I behold the one common substratum in all things (a piece of wood, a beautiful woman, a mountain, a blade of grass, ice and fire and space)…
Your first duty is to learn to live in the world, for to this you are born.
But, meantime, make for yourself a secret room in the inner house of consciousness, where you may rest from the strain of the world, and disentangle yourself from that which is unworthy of your soul.
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I love my family very deeply and I am grateful for my good fortune of having them with me. Even so, no one can compare this sort of love to the ties, which bind me to Bhagavan. That love is happening as if on another sphere, as if I live a double life and at the same time, also deep inside me, as a constant background music. So deep inside, that there is no distance, and never can be any distance between Bhagavan and me. He is in my soul.
Forgetfulness or non-forgetfulness is not a part of your destiny. It is something you choose from moment to moment. That is what Bhagavan (Ramana Maharshi) said. He said that you have the freedom either to identify with the Self and have the understanding that the body is performing its predestined activities, animated and sustained by the power of the Self, or you can identify with the activities of the body and the mind, and in doing so forget the Self. If you choose the latter course, don’t blame God or God’s will, or predestination. God did not make you forget the Self. You yourself are making that choice every second of your life.
As long as there is separateness,
one sees another as separate from oneself,
hears another as separate from oneself,
smells another as separate from oneself,
speaks to another as separate from oneself,
thinks of another as separate from oneself,
knows another as separate from oneself.
But when the Self is realized as the indivisible unity of life,
who can be seen by whom,
who can be heard by whom,
who can be smelled by whom,
who can be spoken to by whom,
who can be thought of by whom,
who can be known by whom?
Maitreyi, my beloved, how can the knower ever be known?
Your personal universe does not exist by itself. It is merely a limited and distorted view of the real. It is not the universe that needs improving, but your way of looking.
Wake up in the morning and say to yourself, “I do not exist now, I have never existed previously, and I will never exist in the future.” When your mind is calm in the morning hours when you awaken, you say something like this, you will get a beautiful warm good feeling. You will feel wonderful, for it relieves you of the responsibility of taking care of yourself to an extent. Yet you will still take care of yourself, but it’ll be completely different. You will brush your teeth, you will take a shower, you will go to work, you will eat breakfast. Yet when you feel that you do not exist, you are totally free from the reactions to the things that are going on. There is no one to react any longer. Therefore, everything that appears to be done by you, will be done in a wonderful way, all the time knowing that you are not the doer.
I know the teaching sounds absurd to most people. Yet this is the teaching that has been propagated by rishis, sages, since the beginning of time. This is it. This is your opportunity to awaken. Why not use it? Do not let another moment go by where you’re sitting there and believing and thinking something is wrong somewhere.
Employment and everything else must be used by us with the aim of seeing God. One who lives with this aim will be content with any kind of work.
The sannyasi’s life and the householder’s life are both good.
Whatever work you have to do, do it well. That in itself is yoga.
Wisdom will come, if you do your duty well.
You need not get at it, for you are it. It will get at you, if you give it a chance. Let go your attachment to the unreal and the real will swiftly and smoothly step into its own. Stop imagining yourself being or doing this or that and the realization that you are the source and heart of all will dawn upon you. With this will come great love which is not choice or predilection, nor attachment, but a power which makes all things love-worthy and lovable.
“A human being has so many skins inside, covering the depths of the heart. We know so many things, but we don’t know ourselves! Why, thirty or forty skins or hides, as thick and hard as an ox’s or bear’s, cover the soul. Go into your own ground and learn to know yourself there.”
[Photo: ‘love letters from the rain’ by www.alexgreenshpun.com]
A devotee said to Bhagavan, “Bhagavan, so long as we are in your presence we are all good people but once we return to our place we resume our usual activities. I have been coming here for so many years now but I do not seem to have progressed even a little bit.”
Bhagavan: Those who travel by first class inform the guard of the train where they have to get down and ask him to wake them up. Thereafter they shut the windows and go to sleep. Do they wake up midway and ask themselves whether they had crossed their destination already? You are all like first class passengers. You have informed the guard about your destination. Does not the guard know what to do? When your destination arrives the guard himself will come and wake you up.
Can there be a greater reassurance than this?