Who you are

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Found this beautiful excerpt on my Facebook feed so I thought I'd share with my favorite bums :)



A foreign visitor who could spend only three days in Bombay attended both the morning and evening sessions every day.

At the final session, he said that during the three days he had absorbed so much that he was not able to sort out the priorities and did not know what to do first and what could be postponed.

He earnestly requested Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj to review the fundamentals so that he could retain them in his mind in an orderly manner.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj laughed and asked him if there was any confusion in his mind about his being a male human being, about being the son of his parents, or about his profession!

If not, then why should there be any confusion about his true nature !

Anyway, said Maharaj, let us take up what you have asked for.
What you really want is to reach an acceptable understanding of your self (which you have been conditioned to regard as a body-mind entity with complete control over its actions) and your relationship with the world in which you live - you on the one hand and the world on the other.

Now, what you think you are,
is nothing but the 'material' essence of your father's body
which was conceived in your mother's womb,
and which later grew spontaneously into the shape of a baby
with bones, flesh, blood etc.

Indeed, you were not even consulted about your 'birth'.

A human form was created which grew
from a baby to an infant and at a certain time,
perhaps in the second year of your life,
you were told that 'you' were born,
that 'you' have both a name and a form.

Thereafter, you had the knowledge of your 'beingness'
and 'you' began to consider yourself as a separate individual,
with an independent entity, apart from the rest of the world.

Now consider:

(i) Did your parents specially and deliberately create 'you?

(ii) Did your parents know the moment when conception took place?

(iii) Did 'you' specifically and deliberately select a particular couple as your parents? and

(iv) Did you choose to get born'?

From the answers to these questions it would be clear
that a form in the shape of a human being got created almost accidentally (without any concurrence or selection on any one's part), which you subsequently accepted as your self.

Therefore, 'you' as such do not exist either as a 'fact', or as an entity.

This is the first fundamental.
A form got created through a natural process.

Then, the question is what are 'we'—all of us?

Each one of us, as a phenomenon,
is merely an appearance in the consciousness
of those who perceive us, and, therefore,
what we appear to be is a phenomenon - temporal, finite and perceptible to the senses;
whereas what we are, what we have always been and
what we shall always be,
without name and form,
is the noumenon - timeless, spaceless, imperceptible being.

However convincingly you may think you have 'understood'
this basic fact,
you will find it almost impossible to dis-associate yourself
from the identification with your name and form as an entity.

This can happen only when that
which you have been thinking of as a separate entity
has been totally annihilated.

This is the second fundamental, the power of Maya.

What is merely a phenomenon, without any independent existence of its own, is considered to be 'real',
and efforts are made by this phantom to 'become' something -
a shadow chasing its substance.

Whereas actually you have all along been the substance and never the shadow in bondage wanting liberation.
How very amusing, but then that is Maya!

Now the third fundamental:
Would you have been able to conceive any aspect of the manifested world if there were no 'space-time'?

If phenomena were not extended into space
and given a three-dimensional 'volume',
and if they were not measured in duration,
you could not have conceived,
let alone perceived, anything of the apparent universe.

Please note that all phenomena are mere appearances in space-time, conceived and perceived in consciousness.
And even the very idea of the wholeness of the Absolute can only be a concept in consciousness!
When consciousness merges in the Absolute,
who or what can there be to want to know anything,
or to experience anything?

And now the final fundamental:

If what I have said so far is clearly understood,
should it not be possible for you to apperceive your true state, the state before 'you' were 'born'?

Could you go back to that primal state,
before consciousness spontaneously arose
and brought on the sense of presence?

This latter state of the 'sense of presence' is true so long as the body exists.

When the life span of the body is over, this conscious presence merges into the original state where there is no consciousness of being present.

No one is born, no one dies.

There is merely the beginning, the duration and the end of an event, objectified as a life-time in space-time.

As phenomenon there is no entity that is bound and as noumenon, there can be no entity that needs to be liberated.

This is what is to be apperceived: The dream-world of phenomena is something to be merely witnessed.

The visitor bowed before Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj and said that he had received the highest knowledge in the fewest words.

"Having learnt about my true identity, I have nothing else to learn now." he added.

~ Pointers from Nisargadatta Maharaj book

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