Dedicated to the lotus feet of the divine guru Shivabalayogi Maharaj


Recorded on 25th November 2023 with worldwide participants

In this Q&A, Babaji answers questions about the Ashtavakra Samhita, one of the great spiritual texts of India. A new book, Babaji’s commentary on the Ashtavakra Samhita, is available now to purchase here

0:00 Introduction from Babaji
01:25 How did King Janaka come to be Ashtavakra’s disciple?
11:53 When we talk of liberation, what is it liberation from?
15:34 How does giving up objects help to attain liberation?
19:42 Does the interest in objects automatically fall away when we do sadhana?
21:18 To ask for liberation King Janaka must have known he was bound to begin with, how did this come about without grace?
25:27 We think that we are the physical body, how has this mistake occurred?
30:27 How can we remove the ego of ‘I am the doer’?
34:39 Why does a disciple receive testing from the Guru as a personality?
42:17 ‘You can make everything in the mind disappear but not the mind itself’
45:18 Was Ashtavakra born Self-Realized? Why do some Yogis have to go through more suffering in their tapas than others have to do?

Discourse: Thus Spake Babaji – online Q and A No. 160
Ashtavakra Samhita

Recorded: 25 November 2023 with worldwide participants

Start of Session

Babaji Commences:

   May the Divine Guru Shivabalayogi bless you all, protect you all, make you the most fortunate, fortunate to be able to remember Him and acquire the knowledge of the Ultimate, the Self. May you be able to do sadhana sincerely in its right technical sense that you achieve the silence of the mind; that is important. Know when you close the eyes, you are just trying to be silent mentally. That is important. That’s what watching means. Watching means you are just watching and not talking, mentally not talking, to remind you all. Remind yourself one time, hundred times, thousand times.

Start of Questions and Answers

Question:   Thank You Baba. Wonderful to have Babaji back again after these weeks and see Him looking so well. Baba, this week we were hoping to look a little bit at the new book that Babaji has released, a commentary on Ashtavakra Samhita. Baba, just initially as a background, could Babaji please explain how King Janaka came to be Ashtavakra’s disciple?

Babaji Maharaj:   In the story that we all have read and heard, King Janaka wanted to know the Ultimate Truth, the awareness of the real Self, a Self-realization. So, for quite long time he maintained his arrogance as a king. So, instead of going to a Master and praying to learn the truth, he sent out a challenge notice, “Is there anybody who can make me Self-realized by the time I sit on a horse back? That much quickly it must happen,  otherwise they will be drowned in the water.” So, so many scholars came; they all tried to do with their knowledge of the scriptures and whatever they could see. For some, might be even awareness of the Self they had gained but somehow they could not teach him and it did not happen.

So, Ashtavakra’s story is that when He was in His mother’s womb, His father was discoursing about the Self; His mother had gone to sleep, and He was listening in the womb. That’s what the story says. Every time he was telling he used to tell like, “Hmm, hmm” means to say “Yes, okay, yes”, like that type of thing. Then it is said that when His father understood that it is some baby in the womb, he cursed it that “You will be born deformed. Why did you do so without my permission?” Means, in olden days they strictly held that first seek the permission of a guru, what truth that you want to know, and ask questions with all humility by seeking the permission of the Master. So, without the permission of the Master, He is said to have heard this and obtained the Self-knowledge. So, when He was born, and He was quite young also, He had attained the knowledge of the Self-awareness, Self-realization, but due to the curse of His father, it is said that He had eight deformations in His body; His legs and hands were like that. He couldn’t even walk properly. Some stories tell “He had to roll down. It appeared as if He was rolling down”, or something like that.

So, when He heard that His father also was drowned and had gone to King Janaka, so finally He comes to Janaka’s court. When He enters Janaka’s court, so all the ministers who were all sitting in the court, they all laugh at Him because of His deformation. With eight deformations – ‘astha’ means ‘eight’. So, that was how His name had come as ‘Ashtavakra’. ‘Vakra’ is ‘deformation’, eight deformations. A person with eight deformations is the Ashtavakra. So, for this, Ashtavakra addressing King Janaka says, “O King, I thought you have wise ministers in your court, but what I can see is all fools.” To this, all the court is stunned and they all start thinking, “How dare this boy talk to the king like that? Now the king will punish him definitely.” But somehow the time was ripe and by then King Janaka considerably had come down from his arrogance and tells Ashtavakra, “Why do you think so?” Then He tells, “They are all thinking this body to be me and watching the eight deformations of this body it might appear funny for them. When they laugh, they are thinking they are laughing at me, but they don’t know who I am and where I am and what form I am. So, for this, when they are simply laughing as if they are laughing at me, I consider them as foolish people because they don’t have the knowledge.” Then the king is surprised and tells “I am so happy at your answer, but what has brought you to my court?” Then Ashtavakra says, “I want to give you the awareness, Self-realization that you had put.” So, King Janaka says, “Do you know the conditions, what will happen if you don’t do that one?” Ashtavakra says, “That’s no problem. But because I am going to be the Master, I also have a right to put some conditions on you, three conditions. Then if you agree, then I will tell what they are. You must accept it.” Then King Janaka accepts. “Okay, tell whatever is your condition, it is acceptable to me.”

So first He says, “You come down the throne and give the kingdom to me. You must not be the king anymore.” He comes down. That was there – you see, first Master always tries to bring down the ego in a person, in a student. Because as our own Swamiji used to tell, “Ego is the biggest hurdle for a person to learn anything.” So, to make this, he brings down from the throne and tells “Now I am the king. You will just listen to me. You give up this kingdom, you don’t need this one for now. You just have to follow me.” Well, following, He goes on narrating. “Now you pay attention what I am going to narrate. If you don’t pay attention, you will be drowned.” Like that he gives the condition. So, then he was fully attentive; the king was ripe.

  And after going a long distance, means before leaving, He asks the king to get a horse and bring it. He sits on the horse and the king is taking the horse as a servant. So that’s how He goes on. “Now you pay attention and that I am going to narrate.” He narrates all the Self knowledge, and how to quieten the mind is important. Then after that He comes down. Ashtavakra says, “Now the third thing, once I give you the command, you must do it. If you don’t do it, it’s not my problem. You will be drowned again if you don’t do whatever I command because I am the Master now, I am the king, I am ordering you. You are simply an ordinary citizen of this country.” Then he agrees, then he understands by now, “This was what was needed. That was why I could not understand the Self-awareness before” – he realizes, King Janaka. So, then Ashtavakra also tells, “Because you had the ego of a rajasic…’rajasic swabhava’, nature is always given – see if a king, he will have the total power, he will always consider “If I say, it means that’s it, it has to happen.” He won’t bother about anybody else, he won’t listen to anybody’s advice, nothing. “That’s why I wanted to bring you down the throne so that you may not have any more arrogance of a king, the ego of a rajasic nature. You need to be sathvik and humble, otherwise you would never have listened to me. So now also, if you don’t listen, it’s your problem, remember that one, that is the condition.” The king agrees. “So now you sit on the horseback, I will tell what to do.” He puts his left leg and tries to sit by putting the right leg on the other side. In the middle, He just says, “Quiet!” That was all the word He said; “Just become quiet.” So, king understood and he became quiet mentally also. He stood there in that position and his mind went into samadhi, stillness, total stillness; it became silent. So he achieved the awareness of the Self, “This is that truth of Self.”

   So, that was how Ashtavakra came to King Janaka and thus King Janaka obtained Self-realization from Ashtavakra. Whatever Ashtavakra had taught on the way to King Janaka is what is known as the Ashtavakra Samhita. So, this was a wonderful book, talking of the highest truth directly without anything else. Bluntly He talks of this, Ashtavakra. So, I was very much impacted in our younger days also. On devotees’ request I thought of writing a commentary of my viewpoints and my experiences in tapas, whatever Swamiji had taught me. And I have tried to simplify the language so that people can understand the modern-day terminologies like mind, consciousness; mostly this is what I have used. Instead of the scriptural terminologies of Brahman, all these I have not used. So, that is how this book has come into existence.

Question:   Thank You Babaji. Babaji, in the opening of the book, Janaka asks how liberation can be attained. When we talk of liberation, what is it liberation from?

Babaji Maharaj:   Here, a common person would have assumed about this world or about anything with millions of thought processes that are getting generated in one’s own mind. Based on them, he would have defined and assumed, “This is it.” Like I have told, mind has a tendency, it recognizes a thing, a matter, or an object, and then it analyzes, “This is good and this is bad. What is this?” Like this, it tries to analyze. Once it analyzes, then it makes a judgment. “This is it.” This is ‘apple’ because I am telling this is ‘apple’. I want the whole world to tell about it as ‘apple’. See, now in the world also when politics happens, if a country is powerful, it tells something and it expects the rest of the countries accept what it is telling. So, this is what is the bondage; you have already bound yourself by your own assumptions and you would try to bind others also into those definitions and assumptions. If you remember, also I have told, nobody really knows what this world or anything is. Whatever they have felt, they have used such terminologies prevailing in the culture of that subject. Like if it is spiritual, ancient sages, when they came across the truth, they experienced. It was such an awesome experience and they understood no terminology can be equivalent for this. Yet, they had to use some terminology if they had to communicate to somebody or teach the next generation students.

Like I have also told, even a Self-realized Master like us has to use the nearest imagination to convey what the truth is, to give a clue to the student and what you are supposed to do. So, that is how. So, that is what is sitting in the mind. From those wrong assumptions, wrong definitions, wrong judgments is what you need to liberate yourself. That is the idea of liberation. Then the truth about yourself is automatically revealed once you become quiet. Because just now you are too preoccupied with your own imaginations. You are unable to pay attention to yourself. So, you don’t know what you are. So, you have bound yourself on to the untruth, considering that to be the truth. So, once you get rid of those assumptions and imaginations, quieten your mind, you will realize what the truth of your existence is, thus liberating yourself from wrong assumptions. This is what the liberation means.

Question:   Thank You, Babaji. Babaji, in reply to that question, Ashtavakra says “To attain liberation, give up objects which give temporary pleasure to the body, considering them as poison.” How does giving up objects help?

Babaji Maharaj:   Means first you give up the objects. In olden days, teachers were very blunt. Today we try to be more cautious. We don’t ask you to give up your home or this world or anything. Simply if you give up the mind’s imaginations; ultimately it’s of course the mind’s imaginations which have to go. The more you get involved in this world, the more your mind will absorb imprints by making analyzations and judgments. You try to sit for half an hour meditation, many people complain, but the rest of the twenty-three hours they are very busy getting involved in this world. They have to be talking, telling lies, telling truth, telling this, telling that, assuming and fighting, so many things are in the world. Emotional problems, relationship problems; all things keep happening. So, through all these the mind absorbs imprints; it goes on and on and already so much of corrupted dirt is there in the mind since time immemorial. Maybe so many lives would have passed that the mind has absorbed, though all those things have to go. So, further it keeps coming and coming, coming, it becomes so difficult. So, that’s why one is unable to be aware of the truth.

So, that is what we try to teach, what probably in olden days, teachers – if you can distance yourself from this worldly involvement as much as possible at least, we will give some leniency, some discount, [laughs] instead of telling totally you give up. Because sometimes Swamiji used to tell, “If you go to caves and forest thinking that you have given up everything, things don’t work out like that because you are carrying your mind; that mind will trouble. You will start feeling loneliness, you will start feeling miserable, you want to come back to the world and see again.” So, these things all can happen. So, they said, they were so strong in olden days, “If you just give up the world, pleasurable objects through which you are thinking that it is going to give you happiness or pleasure.” That’s how they spoke. But this is what needs to be actually – mind needs to give up such things. That’s what we need to understand. And while in the world, I would like to recommend, simply nothing is prohibited but try to understand the limits of the world. Like example, I have always told, you might eat one ice cream or any such thing and you might derive some pleasure and you start thinking “This ice cream has given me such good happiness. This is a wonderful item.” But you go on eating two, three, thirty, forty, fifty. The same ice cream which you are thinking that is giving you happiness will give you unhappiness of ill health. So, the happiness is not in the ice cream, not in the object. It is in your mind accepting and becoming quiet, getting satisfied for a while. That’s what gives you happiness actually. So, like Buddha also said, “Constant cravings of the mind is the basic reason for unhappiness.” So, that’s what I would like to say in the present day about what those great teachers have told.

Question:   Thank You, Baba. Just to come back to that question again, is it that we reject them or does the interest in them automatically fall away when we do sadhana or is it both?

Babaji Maharaj:   Definitely. Either way also. Either you try to go on switching off one by one by one to switch off the lights, or you just go to the main switch and switch off and all lights go off. That’s what Swamiji said, “You meditate. Automatically you will give up, the interest will go. You don’t have the cravings. The cravings all decrease and come down. You will feel more peaceful and satisfied.” Whenever it is needed that your body needs some food, you give only a limited whatever that is needed. You won’t eat out of greed or out of taste or anything. One time Swamiji even said, “Probably we humans are the only ones who eat the food for taste. Look at all animals, once their belly is filled, they stop. They don’t go on eating, even if it is their best food, they will leave it there and go away.” So, like that if we can take care at least, that also can be very helpful – and continue meditation. Meditation can be very helpful to overcome the cravings and keep you satisfied at all times, contented.

Question:   Thank You Baba. To ask for liberation King Janaka must have known he was bound to begin with. How did this come about without grace?

Babaji Maharaj:   Once it has come, the grace has come and the grace is always flowing. Imagine all of you, ninety-plus people are sitting here and you are fortunate enough to have this opportunity to listen to Baba. Is not this a grace of the Divinity? Is not this the grace of the Divine Master? So, like that if you are ready to learn from our life, life is the best teacher in my opinion. Every moment there is an opportunity for us to learn. Even in bhakti marga languages, they talk that the Divine keeps slapping us all the time, thinking when are we going to turn to the Divinity? But we try to keep running after the world for our happiness all the time. The life teaches. If only we have that wisdom, that observation power, that’s what differs from person to person. Well, finally the grace will descend on everybody, every soul. It will be a matter of time. Many times it comes in front of you; you may not notice it, you are busy somewhere else. So, that’s what happens.

   There’s a beautiful story in the Bhagavatam of Sri Krishna. In the end, Uddhava, His best friend has become very old and he is walking in the desert and is going to die very soon. So then, Sri Krishna requests Indra to give him some nectar. Indra tells, “Three times I will go in front of him, offer him the nectar. If he accepts, you can consider that it is in his prarabdha, in his destiny.” So, every time he goes as an untouchable person with a country-made pitcher and the nectar is inside that. Uddhava, he is very thirsty. So, he comes and offers “I have some nectar.” He drives him away, “Go, you are an untouchable idiot. How can nectar come in your hands?” He rejects and then he goes away. Like that after three times, Indra tells, “I am helpless Krishna. What can I say? His prarabdha is still not yet ripe.” So, this is very peculiar, prarabdha is sometimes. The grace might be in front of us, in front of our eyes, in our heart. We may not notice, we reject. We don’t remember the Master also. See, even for Draupadi, when she was about to be disrobed, the grace was there. She loved Krishna, she was so devoted to Krishna, she knew Krishna was Divine. But immediately it did not come to her wisdom or mind. She went to Dhritarashtra, she went to Bhishma, Dronacharya, husband, everyone, to protect. After all this, then suddenly it occurred, “O God, if at all somebody who can protect me, it is Krishna. If He also does not protect, let it happen.” She gave up and then that faith, that one, faith worked wonders. So, if you have faith, grace is always with you.

Question:   Thank You Baba. Thank You. Baba, in the text and also in Babaji’s commentary, He speaks about when we think of ourselves, we think of ourselves as the physical body. Could Baba explain how that has come about, how that mistake has occurred?

Babaji Maharaj:   Because one thing what we observe, consciousness – just now which we recognize as the mind; because of the thoughts and visions that are in there we call it as mind to communicate, to understand all these things, ‘my mind.’ But that mind is the pure consciousness. It is made up of consciousness and energy. And it is nothing but the Self. Means, when I am thinking, I think that thinking portion as the mind, I become the mind. I am thinking and I have to stop thinking. Now this consciousness has got sucked into the brain’s reflections. A peculiar relationship between mind and brain has happened. Brain is the biological organ in the body, that itself is an amazing, wonderful organ which has given us the consciousness of this world, universe, this body and the surroundings, everything. Without the brain working or if it stops, we lose consciousness – that’s what we call it as passing away, death. We won’t have any consciousness because of that. But what we fail to understand, we have failed, majority of people – the brain is a very good servant but a bad master. We must not simply take it granted whatever the brain reflects. We need to apply the brain, that is the application of wisdom. It is a very thin edge of difference will be there.

Only when we meditate and we take control of our mind when we restrain ourselves, then the best concentrated mind when it gets applied, it is able to use the brain. It is like you have a servant. You are in the bedroom. Somebody knocks on the door. You send the servant to go and have a look. The servant comes back and tells “There was somebody. I didn’t want him to meet you. I asked him to get out.” Imagine. He was only a servant. The servant’s job is to come and report to you. “Somebody is there waiting for you. What are your orders, sir?” So you should be the master and you should decide whether you are going to meet that person or not meet. If your servant decides then that is dangerous. Although that person is a good servant, but he will be a bad master. The same way it is the brain. Brain is a wonderful organ which has given us the ability to live in this world and use our mind and brain and achieve so many wonderful things in the world – discoveries and inventions in all fields. It has made humanity to advance like anything, whether in medical sciences or anything, it is so wonderful. Yet, challenges also equally increased but we have definitely advanced. A certain distance which we would have taken one week or ten days or ten weeks we are able to cross within minutes or within half an hour or one hour like that by taking a flight.

So, all these are possible, but we need to take care of our minds so that it is under our control. We are able to restrain ourselves. We use everything to our benefit, not for our own destructions, not for killing each other. But we need to give happiness to each other. So that is what we need to realize. So, that is how this consciousness, that ‘we’ – need to understand where we have bound ourselves and we need to release ourselves from this binding and then use your brain. I have always told, by meditating you are not going to lose your mind. It will be there. Simply you are taking control of that and you become the master of the mind so that whenever you need to think you can think, when you don’t need to think you can keep quiet and relaxed. Thus, you are able to use your brain to the best of your ability.

Question:   Thank You Baba. In that same vein, Ashtavakra explains in one of the shlokas, that He says “You have been bitten by the great black poisonous serpent of egoism that “I am the doer.”“ He says, “Drink instead the nectar of faith, “I am not the doer” and that way you could be happy.” Is this something that we can do by changing our attitude? Or is it again the natural fruit of doing sadhana?

Babaji Maharaj:   That’s what Ashtavakra means – If you have a strong willpower. The present day generations may not have that strong will of those days. Just by thinking also, with a firm conviction, “I am not this body, I have to use this body as a chariot; that is all. And I am the dweller in the body and this is what the truth is.” So that, side by side you have to do sadhana also to obtain a permanent, once for all, that conviction, awareness only can give finally, but by thinking consistently like that, “I am the atman,” that is what is vichara, your contemplation is also equally important; that can tune in your attitude towards that always and somewhat create an awareness and inspire you to go for a sadhana very strongly; would become possible.

Just like when I am conducting once a week this Zoom Meditation, all of you have heard me so many times talking about this Ultimate Truth, this body, this atman, all the mind, consciousness. So, when it has become interested, you will be anxiously waiting for Baba to come online and you want to join this Zoom class. It will be so interesting if it has appealed to you all; what I am talking is not nonsense. If it has really appealed to you all, you will all be waiting for the Saturday so that the link comes to you. You are ready,  “Today evening Baba, we will see him online and we will get to hear Him answering our questions and conducting meditations.” So, that is how the interest gets generated and you feel inspired. This is what is the vichara, listening. This is known as shravana, manana, and nidhidhyasa. Shravana is you get to hear the teachings of the Master; and manana, you adopt it in your mind, keep it in your mind, don’t allow you to forget, not that you sit with me and the moment you switch off and get out you forget and the worldly things starts bothering you. If you pay apt attention when I am teaching or when I am answering – apt attention is very important. That is what always a Master demands.

That is what Ashtavakra demanded. “When I command, if you pay apt attention what I am going to talk to you now on the horse back and you are drawing this horse.” These two things are important. When I give you a command if you are ready to follow it without thinking twice, then you can get Self-realization. And if you pay apt attention when I am teaching, next step following my command will become easier for you. So, like that when you all listen to these answers for your questions with total apt attention then you will feel inspired; it will start making sense for you and next time when you sit for meditation you will feel very inspired – “Ah, this is what is needed for me now.” That is what is the Divine Guru’s grace.

Question:   Thank You Baba. Baba, in the third chapter the Guru tests the disciple very harshly. He starts criticizing him that he doesn’t know anything and he is an idiot. Why does that testing happen from the Guru as a personality?

Babaji Maharaj:   This again, point one is to bring down the ego. If ego is there, a student becomes casual and doesn’t learn, just tries to do a time-pass. You come to the Master for some time, you pay some money and listen to Him talking and then go away again. And you won’t do the sadhana, you won’t be serious. And first of all you wouldn’t have heard by paying apt attention. So, that was the first thing Master took care, to bring down the ego. This is what a yogi always does. And if that ahamkara, that ego is there, the learning process gets curtailed, the person wouldn’t like to be learning, wouldn’t like to be serious, would like to tell lies to the Master also. He has something else in the heart, he talks something else to the Master, just wants the Master to endorse whatever he has already believed. Means we face this type of student, based on the experience I am talking; these are the points. They have already assumed that their experience is the greatest and they just want me to endorse. They are not in a mood to learn anything else. They just come and tell all those things. So, if I don’t endorse, they feel disappointed and they, some even have told that I am not a Realized person. They have judged, made a judgment based on their own imagination.

 So, instead, when Swamiji used to come, we always waited anxiously. “What is it that He wants to give us? What is it that He expects from us? What is it that He wants me to do?” These were all very important questions and carefully listened to what He had to say. In those twenty years I had not anything to say to Him at all. No problem of mine, no query of mine except for the Self-realization thing. I never had any complaint that I have an interest in this tree, shall I cut the tree and pocket it. That type of questions I never asked my Master. I never showed any such thing – that was not in the mind at all. It was such an amazing experience to be with the Master. Always used to keep waiting; does He want to convey anything to me? I just wanted to follow that one. Again, there was no second question; once He had told me that was like a command, “Do it” – that’s it. That was how we learned sitting peacefully in a relaxed way, closing the eyes and watching. That watching was what we learned from Him, by paying apt attention on what He said, those finer points what I talk; “watching means this..” Mind has the aspects of watching and thinking that He used to talk. “You just watch and you will stop thinking. How come that you are unable to watch? How come that you are unable to stop your thinking? You simply have picked up these habits. Now also if you don’t want to give up your habits, no God can help you.” Swamiji was much more blunt than me. I might be…  But only of late I have realized I need to be a little more tough otherwise people are not going to learn. What is the use? So, I try to be if anybody comes. I am trying to be. I hope I am tough enough for people. This is what is important. A Master always demands only this. Nothing else. He doesn’t need anybody’s property. He doesn’t need anybody’s money. He doesn’t need anybody’s anything. Anything anybody gives it is for them only again.

The Master needs devotion, attention. That’s when He is able to teach, otherwise it will be just like I am teaching to the wall. If a person is just sitting and his mind has gone, run away somewhere else and I am simply teaching, it will be like teaching to the wall. So that’s what is important; that’s what Ashtavakra demands. That’s what all Masters demanded, and first thing they did once a student went to the abode of the Master was to bring down the ego. People of all status used to go to the Masters. Somebody might be rich, somebody might be middle, somebody might be this. But one thing they all had to give up, ego – was important. That’s what Swamiji used to say, remember? I have told. “Don’t come to me as a royal person, as a military officer, as a businessman, as a rich person, as a genius, this, that, just come as a devotee. Take out the coat of all such ego outside the gates. Come to me as a devotee, then only you will learn otherwise you will never learn. Hundred times you will sit with me,  I tell, you will listen but you will not learn.” Swamiji, that’s what He used to tell. This is such an important thing. That’s what the Masters always… which many people, ninety-nine out of a hundred does not realize this is what is needed, this is what a Master needs. Afterwards, teaching is very easy. Like you go to the doctor; diagnosing is the first important thing. You all know that. Treatment becomes easy, then you know what the treatment is. If you don’t know what the problem is, how will you think about the treatment?

So, that’s what is important. Important that really you want to learn. Many people come, “I want God, I want Self-realization, I love you Babaji. You hit me, you scold me.” It doesn’t work like that. Once I scold, they go away. They blame me, they attack me. They tell that I’m not Self-realized. That type of thing has happened. Means we have realized, that’s how the…imagine those days, they used to be more tough, they never bothered. “You want to learn, you be here, otherwise just get out.” Swamiji also used to tell “Just back up your things and get out. I didn’t call you to come here. You don’t want to do it, you go.” That’s very important. If a student is really, really interested in Self-realization, in spiritual truth, in a spiritual pursuit, this is the first test a Master will take.

Question:   Thank You Baba. Amongst all the commentary that Babaji has written, there’s one particular sentence I’d like to ask about. Babaji says in the commentary, “You can make everything in the mind disappear but not the mind itself.” Could Baba speak about that a little, please?

Babaji Maharaj:   Yes. You know, I told that mind is nothing but you and the mind is made up of consciousness and energy. Hardly anybody would bother to know the mind itself and nobody knows and nobody has seen in naked eyes what the mind is. Everybody recognizes the mind based on the thoughts and visions, like “My mind wants to do this. I want to go there.” Like this type of talks only we do. Based on that only we recognize ‘my mind’, but what the mind is? Can anybody show its shape or its color, “This is the mind, you see. Can you see my mind?” Nobody can show where it is located. That mind is the infinite consciousness what we recognize as the Self, what you really are, beyond the birth and death of this physical body which you will realize eventually in deeper stillness of the mind known as samadhi.

That ‘I exist’ consciousness of existence will not disappear; you can make all thoughts and visions disappear by just watching but that consciousness of existence is the basic clue; that thing from where it is coming is what is the Infinite Supreme Consciousness. Nearest terminology we can use is ‘consciousness’. Consciousness means wherever you apply your consciousness you become aware of that. If you stop applying on your imaginations it gets applied onto itself and you become aware of yourself. So, that is how I have told, you cannot make the mind itself disappear; all the things of the mind that mind has imagined can be made to disappear. See the world – matter disappears, everything that has appeared will disappear. It’s a matter of time. It may happen tomorrow, it may happen billions of years or ages or so many; different matters may have different time limits. Like that, it will all disappear, but the space itself never disappears. Space is always there. So, that’s what I had tried to convey.

Question:   Thank You Baba. Babaji, Nick has typed his question. He said, “I wanted to know firstly, was Ashtavakra actually born Self-realized? Can that actually happen? Also, I wanted to know why some yogis like Swamiji have to go through so much suffering in their tapas, more than others have to do?”

Babaji Maharaj:   After so many thousands of years it’s very difficult to say exactly what happened from my sign. Maybe, He continued His meditation, but He was very ripe, at least. One thing scientifically what we can say, when He was born, whether it was due to his previous life sadhanas or whatever it is, even if you want to consider listening from the womb of a mother is a myth, at least when He was born He was very ripe. Very soon He realized the futility of this world, impermanence of this world and probably meditated and had learned this technique and very soon at the age of twelve or so He had realized what the truth is. This much is true what I can say, but this is only my opinion, that is all. Difficult to establish a truth of what happened thousands of years ago, but this is what the story says, what we have heard, and this is my opinion.

End of Questions and Answers

End of Session

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