Shlokas # 19:
Wherefrom does this “I” thought arise? If one enquires thus, it vanishes. This is self-enquiry.
Continuing his teaching Swami Paramarthananda says, all types of Sadhana’s such as Puja, Japa, Dhyana, Samadhi, Yoga, and Gyanam all will have to culminate in Atma Vichara. They are important but they are complete only with Atma Vichara. Thus Atma Vichara only will eliminate Ahamkara or the mortal “I”. It is not optional but a compulsory knowledge. Ahamkara is born out of Self Ignorance. Ahamkara goes away with Gyanam. As long as a root is there the tree will sprout again. Agyanam is moolam of Ahamkara. Therefore, Atma Vichara needs to go along with Guru Shastra Upadesha. Even when somebody has got this knowledge without a Guru, they are rare prodigies. They got their Guru Upadesha and knowledge in past births. Therefore, these prodigies do not require Guru Upadesha. For majority of us, we need the Guru Upadesha. So don’t quote Bhagawan Ramana Maharishi to avoid Guru Shatra Upadesha. Majority of us require it. Upadesha means systematic teaching of shastras. This will lead to Atma Gyanam. This will destroy Agyanam and thus destroy Ahamkara. Ahamkara “I” is replaced by Atma “I”.
Ahami is when Ahamkara is destroyed. Atma is Layasthanam or Adisthana Chaitanyam. It is Atma Chaitanyam. This Chaitanyam now shines.
Shloka # 20:
When the “I” thought perishes, then another I, I springs forth as the Heart, spontaneously. It is the Existence in all of its fullness.
After Atma Vichara Ahamkara is eliminated. And the new I shines. A serious seeker wants to know what this means? How do I know if this event has occurred, that is the elimination of Ahamkara, replaced by Shining Atma?
What will life be before it and after it? How will I feel when the event occurs? These are questions from serious seekers. Will I experience the Infinite I? Now I experience a finite I. Will I have the experience of a new infinite I?
Many people have the misconception that they will experience a new I. We should know that there is no specific experience of the new I or infinite I? Any specific experience requires Triputi or experience of dualities (experiencer-experience-Object or knower-known-act of knowing, seer-seen-act of seeing etc) and is thus limited. Any specific experience of infinite is a logical contradiction. All specific experiences are in finitude. In waking and sleep states also we have specific experiences. Another is a general experience. There is absence of any experience in deep sleep and Samadhi states. Triputi is absent in Sushupthi and Samadhi states. Thus the two experiences are:
- One is specific experience of finite.
- Other is absence of any experience like in Sushupthi.
Other than these two experiences there are no other experiences of infinitude.
So, what does this shloka mean? When the limited “I” is gone and is replaced by infinite Atma. It is more a specific understanding. During a transaction in the waking state I am enjoying status of experiencer. Through Upadesha I understand that experience is not my intrinsic nature while consciousness is. My experiencer status is Mithya but not my intrinsic nature, that I am a conscious being. The color of my Angavastram is not mine. The experiencer comes with waking and dream but goes away in Sushupthi. The experiencer comes and goes, hence he is a Mithya. So also all experiences of Experiencer are also Mithya.
I am a Conscious being now, but if I doze off I lose it. So, there is a transient state. Limitation is not my true nature, meaning, I am limitless. This sense of localization does not belong to me. The understanding that I am without localization is the true nature. Experience will be finite, however, understanding will be of infinite.
The experience of the earth is of flatness but we know it is a globe. We feel the stationary status of the earth but we know it is rotating very fast. This wisdom is not shaken by experience. Even though I experience myself locally, I know this is not true. This is wisdom. There is no change in experience, only falsification of it.
This, the Heart, is the true import of “I”. For it exists, when the “ I” is not.
The Ahamkara I says I am limited. There is another Consciousness that says I am limitless. How do I know which is real and which is fake? Should we say experience is right or knowledge is right? We say knowledge alone is powerful. We know several experiences that are not fact based. (Stationary earth, flat earth, rising sun etc). There are illusory experiences at every level. In Self-experience I avoid the experience. In Nirvikapla Samadhi Patanjali did not discover Advaita Gyanam. Yoga is Dvaita. Only knowledge is reliable.
Experienced I is limited in nature. Bhagawan Ramana Maharishu says limitless I is my true nature. The limited I is subject to arrival and departure. During waking and sleep too we can experience arrival and departure.
The limitless is the real I while Ahamkara resolves during sleep every day. Dress is changed every day. Dress is not my real nature. Ahamkara is removed every day and put on as well during sleep and waking states respectively. Consciousness never comes and goes. It has a continued existence without resolution. Consciousness continues even in sleep. That we are able to talk about sleep is proof of witness consciousness. Hence Consciousness is the real meaning of the word “I”.
I am the eternal consciousness in which Ahamkara rises and falls. During sleep Ahamkara goes away. In waking state it comes back. In death Ahamkara goes away but I continue. Knowing is also a manner of transaction. “I am” without transaction is my real nature.
The enquiry into this has to be systematic through Pancha Kosha Viveka. It is discussed in Taitreya Upanishad. I have to see consciousness in every Kosha. I am not the Kosha, but I am the consciousness pervading it. Kosha is separate from Consciousness. Citing an example: Fan is the instrument with the invisible electricity. One is visible while other is not. The invisible electricity is not part of the fan.
So also our body is of five layers with the sentiency principle or consciousness principle. One is invisible while other is visible. Because of sentiency the body functions. Sentiency is not part, product or property of the body. It is not limited by boundary of the body. It is non-material consciousness that survives the end of body. It is the real I.
The body, the sense, the vital force and ignorance, all these are insentient. They are not the consciousness, which “ I am”.
The five fold Koshas are described. Vigraha means Annamaya kosha. First line of shloka is Vedanta Shastra. I am none of these material objects. I am the eternal witness.
With Best Wishes,