Liberation of the Self – October 29 2019

Liberation of the Self – October 29 2019

Liberation is… not something that is created, but is the realization of what has existed from eternity but has hitherto been concealed… He who knows the Self is liberated; even the gods cannot prevent his being so, because he has realized himself to be the very Soul of the gods. ‘He who knows the Supreme Brahman verily becomes Brahman.’

Swami Nikhilananda, 

Discussion of Brahman in the Upanishads

At the deepest essence of what we are, we know ourselves to be pure Spirit. This is Brahman, the Sanskrit word for Totality. This is that place of pure Being we contact when we sit in meditation, transcending our thoughts. We begin to know ourselves as something deeper and more true than our thoughts – something beyond our beliefs, our hopes and fears, our opinions.

Like waves upon the ocean, we are individual expressions of this one thing. A wave is pure ocean water. There is no place at which wave ceases being ocean and becomes wave. It is ocean as it peaks to its highest point, and ocean all the way down as it settles back into the ocean from which it came.

Like this, we are the oneness, but we have forgotten. We continue to forget, even as we build this meditation into our lives. We have our experience sitting for twenty minutes and feeling some degree of this oneness, then we come back out into the relative world and we forget; and our forgetting means that once again we identify as our separate natures, as all that is different and distinguishing about us. We think it matters who we vote for or who we cheer for in the World’s Series. What kind of car we drive, whether or not we have tattoos. Do we eat meat or not. Do we think our version of God is the only one there is, and on and on.

The truth is. The truth never leaves us. No matter how long we may forget the truth of our Being, whether it be for ten minutes or ten hours or half a lifetime, it always is right there beneath our thoughts, ready and waiting for us to return to it, knowing that we will return eventually, and not minding at all how long it takes. For to the truth, to Brahman, time is not even a whisper of a reality. 

Brahman is. Totality is. We are Totality. Like waves upon the ocean, we are wet from top to bottom. In knowing this, even for a moment, what could we possibly have to worry about?

Today I will remember my identity with Oneness, and whatever worries and cares and problems are calling for my attention I will surrender to this greater thing, trusting that Totality’s vision for my life and my fulfillment is greater by far than anything I might come up with as an individual.

Wave, Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia