Joy of being within
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Joy of being within

The Upanishads uniquely illustrated our doer and observer self.

india Updated: Mar 22, 2012 23:49 IST
MN Kundu
MN Kundu

The Upanishads uniquely illustrated our doer and observer self. There were two identical birds in a tree. One bird was eating fruits, jumping, singing and dancing. After prolonged activities, it came near the other bird that was all along sitting silently and observing without any involvement and doing nothing else. Even its presence was shrouded in leaves. In a state of silence, the two became perfectly identical in existential plane without any activity or prominent manifestation of presence.

The silent bird represents our watchful inner self which is always silent and inactive without any involvement in outward happenings. The active bird represents our doer social self which functions in workplace, society, home etc. It is creating and exhausting karma, circling around craving. When the outward activity stops, we are attuned with the observer self beyond worries, anxieties, joy and suffering arising out of involvement in worldly living. The aim is to invoke this calm inner self and seek refuge in peace and happiness of being.

Another example may further clarify the point. When we take part in a drama, we talk, sing, dance, fight, weep, suffer or enjoy as per the role. But our real self amusingly observes our own enactment of suffering, sorrow or death without being perturbed at all. In the heart of hearts, we know that we are mere players but exhibit perfect involvement in the drama by words, deeds and expressions.

The tragedy is that in real life situation we forget that the world is a stage and we are mere players. We identify ourselves with the role played by us and become ignorantly involved in doing and possessing things. Seeking refuge in the inner self, we can make our life enjoyable in every moment and observe it as a tragedy or comedy.

To enter this inner self from social self, we need to meditate to be one with it. Sit down quietly and observe the sensation and sound of breath, its movement in the body. Meditate on who you actually are beyond your deeds and possessions and discover the detached being within.

First Published: Mar 22, 2012 23:48 IST