THE HOW OF LIFE
PURE CONSCIOUSNESS IS THE ESSENCE OF OUR LIVES
Pure consciousness is the essence of our lives. Pure consciousness is all life force, undying, never-ending and forever there. So, what do we want? Do we want to be tossed around from pillar to post, or do we want to stand still? As the Scriptures say, “Be still and know that I am God.” Pure consciousness is God, and we express it through love, right doing, right actions, and right thought.
For example, the eight-fold path of Buddha gives you a guideline. Our Commandments give you a guideline. “Love thy neighbour as thyself”. But the trouble is, they do not say how. I speak about the same principle, but the major ruling factor in my teachings is the how. It is nice to say, “Oh, cook a beautiful cake,” but I must show you how to bake it. The how of life, how to do it. Forget the why and the wherefore, how it will turn out, and whether it will fall flat or not. Do not go for the results; go for the action. The Bhagavad Gita again says, “Act for the sake of acting, not for the fruits thereof.” Fruits will come. Plant and nurture the seeds, and the fruits will come; it is inevitable. I am not going to hanker after the fruit; that is what all people do. The first thing in their minds is what the fruit will be. They do not think of the work involved in planting. When a young man goes to apply for a job, the first thought he has in his mind is how much salary he is going to get. Forget the pay, do the work, and if the boss finds that you are a good worker, your wage will increase. Put in the spade work, so to say.
WHATEVER HAPPENS TO US, WE FACE IT BRAVELY
That is how, similarly, the result of our self-help and efforts will be pure consciousness. It is a beautiful, blissful world. I see all this terrorism around me, around the world – Nicaragua, the Middle East, Iran, and the Arabs and India – everywhere there is turmoil, trouble, and bloodshed. I look at it with compassion, but I say, “They have brought it upon themselves and maybe a lesson from which they could learn.” Not that we approve of it, but we can do nothing to help it. I wish I could go to stop all the fighting there in India, in Iran, Beirut and all those places, but you cannot; you just cannot. The best thing we can do is offer prayers, that is all, and send spiritual forces to them for some betterment.
On the other hand, we must not be sad about all the happenings around us or in our personal lives. We take it as it comes, with the realisation that whatever is happening to us is for my good. No one has made it happen to me. I do not blame anyone else. I do not blame my wife, I do not blame my boss, I do not blame my guru, and I do not blame my God. I deserve it, and I will face it, but I will not face it like a coward. I am facing it bravely, come, wind, hail or storm, for that too shall pass.
THE STRENGTH WITHIN IS PURE CONSCIOUSNESS
This comes from the strength within oneself, which is the pure consciousness within yourself, unaffected by all the happenings. So, to find pure consciousness, one has to sublimate that ego. You cannot eradicate it, and we cannot destroy it, but like a piece of rubber, we can stretch it and make it transparent to see through it. All the Light that is within, the pure consciousness that is within, can shine through it into our daily living and lives.
Many people regard philosophy, religion and metaphysics to be something up in the air, something to think about, mental gymnastics. To me, it is not so. If any knowledge or wisdom is not practised and brought into our daily lives, into our minute-by-minute living, it is of no value, and that does not mean that you must not enjoy life. No, it does not tell that, by all means, you want life but in a different sense. You make love to your wife; why, nothing stops you. You should. Every organ that man or woman is born with is not there to be atrophied; it is there to be used. You have eyes; you want to see. You have ears; you want to hear. A nose, you want to smell. A mouth, you want to eat, taste – feet, legs, arms. Every organ of your body is to be used, and when a man goes to bed with his wife, it should not be for lust because lust is a craving, and where there is a craving, there is attachment. You are attached to your desire, which becomes lust. But if there is no craving in lovemaking and just a flow of love where two people want to be unified and find a physical expression, it is very holy. The same thing is happening but in a different aspect, with a different attitude.
AN OPEN HEART BRINGS A GREATER AMOUNT OF AWARENESS
Like that in everything in our lives, life must flow and not be stunted by our mental aberrations, for because of our thoughts and preconceived ideas, we block that pure consciousness from flowing. Therefore, every action must be in such innocence, which is not difficult to achieve. Spiritual practices bring about that gentleness in you; it brings about that love in you, opens your Heart, and make you kind and compassionate. Because the Heart is opened, it brings you a more significant amount of awareness, where you do not see a particular act but all the circumstances that make a person perform that specific action. Because in your awareness, you can see all the circumstances surrounding it, you do not condemn the action, and when you do not blame, you love, and that comes from pure consciousness.
How many of us can genuinely say that we love? Very few. Love has become a mental concept because “She is pretty, has lovely eyes, has lovely hair, lovely nice cheeks, she is nice, I love her.” I love my wife very much, not because she is pretty and this, that or the other, or excellent. She is appealing to me. One day while chatting, I said, “God forbid, but if you should be involved in an accident and get shrivelled and burned, I will love you just as much. Because I do not love you as that physical entity, but the God within me is loving the God within you, and there are no two Gods; there is only one God. So how can I help to stop the flow of love?”
A SPONTANEOUS ACT OF KINDNESS MUST REACH THE TARGET
This little idea can be extended to everyone around you, to the entire world, that you love everyone. I remember many instances – one, for example. I was driving my car and saw a little child sitting on the pavement crying and snot running down its nose. A poor little child. They were impoverished, and her mother had given her money to buy bread. So, I was passing, and I saw this child sobbing there and stopped the car, not as a do-gooder. No, I do not want to do good. I must be reasonable, and sound is made by itself; remember that. Do not be do-gooders; just be good, and good will be done by itself. So, I stopped, took my handkerchief, wiped this child’s nose and tears, and said,” What is wrong, my child?” So, in her sobbing, “I have lost the money my mother gave me to buy bread,” I put her in the car and said, “Come on, there is a grocery shop down the road.” I had a few pounds in my pocket, bought a little box of groceries, and took the child in the car.
“Where do you live?” So she took me to some little hut where the poor people lived. There is a lot of poverty among the blacks in South Africa, these are political things, and they are oppressed and suppressed. Wage inequality and no job opportunities, even if you have the qualifications, you do not get those jobs because you are black. That is beside the point. So, I took the child home, and I had a chat with the mother. The father was there, he did not work, and I spent half an hour there. A few days later, I got a message that the father had found a job and started bringing money home to feed the wife and child. So, you see, an act of kindness which is spontaneously done must reach the target, must reach home, because pure consciousness is involved and by that act, the spontaneous kindness, the spontaneous flow of pure consciousness affected this loafer that did not want to work.
THE GIVER IS ALWAYS THE GREATEST GAINER
So, there are specific subtle forces within us that could help the world so much, even without trying to help, and this is the inevitable law of nature or of pure consciousness or of God, whatever you want to call it. You can only see pure consciousness around you if your eyes are open. Then only you can love your neighbour as yourself. Then only you can do unto others as you expect to be done unto yourself; in the end, you, the giver, are always the most significant gainer. You give one, as I always say, and Divinity gives ten back in return in some form or the other. If someone says, “My home life, my job life, my, this life, that life, I am so unhappy.” I say, “Do not examine your job. Do not examine your home life or whatever circumstances you are in. Examine yourself and see what you can do about it. Doing something about yourself and your attitudes, your rejections and acceptances, your defiance, and your surrender will determine and change your entire atmosphere.” No adverse atmosphere can touch a person who dwells to a certain extent in pure consciousness.
THE TRUTH IS SIMPLE PURITY
So that is the secret of life, and the greatest secrets are the easiest ones. Only those that are not worthwhile are being made complicated by those mental gymnasts. Truth is simple, uncompounded, and unmixed, and it is not a mixture. It is simple purity, and purity is pure consciousness, and pure consciousness only means that you are conscious of purity. So simple, you are conscious of purity, which is pure consciousness.
All these arrogant propositions made by scientists, philosophers, and metaphysicians can be boiled down to their essential, most straightforward, and practical value. You can give me any complex philosophical statement or question, and I will boil it down to you in two simple sentences because we go to the basis. We go to the basis of it, which we all can do. I am no exception; I am one like you. I behave like you; I eat like you; I have the same biological functions, the same thing. The only difference is that I have penetrated the depth here and found that which all of you have and can find. If you study the lives of Jesus and Krishna, they have been just ordinary people, more familiar than average. They have no wiles, fancies, pretensions, or show-off-ness, just simple.
THE INNER SELF IS FOREVER STILL
So pure consciousness is the total acceptance of oneself, to do things in their simplest way without complicating them. A complete surrender of the ego self to the authentic inner Self, for the ego self, those thought formations come and go and vanish, always in turmoil, while the inner Self is forever still.
With our meditations and other spiritual practices, we find that stillness and allow that pure consciousness to penetrate this mind and brain of ours. And once it penetrates and you open the tap, the water will keep running until you want to close it again. So let the water run, bathe in its purity, that life-giving water. People can stay without food for a long time but cannot remain without water for a long time.
… Gururaj Ananda Yogi: Satsang UK 1984 – 12