Yesterday, I told a story about a woman with five daughters. In that story, the daughters were asked to remove their Disney Princess costumes, “and become my daughters again.” Of course, each girl already was the woman’s daughter. No one really had to remove the costume to “become” the daughter.
The same is true with you. You do not need to remove your false beliefs and conditioning in order to become truth. You are truth now. And yet, you do need to let go of your false beliefs and conditioning, just as the girls did need to take of the costumes—if not for strawberry shortcake, then later, for some other reason, like to get ready for bed, to bathe, or to go to school the next day.
Why do costumes need to be removed? Because they aren’t truth. The costumes did not represent who the girls were. The costumes weren’t real. They were temporary. Beliefs and conditioning do not represent what you are. They aren’t reality. They are temporary. The spiritual journey is one of taking off the temporary—like one takes off a costume—and returning to the foundational reality.
How does one do that?
Nisargadatta Maharaj said, “All you need is to listen, remember, ponder. It is like taking food. All you can do is to bite off, chew and swallow. All else is unconscious and automatic. Listen, remember and understand — the mind is both the actor and the stage. All is of the mind and you are not the mind. The mind is born and reborn, not you.”
He also said, “Forget the known, but remember that you are the knower. Don’t be all the time immersed in your experiences. Remember that you are beyond the experience ever unborn and deathless. In remembering it, the quality of pure knowledge will emerge, the light of unconditional awareness.”
And, “The more earnest you are at remembering what needs to be remembered, the sooner will you be aware of yourself as you are, for memory will become experience. Earnestness reveals being. What is imagined and willed becomes actuality — here lies the danger as well as the way out.”
What is to be remembered? “The ‘I am’. Give your heart and mind to it, think of nothing else.”
And one final instruction from Nisargadatta Maharaj: “Just remember steadily what you want, and reject the incompatibles.”
These quotes are the heart of today’s reading. First, contemplate these quotes, and then read today’s reading from NTI. Put your heart into the contemplation and the reading, and you will experience great profit, which brings me to another Nisargadatta Maharaj quote:
Remember that you are.
This is your working capital.
Rotate it and there will be much profit.