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Messages - Nagaraj

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If one is able to make a sincere effort to
practise anything, whether recitation of hymns, japa,
dhyana or any other sadhana, one can, with the same effort,
practise Self-enquiry ! All these complaints are made only
by those who do not earnestly like to do any sadhana, that’s
all. What is essential in any sadhana is to try to bring back
the running mind and fix it on one thing only’. Why then
should it not be brought back and fixed in Self-attention?
That alone is Self-enquiry (alma-vichara). That is all that is
to be done!

Dear Sri Kicsi108,

You have posted a very important post. the whole point rests in this - "If one is able to make a sincere effort to practise anything" The fact would be we are definitely not 100%, even stalwart devotees who were very close to Bhagavan expressed their difficulty. Hence it is wise and common sense to complement our main Sadhana (what ever it may be, self enquiry or other) with other sadhanas that anchor the sadhaka. We are all no different from the case as mentioned above. We may profess to say, Self Enquiry is enough, being still is enough and so on, but if we see closely, we will be quite far from it. Therefore, even if we are not doing Self Enquiry, it is best to practice some other discipline at least rather than just expend ourselves purposelessly, talking about the glory of Self and Enquiry and so on. A good staple discipline, all-round disciple is very much essential.

Bhagavan also practiced Bhiksha, begging food, living an austere life, with just one cod piece. Lets leave Bhagavan, if we take the cases of Serious disciples, Muruganar, Annamalai Swami, or the disciples of Sri Ramakrishna, all practiced a living that complemented their main faith or sadhana. It would be a folly to ignore ourselves over all believing Self Enquiry would suffice, there is no need for any other disciplines.

When we are faced with such a situation, then our rational mind would begin playing games saying, logically, truly there is nothing else to do but being Still, Self Enquiry alone is truly enough! This is True, but, are we truly at it? Are we just over confident of ourselves? is it a fact about ourselves? Are we so steadfast? Therefore a sincere Sadhaka has to be honest with oneself, if not with anybody else, he will discern, yes, Self Enquiry is sum and substance of all Sadhanas put together, truly speaking Self Enquiry alone would suffice, but yet, i discern and realise that in those times, when I am bored? from self enquiry or need a break from self enquiry, when the mind is loosened and demands for some fun, then we need to see objectively, are we now steadfast to bring back the mind back to Self Enquiry? pursue back to the source? we will not be.

Hence, we need to carefully study ourselves, and train ourselves with other sadhanas as well, when we are not in a frame of state to continue Self Enquiry. IT is practical and common sense to have a regular routine of other disciplines and it does not mean rejecting Self Enquiry, it is merely discerning ourselves and offering ourselves practical solutions to better ourselves so that in time, we will be able to spend more and more quality time in Self Enquiry than now, slowly, when one is master, one will be able to perform Self Enquiry for most party of the waking time.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 11, 2013, 10:25:04 AM »
Dear Silentgreen,

I wonder how you craft out such excellent conversations :D It is definitely fit to be published as a book!

d: Shall I marry?

cguru: You know yourself. What is your deepest aspiration will prevail whether you are married or not. Whatever helps that, try to pursue that path.

Brilliantly put!

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 11, 2013, 10:06:27 AM »
Talking about Sanyasis, there are also certain set of people who dont want to take any responsibilities & as an excuse adopt an option called Sanyasi. My nephew, he is the only son to his parents who r financially very weak & he did not study well, doesnt do any work & reads all the mythological/spiritual books & preaches his parents not to eat non veg & other things & fails his primary responsibilities being a son.

My friends Uncle is a married guy, also had kids but after few years of married life he left his family & now lives somewhere near parvathamalai hills as a sadhu. So there are certain set of people who adopt spirituality(as an excuse) & become sanyasi to escape from the worldly responsibility.

I wanted to express on the above concerns. There are many who criticize even Buddha, Raghavendra for they left left their wives and small kid in the lurch and became a Sadhu. Perhaps it is not that easily observed in Buddha or Raghavendra because they are famous.

But the truth is, i heard from some wise person is this, that upon extreme dispassion and with the taste of yathartham (fact) they realise  that they are absolutely helpless to care for their family, it is this profound wisdom that makes them leave their family, as they realise what they truly are, unsaid (nothing!)

This is suitable only for ripe souls. The rest should follow different methods according to the state of their minds.

(Self Inquiry)

General Discussion / Re: Teachings of Sri Ramakrishna
« on: February 11, 2013, 09:48:00 AM »
Be on your guard even now. It is difficult, no doubt,
to check the torrent in the rainy season.
But a great deal of water has gone out.
If you build the embankment now
it will stand.

(The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna)

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 11, 2013, 09:45:30 AM »
Another point, which i forgot to mention is unsaid understood, however,

if we recklessly decide not to marry in order to lead a spiritual life and later we find ourselves neither here nor there is the worst of worst thing that can happen.

This is tricky and yet very important point of life. One has to be very careful.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 11, 2013, 09:29:56 AM »
Dear Sri Vinod,

I am unmarried & not sure were my destiny takes me on this. Some times I feel difficult to follow the quest of spirituality & however try my level best to be on it. When I was not spiritual I was not concerned of any thing & used to do any thing with out a second thought but now even though some times I cannot control my sences but still I give a second thought wether to do a thing or not.

I agree on a point which u have made, that it becomes routine for us coming to this forum & forget to implement what we learn from here or take it forward. It all depends on us & how serious are we, so it is a personal quest & how commited one is. However even if it becomes a routine exercise it acts as a reminder or a wake up call at times. I am so thank ful to this forum that what ever spirituality I have gained, its only through this platform with the sympathy & grace of Arunaachala & our master.

I would just like to express some of my thoughts. Firsty, I came to understand, that what has already happened, were the results of our prarabdha, there  is no way we can think about our past, what we did in the past, has brought us to where we are now. I believe, we have the wisdom to chose our course of actions now, for the ultimate good with the help of scriptures and the words of Gurus. Also, it is only our past good actions or deeds that only bring us near even such a light, otherwise we will be one among everybody, moving about just existing away the life.

Life has to be lived, and consciously, as we have been bestowed with the power of discrimination, so we have the ability to discriminate. IT is very important to sit and carefully look at your life at this juncture, as it is these few years that will decide the course of your future. It is common in families to start looking for marriage when the boy or girl is around the primal age (Pls read Sri Ravi's posts, he has covered the subtle points, so appropriate) the boy or girl also, imagine, yes, everybody get married, so i should also get married and things eventually take shape thus.

One has to ponder about marriage, find out what marriage really is, what are the true commitments of marriage, the responsibilities towards one's spouse, how the life is going to take shape, what is the purpose, what is the common goal, what should be the ideals and so on. Majority of marriages taking place today is simply marriage of convinience, the ironically, the primary ideal being earning, reproducing, working, sending kids to school, buying house, and saving for retired life, and once retirement comes, people do not seem to have a clue as to what to do, how to pass time, and i have seen so many brood saying i have wasted my youth, i got so many opportunities to learn vedas, spiritual wisdom came ringing towards me, but i did not recognise the importance of that. I was more eager to flourish in life, earn money, build luxury, name, and so on. These days, people openly say that their first kid was just accident, its really shocking, the world is so unconsciously living, just existing.

Secondly, if you are deeply spiritual, you are obliged to think twice and thrice before getting married, and really take extreme patience and communicate with great clarity what is your purpose of life is to the girl who is getting married and even if it takes time, it is best to get married to one who is atleast wiling to be supportive to a moderate extent if not completely. Without taking such points into considerations, if you get married to some girl whose horoscope matches with yours, then the entire life will be a compromise, but turns out to be a great life teacher.

On the other hand, if you truly feel, you are not inclined to lead a married life, prefer the life of solitude, you have to think twice thrice and even much more, firstly, I believe you must take your parents into confidence, mostly from your mother. Mother's acceptance is the ultimate word. Sort out the matter with your parents, explain patiently about your purposes and slowly you can make them understand. But then even after you get their acceptance, it is not done yet, you have to sort your own life from here. What are you going to do. How are you going to lead your life, you need to be anchored in the proper way and also require tapas, these things, you must slowly discern and make your way out, and remembering your parents on hand as well.

Another point of importance is, indecision is curse, if you feel you are spiritually inclined and have less or no interest in worldly life and get married, it would be a grave injustice done upon the girl whom you will marry who will have atleast some aspirations, if she is not yet deeply spiritual. while you may have no interest in money luxury life and your spouse having reasonable flare for all the wonderful things of life, this is very bad, this should not happen, else you must be spiritually strong enough to earn money just for the sake of your spouse, reasonably do justice to the marriage.

What are the options if you are not married, you can remain brahmacharya life long, naishtika brahmacharya, or sanyasam. What kind of life are these, you need to acquaint further from reliable source. We all need Physical Guru. Only one is million may not need, Rarest of rare was Bhagavan. Muruganar, Annamalai Swami and many others came running towards Bhagavan, did they not have enough knowledge, did Muruganar who drank the nectar of Bhagavan's teachings still required the presence of Bhagavan. So, we must also not fall to the "knowledge Trap" I have always believe that even Ignorance trap can be escaped slowly, but knowledge trap is very very tough!

Long back when Abdul Kalam was president, in an interview, the interviewer addressed him as a bachelor, Dr Kalam took quick notice and corrected him saying, don't say I am a bachelor, I am brahmacharya. There is a huge difference between the two. There is no purpose living a bachelor life, but one must aspire to live the life of Brahmacharya if unmarried.

I know of many to are unmarried, who are good people, but are just existing it away. The aspiration aimed should be God.

These, i have very generally mentioned, there are very many subtle points which one needs to carefully discern oneself.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 10, 2013, 09:35:32 AM »
Dear Sri Udai,

I really do not have that much interest in substantiating elaborately, the subtle flaw in your approach. I am very well aware of what you have been conveying for quite some time now. The reason is because, I am more interested in my own self. I am definitely here only for a selfish reason of helping myself out. However I would like to express a couple of thoughts. The Self is ever untouched, the Self in Duryodhana too was untouched just as in Yudhishtira, Arjuna and Krishna, Ravana and Rama as well, but we only worship Sri Krishna and Sri Rama. You need to ponder a little bit more on this.

I am Self, it is unsaid, I am truly untouched by anything that happens before me, or what i also do, I am going to the extent of saying, i am confident enough to say, I can kill somebody and remain untouched and go to jail and get a third degree treatment and still remain untouched. But I do not want a jnana like this. The Jnana that i desire is one like Lord Rama, who is hailed as Maryada Purushottam, as Lord Krishna and not something lesser than that.

The Senses may go to thousands of places, yet I am still untouched by that, the intellect may reason a thousands of things, yet I, as the  Self, am untouched and absolutely peaceful. But still, i do not want to ignore this Temple that is this body, the horses, the senses.

You have been only giving importance to the Kshetrajna and no importance to Kshetram, you have consistently been differentiating with the two and see no need for the Kshetram to merge with the Khsetrajna as one.

Your approach seem to to suggest that there is no need to unite the entire chariot as given in the example of Yama to Nachiketa.

Unfortunately, your idea of freedom, according to my limited understanding, does not really meet the Freedom as understood from the words of Sages and scriptures.

If you are Free, why are you striving to explain to Freedom that you are already free? To whom are you conversing with? Who is in bondage? and who is Free? What are you doing? these are some questions you may need to inquire.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 09, 2013, 10:42:21 PM »
Posted from mobile, spelling, language excuse pls

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 09, 2013, 10:39:36 PM »
Dear Sri Jewel and friends,

Firstly i want to clarify this topic is really not about 'path' or change og paths oreven about marriage or bachelorhood being hindrance. I humbly request members to lindly read with a little more attention before conveying your views then it will be a fine discussion that truly benefits everybody. The topic is really carried out of its true purpose now, really.

Debunking other spiritual practices, did ramana say so? Why do we differentiate any spiritial discipline at all? 

patience is all yes, but in the pretext of patience is the key are each onr of us really striving with madness as uou havr observed? Am afraid not. Are we truly practicing self enquiry constantly? Am afraid not. Being still, to me is    bi-product of our sadhana, and not something that is practiced.

How much have we all reslly mastered our stomach, the cravings for food and taste, are we masters of our stomach? Are we masters of our mind? Do we not watch television, are we not instigated by mere arguements even here or whrn we see newspapers and television? Have we mastered them. Have we mastered the dependence on money people telationships love and others? Where do we stand we need to be fair. Have we genuienly taken steps to transcend these defaults in us? Have we all mastered our bodies, and sensual cravings? Dont we want to enjoy an occassional movie, fun  etc

I do not see we are truly performing self enquiry as the only sadhana, if bhagawan meant self enquiry alone is enough it should unsaid be understood that one is already very close renunciate meaning one has truly givrn himself in working out ones external hsbits. How much dependent are we on money, promotoons and job?

We need to reassess truly well of ourselves. Other spiritual diaciplines include monitoring these aspects, and they are not counter to self enquiry.

We have to face it, we need to.afopt certain changes.

General Discussion / Re: Teachings of Sri Ramakrishna
« on: February 09, 2013, 09:38:59 PM »
Spiritual discipline

"What are the spiritual disciplines that give the mind its upward direction? One learns all this by constantly living in holy company.  The rishis of olden times lived either in solitude or in the company of holy persons; therefore they could easily renounce 'woman and gold' and 'fix their minds on God.  They had no fear nor did they mind the criticism of others.

Will-power needed for renunciation

"In order to be able to renounce, one must pray to God for the will power to do so.  One must immediately renounce what one feels to be unreal.  The rishis had this will-power.  Through it they controlled the sense-organs.  If the tortoise once tucks in its limbs, you cannot make it bring them out even by cutting it into four pieces

General Discussion / Re: Are priests rogues?
« on: February 09, 2013, 10:44:58 AM »
Seeing God in everything

"There was a monastery in a certain place. The monks residing there went out daily to beg their food. One day a monk, while out for his alms, saw a landlord beating a man mercilessly. The compassionate monk stepped in and asked the landlord to stop. But the landlord was filled with anger and turned his wrath against the innocent monk. He beat the monk till he fell unconscious on the ground. Someone  reported the matter to the monastery. The monks ran to the spot and found their brother lying there. Four or five of them carried him back and laid him on a bed. He was still unconscious. The other monks sat around him sad at heart; some were fanning him. Finally someone suggested that he should be given a little milk to drink. When it was poured into his mouth he regained consciousness. He opened his eyes and looked around. One of the monks said, 'Let us see whether he is fully conscious and can recognize us.' Shouting into his ear, he said, 'Revered sir, who is giving you milk?' 'Brother,' replied the holy man in a low voice, 'He who beat me is now giving me milk.' (The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna)

In the days of yore, when we read stories of Kannapa, Kanaka dasa, for whose devotion Krishna in Upupi turned backwards, we are so much better off, imagine had we been in their shoes? we cant even complain or even vent our feelings.

While I feel with you, it is fine, we are better than so many others. The priest may have had a tough day, it does not befit a person of wisdom being in spiritual quest to call a priest a rogue no matter he abuses anybody.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 09, 2013, 10:42:27 AM »
I just wanted to add an extention to the example of Yama as given in the previous post.

When we say 'Just be' It is like this,

The intellect is says Just be, do not react, just keep quiet, while the horses are dancing in field of activity, and what we do is attribute the field of activity to the hands of prarabdha karma and keep quiet doing nothing, neither the horses are tamed neither the intellect is harnessed and is shown its faulty advise, one gets stagnated over this going no where.

Those who say, body is not Self, and one has to keep quiet also are not correct, its like saying, let the intellect say, do somethings, you keep quiet, let the horses say and go hither tither you just be. This is not spirituality, this is not what "Just Be" is.

To be master of the entire thing is the aspiration, the horse should stop upon your command, the intellect should act upon your command, the reigns should only move when you command the intellect, and horses move only upon the command of the intellect commanded by you.

there are a lot of things, we just cover them all up by just saying and practicing "Just Being" blindly. Without the mastery of Body, nothing will last. Thank you. Carrying on with Self Enquiry without keeping the chariot in check also is futile. One has to govern oneself overall.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 09, 2013, 10:20:28 AM »
Sri Ravi,

Thanks for the wonderful posts, they are most beneficial, and are to be read again and again, it is commonly applicable to everybody, no matter which station one is. This reminded me the teachings of Yama in Katha Upanishad. Yama begins his teaching by distinguishing between preyas, "what is pleasant", and shreyas, "what is beneficial."

(A similar distinction between the pleasant and the beneficial was made in ancient Greek philosophy by Plato.)

Yama's teaching also notably includes the Ratha Kalpana (parable of the chariot, Verses 1.3.3–4), Yama's parable consists of the following equations:

atman, the "Self" is the chariot's passenger
the body is the chariot itself
consciousness (buddhi) is the chariot driver
the mind (manas) is the reins
the five senses (indriya) are the chariot horses
the objects perceived by the senses are the chariot's path


I see the dangers of casual approach to life and stations of life after having had small glimpses or tastes of deep spirituality. I beg forgiveness, but in general i have noticed here and elsewhere, a sense of debunking of traditional spiritual practices and disciplines among many Ramana followers if not all.

Many have taken to the famous jargon "Summa Iru" or "Just Be" as the father of all and the only teaching and thereby debunking all the other disciplines necessary. I realised over introspection, (Can't talk for others) but i am truly far from just being, i am not engaging all of my waking times in communion. All who say, "Just Be" they may introspect within themselves, if they are Just Being at this very moment, or are we truly engaging in Self Enquiry in all our waking hours? I am sure not! Sometimes it appears to me 'Just Being' has taken the place of even Self Enquiry, where sadhakas feel, Enquiry is no more required and they are practicing 'Just Being' Teaching of Bhagavan have been distorted, i felt, from my perspective.

I truly felt this is a wake up call. We all should first know where we truly stand in the scheme of things, leaving aside Bhagavan Ramana or Sri Ramakrishna, They are the Supreme Self, Are we even closer to either devotees such as Muruganar or Master Mahashay? We are not, at least I am not.

The body needs to be governed and disciplined, it does not get disciplined simply saying "Just Being" and being far from it in reality. We need to assess ourselves truly by being an honest witness of ourselves and take necessary steps and take ownership of our lives and govern ourselves for the better.

Sri Jewel, yes, as you have said, Self is the Guru, Krishna says in Gita -

उद्धरेदात्मनात्मानं नात्मानमवसादयेत् ।
आत्मैव ह्यात्मनो बन्धुरात्मैव रिपुरात्मनः ॥

uddharedātmanātmānaṁ nātmānamavasādayet,
ātmaiva hyātmano bandhurātmaiva ripurātmanaḥ.

By the self thou shouldst deliver the self, thou shouldst not depress and cast down the self (whether by self-indulgence or suppression); for the self is the friend of the self and the self is the enemy.

and he also says -

तद्विद्धि प्रणिपातेन परिप्रश्नेन सेवया ।
उपदेक्ष्यन्ति ते ज्ञानं ज्ञानिनस्तत्त्वदर्शिनः ॥

tadviddhi praṇipātena paripraśnena sevayā,
upadekṣyanti te jñānaṁ jñāninastattvadarśinaḥ.

Learn that by worshipping the feet of the teacher, by questioning and by service; the men of knowledge who have seen (not those who know merely by the intellect) the true principles of things, will instruct thee in knowledge.

So, what is wise as i see, is yes, one had we must be aware and harness ourselves with the words of Sages that Self is God, Guru is truly within and go on with our lives but at the same time, we should be wise enough to not get stuck with just this ideal alone and stop our efforts and desire to truly meet a real Guru. Both go hand in hand. Truly wisdom calls from within to not rationalise as just this or just that what we say generally is that we need to be open minded.

Thanks all for your comments. The conviction in my quest has only increased now, over various opinions and questions posted in this post.

General Discussion / Re: Subject of Marriage
« on: February 08, 2013, 05:43:10 PM »
Sri Ravi,

Thanks so much, i just glanced thorough this book, truly this is the book i would very much like to read very carefully. I will try and get a book copy too, from Ramakrishna Math. Thank you so much. and yes, i see the importance of your observation, that one should not put oneself in a straitjacket that is the key!

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