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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.            

In the immortal religious culture and spiritual philosophy of India, somehow our ancient thinkers had struck at a very, very important point. It is the truth about the Self. And what is this Self? It is nothing other than what we denote by the term ‘I’. There is none in this world who does not make use of the word ‘I’. Whenever one refers to oneself as ‘I’, it clearly means, implies that something is present in one which is constantly there and which is uniformly referred to as ‘I’. The presence is not doubted. It becomes very clear. Otherwise nobody will refer to oneself as ‘I’.

In the sastras, it is very clearly said the definition of self is - अहं प्रत्यय गोचरः - whatever is denoted by the term ‘I’, the thought or the concept or the idea ‘I’, that is the Self. So such a thing is there. There is no doubt. And what does Vedanta say? This Self is one and one alone. It does not allow any kind of a second factor to be present; it is all-pervading. So, the truth is that there is only one presence and that is universal and constant. This is what we refer to as the ‘I’. So, the ‘I’ is something changeless. In the same way it is changeless, it is unconditioned. It does not have any particular quality to be referred to. All distinctions come after the Self, a little away from the Self. The Self is uniform. It has the power and process to be anything, to cause anything, to uncause anything and to bring about whatever changes are necessary in whatever is. But the Self alone is.

On this basis, if you start thinking, what I have to say particularly today is that we don’t have to cultivate as such anything. On the other hand, we have to de-cultivate whatever is wrong in us. In other words, it is not so much doing a sadhana in order to additionally embellish oneself. It is on the other hand stripping oneself totally naked and free. Stripping oneself to be totally free and natural. What does it mean? All asadhana elements, undesirable qualities which have possessed you for one reason or the other, either by heredity or by your own acquisition, everything will have to be undone. When all the wrong qualities get away from you, automatically the Self will start shining in its own pristine lustre. Vasishta tells Sri Rama,

अयमेवाहमित्यस्मिन्संकोचे विलयं गते ।
अनन्तभुवनव्यापी विस्तार उपजायते ।।
Ayamevāhamityasmin-samkoche vilayam gate |
Anantha-bhuvana-vyāpī vistāra upajāyate ||
(Yogavasishtha Ramayanam 5.13.15)

You don’t have to enlarge and expand the Self to make it universal. It is already universal. It is the universal presence, the only presence. Then, what is to be done?

अयमेवाहमित्यस्मिन्संकोचे विलयं गते ।

We have a feeling that this body is ‘I’. We have the feeling that the body is ‘I’, though we know very clearly that we sleep unconscious of the body, mind, intelligence, ego. So, somebody that sleeps at which time, during which time, the body, mind and intelligence were not present or were not felt. So that ‘I’ is different from the body. Yet we consider that the body is the ‘I’. It is actually a constriction, a constriction, a narrowness, a kind of a perversion we can say or distortion.

अयमेवाहमित्यस्मिन्संकोचे विलयं गते ।

When this संकोच, this constriction is led to dissolution, it clears away, mark the words, when this constriction is done away with saying that “I am not the body, I am different from it and the ‘I’ is a universal presence. To associate it with the body and constrict, it is wrong.” When this constriction is removed from the mind and the intelligence,

अनन्तभुवनव्यापी विस्तार उपजायते ।।

Then suddenly arises, dawns, transpires, अनन्तभुवनव्यापी विस्तारः - an expanse that extends to all the universe. Where the constricted ‘I’ remains, there alone the expansive and extensive ‘I’ will begin to dawn. There is no change in the ‘I’ at all! The change has come in the mind which constricts the ‘I’ to be the body and to be circumscribed by the body. This subscribing, it vanishes and then suddenly begins to expand. It is almost like this. A very powerful bulb is glowing but it is covered with a few layers of cloth of different colors, first maybe white, second maybe yellow, the third maybe red, the fourth maybe purple, the next maybe green and the next may be something else and finally black. Now the bulb is burning but because it is covered by different layers, no ray of light comes out. You start removing one after the other, one after the other, one after the other. You are only removing the obstruction but not adding anything to the bulb to make it more glowing, more lustrous. No. It is already lustrous but the lustre is covered. So the obstructions when removed, automatically the bulb will start shining in its own original lustre. Exactly so is the case with the Self.

So what I want you to understand is that the asadhana elements, the undesirable elements are the ones to be removed. When the undesirable elements are removed, automatically, the Self will start shining. You don’t have to blow up just like the firewood oven is lit, no, not at all. So, look for the undesirable qualities in you and remove them. Automatically, you will find you become a repository of beautiful spiritual virtues.

निराशता निर्भयता नित्यता समता ज्ञता ।
निरीहता निष्क्रियता सौम्यता निर्विकल्पता ।।
धृतिर्मैत्री मतिस्तुष्टिः मृदुता मृदुभाषिता
हेयोपादेयनिर्मुक्ते ज्ञे तिष्ठन्त्यपवासनम् ।।
(योगवसिष्ठरामायणम्, उपशमप्रकरणम् १३.२८,२९)
nirāśatā nirbhayatā nityatā samatā jñatā |
nirīhatā niṣkriyatā saumyatā nirvikalpatā ||
dhṛtirmaitrī matistuṣṭiḥ mṛdutā mṛdubhāṣitā |
heyopādeyanirmukte jñe tiṣṭhantyapavāsanam ||
(Yogavāsiṣṭharāmāyaṇam, Upaśamaprakaraṇam 13.28, 29)

These are two verses sung by Vasishta, recited by Vasishta.

निराशता निर्भयता नित्यता समता ज्ञता । All these are qualities which automatically shine in the Self knower. Desire freedom, fear freedom, fearlessness.

नित्यता - the feeling of eternality, “I am eternal, I am indestructible.”

समता - Even mindedness, equal vision.

ज्ञता - always being wise, always there is knowingness, knowingness, ज्ञता - a state of pure wisdom.

निरीहता निष्क्रियता - There is no desire or motivation to unnecessarily take up activity. निरीहता निष्क्रियता - a feeling that my senses are active, mind is thinking , intelligence is intellecting but beyond that I am, in that level no action emerges and no effect falls.

निष्क्रियता नित्यता समता ज्ञता निरीहता निष्क्रियता सौम्यता निर्विकल्पता

सौम्यता – softness.

निर्विकल्पता means a state of doubt-freeness.

धृतिर्मैत्री मतिस्तुष्टिः

धृतिः means will, your will, the ability to handle your mind and intelligence will be more.

र्मैत्री - a kind of an allfold friendship, amiability.

धृतिर्मैत्री मतिस्तुष्टिः - The mind completely remains contended.

मृदुता मृदुभाषिता - softness and soft spokenness.

हेयोपादेयनिर्मुक्ते ज्ञे तिष्ठन्त्यपवासनम् - When the mind, the knower has risen above acceptance and rejection, the notions of acceptance and rejection.

ज्ञे तिष्ठन्त्यपवासनम् - and the mind is freed of all desires, in such a knower all these qualities automatically shine. He doesn’t have to cultivate them. These are qualities and characteristics intrinsic in the very Self, its presence.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

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