Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Is Ignorance Bliss? (Part 2.)

In His talk, Upasani Maharaj gives a number of examples that lead to the conclusion that the state of not-knowing is better than the state of knowing—in other words, the commonly expressed viewpoint that ignorance is bliss. Of course, He also gives voice to the opposite, the worldly point of view, that knowledge is essential for living in the world. Further on in the talk He says that the state of not-knowing leads to the state of real Knowing. But, how do these different states fit with each other, or do they fit with each other at all?

In the book of Meher Baba’s teachings called, In God’s Hand, Meher Baba draws a diagram that looks something like this:

Natural Light
natural darkness
unnatural darkness
unnatural light i.e.
The whole Universe
i.e. The whole

He then goes on to say that Natural Light equals God—Self—aloof from the three worlds;
Natural Darkness equals Spirit—the Existence of Light—Nothingness;
unnatural darkness equals the mind;
and unnatural light equals the body and the universe.

He explains that “Natural Darkness sees Natural Light every second, and unnatural darkness sees unnatural light every second. (I.e. the Spirit sees the Self and the mind sees the body and the universe).

In other words, the seeing of the mind is the knowing of the mind and this knowing is of the body and the universe which is the unnatural light.

Applying this perspective to Upasani Maharaj’s question, “What is better—to know or not to know?” helps us understand that both the states of knowing and the not-knowing, with regard to the body and the universe, is not the real Knowing of the Spirit—the  seeing of the Natural Light which is God—Self—by the Natural Darkness.

The state of knowing thus, if appreciated and hankered after, leads to suffering and pain; the same state of course can turn into the state of Sat (Real knowledge) and lead to Infinite Bliss.” The Talks of Sadguru Upasani-Baba Maharaja, Volume I, Part A, page 234

But how is this possible? How to wean the mind away from its habituation to the body and the universe and turn it towards the Spirit which can know the Self when the consciousness of the mind is rooted in the gross physical world? Would it not be like being in the ocean and trying not to get wet? And in fact that is exactly what the Masters tell us; “When you are thrown in the ocean, do not get wet!” If we are honest about are situation, most would agree that when confronted with being in the ocean our concern is not with not getting wet, but with not drowning! Upasani Maharaj offers these suggestions…

(To be continued.)

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