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In the form of the human , are there not people who are , as it were , minerals ? In the form of the human , are there not persons who are in the state of the vegetable rulerdom , and are there not people in the shape of the human who are in the state of the animal rulerdom ?

In the shape of the human , let us see if there be humans who are really humans , and in the form of the human , let us see if there be humans who are gods .

RAMA राम

My Own Self in the Form of People ,

Tonight we are going to hear something on the Expansion of Self ; you might say on the degrees of life , the grades of spiritual advancement , or you might call the subject , degrees in the refinement of selfishness . Perhaps the conclusion arrived at will be startling .

The diagram that you see before you consists of a straight line and circles .  You will say ,

" What is the use of these ? What have circles to do with the unfoldment of the Self ? "

Some are saying in their hearts — these are not circles , they are very crooked , they are rather ellipses . But these circles are to denote classes of life , which are not exactly circular , which are crooked and elliptical , so to say , and that justifies the imperfection of the circles ; they exactly represent in their deviation and in their imperfection what they have to indicate .

Before beginning with what life is , and the degrees of life , we shall have to say a few words about these circles .


Here is the minutest circle , a very small speck . It ought to have been made even smaller than that , but fearing that if it were smaller it could not be seen , it is drawn large enough to be visible .

There we have beyond this a second circle , larger than the minute baby-circle , and outside that a third one and then there is the fourth one . One peculiarity of these circles is that as the circle goes on expanding , enlarging , the centre of the circle goes on receding from the starting point A , on the straight line which is a common tangent to all the circles . The centre recedes , the radius increases and the circle enlarges . If the centre of the circle is very near the starting point A and if it is made nearer and nearer still until it coincides with the starting point , the circle becomes a point . Thus a point is the limiting position of a circle , of which the centre has come extremely near to the starting point , and when the centre goes on receding from the starting point , the radius goes on increasing and increasing until it becomes infinite or the centre moves up to infinity , then the circle becomes a straight line .

Thus a straight line is the limiting position of a circle , of which the centre moves up to infinity , or of which the radius is infinite .

Another peculiarity we notice is that the greater the circle , the nearer it becomes to the tangent , straight line and its curvature goes on decreasing as the circle goes on increasing . Thus we mark that the larger circle with centre D is at the point A , very much more like a straight line than the internal circle with centre C is , and then this internal circle is more like a straight line than the circle with centre B , which falls within it .

This is why the earth , although really spherical , appears flat when you look at any part of it , the sectional circles of the earth being infinitely large for the naked eye . This will do for the circles .

|| LIFE ||

Life ! What is the characteristic feature of life ? What is it that distinguishes life from inanimation or want of life ? It is motion , energy or activity . This is the popular way of looking at the question . The definitions of life given by Science can also be summed up in this definition .

A living person can move forth , walk about , do all sorts of things . A dead mummy cannot manifest these forms of energy or this or that motion , or these movements which the living person displays ; a dead animal cannot move about ; the living animal walks , runs , does all sorts of things . The dead plant cannot grow ; it is devoid of motion , devoid of activity entirely . A living plant grows , exhibits motion .


We see again that generally four distinctions are made in the degrees of Life , or this world is divided into four principal rulerdoms : the mineral , the vegetable , the animal and the human .

In this world we see that the human exhibits more energy , more motion , a higher kind of movement than animals do . Animals can simply walk about , run or ascend mountains , but the human does all these things and much more , many other things . The human displays or shows motion and energy to a higher degree . By means of telescopes the human can reach the stars .

Animals cannot do that . The human can control the animals . The human annihilates time and space by means of steam and electricity . The human acquires rapidity unknown to animals . The human can send messages instantaneously to any part of the world . The human can navigate in the air . This is the human's motion , the human's energy , manifestation of power in the world . Animals fall short of the human in manifesting or exhibiting energy and we see that animals are lower down in the scale of life than the human .

Again compare the vegetable rulerdom with the animal rulerdom . Vegetables also grow . They move , but their motion is only in one dimension , they can move up in one line , they cannot move from this place to that , they are fixed to one spot . They send forth their branches in all directions and strike their roots very deep ; but the manifestation or display of energy in the case of vegetables is far inferior to what it is in the animal rulerdom , and there we see vegetables are lower down in the scale of life than animals .

Minerals have no life in them . Indeed , if we define Life in the same way as biologists do , then they have no life . But if we mark the grades of life by the revelation and manifestation of energy , we might say that minerals also do manifest a kind of motion ; they also do undergo a change ; change is indispensable for them , too .

Thus , they also have very small traces of life in them , but their life is very insignificant , being at the bottom of the scale , because the activity , the motion , the energy betrayed by them is insignificant , infinitesimal . Thus , it is clear that life which is characterized by motion is graded in accordance with the degrees of motion or energy .


Now , in Nature , the plan is that there should be nothing new under the Sun . We mark that despite this apparent variety , in spite of all this outward multiformity , Nature or the Universe is very poor . The same Law which governs the trickling down of a tear from the lover's eye also governs the revolutions of suns and stars . From the minutest atom to the remotest star , we find the same simple laws which might be counted on the fingers controlling and governing everything .

Nature repeats itself over and over again . This Universe might be compared to a screw or spiral , of which every thread is of the same fashion , or it might be compared to an onion . Take one sheath out and we have another sheath of the same kind ; then take that out and we find another of the same kind ; peel that off and you have another sheath of the same pattern .

In just the same way , what we have in the whole year , we have on a miniature scale during every twenty-four hours . The morning time might be compared to the spring season . The noon might be compared to the summer season . The afternoon and the evening might well compare with the autumn , and the night might be compared to the winter . Here we have in twenty-four hours the whole year reproduced on a miniature scale .

The human in embryo repeats with marvellous rapidity all the past experiences of life-forms which it inhabited before assuming the human form . The shapes of fish , dog , monkey , etc , are all , one after the other , assumed by the foetus in the ovum , before reaching the form of human-child .

Thus , in accordance with the usual plan of evolution , according to the general law which governs the whole world , we want to find out if in the body or form of the human there be practically the mineral , vegetable and animal rulerdoms reproduced .

In the form of the human , are there not people who are , as it were , minerals ? In the form of the human , are there not persons who are in the state of the vegetable rulerdom , and are there not people in the shape of the human who are in the state of the animal rulerdom ?

In the shape of the human , let us see if there be humans who are really humans , and in the form of the human , let us see if there be humans who are gods .


First , we shall take up the moral and spiritual minerals . The mineral rulerdom manifests no motion apparently ; it exhibits no energy outwardly , but nevertheless it has some kind of energy , some kind of activity , some kind of motion , because we see minerals undergo change , there is disintegration and development even in the minerals . They crystallize and grow . This earth which we look upon as stable , when compared with the sea , this solid-seeming earth rises , falls , undergoes undulations and changes . Thus minerals also have some kind of motion in them , though exceedingly unnoticeable .

Now , who are those in the shape of the human that have only the same kind of motion as minerals ? In other words , who have the same kind of motion as a child's spindle or top has ?

A spindle or top turns , goes round and round , it moves , and when it is revolving vehemently the children come up and clap their hands and rejoice saying :

" It is stationary ! It does not move ! It does not move ! "

This is self-centred motion . Motion they have , revolving motion , but the centre of revolution lies within the body , and even when the motion is most violent , seemingly there is no motion at all . We might compare the life-motion of the minerals to the motion of a spindle or top , and represent it on the blackboard by the smallest circle , the point circle .

You know , all motion in this world is in circles , no motion in a straight line ; all science proves that . For this reason we will make use of circles to represent the manifestation of motion . In Mathematics motion is represented by lines ; in the present case circular lines will best serve the purpose .

So we have mineral life possessed of a motion comparable to spindle-motion . It may be best represented in the figure before you by this minutest circle which might be called a point .

Who are those among humans whose motion is like the motion of a top , whose circle or orbit of movements is simply a point , whose life is the life of minerals ? Just reflect . Evidently these are people , all of whose actions are centred around a little point , a false self , the little quarantine of a body , three and a-half-cubits long .

They are selfish in the lowest sense of the word . These are people whose all actions are directed towards sensuous enjoyment . These people work in different lines , do all sorts of labour , but the object is simply to seek debasing pleasures . These are people who care not if their spouse and children starve ; they care not whether their neighbours perish or live ; at all costs they must drink , they must make merry , they must obey the dictates of the lower nature . Their demoralizing needs must be satisfied , even if it be at the sacrifice of the interests of their family and community . Let the spouse and children starve , they care not , if only their cravings of the flesh are gratified . The centre of all their movements , the focus round which they turn , the sun round which they revolve , the centre of their orbit is simply the little body . Their activity or motion is dead motion . This is the mineral life in the human .

We have had in the history of the world very beautiful and precious minerals in the shape of the human . You know , diamonds also belong to the mineral rulerdom ; rubies , pearls , jewels and all sorts of precious stones also belong to the same rulerdom .

There was a time in the history of Rome , when we had Nero , Tiberius and other Caesars , to mention whose names is to contaminate your ears . We have had mighty rulers , emperors , very precious minerals but minerals only , not humans . What would you think of these emperors , emperors of the whole world that was known to them , and yet caring not a straw for the interests of their state , who took no thought about their relatives and friends , but who must satisfy their animal passions , no matter what happens to their spouses , subjects and friends . You have heard about them , about the crimes they committed .

There was one of them who fell a victim to the passion of eating delicious things the whole day long . Partaking of a most delicious dish , one ate and ate till nature rebelled . With the help of medicines everything was vomited , and when the stomach was relieved , one would return to the table again . This process was repeated over and over in a single day .

One of them burned the capital of the world to gratify the desire of seeing a big conflagration .

What do you think of them ? These were precious jewels , diamonds , no doubt , but not human . These are minerals in the rulerdom of the human .


We come now to the state of vegetables in the form of the human . Their circle is larger than the grossly selfish little circle of the mineral human . Their circle is larger and these people are much higher than the mineral human . Their activity might be compared to the motion of a race horse . The race horse describes a larger circle than the spindle or top does . Their circle is represented in the diagram by the second circle of which the centre is B .

Who are these people ? These people do not pursue their work simply to satisfy the taste of the flesh at the expense of everybody else's interest . They take into consideration the good of some other associates . These are people who turn round their spouse and children , the domestic circle . They are far superior to the selfish mineral human , because these people not only advance the good of their own body , but they advance also the cause of their spouse and children .

The second circle includes many smaller circles , so do these people advance the good of many little selves besides their own little self , but should they be called unselfish ? No , no ; in the case of these people the self is expanded only a little . In the case of the mineral human , the self was limited to this little body ; and in the case of these people the self is practically identified with the domestic circle , their spouse and children .

That is also selfishness but selfishness refined a little . They are very good people so far as they go , but just look at this second circle which represents them .

It is concave towards all inside it . What is concavity ? Concavity is folding and clasping in the arms of love . Let us with our stretched arms form a circle . This is concavity . This circle is concave for the members of family , it is turned towards all the points that it embraces , but it turns its back to the whole universe outside it .

These people are very good so far as they go , so far as their concavity or extended arms go ; but they turn their back to the whole universe . The selfishness of these people moving in the second circle of the vegetable human becomes evident when the interests of one family clash with the interests of any other family , and then there is strife and discord wrought by them between all the members of one family and all the members of another family .


Next we come to the third circle . These are animal humans , animals in the form of the human . This third circle , represented in the figure with the centre C , is larger than the preceding two . It might be compared to the circle described by monsoons or trade winds .

It represents people who have identified their self with something higher than this little body or the domestic circle . These people identify their self with their class or sect or their state . They are sectarians , people who identify their self with a caste or craft . They are very good , very useful indeed , far more useful than the vegetable humans are .

Their centre is beyond the little body . It is at a much higher , wider expanse than the centre of the vegetable human . The radius of revolution in their case is longer . Blessed are these people . You see their usefulness extends to many families and individuals . They are useful to the people they embrace within the arms of love . They are useful to the people to whom their attitude is that of concavity . These people advance the good not only of their little body , not only of one house or family , but they advance the good of the whole class or sect with which they have identified their self ; they are very useful .

Are they also selfish ? Why , yes ; selfish they also are . They seek to benefit their own self which is identified with their sect , at the cost of other sects or castes . If you want to see the shortcomings in them , you will have simply to mark their attitude towards all the points outside their circle . They turn their back to all that is outside . When they crystallize and stereotype their sectarianism , woe unto them that do not accept their version of truth .

Here is one class , and there is another class , another circle of the same kind . These being turned against each other , all the individuals belonging to the first class are at war and at dagger's drawn with all the individuals represented by the second class . Look here , if they do good to some , they do as much mischief , if not more , by declaring war upon all other communities and rival sects . One whole sect quarrelling and fighting with another whole sect on the other side . How much discontent is engendered by that ! Still these people are far more preferable to those who are only vegetable humans .

The Law of Nature is that you should not stand still in any position : you should go on : march on and on . Be not subject to inertia or averse to change and progress . When the people are in the state of the mineral human , the next higher state will be that of the vegetable human and for the people who are in the vegetable rulerdom , so to say , the next higher state will be that of the animal human . If a person , while advancing upwards and making onward progress , passes through the state of the animal human , it is well and good .

There is nothing harmful or detrimental for one in passing through the state of the animal rulerdom ; it is all right . Things go wrong , everything becomes confused and all produces mischief , when we want to stand still and stop at one place and refuse to make further progress by selling our liberty to this or that dogma or creed . It is natural for everybody to pass through that stage at one time or another ; but it becomes wrong for one to stick to it and endeavour to perpetuate it . It becomes wrong and a cause of mischief when one becomes a slave of that particular name and gives rigidity to one's position .

When the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were being destroyed , Lot's spouse turned back . The spouse was leaving the city , but turned the face back , wanting to remain in the city ; the heart was there and the spouse wanted to go back . And there on the spot the spouse was converted into a pillar of salt . Just so with the people who keep making upward progress and who keep moving away from their previous situation and who refuse not to make advancement , it is well and good for them ; but the very moment that they want to turn back and refuse to make onward progress and sell themselves to names and forms , that very moment they change themselves into pillars of salt .

Stagnation or fanaticism becomes the cause of misery . These may be good people , animal humans , but they must make progress , must go on .


We come now to the fourth circle , the circle represented on the board with the centre D . Here is the human in the human . Here is a normal human . The circle might be compared to the circle of the moon . The moon describes a circle around the earth , it is more elliptical than circular .

The moon human , who is that ? A very large orbit this describes : happy is this one , perhaps ? This is a human who identifies with the whole nation or the whole race , who might be called the patriot . A very large circle is this one's . The moon human cares not whether those for whom one works belong to this creed or that . Irrespective of denomination , caste , colour or creed , one makes it a point to advance the cause of all those who live in the same land with one . Very welcome is one , one is very good , a human one is , but that is all . You see , the moon brings about revolutions also in the sea , brings about tides , ebb-tides and flood-tides . Besides , lunatics , you know , are also said to be moon-stricken .

This is a good circle , no doubt , the moon circle , but just see when moon humans stereotype their position , when these people become selfish , and their selfishness is crystallized , the selfishness in their case meaning patriotism , when it is given rigidity , when it is crystallized , what results ? It brings revolutions and lunacy . It sets one nation against another , and there we have bloodshed and warfare , thousands — nay , sometimes millions upon millions — of beings shedding , spilling and drinking blood and making the fairy face of this beautiful earth blush with slaughter , blush red with blood . They are very good for those whom they embrace , to whom they are concaved , but just mark their attitude towards those against whom they are convex .

Washington is all right for Americans , but ask the opinion of the English . The English patriots are very good as far as , what they call , their own country is concerned , but just look at them with reference to those people whose lifeblood is being sucked by their patriotism .


Last of all , we come to the fifth circle . Here the centre moves up to Infinity , say : the radius becomes infinite , and what about the circle ? When the radius moves up to infinity , the circle must become a straight line ; all the crookedness is gone . The straight line passes through the whole space equally , fairly ; it is concave to none , it is convex to none . The circle becomes a right line , a straight line it becomes . All crookedness is gone ; all curvature vanished .

These are GOD-humans ; their circle might be compared to the circle which the Sun is describing . You know that the sun moves in a straight line ; the radius of the circle is infinite . The Sun is all glory . Here is a circle of which the centre is everywhere but the circumference nowhere . This is GOD circle ; these are free-humans ; these are free — free from all sorrow , free from all fear , free from all bodily desires , free from all selfishness .

Are they selfish ? No , up to this , we had selfishness . Have we no selfishness in this straight line ? The straight line is a straight line — no enslaving point can we see anywhere . It passes through the space , no selfish little centre round which it may turn , nothing to turn it round .

Here is selfishness destroyed ; or , you might say , here is the real Self gained .

You see , we began with the point circle , gross selfishness , and here is that little point enlarged , increased and expanded till it has become a straight line .

These are GOD-humans . These are people to whom the wide world is home , irrespective of caste , colour , creed , community or country . Be you English , be you American , be you a Mohammedan , a Buddhist or a Hindu , or whatever you may be , you are Rama's Self . You are the Self to Rama . Here is selfishness marvellously increased , here is a strange kind of selfishness . The wide world is my Self : the universe is the Self of this human : the wide world , the lowest creature , minerals , vegetable , the Self of all these becomes the Self .

To one who had reached this state of perfect freedom , there came a disciple who sat at the feet for a year or so . When the disciple was going to leave the master , the disciple began to bow down at the feet , to kneel down before the master , to prostrate , as the custom in India is .

The master , smiling , raised the disciple and said ,

" Dear , you have not yet learnt all that you could learn . You lack a great many things yet ; stay for some while more . "

A few days more the disciple stayed in the holy presence of the master , and got more and more of inspiration . The heart was converted into GOD-Consciousness , and was full of the Holy Ghost , and left the presence of the master , knowing not whether one was the disciple or the master oneself .

One went away looking upon the whole universe , the wide world , as one's real Self , and the whole universe being one's real Self , where could one , the Self , go ? When the Self fills and permeates every atom , every molecule , where can it go ? The idea of going and coming becomes meaningless to one . You can go from one place to another , if you are not already at the place where you want to go .

Here one found oneself , one found one's true Self , GOD within , GOD everywhere , and how could one think of going and coming ? The idea of going and coming became absent . One was in the state of Self-realization . The going of body was a sort of reflex action . One was in oneself ; no going or coming for one .

Then was the master satisfied . Thus did the master test and prove the disciple of sterling worth . The disciple paid no respects or thanks to the master , and rested in unity to such a degree that the disciple rose above all idea of gratitude . Then did the master know that the disciple had really understood the teachings . Here is the master-state , where if you honour the person , one says you are belittling one .

" I am not confined in this body ; I am not this little body only — I am the wide world , I am you , and honour me in you . "

Here is the state of one who sells not anything to you . Here is the state of a one to whom honour and disgrace for the body have become meaningless , both shame and fame are nothing .

There came a person , an heir , to a monk in India , and prostrated before the monk , who asked as to the cause of homage that the heir was paying .

The heir said ,

" O holy one , you are a monk , and you have adopted this order by giving up your rulerdom in which you reigned at one time . You are one of great renunciation , and so I look upon you as GOD , I worship you . "

You know , in India , people are not honoured so much for the riches they possess . In India they are honoured for the degree of renunciation they display , and the chief principle of honour is essentially different there from what it is here . More trust is placed in GOD than in the almighty Dollar . The heir was offering homage to the one of renunciation .

The monk replied to the heir ,

" If that is the reason why you honour me , I must wash your feet , I must kneel down before you , because , O ruler , you are one of greater renunciation than all the monks in this world put together . "

That is very strange . How could that be ?

Then the monk began to explain ,

" Suppose , here is a person who possesses a magnificent palace , and this person casts out the dust and dirt of the house , throws out or renounces only the dust or dirt of the house . Is that person one of renunciation ? "

The ruler said , " No , no ; the person is not . "

Then the monk continued ,

" Here is a person who treasures up the dirt and the dust of the house and gives away the whole house , the magnificent palace . What do you think of this person ? "

The heir said , " This person who keeps only the dirt and dust , and resigns the palace , is one of renunciation . "

Then the monk said ,

" You are then the one of renunciation , because the real Self , GOD , the real Atman , that which is the magnificent palace , the real home , the paradise , the Heaven of heavens , you have renounced , and only the dust and dirt of that palace , which is this body , this little selfishness , you have retained . I have renounced nothing . I am myself the GOD of gods — the Lord of the Universe . "

Sometimes these people , the people who have reached the highest state of advancement , the free souls , are looked down upon by some and are called crazy ; but ask them if they would , for one moment , exchange the divine bliss , the supreme happiness which they derive from divine intoxication , for all the wealth and riches of this world . Not at all , not at all .

These people look down upon and pity the begging spirit of the so-called wealthy , who go abegging at the door of the flesh , at the door of carnal pleasures . Pleasure is within you . There you can get it . The whole treasure is within you . Then why play the part of the beggar and go about in a miserable plight , in a sad state , and behave like a pitiable atom ?

Come , realize your true Self , Almighty GOD , and let this song burst forth from you in fullness of joy —

I am the mote in the sunbeam , and I am the burning Sun , Rest here ? I whisper the atom , I call to the orb , " Roll on ! "

I am the blush of the morning , and I am the evening breeze ; I am the leaf's low murmur , the swell of the terrible seas .

The lover's passionate pleading , the unmarried one's whispered fears ; The warrior , the blade that strikes , the parent's heart wrung fear .

The rose , the poet nightingale , the songs from the throat that rise , The flint , the sparks , the taper , the moth that about it flies .

I am intoxication , grapes , winepress and musk , and wine , The guest , the host , the traveller , the goblet of crystal fine .

Oh ! The splendour and glory of your Self makes the pomp of emperors ridiculous . Such a wondrous Heaven you are , Existence , Knowledge and Bliss you are .

OM ! OM ! ! OM ! ! !