Author Topic: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:  (Read 63980 times)

Subramanian.R

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #255 on: August 21, 2013, 01:42:47 PM »

Talks No. 653:

Some teachers who attended the Teachers' Guild Meeting in the town came on a visit to the Hall.  One of them asked
Sri Bhagavan:  'I seem to be wandering in a forest because I do not find the way.' 

Maharshi: This idea of being in a forest must go.  It is such ideas which are the root of the trouble.

Devotee: But I do not find the way.

Maharshi: Where is the forest and where is the way unless they are in you?  You are as you are and yet you speak of a
fores and ways.

Devotee: But I am obliged to move in society.

Maharshi: Society is also an idea similar to that of the forest.

Devotee: I leave my home and go mix in society.

Maharshi: Who does it?

Devotee: The body moves and does all.

Maharshi: Quite so. Now that you identify yourself with the body you feel the trouble.  The trouble is in your mind.  You
think that you are the body or that you are the mind.  But there are occasions when you are free of both.  For example,
in deep slumber, you create a body and a world in your dream.  That represents your mental activities.  In your waking
state, you think that you are the body and then the idea of forest and the rest arise.

Now, consider the situation.  You are an unchanging and continuous being, who remains in all these states, which are
constantly changing and therefore transient. But you are always there. It follows that these fleeting objects are mere
phenomena which appear on your being like pictures which move across a screen.  The screen does not move, when the
pictures move.  Similarly, you do not move from where you are even when the body leaves the home and mixes in the society.

Your body, the society, the forest, and the ways are all in you, you are not in them.  You are the body also but not this body
only.  If you remain as pure as Self, the body and its movements need not affect you.

Devotee: This can be realized only by the Grace of the Master. I was reading Sri Bhagvatam. It says that Bliss can be had only
by the dust  of the Master's feet. I pray for Grace.

Maharshi: What is Bliss but you own being?  You are not apart from Being which is the same as Bliss.  You are now thinking
that you are the mind or the body which are both changing and transient. But you are unchanging and eternal.  That is what
you should know.

Devotee: It is darkness and I am ignorant.

Maharshi: This ignorance must go. Again who says, 'I am ignorant'?  He must be the witness of ignorance.  That is what you are.
Socrates said, 'I know that I do not know.' Can it be ignorance?  It is wisdom .

Devotee: Why then do I feel unhappy when I am in Vellore and feel peace in Your Presence?

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.           
   

Subramanian.R

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #256 on: August 22, 2013, 01:41:22 PM »
Talks No. 653:

continues....

Maharshi: Can this feeling in this place be Bliss?  When you leave the place you say you are unhappy.  Therefore this peace
is not permanent, nay it is mixed with unhappiness which is felt in another place.  Therefore, you cannot find Bliss in places and
in periods of time. It must be permanent in order that it may be useful.  Such permanent being is yourself.  Be the Self and
that is Bliss.  You are always That. 

You say, that you left Vellore, traveled in the train, arrived in Tiruvannamalai, entered the Hall and found happiness. When
you go back you are not happy in Vellore.  Now, do you really move from place to place?  Even considering you to be the body,
the body sits in a cart at the gate of the home, the cart moves on to the railway station. Then it gets into a railway carriage
which speeds from Vellore to Tiruvannamalai.  There it gets into another cart which brings the body here.  You when you are
asked, you say, that you have traveled all the way from Vellore. Your body remains where it was and all the places went past
it.

Such ideas are due to the false identity which is so deep rooted

Another asked: Should we understand that the world as transient? - anitya?

Maharshi: Why so?  Because you are now considering it to be permanent (nitya), the Scriptures tell you that it is not so,
in order to wean you away from wrong ideas.  This should be done by knowing yourself to be eternal (nitya) and not
by branding the world as transitory (anitya).

Devotee:  We are told to practice indifference (udasina) which is possible only if the world is unreal.

Maharshi: Yes. Oudasinyam abhipstiam.  Indiffernce is advised. What is it?  It is absence of love and hatred.  When you
realize the Self on which these phenomena pass, will you love or hate them?  That is the meaning of indifference.

Devotee: That will lead to want of interest in our work. Should be do our duty or not?

Maharshi: Yes --- certainly.  Even if you try not to do your duty, you will be perforce obliged to do it.  Let the body complete
its task for which it came into being.

Sri Krishna also says in the Gita, whether Arjuna liked it or not he would be forced to fight.  When there is work to be done
by you, you cannot keep away.  Nor can you continue to do a thing when you are not required to do it.  That is to say,
when the work allotted to you, has been done.  In short, the work will go on and you must take your share in it -- the share
which is allotted to you.

Devotee: How is to be done?

Maharshi: Like an actor playing his part in a drama -- free from love or hatred.

****

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #257 on: August 23, 2013, 01:14:19 PM »

Talks No. 21:

Mr. Ellappa Chettiar, a member of the Legislative Council of Madras Presidency and an influential Hindu, asked, 'Why is
it said that the knowing born of hearing is not firm, whereas that born of contemplation is firm?'

Maharshi: On the other hand it is said that heresay knowledge (paroksha) is not firm, whereas that born of one's own
realization (aparoksha) is firm.

It is also said that hearing helps the intellectual understanding of the Truth that meditation makes the understanding clear,
and finally that contemplation brings about realization of the Truth.

Furthermore, they say also that all such knowledge is not firm and that it is firm only when it is as clear and intimate as a
gooseberry in the hollow of one's palm.

There are those who affirm that hearing alone will suffice, because a competent person who had already, perhaps in
previous incarnations, qualified himself, realizes and abides in peace as soon as he hears from the Truth told him only
once, whereas the person not so qualified must pass through the stages prescribed above, before falling into Samadhi.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #258 on: August 24, 2013, 01:20:52 PM »

Talks No. 22:

Mrs. Piggott returned from Madras for a further visit.  She asked questions regarding diet regulation. 

Devotee: What diet is prescribed for a Sadhak (one who is engaged in spiritual practices)?

Maharshi: Sattvic food in limited quantiies.

Devotee: What is sattvic food?

Maharshi: Bread, fruits, vegetables, milk etc.,

Devotee: Some people take fish in North India. May it be done?

(No answer was made by the Maharshi).

Devotee: We Europeans are accustomed to a particular diet. Change of diet affects the health and weakens the mind.
Is it not necessary to keep up physical health?

Maharshi: Quiet necessary.  The weaker the body the stronger the mind grows.

Devotee: In the absence of our usual diet our health suffers and the mind loses strength.

Maharshi: What do you mean by strength of mind?

Devotee: The power to eliminate worldly attachment.

Maharshi: The quality of food influences mind.  The mind feeds on the food consumed.

Devotee: Really!  How can the Europeans adjust themselves to Sattvic food only?

Maharshi:  (Pointing to Mr. Evans-Wentz) You have been taking our food. Do you feel uncomfortable on that account?

Mr. Evans-Wentz:  No. Because I am accustomed to it.

Devotee: What about those not so accustomed?

Maharshi: Habit is only adjustment to the environment. It is the mind that matters.  The fact is that the mind has been
trained to think of certain food tasty and good.  The food material is to be had both in vegetarian and non vegetarian
diet equally well.  But the mind desires such food as it is accustomed to and considers it tasty.

Devotee: Are there restrictions for the realized man in a similar manner?

Maharshi: No. He is steady and not influenced by the food he takes.

Devotee: Is it not killing of life to prepare meat diet?

Maharshi: Ahimsa stands foremost in the code of discipline for the Yogis. 

Devotee: Even plants have life.

Maharshi: So too the slabs you sit on!

Devotee: May we gradually get ourselves accustomed to vegetarian food?

Maharshi: Yes. That is the way.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #259 on: August 25, 2013, 02:14:09 PM »

Talks No.  23:

Mr. Evans-Wentz continued another day: 'May one have more than one spiritual Master?'

Maharshi:  Who is a Master?  He is the Self after all.  According to the stages of the development of the mind, the Self
manifests as the Master externally.  The famous ancient saint Avadhuta said that he had more than 24 masters.  The Master
is one from whom one learns anything.  The Guru may be sometimes inanimate also, as in the case of Avadhuta.  God,
Guru and the Self are identical. 

A spiritual minded man thinks that God is all pervading and takes God for his Guru.  Later, God brings him in contact with
a personal Guru and the man recognizes him as all in all.  Lastly the same man is made by the grace of the Master to feel
that his Self is the Reality and nothing else.  Thus he finds that the Self is the Master.

Devotee: Does Sri Bhagavan initiate His disciples?

Maharshi kept silent.

Thereafter one of the devotees took it upon himself to answer, saying, 'Maharshi does not see anyone outside his Self.  So
there are no disciples for Him.  His Grace is all pervading and He communicates His Grace to any deserving individual in silence.'

Devotee: How does book-lore help in Self Realization?

Bhagavan: Only so far as to make one spiritually minded.

Devotee:  How far does intellect help?

Bhagavan: Only so far as to make one sink the intellect in the ego, and the ego in the Self.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #260 on: August 26, 2013, 02:16:30 PM »

Talks No. 24:

Mrs. Piggot: Why do you take milk, but not eggs?

Maharshi:  The domesticated cows yield more milk than necessary for their calves and they find it a pleasure to be relieved
of the milk.

Devotee: But the hen cannot contain the eggs?

Maharshi: But there are potential lives in them.

Devotee: Thoughts cease suddenly, then 'I'-'I' rises up as suddenly and continues.  It is only in the feeling and not in the
intellect.  Can it be right?

Maharshi: It is certainly right.  Thoughts must cease and reason disappear for 'I'-I' to rise up and be felt.  Feeling is the
prime factor and not reason. 

Devotee:  Moreover, it is not in the head but in the right side of the chest.

Maharshi:  It ought to be so.  Because the heart is there.

Devotee: When I see outside it disappears.  What is to be done?

Maharshi: It must be held tight.

Devotee: If one is active with such remembrance, will the actions be always right?

Maharshi: They ought to be.  However, such a person is not concerned with the right or wrong of his actions.  Such a person's
actions are God's and therefore they must be right. 

Devotee: Why then the restrictions of food given for such?

Maharshi: Your present experience is due to the influence of the atmosphere you are in.  Can you have it outside this
atmosphere?  The experience is spasmodic.  Until it becomes permanent practice is necessary.  Restrictions of food are aids
for such experience to be repeated.  After one gets established in truth, the restrictions drop away naturally.  Moreover,
food influences the mind and it must be kept pure.

The lady told a disciple later: 'I feel the vibrations from him more intensely and I am able to reach the 'I' center more readily
than before.'

*****

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #261 on: August 27, 2013, 01:54:30 PM »
Talks No.  25:

On a former occasion, B.V. Narasimhaswami author of Self Realization, asked, 'Who am I?' How is it to be found? 

Maharshi: As yourself the question.  The body (annamaya kosa) and its functions are not 'I'.

Going deeper, the mind (manomaya kosa) and its functions are not 'I'.

The next step takes on to the question, 'Wherefrom do these thoughts arise?'  The thoughts are spontaneous, superficial or
analytical.  They operate in intellect.  Then, who is aware of them?  The existence of thoughts, their clear conception and their
operations become evident to the individual.  The analysis leads to the conclusion that the individuality of the person is operative
as the perceiver of the existence of thoughts and of their sequence.  This individuality is the ego, or as people say, 'I'. Vijnanamaya
Kosa (intellect) is only the sheath of 'I' and not the 'I' itself.

Inquiring further, the questions arise, 'Who is this 'I"?  Wherefrom does it come?'  'I' was not aware in deep sleep. Simultaneously
with its rise sleep changes to dream or wakefulness.  But I am not concerned  with dream just now.  Who am I now, in the wakeful
state?  If I originated from sleep, then the 'I' was covered up with ignorance.  Such an ignorant 'I' cannot be what the scriptures
say or the wise ones affirm.  'I' am beyond even 'Sleep'.  'I' must be now and here and what I was all along in sleep and dreams
also, without qualities of such states.  'I' must therefore be the unqualified substratum underlying these three states.  (anandamaya
kosa transcended.)

'I' is, in brief, beyond the five sheaths.  Next, the residuum left over after discarding all that is not-self is the Self, Sat Chit
Ananda.

Devoee: How is that Self to be known or realized?

Maharshi: Transcend the present plane of relativity.   A separate being (Self) appears to know something apart from iself
(non-Self).  That is, the subject is aware of the object.  The seer is drik and the seen is drisya.

There must be a unity underlying these two, which arises as the 'ego'.  The ego is of the nature of Chit (intelligence);
achit (insentient object) is only negation of Chit.  Therefore, the underlying essence is akin to the subject and not the
object.  Seeking the drik, until all drisya disappears, the drik will become subtler and subtler until the absolute drik
alone survives.  This process if called drisya vilaya (the disappearance of the objective world).

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.                   

Subramanian.R

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #262 on: August 28, 2013, 02:19:33 PM »
Talks No. 25 - continues....

Devotee:  Why should the objects drisya be eliminated?  Cannot the Truth be realized even keeping the object as it is?

Maharshi: NO. Elimination of drisya means elimination of separate identities of the subject and object.  The object is unreal.
All drisya (including the ego) is the object.  Eliminating the unreal, the Reality survives.  When a rope is mistaken for a snake,
it is enough to remove the erroneous perception of the snake for the truth to be revealed.  Without such elimination, the truth
will not dawn.

Devotee: When and how is the disappearance of the objective world (drisya vilaya) to be effected? 

Maharshi: It is complete when the relative subject, namely, the mind, is eliminated.  The mind is the creator of the subject
and the object and is the cause of the dualistic idea.  Therefore, it is the cause of the wrong notion of limited self and the misery
consequent on such erroneous idea.

Maharshi: What is this mind?

Maharshi: Mind is one form of manifestation of life. A block of wood or a subtle machine is not called mind.  The vital force manifests
as life-activity and also as the conscious phenomena known as the mind.

Devotee: What is the relationship between mind and object?  Is the mind contacting something different from it viz., the world?

Maharshi: The world is 'sensed' in the waking state and the dream states, or is the object of perception and thought, both
being mental activities.  If the there were no such activities as waking and dreaming thought, there would be no 'perception'
or inference of a 'world'.  In sleep there is no such activity and 'objects and world' do not exist for us in sleep.  Hence 'reality
of the world' may be created by the ego by its act of emergence from sleep.  And that reality may be swallowed up or disappear
by the soul resuming its nature in sleep.  The emergence and disappearance of the world are like the spider producing a gossamer
web and then withdrawing it.  The spider here underlies all the three states ---- waking, dreaming and sleep.  Such a spider
in the person is called Atma (Self), whereas the same with reference to the world (which is considered to issue from the sun)
is called Brahman (Supreme Spirit ). He that is in man is the same as He that is in the Sun. Sa yaschayam purushe yaschasavditye
sa ekah.           

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.

Subramanian.R

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #263 on: August 29, 2013, 01:41:33 PM »

Talks No. 25 - continues...

While Self or Spirit is unmanifest and inactive, there are no relative doubles, e.g subject and object - drik and drisya.
If the inquiry into the ultimate cause of manifestation of mind itself is pushed on, mind will be found to be only the
manifestation of the Real which is otherwise called Atman or Brahman.  The mind is termed as sukshma sarira or subtle body;
and jiva is the individual soul.  The jiva is the essence of the growth of individuality; personality is referred to as jiva.
Thought or mind is said to be its phase, or one of the ways in which the jiva manifests itself -- the earlier stage or phase of
such manifestation being vegetative life.  This mind is always seen as being related to, or acting on, some non-mind or matter,
and never by itself.  Therefore mind and matter co-exist.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #264 on: August 30, 2013, 03:11:09 PM »
Talks No. 26.

Devotee: How shall we discover the nature of the mind i.e its ultimate cause, or the noumenon of which it is a manifestation?

Maharshi:  Arranging thoughts in the order of value, the 'I' thought is the all important thought.  Personality-idea or thought is
also the root or the stem of all other thoughts, since each idea or thought arises only as someone's thought and is not known
to exist independently of the ego.  The ego therefore exhibits thought-activity.  The second and the third person do not appear
except to the first person.  Therefore they arise only after the first person appears, so all the three persons seem to rise and sink
together.  Trace, then, the ultimate cause of 'I' or personality.  The 'I' idea arises to an embodied ego and should be related to a body
or organism.  Has it a location in the body or a special relation to any particular spot, as speech which has its center in the brain,
or amativeness in the brain?  Similarly, has 'I' got any center in the brain, blood, or viscera?  Thought-life is seen to center round
the brain and the spinal cord which in turn are fed by the blood circulating in them carrying food  and air duly mixed up which are
transformed into the nerve matter.  This, vegetative life, --- including circulation, alimentation, respiration etc., -- are vital force,
is said to be (or reside in) the core or essence of the organism.  Thus the mind may be regarded as the manifestation of vital force
which again may be conceived as residing in the Heart. 

Devotee:  Now for the art of eliminating the mind and developing intuition in its stead, are they two distinct stages with a possible
neutral ground which is neither mind nor intuition? Or does the absence of mental activity, necessarily involve Self Realization?

Maharshi: The abhyasi (practitioner) there are two distinctive stages.  There is a neutral ground of sleep, coma, faint, insanity
etc., in which the mental operations either do not exist or consciousness of the Self does not prevail.

Devotee: Taking the first part first, how is the mind to be eliminated or relative consciousness transcended?

Maharshi:  The mind is by nature restless. Begin liberating it from its restlessness; give it peace.  Make it free from distractions,
train it to look inward; make this a habit.  This is done by ignoring the external world and removing the obstacles to peace of
mind.

Devotee: How is restlessness removed from the mind?

Maharshi:  External contacts -- contacts with objects other than itself -- make the mind restless.  Loss of interest in non-Self
(vairagya) is the fist step.  Then the habits of introspection and concentration follow.  They are characterized by control of
external senses, internal faculties etc., (sama, dhama etc.,) ending in Samadhi (undistracted mind.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #265 on: August 31, 2013, 01:28:15 PM »
Talks No.  27:

Devotee:  How are they practiced?

Maharshi:  An examination of the ephemeral nature of external phenomena leads to Vairagya.  Hence inquiry (Vichara) is
the first and foremost step to be taken.  When Vichara continues automatically, it results in a contempt for wealth,  fame,
ease, pleasure etc., The 'I' thought becomes clearer for inspection.  The source of 'I' is the Heart -- the final goal.   If, however,
the aspirant is not temperamentally suited to Vichara Marga (to the introspective and analytical method), he must develop
bhakti (devotion) to an ideal -- may be God, Guru, humanity in general, ethical laws, or even the idea of beauty.  When one
of these take possession of the individual, other attachments grow weaker, i.e. dispassion (Vairagya) develops.  Attachment   
for the ideal simultaneously grows and finally holds the field.  Thus ekagrata (concentration) grows simultaneously and
imperceptibly  -- with or without visions and direct aids.

In the absence of inquiry and devotion, the natural sedative pranayama (breath regulation) may be tried.  This is known as
Yoga Marga.  If life is imperiled the whole interest centers round the one point, the saving of life.  If the breath is held the mind
cannot afford to (and does not) jump at its pets -- external objects.  Thus there is rest for the mind so long as the breath is held.
All attention being turned on breath or its regulation, other interests are lost.  Again, passions are attended with irregular breathing,
whereas calm and happiness are attended with slow and regular breathing.  Paroxysm of joy is in fact as painful as one of pain,
and both are accompanied by ruffled breaths.  Real peace is happiness.  Pleasures do not come from happiness.

The mind improves by practice and becomes finer just as the razor's edge is sharpened by stropping.  The mind is then better be
able to tackle internal or external problems.  If an aspirant be unsuited temperamentally for the first two methods and circumstantially
(on account of age) for the third method, he must try Karma Marga (doing good deeds, for example social service).  His nobler
instincts become more evident  and he drives impersonal pleasure. His smaller self is less assertive and has a chance of expanding
its good side.  The man becomes duly equipped for one of the three aforesaid paths. His intuition may also develop directly
by this single method.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.               

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #266 on: September 01, 2013, 02:15:33 PM »
Talks No.  27 continues....

Devotee: Can a line of thought or a series of questions induce Self-hypnotism?  Should it not be reduced to a single point
analyzing the unanalyzable, elementary and vaguely perceived and elusive 'I'?

Maharshi:  Yes. It is really like gazing into vacancy or a dazzling crystal or light.

Devotee: Can the mind be fixed to that point?  How?

Maharshi: If the mind is distracted, ask the questions promptly, 'To whom do these distracting thoughts arise?' That takes you
back to the 'I' point promptly.

Devotee: How long can the mind stay or be kept in the Heart?

Maharshi: The period extends by practice.

Devotee: What happens at the end of that period?

Maharshi: The mind returns to the present normal state. Unity in the Heart is replaced by variety of phenomena perceived.
This is called the outgoing mind.  The heart going mind is called the resting mind.

Devotee: Is all this process merely intellectual or does it exhibit feeling predominantly?

Maharshi: The latter.

Devotee: How do all thoughts cease when the mind is in the Heart?

Maharshi: By force of will, with strong faith in the truth of the Master's teaching to that effect.

Devotee: What is the good of this process?

Maharshi: a. Conquest of the will -- development of concentration.

                 b. Conquest of passions - development of dispassion.
 
                 c. Increased practice of virtue - samatva, equality to all.

Devotee: Why should one adopt this self hypnotism by thinking on the unthinkable point?  Why not adopt other methods
like gazing into the light, holding the breath, hearing music, hearing internal sounds, repetition of the sacred syllable,
Pranava  or other mantras?

Maharshi:  Light gazing stupefies the mind and produces catalepsy of the will for the time being, yet secures no permanent
benefit.  Breath control benumbs the will for the time being only.  Sound hearing produces similar results -- unless the manta
is sacred and secures the help of a higher power to purify and raise the thoughts.

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #267 on: September 02, 2013, 02:28:48 PM »

Talks No. 28:

Devotee: What is the inter relation between regulation of thoughts and regulation of breath?

Maharshi: Thought (intellectual) and respiration, circulation, etc., (vegetative) activities are both different aspects of the same --
the individual life.  Both depend upon (or metaphorically) 'reside' or 'inhere' in life.  Personality and other ideas spring from it
like vital activity.  If respiration or other vital activity is forcibly repressed, thought also is repressed.  If thought is forcibly slowed
down and pinned to a point, the vital activity of respiration is slowed down, made even and confined to the lowest level compatible
with life.  In both the cases, the distracting variety of thought is temporarily at an end.  The inter action is noticeable in other ways
also.  Take the will to live. That is thought power.  That sustains and keeps up life when other vitality is almost exhausted and delays
death.  In the absence of such will power death is accelerated.  So thought is said to carry life with it in the flesh and from one
fleshy body to another.

Devotee: Are there any aids to (1) concentration and (2) casting off distractions?

Maharshi: Physically the digestive and other organs are kept free from irritation. Therefore the food is regulated both in
quantity and quality.  Non irritants are eaten, avoiding chillies, excess of salt, onions, wine,  opium etc., Avoid constipation,
drowsiness, and excitement, and all food which induce them.  Mentally take interest in one thing and fix the mind on it. Let
such interest be all-absorbing to the exclusion of everything else.  This is dispassion (vairagya) and concentration. God or mantra
may be chosen.  The mind gains strength to grasp the subtle and merge into it.

contd,

Arunachala Siva,.
       

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #268 on: September 03, 2013, 02:22:20 PM »
Talks No. 28:

continues....

Devotee: Distractions result from inherited tendencies.  Can they be cast off too?

Maharshi: Yes.  Many have done so. Believe it!  They did so because they believed they could.  Vasanas can be obliterated.
It is done by concentration on that which is free from vasanas and yet is their core.

Devotee: How long is the practice to continue?

Maharshi: Till the success is achieved and until yoga-liberation becomes permanent. Success begets success.  If one distraction
is conquered the next is conquered and so on, until all are finally conquered.  The process is like reducing an enemy's fort by
slaying its manpower -- one by one, as each issues out.

Devotee: What is the goal of this process?

Maharshi: Realizing the Real. 

Devotee: What is the nature of the Reality? 

Maharshi: (a) Existence without beginning or end -- eternal.
                (b) Existence everywhere, endless, infinite.
                (c) Existence underlying all forms, all changes, all forces, all matter and all spirit.

The many change and pass away (phenomena) whereas the One always endures (noumenon). 
               
                (d) The one displacing the triads, i.e. the knower, the knowledge and the known.  The triads are only appearances
in time and space, whereas the Reality lies beyond and behind them.  They are like a mirage over the Reality.  They are all
result of delusion.

Devotee: If 'I' also be an illusion, who then casts off the illusion?

Maharshi:  The 'I' casts off the illusion of 'I' and yet remains as 'I'.  Such is the paradox of Self Realization.  The realized do not
see any contradiction in it.  Take the case of bhakti -- I approach Isvara  and pray to be absorbed in Him.  I then surrender myself
in faith, and by concentration.  What remains afterwards?  In place of the oriiginal 'I', perfect self surrender leaves a residuum
of God in which the 'I' is lost.  This is the highest form of devotion (parabhakti), prapatti, surrender or the height of Vairagya.

You giver up this and that of 'my' possessions. If you give up 'I', and 'mine' instead, all are given up at a stroke.  The very seed
of possession is lost.  Thus the evil is nipped in the bud or crushed in the germ itself.  Dispassion (Vairagya) must be very strong
t do this.  Eagerness to do it must be equal to that of a man kept under water trying to rise up to the surface for his life.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.                     
 

Subramanian.R

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Re: Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi:
« Reply #269 on: September 04, 2013, 02:21:28 PM »
Talks No.  28

continues....

Devotee: Cannot this trouble and difficulty be lessened with the aid of a Master or an Ishta Devata (God chosen for worship)?
Cannot they give the power to see our Self as it is -- to change us into themselves  -- to take us into Self Realization?

Master: Ishta Devata and Guru are aids - very powerful aids on this path.  But an aid to be effective requires your effort also.
Your effort is a sine qua non.  It is you who should see the sun.  Can spectacles and the sun see for you?  You yourself have
to see your true nature.  Not much aid is required for doing it !

Devotee: What is the relation between my free will and the overwhelming might of the Omnipotent?

  a.  Is omniscience of God consistent with ego's free will?
  b. Is omnipotence of God consistent with ego's free will?
  c.  Are the natural laws consistent with God's free will?

Maharshi: Yes. Free will is the present appearing to a limited faculty of sight and will.  The same ego sees its past activity
as falling into a course of 'law' or rules -- its own free will being one of the links in that course of law.

Omnipotence and omniscience of God  are then seen by the ego to have acted through the appearance of his own free will.
So he comes to the conclusion that the ego must go by appearances.  Natural laws are manifestations of God's Will and
they have been laid down.

Devotee:  Is the study of science, psychology, physiology, philosophy etc., helpful for -
      1. this art of yoga liberation.
      2. the intuitive grasp of the unity of the Real?

Maharshi:  Very little.  Some knowledge is needed for yoga and it may be found in books. But practical application is the thing
needed, and a personal example, personal touch and personal instructions are the most helpful aids.  As for the other, a person
may laboriously convince himself of the truth to be intuited, i.e its function and nature, but the actual intuition is akin to feeling
and requires practice and personal contact.  Mere book learning is not of any great use.  After realization all intellectual loads
are useless burdens and are thrown overboard  as jetsam.  Jettisoning the ego is necessary and natural.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.