Beyond the Senses
We all have to be more open
in our lives. We are caught up in social conventions and trivial
thoughts, trapped by lust and desire, confined in our minds. That
is why our vision is limited. And the purpose of life, our
mission, is to develop our potential fully. Unfortunately,
generations of walls have been built up around us-cultural,
social, sometimes religious barriers which prevent us from
stretching out and reaching beyond prescribed boundaries.
Our situation is like that of a caged lion, fighting to escape,
full of strength, energy and vigor. When he begins his struggle
to get out, he finds the bars too strong, and his energy becomes
dissipated. He loses his power. Eventually he succumbs, accepts
his defeat, surrenders to the environment, and lives like a small
helpless creature. With the passing of time, he forgets that he
is a lion.
This has happened to us. The soul of the human being is fire and
light. It has strength. We not only have a potential to develop
physical power, but we also have an inner spiritual strength which
has to be nourished and sustained as well. It is always said that
we need material possessions, material accomplishments, and a
position in life in order to survive on that level, but we need to
tend the soul too, in order to survive as a totally fulfilled
individual. Then life becomes a series of beautiful meetings in
the universe. While we live, we live happily. And when we leave,
we leave with peace. We understand the importance of this
philosophy when we see that for purely materialistic people, both
living and leaving involves unhappiness. They live with
difficulty, depression and fear of defeat. When the time comes
for leaving, they are sad and tearful, and they go from the world
without any awareness.
There is an extra sense, beyond the five natural sense: to touch,
taste, smell, see and hear. It is a spiritual sense, a sixth
sense, which gives meaning to the other senses. Without this
sixth sense, the senses are senseless. When people look, they do
not realize what they are seeing. When they listen, they do not
understand what they are hearing. When they talk, they do not
know what they are saying, and sometimes, mean, unkind words come
popping out. When they touch, they do not grasp what they are
felling. When they taste, they do not recognize fully what they
are eating. All this happens because they have not developed that
extra sense which adds true sense to the senses. That is why we
often talk about senseless conversation, senseless observation,
senseless living. When you develop your sixth sense, life becomes
full of meaning. Then we say--"That person is sensible." When
"sensible" is used in this way, it means "aware." Every moment,
this person knows what he is doing; every hour he knows what he is
going to do. He feels actions before they occur because his sixth
sense tells him. This sense is in full working order, not rusted,
disusednand neglected. it is shining like the sun. and when this
inner sense shines like the sun, the whole world is bright.
Why do you enjoy the day? Because there are no clouds blocking
the sun. When there are clouds hiding the sun, the day is dull,
everything appears gray and gloomy. You do not feel like going
out or doing anything, so you sit indoor drinking coffee and
wasting energy. When the sun is bright, you want to go out. You
cannot help yourself; something draws you out. You feel alive!
In the same way, when your sixth sense, the extra sense, is
shining, you feel joy in life. You do a small thing, and the act
itself gives you a touch of joy. Even if you shake hands with
somebody, you feel a real communication of two lives. If you look
at a small flower, it stimulates your communication with the life
force. You see life growing, pulsating and blossoming. The
intrinsic tenderness of life diffuses the fragrance and color.
Even a single flower can give you illumination. You do not look
upon the flower as a common object and thoughtlessly throw it
away. You establish communication between life and life. When
you sit on the grass, you feel the same thing. You are delicately
communicating with inner life, and you are growing.
the shell of an egg is broken and life comes out, in the same way
the shell of ignorance is broken and some thing intelligent
emerges. Unfortunately, many people never break through this
shell; they die without ever being properly born. Only when you
make the real breakthrough, see and relate to the universe with
the extra sense, can you feel and experience real life.
There is a word in Jain philosophy for this sense: Pragna. In
other schools, it is called the third eye or higher
consciousness. There are many different words for that special
awareness, pragna. With pragna you break through ignorance, your
perception is different. Things dawn on you. Everything you see
becomes a means to joy, because your inner mechanism has changed
gear--turning all it sees into joy. N that is the art. The artist
who paints a still life and transmits a living quality onto his or
her canvas has this inner sense of perception. This is really
ESP. it is not just reading someone's mind, or having a
premonition about who is coming to see you. All these are
ephemeral phenomena, merely telepathic, child's play, and happen
when the mind is becoming clear. You are waiting for some mail,
and the next day the mailman delivers the mail you were thinking
about. Your mind wanders to a person you have not seen for a
month, and you go out on the street and bump into that person.
You daydream and a certain face comes into your head and after a
week that same face is introduced to you for the first time. All
these things do happen. But these are just indicators of a
strength and potential we all have within us. We have to go
further, to develop this inner power so that everything in life
hums with happiness, peace and serenity.
Then the essence in you will welcome any challenge. You will
think: "Here I am, let anything come. I have the art of heart to
transform all things and bring balance." Take this challenge now,
from today, and work on it. Say to yourself: "Let me use my
extra sense, my inner sense, my wisdom and intelligence to turn
every event into joy, into understanding, into creativity." It is
a challenge. Take it up. Try only for a year and see. The
wisdom of pragna will dawn upon you.
This extra sense requires constant use to make it work properly.
If you break a hand and it is in plaster for a month, when the
cast is removed and you try stretch your hand, you will not be
able to do so. Your hand has become useless. To bring it back to
proper working order, you have to massage and exercise it every
day for several days. Then the hand will do things for you. In
the same way, people who do not use this extra sense will find it
has become numb. In fact, for most people, it is so numb that
they do not think they possess it. They say, "The masters have
it, but we don't" They accept that they are lesser mortals and try
and make do without it. I call this spiritual bankruptcy--not to
realize, understand and feel the inner intelligence which is the
essence of this universe.
Great teachers do not take pleasure in people worshipping them;
they are not on this earth to respond to flattery. Words of
praise mean nothing to them. They exist to show mankind that
pragna is the birthright of each soul, that we all have this
strength inside, that we have to exercise it. It may take some
time and patience. If you use your broken hand too quickly and
try to force it, you may break it again and be back where you
started. You bring it into action slowly and gradually. We must
treat this inner energy in the same way.
the morning and in the evening, put aside some time to be alone
for a while. The journey to the unknown is always made alone.
You cannot go with a crowd. When you are alone, in communication
with yourself, ask: "Who am I? What is my pattern and mechanism?
Am I manufacturing unhappiness every day or do I have some inner
are to transform unpleasant events into pleasantness? Do I have
that art? If not, why don't I? Who or what stops my progress?"
The lesson to be learned here is this: that you do not attribute
this lack of happiness to another person, blaming your mother,
father, teacher or somebody else. Do not rest at that
conclusion. Truly, it hurts you when you settle for the belief
that another person is the cause of your unhappiness. You are not
really analyzing the situation, facing up to the reality. You are
rationalizing out true understanding. You must make an effort
within yourself no break your own barrier of negativism. Be
positive and say, " I want to be happy today anyway. I am not
going to spoil my day; because of somebody else. I cannot afford
to waste a single day. Each hour is precious and meaningful." In
reality, each day that you receive is a blessing.
the morning, start with this: sit and concentrate on yourself.
Feel and believe: "There is pragna inside me and I shall exercise
it. I shall limber it up, take it with me and use it throughout
my day, in the office, in my work, in the bus or on the subway,
with all my coworkers, friends and companions. Also whenever
someone throws negative vibrations toward me, I will burn them up
and turn them into positive constructive energy." It is a very
significant decision which takes much courage to make. But with
your extra sense, you can conquer your inner enemies. Then you
will find that your outer enemies will no longer be a trouble.
When you have this inner awareness, outside influences cease to
be a limiting factor. Your attitude converts them into positive
elements. This metamorphosis is not achieved through intellectual
gymnastics. It is done wholly through awareness, meeting all
aspects of life and making them beautiful, using your extra sense
to give sense to the senses and to all things.
From now on, let us move in the world, radiating our Self wherever
we go. Let us realize that our journey on this planet is to
experience our Essence. Let us all understand the intrinsic
meaning of this extra perceptive sense and celebrate life with