The Self and the Not-Self

Human Personality

by Jayaram V

Notes: I have translated the Bhagavadgita twice. The first one was a loose translation. The second one was a word to word translation with a detailed commentary. The commentary is however different from what you will find here. In this section I will share with you my thoughts about the knowledge, philosophy and wisdom of the Bhagavadgita as I understand it from my perspective. Jayaram V


What is the difference between you and me? If you ask me, "Who are you?" I will reply, "I am Jayaram." If I ask you, "Who are you?" you will reply, "I am so and so." What is common between both of us? I AM. This "I-AM" is universal. It exists in everyone. It exists in the seven billion people who live upon earth. It exists in every living being, even if they are not conscious of it. Same in everyone, it lives in each according to the deeds.

What creates the difference and the diversity is the latter part, the individuality. Jayaram is the individuality, or the ego. It is the outer clothing, which "I-AM" wears. It makes everyone different, separate and recognizable. This individuality is the corrupting, restricting, and binding aspect of "I-AM." It makes living a conscious experience in the midst of the objective world. "I-AM" never dies. It has no death.

The center is the same in all of us. However, what is built around it is different in every living being. It is made up of different qualities (gunas), components (tattva) and organs (indriyas). This part is transient, and will die eventually. It is subject to aging, sickness and death. Will it be reborn? No, it will not. It lives, but one life, and in that one life it tries to make the most of it and desires to live forever.

It is the reflection of "I-AM" in the qualities of Nature. It is the other bird on the tree of life, which wants to eat the fruit, while the other watches. Whether it is in me or in you, the "I-AM" is indistinguishable. When you practice yoga and enter the deepest part of your consciousness, you silence your individuality or personality and become "I-AM" When I-AM alone exists without a second, you enter the purest state of consciousness and become liberated.

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