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If the idea `I am the body' is accepted, the selves are multiple. The state in which this idea vanishes is the Self since in that state there are no other objects. It is for this reason that the Self is regarded as one only.
Since the body itself does not exist in the natural outlook of the real Self, but only in the extroverted outlook of the mind which is deluded by the power of illusion, to call Self, the space of consciousness, dehi [the possessor of the body] is wrong.
The world does not exist without the body, the body never exists without the mind, the mind never exists without consciousness and consciousness never exists without the reality.
For the wise one who has known Self by divining within himself, there is nothing other than Self to be known. Why?
Because since the ego which identifies the form of a body as `I' has perished, he [the wise one] is the formless existence-consciousness. The jnani [one who has realized the Self] knows he is the Self and that nothing, neither his body nor anything else, exists but the Self. To such a one what difference could the presence or absence of a body make?
It is false to speak of realization. What is there to realize? The real is as it is always. We are not creating anything new or achieving something which we did not have before. The illustration given in books is this. We dig a well and create a huge pit. The space in the pit or well has not been created by us. We have just removed the earth which was filling the space there. The space was there then and is also there now. Similarly we have simply to throw out all the age-long samskaras [innate tendencies] which are inside us. When all of them have been given up, the Self will shine alone.
---- Ramana Maharishi (Be as you are)
I am K. Indiran, an Engineer with more than twenty six years experience in Projects and construction. To know more about me see my blog,