The realised one is free of thoughts and worries even in the middle of thoughts and worries. Is free of senses even in the middle of all sensory perception. Is free of the intellect even in the middle of the operations of the intellect and is free of the ego even when acting as the ego.
~ Ashtavakra Gita (Chapter 18, Verse 95)
So firstly, one comes to see that renunciation has no place in the spiritual domain. Nowhere is Ashtavakra saying that the realised one has dropped thoughts, dropped ego, dropped intellect, or dropped the self.
It is very important.
Not only must we read what the Sage is saying, but often it is important to also see what the Sage is not saying.
He is not saying that you must stop all thoughts, he is not saying that you must kill the ego, he is not saying that you must get rid of the world. He is saying that let these continue. He is saying, “Let these continue, and even as these continue, you remain perfectly relaxed and still.”
And it is such a disruptive statement because so much of our traditional Spirituality is concerned with dropping and renunciation. So people go to meditation centres to become thoughtless. People say, “I want to get rid of my worries.” And so many teachers have often advised that the world is an illusion; so drop the world
No, Ashtavakra has said none of that. He is saying, “Let them continue. Let them continue on the periphery, you sit at the centre — still, relaxed; just realising, just knowing, just watching, just witnessing.”
The mind has a right to continue, the body has a right to continue, the world too has a right to continue. Please let them continue. Let them continue as one lets the monkeys play around on the trees. You may be conducting a very important business here, but do you take a gun and shoot the monkeys down? Do you?
You may have a very mischievous kid, and sometimes the kid gives you hell, as all kids do. But will you strangulate the kid? No, you let the kid be. You let the kid be, and you say, “Let the kid do what the kid wants to do, and I will do what I must do.” And that is the right relation between the mother and the kid, between the Source and the mind.
If you try to stop the…