Monday is AUM-day; in search of meditation.
We have been exploring the writings of Gurudev, through his book 'Meditation & Life'. All the instructive chapters have been rendered and now there follows twelve 'chapters' which are designed for contemplation both before and after each meditation session. Please note that the actual writings of Gurudev are quite lengthy, so only the gist and key points are going to be given here. You are again encouraged to seek out a copy of the book to keep to hand as it is an inspiration and with each reading something more will drop into place.
Ch. 37; Inner Silence
Everywhere in the world we find 'masters', folk of high intelligence who hold incredible information and have great erudition. They are often heralded and revered in their respective fields of learning. They can be the role models and prompters of aspiration. However, unless they have cultivated an inner silence, a place of deep contemplation and balance, the can land up being bitter, twisted, defensive, secretive… with great knowledge, there is a tendency to come great power and we all know what that can do. It requires an enormous open-hearted and clear-minded character to withstand the challenge of such power.
Within the spiritual realm which we are discussing here, it is known that there are many 'masters', but here are a few who truly stand out and the difference is that imperceptible quality, inner silence. Yoga Vashishta declares, 'one may reflect long upon the words of the scriptures; for long thereafter, also, one may teach others; but without the inner silence arising our of total vaasana destruction, the Supreme state cannot be experienced'. From this we understand that until the ego is removed from the equation, a teacher remains a simple teacher no matter how good, and not a true master at all. Gurudev writes. 'generally we are apt to take an eloquent or deep-thinking philosopher as an ideal person - but in fact, he may not be an ideal human being. The mystical experience of the transcendental is a thing apart. To reach that experience requires more than study, or the efforts of training, discipline and correct application. It requires the final rediscovery and, therefore, a first-hand experience of one's own Real Nature, which is ever Divine and most auspicious.'
We are currently blinded to our Divine Nature by our BMI identification. In pursuit of correcting this wrong vision, we are said to be living spiritually. The 'cherry' on top of all is the Self Realisation of that nature. The processes which we undertake in living spiritually are called are saadhana and the ultimate saadhana is meditation.
As meditation advances, the seeker may find there some 'rewards' in the form of visions, sounds, smells, touches and tastes - all five of the senses will still play out in the field of meditation. Still further along, there may be sensations of glowing rings - or complete darkness. Such things are the most subtle aspects of our still-material personality arising like hurdles before us. All these things, no matter how 'spiritual' they may appear or feel, are still nothing but part of the grand illusion and are to be rejected 'post haste'!
Any such experiences are but thrashings and thrustings of a dying mind. As long as we have a sense of perception - no matter how subtle - we remain bound to the world of objects. Nothing of 'this' can be smuggled across the borders into 'That'. Transcendence means exactly that - moving beyond everything else. It takes courage founded in trust and faith. That said, once transcendence is achieved, unless the body is departed as well, one is left with the world of objects also. Now, though, one looks upon it as if from an aeroplane. It is there, but we are not walking upon it. The transcended master is one who can operate within the world, but is not of it. Taking such flight is a rarefied thing. Gaining that true silence of being is not for the faint of heart. Knowing that there is much to uplift us as we work towards that possible flight and that the pursuit of the path can only benefit us as long as we are of the world of objects, makes the pursuit worthwhile. If it culminates in transcendence, so much the better.
Allow meditation to take charge of you. Surrender. Daily strive. Waste no time, yet hasten slowly.