Bliss is the essential nature of man. The central fact of man’s being is his inherent divinity.
Man’s essential nature is divine, the awareness of which he has lost because of his animal propensities and the veil of ignorance. Man, in his ignorance, identifies himself with the body, mind, Prana and the senses. Transcending these, he becomes one with Soul or the Absolute who is pure bliss.
Soul or the Absolute is the fullest reality, the completest consciousness. That beyond which there is nothing, that which is the innermost Self of all is Soul or Spirit or Brahman. The Soul is the common Consciousness in all beings. All beings have the same common Soul.
There is apparent, fictitious difference in bodies and minds only. There are differences in colors and opinions. But, the Soul is the same in all. If you are very rich, you can have a steamer, a train, an airship of your own for your own selfish interests. But, you cannot have an Soul of your own. The Soul is common to all. It is not an individual’s sole registered property. The Soul is the one amidst the many. It is constant amidst the forms which come and go. It is the pure, absolute, essential Consciousness of all the conscious beings. The source of all life, the source of all knowledge is the Soul, thy innermost Self. This Soul or Supreme Soul is transcendent, inexpressible, unthinkable, indescribable, the ever-peaceful, all-blissful.
There is no difference between the Soul and bliss. The Soul is bliss itself. God, perfection, peace, immortality, bliss are one. The goal of life is to obtain perfection, immortality or God. The nearer one approaches the Truth, the happier one becomes. For, the essential nature of Truth is positive, absolute bliss. There is no bliss in the finite. Bliss is only in the Infinite. Eternal bliss can be had only from the eternal Self.
To know the Self is to enjoy eternal bliss and everlasting peace. Self-realization bestows eternal existence, absolute knowledge, and perennial bliss. None can be saved without Self-realization.
Oneness of Self or oneness of Existence is Reality, and the realization of this Reality is Moksha or Nirvana or Liberation. Moksha is the breaking down of the barriers that constitute separate existence. Moksha is the absolute state of Being, where the unity of all-pervading and all-permeating consciousness is realized with certainty, like that of an orange which we see in our palm. Moksha is not an attainment of liberation from an actual state of bondage, but is the realization of the liberation which already exists. It is freedom from the false notion of bondage.
The individual soul feels itself to be in bondage on account of ignorance caused by the power of delusion. When the false belief caused by delusion is removed by Knowledge of Soul, the state of Moksha is realized then and there, in this very life. It is not to follow after death. The cause of delusion is the desire in man. The desires generate the thought-waves, and the thought-waves veil the real nature of the Soul which is blissful, immortal, and eternal. When the desires are annihilated, Knowledge of Self dawns!
- Sri Swami Sivananda