Let us take another passage, out of the 'Svetasvatara Upanishad,' which, speaking of the self says: "He is the one God, hidden in all creatures, all pervading, the self within all, watching over all works, shadowing all creatures, the witness, the perceiver, the only one free from qualities."
And now we can return to the point where we left the argument at the beginning of this discourse. We said, you remember, that the Self is certainly no mere bundle of qualities--that the very nature of the mind forbids us thinking that. For however fine and subtle any quality or group of qualities may be, we are irresistibly compelled by the nature of the mind itself to look for the Self, not in any quality or qualities, but in the being that PERCEIVES those qualities. The passage I have just quoted says that being is "The one God, hidden in all creatures, all pervading, the self within all . . . the witness, the perceiver, the only one free from qualities." And the more you think about it the clearer I think you will see that this passage is correct--that there can be only ONE witness, ONE perceiver, and that is the one God hidden in all creatures, "Sarva Sakshi," the Universal Witness.
Have you ever had that curious feeling, not uncommon, especially in moments of vivid experience and emotion, that there was at the back of your mind a witness, watching everything that was going on, yet too deep for your ordinary thought to grasp? Has it not occurred to you--in a moment say of great danger when the mind was agitated to the last degree by fears and anxieties--suddenly to become perfectly calm and collected, to realize that NOTHING can harm you, that you are identified with some great and universal being lifted far over this mortal world and unaffected by its storms? Is it not obvious that the real Self MUST be something of this nature, a being perceiving all, but itself remaining unperceived? For indeed if it were perceived it would fall under the head of some definable quality, and so becoming the object of thought would cease to be the subject, would cease to be the Self.
The witness is and must be "free from qualities." For since it is capable of perceiving ALL qualities it must obviously not be itself imprisoned or tied in any quality--it must either be entirely without quality, or if it have the potentiality of quality in it, it must have the potentiality of EVERY quality; but in either case it cannot be in bondage to any quality, and in either case it would appear that there can be only ONE such ultimate Witness in the universe. For if there were two or more such Witnesses, then we should be compelled to suppose them distinguished from one another by something, and that something could only be a difference of qualities, which would be contrary to our conclusion that such a Witness cannot be in bondage to any quality.
There is then I take it--as the text in question says--only one Witness, one Self, throughout the universe. It is hidden in all living things, men and animals and plants; it pervades all creation. In every thing that has consciousness it is the Self; it watches over all operations, it overshadows all creatures, it moves in the depths of our hearts, the perceiver, the only being that is cognizant of all and yet free from all.
Once you really appropriate this truth, and assimilate it in the depths of your mind, a vast change (you can easily imagine) will take place within you. The whole world will be transformed, and every thought and act of which you are capable will take on a different color and complexion. Indeed the revolution will be so vast that it would be quite impossible for me within the limits of this discourse to describe it. I will, however, occupy the rest of my time in dealing with some points and conclusions, and some mental changes which will flow perfectly naturally from this axiomatic change taking place at the very root of life.
"Free from qualities." We generally pride ourselves a little on our qualities. Some of us think a great deal of our good qualities, and some of us are rather ashamed of our bad ones! I would say: "Do not trouble very much about all that. What good qualities you have--well you may be quite sure they do not really amount to much; and what bad qualities, you may be sure they are not very important! Do not make too much fuss about either. Do you see? The thing is that you, you yourself, are not ANY of your qualities-- you are the being that perceives them. The thing to see to is that they should not confuse you, bamboozle you, and hide you from the knowledge of yourself--that they should not be erected into a screen, to hide you from others, or the others from you. If you cease from running after qualities, then after a little time your soul will become purified, and you will KNOW that your self is the Self of all creatures; and when you can feel that you will know that the other things do not much matter.
Sometimes people are so awfully good that their very goodness hides them from other people. They really cannot be on a level with others, and they feel that the others are far below them. Consequently their 'selves' are blinded or hidden by their 'goodness.' It is a sad end to come to! And sometimes it happens that very 'bad' people--just because they are so bad--do not erect any screens or veils between themselves and others. Indeed they are only too glad if others will recognize them, or if they may be allowed to recognize others. And so, after all, they come nearer the truth than the very good people.
Source of this article：http://uavxz.jnekt.com/html/04a599922.html
Copyright statement: The content of this article was voluntarily contributed by internet users, and the views expressed in this article only represent the author themselves. This website only provides information storage space services and does not hold any ownership or legal responsibility. If you find any suspected plagiarism, infringement, or illegal content on this website, please send an email to report it. Once verified, this website will be immediately deleted.