#1617 - Saturday, November 15, 2003
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Nondual Highlights Issue #1617 Saturday, November 15, 2003 Editor: Mark
Question: I want to go on a yatra to some sacred places.
It is better to just sit where you are and ask yourself "Who am I?" Most of these sacred places are sacred because there your mind is focused on the saint who is related to it, like Buddha in Bodh Gaya. This focus benefits you by strengthening your decision, not the place itself. Most people who live in Bodh Gaya or Tiruvannamalai are not affected, but those who go there focused on the saints and teachings of these places are benefited.
Find where the "I" rises. There is no better education for only this brings you to no past object, but to your Self. "Who am I?" finishes your relationship with time and in this timelessness you know who you are. Go to the sacred places, but the main purpose must be to know who you are. After inquiry, the two places I usually recommend for a yatra are Arunachala who is Shiva and also my Guru's Guru, and the Ganga, who is the Divine Mother. By drinking her water you will remove all your physical problems and diseases. She is a heavenly nectar, and therefore, Ganga is worshipped. If you keep her in your room it is quite enough to purify the atmosphere of the whole room. This is why we keep containers of Ganga in our houses and this water will stay unpolluted for one hundred years. Also, when people are dying a tablespoon of Ganga is place on their tongue and then they are not reborn if it is the last sip of water that they have.
You can go to the source of the Ganga, Gangotri, and there you will see that there is no river! Like this, go to the source of your mind which has become a river of so much samsara and time. Don't forget that going to Gangotri is symbolic of something that few people will understand.
- Excerpt from The Truth Is by Papaji
Be still and know yourself as the Truth you have been searching for.
Be still and let the inherent joy of that Truth capture your drama and destroy it in the bliss of consummation. Be still and let your life be lived by the purpose you were made for. Be still and receive the inherent truth of your heart.
Non-duality is the King of Views.
Resting the mind without flux is the King of Meditations.
Not choosing this or that is the King of Conduct.
When there is neither hope nor fear, this is the King of Results.
Since the fundamental ground (alaya) is unborn,
it can neither be obscured nor defiled.
Simply rest in that original unborn state and
without meditating or not-meditating, let appearances resolve back into Ultimate Reality (dharmata).
In being free of the extremes, one attains the King of Views.
Entering the vast and deep, one attains the King of Meditations.
Not making an effort, one attains the King of Conduct.
With non-seeking awareness, one attains the King of Results.
At first the yogi feels his mind to be turbulent like the upper course of a rushing river.
In the middle stage it becomes smooth like the broad Ganges.
In the end it is like the Ganges entering the ocean, meeting of son and mother.
- excerpt from Ganga-Mahamudra-upadesa of Sri Tilopa
You are already free. You are pure, uninterrupted consciousness. Somehow in the play of yourself, of consciousness itself, there has been a veiling of the inherent truth of freedom. Consciousness somehow hides from itself and pretends it is lost. In a certain moment of the play, there arises the desire to end the game of hiding and begin being eternally found. The desire to be found is the desire to awaken in the dream...
This legend relates to the descent of the river Ganga from the heavens into the earth.
The ruler of Ayodhya, King Sagar, an ancestor of Rama, of the solar race performed the Aswamedha Sacrifice 99 times, where each time, the horse that he sent around the earth, returned to his kingdom unchallenged. Indra the King of Gods, in an act of jealosy, kidnapped and hid the horse in the hermitage of Kapila Muni - when the 100th sacrifice was being performed.
The sixty thousand sons of Kapila came to the hermitage of Kapila in their search for the horse, and mistaking Kapila Muni to be the abductor, attacked him. An enraged Kapila Muni burnt the 60000 princes to ashes.
One of the grandchildren of King Sagar, hearing about the plight of his father and uncles, came in search of Kapila Muni and asked him for a solution to the problem, and was advised that the waters of the river Ganga would miraculously bring back the dead princes to life.
His descendant Bhagiratha, continued his efforts to bring the Ganga to the earth from the heavens to purify the ashes of his ancestors and bring them back to life. Bhagirata's prayers were rewarded and the Ganges rushed to the earth; however, the might of the river was too much for the earth to withstand. Fearing a catastrophe, Bhagirata prayed to Shiva, who held out his matted hair to catch the river as she descended, and thus softened her journey to the earth. The Ganga thus became an attribute of Shiva. This manifestation of Shiva is known as Gangaadhara.
Bhagiratha patiently led the river down to the sea from the Himalayas; however , being unable to locate the exact spot where the ashes lay, he requested Ganga to follow her own course. The Ganga, therefore in the region of Bengal, divided herself into a hundred mouths and formed the Ganges delta. One of these streams washed the ashes, and offered salvation to the souls of the departed. The island with which this incident is associated is referred to as Sagar Island, where a bathe at the confluence of the river and the sea is considered to be sacred on Makara Sankaranti.
You Are the unchanging Awareness in which all activities takes place.
To deny this is to suffer, to know this is Freedom.
It is not difficult to realize this because it is your True Nature.
Simply Inquire 'Who am I?' and Watch Carefully.
Do not make effort and do not stir a thought.
Look within, approach with all-devotion and stay as Heart.
Keep vigilant and you will see that nothing will arise.
This is the trick of how to keep the mind quiet
and how to win Freedom. This doesn't take time
because Freedom is always Here.
You simply have to watch: where does mind arise from?
Where does thought come from? What is the source of this thought?
Then you will see that you have always been Free
and that everything has been a dream."
- Papaji from The Truth Is
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