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Go Back   Spiritual Forums > Religions & Faiths > Hinduism

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  #1  
Old 15-01-2018, 07:34 PM
tryambakbaba_ka_chela tryambakbaba_ka_chela is offline
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Who Am I?

I was reflecting on my "Who am I?" meditation, which I somewhat skeptically undertook after re-re-re-reading Ramana Maharshi's collected works of his teachings and "Be as you are".

So I started with the question "Who am I?" in all earnestness, without really understanding what it meant and entailed. And for a while, every thought that arose, I'd respond to with "Who am I?"...

With time, I found that the "Who am I?" question doesn't find any answer. There is only silence. And then I noticed that the mind starts to settle in the heart center or the point ~ 18-24" above the crown point.

And further more, I sensed a presence in the heart center. An "emptiness" that was luminous. Whenever the mind tried to "see" what it was, the mind just kept getting shot out of it, like if you try to take two like poles of a magnet towards each other, one (which is held more tightly shoots the other out). Eventually the mind just becomes still. I understood that trying to "see" with the mind, what that Presence is, was an exercise in futility (and ended up giving me a headache). So, I just let the mind be, and accepted that the center in the heart is unknowable (in the way one's mind knows it - I cannot discern shape, form, etc of it). It was totally empty. Yet it was luminosity itself.

Eventually there was nothing to be done but just rest in that luminous awareness in the heart center.

It turns out that the mind, ego, etc are essentially rising out of that luminous awareness itself. And therefore they too are empty. They don't have any fundamental reality. The mind is a stream of thoughts. Ego is a story confabulated on the basis of countless thoughts (objects) - a fictional personality.

In the face of the empty luminosity of the Heart Center, they don't really exist as separate entities. They rise out of the heart center and fall back into it.

Subsequently, the story/narrative changed. There was this understanding that the story of my life is just a story. Also, that all the things that I considered to be "important" before were also part of this same story. As long as I stayed as the character (the sometimes hero, sometimes villain, and sometimes both at the same time) in the story, they made sense. Once I became the one who is just the witness, none of it mattered.

The Mind doesn't stop. The Ego doesn't drop. They don't really exist anyway. That is the realization. This has always been with me. It is just so simple a fact that it is hidden in plain sight. We look here and there, searching desperately, but ultimately all we can be, is that which we always are.

We can't control anything. The entity who tries to control anything is a fictional character.

These type of understandings start to arise. Sometimes many at once, and sometimes a little at a time.
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  #2  
Old 16-01-2018, 10:12 PM
Badcopyinc Badcopyinc is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2017
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This post is beautiful.

I've never read his work and keep hearing those I do learn from mention his name. Think it's time.

I urge you to keep going. I've heard every wise guide direct their students to enlightenment with that one question.
I got to the answer of who I am and achieved satori by reading a story that osho told in the book of secrets.
Maybe it will help you better in your meditations.



Quote:
Rinzai went to his master and he said, ”Give me freedom!” The master said, ”Bring yourself. If you are, I will make you free. But if you are not, then how can I make you free? You are already free. And freedom,” his master said, ”is not your freedom. Really, freedom is freedom from ‘you’. So go and find out where this ‘I’ is, where you are, then come to me. This is the meditation. Go and meditate.”

So the disciple Rinzai goes and meditates for weeks, months, and then he comes. Then he says, ”I am not the body. Only this much I have found.” So the master says, ”This much you have become free. Go again. Try to find out.” Then he tries, meditates, and he finds that ”I am not my mind, because I can observe my thoughts. So the observer is different from the observed – I am not my mind.” He comes and says, ”I am not my mind.” So his master says, ”Now you are three-fourths liberated. Now go again and find out who you are.”

So he was thinking, ”I am not my body. I am not my mind.” He had read, studied, he was well informed, so he was thinking, ”I am not my body, not my mind, so I must be my soul, my ATMA.” But he meditated, and then he found that there is no atman, no soul, because this atma is nothing but your mental information – just doctrines, words, philosophies.

So he came running one day and he said, ”Now I am no more!” Then his master said, ”Am I now to teach you the methods for freedom?” Rinzai said, ”I am free because I am no more. There is no one to be in bondage. I am just a wide emptiness, a nothingness.”

Only nothingness can be free. If you are something, you will be in bondage. If you are, you will be in bondage. Only a void, a vacant space, can be free. Then you cannot bind it. Rinzai came running and said, ”I am no more. Nowhere am I to be found.” This is freedom. And for the first time he touched his master’s feet – for the first time! Not actually, because he had touched them many times before also. But the master said, ”For the first time you have touched my feet.”

Rinzai asked, ”Why do you say for the first time? I have touched your feet many times.” The master said, ”But you were there, so how could you touch my feet while you were already there? While you are there how can you touch my feet?” The ”I” can never touch anybody’s feet. Even though it apparently looks like it touches somebody’s feet, it is touching its own feet, just in a round-about way. ”You have touched my feet for the first time,” the master said, ”because now you are no more. And this is also the last time,” the master said. ”The first and the last.”

Surrender happens when you are not, so YOU cannot surrender. That is why surrender cannot be a technique. You cannot surrender – you are the hindrance. When you are not, surrender is there. So you and surrender cannot cohabit, there is no coexistence between you and surrender. Either you are or surrender is. So find out where you are, who you are. This inquiry creates many, many surprising results.

Raman Maharshi used to say, ”Inquire ‘Who am I ?’” It was misunderstood. Even his nearest disciples have not understood the meaning of it. They think that this is an inquiry to find out really ”Who am I?” It is not! if you go on inquiring ”Who am I?” you are bound to come to the conclusion that you are not. This is not really an inquiry to find out ”Who am I?” Really, this is an inquiry to dissolve.
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Knowing others is wisdom, Knowing yourself is enlightenment. Lao Tzu
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  #3  
Old 28-01-2018, 11:53 AM
Still_Waters Still_Waters is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Brooklyn, New York
Posts: 408
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tryambakbaba_ka_chela
I was reflecting on my "Who am I?" meditation, which I somewhat skeptically undertook after re-re-re-reading Ramana Maharshi's collected works of his teachings and "Be as you are".

So I started with the question "Who am I?" in all earnestness, without really understanding what it meant and entailed. And for a while, every thought that arose, I'd respond to with "Who am I?"...

With time, I found that the "Who am I?" question doesn't find any answer. There is only silence. And then I noticed that the mind starts to settle in the heart center or the point ~ 18-24" above the crown point.

And further more, I sensed a presence in the heart center. An "emptiness" that was luminous. Whenever the mind tried to "see" what it was, the mind just kept getting shot out of it, like if you try to take two like poles of a magnet towards each other, one (which is held more tightly shoots the other out). Eventually the mind just becomes still. I understood that trying to "see" with the mind, what that Presence is, was an exercise in futility (and ended up giving me a headache). So, I just let the mind be, and accepted that the center in the heart is unknowable (in the way one's mind knows it - I cannot discern shape, form, etc of it). It was totally empty. Yet it was luminosity itself.

Eventually there was nothing to be done but just rest in that luminous awareness in the heart center.

It turns out that the mind, ego, etc are essentially rising out of that luminous awareness itself. And therefore they too are empty. They don't have any fundamental reality. The mind is a stream of thoughts. Ego is a story confabulated on the basis of countless thoughts (objects) - a fictional personality.

In the face of the empty luminosity of the Heart Center, they don't really exist as separate entities. They rise out of the heart center and fall back into it.

Subsequently, the story/narrative changed. There was this understanding that the story of my life is just a story. Also, that all the things that I considered to be "important" before were also part of this same story. As long as I stayed as the character (the sometimes hero, sometimes villain, and sometimes both at the same time) in the story, they made sense. Once I became the one who is just the witness, none of it mattered.

The Mind doesn't stop. The Ego doesn't drop. They don't really exist anyway. That is the realization. This has always been with me. It is just so simple a fact that it is hidden in plain sight. We look here and there, searching desperately, but ultimately all we can be, is that which we always are.

We can't control anything. The entity who tries to control anything is a fictional character.

These type of understandings start to arise. Sometimes many at once, and sometimes a little at a time.

That is a beautiful post. Ramana Maharshi is indeed awesome.

It was interesting to read your comment about how the mind "starts to settle in .... the point ~ 18-24" above the crown point". There are very few who seem to notice that. Could you elaborate on that further ... especially on what draws you to that point.
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