Fire, though present in the firesticks, is not perceived until one stick is rubbed against another. The Self is like that fire: it is realised in the body by meditation on the sacred syllable OM.
Let your body be the stick that is rubbed, the sacred syllable OM the stick that is rubbed against it. Thus shall you realise God, who is hidden within the body as fire is hidden within the wood.
Like oil in sesame seeds, butter in cream, water in the river bed, fire in tinder, the Self dwells within the soul. Realise him through truthfulness and meditation.
OM…peace – peace – peace.
Disciples enquire within themselves: What is the cause of this universe? – is it Brahman? Whence do we come? Why do we live? Where shall we at last find rest? Under whose command are we bound by the law of happiness and its opposite?
Time, space, law, chance, matter, primal energy, intelligence – none of these, nor a combination of these, can be the final cause of the universe, for they are effects, and exist to serve the soul. Nor can the individual self be the cause, for, being subject to the law of happiness and misery, it is not free.
The seers, absorbed in contemplation, saw within themselves the ultimate reality, the self-luminous being, the one God, who dwells as the self-conscious power in all creatures. He is One without a second. Deep within all beings he dwells, hidden from sight by the coverings of the gunas – Sattwa, Rajas, and Tamas. He presides over time, space, and all apparent causes.
So we’re moving onto our second Upanishad which is called ‘Isha’. This one begins with the introduction: ” Life in the world and life in the spirit are not incompatible. Work, or action, is not contrary to knowledge of God, but indeed, if performed without attachment, is a means to it. On the other hand, renunciation is renunciation of the ego, of selfishness – not of life. The end, both of work and of renunciation, is to know the Self within and Brahman without, and to realise their identity. The Self is Brahman, and Brahman is all.”
The Upanishads are powerful stories, which through repetition and clarity instruct us how to live our lives well. Yoga is a way of life and we’re learning all the time. Learning to let go of attachment is a big lesson…