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Nisargadatta Maharaj

April 17, 1897 530a Mumbai, India – September 8, 1981
Khetwadi, Mumbai, India

Path: Inchegeri Sampradaya, his guru: Siddharameshwar Maharaj
his wikipedia, birthchart
Enlightened: 1938

This page last revised on 5/11/24.

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.

Absolute perfection is here and now, not in some future, near or far. The secret is in action - here and now. It is your behavior that blinds you to yourself. Disregard whatever you think yourself to be and act as if you were absolutely perfect - whatever your idea of perfection may be. All you need is courage.

Actions through the four elements (earth, water, fire, wind) do not affect the fifth, i.e. space. I am pure consciousness, pure life force. I’ve no shape, no form. Therefore, I have no birth, no death and no karma.

All consciousness is limited and therefore painful. At the root of consciousness lies desire, the urge to experience… Consciousness is a burden. Body means burden. Sensations, desires, thoughts — these are all burdens. All consciousness is of conflict.

All depends on you. It is by your consent that the world exists. Withdraw your belief in its reality and it will dissolve like a dream. Time can bring down mountains, much more you, who are the timeless source of time. For without memory and expectation there can be no time.

All this, one and all, in its totality is consciousness. That taste or knowledge of self-existence is Bhagvan. To understand this means to see God in every living being.

As a matter of fact, all realization is only sharing. You enter a wider consciousness and share in it. Unwillingness to enter and to share is the only hindrance. I never talk of differences, for to me there are none.

As you are Brahman itself, you do not need anyone’s blessings. But one must have the conviction of being Brahman.

Awareness is primordial; it is the original state, beginningless, endless, uncaused, unsupported, without parts, without change. Consciousness is on contact, a reflection against a surface, a state of duality. There can be no consciousness without awareness, but there can be awareness without consciousness, as in deep sleep. Awareness is absolute, consciousness is relative to its content; consciousness is always of something. Consciousness is partial and changeful, awareness is total, changeless, calm and silent. And it is the common matrix of every experience.

Be careful. The moment you start talking you create a verbal universe, a universe of words, ideas, concepts and abstractions, interwoven and interdependent, most wonderfully generating, supporting and explaining each other and yet all without essence or substance, mere creations of the mind. Words create words, reality is silent.

Be conscious of yourself, watch your mind, give it your full attention. Don’t look for quick results; there may be none within your noticing. Unknown to you, your psyche will undergo a change; there will be more clarity in your thinking, charity in your feeling, purity in your behavior. You need not aim at these - you will witness the change all the same. For, what you are now is the result of inattention and what you become will be the fruit of attention.

Be nothing, know nothing, have nothing. This is the only life worth living, the only happiness worth having.

Because you take your mind off yourself and make it dwell on what you are not, you lose your sense of well-being, of being well. Be fully aware of your own being and you will be in bliss consciously.

Before the world was, consciousness was. In consciousness the world comes to be, in hard consciousness and in pure consciousness dissolves. At the root of everything, there is the feeling of "I am". The state of mind: "there is a world" is secondary, to be me I don't need the world, the world needs me.

Concepts come into the sense of being ‘I am’ because of the vital breath that causes the mind flow. Mind means words, so thoughts are there – they are the concepts. Look at your root, the child consciousness, and finish it off.

Delve deeply into the sense ‘I am’ and you surely discover that the perceiving center is universal, as universal as the light that illumines the world. All that happens in the universe happens to you, the silent witness. On the other hand, whatever is done, is done by you, the universal and inexhaustible energy.

Do not try to know the truth, for knowledge by the mind is not true knowledge. But you can know what is not true - which is enough to liberate you from the false. The idea that you know what is true is dangerous, for it keeps you imprisoned in the mind. It is when you do not know, that you are free to investigate. And there can be no salvation, without investigation, because non-investigation is the main cause of bondage.

Don't ask the mind to confirm what is beyond the mind. Direct experience is the only valid confirmation.

Don’t pretend to be what you are not, don’t refuse to be what you are.

First find the immutable center where all movement takes birth. Just like a wheel turns round an axle, so must you be always at the axle in the center and not whirling at the periphery.

Forget all the nonsense you think is so real. Deal with it, have fun with it, but don’t continually immerse yourself in it! Remember you are the knower, ever unborn and deathless.

Forget your past experiences and achievements and stand naked, exposed to the winds and rains of life, and you will have a chance [at enlightenment].

From moment to moment you are renewing this dream. If you truly long to end this bondage, then examine your attachments and conditioning. See clearly that they have no inherent truth. Your clarity will release you.

Give up this habit of identifying with whatever you perceive. There is nothing in this world which you can call your own. Look at it as you would a play on the stage, or a picture on the screen, admiring and enjoying, but unmoved in your peace.

God is nearer than the mind and the body, nearer than the sense 'I am'. You do not see it because you look too far away from yourself, outside your inner most being. You have objectified truth and insist on your standard proofs and test, which apply only to things and thoughts.

I am timeless being. I am free of desire or fear because I do not remember the past or imagine the future.

I do not believe in spiritual paths. The purpose of spiritual paths is to enmesh you in the world of knowledge, while Reality resides prior to it. All spiritual paths lead to unreality.

If the consciousness in all the different forms is identical, then why do thoughts and actions differ from one human being to another? The thoughts and actions belong to the body-mind and the body-mind is the essence of the five elements. The nature of the form depends on the various degrees of the five elements and the three 'gunas'. The thoughts and deeds depend on the conditioning received right from the time the consciousness is there. Without the consciousness, there would be only dead forms. Consciousness and the body are kept in working condition by the food and medicine that we imbibe. How amusing it is that one identifies with the body.

If you are angry or in pain, separate yourself from anger and pain and watch them. Externalization is the first step to liberation.

If you seek reality you must set yourself free of all backgrounds, of all cultures, of all patterns of thinking and feeling. Even the idea of being a man or woman, or even human, should be discarded. The ocean of life contains all, not only humans. So, first abandon all self-identification, stop thinking of yourself as such-and-such, so-and-so, this or that. Abandon all self-concern, worry not about your welfare, material or spiritual, abandon every desire, gross or subtle, stop thinking of achievement of any kind. You are complete here and now, you need absolutely nothing.

If you stay with the idea that you are not the body nor the mind, not even their witness, but altogether beyond, your mind will grow in clarity, your desires in purity, your actions in charity, and that inner distillation will take you to another world, a world of truth and fearless love. Resist your old habits of feeling and thinking; keep on telling yourself: "No, not so, it cannot be so; I am not like this, I do not need it, I do not want it", and a day will surely come when the entire structure of error and despair will collapse and the ground will be free for a new life.

If you trust me, believe when I tell you that you are the pure awareness that illumines consciousness and its infinite content. Realize this and live accordingly. If you do not believe me, then go within, enquiring ‘What am I’? or, focus your mind on ‘I am’, which is pure and simple being.

In reality, time and space exist in you; you do not exist in them. They are modes of perception, but they are not the only ones. Time and space are like words written on paper; the paper is real, the words merely a convention. Discard all you are not and go ever deeper. Just as a man digging a well discards what is not water ... so must you discard what is not your own, till nothing is left which you can disown. You will find that what is left is nothing which the mind can hook on to. You are not even a human being. You just are - a point of awareness, co-extensive with time and space and beyond both, the ultimate cause, itself uncaused. If you ask me “Who are you?”, my answer would be: “Nothing in particular. Yet, I am".

In the light of calm and steady self-awareness, inner energies wake up and work miracles without any effort on your part. Understand that you are destined for enlightenment. Co-operate with your destiny, don’t thwart it. All you have to do is to give attention to the obstacles created by the distorted mind.

In the mirror of your mind all kinds of pictures appear and disappear. Knowing that they are entirely your own creations, watch them silently come and go. Be alert, but not perturbed. This attitude of silent observation is the very foundation of yoga. You see the picture, but you are not the picture.

In the stillness of the mind, I saw myself as I am - unbound.

It has nothing to do with effort. Just turn away, look between the thoughts, rather than at the thoughts. When you happen to walk in a crowd, you do not fight every man you meet, you just find your way between. When you fight, you invite a fight. But when you do not resist, you meet no resistance. When you refuse to play the game, you are out of it.

It is just your imagination with its desires and fears that bind you. Know fully your true beingness is unconditioned, without fear. Live by this truth alone.

It is like washing printed cloth. First the design fades, then the background, and in the end the cloth is plain white. The personality gives place to the witness, then the witness goes and pure awareness remains. The cloth was white in the beginning and is white in the end; the patterns and colours just happened - for a time.

It is only the person that you imagine yourself to be that suffers, not you. Do not run from suffering, use it to guide you from the awareness of the unreal to the unconditioned awareness of the real.

It is your self identification with the body, which, of course, is limited in space and time, that gives you the feeling of finiteness. In reality, you are infinite and eternal.

Just keep in mind the feeling “I am”, merge in it, till your mind and feeling become one. By repeated attempts, you will stumble on the right balance of attention and affection, and your mind will be firmly established in the thought-feeling “I am”. Whatever you think, say or do, this sense of immutable and affectionate being remains as the ever-present background of the mind.

Just realize that you are dreaming a dream you call the world and stop looking for ways out. The dream is not your problem. 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.

Learn to distinguish the immovable in the movable, the unchanging in the changing, till you realize that all differences are in appearance only and oneness is a fact. This basic identity—you may call God, or Brahman, or the matrix (Prakriti), the words matter little—is only the realization that all is one. Once you can say with confidence born from direct experience: ‘I am the world, the world is myself’, you are free from desire and fear on one hand and become totally responsible for the world on the other.

Learn to live without self-concern. For this you must know your own true being as indomitable, fearless, ever victorious. Once you know with absolute certainty that nothing can trouble you, you come to disregard your desires and fears, concepts and ideas, and live by truth alone.

Life, a Slapstick Comedy

One evening a visitor started the talk with these words: Maharaj sometimes says that the entire manifestation is an illusion, like a movie, or a stage play, and that... Maharaj interrupted him with a laugh and said: But, it is not the usual purposeful movie; it is a hell of a comedy, a real slapstick, if you would only clearly see the whole thing as it really is. Look, here I am, in my home, bothering no one, doing what comes to me naturally. Suppose, one day a policeman suddenly appears at my doorstep and charges me with assault and robbery in Calcutta on such and such a day. I tell him that I have never been out of my home town, let alone being in Calcutta and taking part in an assault and robbery. The conviction with which I tell this to the policeman makes him a bit diffident. He conducts further inquiries and finds that what I said, was true. He then apologizes to me and leaves me alone. This is as it should be. But here comes the comic part. You also face a similar charge; you also have never been to Calcutta, but you are so much overawed by the presence of the policeman that you are unable to speak in your defense and you allow him to arrest you. Later, when you are behind the bars, you lament about your bondage and cry for liberation! Is this not ridiculous?

In my original state of unicity and wholeness, I didn't even know that I existed. And then one day I was told that I was 'born', that a particular body was 'me', that a particular couple were my parents. Thereafter, I began accepting further information about 'me', day after day, and thus built up a whole pseudo-personality only because I had accepted the charge of being born although I was fully aware that I had no experience of being born, that I had never agreed to be born, and that my body was being thrust on me. Gradually, the conditioning became stronger and stronger and grew to such an extent that not only did I accept the charge that I was born as a particular body, but that I would, at some future date, 'die' and the very word 'death' became a dreaded word to me signifying a traumatic event. Can anything be more ridiculous?

By my Guru's grace, I realized my true nature, and also realized what a huge joke had been played on me.

The more startling illusion, therefore, is not so much the happening of an event known as birth-life-death over a period of what is known as 'time', as is the acceptance of an objective entity which is supposed to undergo the experience of this conceptual event. And the basic illusion, which makes this illusion possible, is the concept of space in which objects could be extended, and the concept of time (duration) in which the spatially extended objects could be perceived.

Now, do you understand why I said that life is a slapstick comedy, a farce?

Go a step further and see the extent to which your conceptual entity gets itself involved in this farce. You not only fail to see that you are merely an actor playing a role in this farce, but go on to assume that you have a choice of decision and action in the play (called 'life'), which must obviously unfold strictly according to the pre-written script. And when events thus take place naturally in the ordinary course, this conceptual entity that man is, lets himself get affected by them, and suffers. And then he thinks of 'bondage' and 'liberation'.

Liberation is seeing the life as a farce, and perceiving that you (the 'I' without the slightest touch of objectivity) can not be an entity of any shape, name or kind.

Liberation is apperceiving that sentient objects are part of the manifestation of the total phenomena, without separate identities, that what 'I' am is the sentience in all sentient objects, the conscious presence as much. Liberation is apperceiving that I, the Absolute, in my phenomenal expression, am the functioning (seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting, smelling, thinking) without the presence of any other individual actors.

Now, do you understand why you 'suffer'? Because you are a case of mistaken identity; or rather because you have accepted what is obviously a mistaken identity!

~ Pointers from Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj compiled by Sri Ramesh Balsekar

Meditation will help you to find your bonds, loosen them, untie them and cast your moorings. When you are no longer attached to anything, you have done your share. The rest will be done for you.

Meet your own self. Be with your own self, listen to it, obey it, cherish it, keep it in mind ceaselessly. You need no other guide. As long as your urge for truth affects your daily life, all is well with you. Live your …life without hurting anybody. Harmlessness is a most powerful form of Yoga and it will take you speedily to your goal. This is what I call nisarga yoga, the Natural yoga. It is the art of living in peace and harmony, in friendliness and love. The fruit of it is happiness, uncaused and endless.

My experience is that everything is bliss already. But when you don’t see this, you are driven by desire. The entire universe of pain is born out of desire. Let go of this urge to be something other than what you already are.

My guru told me, Trust me, I tell you: you are Divine. Take it as the absolute truth. Your joy is divine, your suffering is divine too. All comes from God. Remember it always. You are God, your will alone is done.” If you have regard for me, remember my words. The knowledge “I Am” is the greatest God, the Guru; be one with that, be intimate with it. That itself will bless you with all the knowledge relevant for you and in the proliferation of that knowledge it will lead you to the state which is eternal.

My guru told me: “You alone are, deny existence to everything except your self” and I did not doubt him. I was merely puzzling over it, until I realized that it is absolutely true. I found that I am conscious and happy absolutely, and only by mistake I thought I owed being-consciousness to the body and the world of bodies.

No particular thought can be mind’s natural state, only silence. Not the idea of silence, but silence itself.

Non-dual devotion is devotion to our own Self. Pay attention to That which is continuously with you. Feel its necessity .. Your consciousness has gone through millions of incarnations. It knows its greatness. It is the knower of time. It is your true nature.

Nothing is done by me, everything just happens. I do not expect, I do not plan, I just watch events happening, knowing them to be unreal.

Nothing is wrong with you, but the ideas you have of yourself are altogether wrong. It is not you who desires, fears and suffers, it is the person built on the foundation of your body by circumstances and influences. You are not that person. This must be clearly established in your mind and never lost sight of.

Nothing you do will change you, for you need no change. You may change your mind or your body, but it is always something external to you that has changed, not yourself. Why bother at all to change? Realize once for all that neither your body nor your mind, nor even your consciousness is yourself and stand alone in your true nature beyond consciousness and unconsciousness. No effort can take you there, only the clarity of understanding.

Of all affections, self love comes first. Your love for the world is a reflection of your love for yourself, as your world is made by yourself.

Once you know with absolute certainty that nothing can trouble you but your own imagination, you come to disregard your desires and fears, concepts and ideas, and live by truth alone.

Once you realize that the road is the goal and that you are always on the road, not to reach a goal, but to enjoy its beauty and its wisdom, life ceases to be a task and becomes natural and simple, in itself an ecstasy.

Once you realize that the world is your own projection, you are free of it. You need not free yourself of a world that does not exist, except in your own imagination! However is the picture, beautiful or ugly, you are painting it and you are not bound by it. Realize that there is nobody to force it on you, that it is due to the habit of taking the imaginary to be real. See the imaginary as imaginary and be free of fear.

One thing is certain: the real is not imaginary, it is not a product of the mind. Even the sense ‘I am’ is not continuous, though it is a useful pointer; it shows where to seek, but not what to seek. Just have a good look at it. Once you are convinced that you cannot say truthfully about your self anything except ‘I am’, and that nothing that can be pointed at, can be your self, the need for the ‘I am’ is over — you are no longer intent on verbalising what you are. All you need is to get rid of the tendency to define your self. All definitions apply to your body only and to its expressions.

Once this obsession with the body goes, you will revert to your natural state, spontaneously and effortlessly. The only difference between us is that I am aware of my natural state, while you are bemused. Just like gold made into ornaments has no advantage over gold dust, except when the mind makes it so, so are we one in being — we differ only in appearance. We discover it by being earnest, by searching, enquiring, questioning daily and hourly, by giving one’s life to this discovery.

Question: You seem to advise me to be self-centered to the point of egoism. Must I not yield even to my interest in other people?

Maharaj: Your interest in others is egoistic, self-concerned, self- oriented. You are not interested in others as persons, but only as far as they enrich, or enable your own image of yourself. And the ultimate in selfishness is to care only for the protection, preservation and multiplication of one's own body. By body I mean all that is related to your name and shape--- your family, tribe, country, race, etc. To be attached to one's name and shape is selfishness. A man who knows that he is neither body nor mind cannot be selfish, for he has nothing to be selfish for. Or, you may say, he is equally 'selfish' on behalf of everybody he meets; everybody's welfare is his own. The feeling 'I am the world, the world is myself' becomes quite natural; once it is established, there is just no way of being selfish. To be selfish means to covet, to acquire, accumulate on behalf of the part against the whole.

Quietly watch yourself, all kinds of mind games come into play. Do nothing about them, don’t react to them; they come and go by themselves. All that matters is that you rest as the master; mindful of your awareness, rather than your mind.

Reality is not an event; it cannot be experienced. It is not perceivable in the same way as an event is perceivable. If you wait for an event to take place, for the coming of reality, you will wait forever, for reality neither comes nor goes.

Realize that your world is only a reflection of yourself and stop finding fault with the reflection. Attend to yourself, set yourself right; mentally and emotionally. The physical self will follow automatically.

Remember, you are entirely on your own. You must realize first of all that you are the proof of everything, including yourself. None can prove your existence, because this existence must be confirmed by you first. Your being and knowing you owe nobody. You are entirely on your own. You do not come from somewhere, you do not go anywhere. You are timeless being and awareness.

Running after saints is merely another game to play. Remember yourself instead and watch your daily life relentlessly. Be earnest, and you shall not fail to break the bonds of inattention and imagination.

Shift your attention from words to silence and you will hear.

Stay without ambition, without the least desire, exposed, vulnerable, unprotected, uncertain and alone, completely open to and welcoming life as it happens, without the selfish conviction that all must yield you pleasure or profit, material or so-called spiritual.

Stop imagining yourself to be this or that. Just be. Let your true nature emerge. Don’t disturb your mind with seeking.

Surrender to your own self, of which everything is an expression.

That in which consciousness happens, the universal consciousness or mind, we call the ether of consciousness. All the objects of consciousness form the universe. What is beyond both, supporting both is the Supreme State, a state of utter stillness and silence. Whoever goes there disappears. It is unreachable by words or mind. You may call it God, or Parabrahman, or Supreme Reality; but these are names given by the mind. It is the nameless, contentless, effortless and spontaneous state beyond being and not being.


The dreams are not equal, but the dreamer is one. I am the insect, I am the poet - in dream. But in reality I am neither. I am beyond all dreams. I am the light in which all dreams appear and disappear. I am both inside and outside the dream. Just as a man having a headache knows the ache and also knows that he is not the ache, so do I know the dream, myself dreaming and myself not dreaming - all at the same time. I am what I am before, during and after the dream. But what I see in dream, I am not.

The experience [of self-realization] is unique and unmistakable. It will dawn on you suddenly, when the obstacles are removed to some extent. It is like a frayed rope snapping. Yours is the work at the strands. The break is bound to happen. It can be delayed, but not prevented.

The idea of responsibility is in your mind. You think there must be something or somebody solely responsible for all that happens… There is a contradiction between a multiple universe and a single cause. Either one or the other must be false. Or both. As I see it, it is all day-dreaming. There is no reality in ideas. The fact is that without you, neither the universe nor its cause could have come into being.

The First Moment of Bliss
Self Knowledge and Self Realisation. Chapter 8.

The ever-awaited first moment was the moment when I was convinced that I was not an individual at all. The idea of my individuality had set me burning so far. The scalding pain was beyond my capacity to endure; but there is not even a trace of it now, I am no more an individual. There is nothing to limit my being now. The ever present anxiety and the gloom have vanished and now I am all beatitude, pure knowledge, pure consciousness.

The tumors of innumerable desires and passion were simply unbearable, but fortunately for me, I got hold of the hymn “Hail, Preceptor”, and on its constant recitation, all the tumors of passions withered away as with a magic spell!

I am ever free now. I am all bliss, sans spite, sans fear.

This beatific conscious form of mine now knows no bounds.

I belong to all and everyone is mine. The “all” are but my own individuations, and these together go to make up my beatific being. There is nothing like good or bad, profit or loss, high or low, mine or not mine for me. Nobody opposes me and I oppose none for there is none other than myself. Bliss reclines on the bed of bliss. The repose itself has turned into bliss.

There is nothing that I ought or ought not to do, but my activity goes on everywhere, every minute. Love and anger are divided equally among all, as are work and recreation. My characteristics of immensity and majesty, my pure energy, and my all, having attained to the golden core, repose in bliss as the atom of atoms. My pure consciousness shines forth in majestic splendor Why and how the consciousness became self-conscious is obvious now. The experience of the world is no more of the world as such, but is the blossoming forth of the selfsame conscious principle, God, and what is it?

It is pure, primal knowledge, conscious form, the primordial “I” consciousness that is capable of assuming any form it desires. It is designated as God. The world as the divine expression is not for any profit or loss; it is the pure, simple, natural flow of beatific consciousness. There are no distinctions of God and devotee, nor Brahman and Maya. He that meditated on the bliss and peace is himself the ocean of peace and bliss. Glory to the eternal truth, Sad-Guru, the Supreme Self.

The guru demands one thing only: clarity and intensity of purpose, a sense of responsibility for oneself. The very reality of the world must be questioned. Who is the guru, after all? He who knows the state in which there is neither the world nor the thought of it, he is the Supreme Teacher. To find him means to reach the state in which imagination is no longer taken for reality. Please understand that the guru stands for reality, for truth, for what is. He is a realist in the highest sense of the term. He cannot and shall not come to terms with the mind and it's delusions. He comes to take youto the real; don't expect him to do anything else.

The Guru tells you ‘Get rid of concepts, just be yourself’. The seeker having understood what the Guru said gets rid of the concepts, and now, as the first step, the seeker dwells in the state ‘I am’, just being. First of all there is the knowingness ‘I am’, without words, with that knowingness the world is. Now when the seeker goes into meditation, that knowingness goes into no- knowingness. This is the highest state in the hierarchy when the body aspect is there because this knowing and no-knowing are aspects of the body, and body means consciousness, and in the realm of consciousness, knowingness and no-knowingness exist. The Absolute transcends knowingness and no-knowingness. So, no-knowingness is the highest in the hierarchy of spirituality, and the destination is the transcendence of knowingness and no- knowingness.

The knowledge you are is God. You worship that and one day you will realize that you are not an individual. You will realize that you are the universal consciousness which cannot suffer; there is no pain or pleasure for that consciousness. Not through intellect, but through intense meditation you will know it.

The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it.

The mind produces thoughts ceaselessly, even when you do not look at them. When you know what is going on in your mind, you call it consciousness. This is your waking state - your consciousness shifts from sensation to sensation, from perception to perception, from idea to idea, in endless succession. Then comes awareness, the direct insight into the whole of consciousness, the totality of the mind. The mind is like a river, flowing ceaselessly in the bed of the body, you identify yourself for a moment with some particular ripple and call it 'my thought'. All you are conscious of is your mind. Awareness is the cognizance of consciousness as a whole.

The moment you start talking you create a verbal universe, a universe of words, ideas, concepts and abstractions, interwoven and inter-dependent, most wonderfully generating, supporting and explaining each other and yet all without essence or substance, mere creations of the mind. Words create words, reality is silent.

The only way of knowing reality is to be it. The mind cannot reach it. To perceive it does not need the senses; to know it, does not need the mind.

The past is dead memory, and the future is nonexistent. The present moment is not between the future and the past, but the constant dimension outside of time.

The ultimate point of view is that there is nothing to understand, so when we try to understand, we are only indulging in acrobatics of the mind. Whatever you have understood, you are not. Why are you getting lost in concepts? You are not what you know, you are the knower.

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 dream is not your problem. 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 need be done.

The way to truth lies through the destruction of the false. To destroy the false, you must question your most inveterate beliefs. Of these the idea that you are the body is the worst. With the body comes the world, with the world - God, who is supposed to have created the world and thus it starts - fears, religions, prayers, sacrifices, all sorts of systems - all to protect and support the child-man, frightened out of his wits by monsters of his own making. Realize that what you are cannot be born nor die and with the fear gone, all suffering ends.

The Whole Truth

nis-1-111x164 In its state of perfection of total Awareness, IT is unaware of its awareness. Then, consciousness stirs into a moan of Aum and the dream creation begins. IT is conscious of being. IT exults in this beingness. Immersed in the love of I-am-ness, IT expresses itself in duality.

Through union of twin aspects male-female; through the five elements – space, air, fire, water & earth; through the three gunas – sattva, rajas & tamas [cardinal, fixed, mutable]; IT manifests itself in duration.

In dreamed space-time, IT manifests as phenomena, creating millions of forms, breathing into them the life-force and the all-pervading immanent consciousness. Through these forms, in joyous self-love, functions consciousness as Prajnā, unselfconscious, higher consciousness, pure awareness.

The sentient beings, mere images thus conceived – wonder of wonders! – perceive one another as objects, assuming subjectivity for oneself. Each, in magnificent illusion, sees oneself as an entity separate, with judgment and volition independent. Each forgets his/ her unlimited potential as noumenal Absolute, accepts his/ her limited identity as an appearance - a mere phenomenon – and takes deliver of the functioning of Prajnā as his/ her own personal actions, binding his or her self in illusory bondage, suffering pain & pleasure!

Comes then, the merciful Gurū, full of Grace & Light Divine and shows him or her what it really is, that which he/ she thinks he/ she is, nothing more than the speck of sperm in which is latent the light of sentience, I-am-ness, the consciousness that he/ she is, given names in thousands – Rama, Krishna, Ishwara, Brahman, Buddha, Christ – the same I-am-ness it is, the Light of consciousness.

Mahāmāyā, in magnificent illusion illudes its own nature and leads itself astray until the Gurū says: Halt. See yourself as you are, in your true glory. On your original state of timeless, Absolute noumenality has appeared like a temporary illness, the body-cum-consciousness, Spontaneously, sans cause or reason, as part of Prajnā-ic functioning. It works out its allotted duration until, just as spontaneously it disappears; and, consciousness, no longer conscious of itself, merges in Awareness. No one is born, no one dead.

Says Nisargadatta Maharaj, in terms simple and direct: What were you before you acquired the body? Go back to the source. Be still. Then, will the seeker disappear and into the seeking merge. No longer aware of awareness, in Wholeness, in unicity, without duality, I am. With insight and intuition, with deep conviction, simple to apprehend, This-That-Is is beyond the bounds of intellect.

Only the objective and the phenomenal – presence or absence – can the intellect grasp. But, what-I-Am is neither presence nor absence. Absence of the presence of presence, absence of the presence of absence is what-I-Am.


The world you can perceive is a very small world indeed. And it is entirely private. Take it to be a dream and be done with it.

There are many who have had a momentary experience and are fooled into thinking they ‘know’. They destroy the little they gained by pride. Humility and silence are essential throughout.

There are no steps to self-realisation. There is nothing gradual about it. It happens suddenly and is irrevocably. You rotate into a new dimension, seen from which the previous ones are mere abstractions. Just like on sunrise you see things as they are, so on self-realization you see everything as it is. The world of illusion is left behind.

There is in the body a current of energy, affection and intelligence, which guides, maintains and energizes the body. Discover that current and stay with it.

There is no creator with a vast intellect as such; all this play is going on spontaneously. There's no intellect behind it, so don't try to impose yours to bring about any change; leave it alone. Your intellect is a subsequent product of this process, so how can your intellect take charge of or even evaluate, the whole creation? Investigate your self; this is the purpose of your being. Spirituality is nothing more than understanding this play of consciousness—try to find out what this fraud is by seeking its source.

There is nothing to know, nothing to practice. Just stop imagining yourself to be someone that needs to needs to know, someone that needs to find a ‘higher self’. Just be, without the story of self, and let your unborn nature emerge. You know that you are and that alone is everything.

There is nothing to practice. To know yourself, be yourself. To be yourself, stop imagining yourself to be this or that. Just be. Let your true nature emerge. Don’t disturb your mind with seeking.

There is only one mistake you are making: you take the inner for the outer and the outer for the inner. What is in you, you take to be outside you and what is outside, you take to be in you. The mind and feelings are external, but you take them to be intimate. You believe the world to be objective, while it is entirely a projection of your psyche.

There is no such state as seeing the real. Who is to see what? You can only be the real, which you are, anyhow.

There is only imagination. The intelligence and power are all used up in your imagination. It has absorbed you so completely that you just cannot grasp how far from reality you have wandered. No doubt imagination is richly creative. Universe within universe are built on it. Yet they are all in space and time, past and future, which just do not exist.

There is only Seeing. Both the seer and the seen are contained in it.

There is trouble only when you cling to something. When you hold on to nothing, no trouble arises. The relinquishing of the lesser is the gaining of the greater. Give up all and you gain all. Then life becomes what it was meant to be: pure radiation from an inexhaustible source. In that light the world appears dimly like a dream.

To exist means to be something, a thing, a feeling, a thought, an idea. All existence is particular. Only being is universal, in the sense that every being is compatible with every other being. Existences clash, being - never. Existence means becoming, change, birth and death and birth again, while in being there is silent peace.

To imagine that some little thing-food, sex, power, fame-will make you happy is to deceive oneself. Only something as vast and deep as your real self can make you truly and lastingly happy.

To know the self as the only reality and all else as temporal and transient is freedom, peace and joy. It is all very simple. Instead of seeing things as imagined, learn to see them as they are. When you can see everything as it is, you will also see yourself as you are. It is like cleansing a mirror. The same mirror that shows you the world as it is, will also show you your own face. The thought ‘I am’ is the polishing cloth. Use it.

To see the universe as it is, you must step beyond the net. It is not hard to do so, for the net is full of holes. Look at the net and its many contradictions. You do and undo at every step. You want peace, love and happiness, and work hard to create pain, hatred and war. You want longevity and you overeat. You want friendship and you exploit. See your net as made of such contradictions and remove them – your very seeing will make them go away.

Try to be, only to be. The all-important word is ‘try’. Allot enough time daily for sitting quietly and trying, just trying, to go beyond the personality, with its addictions and obsessions. Don’t ask how, it cannot be explained. You just keep on trying until you succeed. If you persevere, there can be no failure.

Ultimately you will come to see that you are neither the particular nor the universal, you are beyond both. As the tiny point of a pencil can draw innumerable pictures, so does the dimensionless point of awareness draw the contents of the vast universe. Find that point and be free.

Watch your thoughts and watch yourself watching the thoughts. The state of freedom from all thoughts will happen suddenly and by the bliss of it you shall recognize it.

We spend a lot of time looking for happiness when the world right around us is full of wonder. To be alive and walk on the Earth is a miracle, and yet most of us are running as if there were some better place to get to. There is in the body a current of energy, affection and intelligence, which guides, maintains and energizes the body. Discover that current and stay with it.

Weak desires can be removed by introspection and meditation, but strong, deep-rooted ones must be fulfilled and their fruits, sweet or bitter, tasted.

What has been attained may again be lost. Only when you realize the true peace, the peace you have never lost, that peace will remain with you for it was never away. Instead of searching for what you do not have, find out what is it that you have never lost. That which is there before the beginning and after the ending of everything, to That there is no birth nor death. That Immovable state, which is not affected by the birth and death of a body or a mind, that state you must perceive.

What you need will come to you, if you do not ask for what you do not need. Yet only a few people reach this state of complete dispassion and detachment. It is a very high state, the very threshold of liberation.

What you seek is so near you that there is no place for “a way”.

Whatever happens, happens to you by you, through you; you are the creator, enjoyer and destroyer of all you perceive.Whatever happens, happens to you by you, through you; you are the creator, enjoyer and destroyer of all you perceive.

When one talks of consciousness, one is likely to think in terms of an individual. But understand that it is not really the individual that has consciousness, but it is the consciousness that assumes innumerable forms.

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.

When the shadow is seen to be only a shadow, you stop following it. You turn around and discover the sun which was there all the time - behind your back!

When there is complete relinquishment of all concern with one’s phantom identity a new life dawns.

When thought has no customers, thought vanishes.

When you see your dream as dream, you wake up. But in your dream itself I am not interested. Enough for me to know that you must wake up. You need not bring your dream to a definite conclusion, or make it noble, or happy, or beautiful; all you need is to realise that you are dreaming. Stop imagining, stop believing. See the contradictions, the incongruities, the falsehood and the sorrow of the human state, the need to go beyond. Within the immensity of space floats a tiny atom of consciousness and in it the entire universe is contained.

Which God are you talking about? What is God? Is he not the very light by which you ask the question? ‘I am’ itself is God. The seeking itself is God. In seeking you discover that you are neither the body nor mind, and the love of the self in you is for the self in all. The two are one. The consciousness in you and the consciousness in me, apparently two, really one, seek unity and that is love.

Without imagination there is no world. Your conviction that you are conscious of a world is the world. The world you perceive is made of consciousness; what you call matter is consciousness itself.

You are the space in which it moves, the time in which it lasts, the love that gives it life. Cut off imagination and attachment and what remains?

You are not in the body, the body is in you. The mind is in you. They happen to you. They are there because you find them interesting.

You are not the mind, if you know you are not the mind then what difference does it make if it’s busy or quiet.? You are not the mind.

YOU ARE THE TIMELESS REALITY… Why not investigate what is now, instead of questioning the imaginary past and future? Your present state is neither beginningless nor endless. It is over a flash. Watch carefully from where it comes and where it goes. You will soon discover the timeless reality behind it.

You are striving to make progress, but your efforts can take you only so far until they become obstructions. Understand that all desire for progress must be abandoned. When there is no desire to become this or that or to vere away from ‘what-is’, you are taking a step to end your ignorance.

You can do nothing. What time has brought about, time will take away. This is the end of yoga, to realize independence. All that happens, happens in and to the mind, not to the source of the “I am”. Once you realize that all happens by itself (call it destiny, or the will of God, or mere accident), you remain as witness only, understanding and enjoying, but not perturbed. You are responsible only for what you can change. All you can change is only your attitude. There lies your responsibility.

You create the world in your imagination like a dream. Cease looking for reality in a dream and you will wake up. You need not know all ‘What’ 'Why’ and 'How’ there is no end to questions. Abandon all desires, keep your mind silent and you shall discover.

You give reality to concepts, while concepts are distortions of reality. Abandon all conceptualization and stay silent and attentive. Be earnest about it and all will be well with you.

You have no form, no shape, you are like the sky. The vital breath which you take in–will it feel any pain when you die? It will just merge into the air again, as it was before .

You have projected onto yourself a world of your own imagination, based on memories, on desires and fears, and you have imprisoned yourself in it. Break the spell and be free.

You have tasted so many things - all came to naught. Only the sense “I am” persisted, unchanged. Stay with the changeless among the changeful, until you are able to go beyond.

You imagine that without cause there can be no happiness. To me dependence on anything for happiness is utter misery.

You must come to a firm decision. You must forget the thought that you are the body and be only the knowledge ‘I am’, which has no form, no name. Just be. When you stabilize in that beingness, it will give all the knowledge and all the secrets to you, and when the secrets are given to you, you transcend the beingness, and you, the Absolute will know that you are also not the consciousness. Having gained all this knowledge, having understood what is what, a kind of quietude prevails, a tranquility. Beingness is transcended, but beingness is available.

You need not push life about. Just flow with it and give yourself completely to the task of the present moment, which is the dying now to the now. For living is dying, without death life cannot be.

Your world is true in essence but not in appearance. Be free of desires and fears and at once your vision will clear and you shall see all things as they are.

You're free here and now, it's only the mind that imagines slavery. Seeing that there is no separate and permanent person, everything is clear. You are the vastness and countless of consciousness. It is lucid, silent, peaceful, alert and without fear, without desire or pain. Realizing this is the end of every search.

iamthat_cover I Am That: I Am That; scribd^; again; Indian cover; Message, Quotes & I am That; I alone am, the One, the Supreme; On Meditation (excerpt from I Am That); On Teaching (excerpt from I Am That); Song of I Am (selections from I Am That); Song of Beyond I Am (selections from I Am That)
audio chapters: 001, 002, 003, 004, 005, 006, 007, 008, 009, 010, 011, 012, 013, 014, 015, 016, 017, 018, 019, 020, 021, 022, 023, 024, 025, 026, 027, 028, 029, 030, 031, 032, 033, 034, 035, 036, 037, 038, 039, 040, 041, 042, 043, 044, 045, 046, 047, 048, 049, 050, 051, 052, 053, 054, 055, 056, 057, 058, 059, 060, 061, 062, 063, 064, 065, 066, 067, 068, 069, 070, 071, 072, 073, 074, 075, 076, 077, 078, 079, 080, 081, 082, 083, 084, 085, 086, 087, 088, 089, 090, 091, 092, 093, 094, 095, 096, 097, 098, 099, 100, 101

Mumbai, 2/22/12

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