Look at all 18 statements below:
(a) Put a + sign by the 2 or 3 that make your heart sing!
(b) Put a ? mark by the 1 or 2 that are confusing.
(c) Note the one word or phrase in all of the statements below that to you captures the essence of all these teachings.
“The cessation of your sorrow depends on how well you overcome your ignorance of Atma…
___1) The truly wise grieve neither for the living nor the dead!
___2) There has never been a time when I, you, or any of these people did not exist—and we all will never cease to exist.
___3) Physical bodies appear and disappear, but not the Atma (the soul, the life force) within them.
___4) This force comes and dwells in a body for a while, experiences infancy to old age and death, and then passes on to a new body.
___5) Changes such as death pertain to the body, not to the Atma.
___6) Do not get caught up in the delusion that you are this body;
that is the very definition of ego.
___7) Contact of bodily senses with worldly attractions creates feelings like sorrow or happiness, and sensations like heat or cold. All are just passing clouds. Endure them, be unaffected by them.
___8) Assert your power—do not identify your True Self merely with your mortal body!
___9) Knowing the difference between Real and not-Real is the zenith of all knowledge.
___10) Real, in spirituality, means eternal, never-changing, indestructible. Anything that changes, even over a long time, is therefore not truly Real.
___11) One’s body, according to this logic, is not Real, but the Atma within is Real. This Atma is existence, awareness, pure consciousness!
___12) Get to know the Reality within you that pervades the entire cosmos and is unchanging and indestructible. Even time, which is a worldly idea, has no access to the Atma. No power can change the changeless!
___13) Clouds appear in the sky but do not cause the sky to grow apart to make room for them. Atma also remains ever itself, unchanged!
___14) The body may be ‘killed’ but the Atma is never destroyed. To say that one person ‘slays’ another may be correct from the worldly standpoint, but it is not the reality of the matter.
___15) When ego takes over, you wrongly identify your self with your body and think the death of the body is the death of the self, which is frightening. Even if the body is slain, the Atma can never be ‘killed.’
___16) As one throws away a worn-out garment, the Atma within sheds the time-worn body and dons a new one.
___17) Everything in the world changes—every creature, rock, blade of grass or component of any kind changes. Only the Atma never changes!
___18) All beings are temporary—at first they are unmanifested, then manifested, then unmanifested again. What is there in all this to grieve over? Grieving uses up energy and hinders growth.
It is not easy to fathom this mysterious concept. No one really understands Atma, and few even think of inquiring into what is beyond the world.” – Krishna
Copyright 2006 Jack Hawley, All Rights Reserved (Enhanced Web Version 2017)