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Messages - Nagaraj

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1591
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 23, 2013, 10:54:54 AM »
Stray thoughts...

Steadfastness is The Word!

There are no shortcuts, there are no miracles. One has to cultivate absolute steadfastness in the practice of ones Sadhana. Such steadfastness, that motivates and inspires you to engage in practice of ones Sadhana in all of our waking hours.

This is only possible if the desire for Self supersedes all other desires (pl. connect previous post) If it is not so, then the plain simple fact is that our desire for Self is not the supreme, some other desires motivate us, inspire more than the desire for Self.


1592
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 23, 2013, 10:50:21 AM »
Stray Thoughts...

If we are bound by any Vasanas, then the plain fact that we have to face is that, we desire that Vasanas more than the desire for Self!

Therefore, if we truly want to overcome Vasanas, one has to have yearning, longing, strong desire for Self, over everything else. Then the desire of Self will overpower all other desires.


1593
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 23, 2013, 10:09:20 AM »
Stray Thoughts...

One needs life's experiences so long one truly gets true understanding. Only when one has gained [dawned] steady knowledge of [yathaartham] reality, one can can truly engage in the sadhana of [becoming] the [understanding].


1594
Subramanian Sir

Thanks so much for this entire series of posts. These are one of the most valuable posts in the forum and is a sure must read for every aspirant.


1595
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 23, 2013, 09:31:11 AM »
Stray thoughts...

It is truly amazing, that there is air around us and that we are breathing...


1596
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 23, 2013, 09:30:02 AM »
Thanks udai :) yes, that is my channel


1597
General Discussion / Song of Krishna
« on: January 20, 2013, 07:47:45 PM »
Friends,

Just uploaded a small video on Gita.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=db6mL72nC8A

Thank you,


1598
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: January 19, 2013, 11:01:14 AM »
Udai,

It is true the end goal is just one and the same, moksha or vaikunta or kingdom of heaven or self abidance and so on, and as said techniques may also be different, each person may follows any technique, but for each of those persons, it is wise to stick steadfastly to one technique alone.

Even among various Ramama books, it is wise to narrow down to just one book, for personal guidance.

Having a clear conscience in which path one is, it is also wise to seek guidance from that path itself.


1599
General Discussion / Too many cooks spoil the broth
« on: January 19, 2013, 10:47:35 AM »
All methods and paths are correct, but it is very very important to stick to one method persistently, and not mix up one method with another. That is, if one is inclined in Atma Vichara, one should stick to it persistently, if we mix up other methods with this, then our tapas gets contaminated and very many questions begin to spring and the answers we mostly arrive then will be of across paths, thereby only creating confusion, stranded, neither here nor there.

Similarly, if one is into the path of devotion, if one is in path of ritual worship, if one is in path of communion through karma, one should not deviate from it. All solutions or answers are available within ones own path, there fore it is very very important to stick to one path. What we do is while we follow one path, and if we have questions and if we do not immediately get any light from ones path, we look for answers from other paths, and when that brings light, we begin yet again another new path, and when we get stuck there, we look for answers in another path, and so on. The wisdom to is to stick to ones own path even if one does not get any answers trusting that there must be a reason for not getting any answer at that moment and wait patiently.

We have to be clear with the path, we are really inclined to, and chose putting all the burden on the God. However having said this, this path is purely internal, ones external actions do not contradict ones actions, that is, one should not let ones path affect ones routine. Say, for instance, if one chooses Atma Vichara, it does not mean that one stop ones daily routines puja or other devotaional karmas, etc... and vice verse.

It is the most important thing a serious spiritual Sadhaka must be clear with ones path.

If If is inclined with Atma Vichara, one should stick with just one source, Ramana Maharshi and even among many books, it is best if one narrows down to just Who Am I book alone for guidance, if, however, if we, out of our inquisitiveness, look around and explore other scriptires such as Tripura Rahasya and Ashtavakra Gita and Bhagavad Gita, or bring in the views of Sri Ramakrishna or Swami Sivananda, one may end up getting contradicting views Or if one sticks to Buddha, we should not mix up Shankara or Ramana or Ramakrishna with this path. If we stick with Nisargadatta Maharaj, we must be steadfast with only trusting one Guru, one line of thought and only one line of Sadhana, by this focus is natural.

Too many cooks spoil the broth

This does not mean one is right and the other is wrong, but simple, we should not mingle and mix up two different paths.

If one is inclined with Ashtavakra Gita, one must stick to just that alone, all answers and solutions will be got from that itself, similarly, if we are inclined with Sri Ramakrishnar, it is best we stick to that alone, all answers and solutions will be got from that itself. Or if we are inclined with Tamil scriptures, we must stick to that alone, even under them narrow down to only one either Tirumoolar or Thayumanavr or manickavachakar, mixing up all only adds confusion.

But, the most important of them all, is the path that we must chose. How do we chose which is the right path for me. Most of us have deviated from the original inspiration, if we trace back to when our spiritual journey began, we can remember where we got pulled to, that is the path that we started off, and since we have deviated a lot since then, we have lost the grip of our path.

Thank so much,


1600
The following is an article posted by Sri Michael James in his website, which i felt is an excellent share here:

A friend wrote to me recently asking:

How to start with atma vichara?? Some says, “look at your thoughts”, some says, “see from where it occurs”, some says “see who does all this” — what in this is to be followed??? doesnt the one sees is also mind???

Even though always the grace of guru is showered, why is that we cannot have atma vichara always???

Please kindly clarify me in the approach of atma vichara because I many times doubt whether the way of vichara that I do is right.
The following is the reply that I wrote:

Ātma-vichāra is not looking at any thought other than our primal thought ‘I’, which thinks all other thoughts.

All other thoughts are anātma (non-self), anya (other than ourself) and jaḍa (non-conscious), and hence we cannot know our real self by looking at them. We are constantly looking at our thoughts throughout our waking and dream states, but we do not thereby know our real self. In fact, our attention to thoughts is the obstacle that obscures our knowledge of ourself, because we can attend to thoughts only when we experience ourself as this thinking mind.

The only thought that we should look at in order to know ourself as we really are is our primal thought ‘I’, because unlike all other thoughts, none of which are conscious, this thinking thought ‘I’ is conscious, both of itself and of the thoughts that it is thinking. That is, this thinking thought ‘I’ is the knowing subject, whereas all other thoughts are just objects known by it.

This thinking thought ‘I’ is conscious because it is chit-jaḍa-granthi, the ‘knot’ that binds consciousness to the non-conscious. That is, it is an entangled mixture of our ever-conscious real self, ‘I am’, and this non-conscious body (which is only a thought or imagination) and other thoughts, which inevitably arise when we imagine ourself to be this body.

In this entangled mixture, ‘I am this body’, the only real element is our fundamental consciousness ‘I am’. The other element, ‘this body’, is merely an imagination, and hence it is created only by our act of thinking. When we do not think anything, as in deep sleep, this body does not exist, just as a dream-body does not exist when we are not dreaming.

Since that which exists in all our three states of consciousness, waking, dream and sleep, is only our fundamental consciousness of being, ‘I am’, it alone is real, and everything else is just a false figment of our imagination. Since we experience our present waking body only in waking and not in dream or sleep, and since we experience a dream-body only in a dream and not in waking or sleep, these bodies are mere transitory appearances, and hence they cannot be real but are just thoughts that arise along with our thinking mind.

Of all the things that we think or imagine, the root is only our thinking thought ‘I’, which is our mind, the ephemeral consciousness that always experiences itself as ‘I am this body, a person called so-and-so’. Thus this false experience ‘I am this body’ is our primal imagination, and because it obscures the real nature of ourself, our pure ‘I am’, it enables us to imagine all other thoughts.

Since the only reality in our thinking thought ‘I’, which is this primal imagination ‘I am this body’, is our essential consciousness of being, ‘I am’, if we look at it carefully we will see the reality that underlies its false appearance, just as if we look carefully at an imaginary snake we will see the rope, which is the reality that underlies its false appearance.

Since no other thought contains this essential element of self-consciousness, ‘I am’, by looking at any other thought we will not be able to recognise it the reality that underlies it, no matter how long and carefully we may look at it. Looking at other thoughts is like looking at the pictures on a cinema screen, whereas looking at our thinking thought ‘I’ is like looking back at the light that projects those pictures.

If we were to look directly at the light shining out of a cinema projector, we would see not only the rapidly moving film in front of the light, but would also see the bright unmoving light behind that moving film. At first the moving film may seem to obscure the unmoving light behind it, but if we continue to stare at it steadily, our eyes will be dazzled by the light and hence we will cease to see anything other than that.

Likewise, when we look directly into the core of our consciousness, ‘I am’, its true clarity may at first seem to be obscured by an unceasing flow of thoughts, but if we continue to keep our attention fixed steadily upon it, it will shine ever more brightly and clearly and will thereby gradually dissolve all the shadowy appearance of thoughts, until it finally shines alone in all its infinite splendour and non-dual glory.

You ask what is to be followed, ‘look at your thoughts’, ‘see from where it occurs’ or ‘see who does all this’. As I have explained above, ātma-vichāra is not looking at any thought other than our primal thought ‘I’, so we should not follow the advice of anyone who says ‘look at your thoughts’, but we can follow either or both of the other two instructions, ‘see from where it occurs’ and ‘see who does all this’, which both mean essentially the same thing.

From where do all thoughts occur? They occur, arise or appear only from ourself, the ‘I’ who think them, and not from anything else. Therefore ‘seeing from where thoughts occur’ means seeing ourself, the thinking ‘I’, in whose imagination and by whose imagination all thoughts are formed.

Likewise, who does all this? Everything — every thought, word and deed — is done only by this same thinking ‘I’. Even though physical actions may appear to be done by our body, and words may appear to be spoken by our voice, our body and voice are both only instruments by which our mind acts. All bodily actions and words originate from our thoughts, and those thoughts are all thought only by ‘I’, the primal thought, which is our thinking mind. Therefore ‘seeing who does all this’ means seeing ourself, the ‘I’ that feels ‘I am thinking’, ‘I am speaking’ and ‘I am doing’.

Since this thinking, speaking and doing ‘I’ appears in waking and dream but disappears in sleep, it is not our real ‘I’, but is only an impostor who poses as ‘I’. However, it could not pose as ‘I’ if it did not contain at least an element of our real consciousness ‘I’, so when we see it very carefully, we will come to see the real ‘I’ that underlies and supports it, enabling it to appear as ‘I’.

That is, when we look carefully at this false thinking ‘I’, concentrating our entire attention upon it, we will see beyond the body and other imaginary adjuncts that we have superimposed upon it and will thereby recognise the pure adjunct-free consciousness ‘I’ that underlies it, just as when we look very carefully at the imaginary snake, we will see beyond its superficial appearance and will recognise that it is actually only a rope.

Our real ‘I’ does not think or do anything, but just is. That is, its essential nature is just being, and it is ever untouched by any thought or action. The ‘I’ that thinks and does action is only a superficial and transitory appearance, an illusion that exists as such only in its own self-deceiving imagination, but that which seems to appear thus as this false thinking and doing ‘I’ is only our real being ‘I’. Therefore when we examine the appearance carefully, we will come to see it as it really is — that is, as the thought-free, action-free, non-dual being ‘I’.

You also asked, ‘doesnt the one sees is also mind?’ (by which I assume you meant, ‘isn’t the one who sees also mind?’). Yes, that which makes effort to see itself, the false thinking ‘I’, is only our mind, which is nothing other than this thinking ‘I’ itself.

Our real being ‘I’ always knows itself perfectly clearly, because its nature is absolutely pure self-consciousness, so it does not need to make any effort to practice ātma-vichāra. That which needs to make effort to know itself as it really is is only our mind, the false thinking ‘I’.

When this mind makes effort to know ‘who am I?’ by looking very carefully at itself, it automatically subsides and merges in its real state of clear thought-free self-conscious being, and thus it experiences itself as the real being ‘I’ that it always truly is. That is, this mind rises and is active only so long as it attends to other thoughts — that is, to anything other than itself — but when it tries instead to attend only to itself, it subsides and ceases to be active, because without the imaginary support of anything other than itself this mind cannot stand or appear to exist.

When the illusion of thinking and doing is superimposed upon our being ‘I’, it appears to be this thinking ‘I’, our mind or ego, so our mind depends upon its constant activity of thinking in order to sustain its seeming existence. Thinking is the activity of attending to something that appears to be other than ourself, so it will cease when we focus our entire attention exclusively upon ourself, and thus our thinking mind will subside in our natural state of clear self-conscious being, in which it will cease to be this thinking ‘I’ and will instead remain as the being ‘I’ that it always really is.

Finally you ask, ‘Even though always the grace of guru is showered, why is that we cannot have atma vichara always?’ Grace is always abundantly available in our heart, where it shines clearly as our real consciousness, ‘I am’, but to benefit from it fully we must surrender ourself to it entirely by making our attention ahamukham (turning it to face selfwards) and thereby subsiding within.

We can keep our attention fixed on ourself only to the extent to which we have genuine love to do so. So long as we still have desire to experience anything other than our real self, our desires will impel us to think of those things and thus we will repeatedly succumb to pramāda or self-negligence, slipping down from our natural state of vigilant self-attentiveness or clear self-consciousness.

Whatever love we now have to turn away from the objects of our desires and to attend only to our real self, ‘I am’, has been enkindled in our heart only by the grace of guru, and having once enkindled the flame of this love, grace will continue to protect it, nurture it and help it to flourish, just as a gardener would protect and nurture a beautiful plant that he has grown from seed.

Grace is certainly doing its part, as it always has and always will, so it is up to us to do our part by surrendering ourself to it, attending to it exclusively and thereby allowing it to swallow us in the perfect clarity of pure self-consciousness, which is its true form. The more we persevere in our effort to attend only to self, the more clearly the light of grace will shine in our heart as ‘I am’, and the more it will thereby enkindle our love to be ever self-attentive.

Our love to be self-attentive is true bhakti — svātma-bhakti or love for our own self — and its intensity is directly proportionate to the intensity of our vairāgya or freedom from desire to attend to anything other than ourself. We desire to attend to other things only because of our lack of true vivēka, discrimination or right judgement — the ability to distinguish between the real and the unreal, the eternal and the ephemeral, and to discern that true happiness exists only in our real self and not in any ephemeral appearance such as our mind or the objects of its desires.

True vivēka can arise only from the inner clarity of mind and heart that is enkindled in us by the clear light of grace, which always shines within us as ‘I am’. Therefore when we attend to our essential consciousness of being, ‘I am’, we are opening our heart to the influence of grace, allowing it to shine clearly within us and thereby to enkindle and nourish the clarity of true vivēka in our heart.

When we begin to practice ātma-vichāra — self-investigation or self-attentiveness — we are starting a process that will escalate with ever-increasing momentum, like a snowball rolling down a hill, because the more we attend to ‘I am’, the more clearly we will experience it, and the more clearly we experience it, the more brightly the clarity of true vivēka will shine in our heart, thereby enabling us to free ourself from our desires and to love to be self-attentive ever more intensely, until eventually our mind will be swallowed forever in the absolute clarity of pristinely pure self-consciousness.


1601
The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Destroying vasanas
« on: January 17, 2013, 05:52:27 PM »
Udai,

i am not heated up, even if I am heated up, what matters? I am that awareness, for me, as awareness, remain untouched by any heat :D

I do not belong to any school of thought, I do not strictly follow any school of thought, my guru has been teaching me to be free of any school of thought. He has only been teaching me that I am nothing. So therefore truly i may not satisfy your conditions for a dialogue, i may not strictly quote shankara bhashya even though My Guru has covered shankara Bhashya for some important works. If you want to have a dialogue with somebody's education background, and not the very person itself, then my heart stops behind from venturing into any dialogue. My Guru teaches the Bhashya of Heart, he has taught me that this Bhashya is supreme to every other Bhashyas.


1602
The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Destroying vasanas
« on: January 17, 2013, 05:13:48 PM »
Dear Sri Udai,

I do not like to express all these, i have been doing Veda adhyayanm from a proper Guru,  who is an Ashtaavadhaani (one capable of doing 8 things at a time) for over 8 years now and still going on. have covered various works including Gita, Atma bodha, works of Shankara, including some works of Vaishnava and Madhva. i adhere to the instructions of shastras as much as possible and carry out the anhikas without fail.

you may please find somebody if one has studied and then engage yourself in conversation with such a person. I do not wish to communicate with you. i prefer to converse with an ordinary layman or the ordinary street dog near my house that is my highest Guru, who does not know anything, for he has much more to offer than Shankara bhasyam or sometimes even Ramana or Ramakrishna or shankara acharyas or other modern swamiji or pravachakas.

I say, this is nothing, knowledge is nothing, shankara bhashya is nothing, all books are to be burnt, there is nothing you will gain in them, unless you stand stark naked before the higher power. If you are looking for an educated shastric person, I am not the person. each day as I learn, i only realise all learning is nothing! I am not the person, so you communicate with me, you may find somebody who appreciates the vedanta just as you do. I pray may you find one very soon

Prayers,


1603
The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Destroying vasanas
« on: January 17, 2013, 04:59:58 PM »
Dear Nagaraj,
         :) Vedanta is not easy to understand. They have to be studied with Bhashyam of Shankra from a guru. Have you done this ?

If you have studied with Bhashyam of Shankara under a proper guru , please give me the bhasyam reference , the vedantic reference and then it would stand some discussion.

Otherwise its like speaking about E=mc^2 without understanding what it means !! I do not have anything to discuss on a specific vedantic text unless you provide Shankra Bhasyam for this reason.

Are you telling me or asking me? just look at the intent in your own post and the voice and loudness. Your expressions clearly exhibit an impatient outburst.

You seem to say merely listening to Paramarthanandaji's lectrures you have gained everything and have learnt everything under a proper Guru? how do you see others and in what light do you see everybody else? You do not know anybody, it is all in your hands if you see it as speaking as e=mc2.

You have very openly conveyed that it is only you, who have understood the true purport and have truly known what has to be known.

I do not feel inspired to correspond with you and share my thoughts with you. You may revel in your own last say, your knowledge and enlightenment

God Bless.


1604
The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Destroying vasanas
« on: January 17, 2013, 04:53:37 PM »
Subramanian Sir,

Thank you, excellent compilation, it is a blessing truly.


1605
The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Destroying vasanas
« on: January 17, 2013, 04:49:28 PM »
Udai,

Vasanas no longer remain in one who has gone beyond ones body. The question that vasanas arise but they do not affect such a person is not the lakshyartha. It is not correct. It does matter to see the context to which these were said so, which is why, not always we can take a dialogue of saints with devotees as a pramana vakya, veda is final authority.


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