“The ignorant regard this samsara as real. In reality it does not exist at all. What does exist after this appearance is rejected, is in fact the truth. But it has no name! Like a lion, break away from this cage of ignorance and rise above everything. To abandon the notions of ‘I’ and ‘mine’ is liberation; nothing else is liberation. Liberation is peace. Liberation is extinction of all conditioning. Liberation is freedom from every kind of physical, psychological and psychic distress.”
“Remain as the pure consciousness. Drink the essence of self-knowledge. Rest free from all doubts in the garden of nirvana or liberation. Why do you, O men, roam this forest of samsara which is devoid of any essence? O deluded people, do not run after this mirage known as hope and desire for happiness in this world. Pleasures are pain in disguise. Why do you not see that they are sources of your own destruction? Do not be deluded by this illusory world-appearance. Behold this delusion and enquire into it. You will then rest in your own Self which is beginningless and endless.”
The secret is this: You are what you consider yourself to be.
Full realization of this secret brings about salvation, namely liberation par excellence.
See that what and who you think you are is what you have continuously accepted yourself to be. It is through repetitive acceptance that you form an idea of your identity and status. Even the hardest fact, that you are a human being, is considered a fact because we have accepted it to be a fact and a hard one: We have accepted that we are what we are told to be; we have accepted that what people say counts; we have accepted that we don’t know the truth; we have accepted that there was a history, to us and to the world, the the contents of memory is about us, that there are others who know better, that we are fundamentally ignorant and sinner, that religion sucks and science knows better, or science sucks and religion knows better, etc; but all of these have the status and importance that we give to them; it is us who make them what they are and accept them to be our masters or our slaves. We can strongly believe that the earth is flat and get away with it living a life as if the earth were truly flat.
Every fact before us is a fact precisely because we have accepted it to be a fact, and we have accepted that there is such a thing as fact, something existing independently of what we think and accept; but this itself is something we have accepted!
If we have become what we are because we have thought ourselves to be that by continuous acceptance under that pressure of mass belief which is itself something accepted by us to represent a reality to which to conform, then the only way back to our original state of absolute liberation is a continuous repetition of the opposite propositions. The secret is that by doing so we actually become that, since we have become what we are now precisely because we have kept telling ourselves that we are it.
Tell yourself day and night: I am absolutely free and full of bliss; I am not bound or touched by anything. I am pure and perfect. There is nothing that I desire or hate, for I am the supreme witness of all things. The world and the mind are only the objects of my perception; none of them has any affect on me, no more that a light shining on filth can itself become filthy. You are that light, shining on all things and making them appear, yet itself is not touched or bound by anything.
Repeat and repeat: I am pure, perfect, and free and full of bliss.
After a while you will see the miracle of this secret: You will become what you have kept telling yourself to be. Strong conviction is the sole creative force. If you keep believing yourself to be something without doubt or interruption, then your body and environment will have to change themselves so to conform to this new condition, and they do so by their own accord; you only need to do the believing. Thus, believe yourself to be free and perfect even by pretending yourself to be so; pretend so much and so consistently that your mind and body will accept it at last; then you will see that you are actually perfect and free, pure and blissful. At the end, and this is promised, you will realize that you are always free, pure, and perfect all along and from the very beginning; you were only told otherwise all your life and you had simply accepted it as you real condition. That you can become actually free and perfect is not because pretending can create a reality; your freedom and perfection is the reality and the only reality; your believing and pretending is only a washing out the lies and impurities that we had accepted as belonging to us. We have also accepted that change is difficult; if you want to change, then just change; just be the new person, think like him/her; act and react like him/her; go to be, wake up, and walk like him/her; just be what you want to be. How do you think people change? They learn to accept the new paradigms. Practice doesn’t make perfect; it makes confident. The reason we are good at something is because we have done it so many times that we can’t see ourselves screwing it up; we have accepted that if we have succeeded a thousand times, then we can succeed one more time, and this makes us succeed. If I meditate better now than a year ago it is because I see and accept myself as a person with a year of experience in meditation, with the confidence of an experienced person. Give this a shot: Next time you sit to meditate consider yourself to be sage who has meditated for years; approach meditation as if it is nothing to you, as if it is the most natural thing, like an instinct; just sit and be calm without even thinking or trying to be calm. Just be that sage or saint; pretend to have that kind of confidence; don’t even allow in the thought that you may fail or succeed; do you ever think of failure to change the gear after you have driven your car for years! No; thus think of meditation the same; pretend to be that meditating sage and see how your new confidence, though induced, actually makes your meditation much better. Why not have the full acceptance and confidence from the very beginning. Remember that what is is what we have accepted to be.
Repeat and repeat: I am pure, perfect, and free and full of bliss.
I am not something that exists. I am not something that is known, nor the knower of anything. I am not someone who can be free, nor someone who can be happy. Instead, I am the very condition for the possibility of the existent, the known and the knower, the free and the happy. To be more precise:
I am existence itself. I am knowledge itself. I am freedom itself. I am happiness itself.
As knowledge of a defect does not make the knowledge itself defective, I too am untouched by all defects and imperfections though I may witness them day and night.
As knowledge of misery does not make the knowledge itself miserable, I too am free from all misery and lowliness though I may witness them day and night.
As knowledge of bondage does not entail the bondage of knowledge, I too am devoid of all bondage and ignorance though I may see nothing but them.
As knowledge of mortality does not make the knowledge itself mortal, I too am immune to all death and decay though I may witness them day and night.
I am perfect and pure, wise and immortal, free and happy, blessed and beautiful, for I am forever untouched by all that is unlike my nature: I am the Transcendental Witness.
I am the “I” in all of you. Remind yourself this truth: If you are bounded and miserable it is only because you say so.
What are the things that characterize human life? What is the wish of all men and women?
There are three things that characterize human, three objects for which all men and women strive and which have shaped the course of human civilization:
1) Knowledge, in the sense of an answer to the questions “Who am I? Where did I come from? Where am I going?”
2) Immortality, eternal existence.
3) Happiness, a state in which all needs and wants are satisfied.
All human attempts and accomplishments have a motivation in one or more of the above. To make it short, the three ideals of human life constitute a three-fold structure, a trinity: Existence-Knowledge-Bliss.
The intensity by which man strives for the attainment of these goals is suggestive: Man is running after the very things he has never fully tasted, things not even possible to attain! How can man long for something he has never had? Or has he not?! He chases these as if they were taken away from him, as if he knows them very well and knows that they belong to him, for he never ceases the chase even after thousands of failures. Without all three of them, existence-knowledge-bliss, man is still lacking something; he is not yet fully satisfied. He must have Existence-Knowledge-Bliss together and at once.
What is ironic is that Advaita Vedanta of Hinduism, one of the oldest metaphysical systems, is found on a principle known as the Supreme Identity. It states that the true Self of man is one and the same as the essence of the ultimate reality called Brahman: Man is essentially divine. The supreme reality is indivisible, unmanifest, impersonal, infinite, and absolute; it has no attributes and cannot be defined. However, the seers, those mystics who have directly perceived it, say that this Brahman, the ultimate truth which is the essence of man, is of the nature of Satchidananda. Satchidananda, the best and the only word in Hinduism that characterizes the divine essence which is man’s original state, is a Sanskrit compound that means exactly this: Existence-Knowledge-Bliss.
It is important to understand that Advaita Vedanta in particular, and Hinduism in general, is not a religion in the limited sense of the word used in the West as faith-based dogma. It is neither some speculative philosophy developed based on prejudice. Advaita Vedanta is a scientific-metaphysical system founded upon empirical evidence and direct perception of the philosophers; its methods and findings enjoy a mathematical precision and an intellectual intuition still too lofty and abstract for the western scientist to grasp and digest. The penetrating intelligence of its philosophers was never seen before and not seen ever after. The goals that western sciences and philosophies never attained as regard the answers to human existential questions, was directly perceived and known by the Indian philosophers of more than 2000 years ago. What all men and women of all ages have sought is known by the Advaitist to be already in man’s possession, all answers dwelling in man’s own heart. All answers are expressed in one phrase: