Where were ‘you’ when the lights went out?

If you think about it, there are just four possible states for you and me to be in.

There is the waking state. That’s you awake during the day. Working, loving, hating, happy, sad.

And there is the dream state. Mountains and springs and forests arising instantaneously. Old men and infants, births and deaths. Everything and everyone seeming so real in time and space that if I were to enter your dream and say, hey, wake up, this is unreal, you would fight me - in the dream - saying, “No, dammit, this is real!”

And then, of course, there is deep sleep. Sleep so deep that you - as a name and form, as John, Mary, Ramesh or whatever - don’t exist. In fact, the entire manifestation doesn’t exist.

The fourth state is what the Indian sages call turiya - the awakened state when you see the living dream for what it is. You know what they say: you wake up from the personal dream into this living dream; and it is only when you wake up from the living dream that finally Reality is witnessed…in the waking state.

Suppose you get up in the morning after deep sleep. Which means you did not dream, did not know “you” existed. You did not even know if manifestation existed. No dreams, no “me”, no parents, no religion, no wife, no child, no girl friend, no boss. Nothing.Yet you get up in the morning and say, “I slept well.”

Now, think about it: who (or if you like, what) was awake when you were in deep sleep?


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