I wish to present a very instructive episode that took place in the Hall which is as follows:
After sitting for some time in Sri Bhagwan’s Presence, a devotees asked Sri Bhagwan thus :
D. Bhagwan, I am not able to do Self-enquiry. I find it difficult. Shall I do dhyana instead?
Sri Bhagwan: All right.
However, soon after the devotee leaves the Hall, Sri Bhagwan turns to those near Him and says:
Sri Bhagwan : He says that Self-enquiry is difficult for him and that he cannot do it, so he asks me for permission to do dhyana. How can I compel him to do Self-enquirywhen he himself says that he cannot do it ? So, when he wants to dhyana , I have to say ‘All right”. He may come tomorrow and say, Bhagwan, my mind does not remain in dhyana, so shall I do japa? Again I will have to say “All right”. In the same manner, he will one day complain, ‘My mind does not remain quietly in japa. Only my tongue spells the mantra, but my mind wanders on many things. Shall I do worship, recite hymns and so on.’ What else can I do except to say, ‘All right, all right’ in reply to each and every complaint ?
Dear Devotees, Sri Bhagwan says that if one is able to make a sincere effort to practice anything, whether recitation of hymns, japa, dhyana or any other sadhana, ONE CAN WITH THE SAME EFFORT, PRACTICE SELF-ENQUIRY ! All these complaints are made only by those who do not earnestly like to do any sadhana, that is all.
And then what He teaches is well known to all of us:
“What is essential in any sadhana is to try to bring back the running mind and fix it in on one thing only. Why then should it not be brought back and fixed in Self-attention? That alone is Self-enquiry.”
And to drive the Teaching home, Sri Bhagwan cites from the Bhagavad Gita:
By means of an extremely courageous intellect (power of discrimination), make the mind motionless little by little; fix the mind firmly in the Self and never think of any other thing (V.25, Ch. 6); and towards whatever thing the unsteady mind wanders, from each thing pull it back, fix it always in the Self and make it firmly abide there (V. 26, Ch. 6).
(Source: The Path of Sri Ramana, Part one)
Dear devotees, is it not true that all spiritual sadhanas require the strength and ability of the mind to concentrate on one thing only, be it dhyana, or japa, or worship, or even surrender or Enquiry ? THEREFORE, CAN WE THEN NOT SEE THAT IT IS FAR, FAR,MORE BENEFICIAL TO BRING BACK THE RUNNING MIND AND FIX IT IN SELF-ATTENTION RATHER THAN FIXING IT IN ALIEN OBJECT OF MEDITATION ? Why not then the Royal, Direct and Straight Path rather than the lanes and by-lanes ?