By Swami Satrupananda
How will the pandemic play out? Who will win the U.S. Presidential election? How will it impact me? You ask these questions because you want certainty in the future. You seek this certainty because you have forgotten the certainty of your own existence. Your own existence is unchanging, eternal. You will feel unsettled until you know and live from that inner certainty. It’s time to stop looking for certainty in the world and find your eternal, unchanging Essence within.
Technology can make us feel like we are in control of our lives, providing the illusion of certainty. “Siri, set a timer for 5 minutes.” “Alexa, play music I like.” Our phones are smart. Our homes are getting smarter. Stores are opening with no cashiers and no checkout lines. Technology has helped declutter your mind of telephone numbers as well as appointment times and dates. Yet your mind still churns.
You try to calm your mind by finding certainty in external circumstances. But you are looking in the wrong place. To find certainty, look for it in your own existence. The sages from India describe your innermost Essence as unchanging and eternal. In the Vivekachudamani, the 8th century yogic sage Shankaracharya described this Essence:
Aatmaan [your Divine Existence] is birthless and deathless. It neither grows nor decays. It is unchangeable, eternal. It does not dissolve when your body dissolves. — Translated by Swami Nirmalananda
You exist beyond birth and death. You have never not existed. You will never stop existing. Nothing you can take away from yourself will make you less you. Nothing you can add will make you more you. You are unchanging and eternal. You exist. Your existence is the one Eternal Existence that is being everyone and everything.
I remember my first experience of the eternity of my beingness. It was early on in my meditation path. An awareness arose that I always existed and will always exist. It was a knowing beyond my intellect. Having been steeped in the time-space continuum from my scientific education, my intellect was blown away. I could not understand my experience with my mind. Yet I knew my Eternal Beingness was more real than anything my mind could ever understand.
It is incredible that I had such a profound experience of my own eternality so early on in meditation. This is the specialty of Svaroopa® Vidya Meditation: a Meditation Master shows you the way. Swami Nirmalananda is a modern day-Meditation Master, a representative of an unbroken lineage of Masters. She opens the door inside to your own certain Existence. She is the catalyst that fuels the discovery, making it quick and easy.
Well, at least she makes it quicker and easier. This is a process of discovering and learning to abide in your own Existence. It is a bit peculiar: if you are eternal, beyond time, why don’t you know it all the time? The answer is a four-letter word: mind. Your mind draws you outward.
Your mind runs around the world seeking certainty that can only be found inside. It’s not just your mind. Everyone’s mind does this. It’s called the human dilemma. Each of us is the one eternal Existence, yet we don’t know. It is the ultimate quest in life — to know your own eternal Existence. So your mind needs to do some work.
By using your mind to turn inward, you can discover and live in the certainty of your own Existence. Abiding in your eternal Essence, you continue to live in the world. But you approach it from a different place within yourself. While living in this uncertain world, you are based in the certainty of your eternal Existence. To get there, follow the path shown by Swami Nirmalananda and dive within.