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Mind can be known by Mind and Divinity by Divinity


Talk delivered at the seminar on 22nd May 2005

The topic of this seminar relates to the instrument or means of knowing. Our Master asserts that mind can know mind and divinity can know divinity; and the implication is clear that mind cannot know the divinity. The sentence of the Master taken for the seminar is a part of the message given by him at Channapatna in 1972. He states clearly in this message that ‘intellectuality works in its own narrow sphere’ and ‘we should always take the broader view of things and widen it so that it may be able to cross its own boundary.’ Mind thus is stated to be of the nature of binding us to our own notions and dogmas.

Our mind, Master has clarified elsewhere, consists of four parts: chitta, manas, buddhi and ahankar. He asserted that a purified mind (with its constituent parts) only will give correct understanding and it is the instrument that we have to use to know our true nature: in fact it is on this axiom the whole of Rajayoga is explained by him. Yet he makes the statement that mind can know mind and divinity the divinity. There is a clue here to understand that infact they are not polar opposites but is made so by many depending on mind exclusively to know reality.

Explaining the origin of mind he stated in the message given at the time of the Centenary celebrations of Mahatma Sri Ramchandraji Maharaj of Fatehgarh in 1973 that “When the balance was disturbed we came into existence. I do not want to elaborate the subject metaphysically. The thought for creation stirred up near about the centre and energy began to flow out. What was that? That is the First Mind – pure and simple and that has woven all our frame and structure. It brought purity with it which is still maintained. So when we begin to give wrong suggestions, the mind which is absolutely pure, repels them in order to maintain its eternal purity.” Thus we understand that the Mind is pure and divine in its nature. This leads us to think whether two types of mind exist in us one leading us to the divine and the other away from it.

This is the point that Lord Krishna tried to answer when he said that human beings are of two types one of the divine (Daivi) nature and the other demonic (Asuric). We who practice the Sri Ram Chandra’s Rajayoga know that our lower mind denoted by the portion marked as ‘L’ in the heart as explained in the book Efficacy of Rajayoga has to be transcended and move to the higher mind marked as ‘U’ to start knowing reality. We have on earlier occasions noted that the duality exists not only at the mental (astral) level but at the physical level of brain also by noting the different functions of the right and left hemispheres of the brain. In the message under consideration we have to naturally think that the mind referred to by the Master is the lower mind.

Explaining the power of mind, Master has said that it is of the same nature as Kshob and has its roots in the divine. “A powerful will made at the very first step and maintained all through shall never fail to achieve complete success.” However the problem is that we really do not know how to make that ‘will ‘ and we always found ourselves no wiser for the advise. The lower mind has its own logic and reasons to give us not to work for achieving the objective.

We know while making this statement Master is revealing the power of the Mind. He was saying that we can achieve our objective if we instruct our mind and subconscious mind properly. Unfortunately most of us do not know how to instruct the mind or subconscious mind though all that is required is simple suggestion. However our mind is accustomed to complicated ideas and beliefs and therefore the easy task becomes very difficult. Therefore we end up getting the mind and subconscious mind creating things we really do not want. That is the problem of many aspirants which the Master himself has clarified when he said “The thinking has become so rough that they always add their own impure thoughts in the span of Nature. Complexities after complexities are there and it is the creation of the human brain.”

If we do not get our mind and subconscious mind to focus on what we want, we will surely end up getting what we do not want during meditation in particular and life in general. Master states in the same article that “The present question before the world is how to lead a happy life.” It is but natural that everyone wants to be successful and happy but we do not have thoughts that reflect success and happiness. Very few of us choose our thoughts and majority of sadhakas, leave their mind on an autopilot accepting whatever thoughts it conjures up and then they begin to worry about them. Master only advised us to ignore the thoughts. If we do that there is no problem. Instead we seem to believe in the reality of these thoughts and wail over such a situation.

What we should believe is the Master, whose presence is felt as peace (balance) accompanied by an awareness of ‘Nothing’ and many a time non awareness of anything. When Master also advised us to think or imagine that there is a Divine Light without luminosity and meditate he advised that we should ignore all thoughts while meditating. He assured that the suggestion given at the beginning of meditation will continue to work at the sub-conscious level throughout the period of meditation. The unregulated mind has its own way of making us doubt the Master and we seem to get active with our ideas generated by the mind which has got clouded through carnality and relationships. We do not give importance to the presence of the Master by believing him; instead we give importance to the unwanted thoughts and believe in their reality. We thus do not choose our beliefs based on experience and instead we merely accept what our lower minds tell. That is how the impure mind fails us in our task.

’Mind is its own enemy’ said Lord Krishna very emphatically in the Bhagavad Gita. Master also says this but adds the same mind has to be used to control the mind. When we hear sadhakas who are intent on being successful in their spiritual pursuit and try to analyse their thoughts we find them entertaining thoughts which are in their very nature exact opposite of what they seek. While they want to be successful they do not show any evidence of having thoughts and beliefs that promote their cause. Master when he asked us to have yearning he was only hinting at this; we seek but do not yearn!

If we want to achieve success in our endeavour then we have to create thoughts and beliefs that will allow us to achieve the goals. We can think of our mind as a station that sends out energy signals: these energy signals are our thoughts and beliefs. These energy patterns are picked up by our subconscious mind. It then works out and creates situations, circumstances, and events to help us achieve whatever we seek. It also attracts the people to us and guides us to the people who can help us achieve our goals. This is what is meant by the sentence often used by Masters that “when we are ready the Master comes to our doorsteps.”

The subconscious does not distinguish between what is good and bad for us: it simply acts on our instructions. Those instructions are our energy signals which are as we mentioned earlier our thoughts. So while we may want to achieve realisation, our lower mind impure as it is, does not allow us to think that we can and if we regularly maintain that notion either as a mark of humility or fear of incapacity or we are indoctrinated to that effect by the sanyasis, that we cannot achieve the same, we should know we are instructing our lower mind to create situations for us that will not enable us to achieve our goals. This is why it is so important to eliminate negative thinking and create a positive thinking pattern in spirituality. It is in this context we should understand the value of the advice of the Master that we should have faith in us that we can reach the goal.

It becomes clear that if we want to achieve our goal and live the life of natural cooperation that we want, we have to send the right messages to our subconscious mind. It is a matter that is not readily acceptable to our mind because this appears to be nave and simple. But that is the method suggested by our Master. If we examine whether the entertaining of patterns of negative thinking is helping us we find that it does not. That type of defeatist mentality enables only to get defeated. When we get calmness and peace during the meditation, if our attention goes to these states of divinity we progress faster. It is these states of divinity that know and lead us to divinity. That is how we can say divinity knows divinity. But for this to happen we should be clear that divinity reveals itself through calmness and peace.

The importance of having one method, one master and absolute faith in our own deservancy to reach the goal cannot be over emphasized in sadhana. These statements of the Master are based on very sound principles of the science of mind. We should have unflinching faith in our mind and its capacities. However even as stated earlier, it becomes reliable only when it is pure or in other words is the higher mind.

In any enquiry into the nature of things three aspects are to be remembered. One, the object sought to be known should be clearly defined. Two, the instrument of knowing should be pure and clean. Thirdly the knower should be objective. In any attempt to know the workings of mind the instrument and the knower happen to be the same and many times the object of observation itself is an aspect of mind or one of its processes.

I beg your pardon to repeat my old example to explain this. Imagine a ‘bee’ somehow entered a room which has closed doors and window panes. The bee tries to get out of the room; it sees its freedom through the glass window panes; but however much it tries it is not able to get out of the same. Similarly the seeker of freedom sees the opportunities for freedom through the window of mind but he is not able to get out of the window. The seeker like the ‘bee’ can somehow sense the freedom and even experience it from time to time but this he does only through the window of the mind. The seeker may truly be sincere in the longing for freedom. The misfortune is that regardless of what is attained or experienced one remains inside the mind and continues to search with the mind. This is one of the tough problems we face due to our formal training and education. We have had occasion to discuss this aspect while we discussed problems of sadhana in Vijnanamaya Kosa.

Master while giving his method indirectly helped our mind, find its futility. Our Master has asked us to meditate on Divine Light without luminosity. This is an impossible concept for the mind and it is forced to stare at this idea. In doing so he has blocked the way of the mind for the seeker and left open the way to freedom. Further by assisting the seeker through Pranahuti which informs the nature of pure and unalloyed consciousness he opened the path to freedom. In real spiritual training the mind has to be made silent and put to rest. Master therefore called himself a ‘silencer’. Thus it is divinity that can know the divinity and the mind can never know the source or its origin.

For an individual the way to Divinity is silence and in that silence the window of the mind disappears. This is what happens when we receive Pranahuti and imperience the real Silence beyond all comprehension of the mind. We realize it is our true nature to be free and all the bondages are our creation having no reality content. In fact there are no windows or window panes and they are all creations of our individual mind. Even as Ether and Air all that exists is free and it is our mind that creates the boundaries. Boundaries of Earth and Water are human in origin and are illusions created by us. That is why disputes about them never abate. We cannot conceive of the Defence Ministry without these boundaries of dubious origin and sanctity. Perhaps human mind requires many a ‘Tsunami’ to understand this. In fact all our inquiry or search into the nature of our being through mind is an exercise similar to the blind man searching for a black cat in a dark room which is not there. We erroneously look for something that is never lost, our true nature, because our nature is not a thing!

However the mind is not to be shunned. Its true nature of being Universal, without the limitations of the Ego, relationships and ideas if recognized is by itself the freedom. Such recognition of freedom renders the mind benign and useful. We need to see ‘what the mind is’ and ‘also what it is not’. The mind has a creative genius and therefore enjoys parallel status with that of the Divine. Even though such a freedom is there many of us do not understand the same and funnily lead ourselves to be bound by its creations. The ideas which are its windows (its own creations) attract us to look through them always. We like to live and die looking through the windows of the mind. This is how we instead of living in freedom prefer to suffer bondages which are our creation. Though our true nature is so near, by applying the telescope in the wrong direction find the same hazily far off from us and go on wailing through out the life. This is a stark and unpleasant reality but true nonetheless.

During meditation when Pranahuti is getting absorbed and the emptiness is getting filled there comes a stage, when all thoughts are gone but awareness pure and simple stays. There I have invariably found a calm and peaceful stillness that is remembered as a slight jolt. The ripples observed around the ‘eye’ of stillness leaves me dumb and awe stuck. Here on recall it is found the mind stopped functioning and with it are gone all ideas and beliefs, notions and aspirations; all mind stuff is gone. The awareness of self is totally destroyed. In the initial stages there was a sense of what may be termed as apprehension of loss of self identity. On later occasions of such deep absorption there emerged the clarity of vision. However this kind of clarity in the beginning lasted temporarily and I landed back in the plane of individual identity patching up the damaged belief systems. This resulted in seeking for that state where the mind stuff is all but gone. This is the cause of restlessness even after vision of the absolute state. Repeatedly the vision is sought and had and thus the belief systems assiduously developed and owned were given up in the void of Being. This is a painful process of annihilation of the creations of the self. I have found that the great Master Sri Ramchandraji Maharaj blesses us as often as we seek such a state of void and vision of the absolute so that we move into the realms of the Divine where no individuality breathes. That is his love and blessings.

He has given us a path which takes us directly to this awareness of nothingness and to assist us he has given us also many individuals who can put that mind in check and give us a taste of some moments without the mind. Those supra mental moments I prefer to call His grace. That is the divine path leading us to know the divinity as the sole Reality that is all pervasive.

What is reality? Why are we here? These are questions many people fail to consider anymore in this age of quantum mechanics, computers, and high-tech gadgets. I think that everyone except me knows these, or they think the questions have become irrelevant. However as a true seeker I am the kind of person who would consider such questions and is amazed by things other people take for granted.

Let us start out by taking a look at a description of reality put forth by mystical philosophers. For thousands of years, mystics have said that there is ‘One Energy’ in the Universe, that the Universe and everything in it is the play, the dance, and the vibration, of that ‘Energy’. Underneath the seeming multiplicity, they say, everything is made of the same substance. This Energy, they say, is everywhere, and at all times. This principle is sometimes described as Omnipresence, or God. The Hindus call this principle Sat, and it is everywhere, making up everything of past, present, and future. The mystics in addition to noting that this one energy is omnipresent also said that this ‘Energy’ is aware of itself being everything and everywhere and at all times: that it is conscious, that it has consciousness and this they called Chit.

We should note that the word consciousness, used here does not carry the same sense as what we would ordinarily think of as knowing, in a cognitive sense. This is not the same sense as our senses and our brain knowing or recognizing something, though that is one of the reference points we have, intellectually, for understanding the term consciousness. Ultimately, we have to experience being it. So, we have this Energy, this oneness, this Unity conceived as in and behind and over and around and through everything and this energy of Unity is aware of itself being everything.

Now, just for a moment let us pretend that we are this One Energy. If we were everything, there would be nothing outside of us to seek. Then what is our original question of mind knowing the mind and divine knowing the divine? There would also be nothing to seek and know and get, nothing we would lack, because we are everything. There would also be no where to go, since we are already everywhere. So, here we are, everything, always, everywhere, with nothing to want and no where to go. The mystics who had this awareness of who they were, were naturally happy, peaceful, and blissful. This they said is the third characteristic of Reality and called it Ananda, which means bliss. This, according to the mystical view, is who we really are: Satchitananda.

Our fears, our desires, our ideas that we have to get to somewhere, the idea that we lack something, is, in this view, an illusion. We are not a separate ego in a bag of skin, but rather are this Oneness. All this is good philosophy and good description of the nature of Reality. But if this is true, why is it we are so unhappy so much of the time? Why do we feel so powerless? Why does it seem as if we are a separate creature in what looks to be a pretty dangerous world? It is obvious that to live, we need a constant supply of a very specific combination of gases to breath. We need food on a regular basis, or we perish. We need to keep the temperature of the environment within a certain narrow range. And there are ultraviolet rays, and other dangerous electromagnetic forces, and poisons, and dangerous people who want to hurt us, and if we get just a few miles away from the surface of our planet we cannot survive. If we are this One Energy of everything, why do we feel so isolated, so separate and why are we so unhappy so often?

The sages answer this question saying that we are not happy and peaceful and in touch with the fact that we are all and everything, everywhere, eternally peaceful and blissful, because of our mind. Our mind is in the way of our experiencing who we really are. In fact, it appears that our mind is creating an alternate reality, that is, in a sense, like dust covering a mirror and keeping us from seeing who we really are.

Seeing that the mind gets in the way and obscures our true nature from us, the mystics came up with some methods for perceiving reality directly, without the filter of the mind, and the most effective of those is meditation.

Meditation is designed to regulate the mind, until eventually we gain enough control that we can look directly at reality, rather than filtering reality through the mind. The traditional systems were satisfied with the concept of Satchitananda and their methods of meditation led them there with persistent labour and effort.

However Master stated that Satchitananda is not our real nature and our true nature is one of total “Nothingness”. The Master said that at the moment of creation, this One Energy or Centre of all and everything polarized itself into a seeming duality: the Centre and the Stir or Kshob. One is latent and the other is the patent. The zero and action are the polar opposites that emerged. The seemingly opposite forces are what we may consider as the cause for the Universe to manifest in the first place. It is obvious that this duality is a "seeming" duality. The reason why these dualities, these opposites, only seem to exist is that each side of the duality depends on the other side for its existence. ‘Here’ makes no sense without ‘there’ and ‘Love’ makes no sense without ‘Hate’ and ‘This’ makes no sense without ‘That’. They are not, mutually exclusive opposites, but rather aspects of the same thing, the same process. Thus the dualities arise like good and bad, divinity and mind.

Each of these seemingly opposite poles are, really, totally dependent on each other. They are one thing, not two. In being opposite, they are also inextricably tied to each other, and one cannot exist independently. They are like two sides of the same coin. We cannot have a one-sided coin, and the two aspects of duality cannot exist separately either, nor can one win out over the other. We can see clearly the implication of understanding this when we struggle to develop tolerance, patience and cooperative spirit in our transactions.

When we see ourselves as an entity sharing both these principles we know who we are. That is the reason why Master asked us to meditate in the heart where both activity and inactivity meets. When we do see who we really are, we relax. Meditation, while helping us in balancing ourselves helps to get the mind out of the way, allowing us to experience reality, directly, and when this happens, everything flows. When we see reality directly, when we directly perceive who we really are, without the mind getting in the way and imposing the world it created on top of everything, there is nowhere to go, nothing to get, nothing to fear. That is how we in the initial stages of such experience relax and experience happiness, love, peace, and bliss. As the state advances in its depth we move on to the state of balance and further on to a state of “Nothingness.” Nothingness then is Divinity at the time of Origin as well as when we reach our goal or know our real nature. Sadhana then is Nothingness knowing itself! And what is the purpose? Happiness unbounded and eternal peace.

When we describe things in this way, some persons think that if we were able to see reality directly in the way we have described, then we would have no motivation and no connection to life as we know it. This however, is not at all what happens. When we see who we really are, we are still aware of the world the mind creates, the world of things and events, and we still participate in it. We know, however, all the while, that it is all a game, a play, and nothing, really, can go wrong. Or, rather, that whatever happens, we and everyone and everything else is still that One Energy of all and everything.

We can see that there are two ways of seeing things. In one way, the way of the mind, we see the separation of things and the tension between opposites, and think all that to be reality. This could be called "The Game of Black and White." The problem with this way of seeing things is that when we play, we add a rule that gives us a lot of trouble: the rule that White Must Win. We think good must win over evil, without realizing that the two depend on each other, and cannot exist independently. We want life to win out over death, again without realizing that they are one thing, not two. This struggle to make what cannot be a reality; a reality is what creates suffering.

The other way or the divine way of seeing things involves accepting that all the seeming opposites are one system, one organism, and that everything "goes with" everything else, and that fighting to make one side disappear or lose is futile. Now this does not mean that we do not strive to be good, or to stay alive, but it does mean that we realize that this striving is not to be taken too seriously, and that we do not need to suffer over it. It is often said that the Buddha's doctrine teaches us that suffering will disappear if one has meditated long enough, or if one sees everything differently. But his real teaching was not that at all. He was clear in stating that Suffering is not going to go away and only that the one who suffers is going to go away. Similarly Master held that Sufferings, are caused by undue attachment and being attached to one side of a duality and expect that to win always is as silly as being attached to throwing a ball in the air and expect it never to come down. It will not happen. In fact, operating in this divine way, in which we see things as more of a game, works much better. Our Masters have adopted it, and had equal passion for life as any of us and for sure they had better results.

The only way by which I think we can lead this type of living is to meditate as advised by the Master without any changes and modifications. His system is integral and can be practiced only fully. To practice some portions of his system and think that is also doing good will not help us develop the integral living.

It is likely that some persons may try to see the similarity in Vedic passages in Kena Upanishad “na tatra caksur gacchati na vag gacchati na manah na vidmo na vijanimo yathaitad anusisyat /3/ But it is obvious the Reality here, is only stated to be beyond the instruments of Cognition and not Mind as such. Our Master stated that we go much beyond this condition and move in the realms of the Mind region of God before entering the Central region and the Centre itself. This is where one of the powerful belief systems affect us and the Vision of the Mind region of God itself get blurred and one is left repeating the words of the ancient sages and seers. Many victims of this notion are there and that is because they do not leave their dogmas as Master put it.

Master summarized beautifully the system when he wrote “In short, just say: every honest genuine practicant is bound to comprehend and experience spiritual advancement in the right way. In the beginning, mostly there may be emphasis on the importance of physical and material experience. However, comprehension concerning health and peace of heart and mind should develop gradually. Miracle, jugglery, black magic, machination, fraud etc., producing effect through such means, is entirely against spirituality and Brahma Vidya (Divinity); and anyone after these can never be a deserving vessel for this superb science. Certainly there remains so much beyond and above the reach and grasp of heart and mind (intellect), but proper comprehension and experience of that too is possible only through the heart and mind, which is oriented to soul and God. Just due to this, then, there is special emphasis on cleaning and training of heart and mind in this science. The finest Divine gift, which is patrimony of the entire progeny of mankind, stands reserved just for the human being, residing in the state of moderation in all respects. However, proper form of orientation and effort for that is difficult to be ones fortune. It is rightly stated: 'To be Real Man is hardly available even to human beings!'

That is no point for dejection; anyway, but Divine help happens to fall to the lot of human being of right sort of courage alone. As such, adopt the purpose of life and path of its realisation; and move on and on until the purpose be fulfilled, holding on to the promise that whoever moves one step towards it, the goal advances ten steps towards that one. The experience of all this is a matter of fact, but only for the one, who may have faith in that Divine assurance, and keeping stead fast to it may continue marching on. Amen! “

After having quoted the Masters’ summary of the system to add is the impertinence of the Mind. But the monkey has its own way. With divinity filled in our being we radiate His effulgence. When we radiate light and unconditional love, other people with good hearts are magnetically attracted to us to form the Satsangh. After all, like attracts like, even in the physical world, so why not be surrounded by seekers with simply wonderful hearts? That is the way of divinity knowing divinity.

Let me conclude by stating

“Whatever an enemy might do to an enemy, or a foe to a foe, the ill-directed mind can do to you even worse.

Whatever a mother, father or other kinsman might do for you, the well-directed mind can do for you even better.

The Divine Mind can only be that which has directed itself towards the Divine and that alone can know the Divinity.