Saturday, May 3, 2014

Sri Sadhu Om on the Path to Self-Realization


At first one may not be able to maintain unbroken Self-attention even for a few minutes. Due to long habit, it is only natural that the mind will start to think of some second or third person objects. Each time the attention thus turns outwards, the aspirant again tries to turn it back towards the first person. This process of slackening of Self-attention and then trying to regain it, will repeat itself again and again. If the aspirant’s mind is weak due to deficiency in the love to know Self, the slackening of Self-attention will happen frequently, in which case a struggle will ensue and the mind will soon become tired. Instead of thus repeatedly struggling to regain Self-attention, one should relax the mind for a while as soon as the initial attempt to fix the attention on the first person becomes unsteady, and then again make a fresh attempt. If one thus makes intermittent attempts, each attempt will be found to have a fresh force and a more precise clarity of attention.

      If one presses one’s thumb on a pressure scale, the dial may at first indicate a pressure of ten kilograms. But if one tries to maintain that pressure for a long period of time, the dial will show that it is gradually slackening and decreasing. On the other hand, if one releases the pressure and after a brief rest presses again with fresh vigour, the dial will show a little more than ten kilograms. Similar is the case with Self-attention. If one struggles for a long time to maintain Self-attention, the intensity and clarity of one’s attention will gradually slacken and decrease. But if instead one relaxes as soon as one finds that one’s Self-attention is slackening, and if after a brief rest one makes a fresh attempt to fix one’s attention on Self, that fresh attempt will have a greater intensity and clarity. Therefore, what is important is not so much the length of time one spends trying to attend to Self, but the earnestness and intensity with which one makes each fresh attempt.

      During the time of practice (sadhana) our attention, which is now focused on second and third person objects, has to turn back 180 degrees, so to speak to focus itself on the first person. In the beginning, however, one’s attention may be able to turn only 5, 10 or 15 degrees. This is because one’s turning is resisted by a powerful spring  – the spring of one’s tendencies (vasanas) or subtle desires towards worldly objects. Every time one tries to turn towards the first person, this spring of one’s worldly tendencies will tend to pull one’s mind back again towards second and third persons. Therefore the number of degrees one is able to turn will depend upon the firmness of one’s desirelessness (vairagya) towards worldly objects and upon the strength of one’s longing (bhakti) to know Self. Such vairagyaand bhakti  will be increased in one by regularly practising Self-attention, by earnestly praying to Sri Bhagavan and by constantly associating with such persons or books as will repeatedly remind one, “Only by knowing Self can we attain real and enduring happiness; so long as we do not know Self we will be endlessly courting and experiencing misery; therefore our first and foremost duty in life is to know Self; all other efforts will only end in vain.”

      As one’s desirelessness and longing to know Self thus increase by prayer to the Guru, by study (sravana) of and reflection (manana) upon His teachings, and by practice(nididhyasana) of Self-attention, one’s ability to turn one’s attention towards the first person will also increase, until one will be able to turn it 90, 120 or even 150 degrees at each fresh attempt. When one’s ability to turn one’s attention Selfwards thus increases, one will be able to experience a tenuous current of Self-awareness even while engaged in activity; that is, one will be able to experience an awareness of one’s being which will not be disturbed by whatever one’s mind, speech or body may be doing, in other words, one will be able to remember the feeling ‘I am’ which always underlies all one’s activities. However, this tenuous current of Self-awareness should not be taken to be the state of unceasing Self-attention, because one will experience it only when one feels inclined to do so.  [Emphasis mine]

      How then can one experience the state of unceasing Self-attention, the state of unswerving Self-abidance? The Guru’s Grace will more and more help those aspirants who thus repeatedly practise Self-attention with great love (bhakti) to know Self. When a glowing fire and a blowing wind join together, they play wonders. Likewise, when the glowing fire of love for Self-knowledge and the blowing wind of the Guru’s Grace join together, a great wonder takes place. During one of his fresh attempts, the aspirant will be able to turn his attention a complete 180 degrees towards Self (that is, he will be able to achieve a perfect clarity of Self-awareness, completely uncontaminated by even the least awareness of any second or third person), whereupon he will feel a great change taking place spontaneously and without his effort. His power of attention, which he had previously tried so many times to turn towards Self and which had always slipped back towards second and third persons, will now be caught under the grip of a powerful clutch which will not allow it to turn again towards any second or third person. This clutch is the clutch of Grace. Though Grace has always been helping and guiding one, it is only when one is thus caught by its clutch that one becomes totally a prey to it. If one once turns one’s attention a full 180 degrees towards Self, one is sure to be caught by this clutch of Grace, which will then take one as its own and will forever protect one from again turning towards second and third person objects. This state in which the mind is thus caught by the clutch of Grace and is thereby drowned forever in its source, is known as the experience of true knowledge (jnananubhutl), Self-realization(atmasakshatkaram), liberation (moksha) and so on. This alone can be called the state of unceasing Self-attention.

Significant ebooks who needs support on their path to Self-Realization

 Sri Sadhu Om: The Path of Sri Ramana PART ONE: The Jñana aspect of the teaching:

 Sri Sadhu Om: The Path of Sri Ramana PART TWO: On God, World, Bhakti and Karma:

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