We observe matter in constant change. So also the mind changes… In fact motion, as both Aristotle and the Hindus say, is the essential characteristic of Nature. For this reason the world is called in Sanskrit “Jagat” which means the “moving thing”. The universe is Mind and Matter in constant movement, not a single particle being even for one moment at rest. Throughout all this movement the Self remains as the one unchanged Consciousness.
Sir John Woodroffe,
The World As Power
[This writing is from December, 2015, while I was on Sri M’s The Walk of Hope, in India]
India changes you. You can’t help it. You can try to resist, but why would you?
We all are expressions of life. And, as Sir John says above, life Itself is constantly in movement, constantly seeking the new, the better. As it is with life, so it is with us. This is the nature of what we are.
Several days ago I bathed in the Ganges. Took a boat across to the other side, away from the bulk of the pollution, and dipped myself in the river. A bath in the sacred river Ganga, in one of the holy places, or tirthas, is said to cleanse the sins of one’s past lives. It’s a nice thought, isn’t it?
We move through life looking for something. Something underneath the frailty or unhappiness of what we are. Something deeper. We look for meaning, for love, for happiness, for peace. If a bath in a river is said to help with this search, then l shall bathe.
Rituals like this are simply outer manifestations of our inner journey. Real world, tangible actions that send a message to the universe, as well as to ourselves, of what we value in life. What we are looking for.
And what we are looking for is that which never changes.
Beneath all the constant changing-ness of life there is the Self. The transcendent. The thing we contact when we meditate. This, truly, is the goal of life. For when we contact this place, the swirling and searching of the mind ceases. For our mind and being knows that there is nothing better than this place. And it settles down, content simply to Be.
We do not need to fly to India and bathe in holy waters to have this. It is ours, now, in this very moment, if we want it. And if we are willing to sit still long enough to find it here, just under the thinking and fretting and feeling and changing.
Today I will meditate, twice, morning and evening; and I will remind myself throughout the day that what matters to me is the place within that never changes, and I will let go of the idea of finding fulfillment in the ever-changing world.