Sunday, August 22, 2010

Thoughts… … …

Many are the names of God and infinite forms through which he may be approached. The Reality is one and the same, the difference is in the name and forms. Some address Reality as Allah, some as God, some as Brahman, some as Kali, others by names as Rama, Jesus, Hari. God is formless and God is possessed of form too. And he is also that which transcends both form and formless.
- Sri Ramakrishna, a 19th century exponent of religious pluralism

It is almost impossible to like the Indians of Fiji. They are suspicious, vengeful, whining, unassimilated, provocative….Above all, they are surly and unpleasant

 - James Michener, Return to Paradise, 1951

What Lakelly-Hunt says about faith and feminism (in the context of poet Emily Dickinson)…… “Experience transcendence in the mundane and glory in the paradox”

As Jiddu Krishnamurti said, “Only at the point of death many people realize that they have not lived at all!”

If you pick up a starving dog
And make him prosperous,
He will not bite you.
This is the principal difference
Between a dog and a man

- Mark Twain

Saturday, August 14, 2010

From ‘Along the Ganges’ by Ilija Trojanow

…..the story of the shishya who asks his guru: “How long will it take for me to achieve liberation”

“A whole life,” the guru answers.

“And if I try very hard?”

“Several lives!”

“But what if I give it all I have?”

“Then you will never attain it!”

In the sixth century BC, the principle of Ahimsa was developed in the area that is today Bihar. The concept of radical non-violence was formulated and put into practice by the parishads, communities of hermits living in the forests that in those days covered most of the land. This magnetic field also influenced Jainism and Adaita. In all three religious concepts, non-violence is defined far more extensively than the usual understanding of not harming other creatures. According to Advaita, you practice violence when you term the other as ‘other’. The concept of atman, the omnipresent soul, sees every human being as infinite and unlimited, and therefore he is not equal to his neighbours but merged with them as well as with god. If one limits one’s neighbor, one limits oneself. Ahimsa opposes any language of segregation, it calls upon us always to see the common behind the divisive. As a result, Ahimsa could protect humans against manipulation through fictive identities, whether of a national, ethnic or cultural character.


Friday, August 13, 2010

From ‘The Life and Teachings of Jillellamudi Amma’ by Ekkirala Bharadwaja

……..why Mother was passionately fond of feeding children who came to her. She would insist on their taking food. Indeed, she was the tangible manifestation, all felt, of Goddess Annapoorna, in this regard.

One wonders why she insisted on feeding people. One clue, perhaps, is the kosha paradigm of Hinduism. There is the primary sheath (kosha) called “annamaya kosha,” the food dimension. One of the definitions of Brahman, the Ultimate Reality itself, is that it is food. And when food (often prepared by Mother herself) is partaken, it becomes Prasad and sets in motion changes in the body. Eventually, sattvic food blessed by Mother results in subtle unfolding of the deeper spiritual layers of consciousness.

Masters of perfect attainment say that the different paths to perfection such as jnana, bhakti and karma yoga have a fundamental unity. When one pursues one of the three, the other two follow of their own accord, said Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi. The unique greatness of the Bhagavad Gita seems to be this synthesis of these paths. For, Lord Krishna not only expounded their unity but symbolized it in Himself. He is called Yogiswara, Jagadguru, and the Jagannatha, i.e. he is at once the ideal and he goal of the three paths of jnana, bhakti, and karma yoga.

…….Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi…….. “Association with the wise will make the mind sink into the Heart. Such association is both mental and physical”

……..her words regarding God:

“He is formless because all forms are His. He is nameless because all names are His.”

“He is without attributes because all attributes are His.”

If Knowledge is Brahman, why not Ignorance?

The changing, alone, is the Mind; the unchanging is Divinity itself.

Pain is no pain if it is experienced with joy.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

From ‘Prior to Consciousness. Talks with Nisargadatta Maharaj’. Edited by Jean Dunn

The Infinite a sudden guest
Has been assumed to be,
How how can that stupendous come
Which never went away?

- Emily Dickinson
Bolts of Melody – New poems of Emily Dickinson
(New York: Harper and Row)

It is the intensity of the faith you have in the guru’s words that is most important; once that is there, the grace flows automatically. The faith in the guru is based on the consciousness within, faith in one’s Self.

As a man, Christ was crucified, but that universal consciousness which was his lives today.

My association with my Guru was scarcely for two and a half years. He was staying some 200 kilometres away, he would come here once every four months, for fifteen days; this is the fruit of that. The words he gave me touched me very deeply. I abided in one thing only: the words of my Guru are the truth, and he said, “You are the Parabrahman.” No more doubts and no more questions on that. Once my Guru conveyed to me what he had to say I never bothered about other things – I hung on to the words of the Guru.

Nature has the institution of death. If death did not exist, there would be an unbearable accumulation of memories. People come and go, the memories are wiped out, therefore there is a sense of balance.

Merely sit in contemplation and let the consciousness unfold itself.

For you, the first step is worship that vital breath; here you must focus your attention on that vital breath pulsation – and together with that, carry out the name-japa. When you do that, the vital breath will be purified, and in the process of purification this beingness will open up.

Questioner: Does Maharaj go into Samadhi?
M: I am stabilized in the Highest. There is no going into Samadhi, or coming down from Samadhi; that is over.

………you must persist in meditation until you come to a stage when you feel there is no meditation.

According to the time and the situation they have taught their concepts, but there are concepts meant only for that period, that situation and then their concepts have developed into religions

The indication of your progress is your disinclination to associate with normal people; your desires and expectations get less and less........intense hunger for Self knowledge, the door, or the floodgate is opened, then you start rejecting everything, right from the gross state to Iswara state, your own consciousness, you reject everything.

You are prior to the idea “I Am.” Camp yourself there, prior to the words “I Am.”

Q: What does Maharaj think about all the different religions?

M: As far as I am concerned all religions are based on concepts and emotions. These emotions are so violent and absorbing that people have immolated themselves.

Being one with some other personality emotionally can be so effective that those who have identified themselves with Jesus Christ have had the marks of crucifixion appear on their own bodies. All these experiences are totally useless. One individual has identified with another individual, and unless individuality is given up the Reality can never manifest itself. Do not repeat what you have heard, parrot-wise, unless you have it with the conviction that I have.

If you stay put in beingness the thoughts will get less and less. If you get mixed up with the thoughts they will multiply.

You have created a God because you want to beg from somebody and that is what you call spirituality

After listening to my wildly virulent talks you may not come again tomorrow, it doesn’t matter. I tell you again and again, you might run around and around the world, but nobody is going to give you the knowledge. Recede into your own Self. Surrender to your own beingness and that alone will give you all the knowledge necessary for you – no one else will. You don’t inquire into this, you blindly follow the rituals of spirituality.

You may be anywhere, but be honest, be devoted only to your being.

Sitting in meditation helps the consciousness to blossom. It causes deeper understanding and spontaneous change in behavior. These changes are brought about in the consciousness itself, not in the pseudo-personality. Forced changes are at the level of the mind. Mental and intellectual changes are totally unnatural and different from the ones that take place in the birth principle. These take place naturally, automatically, by themselves, due to meditation.

The only thing which anyone has is the conviction that one exists, the conscious presence. Meditation is only on that sense of presence, nothing else.

Q: How can we find the way that is meant for us?

M: If your urge to realize the Self is very intense, your urge and the consciousness will direct you in the correct course.

You must possess that confirmation that you are formless, designless; not only rely on meditation. Always insist that you are formless, free, and are not conditioned. You must hammer on this constantly, that is the practice.