Today I am inspired by a conversation between Sri Ramana Maharshi and a student:
I asked, “Can you show me God?”
“No. I cannot show you God or enable you to see God, because God is not an object that can be seen. God is the subject; he is the seer. Don’t concern yourself with objects that can be seen; find out who the seer is.”
Then he added, “You alone are God,” as if to rebuke me for looking for a God who was outside and apart from me.
I realize that the strength of my meditation on day 18 was due to the fact that I quit chasing the “God out there.” By giving up on chasing God, my consciousness lost its external object and fell back upon itself, which is rooted in the ultimate subject: God.
This realization has given positive content to yesterday’s experience. I didn’t give up my spiritual pursuits; I gave up the illusion that they existed outside of me. By giving up the outer pursuit I gained in my inner experience.
As on days 13 and 14, I still find that I use my time inefficiently when I sit for a whole hour. I spend a lot of time switching perspectives, and if one doesn’t work I switch to another without persevering in the first. I could consider this adaptive and praise myself for altering my method to achieve my goal. But I’m afraid it is making me mentally lazy and teaching me to look for the easy way when I encounter resistance. All things in balance I suppose.
So today, rather than break my meditation in half like day 14, I have a new idea: I am going to make a list of the six perspectives or points of meditation that I feel work best and give each one my full attention for ten minutes.
I sit in a meditative posture and set my timer for ten minutes. I make my list:
- Still mind – just watch your thoughts until your mind is quiet
- Just sitting – don’t do anything; just sit
- Release all expectations of gain – gain implies lack. You are complete now
- Feel the vibrations – feel the energy within you vibrate and feel the stillness in which it vibrates
- Reside as the stillness – let the vibrations be as they are: you are the stillness
- Who is the seer? – inquire as to who all of this awareness arises to. Who is the final subject? Can you verify Maharshi’s claim?
I push start.
The first fifteen minutes are very successful. By giving myself a shorter task I focus more acutely. I sweep my mind completely blank and I hold it this way almost perfectly for the full time. I feel at one point like I removed a fuzzy sweater of energy. Since my mind was clear and not grasping or clinging, the energy simply dissipated from my body.
At precisely the fifteen minute mark I am ready to change gears. I feel a natural compulsion to turn my focus to my vibration. By feeling my vibration I immediately see that I am holding some tension in my countenance. I decide to spend this quarter “feeling it less,” as I described on day 12. I focus on feeling it less, and less, and less… I come to a place in which I am perfectly still. Right on time.
For the third quarter I concentrate on residing in the stillness. After feeling my vibration and feeling it less, I am in a perfectly still state. I am the space in which vibrations occur. I am the witness to all motion. The witness is perfectly still and unmoved. I reside there as until the quarter ends. I am perfectly primed for the final focal point: Who is the seer?
I have not spent much time with this specific inquiry; I’m eager to engage it. I reflect on Maharshi’s claims: You cannot see God because God is the subject, not the object. Follow the seer back to its source; don’t try to see it – be it. How far back does it go?
Suddenly I am the seer looking up what appears to be a long tunnel, except the tunnel is my entire field of vision. The seer is all. The seer and the seen are the same thing. I cannot escape it and it cannot be otherwise. This is an ecstatic moment of realization.
I explode with laughter like a crazy person. It takes more than five minutes to regain my composure. Bliss is radiating through my nerves. There is no me, there is no room; the entire situation here and now is one. I sit for five more minutes. I breathe deeply and effortlessly.
My alarm sounds.
I rate this meditation a 10/10. I immediately realize that I must let go of it or I will ruin my day clinging to it and trying to recreate it. I let it go and it stays with me.
I believe the quarter-hour routine was a success. I’ll have to try it again tomorrow.