Reality Is Indefinable - In Gita Verse 11.31 O Lord of lords, so ﬁerce of form, please tell me who You are. I offer my obeisances unto You; please be gracious to me. You are the primal Lord. I want to know about You, for I do not know what Your mission is.
Arjuna’s mind is not able to comprehend what Krishna is showing him.
Mind has difficulty understanding the existence of “beginninglessness.”
Reality is indefinable. Reality simply is; there is no way to say what it is. It is not a “what,” it is not even a “that,” it is this. It is thisness: you can experience it, but it cannot be explained.
And reality is beginningless and endless. The mind has a beginning and an end, hence the mind and reality cannot meet. The mind cannot comprehend the eternal. The mind exists in time, in fact the mind is time: it exists in the past and the future. And remember, time consists of only two tenses, past and future. The present is not part of time, the present is part of eternity.
Hence the mind is never found in the present. It is always wavering, either toward the past or toward the future. It moves into that which is not, or into that which is not yet. Its whole skill consists in dreaming. It is rooted in the non-existential, hence it cannot understand existence itself. It is like darkness. How can darkness comprehend light? How can death comprehend life? If death can comprehend life then death will have to be life. If darkness has to comprehend light then darkness will have to be light.
And so is the case with the mind. If the mind wants to comprehend reality, it will have to come out of the past and the future. But coming out of the past and the future, it is no longer the mind at all. Hence the insistence of all the great masters of the world: The door to reality is no-mind.
Slip out of the mind, and you will know what it is: the beginningless, the endless. Remain confined to the mind, and you will be puzzled; reality remains inconceivable.
Krishna cannot explain it to you, because in explaining Krishna will have to use the mind. Trying to understand it, you will have to use the mind. Krishna can be silent with you and if you can also be silent with Krishna, then there is understanding.
Understanding is not of the mind. Then there is great intelligence, great insight. Suddenly you know, and you know from a totally different center of your being; you know from the heart. Your knowing has the quality of love, not of knowledge. Your knowing has the quality of transcendence. It is no longer scientific knowledge, reducible to concepts. It is poetic vision, it is mystic experience.
If you really want to understand, you will have to lose the mind. You will have to pay the price of losing the mind. But if you insist, “I have to understand through the mind,” then only one thing is possible. The mind will convince you, slowly, slowly, that there is nothing which is beginningless, nothing which is endless, nothing which is indefinable, nothing which is unknowable.
The mind will reduce your experience to the measurable, the fathomable, the knowable – and the knowable is ordinary, mundane. The unknowable is sacred. And only with the unknowable does life become a benediction, only with the unknowable are you thrilled with the wonder of life and existence. Suddenly a song is born in your heart – a song that cannot be contained, a song that starts overflowing, a song that starts reaching others. A dance is born in you – a dance that has to be shared, a dance about which you cannot be miserly, a dance that makes you generous. A love is born in you – a love that is so infinite that it can fill the whole infinite existence. That is real understanding. But it happens only when the mind is dropped.
Don’t try to do the impossible. Trying to understand reality through the mind is like pulling yourself up by your own shoestrings. Maybe you can hop a little bit, but that hopping is not going to help; you will be back on the ground again and again, and it will be very tiring. Just by pulling your own shoestrings you cannot fly into the sky; that is not going to give you wings.
Slowly, slowly, learn the art of contacting reality without the mind interfering. Sometimes when the sun is setting, just sit there looking at the sun, not thinking about it – watching, not evaluating, not even saying, “How beautiful it is!” The moment you say something, the mind has come in.
The mind consists of language. Don’t use language. Can’t you just see the sunset and its beauty? Can’t you be overwhelmed by its beauty? Can’t you be possessed by its grandeur? What is the point of bringing language in? Nobody is asking you to say anything. The sun does not understand your language, the clouds that have become so beautiful and luminous in the setting sun are unable to understand your language. Why bring it in? Put it aside; be in direct contact, be thrilled. If tears come to your eyes, good. If you start dancing, good. Or if you simply remain unmoving, stoned on the beauty of the sun, intoxicated, you will have gained a little experience – a little experience that goes very far, a little glimpse of no-mind.
Arjuna and we all are facing similar difficulties. As we try to understand the eternity or beginningless and endless through our mind. Mind cannot comprehend reality.