Archive for December, 2010

“IT’S NOTHING, IT’S NOTHING!”

IT is not easy to get rid of illusion. It lingers even
after the attainment of knowledge. A man dreamt
of a tiger. Then he woke up and his dream
vanished. But his heart continued to palpitate.
Some thieves came to a field. A straw figure
resembling a man had been put there to frighten
intruders. The thieves were scared by the figure
and could not persuade themselves to enter the
field. One of them, however, approached and
found that it was only a figure made of straw. He
came back to his companions and said, “There is
nothing to be afraid of.” But still they refused to
go. They said that their hearts were beating fast.
Then the daring thief laid the figure on the ground
and said, “It is nothing, it is nothing.” This is the
process of ‘Neti, neti.’

IT is not easy to get rid of illusion. It lingers even

after the attainment of knowledge. A man dreamt

of a tiger. Then he woke up and his dream

vanished. But his heart continued to palpitate.

Some thieves came to a field. A straw figure

resembling a man had been put there to frighten

intruders. The thieves were scared by the figure

and could not persuade themselves to enter the

field. One of them, however, approached and

found that it was only a figure made of straw. He

came back to his companions and said, “There is

nothing to be afraid of.” But still they refused to

go. They said that their hearts were beating fast.

Then the daring thief laid the figure on the ground

and said, “It is nothing, it is nothing.” This is the

process of ‘Neti, neti.’

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THE PROLONGED DREAM THAT WE CALL LIFE

THERE was a farmer who lived in the countryside.
He was a real jnani. He earned his living by
farming, He was married, and after many years a
son was born to him, whom he named Haru. The
parents loved the boy dearly. This was natural,
since he was the one precious gem of the family.
On account of his religious nature the farmer was
loved by the villagers. One day he was working in
the field when a neighbour came and told him that
Haru had an attack of cholera. The farmer at once
returned home and arranged for treatment for the
boy. But Haru died. The other members of the
family were grief-stricken, but the farmer acted as
if nothing had happened. He consoled his family
and told them that grieving was futile. Then he
went back to his field. On returning home he
found his wife weeping even more bitterly. She
said to him: “How heartless you are! You haven’t
shed one tear for the child.” The farmer replied
quietly: “Shall I tell you why I haven’t wept? I had a
very vivid dream last night. I dreamt I had become
a king; I was the father of eight sons and was very

THERE was a farmer who lived in the countryside.

He was a real jnani. He earned his living by

farming, He was married, and after many years a

son was born to him, whom he named Haru. The

parents loved the boy dearly. This was natural,

since he was the one precious gem of the family.

On account of his religious nature the farmer was

loved by the villagers. One day he was working in

the field when a neighbour came and told him that

Haru had an attack of cholera. The farmer at once

returned home and arranged for treatment for the

boy. But Haru died. The other members of the

family were grief-stricken, but the farmer acted as

if nothing had happened. He consoled his family

and told them that grieving was futile. Then he

went back to his field. On returning home he

found his wife weeping even more bitterly. She

said to him: “How heartless you are! You haven’t

shed one tear for the child.” The farmer replied

quietly: “Shall I tell you why I haven’t wept? I had a

very vivid dream last night. I dreamt I had become

a king; I was the father of eight sons and was very

happy with them. Then I woke up. Now I am

greatly perplexed. Should I weep for those eight

sons or for this one Hani?”

The farmer was a jnani; therefore he realized that

the waking state is as unreal as the dream state.

There is only one eternal substance, and that is the

Atman.

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MAYA VANISHES THE MOMENT IT IS KNOWN

A PRIEST was once going to the village of a
disciple of his. He had no servant with him. Seeing
a cobbler on the way, he addressed him, saying:
“Hulloa! Good man, will you accompany me as a
servant? You will be fed well and taken good care
of, if you come with me.” The cobbler replied: “Sir,
I am of the lowest caste. How can I come as your
servant?” The priest said, “Never mind. Do not tell
anybody what you are. Do not also speak to
anyone, or make anybody’s acquaintance. The
cobbler agreed. At twilight, while the priest was
sitting at prayers in the house of his disciple,
another brahmana came and said to the priest’s
servant, “Go and bring my shoes from there.” True
to the behest of his master, he made no response.
The brahmana repeated his order a second time,
but even then the servant remained silent. The
brahmana repeated it again and again, but the
cobbler did not move an inch. At last, getting
annoyed, the brahmana angrily said: “Sirrah; how
dare you disobey a bralimana’s command? What is
your name? Are you indeed a cobbler?” The

A PRIEST was once going to the village of a

disciple of his. He had no servant with him. Seeing

a cobbler on the way, he addressed him, saying:

“Hulloa! Good man, will you accompany me as a

servant? You will be fed well and taken good care

of, if you come with me.” The cobbler replied: “Sir,

I am of the lowest caste. How can I come as your

servant?” The priest said, “Never mind. Do not tell

anybody what you are. Do not also speak to

anyone, or make anybody’s acquaintance. The

cobbler agreed. At twilight, while the priest was

sitting at prayers in the house of his disciple,

another brahmana came and said to the priest’s

servant, “Go and bring my shoes from there.” True

to the behest of his master, he made no response.

The brahmana repeated his order a second time,

but even then the servant remained silent. The

brahmana repeated it again and again, but the

cobbler did not move an inch. At last, getting

annoyed, the brahmana angrily said: “Sirrah; how

dare you disobey a bralimana’s command? What is

your name? Are you indeed a cobbler?” The

cobbler, hearing this, began to tremble with fear,

and looking piteously at the priest, said: “0

venerable sir, I am found out. I dare not stay here

any longer. Let me flee.” So saying, he took to his

heels.

Just so, as soon as Maya is recognised, she flies

away.

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HOW IS MAYA

A CERTAIN sadhu lived for some time in the
room above the nahavat-khana (concert-room) of
the temple of Dakshineswar. He did not speak with
anybody and spent his whole time in the
meditation of God. One day, all of a sudden, a
cloud darkened the sky and shortly afterwards a
high wind blew away the cloud. The holy man now
came out of his room and began to laugh and
dance in the verandah in front of the concertroom.
Upon this I asked him, “How is it that you,
who spend your days so quietly in your room, are
dancing in joy and feel so jolly today?” The holy
man replied, “Such is Maya that envelops the life!”
At first there is clear sky, all of a sudden a cloud
darkens it and presently everything is as before
once more.

A CERTAIN sadhu lived for some time in the

room above the nahavat-khana (concert-room) of

the temple of Dakshineswar. He did not speak with

anybody and spent his whole time in the

meditation of God. One day, all of a sudden, a

cloud darkened the sky and shortly afterwards a

high wind blew away the cloud. The holy man now

came out of his room and began to laugh and

dance in the verandah in front of the concertroom.

Upon this I asked him, “How is it that you,

who spend your days so quietly in your room, are

dancing in joy and feel so jolly today?” The holy

man replied, “Such is Maya that envelops the life!”

At first there is clear sky, all of a sudden a cloud

darkens it and presently everything is as before

once more.

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