knowledge can exist only if there is a Consciousness to know it.  Since all knowledge depends for its seeming existence upon Consciousness, this Consciousness is the one fundamental, irreducible, & indubitable truth of our experience.  Because we know, our Consciousness is undoubtedly real.

The one essential quality of Consciousness is that it is always Self-Conscious it always knows its own existence or Existence & that Consciousness of its own Existence is what we experience as “I exist”.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

 

Mind & Happiness 14

Mind & Happiness 14

Since true Self-Knowledge is therefore the State in which our individual Consciousness, our Mind or Ego, is known to be a false appearance that never existed except in its own imagination, Sri Ramana often described it as the state of “egolessness”, “loss of individuality”, or “destruction of the Mind.”

Another term that is commonly used, both in Buddhism & in advaita vēdānta, to describe this state of annihilation or extinction of our personal identity is nirvāa, a word that literally means “blown out” or “extinguished”. This is the same state that most religions refer to as “liberation” or “salvation”, because only in this state of true Self-Knowledge are we free or saved from the bondage of mistaking our self to be a separate individual, a Consciousness that is confined within the limits of a physical Body.

The sole Reality that exists & is known in this state of ego-less-ness, nirvāa or Salvation is our fundamental & essential Consciousness “I exist”.  Since it does not identify itself with any delimiting adjunct, our essential & pure Consciousness “I exist” is a single, undivided & unlimited whole, separate from which nothing can exist.

All the Diversity & Multiplicity that appears to exist so long as we identify our self with a physical Body, is known only by our Mind, which is merely a distorted & limited form of our original Consciousness “I exist”.  If this Consciousness “I exist” did not exist, nothing else could appear to exist.  Therefore, our fundamental Consciousness “I exist” is the Source & Origin of all Knowledge the one Basis of all that appears to exist.

Our essential Consciousness “I am” is thus the Ultimate Reality, the original Source from which everything arises, & the final Destination towards which all religions & spiritual traditions seek to lead us.  Most religions call this fundamental Reality “God” or the “Supreme Being”, or else they refer to it in a more abstract manner as the true State of Existence.  But by whatever name they may call it & whether they describe it as Existence or a State of Existence the Truth is that the Supreme & Absolute Reality is not anything other than our own Existence, the Consciousness which we experience as “I exist”.

In his True Form, his Essential Nature, God is not something or some person who exists outside us or separate from us, but is the Spirit or Consciousness that exists within us as our own Essential Nature.  God is the pure Consciousness “I exist”, the true Form of Consciousness that is not limited by identifying itself with a physical Body or any other adjunct.  But when we, who are that same pure Consciousness “I exist”, identify our self with a physical Body, feeling “I am this Body, I am a person, an Individual confined within the limits of Time & Space,” we become the Mind, a false & illusory form of Consciousness.  Because we identify our self with adjuncts in this manner, we seemingly separate our self from the adjunct-less pure Consciousness “I exist”, which is God.

By thus imagining our self to be an Individual separate from God, we violate his Unlimited Wholeness & Undivided Oneness.  The inner aim of all religions & spiritual traditions is to free us from this illusory state in which we imagine that we are separate from God, the One Unlimited & Undivided Reality.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 13

Mind & Happiness 13

This individual Consciousness our feeling “I am a person, a separate Individual, a Mind or soul confined within the limits of a Body” is merely an Imagination, a false & distorted form of our pure Consciousness “I exist”, but it is nevertheless the root cause of all desire & all Suffering.

Unless we give up this individual Consciousness, this false notion that we are separate from God, we can never be free of Desire, nor of Suffering, which is the inevitable consequence of Desire.  True Self-Surrender is therefore nothing but giving up the false notion that we are separate from God.  In order to give up this false notion, we must know who we really are.  And in order to know who we really are, we must attend to the Consciousness that we feel to be “I”.

Though the Consciousness that we now feel to be “I” is only a false Consciousness, a limited & distorted form of the real Consciousness that is God, by attending to it keenly we can know the Real Consciousness that underlies it.  That is, attending keenly to this false form of Consciousness is similar to looking closely at a Snake that we imagine we see lying on the ground in the dim light of dusk.  When we look closely at the Snake, we discover that it is in fact nothing but a Rope.

Similarly, if we keenly attend to the limited & distorted individual Consciousness that we now feel to be “I”, we will discover that it is in fact nothing but the Real & Unlimited Consciousness “I exist”, which is God.  Just as the illusory appearance of the Snake dissolves & disappears as soon as we see the Rope, so the illusory feeling that we are a separate individual Consciousness confined within the limits of a Body will dissolve & disappear as soon as we experience the pure Non-Dual Consciousness, which is the Reality both of our Self & of God.

We can thus achieve complete & perfect Self-Surrender only by knowing our self to be the Real Consciousness that is devoid of all duality & separateness.  Without knowing our True Self, we cannot surrender our false self, & without surrendering our false self, we cannot know our True Self.

Self-Surrender & Self-Knowledge are thus inseparable, like the 2 sides of one sheet of paper. In fact, the terms “Self-Surrender” & “Self-Knowledge” are just 2 ways of describing one & the same state the pure Non-Dual State of Consciousness devoid of Individuality.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 12

Mind & Happiness 12

Besides describing the means to attain Self-Knowledge by the use of terms that mean “Self-Attention” or “Self-Abidance”, Sri Ramana also described it by terms that mean “Self-Surrender” or “Self-Denial”.  By using the latter terms, he affirmed that the ultimate aim of all forms of Dualistic Devotion devotion to a God who is conceived as other than the devotee is in fact the Non-Dual State of true Self-Knowledge.

In order to know our True Self, we must give up our identification with the false individual self that we now mistake to be “I”.  Therefore, surrendering or denying our personal self our Mind, which is our confused & distorted Consciousness “I am this Body, a person called so-&-so” is essential if we are to know our true unadulterated Consciousness “I exist”, which is our Real Self.

Our individual self, which is the limited & distorted Consciousness that we call our “Mind” or “Ego”, & that in theological terminology is called our “soul“, nourishes its seeming existence by attending to things other than itself.  When we cease attending to other things, as in sleep, our Mind or individual self subsides, but as soon as we begin to think of other things, it again rises & flourishes. Without thinking of things other than “I”, our Mind cannot stand. Therefore, when we attempt to turn our attention away from all objects & towards our fundamental Consciousness “I”, we are surrendering or denying our individual self, our Mind or Ego.  Self-Attention or Self-Abidance is thus the perfect means to attain the state of “Self-Surrender” or “Self-Denial”.

This is why in verse 31 of Vivēkacūāmai Sri Adi Sankara defines bhakti or “Devotion” as sva-svarūpa-anusandhāna or “Self-Attention”, the investigation or close inspection of our own true form or essential nature, which is our fundamental Self-Consciousness our Non-Dual Consciousness of our own Existence, “I am”. Sri Ramana expresses the same truth in verse 15 of Upadēśa Taippākka, but at the same Time explains why it is so:

“Since God exists as ātmā [our essential “spirit” or Real Self], ātmaanusandhāna [Self-Investigation, Self-Inspection, or Self-Attention] is parama-īśa-bhakti [Supreme Devotion to God].”

He also expresses a similar idea in the 13th paragraph of his brief treatise Yār? (Who am I ?):

Being completely absorbed in ātma-niṣṭha [Self-Abidance, the State of just Existence as we really are], giving not even the slightest room to the rising of any thought other than ātma-cintana [the thought of our own Real Self], is giving our self to God. […]”

People who practice Dualistic Devotion believe that the highest form of devotion to God the purest form of Love is to surrender our self wholly to Him.  In order to surrender themselves to Him, they try to deny themselves by giving up their Attachment to all that they consider as “mine” & in particular by renouncing their own individual will.  Thus the ultimate prayer of every true devotee is, “Thy Will be done not my will, but only Thine”.

However, so long as the Mind exists, it will inevitably have a will of its own.  Desire & Attachment are inherent in the Mind, the very fabric of which it is made. Therefore, so long as we feel our self to be an individual “I”, we will also have an individual will, & will feel a sense of Attachment to “mine”.  The only way we can surrender our own will & give up all our Attachments is to surrender the Mind that has an individual will & feels Attachment to the Body & other possessions.

Trying to surrender our individual will & sense of “mine” our desires & Attachments without actually surrendering our Individuality, our Ego or sense of Existence as a separate “I”, is like cutting the leaves & branches off a tree without cutting its root.  Until & unless we cut the root, the branches & leaves will continue sprouting again & again.  Similarly, until & unless we surrender our Ego, the root of all our desires & Attachments, all our efforts to give up our desires & Attachments will fail, because they will continue to sprout again & again in one subtle form or another. Therefore Self-Surrender can be complete & final only when our individual self, the limited Consciousness that we call our “Mind” or “Ego”, is surrendered wholly.

So long as we feel that we exist as an Individual who is separate from God, we have not surrendered our self wholly to him. Though we are in truth only the pure, unlimited & non-personal Consciousness “I exist”, which is the spirit or true form of God, we feel that we are separate from Him because we mistake our self to be a limited individual Consciousness that has identified itself with a particular Body.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

 http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

 Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 11

Mind & Happiness 11

Sri Ramana spoke & wrote mostly in Tamil [Dravidian], his mother tongue, but he was also conversant in Sanskrit [IndoEuropean], Telugu [Dravidian], Malayalam [Dravidian], & English [IndoEuropean].

Tamil is the oldest surviving member of the Dravidian family of languages, & has a rich & ancient classical literature.  Though in its origins it belongs to a family of languages that is entirely independent of the IndoEuropean family, for the past 2,000 years or so Tamil literature has made rich & abundant use of words borrowed from Sanskrit, the oldest surviving member of the IndoEuropean family. Therefore, most of the terms Sri Ramana used to describe the practical means by which we can attain Self-Knowledge are either Tamil words or words of Sanskrit origin that are commonly used in Tamil spiritual literature.

The words he thus used in Tamil have been translated in English by a variety of different words, some of which convey the import & spirit of his original words more clearly & accurately than others.  Perhaps 2 of the clearest & most simple terms used in English to convey the Sense of the words that he used in Tamil to describe the practical means to attain Self-Knowledge are “Self-Attention” & “Self-Abidance”.

The term “Self-Attention” denotes the Knowing aspect of the practice, while the term “Self-Abidance” denotes its Existence aspect.  Since our Real Self, which is Non-Dual Self-Consciousness, knows itself not by an act of Knowing but merely by Existence itself, the state of knowing our Real Self is just the state of Existence our Real Self.  Thus attending to our SelfConsciousness & abiding as our SelfConsciousness are one & the same thing.

All the other words that Sri Ramana used to describe the practice are intended to be clues that help to clarify what this state of “Self-Attention” or “Self-Abidance” really is. A few of the terms which he used to describe the practice of “Self-Attention” or “Self-Abidance” are in fact terms already used in some of the classical texts of advaita vēdānta.  However, though such texts have used some of the same terms that Sri Ramana used to express the practice, they have seldom explained the true import of those terms in a clear & unambiguous manner.  Thus, even after thoroughly studying the classical literature of advaita vēdānta, many people are left with only a vague understanding of what they can do to attain Self-Knowledge.  As a result, many mis-conceptions about the practice of advaita vēdānta arose, & some of these mis-conceptions have been prevalent among students & scholars of advaita vēdānta since time immemorial.

One of the terms that occurs in the classical literature of advaita vēdānta & that Sri Ramana frequently used to denote the practice of Self-Attention is vicāra (which is commonly transcribed as vichara, since the “c” in vicāra represents the same sound as “ch” in chutney), but the significance of this term was not clearly understood by most of the traditional scholars of advaita vēdānta.

According to the Sanskrit-English dictionary of MonierWilliams, the term vicāra has various meanings, including “pondering, deliberation, consideration, reflection, examination, investigation”, & it is in these senses that this same word is used in Tamil, as is clear from the Tamil Lexicon, which defines it both as “deliberation” or “consideration”, & as “unbiased examination with a view to arriving at the Truth” or “investigation”.  Therefore the term ātma-vicāra, which Sri Ramana frequently used to describe the practice by which we can attain Self-Knowledge, means “Self-Investigation” or “Self-Examination”, & denotes the practice of examining, inspecting or scrutinizing our fundamental & essential Consciousness “I exist” with a keen & concentrated power of attention.

Though the term ātma-vicāra can best be translated in English as “SelfInvestigation”, “Self-Examination”, “Self-Inspection”, “Self-Scrutiny”, “Self-Contemplation”, or simply “Self-Attention”, in most English translations of Sri Ramana”s teachings it has been translated as “Self-Inquiry”.  This choice of the English word “Inquiry” to translate vicāra has had unfortunate consequences, because it has created an impression in the Minds of some people that ātma-vicāra, or the vicāra “Who Am  I ?” as Sri Ramana often called it, is merely a process of questioning or asking our self “Who am I ?”

This is clearly a mis-interpretation, because in Sanskrit the word vicāra means “Inquiry” in the Sense of “Investigation” rather than in the sense of “questioning”.  When Sri Ramana spoke of the vicāra “Who am I ?” he did not intend it to imply that we can attain the Non-Dual experience of true Self-Knowledge simply by asking our self the question “Who am I ?”  The vicāra “Who am I ?”  is an investigation, examination or scrutiny of our fundamental Consciousness “I exist”, because only by keenly scrutinizing or inspecting our Consciousness “I” can we discover who we really are what this Consciousness “I” actually is.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 10

Mind & Happiness 10

Though in his Teachings Sri Ramana borrowed some of the terminology, concepts & analogies commonly used in the classical literature of advaita vēdānta, his Teachings are not merely a repetition of the old & familiar teachings contained in that literature.  Because he was teaching the Truth that he had known from his own direct experience, & not merely learnt from books, he was able to set aside all the dense mass of non-essential, complex & ponderous arguments & concepts found in that literature [including in some of the Shankara tradition literature], & to throw a fresh & clear light upon the inner essence of advaita vēdānta.

In his Teachings he has revealed the true spirit of advaita vēdānta in a clear & simple manner that can easily be understood even by people who have no previous acquaintance with such Philosophy.  Moreover, the simplicity, clarity & directness of his Teachings have helped to clear the confusion created in the Minds of many people who have studied the classical literature of advaita vēdānta, but have been misled by the many well-established misinterpretations of it made by scholars who had no direct experience of the Truth.

In particular, his Teachings have cleared up many misunderstandings that had long existed about the practice of advaita vēdānta, & have clearly revealed the means by which we can attain the experience of true Self-Knowledge.  Since the means to attain Self-Knowledge is for some reason seldom stated in clear & unambiguous terms in the classical literature of advaita vēdānta, many misconceptions exist about the spiritual practice advocated by advaita vēdānta.  Therefore perhaps the most significant contribution made by Sri Ramana to the literature of advaita vēdānta lies in the fact that in his Teachings he has revealed in very clear, precise & unambiguous terms the practical means by which Self-Knowledge can be attained.

Not only has he explained this practical means very clearly, he has also explained exactly how it will lead us infallibly to the state of Self-Knowledge, & why it is the only means that can do so. Unlike many of the older texts of advaita vēdānta, the Teachings of Sri Ramana are centered entirely around the practical means by which we can attain Self-Knowledge, & all that he taught regarding any aspect of Life was aimed solely at directing our Minds towards this practice.

Though this practical means is essentially very simple, for many people it appears difficult to comprehend, because it is not an action or state of “doing”, nor does it involve any form of objective attention.  Since the practice is thus a state beyond all mental activity a state of non-doing & non-objective attention no words can express it perfectly. Therefore, to enable us to understand & practice it, Sri Ramana has expressed & described it in various different ways, each of which serves as a valuable clue that helps us to know & to be the pure Consciousness that is our own True Self.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 09

Mind & Happiness 09

The word vēdānta literally means the “conclusion” or “end” (anta) of “knowledge” (vēda), & denotes the philosophical conclusions of the Vēdas.  These philosophical conclusions are contained in Vedic texts known as the Upaniads, & were later expressed more clearly & in greater detail in 2 other ancient texts known as the Brahma Sūtra & the Bhagavad Gītā.

These 3 bodies of literature, which are known as the “triple source” (prasthāna-traya) of vēdānta, have been interpreted in very different ways, giving rise to 3 distinct systems of vēdāntic philosophy, the pure monistic system known as advaita, the dualistic system known as dvaita, & the qualified monistic system known as viśiṣṭādvaita.  Of these 3 systems of philosophy, advaita is not only the most radical but also the least convoluted interpretation of the ancient prasthāna-traya of vēdānta, & hence it is widely recognized as being vēdānta in its purest & truest form.

However, advaita is more than just a scholarly interpretation of some ancient texts.  Like the literature of any other system of religious or spiritual philosophy, the literature of advaita includes a huge amount of elaborate & abstruse material written by & for scholars, but such material is not the essence or basis of the advaita philosophy. The Life & Heart of advaita

vēdānta lies in a number of crucial texts that contain the sayings & writings of Sages like Sri Ramana who had attained true Self-Knowledge, & whose words therefore reflect their own direct experience of the Reality.

Thus advaita vēdānta is a system of spiritual philosophy that is based not upon mere reasoning or intellectual speculation, but upon the experience of Sages who have attained direct Knowledge of the Non-Dual Reality that underlies the appearance of all multiplicity.

The word advaita literally means “no-2ness” or “Non-Duality”, & denotes the Truth experienced by Sages the Truth that the Reality is only One, a single undivided whole that is completely devoid of any Duality or Multiplicity. According to Sages who have attained true Self-Knowledge, all Multiplicity is a mere appearance, a distorted view of the one Reality, like the illusory appearance of a Snake seen in a dim light.  Just as the Reality underlying the illusory appearance of the Snake is just a Rope lying on the ground, so the Reality underlying the illusory appearance of Multiplicity is only the Non-Dual Consciousness of Existence that we each experience as “I exist”.

Sri Ramana”s Teachings are therefore identified with advaita vēdānta for 3 main reasons:

1stly because he experienced & taught the same Non-Dual Reality that was experienced by the Sages whose sayings & writings formed the foundation of the advaita vēdānta philosophy;

2ndly because he was often asked to explain & elucidate various texts from the classical literature of advaita vēdānta; &

3rdly because in his Teachings he made free but nevertheless selective use of the terminology, concepts & analogies used in that classical advaita vēdānta literature. The reason he thus used the terminology & concepts of advaita vēdānta more than those of any other spiritual tradition, such as Buddhism [Huang Po, etc.], Taoism [Lao Tse], Jewish [Melchesedek ?], or Christian [Eckhart]  mysticism, or Sufism [Ib’n Arabi’s inerviewee], is that most of the people who sought his spiritual guidance were more familiar with advaita vēdānta than with those other spiritual traditions, & hence it was easier for them to understand such terminology & concepts.

However, whenever anyone asked him to elucidate any text or passage from the literature of those other spiritual traditions, he did so with the same ease, clarity & authority that he elucidated the texts of advaita vēdānta.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 08

Mind & Happiness 08

Of the 4 words of the name “Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi”, only the word “Ramana” is a personal name, & the other 3 words are titles of various sorts.  “Ramana” is a shortened form of “Venkataramana”, a variant of his childhood name “Venkataraman”, & is a word that is commonly used as a term of affection.  Whereas in the name “Venkataraman”, the letter “a” in the syllable “ra” is a long form of the vowel & is therefore pronounced with a stress, in the name “Ramana” all the 3 “a” ’s are short forms of the vowel, & therefore none of the 3 syllables are pronounced with any stress.  Etymologically, the word ramaa comes from the verbal root ram, which means to stop, to set at rest, to make steady or calm, to delight or to make happy, & is a noun that means “joy” or that which gives joy, that which is pleasing, charming or delightful. By extension it is used as an affectionate term meaning a beloved person, a lover, husband or wife, or the lord or mistress of one’s heart.

The word bhagavān is an honorific & affectionate title meaning the glorious, adorable & divine Lord, & is used generally as a term meaning “God”, & more particularly as a title of veneration given to a person who is considered to be an incarnation of God or a human embodiment of the Supreme Reality, such as the Buddha, Sri Adi Sankara, or most commonly Sri Krishna, whose teachings are given in the Bhagavad Gītā & in parts of the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam.

The word śrī is a sacred monosyllable meaning light, luster, radiance or splendor, & is customarily used as an honorific prefix appended to the names of holy people, places, texts or other objects of veneration. As a reverential prefix, it means “sacred”, “holy”, or “venerable”.  But it is also commonly used as a simple title of respect which may be appended to the name of any person in place of the English title “Mister”.

The word mahari (which is commonly transcribed as “maharshi”) means a great ṛṣi (commonly transcribed as “rishi”) or “seer”.  To the World at large, particularly outside India, Sri Ramana is generally known as “Ramana Maharshi” (probably because to a western Mind the title “Maharshi” placed after his personal name appears to be a surname, which it is not), & since he is so frequently referred to as such, some people even refer to him simply as “the Maharshi”.

However those who are close to him seldom use the title “Maharshi” when referring to him.  In Indian history & mythology, the term ṛṣi originally denoted one of the inspired poets or “seers” who “saw” & wrote down the hymns of the Vēdas, or any person who was adept in the performance of Vedic rituals & had thereby attained psychic or supernatural powers, but in later times it was used more generally to denote an ascetic or saint who was considered to have achieved some degree of spiritual attainment.  The term ṛṣi has therefore never specifically meant a person who has “seen” or attained true Self-Knowledge, & nor has the term mahari (maha-ṛṣi). The few ṛṣis, such as Vasishtha, & later Viswamitra, who did attain true knowledge of brahman, the Absolute Reality or God, were called not merely maha-ṛṣis but brahma-ṛṣis, a term that denotes a ṛṣi of the highest order.  Hence many people feel that it is not particularly appropriate to apply the title “Maharshi” to Sri Ramana, who had attained true knowledge of brahman, & who therefore can be accurately described as Existence nothing less than a brahma-ṛṣi.

Besides being not particularly appropriate, the title “Maharshi” sounds rather cold & distant when applied to Sri Ramana, so rather than referring to him as “the Maharshi”, his disciples & devotees usually prefer to refer to him by the more affectionate & respectful title “Bhagavan”.  Here we will refer to him by his personal name as “Sri Ramana” or “Bhagavan Ramana”.

To all those who have followed his teachings & thereby attained the blissful state of true Self-Knowledge, he is “Ramana”, the beloved giver of joy, & “Bhagavan”, a gracious embodiment of God, the Supreme Reality, which he discovered to be his own True Self, & which he prompted & guided each one of us to discover likewise as our own True Self.  Sri Ramana is not merely an individual person who lived sometime in the Past, nor does he belong to any particular religion or culture.  He is the eternal & unlimited spirit, the Ultimate & Absolute Reality, our own True Self, & as such he always lives within each one of us as our pure & essential Consciousness of Existence, which we each experience as “I exist”.

Bhagavan Sri Ramana never sought of his own accord to teach anyone the Truth that he had come to know, because in his experience that Truth the Consciousness “I exist” alone exists, & hence there is no person either to give or to receive any Teaching.  However, though he inwardly knew that Consciousness is the only Reality, he was nevertheless outwardly a personification of Love, compassion & kindness.  Knowing both himself & all other things to be nothing but the Consciousness “I exist”, he saw himself in everything, & hence he quite literally loved all living beings as his own Self.  Therefore, when people asked him questions about the Reality & the means of attaining it, he patiently answered their questions, & thus without any volition on his part he gradually revealed a wealth of spiritual teachings.

Many of the answers that he thus gave were recorded in writing, more or less accurately, by his devotees & disciples, but the most accurate & authentic record of his teachings lies in the poetry that he himself wrote, mostly in Tamil, & also in Sanskrit, Telugu & Malayalam. Most of the poetry he wrote was in response to requests made by his disciples, but some of it was composed by him spontaneously.  His poetry falls into 2 general categories poems that directly convey spiritual teachings, & devotional hymns that convey spiritual teachings indirectly in the allegorical language of mystical love.

Since he was asked questions on a wide range of subjects by people whose interests & level of understanding varied greatly, the answers that he gave were in each case tailored to the needs of the person he was talking to, & hence they did not always reflect the essence of his Teachings.

Therefore when we read the various records of the conversations that he had with people, they may appear to contain inconsistencies, & to convey no single, clear or coherent set of Teachings. However, a very clear, coherent & consistent account of his central Teachings can be found in his poetry & other writings, & if we read all the records of his conversations in the light of those central Teachings, we can clearly understand that he had a very definite message for all who were ready to hear it.

Before he attained the experience of true Self-Knowledge, Sri Ramana had not read or heard anything that described that experience, or prepared him in any way for it.  Having been brought up in a normal family of south Indian brahmins, he was familiar with the outward forms of the Hindu religion & with a few devotional texts, & having been educated in a Christian missionary school, he was familiar with the outward forms of Christianity & with the Bible.  Moreover, having had some childhood friends who were from Muslim families, he also had some familiarity with the outward forms of Islam.  But though he had a general idea that all these religions were just different ways of worshipping the same one God, he had had no opportunity to learn anything about the real inner essence that lies behind the outward forms of all religions.

The Teachings that he gave in later years were therefore derived entirely from his own inward experience, & did not originate from any outward learning.  However, whenever anyone asked him to explain any sacred or spiritual text, he would read it & would often recognize that in one way or another it was expressing the Truth that was his own experience. Thus he was able to interpret such texts with authority & to explain their inner meaning in clear & simple words.

Since the cultural & religious milieu in which he lived was predominantly Hindu, & since most of the people who sought his spiritual guidance were either born Hindus or were familiar with traditional Hindu philosophy, the texts he was most often asked to explain were those of the Hindu philosophical tradition known as advaita vēdānta. Thus Sri Ramana’s teachings are often identified with advaita vēdānta & are taken to be a modern expression or interpretation of that ancient philosophy.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 07

Mind & Happiness 07

Even more rare than those highly mature souls who are able to experience the Truth as soon as they hear it, there are some people who without ever hearing the Truth experience it spontaneously.  But such people are very rare indeed.  The sage known as Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi was one such extremely rare Existence who experienced the Truth spontaneously without ever having heard or read anything about it.  He spontaneously attained the experience of true Self-Knowledge one day in July 1896, when he was just a 16-year-old schoolboy.  That day he was sitting alone in a room in his uncle’s house in the south Indian town of Madurai, when suddenly & with no apparent cause an intense fear of death arose within him.

Instead of trying to put this fear out of his Mind, as most of us would do, he decided to investigate & discover for himself the truth about death. “All right, death has come !  What is death ?  What is it that dies ?  This Body is going to die let it die.”  Deciding thus, he lay down like a corpse, rigid & without breathing, & turned his Mind inwards to discover what Death would actually do to him.  He later described the Truth that dawned upon him at that moment as follows:

“This Body is dead. It will now be taken to the cremation ground, burnt, & reduced to ashes. But with the destruction of this Body, am I also destroyed ?  Is this Body really “I” ?  Although this Body is lying Lifeless as a corpse, I know that I exist. Unaffected in the least by this death, my Existence is shining clearly. Therefore I am not this Body which dies. I am the ‘I’ which is indestructible. Of all things, I alone am the Reality. This Body is subject to Death, but I, who transcend the Body, am that which lives eternally. The Death that came to this Body cannot affect me.”

Although he described his experience of Death in so many words, he explained that this Truth actually dawned upon him in an instant, not as reasoning or verbalized thoughts, but as a direct experience, without the least action of Mind.  So intense was his fear & consequent urge to know the truth of Death, that without actually thinking anything he turned his attention away from his rigid & Lifeless Body & towards the innermost core of his Existence his essential, unadulterated & Non-Dual SelfConsciousness “I exist”.  Because his attention was so keenly focused on his Consciousness of Existence, the True Nature of that Existence-Consciousness revealed itself as a flash of direct & certain Knowledge Knowledge that was so direct & certain that it could never be doubted.

Thus Sri Ramana discovered himself to be the pure Transpersonal Consciousness “I exist”, which is the one, un-limited, un-divided & Non-Dual whole, the only existing Reality, the Source & substance of all things, & the True Self of every living Existence.  This Knowledge of his Real Nature destroyed in him forever the sense of Identification with the physical Body the feeling of Existence an individual person, a separate conscious entity confined within the limits of a particular Time & Place.

Along with this dawn of Non-Dual Self-Knowledge, the Truth of everything else became clear to him.  By knowing himself to be the Infinite Spirit, the fundamental Consciousness “I exist”, in which & through which all other things are known, he knew as an immediate experience how those other things appear & disappear in this essential Consciousness.  Thus he knew without the least doubt that everything that appears & disappears depends for its seeming existence upon this fundamental Consciousness, which he knew to be his Real Self.

When reading some of the recorded accounts of his Death experience, people often get the impression that when he lay down like a corpse, that Sri Ramana merely simulated the signs of physical Death.  But he explained on several occasions that he did not merely simulate it, but actually underwent the experience of physical death at that Time. Because he fixed his whole attention so firmly & intensely upon his Non-Dual Consciousness of Existence, not only did his breathing cease, but his heart stopped beating.  All the other biological functions that indicate Life also came to a standstill.  Thus his Body literally lay Lifeless for about 20 minutes, until suddenly Life surged through it once again, & his heartbeat & breath started to function as normal.

However, though Life returned to his physical Body, the person who had previously identified that Body as “I” was dead, having been destroyed forever by the clear light of true Self-Knowledge.  But though he had died as an individual person, he had thereby been born again as the Infinite Spirit the fundamental & unlimited Consciousness of Existence, the Non-Dual SelfConsciousness “I exist”.

Though outwardly he appeared to behave as an individual person, his personality was in fact just an appearance that existed only in the view of other people, like the charred form of a rope that remains after the rope itself has been burnt.  Inwardly he knew himself to be the all-inclusive Consciousness that transcends all limitations, & not merely a separate individual Consciousness confined within the limits of a particular Body.

Therefore, the conscious Existence that other people saw acting through his Body was not really an individual person at all, but was only the Supreme Spirit the Infinite & Absolute Reality that we usually refer to as “God”.  Soon after this true Self-Knowledge dawned upon him, Sri Ramana left his childhood home & traveled a few hundred miles north to Tiruvannamalai, a temple town nestled at the foot of the holy mountain Arunachala, where he lived as a sādhu or religious mendicant for the remaining 54 years of his bodily Life.  Since he had ceased to identify himself with the Body that other people mistook to be him, he also ceased to identify with the name that had previously been given to that Body. Therefore, from the Time he left home, he stopped using his childhood name Venkataraman, & he signed his parting note with just a line.

Thus when he first came to Tiruvannamalai, no one there knew his name, so they referred to him by various names of their choosing.  More than 10 years later, however, one of his devotees, who was a Sanskrit poet & Vedic scholar, announced that he should be called “Bhagavan Sri Ramana

Maharshi”, & somehow this became the name by which he was generally known thereafter.

However, till the end of his bodily Life, Sri Ramana never claimed this or any other name as his own, & he always declined to sign any signature, even when asked to do so.  When he was once asked why he never signed his name, he replied:

“By what name am I to be known ?  I myself do not know.  At various Times various people have called me by various different names”.

Because he did not experience himself as an individual person, but knew himself to be the One Reality, which is the source & substance of all names & forms, but which has no name or form of its own, he responded to whatever name people called him, without ever identifying any of those names as his own.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 06

Mind & Happiness 06

For the majority of spiritual aspirants, the process of attaining Self-Knowledge, like the process of learning any other Knowledge, is said to be a 3fold process of repeated śravaa, manana & nididhyāsana, or learning, assimilation & practice.  The Sanskrit word śravaa literally means “hearing”, but in this context it means learning the Truth by hearing, reading or studying.

The word manana means thinking, pondering, musing, reflection or meditation, that is, dwelling frequently upon the Truth that we have learned through śravaa in order to imbibe it & understand it more & more clearly, & to impress it upon our Mind more & more firmly.

And the word nididhyāsana means keen observation, scrutiny, attentiveness or profound contemplation, that is, in our context, putting what we have learned & understood by śravaa & manana into practice by keenly scrutinizing, attending to or contemplating upon our essential Self-Conscious Existence, “I exist”.  In the Life of a serious spiritual aspirant, this 3fold process of śravaa, manana & nididhyāsana should continue repeatedly until the experience of true Self-Knowledge is attained.  In our day-to-day lives our Mind encounters innumerable different impressions through our 5 Senses, & thinks innumerable thoughts about those impressions.  So the impression made by 1 thing is quickly replaced by the impression made by other things.

Therefore even though we have once learnt about the spiritual Truth the Truth that we are not the limited Body but are only the unlimited spirit or Consciousness the impression made by that truth will quickly fade if we do not repeatedly study books that remind us of it, & frequently reflect upon it in our Mind.

However mere reading & thinking about the Truth will be of little benefit to us if we do not also repeatedly attempt to put it into practice by turning our attention back to our mere Consciousness of Existence, “I exist”, whenever we notice that it has slipped away to think of other things.

To stress the paramount importance of such practice, Sri Adi Sankara declared in verse 364 of Vivēkacūāmai that the benefit of manana is a 100x greater than that of śravaa, & the benefit of nididhyāsana is a 100,000x greater than that of manana.

For some very rare souls, repeated śravaa, manana & nididhyāsana is not necessary, because as soon as they first hear the Truth, they at once grasp its meaning & importance, turn their attention  Self wards, & thereby immediately experience true Self-Knowledge.  But the majority of us do not have the spiritual maturity to be able to experience the Truth as soon as we hear it, because we are too strongly attached to our existence as an individual person, & to all that is associated with our Life as a person.

By repeated nididhyāsana or Self-Contemplation, supported by the aid of repeated śravaa & manana, our Consciousness of our own essential Existence & our corresponding understanding of the Truth will become increasingly clear, & by that increasing clarity we will steadily gain more love to know our self as we really are, along with more Detachment from our Individuality & all that is associated with it.  Therefore, until we gain such true spiritual maturity the willingness & love to lose our individual self in the experience of true Non-Dual Self-Knowledge we have to continue the process of repeated śravaa, manana & nididhyāsana.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 05

Mind & Happiness 05

If we truly understand that we are not a Body, nor the Mind which imagines itself to be a Body, & that every form of unhappiness that we experience is caused only by our mistaken Identification with a Body, we will endeavor to destroy that false Identification by undertaking practical research to discover who or what we really are. To know what we really are, we must cease attending to any other things, & must attend instead to our self, the Consciousness that knows those other things.

When we attend to things other than “I”, our attention is a “thought” or activity of the Mind. But when we attend to our essential Consciousness “I”, our attention ceases to be an activity or “thought”, & instead becomes mere Existence.  We know other things by an act of knowing, but we know our self not by an act of knowing but by merely Existence our self.  Therefore, when we attend to the innermost core of our Existence that is, to our essential & real Self, which is simple thought-free Non-Dual, Self-Conscious Existence we cease to rise as the incessantly active Mind & instead remain merely as our naturally action-less Consciousness of Existence.  Therefore Self-Attention is SelfAbidance, the state of mere Existence as what we really are.

So long as we attend to things other than our self, our Mind is active, & its activity clouds & obscures our natural clarity of Self-Consciousness.  But when we try to attend to our self, the activity of our Mind begins to subside, & thus the veil that obscures our natural Self-Consciousness begins to dissolve. The more keenly & intensely we focus our attention upon our basic Consciousness “I”, the more our Mind will subside, until finally it disappears in the clear light of true Self-Knowledge.

The theory of this Knowledge of Self-Knowledge is necessary & helpful to us insofar as it enables us to understand not only the imperative need for us to know the Reality, but also the practical means by which we can achieve such Knowledge.

All the unhappiness, discontent & Suffering that we experience in our Life is caused only by our Ignorance or confused knowledge of who or what we really are.  So long as we limit our self by identifying a Body as “I”, we will feel desire for whatever we think is necessary for our survival in that Body, & for whatever we think will make our Life in that Body more comfortable & pleasant.  Likewise we will feel fear & dislike of whatever we think threatens our survival in that Body, & of whatever we think will make our Life in it less comfortable or pleasant.  When we do not get whatever we desire or like, & when we cannot avoid whatever we fear or dislike, we feel unhappy, discontented or miserable.

Thus unhappiness or Suffering is the inevitable result of desire & fear, or likes & dislikes. Desire & fear, & likes & dislikes, are the inevitable result of identifying a Body as “I”.  And identifying a Body as “I” results from our lack of clear knowledge of our Real Nature our essential Self-Conscious Existence. Therefore if we want to be free of all forms of Suffering & unhappiness, we must free our self from our Ignorance or confused knowledge of what we really are.

In order to free our self from this confused knowledge, which makes us feel that we are a Body, we must attain a clear Knowledge of our Real Self.  The only means by which we can attain such clear Self-Knowledge is to turn our attention away from our Body, our Mind & all other things, & to focus it keenly upon our own essential Self-Consciousness our fundamental Consciousness of our own Existence, “I exist”.

Thus the theory that underlies the Knowledge of Self-Knowledge enables us to understand that all we need do in order to experience perfect & unlimited Happiness is to attain true Self-Knowledge, & that the only means to attain true Self-Knowledge is to practice keen scrutinizing SelfAttention.  Unless we know our self as we really are, we can never experience true & perfect Happiness, untainted by even the least unhappiness or dissatisfaction.  And unless we keenly attend to our essential Consciousness of our own mere Existence our simple Non-Dual Self-Consciousness, “I exist” we can never know our self as we really are.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 04

Mind & Happiness 04

When we say, “I slept peacefully, I had no Dreams, I was unaware of anything,” we are confidently affirming that “I” was in Deep Dreamless Sleep that is, that we existed & knew that we existed at that time.  Because we associate Consciousness with Existence, conscious of all the thoughts & perceptions that make up our Life in Waking & in Dream, we consider Deep Dreamless Sleep to be a state of unconsciousness.

But we should examine the so-called unconsciousness of Deep Dreamless Sleep more carefully. The Consciousness that knows thoughts & perceptions is our Mind, which rises & is active in Waking &  Dream, but which subsides in sleep. But this rising & subsiding Consciousness is not our real Consciousness. We are conscious not only of the 2 States of Waking & Dream, in which our Mind rises to experience thoughts & perceptions, but also of a 3rd State, Deep Dreamless Sleep, in which our Mind has subsided in a State devoid of thoughts & perceptions.

This fact that we are conscious of Deep Dreamless Sleep as a State distinct from Waking & Dream clearly indicates that we are the Consciousness that underlies the rising & subsiding of the transient Consciousness that we call “Mind”.  The Consciousness that enables us to affirm confidently, “I did exist in Deep Dreamless Sleep, but I was unconscious of anything,” is not our “rising Consciousness” but our “Existence Consciousness”.

This “Existence Consciousness”, which exists in all our 3 States, is our real Consciousness, & is what is truly denoted when we say “I exist”.  Our Mind, the “rising Consciousness” that appears in Waking & Dream & disappears in Deep Dreamless Sleep, is only a spurious form of  Consciousness, which on rising mistakes itself to be both our basic Consciousness “I exist” & this material Body.

Thus, by analyzing our experience in our 3 States of Waking, Dream, & Deep Dreamless Sleep, we can understand that though we now mistake our Self to be a Body limited by Time & Space, we are in fact the Consciousness that underlies the appearance of these 3 States, in only 2 of which the sense of being a Body & the consequent limitations of Time & Space are experienced.

However, a mere theoretical understanding of the Truth that we are only Consciousness will be of little use to us if we do not apply it in practice by endeavoring to gain real experiential Knowledge of that Truth. By itself, a theoretical understanding will not & cannot give us true & lasting Happiness, because it cannot destroy our deep-rooted sense of Identification with the Body, which is the root of all Ignorance, & the cause of all Suffering.

That which understands this Truth theoretically is only our Mind or Intellect, & our Mind cannot function without first identifying itself with a Body. Since our Mind or Intellect is thus a confused knowledge whose existence is rooted in Ignorance about who or what we really are, no intellectual understanding can ever by itself give us true Self-Knowledge.  Self-Knowledge can only be gained by direct experience of the pure unlimited Consciousness which is our Real Self, because only such experience can root out the Ignorance that we are anything other than that Consciousness.

Therefore a theoretical understanding of the Truth can be of real benefit to us only if it prompts us to investigate our essential Consciousness of Existence our simple Self-Consciousness, “I exist” & thereby attain, through direct experience, a clear Knowledge of our own True Nature. Only by attaining such a clear Knowledge of the Consciousness that is truly “I”, can we destroy our primal Ignorance, the confused & mistaken knowledge that we are the Mind, the limited form of Consciousness that identifies a Body as “I”.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 03

Mind & Happiness 03

That which thus mistakes this Body to be “I” is our Mind. Our Mind comes into existence only by imagining itself to be a Body. In Deep Dreamless Sleep we are unaware of either our Mind or our Body. As soon as we wake up, our Mind rises feeling “I am the Body”, “I am called so-&-so,” &  only after thus identifying itself as a particular Body does it perceive the external World through the 5 Senses of that Body.

Exactly the same thing happens in Dream our Mind identifies itself as a particular Body & through the 5 Senses of that Body it perceives a seemingly real & external World. When we wake up from a Dream, we understand that the Body we mistook to be “I” & the World we mistook to be real & external were both in fact only figments of our imagination.

Thus from our experience in Dream we all know that our Mind has a wonderful power of imagination by which it is able to create a Body, to mistake that imaginary Body to be “I” &  through that Body (via the Senses) to project a World which, at the Time we perceive it, appears to be every bit as real & external to us as the World that we now perceive in this Waking State.  Knowing that our Mind possesses this wonderful power of creation & self-deception, is it not reasonable for us to suspect that the Body we take to be “I” & the World we take to be real in our present Waking state may in fact be nothing more than a mere imagination or mental projection, just like the Body & World that we experience in Dream ?

What evidence do we have that the Body & World we experience in this Waking state are anything other than a creation of our own Mind ?  We may be able to point out certain differences between Waking & Dream, but on analysis we will discover that those differences are superficial, “existence” concerned with quality or quantity rather than with substance.

If we compare the World drama we see in Waking or Dream to a drama we see on a cinema screen, we may say that the drama seen in Waking is a better quality & more impressive production than that seen in Dream, but both are productions none the less productions not of some external agency but of our Mind which sees them.

In substance, there is no essential difference between our experience in Waking & that in Dream. In both states our Mind rises, attaching itself to a Body by taking it to be “I”, &  through the Senses of that Body it sees a World bound within the limits of Time & Space, & filled with numerous people & other objects, both sentient & insentient, all of which it is convinced are real. How can we prove to our self that what we experience in the Waking state exists at all outside our own imagination, any more than a Dream exists outside our Imagination ?

When we carefully analyze our experience in our 3 States of Waking, Dream & Deep Dreamless Sleep, it is clear that we are able to confuse our Consciousness “I” to be different things at different Times. In the Waking State we mistake our present Body to be “I”, in Dream we mistake some other imaginary DreamBody to be “I”, &  in Deep Dreamless Sleep we mistake unconsciousness to be “I” or at least on Waking from Deep Dreamless Sleep what we remember is that “I was unconscious.”

What we were in fact unconscious of in Deep Dreamless Sleep was our Mind, our Body & the World, but not our own Existence. Our experience in Deep Dreamless Sleep was not that we ceased to exist, but only that we ceased to be aware of all the thoughts & perceptions that we are accustomed to experiencing in the Waking & Dream States.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 02

Mind & Happiness 02

The Knowledge of Existence is fundamentally unlike all other Knowledge because it is not a Knowledge that involves doing anything. It is a Knowledge not of doing but of nondoing a Knowledge of just Existence.

The state of just Existence is one in which our Mind does not rise to do, think or know anything, yet it is a state of full Consciousness Consciousness not of anything else but only of Existence. The skill that is to be learnt in this Knowledge is not simply the skill to exist because we always exist & therefore require no special skill or effort to exist nor is it merely the skill to exist without doing or thinking anything because we are able to exist so each day in Deep Dreamless Sleep. The skill to be cultivated is the skill to remain calmly & peacefully without doing or thinking anything, but nevertheless retaining a perfectly clear Consciousness of Existence that is, Consciousness of our own Existence or essential “am“-ness. Only in this pristine state of clear Non-Dual SelfConscious Existence, unclouded by the distracting agitation of thought & action, will the True Nature of Existence become perfectly clear, obvious, selfevident & free from even the least scope for doubt or confusion.

Our first &  most direct experience of Existence is that of our own Existence. First we know that we exist, & then only can we know of the existence of other things. But whereas our own Existence is Self-Conscious, the existence of each other thing depends on us to be known.

We know our own Existence because we are Consciousness. In other words, our Existence is itself the Consciousness that knows itself. It knows itself because it is essentially Self-Conscious. Thus it is reasonable to hypothesize that Consciousness is the primal &  essential form of Existence. Without Consciousness, Existence would be unknown, & without Existence, Consciousness would not exist.

Our Existence & our Consciousness of Existence are inseparable – in fact they are identical – &  both are expressed by the single phrase “I exist”. This Existence-Consciousness, “I exist”, is our most fundamental experience, & the most fundamental experience of every sentient Existence.

“I exist” is the one basic Consciousness the essential Non-Dual Self-Consciousness without which nothing would be known.  “I exist” is therefore the source & foundation of all knowledge.

What then is the use of knowing anything else if we do not know the Truth of our own Existence-Consciousness, our Self-Consciousness, “I exist”, on the basis of which all else is known ?  All that we know about the World & all that we know about God – all our sciences &  all our religions are of no real value to us if we do not know the Truth about our Self, that who desires to know the Truth about the World & God.

We are the Existence-Consciousness “I exist”, yet our knowledge about this “I exist” is confused. We all believe “I am this Body”, “I am a person”, “I am called so-&-so, & was born on such-&-such a date at such-&-such a place.” Thus we identify our Consciousness “I exist” with a particular Body.

This identification is the result of a confused & unclear knowledge of the True Nature of Consciousness.  Our Consciousness “I exist” is not something material, whereas our Body is

merely a bundle of physical matter, which is not inherently conscious. Yet somehow we are deluded into mistaking this material Body to be our Consciousness “I”. As a result of our unclear knowledge of Consciousness, we mistake matter to be conscious, &  Consciousness to be something material.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/

Mind & Happiness 01

Mind & Happiness 01

[After an interval of ill health interruption this Blog continues with a new series called “Mind & Happiness”.  After a time the previous series “Reality” will resume.]

Happiness lies deep within us, in the very core of our Existence. Happiness does not exist in any external object, but only in us, who are the Consciousness that experiences Happiness. Though we seem to derive Happiness from external objects or experiences, the Happiness that we thus enjoy in fact arises from within us.

Whatever turmoil our Mind may be in, in the centre of our Existence there always exists a state of perfect peace & joy, like the calm in the eye of a storm. Desire & fear agitate our Mind, & obscure from its view the Happiness that always exists within it. When a desire is satisfied, or the cause of a fear is removed, the surface agitation of our Mind subsides, & in that temporary calm our Mind enjoys a taste of its own innate Happiness.

Happiness is thus a state of Existence a state in which our Mind’s habitual agitation is calmed. The activity of our Mind disturbs it from its calm state of just Existence, & causes it to lose sight of its own innermost Happiness. To enjoy Happiness, therefore, all our Mind need do is to cease all activity, returning calmly to its natural state of inactive Existence, as it does daily in Deep Dreamless Sleep.

Therefore to master the Knowledge of being happy, we must master the Knowledge of just Existence. We must discover what the innermost core of our Existence is, & we must learn to abide consciously & constantly in that state of pure Existence, which underlies &  supports (but nevertheless remains unaffected by) all the superficial activities of our Mind: thinking, feeling & perceiving, remembering &  forgetting, & so on.

The Knowledge of just Existence, remaining fully conscious but without any activity of the Mind, is not only Knowledge a practical skill that can be cultivated & applied to produce an experience of inexpressible beauty & joy but also an attempt to acquire true Knowledge by keen observation & rigorous experiment. And this Knowledge of Existence is not only the Knowledge of Happiness, but also the Knowledge of Consciousness, & Self-Knowledge.

The Knowledge of Existence is incredibly simple & clear. To the human Mind, however, it may appear to be complex & abstruse, not because it is in any way complex in itself, but because the Mind which tries to comprehend it is such a complex bundle of thoughts & emotions desires, fears, anxieties, attachments, long-cherished beliefs &  preconceived ideas that it tends to cloud the pure simplicity & clarity of Existence, making what is obvious appear to be obscure.

Like any other knowledge, the Knowledge of Existence begins with observation & analysis of something that we already know but do not fully understand, & proceeds by reasoning to formulate a plausible hypothesis that can explain what is observed, & then rigorously tests that hypothesis by precise & critical experiment. However, unlike all other Knowledge, this Knowledge does not study any object of knowledge, but instead studies the very power of

Knowing itself the power of Consciousness that underlies the Mind, the power by which all objects are known.  Hence the Truth discovered by means of this Knowledge is not something that can be demonstrated or proved objectively by one person to another. It can, however, be directly experienced as a clear Knowledge in the innermost core of each person who scrupulously pursues the necessary process of experiment till the True Nature of Existence which is the True Nature of Consciousness, & of Happiness is revealed in the full clarity of pure unadulterated Self-Consciousness.

The above themes & 2500 pages more are freely available as perused or downloaded PDF’s, the sole occupants of a Public Microsoft Skydrive “Public Folder” accessible through  www.jpstiga.com 

short-cut: http://sdrv.ms/YPOgkX or http://tinyurl.com/nnyyr58  link directly to free E-book PDF files

www.jpstiga.com/

http://jstiga.wixsite.com/nonduality/

Duplicate blogs (but with graphics) have been available on:

http://www.blogger.com     as  “Being-as-Consciousness, Non-Duality – new & final version” with link:

http://Being-as-Consciousness.blogspot.com/

There is no Creation, no Destruction, no Bondage, no longing to be freed from Bondage, no striving for Liberation, nor anyone who has attained Liberation. Know that this to be Ultimate Truth.

  the “no creation” school of Gaudapada, Shankara, Ramana, Nome  Ajata Vada

 for very succinct summary of the teaching & practice, see:  www.ajatavada.com/