Thursday, March 1, 2007

Two Different Dream Worlds

This is from a talk given by Robert Adams. For the whole talk, go to

Last Sunday we were discussing the telephone calls I received in reference to voting. People call me with strange questions. Do Jnani's vote? Should I vote if I’m a Jnani? And my answer is usually the same to everybody, which was, as long as you ask the question, you should vote. As long as you inquire if you should or you shouldn't, then you're part of the system and you should.

After the election I continued to receive phone calls. One person asked me an interesting question. He called from Dusseldorf, Germany. Is there such a place as Dusseldorf? I asked him where he got my phone number. He said, "Ramana Ashram." I didn't realize they had my phone number. But anyway he asked me a pretty intelligent question, to an extent. He said, "Robert, if everything is a dream, why should we vote, or do anything, if it's all a dream?" We'll discuss this today.

We see that life is a dream. Everything is a dream. The world is unreal. Why should you do anything? The reason of course is you are involved in the dream. You are part of the dream. As long as you are part of the dream, you have to do what has to be done in this world of the dream, for you believe you are the body, the mind. Therefore you cannot fool yourself and imagine that you're somewhere else, when you're not. You come under the law of cause and effect. You come under the laws of karma. As long as you believe in this world, there is karma for you, there is cause and effect. You cannot say in one breath that there is no karma and no cause and effect, and then react to the world. You know whether or not you believe the world is real, by the way you react to it, consistently, constantly, how the world makes you feel. This shows you whether you believe the world is real or not.

When you think of your body all the time, when you respond to the world all the time, then you must do the things of this world. Remember the cliché, "Do unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s. And do unto God, that which is God's." Where do you belong? In the world or in heaven? You can tell by the way you react to life, by the way the world makes you feel, by the way you respond to your body. Yet it's all a dream, but you're caught up in the dream.

As an example, when you go to sleep and you're having a dream, you dream that thieves break into your home and shoot all of your family. Then you wake up. When you wake up, do you go looking for the people who shot your family? It was a dream and you laugh. But you forget you're living in another dream, which is this world, which is the mortal dream.

Do not connect both worlds. They're both two different states of consciousness. They're two different dreams. Yet when you're in your dream world, dreaming, when you go to sleep at night, you're doing all sorts of things in that dream, aren't you? You're acting and reacting, doing all kinds of things in that dream. Do you ever in a dream say, "This is a dream, and I'm not going to react to this world?" You don't. You continue doing things in your dream. That's how it is in this world also.

Most of us are stuck in a dream world. We're stuck in a dream world because it presses down on us. It appears so real. Things are happening every day. Yet, one day you will awaken. It’s the same as awakening from your dream at night. There is no difference. When you awaken to the dream at night, do you have any interest in the dream? You may for a while. If you're into dreams, you may try to decipher what the dream means, for a little bit. But after a while you forget all about the dream. So it is with this world. When a person awakens, or a person becomes liberated, they are able to see the dream, but they know they are not part of it. They merely observe everything, but they are not part of the dream. The world no longer has any power over them, over the awakened person, the liberated person. The world has no power whatsoever over you once you’re liberated.

This is the way you should think of it. Just as a dream that you were dreaming at night, you awaken and forget all about it, so when you awaken here, you forget all about this world also. Yet you're in a body, so it appears. As long as you're in a body, you'll see other bodies. You will see the world as everybody else sees the world. But you're a 100% sure that this is not a world of reality. You know this. You continue functioning in this world, but yet you are not doing anything.

To the Jnani there is no action being taken whatsoever. To the ajnani there is action being taken. And the ajnani sees the Jnani taking action also. But yet, to the Jnani, nothing is happening, nothing is going on, there’s no world, there’s no dream, there’s no karma, there’s no cause and effect.

When I tell you that cause and effect and karma do not exist, you have to be real careful with yourself. Do not take this as a license to do anything you like. Remember again, and I'll remind you again, and again, and again, as long as you are involved in this world and you believe the world to be real, then karma is also real. It's as real as the world, as real as your body. As you sow, so shall you reap. You have to deal with this. What you do to others, you are doing to yourself. You hurt someone, you hurt yourself. You love someone, you love yourself.

It's nice for me to come here and tell you that everything is absolute reality, everything is nirvana, sat-chit-ananda, pure awareness, pure intelligence. This is the ultimate truth. But how many of us are living from this standpoint? We have to work from where we are. The worst thing you can do is to fool yourself, and make believe you can get away with something. In this world you can't get away with anything. The lord of karma is always watching. You always get back what you put out. Nothing more, nothing less. This is what I mean when I tell you everything is in the right, place, unfolding the way it should, all is well, there’s absolutely nothing to be concerned about. But if you go around making a fool of yourself, by causing problems to other people, having all kinds of attitudes, anger, jealousy, fear, whatever, these are emotions that you're putting out in the karmic world, and the karmic world has to return to you what you put out.

So this is a dream world. Yes, this is all a dream. You are the dreamer, but you haven't discovered this for yourself. This is a very important point to remember. You have to awaken, become free. You cannot imagine that you're free, because you hear Advaita Vedanta lectures. You cannot imagine that you're free, if you feel yourself suffering somehow. If you feel hurt, or frustrated, disillusioned, or depressed, how can you possibly be free?

When you are free, you have unalloyed happiness all the time. Eternal happiness and eternal joy is always with you, regardless of conditions. For you are no longer conditioned. You are no longer looking for anything. Does it make sense for a enlightened person to look for a healthy body, or for a prosperous body, or for this or for that? Of course not. This is the fact that nobody’s left to look for these things. The ego who does this has been totally transcended.

... Why is it so hard for most people? Because you've been attached totally, solidly, to maya, to ignorance, to the belief in two powers, belief in separation. You feel in your ego that you're separate from the self, you're separate from your source. This is the only reason that you suffer. If you knew who you were, it would be virtually impossible for you to suffer in any way. But this is where it becomes paradoxical. For again you may appear to be going through some experiences, yet the enlightened one knows they’re not going through anything. This is why when the disciples saw Jesus hanging on the cross, they thought he was suffering. But Jesus, the Christ, never suffered. Yet Jesus, the man, appeared to be suffering, by all of his disciples, by the Roman guards.

... One of the best ways to let go of your emotions is by practicing self-inquiry. I know some of you have got tired of practicing this. Some of you believe nothing is happening, but all the same make it a habit. Think of the many habits you have now, destructive habits. Habits that do not help you whatsoever in your unfoldment to the self. But yet you do these things without thinking, the destructive habits. Develop a good habit, like practicing self-inquiry. Do not look for results. Do not look for anything to happen. Just do it.

Ask yourself, "Who feels depressed? Who feels human? Who feels there’s something wrong someplace? Who feels this illusion? To whom do these things come?" And of course you answer, "I do. I am feeling all these things." As soon as you say this to yourself, realize that the I is separate from you. The I who feels all this is not you. For if the I were you, you wouldn't use it all the time like you do. You wouldn't say, "I am this," and, "I am that." This shows you there’s an I and there’s a you. You say, "I am this, I am that, I feel sick, I feel discouraged, I feel depressed."

... Realize to yourself, "I is not Me." I is something by itself, and it doesn't exist, some form of hypnosis, some delusion, called an optical illusion, that makes me believe I am I. When you get that far, you can further inquire, "Then where did this I come from? If the I is not me, why do I keep saying I, I, referring to myself? Where did this I come from? What is the source of the I?" Everything has a source.

Just by thinking this way, you're thinking about God. People always ask me, "How shall I think about God? You always tell us Robert, to concentrate on God and forget about the world. How shall I think about God? Say anything about God?" By realizing the source is not I. Who am I? If I is not the source, what is the source of I? That's all you have to say. Don't go any further.

... Catch yourself. Day, after day, after day, catch yourself, and think along the lines we’ve discussed tonight. When you can do this, something will happen to you, something wonderful. I can assure you of this. A benevolent power will take over and bring you to your true home, which is absolute reality and total happiness.

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