Is the consciousness of which you speak Eternal
Unborn and undying?
Papaji: Consciousness is beyond the concepts
of birth and death, beyond even any concept of
Eternity, Emptiness or space. That which
accommodates Emptiness or Eternity is called
consciousness, within which everything is
Catherine: Yet there is the appearance of
birth and death.
Papaji: You see, all existence and
destruction happens ceaselessly. All these
manifestations are like bubbles and waves in the
ocean; let them happen. The ocean doesn't find that
they are separate. The bubbles, the eddies, the
waves they may appear to themselves as
separate, but the ocean itself has no trouble with
them. Let them move on it, let them have different
shapes and different names, coming and going. This
body will be the food of worms and ants. From earth
it came and to earth it will return. You are That
which shines through it. The consciousness is
Catherine: Do you propose that we identify
with the ocean, that Source, instead of with the
Papaji: No, you need not identify with
anything. You only need to get rid of your notions.
Do not identify with any name or form which is not
real, and no name or form is real. Now to reject
name and form you need not make any effort or
employ any kind of thinking or identification. You
have been identifying with names and forms which
have caused you to feel separate from the
fundamental nature which you always are, so you
have to disidentify with something which is not
true. No need to identify with the ocean or Source.
You are the Source. When your identification with
the unreal has vanished, then you will be what you
have been, what you are, and what you will be.
Catherine: What is mind?
Papaji: Never mind! [laughing] Show
me the mind. You have used the word "mind". No one
has seen what the mind is. Mind is thought existing
as subjects and objects. The first wave is "I",
then "I am", then "I am this, I am that" and "This
belongs to me." Here the mind begins. Now, keep
quiet and do not allow any desire to arise from the
Source. Just for this instant of time, don't give
rise to any desire. You will find you have no mind
and you will also see that you are somewhere
indestructible, in tremendous happiness. And then
you will see who you really are.
So when you enquire "Who am I?", this will take you
home. First reject the "who", then reject the "am",
then you are left with the "I". When this
"I"-thought plunges back into its Source, it ceases
to exist and finds pure being itself. There you can
very well live without mind. If you do it
practically, you will find that something else will
take care of all your activity more wisely than the
mind is doing for people who are using mind. We can
see today what the result is of using the mind, how
the world is behaving by using the mind. I believe
that if you keep quiet and let the supreme power
take charge of all activities, then you will see
how to live with all beings. The one who knows
himself will know what it is to be animals, plants,
rocks, everything that exists. If you miss
realisation of your own Self, you have not known
Catherine: People who are spiritually
oriented struggle with what is called the
Papaji: Let us see where the ego is rising
from. Ego has to rise from somewhere to become ego.
The ego arises, then mind, then senses
seeing, smelling, tasting, hearing, touching. There
must be "I" before ego arises. This notion of "I"
is the root cause of ego, the mind, manifestation,
happiness and unhappiness samsara. Now
return to "I" and question what this "I" is. Where
does it rise from? Let us try.
Catherine: I have done this many times,
Papaji: You may have done it, but now don't
do it. Just land into it. Nothing to do. When you
see the process of doing, you must return back
again. Ego, mind, senses this is called
"doing". What I am talking about requires no doing
at all, just intelligence. You have only to be
watchful, vigilant, attentive, serious. No doing,
no thinking, no effort, no notions, no intentions.
You leave everything aside, simply keep quiet, and
wait for the result.
Catherine: This result happens now with you,
Papaji: Yes, then you start now from this
happening. With this happening you have broken at
least this process of ego, mind, senses and
manifestation. Now you return from the happening.
You can also step out this, but you do so as a king
when he rises from his throne and goes to the
garden. He is not a gardener; he is still the king.
You are this happening.
Catherine: The Buddha spoke about practising
this awareness. He taught a meditation practice to
enable people to taste this.
Papaji: I have not found any results from
these practices, but they are going on. I don't
give you any practice. I just remove your old
burdens. Don't expect that I will give you
something new. If you gain something new, its
nature is not Eternal, and you will lose it.
Freedom cannot be the effect of any cause. You
already have everything. You are an emperor. Throw
away the begging bowl.
Practise is needed when you have some destination,
something to attain. Abandon this concept of
gaining something at a later date. What is Eternal
is here and now. If you find freedom after 30 years
of practise, it will still be only here and now.
Why wait 30 years?
Just sit with a calm mind and see where you have to
go and where you are now. Question yourself: "What
do I practise for?" For practice you need need
something to practise and some intention for
practising. What is that through which you
practise? Through what do you derive this energy to
put anything into practise? Do you get my point? If
you want to go somewhere, you have to stand up and
walk to reach the destination, so there must be
some energy to stand and walk to the destination.
What makes you stand up?
Catherine: Some desire.
Papaji: Yes, but where is the desire rising
from? Who makes the desire arise and from where?
People are doing practices for freedom, so I want
you to see here and now, before going to the
destination what you want. If you want
freedom, then find out what is the bondage, where
are the chains, what are the fetters. Sit down
calmly, patiently, and question, "How am I bound?"
What binds you except these notions, concepts,
perceptions? Forget about all these things. Don't
give rise to any notion, any intention, or any
idea. Just for a second. Get rid of these notions,
instantly. Now who is seeking freedom? The seeker
himself is not yet tackled.
Catherine: There is a saying, "What you are
looking for is what is seeking."
Papaji: Yes, find out who the seeker is. Ask
yourself, "Who am I?" You have not to move anywhere
because it is here and now. It has always been here
and now. You are already here and you are already
free. You think or have a notion that you have to
search for something, to meditate. You have been
told this many times. Now just for a short while,
sit quietly and do not activate a single thought.
You will discover that what you are searching for
through methods or practices was already there. It
was what was prompting you to meditate. The desire
for freedom arises from freedom itself.
Most meditation is only mind working on mind. You
are somewhere where the mind cannot trespass. The
real meditation is simply to know that you are
Catherine: Yet thoughts come uninvited, as
unwelcome guests. And it seems that through
meditation practice there is a lessening of
thoughts. By systematically keeping quiet, in a
calm place, thoughts slow down and even go away
Papaji: Then you have a tug of war with the
thoughts. So long as you are powerful and you are
checking your mind, thoughts are not there. When
you don't check your mind, the thoughts come again.
Don't worry about the thoughts. Let them come and
play with you as the waves play with the ocean.
When the waves disturb the tranquility of the
ocean, it doesn't mind. Let the thoughts arise, but
don't allow them any landing space.
Catherine: So much emphasis is placed on
getting rid of the thoughts, as though a mind
without thoughts is tantamount to an awakened
Papaji: No, no, no. Let the thoughts come.
If you reject them, they will invade forcibly
through your door. Remove the door. Remove the wall
itself. Who will come in now? In and out is due to
a wall, and this wall is "I am separate from
consciousness." Let the thoughts come; they are not
different from the waves of the ocean. It is better
to be at peace with thought, ego, mind, senses and
the manifestation. Let us not fight with anything.
Let us be One. You will see your own face in
everything. You can speak to plants. You can speak
to rocks, and you are the hardness of the rock
itself. You are the twittering of the birds. You
have to see, "I am the twittering of the birds, I
am the shining of the stars."
Catherine: Isn't a still, silent mind more
conductive to this depth?
Papaji: There is no depth. It is Immaculate
Emptiness. No inside, no outside, no surface, no
depth. No place to go. Everywhere you go is here.
Just look around and tell me the limits of this
moment. Go as far as you can go. How is it
measured? Its length? Breadth? Width? This moment
has nothing to do with time or depth.
Catherine: Is it really so simple?
Papaji: Yes, when you know it, you will
laugh! People go to mountain caves for 30 years
just to find pure being itself. Being is just here
and now. it is like searching for your glasses
while wearing them. What you have been searching
for is nearer than your own breath. You are always
in the Source. Whatever you are doing, you are
doing it in the Source.
Catherine: Poonjaji, religions always
promise some afterlife. Is the Source that you
speak of a promise of everlasting beingness?
Papaji: I don't believe in these promises
which will happen after death. This experience I am
speaking of is here and now. What is not here and
now is not worth attempting or attaining. To enjoy
this here and now is to get rid of the notion that
you are not here and now.
Truth must be simple. Complication is in falsehood.
Where there are two, there is fear and
Catherine: Ramana Maharshi, Nisargadatta
Maharaj, and even the Buddha referred to this life
as a dream. Why?
Papaji: Because it is not permanent. Nothing
has been permanent. Therefore they don't
differentiate between this waking state and the
dream state. In a dream you see mountains, rivers
and trees which appear real. It is only when you
wake up that you say, "I had a dream." Upon
awakening, those things are seen as transitory, and
you call them a dream. The state you have woken up
into now seems real, permanent and continuous when
compared to that dream. Like this, when we wake up
into consciousness itself, then this so-called
waking state also appears to be a dream.
Catherine: What is the function of the
Papaji: The word "Guru" means "that which
removes ignorance" or "that which dispels darkness"
the darkness of "I am the body", "I am the
mind, "I am the senses" and "I am the objects and
manifestation." That person who has known the Truth
himself and is somehow able to impart his
experience, his knowledge to one who needs some
help is called "Guru".
Catherine: Many people think of you as their
Papaji: They are speaking of the body. Guru
sees only Self unto Self. You are my very own Self.
I am your very own Self. This relationship is no
relationship. What is the difference between your
Self and my Self? I am speaking to that Self which
you truly are. I am speaking to my Self.
Others may be preachers of some sect, some dogma,
but a Guru gives you his own experience, and this
experience is timeless consciousness, nothing else.
Guru does not give you any teachings, method or
anything that is destructible, impermanent. That is
not a Guru. You are not to follow anyone. You are a
lion, and wherever a lion goes he cuts his own
Catherine: There are many disciples of Osho
Rajneesh here in Lucknow with you and there are
more coming everyday. As you probably know, he was
a very controversial teacher with a bad reputation.
What are the differences between you and Osho?
Papaji: I don't indulge in any kinds of
differences. The Divine is playing. Whatever it is
doing, it is being done by the commands of that
Supreme Source. All are my own Self, having
different roles to play, and It is being
Catherine: You say that this Divine is
playing itself out, but let's look at the suffering
on this planet; For instance, there is an
ecological destruction that is creating a living
hell for people and other beings who are not awake
in this dream, as we can easily see here in India.
We are creating a desert of this earth and
poisoning our land, water and air. Many more people
will face starvation and live in degraded
circumstances. Worldwide tensions will increase,
and so on. people who are primarily interested in
spiritual matters, at this particular point in
history, are sometimes accused of being selfish.
What do you feel about rendering service to the
world, and from where does the passion arise for
service if this manifestation is seen as a
Papaji: Having know the Supreme, our own
Self, from inside there arises compassion.
Automatically we are compelled. It's not service.
Service has to do with somebody else. When the
command is compassion, there's no one doing any
service for anybody else, as when you are hungry
you eat. You are not in service to the stomach, nor
are the hands the servant when they are putting
food into the mouth. Like this we should live in
the world. Service is the responsibility of the
Self. Otherwise who is doing this service? When the
action is coming from the ego, there is hypocrisy,
jealousy, crisis. When the doer is not there, then
compassion arises. If a person is realised, then
all his actions are beautiful.
Catherine: What are the main obstructions to
Papaji: The main obstruction is that the
total absolute desire for freedom is missing,
because the relationship with the world is not
absolutely cut off. In a dream, sometimes, we have
a wedding, and then we have children, and we of
course love our children. When we wake up, we see
how instantly we detach ourselves from our wedding,
from our wife, and from our children also. Like
this, when we wake up from this dream, and the
relationship terminates, there is freedom. Viveka
is to discern the Real from the unreal.
Catherine: Do you think there is a danger in
people seeing this manifestation as only a dream
and therefore not taking responsibility for their
Papaji: That would be a misunderstanding. In
1947, when India was being partitioned, my home
area was going to Pakistan. At that time I was with
Ramana Maharshi in Tiruvannamalai, and he said to
me, "There will be a lot of trouble in the area you
come from. Why don't you go and look after your
family?" I said, "Since meeting you I have no
family. It was a dream, and I have no more interest
in that dream." He said, "If you know it is a
dream, what difference does it make if you remain
in that dream and do your duty?" Then I said, "I do
not want to leave you." And he replied, "I am with
you wherever you are." This I understood then, and
still it is true.
Now, when you have discerned the Real from the
unreal, then do not doubt. Doubt is a wall between
you and freedom, and even this doubt is only a
concept, a phantom. Plunge into Eternity. This is
the nectar. People are afraid of tasting the
nectar. What to do?
Catherine: Some teachers propose that there
is merit in burning out desires, fulfilling the
desires until we are sick of them and don't want
the objects anymore. You're saying that we need,
rather, to see that this reality is just a dream,
and then we will lose interest.
Papaji: Yes, some teachers say that you must
fulfill the desires. I don't think that to
extinguish a fire, you go on pouring gasoline on
it. This is to continue the desire with wrong
desire. It will not end the desires. The best way
is to know what is real. Once you know what is real
and what is unreal, then you will not desire that
which is unreal. Then you will stand with
absolutely one weapon in hand and that is
discrimination between the Real and the unreal and
the desire to be free. When you have this desire it
merges with freedom itself.
Catherine: It seems that doubt and the
inability to discern the Real from the unreal are
often perpetuated by psychological habits and a
lifetime of conditioning, often leading to various
forms of mental suffering. What do you suggest in
Papaji: This suffering denotes that you are
digging in the graveyard of the past. Without
touching the past, tell me who is unhappy. If you
are living in the present, you are happy. In
between the past and the future, who are you? You
Catherine: Is it love that is fueling the
cosmos a gigantic pulsation wanting to unite
Papaji: I don't even call it love. When you
utter the word "love", if you carefully watch, you
see it is taking you to some previous objective
experience to translate this love into the past. As
far as my experience goes, it's not even love, not
even love. It is something... a fullness as when
there are no waves in the middle of the ocean.
The word "love" is misused. I could believe love
where there is no lover and no beloved. No subject,
no object this is true love.
Catherine: To what does the concept of
Papaji: It is not from any individuality
toward something else. The silence is itself
surrendered to its Source.
Catherine: Poonjaji, are you still going
beyond and beyond in your life?
Papaji: Even now. Every moment. Every