"Our body and this complex world around us is meant to reveal and display the Self variously. Spiritual seeking lies in looking for That which animates the body. Turn the mind and intelligence inward to their very Source. Let the thoughts make you search for the thinking substance, the thinker.  Only then the mystery of the Self will be unveiled."

The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam & Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

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Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

I was speaking about attention which normally will give rise to more and more inwardness, sublimation and refinement. How to develop this attentiveness or attention is an important question. You have to start from somewhere. Our activities are normally viewed external and sense-based, sensory. You may not be able to be attentive for all the items of work you are performing. So take one or two special items and try to put more and more inwardness and attention to it. That is how we have this pooja, chanting of hymns etc. When you chant a hymn, it is actually an oral activity. It is not a physical or a mechanical one. This oral activity results in the production of words, ideas and so many different propositions. Unless the mind is agile and attentive to bring about the right words and phrases, you will not be able to do the recitation well.

So you can take up some very good recitation, recitation of some meaningful verses which have value, which can inspire¸ strengthen, elevate, bring expansion to you, which can make you more and more benign and benevolent. Chant these verses. While chanting the verses, be attentive to each syllable that comes out from the mouth. Try also to associate the meaning and import of the words that come out. So on the one hand, the mind is engrossed in bringing the right words, on the other hand, a deeper level of the mind or intelligence is employed to associate the necessary meaning, purpose and attitude with regard to what you recite. You also have to hear the whole recitation. Otherwise, the two processes cannot go on well. So you will find there is a multiple or multifold application from within your personality.

First of all, we have to understand that our personality is truly inner. The biological body completes its growth at the age of maximum twenty-one. Then there is no growth, on the other hand there is steady decline. That is the time everyone becomes an adult. If at all, there is a growth, enrichment, expansion etc. it is only inward. Once you are sure of this, with all the attention and involvement, we are only trying to improve our inner personality, mainly the mind and the intelligence. Listen to what Sankara says in Vivekachudamani.

अतीव सूक्ष्मं परमात्मतत्त्वं
न स्थूलदृष्ट्या प्रतिपत्तुमर्हति ।
समाधिनात्यन्तसुसूक्ष्मवृत्या
ज्ञातव्यमार्यैरतिशुद्धबुद्धिभिः ।।
atīva sūkṣmam paramātmatattvam
na sthūladṛṣṭyā pratipattumarhati |
samādhinātyantasusūkṣmavṛtyā
jñātavyamāryairatiśuddhabuddhibhiḥ ||
(Vivekachudamani 361)
What does it mean? The Atma or in other words, God, is actually a सूक्ष्म तत्त्व. Not only सूक्ष्म, अतीव सूक्ष्म तत्त्व. It is a principle or a concept which is extremely subtle in nature. Ever since birth, we are interacting with only the gross objects the panchabhutas and things made up of panchabhutas. We don’t have anything like a subtle seeing or subtle introspecting habit. But actually, the Self is extremely subtle. It is inside the body. It is in the earth, water, air, different forms of energy and space, all of which constitute your body. So imagine the subtlety of the self. It is extremely subtle.

न स्थूलदृष्ट्या प्रतिपत्तुमर्हति - Such a subtlest presence like the self, cannot be glimpsed or grasped by the usual gross-seeing habit or capacity. Then what is the way?

समाधिना अत्यन्तसुसूक्ष्मवृत्या - You have to practice Samadhi. What is Samadhi? अत्यन्तसुसूक्ष्मवृत्या - Sit in a place, take an optional thought, spiritual thought. Start revolving it within yourself. Be attentive to the revolving process and make the process subtler, lighter, feebler, still more so, still more so, still more so, subtler, lighter, slower, feebler, still more so, still more so, until at last the manovrithi itself become very, very light and luminous. Mark my word - ‘Luminous’. It will become more and more brilliant and if it becomes subtler and subtler, stiller and stiller, feebler and feebler, you will find that the vibration is not different from the source, mother source.

Suppose I start moving my finger, moving it something like six inches to begin with, then I reduce six inches to five, then four, then three, then two, further, one. Then I reduce it by divisions of an inch. Ultimately I move my finger only to 1/50th of an inch, I still reduce it to 1/60th, 1/100th of an inch. At that point, you will not see the movement at all. You will see only the finger, the finger, the finger. The same happens to the mind and the thought process.

Mind is the source from which thoughts emerge. When the thoughts becomes lighter, feebler, slower, still more so, still more so, then there will come a time when the vibrant thought itself will be virtually extinct and you will find the source which vibrates. Now this cannot be done except when you are more and more inward and attentive. This attention is the secret of discipline. You can employ any discipline when you are attentive to your own body, its movements, your own tongue, its speeches, your own thoughts, their quality, breadth, loftiness and the like. So the word ‘attention’ has immense import. Every day you sit in a place and either by chanting or by studying your thought process, try to make your optional thought feebler, feebler and feebler. It will improve your attention, perception, absorption, expansion, loftiness and the like.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

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