Thursday, June 19, 2008

Know thyself?

Sri gurubhyo namaha.

'Know thyself' the wise master says. 'Know thyself' the scriptures affirm. 'Know thyself' my intuition screams.

Is the Self 'knowable'? Does not the Self defy all notions and perspectives by being non substance? Knowing the self in terms of its qualities or its size etc is not possible as the self is in possession of no attributes. It is like water or air, having for itself no shape or form, yet readily taking the shape of the container it is placed in. It is beyond gender or race and as it exists even beyond the temporal or spatial dimensions it is ageless too.

What is there to know about the Self? And if we consider that the Self exists eternally as the absolute witness, setting the context and being the constant background for everything how could one know the self? Can a mirror reflect itself?

Is the knowledge that there can be nothing known about the Self, the true self knowledge? The self or the atman existing as such. Without any justifications for its existence, without any attributes and beyond all modifications, it merely Is.

How then is the Self knowable?


Confused Martian said...

There is a book called 'God's Debris' where the author ridicules the phrase - Be yourself. There is no effort needed in being yourself. No matter what you do, what principles you compromise, what person you imitate, all you do is yourself. You can never be not yourself. And in the same vein, knowing oneself is a paradox. I believe that everything that you know - they are the sum total of the self. Beyond the self, there is nothing to know. What you know is your self. Effortless salvation :)

mooligai sidhan said...

Sri gurubhyo namaha.
@confused martian
The concept of Self if related to the conext of the 'I' is relatively easy to understand and that is not the Self the wise or the sastras are talking about.

When I use the word Self it refers to the attribute less Atman who stands alone and unaffected irrespective of what 'you' know or not know or do or not do.

What you 'know' is not your self.However when the 'I' ness is transcended what you 'are' is the Self - though this holds true when the 'I'ness is transcended.

Salvation is 'effortless' that I aggree with as no effort is needed to be in a place you already are in. However to become aware of what your 'real' nature is needs plenty of effort - eons of it.