Author Topic: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj  (Read 595459 times)


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #555 on: September 01, 2013, 05:55:12 PM »

Do not bother about anything you want, or think, or do, just stay
put in the thought and feeling, ‘I am’, focusing ‘I am’ firmly in
your mind. All kinds of experience may come to you – remain
unmoved in the knowledge that all perceivable is transient and
only the ‘I am’ endures.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #556 on: September 02, 2013, 01:19:29 PM »
M:  What were you actually experiencing when you were in the right mood?

Q:   A sense of inner stillness, peace and silence.

M:  Did you notice yourself becoming unconscious?

Q:   Yes, occasionally and for a very short time. Otherwise I was just quiet, inwardly and outwardly.

M:  What kind of quiet was it? Something akin to deep sleep, yet conscious all the same. A sort of wakeful sleep?

Q:   Yes. Alertly asleep. (jagrit-sushupti).

M:  The main thing is to be free of negative emotions -- desire, fear etc., the 'six enemies' of the mind. Once the mind is free of them, the rest will come easily. Just as cloth kept in soap water will become clean, so will the mind get purified in the stream of pure feeling.

When you sit quiet and watch yourself, all kinds of things may come to the surface. Do nothing about them, don't react to them; as they have come so will they go, by themselves. All that matters is mindfulness, total awareness of oneself or rather, of one's mind.

Q:   By 'oneself' do you mean the daily self?

M:  Yes, the person, which alone is objectively observable. The observer is beyond observation. What is observable is not the real self.

Q:   I can always observe the observer, in endless recession.

M:  You can observe the observation, but not the observer. You know you are the ultimate observer by direct insight, not by a logical process based on observation. You are what you are, but you know what you are not. The self is known as being, the not-self is known as transient. But in reality all is in the mind. The observed, observation and observer are mental constructs. The self alone is.

Q:   Why does the mind create all these divisions?

M:  To divide and particularise is in the mind's very nature. There is no harm in dividing. But separation goes against fact. Things and people are different, but they are not separate. Nature is one, reality is one. There are opposites, but no opposition.

Q:   I find that by nature I am very active. Here I am advised to avoid activity. The more I try to remain inactive, the greater the urge to do something. This makes me not only active outwardly, but also struggling inwardly to be what by nature I am not. Is there a remedy against longing for work?

M:  There is a difference between work and mere activity. All nature works. Work is nature, nature is work. On the other hand, activity is based on desire and fear, on longing to possess and enjoy, on fear of pain and annihilation. Work is by the whole for the whole, activity is by oneself for oneself.

Q:   Is there a remedy against activity?

M:  Watch it, and it shall cease. Use every opportunity to remind yourself that you are in bondage, that whatever happens to you is due to the fact of your bodily existence. Desire, fear, trouble, joy, they cannot appear unless you are there to appear to. Yet, whatever happens, points to your existence as a perceiving centre. Disregard the pointers and be aware of what they are pointing to. It is quite simple, but it needs be done. What matters is the persistence with which you keep on returning to yourself.

Q:   I do get into peculiar states of deep absorption into myself, but unpredictably and momentarily. I do not feel myself to be in control of such states.

M:  The body is a material thing and needs time to change. The mind is but a set of mental habits, of ways of thinking and feeling, and to change they must be brought to the surface and examined. This also takes time. Just resolve and persevere, the rest will take care of itself.

Q:   I seem to have a clear idea of what needs be done, but I find myself getting tired and depressed and seeking human company and thus wasting time that should be given to solitude and meditation.

M:  Do what you feel like doing. Don't bully yourself. Violence will make you hard and rigid. Do not fight with what you take to be obstacles on your way. Just be interested in them, watch them, observe, enquire. Let anything happen -- good or bad. But don't let yourself be submerged by what happens.

Q:   What is the purpose in reminding oneself all the time that one is the watcher?

M:  The mind must learn that beyond the moving mind there is the background of awareness, which does not change. The mind must come to know the true self and respect it and cease covering it up, like the moon which obscures the sun during solar eclipse. Just realise that nothing observable, or experienceable is you, or binds you. Take no notice of what is not yourself.

Q:   To do what you tell me I must be ceaselessly aware.

M:  To be aware is to be awake. Unaware means asleep. You are aware anyhow, you need not try to be. What you need is to be aware of being aware. Be aware deliberately and consciously, broaden and deepen the field of awareness. You are always conscious of the mind, but you are not aware of yourself as being conscious.

Q:   As I can make out, you give distinct meanings to the words 'mind', 'consciousness', and 'awareness'.

M:  Look at it this way. The mind produces thoughts ceaselessly, even when you do not look at them. When you know what is going on in your mind, you call it consciousness. This is your waking state -- your consciousness shifts from sensation to sensation, from perception to perception, from idea to idea, in endless succession. Then comes awareness, the direct insight into the whole of consciousness, the totality of the mind. The mind is like a river, flowing ceaselessly in the bed of the body; you identify yourself for a moment with some particular ripple and call it: 'my thought'. All you are conscious of is your mind; awareness is the cognisance of consciousness as a whole.

Q:   Everybody is conscious, but not everybody is aware.

M:  Don't say: 'everybody is conscious'. Say: 'there is consciousness', in which everything appears and disappears. Our minds are just waves on the ocean of consciousness. As waves they come and go. As ocean they are infinite and eternal. Know yourself as the ocean of being, the womb of all existence. These are all metaphors of course; the reality is beyond description. You can know it only by being it.

Q:   Is the search for it worth the trouble?

M:  Without it all is trouble. If you want to live sanely, creatively and happily and have infinite riches to share, search for what you are.

While the mind is centred in the body and consciousness is centred in the mind, awareness is free. The body has its urges and mind its pains and pleasures. Awareness is unattached and unshaken. It is lucid, silent, peaceful, alert and unafraid, without desire and fear. Meditate on it as your true being and try to be it in your daily life, and you shall realise it in its fullness.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #557 on: September 03, 2013, 03:39:58 PM »

The ‘Maya’ is so powerful that it gets you completely wrapped up
in it. ‘Maya’ means ‘I am’, ‘I love to be’, It has no identity except
love. That knowledge of ‘I am’ is the greatest foe and the greatest
friend. Although it might be your greatest enemy, if you propitiate
it properly, it will turn around and lead you to the highest state.

If you want to remember this visit, if you have love for me,
remember this ‘I am’ principle and without the command or
direction of this principle, do nothing.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #558 on: September 03, 2013, 03:44:11 PM »

Most essential is that knowledge ‘I am’. Claim it; appropriate it as
your own. If that is not there, nothing is. Knowledge of all stages
will be obtained only with the aid of this knowledge ‘I am’ From
the Absolute no-knowing state, spontaneously this consciousness ‘I
am’ has appeared – no reason, no cause.

In this spiritual hierarchy, from the grossest to the subtlest, you are
the subtlest. How can this be realized? The very base is that you
don’t know you are, and suddenly the feeling of ‘I amness’
appears. The moment it appears you see space, mental space; that
subtle sky-like space, stabilize there. You are that. When you are
able to stabilize in that space, you are space only.
When this spacelike identity ‘I am’ disappears, the space will also disappear, there
is no space. When that space-like ‘I am’ goes into oblivion, that is
the eternal state, ‘nirguna’, no form, no beingness. Actually, what
did happen there? This message ‘I am’ was no message. Dealing
with this aspect, I cannot talk much because there is no scope to
put it in words.

Understand that it is not the individual that has consciousness; it is
the consciousness which assumes innumerable forms. That
something which is born or which will die is purely imaginary. It is
the child of a barren woman. In the absence of this basic concept ‘I
am’, there is no thought, there is no consciousness.

Whatever I am telling you, is not the truth, because it has come out
of this ‘I am’. The truth is beyond expression. I am taking you
again and again to the source of the spring. Once you go to the
source you will come to know there is no water, water is the news
‘I am’.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #559 on: September 05, 2013, 08:23:40 PM »
Questioner: Repeatedly you have been saying that events are causeless, a thing just happens and no cause can be assigned to it. Surely everything has a cause, or several causes. How am I to understand the causelessness of things?

Maharaj: From the highest point of view the world has no cause.

Q:   But what is your own experience?

M:  Everything is uncaused. The world has no cause.

Q:   I am not enquiring about the causes that led to the creation of the world. Who has seen the creation of the world? It may even be without a beginning, always existing. But I am not talking of the world. I take the world to exist -- somehow. It contains so many things. Surely, each must have a cause, or several causes.

M:  Once you create for yourself a world in time and space, governed by causality, you are bound to search for and find causes for everything. You put the question and impose an answer.

Q:   My question is very simple: I see all kinds of things and I understand that each must have a cause, or a number of causes. You say they are uncaused -- from your point of view. But, to you nothing has being and, therefore, the question of causation does not arise. Yet you seem to admit the existence of things, but deny them causation. This is what I cannot grasp. Once you accept the existence of things, why reject their causes?

M:  I see only consciousness, and know everything to be but consciousness, as you know the picture on the cinema screen to be but light.

Q:   Still, the movements of light have a cause.

M:  The light does not move at all. You know very well that the movement is illusory, a sequence of interceptions and colour­ings in the film. What moves is the film -- which is the mind.

Q:   This does not make the picture causeless. The film is there, and the actors with the technicians, the director, the producer, the various manufacturers. The world is governed by causality. Everything is inter-linked.

M:  Of course, everything is inter-linked. And therefore everything has numberless causes. The entire universe contributes to the least thing. A thing is as it is, because the world is as it is. You see, you deal in gold ornaments and I -- in gold. Between the different ornaments there is no causal relation. When you re-melt an ornament to make another, there is no causal relation between the two. The common factor is the gold. But you cannot say gold is the cause. It cannot be called a cause, for it causes nothing by itself. It is reflected in the mind as 'I am', as the ornament's particular name and shape. Yet all is only gold. In the same way reality makes everything possible and yet nothing that makes a thing what it is, its name and form, comes from reality.

But why worry so much about causation? What do causes matter, when things themselves are transient? Let come what comes and let go what goes -- why catch hold of things and enquire about their causes?

Q:   From the relative point of view, everything must have a cause.

M:  Of what use is the relative view to you? You are able to look from the absolute point of view -- why go back to the relative? Are you afraid of the absolute?

Q:   I am afraid. I am afraid of falling asleep over my so-called absolute certainties. For living a life decently absolutes don't help. When you need a shirt, you buy cloth, call a tailor and so on.

M:  All this talk shows ignorance.

Q:   And what is the knower's view?

M:  There is only light and the light is all. Everything else is but a picture made of light. The picture is in the light and the light is in the picture. Life and death, self and not-self --- abandon all these ideas. They are of no use to you.

Q:   From what point of view you deny causation? From the relative -- the universe is the cause of everything. From the absolute -- there is no thing at all.

M:  From which state are you asking?

Q:   From the daily waking state, in which alone all these discussions take place.

M:  In the waking state all these problems arise, for such is its nature. But, you are not always in that state. What good can you do in a state into which you fall and from which you emerge, helplessly. In what way does it help you to know that things are causally related -- as they may appear to be in your waking state?

Q:   The world and the waking state emerge and subside together.

M:  When the mind is still, absolutely silent, the waking state is no more.

Q:   Words like God, universe, the total, absolute, supreme are just noises in the air, because no action can be taken on them.

M:  You are bringing up questions which you alone can answer.

Q:   Don't brush me off like this! You are so quick to speak for the totality, the universe and such imaginary things! They cannot come and forbid you to talk on their behalf. I hate those irresponsible generalizations! And you are so prone to personalise them. Without causality there will be no order; nor purposeful action will be possible.

M:  Do you want to know all the causes of each event? Is it possible?

Q:   I know it is not possible! All I want to know is if there are causes for everything and the causes can be influenced, thereby affecting the events?

M:  To influence events, you need not know the causes. What a roundabout way of doing things! Are you not the source and the end of every event? Control it at the source itself.

Q:   Every morning I pick up the newspaper and read with dismay that the world's sorrows -- poverty, hatred and wars -- continue unabated. My questions are concerning the fact of sorrow, the cause, the remedy. Don't brush me off saying that it is Buddhism! Don't label me. Your insistence on causelessness removes all hope of the world ever changing.

M:  You are confused, because you believe that you are in the world, not the world in you. Who came first -- you or your parents? You imagine that you were born at a certain time and place, that you have a father and a mother, a body and a name. This is your sin and your calamity! Surely you can change your world if you work at it. By all means, work. Who stops you? I have never discouraged you. Causes or no causes, you have made this world and you can change it.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #560 on: September 09, 2013, 03:41:31 PM »

Consciousness is the sense of knowingness ‘I am’ without words,
and it appeared unknowingly and unsolicited. Only in the realm of
knowingness ‘I am’ – the consciousness – can a world be, and so
also an experience. Hold on to this knowingness ‘I am’ and the
fount of knowledge will well up within you, revealing the mystery
of the Universe; of your body and psyche; of the play of the five
elements, the three ‘gunas’ and ‘prakriti-purusha’; and of
everything else. In the process of this revelation, your
individualistic personality confined to the body shall expand into
the manifested universe, and it will be realized that you permeate
and embrace the entire cosmos as your ‘body’ only. This is known
as the ‘Pure Super-knowledge’ – ‘Shuddhavijnana’.

Now coming to a very subtle situation, what is it in you that
understands this knowledge ‘you are’ – or from your standpoint ‘I
am’ without a name, title or word? Subside in that innermost center
and witness the knowledge ‘I am’ and ‘just be’; this is the bliss of
being – the ‘swarupananda’.

Paths and movements cannot transport you into Reality, because
their function is to enmesh you within the dimensions of
knowledge, while the Reality prevails prior to it. To apprehend
this, you must stay put at the source of your creation, at the
beginning of the knowledge ‘I am’. So long as you do not achieve
this, you will be entangled in the chains forged by your mind and
get enmeshed in those of others.
This true knowledge, the knowledge ‘I am’, is also rendered the
status of ‘non-knowledge’ in the final Absolute state. When one is
established in this final free state, the knowledge ‘I am’ becomes

For all beings it is the same experience. Early morning,
immediately after waking, just the feeling ‘I am’ is felt inside or
the beingness happens, and therefore further witnessing of all else
happens. The first witnessing is that of ‘I am’, this primary
witnessing is the prerequisite for all further witnessing. But to
whom is the witnessing occurring? One that ever is, even without
waking, to that ever-present substratum the witnessing of the
waking state happens.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #561 on: September 10, 2013, 07:21:10 PM »

You know you are sitting here. Be attentive to that knowledge
only. Just be in your beingness. That knowingness ‘I am’ has
created the entire universe. Hold on to that; nothing has to be done.
Once you recognize that principle it becomes tranquil. Become one
with that and all your needs will be satisfied.

I have been very open, very explicit. I’ve been telling you that you
are not the body, you are that knowledge only and that vital breath
is your conveyance, a tool by which you carry out your activities,
and the knowledge ‘I am’ is very subtle. Because of your
knowledge, you are and world is.

You are worrying because of the intellect, but you have only to
continue in that ‘I am’ with faith, you have nothing else to do. You
are likely to miss that incident if you try to use your intellect. Just
let it happen. Hold on to the feeling ‘I am’; don’t pollute that state
by holding on to the body sense.

Maya is the primary source of illusion. At that point, love for the
Self begins: ‘I am’, the love to be. Its expression is all this

After deep sleep, as soon as consciousness dawns on you of ‘I am’
– that is the witness. Before that moment you did not know that
you are, there was no witness, no knowledge of ‘I am’.

As long as you identify with the body-mind you are conditioned.
Once you stabilize in the knowledge ‘I am’ unconditionally you
are the manifest ‘I amness’ – no more an individual. In the
manifested state of ‘I amness’ there is no question of your doing,
because you are no more an individual. Whatever happens,
happens in your consciousness. Whatever happens through this,
you also know it will happen, but there is no question of doing or
being anything.

The first film is when that knowingness appears on you. In that
knowledge ‘I am’ all is contained. Only in that film when the film
started knowing itself, ‘I am’; then you came to know all this. Did
you know anything before?


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #562 on: September 11, 2013, 07:18:59 PM »

Out of the nothingness, the ‘I am’ or
beingness has come, there is no individual, the knowledge ‘I am’- not the
individual – has to go back to its source. It’s very difficult to formulate any descriptions or
words for the state prior to the ‘I am’ or beingness. Some words that have been commonly used are:
nothingness, emptiness, fullness, void, eternity, totality or even the Absolute or ‘Parabrahman’.
Whatever the word, the ‘I am’ appears to have arisen on it and it is sometimes called its source.
The individual comes much later in the picture and as you go back it is the pure ‘I am’
or beingness that remains, so it this knowledge ‘I am’ that has to
go back to its source. There is no question of a non-existent individual anywhere.

By meditating on the knowledge ‘I am’ it gradually settles down at its
source and disappears, then you are the Absolute. Your entire focus should be on the knowledge ‘I
am’. Constantly, without break, keep meditating on it. When an object remains in focus for a prolonged
period there is a good chance it will disappear, that is bound to happen as that is its opposite.
From just ‘being’ to ‘non-being’ from ‘I am’ to ‘I am not’, when this happens nothing remains
anymore, then you are the Absolute, silent , still, without any movement or experience.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #563 on: September 13, 2013, 06:40:49 PM »

M: Keep quiet, undisturbed, and the wisdom and the power will come on their own.

You need not hanker.

Wait in silence of the heart and mind.

It is very easy to be quiet, but willingness is rare.

You people want to become supermen overnight.

Stay without ambition, without the least desire, exposed, vulnerable, unprotected, uncertain and alone, completely open to and welcoming life as it happens, without the selfish conviction that all must yield you pleasure or profit, material or so- called spiritual.

Q: I respond to what you say, but I just do not see how it is done.

M: If you know how to do it, you will not do it.

Abandon every attempt, just be; don't strive, don't struggle, let go every support, hold on to the blind sense of being, brushing off all else.

This is enough.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #564 on: September 22, 2013, 09:07:34 PM »

Q: How do you see things?

M: One and all are the same to me. The same consciousness
(chit) appears as being (sat) and as bliss (ananda): Chit in
movement is Ananda; Chit motionless is being.

Q: Still you are making a distinction between motion and

M: Non-distinction speaks in silence. Words carry distinctions.
The unmanifested (nirguna) has no name, all names refer to the
manifested (saguna). It is useless to struggle with words to express
what is beyond words. Consciousness (chidananda) is
spirit (purusha), consciousness is matter (prakriti). Imperfect
spirit is matter, perfect matter is spirit. In the beginning as in the
end, all is one.
 All division is in the mind (chitta); there is none in reality (chit).
Movement and rest are states of mind and cannot be without
their opposites. By itself nothing moves, nothing rests. It is a
grievous mistake to attribute to mental constructs absolute existence.
Nothing exists by itself.

Q: You seem to identify rest with the Supreme State?

M: There is rest as a state of mind (chidaram) and there is rest
as a state of being (atmaram). The former comes and goes,
while the true rest is the very heart of action. Unfortunately,
language is a mental tool and works only in opposites.
Q: As a witness, you are working or at rest?
M: Witnessing is an experience and rest is freedom from experience.

Q: Can’t they co-exist, as the tumult of the waves and the quiet
of the deep co-exist in the ocean.

M: Beyond the mind there is no such thing as experience. Experience is a dual state.
You cannot talk of reality as an experience. Once this is understood,
you will no longer look for being and becoming as separate and opposite.
In reality they are one and inseparable, like roots and branches of the same tree.
Both can exist only in the light of consciousness, which again, arises
in the wake of the sense ‘I am’. This is the primary fact. If you
miss it, you miss all.

Q: Is the sense of being a product of experience only? The
great saying (Mahavakya) tat-sat is it a mere mode of mentation?

M: Whatever is spoken is speech only. Whatever is thought is
thought only. The real meaning is unexplainable, though experienceable.
The Mahavakya is true, but your ideas are false,
for all ideas (kalpana) are false.

Q: Is the conviction: ‘I am That’ false?

M: Of course. Conviction is a mental state. In ‘That’ there is no ‘I
am’. With the sense ‘I am’ emerging, ‘That’ is obscured, as with
the sun rising the stars are wiped out. But as with the sun comes
light, so with the sense of self comes bliss (chidananda). The
cause of bliss is sought in the ‘not — I’ and thus the bondage

Q: In your daily life are you always conscious of your real state?

M: Neither conscious, nor unconscious. I do not need convictions.
I live on courage. Courage is my essence, which is love of life.
I am free of memories and anticipations, unconcerned with
what I am and what I am not.
I am not addicted to selfdescriptions, soham and brahmasmi (‘I am He’, ‘I am the Supreme’)
 are of no use to me, I have the courage to be as nothing
and to see the world as it is: nothing. It sounds simple, just try it!

Q: But what gives you courage?

M: How perverted are your views! Need courage be given?
Your question implies that anxiety is the normal state and courage is abnormal.
It is the other way round. Anxiety and hope are
born of imagination — I am free of both. I am simple being and I
need nothing to rest on.

Q: Unless you know yourself, of what use is your being to you?

To be happy with what you are, you must know what you are.

M: Being shines as knowing, knowing is warm in love. It is all
one. You imagine separations and trouble yourself with questions.
Don’t concern yourself overmuch with formulations. Pure
being cannot be described.

Q: Unless a thing is knowable and enjoyable, it is of no use to
me. It must become a part of my experience, first of all.

M: You are dragging down reality to the level of experience.
How can reality depend on experience, when it is the very
ground (adhar) of experience. Reality is in the very fact of experience,
not in its nature. Experience is, after all, a state of
mind, while being is definitely not a state of mind.

Q: Again I am confused! Is being separate from knowing?

M: The separation is an appearance. Just as the dream is not
apart from the dreamer, so is knowing not apart from being. The
dream is the dreamer, the knowledge is the knower, the distinction is merely verbal.

Q: I can see now that sat and chit are one. But what about bliss
(ananda)? Being and consciousness are always present together,
but bliss flashes only occasionally.

M: The undisturbed state of being is bliss; the disturbed state is
what appears as the world. In non-duality there is bliss; in duality — experience.
What comes and goes is experience with its
duality of pain and pleasure. Bliss is not to be known.
One is always bliss, but never blissful. Bliss is not an attribute.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #565 on: September 23, 2013, 10:02:14 PM »

Can any of your concepts grasp the total, the Ultimate? Have you
understood that knowledge itself is ignorance? If it were real it
would have been there eternally – it would not have had a
beginning and an end. Now the experience ‘I am’ is felt, earlier
that experience was not. When it was not, no proof was called for,
but once it is, lots of proof is required.

One is the Absolute, two is consciousness, and three is space.
Where there was no knowledge ‘I am’ that is number one, later on
there is the sense ‘I am’ that is number two, and then there is space
– number three.

I have experienced all four kinds of speech and transcended them.
Rarely will anybody follow this hierarchy to stabilize in the
consciousness and transcend consciousness. Starting from
‘Vaikhari’ (word), normally we listen to words; from ‘Vaikhari’
we go to ‘Madhyama’ (mind-thought); in watching the mind we
are in ‘Pashayanti’ where the concept formation takes place and
from there to ‘Para’ (‘I am’ without words), and finally from ‘Para’
to prior to consciousness. This is the line to follow, but only a rare
one follows it – receding, reversing.

It is not important where you are, once you are established in the ‘I
am’. It is like space – it neither comes nor goes; just as when you
demolish the walls of a building only space remains.

From "Prior to Consciousness"


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #566 on: September 24, 2013, 08:59:32 PM »
Maharaj: The seeker is he who is in search of himself. Soon he discovers that his own body he
cannot be. Once the conviction: 'I am not the body' becomes so well grounded that he can no
longer feel, think and act for and on behalf of the body, he will easily discover that he is the
universal being, knowing, acting, that in him and through him the entire universe is real, conscious
and active. This is the heart of the problem. Either you are body-conscious and a slave of
circumstances, or you are the universal consciousness itself -- and in full control of every event.
Yet consciousness, individual or universal, is not my true abode; I am not in it, it is not mine, there is
no 'me' in it. I am beyond, though it is not easy to explain how one can be neither conscious, nor
unconscious, but just beyond. I cannot say that I am in God or I am God; God is the universal light
and love, the universal witness: I am beyond the universal even.

Questioner: In that case you are without name and shape. What kind of being have you?

M: I am what I am, neither with form nor formless, neither conscious nor unconscious. I am outside
all these categories.

Q: You are taking the neti-neti (not this, not this) approach.

M: You cannot find me by mere denial. I am as well everything, as nothing. Nor both, nor either.
These definitions apply to the Lord of the Universe, not to me.
Q: Do you intend to convey that you are just nothing.

M: Oh, no! I am complete and perfect. I am the beingness of being, the knowingness of knowing,
the fullness of happiness. You cannot reduce me to emptiness!

Q: If you are beyond words, what shall we talk about? Metaphysically speaking, what you say
holds together; there is no inner contradiction. But there is no food for me in what you say. It is so
completely beyond my urgent needs. When I ask for bread, you are giving jewels. They are
beautiful, no doubt, but I am hungry.

M: It is not so. I am offering you exactly what you need -- awakening. You are not hungry and you need no bread.
You need cessation, relinquishing, disentanglement. What you believe you need is
not what you need. Your real need I know, not you. You need to return to the state in which I am --
your natural state. Anything else you may think of is an illusion and an obstacle. Believe me, you
need nothing except to be what you are. You imagine you will increase your value by acquisition. It
is like gold imagining that an addition of copper will improve it. Elimination and purification,
renunciation of all that is foreign to your nature is enough. All else is vanity.

Q: It is easier said than done. A man comes to you with stomach-ache and you advise him to
disgorge his stomach. Of course, without the mind there will be no problems. But the mind is there
-- most tangibly.

M: It is the mind that tells you that the mind is there. Don't be deceived. All the endless arguments
about the mind are produced by the mind itself, for its own protection, continuation and expansion. It
is the blank refusal to consider the convolutions and convulsions of the mind that can take you
beyond it.

Q: Sir, I am an humble seeker, while you are the Supreme Reality itself. Now the seeker
approaches the Supreme in order to be enlightened. What does the Supreme do?

M: Listen to what I keep on telling you and do not move away from it. Think of it all the time and of
nothing else. Having reached that far, abandon all thoughts, not only of the world, but of yourself
also. Stay beyond all thoughts, in silent being-awareness. It is not progress, for what you come to is
already there in you, waiting for you.

Q: So you say I should try to stop thinking and stay steady in the idea: 'I am'.

M: Yes, and whatever thoughts come to you in connection with the 'I am', empty them of all
meaning, pay them no attention.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #567 on: September 25, 2013, 11:56:47 PM »
M: Can't you go beyond the gunas? Why choose the sattva? Be what you are, wherever you are
and worry not about gunas.

Q: I have not the strength.

M: It merely shows that you have gained little in India. What you truly have you cannot lose. Were
you well-grounded in your self, change of place would not affect it.

Q: In India spiritual life is easy. It is not so in the West. One has to conform to environment to a
much greater extent.

M: Why don't you create your own environment? The world has only as much power over you as
you give it. Rebel. Go beyond duality, make no difference between east and west.

Q: What can one do when one finds oneself in a very unspiritual environment?

M: Do nothing. Be yourself. Stay out. Look beyond.

Q: There may be clashes at home. Parents rarely understand.

M: When you know your true being, you have no problems. You may please your parents or not,
marry or not, make a lot of money or not; it is all the same to you. Just act according to
circumstances, yet in close touch with the facts, with the reality in every situation.

Q: Is it not a very high state?

M: Oh no, it is the normal state. You call it high because you are afraid of it. First be free from fear.
See that there is nothing to be afraid of. Fearlessness is the door to the Supreme.

Q: No amount of effort can make me fearless.

M: Fearlessness comes by itself, when you see that there is nothing to be afraid of. When you walk
in a crowded street, you just bypass people. Some you see, some you just glance at, but you do not
stop. It is the stopping that creates the bottleneck. Keep moving! Disregard names and shapes,
don't be attached to them; your attachment is your bondage.

Q: What should I do when a man slaps me on my face?

M: You will react according to your character, inborn or acquired.

Q: Is it inevitable? Am I, is the world, condemned to remain as we are?

M: A jeweller who wants to refashion an ornament, first melts it town to shapeless gold. Similarly,
one must return to one's original state before a new name and form can emerge. Death is essential
for renewal.

Q: You are always stressing the need of going beyond, of aloofness, of solitude. You hardly ever
use the words 'right' and 'wrong'. Why is it so?

M: It is right to be oneself, it is wrong not to be. All else is conditional. You are eager to separate
right from wrong, because you need some basis for action. You are always after doing something or
other. But, personally motivated action, based on some scale of values, aiming at some result is
worse than inaction, for its fruits are always bitter.

Q: Are awareness and love one and the same?

M: Of course. Awareness is dynamic, love is being. Awareness is love in action. By itself the mind
can actualise any number of possibilities, but unless they are prompted by love, they are valueless.
Love precedes creation. Without it there is only chaos.

Q: Where is the action in awareness?

M: You are so incurably operational! Unless there is movement, restlessness, turmoil, you do not
call it action. Chaos is movement for movement's sake. True action does not displace; it transforms.
A change of place is mere transportation; a change of heart is action. Just remember, nothing
perceivable is real. Activity is not action. Action is hidden, unknown, unknowable. You can only
know the fruit.

Q: Is not God the all-doer?

M: Why do you bring in an outer doer? The world recreates itself out of itself. It is an endless
process, the transitory begetting the transitory. It is your ego that makes you think that there must
be a doer. You create a God to your own Image, however dismal the image. Through the film of
your mind you project a world and also a God to give it cause and purpose. It is all imagination --
step out of it.

Q: How difficult it is to see the world as purely mental! The tangible reality of it seems so very

M: This is the mystery of imagination, that it seems to be so real. You may be celibate or married, a
monk or a family man; that is not the point. Are you a slave of your imagination, or are you not?
Whatever decision you take, whatever work you do, it will be invariably based on imagination, on
assumptions parading as facts.

Q: Here I am sitting in front of you. What part of it is imagination?

M: The whole of it. Even space and time are imagined.

Q: Does it mean that I don't exist?

M: I too do not exist. All existence is imaginary.

Q: Is being too imaginary?

M: Pure being, filling all and beyond all, is not existence which is limited. All limitation is imaginary,
only the unlimited is real.

Q: When you look at me, what do you see?

M: I see you imagining yourself to be.

Q: There are many like me. Yet each is different.

M: The totality of all projections is what is called maha-maya, the Great Illusion.

Q: But when you look at yourself, what do you see?

M: It depends how I look. When I look through the mind, I see numberless people. When I look
beyond the mind, I see the witness. Beyond the witness there is the infinite intensity of emptiness
and silence.

Q: How to deal with people?

M: Why make plans and what for? Such questions show anxiety. Relationship is a living thing. Be
at peace with your inner self and you will be at peace with everybody.
realise that you are not the master of what happens, you cannot control the future except in purely
technical matters. Human relationship cannot be planned, it is too rich and varied. Just be
understanding and compassionate, free of all self seeking.

Q: Surely, I am not the master of what happens. Its slave rather.

M: Be neither master, nor slave. Stand aloof.

Q: Does it imply avoidance of action?

M: You cannot avoid action. It happens, like everything else.

Q: My actions, surely, I can control.

M: Try. You will soon see that you do what you must.

Q: I can act according to my will.

M: You know your will only after you have acted.

Q: I remember my desires, the choices made, the decisions taken and act accordingly.

M: Then your memory decides, not you.

Q: Where do I come in?

M: You make it possible by giving it attention.

Q: Is there no such thing as free will? Am I not free to desire?

M: Oh no, you are compelled to desire. In Hinduism the very idea of free will is non-existent, so
there is no word for it. Will is commitment, fixation, bondage.

Q: I am free to choose my limitations.

M: You must be free first. To be free in the world you must be free of the world. Otherwise your
past decides for you and your future. Between what had happened and what must happen you are
caught. Call it destiny or karma, but never -- freedom. First return to your true being and then act
from the heart of love.

Q: Within the manifested what is the stamp of the unmanifested?

M: There is none. The moment you begin to look for the stamp of the unmanifested, the manifested
dissolves. If you try to understand the unmanifested with the mind, you at once go beyond the mind,
like when you stir the fire with a wooden stick, you burn the stick. Use the mind to investigate the
manifested. Be like the chick that pecks at the shell. Speculating about life outside the shell would
have been of little use to it, but pecking at the shell breaks the shell from within and liberates the
chick. Similarly, break the mind from within by investigation and exposure of its contradictions and
« Last Edit: September 26, 2013, 11:45:19 PM by Jewell »


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #568 on: September 26, 2013, 11:44:12 PM »
Q: Please tell me, must I lose all by losing the 'I'?

M: You may or you may not. It will be all the same to you. Your loss will be somebody's gain. You
will not mind.

Q: If I do not mind, I shall lose all!

M: Once you have nothing you have no problems.

Q: I am left with the problem of survival.

M: It is the body's problem and it will solve it by eating, drinking and sleeping. There is enough for
all, provided all share.

Q: Our society is based on grabbing, not on sharing.

M: By sharing you will change it.

Q: I do not feel like sharing. Anyhow, I am being taxed out of my possessions.

M: This is not the same as voluntary sharing. Society will not change by compulsion. It requires a
change of heart. Understand that nothing is your own, that all belongs to all. Then only society will

Q: One man's understanding will not take the world far.

M: The world in which you live will be affected deeply. it will be a healthy and happy world, which
will radiate and communicate, increase and spread. The power of a true heart is immense.

Q: Please tell us more.

M: Talking is not my hobby. Sometimes I talk, sometimes I do not. My talking, or not talking,
is a part of a given situation and does not depend on me. When there is a situation in which I have to
talk, I hear myself talking. In some other situation I may not hear myself talking. It is all the same to
me. Whether I talk or not, the light and love of being what I am are not affected, nor are they under
my control. They are, and I know they are. There is a glad awareness, but nobody who is glad. Of
course, there is a sense of identity, but it is the identity of a memory track, like the identity of a
sequence of pictures on the ever-present screen. Without the light and the screen there can be no
picture. To know the picture as the play of light on the screen, gives freedom from the idea that the
picture is real. All you have to do is to understand that you love the self and the self loves you and
that the sense 'I am' is the link between you both, a token of identity in spite of apparent diversity.
Look at the 'I am' as a sign of love between the inner and the outer, the real and the appearance.
Just like in a dream all is different, except the sense of 'I', which enables you to say 'I dreamt', so
does the sense of 'I am' enable you to say 'I am my real Self again’. I do nothing, nor is anything
done to me. I am what I am and nothing can affect me. I appear to depend on everything, but in fact
all depends on me.

Q: How can you say you do nothing? Are you not talking to me?

M: I do not have the feeling that I am talking. There is talking going on, that is all.

Q: I talk.

M: Do you? You hear yourself talking and you say: I talk.

Q: Everybody says: 'I work, I come, I go'.

M: I have no objection to the conventions of your language, but they distort and destroy reality. A
more accurate way of saying would have been: 'There is talking, working, coming, going'. For
anything to happen, the entire universe must coincide. It is wrong to believe that anything in
particular can cause an event. Every cause is universal. Your very body would not exist without the
entire universe contributing to its creation and survival. I am fully aware that things happen as they
happen because the world is as it is. To affect the course of events I must bring a new factor into
the world and such factor can only be myself, the power of love and understanding focussed in me.
When the body is born, all kinds of things happen to it and you take part in them, because you take
yourself to be the body. You are like the man in the cinema house, laughing and crying with the
picture, though knowing fully well that he is all the time in his seat and the picture is but the play of
light. It is enough to shift attention from the screen to oneself to break the spell. When the body
dies, the kind of life you live now -- succession of physical and mental events -- comes to an end. It
can end even now -- without waiting for the death of the body -- it is enough to shift attention to the
Self and keep it there. All happens as if there is a mysterious power that creates and moves
everything. realise that you are not the mover, only the observer, and you will be at peace.

Q: Is that power separate from me?

M: Of course not. But you must begin by being the dispassionate observer. Then only will you
realise your full being as the universal lover and actor. As long as you are enmeshed in the
tribulations of a particular personality, you can see nothing beyond it. But ultimately you will come to
see that you are neither the particular nor the universal, you are beyond both.
As the tiny point of a pencil can draw innumerable pictures, so does the dimensionless point of awareness draw the
contents of the vast universe. Find that point and be free.

Q: Out of what do I create this world?

M: Out of your own memories. As long as you are ignorant of yourself as the creator, your world is
limited and repetitive. Once you go beyond your self-identification with your past, you are free to
create a new world of harmony and beauty. Or you just remain -- beyond being and non-being.

Q: What will remain with me if I let go my memories?

M: Nothing will remain.

Q: I am afraid.

M: You will be afraid until you experience freedom and its blessings. Of course, some memories
are needed to identify and guide the body and such memories do remain, but there is no
attachment left to the body as such; it is no longer the ground for desire or fear. All this is not very
difficult to understand and practice, but you must be interested. Without interest nothing can be
Having seen that you are a bundle of memories held together by attachment, step out and look from
the outside. You may perceive for the first time something which is not memory. You cease to be a
Mr-so-and-so, busy about his own affairs. You are at last at peace. You realise that nothing was
ever wrong with the world -- you alone were wrong and now it is all over. Never again will you be
caught in the meshes of desire born of ignorance.


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Re: Quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
« Reply #569 on: September 28, 2013, 11:34:02 PM »

Take the first step first. All blessings come from within.
Turn within. 'I am' you know. Be with it all the time you can spare, until you revert to it spontaneously.
There is no simpler and easier way.

How do you go about finding anything?
By keeping your mind and heart on it. Interest there must be and steady remembrance.
To remember what needs to be remembered is the secret of success.
You come to it through earnestness.

What is supremely important is to be free from contradictions:
the goal and the way must not be on different levels;
life and light must not quarrel; behaviour must not betray belief.

Call it honesty, integrity, wholeness;
you must not go back, undo, uproot, abandon the conquered ground.
Tenacity of purpose and honesty in pursuit will bring you to your goal.

We discover it by being earnest, by searching, inquiring, questioning daily and hourly,
 by giving one's life to this discovery.