Nisargadatta Maharaj’s Self-Realization
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, Hindu Advaita Master:
The Master Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj’s ‘Medicinal Decoction’ of Abiding in the ‘I-am-ness’:
It has been made abundantly clear by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj (1897-1981) in his satsangs that as moksha is not anything, which can be grasped by our intellects or our customary mental activities, there is absolutely nothing our intellects can possibly do by way of sadhana as a mental effort( except to have that irrevocable understanding), to get at moksha. The reason is that through their ceaseless involvement in one kind of mental activity or the other, all they can possibly do is to sustain this ceaseless activity and as such activity is the very mechanism of the veiling force of maya, which prevents us from knowing who we really are, no sadhana, which implies an activity in consciousness, can be a fruitful means in the quest for this realization.
So, like all true advaitic masters, this master too negates the activity of thought, and asks us to just sink in and abide in the state of ‘I-am-ness’, which is just the simple and pure feeling of being, in contrast to our incessant becoming-which is ever fraught with every kind of mental activity. In this master’s perception as ‘I-am-ness’ is the portal, extremely proximate to Parabrahma, the unmanifest & attribute less sovereign Divinity; our being poised at this portal, bereft of all ulterior motives, is the best we may possibly accomplish, by way of a ‘sadhana’, and it is important to note that even this, is more in the nature of an inaction and negation, rather than any positive action or activity, that may be inspired by self-seeking, in howsoever subtle a form.
After Krishnamurti’s ‘medicinal decoction’ has resulted in the slowing down of thought and later, even in the relative stilling of mental activity, at that stage, it will be relatively easy to drink the draught of the more potent medicine, that Sri Maharaj is recommending, as a means to our realization. If, of course, one undertakes this sadhana, even with the slight contamination of some desire or ulterior motive, or sense of agency, that one is doing something, then one is finished, one loses all spiritual merit in the process. Abidance in ‘I-am-ness’, has to be motiveless, for it to be truly spiritually pure, meritorious and fruitful. In Maharaj’s view, nothing more is necessary than abidance in I-am-ness – because according to him, once this happens, and this is actually what people on the Bhakti path call surrender, Parabrahma will ‘get us’, rather than we questing for Parabrahma, through an act of extroverted seeking.