by Swami Krishnananda
I read a large book by Thomas Hill Green called Prolegomena to Ethics about the goodness of a person, the morality, and the ethicality. Who, which person do you call moral? Who is a moral a person? If you see a person, can you know whether or not he is moral? Now I put another question. What are the qualities that you want to see in a person in order that you may regard that person as moral? You cannot answer these questions. None of you will answer. You will not be able to say which qualities should be present to regard that person as ethical and moral. The mind will refuse to answer that also. “Don’t trouble me like that.” There is a point where the mind refuses to go further. “It is not possible! You should not think!” Here Kant gives a warning: Do not break your mind unnecessarily; you cannot go beyond space and time, so do not go further. Kant was a great man. He said you should not go mad by thinking like this. How will you think independent of space and time? It is not possible. The entire huge volume which he wrote is a warning: Space and time condition you, and nobody can go beyond. And the mind says, “I am a disciple of Kant. You stupid man, don’t bring any philosophy behind me. I will make you crazy!”
I will tell you one thing. Never try this kind of meditation unless you have a competent Guru. That swami I mentioned earlier had no Guru. He simply read some books on philosophy, such as the Yoga Vasishtha, and started meditating, and it affected his head. If you have any difficulty in meditation, some agony in the heart, some pain or anything disturbing, you must immediately go to your tutor. “I am upset. I am doing meditation as you have instructed, but my mind is not able to concentrate. Not only that, I am feeling worse than before. I cannot eat. I have no sleep.” Then, it is the duty of the teacher or the Guru to find out why it has happened. The physical and psychophysical structure of the individual is not prepared to overstep its own limitations and allow the whole sea of a new thought to enter into itself. It does not want to break the boundaries of space and time – because you are breaking yourself only, actually speaking. It is like a person who has climbed a tree and is sitting on a branch cuts the root of the tree. You know what will happen to him; he will go down with the branch.
Certain things should not even be uttered. I am not supposed to speak too much on this subject, but as this is a subject that is prescribed here in this academy, I am giving you a broad outline of what it is. It should not become something very agonising in your mind and make you suffer. Nobody can be so perfect in the psychical and the physical makeup as to tolerate this kind of onslaught of a super-spatial and super-temporal entry into the Whole. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to give an illustration: Do you know what happens when the Absolute enters you? It is like a mad elephant in rut entering a thatched hut. It will simply break the hut into pieces, and there will not be even one little piece left. It will simply throw and trample everything, and nothing will be left. This is what will happen if the Absolute enters you. The whole body will break into pieces, and the mind will go crazy, that’s all.
So, do not call the Absolute when you are unfit even to take its name. You cannot take its name falsely. It is said by religious people that the name of God should not be taken falsely or as a joke. In Jewish circles, there is a tradition that the name of God should not be uttered at all. If you take God’s name, they will say, “Oh! Blasphemy! Blasphemy! You are taking the name of God in the Hebrew language? This is not supposed to be done. No! No! How dare you? You should not take God’s name. It is so holy, so mighty and so great that it will break the tongue of puny individuals. Don’t utter it!” There are some schools which prohibit the utterance of the name of God in its pure perfection. It is not possible for the mind.
This kind of meditation where the idea of space and time is also overcome, and a non-spatial, super-spatial, super-temporal inclusiveness of cosmos is contemplated by itself only, is the second samaptti, called nirvitarka samapatti. No logical argumentation will be there. The mind will not work at all.
Am I troubling your mind, or do you understand what I say? If you think I am unnecessarily harassing you, I will not speak further. Or do you think that it is very good? What do you say? Am I torturing your mind by saying all this? I must be very careful. When you are given too much charity, you will have no place to keep it. You can accept millions and millions if it is given to you, but you won’t know where to keep it. You want little salary; but if whole infinite salary is given to you, where will you keep it? You will say there is something wrong somewhere, that’s all. Even when you want a thing, you cannot ask for the infinite. You want finite things only. Now we are entering into the infinitude of experience and possession. You are possessing the Infinite. Do you want it? You are a little man with two hands and a small brain. How will you contain it? However, here is nirvitarka samapatti.
But Patanjali is not going to leave you. He is like Shylock who wants the last drop of your blood, and he will not leave you like that. “Ah! I’ll see. I’ll punish you still more,” says Patanjali. “You have been punished sufficiently, but I’ll punish you still more.” What is that? There is something more than the physical universe. Even if you are able – somehow, by some miracle – to include space-time as an integral component of the whole cosmos, that is not sufficient, because the world is not made up of physical matter. It is made up of forces, as all students of physics know. There is no solidity in the universe, really. Forces act and react, and operate in their own wonderful, indescribable manner, making certain points of stress of force appear like hard substances.
If an electrical fan moves with tremendous velocity, it will look like nothing is moving. You will see only a bare abstract circle; there is no substance there. You see only a Euclidean circle, an abstract circular motion. Even the motion cannot be seen, only an enigmatic circle. But if you want to know if there is anything really there, put your finger; then you will know. However, the solidity, the substantiality, the spatiality, the temporality, the externality of this universe is a joke, I should say, played by the forces which constitute the entire so-called substantiality of things.
It is difficult to conceive force. You may say it is a kind of energy – like electricity, for instance. You know what electricity is, but you do not know what it is made of. What is the substance out of which electricity is made? You can know how it operates, but you cannot know why it operates in the manner it does. It is, again, something beyond human conception.
You have seen energies in the ordinary physical sense, but this is a super energy which is not at some place. Quantum energy is ubiquitous, all-pervading. The entire universe, so-called, including what is called space and time, is a huge sea of unimaginable all-pervading liquefied energy, we may say, and any pressure point in it looks like some bubble – a quantum molecule, a substance, a reality – capable of being contacted by the sense organs. These sense organs which are seeing the world of physicality are also made up of energy only. It does not mean energy is standing outside, moving. Your whole body – your mind, brain, and the sense organs – are also congealed spatiotemporal forms of this unimaginable, ubiquitous, liquefied energy quantum. The less said about it, the better for us.
We are flowing everywhere. Every one of you is everywhere. A drop of water in the sea is not in one place. There is no such thing as a drop of water in the sea. There are no drops in the sea. There is only sea, and any point in the ocean is everywhere. We are told by ancient scriptures such as the Yoga Vasishtha, and even by modern physical discoveries, that the so-called ‘you’ sitting here is not only here. You are also in another place simultaneously. Just as the water of the sea is not in one place, it is everywhere, you are a little apparent droplet of the sea of force. You, yourself, are everywhere.
Can the mind imagine this possibility that you are simultaneously present in every point of space? Everywhere you see yourself. And who is seeing you, when the seer is gone? It is an indescribable multiple phenomena seeing itself as a spread out universality. Everything is everywhere at all times. Because time has gone, you should not say it is somewhere – yesterday, tomorrow, and so on; and because space has gone, it is everywhere. Everything – yourself, myself – is everywhere at all times. This concept comes further on in a samapatti, a samadhi called savichara samapatti. These are all technical Sanskrit names. You may forget these names; it is enough if you know the meaning of these designations. It is non-centralised, non-spatial and non-temporal energy contemplating itself as all-consciousness.
If you want to use Sanskrit terms, the potentials of physicality are called tanmatras, which are droplets of universal energy that condense themselves into spatial earth, water, fire, air and ether. These droplets of the sea of ubiquitous energy are called tanmatras in Sanskrit. Here, again, you may omit the Sanskrit word; it is enough if you know the connotation of this description. The entire sea is dancing within its own bosom. The world is a beautiful presentation of a dramatic opera taking place, where the Supreme Absolute is the director, and the director Himself has become all these actors, and the theatre also is Himself only, and the audience also is He only.
The Absolute is the theatre, the Absolute is the actor, the Absolute is the director, the Absolute is the audience. Can you imagine what is this? Here, you are in a still higher level of superconsciousness. Some people such as Aurobindo Ghosh call it supra-consciousness because the word ‘super’ is inefficient and inadequate. ‘Supra’ is the word. Let it be, and let the meaning be anything; you can expect something wonderful. Whatever be the difficulties you feel in entertaining these thoughts, you must be happy that a great wonder is awaiting you. A great miracle is to take place. The Kingdom of God is at hand. “Repent ye! The Kingdom of God is at hand,” said the great Christ. So, I am telling you: Repent ye, from the bottom of your heart. Cry for this great immanence that is awaiting, and wanting you, and flooding you, and wanting to make you its own.
Even to listen to these things is a great pleasure, I should say, to the soul of a person. It is like music of the heavens being sung to the ears of consciousness itself. Wonderful! Wonderful! Ascharyam is the word used in our scriptures. Wonderful is the teacher who speaks like this; wonderful is the student who can know what it is; wonderful is the experience that follows; and wonderful is the result that is the final goal of it. The whole thing is a wonder! We cannot describe this Reality by any word except ‘wonder’. You simply open your mouth and gaze at this wonder, and your breath stops, and the mind ceases to think. You melt into the great artistic beauty of this manifestation of the wondrous grandeur of the Absolute.