Ramana Maharshi on Ignorance

Ignorance - ajnana - is of two kinds: (1) Forgetfulness of the Self. (2) Obstruction to the knowledge of the Self. Aids are meant for eradicating thoughts; these thoughts are the re-manifestations of predispositions remaining in seed-form; they give rise to diversity from which all troubles arise. These aids are: hearing the truth from the … Continue reading Ramana Maharshi on Ignorance

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Ignorance (Maya, Avidya)

21-24. D.: What is this ignorance? M.: Listen. In the body appears a phantom, the ‘false-I’, to claim the body for itself and it is called jiva. This jiva always outward bent, taking the world to be real and himself to be the doer and experiencer of pleasures and pains, desirous of this and that, … Continue reading Ignorance (Maya, Avidya)

Understanding how delusion arises

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To understand how delusion arises, practice watching your mind. Begin by simply letting it relax. Without thinking of the past or the future, without feeling hope or fear about this thing or that, let it rest comfortably, open and natural. In this space of the mind, there is no problem, no suffering. Then something catches your attention – an image, a sound, a smell. Your mind splits into inner and outer, self and other, subject and object. In simply perceiving the object, there is still no problem. But when you zero in on it, you notice that it’s big or small, white or black, square or circular; and then you make a judgment – for example, whether it’s pretty or ugly. Having made that judgment, you react to it: you decide you like it or don’t like it. That’s when the problem starts, because “I like it” leads to…

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