Chapter 14: Action, Inaction and Non-Action
In fact, we make do with a very tiny part of our mind, a major part of it remains unused. It is like a person owns a big palace but lives in its porch. And he has become so accustomed to the porch that he has forgotten altogether that he owns a large palace which is just behind. Really there can be no porch without a house, the porch is only the entrance to the house. But we have forgotten the large house that our mind is, and we spend our whole life in the porch - our conscious mind is nothing more than a porch. It is not that the conscious ever gets completely disconnected from the larger mind, but we never enter and explore it so we get psychologically isolated from it. But deep down we know it is there.
Entry into the depths of the unconscious does not take place in stages; it always happens in a leap. Of course we can discuss and understand the unconscious in terms of parts.
Those who follow the path of spiritual discipline do so piece by piece. Krishna’s path, however, does not accept discipline. He says over and over again that we are already divine, but since we have forgotten it we have only to remember it again. That is why the Upanishads repeatedly say it is just a matter of remembering. We have to remember who we are. It is not that we have lost our godliness, we have only forgotten it. It is not that godliness is our future, which we have to become. It is sheer forgetfulness.
And that makes a great difference, because spiritual discipline believes that we have lost something which we have to regain. Or it thinks we have to become something which we are not. Or it is presumed that we have to use discipline to get rid of many wrong things that we have acquired through wrong living. But in the process of remembering we have neither to regain something nor to become something, we have only to remember that which we have forgotten. We are what we are, and it is divine. Nothing has to be added or subtracted. Only a screen of forgetfulness, oblivion, divides us from our real being, our divinity.
Devotion is the foundation of Krishna’s teaching, and remembering is basic to devotion. But the devotee has forgotten remembering altogether, and instead has taken to chanting; he goes on chanting the name of Rama. The Sanskrit word smaran, for remembering, has been corrupted, it has become sumiran and surati, and these other words have taken different connotations. Chanting Rama’s name will not make you remember that you are Rama or God. Even if someone constantly repeats, “I am God, I am God,” it will not be of any use. Remembering has nothing to do with chanting or repetition of names. But constant repetition of God’s name can create an illusion. You will begin to believe that you are God. This belief will be illusory, because it remains con fined to the conscious mind while the unconscious remains absolutely untouched by it. Then what is the process, the way of remembering? What is its technique?