WORSHIP OF GOD
In this chapter it is said that perennial awareness of the Self is real worship and penance (tapas).
The purpose of worshipping the Impersonal Supreme Being is the incessant remembrance of the truth that you are
Brahman, because the meditation ‘I am Brahman’ comprises sacrifice, gifts, penance, ritual, prayer, yoga and worship.
The only way to overcome obstructions to your meditation is to forbid the mind to dwell on them and to introvert it into the
Self and there witness unconcernedly all that happens;
there is no other method.
Do not even for a moment lose sight of the
Self. Fixing the mind on the Self or the ‘I’ abiding in the Heart is the perfection of yoga, meditation, wisdom, devotion and
worship. Since the Supreme Being abides as the Self, constant surrender of the mind by absorption in the Self is said to comprise all forms of worship. Mind controlled, all else is controlled. The mind is itself the life-current; the ignorant say that in form it looks like a coiled serpent.*
The six subtle centres** (chakras) are merely mental pictures and are meant for beginners in yoga. We project ourselves into the idols and worship them, because we do not understand true inward worship. Knowledge of the Self, which knows all, is Knowledge in perfection.
*Kundalini, in the original, usually meaning a mysterious dynamic force dormant at the base of the spine, whose arousal is said
to confer first thaumaturgic powers and then spiritual Illumination.
**These are said to be centres in the subtle body along the spine from the sacral region to the top of the head: the life-currnet in its
upward passage forces its way into them and in doing so confers thaumaturgic and other powers.
Distracted as we are by various thoughts, if we would continuously contemplate the Self, which is Itself God, this single thought would in due course replace all distraction and would itself ultimately vanish; the pure Consciousness that alone finally remains is God.
This is Liberation.
Never to be heedless of one’s own all-perfect, pure Self is the acme of yoga, wisdom, and all other forms of spiritual practice. Even though the mind wanders
restlessly, involved in external matters, and so is forgetful of its own Self, one should remain alert and remember:
‘The body is not I. Who am I?’
Enquire in this way, turning the mind backward to its primal state. The enquiry ‘Who am I?’ is the only method of putting an end to all misery and ushering in supreme Beatitude. Whatever may be said and however phrased, this is the whole truth in a nutshell.