This word nirgrantha is very valuable. Brahman, the absolute, is knotless, and we are full of knots – that is the only difference. But how were the knots tied and what are they? It is necessary to understand their nature. This sutra is about the nature of the knots. Let us understand this sutra, there are some very valuable hints in it.
The delusion of things being in one’s soul is an imposed phenomenon. Dropping it, one is oneself the perfect, nondual and actionless Brahman, the absolute reality.
When a knot is made in a handkerchief it is not separate from the handkerchief. Have you ever seen a knot alone without the handkerchief? Have you ever seen a knot alone without any string? Did you ever see a pure knot – a knot all by itself? Whenever there is a knot it will be in something, it can never be all by itself. It shows one thing clearly, that a knot cannot be separate from that from which it is constructed. When it cannot exist all by itself, how can it be imposed from outside?
No, the knot does not come from the outside. And even in the handkerchief the knot was not there until it was tied. So it is a very interesting question. The knot cannot just come from outside – nobody has ever seen a knot all by itself, nothing of the sort exists. It is always in something, never alone. And the handkerchief itself was knotless just moments ago, it was not carrying any knots in it. Then where did the knot come then? Did it come from within the handkerchief? How can it come from within the handkerchief when there was no trace of it in the handkerchief just moments ago? It did not come from outside, because on the outside no knot is ever found. Neither has it come from outside nor has it come from within; the handkerchief has imposed it upon itself, the handkerchief has created it. Created means it was not in the nature of the handkerchief, it has achieved it.
The world is our achievement; we have created it with great effort, through many devices. The knot does not exist somewhere in existence, the handkerchief has imposed it upon itself with great effort.
Whatsoever appears to be in the consciousness is an imposition. Whatsoever comes to be experienced within, it is all imposition.
As we were discussing earlier, things come before a mirror and they are reflected in it. If the mirror commits the same mistake that we do, thinking that it is these reflections, it will be in the same trouble that we are in. But the mirror does not commit such a mistake, though some other mirrorlike things – photographic plates or photographic films – do commit such mistakes.
A film hidden inside a camera and a mirror are similar. An image forms in a mirror as well as in the film in a camera, but the mirror does not catch hold of the image, whereas the film does. Thus, whatever image forms on a film is caught by it, and because of this catching the film becomes useless. Now no other image can form over its surface, it is full.