Monday, November 06, 2006


Following are some quotes of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi on Surrender.
Excerpted from Be As You Are.

(The second way of transending the personal self is) Completely
surrendering all responsibility for one's life to
God or the Self. For such self-surrender to be effective
one must have no will or desire of one' own and one must be
completely free of the idea that there is an individual person
who is capable of acting independently of God.

The second method, of surrendering responsibility for one's life to God,
is also related to self-enquiry since it aims to eliminate the 'I-
thought by separating it from the objects and actions that it constantly
identifies with. In following this practice there should be a
constant awareness that there is no individual `I' who acts or desires,
that only the Self exists and that there is nothing apart from the Self
that is capable of acting independently of it. When following this
practice, whenever one becomes aware that one is assuming
responsibility for thoughts and actions - for example, `I want' or `I
am doing this' - one should try to withdraw the mind from its
external contacts and fix it in the Self
. This is analogous to the
transfer of attention which takes place in self-enquiry when one
realizes that self-attention has been lost. In both cases the aim is to
isolate the 'I'-thought and make it disappear in its source.

Sri Ramana himself admitted that spontaneous and complete
surrender of the `I' by this method was an impossible goal for many
people and so he sometimes advised his followers to undertake
preliminary exercises which would cultivate their devotion and
control their minds. Most of these practices involved thinking of or
meditating on God or the Guru either by constantly repeating his
name ( japa) or by visualising his form. He told his devotees that if
this was done regularly with love and devotion then the mind would
become effortlessly absorbed in the object of meditation.
Once this has been achieved complete surrender becomes much
easier. The constant awareness of God prevents the mind from
identifying with other objects and enhances the conviction that God
alone exists. It also produces a reciprocal flow of power or grace
from the Self which weakens the hold of the 'I'-thought and destroys
the vasanas which perpetuate and reinforce its existence. Eventually
the 'I'-thought is reduced to manageable proportions and with a little
self-attention it can be made to sink temporarily into the Heart.
As with self-enquiry, final realization is brought about automatically
by the power of the Self. When all the outgoing tendencies of the
mind have been dissolved in the repeated experiences of being, the
Self destroys the vestigial `I'-thought so completely that it never rises
again. This final destruction of the `I' takes place only if the self-
surrender has been completely motiveless. If it is done with a desire
for grace or Self-realization it can never be more than partial
surrender, a business transaction in which the 'I'-thought makes an
effort in the expectation of receiving a reward.
Complete surrender does require that you have no desire of your own. You must be satisfied with whatever God gives you and that means having no desires of your own.
Q: I want to know what the steps are by which I could achieve surrender. 

A: There are two ways. One is looking into the source of `I' and
merging into that source. The other is feeling `I am helpless by myself,
God alone is all-powerful and except by throwing myself

completely on him, there is no other means of safety for me.
By this
method one gradually develops the conviction that God alone exists
and that the ego does not count. Both methods lead to the same goal.
Complete surrender is another name for jnana or liberation.
 ... But the fact is that you can have no likes or dislikes after your surrender;
your will should
become completely non-existent, the Lord's will taking its place. The
death of the ego in this way brings about a state which is not
different from jnana. So by whatever path you may go, you must
come to jnana or oneness.

You must only trust God.
Surrender to him and abide by his will whether he appears or
vanishes. Await his pleasure. If you ask him to do as you please, it is
not surrender but command to him. You cannot have him obey you
and yet think that you have surrendered. He knows what is best and
when and how to do it. Leave everything entirely to him. His is the
burden, you have no longer any cares. All your cares are his. Such is
surrender. This is bhakti.
When one has completely surrendered oneself at the feet of Siva,
thereby becoming of the nature of the Self, the resulting abundant
peace, in which there is not even the least room within the Heart for
one to make any complaint about one's defects and deficiencies,
alone is the nature of supreme devotion. One's thus becoming a slave
to the Lord and one's remaining quiet and silent, devoid even of the
egotistical thought `I am his slave', is Self-abidance, and this is the
supreme knowledge.