The Self as Bliss – June 19 2020

The Self as Bliss – June 19 2020

Q: Is sorrow a thought?

A: All thoughts are sorrowful.

Q: Even pleasurable thoughts must be sorrowful.

A: Yes, because thoughts take one’s attention away from the Self, which is undiluted happiness.

From A Practical Guide to Know Yourself: 

Conversations with Sri Ramana Maharshi


We are meant to enjoy life. This is the Vedic worldview. We are meant to be full, free and joyful expressions of nature, of Totality, of the Self.


What is this Self? It is that which is left when we have let go of every other means by which we identify ourselves. Our thoughts, feelings, body, mind, occupation, marital status, bank book, list of awards, age, race, sex, personal and professional achievements. When all these have been set aside as ‘not me,’ there is still something left. There is still some place from where the question arises, Who am I? 


That place is the place of Self.


What is the nature of Self? Bliss. Sat-chid-ananda–Existence-Consciousness-Bliss–is the nature of the Self.


In meditation we naturally step beyond all that is not Self. We transcend all other layers of existence, and experience ourselves as this place of pure Being, Satchidananda, Bliss.


We bring this bliss into our waking state world by insisting on enjoying life, knowing ourselves as the Bliss, 24/7. This Bliss is our birthright. When we set aside all else, this Bliss is what we feel simply by being alive. 


Today I will insist on becoming present to the truth of what I am. I will insist on stepping out of speculation and the thinking mind and into the pure experience of Being. Of Being Here. I will assume that I am meant to enjoy this experience and I will find one scent, one sight, one sound, one taste, one texture that gives me pleasure, and that helps to move me in the direction of my happiness.

Lisa, 2 4×5 contact prints, Penumbra Foundation, NY, NY