Know your Atman

Above all else we are temporal and spatial beings, meaning that we live in a time and a space. All our perceptions of the world around us are based on this time and space, at this moment. All things that we see in this time and space, have their own reality, and we perceive them through our sense organs. We are also intuitive beings, and perceive things around us; as if they have an existence, beyond current space and time. We can only know about the things around us, based on our intuitive ability. The more we grow our intuitive ability, to see our space and time relationships, by moving beyond them, into a new reality. The more we will learn about the world around us. First we must come to know our own Atman, before we can grow our intuitive knowledge through Om.

Copernicus forever changed our perceptions about the planets and the space around us. ‘Copernicus revolutionized astronomy by taking the position of the observer into account.’ From then onwards we noticed the movement of the stars, in relation to the viewer’s perception. Our whole universe changed, as we gazed at the heavens, as space slowly emerged; as eternal and endless, as our knowledge grew. Time also is eternal, and we are fooled into thinking, that Time and Space are our only reality. In fact they too, like the stars above, are transcendental, and we have to seek knowledge beyond them. The things we observe are independent of them, and in fact we are in a world of ‘Maya’, or a not properly perceived transitory world. As the knower is not knowledgeable, he\she cannot understand all that he\she is experiencing, at a given place\time. As we cannot know completely, until all our capabilities are enhanced, the knower limits his knowledge, based on his intuitive capability and reason. Our attachment to this gross world, limits our world of reason and knowledge and we stray from our Atman.

The growth in this consciousness is required for mankind to prosper. We have pondered on these questions for millennia in India, and the Upanishads and the scriptures of ancient Hinduism paint a far different reality. Thousands of year’s ago the students sat at their master’s feet, and explored the meaning of our existence. Human existence is unique and the quest for our reality in a dream\sleep\awake state troubled the sages greatly. We exist in a fourth state (atman) they realized, and it is this conscious being, who is observing the one, in the dream\sleep\awake state. We have to grow our consciousness to improve our intuitive understanding of reality. Reason and knowledge point to a knower who is evolving into a conscious being, and therein lies our future. We have to learn to learn again, and become that knower (atman), who transcends the past, present and future (Om). .

It is only when objects around us become part of our knowledge, that existence happens. Only when we are conscious, does consciousness and reality exist, in its base form. Yet we are limited in this existence, as we know so little, and we all share so much hope, for us to grow. Humanity has built a great need, for knowing more about our existence. Our reality is questioned and we still must maintain our hope, in our future, if we are rational beings. Idealists also use time to their advantage, saying things will get better over time. We can enjoy the present and live life to its fullest, as all constraints have been removed. We are free to become a knower, and be happy, and seek Nirvana. The fourth state (atman) is neither born or dies, and it is neither the dream nor the reality, nor the deep sleep. We are all that, and these objects we see, are not real. When we come to know that reality, we are already transcended beyond it.. Awaking all our intuition is why we have this life, and those who rise from its shadows become the knower (brahman). Live now and be aware of our universe and existence (atman), and we will become free to explore beyond our temporal and spatial world (brahman).

We are told [in Mandukya Upanishad] how, “the syllable Om is verily all that exists. Under it is included all the past, the present and the future, as well as that which transcends time. Verily all this is Brahman. The Atman is Brahman. This Atman is four-footed. The first foot is the Vaisvanara, who enjoys gross things, in the state of wakefulness. The second foot is the Taijasa, who enjoys exquisite things in the state of dream. The third is the Prajna who enjoys bliss in the state of deep sleep. The fourth is Atman, who is alone without a second, calm, holy and tranquil”. R D Ranade

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