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Pray for Moksa
Kumar: Thanks, James, for all your answers. I think maybe I need to meet you in Los Angeles to clarify these questions. This awareness-experiencer question has been bugging me for a while, and maybe I should just relax and take a break.
I spoke to one of Dayananda Saraswati’s student yesterday. He is a family friend, and I told him about my conundrum. His advice to me was that at this point in time and condition the only thing left is to pray. This cannot be willed or wanted.
Sundari: At any point “in time or condition” the only thing to do is self-inquiry, applying the knowledge of Vedanta in the pursuit of moksa. Moksa is not an experience, and willing it or wanting it is pointless, because you ARE it. Liberation FROM the doer, the individual, or ego, is simply the removal of the ignorance of yourself as whole and complete, unborn, unchanging, actionless, ordinary, unconcerned awareness. A burning desire for freedom is something you need to have.
However, devotional prayer is tremendously important. Pray for understanding, for a quiet mind, for moksa. The best prayer is karma yoga – entrusting it to Isvara and taking it easy.
Kumar: He also told me to relax the thinking mind so that it merges with awareness. I am suspicious of the second teaching though. I can see how awareness and the mind are related, but I am not clear how relaxing the mind and falling into awareness is going to liberate me.
Sundari: The mind is known to you, therefore it is an object in you, awareness. The mind in and of itself is inert, just matter. It is related to awareness in that it has a dependent reality on awareness and does not exist without it. The mind seems to “think” when the light of awareness illuminates it. You cannot “fall” into awareness, because you already ARE awareness. Self-inquiry prepares the mind for the knowledge that removes the ignorance of your true nature as awareness. Being told to “relax the mind,” as in meditation, helps to steady it for self-inquiry. It will do nothing to remove the ignorance of your true nature, which is liberation. Only self-knowledge will do that.
Kumar: This is a really tricky part on my spiritual path, separating the I, or experiencer, from the awareness. It is very enjoyable though.
Sundari: On the non-dual level, the experiencer is not separate from awareness, there is only awareness.
However, they are not the same; they exist in different orders of reality. How do you discriminate them? One is the subject and the other the object. The object, Kumar, is not the self. Why? Because he is known to you – awareness. Once this discrimination is complete and ignorance of your true nature is removed, it is most enjoyable because you will appreciate all objects, especially Kumar, as you, awareness.
~ Love, Sundari (for James)