I have withheld all my thoughts at the cliff edge of my mind,
A step further and the emptiness will be filled again,
Many times I have gone over the cliff,
Trashing myself into an ocean of thoughts.
Why do I lose the beauty of an empty mind?
Why do I not allow the song to continue?
Where the Sacred Aum surrounds me,
Yet my thoughts seem to drown me.
I've let thoughts win each time,
Not that this is a battle on my side,
Each time I seek for the Sacred Aum,
More noise seems to appear at the Gate.
Acting like a great host - I let the noise in,
Suddenly my house is frantic with chaos,
I often stand by and watch this drama unfold,
And again I enter into the Sacred Aum.
When the noise has finally entered into a melody,
When the heaviness of thought enters a lighter state,
When sorrow dissolves into an intoxication,
I am bliss, transforming into Formless Awareness.
The biggest declaration is one that is made in your own very heart, your very being itself. It is a personal moment that whenever it is shared, it is lost and unless you are a mystic, you cannot afford to share it yet.
Bathe in the wisdom that you have discovered in your own being, meet it every day, spend quality time with it, get to know it more, unveil things that you never knew and make sure that you are convinced that this wisdom will never change and is of an eternal nature. Once you find this, then it is worth sharing. Then the more you share it, the more you realize it does not deplete.
What is wisdom? It is knowledge that becomes experience. It is eternal, changeless, transcending and in many ways it is beyond comprehension. When it is translated back to words, it loses a large part of it’s essence. Wisdom is not like strong winds that blows you away, it is that gentle breeze that swirls around you in a dance, it envelopes you and takes you to a place of meditation, a place of inner awareness, where there is stillness and you have been taken over by that wisdom.
Mysticism of the East have named this wisdom as Nirguna Brahman (The Formless Oneness without attributes) or Tat Tvam Asi (You are That). This is where all lofty thoughts, concepts and ideas come from. However, we must always separate them to Nirguna Brahman. To get to this point of clarity, to this indivisible state requires practice in meditation, and contemplation on one’s true self with the company of the wise. Serving others in a selfless manner can also bring one to that clarity. If one serves all as if serving Nirguna Brahman, many have reported attaining that Wisdom itself from performing selfless acts. Devotional acts have made people reach Nirguna Brahman too even though one may believe they are worshipping Saguna Brahman (the Formless One with attributes).
The fastest way to Nirguna Brahman is by seeking a teacher, a Guru of Truth. With their Grace, they reveal this wisdom in an instant. They may ask the seeker to purify themselves first by reading scriptures, sitting with wise company, meditating, volunteering etc. The Teacher, when they feel the seeker is ready, unveils the Highest Wisdom – Nirguna Brahman. From there, it is seen that Saguna Brahman is the manifested in the Guru of Truth and whenever the seeker finds it difficult to connect, they lead the seeker to Nirguna Brahman.
This is my experience and I find myself very fortunate to be able to behold nothing but Nirguna Brahman for periods of time. Even though, I do find it challenging to connect to Nirguna Brahman, I find that devotion, singing the praise of my Guru of Truth, my Saguna Brahman leads me to the Formless Indivisible Self that resides within me. In fact, I am always This but I am battling my mind/ego to accept it.
Once the Guru says something, do I take it with a pinch of salt and continue with my own way? Or do I take a moment to think and act accordingly to as the Guru prescribes. We read in our scriptures, in stories like the Puranas of devotees who acted simply at the hint of the Guru. We hear of the Guru celebrating them with great happiness but with a hint of sadness too as there may not be a devotee even similar.
The path that the Guru prescribes is never easy because it is allowing someone else to have the power over your thoughts and actions. Now for a lot of people this is difficult because the illusion is that they are in power. People even struggle with the fact that there can be a Guru. It isn’t a difficult concept either. Just like we have teachers in education, we have Gurus for spirituality. They have something above the typical teachers we see. A Guru is able to impart knowledge aswell as show their students how to live and implement it.
The Guru can be seen as an object of worship and devotion. Every morning that I wake up, I may not be anywhere near my Guru but I place my head at His feet. I have His blessings and whenever I need uplifting, I can close my eyes and place my head at His feet and feel His hand placed on my head and feeling the energy of the Divine power up the crown chakra. The Guru is the one that leads you to embrace the wordless, formless, beyond ideas and concepts, that which no thought can reach, no feeling or emotion can describe it or even feel it, it is beyond the comprehension of the mind, ungraspable by our intellect. This Truth that the Guru leads you to is everything you ever need. It is Fullness, it is Isness.
I can praise my Guru, have His blessings but I need to implement His teachings. Am I discriminating others on their language, age, nationality, sexuality, caste, religion, diet, dress and even their Gurus? Am I hurting other people consciously or unconsciously? Am I leading people to the Truth or am I taking them astray? Am I forgiving those who wrong me and do I ask for forgiveness from those that I wrong? Do I listen to others without judgement? Do I create conclusions of others before even knowing them? Do I feel greedy at any time, or selfish or even lustful? Do I pass all praise and criticism to the Formless? Until, I am able to say that I practice everything my Guru teaches, only then can I say He has blessed me. The problem isn’t that the blessings are not there, they are always here and now, but am I utilising them? Am I putting them to good use?
I do not want to be one of those that just shout empty slogans, make applauding speeches but little inner implementation in daily life, sing songs but feel miserable inside, recite and write poetry without an iota of experience manifesting in my daily routine and interactions with people.
It is time for some serious action and after listening to my Guru’s discourse this Saturday and again on Sunday, I feel I have a lot to do. If anything, I want to atleast be a reason for His smile. That whenever He hears my name, He smiles because I am committed to His cause and teachings. Commitment isn’t just a contract, it is actually living accordingly to the contract. And if I do not live according to the contract that I signed meaning the Divine Wisdom that my Guru revealed to me, then I am breaking the clauses in my contract. And let me add this, the punishment is simple – you do not live in bliss. What is the point of life without bliss?
Time for impactful action, less time for mindless reaction.
His love and blessings,
The intense longing for the Truth, the strongest desire for the perception of Reality, the heartbreaking moments of losing everything and everyone even your own self for the sake of enlightenment is the beauty of devotion. Dancing like there is nobody watching, dancing by yourself without the need of music because the sound of the universe vibrates around you. Singing like there is nobody listening, singing by yourself without the need of the audience because the only spectator is the Formless One. Speaking like there is nobody listening, speaking with yourself without the need of appreciation, speaking just because you are sharing your heartfelt experiences with the Divinity that is within you, that surrounds you and that permeates within every aspect of creation and yet at the same time is beyond creation.
It is a shame that the western audience for Hinduism, specifically for Advaita Vedanta or nonduality or even neo-advaita is shunning devotion because they feel the intellect can reach the highest state of knowledge. Frankly, it cannot and it never will. They praise Kabir, Shiva, Rumi and yet, the miss the fundamental practice they had and that is bhakti or devotion. They had a strong passion for the Formless and the one who revealed the Formless to them. They praised their Gurus and today, we have become sceptics, albeit not for the wrong reasons, we have not opened our hearts to the Guru.
Self-realisation or God-realisation is impossible without the grace of the Guru. The disciple feels that the Guru is absolutely needed and the Guru will feel equally as dedicated and passionate towards his disciple. I know for a fact that the Satguru or True Teacher is out there, literally in love with his devotees and sacrifices everything he has for them. Devotion is impossible without a Guru.
Here is a poem by Rumi:
Once again my beloved sought me and found
Joyously in the marketplace sought me and found.
I hid myself, at my feet that drunken rose, rose from the ground
I escaped the House of Wine, sought me and found.
How wondrous that so doggedly would hound
What luck that such swindling lock sought me and found.
Who would find me if with crowds myself surround?
Knower of crowded secrets sought me and found.
I have left a bloody trail; just look around
And the one on my trail sought me and found.
Run away to what avail, deathward bound
Why hide, a thousand times sought me and found.
I pulled the thorn from my side, yet one more round
That oak towering flowerbeds sought me and found.
Like a pearl at the bottom of ocean, drowned
Pearl diver, with a string sought me and found.
Shams-e Tabriz with piercing eyes and no sound
In the light of insight sought me and found.
Kabir also says:
Even if the whole earth is transformed into paper,
with all the big trees made into pens,
And if the entire water in the seven oceans are transformed into writing ink,
Even then the glories of the Guru cannot be written.
So much is the greatness of the Guru.
Today, devotion needs to be celebrated and observed correctly. It is not just about passionate love and affection but it is the route to grow within spiritually. Knowledge transforms into wisdom by the act of devotion. Having the intense love to be there with the Beloved, the Formless One. Without the Formless, there is no love for even the forms around us. With Advaita Vedanta and other paths, you may negate until you reach the Formless, but to stay with the Formless, you have to learn to love the Formless unconditionally. Only then does the realisation stay with you. Only then does wonder and awe become an everyday part of your life. Only then do you become an explorer of Reality and Wisdom. This is only when the intense longing of the Formless is within us. To truly be wise, is to truly long for the Formless. The Formless is Reality. The Formless created consciousness. You can only understand the nature of consciousness, if you understand the nature of the Formless.
The Formless is shapeless, ceaseless, boundless, birthless, deathless, self-existent, colourless, endless, without a beginning, full of love, compassion, radiating with peace and harmony, celebrating the oneness of all things. The Formless can be yours but can you let go and surrender to the Formless.
Surrender is not letting go of you, it is letting go of who you think you are. When you surrender then you truly find yourself. Then you truly discover who you are and this Reality will stay with you. Surrender is only possible in duality, once you enter the nondual state then who will it be that surrenders. In the grand scheme of it, it is the Formless surrendering to the Formless. Surrender removes any aspect of the ego that can disturb the process of enlightenment. The chances of surrender become higher with keeping in the company of like-minded people, serving others selflessly and constantly remembering the Formless is within you and around you. Remembering the Formless not as a form of repetition but as a form of daily practice. Every feeling, every intention, every emotion and every thought must be done with the remembrance of the nature of the Formless.
Devotion is the key to spiritual enlightenment. It can be done instantly and it all depends on how much you really want to be enlightened by the Formless One. The path of devotion is simple and it is simple because the Formless is simple. It doesn’t need to be complicated by massive words which mean nothing. The less you want the Formless then frankly the longer it will take you to be enlightened. It is not if you become enlightened either, you already are but the ego will always make a goal or a meaning out of it. Being on the path of devotion, you have to let go of meaning, of concept and context. You simple have to be in this moment. This moment reveals the eternal. Give time to the Timeless and you will see a moment transform into eternity. Devotion adds juice to your journey. Without it, your faith, your practice will stand like a wilted tree, bored and secluded in the desert. However, devotion will be like an oasis in the desert. Not only does the oasis enjoy itself but others feel blessed by the presence of the oasis. They also drink the nectar that leads them into immortality.
The path of devotion is extremely important. I would go far to say that it is the best way to God, to the Formless, to Reality or whatever you would like to call it. You can even curse This, and if you do it out of love and passion then it will reveal itself unto you. It is not partial to words. You think God is so sad that He analyses each word. He knows you analyse it yourself and you yourself provide your own punishment. God neither punishes nor congratulates. He has left that to You!
His Love and Blessings,
Rahul N Singh
A vast, changeless, void that looks like nothingness or emptiness. An atom is 99.9% pure energy and what we see is really just 0.01% of the atom. The Formless Reality is everywhere and in everything. It is a state beyond nothingness. Nothingness cannot be nothing when you can observe nothingness. If an observer is present then that means there is an element of awareness within that nothingness. This element is what is formless – this is Nirankar.
David Bohm towards the end of his life had likened humanity to be the “mirror created by the universe to reflect upon itself.” What does this mean? Upon reflection, we can discover that if humanity is a mirror created by the universe to reflect upon itself then we know this isn’t far from the Upanishadic thought that Brahman created the world in order to discover Himself.
We live in an era where people place scientific thought to be based as truth rather than their own experience and documented spiritual realisations. This is where I feel people falter. Spirituality is considered just as ludicrous as dogmatic religion. Spirituality is about your own experience and the eventual realisation of why you are here. It is to discover the obvious fact which is that we are the 99.9% of the atom and the 0.01% is merely our physical forms that we see with our limited perceptions. How can we human beings with our limited minds be able to understand a complex universe that can do whatever it wants at any given time? We are at the will of the Universe or the 99.9% and we think the 0.01% with it’s limited apparatus can understand and measure the vastness of the Formless? This is madness.
The vastness of the Formless is beyond any words expressed here. It contains so much love that intensifies within every moment. Love is beyond every dimension and it is within every dimension. The purpose of the whole universe, the whole reason behind it realising itself is out of pure love.
Time fails in front of IT as this is Infinite. It is timeless. It goes beyond time. What is time? The future and past are both in the present and therefore there is nothing as past. It is one time at every given time. A moment is an eternity. How can Formless Energy be given the parameters of time? In fact, how can the Formless be measured? It cannot be measured. The only apparatus you have is your self and when you realise your self then you are one with the Formless. Then you feel the Formless Nirankar. Nirankar means formless. You and the Formless are unified and bind together. You both expand as one. When the walls are broken down, the bridge towards wisdom and clarity appears. This is when our heart opens up to devotion to the Formless. Our dancing becomes the dance. Our singing becomes the song. Our writing becomes the poem. Such is the experience when the Formless enters our consciousness. In fact, it does not enter your consciousness, it IS your consciousness.
The endeavour of all spiritual discovery is to live in the Light of the Formless, to live in the energy of the Formless. To accept the grace of the Formless and enjoy the blessing that showers upon the soul. The challenge in life is not about remembering the Formless, the real challenge is living as the Formless. People are doing this and I bow to them. They are blessed and they keep blessing me. I am humbled by the One who imparted this Divine Wisdom to me as it led to my realisation.
This realisation is the best thing. Nirankar, the Formless is the love of my life. I cannot trade this wisdom for anything as nothing can ever be valued against This. The realisation has allowed me to travel to dimensions untouched by the limited human mind, it has allowed me to travel through time to timelessness, it has allowed me to perceive matter as it is. It has allowed me to expand into this Vast Void and then dissolve into it so that only the Formless remains.
Nirankar is not nothing, it is everything!
My life would be empty without poetry. It adds a certain dimension to my existence on a daily basis. Poetry isn’t always about the words but about the journey it takes you on. It is a journey that speaks of wordless wisdom, a speechless spectacle and a continuing wonder of the world around me.
There was a time when poetry was there for my pains. Those were pains of growing up. Ditching knowledge for earthy wisdom that contained elements of the wisdom contained in the stars. It brings forth a great rush of meditation so that the soul within you becomes still. This stillness contains the mark of the Formless. Oh I love the formless! What would I be without Him?!
Poetry has a certain melody that only a silent person truly finds. Someone attuned to music can find poetry very easily and see the soundless sound behind it. Poets endeavour to try and put words to an experience that leaves them lost for words. It is very difficult but it is the best experience. I wouldn’t trade this for the world.
The Formless and Poetry are the two of the best things in my life. I cannot see my life without either of these two. They add certain dimensions that no other substance can come close to. The intoxication, the high that they bring cannot be found in the marketplace. Such is the wisdom found in the hidden depths of our being.
A little poem for you all to end this:
I do not know if I will love you tomorrow,
I do know that I love you right now.
Time and feelings are transiently flowing,
Love remains devoted to the Stillness.
The wondrous nature of this Vision,
I have made poetry my ambition.
An attempt to explain the Unexplainable,
A route to attain the Unattainable.