Letters From Ramanashram – PEACE OF MIND ITSELF IS LIBERATION

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PEACE OF MIND ITSELF IS LIBERATION

16th September 1947

The day before yesterday, an Andhra lady with her husband came to Bhagavan and asked:

“Swami, I have heard several discourses on Vedanta; I also do some meditation. Sometimes while in meditation, I feel blissful and tears come to my eyes; at other times I do not have them. Why is that?”

Bhagavan with a smile, said: “Bliss is a thing which is always there and is not something which comes and goes. That which comes and goes is a creation of the mind and you should not worry about it.”

The lady: “The moment the bliss that comes with a thrill of the body disappears, I feel dejected and desire to have the experience over again. Why?”

Bhagavan: “You admit that ‘you’ were there both when the blissful feeling was on and when it was not? If you realize that ‘you’ properly, those experiences will be of no account.”

Another questioner: “For realizing that bliss, there must be something to catch hold of, mustn’t there?”

Bhagavan: “There must be a duality if you are to catch hold of something else; but what IS, is only one Self, not a duality. Hence, who is to catch hold of whom? And what is the thing to be caught?”

No one replied, and with a kindly expression, Bhagavan said, “The inherent vasanas are so strong. What can be done?”

A young man came in, sat down, and gave a note to Bhagavan.

Bhagavan, after reading it, said, “See, in this note is written, ‘Is peace of mind Liberation (moksha)?’ The reply is contained in the question itself. What else can be said? He must have asked after knowing what Mind (chitta) is”.

Someone asked the young man, “You know what is meant by chitta, don’t you?”

The young man: “Chitta means Mind”.

Bhagavan: “Yes, but what about it? Your question itself states that peace of mind is liberation”.

The young man: “The mind is at times peaceful and at other times distracted. How are we to prevent those distractions?”

Bhagavan: “For whose mind is that distraction? Who is it that is enquiring?”

The young man: “For my mind. The enquirer is myself”.

Bhagavan: “Yes, that is the real thing. There is a thing called ‘I’. Peace being experienced now and then, it must be admitted that there is a thing called peace; moreover, those feelings called desires are also of the mind; and if desires were banished, there would be no wavering of the mind; and if there is no wavering, that which remains is peace. To attain that which is always there requires no effort. Effort is required only for the banishing of all desires. As and when the mind wavers, it must be diverted from those matters; if that is done, peace remains as it is. That is Atma, the Self, that is Liberation and that is Self^’.

Restraining the restless and fidgety mind from all those objects after which it runs, one should repeatedly concentrate on the Self.

(Bhagavad Gita,VI:26)

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