Once you have transcended the body idea, it does not matter whether you live a short or a long time. You do not depend on anything for your existence. Try to find out for yourself what you are, without depending on anything or anyone.
The conviction that this world never existed can happen only to ‘Parabrahman’. If this is indeed your conviction then you are the ‘Parabrahman’. This thing aside, you should discover how this news ‘I am’ – the knowledge of your existence – appeared and at what moment. Go to the source of it and find out.
Whatever food you consume, that is converted into this body, ultimately. And this body in turn is the food for the consciousness. So you come with the food, you come with the body. The question is one of correctly identifying what you are.
Originally, I am untainted - uncovered by anything, without stigma - since nobody existed prior to me. Nor do I entertain any concepts about somebody existing before me. Everything is in the form of the manifest world, after the appearance of the knowledge "I am" with the body. Together with the body and the indwelling "I-am-ness," everything is. Prior to the appearance of this body and the knowledge "I am" what was there?
When you say you sit for meditation, the first thing to be done is understand that it is not this body identification that is sitting for meditation, but this knowledge ‘I am’, this consciousness, which is sitting in meditation and is meditating on itself. When this is finally understood, then it becomes easy. When this consciousness, this conscious presence, merges in itself, the state of ‘samadhi’ ensues. It is the conceptual feeling that I exist that disappears and merges into the beingness itself. So this conscious presence also gets merged into that knowledge, that beingness – that is ‘samadhi’.
What remains is the Original, which is unconditioned without attributes, and without identity: that on which this temporary state of the consciousness and the three states and the three gunas have come and gone. It is called Parabrahman, the Absolute. This is my basic teaching. Have you any questions on that?
There is no question of duality because nothing exists except me. Only I exist. I deal only with that Highest, whatever it is. In the lower, everything is true, on that level. But I don't deal with that stuff at all. I don't expound the initial stages...That time is over for myself. If anybody places full reliance on my words, that you are the Brahman, you are everything, that itself will transform you.
Only Conviction! That is the only technique for the sadhana if you are thinking of any initiation - only the words of the guru that you are not the body! That is the initiation. Stay put there, in that state. It is spontaneous, natural, that ‘shraddha’ (faith). What is that faith? ‘I am’ without words, whatever you are that is the faith. Now you have to elevate yourself to the state of ‘Brahman’; this is the condition you have to develop.
You know that there is Being, and you are going towards non-Being. And there are all the things of Being and you know that they are really nothing. But it was fun; it was a great illusion while it lasted.
This ‘I am’ is an announcement, it is not the real, it has come out of something else. What the real is, I am not trying to tell you, because words negate that. Whatever I am telling you, is not the truth, because it has come out of the ‘I am’.
That "I Am" is a concept is to be understood while the concept is there. Once it merges in the original state, who (or what) is there who wants to know? The illusory entity has disappeared. The basic reason for all this great cause is that you exist, so find the nature of that. All these acts are done by the child of a barren woman. All these are problems of the consciousness; find out the root of the consciousness.
Normally a common spiritual seeker will not understand what I am driving at because he is seeking something which he can enjoy. What is your ambition in being a spiritual seeker? You are looking for advantage in the world, to take care of your daily life - that is the maximum you expect out of spirituality. The so-called sages, who are following a spiritual pursuit, focus their ambition on seeing that their daily life goes on comfortably. Why in hell did I happen to be? Nobody enquires about that.
Throw it away! Whatever you understand is not the truth and it is to be thrown overboard. You are trying to catch hold of something and cling to it. Accept, as it is, what I am telling you. Don't be carried away by concepts. Don't employ any words, and look at yourself as you are. Few people understand what I am driving at. You are not paying proper attention, you are talking only after this beingness appeared. Before the beingness was there, look at that, be in that state. If you dare call me an atheist, remember that I do bhajans four times a day.
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.
On my true, whole, homogeneous state just a small ripple appeared, the news came, "I Am". That news made all the difference, and I started knowing this; but now I have known my true state, so I understand my true state first, and then I understand that this ripple is coming and going on my true state. While, in your case, you take interest in the ripple and don't take interest in your true state.
It is the intensity of the faith you have in the guru's words that is most important; once that is there, the grace flows automatically. The faith in the guru is based on the consciousness within, faith in one's Self. The love for the beingness I am trying to direct to a higher level. What is lasting is this love for the Self, on which temples have been built. This Christ-consciousness is existing; is it faith in a man? As a man, Christ was crucified, but that universal consciousness which was his, lives today.
When death approaches you, remember that you have no shape and no color. "I am Nirguna - without attributes" - this is the last thought that you should have. You know the body, but you are not the body. When you go to sleep, sleep with the remembrance of that truth. Many impure thoughts have come and gone away, but I am immutable, I am infinite, I am the Truth. Sleep with these thoughts and all those impure thoughts are absolved. Don't go off to sleep as a slave to the mind; be its master. Form this habit, become absolutely detached and master of your mind.
See this flame of the cigarette lighter. It has appeared, it has disappeared; it's just like that. Has it got any concept, this flame? What is without concept is the most perfect, the most proper. The witnessing has to be done when you try to concentrate on an objective. Suppose you want to concentrate on a Rama, a Krishna, or a Christ, then there is a question of concentrating or watching. This is only the knowledge "I am".
As salt is in seawater, similarly, in the body, in combination with the vital breath, the consciousness appears. It is the consciousness that feels pain or pleasure, not the body or the vital breath. Once you know that you are not the body, all the concepts about pain and pleasure will disappear by themselves.
Rare, unpublished and exclusive audio talks in Marathi of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj with wonderful English translation by His evening tra...
About Nisargadatta Maharaj
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj was an Indian spiritual teacher and philosopher of Advaita (Nondualism), and a Guru, belonging to the Navnath Sampradaya. Sri Nisargadatta, with his direct and minimalistic explanation of non-dualism, is considered the most famous teacher of Advaita since Ramana Maharshi. In 1973, the publication of his most famous and widely-translated book, "I AM THAT", an English translation of his talks in Marathi by Maurice Frydman, brought him worldwide recognition and followers.
According to Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, the purpose of spirituality is simply to know who you are. His discussions are not for academic scholars. He is a rebellious spirit, abrupt in his style of discussion, provocative, and immensely profound, cutting to the core and wasting little effort on inessentials. He talked about the 'direct way' of knowing the Final Reality, in which one becomes aware of one's original nature through mental discrimination, breaking the mind's false identification with the ego, knowing that "You are already That".