Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has founded courses that provide techniques and tools to live a deeper, more joyous life. He has established nonprofit organizations that recognize a common human identity above the boundaries of race, nationality and religion. His goal is to uplift people around the globe, to reduce stress, and to develop leaders so that human values can flourish in people and communities.

AGA - Decoding the mind & consciousness

Spirituality & Human Values

AGA - Decoding the mind & consciousness

July 15, 2021
Bengaluru, India

The secret to becoming truly free

The mind is a wave in the ocean of consciousness. The mind is a particular function of consciousness. When we perceive through our senses, we say it is the mind that perceives. I am looking at you. That which looks through the eyes, that which is heard through the ears, that which smells fragrances or foul smells, that which tastes. That aspect of our consciousness which perceives through the five senses – smell, taste, touch, sight, hear – is what we call mind.

What is consciousness?

That which experiences is the consciousness. Who is experiencing? That is consciousness. The waves are there. Waves cannot be there without the ocean. The ocean is consciousness and the waves are the perceptual and thinking ability and all those various faculties that we experience in life. Those are all just the fringe. Consciousness is the very basis. You can’t get out of the consciousness like you can’t get out of space. Can you get out of the space? Impossible.

How do you experience it?

When all other experiences are subdued, then what remains is pure consciousness. You call this satori, nirvana, emptiness, moksha – all these different names are attributed to it. Where you feel you are, yet you are not.

The first step towards being free from the grip of the mind is to know you’re not just the mind. First, you should know that I am not this. Our little mind is not a different entity. It has no existence of its own. It is part of consciousness.

The second stage is realizing that it is gripping you.

The third stage is being a witness to it. Neither trying to get out of it nor trying to indulge in it. Taking things as they are, helps you to be a witness. That’s the next step. Then you find that things are happening. Thoughts and imaginations hover around, ideas come and go, but you know that you are not that. This is a stage in life. When you are blossoming towards your higher self. You pass through these different stations.

You don’t have to do anything to realize that you are part of the universal consciousness. It is just a lack of awareness. In fact, the crux of the issue is that you don’t need to do anything. Just drop everything, including wanting to do something.

When you drop all that you are craving for and all that you are averse to, you are right there. You simply have to let go and let be. That’s where meditation will come to you as a big help. Meditation is the biggest tool here. It is the most effective tool for you to be who you are.

How do we remove impressions in the consciousness?

If you have studied physics, you will know the law of thermodynamics. Energy can neither be created nor destroyed. It is a fact, whether you believe in it or not. In the same way, our consciousness can never be destroyed. The impressions that have come in the consciousness as memories can be erased. That happens through all these spiritual practices, meditation, the Sudarshan Kriya. The mind goes completely blank after you do the Sudarshan Kriya. You feel an absolute stillness in the mind. These practices would help you to get rid of impressions in the consciousness. Consciousness stays and nothing can happen to it. Nothing whatsoever.

Just take this one thing: Consciousness is like space. Your mind is like a cloud, but you are like the sky. If you can keep this in your awareness, you will suddenly find that all that was restricting you, your identity, your body, your ideas, and your set of thoughts would simply vanish. A new dimension starts opening within you. If you haven’t experienced it, know that you can (experience it) at any time by meditating and going deep in silence.

A secret: live in the present

Drop all that past luggage, the garbage that you have been carrying. See the entire past as a dream. That is the way to snap out of the past. Let me give you another example. When you are flying, you see a car moving on the highway. A person driving the car can only see a few hundred meters in front of him. But the person flying above can see the entire road, where it leads, how it goes. In the same way, the more expanded attention of our consciousness starts happening within us. Then we see the past, present, and future all as happening. It is very interesting to see from that angle.

It is simple. But you have to remind yourself several times in the beginning:

  • See the entire past as a dream
  • Know that the future could be a dream too
  • Question the present: Is it a dream?
When you are very happy or excited, you question the reality of the present. You wonder whether it is a dream or reality, right? That’s your true state. Click To Tweet