Bulletin No: 2016.66 - Monday, 26 September 2016
Conversations with Daaji, August and September 2016, Part 2
New Jersey & New York
Be a witness
Daaji: Another important thing in the Gita that is very widely misunderstood is this concept of Saakshi bhava, meaning to be a witness. There are certain meditation practices that talk of observing yourself. Observing and witnessing are two different things. In observing you are actively involved. When you are witnessing, you are simply there. For example, some crime is happening and you are simply there. You don’t participate and support an outcome.
Witnessing happens at many levels. Initially we cultivate the habit of witnessing what we are doing and saying, etc. Second, we witness at an emotional level. Third, we witness at a vibratory level. At what level are we witnessing? From which level are we witnessing?
For example, when I see someone I think, “Oh! She is wearing green and red.” I can also witness what is her mood, her emotional state. I can also witness her spiritual state. So what are you witnessing? And what are your intentions? Why are you witnessing?
Q: So intentional witnessing is observation?
Daaji: Yes, it becomes observation.
Q: So Lord Krishna was referring to this aspect?
Daaji: Yes, the need to be a witness. You are witnessing your own self.
Q: Is that the difference between using the mind and the heart?
Daaji: You tell me!
Q: With the mind I am observing … I think.
Daaji: You see the mind will always observe and the heart will always witness. Mind reacts, heart responds. Mind and heart are the two poles of the same thing, thinking and feeling.
Now if you look at it from the perspective of the subtle body, from what level are you seeing? Is thinking closer to the Source or is feeling closer? It is better to be guided by closer proximity. For example, at work when you need to get the CEO’s view, do you ask the janitor or the Secretary of the CEO? Who is more reliable?
So meditation is the art of accessing the inner being for verification all the time.
Q: That’s a beautiful definition!
Daaji: In such a state, intercommunication becomes redundant.
Q: Because you are with the Source?
Daaji: Yes, you are directly with the Source. Would you go running to your mother all the time? At a higher level when your mother prepares you thoroughly you don’t need her all the time. She is doing her work and you are doing yours. Both are happy. Only in crucial circumstances, you look to her for advice, and that too for verification.
There was a time when Puyja Lalaji Saheb used to dictate letters to Pujya Babuji Saheb. After a few years, in 1954 or 1955, Lalaji Saheb chided our beloved Babuji, saying, “Do you think I am your clerk to keep dictating and answering your letters? You write on your own now!”
[Saying this, Daaji burst into laughter]
Masters come and Masters go
One of the roles of the Master is to make us realize the inner Master. Once that is fulfilled you don’t need an external Master. Once you realize the inner Guide, he keeps showing you the way. Our whole life we keep depending on Masters: how many Masters are you going to depend upon? One flame is enough for you to be enlightened. This happens by the annihilation of the ego.
Even when the great Masters tell us something, we still analyse it in our heart. We weigh it up inside, evaluating it for right and wrong, likes and dislikes. So who are we seeking counsel from? The inner guide. Once you are 100% in sync with the inner, which confirms the instructions of the external Master, then you are at peace. When the inner voice conflicts with the instructions of the external Master, then there is restlessness resulting in inner turmoil.
So whom do you follow now when your inner conscience says otherwise?
Interestingly, that is when devotion kicks in. This devotion enhances the reliance on the external. So even when the inner Master is guiding you, the dependence on the external does not leave you. It is like an addiction!
[Daaji laughs aloud while saying this]
Q: Yes, but isn’t it a sincere dependence?
Daaji: Well, it has another purpose. Realization is one, but next is merger.
Q: So it’s about realizing the Master and then merging in him?
Daaji: Let’s look at the steps. Salvation is one. Liberation is next. Realization is another. Merger is next. So there are various frontiers. And according to beloved Babuji, after merger the real spiritual journey starts.
When two become one, then the real journey starts.
Q: In your article ‘Beyond Self’, you state this very beautifully: “When I am there he is not there, and when I am not there he is also not there.”
Daaji: First there is ‘I’ experience, then ‘we’ experience. Then ‘we’ becomes ‘one’. You move to a state of Being. You are no longer in the realm of experience. You have already experienced the knowledge that God is everywhere. When you actually feel it, then you have moved away from religion to spirituality. Religion served its purpose and you have transcended.
In spirituality experiences are there, but eventually you become fed up with those experiences. Then you enter the state of Being. This state doesn’t demand experiences. You are just in it. After some time the state of Non-being kicks in. In this state you are not there. It means your ego is not enjoying the state of Being because you have surrendered yourself. In this state true bliss comes, because the weight of your own self is not there.
So that is why beloved Babuji says it is only bliss. It is bliss all over, but you are not there anymore to enjoy it! If you were there, then the bliss would not be there. You are too much of a burden for the bliss.
All these states of peace and bliss remain, but in a way they are almost inversely proportional to you being there.
Peace and contentment formula
As the conversation progressed, Daaji remarked, “I think we should now draw up a new formula for bliss, happiness, contentment – all of these states.”
Q: And what would that be?
Daaji: Bliss or contentment is inversely proportional to ego. We had earlier devised a formula for happiness; now let’s have one for peace and contentment.
Previously our happiness formula only tackled desires. But let’s say you don’t have any desires. If your ego keeps pumping you up and keeps saying that you don’t have any desires, then what’s the use?
Contentment is inversely proportional to the sum of your ego and desires.
Now, if you look at sadness or sorrow, ego and desires play a direct role.
Sadness or sorrow is directly proportional to the sum of ego and desires.
When one has a lesser burden of ego, insults and rebukes won’t hurt as much. Only the arrogant heart is hurt and becomes sorrowful or sad. When the ego is subdued, where is the question of winning an argument or losing one? One remains a witness to the entire conversation and learns. This is, in a way, the life of simplicity. A simpler life is a sure bestower of Grace and this in turn attracts more Grace.
Depend on the inner Being
Daaji had several conversations about the need to conduct our life by depending on the inner Being. During one such conversation, he presented some insights to further our understanding of the subtle bodies.
He said, “Consider a 2D orientation of the system.” Saying so, he picked up a piece of paper and quickly drew the layout:
“Now when you look at the causal body (the soul), it is at one end of the spectrum. Then comes the canvas of consciousness that envelopes the subtle bodies – ego, thinking and intellect. Then there is the manifested gross body, which is at the other end of the spectrum. The gross body is useful only when the faculties are intact. These faculties are mainly the five senses.
“Now according to beloved Babuji Maharaj, there are many subtle bodies but they are so fine that it is best to describe them as layers around the soul. So when you look at it, between the deepest consciousness and the soul there are very few filters, whereas, between the five senses of the grosser body and the soul there are many mediums and filters.
“So the perception of the senses is altered because of these filters. The knowledge coming from within is perceived differently. It is not pure.
“For example, in meditation I am in touch with my innermost being. That being is the soul. So the inspiration or intuition we receive is from the innermost being. Now would you rely on this intuition or would you prefer to go by thinking or intellectualizing, or would you rely more on the animal instincts, the 5 senses?”
Rewire the system
Continuing the dialogue, Daaji said, “Intuition says stay in tune with your inner Being. If you can make use of intuition more and more, you can make it instinctive. This is like a mutation, an intrinsic mutation from animalistic instincts to love-filled responses. Instead of instinctively getting snappy, instinctively getting angry, now you have rewired yourself. With this rewiring, your reactions are now love-based responses. Instead of a grand display of temper, with the transformed self you can instinctively respond with love and magnanimity. This is true transformation. The state of akarma is reached so naturally with the simple pursuit of meditating daily for a few minutes.
“This is the beauty of Sahaj Marg. We read so many books that describe all this, and they are beautifully written. Only Sahaj Marg shows how to incorporate all these things in a very practical way.
“The meditation we do is of no use if we are not able to make the inner condition dynamic. Whatever we are doing, what is the point if it is not imbued with the spiritual state that has been instilled in us? Otherwise, when it stays static and we continue with animalistic behaviour, then it is of no use. God is where He is; Divine. If I remain the way I am, it is of no use!
“Let us say I have a peculiar peaceful condition. With such a state, after meditation do I get up and start yelling at people and demanding things? In fact, with this state, when I approach people who are yelling, my presence will change the whole scenario. That is being dynamic. Our inner state is made to manifest in actions, behaviours, attitudes and thoughts.
Ego and samskara
Daaji: Ego is not samskara. People misunderstand this. Samskara can intensify the ego, but ego is not samskara. You cannot say I will remove ego. You can only transform it. Other things you can remove, like greed, etc.
Q: So as viveka develops can we differentiate between ego and samskara?
Daaji: For the individual, it is important to understand the impact of this. What will you do just by knowing that ego is not samskara?
The Evolutionary Sequence
In the evolutionary scheme there are 4 main subtle bodies. There are many others that are difficult to define. The first subtle body that came into existence is chit. Then came ego. Then came manas and buddhi. So which came after which? Well it is not important. What is important is that consciousness envelops all the other three. That is important.
Q: We say God has no manas. But God also doesn’t have chit, buddhi or ahankar. It is pure causality. So when all my subtle bodies evolve, that is when consciousness becomes pure potentiality.
Daaji: Yes, the pure form of consciousness is then manifested.
Q: So is that how the film of consciousness expands?
Daaji: It is the ego that affects the width of the film. Ego is like a black hole. It can have the greatest pull upon our consciousness. It just will not allow the consciousness to expand. By becoming more and more humble, consciousness will have the opportunity to expand infinitely. And of course desires also affect thinking and intellect. So cleaning helps get rid of these layers.