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Demonic Entities, Psychic Vampires and Other Jivas
Daniel: There is one more thing that would be interesting to me: What do you think about the idea of bodiless jivas that we cannot perceive with our physical senses? Do you think they are just psychological projections in pratibasika satyam or do you think that they have a real existence?
Sundari: Yes, demonic or angelic entities of whatever ilk are subjective psychological (thought/emotional) projections in pratibasika. How can they have a real existence when nothing in mithya is real? What do you mean by “real”? The only thing that is real is you, the knower of all objects embodied or not, meaning the self – that which is always present and never changes.
Daniel: Since many years I have been molested by dark entities (demons, earthbound spirits, disincarnated parasites, whatever). I do not dare to practice formal meditation, since I might open up spiritually too much and the risk of being influenced increases. And even if I only study Vedanta and my mind becomes meditative, I do not dare to let go and explore these meditative states, because I fear that this demon abuses my vulnerability.
Sundari: Who does not “dare to let go”? And let go of what, exactly? The only thing you need to let go of is fear, tamas, and rajas, projection. That is what is “abusing your vulnerability.” Self-knowledge resolves all pratibasika issues irrefutably. Vedanta is unambiguous about ghosts, angels, demons and other disembodied beings. As there is only awareness and all objects have a dependent existence on it, disembodied jivas of whatever kind are not much different from the supposedly embodied jivas. As reality is non-dual, they are objects that arise in you and are known to you, awareness. The apparent reality is all a dream within a dream; none of it is real. Only awareness fits the definition of “real.”
Disembodied beings are jivas too and have a subtle body; they still have great attachment to the world of gross objects, just like embodied jivas do. It is desire that keeps them attached, so they are driven by their vasanas.
But vasanas cannot be directly seen, whereas the subtle body can be seen, even if it is not seemingly attached to a gross object, like a physical body. Some people can see subtle energies such as disembodied jivas of a “good or bad” nature more clearly than others and are called sensitives, psychics or “possessed.”
Much of it is the result of neurotic projections based on misguided fears and beliefs. The New Age fad of “channelling” supposedly superior beings is open ground for fools and phoneys. Some of it has some value from the mithya level, but the problem is of course that if it is taken to real, which it usually is, it keeps you stuck in duality. The ability to see or hear disembodied entities is just the ability to tune in to a different bandwidth, so to speak, much like tuning into a different TV or radio channel. It’s no big deal. The magical thinking types who abound in the spiritual marketplace use this subjective knowledge and present it as though it is truth – and of course you need to give your power over to them because THEY know what is the truth for you. The psychic world of spirits is best avoided if you are a serious inquirer because it is all based in duality, it has no valid or objective teaching, and therefore is all ignorance.
The ability to perceive the subtle realm of disembodied beings is the stuff of mythology and mysticism. It does have some minor benefit in that it can give one the understanding that there is something outside of the information available through the normal organs of perception. The insights available in such cases are much like the insights a drug-induced high or an epiphany can provide. The problem comes in when more import is given to these insights than they actually hold. Like all subjective experiences, experiencing disembodied beings is of little use unless it delivers self-knowledge, and the knowledge is understood and assimilated.
The knowledge this kind of subjective information is supposed to give is that YOU are the knower of what appears in the mind. If you see it as coming from some magical or evil place outside of and beyond you, you are trapped in duality once again, bound to objects and subjugated by them. It is spiritual materialism, no different from any other materialism – but perhaps more dangerous in terms of giving your power and self-confidence (not to mention common sense!) as the self away.
For knowledge to qualify as knowledge it must be true to the object and not the subject; therefore subjective knowledge may or may not contain truth, whereas self-knowledge is not dependent on the object; it is self-revealing. As you seem to be aware, Vedanta calls the subjective realm of experience “pratibasika,” which means apparently real, and the information obtained from this is dependent on interpretation. Everyone will experience this realm differently, through the filters of their conditioning, meaning their vasanas.
Vyavaharika refers to the realm of empirical reality, such as Newton’s world of billiard balls and clocks. This realm is apparently predictable and relatively stable. If we are both looking at a mountain, we will probably both agree that it is a mountain. But I might find it a scary mountain and you might find it a peaceful mountain, which will be a result of our subjective view of the mountain. Lastly, one has the realm of paramarthika – the perspective of awareness. This is non-dual vision, where everything is seen as awareness, as you, that which is real, ever-present, the unchanging, actionless witness of the experiencing entity.
Daniel: Acting in accordance with the dharma of the moment helps alleviate these attacks. Those attacks are like a karma police. Whenever I do or think something that is only slightly against dharma I get whacked immediately.
Sundari: I am sure you are quite serious about this, but do you not see that you are playing games with your own mind, since everything we experience originates from our thoughts? There is no such thing as the “karma police” other than the understanding of who and what Isvara is – what the gunas are, how they operate and govern our seemingly personal vasanas, and the laws that run the creation, or dharma field. We need to act in accordance with what Isvara requires of us or we suffer. There is no other “external” force that can subjugate us other than ignorance of Isvara, i.e. the belief that duality is real. When we do not act in accordance with universal dharma and our own personal svadharma, we do get whacked, usually quickly, sometimes not so quickly. The consequences will come, as there is no escape from karma other than through self-actualization. But Isvara is not a big person meting out punishment or reward for good or bad behaviour. Isvara simply facilitates karma, and if we break the rules we pay the price.
Daniel: Other things that seem to help are prayer, crystals, saltwater baths and a sattvic lifestyle. What doesn’t seem to help is medication. I have not tried counseling, since I esteem myself as a psychologically healthy person and I did not have any major trauma in my life or family. I also doubt that trying to find and verbalize problems for an extended amount of time does so much good.
I’ve also been to various healers and alternative therapists, one of them even once could free me from psychic attacks for six months, then they returned. I am not able to see these entities as psychological projections. I cannot believe that. They appear as distinct, malevolent, intelligent entities. I can feel them, hear them and at times see them.
What is the Vedantic perspective on such “psychic experiences”?
Sundari: If you have read Panchadasi (James has made this advanced scripture much more accessible in his book Inquiry into Existence), you will know that creation is a “cosmic egg.” It is born out of a “black hole,” or macrocosmic tamas – the densest form of matter – so dense, even light cannot escape it. In this egg, there are 14 (some say 17) levels or fields of existence and experience. Three types or levels of sentient beings inhabit these worlds, in various gradations, “up or down,” meaning all of them are determined by punya or papa (good or bad) karma.
The first realms are the lower realms, which are predominantly tamasic, then the middle realms, which are predominantly tamasic-rajasic with different levels of sattva, and the higher or celestial realms, which are predominantly sattvic. All levels are “below the line,” in mithya, and known to you, awareness. None of them are more real or have more meaning than any other, as much as the New Age magical world of spiritual materialism would like to make it so.
The first and lower, predominantly tamasic-level viswas, or jivas (waking-state entities), include animals, reptiles, birds, insects, microorganisms, plants and also the demonic embodied or disembodied spiritual realm. Embodied demonic entities are totally tamasic, meaning ignorant of the self, and are mostly psychopaths but could also be sociopaths, what Vedanta calls rakshasas – demons. These are souls that want to harm others and take pleasure in doing so. They do not feel for others at all (cannot feel compassion or empathy) and do not suffer guilt or regret. They do not suffer existential anxiety, nor do they worry or feel separate and alone. They are cold-hearted and have no feeling for Isvara’s law of non-injury – it is not built-in, like it is for most humans. Unlike animals, they do have an intellect and can think – but their thinking is controlled purely by tamas. They can be very intelligent (sattva), but it is intelligence solely in the service of tamas, “evil.” Like animals, they do not make themselves this way; they are a program and they cannot help their nature.
The disembodied demonic beings in this realm are the same as the embodied ones, but as I said above, they do not have a physical body, they only have a subtle body. As they still have great attachment to the world of gross objects just like embodied demonic jivas do, their intention is also to harm. Susceptible people experience these entities or psychic vampires in various ways, in dreams, in people and situations – they can even appear “embodied” in what looks like physical form. They are dark and extremely malevolent entities that take form through fear-thoughts, just like their opposite, the angelic realm, can appear through thoughts of love and compassion. But they are no more real than a thought.
The lower realm also includes animal, insect, microorganisms and plant jivas. Having no intellect (or only very rudimentary intellects) they are also totally tamasic, ignorant of the self. You could say they are totally bound or you could say they are totally free, one with the self. Animals are not conditioned by the gunas, so they do not have vasanas nor can they or do they deliberately want to harm (unlike demonic embodied or disembodied beings, who can think and do plot harm). Animals are not plagued by the usual thought/emotional patterns that limit humans: guilt, shame, regret, lack of self-esteem, to name a few. So animals do not have existential problems, they are happy and do not worry. Animals have no power to analyze or think other than in terms of their desires.
Animals do not interpret their environment; they do not evaluate the things that happen to them, in them and around them. Being ignorant and not capable of self-reflection, there is no karma for animals. Animals act purely by “instinct,” meaning in accordance with Isvara. They are programs and have no choice in the matter, whereas humans do have choice. We have free will. Well, we can question how free it really is because the gunas are behind everything, but essentially, we can seemingly choose one thing over another. Animals do not feel incomplete or separate, so do not chase objects to complete them. Animals don’t worry, because they accept reality as it is. Animals don’t need scripture or enlightenment, because they are not bound by the gunas.
But the downside is, to achieve moksa, a jiva must develop the ability to assimilate the meaning of experience. First-level jivas do not have much merit, because they cannot assimilate the meaning of experience, so are not able to achieve moksa. However, whether demonic (embodied or not) animal or plant, they have the ability, given by Isvara of course, to evolve upwards. When the prarabdha karma of a demonic or animal/insect/organism or plant jiva is exhausted, it can be reborn into higher realms or levels within its realm, progressing upwards.
The middle level of creation contains embodied human and disembodied spirit viswas who are predominantly rajasic/tamasic, but with different levels of sattva. The middle-level disembodied beings, such as benevolent spirits or ghosts, are jivas too with a subtle body, and again, like the lower-level demonic spiritual realm, they still have great attachment to the world of gross objects, just like embodied jivas do. But disembodied jivas in these middle realms are benign, or neutral. They are no different to embodied jivas stuck in bondage to their desires – i.e. in ignorance.
Most beings in this realm have some merit (punya) and some demerit (papa), even the ones who are mostly sattvic, being the ones qualified for self-inquiry but not yet free of samsara. They are in the twilight zone with half-knowledge (spirit) and half-ignorance (matter), and are bound by the gunas, as having free will and an intellect capable of doubt, this realm can make choices not conducive to peace of mind, creating “bad” (papa) karma. The most evolved souls in this realm have attained moksa, are free of the gunas, and being the self, are free of karma, although seemingly “good and bad” things still play out for the jiva, they are no longer identified with the jiva.
As I told you in my last email, karma itself is value-neutral. It is just action and its results. It only becomes meaningful when we evaluate it. We either like it, don’t like it or are indifferent to it. Only in the minds of bound and ignorant human beings does action become “karma.” Karma is either meritorious or deleterious based on how pure or impure it renders the subtle body because a pure subtle body is the instrument for attaining moksa.
Humans and spirits in the middle realm can evolve upwards or downwards, depending on the predominance of merit and demerit that their actions produce. The upside of having a human subtle body is that it can analyze and do inquiry, and because of this, ignorance can be removed from the mind by self-knowledge. Therefore a human subtle body is better than any other body because it is capable of moksa, whereas no other subtle body is. A human subtle body is also better than a spirit or celestial subtle body, and I will explain why.
The “higher” levels of creation contain celestials, such as angels. Celestials are totally sattvic and do not suffer worry or dissatisfaction. They do not have vasanas, and like animals they are happy because they too are not bound by the gunas. But there is a downside in the “celestial realm” as there is everywhere in mithya. Namely, it is still in mithya. And celestials must become human jivas when the momentum of their good karma is exhausted, bringing them back to earth, samsara – the wheel of karma – where they must work on another round of human karma before final liberation, moksa, is actualized through self-knowledge.
Moksa can only be achieved in a human subtle body which is attached to a gross physical body, through self-knowledge. Disembodied beings, no matter how pure, cannot achieve moksa. So it is pointless making a big deal of these realms as somehow superior to the human plane of experience. They are not. Nothing in mithya is real.
As I said above, all three levels of existence are mithya – only apparently real. Making an identity out of any of these levels is duality, ignorance.When self-knowledge has removed all ignorance, we are triguna-atita, beyond the gunas. But to be free as a jiva and live free as the self, we need to understand the gunas and how they condition the jiva – in other words, how the gunas generate “our” seemingly personal vasanas – fears and desires, which is another way of saying we need to understand Isvara and the field of existence.
You have objectified these entities and identified with them, so you take them to be real. Your discrimination fails you because you cannot see that you are always the knower of these entities, so they cannot be you. Therefore THEY HAVE NO POWER OVER YOU!! Unless you give them power of course, which you have. They are no more than the embodiment of your fear-thoughts.
Ramji was married to a woman many years ago who lost her mind – and he watched the process unfold. She was a beautiful soul, but these very deep fear-thoughts took over her mind and materialized externally as seemingly real entities – and she was so invested in them even he could see them. He had self-knowledge, so he never bought into them, and dismissed them, but if your knowledge is not strong, these thought forms can take over. Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom. He had a recurring nightmare around that time. He was taking part in a basketball match with a team of very tall, menacing, black players who chased him and wanted to smash his skull with the ball. Instead of running away from them, he decided to embrace them as the self, and they disappeared. We live in a thought universe, none of it is real – it is just a movie. These entities you see are not real. If you cannot dismiss them, love them. Take them as prasad. Embrace them. Love is your nature and it conquers all. Nothing can withstand love’s transformative power.
A happy life for the jiva is all about thought and emotion management. The mind is our primary instrument for knowing anything. It is so powerful, it has the unique capacity to convert heaven into hell and hell into heaven. A person with every convenience, coming from a good karmic life, can feel miserable and tortured, and a person weighed down with so many problems can feel totally happy and peaceful. The quality of our life is dependent on this powerful organ, the mind. Isvara has given us an exquisite instrument with which to experience life, but it has a serious drawback inherent in its nature which prevents most of us from experiencing the joy of our true nature as awareness.
The serious drawback of the mind is that, without our permission, the mind generates continuous involuntary thoughts we have no control over. With or without our involvement, the mind, which is supposed to be our instrument – we are the owner – acts on its own, of its own volition. The mind is supposed to, and can, produce deliberate thoughts of our own choosing, but unless we understand it and know how to manage it, its nature is to produce and churn out thoughts continuously. It is simply a machine, and this is how it is made. As I said above, if fear-thoughts dominate the mind, they will come at you in every form and the mind will just keep churning them out. The more you invest in them, the more entrenched they become. The mind is so powerful it can externalize them into psychic entities that can appear very real indeed. They are like squatters in the mind, and they refuse to leave.
Think of it this way: you are unborn, undying, ever-present, unchanging, limitless awareness. One day, the jiva called Daniel appears in front of you. Arising from you, he is perfect because he is you. But there is one problem. Maya, the power in you to delude has also appeared.
Although Daniel is conscious only because your light shines on him, he now believes he is Daniel. He experiences objects and identifies with them, believing he is nothing, empty, and needs something to make him whole. He believes he is a worthless, unlovable burden. He suffers. This suffering is also a gift because it galvanizes him to find relief.
Through many travails, Daniel finds the Holy Grail, himself – Vedanta. But he still has a problem. He was given an exquisite instrument with which to experience. He now knows he is the knower of this instrument, not the instrument itself. But nonetheless, this instrument has one big flaw. It generates thoughts Daniel has no control over.
It’s like he owns this beautiful piece of land, but squatters have moved in; ugly, smelly, gross, uncouth – even evil squatters. And they take over. Worse, they do not even see him. They ignore him. It seems he is helpless to get rid of them even though they contradict everything about him. They paralyze the mind like a virus. Daniel feels immobilized by fear.
Then, through the dark cloud of tamas, Vedanta appears, and a teacher to unfold the teachings. It reveals to him that he is not Daniel; he is the knower of Daniel. Daniel exists only because of the knower, his true self, awareness. He feels the power of self-knowledge stir; the thoughts recede somewhat into the shadows. But they seem to have a life of their own all the same. Even though he is the light that makes even those thoughts possible, there is a certain order that is keeping them in the real estate of the mind. They do not go away and they keep coming.
They come from an unknown and unknowable place, the unconscious – the causal body. But now Daniel has self-knowledge; he is protected and the thoughts/feelings, those awful imposters, cannot take over the mind anymore. They are known for what they are: phantoms of the opera called Daniel’s life.
So don’t worry about them. The knowledge will take care of them in due course. Reclaim the power and real estate of the mind by giving it a project – noble work. Keep it focused on the scripture, on the self. If you don’t have an altar, create one. Practice devotion daily. Chant the names of the Lord, read The Song of the Self out loud, especially when these seemingly real thought entities appear. Take a stand in awareness as awareness, practise the opposite thought with courage. You, the self, are Lord of the Manor, owner of the mind. Those imposter-thoughts will play out as long as they play out, and one day they will be gone. No trace of their existence will remain. And Daniel will be Daniel, but he will no longer be burdened with Daniel.
Say thank you to Isvara, accept what appears, with gratitude. Feel the bliss of self-knowledge, always present, witnessing. It does not feel like anything. It is you, existence.
You are one of the lucky ones who have, by good grace that is not your doing, stumbled upon the manual: Vedanta. This manual contains not only all the operating instructions, it also explains the nature of the mind, what it is and the forces that run it, the gunas. The mind run by the gunas is a very serious problem for the jiva, with many adverse consequences. When involuntary thoughts kidnap the mind, it means the mind is not available for our use in self-inquiry or for much else. We do actions without thinking, as an absent-minded or mindless person, living “in absentia.”
Managing the mind means managing the gunas – and vice versa. There’s no magic to Vedanta. Vedanta shows us that the mind is our primary instrument for experiencing, realizing and actualizing ourselves in this world. It all boils down to owning your mind as your primary instrument and repeatedly and consistently reconditioning it with thoughts that are true – in other words, that produce peace of mind. Any seeming failure to realize or actualize ourselves or to have a peaceful life, is only due to lack of knowledge and incorrect thoughts that dominate the mind/emotions/intellect. The simple solution is reconditioning the mind with chosen thoughts that are aligned with the truth and based on self-knowledge. This is called volitional, deliberate, thinking.
When skilfully managed, the mind will produce peace of mind and allow us to express and enjoy the beauty that we are in our day-to-day life, no matter what life dishes out to us. When you feel bad, for any reason, you can convert your emotional distress/fear and mental agitation into gratitude and peace through managing the gunas with volitional thinking. This entails watching out with hawk’s eyes for the habitual emotional thought patterns dominating your mind and creating your negative state of mind and suffering – and transforming those thought patterns into new thoughts of your own choosing.
We have a brilliant course, available free on ShiningWorld, Christian Leeby’s 5 Step Formula to Mastering Mind Control. I recommend it. I have taken the liberty to adjust and flesh out this simple guideline for managing the mind, below.
Seven-Step Formula for Effective Mind Management:
1. Own your mind as your primary instrument.
2. Clarify your highest values by conducting a fearless moral inventory.
3. Take responsibility for every experience you have; it comes from your thoughts, not the world.
4. Your thoughts/emotions don’t come from you; they come from the three gunas. Make sure you understand what they are.
5. Monitor your every thought and the emotion it produces, see the guna behind it.
6. Discriminate the habitual emotional thought patterns that compel you to act against your highest values, creating pain and suffering.
7. Evaluate your daily actions to discover those that do not support your highest values.
8. Change those thoughts and the actions they produce by conditioning new chosen thoughts into your primary instrument. Always apply karma yoga to every thought, word and action.
7. Relax and stop worrying, as your primary instrument automatically serves your highest values in your day-to-day life, no matter what unfolds.
I know it sounds easier than it is, but if we want to be free of suffering, there is no other way. Vedanta offers you the complete knowledge of reality along with moksa. It may not be a magic pill for the ego, because it does not inoculate the jiva from the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, but it does free us from identification with the suffering jiva, which makes all the difference in the world. You are on the Vedanta bus, trust it to take you where you need to go, remembering that the steps to get “there” are the qualities of being there, and there is no “there” to get to.
Daniel: In the Facebook group, somebody wrote that Vedanta without meditation was like putting honey into a cup of tea and not stirring it. Meditation appears to be an essential aid for moksa.
Sundari: Meditation is an important tool to aid self-inquiry but it does not equal self-inquiry. There is no meditation like self-inquiry. There are different kinds of meditation. One is based on yoga and does not dismiss the doer – the meditator – and the other, much more powerful meditation is self-inquiry, jnana yoga, which does dismiss the doer. Yes, mediation helps, but the person who wrote that quote on Facebook clearly does not understand what real meditation is. Unless one has realized that one is not the meditator but the one who knows the meditator, meditation can keep one stuck for years trying to have an experience of the self, which many meditators do have, but the problem is: the identification with the experiencer/meditator is still there. Unless the knowledge that meditation is designed to impart is fully assimilated – i.e. “I am whole and complete, non-dual awareness” and not the meditator – the experience ends because it was just that, an experience. All experiences happen in time, and so they are subject to change and will end. Only self-knowledge will permanently set one free of the meditator/experiencer because you – awareness/consciousness – are already free.
In this way, the experience of self-realization does not necessarily lead to freedom, moksa. Therefore there are so many frustrated meditators around, trying to get the experience back. Even if they succeed, they will most likely “lose” the self-realization once again because the knowledge that they are that which makes all experience possible, i.e. awareness, escapes them. Meditation is no different from any other activity done to achieve a specific result – unless it is practised with karma yoga.
The knowledge that the meditation points to is that you are the knower of the one who meditates, the one who thinks it is the doer/meditator. Meditation is just another object appearing in you, allowing the reflection of the self to appear in a still mind. However, seeing as no experience can take place without you, awareness, and because as awareness you are actionless, no special experience is required to experience the self. You are always experiencing the self, whether you are meditating or not. You just don’t know this. And no action the doer takes can produce self-knowledge. This is because as the doer you are limited and no action taken by a limited being can produce a limitless result, i.e. freedom/moksa.
The self, awareness – YOU – are not an object of perception and cannot be known by the mind, because the mind is too gross and the self too subtle. The object or the effect cannot know the subject, the cause. The self is “beyond” the mind and the only means of knowledge the mind has to know anything are perception and inference, which are suitable for knowing objects but not suitable means of knowledge to know awareness. Only Vedanta offers a complete and valid means of knowledge for awareness.
Although we can have an experience of the reflection of the self in a pure, sattvic mind in meditation, this is not enough to set us free of the doer. For this we need to expose the mind to self-inquiry and allow self-knowledge to remove our ignorance (avidya) – BUT we need to “do the work” of negating the binding vasanas and the doer. Although self-inquiry is also an action, the result of self-inquiry is self-knowledge, which can produce a limitless result, meaning freedom from identification with the doer, or person.
Self-inquiry is just the application of knowledge. Self-inquiry states that awareness is our true nature and both knowledge and ignorance are objects appearing in you, awareness. Keeping this knowledge in mind and continually contemplating on it is self-inquiry, which is why self-inquiry is different from meditation because the knowledge is maintained by an act of will, whereas in meditation the knowledge appears during a particular experience.Self-inquiry is superior to meditation because the doer does not need to maintain a particular state and wait for the knowledge. He or she has the knowledge already and applies it continually. Meditators do not know the value of knowledge, whereas inquirers do. That is why the meditators are meditating. Knowledge may arise in meditation or it may not. If it does, we say meditation is a “leading error.” But even if meditation does lead to knowledge of the “unbroken I-thought” (akandakara vritti), the knowledge does not always stick.
Daniel: I hope that by just doing karma yoga and jnana yoga moksa someday becomes inevitable, so that Isvara grants me the protection to meditate peacefully.
Sundari: You do not need protection to meditate, Daniel. Self-knowledge is the only protection there is, from anything. Isvara cannot dissolve the power of those fear-thoughts that manifest as “real” entities for you. Only you can dissolve them by seeing that they are not real, they are known to you, and as the self NOTHING has power of you. Only the mind under the spell of ignorance can be modified by fear-thoughts. If your desire for moksa is stronger than the fear-thoughts, and you diligently subject the mind to the scripture, applying the knowledge in Daniel’s life, by the grace of Isvara, self-knowledge will eventually do the work of removing all ignorance, duality.
Daniel: If I take these attacks as prasad, I am grateful because it strengthens my commitment to dharma and it’s a good practice in titiksha, but at the same time I also know that it is an obstacle because I cannot meditate.
Sundari: Yes, take these fear manifestations as prasad if you cannot dismiss them in the knowledge – but much more importantly, you need to do inquiry into why you think they are or can be real. You need to the most powerful form of meditation – which is nididhysana, understanding and transforming the fear-based emotional/thought patterns or conditioning, that modify the mind and impede self-inquiry, into devotion to the self. This is the hardest part of self-inquiry – understanding the jiva’s conditioning and understanding Isvara, and unless you can dissolve these fear-vasanas, you will not progress with your self-inquiry, and certainly moksa will not obtain. This is all that is keeping you from meditation – there is nothing “out there,” because there is no “there” outside of you.
Daniel: I should also be grateful because it could be much, much worse: I am able to take care of my life. Many people with this kind of affliction are not even able to cook a meal for themselves.
Sundari: Yes, it could be much worse. You could be a complete samsari, totally under the spell of ignorance, without Vedanta to turn to, convinced that objects are real and have power over you. Like I said last time, your grasp of the scripture is good but you have a satya-mithya confusion. You are superimposing qualities that belong only to the self, that which is always present and unchanging, onto to objects in mithya – that which is not always present and always changing, these fear-based, disembodied thought-entities.
~ Love, Sundari