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the necessary threshold is through consciousness

Nisargadatta from 'Seeds of Consciousness'

August 18, 1979

Questioner: Why is the understanding so fleeting, changing?

Maharaj: It depends on the body sense. All people will
receive the knowledge from here, but the behavior of each
will be different from that of the others.

Q: Myself, I am holding on to the same consciousness,
and the understanding which is reflected in that consciousness
is changing completely from day to day.

M: Oh yes. This knowledge, "I Am," in the field of
mind-inclination, mind-understanding, will not remain the
same. It is changing every moment. It will never stabilize
itself on one understanding.

Q: So there is no such thing as final understanding?

M: The beginning and the end of this understanding is
the knowledge "I Am." The beginning of concepts started
with the primary concept "I Am." Having wandered
through all the concepts and rejected them, you have to get
rid of this last or the first concept.

Q: That rejection-does it come by the disappearing of
the last concept, just by giving it attention?

M: See this flame of the cigarette lighter? It has appeared,
it has disappeared; it's just like that. Has it got any
concept, this flame? What is without concept is the most
perfect, the most proper. The witnessing has to be done
when you try to concentrate on an objective. Suppose you
want to concentrate on a Rama, a Krishna, or a Christ, then
there is a question of concentrating or watching. This is only
the knowledge "I Am."

Q: The problem is, the more attention I give to consciousness,
the larger the concept which appears in the mind.

M: How do you focus attention on consciousness? Consciousness
itself has to focus.

Q: That is what I meant.

M: Understand consciousness and come to the conclusion
that consciousness is not yourself.

Q: I can't. I cannot!

M: Give it up! Whatever demands you make, I am not
going to fulfill. I am not going to meet your demands. I am
not going to give you whatever you want. I am just going to
tell you, to emphasize what you are. You want to convert or
transform yourself into something: "I want to become this,"
"I am going to do that." I am going to tell you what is the
root of you, the innermost core, what you are. I am not a
sculptor, you see, I don't make images for you, so that you
become that image.

Q: Where does this need of consciousness to see itself as
everything come from?

M: You know that you are, and you love to be, hence the
necessity. Although you have been saying that you understood,
there is some hitch somewhere, isn't there?

Q: One card. I am holding back one card.

M: Throw it out! Where is the loss? Give up the game.
You listen to my talks or don't listen. You come here or
don't come here. I know what you are, what you were prior
to your "I Amness." Before your parents met, I know you. I
know your knowingness after your parents met, how it got
transformed to various stages, how it developed in different
images, I know all that. Suppose a person is a hundred
twenty-five years old; since childhood he has grown into various
stages, learned a lot worldly things. Now whatever he has
learned or gained, everything has gone, and he is lying on a
bed, and what remains now? Only that child-consciousness,
that child-ignorance, remains. And that also will go. Will it
go to heaven or hell? No; the ignorance has sprung up and
the ignorance will disappear.

Q: The question then is, if that ignorance can disappear
only through that process of time or can it be stopped now?

M: Even in between. It is sustained by food and water. If
this is not supplied it will go, disappear.

Q: But it has gone in the case of Maharaj and there is a
supply of food and water there. So what I am asking is, is
that process inevitable, or can it just end now?

M: You have to meditate. It won't be available free. The
necessary threshold is through consciousness only. You have
to imbibe and be consciousness. In the process of being in
the consciousness, you come out of it, and there you see; and
meditation is the only remedy.

Q: The more you get into consciousness, the more impossible
it seems to transcend it.

M: Give it a fair trial. Be in beingness. Try to be in
beingness. You won't get it here and now. Step number one
is: Be yourself, be in your beingness only. Although, to start
with, I am the Immanent Spirit "I Am," you have to be in
that beingness without the body sense. You feel that you are
the body now, but when you abide in that beingness you will
know then how you are without the body. But don't forget,
at the same time, that body and vital breath are very necessary.
Once you understand these three entities correctly
[body, vital breath and the message "I Am"], then you are
apart. The knower of these three entities will not be caught
by the parents.

Q: When Maharaj was immersed in his beingness, what
exactly did he understand that made him transcend
consciousness?

M: You know TV? Meditate and you will know as tangibly
as you see TV. You will see then: I am not the TV
screen, the observer of TV is not in the set. In the process of
meditation, more knowledge will be awakened, will be realized
by you, and, in the same process, you will understand
that whatever you have understood you are not.

Q: That's why I was saying before that the more consciousness
was conscious of itself, the larger the concept, the
knowledge.

M: Yes, it will happen, a living cosmos, a million universes
are in your consciousness.

Q: What about the knower?

M: The knower and whatever is known, both will go.
Nothing will remain stable, permanent. This triangle, father,
mother, and you, how did it happen? Inquire about that,
meditate on that.

Q: Isn't it the same thing, father, mother, and I; just a
flow of that consciousness?

M: Don't talk, try to understand. Just talking about eating
will not fill your stomach, you have to actually eat. You
will not get eternal peace with knowledge derived out of
words, only by Self-knowledge, Self-realization.

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