By HH Swami Shantanand

The whole of our mind has for so long been associated with the outer world that it has quite forgotten the existence, let alone the language of the inner world. The moving mind looks for happiness in getting and experiencing things. These do not suffice for when the mind has one thing it immediately rushes after another. The still mind finds happiness in everything. The kingdom within or the heaven within is the reservoir of peace and bliss. Dive in with devotion and swim around gently in that blissful heaven that is within you.

When we go into meditation we reach a spiritual world where quietness prevails like that of a deep, undisturbed ocean. There is no movement – no waves, no currents – everything is absolutely stationary.

This is the meditational world. When we look out from such a spiritual world our own being or Self is seen in everything and nothing else remains.
The ultimate end of meditation is to reach total immobility, or the profound stillness, which is very deep.

No meter can measure it — it is without end. It is not necessary to remain in this state for a long period.

Most of the time spent during meditation is in preparation to lead one to this state. The stillness itself is the real experience of meditation.

In a diamond mine, thousands of tons of stone are cut 300 feet below the ground. It is brought up, broken into pieces, processed, washed and then spread out to try. Thousands of people are engaged in picking over these small stones and looking at them. All this process goes on and ultimately they may find about 100 grams of diamonds. This also happens in meditation – so you will have to give half an hour simply to get just a few moments of contact with the Self, and it is worthwhile because you do get a diamond – the real force, the most valuable precious material of anybody’s life.

The whole universe is divided into two – I and the rest! This is the world of division and we live in this world of duality. The method of meditation is to lead us from duality to unity. This method is not the end. It is like a rope through which we can go into the well or come out. Once the necessary is accomplished, the rope is left behind. The mantra is not unity, it only leads to unity where the world of division disappears. This unity is the Absolute, Known as Truth, Consciousness and Bliss. Once we reach there, a miraculous alchemy takes place, and the being is charged with energy just as one gets a car battery charged for further use. If, in meditation, after sounding the mantra, we start looking for anything, maybe a sound or substance, we undo the meditation. Even talking of ‘appreciation’ is duality.

In deep meditation we don’t even appreciate the peace, truth, bliss or consciousness; we in fact become peaceful, truthful, blissful and conscious of the Self. One must give up all ideas of appreciating anything about the mantra. The mantra will naturally settle down into that unity where there is no activity and no division.
When one sits for meditation in a still position, there may be distractions outside and these distractions will attract the mind. Pay them no mind. Apart from the outer distractions, there are internal riots!

These keep going on in the mind; it keeps returning to certain things that it wants to do – it is simply presenting different ‘files’ for your consideration! When you are almost still, you can give more energy to these files, so your mind tries to get you to look at them. In fact this is not the time for them, so make a resolution – tell the mind that this is not the time for those files – ‘When I have finished my meeting with the Self, then I will surely attend to them!’ Then attend to those files later, resolving those questions which seem to be bothering the mind. This is the way – order him – he will follow your commands provided you do command. Make a resolution, let him stay at the gate, and ask him not to allow any files to be presented to you because this is not the time. You will see them later on. And then attend to them later on.

In meditation one is just One. One becomes the Self. The method of meditation is only a process by which this is made possible.
The causal or spiritual level of rest, which is profound stillness or total immobility, is in the realm of the Absolute. Since the causal realm cannot be described, one learns about it from its effects. One can see it in the activities and dispositions of those who provide themselves with spiritual rest. There are three prominent features.

First, they show love and affection towards everything they encounter. All activities are initiated with love, and then held and nourished with love till they come to their fulfillment. All relationships with individuals or activities, direct or indirect, are illuminated and guided only by love and affection.

Second, their ideas, intentions or motives are pure and simple. Purity and simplicity widen the horizon, and they think and work for the whole of humanity and only through the laws of the Absolute. The divisions of groups, races or nations disappear and only natural laws are employed. Their thoughts naturally encompass the whole of the human family, and its intrinsic goodness.

Third, the physical movements of such people are tuned to the natural rhythm, and the result is simplicity and economy of movement. They never rush into any situation, are never agitated, and perform all actions in an efficient, sublime and refined way. Whatever they do will emerge from stillness, be held in stillness, and again submerge in the same stillness which they experience in this great total immobility. This is an ideal or a standard for the common man to aspire to, if he somehow awakes to the need to improve his state.

In the spiritual world there are books to give you knowledge, but more knowledge doesn’t make you a Realized Man. You need experience. Unless you go on the path, knowledge of the path is useless. What books can’t give you, a teacher can. But above all, although you can get almost anything from others, Realization you must experience yourself.