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Reality Omnipresent



We now admit that Spirit as well as Matter is absolutely free to manifest in us. Then it is necessary to reconcile them. Matter was represented by the materialists. The Spirit is represented by the sannyasi. For a long time each opposed the other. Their meeting must be explained as a reasonable possibility, an acceptable idea. It must also be explained in Life. Both represent sovereign truths. Both tend to exclusive errors. Even their errors are vigorous. We must represent those truths faithfully. They emerge as extreme statements. Because it is extreme, it has a strong appeal. The sovereign fact, the extreme tone demand our attention. We cannot overlook them. They can avenge themselves upon us, if we neglect them.  There were several attempts at compromising Spirit and Matter. No satisfying solution emerged. The powerful position each camp takes, their errors, their extreme views make it difficult to arrive at a compromise. In a dispute, rights and powers conflict. In a compromise, interests dictate. By a process of give and take, a compromise is arrived at. Reconciliation is not like that. Each man's demand has in another man a rightful, beneficial use. By locating them and bringing them together, we arrive at a position where both gain and no one gives up.  This is reconciliation. Ultimately this process can lead to oneness. Man's inner life is presided over by the Spirit. His outer existence is a field for Matter. For him to flower, the inner and outer must unite. It means that Spirit and Matter must be reconciled, not subjected to a compromise.

In the last chapter we saw Spirit and Matter meet in the cosmic consciousness. It is a reconciliation, because Matter finds Spirit real and vice versa. In the egoistic mentality mind separates Matter from Spirit; Life creates a quarrel between them. But in cosmic consciousness there is no separation, no quarrel. Mind and Life play the role of intermediaries between Spirit and Matter. Spirit and Matter are the positive and negative principles of the same Brahman. Here Mind is illuminated by a truth. It helps mind see the truth of unity and the truth of Multiplicity. It also learns the rules of interaction of one with the other. Also, Mind understands why there is disharmony in it.

Mind sees that here divine Harmony reconciles its own discords. So, Mind is satisfied. We tend towards a unity between God and Life. Mind readily comes forward to be an agent of unity.

Matter is inert for our thought. Our senses are gross. They too find matter lifeless. There is a higher thought that can realise God. There are subtle senses. To them Matter is not dull, inanimate, or inert. Subtle senses and higher thought see Matter is Spirit. They find Matter as the body of the Spirit. When the Spirit wants to create a form and extend itself for that purpose, Matter is born. Spirit is invisible to us. Nor can we feel or sense the Spirit. When Mind and Life turn into willing agents of Being, Spirit reveals itself through them. It reveals itself as soul, truth. We do now realise that the Spirit is the essence of Matter. Both meet. Spirit reveals itself to Matter as soul. Matter confesses itself to Spirit as its own body. No longer do we see Mind as a mere instrument of thought. Now Mind and Life are illumined. They become instruments of the Conscious Being.  We see it so. We are able to see Mind and Life as symbols of the Purusha. Brahman extends itself through Being to material forms. Brahman dwells in those material forms. Dwelling there, It unveils Itself to other numberless centres. Mind and Life serve as instruments for this purpose. To us Mind is an instrument for thinking. At this height, Mind rises high and feels fulfilled. Here Mind becomes a true mirror. It reflects the Truth of Being. Being expresses Itself in the symbols of the universe. Life too undergoes a similar transformation. Life becomes a self-figure of the Divine. The Universe creates ever-new forms. Life gives its own energies for this self-figuration.

The above is a new idea. If this idea is accepted, it is possible for us to believe in a divine life. That will justify Science. Then cosmic evolution can have a living sense. It will get an aim we can understand. The great dream of religions is to transfigure the human soul into a divine soul. And that is possible there.

The ascetic saw the Self and gave up the world. If we can arrive at the divine life as above, what is the meaning of the Self he saw. It is a Self, pure, inactive, self-existent, self-enjoying. It needs no action for its existence. Its enjoyment issues out of itself, not from outside. It does not depend on anything for its existence. Here too we follow the same rule, the rule of divine harmony. We cannot accept conflicting oppositions. The ascetic met with the Silent Brahman. Our life is in active Brahman. They are not different. The cosmic illusion is not supported by one and opposed by the other. They are one Brahman with two aspects, positive and negative. Both are necessary. We cannot miss either. It is said the Word created the world. That Word issues out of this Silence. The systems in the cosmos are innumerable. The divine activity in the world is powerful and free. These systems, their freedom and power issue out of the passive, silent Brahman. The dynamic Nature in the world has infinite fertility. The changeless Being consents to this Nature. It supports impartially the activities of Nature. These activities take place in a harmonious plane. It varies but is powerful. It needs great energies. It is the immutable Being that supplies all these energies.

Man can also find that Brahman inside. It is calm and passive. It has a divine tolerance and divine bliss. Man's outer activities are free and endless. The Brahman inside will support the outer needs. Several people do possess it inside. It is a calm they get by tapas. They see that enormous energies pour out of this Calm. This calm is also silent. The work of the universe needs these energies. The supply from inside is forever, non-stop. People think Silence rejects activity. It is not true. Silence and activity do not go together. One is opposed to another. This is only an appearance, not really true. Mind is limited. It is used to high and low, light and darkness, the pairs of opposition. Mind cannot think of light and darkness dwelling together simultaneously. A comprehensive consciousness includes both. It is vast and strong. Mind is unable to conceive of such a consciousness. The ultimate truth is the opposite. The Silence does not reject the world, instead it supports the world. We can say Silence is impartial in supplying its energies to activity and non-activity. This Silence approves of the attitude of the soul which remaining free, supports all action, even the opposite of action.

There is the absolute withdrawal from activity. It is Non-Being. The Upanishad says Being is born out of Non-Being. Then it must go back to Non-Being. We say Sat, Existence, supports every activity in the world. Its support is without any condition. Whatever activity arises, the Existence supports. Then Non-Existence must do the opposite. It must cancel all activities. If so, a real universe is not possible. This is the Buddhist Nihil. They say ego is illusory. It is created by our ideas. Then Self also is such a creation. When ego dissolves, Self too dissolves.

Our mentality is limited. It makes verbal distinctions. The words create distinctions that do not exist. Having created them, the mind is fond of them. The distinctions lead to strong oppositions. All these are created by words. This is misleading. Mind uses this method even to explain ultimate truths. It does so to explain supramental experiences. It is a pity that mind uses the words of intolerant distinctions to explain divine harmony. Non-Being is only a word. Let us examine it. As the Self was explained as an ideative formation, Non-Being too is a creation of the mind. What do we really mean by this Nothing? We are in this universe. While here, we have an experience of the being. This experience is abstract in the mind, subtle in the soul. We can reduce this experience to something concrete. This is the highest we can attain to. We want to go beyond that. Then we describe that beyond as Nothing. So, this Nothing is something, something beyond our highest idea. We really want to go beyond all that we know, because God is there. This is a method of total exclusion. So, we create a Nothing. Our idea is when we exclude all we know, there must be Nothing else. It is not true. This is a fiction What is the truth? Nihil is a zero, but a zero which is All. Or the Nihil is an Infinite, but cannot be defined. Therefore it appears as a blank to the mind. Mind understand something. It cannot understand nothing. The Truth is Nihil is the true Existence.

We say Non-Being gave birth to Being. Being and Non-Being are outside Time. We are in Time. We speak about Timeless things in the words of Time. Naturally we will not arrive anywhere. We are looking for a philosophy that will accept all and explain all, a harmony which will embrace all. This method is a method of negation, a method of saying No to everything. Our goal cannot be reached by this method. Sat and Asat do not move in a sequence, one behind the other. We want to accept everything in the world. So we want both Sat and Asat. We must, then, conceive them to be simultaneous. It is not as if Sat was born on a certain date and Asat will swallow it up at a later date. We speak in terms of Time. So, let us say both are eternal. We cannot say one exists and the other does not.

What is Pure Being? The cosmos exists. It has a base. Brahman is the Unknowable. Brahman is that base. Brahman declaring Itself to be that base is Pure Being. But Brahman does not exhaust Itself by being that base. Brahman can be cosmic existence and its base. It can also be free from being that base. Brahman's freedom from that base is Non-Being. Non-Being, thus, is a name we give to Brahman's freedom. Consciousness in the universe can formulate to itself a positive term. So it can formulate an abstract term. So too it can formulate a transcendent term. Brahman can refuse to do any of these. That refusal is Non-Being. Non-Being does not prevent any positive formulation. But Non-Being refuses to be limited by those formulations. We saw Silence supports activity. So, Non-Being supports Being. Man is unconscious, unawakened. He can see either Being or Non-Being. He cannot see both simultaneously. When his soul is awakened, he can see both. To  us affirmation and negation are opposites, mutually destructive. The one destroys the other. This is not true. Affirmations and negations are simultaneous, mutually supportive, complementary. Only the awakened soul can see that. He can see Being and the beyond simultaneously. To him Being is the conscious Self-Being. Beyond is the unknowable. Buddha attained Nirvana thus. While in Nirvana, Sunya, he had enormous power. His inner consciousness was impersonal. He was the most powerful personality the world has known. He produced on earth great results.

Words, once created, have a power. They assert. It becomes violent. Distinctions made by words are misleading. It is confusing too. It is a pity. Our mind is narrow. It is made to see only one aspect at a time. It extends to Brahman also. Having seen only one side, the mind goes on to deny all the other sides. We understand Brahman not as it should be understood, but as we can understand it. We are to affirm the One. It is Identical. It is done by the only way mind can do. Passion, discrimination and egoism are our methods. They do not suit the One which is calm, all-inclusive, egoless. Our experience is partial. Others' experience is partial. Neither is a total experience. We assert our opinion against other's opinions. That, certainly, is not the way to understand the All-inclusive, Eternal Brahman. We must wait. We must learn. We are obliged to grow. Self-perfection is what we seek. It requires knowledge of the One. No human speech can do it. Our affirmation must be the widest. It must not oppose anyone's position. It must be flexible and catholic. On that foundation we must erect a harmony. It must be the largest and most comprehensive harmony.

There is a high state of consciousness. When we enter into it our life dissolves. Even the Self is not enough to explain that experience. It is possible for us to enter into it. We recognise we can do so. We know Silence. Beyond that there is another Silence. We can enter that. Even this Silence is not ultimate or the whole. It is not the single, all-excluding truth. This is Nirvana. Here the Self dissolves. It gives absolute freedom to the soul and absolute peace too. The peace still permits action. The peace does not prevent action without. There is no personality there, nor motion. It is motionless impersonality. It does the works of Love, Truth, Righteousness outwardly. Inwardly it is Calm. This is the gist of Buddha's teaching. This gives us a superiority to ego, and frees us from karma. Karma rises from our identifying with the changing idea. Escape from birth and suffering is a petty ideal before that. The perfect man is not the active worker or the inactive idealist. He combines outer activity with inner calm. The conscious soul, likewise, combines freedom of Non-Being with dynamic life outside. That is an eternal miracle of divine Existence. Still he will not be bound to it. He will be beyond his work. Not only that, he will be beyond himself. There is an opposite experience to it. Here the individual concentrates on Non-existence. He personally withdraws from activity. He becomes oblivious, self-forgetful. He still lives in the consciousness of the Eternal Being.

Now Being is Spirit. Non-Being is Matter. They unite above. It is a reconciliation in the transcendent consciousness. Earlier, we reconciled Spirit and Matter in cosmic consciousness. Now they unite once more here, above cosmic consciousness. Thus we assert and affirm not a part, but the all. The all includes all negation. Thus, at last, we reach a position that includes all in a divine harmony. It is the Unknowable, the Brahman. Our affirmations here are status in the Unknowable. We can take that status in the Unknowable activity in the Unknowable. Here we have several negations corresponding to those affirmations. In the Unknowable our negations here are freedom from status there. The Unknowable is Supreme, Wonderful, not explainable in words. It comes to our consciousness, gives what It can give and goes away. Our consciousness constantly needs something from the Unknowable. The Unknowable gives it to us. This is called formulation. Here it does not act with ill-will, nor like a bad spirit or a magician. It does not lead us to falsehood. It does not ask us to deny everything. It acts wisely. Its Wisdom is greater than the wisdom we know. It leads us from a reality to a greater Reality.  It continues to do so till we reach the end. At the end is the vastest Reality. It is the Omnipresent Reality. There is no illusion, no negation, no disharmony.

We seek harmony. The above, which includes all, is a positive basis for harmony. Harmony can have only a positive basis. There are so many ideas of the Unknowable. Each of them is a great truth beyond Mind. Now they are conflicting. But we must try to understand each in relation to the other. We must understand how each affects the other. We cannot try to understand them separately. That will create conflicts. We should not aim at destroying another. What is true Adwaita? It includes all; it does not exclude any. We divide Brahman into two as Truth and Falsehood. We call them Brahman and not-Brahman; Self and not-Self; a real Self and unreal Maya. If we divide, we will exclude one. Let us not exclude any. Let us include All. That is Monism, true Adwaita. If Self alone is real, then all is Self. How can we exclude any?

This Brahman is God. It is All. It is conscious of Itself. Therefore it is a self-conscient All. Its personality is not limited. Its power has no bounds. Its state is not helpless. If it has manifested, it must have a reason. It must be a good reason. We must discover that reason. It must have some truth to manifest. We must assume it is power, it is potent, it is wise. How, then, are we to understand evil? Yes, we can accept evil as we see it, in the places where it occurs. We cannot accept evil is more powerful than we. Humanity has an instinct. It can know good from evil. It seeks not that evil. It seeks only good and seeks it wisely. That Good is the last word of manifestation. Of course, the world does not end in an illusion. That would be an eternal mockery. That is the secret. That secret is victorious Good. It is not an all-creative powerful evil. It is the adventure of the soul. It looks forward to fulfilment, not disappointment.

Brahman, we know, is the sole Entity. Nothing exists outside that. There is no question of something outside compelling Brahman. We cannot also say Brahman unwillingly submits to outside forces or inside forces. ‘A force inside hostile to Brahman compels it' is not something we can accept. That way we will bring in the same contradiction through the back door. If Brahman is All, where is the question of something other than All compelling It, from outside or inside? We can say Self is tolerant and impartial. Therefore we can assume that the Self tolerates this contradiction also. In that case too Something wants - Wills - this creation. And it cannot be something other than this Brahman. Brahman is indivisible. Therefore there is no question of a part in it. Whatever is willed here is really willed by Brahman. In other words, whoever does anything on earth, it is really  Brahman who does it. Our consciousness is partial and relative. It is afraid of evil; Brahman is not afraid of evil. We want to save Brahman from the evil it has created. So we create an opposition, Maya, Mara, Devil, evil, etc. This is one Lord and Self. The many are His creations only. Therefore the many are His representations.

People say the world is a dream or illusion or mistake. If so, it is this Brahman who created this dream or mistake. Not only created but also supports it forever. Where does this dream exist? It exists in this Brahman. What is it made of? It is made of this Brahman. Brahman is the base of this world. Brahman contains this world. If the gold of which the vessel is made is real, how shall we say the vessel is not real? Dream and illusion are words, mere words. They are tricks of speech. It is our habit to use these words. These words do represent a truth. Sometimes it is a great truth. But these words can also misrepresent that truth. We saw Non-Being is not a zero. So Dream is not a hallucination. Dream is a substantial form of Truth.

Now we have arrived at an idea of an Omnipresent Reality. At its two ends are the universe and Non-Being. Neither of them cancel our Reality. Both of them are states of that Reality. What is our highest experience of this Reality. This Reality is a knowledge, a force and an Ananda. So let us examine the dualities of our universe, not by our senses but by our Intelligence liberated from the senses. Then the conflict will disappear; it will resolve into harmony. What do we do when we are in dualities? We must have Faith till knowledge comes. God has given this creed to us for our journey back to the Absolute.

story | by Dr. Radut