Did we realize this fact? That is, in our life’s journey, from the time of birth until this point, we always try to find answers to many questions, such as why the share market suddenly crashed?, Despite my sincere hard work why didn’t I get promotion this time? In spite of being very cautious with my habits and medications all these years, why the sugar levels aren’t dropping? or Why should my only kid be born with autistic symptoms? and many such other questions we try to seek and know things that we don’t know; And most of the time even before getting the answer, our thoughts and ideas somehow dissipate, for it looks like the distraction is always stronger than focus. But there is a strong sense in it, i.e., when too many things individually get our attention then we are not actually focused, we are distracted, and that is one of the main reasons why we are not able to get to the end of our search.
Now, the real catch is this. We need to know what is it, what is that tendency or force that takes my attention to many things in a cycle, and purposely keeps me distracted and also stops me from attaining the desired result that I’m looking for?. What is it that I’m actually missing?.
That’s because, we really don’t know our purpose yet clearly. Only if we are clear in the first place that this is who I am and this is what my purpose of this birth, then alone we can even try to be focused. And only by knowing who we are, what’s our nature and purpose of our existence, we can save our SELF from this mysterious circumstances where it looks like we are forced only react to life’s situations with no control whatsoever with us.
So now, the real purpose of adhering to this ‘Hindu Dharma’, is to gradually save our ‘SELF’ from this Unreality (or, the Changing Reality), and move towards the Real Reality. That is to say, “ to realize or know thy Real Self “ and find the real purpose of our existence…
When we say Changing reality, we mean the swiftly changing happiness, sufferings, and this slowly fading physical body. That which is changing constantly and at the same time seeming to be so very real is what is referred here as the Changing Reality – MAYA. And, just for trusting this ever-changing MAYA world to be a total reality, we experience misery, either constantly or intermittently.
But the ‘Adhyatma Shastra’, the scriptures that teach about ‘the knowledge of the SELF’, points out to us that the root cause of this problem is we accept this miserable situation to be absolutely real. We don’t question their validity. We just got convinced that we don’t have an option to be at eternal happiness, but to suffer and die is our lot. Sometimes we even hear people say in the old fashion, Ah! that’s what life is all about; You gotta accept the change and move on.
Contrast to this idea, our Shastras declare boldly that actually by nature, our very ‘Self’ is beyond misery, beyond the idea of limitedness and also beyond Death. And it also points out that the only reason for our current state of misery is sheer IGNORANCE. That is, not knowing the real nature of our own ‘Self’ in the true sense. Since we don’t see our innermost ‘SELF’ in its true form, we experience this misery or sufferings.
Now, one may say, knowing the ‘Self’? well, I know myself very well. This is who I am. For this, we should ask ourselves that, for the way I know my ‘ Self ‘, it looks like the misery has not vanished eternally; a sense of fulfillment or total fearlessness is not experienced yet. What are we missing?. The Shastra says, well then, you had understood your ‘Self’ exactly the wrong way. The misunderstanding has to be corrected.
“ The only way out is to know ” Who we really are ? ” and find what is our real nature is. “
To Quote from ” Brihadaranyaka Upanishad ” –
The Great holy sage Yagnyavalkya teaches his beloved wife (II.4.5) :
” आत्मा वा अरे द्रष्टव्यः श्रोतव्यो मन्तव्यो निदिध्यासितव्यो मैत्रेयि,
आत्मनो वा अरे दर्शनेन श्रवणेन मत्या विज्ञानेनेदं सर्वं विदितम्॥ “
“ ātmā vā are draṣṭavyaḥ śrootavyo mantavyo nididhyāsitavyo maitreyi,
ātmano vā are darśanena śravaṇena matyā vijñānenedaṁ sarvaṁ viditam || “
… “ The SELF, dear Maitreyi, is to be perceived(in its true form), (it is to be) heard of, thought of and meditated on (in its actual form) . “
Then he goes on to say, “When the SELF is perceived, my dear, through hearing, thought and meditation, all this is known.“
Now, How should i know this ” SELF ” in its actual form ?,
The answer is, though the realization is only in one form, the scriptures guide us with different approach according to the individual’s temperament and capacity… One simple straightforward method recommeded by ” Bhagavan Sri RAMANA MAHARISHI ” is :