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Student-Self and Teacher-Soul

illustration of information flowing from one brain to another


“Very often, our anxious self will attack a problem, looking for how to juggle, maintain, or solve what has been set in motion, while the teacher within will stand back and question our very assumptions, even our very definition of what constitutes a problem.”

In a conversation with a student, the Hindu sage Ramana Maharshi was asked, “While searching for the God within, should we keep part of our attention on the physical work at hand?” Sri Ramana spoke softly, “The Self is Universal. So all actions will go on whether you strain yourself to be engaged in them or not. The work will go on by itself. ... It’s not for [us] to work and worry about it ... but to allow [our deeper] nature to carry out the will of a Higher Power.” “But,” the student replied, “the work may suffer if I don’t attend it.” Sri Ramana answered clearly, “Attending to the Self means attending to the work.” What are we to make of this exchange? When Sri Ramana speaks of the need to attend the Self, he’s referring to the center we carry that is larger than our identity and older than our personal history. He’s referring to the Hindu notion of Namaste, which means: I bow to the piece of God, the piece of the Universe that resides in you. When we attend to the piece of God we carry within, we attend to the work and the work goes on by itself. To understand this fully, we need to look …

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Self-HelpMental HealthWisdomAnxiety

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