Author Topic: Ramana Maharshi About Enquiry And Sadhana  (Read 5184 times)


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Ramana Maharshi About Enquiry And Sadhana
« on: May 07, 2010, 01:11:40 PM »
The following is an excerpt from questions and answers exchanged between Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi and Sri D. C. Desai at Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai, South India, on August 8, 1944, at 9 a.m. and published in the October 1969 issue of the Mountain Path.

D: I am often baffled and depressed during or outside my meditation by thinking that there are millions of souls who are either quite ignorant or quite innocent, and are suffering intolerable pains and tortures in this world, e.g., (a) starvation of the poor by famine, poverty or unemployment; (b) pain and suffering through diseases of ignorant people caused by ignorance of laws of hygiene, diet or poverty; (c) bombing of innocent women and children; (d) suffering through floods, earthquakes, etc., of innocent and poor persons; (e) killing of animals for food; (f) insects and lower animals being eaten up by higher animals in nature, and so on. I try to convince myself that all this must be due to their bad karma in past lives, but doubts still arise as to how and by whom their freewill was so directed as to force them to commit such actions. If it was due to desire, why or how did they come to get it, or such tendencies originally? If it is due to avidya, dehadhyas (body idea), etc., how can they be held responsible for the same?

M: First find out whether the ego exists, who is depressed by these thoughts. Find out how you got the idea of the body, solve this problem of your ego, and then see if anything remains to be solved.

D: Is it helpful in the enquiry to sit in siddhasana, keeping the spine erect, sitting on deerskin, kushasana, etc. during the meditation, or are they not quite necessary? Will they expedite the progress?

M: The real asana is being established in the Self-Reality or the Source. Sit in your Self. Where can the Self go and sit? Everything sits in the Self. Find out the source of I and sit there. Do not have the idea that the Self cannot be realized without the help of asanas, etc. They are not at all necessary. The chief thing is to enquire and reach the source of the ego. These details such as posture, etc., may distract the mind towards them or to the body. D: Which books are most helpful in swadhyaya (self-study) during spare time (for quick training of the mind for the enquiry)?

M: You may read whichever book you like. Self (Atma) is the real book. You can look into it whenever you like. Nobody can take it away. It is always at hand, to be read. Hold on to your Self in your spare time also, and then you can read any book.

D: If doubts, fears and worries harass me during meditation, how can they be most effectively removed?

M: Ask yourself "To whom do these doubts, fears and worries occur?" and they will vanish. Cease to pay attention to them. Pay attention to the Self within. Fears, etc., can only arise when there are two, or when anybody else exists apart from, or separate from, or outside of you. If you turn the mind inward towards the Self, fears, etc., will disappear.

If you try to remove a doubt or fear, another doubt or fear will arise. There will be no end to it. The best method to annihilate them is to ask "To whom do they occur?" and they will disappear. Destroying a tree by plucking its leaves one by one is impossible. Other leaves will grow by the time you pluck a few. Remove the root of the tree - the ego - and the whole tree with its leaves and branches will be destroyed. Prevention is better than cure.

D: Should I look for the source within the body?

M: The ego arises within the body. Hence, in the first instance you may look within the body for its source. When you reach the source there will be no inside or outside, because the source or the Self is all-pervading. After realization everything will be inside the Self.

D: Is the source on the right side of the middle line of the chest?

M: The Heart is defined as the place from which the I-thought arises. Heart means the Centre (of consciousness). It cannot be identified with any part of the physical body.

D: What can I do to increase the receptivity of the mind to your spiritual vibrations while sitting in the hall, and to increase the frequency and duration of the efforts at enquiry in the hall, or to ease such efforts?

M: Keep the mind quiet. That is enough. Sitting in this hall will help you. The purpose of efforts is to get rid of all efforts. The force will be clearly felt when the stillness is achieved. Spiritual vibrations exist everywhere. They will manifest when the mind is stilled.

D: Will it be helpful if I gaze from time to time on your eyes or face during the effort at meditation, or should I keep the eyes closed? If closed, should I concentrate them on the ajna-chakra, or deep down in the heart? When practicing the enquiry at one's own place should the eyes be closed or fixed on some object of devotion?

M: Look at your Self or Atma rather than anywhere else. The eyes may be kept open or closed. It is immaterial. There is only one I, whether you spell it 'I' or 'eye'. There is no point in opening or closing the eyes. Attention must be focused on the inner 'I'. You are not an 'I' that can be opened or closed. You may open or close the eyes according to your liking or inclination. It is immaterial, and not important. You will cease to think of the world when you think of the Self. If you are in a room and close your eyes and do not look out, it is immaterial whether you close the windows or keep them open. The body is the room; the eyes are the windows.

Looking at ajna chakra, etc., is not necessary in this method. It may be helpful in keeping the mind from going out towards external objects. Concentrate on the Self without which there are no chakras. They do not exist without you. You are all of them. All centres (chakras) are in the Heart. The Heart is not the anahata chakra. The latter is in the spinal cord. Heart is I.



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Re: Ramana Maharshi About Enquiry And Sadhana
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2010, 03:25:56 PM »

Ego destruction is the only thing.  Pain, happiness, sorrow and joy
do not affect a person who has vanquished his ego.

Recently, when Brahmasri Nochur Venkatraman was discoursing in
Chennai, about Bhagavan Ramana, one in the audience found that
a mosquito was sitting on Nochur's shoulder, which was uncovered,
because the upper cloth had just moved. The mosquito had a good
feast for a number of minutes.  Brahmasri Nochur Venkataraman
never attempted to drive away the mosquito, nor refix his upper cloth.  The mosquito left after some minutes.  This is the ego-less state thought the participant in the discourse. 

This reminds me another incident.  One devotee asked Bhagavan
Ramana:  Bhagavan!  When I am meditating, a mosquito bites me.  Should I drive it away and hit it?

Bhagavan Ramana smiled and replied:  "If you are in true meditation, the presence of the mosquito will not be known to
you at all!"

I bow to Him, the best among the bipeds,
The Lord of Arunachala, the Only True Complete Being.

Arunachala Siva.