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Mat: Hey, Ram, I was reading some e-satsangs, and in one of them you say you met sages in India with negative minds but they didn’t mind because their attention was only on the self. Wouldn’t that attention purify the mind after a while? If self-knowledge is the greatest purifier, which it has to be because it negates the doer, why would their minds be negative? An excess of rajasic and tamasic actions?
~ Thanks, Mat
Ram: Hi, Mat. Great question. Yes, self-knowledge will purify the mind but negation of the doer means that the doer is known not to be real. The doer stays, like a mirage stays when it is known to be a mirage. So if the mind had a predominance of rajas and tamas before self-knowledge occurred there will be negativity in the doer according to the degree of the rajas and the tamas. If you know you are the self there is no reason to make negativity into a problem. In the fullness of time the negativity will slowly dissipate to the point where it is entirely manageable. That statement I made was meant to indicate that the self is not in conflict with any emotion. Yes, to the degree that there is still some identification with the doer there will be discomfort. It can either be happily tolerated or some kind of inquiry can be conducted to reveal the source and purify it.
It is uncomfortable for the doer, and the enlightened person may see fit to avoid the situations that produce discomfort. From the self’s point of view it is optional whether or not it applies the knowledge to the mind. It can see doership, so it is only an object and not a problem. It knows that negativity is unreal, caused by unpurified rajas and tamas. To the degree that the realized person identifies with the mind it can, if it has compassion for the mind, cultivate sattva until the rajas and tamas is ameliorated eventually but if you ignore your mind and keep your attention on the self the mind will just remain as it is.