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Unfortunately We Are All Hypnotized

Unfortunately, we are all hypnotized. We don’t know what we are in reality; we identify ourselves with so many things according to our knowledge, experience and environment, and the way we were brought up. At the same time, we do not know what the ground looks like, what the pure Self is. We have to undo whatever we have learnt; completely remove from our own being whatever we are now identifying with. The greatest difficulty is to make innocuous the already imprinted thoughts and ideas. The truth is none of them are sticking to us, none of them is interfering with our true nature. They are all just like clouds, reducing the amount of light shining through, but the light above the clouds — like that of the sun — is still bright, in all its glory.

These impressions are so powerful — just a sound, one word, is sufficient to tip us off, to make us lose our ground and to make us behave like lunatics. Even though we are thoughtful, intelligent beings, when it comes to our life, we are helpless. With all our intelligence, with all our scientific knowledge, we don’t understand our present situation because we are so deeply rooted in and so coloured by our impressions, superimpositions, attachments, aversions. We identify ourselves with all these impressions and think that we are [structured] according to them. But really speaking: Were they born with us? No. When did they come? How did they come?

When we analyse: ‘Yes, there was a situation which brought on the ideas, the identifications, and now I identify with them.’ As they came so they will go. If we are not one with the thoughts, then why should we identify ourselves with them and make ourselves miserable? We know this logically but not emotionally. Reason tells us it is all true but when it comes to the emotions, we are lost. What we need is strong will power, conviction, so as to neutralize all these identifications. To de-hypnotize ourselves we need to be well grounded spiritually.

It is true that all religious teachers, without exception, are telling us in one voice that the kingdom of God is within us, that the Atman is within us, that all these superimpositions are temporal. But in the name of the gods, the evolved souls, we kill each other; we identify ourselves with those creeds and we do the worst things. That is why human life is not based on reasoning, not on logic. We use logic to explain things but we live by emotions, sentiments, associations. All these drag us down to commit the worst things. We don’t stop and think:‘Was it true, is it true, will it be true?’

Patanjali brings the concept of Ishwara, God, as there must be something on which you can put
your mind, focus your mind, to remove all superimpositions, attachments, aversions, associations. To draw the mind from all of them you need a greater force — God is the greatest force.

If we have any faith, any devotion to God, we can gain ground. Patanjali explains what is meant
by ‘Ishwara’: He is the Supreme Being, untouched by all these dual throngs of miseries, is beyond attachments and desires, is absolutely pure.