Beyond Mind there is no Suffering
I see you sitting in your son's house waiting for lunch to be
served. And I wonder
the content of your consciousness is similar to mine, or partly
different, or totally different.
you hungry and thirsty as I am, waiting rather impatiently for the
meals to be served, or are you
an altogether different state of mind?
There is not much difference on the surface, but very much of it
in depth. You know
only through the senses and the mind. You take yourself to be what
they suggest; having
direct knowledge of yourself, you have mere ideas; all mediocre,
second-hand, by hearsay.
you think you are you take it to be true; the habit of imagining
yourself perceivable and
is very strong with you.
see as you see, hear as you hear, taste as you taste, eat as you
eat. I also feel thirst and hunger
expect my food to be served on time. When starved or sick, my body
and mind go weak. All this
perceive quite clearly, but somehow I am not in it, I feel myself
as if floating over it, aloof and
Even not aloof and detached. There is aloofness and detachment as
there is thirst and
there is also the awareness of it all and a sense of Immense
distance, as if the body and
mind and all that happens to them were somewhere far out on the
horizon. I am like a cinema
-- clear and empty -- the pictures pass over it and disappear,
leaving it as clear and empty
before. In no way is the screen affected by the pictures, nor are
the pictures affected by the
The screen intercepts and reflects the pictures, it does not shape
them. It has nothing to do
the rolls of films. These are as they are, lumps of destiny
(prarabdha), but not my destiny; the
of the people on the screen.
You do not mean to say that the people in a picture have
destinies! They belong to the story,
story is not theirs.
And what about you? Do you shape your life or are you shaped by
Yes, you are right. A life story unrolls itself of which I am one
of the actors. I have no being
it, as it has no being without me. I am merely a character, not a
The character will become a person, when he begins to shape his
life instead of accepting it as
comes, and identifying himself with it.
When I ask a question and you answer, what exactly happens?
The question and the answer -- both appear on the screen. The lips
move, the body speaks --
again the screen is clear and empty.
When you say: clear and empty, what do you mean?
I mean free of all contents. To myself I am neither perceivable
nor conceivable; there is nothing
can point out and say: 'this I am'. You identify yourself with
everything so easily, I find it
The feeling: 'I am not this or that, nor is anything mine' is so
strong in me that as soon
a thing or a thought appears, there comes at once the sense 'this
I am not'.
Do you mean to say that you spend your time repeating 'this I am
not, that I am not'?
Of course not. I am merely verbalizing for your sake. By the grace
of my Guru I have realised
and for good that I am neither object nor subject and I do not
need to remind myself all the
I find it hard to grasp what exactly do you mean by saying that
you are neither the object nor
subject. At this very moment, as we talk, am I not the object of
your experience, and you the
Look, my thumb touches my forefinger. Both touch and are touched.
When my attention; is on
thumb, the thumb is the feeler and the forefinger -- the self.
Shift the focus of attention and the
is reversed. I find that somehow, by shifting the focus of
attention, I become the very
I look at and experience the kind of consciousness it has; I
become the inner witness of the
I call this capacity of entering other focal points of
consciousness -- love; you may give it any
you like. Love says: 'I am everything'. Wisdom says: 'I am
nothing' Between the two my life
Since at any point of time and space I can be both the subject and
the object of experience, I
it by saying that I am both, and neither, and beyond both.
You make all these extraordinary statements about yourself. What
makes you say those
What do you mean by saying that you are beyond space and time?
You ask and the answer comes. I watch myself -- I watch the answer
and see no contradiction.
is clear to me that I am telling you the truth. It is all very
simple. Only you must trust me that I
what I say, that I am quite serious. As I told you already, my
Guru showed me my true nature
and the true nature of the world. Having realised that I am one
with, and yet beyond the world, I
free from all desire and fear. I did not reason out that I should
be free -- I found myself free
unexpectedly, without the least effort. This freedom from desire
and fear remained with me since
Another thing I noticed was that I do not need to make an effort;
the deed follows the thought,
delay and friction. I have also found that thoughts become
self-fulfilling; things would fall in
smoothly and rightly. The main change was in the mind; it became
motionless and silent,
quickly, but not perpetuating the response. Spontaneity became a
way of life, the real
natural and the natural became real. And above all, infinite
affection, love, dark and quiet,
in all directions, embracing all, making all interesting and
beautiful, significant and
We are told that various Yogic powers arise spontaneously in a man
who has realised his own
being. What is your experience in these matters?
Man's fivefold body (physical etc.) has potential powers beyond
our wildest dreams. Not only is
entire universe reflected in man, but also the power to control
the universe is waiting to be used
him. The wise man is not anxious to use such powers, except when
the situation calls for them.
finds the abilities and skills of the human personality quite
adequate for the business of daily
Some of the powers can be developed by specialised training, but
the man who flaunts such
is still in bondage. The wise man counts nothing as his own. When
at some time and place
miracle is attributed to some person, he will not establish any
causal link between events and
nor will he allow any conclusions to be drawn. All happened as it
happened because it had
happen everything happens as it does, because the universe is as
The universe does not seem a happy place to live in. Why is there
so much suffering?
Pain is physical; suffering is mental. Beyond the mind there is no
suffering. Pain is merely a
that the body is in danger and requires attention. Similarly,
suffering warns us that the
of memories and habits, which we call the person (vyakti), is
threatened by loss or
Pain is essential for the survival of the body, but none compels
you to suffer. Suffering is
entirely to clinging or resisting; it is a sign of our
unwillingness to move on, to flow with life.
a sane life is free of pain, so is a saintly life free from
Nobody has suffered more than saints.
Did they tell you, or do you say so on your own? The essence of
saintliness is total acceptance
the present moment, harmony with things as they happen. A saint
does not want things to be
from what they are; he knows that, considering all factors, they
are unavoidable. He is
with the inevitable and,. therefore, does not suffer. Pain he may
know, but it does not
him. If he can, he does the needful to restore the lost balance --
or he lets things take their
He may die.
So what? What does he gain by living on and what does he lose by
dying? What was born,
die; what was never born cannot die. It all depends on what he
takes himself to be.
Imagine you fall mortally ill. Would you not regret and resent?
But I am dead already, or, rather, neither alive nor dead. You see
my body behaving the
way and draw your own conclusions. You will not admit that your
conclusions bind nobody
you. Do see that the image you have of me may be altogether wrong.
Your image of yourself is
too, but that is your problem. But you need not create problems
for me and then ask me to
them. I am neither creating problems nor solving them.