Firstly, there must be a desire for God, a love for Him, or a desire for liberation. Without that, nothing is possible……….This desire……..is like an inner flame. One must kindle it and then fan it until it becomes a raging fire which consumes all one’s other desires and interests……..If this inner fire rages for long enough, with sufficient intensity, it will finally consume that one, central, overwhelming desire for God or the Self. This is essential because realization will not take place until even this last desire has gone. After this final desire disappears, there will be the silence of no thoughts………Many people have had temporary glimpses of the Self. Sometimes it happens spontaneously, and it is not uncommon for it to happen in the presence of a realized Master.
On another visit, I brought a Muslim pir I had met in Madras. As a professor in Baghdad he had had an inner awakening and taken to the religious life. He had come to India…….to visit some Hindu holy men….I encouraged him to join me on one of my visits to the [Ramana] Maharshi…At Tiruvannamalai we sat in the hall together for some time, looking at the Maharshi. Then the pir got up, saluted him and walked out……….he said, I have smelled this one flower in the garden of Hinduism. I don’t need to smell any of the others……..This man was a jnani and in those few minutes with the Maharshi he was able to satisfy himself that the flowering of jnana in Hindus was no different from the highest experience attained by Islamic saints……..Such enlightened people are very rare. In the last forty years or so I have met thousands of sadhus, swamis, gurus etc……….But in the years since my realization I have only met two men, apart from the Maharshi himself, who convinced me that they had attained full and complete Self-realisation. This Muslim pir was one. The other was a relatively unknown sadhu I met by the side of a road in Karnataka.
…….. ‘By the enquiry “Who am I?” the thought ‘Who am I?’ will destroy all other thoughts, and like the stick used for stirring the funeral pyre, it will in the end get destroyed. Then there will arise Self-realisation.’
Freedom is to know your own fundamental nature, your own Self. Nothing else
Master, for what reason do the scriptures exist?..........
They tell you to read all these things – the Upanishads, the Vedas, the Sutras, the Shastras – so that one day you will get fed up with them. Then afterwords, you can be quiet……..Just keep quiet and see what happens.
So, avoid all persons, including yourself……And avoid all things……..Don’t think of things and don’t have any objects in the mind. Give up all ideas including ‘I have had a glimpse’ or ‘I have not had a glimpse’. No ideas, no things, no persons……..then look. What do you see?
Enlightenment is for those people who have not found any satisfaction in sensory indulgence. It is for those people who are fed up with things, with objects, and the enjoyment of them. The desire for freedom, for enlightenment, arises when one begins to understand that permanent happiness cannot be found in sensory pleasures……….happiness arises spontaneously only when there are no thoughts and no desires, and that it disappears when thoughts and desires come back………Happiness therefore lies in the emptiness of no thought, not in the quest for more and more things………The emptiness of no-thought, of no desires, is permanent. It is the source of true, permanent happiness…….When you can abide in that emptiness…….without feeling a need to search for happiness anywhere else, you are free from desires and suffering. That freedom is enlightenment………The people and things of this world will still be there, but they will not cause you any trouble or suffering because the desire to get pleasure and happiness through them will never arise.
When you have a desire for freedom…………..you should look for a perfect being. Someone who has established himself in the state of true and permanent happiness. Such a being………can make you aware of the happiness and the emptiness that lie within you. He may do it by the power of his thought, by looking at you, by touching you or simply by being quiet. Anyone who comes into contact with such a being will be benefited by his presence.
Is it necessary to have a Master who is himself realized to succeed?
Absolutely! Absolutely! Otherwise how can you know whether you are on the right track?
[Ramana Maharshi]…………He would talk about many things: how to be free, how to get enlightened, and sometimes he would say things like, ‘You need grace’. But most of the time he said in Tamil, ‘Summa iru,’ which means, ‘Keep quiet’. Most people did not understand the true meaning of this…….
When you ask ‘Who am I?’, don’t expect any answer. You must get rid of the expectation that you will get an answer……The purpose of the question is not to get an answer.
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