The youthful Rama recognises that ignorance creates the world and that focussing on the Atma or reciting “I am Brahman” or ayam atma brahma resolves such illusions. The sage gives the advice.
avidya San. f. ignorance, especially in a spiritual sense arising from the illusion of maya, the veil of separateness. The darkness of ignorance veils our perception, so that we see a snake in a rope and are deluded by our senses into believing the world is real; we are unaware of the true Reality that underlies and sustains it.
param – Hin. adj. parama– San. prefix (superlative of para) supreme, best, perfect, most glorious, in the highest degree, most excellent, ultimate, transcendental, mightiest, most remote, further than.
Paramatma: The Supreme Soul; the Supreme Being;
parama+brahman San. N. the supreme Self, the Absolute.
anubhava San. m. perception; understanding; experience, feeling.
īshwara San. M. ‘the supreme master’ – the cosmic lord; the Almighty, God in time and space, Brahman in manifestation, all controlling, all powerful and by nature eternally pure, awakened and free – epithet of either Vishnu (V. 36, 74) or Shiva, but the term usually refers to Shiva. ‘When Reality was reflected in māyā, it resulted in īshwara.’ ) ‘Wherever you find the three activities (shakti) of creation, preservation and dissolution, there you can recognise God (īshwara).’
atmaswaroop: cf. atmaswarupa; Consciousness, the Self, original nature, our true essential nature. (embodiment, form of the Atma)
chitta: individual consciousness
samskara (samskaara). Inborn desire, mental impression of acts done in former state of existence.
Question 122: Sir, the world is a product of ignorance (avidya). Avidya is destroyed with the practice of Atma. What is that Atma ?
Answer: Ramji, the Consciousness, Atma or the Almighty (Parameshwar) is that which is free from any ideation of the world, is even in all states, undergoes no change, is neither born nor does it die and permeates evenly at all times through everything. It is of the nature of cognition (anubhava) and is supreme (Ishwara). Only He permeates through everything. Atma, the omnipresent, exists in everything between Brahma and an atom, that is to say, the entire universe is of the nature of Atma (Atmaswaroop). Nothing exists except Atma. The phenomenal multiplicity experienced with names and forms is all Atmaswaroop.
Mind or avidya is the name for the ideation or modification in the omnipotent Atma. Avidya is a product of the ideation in the mind and is annihilated with sankalpa only. When chitta (individual consciousness) is extrovert and creates through ideation, then the universe of names and forms is experienced. When chitta is introvert and being rid of ideations is engaged in spiritual endeavour, then the ideation of the universe disappears and ignorance is destroyed. When the mind ideates that ‘I am not Brahman’, then by assuming itself as the doer, it creates the universe and is caught in bondage. Again, when with strong effort, the ideation that ‘I am Brahman’ becomes firm, then all illusions vanish and liberation is attained. It shows that the ideation of the universe is bondage, and freedom from the ideation of the universe is liberation.
Ramji, I have adequately explained to you, and now it is up to you to act. Due to ignorance the individual has innumerable misconceptions. He thinks himself as a child, an old man, a body with sense organs, a happy or an unhappy being, etc and assumes ego. When he attains wisdom he realises that he is a non-entity and that he is free from joy and sorrow, liberation and bondage. He realises himself as the witness, distinct from a physical body.
Twenty hammer-strokes might not succeed in breaking a stone; the twenty-first stroke might break it. But, does this mean that the twenty blows were of no avail? No. Each of those twenty strokes contributed its share to the final success; the final result was the cumulative effect of all the twenty-one. So too, the mind is engaged in a struggle with the world, both internal and external. Needless to say success might not always be your lot. But man can attain ever-lasting bliss by getting immersed in good works and by saturating the mind with the love of God. Infuse every moment of life with that love. Then evil tendencies dare not hamper the path. Since his mind ever dwells with the Lord, he will be drawn automatically towards good deeds only. The object of all spiritual endeavour is the destruction of the mind and some day, some one good deed will succeed in destroying it, just as the twenty-first blow broke the stone. For this triumph, all the good deeds done in the past have contributed; each little thing counts; no good deed is a waste.
While struggling in the spiritual field, you should take Parameswar Himself as your protector. To instil courage in the child, the mother persuades it to walk a few steps and turn about, but she will not allow it to loose balance, she hurries from behind it and catches it ere it falls. Ishwara too has His Eyes fixed on the individual. He has in his hand the string of the kite which is man; sometimes, he may give it a pull, sometimes, he may loosen the hold; but whatever He does, be confident and carefree, for it is He that holds the string. That faith ever present, that feeling hardening into a strong desire for the Lord, will fill you with the essence of Love.
The string is the bond of Love and Grace. The kite (or the individual soul) is thus bound to Ishwara (God). You must do and earn auspicious desires in order that the bond of Love and Grace may exist and get tightened.
The inherited desires make or mar the individual; they are the steps which take all individuals to the goal. Inherited desires and intentions make the individual wade through loss and grief. Through good desires and intentions alone can man attain the Lord. So, every individual has to be wholly engaged in good deeds. Good deeds are the authentic offering. It is the best form of remembering the Lord. It is the highest Bhajan. It spreads love, without distinction and difference. It is service done as the duty of the Individual.
Om Hamsaaya Vidmahe
Tanno Hamsa Prachodayat
“May we realise Hamsa that is our own Self as the Swan. Let us meditate on that Paramahamsa, the Supreme Self. May Hamsa illumine us.”