Choose the path of the Spirit. Move from the clear white light to the brink of the Absolute. Focus on foundational studies; sustain the higher realizations. Worship Lord Ganesha to channel desire, harness the mind. Accept what happens and work with it. When you go deep enough, past, present and future all exist in the present. In that core of the superconscious mind, once you have realized the Self, you are as you've always been, an eternal being, free of time, cause and change.
Master Course Trilogy, Merging With Siva, Lessons 328,329.
Good morning everyone.
From the current Master Course lesson, Merging With Siva, going to read On The Brink of the Absolute but there's a couple of sentences before it starts that are useful.
"The goal of course is Self Realization. That won't come naturally. A foundation is needed first, a foundation nurtured through slow and arduous study, through sadhana performed and the demands placed by the guru upon the aspirant."
I think one of the beauties of Gurudeva's teachings is it combines both the highest realizations and foundational studies. Doesn't just have one or the other. This is probably unusual. These days it's easier to pack a seminar if you talk about the great realizations then if you talk about the foundational studies. Hard to fill the room if you're focusing on foundational studies but that's what's needed. Otherwise we can't sustain the realizations that we have. We have them and then we go back into our daily life with its ups and downs and we lose it. So we need to upgrade our daily life, states of mind we go through, the behavior we indulge ourselves in, we need to upgrade that and be able to sustain the higher realizations. Otherwise we can't get back there.
"On the Brink of the Absolute."
"The higher states of consciousness very few people are familiar with, having never experienced them..."
I think the... Hard to under value this sentence. If you were to talk about higher states of consciousness to the people you meet how many would know what you were talking about? More than there used to be but still it's not that well understood. Most people are more oriented toward external things than toward trying to achieve higher states of consciousness and to move from being a millionaire to a billionaire is more interesting than moving from the clear white light to the brink of the absolute, shall we say. But it's there. Higher states of consciousness.
"...They are very pleasant to learn of, and yet out of our grasp until we have that direct experience of a higher state of expanded consciousness..."
In some material we were sharing, I guess it was on Mahasivaratri, Gurudeva made the point that we need to be careful to distinguish between an intellectual understanding of a higher state of consciousness and the actual experience of a higher state of consciousness. They are two different things but sometimes they get mixed up. We think just because we can explain the higher state of consciousness very clearly that that's the same as experiencing it. But it's not of course.
"...The mind, in its density, keeps us from the knowledge of the Self. And then we attain a little knowledge of the existence of the Self as a result of the mind freeing itself from desires and cravings, hates and fears and the various and varied things of the mind..."
The mind definitely keeps us busy, right? So with that going on. So we have to harness it. As we know in Gurudeva's teachings we don't give up desire as you read in some teachings. You have to channel desire. Why don't we give up desire? Because desire's life. So we can't give up being alive, it's not possible to give up being alive. We just have to channel it into desiring higher things. Instead of desiring food for ourself, we desire food for our family. Instead of desiring food for our family we desire food for the community. You know we have to channel it into higher thoughts, constantly channeling. And then, it's not dense. As Gurudeva says the density; it's only dense when it's really overly self-centered. When it's involved in the welfare of others it's not dense.
"...I say 'things' because if you could see hate, you would see it as a thing that lives with one as a companion. If you could see fear, you'd see it as a thing, and as understanding comes, that thing called fear walks away down the road, never to return..."
Again, one of the beauties of Gurudeva's teachings is, you can see it when it comes teachings such as the chakras. Again, if you can fill the auditorium or if you talk about the higher chakras that Gurudeva starts out with the lower ones so fewer people would attend. But we need to close off the lower ones, that's the starting point. You know we need to close off anger, jealousy and fear so we don't experience them any more. And once those are closed off then we can achieve the higher ones. But we don't want to skip that step. Of course, one of the key practices in closing them off is the worship of Lord Ganesha. Cause Lord Ganesha stabilized us in the muladhara chakra. So that doesn't sound very exciting, right? Congratulations! You're stabilized in the muladhara chakra. But it's foundational. We don't want to go below that. We want that to be the bottom of the states of consciousness we experience. We don't want to go down into fear, jealousy, anger. So we need to get those practices working well.
"...As you unfold spiritually, it is difficult to explain what you find that you know. At first you feel light shining within, and that light you think you have created with your mind, and yet you will find that, as you quiet your mind, you can see that light again and again, and it becomes brighter and brighter, and then you begin to wonder what is in the center of that light. 'If it is the light of my True Being, why does it not quiet the mind?' Then, as you live the so-called 'good life,' a life that treats your conscience right, that light does get brighter and brighter, and as you contemplate it, you pierce through into the center of that light, and you begin to see the various beautiful forms, forms more beautiful than the physical world has to offer, beautiful colors, in that fourth-dimensional realm, more beautiful than this material world has to offer. And then you say to yourself, 'Why forms? Why color, when the scriptures tell me that I am timeless, causeless and formless?' And you seek only for the colorless color and the formless form. But the mind in its various and varied happenings, like a perpetual cinema play, pulls you down and keeps you hidden within its ramifications."
Ramifications is a good concept to think about. Our modern world is filled with more opportunities to ramify. Internet being one of them. There's more and more information available to everyone on a daily basis and it's easy to get overly caught up in it. Nothing wrong with keeping track of it but it's easy to get overly caught up in it so that it's what you're thinking about, it's what you're talking about. Instead of talking about the inner light or thinking about the inner light, caught up in the ramifications of the mind, excessively. So we don't want to, we want to avoid that.
"In your constant striving to control that mind, your soul comes into action as a manifestation of will, and you quiet more and more of that mind and enter into a deeper state of contemplation where you see a scintillating light more radiant than the sun, and as it bursts within you, you begin to know that you are the cause of that light which you apparently see..."
I like the phrase: "...your soul comes into action as a manifestation of will..."
The question can be asked: How do we control the mind? It just seems to go all over the place. Well the key to controlling the mind is to control the mind. In other words, we have to practice controlling the mind. And it's like anything we practice we get better at it. So we need to constantly be controlling the mind even when we're driving from home to the temple we want to be controlling the mind. We don't want it to be all over the place. So, the practice of controlling the mind causes us to have better control of the mind and eventually it quiets down.
We're talking about the light:
"...And in that knowing, you cling to it as a drowning man clings to a stick of wood floating upon the ocean. You cling to it and the will grows stronger; the mind becomes calm through your understanding of experience and how experience has become created..."
So, one of the keys there of course is acceptance. As long as we feel, this shouldn't be happening, then it stirs the mind. If we're constantly thinking about something, if we aren't willing to accept it, or, this person shouldn't be treating me this way. That shouldn't have happened. I worship every day, how could this happen to me? Things like that. Well we have to accept what's happening as what's supposed to happen. And of course, we know who created it; we did. So we have to accept that and work with it. Just that acceptance helps a lot to keep the mind quiet.
"...As your mind releases its hold on you of its desires and cravings, you dive deeper, fearlessly, into the center of this blazing avalanche of light, losing your consciousness in That which is beyond consciousness. And as you come back into the mind, you not only see the mind for what it is; you see the mind for what it isn't. You are free, and you find men and women bound, and what you find you are not attached to, because binder and the bound are one. You become the path. You become the way. You are the light. And as you watch souls unfold, some choose the path of the Spirit; some choose the path of the mind. As you watch and wonder, your wondering is in itself a contemplation of the universe, and on the brink of the Absolute you look into the mind, and one tiny atom magnifies itself greater than the entire universe, and you see, at a glance, evolution from beginning to end, inside and outside, in that one small atom..."
So, that's pretty deep. From, but the idea is that when you go deep enough time is no longer sequential. There's still time, the sense of past, present and future but it's not sequential. It's only sequential when you come out a certain distance. But when you go in enough past present and future all exist in the present. Or that, you know, said another way there's only the present but you can see the past and the future within it. So that's non-sequential time.
"...Again, as you leave external form and dive into that light which you become, you realize beyond realization a knowing deeper than thinking, a knowing deeper than understanding, a knowing which is the very, very depth of your being. (Meaning you're experiencing it.) You realize immortality, that you are immortal--this body but a shell, when it fades; this mind but an encasement, when it fades. Even in their fading there is no reality..."
So, when you're in that part of you, it's unchanging. That's the idea that it, in that core of the superconscious mind, you are as you've always been. You haven't changed. You're an eternal being who hasn't changed. Change is only going on out here. But at the depth of you, you're unchanged.
"...And as you come out of that samadhi, you realize you are the spirit, you become that spirit, you actually are that spirit, consciously, if you could say spirit has a consciousness. You are that spirit in every living soul. You realize you are That which everyone, in their intelligent state or their ignorant state, everyone, is striving for--a realization of that spirit that you are. And then again for brief interludes you might come into the conscious mind and relate life to a past and a future and tarry there but for a while. But in a moment of concentration, your eye resting on a single line of a scripture or anything that holds the interest of the mind, the illusion of past and future fades, and again you become that light, that life deep within every living form--timeless, causeless, spaceless.
"Then we say, 'Why, why, after having realized the Self do you hold a form, do you hold a consciousness of mind? Why?' The answer is but simple and complete: you do not; of yourself you do not. But every promise made must have its fulfillment, and promises to close devotees and the desire that they hold for realization of their true being hold this form, this mind, in a lower conscious state. Were the devotees and disciples to release their desires for realization but for one minute, their satguru would be no more. Once having realized the Self, you are free of time, cause and change."
Sounds good! Be free of time, cause and change!
That's pointing out, the talk's pointing out that we need to realize that the inside is quite different than the outside and generally individuals are too identified with the outside of themselves. In particularly the flaws in the outside of themselves. So, it's preventing us from seeing the inside of ourselves. So we don't want to pretend the outside of us is perfect but we don't want the imperfections we see to deter us from finding the perfection that inside of us shall we say. That's the, we need a balanced perspective.
A statement I quote for myself often is: "No one's perfect. If you were perfect you wouldn't have been born in the first place." Right? No reason to be born if you're already perfect. So everybody's imperfect, that's why you were born. And, gradually becoming, reducing the imperfections. But we can't get overly concerned about them. We have a self created obstacle defining in and holding inner higher states of consciousness.
Aum Namah Sivaya.