Know that the pure and changeless self-awareness in the heart is the knowledge that, through the destruction of the ego, bestows liberation.
Ramana distils in a few words the perennial wisdom of millennia. Take it or leave it. We might fail to listen and trust it because of its irreducible simplicity. It doesn’t say everything about human consciousness and destiny. What can? But it expresses a truth that opens the self-illumined mind to itself if we trust it. The gospel word pistis that we translate as faith also means trust.
Trust is the first step towards the serious practice that may take us a day - or a lifetime - to fulfil. It doesn’t matter how long. All that matters is that we are taking that first step - each day - until we know we are already there.
With the legion of whirling crises storming around us these days, this kind of expression of truth might seem aspirational, idealistic but, well, not just for now. Naturally, our first concern should not be to write daily readings and think about these things but to do what we can to reduce the suffering generated by these crises. But this is not what Ramana is expecting, that we should just think about it. If we listen attentively, faithfully and trust then we will see the self-illuminated. And we become what we see.
St Peter knew this:
And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. (2 Pet 1:19)
Just to think about it, compare it, analyse it, store it away in memory is to act like the addict who knows she has to quit or die but still postpones the moment of truth and real conversion.
If one person on the planet each day could listen to the degree where they allow the ‘mystery of Christ in you’ to be self-luminous, the cause of the suffering of the world would be reduced. It shines by itself because it does not depend on thought or proof. It just is and nothing can contradict or invade it.
Laurence Freeman
Lenten Reflections 2022