Ramana Maharshi: No Thoughts – A selection of quotes on Silence

ramana-maharshi face
Sri Ramana Maharshi

All of the following quotes were written by Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi himself (as opposed to being recorded or compiled by someone else – of course translations from the original Tamil are presented here). Most of the quotes are taken from his short masterpiece ‘Who Am I?’, but I have also included two verses from Upadesa Saram (which he also wrote) which explains, in concise form, a method for liberation (click on the above links to find the texts together with them in PDF format for download).

If you read the quotes below carefully, you will see that Ramana also explains the nature of Jnana (Knowledge or Wisdom) and what it means to ‘abide as the Self’ or ‘resolve the mind in the Self’.

!Om Guru Ramana!


No thoughts

All the texts say that in order to gain release one should render the mind quiescent; therefore their conclusive teaching is that the mind should be rendered quiescent; once this has been understood there is no need for endless reading.
Who Am I?

There will come a time when one will have to forget all that one has learned.
Who Am I?

The mind should not be allowed to wander towards worldly objects and what concerns other people.
Who Am I?

When there is no thought, the mind experiences happiness
Who Am I?

As the meditation on the Self rises higher and higher, the thoughts will get destroyed.
Who Am I?

Jnana

Remaining quiet is what is called wisdom-insight (Jnana-dristi).
Who Am I?

Self-Abidance

To remain quiet is to resolve the mind in the Self.
Who Am I?

No desire/attachment

Likes and dislikes, love and hatred, are equally to be eschewed.
Who Am I?

As thoughts arise, destroying them utterly without any residue in the very place of their origin is non-attachment.
Who Am I?

The world should be considered like a dream.
Who Am I?

In no single one of  the countless objects of the mundane world is there anything that can be called happiness.
Who Am I?

The Mind

Apart from thoughts, there is no such thing as mind.
Who Am I?

Doubts

Without yielding to the doubt ‘Is it possible, or not?’, one should persistently hold on to the meditation on the Self.
Who Am I?

Even if one be a great sinner, one should not worry and weep ‘O! I am a sinner, how can I be saved?’ One should completely renounce the thought ‘I am a sinner’ and concentrate keenly on meditation on the Self; then, one would surely succeed.
Who Am I?

A Method

Breath controlled and thought restrained,
The mind turned one-way inward
Fades and dies.
Upadesa Saram

It is true wisdom
For the mind to turn away
From outer objects and behold
Its own effulgent form.
Upadesa Saram

Silence

The Self is that where there is absolutely no ‘I-thought’. That is called ‘Silence’.
Who Am I?

When one’s self arises all arises; when one’s self becomes quiescent all becomes quiescent.
Who Am I?

Surrender

He who gives himself up to the Self that is God is the most excellent devotee. Giving one’s self up to God means remaining constantly in the Self without giving room for the rise of any thoughts other than the thought of the Self.
Who Am I?

It is, in fact, the indefinable power of the Lord that ordains, sustains, and controls everything that happens. Why then should we worry, tormented by vexatious thoughts, saying: ‘Shall we act this way? No, that way,’ instead of meekly but happily submitting to that Power?
Who Am I?

Closing ‘thoughts’

If only the mind is kept under control, what matters it where one may happen to be?
Who Am I?

All the texts say that in order to gain release one should render the mind quiescent; therefore their conclusive teaching is that the mind should be rendered quiescent; once this has been understood there is no need for endless reading.
Who Am I?

!Om Guru Ramana!

4 thoughts on “Ramana Maharshi: No Thoughts – A selection of quotes on Silence

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