Search & Read
Self Is Formless
Thomas: Hello, Sundari, it’s Thomas again, just emailing you to express my thoughts and ruminations.
Yes, the “dark night of the soul” moments are just phases in life that this jiva must pass through.
Sundari: The “dark night of the soul” is identification with tamas, the guna energy of concealment, dullness, depression. All jivas are subject to all three gunas all the time, until self-knowledge has removed all ignorance and the mind rests predominantly in sattva. As the self, you are triguna-atita, beyond the gunas. Until all ignorance is removed by self-knowledge, the mind will constantly cycle through all three gunas, with one or two predominating, usually rajas and tamas. All three gunas produce very predictable thoughts. I strongly suggest that you read James’ new book on the gunas, The Yoga of the Three Energies.
Thomas: Death is just the end of the dream, that in which the character’s movie has ended. Every stage and age within the jiva’s life is just parts of the play working itself out. There’s no need to worry about anything whether one is alive or dead, because everything will always take care of itself as long as one follows dharma and acts appropriately.
Sundari: There is never anything to worry about as the self, because you are unborn, and therefore you never die. And as the jiva (enlightened or not), there is never anything to worry about alive or dead, because Isvara takes care of the Field of Existence perfectly – and you have NO control over it. You only have control over your own subjective reality of thoughts/feelings – that is ALL.
Thomas: As one generation of jiva ends, a new group of jivas emerge and work out their roles within the field, and something new appears over and over again and again, and recycles continuously. New appearances, new generations, new ideas, etc. But it will always remain as nothing more than a projection. There will never be a time when we won’t have our artists, spiritual leaders, celebrities, friendly bartenders, etc. It’s just a new projection over and over again.
Sundari: Correct. There is an over-abundance of identities to assume in mithya. What matters is knowing what your svadharma (inborn character) is as a jiva so that you can follow your nature, enlightened or not. When you do know who you are, you are never identified with your nature as a jiva, but you do honour it in keeping with the rules of the Field of Existence.
Thomas: It’s consciousness putting on new costumes within every stage of life to play their parts out and have its drama and entertaining experiences. It is a never-ending movie.
Sundari: It make look like it, but consciousness does not “put on new costumes.” All forms in the field are Isvara, awareness + Maya, appearing in constantly changing (apparent) forms. No form is conscious, although the light of consciousness (you) shining on it makes it look like the form is conscious. Consciousness is always the formless behind the form.
Although the form arises from consciousness, is made up of consciousness and dissolves back into consciousness, consciousness itself never enters form. Maya makes it look like it does – but it does not. All the substance (prakriti/the five elements) that matter is made of actually has no substance, because consciousness is not a “thing,” an object, although it is that which makes all form possible.
Thomas: I guess being enlightened means just understanding the whole play of Maya as nothing more than a mere dream.
Sundari: Yes. “Enlightenment” means you are no longer identified with the jiva, and therefore no longer subject to the gunas, although as a jiva you never leave the apparent reality. As the self, you never entered it. All matter arose from you in the role of Creator, Isvara. So moksa is 100%, 24/7 discrimination between you – satya/consciousness – and that which arises in you – mithya, the jiva + the world.
Thomas: It’s the ultimate dream in which consciousness and its sense perceptions make the experiences seemingly real, forgets itself and identifies with the character who forgets that every stage in the dream is just a mere role in which it is acting in.
Sundari: Ignorance is very intelligent and very seductive. And very tenacious. The senses are in mithya, they are the instruments of knowledge for the jiva, part of the five sheaths, therefore they belong to the field, Isvara/Maya. But consciousness does not have sense perceptions. Maya makes it look like the self forgets itself, but that is an impossibility, because the self is the substrate – it is ALWAYS conscious. If it was not, and it could “forget” itself, even for a nanosecond, otherwise this whole movie would instantly end. It is only an apparent forgetting because this movie, this play or dream, is NOT real. It is a superimposition onto awareness – a mirage.
Thomas: It’s funny knowing how almost everything in this jiva’s blueprint has been planned out and all the actions, thoughts and emotions he finds himself in are just arising from the unmanifest.
Sundari: True. It’s like a computer game, all the moves the jiva can make are already programmed.
Thomas: My question is, once this jiva works out all its karma, how will it guarantee that it won’t be reborn again and that if it does get reborn again to work out its few karmas that it will seek out enlightenment with its spiritual vasanas once more?
Sundari: Who guarantees what? It is the ego, the limited self who needs guarantees. In mithya there are no guarantees, ever. As the self, you do not need guarantees, because there is no world, no ignorance and no jiva for you. I have answered this issue of yours about reincarnation at length, several times for you already. As the self, you are never “reborn,” because you are never born. Therefore, as the jiva who has actualized the self, you do not worry about dying or being reborn, because you know you are unborn.
And as the self, you are not the jiva, so you have no karma, no binding vasanas. And you will definitely NOT be seeking enlightenment when you know that you are the light. What difference does it make anyway if you are reborn as the jiva once self-knowledge has actualized if you know none of it is real? Why are you worried about the world if you know it is not real?
Thomas: Perhaps everything is encoded within the space-time continuum, and that this play of Maya and its history and jivas will appear over and over again.
Sundari: Basically correct, but remember, there is no such thing as time, past, present or future, no space, no change and no causality. These are all objects known to awareness. The power of Maya to delude is so pervasive and persuasive that it makes the changeless appear to be changing, i.e. it creates the apparent reality – all the forms we see and experience as real. Causality is another word for Isvara/Maya. It causes the universe in conjunction with awareness.
Time has no objective reality. It is the distance between a memory of an event and another memory or current experience. Yet as the jiva, we cannot step “out of time,” because we do not stop experiencing as long as the body is alive. The essence of the experience of events (time) is stored in the causal body by Isvara, the vasanas, enlightened or not. How we relate to experience is determined by the level of self-knowledge or lack of it. You, awareness, the changeless, observe time, space, experience and are unaffected by it. Nothing ever happens, for you.
Thomas: Because we know that karma and vasanas are impersonal, eventually Isvara will cook up some new play and we’ll all be back here engaging the drama of life. What do you think?
Sundari: WHO will be back? If you are still identified with the jiva, then that vasana load will be back when “you” die. For the living without self-knowledge, death is as certain as is birth for the dead.
What I think is that you still have a satya-mithya confusion.
~ Love, Sundari