The knower and the known – Meditation instruction by Nome

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Meditation instructions – May 16, 2008 – Nome, Society of Abidance in Truth (SAT) www.satramana.org

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Inquiring in order to realize the quintessential being of the inquirer, it is very important to discriminate between the knower and the known in order that the tendency to imagine yourself to be something objective – the imagining that constitutes misidentification – ceases.

Discern what is merely the known, for what you are can never be defined by thinking. The essence of the knower, that thus remains, is of the nature of pure self-luminous consciousness, which is utterly formless, unborn, indestructible, without bondage or limitation. Discern the known, discriminating deeply, and the knower remains – without a body, beyond the senses and what they perceive, free of the qualities and activities of the body and the senses.

The unborn, the imperishable existence, which knows no difference, remains. What remains is what you truly are. Inquiry is establishing your identity in its rightful place, that is, it is dispensing with ignorance and thus remaining with the innate knowledge of the bodiless, sense transcendent, mind-transcendent, unconceived, unthought, nonindividualized, pure Existence-Consciousness-Bliss.

Inquire within yourself, meditating on the essence of the meditator. Discern what is known – you are the knower. Let there be no confounding of the knower and the known, no mixing yourself up with what is merely objective.

Inquire, “Who am I?” within yourself. .

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About Nome

Nome is an American spiritual teacher of Advaita Vedanta, in the tradition of 20th Century Indian sage Ramana Maharshi.

Biographical Info

Nome was born on January 23, 1955 in Long Island, New York, and spent most of his childhood in New Jersey. His family was opposed to all religions.

Early Spiritual Experiences and Practice

Despite having no training in any religious tradition, Nome’s first spiritual experience, of nirvikalpa samadhi, occurred at age 15 spontaneously in a park in New jersey. At age 16, without graduating from high school, he left his home and family in New Jersey and traveled to California in search of enlightenment.

In San Francisco Nome met Swami Swanandashram, who introduced him to the traditional scriptures of Hinduism such as the Upanisads, the Avadhuta Gita, and the Astavakra Gita, and to the teachings of Adi Sankara and Sri Ramana Maharshi.

After three years of intense spiritual practice (Ramana’s Self-inquiry), on May 14, 1974, at 19 years of age, Nome gained Self-Realization.

Early Teaching

For several years Nome was mainly silent, and sometimes answered questions from spiritual seekers.

In 1978, a group of spiritual seekers, first called “The Avadhut Ashram,” formed around Nome. He held satsang in Boulder Creek, Santa Cruz and San Francisco. Later, the Society of Abidance in Truth was created from this group, and a temple, dedicated to Sri Ramana Maharshi, was built in Santa Cruz, CA, USA, and opened in 1989. Satsang and retreats have been offered in this temple since that time.

Books – Translations, commentaries and original works

Although he had no formal education in Hinduism, Nome dedicated himself to reading and studying the classical scriptures and the Sanskrit language. From 1988 to 2001, Nome worked with Dr. H. Ramamoorthy, a scholar of Hinduism and the Sanskrit and Tamil languages, to translate classic Advaita Vedanta works into English (many for the first time). This work encompassed 20 manuscripts, and continued until the death of Dr. Ramamoorthy in 2001.

Many works have been published, including classics of Hindu thought such as both the Sanskrit and the Tamil versions of the Ribhu Gita, and Sankara’s Svatmanirupanam. There are more manuscripts still to be published. This collaboration produced the only complete English translation of the Tamil-language Ribhu Gita, titled Song of Ribhu. This work has been reprinted in India by Ramanasramam, and has been translated into Hindi and Italian.

Original written works by Nome include Timeless Presence and Self-Knowledge. A commentary on Sri Ramana’s “Self-Inquiry,” Essence of Inquiry has also been published and is available  from the Ramanasramam book store.

Since the founding of SAT

Nome was invited by Sri Ramanasramam to participate at the 1996 centenary celebration of Sri Ramana Maharshi’s arrival at Arunachala. He has also spoken at The Ramana Centre for Learning in Bangalore, by request of A.R. Natarajan. Both Ramanasramam and The Ramana Centre for Learning have published books written or translated by Nome.

More about SAT can be found at www.satramana.org. More about Nome is on Wikepedia, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nome,_Spiritual_Teacher

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