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The 99 floors of consciousness || Acharya Prashant (2018)
Author Acharya Prashant
आचार्य प्रशांत
40 मिनट
113 बार पढ़ा गया

Questioner (Q): Acharya Ji, Pranam! I do not want to ask philosophical questions as you have also rightly stopped me from doing so many times in the past. But here are some thoughts, knocking about in the head, and I want to know how to make them practical and behaviourally relevant. So, I'm asking these three questions, only with the purpose of understanding how to live the answers.

First Question is, "What is the difference between Māyā and Prakṛti ?"

Acharya Prashant (AP): When you understand Prakṛti as Prakṛti , then Prakṛti is merely Prakṛti , Riya. When you take Prakṛti as yourself, then Prakṛti is Māyā . Just a while back you sent a joke on the group; that joke was Māyā because you were confusing Prakṛti with yourself. You know what that joke said, Riya? Riya was the one who said that, right?

She (the questioner) said, "Human body is 80% water, so we are just cucumbers with anxiety," which is good; the wit is appreciable. Human body is 80% water, so we are just cucumbers with anxiety. But do you see the underlying assumption there? Yes, human body is 80% water, but what did you term the human body as? —"Me".

You see that? You're not merely comparing the human body to a cucumber; you are also saying "we" are cucumbers with anxiety. So, there you have taken Prakṛti , the body is Prakṛti , there you have taken Prakṛti as? —"Me". And that is Māyā .

The Joke said—human body is 80% water, so we are just cucumbers with anxiety. So, what are you saying—you are the body? Because human body is 80% water, and cucumbers do have 80% water. So, you should have said, "So human body is just a cucumber with anxiety."

But you didn't say "Human body is a cucumber," you said, "we are cucumbers." And you failed to notice the subtle trap. I looked at that and I said—you are confusing, conflating Prakṛti with "I", and that is Māyā . When Prakṛti is taken as "I", that is called Māyā .

Ashtavakra tells you, "Bodho'haṃ prakṛteḥ pareḥ" I am merely realization; I am separate from Prakṛti , very clearly, he says. You are not Prakṛti , but see how quickly you label the body as "I", and that is Māyā . Is the question answered?

Q: Why does God's Prakṛti seem opposed to realization of God or peace? Surely, Prakṛti and its laws exist by his will, and Prakṛti is not running a parallel empire of its own, then why must we be subjected to fluctuations of time, age, mood, hormones, physical needs, etc.?

It has become even more necessary for me to understand this as I observe how the things I want, the people I love, and my definitions of all this are due to my physical condition at any given time in the day in brain chemistry of my particular age.

They can make us so helpless, so enamored, so willing to surrender to false gods, and then one day all the definitions change because something in the body changes. All these drivers that control us because we took birth, or because the species must continue. I can tell myself not to be its puppet in the moment, but when do I have to do it? But when I have to do it moment after moment consistently, then I feel as if I don't fully know what I am saying "No" to. And that I lack an understanding of the nature of the thing that I am to resist.

All the study of psychology, social psychology, evolutionary biology, and anthropology, etc. seems to be lacking something from which I can distill wisdom about my own true nature.

AP: We have just reached about the halfway. Stay tuned! (audience laughing)

Q: What am I missing?

AP: (smiles) Sorry.

Q: It's not even about faith, because there is no fear, and I am resolute that this inquiry must be completed. I'll go down this road. I'm not even asking for the next step, or assurances of what happens, or is achieved at the end of the road, or if it's worth it. But there is a confusion that if I had to be punished, by being encased in a body, why is the body designed to find the false gods beautiful in any way at all?

The body's processes have the power to influence the mind itself. I'm not scared; whatever it is inside that I used to shy away, is standing its ground now. It's not a lack of faith, and I see where our wants come from.

Saṃskṛti can be easily resisted somehow, but Prakṛti is feigning innocence and wants to be indulged. It's only natural, it says. Not acting on it impulsively would be repression, it says. And apparently, that would amount to insulting one of the many forms in which divinity exists.

But even I know it's a trap, and I'm just being used by Nature like a machine. It has its own reason and agenda for every chemical secretion and consequent mood that I experience. Please tell me during "Neti-Neti," what am I supposed to hold on to? and how is it different from "Iti".

AP: Riya, you are questioning about the hormones, the body, its effect upon the mind, and such things. So first of all, I'll explain Riya's question.

Riya is saying, we are conditioned in two ways—social and biological. The social way she is calling as Saṃskṛti .

And she is saying, that is easier to resist. Because you can see what all the society is doing, and what the society is doing is perceivable. Its ways change across cultures, across time periods, and the ways of the society have also been studied and captured in literature, in the various social sciences. So, you know that, and you can cut through the stranglehold of Saṃskṛti .

Her question pertains to Prakṛti . She's saying—that is so very difficult to get rid of. You are deeply identified with it, how do you know which chemical, which hormonal secretion is affecting your mood in what way? That's the question.

Riya, even this question is not "you." You are trying to say that the society is not "you," the body is not "you," hence how to figure out the real "you?" You have said, you can fight the society. But what to do with the body? The body says that my impulses are natural. And you have said that if you do not cater to those impulses, then they shout—repression, repression!

Even this question is not "you," without the play of the three Prakṛtik elements, the three Gunas , even this question won't arise. You can go as far, and as back in search of yourself, and you will never find yourself. You will never see you lying somewhere at the end of the tunnel. You are just "the seer."

Look at this question, even though inquisitive it sounds, and it carries the halo of spiritual inquiry, in the same way as you look at social conditioning. You might find this shocking, or difficult to take. But in one sense, all spiritual inquiry is no different from any other activity of a human being. A drunkard is mouthing obscenities, and a genuine seeker is asking the most profound of questions; it is true that they exist at different levels of consciousness, but it is equally true, and more importantly true, that they both are just operating within consciousness.

You have to watch them both with aloofness. You have to look at them both as a child looks at a new and alien object. Just with passive wonderment. Do you get that? "Passive wonderment." No active Indulgence, no trace of knowledge, mere wonderment.

The drunkard is uttering the most foul of words; the spiritual seeker has asked the most profound question. Look at them; both with equal detachment. You are not the fallen one, you are also not the sublime one; you are nobody. You are just nobody.

At the end of your question, you have asked "What do I hold on to?" the answer is "Nothing," “Nothing.” You don't have a true nature. You are asking me—”I am rejecting everything through "Neti-Neti", what do I say "Iti-Iti" to? the answer is "Nothing," "Nothing."

When it comes to rejection, look at all rejectables as equal, all. Be a watcher of everything. Watch the most beautiful of flowers, and then ugly Caracas, in the same way. Here you have an enamoring aroma, it’s okay. There you have a foul stench; none of them is fundamentally true.

In a relative sense, one might appease the mind; in a relative sense one might calm you down, the other might agitate you, work you up. Attraction or repulsion doesn't matter. You are in a very, very comfortable seat. You are just supposed to laze around. "Doing" is all happening in Prakṛti on its own.

You are the super boss, who just watches. His is the office on the hundredth floor, and the 99 floors are the various departments and sub-departments and sections and such things. On his 100th floor, he is alone. From there, he just watches.

The 99 floors are one dimension, the 99 floors together can be clubbed into one single dimension. Look at them all as one. The 99 floors are the 99 layers of consciousness. They are the 99 levels of Prakṛti .

Relatively some of them are inferior, and some of them are superior. Yes, relatively. Compared to each other, some are inferior, and some are superior. But in an absolute sense, they are all one, and they are all false. In an absolute sense, they are all one.

All 99 are all One, and all False. Only the 100th one is true. And the wise ones have said that these 99 are just the projection, the game of the one sitting on the 100th floor, or let's say the only floor really possible.

We live in the 99 floors. We sometimes ascend; we sometimes descend. And we are advised to try to ascend. We are advised to be in the highest floor possible, to the mortal form.

But even if you are in the 99th floor, truly speaking you are as distant from the 100th floor as you were when you were on the first floor. Having come to the 99th floor, you haven't come any closer to the 100th floor. Even the best world is just a world, incomparable to silence. But yes, it is still better than a misleading world.

You come to the 99th floor, absolutely, it is still very, very, very distant from the 100th floor. But when you are on the 99th floor, then you, the being, the little creature, caught in this maze of floors, is demonstrating, is certifying that she is eager to go beyond the murky business of floors. Then for want of better words, I say that magic happens. 99th floor really is the same as the first floor, but when you are on the 99th, you are demonstrating that you are eager to rise. You haven't done much, but you have demonstrated that you want something.

It's your want that you have demonstrated, not that you have earned the eligibility, to now break away from the system of floors. You have just demonstrated your desperation, your utter desire. It is still "the ego"; It is still "the ego".

Even on the 99th floor, the one who is desiring is still "the ego". If it is ego, it is unreal. So that's why I said that 1 to 99 can all be bundled into One as False. So, falseness there is, but falseness can at least demonstrate its love for the Truth. It cannot do any more than that.

You are False on the first floor, and remember, you are equally False on the 99th floor. But on the 99th floor, you are saying I am False, yes, I know I am False. But please, please, please, can I have a taste of the truth? Then magic happens; you are picked up. It's like a magical ladder dropping from the heavens; you are picked up.

A mighty hand descends and just takes you away. Takes what away? —that which deserves to be taken away, the body still remains there. All that, which is False, will remain False. That of you, which belongs to the 1 to 99, will remain in 1 to 99. But something else is touched and sanctified; something else gains ascension.

That does not mean that you disappear from the system of floors, you still stay there, you still stay there. But now something about you is up there, and from there it can? Riya is there, on the 88th floor, right now.

Now Riya is there (in the Floors), and Riya is there (in the Skies). Now Riya is at both places. Now Riya is False, and Riya is True as well. And the True Riya is now watching the False Riya.

Does any floor exist there? —No. If you ask me the address of that place, is there any address of that place? up there? —No. Is there a place like that at all? —No, not at all, no place like that exists. You cannot even say, "it's a 1000th floor," it is not.

So, Riya is saying, she needs an understanding of the nature of the thing that she is to resist. Who will resist, Riya? Who will resist? Who will resist? You are still taking yourself as somebody. Somebody, who will resist; can empty space resist? Can empty space resist? Who are you offering resistance?

This is exactly what you must watch, not resist, watch. What is to be watched? —that there is a force of Prakṛti within me, that wants to fight something else in Prakṛti .

A fellow on the 83rd floor wants to fight a fellow on the 45th floor. Do you want to take sides? Do you want to favor one of them, seriously? The two rascals are both jail inmates; it's just that one is a little senior compared to the other. One of them has been in the jail since eight years, the other one is a little fresh, and the two of them are quarreling.

And here is Riya, saying, "I want an understanding of the nature of the thing that I am to resist." Surely, she's siding with one of them. Why do you want to favor one of them? Let them fight; let them fight. Those are things within Consciousness, let Consciousness do the resolution.

If you are really compassionate about helping your Consciousness, which means helping yourself; just be a spectator to the fight. The one, who deserves to win, will win. You don't interfere, you don't interfere. Let the best one, as they say, let the best man win.

And within those layers, of course, there are gradations, of course, there are levels and hierarchies, and there are inferiors and superiors, and the game continues. Something is sometimes better to something else; of course, surely.

Don't "I" advise in my sessions, "Do this and do not do that." Don't I tell that? All of that is within the 99 floors. One thing is preferable to another thing, and all of that is within the 99 floors. And let all of that happen; let all of that happen; don't try to suppress that.

You stay where you must, you stay where you must. Yes, you have a body; somebody has a man's body, you have a woman's body. And you experience that which a human being does, a woman does. You mentioned hormonal surges, and chemical secretions, and mood swings.

And yes, of course, all of that would happen; on some days you will find the world beautiful. "Somebody" is finding the world beautiful, why do you want to spoil her mood?

All of that is happening "within the case of the 99 floors," here is this. "Somebody" is finding something beautiful; it might just be due to hormonal effects. Fine, why do you want to tell her, "Listen, baby, it is just that time of the month." Why, why?

And on other days, for no reason, for no ostensible reason, the world appears wicked, and the lady is upset. Fine, it happens, she's upset, fine. The Riya of the building is upset, and the Riya of the Sky must? —watch, fine.

It is not as if realization will take away your social and biological prejudices or conditioning. It is not going to happen; it is just not going to happen. It's just that you do not identify with them, you do not provide your life energy to the nonsense that is happening there.

To what extent can you fight your fate, Riya? It is not going to be possible. What if you are genetically coded, to be more susceptible to cardiac disease? And there are people, don't you know that? There are people who are genetically more vulnerable to diabetes, to cardiac disorders, and to many other things in the body. They haven't really done anything in this lifetime to deserve a heart attack.

There are so many people who are very physically fit, but they would suffer a heart attack at the age of 35. They haven't really done anything to deserve that heart attack. But it comes, because it's there in the body. You can just watch that, that is going to happen.

So kindly do not live in the illusion, that by being a "witness", you will be able to eliminate all the pain. The pain will be there because the pain is contained in the body.

The day you were born as a human being, Riya, you were born in the world of pain. We all are born in the city of delusion as we said the other night. We are born in the world of pain.

Now it's a choice available to you. It's not a very proper word but let me use it. Now it's a choice available to you—whether to identify with the pain, if you identify with the pain, the identification results in resistance. If you identify with the pain, then you suffer.

You can either identify or you can watch. And it's a surreal thing, to watch pain. Riya, in the Floors, is in agony. And agony she will face, it's her fate. Nobody can fight fate. And Riya, from the Skies, is watching. Riya, in the Floors, is in pain.

She's cringing, her entire demeanor has been distorted by angst. And that is inevitable, that's going to happen. And sometimes, she'll be utter delight as well, "Ah, a butterfly on her shoulder," "Great delight, a sunny day in the mountains, like this one, wow."

And those things will come and go. If you think that spirituality will give you an everlasting tranquil state, as you might have read in some of the books, and biographies, and descriptions, and also autobiographies, then you are just being fooled, it is not going to happen. You are born human, and to be born human is to be born in pain, disorder, chaos, and whatnot.

Riya, from the Skies, can watch. Even as I talk right now, this is your test, if you are there, answer me from wherever you are, who is being addressed, right now? —Riya, in the Floors. The Riya, in the Skies, is beyond any address. She cannot be talked to.

She is just "Beyondness". Whom am I talking to? —Riya in the Floors. And when I'm talking to her, what's the best that can happen? When I started talking to her, she was on the 70th floor. She can come up to the 99th floor, and then from the 99th floor, she can be picked up.

But that is not in her discretion, that may happen, that may not happen, that only the Riya, in the Skies, knows. Even the Guru does not know that. He can at best pull you up to the 99th floor, and then you have to wait for the magic to happen.

Then she's saying, "Why does Prakṛti seem opposed to God's realization?" (The question) Prakṛti is neither opposed nor in favor. How can something in the floors oppose something in the Skies? Where is peace? —in the Skies, and where do you find opposition and support? —in the Floors.

How can a phenomenon within the Floors have a bearing on the one element in the Skies? Tell me, please. The Floors, as you know, are a self-contained phenomenon; they are a self-contained delusion. Do the Floors have it in their powers to touch the Skies? Then how can Prakṛti oppose peace?

Prakṛti doesn't oppose peace; Prakṛti doesn't even support peace. Prakṛti simply does not know peace. Prakṛti and peace are different dimensions altogether. Prakṛti only knows its own ways; there is no question of peace or lack of peace there.

Prakṛti and peace are like sweetness and red color. Is there a relationship between these two? What is the relationship between sweetness and red? —they are different dimensions. You keep doing something in one dimension, it doesn't affect the other dimension.

Q: " Prakṛti too exists by God's will, and if Prakṛti is not running a parallel empire of its own if it too is subject to God's mighty will, then why are we subjected to the fluctuations of time, age, mood, hormones, physical needs, etc.?"

Who said that you are subjected to these things? You are the Riya of the Skies. The Riya of the Floors is subjected to all these things. And the Riya of the Floors is not Riya at all, she is just Prakṛti .

So, Prakṛti is subjected to itself, you are not subjected to anything. You are there up in the Skies. Now Prakṛti is subjecting itself to what it is. Elements of Prakṛti are being subjected to the laws of Prakṛti .

(Pointing to his hand) —This is an element of Prakṛti , is it not? So, it is subject to the laws of Prakṛti . For example, it is subject to gravitation, it is subject to decay, it is subject to heat, cold, so many things. It is subject to the laws of Prakṛti only because it is a part of Prakṛti , an element of Prakṛti .

(Again, pointing to his hand) —Why am I calling this as "me"? Prakṛti is operating upon Prakṛti ; Prakṛti is not operating upon "me". The lion is killing the deer; lion and deer are elements in Prakṛti , and killing is a phenomenon in Prakṛti , correct? Yes.

The lion is killing the deer; the lion and deer are elements in Prakṛti , entities in Prakṛti , forms in Prakṛti . You know what I'm referring to, right? Yes. And killing is a phenomenon in Prakṛti . Now Riya thinks that she is the deer, and she starts crying, "God, why are you meeting out this Injustice!" The fact is that Riya is not being killed at all, it is the deer that is being killed. But Riya thinks that she is the deer. And because Riya thinks that she is the deer, so now she suffers.

Similarly, there is a woman's body, and that woman's body is subject to time, age, disorder, pain, what not—the laws of Prakṛti . The thing in Prakṛti is subject to the laws of Prakṛti . But Riya thinks that that body belongs to Riya.

And now when something happens to that body, like when something happened to that deer, Riya started crying aloud. See how stupid it is; see how stupid it is. And it is going to happen because Lions would always keep killing Deers; you cannot stop that.

Just as Lions would keep killing Deers, similarly, there is going to be pain to the body. In between, the Deers can make Merry, they do. Have you not seen them, galloping, and mating, and enjoying grasslands?

Just as they would have pleasure, they would also have pain. The deer that is frolicking today gets killed tomorrow. If today you say, "Riya is happy," tomorrow you will also say, "Riya is sad." All of this is happening within the 99 floors.

So, your fundamental assumption, that you have been subjected to all the things in time, and space, and all the laws, and all the phenomenon, that assumption itself holds no ground. And when you feel pain, then just visualize the lion killing the deer. The lion is killing the deer, why are you jumping about?

And even as you sit here, some deer somewhere is surely getting killed. Even as you sit here, aren't lions doing their work? Even as you sit here, aren't deaths happening somewhere? Somebody is always dying somewhere.

And if you start identifying with the death, then your life is Hell. Similarly, something wrong is always happening, either in your physical universe or in your mental universe; and if you keep identifying with that, then life will be Hell. Even as you sit here, you do not know, but something is going wrong. See how alerted you already feel.

Just as some death is happening somewhere in the Universe, right now, similarly, something is going wrong with your personal Universe, in your personal Universe, right now. And if you start identifying with that, or thinking of that, then can you stay attentive? can you stay in the Skies? In the next question, she says that in one of your YouTube talks, you even proved that we are not alive, that we are just elements being attracted and giving reactions. So, what's really going on? Am I alive or not?

That which you call as "Life" is happening only in the Floors. And that is why, when you call "That" as "Life", life is full of suffering. Life is up there, and the life up there is not subject to the vagaries of time and death. In the 99 floors, there would necessarily be birth and death.

You have a funeral floor there, and you have a maternity floor there. and due to your prevalent value system, you place the cremation floor in the basement, not even on the first floor, not even on the ground floor. Where do you put it? —in the basement. According to you, it is the lowest thing that can happen.

And where do you put the maternity floor? —99th. Wow! wonderful thing, that has happened! And the result of that is that all your life you live in the fear of death. Because according to you, birth is the best thing, and death is the worst thing. And all that happens in between birth and death, that you call as "Life".

Death is in the basement, birth is at the top, according to you, and in between is Life. This is false. What is false? —not that merely death is false, birth too is false. And it is a random assignment by you—to place birth on the 99th floor.

Life is not here; Life is there, up there. Riya is asking me, is she alive? depends on who is asking. If the one, in the Floors, is asking, then she is not alive. She may call herself alive; that is a social convention.

If you are breathing, you are alive. You go to a hospital; how do they confirm whether you are alive? —they check your pulse; they check your heart rate; they check your brain; and finally, they declare your brain dead or whatever.

So, you may keep telling yourself you are alive, according to the medical conventions. But if you listen to the Masters, they say that as long as you are in the cycle of birth and death, you cannot call yourself alive; "Sadho ye murdon ka gaon" you are already dead. You are not going to be dead. Because you live in the Floor, so you are already dead.

Life is only up there, up there. The more entangled you are, in the various states of consciousness, the more dead you are. Only the Witness is alive. The Witness is the one whose state does not change according to what he witnesses. Right? That's the difference between the subject and object.

There is the subject-object combo, and then there is the witness and the witnessed combo. There's a difference there, what is the difference? —the subject looks at the object, and the object changes the subject.

You look at money, or a woman, and your state changes; that's about the subject and the object. The subject-object combo is found in the Floors, and what's it about the witness? —he keeps looking at everything and his state does not change, because he does not have a state.

Had he had a state, the state could have changed. The witness is nothing, therefore, he cannot change. The subject is something or somebody, therefore, it changes. The moment he looks at something, that something changes him.

The witness is a nobody, the witness does not change. If the witness does not change, that means time does not exist for the witness. Time can exist only where change is, and if the witness is the one, who by definition does not change, then time does not exist for the witness. If time does not exist for the witness the witness cannot die. Therefore, the witness alone is alive; the witness alone is eternal.

If you change, then you are living in time; if you're living in time, "ah, death!" The only eternity possible is "unchangeability," "don't change." The Riya of the Skies must remain forever untouched, unchangeable. The scriptures say "virgin", "virgin" in the spiritual sense. Too much.

Q1: Initially, when we started this conversation, you had said that "from the 99th floor Riya gets pulled up by itself like the ladder is dropped. But now you're talking, it's like the Riya is already there, even when she is here, she's there. So, even when we are here, we're already there? or we are there after that "Pull" happens?

AP: You are already there. But unless the one there chooses to touch the one here, she will keep feeling that she is merely here.

Q1: Then if I have never witnessed anything without my judgments, that means that I have never ever surfaced (inaudible word 55:16) with the one?

AP: Yes, yes, yes. Riya is both here, and there. Taru is both here and there. But unless the Taru, here, decides to ascend to the 99th floor, she will keep feeling that she lives only in the Floors. She will never become a witness of herself. She will just remain a subject and an object indulging in the Floors, in the various phenomenon and such things.

Q1: And this decision is of Taru of the Floors? or of this guy that to connect? or both?

AP: This decision you must suppose is of the Taru of the Floors. It is not really of the Taru of the Floors, but in your best interests, and I am talking to the Taru of the Floors, in the best interest of the Taru of the Floors, she must keep assuming that she does have the power to ascend to the 99th floor.

She must exercise "choice" because she lives in choices. Choice is an illusion, absolutely speaking, no choice exists. But then why does Acharya Prashant keep talking of choices? —the fact is absolutely no choice whatsoever exists. I keep talking of choices because choice is a phenomenon of the Floors, and it is your only hope or your only savior.

You keep choosing, and because you keep choosing, you can also choose to rise to the 99th floor. So, that's the choice you must make.

Q1: And when you say, the Evil and the Virtue are same.

AP: Same in the sense that they both are in the Floors.

Q1: But still, Virtue's better than Evil, in terms of "Karya"

AP: Relatively better, relatively better, absolutely not at all better. If you ask the witness—is one thing better than the other? He says, "Ah, c'mon! they all are merely objects to be witnessed, and hence all of them are at par, same level."

Q2: We're picked up to the Sky, only from the 99th floor, or from lower floors also?

AP: No. That's the condition. That's why "tapasyā" and "sādhanā" are needed. What is the definition of sādhanā? —that which takes you from the 5th floor to the 99th floor. He will not pick you up from the 5th floor. The Pick-up point is on the 99th floor.

Q1: Acharya Ji, going back to the Virtue and the Evil. That day when we were speaking, we said that the kārmic account has to be cleared, even if you are like…

AP: This is that clearing of the kārmic account.

Q1: You only rise once those are cleared.

AP: In the process of rising, you clear the kārmic account.

Q1: So, in the process of rising, you have to choose Virtue!

AP: Yes, yes, yes. But when the Riya from the sky looks at all this, she says, "All of this is just nonsense."

Q1: But she doesn't mean anything to me, right now.

AP: She doesn't mean it. For you, aside it is in your best interest, to assume, to believe, that you do have a choice, and exercise that choice.

Q3: Acharya Ji, at one place, you were saying, "Don't be fake." If you are feeling pain, hurt, don't fake it. Is this referred to Riya at 100th?

AP: Nothing can ever be said to her. Who can address her? —nobody. Only she can address herself.

Q3: Is watching the Riya of the Floors with her feelings referred to as "Don't be fake?"

AP: "Don't be fake" and "Be real", both are applicable within these 99 floors only. When you are being honest to yourself, even then you are in the 99 floors, and when you are faking stuff, even then you are here.

All that which you can perceive, experience, and name, is in the floor domain. It is not outside of that. It's just that, relatively speaking, only relatively speaking, honesty is better than faking.

In that world (Skies), there is nothing called honesty. There is nothing called honesty. Honesty is a virtue only in the phenomenal world. But because you take yourself as belonging to the phenomenon, so you better be honest.

Q: What is awareness? Is awareness playing cards, cricket, watching movies, doing nothing? And why is there a fear of being alone?

AP: Awareness is when none of these matters to you. You may play cards; you may play cricket; you may watch a movie; or you may be alone, or whatever. When none of that matters to "You", that is awareness.

"Matter" must matter only to "matter", not to "you". There is you, "the matter", and there is you, "the you". There is you, "the you", and there is you, "the matter". And matter must matter only to you, "the matter", that is awareness.

To you, "the you", matter must not matter. And cards, cricket, movies are just matter. When to you, "the you", no matter matters; then you are aware. Being aware is just about being you "the you", not you "the matter". Should "matter" matter? —of course, to you, "the matter".

If an insect comes, and bites here (pointing at the arm), it should matter, and the hand must jerk the insect away. But “you” must have remained unmoved when this phenomenon was happening. The hand should have quickly moved, and protected itself, but “you” should have remained? —unmoved.

You, "the matter" should have reacted to insect, "the matter", but you "the you" should have remained unmoved, and untouched by insect, "the matter". But “you” can remain untouched by insect, "the matter" only when “you” are also untouched by hand, "the matter". When you are someone, your own hand cannot touch, then you are aware.

Q1: Everything, thoughts, feelings, emotions, everything is matter.

AP: Of course, all is matter, that which can be named is matter. Mind is matter, that which can rise, or appear, or show up, as something in mind, is matter.

Q4: How to increase our intellect so that we'll take the right decision in life?

AP: Keep listening, keep listening. All this is an arrangement just for that, for the right decisions. Just that your question is a little misdirected. Right decisions appear to be coming from intellect, but for the intellect to make right decisions, the intellect must be guided by something beyond itself.

If the intellect is its own master, then it cannot take right decisions. For your logic to be well directed, for your intellect to move in the right direction, the intellect must be subservient to something immense. But for now, it suffices to say, stay put, keep listening.

Q: When we go to the various gurus belonging to the various cults and communities, they do not motivate us to go to the 99th floor. They assure us that even from the 2nd floor, we would be picked up. And this is the most hurtful of deceptions. Isi se sabse zyada dhakka baithta hai

AP: The message is in Hindi. (reading the question) That's true. If you realize this, then you will never ever be found in front of a false Guru. The very Mark of a false Guru is that he will not encourage you to make the disciplined effort to rise to the 99th floor. He will never say " sādhanā " and "tapasyā" are needed. He will say, "Wherever you are, God's grace will shine on you." It is not going to happen.

Or let me explain it. When you are on the 2nd floor, then God's grace shines on you to encourage you to move to the 99th floor. That's how God's grace shines on you when you are on the 2nd floor. It Shines on you, and it tells you, "Go to the 99th floor for more help."

If God's grace is shining on you, you cannot make the 2nd floor your home. And if a teacher is telling you that wherever you are, you are all right; if you are sitting in the shop, stay there, and you can be liberated; if you are subject to various obsessions, intoxications, infatuations, and you need not give them up; it's okay. But in the eyes of God, all are equal. It doesn't differentiate between Black and White, Saint and Sinner.

So, stay where you are. Feel comfortable. You don't need to make any effort. Enjoy your luxurious home, and from there you will be picked up, no, that Guru is just cheating you. He does not want to disturb your comfort zone.

The fellow just is a creature of the Floors. And when you're in the Floors, then you are hardly ever targeting "That". (Pointing upwards) When you are in the Floors, then you are only targeting something that is relatively beneficial to you, according to your own value system.

Don't forget the value system too is just a delusional phenomenon within the Floors. Outside the Floors, no values exist. All values exist only within the Floors. And since they exist within the Floors, they are all false.

I repeat this, if God's grace shines on you when you are on the 2nd floor, then it will only encourage you to move you to the 99th floor. If you say, "God's grace is shining on me, and I'll be straight away picked up from the 2nd floor", It's not going to happen. God has only one pickup point, I repeat.

The helipad is on the 99th floor, it cannot be on the 2nd floor, you know that. Can there be a helipad on the 2nd floor? —not going to happen.

So, make the disciplined effort to ascend. Yes, the plane is waiting for you, but you have to go to the airport, in right time, before your death, and get the boarding pass. The flight is indeed waiting for you, but you have to move to the airport, and the airport is on the 99th floor. Reach there in time.

And you don't know how much time you have? So, better, hurry up.

Q6: What is security check? Where do we get a boarding pass?

AP: Once you reach the 99th floor, you get everything—the security check, the boarding pass. But first of all, you must reach the 99th floor. You will not get a boarding pass where you are. And once you are on the 99th floor, you need not worry about the boarding pass. Just reach in time.

Q1: What is at the 99th floor? How to know that?

AP: Sitting on the 2nd floor, you cannot know that. When you are on the 2nd floor, talk only of the 3rd floor. When you are on the 2nd floor, talk only of the 3rd floor.

Q1: And God's grace that you said, can help you to come to the 99th floor. What can I do to make that Grace fall on me?

AP: Remain open to that, remain open to that. On the 2nd floor, on any floor, you make choices. Choose to receive Grace; choose to receive Grace; choose to invest your time, resources, attention, energy, towards receiving Grace, rather than in miscellaneous pursuits.

Q1: Receiving Grace mean?

AP: You know that. On every floor that choice is there, which means that knowledge is there. You cannot have Choice without Knowledge. Of course, all that knowledge is bogus, and all those choices don't mean anything in the absolute sense.

But if you are on the 2nd floor, then you surely know, at least, what is worthy of being done, on that floor itself. You cannot know too much, but I said you can know a bit about, at least the 2nd and 3rd floors.

I'm sitting here. I may not know what it means to be absolutely liberated, but if a thorn is pricking me in my back, I, at least, know what to do with the thorn. I, at least, know what to do with this prick, right now.

I may not know Absolute Liberation, but I know what to do on this floor. What to do on this floor? —get rid of that which is pricking you, right now. And there is a lot that is pricking you, right now. Get rid of that. Direct knowledge you have.

Q1: It's like as you become lighter.

AP: Good, it's like a gas balloon. Rockets, you know as they move up, what do they do? —they keep shedding their load. To go up, you have to keep shedding your load. Otherwise, you will just be bound to gravity.

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