Self-Centeredness — versus God-Centeredness
We have already discussed that in order to realize the meaning of our lives as humans, to realize our love for God that should be manifested in the desire to serve Him, to cognize Him, to become like Him, and to merge with Him in the Embraces of Eternal Love — we have to grow ourselves as spiritual hearts and to refine ourselves as consciousnesses.
But there is another aspect of self-development that needs to be understood and fulfilled. I am talking about the destruction of one’s lower self (ego).
The lower self is the part of a person that manifests itself as a feeling of separate existence, isolation from the Absolute.
A large number of vices are manifestations of the pathologically inflated lower self. Among these are greed, the desire to take possession of what belongs to others, arrogance, pride, conceit, resentfulness, anger, revengefulness, jealousy, self-admiration, attachment to material objects, emotional vulnerability, and so on.
All this creates trouble and pain to both other people who surround such a person and to the person himself or herself. He or she cannot be loved and respected by people. Moreover, actions performed under influence of this kind of emotions form a negative karma (destiny). And coarsening of the consciousness, which inevitably results from the domination of coarse negative states, steers the development of such a person into a demoniac pattern and determines hell for him or her.
This is why Jesus put such a great emphasis in His preachings on the importance of conquering the “sticking out” lower selves of His disciples. In particular, He taught never to sit on the “high” place, to think “big” of oneself; on the contrary: He said that he who is willing to serve people should feel himself as their servant. (More details can be found in ).
Lao Tse, Krishna, Gautama Buddha, Pythagoras, and Babaji taught the same. Today this is taught by Sathya Sai Baba .
The opposite qualities to those pertaining to the “protruding” lower self, which is proud, boastful, arrogant, self-admiring, touchy, rude, hasty, revengeful, envious, irritable, angry, greedy, lascivious, — are simplicity and lowliness of mind (humble thinking of oneself), also dedicating the life not to caring about oneself but about the good of others [8-10].
Studying of spiritual literature, in particular, The Philokalia [6,63], can help in acquiring these qualities. Mistakes that one has made must become the subject of a thorough intelligent repenting, which we have discussed in detail in many books [6,12,14, and others].
But the ultimate solution to this problem can come only through the practice of meditation.
The point is that it is impossible to be in Divine eons as a separate entity: one can be there only in a dissolved and merged with other Consciousnesses state, the state of “non-I”. It can be likened to a drop of water which falls to the ocean and must dissolve in it and become its integral part. If the drop does not do it, then it will not be identical to the ocean and will not become a part of it, no matter how many times it dips into or swims inside it.
The same is true for us: for the sake of Mergence with our beloved Creator we have to sacrifice our selves — they have to die. Only in this case we can associate with His Self — the Higher Self.
But let no one think that it can be accomplished as a result of a purely mental process. No. In order to realize Mergence with the Creator one has to go a long Path of purifying oneself of vices and refining the consciousness. One’s love for the Creator has to be so strong that it would enable one to renounce all the worldly goals. One also has to bring up the Atmic energy Kundalini to the body and move it through the body. Upon coming through the body, it merges into the Creator. Starting from this moment, you may consider a part of “yourself” as already being in Him [6,8]. And all that remains to accomplish is to learn to move yourself into Him completely and then to come out from Him. Then we become like our Divine Teachers.
Let me explain this in other words. The state of “non-I” means that there is only He and there is no me. This is Mergence with God: the state when I, as a consciousness, completely dissolve in Him.
This is achieved through the method of total reciprocity.
We can begin mastering it in the harmony of forest, at spring evening best of all. Then we enter the meditative state when “there is only the forest and there is no me”.
Then, as we master subtler eons, we do the same in them.
Realization of this meditation in the eon of the Primordial Consciousness (Abode of the Creator) means Mergence with Him.
If one then masters abiding in this state in all eons of the Absolute simultaneously, starting from the subtlest one and putting the emphasis on it — it would be Mergence with the Absolute.
Mastering of this stage of spiritual work can be performed best on special places of power intended for this task. And it is possible only for those who have transformed themselves into giant spiritual hearts. Only this part of the human soul is capable of mergence.
* * *
Once God told me:
“Death of your body can happen tomorrow. Be ready.”
And after some time He added:
“You should have more humility.”
… Winter. Morning. It is still dark. I walk along the road with a backpack. Along the sides of the road there are high icy walls of packed snow that have been cleared off the road.
All of a sudden I see headlights: a tractor is rushing at high speed by the shoulder of the road right towards my body. It is impossible to jump aside to the road: there is dense traffic there. I am pressing into the snow wall hoping that the tractor will pass by. No: it proceeds without slowing down or turning aside. A deliberate run-over attempt! At the last instant I jump on the icy wall, cling onto it — hoping that the body does not start sliding down! The vehicle flashes by within less than an inch of my feet. I survive! If the body had slid down, severe injuries would have been inevitable.
I walk further, thinking. An ordinary man would have burst with negative emotions: offence, spite, a desire to revenge, etc. Or rather, it is the lower self that would have burst. How dare he?! Bastard! Catch him! Punish him! And if it is impossible to catch and punish, then it translates into prolonged stress, stenocardia, high blood pressure, stroke, infarct, etc.
In cases like that it is best to recall the words of Juan Matus that He said to Carlos Castaneda :
“A (spiritual) warrior could be injured but not offended. For a warrior there is nothing offensive about the acts of his fellow men…
The other night you were not offended by the lion. The fact that it chased us did not anger you. I did not hear you cursing it, nor did I hear you say that he had no right to follow us. It could have been a cruel and malicious lion for all you know.
To achieve the mood of a warrior is not a simple matter. To regard the lion and the water rats and our fellow men as equals is a magnificent act of the warrior’s spirit! It takes power to do that.”
Sufis say  that there are three types of people:
b) animal-like who live only with primitive instincts and whose intellect can be compared with that of many animals;
c) people capable of engaging in serious spiritual practice.
If we get stuck in the conflicts that representatives of the first two groups thrust on us we will not only lose such precious time that God allotted us for self-perfection in our bodies, but we also run the risk of growing embittered, accustoming ourselves to anger… and becoming like them — without even noticing it.
Temptations to become involved into conflicts when the interests of the lower self are being vindicated are a sort of “filter” that stands in the way to the Abode of the Creator. Only those who are free of self-centeredness can pass through them.
* * *
Looking back at my life I clearly realize now that I could not have accomplished anything serious either for myself or for other people if I had not learned to ignore insults, slander, betrayals, and even murdering of my body performed by a sect consisting of people who refused to follow the fundamental principles of spiritual practice .
… How many people live with emotions of hatred and with the desire to revenge on their offenders!... But what sense does it make to dedicate years of our lives to these passions? Life was given to us for another purpose!
But anger, even “righteous”, — can lead us only to hell.
… I also know very well what a desperate need (as it seemed then) lack of money is.
When the KGB prosecuted me for my religious convictions — in the “soviet” times, I sometimes had to collect and turn in empty bottles from the streets…
Or when my body was crippled by that gang of primitive people and I was disabled for several months — I also had no money. I could not even receive any “sick leave” compensation: the center where I had worked before was closed by me. And my “best friends” who used to travel with me tens of kilometers to the woods and even to seminars in Moscow (from Saint-Petersburg) decided that they could not receive anything more from me and thus lost any interest in me. At that time, when it was not them but I who needed help, it turned out that I lived “too far away”: one long hour of traveling by subway, for example…
In this manner God showed me the true nature of those to whom I was going to dedicate my life…
At that time I lived together with my mother on her pension. But she died soon: her heart could not withstand the view of her son’s crippled body…
But God used to say all the time then:
— Do not worry about money! Come to Me! I will take care of the rest!
And He ordered me to write books: the first one, then the second, the third… Every time publishing them turned out to be a problem. But the resolution would always turn up somehow. Along the way He introduced me to new (for me) types of people: liars, thieves, those who were willing to do something for other people only for money, or primitive people who would set to leading others on the “spiritual path”…
But I also met those who saw a long-awaited Good in me, and the Creator behind me — they would begin to help me, although they lacked the resolution necessary to make their own spiritual efforts…
He also brought to me those who were able to effortlessly master the most complex things and demonstrated an absolute devotion to the cause. They were the people, who, as Krishna said in the Bhagavad Gita [4,10], already sought for the Creator in their past lives; and now He was presenting them with Buddhi Yoga through me — so that they could get close to and merge into Him soon…
* * *
Everyone chooses their own abode themselves: some choose hell, some — paradise, while others — the Abode of the Creator.
It is a pity though, that there are so few people on the Earth who possess sufficient knowledge that would allow them to make a deliberate choice…
“There is no life but the life to come!” — this is how one of the most important and fundamental themes for meditation is worded in the Quran . In other words, this life in the body is but a preparation for the life “on the other side”, which usually is much longer than the one on the Earth. And one must live the earthly life having a profound understanding of the mechanisms of destiny formation and of the true meaning of life and the ways of its realization.
* * *
What is the God-centeredness mentioned in the title of this chapter? It implies that one has the Creator rather than oneself as the center of one’s own perception of the world.
Taking a positive intellectual decision in this matter is good but not enough. It is meditative realization that is important.
And how one can come to this — is discussed in many of our books including this one.