The following is a continuation of the email debate that began in November 2006.




Dear Laksmanji,


At first I thought not to respond this latest email (of Dec. 4th), since your replies contained therein are actually to earlier responses of mine, and you have not addressed any of the points raised (i.e., my responses) in my most recent email (the email that ends with the excerpt from Satyarth Prakash, and which was sent on Nov. 30th).  Kindly go through the previous email (of Nov. 30th), because many of the points you raise in your most recent email were addressed (at least indirectly).




Following are my replies to your current email: 




Dev: (from before): Let us consider for a moment this notion that everything is Consciousness, or that Consciousness is all that there is, or that there is only Unlimited Consciousness. First of all, such a statement is not substantiated anywhere in the Vedas. But leaving that aside, it not substantiated by any one's experience either. You say it is not a matter of experience but a matter of knowledge, but the bottom line is that it is a matter of consciousness.  Your consciousness is NOT unlimited, and no one's consciousness is unlimited (except the Supreme Consciousness, if one so believes).  You cannot demonstrate that your consciousness is unlimited, nor can you prove it logically or even by means of sophistry.

Laksman:  In the case of ‘my’ consciousness being unlimited you are right…if I am a limited being, a person.  But I am not a limited being.  I am the Consciousness that reflects on the jiva and gives it consciousness.  In reality jiva’s consciousness is limitless too but because of ignorance it identifies with the body/mind upadhis and thinks it is limited. 

Dev: Yes, Laksmanji, but I am not referring to the ‘my’ consciousness, which we both know is the consciousness that ‘appears’ to be limited due to its identification with the mind and body. This ‘my’ consciousness entity is the Jiva, and the identification power of the Jiva is called ego. As I explained earlier, the Jiva is not really the sum total of its parts (consciousness, ego/intellect, mind, senses, body), but is really the Self (the Immortal, ‘individual’, Soul) engaged in the Sport of Existence. In other words (as you also have indicated), the Jiva identifies with the body/mind upadhis due to ignorance, and when this ignorance is removed the Jiva becomes Jivamukta, which really simply means the Self is finished playing mind games.


You have said you are “the Consciousness that reflects on the jiva and gives it consciousness.”  I agree, but I would state this differently because this implies the Jiva is really separate from the Self, which in reality it is not. Hence, I would say ‘the Jiva emanates from the Self and ultimately resolves back to the Self. That Self I am, and this Jiva is the Self. The Essence of the Self is the Supreme Self from which the Universe (by means of the eternal primordial substance, Prakriti) emanates. The Supreme Self never ceases being the Supreme Self whether the Universe is manifested or not. Likewise, the Self never ceases to be the Self whether manifested (in the Universe) as the Jivatman or not manifested.  The point is, you, I, and everyone else are Immortal (the innumerable unique Atman), and we are inseparable from our unlimited Eternal Essence which is none other than the Supreme Self.


Neo-vedanta asserts that the ‘individual’ soul is the Jiva and that beyond this is Unlimited Consciousness, i.e., the Supreme Self (or simply, the Self since it makes no distinction). However, this is incorrect (as substantiated by both the Sruti and Smriti).  The ‘individual’ soul is the Self and the Jiva is the Self, and the Self of the Self is the Supreme Self.  This distinction is brought out again and again throughout the Vedas and the Upanishads. 

Your statement that the Vedas do not substantiate the idea that everything is Consciousness is only partly true.  It is true for the karma kanda section of the Vedas.  But the central message of the jnana kanda…the Upanishads…is that everything is Consciousness.


Dev: I have studied a few hundred mantras from the Vedas (primarily Rig Veda and Yajur Veda), the Isha Upanishad (i.e., the 40th chapter of the Yajur Veda), a rudimentary study of the other major Upanishads, the Gita, and the Darshanas (primarily Yoga Dharshan), and a few other Smriti texts.  Your assertion that everything is Consciousness is not (in my humble opinion) the central message of the Upanishads. The central message of the Upanishads, and indeed the Vedas, is that the Supreme Self is the ultimate goal of existence; in other words, the purpose of life is the realization of our own Essence.  This realization doesn’t entail the dissolution of the ‘realizer’, who is the immortal Self projected as the Jivatman.  The Essence (the Supreme Self) is not the ‘realizer,’ that is, the Supreme Self is not projected as Jivatman; the Supreme Self is never ‘apparently’ ignorant, never ‘apparently’ embodied, and never attains enlightenment or Moksha. The Supreme Self is the very essence of Moksha. The Self that attains Moksha is just as immortal as the Supreme Self.  Like the Supreme Self (GOD), we too are uncreated and indestructible—before, during, and after the attainment of Moksha. The Self (that’s you, I, and everyone else) upon realizing its own Essence (that’s the Supreme Self), is freed from the bonds of time and remains in that timeless essence until it chooses to once again play the Drama of Existence. 

The problem is that karma kandis take the reflection (pratibimba) of Pure Consciousness in the Subtle Body to be the only consciousness and naturally this will cause them to believe that consciousness is limited.


Dev: Perhaps this is what karma kandis do; I do not know, but this is not what I am doing. The Pure Consciousness, from which emanates the Subtle Body, is certainly NOT the only consciousness, but this certainly appears to be what the neo-vedantist assert. I am simply stating that (1) the Self that realizes its own Self is NOT the Supreme Self; (2) that both the Self and the Supreme Self are Immortal and therefore indestructible; and (3) that the non-consciousness substance (Prakriti) from which all material things (including the ego, mind, body, thoughts, and material objects) are formed is also eternal and therefore indestructible.  

Dev (from before): I too (and many others) have had many experiences similar to those you have described in your autobiography. The difference between you and me is that you understand your experiences in the framework of neo-vedanta, which has led you to believe that your own consciousness is unlimited.

Laksman:  It is not true that I understand these experiences in light of Neo-Vedanta.  I understand them in light of me, the Self.  It so happens that the Upanishads and Shankara and the experience of many others confirm my understanding.  Our problem as I said before is that you are basing your statements on the karma kanda section of the Vedas and with that orientation your statements are correct.  My statements only make sense if you understand the jnana kanda…or if your limited consciousness has dissolved into limitless consciousness i.e. you have inquired into the upadhis that cause the limitless to appear to be limited…and erased them. 

Dev: Yes, I have inquired and they have been erased. However, the one who inquired was not the Supreme Self, but is me, the immortal Self. There are many others just like me who have inquired and realized, and there are many who have yet to inquire, and there are still others who are now inquiring.  All of them are real beings, they are souls just like you and I. When they realize ‘who they are’ they are very close to the Supreme Self.  That ‘closeness’ is known as Divine Love and is the Ultimate Yoga.

Laksman (from before): From my perspective there is only one problem with this statement.  You say ‘one lives in the imageless self.’  Can you see that this means that you and the Self are seen as two different things?  I don’t live ‘in’ the imageless Self.  I am the imageless Self.  Or if you want a slightly less accurate statement, I ‘live’ as the imageless Self, not that the Self lives or dies.

Dev response (from before):  Yes, I am the imageless Self too, but that doesn't mean we are the same self or that we are the Supreme Self.

Laksman:  Why not?  Advaita means that there is only one Self.  If reality is non-dual then there cannot be two or more selves.  Anyway, this is the second or third time I have responded to this idea.  When people ‘believe’ things the best you can get is an acceptance of conflicting beliefs.  I understand quite well your belief…because I once held it…but experience erased it.  Your statement that we are different selves is called dwaita (duality), Dev.  Dwaita is how 99.999% of people see things.  No blame.  I don’t happen to see things this way…and It’s not because I have been deluded by Neo-Advaita teachings.


Dev: Laksmanji, what I am talking about is not my ‘belief’ but my direct experience and Self-knowledge (Atam-Gyaan). Your interpretation of Advaita is the prevalent one in our times, and has been for quite a while, but that doesn’t necessarily make it correct.  I used to think that way too and only after much deep reflection, self-study, and direct experience am I realizing the true meaning of Advaita.   


Dev (from before): We are the imageless Self. We cannot be imagined in the mind. We are formless; we are neither formed of flesh and bones (as a human being) nor are formed of words and ideas (as a neo-vedantist or other intellectualist). We are the Self. So, what is all of this? Is this also the Self? Yes, it is. It is the Self in self-evolution.  Yet, there is THAT which never evolves or devolves, and THAT is the Supreme.

Laksman (from before): That is what I am.  I have nothing to do with the part of me that evolves except observe it.  It evolves on its own.  You have identified me as a tiny fly speck of mortality called the soul.

Dev response (from before): I have identified you as an immortal Soul, whose characteristics are all eternal and unchangeable, and one of those characteristics is your nature to become embodied from time to time to play the Drama of existence. 

Laksman:  The Immortal Soul has no characteristics, Dev.  It is attributeless.  Don’t take my word for it, study the Upanishads.  Characteristics only happen when you take Maya, the relative reality into account. 


Dev: The Immortal Soul certainly has characteristics:


Om Sa Paryagachhukram, Akayam, Avranam, Asnaviram, Shuddham, Apapaviddham.

Kavir Manishi, Paribhuh, Svayambur, YathatathyatoRthan Vyadadhacchashvatibhyah SamabhyahIsha Upanishad, 8


Paryagat: pervasive; Shukram- self effulgent fashioner of the universe; Akayam-bodiless; Avaranam-invulnerable and indivisible; Asnaviram-devoid of any kind of superimposition; Shuddham-ever pure;  Apapaviddham-untouched by evil or sins; Kavi-all seeing; Manishi-all knowing; Paribhuh-all pervading intelligence; Swambhu-self created


These are just a minute sampling of the innumerable characteristics of the Self (both the ‘individual’ Soul and the Supreme Soul).  Your statement that the Self is without characteristics is true in the following sense: the Self is devoid of the characteristics of cruelty, stupidity, insanity, arrogance, shame, impurity, etc., etc., etc.


The Immortal Soul or the ‘Imageless Self’ does not actually become embodied.  It seems to become embodied.  It is an apparent embodiment.  I can’t argue with you because we are looking at reality from different points of view.  You perhaps think I’m a fool because I don’t care about embodiment or evolution.  Even if…accepting your limited view of things… I am a fool I’m enjoying my foolishness one hundred percent.  When and if I start suffering (it seems quite unlikely since I’ve not had a bad day in almost forty years) I will check with your emails to see if there is any clue to how I might get out of it. 

Dev: I do not at all think you are fool; I do however think (and I could be wrong) that you have boxed yourself into a neo-vedantic mould which is preventing you from seeing the distinction between yourself and the Supreme Self (the Essence of your Self). You are accustomed to thinking of Advaita according to the way most people think of it. To see Advaita as I am explaining it goes completely against everything you have been told and ascertained to be true (about Advaita). Your understanding of Advaita makes it impossible for you to consider that there could be ANY distinction between yourself and the Supreme Self; it precludes you from accepting that both you (as the Self) and the Supreme Self are both uncreated, eternal, inseparable, and unique. It also prevents you from accepting that Prakriti is also uncreated and eternal.


Dev (from before): We cannot play games with our life and then say it was all the Supreme. We cannot make mistakes and say it was all the Supreme having a dream.

Laksman:  I’m saying that in a non-dual reality there is no ‘supreme’ or not-supreme.  Even on the level of common sense or simple logic this is true.  But, as I’ve said many times, if you take a dualistic point of view then it is true. 

Dev: Your sense and logic are common and simple only in the context of neo-vedanta and neo-advaita, otherwise they are both invalid. Reality is certainly non-dual, that is, there can be only one Reality, but your understanding and experience of what that Reality is, is not necessarily complete.


Dev response (from before): My children are my children but they are not objects and I do not own them, nor am I, being their father, an object that they own. Though we are separate, we are inseparable. Likewise is the eternal (beginningless and endless) relationship of Atman and Paramatman.  There are so many mantras in the Vedas that substantiate this.

Laksman:  Yes.  The problem here is with the word ‘relationship.’  You only have a relationship between different things.  If you have one glass of milk and another glass of milk you have no relationship between the contents.  You only have a ‘relationship’ when you see from the standpoint of the glasses.  I think you would benefit greatly in this discussion if you contemplated Shankara’s statement “Brahma satyam, jagan mithyaJivo brahmaiva na parah.”  The limitless Self is real.  The world is apparently real.  The jivatman and the paramatman (bramaiva) are not separate which is the central message of the Upanishads.  Apparent reality is not reality.  It looks, tastes, smells and feels like reality…and therefore fools everyone…but it is not reality.  The definition of reality being ‘what never changes.’  Anything that is ‘mithya, apparent, can be dismissed but you, the limitless Self, cannot be dismissed.  Dev, the evolver, the believer in supreme and ordinary etc. can be dismissed. 


Dev: I am in complete agreement with Shankara’s statement: the Limitless Self (the Supreme Self) is Real. The notion that the world (manifested from the eternal Prakriti) is permanent is simply mithya, false. The living Self and the Supreme Self are inseparable (because they are eternally united: both the Self and the Supreme Self are eternally real). 

It is a waste of time to tell you this because you seem not to be ready to consider it. 


Dev: As I told you, I have considered it thoroughly and dismissed it. Have you thoroughly considered what I have been saying?

For a long time as you know the general population believed that the world was flat…in spite of the testimony of seafarers who knew differently.  When you trust your senses or the words of people whose means of knowledge is the senses you only get an apparent version of reality.  The interesting fact about the dream of Maya, the apparent reality, is that it seems to be real because it ‘borrows’ reality from me, limitless Awareness.  It is only when you wake up that you realize that you have been dreaming. 

Dev: It is interesting that you use this analogy, because it is one which I have frequently used myself. 


Dev response (from before): My friend, you are in the enlightenment business, and for any business to work there needs to be a product or service offered by one and received or purchased by another. Neo-vedanta is a very nifty tool for helping people feel good about themselves in a very non-material way, i.e., by objectifying everything and seeing everything as unlimited consciousness.  It may work for a while, but eventually, like any product (in this case, a product of the Mind), it will fail.

Laksman:  This is your experience and in general I agree with you. But I have nothing to do with Neo-Advaita.  I have already explained that I use Vedanta as a pramana but you seem not to understand what that means… in spite of my explanation. 

Dev: Vedanta is indeed a pramana; it is the VERY best pramana; there is none superior to it (that I am aware of).  Our difference is in our understanding of Advaita, which of course affects our grasp of Vedanta.


Dev continuing (from before): When we see ourselves as projections of this world we imagine ourselves to be many people (a husband, a father, a son, a writer, a teacher, etc.), but when our ignorance is removed we see clearly that we are the indivisible, invisible, immortal Self.  Through the practice of Yoga we realize our Essence, the Soul of our Self, which is the Supreme Self.

Laksman:  Fine.  So what are we arguing about?  The only argument it seems to me is that you want to tell me that I have not seen that I am the immortal Self.  And I know differently.  When something has not happened to you, you cannot imagine that it could have happened to someone else.  This kind of communication only works if both people are on the same wave length.  You’re on frequency X and I’m on frequency Y. 


Dev: Laksmanji, I am NOT saying that you have not seen that you are the immortal Self. On the contrary, based on your writings I feel quite sure you definitely know you are the Immortal Self. The question is, do you perceive the Supreme Self? Naturally, because of your definition of Advaita you will certainly say that you are the Supreme Self. I have no problem with this statement; I too can assert (and most certainly do know) I am the Supreme Self too, but this does not negate the individual, immortal Soul.


I don’t like using the word ‘individual’ because it relates to ego and is really nothing more than a myth (being rooted in Mithya Gyaan, or false knowledge).  Anyway, I’ve used it here for convienence because generally people cannot seem to grasp that every Soul is unique (not individual), uncreated, and indestructible (and therefore exists eternally with the Supreme Self).  As each of us is unique and eternal, we can never lose our uniqueness and somehow merge with the Supreme Self. Our Essence IS the Supreme Self, so what need is there to merge anyway? The point is, we (Atman) are Eternal and our Essence (Paramatman) is Eternal, and so is the material cause (Prakriti) of the Universe eternal.  These three are all eternal, beginingless, and indestructible.


I fully realize that this flies in the face of Vedanta as it is understood today. This also flies in the face of dvaitists because they will never accept just how similar the Soul is to the Supreme Soul.  Now, this may sound like some new fangled theory to you, but the fact is this is clearly enunciated in the Vedas and the Upanishads (and other scriptures).

Laksman (from before):  I’m having you on with these questions, Dev.  Notice I said, at the beginning “let’s  theoretically accept…”  It was just a way of drawing you out.  I do not have an appetite to know more about anything concerning the Self or the world.  I’ve never seen such an eager guru as you.  And your last statement is not true.  I am the wisdom.  You can ‘continue to draw out’ all you like but please don’t project this desire on me.  As pointed out at the end, my whole email was gentle sarcasm.   

Dev response (from before): Laksmanji, I have certainly realized all along your gentle sarcasm in this present email, and I replied  more or less in kind, using it as a vehicle for the exposition of Wisdom.  Laksmanji, the Wisdom is as limitless as the Unlimited Consciousness of which it is an expression.


Dev: I am surprised that you did not respond to the last statement above (‘Wisdom is as limitless as the Unlimited Consciousness of which it is an expression’). I am sure you must know what I am expressing here.  Notwithstanding what you have written elsewhere, Vedanta (neo-vedanta) is certainly a pramana, but I have yet to meet a neo-vedantin who has really disposed of it.  A neo-vedantin believes they them self are Unlimited Consciousness yet their wisdom is limited to the Vedanta pramana, which presumably they have dispensed with once they have realized their own unlimited nature. But the fact is they’ve not been able to realize their own unlimited nature (the Supreme Self) because they remain stuck in their images (of Vedanta and Advaita).  Really they are not much (if any) better off than the dvaitists who are worshippers of stone, metal, or paper images.  Like the dvaitists, the neo-vedantist (and other intellectualists) remain bound by their images: the dvaitists because they choose to be bound (by their images), and the neo-vedantists because in principle they cannot acknowledge their own limited understanding, i.e., image (without nullifying the neo-advaitic principle).


Laksman (from before): You’re incredibly obtuse, Dev.  I am the Treasure.  The treasure hunt ended in 1971.

Dev response (from before): You think I am obtuse because your own ego (though imperceptible to you) is very obtuse and does not let you see the Treasure (MOKSHA) has yet to be found.

Laksman:  OK, Dev.  Think what you want.  As I’ve already said if I’m deluded I’m happy in my delusion and your attempt to wake me up is not working.

Dev: I am not attempting to ‘wake you up’ because that’s not my job. My duty is to share the truth, that’s all. I am not perfect, nor will I ever be, nor am I striving to be perfect. I am striving for excellence and I realize His Excellency, the Supreme Self, my very own Essence, is Boundless Blissful Consciousness having neither center nor circumference. 


Laksman: (from a previous email) Is there any guarantee that I will 'get' it?  What is the time frame involved?  Will it last? 

Dev reply (from before): Well, given the extent of Eternity, and the natural aptitude of the Self to keep plugging away at it, I would say that the mathematical probability is as good as saying, "yes, you are guaranteed to win the Game" (albeit, eventually, which in terms of our limited conception of time, could take a gooleth to the gooleth power of Creations, which might as well be never to the 'person' who asks the question). The time frame involved is meaningless, as you know, since reaching the Supreme Self means reaching Timelessness Itself. However, from a practical standpoint, since you are really only playing the Game with yourself, you can decide to stop playing whenever you like.  For the same reason (which is no reason) you can choose to play this game all over again at any time you wish; hence, your experience of the Supreme State will last as long as you like. Of course, you, the Self, are ALWAYS connected to That Supreme Self in the eternal relationship of the Pervader to the Pervaded. We remain the same Self regardless whether or not we know it.  In other words, ATMAN never ceases being ATMAN, just as PARAMATMAN never ceases being PARAMATMAN.

Laksman:  And atman and paramatman are just two different words that refer to the same thing.


Dev: No doubt they are very similar, and in fact the scriptures do often use the word Atman when referring to the Supreme Self.  But then, Agni is also used differently, and in one context may mean fire, and in another the Supreme Self, and yet in another the individual Soul.  Throughout the Vedas and Upanishads we find this is true of many of the words.

Dev (from before):  If one holds the view that Jivatman emanates from Atman, goes through many incarnations and perhaps many, many cycles of Creation, and eventually attains Moksha, and is NEVER born again, this view is also correct.  For example, just as in each cycle of Creation the earth and other planets are created anew and we cannot say this Earth planet is the SAME earth planet that previously existed, in the same way we can say the Jivatman is liberated forever and never comes back again.

Laksman (from before):  Again, this was just a joke, Dev.  I’m surprised considering what I’ve said so far that you didn’t pick up on it.  I meant that when you promise somebody something that is going to happen in the future you are really taking them for a ride.  This whole spiritual riddle can be sorted out in the present.

Dev response (from before): This whole thing is a drama, Laksmanji. The Past, the Present, the Future, they are certainly relevant to the drama. There are many riddles to be sorted out in the drama, and whether they are sorted out now or later it will not put an end to the drama. The drama of life is not an existential riddle. The drama of life is a journey to Eternity and that journey is as fantastic as the Destination. No need to rush it.

Laksman:  I can’t see any use in arguing about the meaning of words like drama and riddle. If my meaning was not clear I’m sorry for that.

Dev: It is not that your meanings are unclear; they are quite clear. Still, our disconnect has to do with our differing understandings of Advaita.  Your understanding does not seem to allow you to realize the eternal (uncreated, beginingless, indestructible) nature of the ‘individual’ Soul and Prakriti, and thus their eternal concomitant existence with the eternal, unchangeable, indivisible, Absolute, Supreme Being Who is One Without a Second.


Laksman (from before):  This is how it is, Dev.  It’s probably almost this way with you but I think there is some lack of confidence in your words because you won’t say ‘I’ when you speak of the Self.  You talk about it…which is indirect knowledge…but you don’t speak as It..which is direct knowledge.  And you think that something will be different in the future.  Anyway it’s none of my business. 

Dev response (from before): Laksmanji, this Self that is Consciousness is not the Supreme Consciousness. You are affirming that you are the Supreme Consciousness. The confirmation of this is known only to the Self. The Supreme Consciousness is Self-evident, and that evidence is made manifest when one is egoless.

Laksman:  The statement ‘when one is egoless’ bears looking into, Dev.  The realization that one is Consciousness does not depend on the presence or absence of ego.  It is in the light of Consciousness that ego and its presence or absence is known.  The Self is always manifest, always obvious.  It is never hidden behind some impurities or some ego. 


Dev: This is absolutely true. However, what you do not acknowledge is the concomitant existence of this Consciousness with the Supreme Consciousness. This Consciousness that you speak of projects itself as the Jivatman; this Consciousness that you speak of then ‘appears’ to become hidden in the world of gross matter, i.e., it appears to be ‘apparently’ ignorant and ultimately ‘apparently’ enlightened.  This Consciousness, which is Eternal, is the same in each and every one of us (the jivas), and yet is eternally unique as well.  That is, each and every Atman is uncreated, eternal, unique, immortal, and self-contained. Subtler than this Self is the Supreme Self, which, unlike the Self, never assumes the role of a Jivatmam.  Just as the Self is unique, i.e., one without a second, the Supreme Self that pervades the Self is also One Without a Second.  


 When you think like this you naturally end up with yogic and evolutionary views, not that there is anything wrong with them…although I don’t hold them. 


Dev: What you call the ‘evolutionary view’ is a fact of Life, my friend.  This Life (Lila) is very much like a dream, but it is NOT a dream.  This Life is real. That’s why it requires real wisdom to really live our life to the fullest, which we do by going beyond our small self ego, and then even going beyond our Self to know our Essence (the Supreme Self). The path of Yoga (which cannot really be fully practiced without Vedanta, i.e., the knowledge of the essence of the Vedas) is the time-tested, proven, method that reveals one’s own Essence to one’s own Self, in this drama (Lila) of Life.  


If you think about it at this moment you know that you have an ego.  Is it the ego that knows that it is an ego or is it Consciousness, you, that knows you have an ego? And when your sadhana is finished and the Self has been revealed who will it be revealed to?  It will only be revealed to you, the Self, because the Self is the means of knowledge for everything, the presence and absence of ego included.  Ego is just a concept of limitation.  Ignorance keeps one believing in it.  And when you believe in it, it seems that you are it. 


Dev: I agree with everything you have stated above. Don’t you see that the ‘you’ to whom the Self has been revealed. . . ‘you’, the Self that awakens from the Dream and realizes that it’s essential nature was never modified in any way whatsoever. . . don’t you see that this imageless Self, this immortal Self, is NOT the Supreme Self? The Supreme Self has never been subjected to ANY form of Ignorance, INCLUDING ‘apparent’ ignorance.


As I said already, show me the ego.  You can’t do it.  All you can do is try to plant a doubt in my mind that maybe I am under the spell of an ego that I can’t see.  I suppose it is ‘natural’ to try to pull down people that seem to you to be deluded (although I think it is a bad habit) but it doesn’t have any effect on me.  You will of course think that that very ego that you are suggesting is hidden away in me is creating my denial and keeping me deluded.  There is no end to this ‘I’m right, you’re wrong’ game.  Duality is OK but there are problems associated with it.  Non-duality creates no problems.  Maybe you’re just trying to sharpen your debating skills.     

Dev: If any seed has been planted in your mind it certainly has not been for the sake of pulling you down. But honestly, I have not set out to plant any seeds in your mind, and nor do I have any desire to sharpen my debating skills. I am simply sharing my understanding with you and learning from you. That’s all.


Laksman (from before):  Is there an element of chance that you will wake up tomorrow morning and forget that you are Dev?  I doubt it.  There is no element of chance involved for me because I am not in Maya.  Maya is in me. 

Dev response (from before): I have woken up many times and forgotten I was Dev, because this Dev identity too is only a fiction. Because we are the Self, our consciousness is not interrupted by the death and birth of the body, or the formation of a personality. The Self remains ever conscious. This is not the same as the consciousness which Krishna spoke of when he told Arjuna that he knew all his births from the very beginning.  In other words, when one (the Self) is really established in the Supreme Self, one knows all and one's knowledge is not subject to increase or decrease.

Laksman:  That’s not what I meant, Dev, although it shows that ‘Dev’ is just a concept too.  I meant that the knowledge of one’s relative self, except in mad people, is basically unforgettable.  And I was using that as an analogy to say that once one’s knowledge “I am the Self’ is direct and firm it is not subject to forgetting.

Dev: Your statements are accurate but this does not equate the Self with the Supreme Self.  Certainly the knowledge “I am the Self” is direct and firm and is not subject to forgetting. However, this knowing that ‘I am the Self’ is not the same as ‘all-knowing’ (omniscience). This knowing that I am not limited to the ego, mind, or body (or even to the Jivatman) is not same as being All-pervading (omnipresent). This knowing that I am the power of Divine Love (Blissful Consciousness) is not the same as that all-powerful (Omnipotent) Supreme Bliss that knows no beginning or end.

Dev (from before): Is there no chance that you might not have reached your full potential?  If the answer to this question is no, then naturally you would have no desire to explore the matter further.

Laksman (from before):  There is no full potential or partial potential for me, Dev.  There is only actual.  You might consider how so much of your thinking is future oriented.  For me there is no time.  It stopped in 1971 and never started again. Everything is present and actual…eternally. 

Dev response (from before): Based on other things you have said, this is not very believable (though I know that doesn't matter to you). In any case, you are certainly an extremely rare Jivatman, though you will surely deny it.

Laksman:  This statement confirms what I have been saying all along.  You can only believe or not believe.  What you believe or don’t believe doesn’t have anything to do with the reality in this case…because you have no way to verify my statement. 


Dev: I have no need or desire to verify your statement when I have no doubt.  It was simply a manner of speaking to say ‘this is not very believable.’ What I am saying is not based on beliefs; it is based on the Sruti, the testimony of Aptas (the Trustworthy), and my own direct experience.


As you rightly point out I don’t care what you believe one way or the other.  Your belief doesn’t benefit you or me.  I would, however, qualify this statement slightly.  If you were inclined to believe, pending the outcome of an investigation, you might see…as I suggested before…that what is true for me could also be true for you.  Let’s not forget that you initiated this discussion and you have a well known tendency to look for what you deem to be untruth.

Dev: Truth is universal. Facts may change, because what is factual is not always actual. For example, it is a fact that people experience things while doing drugs; the experiences are facts to the experiencer even though those facts may be little more than a fantasy. The human mind is a laboratory filled with exotic chemicals which are capable of producing remarkable experiences from which one may draw amazing conclusions.  The chemical reactions may be triggered by drugs or by the power of thought itself, but neither drugs nor the power of thought can reveal the Truth.  My point is that the Truth cannot be known by an empirical process, though that empirical process (in the form of Vedanta pramana, for example) may certainly produce a relatively blissful and peaceful mental condition.