Death and Cosmic Consciousness – A Talk by Maharishi
A recorded lecture by
August 1970, Humboldt State
Student (S) : Today in our discussion group we were discussing levels of consciousness and this rose a couple of questions. The first one is, at what level of consciousness is it unnecessary for an individual to incarnate again.
: At the level of consciousness where the development of the self is full. And that is.S: (interrupting) Is this Cosmic Consciousness (CC) then?
MMY: Right. S: I see. And at this point if the person leaves the body or dies if you want to call it that and goes on to wherever he goes, does he have his individuality? And if he does can he incarnate again?
MMY: He doesn’t go.S: I don’t understand.
MMY: Cosmic Consciousness is a state where the small ‘s’ has become big ‘S’. Self. And Self – big ‘S’ Self – means unboundedness. Unboundedness. Eternity. When the status of the individual has expanded to unboundedness, that is his status and that is he. Hmm? When the status is unbounded, he is beyond time and space. He’s all over. Once he is all over, where he can go? Hmm?S: He’s individual, but yet he’s unbounded everywhere?
MMY: This is what the small self becoming big Self means. In our meditation that unbounded awareness, that awareness, it has already expanded to eternity, to infinity. Infinite is the boundary of the individual consciousness, huh? On the level of consciousness. On the level of the body he is so many feet long and so many feet wide.Individual. But his awareness is so much unbounded. When the ndividual is so much unbounded, and the body ceases to function, then what will happen to that unbounded awareness? Nothing can happen to It. Hmm? That It is ‘I’ capital. It. Unboundedness. And therefore, it doesn’t leave the body and doesn’t go anywhere, because being everywhere it cannot leave a place and go to another place. It cannot leave one time, go to other time. So the unboundedness is free from the boundaries of time and space. And that is why a man living Cosmic Consciousness does not go somewhere. His body goes from manifested state to unmanifested state. The body goes, he doesn’t go.
S: Thank you, Could you speak a little bit on chakras and kundalini?
MMY: (interrupting) Now, now, now, now, now. I’ll speak more on this, hmmm? To make it little bit more clear. What is happening. (a group enters the lecture hall) Oh, come on. The poets enter the room now.Come on, come on. I am having a poetic flight. (laughter)Now how does CC grow? How does one grow in CC? We have known it is the growth of the nervous system. Growth means transformation.Purification of the nervous system. Modification of the nervous system. Due to which that pure consciousness becomes permanent. One example will clarify this situation. Green water in a glass, green water in a glass. Now the sun is shining everywhere and the glass is in the sun. The reflection is green. This is like the small ‘s’ self- when the nervous system is not purified, it is green. The water is green, it’s not very clear. Nervous system is clouded with all kinds of impurities. Now that green water has green reflection. The sun, sun shining evenly everywhere is not green. It’s neither green nor red or no colour. It’s colourless. If we modify water, green water being modified, green becoming less and less, hmm? That means the reflector of the sun is being modified, resulting in the modification of the reflection. The water becoming less and less green, the reflection is becoming less and less green. Less and less green means more and more towards the nature of the sun. Less and less green reflection means more and more becoming like the sun. At a point, at one particular moment, the water is no more green. Completely pure.Still, the water could continue to be modified. This modification could continue ’til the reflection has gained the quality of the sun around it. The reflection has become the omnipresent sun. It has gained the quality of the sun around it. This is like Cosmic Consciousness. The reflection then is a eflection. It has its structure according to the shape of the glass, but that the quality of the reflection is the quality of the sun. The reflection feels, ‘I am the sun’. Hmm? This is realization. The reflection which had its an identity different from the sun has now gained the quality of the sun.’I am the sun.’
Just like that, the nervous system, reflecting the omnipresent being,and the reflection is of a particular quality. Hmm? But with transcendental meditation the modification of the nervous system keeps on improving the quality of the reflection. Quality of reflection keeps on becoming purer and purer. A time comes when the individual reflection, the Self, has gained the quality of omnipresent being. Hundred percent. The Self is Being. The small self has gained the status of big Self,big ‘S’. In this state, the nervous system, due to the nervous system, the big Self can be located and yet it is unbounded. When the reflection has become like the sun, and the reflection has gained the quality of the sun around it, then it is omnipresent sun. It is the same sun that shining everywhere. Yet,because of the glass it has its individuality. So it is an individual entity and it is omnipresent sun both at the same time.
Now, the glass breaks. Water spreads. What has happened to the reflection? Nothing has happened to the reflection except that is ceases to be located. The reflection that was here when the glass was intact was the same sun as everywhere – it has the same quality. Now the glass is not there, it’s broken. Where has gone the reflection?
What happens when the body ceases to function? What happens? The ego, individual ego had already gained the status of cosmic ego. And cosmic ego is there on the cosmic level. So nothing happens to the individual ego. Nothing new happens to the individual ego. Only that the individual ego is not able to associate itself with the mind and senses and project itself to the field of action and in the environment. Only it’s because there is no means available for the projection of the ego through the action into the environment, this phenomenon ceases to happen. The ego ceases to function because the means of action – the nervous system and the senses – they are not available. So what happens to the ego? It only ceases to function through the senses because there is no senses. It ceases to experience because the means of experience are no more available.
Senses, they already had been fully developed, even when they were functioning on the isolated boundaries of time and place. Hmm? When the man was living Cosmic Consciousness. That time the senses were functioning. Now the machinery is no more available. They do not, the senses are not able to function. That is all. So only the functioning stops. Nothing happens to these individual subjective aspects of life. Ego, even during lifetime had already been cosmic ego. Intellect had already been cosmic intelligence. Mind was already cosmic mind. Senses had been fully developed. Hmm? And so the isolation aspect of the senses only drops off. The cosmic aspect continues. So it’s only the individuality drops off with the body ceasing to function. The cosmic aspect, hmm? Remains.Cosmic Consciousness has two aspects to it – one cosmic aspect, theother individual aspect. The glory of the individual aspect is that by virtue of this individual aspect, cosmic aspect can be lived. Hmm? This is the glory of the individual aspect of Cosmic Consciousness by virtue of the nervous system functioning normally- that the cosmic aspect of life is possible to live on the individual level. And this is the glory of the fully developed nervous system. That cosmic unbounded aspect of life is capable of being lived on the individual level. Hmm? It’s a very great, it’s a very great blessing that the individuality can live cosmic existence, cosmic intelligence. This is the glory of Cosmic Consciousness, and when the body ceases, individuality drops off, cosmic status remains. So one doesn’t leave the body.
It is said that the ego and the mind, they are already cosmic in structure, even when the body is functioning. And nothing can happen to the cosmic structure when something happens to the individual level of the cosmic structure. What does it matter? Hmm? Cosmic structure remains undisturbed when the individuality drops. What can happen to the ocean if a drop drops off? Nothing. So when the body drops off in the cosmic, cosmic value of life only ceases to be located, that’s all. We don’t talk in terms of death of Cosmic Consciousness- he doesn’t die.
Only the individuality of cosmic prana which was due to the body ceases to be. The individuality of the mind, which was due to the body,ceases to be with this ceasing of the body. Hmm? Nothing happens new at the time of death, only that the individual ceases to be located by others. Is that clear?S: Could a man in CC choose to reincarnate to help raise the level of man? Raise the level of consciousness of man? Once he’s reached this CC, can he incarnate again to help further the evolution of man?
MMY: Incarnate means come back.
S: Yes I know.
MMY: Now we have seen he doesn’t go. (laughter)
S: Take up another body?
MMY: So when he doesn’t go, there is no question of coming back.
S: Yes, but I’m speaking in.
MMY: (interrupting) Anyone who will go will come back. Go has to be back. One doesn’t go, doesn’t. There’s no question of coming back when he doesn’t go. There is no question of coming back. When his going is arrested, he doesn’t get a passport to come back. His going is arrested, it doesn’t go.
S: Thank you.
MMY: Is that point clear?
S: Uh, yeah kinda. I don’t see if a man reaches Cosmic Consciousness,and he leaves the body, and like you say he’s unbounded, then can he choose to come back toin a body to help.
MMY: The desire is out of hand. He can’t make a choice. Because,hmm? A seed which has been roasted, a roasted seed, firstly it can not desire to germinate and in case it desires to germinate it has no more potentiality left to germinate. Even if a roasted seed desires- irstly, he cannot, it cannot desire to germinate, because there is no possibility left for desiring. In case, by some chance maybe, it desires to germinate, it can’t. It cannot germinate because that possibility has been roasted. (laughter) In the fire of knowledge,that possibility to germinate has been roasted. Now a man in enlightenment cannot- firstly he cannot desire to come back,secondly if by any cosmic mistake he desires, the coming back is out of hand.That possibility is out of hand, it just cannot, cannot, cannot come back.S: Can he influence the relative world?
MMY: While alive he does in every way. As long as he is individual,he is living that cosmic life and therefore is a means. His individuality is a means to set in motion, to set in vibration that cosmic life. Cosmic life breathes through him, pulsates in his, in his pulsations. And this is a very great thing. If one could set the cosmic existence to pulsate, it’s a very great thing. And this cosmically conscious man does automatically.
When I am answering, don’t make questions. When I am answering, if youare manipulating a question in the mind, then you are left with a problem. When I have finished answering, then you start thinking ‘What is the next angle to raise?’ It will be very beneficial. And if, when I’m talking you do strike with some question regarding what is being said, note it down quietly and keep it.