My parents gave me the name Jagjot (nickname is Sunny, means the same thing), which translated in English means light of the world. Parents give appealing names to children out of love and affection, but the reality is that the name is just a concept that exists as an identification with a form.
Concepts enable the ego to function in this 3D reality or waking dream – call it whatever you like, but there’s no deeper meaning to it. When people ask me what I do, I don’t know what to say, and I’m not trying to be abstract or philosophical here. It’s a genuine dilemma to which I have no concrete answer.
Some people think of me as a spiritual teacher, but I’ve never thought of myself being that. I share my experiences and whatever I’ve learned in the past few years. I don’t think I’ve ever taught anything to anybody.
I’m NEITHER a Healer NOR a Guru OR a Teacher. I share stories to help people turn inwards to discover the truth themselves rather than take my words to be the absolute truth.
I keep writing whatever comes to my mind, and there’s a YouTube channel where I talk about the same things. Well! Since you are here out of curiosity, let me tell you something about myself.
I was born in Chandigarh into a Sikh family. Being the child of a prominent government official, my destiny for so-called greatness was predecided by the people around me. In my early years, I played this designated role well to everybody’s satisfaction, but then something happened that changed the course of my life.
After my father passed away in 2014, I lost my job, and things became difficult, for I had the responsibility of supporting my wife (who was not working at that time) and two children. It was at this time that I started questioning the meaning of life and death. Before this, I had no spiritual inclinations whatsoever.
I started meditation, and gradually, over the next few years, something grew inside of me. It was an empty presence or awareness that felt like pure and unconditional love. I experienced a surge of energy within my being.
There was a feeling of expansion, and I saw myself as one with the entire existence. It was a feeling that I cannot describe in words. The small “I” or “me” had vanished and concepts like “mine,” “my needs,” “my desires,” etc., started withering away.
Subsequently, I discovered Advaita (Non-Duality), which gave answers to what I was experiencing. The best thing that happened was that the experience of oneness happened first, and the teaching came afterward to explain what was happening.
For most people, the experience of oneness remains a mystery or merely a philosophical concept because their ego stops them from going beyond the perceived limited “self.” I call oneness an experience because there’s no appropriate word to describe it.
In fact, words or explanations reduce it to a concept, when in reality, it is timeless knowing. It is impersonal and not the product of the thinking mind, so there cannot be any doubt or skepticism.
It’s not that the one who experiences oneness becomes superior to others (spiritually or otherwise). It’s precisely the opposite. When you awaken, you realize that you’re nothing.
Eventually, my spiritual exploration began, and I started reading the teachings of Advaita, including commentaries from Adi Shankaracharya. It deepened my understanding, but there was some “me” still left. My understanding was incomplete, and at one point, my spiritual pain became unbearable.
The straw that broke the camel’s back came when I read the teaching of great Advaita teachers like Maharishi Ramana, Nisargadatta Maharaj, Jiddu Krishnamurthy, and finally, Ramesh Balsekar. Ramesh’s words put an end to what were the last remains of the fictional entity called Jagjot. My biases and imperfections as the mind-body organism are still there, but I’m aware of them (at least some, if not all).
In 2019, I started MindfulnessQuest to help others explore mindfulness and raise collective human consciousness. MindfulnessQuest happened because my energy had become potential, and it needed to flow. I’m just one of the instruments through which the divine consciousness or cosmic energy finds expression.
I write about non-duality, mindfulness, meditation, and spirituality and cover other topics that help people experience inner peace and live a blissful life. Understanding the mind’s working is an essential part of self-realization.
Our mind is the most complex and confusing part of the puzzle we call life. A clear understanding of the mind and its dispositions, propensities, and subtle nuisances is essential for self-awareness and healing.
Self-realization is our ultimate goal. We are not the limited mind-body complex we imagine ourselves to be. There is a pure-unchanging-eternal-shinning awareness beyond the mind that is our true essence. It is not the knowledge of the senses or the intellect but a realization of a different kind, which comes about only when the mind becomes silent.
Life Before “Understanding”
I will shortly come to what I mean by the word “understanding,” but before that, let me give you a glimpse into what my life was before this understanding.
I was always a shy kid and remained introverted. In school, I deliberately sat on the last bench to lose myself in the fantasy world where no one interrupts.
I had no interest in studies or extra-curricular activities. My teachers used to be concerned, but that never bothered me. Somehow, I managed to complete schooling (barely making it through), and then the societal conditioning intensified.
I graduated as a computer science engineer and worked in the corporate industry for about 12 years. I had what you can call a comfortable life with a well-paying job, but there was this void, a sort of discomfort that was driving me crazy. Sitting in a cubical, I used to feel suffocated.
I used to interact with my coworkers just for the sake of it. There was no genuineness in those associations. It felt like I was playing a role. All my efforts were just to fit in.
For hours, I would stare at the outside view of the lush green grass from my office window. If you could see me from a perspective, it was like a prisoner holding the prison bars and looking outside, hoping for freedom.
As the years passed by, a lot of changes took place. I started seeing the futility of my pursuits. Eventually, this reality hit me that nothing in this life comes without an opposite. That unhappiness accompanies every happiness. It is called duality or phenomenality.
In duality, every desire we seek to fulfill only gives temporary happiness. The pain we experience in the absence of that desirable object creates more suffering. I saw that there is no true fulfillment of worldly desires. When we fulfill one desire, we immediately create another. Desires arise from the lack or void that can only be fulfilled when we realize our true nature.
I started experiencing an empty awareness in my meditation where the individual “me” meditating started to disappear. I had no sense of my body or mind. Just pure awareness. That’s what I mean by the word understanding. It means there’s no “I” doing the actions, but everything is happening.
This understanding brought about an amazing sense of freedom and relief. My childhood anxiety disappeared. I experienced a sense of oneness with the entire existence. I cannot describe this experience in words; the closest thing would be peace or bliss.
The individual ego remains, but only for worldly interactions. I still have my likes/dislikes, preferences, habits, and experience emotions the same way as before the understanding, but its seriousness (or involvement) is gone. There’s an unconditional acceptance of life. What happens, happens.
Effortlessness in Action (Cultivating Mindfulness)
I never discourage people from goals they want to achieve in life or the spiritual practices they undertake for self-realization, but if you ask me, there’s nothing to gain and nowhere to reach because the truth lies in this very moment or now.
We have a habit of unconsciously chasing after things. In the materialistic world, we run after sense-pleasures for happiness. In the spiritual world, we run after self-realization. Whereas the reality of “self” is in the timeless presence.
We’re so conditioned to effort and achievement that it seems unreal that the highest truth can be realized without any effort. Thus, the spiritual journey begins with the seeker seeking truth, but it ends with the seeker realizing that there’s nothing to seek. This realization is not intellectual but comes from the heart.
All spiritual experiences are a glimpse into the nature of the absolute or the all-pervasive consciousness. In the words of Ramesh Balsekar, “Consciousness is all there is.”
It’s known by different names – god, absolute, consciousness, energy, presence, awareness, the infinite or universal mind, and so forth. They are all the same. Therefore, you, the reader, and I, the writer, are the same consciousness or cosmic energy interacting with itself.
Dropping the effort does not mean that we stop working. The mind needs to work to stay healthy. That’s why I write and make content. The subtle energy in the body flows optimally when the mind and body are at work. However, the action becomes effortless when there’s no doer because the expectation of the outcome is no more.
The doer of the action realizes that it is merely an instrument through which the universal consciousness expresses itself. I remember the infamous Micheal Jackson and Martin Bashir interview. At one point, Micheal does amazing beatboxing or something, and Martin asks, “How do you do this?” And Micheal raises his arms and nods his head without saying a word.
There’s no explanation of how the universal consciousness operates, and it’s impossible for the mind, which is the product of this universal consciousness, to understand its nature. Creativity manifests naturally when the ego drops the resistance.
Micheal was such a shy guy in person, but he was phenomenal and beyond human comprehension on stage. It was the divine will that that mind-body expressed such creativity and genius.
There’s no explanation why the mind-body organism we know as Micheal Jackson was destined to have so much talent. The finite mind cannot know the will of the universal mind. In the end, the body disintegrates, but the consciousness remains.
Great artists perform effortlessly. It is visible in their performance. The worldly illusion is that this effortlessness comes with a lot of hard work and practice. That’s why the concept of effort and work is so pervasive in modern times.
You can earn good money by putting effort (just like I did in the past) into work, but there’s no surety that it will bring you the happiness or peace you long for internally (unless it is the divine Will).
If you ask any of these artists, they will tell you that what they did never felt like work, even when they were amateurs. If there was a formula, everyone could do it, but no such thing exists. If the secret of the atomic bomb formula could not be contained, how can the personal success secret formula be contained?
Again, I’m not telling you to stop the work or abandon your goals. No! Cultivate the mindfulness to work without involving your mind in the outcome of your efforts. That way, you free yourself from the burden of success or the guilt of failure. Why take the load? I know it’s not easy. Mindfulness takes time.
Happiness is here and now in this very moment. Be the witness rather than getting entangled in the intricacies of life. Rise beyond duality and rest in your being, which is not apart from the absolute truth.
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