BY SOFO ARCHON
Ramana Maharshi is one of the greatest and most respected spiritual modern teachers coming from the sacred land of India. Below is a collection of some of his most powerful quotes on self-realization, self-mastery, and the awakening to higher states of consciousness.
1. Whatever is destined not to happen will not happen, try as you may. Whatever is destined to happen will happen, do what you may to prevent it. This is certain. The best course, therefore, is to remain silent.
2. There is no greater mystery than this, that we keep seeking reality though in fact we are reality. We think that there is something hiding reality and that this must be destroyed before reality is gained. How ridiculous! A day will dawn when you will laugh at all your past efforts. That which will be the day you laugh is also here and now.
3. Relative knowledge pertains to the mind and not to the Self. It is therefore illusory and not permanent. Take a scientist, for instance. He formulates a theory that the Earth is round and goes on to prove it on an incontrovertible basis. When he falls asleep the whole idea vanishes; his mind is left a blank. What does it matter whether the world remains round or flat when he is asleep? So you see the futility of all such relative knowledge. One should go beyond relative knowledge and abide in the Self. Real knowledge is such experience, and not apprehension by the mind.
4. The explorers seek happiness in finding curiosities, discovering new lands and undergoing risks in adventures. They are thrilling. But where is pleasure found? Only within. Pleasure is not to be sought in the external world.
5. Nobody doubts that he exists, though he may doubt the existence of God. If he finds out the truth about himself and discovers his own source, this is all that is required.
6. There is nothing like ‘within’ or ‘without.’ Both mean either the same thing or nothing.
7. When one remains without thinking one understands another by means of the universal language of silence.
8. There are no impediments to meditation. The very thought of such obstacles is the greatest impediment.
9. Wanting to reform the world without discovering one’s true self is like trying to cover the world with leather to avoid the pain of walking on stones and thorns. It is much simpler to wear shoes.
10. We loosely talk of Self-realization, for lack of a better term. But how can one realize or make real that which alone is real? All we need to do is to give up our habit of regarding as real that which is unreal. All religious practices are meant solely to help us do this. When we stop regarding the unreal as real, then reality alone will remain, and we will be that.
11. Your duty is to be and not to be this or that. ‘I am that I am’ sums up the whole truth. The method is summed up in the words ‘Be still’. What does stillness mean? It means destroy yourself. Because any form or shape is the cause for trouble. Give up the notion that ‘I am so and so’. All that is required to realize the Self is to be still. What can be easier than that?
12. Become conscious of being conscious. Say or think “I am”, and add nothing to it. Be aware of the stillness that follows the “I am”. Sense your presence, the naked, unveiled, unclothed beingness. It is untouched by young or old, rich or poor, good or bad, or any other attributes. It is the spacious womb of all creation, all form.
13.“Heart” is merely another name for the Supreme Spirit, because He is in all hearts. The entire Universe is condensed in the body, and the entire body in the Heart. Thus the Heart is the nucleus of the whole Universe.
14. Silence is most powerful. Speech is always less powerful than silence.
15. Eventually, all that one has learnt will have to be forgotten.
16. Why should you trouble yourself about the future? You do not even properly know about the present. Take care of the present, the future will take care of itself.
17. Happiness is your nature. It is not wrong to desire it. What is wrong is seeking it outside when it is inside.
18. ‘I exist’ is the only permanent self-evident experience of everyone. Nothing else is so self-evident as ‘I am’. What people call self-evident, that is, the experience they get through the senses, is far from self-evident. The Self alone is that. So to do self-enquiry and be that ‘I am’ is the only thing to do. ‘I am’ is reality. I am this or that is unreal. ‘I am’ is truth, another name for Self.
19. No one succeeds without effort… Those who succeed owe their success to perseverance.
20. Correcting oneself is correcting the whole world. The Sun is simply bright. It does not correct anyone. Because it shines, the whole world is full of light. Transforming yourself is a means of giving light to the whole world.
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