Today I was re-reading Krishnananda’s The Study and Practice of Yoga Vol. 1 and came across this great passage and just thought I would share it will all two of my Readers…with optional musical accompaniment…
“If, in a dream, we ran away in fear of having seen a tiger in a jungle, and climbed up a tree and then, due to fright, fell to the ground in agony and broke our leg – all this activity has taken place within the jurisdiction of the mind alone. The tiger was the mind, our running was the mind, the tree was the mind, our falling from the tree was the mind, and our feeling of pain was also the mind working in various ways. The mind was everything there. The mind was the space; it was the time; it was the distance; it was the fear; it was the action; it was the subject; it was the object. Such a kaleidoscopic shape the mind could take, though it is absolutely certain that there was nothing external to the mind in while dreaming. There was nothing there – neither a tiger, nor a tree, nor our running – nothing happened. But all this mystery of dream experience cannot be known as long as one is in the condition of the dream, as long as one is dreaming. It becomes known only when we wake up from the dream.
Likewise, the philosophical mind may analyze the nature of the world. It is not true that there are objects outside. It is not true that there is space and time. It is not true that we have likes and dislikes in respect of external objects. All of our pleasures and pains, which are the outcome of these complexities of experience, are as much real, significant and meaningful as those we have experienced in dream. Just as we cannot know that our dream is unreal as long as we are dreaming, and can know it only after we are awake, in the same way we cannot know this secret about the nature of the world as long as we are in a world of relativity where everything is determined by everything else, so that nothing can be known absolutely. We are caught up in a peculiar difficulty in the understanding of the essential nature of any object in this world on account of the relatedness of this object to everything else in this world, so that we cannot know anything unless we know all things.
Thus it is that we are kept in a state of ignorance, and it is on account of the ignorance of the essential nature of the objects of perception that we are in this world of pleasures and pains. But, as it is the case with waking up from a dream, so is the case with waking up from world-consciousness. The internal relationship of things gets revealed only after the awakening of oneself from the dream condition, so that we are not bothered even the least about what happened in dream. We are neither frightened of the tiger, nor are we happy about the emperorship which was perhaps bestowed upon us in a dream. Neither of these has any significance for us, merely because of the fact that we have woken up into a higher degree of consciousness which is called waking.
So will be our condition when we wake up from world-consciousness. All these wonders, attractions and repulsions, these horrors, these forms of ugliness, these mysteries – all will be wiped out in a second when this relativity-consciousness gets sublimated in Absolute-consciousness, which is similar to the mind waking up from a dream into this world- consciousness…”