One does not find reflection of his self when he is standing in front of a mirror but he finds his body and the background world in the mirror. The one which is conscious of the body and the experience of the world is not the body but the consciousness, which is the inner most self.
The relationship and love, hate happiness and misery of the practical life within the practical world are not connected to the soul [formless consciousness] which is his true identity. The true identity is beyond form, time and space and beyond birth, life, death and world.
Thus rest in consciousness by recognizing it as our inner most self, which is god. And realize the practical life within the practical world is mere mirage created out of consciousness. Consciousness is ultimate truth and ultimate truth is God.
Getting rid of the physical shackle is necessary to overcome the burden and bondage of the illusory samsara. Love and relationship seems reality in practical life within the practical world but they are mere illusion from ultimate standpoint. Thus the game of life is mere passing show.
It is not possible to get rid of the ignorance through religious or yogic path.
Katha Upanishad 1:2:23 The Soul cannot be realized through hearing scholarly explanation of the discourses, not even by the intellect.
Katha Upanishad 1:3:6 “Through the knowledge of the Soul, God, one is pure and clean constantly.” Neither by reading the book, nor by taking a bath at holy place has one become pure. Inner purity is possible when one remains in constant touch with the Soul. Constant Soul-Consciousness is the real purity.
Kena Upanishad 2:4 When it is known through every state of cognition, it is rightly known, for (by such knowledge) one attains life eternal. Through one's own self one gains power and through wisdom one gains immortality.
Kena Upanishad 2:5
If here one knows it, then there is truth, and if here one knows it not, there is a great loss. Hence, seeing the Real in all beings, wise men become immortal on departing from this world.
Mundaka Upanishad 1:2:8
“Remaining in the fold of ignorance and thinking “we are extremely wise and learned,” the fools with boastful nature ramble about like the blind led by the blind alone.”
Mundaka Upanishad 3:2:3
“The weak and timid cannot realize the Self. Self-Realization is not possible through intellect or hearing spiritual discourse. One who welcomes God in every activity, through a thorough controlled and disciplined life, to him also the Soul is revealed."
Mundaka Upanishad 3:2:3
The Soul cannot be realized by the weak and timid.
That is why Sri, Sankara says in Viveka Chudamani:-
56. Neither by Yoga, nor by Sankhya, nor by work, nor by learning, but by the realisation of one's identity with Brahman is Liberation possible, and by no other means.
58. Loud speech consisting of a shower of words, the skill in expounding the Scriptures, and likewise erudition - these merely bring on a little personal enjoyment to the scholar, but are no good for Liberation.
59. The study of the Scriptures is useless so long as the highest Truth is unknown, and it is equally useless when the highest Truth has already been known.
60. The Scriptures consisting of many words are a dense forest which merely causes the mind to ramble. Hence men of wisdom should earnestly set about knowing the true nature of the Self.
61. For one who has been bitten by the serpent of Ignorance, the only remedy is the knowledge of Brahman. Of what avail are the Vedas and (other) Scriptures, Mantras (sacred formulae) and medicines to such a one?
62. A disease does not leave off if one simply utter the name of the medicine, without taking it; (similarly) without direct realisation one cannot be liberated by the mere utterance of the word Brahman.
63. Without causing the objective universe to vanish and without knowing the truth of the Self, how is one to achieve Liberation by the mere utterance of the word Brahman ? — It would result merely in an effort of speech.
64. Without killing one’s enemies, and possessing oneself of the splendor of the entire surrounding region, one cannot claim to be an emperor by merely saying, ‘I am an emperor’.
Until one knows the truth of his true existence, whatever he knows about god is mere belief. Belief is individual whereas the ultimate truth is universal every belief system has its own idea of god thus there is no universality in the belief system.
“True Self” is neither five elements, nor any of the organs individually, nor all the elements or organs together as a whole. The body and universe exists within the waking or dream. Thus the body and the universe are limited to the waking or dream. The self is within the universe, which appears as waking or dream and disappears as deep sleep. It is within the waking or dream as their formless substance and it is without the waking or dream as their formless witness. If is within because the waking or dream are mere mirage created out of the self, which is in the form of consciousness. Thus forms and names within waking or dream have no value, because the waking or dreams are mere mirage created out of the consciousness. The waking or dreams are impermanent whereas the formless substance and witness of the waking or dream are permanent.
True Self is beyond the waking or dream because it is neither the waking entity nor it is the dream entity. The self exists by itself only in deep sleep without the limitation of sense of form, time and space. The self is attribute- less, non-dual entity which alone prevails when all the three states are negated mentally.
The view of materialists that there is no self or soul different from the body has to be rejected, because the consciousness itself is the soul, which pervades all the three states. Materialists do not accept the existence of a soul different from the body but how can they find the soul within the body when it pervades in everything and everywhere in all the three states.
All the confusion is because some thinkers hold the physical body itself is the self, another that the sense organs are the self, yet another that the mind is the self. All these are rejected when one becomes aware of the fact that the soul, which is in the form of consciousness as true self. Many people hold on to the concept that there is no such thing as soul because their teacher said so or some teaching said so or some scriptures say so. Thus they get stuck with the idea of no soul and remain as stagnant water dropping all the further investigation and trying to find answers for their shortcomings in their worldly life.
Deeper investigation reveals the fact that, the individual self is limited to the waking entity or dream entity, is not the self, because the waking experience is also falsehood. Therefore, the self is the formless knower [witness] of the coming and going of the three states. And also it is the formless substance of the three states. Thus, the soul is in the form of consciousness, is the true self.
Consciousness is devoid of all qualities and is neither a doer nor an experiencer. In ignorance it appears as waking experience or dream. And in deep sleep it remains in its formless non-dual true nature. Thus the one that appears as waking or dream and disappears as deep sleep is consciousness. Thus all the three states are consciousness because there is no second thing exists, other than consciousness.
In the deep sleep there is neither waking nor dream experience. The dream is parallel waking and waking is parallel dream. In the deep sleep experience the waking or dream too is dormant and consciousness alone is there. In deep sleep there is only non-dual tranquility and total ignorance of everything, as is proved by the fact that, when a person wakes up from sleep he or she says, “I slept deeply, I did not know anything”. This proves that the soul, which is in the form consciousness, exists in the deep sleep in its formless non-dual true nature. In deep sleep there is nothing but the consciousness. The waking or dream is only a mirage created out of consciousness.
Due to ignorance the mirage is experienced as reality by the false self within the false experience. When self-knowledge arises, this ignorance is destroyed then the self, which is in the form of consciousness alone remains, which can never be negated.
The division into castes and neither stages of life, nor the rules of conduct and duties of the various castes and stages of life apply to the false self within the false experience. Religion meditation or yoga rituals, scriptural studies and follow the spiritual laws are greatest obstacles in realizing the ultimate truth. Since the notions of ‘I’, ‘I Am’ and ‘Me’, ‘mine’ are of the false self within the false experience. If one is able to drop the identification with the ‘I’ or ‘I am’ then, the consciousness [true self] will remain free from experiencing the illusory duality as reality.
In deep sleep there is neither birth, nor life, nor death, nor world, nor gods, nor is there total void, since consciousness alone exists as free from experience of waking or dream.
The experience of birth, life, death and the world are based on the false self within the false experience. On the base of the false self and the false knowledge, the waking experience is experienced as reality. But when that false knowledge is not there, such notions also do not exist, as in the state of deep sleep.
When the wisdom dawns than waking experience cease to be a reality, the dream ceases to be a reality; deep sleep ceases to be reality because there is no division in consciousness, because everything is consciousness. Thus three states are mere mirage created out of consciousness. Thus consciousness alone is all else is illusion.
Neither the religious view, nor the yogic, nor the scientific view, nor the atheistic nor the intellectual view, etc., are tenable. Because of the realization of the part- less consciousness, ultimate truth is absolutely free from diversity. It always remains as the one self, free from all diversities when one is able to view from ultimate standpoint.
Consciousness has no such thing as upper or lower (part), it has no inside or outside, it has no middle or any ‘across’, and it has no eastern or western direction, because it is all-pervading like space or pervades space also. It is one and without parts. It remains as the one self, free from all diversities.
Consciousness is formless and colorless; it is not tiny, nor big. It is neither short nor long. It is not knowable since it is of the nature of effulgence. It remains as the one self, free from dualities.
There is neither teacher nor teaching, neither student nor instruction, neither “Me” nor “you”, nor this universe. The knowledge of real nature of consciousness does not admit of different perceptions. It remains as the one auspicious self, free from all attributes.
Consciousness, which is the true self, does not have the state of waking, nor of dream, nor of deep sleep. These three states are only the products of ignorance. Consciousness is beyond these three states and it remains as the one self, free from all states.
Consciousness is all-pervading, is the desired goal, is self-existent, and is not dependent on anything else, while the entire universe which is different from it is unreal. Consciousness remains as the one self-free from all divisions.
It is not one; how can there be a second different from it? It has neither absoluteness nor non-absoluteness. It is neither void nor non-void since it is devoid of duality. It cannot be described that which is the formless essence of the all the three states.