Sincere thanks to Nagaraj for sharing his experience of the atman / awareness…This is what he writes (2/24/03)
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The prelude to the experience was that at the age of 24, I was prepared to forego all that this life had to offer for the sake of God Realization. I was virtually mad after higher things. The thought of God and God alone was in my mind all along
This experience happened in 1992. I had just then finished my graduation and searching for a job. It was about six months since I had listened to the Hymn to Dakshinamurti (Sri Dakshinamurti Stotra http://lavanya.aros.net/sanskrit/all_pdf/dakshina.pdf and also at http://www.hindunet.org/stotras/shiva/dakshiNaamurti_stotra.pdf) from my revered uncle, a rare householder Jnani. I kept contemplating on the meaning of the hymn almost always when the mind was not required to focus attention on a specific task.
I attended a relative's marriage and met many relatives after a long time. Many said that I had changed a lot ever since they had seen me in my boyhood. Few days later, walking along the street, contemplating on the seventh stanza of the Hymn to Dakshinamurthi:
Balyadishvapi Jagradadishu thatha Sarvasvavasthasvapi
VyavruttasvaNuvartamanMahamityantaha Sphurantam Sada.
Svatmanam Prakatikaroti Bhajatam Yo Mudraya Bhadraya
Tasmay Shri Guru Murtayay Nama Edam Shri Dakshinamurtaye
"To Him who, by means of the blessed symbol, manifests to the disciples the True Self that always shines within as 'I', constant in all the varying states of infancy, (manhood and old age), of jagrat (swapna and sushupti) and so on; to Him who is incarnate in the Teacher, to Him in the Effulgent Form Facing the South, to Him (siva) be this bow!"
I kept telling myself that those relatives said that I had changed. But I see that this body has grown, no doubt, but I do not feel that I have changed. I am the same all along....and immediately after that reciting the above verse over and over waited for the traffic signal to cross the road. While crossing the road, there was alertness and no thoughts. After crossing I leaned against the piller of bus shelter and suddenly something happened.
I could not see my body at all. I was light, consciousness, with blue hue, bright as sunlight but cool as moonlight on a full moon day. That was my Being. The pillar could be seen, so were the vehicles on the road. All the activities happening around derived the power from this light. There were no thoughts, no sense of belonging to anyone. I was Ananda, not rapturous ecstacy, but a steady stream of unconditioned bliss. All that was around was not different from the light. It was as if the light had its allotropic forms in the manifestation around. After a couple of minutes I could see the body but there was no feeling. I could see the footwear but not feel it. A bus going towards my place came and I boarded it. Paid the fare...all along no thoughts - (worldly activity can happen without mind) - alighted in the right place and walked back home. It took another hour after reaching home to get the body consciuosness and feeling back.
Then onwards, there is no doubt that I am not this body though every happening about this body is similar to any other normal human body.
The steady stream of Ananda - Sahaja Ananda continues on account of which I have not felt the difficulties and mental turbulence that came in way of my life ever since. Most of the time this Ananda makes me humming some song even during my office work. This, perhaps, was a foretaste of Awakening by sheer Grace of Sri Dakshinamurthi.
This event may not be useful to anyone, but while reading "unchanging, birthless, deathless and Divine consciousness", I felt a strong urge to narrate this incident.
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