EXPERIENCE IS THE RESULT OF THE INABILITY TO DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN PURUSHA, PURE CONSCIOUSNESS, AND SATTVA, PURE INTELLIGENCE, ALTHOUGH THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY DISTINCT.
PERFORMING SAMYAMA ON THE SELF-INTEREST BRINGS KNOWLEDGE OF THE purusha SEPARATED FROM THE KNOWLEDGE OF OTHERS.
Each word has to be understood because each word is tremendously significant.
“Experience is the result of the inability to differentiate….” All experience is just an error. You say, “I am miserable,” or you say, “I am happy,” or you say, “I am feeling hungry,” or you say, “I am feeling very good and healthy” – all experience is an error, is a misunderstanding.
When you say, “I am hungry,” what do you really mean? You should say, “I am conscious that the body is hungry.” You should not say, “I am hungry.” You are not hungry. The body is hungry; you are the knower of the fact. The experience is not yours; only the awareness. The experience is of the body; the awareness is yours. When you feel miserable, again, the experience may be of the body or of the mind – which are not two.
Body and mind are one mechanism. The body is the gross mechanism of the same entity; the mind is the subtle mechanism. But both are the same. It is not good to say, “body and mind”; we should say, “body mind.” The body is nothing but the mind in a gross way, and if you watch your body you will see that the body also functions as a mind. You are fast asleep, and a fly comes and hangs around your face – you remove it with your hand without in any way getting up or waking up. The body functioned, very mindfully. Or something starts crawling on your feet – you throw it away. Fast asleep. You will not remember in the morning. The body functions as a mind – very gross, but it functions as a mind.
So body-mind has all the experience – good or bad, happy, unhappy, it makes no difference. You are never the experiencer; you are always the awareness of the experience. So Patanjali says in a very bold statement, “Experience is the result of the inability to differentiate….” All experience is an error. The error arises because you don’t discriminate, you don’t know who is who.
It happens many times. In the Amazon there is a small tribe of primitive people. When the wife is giving birth to a child, the husband also lies down on another cot. The wife starts screaming and yelling, and the husband also starts screaming and yelling. When for the first time it was discovered, it was unbelievable. What is the husband doing, and for what? The wife is passing through pain, but why is this husband? Is he simply acting? And then much research was done upon it and it has been found the husband is not acting. The pain really starts happening once you get identified.
For millennia the mind of that tribe has been conditioned that because the wife and husband both are the parents of the child, both should suffer.
Seems perfectly okay. The women’s lib movement should agree with them. Why only women? And these husbands just go on, they don’t suffer? They don’t carry the child in their womb for nine months, and then again when the child is born the whole responsibility seems to be of the mother.
But that tribe has lived that way. Psychologists, medical research workers, have observed the man really goes through pain – really. Unbelievable to us because we are not identified that way. The husband is so identified with the wife – the very identification that “she is going through pain” – he starts having pangs.
You may have watched it sometimes. If you love somebody very much and he is suffering, you start suffering. That’s what empathy is. If your loved one is suffering, you start suffering. If your loved one is happy, you start feeling happy. If your loved one is dancing, you feel like dancing. You get in tune with your loved one – you become identified.
Now this seems to be a very absurd case, that this society has continued and the husbands really suffer almost as much as the wife, and there is no difference. Now new light has come upon women’s suffering also. One psychoanalyst in France has worked deeply upon it, and he says that women are suffering only because they believe that way. There are tribes in which not even the wife suffers.
In India there are tribes. In primitive societies the wife will go on working in the field, cutting wood, carrying wood, and suddenly she will give birth to a child, put the child in her bucket, and go home.
She will give birth to the child in the field, put the child under the tree and continue her work, the work has to be finished, and by evening she will take the child home. No pain. What has happened?
That too is a belief, a conditioning.
And now millions of women are getting ready to give birth to a child without any pain in the Western world, painless childbirth; just the belief system has to be changed. They have to be dehypnotized.
They have to be told that this is just an idea – the pain really does not happen; it is just an idea.
And once you have an idea you create it. Once you have an idea it starts happening – it is your projection.
Patanjali says all experience is an error – error in your vision. You become identified with the object, and the subject starts thinking as if it is the object. You feel hunger, but you are not hungry – the body is hungry. You feel pain, but you are not in pain – the body is in pain; you are only alert.
Next time something happens to you – and every moment something or other is happening – just watch. Just try to keep hold of this remembrance that “I am the witness,” and see how much things change. Once you realize you are the witness, many things simply disappear, start disappearing. And one day comes which is the final day, the day of enlightenment, when all experience falls flat. Suddenly you are beyond experience: you are not in the body, you are not in the mind; you are beyond both. Suddenly you start floating like a cloud, above all, beyond all.
That state of no-experience is the state of kaivalya.
Now one more thing about it. There are people who think that spirituality is also an experience. They don’t know. There are people who come to me, and they say, “We would like to have some spiritual experience.” They don’t know what they are saying. Experience as such is of the world. There is no spiritual experience – there cannot be. To call an experience “spiritual” is to falsify it. The spiritual is only a realization of pure awareness, purusha.
How does it happen? How do we get identified? In yoga terminology the truth, the ultimate truth, has three attributes to it, sat chit anand – satchitanand. sat means “being” – the quality of eternity, the quality of permanence, being. chit: chit means “consciousness,” awareness – chit is energy, movement, process. And anand: anand is “blissfulness.” These three have been called the three attributes of the ultimate. This is the yoga trinity; of course, more scientific than the Christian trinity because it does not talk about persons – God, the Holy Ghost, the Son. It talks about realizations.
When one reaches to the ultimate peak of existence, one realizes three things: that one is and one is going to remain, that is sat; the second, one is and one is conscious – one is not like dead matter – one is and one knows that one is, that is chit; and one knows that one is and one is tremendously blissful.
Now let me explain it to you. It is not right to call it “blissful,” because then it will become an experience. So a better way will be to say, “one is bliss” – not “blissful.” One is sat, one is chit, one is anand; one is being, one is consciousness, one is bliss.
These are the ultimate realizations of the truth. Patanjali says these three, when they are present in the world, create three qualities in prakriti, in nature. They function as a catalytic agent; they don’t do anything. Just their presence creates a tremendous activity in prakriti. That activity is corresponded by three gunas, qualities: sattva, rajas, tamas.
Sattva corresponds to anand, the quality of bliss. Sattva means pure intelligence. The closer you come to sattva, the more you feel blissful. Sattva is the reflection of anand. If you can conceive of a triangle, then the base is anand and the other two lines are sat, chit. It is reflected in the world of matter, prakriti. Of course in the reflection it becomes upside down: sattva and rajas, tamas – the same triangle.
But the ultimate truth is not doing anything – that is the emphasis of Patanjali. Because once the ultimate truth is doing something, he becomes a doer and he has already moved into the world. In Patanjali God is not the creator; he is just a catalytic agent. This is tremendously scientific because if God is the creator then you will have to find the motive, why he creates. Then you will have to find some desire in him to create. Then he will become just as ordinary as man. No, in Patanjali God is absolute, pure presence. He does not do anything, but by his presence things happen – the prakriti, the nature, starts dancing.
There is an old story. A king had made a palace; the palace was called the Mirror Palace. The floor, the walls, the ceiling, all were covered in millions of mirrors, tiny, tiny mirrors. There was nothing else in the whole palace; it was a mirror palace. Once it happened, the king’s dog, by mistake, was left inside the palace in the night and the palace was locked from the outside. The dog looked, became frightened – there were millions of dogs everywhere. He was reflected; down, up, all the directions – millions of dogs. He was not an ordinary dog, he was the king’s dog – very brave – but even then, he was alone. He ran from one room to another, but there was no escape, there was no go. All over.
He became more and more frightened. He tried to get out, but there was no way to get out – the door was locked.
Just to frighten the other dogs he started barking, but the moment he barked the other dogs also barked – because they were pure reflections. Then he became more frightened. To frighten the other dogs he started knocking against the walls. The other dogs also jumped into him, bumped into him. In the morning the dog was found dead.
But the moment the dog died, all the dogs died. The palace was empty. There was only one dog and millions of reflections.
This is the standpoint of Patanjali: that there is only one reality, millions of reflections of it. You are separate from me as a reflection, I am separate from you as a reflection, but if we move towards the real, the separation will be gone – we will be one. One reflection is separate from another reflection; you can destroy one reflection and save another.
That’s how one person dies…. There are many argumentative people in the world who ask, “Then if there is only one Brahman, one God, one being spread all over, then when one dies, why don’t others die also?” This is simple. If there are a thousand and one mirrors in the room, you can destroy one mirror: one reflection will disappear – not others. You destroy another: another reflection will disappear – not others. When one person dies, only one reflection dies. But the one who is being reflected remains undying; it is deathless. Then another child is born – that is, another mirror is born; again another reflection.
This story goes on and on. That’s why Hindus have called this world a maya: maya means a magic show. Nothing is there really; everything only appears to be there. And this whole magic world depends on one error, and that error is of identity.
“Experience is the result of the inability to differentiate between purusha, (absolute) pure consciousness, and sattva, pure intelligence….” Purusha is reflected in prakriti as sattva. Your intelligence is just a reflection of real intelligence; it is not real intelligence. You are clever, argumentative, groping in the dark, thinking, contemplating, creating philosophies, systems of thought – this is just a reflection. This intelligence is not the real intelligence because the real intelligence need not discover anything: for the real intelligence everything is already discovered.
Now look at the different paths of philosophy and religion. Philosophy moves in the reflected intelligence, into sattva – it goes on thinking and thinking and thinking and goes on creating bigger palaces of thought. Religion moves into purusha – it drops this so-called intelligence; hence the insistence of meditation to drop thinking.Tags: Patanjali Yoga Sutra 39 Inability To Differentiate