|Within the prison of your world appears a man who tells you that the
world of painful contradictions, which you have created, is neither
continuous nor permanent and is based on a misapprehension. He
pleads with you to get out of it, by the same way by which you got
into it. You got into it by forgetting what you are and you will get
out of it by knowing yourself as you are.
|I'm sure many have noticed the similarity between Eastern Sprituality, particularly "Advaita" (nonduality)
and the movie Matrix.
In Sanskrit language Advaita means "not two." For example, the above quote by the Advaita Vedanta Master
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj could have easily been used in the script by Neo's mentor Morpheus.
According to an interpretation of Advaita, the mind whether awake or dreaming moves through the illusion (maya=matrix?). Only consciousness is real. You are consciousness.
Nisargadatta's student Ramesh Balsekar explains the core of his Guru's teachings as "the knowledge of one's identity."Then how do you find out who you are?
|The seeker is he who is in search of himself.
Give up all questions except one: "Who am I?" After all, the only fact you are sure of is that you are. The "I am" is certain. The "I am this" is not. Struggle to find out what you are in reality. To know what you are, you must first investigate and know what you are not. Discover all that you are not--body, feelings, thoughts, time, space, this or that--nothing, concrete or abstract, which you perceive can be you. The very act of perceiving shows that you are not what you perceive. The clearer you understand that on the level of mind you can be described in negative terms only, the quicker will you come to the end of your search and realize that you are the limitless being.
|When I met my Guru, he told me: "You are not what you take yourself to be. Find out what you are. Watch the sense 'I am', find your real Self." I obeyed him, because I trusted him. I did as he told me. All my spare time I would spend looking at myself in silence. And what a difference it made, and how soon! My teacher told me to hold on to the sense 'I am' tenaciously and not to swerve from it even for a moment. I did my best to follow his advice and in a comparatively short time I realized within myself the truth of his teaching. All I did was to remember his teaching, his face, his words constantly. This brought an end to the mind; in the stillness of the mind I saw myself as I am -- unbound.
I simply followed (my teacher's) instruction which was to focus the mind on pure being 'I am', and stay in it. I used to sit for hours together, with nothing but the 'I am' in my mind and soon peace and joy and a deep all-embracing love became my normal state. In it all disappeared -- myself, my Guru, the life I lived, the world around me. Only peace remained and unfathomable silence. My Guru ordered me to attend to the sense 'I am' and to give attention to nothing else. I just obeyed. I did not follow any particular course of breathing, or meditation, or study of scriptures. Whatever happened, I would turn away my attention from it and remain with the sense 'I am', it may look too simple, even crude. My only reason for doing it was that my Guru told me so. Yet it worked! Obedience is a powerful solvent of all desires and fears...
|I find that somehow, by shifting the focus of attention, I become the very thing I look at, and experience the kind of consciousness it has; I become the inner witness of the thing. I call this capacity of entering other focal points of consciousness, love; you may give it any name you like. Love says "I am everything". Wisdom says "I am nothing". Between the two, my life flows. Since at any point of time and space I can be both the subject and the object of experience, I express it by saying that I am both, and neither, and beyond both. --Nisargadatta Maharaj