Devotee - How shall I reach the Self?
Maharshi - There is no reaching the Self. If the Self were to be reached, it would mean that the Self is not now and here, but that it should be got anew. What is got afresh, will also be lost. So it will be impermanent. What is not permanent is not worth striving for.
So I say, the Self is not reached. You are the Self. You are already That.
The fact is that you are ignorant of your blissful state. Ignorance supervenes and draws a veil over the pure Bliss.
Attempts are directed only to remove this ignorance. This ignorance consists in wrong knowledge. The wrong knowledge consists in the false identification of the Self with the body, the mind, etc. This false identity must go and there remains the Self.
D - How is that to happen?
M - By enquiry into the Self.
D - It is difficult. Can I realise the Self, Maharaj? Kindly tell me. It looks so difficult.
M - You are already the Self.
Therefore realisation is common to everyone. Realisation knows no difference in the aspirants.
This very doubt, 'Can I realise?' or the feeling, 'I have not realised' are the obstacles. Be free from these also.
D - But there should be the experience. Unless I have the experience how can I be free from these afflicting thoughts?
M - These are also in the mind. They are there because you have identified yourself with the body. If this false identity drops away, ignorance vanishes and Truth is revealed.
Shri Ramana Maharshi
from: Talkes with Shri Ramana Maharshi, Talk 251.