Talk 601.
27th December, 1938
G. V. Subbaramiah, an Andhra devotee, mentioned something about time.
M.: What is time? It posits a state, one’s recognition of it, and also the
changes which affect it. The interval between two states is called
time. A state cannot come into being unless the mind calls it into
existence. The mind must be held by the Self. If the mind is not
made use of there is no concept of time. Time and space are in the
mind but one’s true state lies beyond the mind. The question of time
does not arise at all to the one established in one’s true nature.
Mr. Narayana Iyer: Sri Bhagavan’s words are so pleasing to hear
but their import is beyond our comprehension. That seems to be
far too much for us even to hope to realise.
G. V. S.: Our grasp is only intellectual. If Sri Bhagavan be pleased
to direct us with a few instructions we shall be highly benefited.
M.: He who instructs an ardent seeker to do this or that is not a true
master. The seeker is already afflicted by his activities and wants
Peace and Rest. In other words he wants cessation of his activities.
Instead of that he is told to do something in addition to, or in place
of, his other activities. Can that be a help to the seeker?
Activity is creation; activity is the destruction of one’s inherent
happiness. If activity be advocated the adviser is not a master but
the killer. Either the Creator (Brahma) or Death (Yama) may be
said to have come in the guise of such a master. He cannot liberate
the aspirant but strengthens his fetters.
D.: When we attempt to cease from activity the very attempt is action.
So activity seems to be inevitable.
M.: True. Thayumanavar has also alluded to it. A doctor advises a
patient to take the prescribed medicine with only one condition.
That condition is not to think of a monkey when he takes the
medicine. Can the patient ever take the medicine? Will he not think
of the monkey whenever he tries not to do so?
So also, when people try to give up thoughts their object is frustrated
by their very attempt.

D.: How then is the state to be attained?
M.: What is there to attain? A thing remains to be attained if it is not
already attained. But here one’s very being is That.
Someone: Why do we not then know it?
Annamalaiswami: I should always try to think I am That.
M.: Why should one think “I am That”? He is That only. Does a man
go on thinking that he is a man?
Mr. Anantachari: The belief ‘I am a man’ is so deep that we cannot
help thinking so.
M.: Why should you think “I am a man”? If you are challenged you
may say ‘I am a man’. Therefore the thought - ‘I am a man’ - is
called up when another thought, say ‘I am an animal’, protrudes
itself. Similarly, the thought I am That is necessary only so long
as the other thought I am a man persists.
D.: The thought ‘I am a man’ is so firm that it cannot he got rid of.
M.: Be your true Self. Why should you think ‘I am a man’?
D.: The thought ‘I am a man’ is so natural.
M.: Not so. On the other hand ‘I am’ is natural. Why do you qualify
it with ‘a man’?
D.: ‘I am a man’ is so obvious whereas ‘I am That’ is not understood
by us.
M.: You are neither That nor This. The truth is ‘I am’. “I AM that I
AM” according to the Bible also. Mere Being is alone natural. To
limit it to ‘being a man’ is uncalled for.
D.: (Humorously) If votes be taken the majority will be on my side.
M.: I cast my vote also on your side (Laughter). I say also ‘I am a man’:
but I am not limited to the body. It is IN ME. That is the difference.
Someone: The limitation (upadhi) of being a man cannot be got rid of.
M.: How were you in deep sleep? There was no thought of being a man.
Another: So, the state of sleep must be brought about even when one
is awake.
M.: Yes. It is jagrat-sushupti.

Sri Bhagavan continued: Some people even say that while they sleep
they are enclosed somewhere in the body. They forget that such
an idea did not persist in sleep but rises up only on waking. They
bring their waking-state to bear upon their sleep.
The lights went down and all retired.