"However many holy words you read, however many you speak, what good will they do you if you do not act on upon them?" ~ Buddha
You do not need more study. You need practice. Spiritual practice is called sadhana in India. All spiritual practices fall under that category.
Just as guitars and drums and voices make music, so does meditation and self-inquiry and devotion and prayer and selfless service make for awakening.
For all the musical instruments, they have sound in common. They all use sound and sound is their ultimate point, music. All spiritual practices use attention. Attention is awareness, which becomes apparent when you pay attention to attention, which is the essence of meditation. Doing spiritual practices without being present and attentive is like trying to play a song without listening to the notes you are playing.
Why do you need to understand truth and purpose? Because you think it will give you peace. So forget truth and purpose and instead discover the real meaning of peace. That is truthful and purposeful in itself. The notions of objectivity and subjectivity are thoughts. Abandon both when it comes to this endeavor. Truth is not seen objectively or subjectively. It is not seen at all.
Truth knows itself. Nothing knows the truth. You are the truth. Know yourself as you really are and you will know truth. But this knowing is not a mental experience. It is not a perspective or a thought or a feeling.
Right now, you ‘know’ you are a human. Is that knowledge a thought you must continually have? No. That knowledge is the place from which you are living. That knowledge of being a human is simply a misperception of the eternal knowledge of the Self.
Words cannot take you beyond words. You must put in the effort to practice and discover for yourself. Daily meditation is the place to start. At first, perhaps for a while, effort may be needed. Once you stop resisting, then effort loses meaning.
The guru, the disciple, and the teaching are not separate from each other. They are one. The guru is the Self, the disciple is the Self, and the teaching is the Self.
An outer guru, a guru with a physical body, is like a bonus. A guru is a human who has realized the Self and is capable of leading others to that same realization. The outer guru encourages, inspires, and gives the teachings. This pushes you inward.
The inner guru is none other than the Self, your real Self. It is You. So while the outer guru pushes you within, the inner guru pulls. What is being pushed and pulled seems like ‘you’, but really it is a kind of imagination. That imagination is what we call the ego. This may be confusing to really understand but it becomes more comprehendible by practicing daily meditation. However, that is why you don’t need to attain something new but rather only forget the false. The Self doesn’t need to be attained, you are always yourself.
The outer guru is certainly a help and a blessing. But it is not a necessity. After all, if a guru was needed for realization, how did the first guru come about? Buddha is a good example of someone without a guru who realized the Self (although he phrased it as the no-self, Emptiness).
If your interest is in self-realization, enlightenment, nirvana, whatever you want to call it, then a good place to start is with someone who has actualized that interest. It’s very practical.
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