Q: I came across the teachings of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj ten years ago, and it had an impact on my beingness, and I wasn’t really able to handle that. So over the last ten years I’ve mainly practiced on the Sufi path. And the teacher, he was familiar himself with the lineage of Sri Ramakrishna also, and last year I came back to reading Sri Nisargadatta, and your wonderful book.
Maharaj: See, after reading so many books, we have to absorb that knowledge. Knowledge is just Reality, your Reality, Listener’s Reality, Reader’s Reality. That ‘I’ is supposed to be dissolved.
That ‘I’ appeared upon your Invisible Presence. If the Presence is not there, who will talk about the ‘I’? And as I told you, except your Selfless Self there is no God, no Brahman, no Atman, no Paramatman, no Master. The Invisible Listener within you is the Master. It does not have any special identity. To say ‘I’, your Presence is required. If Presence is not there, who will talk about the ‘I’ and who will talk about the God? To say ‘God’, your Presence is required. The body can’t say, ‘this is God’. If there is no Presence, the body can’t act, this is a dead body. The Invisible Presence, the Invisible Listener within you, through which you can identify the world, that means the entire world is projected out of your Invisible Presence. If the Presence is not in the body, who will talk about the world and God and everything? Who knows Krishna? Prior to beingness, do you know Krishna? Any God you know? Any Master you know? Any spiritual knowledge you’re having? Nothing. After leaving the body what is the use of that Krishna? All Gods and Goddesses are concepts. Okay, it’s not bad, I’m not criticizing. I’m placing before you the Invisible Identity within you, which is called Brahman, Atman, Paramatman, God, Krishna, whatever names are given. To say ‘Lord Krishna’, your Presence is there. If your Presence is not there, who will talk about Lord Krishna? We know the picture, ‘Oh, this is Lord Krishna’. Somebody told us, or we’re reading from some books, ‘This is the God, Rama, this is Krishna, this is this thing’, okay. Prior to beingness, do you know anything about this? Be honest. After leaving the body do you know anything about this? Any Master? Any God, any Goddesses?
Through the body we are trying to identify, ‘Oh, this is the God’. And what is the use of this God? Just to have peacefulness, happiness, what we require. The body-knowledge is not tolerable, therefore all these Gods and Goddesses are required. Why is spiritual knowledge required? Body-knowledge is not tolerable, for which you are taking some material causes. So many desires are there. So all desires are supposed to be dissolved spontaneously.
You may read thousands of books. What is the use of reading the books? Try to identify the Invisible Reader within you. We’re collecting information through various books and playing with the words, ‘Atman’, ‘Paramatman’, ‘Brahman’, ‘God’, it’s okay, so many words are there. So many books are there, what do they convey? So many Masters are there, what do they convey? They say: except your Selfless Self there is no God, no Brahman, no Atman, no Paramatman, no Master. Why don’t you see that Master within you? Why don’t you see that Krishna within you? Because we’re measuring ourself in body-form. And that body-identity is supposed to be dissolved, for which you are to undergo the discipline of the meditation.
Why is meditation required? Through which you’re hammering yourself, you’re inviting the attention of the Invisible Meditator within you that you are Ultimate Truth, you are Final Truth. That is the base.
Meditation is also illusion, but it is necessary. To remove one illusion you have to take the help of another illusion. Be strong, not physically, spiritually. Have some courage to accept the Reality. We’re having pressures of so many concepts, spiritual concepts, ‘Oh, how can I do this. If I say something, it will do something.’ ‘This is called sin, this is called virtue’. What is ‘sin’, what is ‘virtue’? This is called ‘destiny’, this is ‘past birth’, ‘future birth’, who’s birth? This is ‘karma’, that is ‘karma’, what is ‘karma’? You’re not the doer, there’s no deed! Ultimate Truth is not separate from you. So far we’re measuring ourself in body-form, that Ultimate Truth will be separate.