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Who Are You Not to Be the Light?
Henry: Dearest Sundari, thank you again for your fabulous response. Your words are so to the point.
Sundari: You are most welcome, Henry, always a pleasure to hear from you. Sorry for the delay in replying, I have been travelling between continents, getting over jetlag and also getting sick en route. I am in South Africa now, Ramji to join me soon.
Henry: I am still amazed about the change in this jiva’s experience. I am still quite identified and focused on this phantasm called Henry and at the same time I have never experienced pretty consistently this marvelous freedom from Henry. Maybe I am less identified with jiva Henry than I think I am, I really don’t know. I am even just witnessing jiva Henry being so pleased with himself! Space, love, freedom, a delicate trembling body and such a solid “returning” to Self-knowledge even under otherwise challenging circumstances. Henry is going about his business as always, a big touch lighter though. I feel like I am really resting in awareness. And of course I am! There is space for everything here, or better, still no thing enters here. Reality is absolutely stranger than fiction. Oh, I have no illusion about feeling like this forever. Who knows what lies in wait in the prarabdha karma of jiva Henry, what kind of challenges will come Henry’s way?
I still slip from jiva Henry to the Self as if they have the same reality. I know they don’t.
Sundari: It is clear you have achieved a great deal of jiva-objectivity, Henry. Consciously seeing through the veil of Maya at first often feels bizarre and strange until non-dual vision becomes normal. The mind is finding a new normal despite the fact the all sensory information contradicts it; it must peel away duality deliberately, moment to moment. When Self-knowledge actualizes, the mind is so conditioned to think as the Self that it is no longer aware of its natural ability to discriminate. And when the jiva makes a fuss about an experience, it dismisses it instantly, which does not mean it denies legitimate feelings that relate to its svadharma. All gratuitous thoughts and feelings are renounced.
Henry: Your paragraph on anger and fear is fabulous. Thank you. (Anger and fear are usually the same thing, unless Self-knowledge has obtained. When it has, anger can be there without fear and you simply allow it to be or express it appropriately, without causing injury to yourself (jiva) or others. It is known to belong to Isvara, not to you. Gone is the debilitating free-floating anxiety/fear that sucks the jiva into the dream and the dark underbelly of the gunas, crushing it on the rocks of samsara. Fear is over once Self-knowledge obtains, and only then can the jiva experience whatever it experiences and it is all known to be mithya, not-self.)
Sundari: I am glad this helped, Henry. Like I said above, even though as the Self you know all thoughts and feelings have no reality, the jiva is made a certain way and must honour its svadharma, without getting too hung up on it either of course. There are times to fight back, to speak up, to stand up for yourself. There is never a time that we should take the jiva too seriously!
Here is an excerpt from the fabulous speech Nelson Mandela made at his presidential inauguration that speaks to this:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Isn’t this beautiful and so true?? You serve nobody by being timid and small. Have the courage to stand tall as the magnificent being you are in the Self, especially when life conspires to makes things tough for poor jivaji!
~ Much love to you always, Sundari