The Self is Like the Sky

How many ever times and in how many ever ways the Self is described, the understanding just doest not stay for long in our memory.

Published: 02nd December 2018 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th November 2018 10:22 PM   |  A+A-

How many ever times and in how many ever ways the Self is described, the understanding just doest not stay for long in our memory. Hence the Atma Bodha by Sri Adi Sankaracharya repeats many times the nature of the Self. The Self or the life in all beings is not attached to anything. Hence it is always free. That life is without any impurities of desire, anger, greed, delusion, arrogance and jealousy.

It is present everywhere. It is steady and hence does not move here and there. It is all-pervasive and hence still.How do I experience this still,pure and free life within me? It is through the practice of meditation. Anytime you find time, simply sit down in a comfortable posture, preferably with spine, neck and head in one line, take a couple of deep breaths, exhale and settle down.

With eyes closed, observe the breath until it reaches a point after which it makes its return journey out. That still space within where the breath touches and turns around is where the Self can be meditated on. That space is even, and always pure with no stormy desires that whirl around.Everything else in this world, physical matter, water, fire and air is subject to change and fall. The Self alone is called ‘Achyuta’ because it can never fall from its place. It pervades everywhere and is in everything that it cannot fall even if it wants to. 

The Upanishads glorify the Self in many ways. One Upanishad even says that whatever we may like in this world, such as the attention through ‘Likes’ we get on a social media page, the many reply pings we get on our mobile phone messages, going to a place we like, eating something we like or meeting someone we like.—we like them because we love our Self the best. If anything or anyone appeals to our Self, we like that thing or person. The moment it ceases to appeal to our Self, that object or person is rejected. 
What is the purpose of this knowledge? It instantly removes our ignorance about who we really are and makes our faculty of knowing still and steady.  

The example that the Acharya gives is: I—the Self—is like the sky. The sky is everywhere. The clouds move in it. The birds fly in it. Closer to earth, everything gets its space to be because of the sky. There is no place in this universe where the sky is not. In the same way, even more subtle than the sky is consciousness or the Self which is present outside and within us too.

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