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Ramana on Meditation

Ramana4 Sri Ramana’s insistence that awareness of the “I”-thought was a prerequisite for Self-realisation led him to the conclusion that all spiritual practices which did not incorporate this feature were indirect and inefficient:

“This path [attention to the ‘I’] is the direct path; all others are indirect ways. The first leads to the SElf, the others elsewhere. And even if the latter do arrive at the Self it is only because they lead at the end to the first path which ultimately carries them to the goal. So, in the end, the aspirants must adopt the first path. Why not do so now? Why waste time?”

That is to say, other techniques may sometimes bring one to an inner state of stillness, in which self-attention or self-awareness inadvertently takes place, but it is a very roundabout way of reaching the Self. Sri Ramana maintained that other techniques could only take on to the place where self enquiry starts and so heĀ  never endorsed them unless he felt that particular questioners were unable or unwilling to adopt self-enquiry.

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I have come across the following analogy quite often.

..meditation is very much like training a puppy.
You put the puppy down and say, "Stay."
Does the puppy listen?
It gets up and it runs away.
You sit the puppy back down again. "Stay."
And the puppy runs away over and over again.
Sometimes the puppy jumps up, runs over, and
pees in the corner or makes some other mess.
Our minds are much the same as the puppy,
only they create even bigger messes.
In training the mind, or the puppy,
we have to start over and over again.
one does not beat a puppy for being a puppy
one does not internally berate oneself for the wanderings of the mind
but simply starts over and persists patiently

A question.  What is it but the mind that is attempting to train the puppy? By buying this analogy and attempting this practise you are putting the puppy in charge of the puppy.  How does this help?

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