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Dealing with Blame [per Ramana Maharshi’s direct path]

by | Jun 30, 2020 | Advaita, Awareness, Consciousness, Drama, Ego, Independent Spirituality, Mind, Paths, Sakshi Bhav/Witness, Samsara

Question:

I can not take insults and blame and criticism, I wilt away like a dying flower. Please help me deal with this, a family member does not speak respectfully and this kills me. Please help!

 

Answer: 

Whenever somebody insults you or somebody praises you, what really happens within you? Let’s look at this in detail:

 

STEP 1] ROOT CAUSE IDENTIFICATION:

  • You have an image of yourself in your own mind and you believe in this image, you believe in the qualities of this image.
  • When somebody says something about this image [criticism or praise], the ‘I’ identifies with the blame or criticism.
  • This identification creates a pleasant sensation in case of praise or an unpleasant sensation in case of criticism.
  • You react to the pleasant sensation with excitement, the graph of your mind goes up. In the opposite scenario, you react with unhappiness to the unpleasant sensation and the graph of your mind goes down.

Recognize that the problem is two-part:

– when the ‘I’ identifies with an image of itself and believes in that image and

– when the ‘I’ reacts to the sensations created by criticism or praise that refer to the image.

The wise one clearly sees that the root cause of the pain was not the criticism or the praise, the root cause of any internal ups and downs in the mind is my identification. The I or the ego identifying with its own image in the mind and identifying with the words that come towards him & reacting.

 

So what does the wise one now do?

Now that he has identified with the problem, he takes a step back from the ‘I’ [Ego] and learns to rest in that which is ‘beyond the I’.

 

STEP 2] UPROOTING THE CAUSE:

On Ramana Maharishi’s path, one would look for the source of I.

Where does this I come from, who am I, who is the one who is hurt?

  •  When you ask this question, the attention that was outside on the words of the other person or outside on the mind that is feeling hurt, that attention now moves inwards, yes even the mind is external, there is that witnessing that is happening at the back. Move towards that witnessing, turn inwards, and find who is it that knows the suffering in the mind?  
  • When you look within you will hit that quiet witnessing, that quiet field of awareness, that background of silence which contains the I, the screen of silence which contains the image of the suffering mind, the silence which contains the entire drama of praise and blame.

The wise one finds his solution. He now learns to rest in that awareness, in that silence again and again and again. Whenever the mind pulls him out into thought of pleasant and unpleasant, he again withdraws from the mind, by asking the question, ‘who am I’ and turns within, again; he rests in the awareness. He rests in that witnessing silent pool that is never touched by blame nor praise.

 

So now let’s understand, how can just mere shifting of attention from external to the internal solve the problem?

 

Simply because attention or awareness is like a flame and this flame burns away the mind. Don’t believe me blindly, experiment with your mind, and know for yourself.

  • When somebody is talking to you irrespective of whether it is blame or praise give it full attention, hundred percent be aware of the one who is witnessing this scenario and be there, you will still be able to listen to what the person is saying, you will still be in the same scenario but you will have hooked onto something beyond, you will have hooked onto pool of witnessing silence that contains the scenario.
  • There the silence of awareness will burn all the hurt, all the blame and it will also burn the praise.
  • You will be left with NO-THING!. 

Keep practicing, keep practicing, and get to the source of ‘I’. Always ask yourself ‘Who am I?’ or even better ask yourself, ‘What is this I?’

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5 Comments

  1. Ramana Devotee

    Thank you Ektaji for the detailed step-by-step method on how to perform Self-enquiry and then stay as the Witness in difficult situations.

    Bhagavan Ramana also said: “What they are abusing is your body, isn’t it? What greater enemy is there than this body which is the abode of anger and similar feelings? It is necessary that we ourselves should hate it. If anybody abuses us, we should know that they are waking us up. Those who abuse us that way should be looked upon as our friends. It is good for us to be among such people. If you are among people who praise you, you get deceived” .

    (Source: Letters from Sri Ramanasramam by Suri Nagamma, Letter no. 30, 26th Jan 1946)

    Conclusion: Either way, the Bad karma that brings on the insult can be put to Good use by letting the insult remove our ego/ body-identification.

    Reply
    • Gnyana Sangha

      Sometimes teachers need to use strong statements to convey a message. Ramana wanted to bring this point across to that particular questioner that he is too strongly identified with his ego/body and that identification itself is the root cause of his misery. The one who gets this clarity surpasses the world of suffering.

      Reply
      • Ramana Devotee

        Got it👍🏼 Thank you so much🙏🏼 I realize that this approach still involves ‘doing’ as in trying to decrease the Ego/ body-identification. I now understand that ‘Being’ is the higher path. I will try practicing Ramana’s Self-Enquiry and just ‘being’ the witness/Awareness as described by you in detail above……during praise or criticism🙏🏼

        “ Awareness is the flame that burns away the mind”: this sentence is a great motivation. I see that only ‘ being’ aware is needed here, not doing. Many thanks again Ektaji🙏🏼🙏🏼

        Reply
        • Suresh

          Ektaji,

          Thank you so much for the profound insight into this. This is something everyone come across in day to day life situations. Your answer to the question really helps a lot.I particularly like the step by step instructions. I think It is practical and can be practised with little focus. Being a Software engineer, I get the step by step instructions easily. Thanks again.

          Reply
  2. Aparna

    Thank you Ekta ji ,

    I was going through this for quite sometime but was not able to frame the question .

    I read the entire explaination and completely agree that sometimes i am able to see inside & not react but at times I react immediately . Please guide me how can I make it a habit of not reacting .

    One of my close relative reacts the moment i give my honest opinion , the reaction is so violent that I am left with no other option but to keep quite to stop it from reaching worst .

    Thank you 🙏

    Reply

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