Friday, May 17, 2019

Ramana Maharshi on the topic of "family life" and liberation.

Excellent little dialogue found in "Talks". Direct pointing by the Master himself.

Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi

Talk 524.

Another pilgrim asked: I am a man with a family. Is it possible for
those in a family to get release, and if so how?

M.: Now what is family? Whose family is it? If the answers to these
questions are found the other questions solve themselves.
Tell me: Are you in the family, or is the family in you?

The visitor did not answer. Then Sri Bhagavan’s answer was
continued: Who are you? You include three aspects of life, namely,
the waking, the dream and the sleep states. You were not aware of the
family and their ties in your sleep and so these questions did not arise
then. But now you are aware of the family and their ties and therefore
you seek release. But you are the same person throughout.

D.: Because I now feel that I am in the family it is right that I should
seek release.
M.: You are right. But consider and say: Are you in the family or is
the family in you?
Another visitor interposed: What is family?
M.: That’s it. It must be known.
D.: There is my wife and there are also my children. They are
dependent on me. That is the family.
M.: Do the members of the family bind your mind? Or do you bind
yourself to them? Do they come and say to you “We form your
family. Be with us”? Or do you consider them as your family and
that you are bound to them?
D.: I consider them as my family and feel bound to them.
M.: Quite so. Because you think that so-and-so is your wife and so-and-so
are your children you also think that you are bound to them.
These thoughts are yours. They owe their very existence to you.
You can entertain these thoughts or relinquish them. The former
is bondage and the latter is release.

D.: It is not quite clear to me.
M.: You must exist in order that you may think. You may think these
thoughts or other thoughts. The thoughts change but not you. Let
go the passing thoughts and hold on to the unchanging Self. The
thoughts form your bondage. If they are given up, there is release.
The bondage is not external. So no external remedy need be sought
for release. It is within your competence to think and thus to get
bound or to cease thinking and thus be free.
D.: But it is not easy to remain without thinking.
M.: You need not cease thinking. Only think of the root of the thoughts;
seek it and find it. The Self shines by itself. When that is found the
thoughts cease of their own accord. That is freedom from bondage.

D.: Yes. I understand it now. I have learnt it now. Is a Guru necessary?
M.: So long as you consider yourself as an individual, a Guru is
necessary to show to you that you are not bound by limitations
and that your nature is to be free from limitations.