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Gurudeva's Description of the Self

Siva exists in three perfectionsas the personal God, as omnipresent consciousness and as the transcendent Self. One of the many unique teachings Gurudeva gave us was a very accurate description of the transcendent Self - timeless, formless, spaceless and causeless - "an emptiness that is the fullness of everything." Having this precise description of the Self makes our search much easier through our vast and varied meditative experiences.

Unedited Transcript:

One of the great gifts given to us by Gurudeva is the description of God. In our terminology, we call it the three perfections, three different aspects of God.

Why is this important? Well, it is important because otherwise it can be very confusing. We read scripture and God is described as a person. We read scripture and God is described as Transcendent. We read something else and God is Omnipresent Consciousness. We read something else , we can end up kind-of confused. We try and worship God Siva and we run into our confusion. We say, "What exactly is the nature of God Siva?"

So when it comes to the five actions, of course, this relates to the personal God, Parameshvara and that is one of the perfections. God Siva as a person, who can be seen as a person. Gurudeva's powerful vision of Lord Siva as a person is what we are fortunate to have on our San Marga property, where the Svayambhu Linga is. That is where God Siva as a person appeared to Gurudeva and from that, the Iraivan Temple has come forth. That is one of the aspects that makes the Iraivan Temple very special - it was founded upon a vision. Temples can be founded for many reasons. You want a cultural center, you want a place where it is warm, whatever. Temples are founded for many reasons but when they are founded on a vision, it gives a temple a special quality.

The second concept of God is Omnipresence. That is nicely conveyed in Yogaswami's statement, "Bliss, bliss, bliss. Here, there, everywhere am I." In this case, he is identifying himself with the consciousness, which is God Siva. He calls it an "I" also. When we are in that consciousness because we are attuned to omnipresence, we can't go anywhere or come anywhere. There is no going, there is no coming. There is no movement. We can't travel because we are already everywhere.

Gurudeva would sometimes joke about it. He would be driving along and tell you that he wasn't moving. It was his way of describing what Yogaswami was describing. "I am not moving. Nothing is moving." Because, he was already everywhere. You cannot move if you are already everywhere. You can only move if you are somewhere, going somewhere else. Then you have a sense of moving. But in that state of consciousness there is no moving. We are already there. We could be running down the street and we are not moving because we are already everywhere.

Then, Gurudeva has given us the description of Siva as the Transcendent Absolute, Parasiva, identical with Paramatma, the Transcendent Self.

One of Gurudeva's unique contributions to talking about the Self, is he describes it so precisely. It is very hard to think of transcendent. What does it mean for something to be Transcendent? What does it mean for something to be the Absolute? So, how does he describe it? We all know how he describes it. "Timeless, formless, spaceless and causeless. Like the emptiness on the inside of a empty box, which is not empty but it is the fullness of everything."

The word empty is a very useful word to grab on to. It is an emptiness that is a fullness. Timeless, causeless, spaceless, formless. This is very useful in terms of thinking about it, in terms of searching for it, in terms of realizing it. Because we have a description.

We sit down, we go into the inner light and see all this beautiful inner light. We know that is not the Self . Even though it is blissful and wonderful, we are not confused, "Oh, I found the Self." We get into a state of consciousness where we feel everything is one. "Oh, this is beautiful, must be the Self." No, we know that is not the Self because it is something. It is a thing, it is not nothing, it is not empty. So, we even have to go deeper than those realizations of light and unity of consciousness to get near the Self.

That is a wonderful contribution that Gurudeva has made. It makes realization of the Self a lot easier because it is described so precisely.