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Story Of Realization – Indra Prajapati

Indra was seeking enlightenment and spent about thirty years with Prajapati, the Supreme Deity. After thirty years, Prajapati told him to dress in his finest clothes and look at his reflection in a pan of water. He did so, and as he stood looking at his reflection he realized that he was Brahman, without fear or imperfection. He was thrilled with this enlightenment. The body is God. There is no need for sacrifice or meditation; simply seek the heart’s desire and personal gain, and enlightenment will follow.

But as Indra travelled back to heaven with this new realization, another thought struck him. In
time, this body would begin to fade and lose its beauty. So he returned to Prajapati and studied for
a further seventy-odd years, still seeking the answer and going deeper into himself. This time, Prajapati told him that enlightenment was found in the dream state, when the self is free from pretense and attachments. This seemed hopeful to Indra, and he celebrated enlightenment through his dream world. After a while, this too was squashed as he realized that his dreams were often full of suffering and sadness. This was not what he was looking for.

So he went back, and this time was told by Prajapati that it was in a deep, dreamless sleep that enlightenment would be found. Indra tried this, but it too was unsatisfactory as he felt he might as well have been dead at rest in this state. So one last time he returned to Prajapati for some years.

Finally Prajapati taught him that enlightenment lies beyond body and mind, in the deep awareness
of one who has a body but is not that body, the one who dreams but is not those dreams, and the one who merges with the deep, dreamless sleep. The one who is aware is Brahman, God.

Even for the mighty Indra it took one hundred years of study to realize that it was the very process
of self-discovery that was enlightenment. Spirituality is a process of self-awareness. It does not have
an end.