“Is a man in Unity Consciousness ever in a hurry?” – Maharishi explains enlightenment


In the seventh and highest state of consciousness, which Maharishi (1972) calls unity consciousness, one experiences Being as the basis of and permeating all aspects of life: everything is perceived as nothing but expressions of Being. Even though the diversity of life is still appreciated, what dominates in unity consciousness is the experience that all aspects of life, from the most refined to the most manifest levels, are nothing but the self-interacting dynamics of Being, pure consciousness, the substance of our own transcendental consciousness.

For this reason, one is capable of appreciating all objects of perception in terms of the Self (pp. 23-8?23-9). The Vedic literature describes this experience: I am That (pure transcendental consciousness), thou art That, all this is That (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, 1.4.10).

Recall that the Upanishads also declared that all fear is born of duality. Although a state of inner nonduality, or inner unity of the Self, is permanently achieved in cosmic consciousness in this first stable state of enlightenment, the inner Self stood separate from the outer, constantly changing, highly diversified world. Hence the outer world is still experienced as fragmented and completely different from the Self.

Only in unity consciousness is the gap between inner and outer reality, between subjective and objective existence fully bridged. As proclaimed in the Bhagavad Gita, in the highest state of enlightenment, one sees the Self in all beings, and all beings in the Self (His Holiness Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1967, p. 441). Thus all creation becomes as dear to one as the Self, and one experiences in the most profound sense, The world is my family (Maha Upanishad, 6.71). In this state, not only is fear unthinkable, one becomes maximally nourishing, harmonizing, and enriching toward all of creation.

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