Root Cause of Fear
Where do you come from?
I am from the United States, but I live mostly in Europe. To India I
came recently. I was
Rishikesh, in two Ashrams. I was taught meditation and breathing.
How long were you there?
Eight days in one, six days in another. I was not happy there and I
left. Then for three weeks I
with the Tibetan Lamas. But they were all wrapped up in formulas and
And what was the net result of it all?
Definitely there was an increase of energy. But before I left for
Rishikesh, I did some fasting
dieting at a Nature Cure Sanatorium at Pudukkotai in South India. It
has done me enormous
Maybe the access of energy was due to better health.
I cannot say. But as a result of all these attempts some fires
started burning in various places in
body and I heard chants and voices where there were none.
And what are you after now?
Well, what are we all after? Some truth, some inner certainty, some
real happiness. In the
schools of self-realisation there is so much talk of awareness, that
one ends with the
that awareness itself is the supreme reality. Is it so? The body is
looked after by the
the brain is illumined by consciousness; awareness watches over
consciousness; is there
How do you know that you are aware?
I feel that I am. I cannot express it otherwise.
When you follow it up carefully from brain through consciousness to
awareness, you find that
sense of duality persists. When you go beyond awareness, there is a
state of non-duality, in
there is no cognition, only pure being, which may be as well called
non-being, if by being you
being something in particular.
What you call pure being is it universal being, being everything?
Everything implies a collection of particulars. In pure being the
very idea of the particular is
Is there any relationship between pure being and particular being?
What relationship can there be between what is and what merely
appears to be? Is there any
between the ocean and its waves? The real enables the unreal to
appear and causes it
disappear. the succession of transient moments creates the illusion
of time, but the timeless
of pure being is not in movement, for all movement requires a
motionless background. It is
the background. Once you have found it in yourself, you know that
you had never lost that
being, independent of all divisions and separations. But don't look
for it in
you will not find it there. Don't look for it anywhere, for nothing
contains it. On the
it contains everything and manifests everything. It is like the
daylight that makes
visible while itself remaining invisible.
Sir, of what use to me is your telling me that reality cannot be
found in consciousness? Where
am I to look for it? How do you apprehend it?
It is quite simple. If I ask you what is the taste of your mouth all
you can do is to say: it is neither
nor bitter, nor sour nor astringent; it is what remains when all
these tastes are not. Similarly,
all distinctions and reactions are no more, what remains is reality,
simple and solid.
All that I understand is that I am in the grip of a beginningless
illusion. And I do not see how it
come to an end. If it could, it would -- long ago. I must have had
as many opportunities in the
as I shall have in the future. What could not happen cannot happen.
Or, if it did, it could not
Our very deplorable state after all these untold millions of years
carries, at best, the promise of
extinction, or, which is worse, the threat of an endless and
What proof have you that your present state is beginningless and
endless? How were you
you were born? How will you be after death? And of your present
state -- how much do you
You do not know even what was your condition before you woke up this
morning? You only
a little of your present state and from it you draw conclusions for
all times and places. You
be just dreaming and imagining your dream to be eternal.
Calling it a dream does not change the situation. I repeat my
question: what hope is left which
eternity behind me could not fulfil? Why should my future be
different from my past?
In your fevered state, you project a past and a future and take them
to be real. In fact, you know
your present moment. Why not investigate what is now, instead of
questioning the imaginary
and future? Your present state is neither beginningless nor endless.
If is over in a flash. Watch
from where it comes and where it goes. You will soon discover the
timeless reality behind
Why have I not done it before?
Just as every wave subsides into the ocean, so does every moment
return to its source.
consists in discovering the source and abiding there.
The mind discovers.
Does it find the answers?
It finds that it is left without questions, that no answers are
Being born is a fact. Dying is another fact. How do they appear to
A child was born; a man has died -- just events in the course of
Is there any progress in the witness? Does awareness evolve?
What is seen may undergo many changes when the light of awareness is
focussed on it, but it
the object that changes, not the light. Plants grow in sunlight, but
the sun does not grow. By
both the body and the witness are motionless, but when brought
together in the mind,
appear to move.
Yes, I can see that what moves and changes is the 'I am' only. Is
the 'I am' needed at all?
Who needs it? It is there -- now. It had a beginning it will have an
What remains when the ‘I am’ goes?
What does not come and go -- remains. It is the ever greedy mind
that creates ideas of
and evolution towards perfection. It disturbs and talks of order,
destroys and seeks
Is there progress in destiny, in karma?
is only a store of unspent energies, of unfulfilled desires and
fears not understood. The
is being constantly replenished by new desires and fears. It need
not be so for ever.
the root cause of your fears -- estrangement from yourself: and of
desires -- the longing
the self, and your karma will dissolve like a dream. Between earth
and heaven life goes on.
is affected, only bodies grow and decay.
Between the person and the witness, what is the relation?
There can be no relation between them because they are one. Don't
separate and don't look for
If the seer and the seen are one, how did the separation occur?
Fascinated by names and forms, which are by their very nature
distinct and diverse, you
what is natural and separate what is one. The world is rich in
diversity, but your feeling
and frightened is due to misapprehension. It is the body that is in
danger, not you.
I can see that the basic biological anxiety, the flight instinct,
takes many shapes and distorts my
and feelings. But how did this anxiety come into being?
It is a mental state caused by the 'I-am-the-body' idea. It can be
removed by the contrary idea: 'I-
Both the ideas are false, but one removes the other. realise that no
own, they all come to you from outside. You must think it all out
for yourself, become yourself
object of your meditation. The effort to understand yourself is
Yoga. Be a Yogi, give your life to
brood, wonder, search, till you come to the root of error and to the
truth beyond the error.
In meditation, who meditates, the person or the witness?
Meditation is a deliberate attempt to pierce into the higher states
of consciousness and finally
beyond it. The art of meditation is the art of shifting the focus of
attention to ever subtler levels,
losing one's grip on the levels left behind. In a way it is like
having death under control. One
with the lowest levels: social circumstances, customs and habits;
physical surroundings, the
and the breathing of the body, the senses, their sensations and
perceptions; the mind, its
and feelings; until the entire mechanism of personality is grasped
and firmly held. The final
of meditation is reached when the sense of identity goes beyond the
beyond 'I-am-the-witness-only', beyond 'there-is', beyond all ideas
into the impersonally
pure being. But you must be energetic when you take to meditation.
It is definitely not a
occupation. Limit your interests and activities to what is needed
for you and your
barest needs. Save all your energies and time for breaking the wall
your mind had built
you. Believe me, you will not regret.
How do I come to know that my experience is universal?
At the end of your meditation all is known directly, no proofs
whatsoever are required. Just as
drop of the ocean carries the taste of the ocean, so does every
moment carry the taste of
Definitions and descriptions have their place as useful incentives
for further search, but you
go beyond them into what is undefinable and indescribable, except in
all, even universality and eternity are mere concepts, the opposites
of being place and time-
Reality is not a concept, nor the manifestation of a concept. It has
nothing to do with
Concern yourself with your mind, remove its distortions and
impurities. Once you had the
of your own self, you will find it everywhere and at all times.
Therefore, it is so important that
should come to it. Once you know it, you will never lose it.
you must give yourself the opportunity through intensive, even
What exactly do you want me to do?
Give your heart and mind to brooding over the 'I am', what is it,
how is it, what is its source, its
its meaning. It is very much like digging a well. You reject all
that is not water, till you reach the
How shall I know that I am moving in the right direction?
By your progress in intentness, in clarity and devotion to the task.
We, Europeans, find it very difficult to keep quiet. The world is
too much with us.
Oh, no, you are dreamers too. We differ only in the contents of our
dreams. You are after
-- in the future. We are intent on finding it -- in the now. The
limited only is perfectible.
unlimited is already perfect. You are perfect, only you don't know
it. Learn to know yourself and
will discover wonders.
you need is already within you, only you must approach your self
with reverence and love. Self-
and self-distrust are grievous errors. Your constant flight from
pain and search for
is a sign of love you bear for your self, all I plead with you is
this: make love of your self
Deny yourself nothing -- give your self infinity and eternity and
discover that you do not
them; you are beyond.