sada at ANVIL.NRL.NAVY.MIL
Wed Aug 20 07:21:54 CDT 1997
>I asked the list ages ago if you felt Ramana's "nan yar" (who am I?)
>vichara marga (self enquiry) was actually directed to finding the ego.
>I don't remember getting any replies to that question, so I'll ask it
>again. Is the ego looked for in order to facilitate the vision of its
>abscence? Is the true self the seeing of the abscence of the ego?
>I'd say "yes", but you might disagree. If "yes", how does that square
>with Sankara and Advaita proper?
In the Upadesha saara, Bhagavaan Ramana has outlined the process of
inquiry. To start with, it is inquiry of the ego by the ego!
maanasantu kim maargane kRite
naivamaanasam maarga aarjavaat|
If one inquires in the direction - what is the mind - he will be left with
no mind (that is the mind with notions about oneself) and that is the
straight path (this is after Bhagavaan discussing about the other paths
-puuja, japa, and other yogaas)
Then he further says mind is nothing but thoughts and there are two sets of
thoughts - this and this thoughts and I thought - I thought (ego) is the
center of all this, this thoughts. Inquiry of the mind essentially boils
down to inquiry of the I thought - When that is done - ai patatyaham
nijavichaaraNam - one discovers (with wonder) Hai! that i falls - why
because it is false. Then what happens ( this is not really a sequence!)
ahami naashabaajyahamaham tayaa
hRitswamayam spurat parama puurna sat|
when that(small) i - notion is destroyed, understanding "I am", "I am", " I
am" etc.swayam spurati - raises spontaneously in the very core of the
personality (hRit); and this I am is
paramam, puurNam and of the nature of Sat swaruupam. It is supreme (there
nothing beyond, so this big I can never fall) and it is complete (hence it
is happiness) and it is of the nature of existence.
To answer your question, the "nan yar" is directed to find who i am.
Initially it is the inquiry about the ego. But the ego being a false guy,
he can not stand any inquiry, and hence he falls. and when the false-guy
falls the true I (as though) raises. Actually it is not a cause and effect
- because cause-effect are within the ego range. It is the understanding or
realization of who really I am.
That is why Vedanta is called - Vedanta kesari - Lion of vedanta - When it
roars in the dream one is awaken from the dream. While the state of
awakening is real, the Lion and the roaring and the dream from which one is
awakened are all as real as the dream.
But Anand has rightly pointed out that as long as one has i-notion, proper
inquiry and proper preparation of the mind to do this inquiry are
essential. Otherwise it will be ego reborn all the time in different wombs
- now as I am a great karma yogi, now as I am a great Bhakta yogi, now as I
am grate JNaani, and now as I am a great advaitin! It survives even death.
Only thing it cannot stand is the inquiry!
Hence from ego point it is the inquiry of who i am - When the understanding
of i- changes to - I - then the inquiry itself looses its significance.
Your question also falls along with this answer!
Naval Research Laboratory
Washington D.C. 20375
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