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Confidence in the Confidence
Arieh: Hello, Sundari!
There is this really sweet confidence now, in that I am okay. I realize I have had this same confidence before but only for short periods of time because it was so far from usual fearful ”personality,” so there was no trust. There is like a confidence in the confidence now. Sometimes fear energy comes but I have been able to handle it with knowledge so far. Thank you again for all your help!
Sundari: I am so pleased to hear this, Arieh. The knowledge is working which is why you have “confidence in the confidence” – great title, by the way. ☺
When rajas (desire/extroversion/projection) and tamas (negativity/fear/denial) arise in the mind (which of course they always will), one simply sees the predictable thoughts and feelings associated with the gunas as coming from Isvara (the causal body) and discriminates you, the self, from the objects – as you are doing. Keep it up and well done!
I am almost finished my guna/lifestyle book, and understanding the gunas will help you tremendously with discrimination. In fact it is impossible to discriminate the objects appearing in the mind without understanding the gunas and how they operate, because they govern the creation of everything, including of course “your” particular likes and dislikes.
Arieh: I am trying to understand Isvara and what I am relating to in terms of daily bhakti and karma yoga. So I have a question about that, if you don’t mind.
Here is how I understand it: when it comes to bhakti, I worship Krishna, who is a symbol of the self. So he is a symbol for me.
Arieh: Practising karma yoga, I say thank you for all that has been given to me, this body, this world and so on. It is given to me by Isvara, the self plus pure sattva.
Sundari: Karma yoga is really bhakti yoga because one surrenders all results of action to Isvara. Isvara is the self “plus,” or “in association with,” maya, which is pure sattva because maya is not contaminated by rajas and tamas.
Arieh: Isvara creates this apparent world. It has maya as its uphadi, an uphadi being something that makes something look like something it’s not. Isvara is the giver of the results of actions (and is actually the doer also).
Sundari: All correct – except Isvara is not a doer either, because Isvara is not a person with likes and dislikes. Although it seems to be so because we say Isvara is the giver of the results of action (or karma), karma comes as a result of the action of the gunas – which are IMPERSONAL forces – on the mind.
Arieh: Everything is the self, awareness, anyway. But Isvara is an aspect of awareness.
Sundari: Isvara is not an aspect of awareness, because awareness is a partless whole and has no “aspects.” Isvara is awareness, but when maya manifests it “becomes,” or “assumes,” the role of Creator, bringing about the creation when rajas and tamas manifest.
Arieh: And I am not Isvara, because I don’t have Isvara’s powers or knowledge and I am not in charge of results (or actually, doing either).
Sundari: Yes, correct. Isvara creates everything in the apparent reality and the jiva only creates its subjective reality.
Arieh: So should I give my thanks to Isvara, the dharma field? Or just to Krishna, my symbol of awareness, my self, since awareness is what I and Isvara have in common and awareness is the essence of everything?
Here is a really silly example:
If I pray for something, do I picture Krishna with the Creator hat on to differentiate? Because I’m not giving it to my self, really.
Sundari: Who else are you (and who is YOU?) giving it to if not the self? And what does it matter who you give thanks to if you know it is all you, the self? Giving thanks – the ability to feel gratitude – is a gift from Isvara/awareness to the JIVA. Neither Isvara nor awareness need the jiva’s gratitude, because there is nothing but awareness, so seen from that perspective, what is there to be grateful for?
But remember that freedom and peace of mind is for the jiva – and jivaji lives in the apparent reality, it never leaves it. So when jiva feels gratitude in the mind, it feels good – VERY good. In fact if you wake up in the morning and cannot connect to feeling gratitude, know that the jiva is going to have a tough day.
Gratitude, no matter to whom or where it is expressed, oils the wheels of life and is the most important aid to karma yoga because every act made in with the attitude of gratitude is a consecration to Isvara – YOU, awareness. Then taking the results of all action as prasad comes naturally.
Arieh: Thank you again!
~ Love, Arieh
Sundari: You are most welcome, Arieh, lovely to hear from you, as always!
~ Much love, Sundari