It is a method, a discipline, that when we follow it properly we find that it helps us to discover ourselves, what we really are. As we get deeper into meditation we come nearer the Source of our Being.
We think that we are the physical body, the senses, the intellect, but when we analyse this carefully we will find that all these things have their limitations. Through such analysis we tend to come to the conclusion that there is something more profound within us which we do not know, and as we get deeper and deeper into meditation, we come nearer and nearer to that Source of our Being.
So, meditation really is that which leads us from this world of suffering into the world of joy. This distraction that we find in the world is due to the senses – they are all attractions of the senses, sense objects, and we tend to realize that the pleasure that we get out of these things is what we call happiness, but these pleasures are all temporary and they make us no better than what we are.
Only through the practice of meditation are we able to tap that Source of our inner Being. These distractions are there and when we get away from them we come to the Source of meditation.
In the Hindu philosophy, this Source is referred to as Sat-Chit-Ananda – absolute Consciousness, absolute Existence, absolute Bliss. These are the three characteristics of the Source of happiness and inner Being – what we really are. But when we come into this world our mind becomes so much obsessed with the material world and conditioned by the material vibrations that we tend to think we can analyse with our senses what we can see and hear, and that these are the only reality. But we will find that all these things change, that all these things are impermanent, and when we look at them carefully we find that they do not have the characteristics of happiness, because they are all inanimate objects and, therefore, cannot be the Source of happiness.
It is through such analysis that we tend to be drawn to find out how we can get to that Source of meditation. When we practise meditation for a certain period of time we tend – very gradually – to realize that Source, because our mind – rather than becoming attracted to the world – becomes detached from the world. As a result of this detachment and training in meditation, our mind begins to get deeper and deeper into a purer state of consciousness. As we get deeper into that we tend to realise peace and happiness and there is also a feeling of joy, of liberation. This liberation is what we are all searching for, this happiness and peace which the material world cannot give us.
When we sit quietly and calmly for meditation we will gradually find that the mind becomes settled, and we begin to sense peace within us. In other words, it is a Self-discovery, the discovery of who we really are – not the physical body but Sat-Chit-Ananda.