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This is the 2nd of a 3 part series called “Finding Myself” – The fundamentals of enlightenment.

In the attempt to come to know who I really am (self-realization), it is necessary to answer three questions:  1) What is my essence?  2) What is my position? – meaning where do I fit in the big picture, and 3) What is my natural function?

Since time immemorial people have struggled with material nature, seeking to dominate, own, and control the Earth and its resources.  We have similarly sought to control, dominate, and even own, others.

While desiring to be in control, all people never-the-less experience how we tend to be controlled by our mind, with its infinite desires and wants, and even by our physical body, especially noticeable when it is sick or as it grows old.

We desire freedom, to do whatever we want, whenever we want, and in many ways to be “number one”, to be supreme, but this is also a losing battle.

We can experience harmony and peacefulness when we are able to realize our true position, or where we fit (as eternal spiritual beings) in the big picture.

Namaste. Welcome to the second part of the series Finding Myself.

So, if you recall from the first part we did, which dealt with my essence, we mentioned that in order to truly come to know oneself, to be able to answer that question, we need to know what is my essence, what is my position, and what is my natural function. Any type of scientific analysis of anything, we basically need to know those things to have a quite full understanding. And so, what we’re considering today is trying to answer the question, where do I fit?  And of course, that addresses the second part of this question, my—what is my position?

We literally find ourself in a vast or almost limitless universe, surrounded by countless heavenly bodies. Astronauts when gazing down upon the earth from the vastness of space, they all have this really amazing experience, which I would describe as being almost like a religious experience, if I can use that terminology. I remember looking at a coffee table book, and it was all statements of astronauts who had spent time in space; and whether they were American, whether they were Russian, whether they were from the UK, Saudi, I mean almost any country, they all made profound statements, that cause them to really question themself and where they fit in this vast, vast world.

So, from a great distance, even the greatest accomplishments of man seem to be very puny and small. You can think of somebody building some—the tallest building in the world, for instance, but from out of space, gazing down upon the country where that stands, it doesn’t seem so significant from that kind of at a distance.

Gazing down upon the earth or upon a country that we may be intimately familiar with, and knowing that within our vision there could be a multitude of great cities, and there could be hundreds of millions of people, and it raises a very profound question, where do I fit in this big picture? And it is truly a very big picture. We can find ourself in the busiest metropolis or amongst a sea of people and feeling quite alone, or we can be alone on a mountaintop or even lying in bed at night with our phone, scanning our social media, and have this experience, ask this question, “Where do I actually fit amongst all of this?”

The experience of asking this question is something that many of us have at different times in our life, and for perhaps different reasons, so when asking, “Where do I fit?” we must remember from the previous talk who is this I; because if I consider the body (which we’ve discussed is not me, or the mind, is not me. I’m the eternal spiritual being within) if I am in the consciousness that the body is me, I’m going to come up with a whole different paradigm and a whole different set of answers than if I really consider that I am an eternal spiritual being—all of a sudden everything becomes way more deeply profound. Where do I fit? Because we’re referencing not just the world around us, as it were, and the universe, but even in relation to my own body, where do we fit? If we confuse the body and the mind as being me, who I am, and I ask that question, “Where do I fit,” we are going to head off in an entirely different direction than where we really need to be going.

So, answering this question of “where do I fit?” it’s actually really foundational to establishing true and harmonious relationships, not just with the world in which we live, but also with others. And I think we all accept the reality that living a more harmonious life will produce a lot more peacefulness and a greater sense of direction and purpose.

If I think that I am the physical body and the mind then automatically my really— my highest priorities will be to feed the desires of the body and the mind. And in doing that I generally will not have very much regard for the earth and all of its natural resources, and I really will not be very mindful or aware of the effect that my choices and actions may have upon others.

To develop a very clear understanding of this bigger picture the ancient yogis were guided by spiritual texts, or these Vedic texts, and I’ll just read a few for you, and ask you to kindly consider what it is that they are saying.

So the first one is from the Bhagavad-gita. It states that:

“The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind.”

So I just want to sort of hone in on one part of this. Other parts of it we’ll be dealing with as we go forward. But fundamentally what is stated is that in the material condition, when one is absorbed in the bodily identity, then one is going to be constantly stimulated by the five external senses, the sense of smell, of hearing, of taste, of touch, and in the Bhagavad-gita they’ve also included the mind, as the repository and the chief amongst the senses, so it is like the sixth sense.

And what has been stated here is that when we are in this illusion, this false idea of simply this body as being who I am, this bodily identity, then there is going to be, we’re going to be experienced constant disturbance. Our senses are going to be demanding from us so many things: look at this, smell this, taste this, touch this, and there will be an accompanying promise that by stimulating the senses and gratifying, or attempting to gratify them, that I will actually feel fulfillment. And when one is caught up in the state of consciousness then their view of the world and their view of others is as something to use or utilize.

So the next text we’ll look at is from the Bhagavat Purana, and it says:

“In this material world, every living entity is very much addicted to his material body. Struggling to keep his body forever, everyone tries to protect it by all means, even at the sacrifice of all his possessions.”

So this is actually really a quite intense statement, if I can use that word, in that, when you see that somebody is struggling hard to make money, and people regard their acquired wealth as being so dear to them that they will practically sacrifice anything for their wealth, their own families, their peace of mind, their relationships, all kinds of things we sacrifice for the opportunity to acquire more wealth and with it power etc, but yet a person’s own body they consider so dear to them that they are prepared to sacrifice their entire wealth to be able to preserve it or maintain it.

In speaking about that, what’s needed is that we actually take a little time. Perhaps later when you’ve finished watching this or at some other point, go back and really contemplate on that, and contemplate on the state of consciousness that a person is in and what will be the different drivers and the things really affecting them.

Then in the next verse, also from the Bhagavad-gita, it states that:

“Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and false ego—all together these eight comprise My separated material energies. But besides this inferior nature, O mighty-armed Arjuna, there is a superior energy of Mine, which consists of all living entities who are struggling with material nature and are sustaining the universe.”

So there is this really broad understanding in all great spiritual paths that the living being, that life itself, is a symptom of the presence of a spiritual being. And the most astonishing thing within the material dimension. even though the material energy (we’re talking about everything that we see around us, all of this kind of stuff) the material energy, while it is considered inferior to this higher spiritual energy of the living being, the living beings find themselves to be constantly struggling with the material energy in so many different ways. And their presence is described as sustaining the universe. I mean if you removed all of the living beings, then plant life would be dead, there would be no life forms, things would reduce to something that’s actually quite undesirable.

Now the final verse:

“Actually the living entity is transcendental to material existence. But because of his mentality of lording it over material nature, his material existential condition does not cease, and, just as in a dream, he is affected by all sorts of disadvantages or sufferings.”

So with all of these verses we’re—it’s painting a fundamental picture, and that picture is that we are not in our natural element when we are existing within the material realm. And because we are not in our natural element there is going to be this experience of a struggle, and facing ongoing agitations and difficulties. All the while a living being is attempting to somehow create a—something permanent, a home to—a place of protection and shelter, a place where I can find happiness, some form of perfection, of fulfillment and things, but yet that desire is not really harmonized and connected to a higher spiritual reality. It is based upon a false conception, a false conception that the body is the self.

And while this may seem to be somewhat of a pessimistic view, I ask you to just actually consider it very objectively, if you can, and you’ll find in it the opportunity for true freedom, the freedom that will come from having a very clear perspective of myself, and everything, the environment in which I find myself.

When I’m kind of overwhelmed with this false concept of the self, the body and the mind as being myself, I’m going to have this natural tendency to try and dominate both nature and others; and when I try to do that it will always lead to disharmony and to conflict. You will see that almost all the wars in the world—I mean let’s not worry about political ideologies or religious ideals or whatever, the quest for power or whatever, if we look at things very objectively and upfront, we’ll see that all forms of conflict arise from a desire to both dominate nature and to dominate others, and it invariably leads to all forms of unhappiness.

So some of the fundamental realities are that, having a false sense of who I am, a false identity, it will always produce a bad economy. It—you cannot have good economic circumstances when people are absorbed in this idea. There will be this rush towards endless consumption, just to continuously try to feed all the different desires of the senses and the mind and the quest for happiness, and that will lead to a lack of control and restraint, a proper sense of order and higher purpose; and the outcome of it will be what we have, and what we will have going into the future.

This false identity will also always result in the attempt to exploit nature. In our quest to try and gratify our senses and all these material desires we will always seek to dominate and to exploit nature. And of course, that will have its own catastrophic consequences, which we are witnessing like this slow motion train wreck that we are seeing all around us. This false identity, if that’s our foundation, it will also lead always to the exploitation of others and myriads of social issues, for example, racism and sexism and everything else that just flows from that. This is the consequence of adopting this type of thinking.

In the material condition we all tend towards self-centeredness. And I don’t mean like a bratty selfish person. It’s much deeper than that, this idea of seeing myself at the centre of everything. We have this tendency to see ourselves at the centre of everything. We see everything in relation to ourself: “Oh, I like that. I don’t like that.” And we build a hierarchy of values, of that which we value, based upon that which we find personally desirable or undesirable. We then tend towards wanting to be a dominator or controller.

We desire to be the central enjoying agent within our life. We even have these desires to be worshiped and adored. I mean how many people in their younger days (usually as we get a little bit older, a little bit more shy about this) fantasizing about being the lead person in a rock band, or being a movie star, or being a great business magnate, or a politician, and being adored by others and… Everybody has these desires. This is what the selfie is all about. That’s a little snapshot of this desire, the desire to be beautiful, to be youthful, to be accepted, to be loved, to be adored in so many ways.

And that tendency is a material tendency. It is not part of our deeper spiritual being. This is considered a contamination. If we consider our situation completely objectively then almost always we will recognize that in my embodied condition, the truth is I am not supreme. I am not the centre of everything. In fact, I am not even completely independent. In fact, I am very much dominated.

And most people, when they hear this, it’s going to be like, “What!?”—something that we consider really undesirable. But I’m not considering you to think about it or hear this on the basis of some ideology or social philosophy or anything. I mean just try to look at it really objectively.

For instance, we are completely controlled by the laws of nature. We don’t have any capacity to turn back a raging storm. I mean, you see these typhoons or hurricanes when they hit, or you think of tornadoes, these huge snow storms, or scorching heat that we’re seeing becoming also worse and worse. We are just constantly having to adjust to the reality of the power of material nature, the laws of nature over us. I can’t fly. I can’t—I need technology. We’re dependent on technology in so many ways to try and overcome the laws of nature, but we never completely and fully overcome them, and we will always find ourself, at the end of the day, within the grip. You can’t fight against the law of gravity. You can try with technology, but you don’t reverse it. You can’t control gravity, for instance.

So, when you look around, you’ll find that we are actually completely dominated by nature, in spite of our best attempts and the use of technology and money to create artificial environments and artificial situations. You know, there’s nothing like a great earthquake, or being near a massive volcanic eruption to shake your faith in your ability to control material nature.

We are also controlled by the laws of man, or social laws. How many red lights can you drive through without getting caught and perhaps losing your license, ending up in a stint in prison even? We just can’t do whatever we want to do, even though we may be rich and powerful.  Social law, society’s law, the laws of man are something that we are forced somehow or other to bow to.

Then you’ve got the desires of our own mind and senses. I don’t know if you can recollect a time in your life when you really thought, “I shouldn’t do this, I shouldn’t go here,” and you’ve got this little voice in your head telling you, “Don’t do it,” but you feel compelled or driven. I mean all you’ve got to do is look at these TV shows about people being convinced to become a drug mule or something and fly to some foreign country, and they’ve got this feeling, “Oh I shouldn’t be doing this,” but then they’re thinking, “Well, I’m gonna get ten thousand dollars. It’ll be fine. I will try it. Everybody’s saying it’s cool,” and then they end up in these horrible situations, locked up in some foreign jail, just really suffering, and their lives are in grave danger; and it was all because the mind and the desire of the senses was propelling them, driving them. So this is an example, and there’s so many of them, examples of how we are controlled by our own mind and senses.

We’re also controlled by relationships. The most powerful person in the world, who exerts tremendous influence of others, and the person that they may be in a relationship, all that person’s got to do is, say, give them a side glance and disapproving look, “Come here, now!” and then all of a sudden here they are in a high-powered meeting and, “Uh excuse me, I’m gonna go and take care of something,” and you see they just get moved from their seat of power, where they have tremendous influence over others, to now being controlled by the other person—or, by the person that’s the other part of a relationship that they may have. And we can examine that on so many different levels, but it’s fundamentally true.

Since I am a spiritual being, what should my relationship with this world be? So we’re going to look at our relationship, from a spiritual level, with the world and with others, looking at the world first.

From a spiritual perspective I am a temporary resident. I’m a transient. I come into this life with nothing, and I leave with nothing, therefore I cannot truly claim ownership. I mean how can you claim an ownership, when at death everything will be taken away from you? And this is true for everyone. And so the idea that I am owning something is—it’s a social convention, but from a spiritual perspective it’s not really a reality. And if I accept that truth, then I would understand that being a temporary visitor here, my relationship with this world, rather than being a dominator and an exploiter, a so-called owner, I would be far more happy, and the world would be a better place, if my view of the world was that of stewardship, where I am going to be a steward. I can take things that fall within my limited control, but I should understand that I have a responsibility not to destroy things, not to make things worse, to preserve and maintain, to conserve and to leave something even better at my departure.

So, in this regard there is a category of ancient Vedic texts known as the Upanisads, and in one of the prominent ones, the Iso Upanisad, Sri Isopanisad, there is, in the very first mantra, not the invocation but the first mantra, in this rather short work, there is a really, an amazing verse, that is the best possible guide for my connection, or relationship, to this material world, and it states:

“Everything animate or inanimate that is within the universe is controlled and owned by the Supreme Soul. One should therefore accept only those things necessary for himself, which are set aside as his quota, and one should not accept other things knowing well to whom they belong.”

This is about as perfect a guidance or guiding principles as one could have to make it so that we can live in this world in a very harmonious, productive and respectful way. If people actually did accept this, these principles, then we would have been able to ward off the effects of climate change that we’re seeing, and the great impending disaster for humanity.

I mean, just in my lifetime it’s been astonishing. When I first travelled to India, back in 1970, the skies were blue. Now they are entirely grey. The rivers, we could swim in them. There was one place where I was living for some time, Brindaban, it was, they would have these huge river turtles that we would grab and hold on the shell, and they’d pull us down into the water. Now this whole river is like a cesspool. It absolutely stinks. It is devoid of this life that used to thrive there. And so it is with many of the great rivers or the world, in many different places.

In more recent times, over the last 30 years or so, there have been attempts by—30 or 40 years in the more developed world, to try and reverse the damage that they had previously done. And a lot of that is achieved by offshoring industrial manufacturing to the third world or the developing world. Let them screw up their place so that we can buy cheap goods from them and prevent the pollution that is taking place.

But this—if we adopted the principle of that verse from the Sri Isopanisad, we would be able to actually live a far more harmonious and healthy life, and peaceful life. So this is the way in which we should look upon this world from the spiritual perspective.

In terms of our relationship with others, the Vedas teach that there is an equality of all life, that all life is considered equal. And so, if I not only understand, if I see that as being a reality, and I live that way, then you would not have to artificially develop social and political philosophies that artificially try and create more equality in terms of economic outcomes, social outcomes and benefits etc. It would be an automatic by-product of a life choice that we would be making.

In relation to the equality of all life, I’ll read a couple of verses, one of them from the Bhagavad-gita, and it states,

“He is a perfect yogi who, by comparison to his own self, sees the true equality of all living beings, both in their happiness and distress, O Arjuna!”

So again you have this underlying principle of empathy, by comparison to one’s own self, one would see the true equality of all beings both in their happiness and their distress.

But this next verse, from the Bhagavat Purana, it talks about the four characteristics of an actual spiritual person, and it states that:

“The Supreme Soul is very satisfied with the transcendentalist when he greets other people with tolerance, mercy, friendship and equality.”

So these are underlying and foundational spiritual principles that actually sit upon this understanding, that we are all equal, we are all spiritual beings, not higher or lower than each other. And if we ask, what is that foundation of that equality, what is that foundation? then we need to understand how the ancient teachers taught about the nature of the living being.

The totality of the energy known as the living beings is sometimes referred to as the jiva tattva, and so each individual is sometimes called a jiva. Jiva connotes life, actual life, the energy of life itself, and tattva means a truth, but it speaks to a form of spiritual energy made of the living beings, the jiva tattva. The individual is also often described with the word atma. This word atma literally translates to the self, the actual individual self.

The other word that was commonly used, particularly in the Yogic texts of Patanjali, and that school, but widely used in the Vedas, is the term purusa. This word purusa, when addressing that spiritual entity, describes a person. And as we discussed in the previous talk, the main characteristic of the living being is that this is where your personhood comes from. The body is not a person. The body is impersonal energy. As soon as you leave it falls over and begins to rot and fall apart and break down. Your actual personhood doesn’t come from your body. It comes from the dignity, the noble living being who occupies that body.

So, in relation to the foundational understanding, it’s promoted in the one of the Upanishads, the Brhad-aranyaka Upanisad, and it states:

“As tiny sparks fly from a fire, so all the individual souls have come from the Supreme.”

So here we have this source known as the—just broadly described here as the Supreme; and the individual living beings are likened to sparks that are emanating from a fire, being qualitatively one with the fire but quantitatively, of course, much smaller.

So then, there will then arise this question, okay we accept that there is an ocean of individual living beings, is there one amongst them that is somehow different, or supreme? Is there a supreme entity? So now arises the question, as to whether there is actually a supreme entity, or one entity amongst this vast ocean of limitless spiritual beings that is somehow different or maybe considered supreme.

When we get into this subject, and it’s a really important subject—I mean if we’re going to cover this, really consider that the topic of what’s my position, where do I fit in relation to everything—I just want to make this statement: the concept or idea of God, or some higher spiritual truth, has really fallen out of fashion, as it were, particularly in the more developed world, and that is extremely unfortunate, and it’s not incredibly smart. Atheism has kind of become the go-to position for many people. And I’m not going to try and convince you of anything, but the only thing I’m trying to do here is to ask you to be open and not limiting yourself by certain mental constructs. And I’ll give you a little idea what I’m talking about.

How many people can actually conceive of the size of a hydrogen atom? I mean, fully? They can actually comprehend the size? If I consider I could put 10,000 hydrogen atoms on a—or more—on a period at the end of a sentence with normal type page. Do you have the capacity to divide that tiny little dot into ten thousand? You’ve got the capacity to divide into two and four, maybe eight. Sixteen, it’s getting a bit dodgy. 32—I mean really? 64—you can actually conceive of that size, what it’s going to be? 128? of particles? And we’re not even getting up to 10,000 yet, anywhere near it.

The reality is, while we may be able to conceive of the structure and the different energies connected to atoms, and where they sort of—how they function and things, we may have a concept of that, the actual size of the atom is beyond our capacity to actually fully comprehend.

On the other end of the spectrum, who could possibly comprehend the size of the universe in which we live, the great cosmos, you know, when you look through these shots from the Hubble telescope, the vastness of space? We’re talking about distances that are—you can’t comprehend. You can’t. You may be able to put a number to it and talk about things, but in terms of fully comprehending, our mind has difficulty on both ends of the scale, the smallest complete unit—it’s not even a subatomic particle, an atom of hydrogen, and a universe.

And if we were to consider any—if there was a higher spiritual truth, we would have to move outside of the universe. It would necessarily exist beyond, and encompass, the universe, and if our mind does not have the capacity to do that, then these statements that there is no higher truth, there is no such thing as a God, are not very smart. They’re not very intelligent, because in doing that a person is laying claim to be omniscient, to actually knowing everything, and that’s a ridiculous position to take. With a little humility, we should approach these subjects, and realize that we should not be limited by biases and these different material conceptions.

So, is there a higher truth beyond myself? Is there something greater?

In the Bhagavat Purana it states that,

“The learned transcendentalist who know the Absolute Truth call this non-dual substance Brahman, Paramatma or Bhagavan.”

So, this is a huge subject, and I’m just putting it out there for your awareness. Their understanding of a higher truth involved three features. One is this vast ocean of spiritual energy and light, known as the Brahmajyoti, of conscious, pure conscious existence, in which one does not experience their full individuality. There is a loss of a sense of individuality, and [a sense] of just being part of something that is greater, infinite and spiritual.

But there is another feature to this highest truth or absolute truth, which is called the Paramatma which literally means the Supreme Soul, and it speaks about this feature that permeates material existence and can act as what’s called chaitya guru, the guru within, that divine voice that may guide us from within. And then you have the feature of Bhagavan which is considered the supreme personal feature of Godhead.

So, yogis, they can potentially have different types of experiences in relation to enlightenment, or self and God realization. There can be this experience of the realization of this impersonal ocean of spiritual energy. The vast majority of yogis sought to experience and see this feature that sits within the heart of all living beings. When I say the heart, I don’t mean the muscle. We’re talking about the core of our being. And of course, this feature of Bhagavan, the feature of Isvara, or the Supreme, who exists in a transcendental dimension.

Of course, when I mention the term transcendental dimension, we’re probably going to have a few eye rolls and stuff and—but it kind of amazes me that in—now, in astrophysics, or in physics in general, they’re trying to come up with some unified theory that explains all the observable laws and phenomena attached to the macro picture, and then a different and sometimes opposite set of laws and observations that occur with—on a nano level; and they say that for there to be a unified theory—the current one in vogue, which will probably change soon, is string theory—which would require the existence of eight or nine alternate dimensions which cannot be measured, experienced or perceived in any way, and that is considered scientific. But if I apply that same thing towards that which is spiritual suddenly you get the eye rolls and everything. And it’s simply due to a poor fund of knowledge and a form of a refusal to be actually completely impartial in considering this particular subject.

So, within the—all of the Vedic teachings, you had the living being, who’s called the atma, but there was considered one amongst them that was called the Paramatma, or the Supreme Self. They have the term Brahman which refers to just the spiritual existence of the living being and a greater understanding of spiritual existence and totality, but then you also have the Param Brahman or the Supreme Brahman, and just with as with the living being who is referred to as the purusa, you also have the Param Parusa, the Supreme Self.

So in this connection, in the Yoga Sutra, Pathanjali raises the question of this personality, whom he refers to as Isvara. He has previously referred to the self, the living beings, as being the purusa, and he says that,

“Isvara is a special Purusa. The sanskrit is purusa vishesha. He is a special purusa unlike other purushas, being untouched by afflictions, actions, meaning material activity and the fruits of actions, the karmic fruit, and also latent impressions or material desires. In Him the seed of omniscience is unsurpassed or infinite. He is also the teacher of all ancient teachers or sages, being not limited by time. The transcendental sound personifying him is AUM.”

So, this is the description given by Patanjali of this greater being known as Isvara.

So, in the—within the Upanishads, the Katha Upanishad, the Svetasvatara Upanisad, there is a a verse that is used—appears in both of these places, where they speak about that “He is the eternal amongst all eternal entities.” So we have these words, nityo nityanam, cetanas cetananam. Nitya means eternal, the eternal beings, that there is one amongst the ocean of eternal beings who is different. He is the chief. He is the chief conscious being amongst all conscious beings. And then it goes on with the next line, that “Amongst the many living entities, He is the chief, who fulfills their desires.”

So, this may be very challenging for some people. We’ve taken this position, that we are the ultimate authority on truth. Whatever I embrace within my mind, whatever appeals to me in my material condition, whatever that is of—I hold to be true and absolute, and everything else contrary to it is false, and that’s a very unfortunate position.

If we want to really be able to explore deeper understanding of things and come to actually fully understand and experience a higher spiritual reality there is going to need to be an intense inquiry, but from a platform of humility, not thinking that I already know something, I have my own truth. This is not very wise. This will not lead to enlightenment if we are thinking in this way.

So, from these statements we can understand that it is a very unnatural condition when I try to be at the centre of everything, or I have this feeling of challenging the supremacy of someone or something that is greater than myself, wanting to just reject it, and be the ultimate authority on things. This is considered an unnatural position.

And just as a reminder, we are today, we are trying to explore the question of what is my natural position. Where do I fit? Where do I fit into—in relation to things, and this will become, you’ll be able to understand its importance as we go forward.

But in summary the reality is that I am not my material body, nor the mind; and I need to be in a situation where my mind and body are not the ones driving me, that they are the ones in control and determining everything that I do. I need to be the master of my own body and mind. That is critically important.

In relation to this world, I should not be laying claim to this world. Although I am superior to it in terms of the nature of the energy of the atma as opposed to the material energy, still when I am embodied I am forced to obey the laws of nature. I am not supreme in this realm, in this dimension. I am an eternal spark of the Supreme. I am a part and parcel of God, or a higher spiritual reality.

In relation to all living beings, all these jivas or atmas, they are my brothers and sisters. I am not their lord or their master, and I should not seek to control or dominate or exploit them. If I do, I will never be at peace. I will never experience happiness. I can’t.

Amongst all this vast limitless ocean of living beings there is One who is actually supreme, and I am not that Supreme Being, nor can I ever become that Supreme Soul. I will always be in a dependent or a subservient position to this supreme and higher truth, and this recognition is completely essential for me to be able to move forward in the exploration of our real natural function or purpose.

So, I hope you have enjoyed this little bit of a journey. It’s probably been a little bit long, but if you need to, go back over it, and consider, contemplate, meditate upon these eternal spiritual truths. The thing that will be most beneficial in helping you develop this clarity of understanding, to aid you in the growth of your own spiritual realization, your own enlightenment, will be the process that we spoke about at the end of the last talk, the process of meditation using spiritual or transcendental sound.

And so, in closing out now, we will close out with a, what’s called a kirtan meditation. It is a singing meditation upon this spiritual sound. And I look forward to joining you for the final talk in the series where we will be dealing with, what is my natural or my ultimate purpose? Do I have a higher purpose?

So, I invite you to just sit back and relax and close your eyes, perhaps. And we will be using the mantra Aum Hari Aum. In this process of kirtan and this singing meditation or sankirtana, congregational meditation, or singing, a person that has received this mantra from an enlightened spiritual teacher who is part of a lineage of spiritual teachers, perfect spiritual teachers that goes back through time immemorial connected with the Supreme, a person who has received this mantra should be the one to lead, by singing the mantra. And when that person who is leading sings the mantra we simply listen to it. We bathe in it. We immerse ourself in it, and then we repeat. The quality of voice is not important. Just let go and sing along with it, and listen to the sound as you are saying it. And then the leader leads one more time, and the people in the group with him then responds.

So, thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to present this to you, and sit back, relax and let’s engage in this meditation on Aum Hari Aum.