To the Reader: Each sentence and word concerning the Self should be meditated and earnestly dwelt upon to such a degree that the mind should get steeped in the real Self -nay, lost in it. Beginners may center their energy in the solar plexus while meditating upon OM.
Invedantic concentration of mind the chief point is that we have to realize our real Self to be the Sun of suns, the Light of lights. Just throw yourself into this state, above the body, above the mind, and dehypnotize yourself into the Light of lights, into the Sun of suns, and you will see the whole world unfolded before you in a panorama, or melted down as a cloud. Everything will come about in a most submissive way before you.
If not inconvenient, get up early in the morning and face the rising sun while it is yet below the horizon. Look at the aura of the sun, and that fair, bright, most welcome view animates the mind and uplifts it to some extent; and when the mind gets some exaltation or is elevated to a certain height, it becomes very easy to make it soar as high as you please, to make it ascend the highest summits of the delectable mountains, so to say.
On the playground, in India, we place an instrument called gilli which is thick at the middle and sharply pointed at the ends, with both ends resting above the ground, and we strike one end with a hat and the gilli rises at once in the air a little; then we deal it a very hard blow with the bat and it goes flying right into the air to a great distance. There are two processes in this game. The first is to raise it and the second is to make it fly into the air. If the mind is to be brought into divine communion, first of all it is to be raised just a little, and the second process is to shoot it far off into the spiritual atmosphere.
Cheerful atmosphere, fair landscapes, and fairy scenes, sometimes go a great way in giving to the mind its first rise -to elevate it in the primary stages; and after that it becomes easy enough for us to make the mind run along, go on and on and on until it loses all body-consciousness and is God and nothing but God. To give the mind the first lift and to impart to it the elementary exaltation, the natural inspiration imparted by favourable time and place may be utilized. Near dawn, the songs of birds, the fragrant air, and the most fascinating and beautiful colours seen in the eastern horizon give to the mind the original rise. How to make the mind rise higher into the celestial regions -to make the soul soar away up to the throne of God! When the benign light of the rising or setting sun is falling upon the translucent lids of half-closed eyes we begin humming the syllable OM; we sing it in the language of feeling.
The meaning of the syllable OM is different with different persons. Everybody in his own stage of spiritual development has to give it the meaning which suits him best. There are some people who take this syllable OM to stand for the Sun of suns, and they look at the rising orb just in the same way as women look at their looking-glasses. In India women wear looking-glasses on their thumbs. They have big gold ring-like frames containing looking-glasses. There is, in fact, nothing so dear to a woman as a looking-glass. When she looks into it she sees her face, as it were, outside herself, but she knows and feels her face to be with her. She sees something outside, but she is convinced of the thing being herself. So does a Vedantin look at the sun as if it were outside, but he gets convinced and feels that the real sun is his own Self, that the outward, material sun is simply his image, his reflection and his shallow.
A Vedantin looks upon the Sun as related to himself just in the same way as the moon is related to the sun. The moon appears to shine by herself, but in reality, from the scientific stand-point, she borrows all her lustre from the sun. So the Vedantin feels and realizes that the sun which is declaring his splendour as if it belonged to him, in reality borrows all that from my real Self and owes all his grandeur and glory to me.
The Earth revolves, but we think the Sun is revolving. When we learn Astronomy we know better and we are not deceived any longer, and we are sure that it is not the Sun that revolves, but the Earth’s motion is ascribed to the Sun. Similarly the Vedantin, when looking at the rising orb, feels and realizes that the grandeur, glory, and power that seem to belong to the glorious sun are, by mistake, ascribed to the sun. In reality it is mine, mine, mine!
The sun in the material world is a symbol of light, that is to say, knowledge. The sun is a symbol of power. It makes all the planets revolve. It is a symbol of existence, life: all life owes its origin to or is indebted to the sun. The sun is a symbol of beauty; it attracts the earth and everything -so dazzling. Now the sun represents knowledge, light, life, power, existence, beauty, attractiveness. All these attributes a Vedantin realises to be his own. All these attributes a Vedantin feels to be mine; nay, Me or I. These attributes and all this power, light, life, etc., are seen outside myself, in the same way as the fairy face of a lady is seen in the looking-glass outside herself. As a matter of fact, in reality, I am light, life, knowledge, power, attractiveness and everything.
To realize this idea and dehypnotize into the real Self, a beginner gets a great help from the syllable OM. While chanting the syllable OM, to the Vedantin the meaning attached to it is: –I am the Light of light; I am the Sun; I am the real Sun, the apparent sun is my symbol only. I am the Sun before whom alt the planets and all the bodies revolve. For my sake all the heavenly as well as human bodies undergo their movements and do everything. I am immovable and eternal, the same yesterday, today and forever.
Before me does this whole globe, this whole universe, unfold itself. It goes on turning round and round to bring out before me all her parts -to show me everything that is hers. The Earth revolves upon her axis to lay open before me all her sides; the universe does all sorts of things for me; the sun, sheds lustre for my sake; the moon shines for my sake, before me. At my commandment, on account of my presence, all the phenomena in this world take place. Just as it is the very presence of the sun that makes trees grow, the muscles of animals move, or men think, so it is my presence that awakens all. It is mine -the real Spirit’s -the real God’s -presence that makes everything in this world come to pass. All these bodies -heavenly or human -any sort of objects, all these creatures, together with their spirits and gods, owe their existence to me; they live in me, the Sun of suns!
The Light of lights am I. In dreams we see an object not by the light of the lamp, nor by the light of the moon or the sun; and vet we see it, and know that without light we could not see it. In what light, then, do we see it? It is the light of my real Self; it is the light of Atma; it is my light that makes everything visible in a dream. If I see in a dream a diamond, it is perceived by my light. Even the lustre of the diamond is simply a ripple in the sea of my light. If in a dream I see the moon, she together with her light is likewise a wave in my splendour. If I see the Sun in a dream, it, as well as its light, is simply like an eddy in the ocean of my glory. So it is in the wakeful state: the sun, the moon, the stars and everything are simply waves in the ocean of my light. I am the Light of lights. I am the Light of the world. In the ocean of my presence, every object -the sun, the stars, the gods -all behave like rings and ripples.
“I raised the sun from out the sea;
The moon began her changeful course with me.”
I am the Monarch of monarchy. It is I that appear as all the kings in this world. It is I that appear as all the beautiful flowers in different gardens. It is I that smile with the bewitching faces of all the fairies. It is I that make the muscles of all the warriors move. In Me does the whole world live, move and have its being. Everywhere it is my will that is being done. It is my kingdom that is reigning supreme everywhere. I am manifest everywhere, I feed every being from the minutest animalcule to the biggest sun. I administer to every being his daily bread. I made the earth revolve round the sun; I was there before the world began.
Evil thoughts and worldly desires are things concerning the false body and the false mind, and are things of the darkness. In my presence they have no right to make their appearance. I am the Supreme Ether in which are afloat all the universe and all material ethers. I like light to permeate and pervade every atom and every object. I am the lowest; I am the highest. There is no lowest, no highest, with Me. Wherever human eyes fall, there I am. I am the spectator, I am the showman, I am the performer. In Jesus I appeared. In Mohammad I revealed myself. The most famous people in the world I am, and the most disreputable, ignominious, the most fallen I am. I am the all, the all. Whatever be your object of desire, that I am. Oh, how beautiful I am! 1 shine in the lightning: I roar in the thunder; I flutter in leaves; I hiss in winds; I roll in the surging seas. The friends I am: the foes I am. To Me no friends, no foes. Away, ye thoughts, ye desires which concern the transient, evanescent fame or riches of this world. Whatever be the state of this body, it concerns Me not; all bodies are mine. Franklin I was; Newton I have been; Lord Kelvin I am; mighty Ram and lovely Krishna I am. It is I that worked in the brain of Kant. It is I that inspired the hearts of Buddha and illustrious Shankar. It is I that lend light to all Shakespeares and Platos. They come unto Me, the fountain head, and they are filled, get lustre and shine. All these worldly ambitions bind and drag down the real man. Away, ye gay landscapes and gardens of roaes. All of you are in Me; not one of YOU can contain Me. In Mo is this universe; in Me is everything. What can contain Me? How can I be limited? The world, the world is in Me; the universe, the universe is in Me! And still I am in each and all. I am in the minds and in the thoughts of each and all. I am in the throbbing breast of the lover; I am in the laughing eyes of the proud beloved. I pulsate in the nerves of each and all. I am in you; I am in you! Nay, there can be no you and I, no difference. I AM I!
I am the unseen Spirit which informs
All subtle essences! I flame in fire,
I shine in sun and moon, planets and stars!
I blow with the winds, roll with the waves!
I am the man and woman, youth and maid!
The babe new-born, the withered ancient, propped
Upon his staff! I am whatever is —
The black bee and the tiger and the fish,
The green bird with red eyes, the tree, the grass,
The cloud that hath the lightning in its womb.
The seasons and the seas! In Me they are,
In Me begin and end.
— Upanishad (Sir Edwin Arnold, translator).
I hide in the solar glory.
I am dumb in the pealing song,
I rest on the pitch of the torrent,
In slumber I am strong.
I wrote the past in characters
Of rock and fire the scroll,
The building in the coral sea.
The planting of the coal.
Time and thought were rav surveyors,
They laid their courses well,
They poured the sen, and baked the layers
Of granite, marl, and shell.
I am the mote in the sunbeam, and I am the burning sun,
“Rest here! “I whisper the atom. I call to the orb, “Roll on.”
I am the blush of the morning, and I am the evening breeze:
I am the leaf’s low murmur, the swell of the terrible seas.
I am the net, the fowler, the bird and its frightened cry;
The mirror, the form reflected: the sound and its echo I:
The lover’s passionate pleading, the maiden’s whispered fear;
The warrior, the blade that smites him, his mother’s
I am intoxication, grapes, wine-press, and musk and wine,
The guest, the host, the traveller, the goblet of crystal fine.
I am the breath of the flute, I am the mind of man;
Gold’s glitter, the light of the diamond, the sea pearl’s lustre wan.
The rose, her poet nightingale, the songs from the throat that rise;
The flint, the sparks, the taper, the moth that about it flies.
I am both good and evil, the deed and the deed’s intent;
Temptation, victim, sinner, crime, pardon and punishment.
I am what was, is, will be -creation’s ascent and fall;
The link, the chain of existence; beginning and end of all.
Lo! the trees of the wood are my next of kin,
And the rocks alive with what beats in me;
The clay is my flesh, and the fox my skin,
I am fierce with the gadfly, and sweet with the bee.
The flower is naught but the bloom of my love,
And the waters run down in the tune I dream.
The sun is my flower uphung above,
I flash with the lightning, with falcons scream.
I cannot die though forever death
Weave back and fro in the warp of me,
I was never born, yet my births of breath
Are as many as waves on the sleepless sea.
My breath doth make the flowers fragrant,
My eyebeams cause the sun’s bright light.
The sunset mirrors my cheek’s rose blushes,
My aching love holds stars so tight.
Sweet streams and rivers my veins and arteries,
My beauteous hair the fresh green trees.
What giant strength! My bones are mountains.
O, joy! the fairy world my bride.
Nay, talk no difference, wonder of wonders,
Myself the bridegroom, I the bride.
Roll on, ye suns and stars, roll on
Ye motes in dazzling Light of lights.
In Me, the Sun of suns, roll on.
O, orbs and globes mere eddies, waves
In Me the surging oceans wide
Do rise and fall, vibrate, roll on.
O worlds, my planets, spindle turn,
Expose me all your pants and sides,
And dancing bask in light of life.
Do suns and stars or earths and seas
Revolve, the shadows of my dream?
I move, I turn, I come, I go.
The motion, moved and mover I.
No rest, no motion mine or thine.
No words can ever Me describe.
Twinkle, twinkle, little stars,
Twinkling, winking, beckon, call me.
Answer, first, O lovely stars,
Whither do you sign and call me?
I’m the sparkle in your eyes,
I’m the life that in you lies.
“Break, break, break
At the foot of thy crags, O sea!”
Break, break, break
At my feet, O world that be.
O suns and storms, O earthquakes, wars,
Hail, welcome, come, try all your force on me!
Ye nice torpedoes, fire! my playthings, crack!
O shooting stars, my arrows, fly!
You burning fire! Can you consume?
O threatening one you flame from me;
You flaming sword, ye cannon-ball,
My energy headlong drives forth thee!
The body dissolved is cast to winds;
Well doth Infinity Me enshrine!
All ears, my ears; all eyes, my eyes;
All hands, my hands; all minds, my mind!
I swallowed up Death, all difference I drank up;
How sweet and strong a food I find!
No fear, no grief, no hankering pain;
All, all delight, or sun or rain I
Ignorance, darkness, quaked and quivered,
Trembled, shivered, vanished forever;
My dazzling light did parch and scorch it,
Joy ineffable! Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!!