Nonduality Presents

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Excerpts from Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj's I AM THAT

compiled and edited by Miguel-Angel Carrasco

Numbers after quotations refer to pages of the edition by Chetana (P) Ltd, Bombay, 1992.

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The way to Realization: Part Three

Not through the mind.

It is only your mind that prevents self-knowledge. (517)

[The cause of suffering is] self-identification with the limited. Sensations as such, however strong, do not cause suffering. It is the mind, bewildered by wrong ideas, addicted to thinking "I am this", "I am that", that fears loss and craves gain and suffers when frustrated. (110)

Nothing can trouble you but your own imagination. (113)

There is no such thing as peace of mind. Mind means disturbance; restlessness itself is mind. (142)

A level of maturity is reached when nothing external is of any value, and the heart is ready to relinquish all. Then the real has a chance and it grasps it. Delays, if any, are caused by the mind being unwilling to see or discard. (514)

You cannot see the true unless you are at peace. A quiet mind is essential for right perception, which again is required for self-realization. (481)

When the mind has been put to rest and disturbs no longer the inner space (chidakash), the body acquires a new meaning and its transformation becomes both necessary and possible. (496-7)

The mirror can do nothing to attract the sun. It can only keep bright. As soon as the mind is ready, the sun shines in. [The light] is uncaused and unvarying by itself, and coloured by the mind as soon as it moves and changes. It is very much like a cinema. The light is not in the film, but the film colours the light and makes it appear to move by intercepting it. (54)

The world is but the surface of the mind and the mind is infinite. What we call thoughts are just ripples in the mind. When the mind is quiet it reflects reality. When it is motionless through and through, it dissolves and only reality remains. (484)

What is going on is a projection of your mind. A weak mind cannot control its own projections. Be aware, therefore, of your mind and its projections. You cannot control what you do not know. On the other hand, knowledge gives power. In practice it is very siple. To control yourself, know yourself. (121)

Deal with your mind first. When you realize that your mind too is a part of nature, the duality will cease. Because nature is in the mind; without the mind, where is nature? (186)

Use your mind to know your mind. It is perfectly legitimate and also the best preparation for going beyond the mind. (520)

Understand your own mind and its hold on you will snap. The mind misunderstands; misunderstading is its very nature. Right understanding is the only remedy. (520)

All change affects the mind only. To be what you are, you must go beyond the mind, into your own being. It is immaterial what is the mind that you leave behind, provided you leave it behind for good. This again is not possible without self-realization. Self-realization definitely comes first. The mind cannot go beyond itself by itself. It must explode. The explosive power comes from the real. But you are well advised to have your mind ready for it. (522)

Reality is not the result of a process; it is an explosion. It is definitely beyond the mind, but all you can do is to know your mind well. Not that the mind will help you, but by knowing your mind you may avoid your mind disabling you. You have to be alert, or else your mind will play false with you. It is like watching a thief - not that you expect anything from a thief, but you do not want to be robbed. In the same way, you give a lot of attention to the mind without expecting anything from it. (189)

Watch your mind, how it comes into being, how it operates. As you watch your mind, you discover your self as the watcher. When you stand motionless, only watching, you discover your self as the light behind the watcher. The source of light is dark, unknown is the source of knowledge. That source alone is. Go back to that source and abide there. (188)

No state of mind can be more real than the mind itself. Is the mind real? It is but a collection of states, each of them transitory. How can a succession of transitory states be considered real? The illusion of being the body-mind is there only because it is not investigated. Non-investigation is the thread on which all the states of mind are strung. It is like darkness in a closed room. It is there - apparently. But when the room is opened, where does it go? It goes nowhere, because it was not there. All states of mind, all names and forms of existence are rooted in non-enquiry, non-investigation, in imagining and credulity. It is right to say "I am", but to say "I am this", "I am that" is a sign of not enquiring, not examining, of mental weakness or lethargy. Sadhana (practice) consists in reminding oneself forcibly of one's pure being-ness, of not being anything in particular, nor a sum of particulars, not even the totality of all particulars, which make up a universe. All exists in the mind, even the body is an integration in the mind of a vast number of sensory perceptions, each perception also a mental state. Think of yourself. Only don't bring the idea of a body into the picture. There is only a stream of sensations, perceptions, memories and ideations. The body is an abstraction, created by our tendency to seek unity in diversity. (134-135)

Consciousness and unconsciousness, while in the body, depend on the condition of the brain. But the self is beyond both, beyond the brain, beyond the mind. The fault of the instrument is no reflection of its user. (114)

Concern yourself with your mind, remove its distortions and impurities. Once you had the taste of your own self, you will find it everywhere and at all times. Therefore it is so important that you should come to it. Once you know it, you will never lose it. (413)

You are the Self, here and now. Leave the mind alone, stand aware and unconcerned, and you will realize that to stand alert and detached, watching events come and go, is an aspect of your real nature. (19)

A quiet mind is all you need. All else will happen rightly, once your mind is quiet. As the sun on rising makes the world active, so does self-awareness affect changes in the mind. In the light of calm and steady self-awareness, inner energies wake up and work miracles without any effort on your part. Do understand that you are destined for enlightenment. Co-operate with your destiny, don't go against it, don't thwart it. Allow it to fulfill itself. All you have to do is to give attention to the obstacles created by the foolish mind. (311)

Moods are in the mind and do not matter. Go within, go beyond. Cease being fascinated by the content of your consciousness. When you reach the deep layers of your true being, you will find that the mind's surface-play affects you very little. (531)

What was never lost can never be found. Your very search for safety and joy keeps you away from them. Stop searching, cease losing. The disease is simple and the remedy equally simple. It is your mind only that makes you insecure and unhappy. Anticipation makes you insecure; memory, unhappy. Stop misusing your mind and all will be well with you. You need not set it right, it will set itself right, as soon as you give up all concern with the past and the future and live entirely in the now. (230)

Of the unknowable only silence talks. The mind can talk only of what it knows. If you diligently investigate the knowable, it dissolves and only the unknowable remains. But with the first flicker of imagination and interest the unknowable is obscured and the known comes to the fore-front. The known, the changing, is what you live with; the unchangeable is of no use to you. It is only when you are satiated with the changeable and long for the unchangeable that you are ready for the turning round and stepping into what can be described, when seen from the level of the mind, as emptiness and darkness. For the mind craves for content and variety, while reality
is, to the mind, contentless and invariable. (436)

What prevents you from knowing yourself as all and beyond all, is the mind based on memory. It has power over you as long as you trust it. Don't struggle with it; just disregard it. Deprived of attention, it will slow down and reveal the mechanism of its working. Once you know its nature and purpose, you will not allow it to create imaginary problems. What problems can there be which the mind did not create? Life and death do not create problems; pains and pleasures come and go, experienced and forgotten. It is me-mory and anticipation that create problems of attainment or avoidance, coloured by like and dislike. (475)

The problem is not yours - it is your mind's only. Begin by disassociating yourself from your mind. Resolutely remind yourself that you are not the mind and that its problems are not yours. (125)

How can an unsteady mind make itself steady? Of course it cannot. It is the nature of the mind to roam about. All you can do is to shift the focus of consciousness beyond the mind. (18)

Leave your mind alone, that is all. Don't go along with it. After all, there is no such thing as mind apart from thoughts which come and go obeying their own laws, not yours. They dominate you only because you are interested in them. (350)

It is the mind that tells you that the mind is there. Don't be deceived. All the endless arguments about the mind are produced by the mind itself, for its own protection, continuation and expansion. It is the blank refusal to consider the convolutions and convulsions of the mind that can take you beyond it. (321)

Having never left the house you are asking for the way home. Get rid of wrong ideas, that is all. Collecting right ideas also will take you nowhere. Just cease imagining. Don't try to understand! Enough if you do not misunderstand. Don't rely on your mind for liberation. It is the mind that brought you into bondage. Go beyond it altogether. (206)

There is no such thing as mind. There are ideas and some of them are wrong. Abandon the wrong ideas, for they are wrong and obstruct your vision of yourself. Assertions are usually wrong, and denials right. Only by denying can one live. Assertion is bondage. To question and deny is necessary. It is the essence of revolt and without revolt there can be no freedom. (517)

General knowledge develops the mind, no doubt. But if you are going to spend your life in amassing knowledge, you build a wall round yourself. To go beyond the mind, a well-furnished mind is not needed. (50)

The window is the absence of the wall, and it gives air and light because it is empty. Be empty of al mental content, of all imagination and effort, and the very absence of obstacles will cause reality to rush in. (260)

Leave it all behind you. Forget it. Go forth, unburdened with ideas and beliefs. Abandon all verbal structures, all relative truth, all tangible objectives. (340)

All are mere words, of what use are they to you? You are entangled in the web of verbal definitions and formulations. Go beyond your concepts and ideas; in the silence of desire and thought the truth is found. (295)

Too much analysis leads you nowhere. There is in you the core of being which is beyond analysis, beyond the mind. You can know it in action only. The legitimate function of the mind is to tell you what is not. But if you want possitive knowledge, you must go beyond the mind. (341)

Before you can know anything directly, non-verbally, you must know the knower. So far, you took the mind for the knower, but it is not so. The mind clogs you up with images and ideas, which leave scars in memory. You take remembering to be knowledge. True knowledge is ever fresh, new, unexpected. It wells up from within. When you know what you are, you also are what you know. Between knowing and being there is no gap. (520)

Consciousness, being a product of conditions and circumstances, depends on them and changes along with them. What is independent, uncreated, timeless and changeless and yet ever new and fresh is beyond the mind. When the mind thinks of it, the mind dissolves and only happiness remains. (488)

[With self-awareness] you grow more intelligent. In awareness you learn, in self-awareness you learn about yourself. Of course, you can only learn what you are not. To know what you are, you must go beyond the mind. Awareness is the point at which the mind reaches out beyond itself into reality. In awareness you seek not what pleases, but what is true. (346)

Stop making use of your mind and see what happens. Do this one thing thoroughly. That is all. (197)

See everything as a dream, as a show, as a film.

Just remember, nothing perceivable is real. (354)

All you can do is to grasp the central point: that reality is not an event and does not happen, and whatever happens, whatever comes and goes, is not really. See the event as event only, the transient as transient, experience as mere experience, and you have done all you can do. But as soon as there is some like or dislike, you have drawn a screen. (190)

Everyone creates a world for himself and lives in it, imprisoned by one's ignorance. All we have to do is to deny reality to our prison. (208)

Don't be afraid of a world you yourself have created. Cease from looking for happiness and reality in a dream and you will wake up. (453)

This is the mystery of imagination, that it seems to be so real. You may be celibate or married, a monk or a family man; that is not the point. Are you a slave of your imagination, or are you not? Whatever decision you take, whatever work you do, it will be invariably based on imagination, on assumptions parading as facts. (355)

When the body is born, all kinds of things happen to it, and you take part in them because you take yourself to be the body. You are like the man in the cinema house, laughing and crying with the picture, though knowing fully well that he is all the time in his seat and the picture is but the play of light. It is enough to shift attention from the screen to oneself to break the spell. (389)

When the body dies, the kind of life you live now, succession of physical and mental events, comes to an end. It can end even now, without waiting for the death of the body. It is enough to shift attention to the Self and keep it there. All happens as if there is a mysterious power that creates and moves everything. Realize that you are not the mover, only the observer, and you will be at peace. Of course not [:that power is not separate from you]. But you must begin by being the dispassionate observer. Then only will you realize your full being as the universal lover and actor. As long as you are enmeshed in the tribulations of a particular personality, you can see nothing beyond it. (389)

If you stand aloof as obrserver only, you will not suffer. You will see the world as a show, a most entertaining show indeed. (380)

Stop hurting yourself and others, stop suffering, wake up. When you begin to question your dream, awakening will be not far away. (74)

It [the dream] appears to be beginnigless, but in fact it is only now. From moment to moment you are renewing it. Once you have seen that you are dreaming, you shall wake up. But you do not see because you want the dream to continue. A day will come when you will long for the ending of the dream, with all your heart and mind, and be willing to pay the price; the price will be dispassion and detachment, the loss of interest in the dream itself. Wanting it to continue is not inevitable. See clearly your condition, your very clarity will release you. (506)

There is no need of a way out [of the dream]! Don't you see that a way out is also a part of the dream? All you have to do is see the dream as dream. The very idea of going beyond the dream is illusory. Why go anywhere? Just realize that you are dreaming a dream you call the world, and stop looking for ways out. The problem is not the dream. Your problem is that you like one part of your dream and not another. Love all, or none of it, and stop complaining. When you have seen the dream as a dream, you have done all that needs be done. (117)

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