Search & Read
Nothing to Learn When You Know Who You Are
Cathy: I don’t agree with you that when one has realized the self there’s nothing more to discover. From the self’s point of view, certainly it is so.
Ram: This is the point of view I was referring to.
Cathy: From the self as manifest world’s point of view, this is nonsense.
Ram: The idea of a manifest world is nonsense too. Everything that you call the manifest world is nothing but the self. The self is not hidden beneath it or behind it in some subtle space or dimension. “What you worship there is what you see here,” the Veda says. “Manifest” and “unmanifest” are just concepts.
If you inquire into anything here, if you analyze the forms, break them down into their constituents, you will see that they have no actual substance. Therefore if you know them, will you know anything real? If you enjoy inquiring into unreality, that is fine, but you should know that it is unreality. The knowledge of limited things is always fundamentally unsatisfying. This is why people go on and on trying to “learn” more about their subject. This kind of knowledge always reveals more ignorance. And then one has to set out to remove that ignorance. And so on.
This is why there is only one knowledge to seek: “Who am I?” And once this knowledge is gained the search for knowledge stops. This is so because the essence of every bit of knowledge is the self. Without it there is nothing to know nor anyone to know it. Yes, you can seek relative knowledge to amuse yourself or to solve practical problems, but basically this is a superficial pursuit, one that has no permanent effect on you, the self.
Cathy: Most great masters have healthy, vibrant curiosity about the world around them. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to love going to the circus. I know Swami Dayananda certainly had loads of curiosity. I do believe that Swami Chinmayanda had a great deal of joie de vivre and interest in life. Even the silent Ramana Maharshi in his silent, confined physical boundaries had distinct preferences.
Ram: Perhaps, but only on the surface. I don’t believe in the concept of great masters. My view is that there is only one “master” and it is neither a master nor is it great. And that is – ta-da! – got it in one – the self. The swami dies and all that remains is the self. From the outside, people look at the body and see the tendencies playing and they think that this person is enlightened (or not), but there is only one enlightened being – you, the self. Where are all the great masters today? Jesus, the Buddha? They are all dead and gone. But is the self, God, dead and gone? Throw them all away because they only exist in your mind. Or keep them in your mind – but know that they are only happy dreams. The self alone exists.
Cathy: And don’t say that there is nothing to discover when you have repeatedly said that you enjoy the machinations of the human mind.
Ram: I enjoy it because it is funny, not because it is anything new.
Cathy: And if you were so dead you would never spend the time, energy and love on being such a great teacher to people.
Ram: I am not a great teacher. I am not a teacher. Ignorance is sometimes removed when I communicate the self. There is no “I” teaching. It looks that way when you take yourself to be a person, but it is not so.
Cathy: Perhaps your physical death is imminent, and a sad day that would be for me.
Ram: No, it wouldn’t, because I continue to exist as you.
Cathy: But it’s been a year or so now that you’ve been singing this song. Do you think you need a shrink? I’ll let you have my ex-shrink’s email, if you like. He’ll sort you out, show you the gates to paradise!
Ram: Good idea. Send it on.
Cathy: But before I conclude this tome, I wish to quote a few points from Swami Rama of the Himalayas on the subject of SIGNS OF IMPENDING DEATH which you may want to tack onto your refrigerator door.
Ram: I’m hopeful you’re not being serious. If you are, both you and Swami Rama are morons. What does he know? He probably copied a bunch of yogic folklore from some old texts. Death is always impending. From the relative point of view, the fact that we are living means that we are dying. From my point of view there is no death. It is just another dream.