Wanting to reforms the world without discovering one’s true self is like trying to cover the world with leather to avoid the pain of walking on stones and thorns.
Nobody doubts that he exists, though he may doubt the existence of God. If he finds out the truth about himself and discovers his own source, this is all that is required.
Better than viewing Him as Other, Indeed the noblest attitude of all, Is to hold Him as the ‘I’ within, The very ‘I’.
When one turns within and searches Whence this ‘I’ thought arises, The shamed ‘I’ vanishes — And wisdom’s quest begins.
To know the Self is but to be the Self, For it is non-dual. In such knowledge, One abides as that.
Realization: When asked about realization, Ramana said there is no such event as realization. Realization implies two selves, one realizing the other. But, it is in everybody’s experience that there is only one self. What is called Realization is simply the loss of ego, loss of the false I which pretends to be real. This false ‘I’ is not there in deep dreamless. The real I remains constant throughout is deep dream less sleep, dreams and waking state. How can the false ‘I’ [, the ego, mind] know the real I, when in reality, the false ‘I’ doesn’t even exist. All that is required to is to turn within and find out where this false ‘I’ arises from.
According to external observers however, he is assumed to have realized as a sixteen years old boy. According to the description of this event, he was gripped by a sudden fear of death and through his surrendered, conscious, mental death, he saw that which doesn’t die even after all else has died. After that event, Ramana was never the same.
Death: Ramana died on April 14, 1950 in Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu, India.
Teaching Style: Ramana wrote three books: Upadesha Shravanam, Forty verses of Reality and his love poems for Arunachala, a mountain for which, he had immense love. Other than that, he spent his time mostly in silence, occasionally answering visitor’s questions in a brief and succinct manner. Most of his visitors were awe-stuck by the deep peace that they felt radiated from him and that was the reason many visited him. Ramana said Silence was the best teaching and the best teaching medium.
Fame: Ramana is among the most famous sage from India from twentieth century. His authenticity is considered unparalleled and his words are considered self-evident. His name is taken with great reverence, so much so that by many he is affectionately called bhagvan, the God incarnate. However, Ramana himself never considered himself to be anything special or extra-ordinary.
Legacy: Ramana can be largely credited with the revival of ancient advaitic teachings in the modern times. His admirers include world famous teachers of enlightenemnt like Eckhart Tolle, Adyashanti, Ramesh, Ram Tzu and Sailor Bob. One of his most famous direct disciple was Papaji, who later became teacher of many modern teachers of self realization, enlightenment and nonduality including Gangaji, Neelam and Andrew Cohen.
Ramana Maharshi taught by being the living example of what he taught. Peace permeated from his presence and many came to him just to be in his presence. Just being in his presence, just one gaze of his was often enough to show many visitors the glimpse of the Self, the Reality present in all.
God: When asked about God, life after death, heaven and other similar things, Ramana asked questioner to find out his/her own identity first. He said once you find out your own identity, there will be opportunity to find out what God, heaven, realization is. Whatever you learn from outside, without knowing your true identity, will only remain a concept and not the real knowledge. You can discover your true identity only thru Self Inquiry.
False Identity: Explaining the self identity, Ramana talked of two ‘I’s. There is one identity in you that keeps changing from deep sleep to dreams to the waking hours. That changing identity is the false ‘I’ and taking that to be the real Self is the source of all problems. In your dreams, you experience fear, loss, sorrow because whatever happens in dream, you assume happening to you, because you have taken a thing or person in your dream to be the real you. That false identification with a character in your dream is the source of your expereince of fear, sorrow in your dreams.
Ramana said similar things happens in waking hours too. In waking hours, you identify with your body and suffer because whatever happens to the body, you take it to be happening to you. Without this false identity, there will be no suffering.
In the deep dreamless sleep, this flase identity totally disappears along with any sense of body and that results in nondual bliss. That bliss is the resaon why sleep is so deer to everyone. If the false ‘I’ dissapers in the waking hours, you will expereince the bliss of deep sleep, while awake.
Reality: Ramana said that which is present in the deep dreamless sleep, is the only one which is real, the other which is something in waking hours and something totally different in dream is false. This false identity is the result of thinking and has no independent reality apart from thoughts.
This reality which is present in the deep dreamless sleep, never changes, it never fades, it never dies, it is formless and it is ever blissful – only that is real. God, Consciousness, Tao, Allah are just different names given to that Reality.
Heart: Ramana considered heart to be of special significance. Heart is the place from where the mind, I, the ego emerges and the place where the real I shines. When one merges his/her prana (awareness) into heart, the name and forms dissapear and the ever blissful reality shines forth.
Religions: Ramana respected all religions and was visited by the people of all religeons, race and color. He said ‘God Within’ is the essential teaching of all religions. He had great respect of ‘I Am That I Am’ expressed in the Bible and counted it among the best description of Reality. He found teachings of Advaita, Upanishads and Gita to be true. But, above everything else, he advised to know that by knowing which all else in known – Know thyself!