The concept “Aham Brahmasmi” has always fascinated me!!!!! A one liner that can explain this would be something like ‘Its a philosophical insight gained through vichara (thinking) or an awareness experienced in a transcendental state of samadhi or union of oneself with god or some higher power’………..Ok.....ok..!! now!!! Don’t give up reading this post...it’s not a discourse!! And I am not getting too technical!! :-)
Aham Brahmasmi is like an expression of a kind of’ I-am-ness’!! Not the kinda ‘I’ that is egoist or proud or haughty..... but the ‘I’ that is so sure of itself... the ‘I’ that speaks humbly about self realisation it its fullness!!!
...these two words contain a world of meaning in them! What is most fascinating is that how something as old as creation itself is applicable to your and my everyday life! Today we talk and hear SO much about ‘I’, ‘myself ‘, ‘individuality’, ‘my own space’ ....... ‘Aham Brahmasmi’ is something that is central to a sense of ‘I’ ness!!!!!
We hear of kids as young as 10 years old(or even younger!) having their own preferences in food, clothes.....we come across young kids demanding a room of their own to ensure personal space..... We hear about people changing their names that their parents gave, just to establish a kind of individuality........we see people piercing and tattooing themselves in unique ways... to individualise themselves...to establish an ‘I’ kind of identity!! Most of these behaviours and ideas may sound ridiculous and unacceptable to most people of earlier generations.... it clearly indicates that as a generation we have slowly transformed into a generation that values ‘I’ ness.. a sense of individuality, it is no longer looked down upon!!
When I look around objectively, I guess at some level, we have to face the truth that we, the present generation is one of confusion, selfishness at some level.......!!( No offense to anybody! I believe that we are very potential and all that jazz... but this side of reality has to faced!!)
We hear elders say that the root cause of the selfishness and confusion is because we are given too much freedom......and individuality is appreciated and taught as a value, unlike their generation!! I wish to contradict here and raise a point that, it’s not the freedom or the importance given to individuality that’s the culprit creating a generation of selfish, confused individuals who are SO unsure as an entire generation. It’s the lack of understanding of the self that is to be blamed....... it is the lack of realisation of the self.... of the inner space...of the personal space....! There is a very thin line of difference between the ‘I’ ness becoming a selfish , self centered one or it being one that is fully aware of itself...... Rather than blaming the freedom and individuality that is encouraged , we might as well move towards refining the sense of ‘I’ness...... How and when does that happen?
If and When, as an individual I am able to be fully aware of myself, know my needs wants desires well, when I establish a kind of peace with myself... I would experience a communion with a kind of higher force, which some call God, some call Energy or soul or any other name! I can feel a sense of goodness within me,that religious people may want to call god! I experience a state where I am no different from God or the Goodness around me! In short, I reach a state where I can say ‘Aham Brahmasmi’ with a certain humility and conviction!! Well, like most solutions to problems...this too is simple and works well only under IDEAL conditions!!Practically...... to reach such a state of mind is no joke!! But to move towards such a state of mind itself may be a soul satisfying journey......... and if on the way.......somewhere..... if we are able to get a glimpse of the communion, of the ‘I’ in ourself, the state of mind that says ‘Aham Brahmasmi’ – that should be rewarding enough!!