Celibacy/Abstinence/Tolerance of intense desire
Thank you for your previous inspiring answers. I have a few interesting queries left after conducting sincere vichara during meditation sessions and contemplation.
1) Swami Vivekananda said famously that as long as (his) body was alive, duality would exist. Dhananjay, I understand that realization with the atman and the recognition of the impermanence of the physical flesh-cage is the ultimate goal, but as a functioning member in society, isn't one's ego necessarily present at some small degree, even for an advanced practitioner?
Vivekananda, upon hearing a foreign missionary criticize Hinduism, threatened to throw him overboard. He become emotionally overcome when dealing with India's poor. A 100 % self-realized man would have dealt with inspiring India's masses without becoming entangled in the emotional aspects, understanding they were simply the "leela" of the lord, as I have understood from your past answers.
2. In an attempt to improve my ability to practice the 8 yamas of yoga, I have searched youtube for an honest practitioner and not one of thousands of people who put up yoga tutorials without the smallest idea of the lifestyle it entails. I found certain videos by Dr. Dhananjay Gunde, and would like to know if that is you. I trust your physical self's progress in self-realization and would be happy to learn from these videos if it is, in fact, you.
3. Swami Sivananda and Vivekananda always spoke of the need to develop a strong physical body. They are both the self-realized sages I look up to most. However, once again, doesn't this focus on the physical body seem incompatible with the full realization of the atman?
4. While the aforementioned two yogis are highly relatable to me, I have a very difficult time understanding Ramana Maharishi, although it seems that he was truly the most wholly self-realized of the three, completely not getting involving in worldly affairs but still being a part of the world. What does he mean by the "I thought"? By holding the "I thought", is one not further binding himself to the snatches of the unreal Ego?
1. The realized soul dons the Ego of the role assigned to him in 'Samsara' (as an actor assumes the Ego of the character he plays, with its mannerisms etc.), appearing as though really involved, while always being detached, fixed to the self. He then works without desire, unaffected by the results of his actions.
Inwardly calm and completely unattached, yet outwardly displaying various emotions, he remains free for ever, sporting in the ocean of the self.
He may externally don the appearance of a king in the midst of pomp and luxury, surrounded by riches. He may appear as a saint, clad in his robes, with a calm & serene demeanor. He may appear like a mentally unstable or retarded recluse, clad in rags, unkempt, living in a ruined, dilapidated, roofless house, all alone, with all the signs of insanity, subject to unpredictable behavior.
To him, all these are one and the same. They are only characters in the Leela of the Lord. He does not internally identify the least with any of them, nor gets affected by the reactions of the world. Having completely overcome identification with the Ego, body and the world, he remains like a painted flame, always ablaze, without a trace of fire.
The realized soul can only be identified by another realized soul, for there are no external signs. The actions of the realized soul can only be understood by another realized soul.
2. Apply efforts on the complete Sadhana suggested in past answers. Surrender to God and work with a strong urge for realization. That which is to be imparted will be imparted by HIM, in the way required. The self within all beings is the same, be the being an insect, animal or a man.
3. As long as one does not develop 'Moha' (attachment) & a fancy for the body, there is no harm in devoting some time to its upkeep, with the sole view of healthy sustenance; for the body is the vessel which serves as the medium of working out past karma.
A healthy body, free from disease & ill-health is supportive to 'Atma Sadhana'. This much and not more is warranted.
4. The 'I', one immediately relates to is the Ego. When constant Vichara (inquiry) is done on the 'I-thought', with Yoga Sadhana in parallel, one eventually realizes the fallacy of the Ego and the presence of a constant truth, of pure consciousness behind the Ego, by whose virtue, by whose power, the false Ego is sustaining; just as the Moon appears to shine, having borrowed from the light of the Sun.
When the 'Ashtaga-s' (8-limbs) of Yoga and 'Vairagya' (dispassion for the unreal) are also correspondingly practiced, one eventually overcomes the Ego and merges into the Atman (self). It is the real 'I', pure consciousness, the only truth, eternal, constant, infinite, full of bliss and ever integral with the Supreme. Bhagavan Ramana's method is the most direct and straight forward methods to realize oneself.
It will appeal after the Jiva (individual) reaches a certain level of advancement.
ॐ तत् सत्
(That Supreme being is the absolute truth)