I AM THAT | CHAPTER 7 | NISARGADATTA MAHARAJ
|| THE MIND ||
As long as the mind is there , your body and your world are there . Your world is mind-made , subjective , enclosed within the mind , fragmentary , temporary , personal , hanging on the thread of memory .
QUESTIONER : There are very interesting books written by apparently very competent people , in which the illusoriness of the world is denied ( though not its transitoriness ) .
According to them , there exists a hierarchy of beings , from the lowest to the highest ; on each level the complexity of the organism enables and reflects the depth , breadth and intensity of consciousness , without any visible or knowable culmination .
One law supreme rules throughout : evolution of forms for the growth and enrichment of consciousness and manifestation of its infinite potentialities .
MAHARAJ : This may or may not be so .
Even if it is , it is only so from the mind's point of view , but in fact the entire universe ( mahadakash ) exists only in consciousness ( chidakash ) , while I have my stand in the Absolute ( paramakash ) .
In pure being consciousness arises ; in consciousness the world appears and disappears .
All there is is me , all there is is mine .
Before all beginnings , after all endings — I am .
All has its being in me , in the " I am " , that shines in every living being . Even not-being is unthinkable without me .
Whatever happens , I must be there to witness it .
QUESTIONER : Why do you deny being to the world?
MAHARAJ : I do not negate the world . I see it as appearing in consciousness , which is the totality of the known in the immensity of the unknown .
What begins and ends is mere appearance . The world can be said to appear , but not to be .
The appearance may last very long on some scale of time , and be very short on another , but ultimately it comes to the same . Whatever is time bound is momentary and has no reality .
QUESTIONER : Surely , you see the actual world as it surrounds you . You seem to behave quite normally !
MAHARAJ : That is how it appears to you .
What in your case occupies the entire field of consciousness is a mere speck in mine .
The world lasts but for a moment .
It is your memory that makes you think that the world continues .
Myself , I do not live by memory . I see the world as it is , a momentary appearance in consciousness .
QUESTIONER : In your consciousness ?
MAHARAJ : All idea of " me " and " mine " , even of " I am " is in consciousness .
QUESTIONER : Is then your " absolute being " ( paramakash ) un-consciousness ?
MAHARAJ : The idea of un-consciousness exists in consciousness only .
QUESTIONER : Then how do you know you are in the supreme state ?
MAHARAJ : Because I am in it . It is the only natural state .
QUESTIONER : Can you describe it ?
MAHARAJ : Only by negation , as uncaused , independent , unrelated , undivided , uncomposed , unshakable , unquestionable , unreachable by effort .
Every positive definition is from memory and , therefore , inapplicable .
And yet my state is supremely actual and , therefore , possible , realisable , attainable .
QUESTIONER : Are you not immersed timelessly in an abstraction ?
MAHARAJ : Abstraction is mental and verbal and disappears in sleep , or swoon; it reappears in time ; I am in my own state ( swarupa ) timelessly in the now .
Past and future are in mind only — I am now .
QUESTIONER : The world too is now .
MAHARAJ : Which world ?
QUESTIONER : The world around us .
MAHARAJ : It is your world you have in mind , not mine . What do you know of me , when even my talk with you is in your world only ?
You have no reason to believe that my world is identical with yours .
My world is real , true , as it is perceived , while yours appears and disappears , according to the state of your mind .
Your world is something alien , and you are afraid of it .
My world is myself . I am at home .
QUESTIONER : If you are the world , how can you be conscious of it ? Is not the subject of consciousness different from its object ?
MAHARAJ : Consciousness and the world appear and disappear together , hence they are two aspects of the same state .
QUESTIONER : In sleep I am not , and the world continues .
MAHARAJ : How do you know ?
QUESTIONER : On waking up I come to know . My memory tells me .
MAHARAJ : Memory is in the mind . The mind continues in sleep .
QUESTIONER : It is partly in abeyance .
MAHARAJ : But its world picture is not affected .
As long as the mind is there , your body and your world are there .
Your world is mind-made , subjective , enclosed within the mind , fragmentary , temporary , personal , hanging on the thread of memory .
QUESTIONER : So is yours ?
MAHARAJ : Oh no .
I live in a world of realities , while yours is of imaginations .
Your world is personal , private , unshareable , intimately your own . Nobody can enter it , see as you see , hear as you hear , feel your emotions and think your thoughts . In your world you are truly alone , enclosed in your ever-changing dream , which you take for life .
My world is an open world , common to all , accessible to all . In my world there is community , insight , love , real quality ; the individual is the total , the totality — in the individual .
All are one and the One is all .
QUESTIONER : Is your world full of things and people as is mine ?
MAHARAJ : No , it is full of myself .
QUESTIONER : But do you see and hear as we do ?
MAHARAJ : Yes , l appear to hear and see and talk and act , but to me it just happens , as to you digestion or perspiration happens .
The body-mind machine looks after it , but leaves me out of it . Just as you do not need to worry about growing hair , so I need not worry about words and actions .
They just happen and leave me unconcerned , for in my world nothing ever goes wrong .
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