Who am I? And that is the next part. You learned it last night if you were here, I say this continuously, because that is the foundation of truth. If we do not know who we are what do we know. And basically almost nobody knows.
We speculate. We think, we have an opinion, we have our feelings, we have and experience of who we are. And almost always it is wrong. Just because I think something, I feel something, I have an experience of something, it does not mean that it is true.
The truth tells me if it is true or not. This absolute knowledge reveals the truth to us. And If my truth is different than that I have to (if I want to actually make some progress) accept – I am wrong. It is really difficult to say I am wrong. And ultimately we may find that we were wrong about everything, yes.
The Vedas tell us we should all ask ourselves the question – who am I. But we do not do that, how many people do that? And even if we do what we come up with? We come up with some wrong answer because we do not accept an authoritative answer. We conclude: oh, we take LSD and we rocket through space, you know, and we come back with the new conclusion of who I am: I am light energy or whatever, you see. It is wrong, it is not correct. That is why we have to give up all of these quests that go in the wrong direction and become humble. And simply come to the feet of the absolute knowledge and say, «Okay, tell me what do I need to know, what do I need to know.» You see, this is a person who is ready to learn. He is a real student.
The Vedas say that who we thought we are, we are not. We are not these material bodies. We all think, «Oh, I am a male or I am female, I am black or I am white, I am a Norwegian or I am a Spaniard, or I am an American, or I am a Russian. I am young, I am old, you know, I am a member of this family”, and on and on it goes. All wrong, all wrong. «I am a doctor, I am a lawyer, I am a husband, wife, parent.» All wrong, absolutely wrong, not true, you see. And people build their lives on this illusion! So what we need to do is find out who we really are.
I remember me personally, I entered into this arena, if you will, of trying to find knowledge, truth many years ago. I had some experiences, pretty profound experiences. I had read some books, you know, and from my experiences and the books that I have read I concluded I am not the body. So I knew who I was not, but I did not know who I was. And of cause reading the wrong books, listening to the wrong people… I was misled, thinking, «I am God.» Because somebody says, «You are God.» Okay. (But of course I knew I was not.) But you are trying to realize this, you are trying to come to this understanding. Because here is some book that somebody wrote.
You know, there was not any Internet in those days. You couldn’t read it. You must go out, buy a book, take it home and actually open a book and read it, can you imagine? People had to do those things. That is true. We actually had books (laughing). So you open your book and you read it, and somebody wrote this book and you read, «You are God.» And you think, «Oh, okay.» But in your heart you know you are not God. You know it is not true. You are trying to justify that experience of reality with «Oh, but I just have not realized that yet. You see, but when I advance more I will came to that understanding.» You will never advance that much, because it is not true. You will never become God. We can never become someone other than who we truly are.
So we are not a material body, external, physical body. We have a second body, mental body. Sometimes it is called the astral body, made of subtle material energy – not spiritual. But that is not who we are either, it is just like under layer of clothing.
But we are spiritual in nature, we are an atomic spiritual spark, infinitesimal in size spirit soul. That is who we are eternally.
Why? Because spirit is eternal. Matter is temporary, it comes and it goes. Including the whole material creation. It comes and goes. Comes, manifests for a while and then it goes away. You see, all material energy is temporary. However spirit is eternal. Sometimes we hear this incorrect statement, «He is an old soul.» Like he was born a long time ago. Souls are not born, souls are eternal, ever existing, primeval.
So we do not have a beginning, we are eternal. We do not have an end, because «eternal» means «no end» also. We have always existed, we will always continue to exist. That is beginning of understanding: I am eternal, I am spirit soul, I am not this material body, I am not this material mind. And we are also a part and parcel of the Supreme Soul.
Where did we come from? What is our origin, you see? How it is that we came about from the eternal Supreme Person. We are eternal part and parcel of the Original Supreme Personality, who is known as the Adipurusa. «Adi» means «first», «Purusa» means «Lord.» The first Lord, the first original creator of everything, the cause of all causes. If you take anything and trace it back: there was a cause which had another cause. You trace all causes back and you come to the Adipurusa, the cause of all causes. That is our true identity.