The song of Self-discovery is bursting with realisations in the Vivekachoodamani of Sri Adi Sankaracharya. The student sings with excitement his own glory pointed out to him by the Guru. “I alone exist in all living beings as knowledge which is aware of what is going on within and without. I am the one who experiences and the object experienced. I enjoy everything that seems to be different from me and known to me as this and that.”
The ocean of bliss without any parts and fault lines has many a wave of the universe in it. Moved by the power of thoughts the waves rise and fall all the time. All modes of existence such as gross and subtle are imagined by me, out of erroneous perception. Everything that we know is just a continuous flow of thought superimposed by the people. The teacher gives a very beautiful example for superimposition. Time is simply time, the distance between one experience and another. However, we divide it into many parts such as eons, millennia, centuries, years, months, fortnights, weeks, days, hours, minutes and seconds. Every one thing in this list is actually time only. It is without any parts and there are actually no modifications. In the same way, when the mind has quietened down and absorbed in the Self, there are no dimensions to it such as subtle, gross and causal.
Even though these thoughts have been superimposed, they can never tarnish the screen of Self that knows no blemish. How much ever the mirage may try seeming wet with abundance of water, it can never make a drop of the desert sand wet.
The 500th verse of the Vivekachoodamani throws up a beautiful example to point out to the Self. “I am like the sky, very far away and untouched by anything. I am like the sun that is always different from the objects it illumines. I am like the mountain that is unmoving and I am like the ocean with no shores. Just as the clouds have no connection with the sky, I am not connected to the body. So where will the qualities of the body—the waking, dream and deep sleep states affect me?
“The accoutrements such as the body come and go. It does all work and experiences the results. It becomes old and dies. I am always unmoving and steady like Mount Meru. “I know no movement into the world or into myself. I am always in one form and have no parts. I am one Self. I know no limit. I fill the universe like the sky does space. How can such a being as I have any action to do?”