Shri Ramakrushna kathamrut

Sri Sri Thakur’s Teachings from the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna

*Today’s Page: 417-418*
*Chapter 21: A DAY AT DAKSHINESWAR*

(To Prankrishna) But there are signs that distinguish the man of Knowledge. Some people think they have Knowledge. *What are the characteristics of Knowledge? A jnani cannot injure anybody. He becomes like a child.* If a steel sword touches the philosopher’s stone, it is transformed into gold. Gold can never cut. *It may seem from the outside that a jnani also has anger or egotism, but in reality he has no such thing.*

*”From a distance a burnt string lying on the ground may look like a real one; but if you come near and blow at it, it disappears altogether. The anger and egotism of a jnani are mere appearances; they are not real.*

*”A child has no attachment. He makes a play house, and if anyone touches it, he will jump about and cry. The next moment he himself will break it. This moment he may be very attached to his cloth. He says: ‘My daddy has given it to me. I won’t part with it.’ But the next moment you can cajole him away from it with a toy. He will go away with you, leaving the cloth behind.*

“These are the characteristics of a jnani. *Perhaps he has many luxuries at home — couch, chairs, paintings, and equipage. But any day he may leave all these and go off to Benares.*

*”According to Vedanta the waking state, too, is unreal.* Once a wood-cutter lay dreaming, when someone woke him up. Greatly annoyed, he said: ‘Why have you disturbed my sleep? I was dreaming that I was a king and the father of seven children. The princes were becoming well versed in letters and military arts. I was secure on my throne and ruled over my subjects. Why have you demolished my world of joy?’ ‘But that was a mere dream’, said the other man. ‘Why should that bother you?’ Fool!’ said the wood-cutter. ‘You don’t understand. My becoming a king in the dream was just as real as is my being a wood-cutter. *If being a wood-cutter is real, then being a king in a dream is real also.'”*

Prankrishna always talked about jnana. Was this why the Master described the state of the jnani? Now he proceeded to describe the state of the vijnani.

MASTER: *”Jnana is the realization of Self through the process of ‘Neti, neti’, ‘Not this, not this’. One goes into samadhi through this process of elimination and realizes the Atman.*

*”But vijnana means Knowledge with a greater fullness. Some have heard of milk, some have seen milk, and some have drunk milk. He who has merely heard of it is ‘ignorant’. He who has seen it is a jnani. But he who has drunk it has vijnana, that is to say, a fuller knowledge of it. After having the vision of God one talks to Him as if He were an intimate relative. That is vijnana.*

“First of all you must discriminate, following the method of ‘Neti, neti’: *’He is not the five elements, nor the sense-organs, nor the mind, nor the intelligence, nor the ego. He is beyond all these cosmic principles.’ You want to climb to the roof; then you must eliminate and leave behind all the steps, one by one. The steps are by no means the roof. But after reaching the roof you find that the steps are made of the same materials — brick, lime, and brick-dust — as the roof. It is the Supreme Brahman that has become the universe and its living beings and the twenty-four cosmic principles. That which is Atman has become the five elements. You may ask why the earth is so hard, if it has come out of Atman? All is possible through the will of God.* Don’t you see that bone and flesh are made from blood and semen? How hard ‘sea-foam’3 becomes! (3 The Master perhaps referred to the cuttle-bone found on the seashore. The popular belief is that it is hardened foam.)

*”After attaining vijnana one can live in the world as well. Then one clearly realizes that God Himself has become the universe and all living beings, that He is not outside the world.*

_*Om Namah Sri Bhagavate Ramakrishnaya*_

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