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Enquiry and Meditation

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  • medit8ionsociety
    While meditation in itself constitutes. a very powerful attack on ignorance, Swami Sivananda suggests that the spiritual aspirant should practise Vichar also.
    Message 1 of 5 , Mar 30, 2003
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      While meditation in itself constitutes. a very powerful attack on
      ignorance, Swami Sivananda suggests that the spiritual aspirant should
      practise Vichar also. Vichar is enquiry into the real nature of
      things. Vichara results in Viveka or discrimination between the real
      and the unreal. It helps the aspirant to sift the true from the false.
      Swamiji asserts that without cogitation, Truth cannot be known or
      realised. Vichara sharpens the intellect and leads to the discernment
      of the Truth that lies behind the phenomenal universe.
      How should the aspirant reflect? The Master shows the way: "Who am I?
      What is Brahman (God)? What is this Samsara (process of worldly life)?
      What is the goal of life? How to attain the goal? How to attain
      freedom from births and deaths? What is the Svarupa of Moksha
      (Essential nature of liberation)? Whence? Where? Whither? Thus should
      the aspirant of liberation ever enquire, seeking to achieve the
      purpose of life". The justification for this method of Vichara or
      enquiry is contained in the saying, "As you think, so you become". By
      constant reflection on the Reality behind the appearances, the seeker
      attains oneness with the Reality and becomes that Reality itself.

      Enquiry opens the aspirant's eyes to new vistas of knowledge. It leads
      him steadily to Truth. For instance, if the aspirant starts the "Who
      am I?" enquiry, he will soon find that he cannot equate himself with
      any one of his sense organs like the nose, the eyes or the ears,
      because even without one or more of these, he can live and life can
      pulsate in his veins. So, he is not the body. Nor is he the mind,
      because even during the unconscious and the deep sleep states, when
      the mind ceases to function, he exists and his heart throbs. Then,
      what is this 'I' in everybody? Swami Sivananda declares that the real
      'I' is none, else than Brahman or the Atman who is the motive force
      behind all existence. It is He who thinks through the mind, sees
      through the eyes, eats through the mouth, hears through the ears and
      so on He is the Witnessing Consciousness who dwells in all beings.
      When a person gets up from deep sleep and says, "I enjoyed a sound
      dreamless sleep", it is this Witnessing Consciousness which remembers
      the fact that the body and the mind rested in sound sleep. It cannot
      be otherwise. The mind which was virtually dead during the deep sleep
      state could . not itself have consciously enjoyed a sound slumber and
      remembered it. The enjoyer is the Atman. Swamiji repeatedly advises
      the spiritual seeker to identify himself with this Atman which is his
      real Self and not with his perishable body. Constant identification
      with the Atman or the Witnessing Consciousness in oneself is a
      shortcut to spiritual success. The aspirant who adopts this technique
      will soon rise above body consciousness.

      The secret of spirituality lies in realising one's essential nature.
      It is not becoming something outside of oneself. It is not as if man
      and God are separate and that man should go to a God who is external
      to him and merge in that God. No. God is already there, everywhere,
      Within us and outside of us. The body and the mind in which man is
      encased are mere illusions of an ignorant mind. God only is. All else
      is not. All else is only appearance. This appearance is made possible
      by the functioning of the mind. Meditation and enquiry enable the
      aspirant to feel, to realise that he is, after all, Brahman and not a
      bundle of body and mind. When divine wisdom dawns, the Sadhak realises
      his innermost Being. And being is Brahman.

      Man himself is God and the entirety of Sadhana (spiritual practices)
      is meant to enable man to realise his God-nature, to realise that the
      God he has been searching for is his own Self. Initially, Yoga Sadhana
      purifies the mind. Later on, the seeker uses this purified mind, to
      concentrate and meditate on the God within; and at the deepest point
      of meditation, the purified mind melts in the God within and is itself
      lost there, destroyed there. And only God remains. Being remains.
      God-consciousness remains. A telling analogy given in the Yoga texts
      is the dry twig used in kindling a fire, where the twig itself is
      ultimately consumed in the fire. The purified mind is like this twig.
      It helps to kindle the fire of God-consciousness within, and in the
      process, is itself destroyed in that fire. In Samadhi (superconscious
      state), the mind melts in Brahman as camphor melts in fire. The
      separate identity of the individual soul vanishes. Only
      Sat-Chit-Ananda (Existence- Consciousness-Bliss Absolute) prevails.

      This is an excerpt from the chapter titled PRACTICE OF MEDITATION from
      the book, What Does Swami Sivananda Teach? By Sri N.Ananthanarayanan
    • Jeff Belyea
      Bob - Thanks for this most tasty of meditation pastries to go with my morning cup of cinnamon hazelnut coffee. What a joyful and refreshing read. It s all so
      Message 2 of 5 , Mar 30, 2003
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        Bob -

        Thanks for this most tasty of meditation pastries
        to go with my morning cup of cinnamon hazelnut coffee.
        What a joyful and refreshing read. It's all so
        beautiful.

        Love and Namaste,

        Jeff


        --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, medit8ionsociety <
        no_reply@y...> wrote:
        > While meditation in itself constitutes. a very powerful attack on
        > ignorance, Swami Sivananda suggests that the spiritual aspirant should
        > practise Vichar also. Vichar is enquiry into the real nature of
        > things. Vichara results in Viveka or discrimination between the real
        > and the unreal. It helps the aspirant to sift the true from the false.
        > Swamiji asserts that without cogitation, Truth cannot be known or
        > realised. Vichara sharpens the intellect and leads to the discernment
        > of the Truth that lies behind the phenomenal universe.
        > How should the aspirant reflect? The Master shows the way: "Who am I?
        > What is Brahman (God)? What is this Samsara (process of worldly life)?
        > What is the goal of life? How to attain the goal? How to attain
        > freedom from births and deaths? What is the Svarupa of Moksha
        > (Essential nature of liberation)? Whence? Where? Whither? Thus should
        > the aspirant of liberation ever enquire, seeking to achieve the
        > purpose of life". The justification for this method of Vichara or
        > enquiry is contained in the saying, "As you think, so you become". By
        > constant reflection on the Reality behind the appearances, the seeker
        > attains oneness with the Reality and becomes that Reality itself.
        >
        > Enquiry opens the aspirant's eyes to new vistas of knowledge. It leads
        > him steadily to Truth. For instance, if the aspirant starts the "Who
        > am I?" enquiry, he will soon find that he cannot equate himself with
        > any one of his sense organs like the nose, the eyes or the ears,
        > because even without one or more of these, he can live and life can
        > pulsate in his veins. So, he is not the body. Nor is he the mind,
        > because even during the unconscious and the deep sleep states, when
        > the mind ceases to function, he exists and his heart throbs. Then,
        > what is this 'I' in everybody? Swami Sivananda declares that the real
        > 'I' is none, else than Brahman or the Atman who is the motive force
        > behind all existence. It is He who thinks through the mind, sees
        > through the eyes, eats through the mouth, hears through the ears and
        > so on He is the Witnessing Consciousness who dwells in all beings.
        > When a person gets up from deep sleep and says, "I enjoyed a sound
        > dreamless sleep", it is this Witnessing Consciousness which remembers
        > the fact that the body and the mind rested in sound sleep. It cannot
        > be otherwise. The mind which was virtually dead during the deep sleep
        > state could . not itself have consciously enjoyed a sound slumber and
        > remembered it. The enjoyer is the Atman. Swamiji repeatedly advises
        > the spiritual seeker to identify himself with this Atman which is his
        > real Self and not with his perishable body. Constant identification
        > with the Atman or the Witnessing Consciousness in oneself is a
        > shortcut to spiritual success. The aspirant who adopts this technique
        > will soon rise above body consciousness.
        >
        > The secret of spirituality lies in realising one's essential nature.
        > It is not becoming something outside of oneself. It is not as if man
        > and God are separate and that man should go to a God who is external
        > to him and merge in that God. No. God is already there, everywhere,
        > Within us and outside of us. The body and the mind in which man is
        > encased are mere illusions of an ignorant mind. God only is. All else
        > is not. All else is only appearance. This appearance is made possible
        > by the functioning of the mind. Meditation and enquiry enable the
        > aspirant to feel, to realise that he is, after all, Brahman and not a
        > bundle of body and mind. When divine wisdom dawns, the Sadhak realises
        > his innermost Being. And being is Brahman.
        >
        > Man himself is God and the entirety of Sadhana (spiritual practices)
        > is meant to enable man to realise his God-nature, to realise that the
        > God he has been searching for is his own Self. Initially, Yoga Sadhana
        > purifies the mind. Later on, the seeker uses this purified mind, to
        > concentrate and meditate on the God within; and at the deepest point
        > of meditation, the purified mind melts in the God within and is itself
        > lost there, destroyed there. And only God remains. Being remains.
        > God-consciousness remains. A telling analogy given in the Yoga texts
        > is the dry twig used in kindling a fire, where the twig itself is
        > ultimately consumed in the fire. The purified mind is like this twig.
        > It helps to kindle the fire of God-consciousness within, and in the
        > process, is itself destroyed in that fire. In Samadhi (superconscious
        > state), the mind melts in Brahman as camphor melts in fire. The
        > separate identity of the individual soul vanishes. Only
        > Sat-Chit-Ananda (Existence- Consciousness-Bliss Absolute) prevails.
        >
        > This is an excerpt from the chapter titled PRACTICE OF MEDITATION from
        > the book, What Does Swami Sivananda Teach? By Sri N.Ananthanarayanan
      • devianandi
        there was a time when you i did not exist miraculously out of nowhere something appeared and began to evolve and grow around this somethig we call it
        Message 3 of 5 , Mar 30, 2003
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          there was a time when you i did not exist
          miraculously out of nowhere something appeared
          and began to evolve and grow around this somethig
          we call it consciousness
          first it became a spark of the most subtle kind of energy
          and then, it had the opposite experience of solid stone
          this something that appearred by the force of nature
          continued to evolve through mineral plant animal and then human
          each experience having its equal and opposite experience.
          this something finally had the consciousness fit for human form
          the next step in the process was to become divine
          by realizing the God but what happended is the that human
          consciousness got caught up in the beauty of the world
          and kept getting deeper and deeper into experience until it became
          tired of all experiences on the outside and started to experience
          the inner worlds.heavens and hells for example.
          then after hundreds and thousands maybe millions of years more
          someone comes along and says that theres one more step for you to go
          to finish this journey of not knowing the complete Truth about your
          self and the world we live in
          That somehing is now moving into a life of divinity. That something
          goes deeper and deeper into inner creation by spiritual practice, the
          thoughts progressivly get slower and slower and more and more refined
          until that last thought is gone and that something realizes its now
          Eternal Nature Sat-Chit-Ananda....


          point being...the enlightenend ones don't have any impressions of
          their own, their consciousness is free and clear to be able to live
          Sat-Chit- Ananda...they live and react to the impressions that
          *others* have...

          When this eteranl nature is realized all impressions that had to be
          experienced and balanced and cancelled out, at liberation from
          ignorance, never comes up again. That Divine Nature has nothing of
          its own...When you see that Divine Nature in a human form, everything
          It does is because of spontaneous and pure and perfect reactions to
          whatever comes in front of it....
        • G
          ... aspirant should ... real ... false. ... or ... discernment ... Who am I? ... worldly life)? ... Moksha ... Thus should ... become . By ... seeker ...
          Message 4 of 5 , Mar 30, 2003
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            --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
            medit8ionsociety <no_reply@y...> wrote:
            > While meditation in itself constitutes. a very powerful attack on
            > ignorance, Swami Sivananda suggests that the spiritual
            aspirant should
            > practise Vichar also. Vichar is enquiry into the real nature of
            > things. Vichara results in Viveka or discrimination between the
            real
            > and the unreal. It helps the aspirant to sift the true from the
            false.
            > Swamiji asserts that without cogitation, Truth cannot be known
            or
            > realised. Vichara sharpens the intellect and leads to the
            discernment
            > of the Truth that lies behind the phenomenal universe.
            > How should the aspirant reflect? The Master shows the way:
            "Who am I?
            > What is Brahman (God)? What is this Samsara (process of
            worldly life)?
            > What is the goal of life? How to attain the goal? How to attain
            > freedom from births and deaths? What is the Svarupa of
            Moksha
            > (Essential nature of liberation)? Whence? Where? Whither?
            Thus should
            > the aspirant of liberation ever enquire, seeking to achieve the
            > purpose of life". The justification for this method of Vichara or
            > enquiry is contained in the saying, "As you think, so you
            become". By
            > constant reflection on the Reality behind the appearances, the
            seeker
            > attains oneness with the Reality and becomes that Reality
            itself.
            >
            > Enquiry opens the aspirant's eyes to new vistas of knowledge.
            It leads
            > him steadily to Truth. For instance, if the aspirant starts the
            "Who
            > am I?" enquiry, he will soon find that he cannot equate himself
            with
            > any one of his sense organs like the nose, the eyes or the
            ears,
            > because even without one or more of these, he can live and life
            can
            > pulsate in his veins. So, he is not the body. Nor is he the mind,
            > because even during the unconscious and the deep sleep
            states, when
            > the mind ceases to function, he exists and his heart throbs.
            Then,
            > what is this 'I' in everybody? Swami Sivananda declares that
            the real
            > 'I' is none, else than Brahman or the Atman who is the motive
            force
            > behind all existence. It is He who thinks through the mind,
            sees
            > through the eyes, eats through the mouth, hears through the
            ears and
            > so on He is the Witnessing Consciousness who dwells in all
            beings.
            > When a person gets up from deep sleep and says, "I enjoyed a
            sound
            > dreamless sleep", it is this Witnessing Consciousness which
            remembers
            > the fact that the body and the mind rested in sound sleep. It
            cannot
            > be otherwise. The mind which was virtually dead during the
            deep sleep
            > state could . not itself have consciously enjoyed a sound
            slumber and
            > remembered it. The enjoyer is the Atman. Swamiji repeatedly
            advises
            > the spiritual seeker to identify himself with this Atman which is
            his
            > real Self and not with his perishable body. Constant
            identification
            > with the Atman or the Witnessing Consciousness in oneself is
            a
            > shortcut to spiritual success. The aspirant who adopts this
            technique
            > will soon rise above body consciousness.
            >
            > The secret of spirituality lies in realising one's essential
            nature.
            > It is not becoming something outside of oneself. It is not as if
            man
            > and God are separate and that man should go to a God who is
            external
            > to him and merge in that God. No. God is already there,
            everywhere,
            > Within us and outside of us. The body and the mind in which
            man is
            > encased are mere illusions of an ignorant mind. God only is.
            All else
            > is not. All else is only appearance. This appearance is made
            possible
            > by the functioning of the mind. Meditation and enquiry enable
            the
            > aspirant to feel, to realise that he is, after all, Brahman and not
            a
            > bundle of body and mind. When divine wisdom dawns, the
            Sadhak realises
            > his innermost Being. And being is Brahman.
            >
            > Man himself is God and the entirety of Sadhana (spiritual
            practices)
            > is meant to enable man to realise his God-nature, to realise
            that the
            > God he has been searching for is his own Self. Initially, Yoga
            Sadhana
            > purifies the mind. Later on, the seeker uses this purified mind,
            to
            > concentrate and meditate on the God within; and at the
            deepest point
            > of meditation, the purified mind melts in the God within and is
            itself
            > lost there, destroyed there. And only God remains. Being
            remains.
            > God-consciousness remains. A telling analogy given in the
            Yoga texts
            > is the dry twig used in kindling a fire, where the twig itself is
            > ultimately consumed in the fire. The purified mind is like this
            twig.
            > It helps to kindle the fire of God-consciousness within, and in
            the
            > process, is itself destroyed in that fire. In Samadhi
            (superconscious
            > state), the mind melts in Brahman as camphor melts in fire.
            The
            > separate identity of the individual soul vanishes. Only
            > Sat-Chit-Ananda (Existence- Consciousness-Bliss Absolute)
            prevails.
            >
            > This is an excerpt from the chapter titled PRACTICE OF
            MEDITATION from
            > the book, What Does Swami Sivananda Teach? By Sri
            N.Ananthanarayanan


            G: yes one begins by relaxing ,witnessing then being in the
            moment... many times a progression takes place.... naturally
            and spontaneously ... when settled enough one begins to
            question these rising thoughts which run our world and
            emotions.... where do they come from .... what sustains them
            .... are they in fact who and what i am.... what am i .... so
            goes the progression .... until one is drawn into a vastness in
            which all illusion falls away.... or a Nirvikalpa wherein all is
            stripped away in one instant ....

            it matters not which avenue .... whether the falling away or being
            stripped bare... there are no supports left that remain...

            supports of identity no longer need to remain in place ....
            simply Awareness remains ... a Peace IS.... life IS..... mind is
            based in emptiness.... all that is seen IS but is empty in
            nature.... Vast .... ONE...... the play of separation is mind alone
            for ultimately all is simply the ONE beyond any divisionary
            play........

            within the individual play the ONE may either be Paramount in
            conscious awareness or be hidden under the layers of mind and
            it's distinctions.... some see .... some are blind ... all has the
            same One at its core.... that ONE is Life....
          • mlcanow
            ... is ... not ... so ... in ... is ... being ... mind is ... alone ... has the ... Yes, and this I am, from ever and for ever. No relevant or irelevant,
            Message 5 of 5 , Mar 30, 2003
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              --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "G"
              <crystalkundalini@h...> wrote:
              > --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
              > medit8ionsociety <no_reply@y...> wrote:
              > > While meditation in itself constitutes. a very powerful attack on
              > > ignorance, Swami Sivananda suggests that the spiritual
              > aspirant should
              > > practise Vichar also. Vichar is enquiry into the real nature of
              > > things. Vichara results in Viveka or discrimination between the
              > real
              > > and the unreal. It helps the aspirant to sift the true from the
              > false.
              > > Swamiji asserts that without cogitation, Truth cannot be known
              > or
              > > realised. Vichara sharpens the intellect and leads to the
              > discernment
              > > of the Truth that lies behind the phenomenal universe.
              > > How should the aspirant reflect? The Master shows the way:
              > "Who am I?
              > > What is Brahman (God)? What is this Samsara (process of
              > worldly life)?
              > > What is the goal of life? How to attain the goal? How to attain
              > > freedom from births and deaths? What is the Svarupa of
              > Moksha
              > > (Essential nature of liberation)? Whence? Where? Whither?
              > Thus should
              > > the aspirant of liberation ever enquire, seeking to achieve the
              > > purpose of life". The justification for this method of Vichara or
              > > enquiry is contained in the saying, "As you think, so you
              > become". By
              > > constant reflection on the Reality behind the appearances, the
              > seeker
              > > attains oneness with the Reality and becomes that Reality
              > itself.
              > >
              > > Enquiry opens the aspirant's eyes to new vistas of knowledge.
              > It leads
              > > him steadily to Truth. For instance, if the aspirant starts the
              > "Who
              > > am I?" enquiry, he will soon find that he cannot equate himself
              > with
              > > any one of his sense organs like the nose, the eyes or the
              > ears,
              > > because even without one or more of these, he can live and life
              > can
              > > pulsate in his veins. So, he is not the body. Nor is he the mind,
              > > because even during the unconscious and the deep sleep
              > states, when
              > > the mind ceases to function, he exists and his heart throbs.
              > Then,
              > > what is this 'I' in everybody? Swami Sivananda declares that
              > the real
              > > 'I' is none, else than Brahman or the Atman who is the motive
              > force
              > > behind all existence. It is He who thinks through the mind,
              > sees
              > > through the eyes, eats through the mouth, hears through the
              > ears and
              > > so on He is the Witnessing Consciousness who dwells in all
              > beings.
              > > When a person gets up from deep sleep and says, "I enjoyed a
              > sound
              > > dreamless sleep", it is this Witnessing Consciousness which
              > remembers
              > > the fact that the body and the mind rested in sound sleep. It
              > cannot
              > > be otherwise. The mind which was virtually dead during the
              > deep sleep
              > > state could . not itself have consciously enjoyed a sound
              > slumber and
              > > remembered it. The enjoyer is the Atman. Swamiji repeatedly
              > advises
              > > the spiritual seeker to identify himself with this Atman which
              is
              > his
              > > real Self and not with his perishable body. Constant
              > identification
              > > with the Atman or the Witnessing Consciousness in oneself is
              > a
              > > shortcut to spiritual success. The aspirant who adopts this
              > technique
              > > will soon rise above body consciousness.
              > >
              > > The secret of spirituality lies in realising one's essential
              > nature.
              > > It is not becoming something outside of oneself. It is not as if
              > man
              > > and God are separate and that man should go to a God who is
              > external
              > > to him and merge in that God. No. God is already there,
              > everywhere,
              > > Within us and outside of us. The body and the mind in which
              > man is
              > > encased are mere illusions of an ignorant mind. God only is.
              > All else
              > > is not. All else is only appearance. This appearance is made
              > possible
              > > by the functioning of the mind. Meditation and enquiry enable
              > the
              > > aspirant to feel, to realise that he is, after all, Brahman and
              not
              > a
              > > bundle of body and mind. When divine wisdom dawns, the
              > Sadhak realises
              > > his innermost Being. And being is Brahman.
              > >
              > > Man himself is God and the entirety of Sadhana (spiritual
              > practices)
              > > is meant to enable man to realise his God-nature, to realise
              > that the
              > > God he has been searching for is his own Self. Initially, Yoga
              > Sadhana
              > > purifies the mind. Later on, the seeker uses this purified mind,
              > to
              > > concentrate and meditate on the God within; and at the
              > deepest point
              > > of meditation, the purified mind melts in the God within and is
              > itself
              > > lost there, destroyed there. And only God remains. Being
              > remains.
              > > God-consciousness remains. A telling analogy given in the
              > Yoga texts
              > > is the dry twig used in kindling a fire, where the twig itself is
              > > ultimately consumed in the fire. The purified mind is like this
              > twig.
              > > It helps to kindle the fire of God-consciousness within, and in
              > the
              > > process, is itself destroyed in that fire. In Samadhi
              > (superconscious
              > > state), the mind melts in Brahman as camphor melts in fire.
              > The
              > > separate identity of the individual soul vanishes. Only
              > > Sat-Chit-Ananda (Existence- Consciousness-Bliss Absolute)
              > prevails.
              > >
              > > This is an excerpt from the chapter titled PRACTICE OF
              > MEDITATION from
              > > the book, What Does Swami Sivananda Teach? By Sri
              > N.Ananthanarayanan
              >
              >
              > G: yes one begins by relaxing ,witnessing then being in the
              > moment... many times a progression takes place.... naturally
              > and spontaneously ... when settled enough one begins to
              > question these rising thoughts which run our world and
              > emotions.... where do they come from .... what sustains them
              > .... are they in fact who and what i am.... what am i ....
              so
              > goes the progression .... until one is drawn into a vastness
              in
              > which all illusion falls away.... or a Nirvikalpa wherein all
              is
              > stripped away in one instant ....
              >
              > it matters not which avenue .... whether the falling away or
              being
              > stripped bare... there are no supports left that remain...
              >
              > supports of identity no longer need to remain in place ....
              > simply Awareness remains ... a Peace IS.... life IS.....
              mind is
              > based in emptiness.... all that is seen IS but is empty in
              > nature.... Vast .... ONE...... the play of separation is mind
              alone
              > for ultimately all is simply the ONE beyond any divisionary
              > play........
              >
              > within the individual play the ONE may either be Paramount in
              > conscious awareness or be hidden under the layers of mind and
              > it's distinctions.... some see .... some are blind ... all
              has the
              > same One at its core.... that ONE is Life....

              Yes, and this I am, from ever and for ever. No relevant or
              irelevant, personal or impersonal history here. No time, no space,
              but relatively. If I do not exist....nothing can ever exist.
              Sat-Chit-Anand.....Self, Consciousness, Joy
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