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Self-Knowledge and the Jnani
Sundari, previous: Causality is another word for Isvara/maya. It causes the universe in conjunction with awareness.
Sarah: Isvara, or what some refer to as “God,” in conjunction with awareness/brahman, causes beginningless maya, apparent reality. The body/mind as part of the whole, as well as the whole, is me, but I am neither the body/mind nor the whole. I am free from both as changeless awareness/brahman.
Sundari: Yes, indeed!
Sundari, previous: How we relate to experience is determined by the level of self-knowledge, or lack of it, in the mind.
Sarah: A person who is mature in their self-knowledge can handle the vicissitudes of maya more easily than an ajnani.
Sundari: Yes, this goes without saying. When ignorance is present in the mind, the self under the spell of ignorance identifies with experience (objects).
Sundari, previous: If you take yourself to be the jiva, you identify with the thoughts/memories/experience, taking them to be real and to be “yours.” This is the hypnosis of duality – mithya – which is how most people experience life and the world.
Sarah: If I can see the body, mind, thoughts, memories, emotions – not to mention other people and the rest of the world – all as objects in my awareness, that gives me a perspective of freedom.
Sundari: See all objects in awareness – you – not in “my” awareness. Awareness is not something you have, it is what you are. And there is only one awareness which belongs to everyone and no one. There is no “in” or “out of” awareness, there is only “in the scope of” awareness because awareness is all there is.
Sundari, previous: You – awareness, the changeless – observe time, space and experience, and are unaffected by it. Nothing ever happens, for you.
Sarah: It requires great knowledge/maturity to be unaffected by anything. It requires unrelenting vigilance, until one is established in knowledge. Would you say there is a point where one has simply seen the rope in every situation/combination/permutation, and the fear and terror of the snake is mitigated? The snake can longer be taken as real. It has been seen through.
Sundari: The mind may still be disturbed by maya, the person after all still remains after moksa – as we have discussed – and the person remains limited because maya is limited. But when self-knowledge is firm, you know you are not the person and are no longer deluded by maya. So if difficult situations arise, you watch the mind, the thoughts that arise and the emotions that go with them, with detachment. The mind can experience pain without suffering over the suffering, if you know what I mean. Self-knowledge is not a magic pill for the ego, making it impervious to thoughts and feelings. Moksa is the ability to discriminate you, awareness, from whatever is or is not happening in the mind because you know that for you nothing is really happening because you are not the mind. The important issue is to remember that the apparent reality does not disappear once self-knowledge is firm. Sarah remains Sarah, with her tendencies. The world remains the world, maya remains maya. The big difference for a jnani is how you relate to what is apparently happening, why and how you contact objects.
~ Much love, Sundari