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9. Knowingness and No-Knowingness


Suppose you started knowing yourself at the age of four. Whatever actions took place prior to that happened without your knowing and there is no record in your memory of that. You will have heard of some happenings from others, but you directly do not know. In those first few years, the primary concept 'I am' is there, but in a dormant condition. Later on it started knowing itself. The jnani is like the child-state when the child was not knowing itself. The apparatus is different but the principle is the same.

To start with, when you were born, only reactions such as hunger and thirst took place. These are physical things when life is there, but inside the state of knowingness had not yet developed. Then after three or four years the process of knowingness dawned and you came to know yourself - the knowledge 'I am' had been attained. You did not know who you were but you knew you were something. Later on, you started collecting concepts and ideas which other people fed you, and you developed images about yourself and others. Thus the mind developed. In the waking state you knew the world together with your concepts, but then this knowledge vanished when you fell asleep, and reappeared again when you woke up. Daily this went on, with the knowledge of 'I am' cycling between these active and dormant phases. The conscious­ness was there throughout, provided the waking state and sleep states were also there. But, before you were born, where was that consciousness? Where were you? What was your experience then? You don't know. It was a no-knowing state. In that no-knowing state suddenly knowingness appeared and created all this mischief. If you had the capacity to know before birth that you were being born, would you have jumped into this pit? Could anything have induced you to get into this wearisome cycle of waking and sleeping?

One day you met the guru. The guru told you, "Get rid of all your concepts and just be yourself.? Having understood what the guru said, you gave up your concepts and abided in pure beingness, in the universal consciousness without words. Now you were established in the knowingess 'I am', and you knew that because of this knowingness the world was. But then, in your meditation, this knowingess went into no-knowingess. The 'I am' forgot itself. You know you are but you forget that you are - that forgetfulness is no-knowingess; it is the highest state in the spiritual hierarchy. When you know you are, duality is there; when you do not know you are, you are in unity, you are perfect. This state cannot be captured with words.

When you are in the stage of knowingness, of beingness without words, there will be a lot of powers and many allurements; you will become very powerful. But give up these powers, don't possess them. You must recede into the state of no-knowingess, into that original state before the 'I amness' came. Knowingness and no-knowingess are the expressions of the bodily consciousness. The destination is transcendence of both knowingness and no-knowingness. When this food instrument body, together with the consciousness is totally transcended - then you are home in the Absolute.

When you look out into the night sky, you see the light and the dark that are there. But what is the background? Space. It is the basis of both light and darkness; they change but it remains unchanged. To abide in that space, to stabilize in it you have to transcend both the light and the dark. Similarly, you have to transcend both knowingness and no-knowingness - the aspects of bodily consciousness - to abide in that unchanging state when you are just watching the consciousness and the no-consciousness. That is called sahaja-samadhi. In that state, as soon as somebody comes, the psychosomatic instrument of body and consciousness go into operation. Otherwise you revert to your natural state, the Absolute.

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