Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Who am I? (part 1)

Who am I? What is the purpose of existence? What is my role in the same? How best can I play this role? For the last six years, day and night these existential questions play in my system whether meditating, thinking, reading, working or discussing.... I presume that this must be true for many.

Answers and understandings of these issues have come to me in meditation with great vehemence and clarity. I must have examined these understandings thousands of time from all scientific and logical angles, but have not been able to change a millionth of its fraction. Since the time I have got these answers in meditation, I have used the mind for verification, validation, searching for the right words (however inadequate),explanation and logic to explain to myself. I am not a grammarian - I cannot create arguments, refute others nor quote scriptures, philosophers or religion. In short, I am not a wordsmith, not someone who could write a brilliant recipe book - but one who has tasted and experienced the truth, as I understand it.

Is this megalomania? Is this perversion of the mind? Is this some fanciful notion of thoughts playing in my mind as it does in everyone's mind - converted into "my" variety of truth? Am I playing mind games? Does my understanding stand up to the beacon of rationality and logic? Are these profound understanding or some kind of bullshit masquerading as one? Am I crazy?

These questions and more of its ilk grapple all the time and I look for answers in religious books like the Bhagawad Gita, Vedas, Upanishads, the Darshanas and philosophers like Sri Aurobindo, J Krishnamurthy, Osho, Swami Vivekananda and religious leaders like Paramahans Yogananda, Ramana Maharshi, Sant Dnyaneshwar, Ramkrishna Paramhansa, new found thinkers like Sadhguru, Maharishi Yogi, along with scientific understanding with Fritjof Capra, Roger Penrose, Ken Wilber along with findings of quantum physics and such.

So, over a series of blogs - I intend to share my thoughts on these 4 crucial questions - with critical analysis of the variants of current thought process.

For example on the question of "Who am I?" there are three broad philosophical strands.

1. Materialism - understands everything in terms of material terms. Believes that the universe is a complex machine with only physical parts, subject to certain laws, therefore everything is based on the theory of Evolution. It has some drawbacks but is the genesis of great scientific progress.

2. Religion - a dualistic viewpoint of existence with a physical benevolent God being the creator and existence being the creation. Some have messengers and books as go-between Creator and creation. Has some amazing advantages in the devotion tradition but source of immense violence, separation, competition and exploitation.

3. Spiritualism - a non - dualistic thought process which looks at each and every element of existence as being part of creator. Which deals with the energy / spirit of every being and works for inner clarity to discover the relationship between all forms of existence. Quantum physics has validated many of its worldview.

The next blog will talk about these three broad strands in details and try to answer the key question "Who am I?". Do write in your thoughts.


  1. do ask your readers to enrol for the postal course in kriya yoga for first hand experiments with yoga


  2. Highly intellectual stimulant but i could not locate " Who am I "

  3. I am the soul or spirit and not the body. I have adopted a human body at the command of God but I am not the body. I am a part of God, "Ishwar Ansh Jeev Avinaashi, Chetan Amal Sahaj Sukh Raashee". So I am without a beginning and the end, infinite, un-destructible,"Sat", "Chit" and "Anand".

    Religion to me is "Re" means again and "Legion" means unite or meet. Over a period of time it seems it got distorted. It tells me that I was once a part of God and at the command of God I took the human form. Ever since then (birth) my destination is to unite back with my source or God. That seems the purpose of human life and the goal of human life. What one should then do to achieve that goal? One should embody all those means and ways -called virtues, such as speak truth always, love everyone, don't be attached to materials in them, have patience, forgiveness, etc. and shed of all vices such as greed, lust, envy, anger, etc.

    Materialism to me is all manifestation of God. All matters have God in it. The space we occupy ever since conception, the air we breathe, the fire in us, the water we drink and the earth we live on and eat from. The spirit is every where, even in stones there is one characteristic of life -the subtle movement as all electrons of an atom moves around the nucleus. We can't see it but it is there. Life in trees and plants is more developed than that in stones and so on in animals it is more advanced than in plants and vegetation. But the human life is the most advanced form of life in all universes. After all the Bible says, “God made the man in his own image”.

    Spiritualism is being infinite from the finite. It is like the realization of self within and everywhere just like water within and outside the pot. The spirit is to be experienced no matter what it is called –spirit, soul, self, “Atma”, “Braham”, “Ruh”, “Tatva” or anything else. It does not matter what we call it, but we need to experience it. Just like it does not matter what we call water -aqua, eau, “Jal”, “Paani”, “Aab” etc., we need to drink it to quench our thirst.

  4. Simply EXCELLENT, Mayank, in fact gorgeous with capital 'G', if I can be permitted to say so. What you have presented, not many are privileged to experience or narrate, not because they are any less , but because they are YET to BE THERE where you are - each human being at his/her evolutionary milestone.

    Since I have met you, 'auric-exchanged/interacted' with you, I am ONE with you, so I 'know' you, because I am you and you me - you will understand what I am blabbing :), most may not! which is perfectly in place.

    I am really happy you have chosen to so express yourself. Its the natural outcome of a deep 'inner sadhana' which ony fellow sadhakas can relate to - you CANT BUT EMIT the fragrance ... hmmm ... ALL that you have shared is true and so valuable; people, and the entire world, may stand up against you to declare you inane or insane, YET you shall stand, yet you shall conquer, for those are the laws of the spiritual ascension, the evolutionary trace-back of the involutionary trail.

    It was not without 'reason' that our paths converged!!! - You are the designated one for tasks that you know not yet, yet are destined to fulfill.
    See? the madness is matching :) :) Am I insane too? ha ha, ho ho, certainly not - its relative in any case, my truth is mine, squarely between me and HIM, scripted uniquely for me; yours for you, same for others, but they are NOT YET CONNECTED, the veil still not ruptured - the 'outer' not conquered, the INNER not yet discovered - that’s the fate of most. 'INNER' dynamics being the repository of the OUTER'S SCRIPTs, a la seed containing the tree, how then can the fiddling with the 'outer' alone change the outer? The sperm and the egg, being pre-scripted, determine the fundamentals, the collective and the environment the adornment.

    Who you are, what life is, whither the man, are ultimately the queries of man, the God-to-be.

    My sharing is the result of the ripples of your sharing, the butterfly effect - without you, I am naught n NOT! So is it with everyone [only if Amitabh Bacchan :) can promote the dissemination of its awareness – a la 4 boond jindagi ke (polio add)]. That is the ultimate secret – paarasparikta, mutuality, if you will.

    Reminds me of a quote or two:

    “He who acquires for himself alone, acquires ill though he may call it heaven and virtue.”

    “Before us still there floats the ideal of those splendid days of gold:
    A new world in our vision wakes, Love’s India we shall rise to mould.”

    WELCOME Mayank, to this blog - to yourself. Happy exploration …

    Love and regards,
    Tumhara Suren

    (Surendra Gupta
    Golden India, Pondicherry)

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  6. I am exploring answer to a somewhat related question : Why am I born ? All possible answers only appear to be philosophical. Does not strike a chord with the heart, and therefore not convincing.

  7. I have read Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, a realised master, whom I follow and have accepted him as my Guru.(I do not know if he has accepted me as his disciple or not) I am looking forward to your next blogs. Interesting reading.

  8. Thanks for all your views.

    "Rama is dead and in the picture, Krsna is in the statue" - now it is "me" that is in this existence. So, I will proceed to blog about my understanding of who am I, what is the purpose of existence,What is my role (or why did I take birth) and how best can i play the role.

    So while I respect various worldviews, I do not subscribe to any. I do not wish to compete or argue with anyone, I follow no one, I am content just sharing my understanding because its welling within me. As George Mallory said that he wished to climb the Mt. Everest "because it was there"

  9. Mayank Bhai!
    I would break this question further in two parts -
    Why to live? &
    How to live?
    All the answers you have been discussing are related to 'How to live'. But the first question is 'Why to live?'. Unless we answer this question from within, we can not answer How to live or who am I?

    Why do I live?/or to be ore clear, Why do not I die?' has to be answered first, the only other questions get their answers.

  10. Dear Manish,

    I intend to start with the basic question and then go to these relevant issues. Do stay with me as I explore all these issues, in my own way. :-)

  11. You have started very thought provoking discourse. I am interesting to know that can this dialogue will explain question, “Who am I, ultimately?” and what is the purpose of my existence in the planet earth. How can we (all human) live the in the mother earth with love, peace justice (Nyaya), and truth? What will be programme and way of life to achieve the existential goal?

  12. Mayankbhai you may not be a wordsmith to write a book but definately a influence and visonary whose thoughts are path breaking.

  13. oh my god ! you have have measured all religion with one scale ! what is difference between concept of existance by sprituality and hinduism

  14. I would like to helo you with this as I can see you havent understood the question, "Who am I"
    its not about finding "intellectual" understanding of the world, like you have done. there is tons of knowledge available in the world and you can process it the way you want. Your mind is affected by thousands of samskaras and mind patterns which will come up as thoughts and give you idea, which may or may not have anything to do with absolute truth. What is the purpose ofall spiritual gurus, tell us to as the question, "Who am i" I dont know if words are enough to explain it, as its an experience and not any intellectual thought or information. When you ask "Who Am i" dont answer it.. look within you.. just look.. and thats it.. there is no requirement of any answer. even if any thought comes.. dont follow it.. keep doing it.. remain in the state of "thoughtless awareness" (mindfulness) as much as you can.. once you do that.. you will truly find who you are.. and thats you.. and once you find it.. you will start learning the sidom of the world and not just knowledge.. Once you know who you are.. there wont be any questions left to ask or ponder..