If one thinks: "I know Atman well," then surely he knows but little of its form; he knows only its form as conditioned by man or by the concept of gods. Therefore consciousness has to be grasped through inquiry, analysis and reasoning on the true base.
Atman, which is in the form of consciousness, is not known by those who know it; it is known by those who do not know it. That is when one says he knows Atman he is saying it as a person. The consciousness cannot be applied only to the individuality but to the whole experience [three states]. But in reality the person and world created out of consciousness, thus nothing exits other than consciousness. Thus if one says he knows consciousness as a person, he is making a wrong statement. One must know consciousness as the formless clay of the three states (whole).
Consciousness is known when it is realized in every state of mind; for by such Knowledge one attains Immortality. By consciousness one obtains strength; by Knowledge, Immortality.
If a man knows consciousness as self here, he then attains the non-dual goal of his mission. If he does not know it here, he remains ignorance experiencing the cycle of birth, life and death as reality. Having realized the Self in every being, the wise relinquish the world and become immortal.
Man and his individual experience of the birth life and death are reality within the falsehood. Until one has a firm conviction he is an individual separate from the universe and universe existed prior to him, and he is born in it afterwards he will never be able to acquire non-dual wisdom. Because of this reason he will not be able think beyond form, time and space. Until this conviction is there all his views, judgments and conclusions are based on the false self within the false experience. Thus there is a need for overcoming this conviction by realizing the fact that the self is not form but self is formless.
Without overcoming this conviction one is in the grip of form, time and space. Until self is in the grip of form, time and space, the duality will prevail as reality. If duality prevails as reality the ignorance prevails. If ignorance prevails the wisdom will not dawn. Without wisdom detachment to attachment is impossibility.
Path of Bhakti or Karma are based on the false self within the false experience. Thus they are not tools to acquire non-dual wisdom. Liberation from experiencing duality as reality is absolutely impossible without Self-knowledge or Brahma Gnana or Atma Gnana.
Consciousness alone which is permanent and eternal, unchanging in the changing world is reality. People hear of Brahman or ultimate truth. People can only imagine it. One requires words only to distinguish between is there and not there, but he can’t posit either of Reality, because his saying so is only an idea, not reality. Ultimate truth is beyond words. Words are of use, however, as a thorn to pull out the thorn of other words that hinder knowledge.
Intellectually knowing the truth is only an imagination, whereas realizing the truth is knowing it as such.