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Understanding, A Talk by Avatar Adi Da Samraj
The mind acts as an obstruction. When the process of understanding begins in you, you may Enquire of yourself in the manner I have described. In that case, you will Enquire of the mind, you will Enquire in this moment of thinking, and you will understand it. When the living consciousness moves into relationship, the mind falls away. The mind is replaced by a form of intensity. The more that simple intensity is enjoyed as existence, the less obtrusive the mind becomes. Even though it continues to arise, it becomes less and less obtrusive. You notice it less. Now you think you are the mind. You are thinking, thinking. But the mind is actually something that is arising in Consciousness Itself. It is only a modification of your own Ultimate Nature. One who understands simply does not notice the mind in the usual manner. It is not that one has quieted one's mind. One is not the mind. There is no separate one there to be the mind. The "mind" is simply one of the functions that spontaneously arise. But if you identify with it, then you have already separated yourself. Only when that entire structure of the separate self is undermined by "radical" understanding of its root-activity does thought resume its natural, or prior, state.
Ramana Maharshi advised seekers to find out Who it is that asks the question, thinks the thought, and so on. The "Who" is not an entity. When Ramana Maharshi spoke, He used the symbology and language of Advaita Vedanta, the classic monistic, or "Only-One-Reality", school of Hindu philosophy. The imagery of this traditional description of the process of Truth deals in statics, things in space. So there is the ego--the objectified, solidified self. But I speak more in terms of process, or movement. I speak in terms of concepts of experience with which the modern mind is more familiar, and which are more appropriate in this time and place. I do not speak of "the ego" as an object within a conceptual universe of objects, because people today think more in terms of process, of energy. Therefore, presently, the concept of the static ego is not very useful. It does not communicate people's actual experience very well. To say "Seek the 'I'--find out 'Who' the 'I' is" is not very meaningful, because today people do not tend to approach the "problem" of consciousness via the mental structure assumed by that question. But everyone is dealing with activity, with process, movement. Therefore, what is called "the ego" in the traditions is today more appropriately and conclusively re-cognized to be an activity. And understanding is that re-cognition, that direct seeing of the fundamental and always present activity that is suffering, ignorance, distraction, motivation, and dilemma. When this activity is thus known again, there is spontaneous and unqualified Enjoyment of What it excludes--That Which is always already the case, always already there.
Since you are all presently existing, you cannot simply and naively embrace the fixtures that you have inherited. There must be conscious re-cognition of your present condition. Therefore, the old concepts and methods are not necessarily useful, even though they may be pleasant and consoling. There must be an absolute penetration of the form of life. Thus, it must be approached within the living, present structure in which it is suffered and entertained.
QUESTIONER: On this basis, how does formal meditation stand? You do not seem to think that formal meditation has much benefit.
AVATAR ADI DA SAMRAJ: If you understand what you call your "formal meditation", that understanding is meditation. The understanding of your activity is meditation. If you have an inclination to do some particular kind of sitting, concentrating, Yogic method, whatever, all of that is an activity that you are already tending to do. The point is not whether to do that or not. The point is the understanding of that entire ordinary motivation, the process in this moment that is producing this particular tendency that is "formal meditation". Intelligence is the fundamental meditation. The living consciousness is itself meditation. The usual individual is always already seeking, so it is not a matter of doing or not doing some particular kind of motivated search. One is always already seeking, whether at this moment one is doing it in the form of a conventional Yogic technique, or in the next moment one is doing it in the form of a sly glance at somebody passing on the street. You are always already doing it, so the point is not whether you should do a particular form of it or not. There is simply and always the process of your own action. When there is the engagement of action by Real, unmotivated intelligence, understanding begins to develop as a spontaneous, Real process in consciousness. As this process of intelligence matures, it tends to appear to become more formal, so that one actually sits down and intentionally meditates for a half hour, an hour, or even longer periods. Thus, one may appear to everyone else to be doing motivated (or remedial) meditation. But that is not in fact what one is doing. One is living the Conscious intelligence. It is just that, from a practical point of view, if the body is relaxed, sitting in a natural pose in which its fluids and energies can move freely, such is an appropriate manner in which to enjoy the critical activity of Real intelligence. Even so, the same intelligence can be active under any conditions, whether formal or random and circumstantial. There is simply the endless return to this re-cognition of your own activity. Your gathering with others of My devotees, your conversation together, your devotional and cultural life together, the reading and study you do, your life with one another, everything you are doing, constantly reawakens this re-cognition in some form or other, through crises, endurance of the resistance that is your suffering, and so on. As you pass through ordinary life in this manner, and you see this same quality, always this same disturbance--that seeing, that understanding, which is to exist no longer trapped in the unconscious process of action, is meditation. And such meditation is the necessary foundation of all true Spiritual activity, the life of Truth.
The form that arises in the living consciousness at any moment is the avoidance of relationship. It is the obstruction. The entire quality that arises in the living consciousness, which appears as forms of bodily sensation, emotion, thought, the entire spontaneous event of waking, dreaming, and deep sleep, is, in itself, in the case of the usual man or woman, the avoidance of relationship. Whatever arises is a manifestation of this same process. Once you begin to re-cognize it, once you catch the little pieces of it that are prominent, then you begin to see yourself fully. Understanding begins in that manner, in very practical observation, in the real observation of something that is obviously and practically a hindrance, an avoidance of the living condition of relationship. When real observation of that kind has begun in you, this intelligence that is understanding has a practical basis. To that degree, you are able to respond with the intelligence of understanding to the events that arise for you. The more there is of this re-cognition, of this practical re-cognition, the more understanding has become your intelligence. At the point when you really begin to see the pervasive strategy of your life, when you really begin to understand the egoic structure of your suffering, at that point the practice of self-Enquiry becomes a natural extension of your conscious awareness (if self-Enquiry, rather than some other form of by Me given counter-egoic practice, is your appropriate practice in Satsang with Me). And, in that case, self-Enquiry will be used by you in even a very formal and consistent manner, but its right use, in any moment, is, necessarily, rooted in understanding. Genuine self-Enquiry (in the only-by-Me revealed and given form "Avoiding relationship?") is utterly dependent on prior (and really present-time) understanding. Without present-time understanding, self-Enquiry is like any other thought--a mere question in the mind, and a form of stress in the head. In that case, self-Enquiry is merely another preference, another strategy. Therefore, right self-Enquiry requires real understanding, and real understanding depends on Satsang with Me (or My Divine Blessing Company, and all the conditions I generate in one who lives in devotional Communion with Me).
People do in fact tend to use self-Enquiry (in the form "Avoiding relationship?") as a "method". They may read about it, or they may even have begun to engage themselves in the preliminary stages of life in My Company, and they begin to "meditate" by using this self-Enquiry or some other form of looking at themselves. But in such cases, self-Enquiry is always used in the spirit of method and seeking. Everything tends to become the search, until "radical" understanding, or Real intelligence, is alive. But even though such people are going on with all of that, if they are involved in the conditions of practice in My Company, everything will eventually break down, if only a person has the endurance for it, or the need for it, the looseness for it, or only the inability to go out and play the egoic game again, whatever it is. Some such inner quality must keep a person in place, so this work can take hold. And the supreme, or most potent, inner quality is faith in the Guru, devotion to the Guru, and surrender to the Guru.
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