Knower – The Legacy of Shyam

Many years ago, while driving in a car, Swami Shyam turned to the few disciples sitting with him and said, “If we have given the world anything, it is the awareness of the Knower.” This is the legacy of Shyam.

In all his simplicity, he boiled down the entirety of all his videos, audio talks, books, writings, and satsangs into one single focus, the focus of Knower Awareness.

In the scriptures they speak of Sat-Chit-Aanand, Existence-Consciousness-Bliss; about Purush and Prakriti, Creator and created, The source and the world. Words such as thou art That, I am That, all this is That, all describe the same awareness. The word Knower brings this insight of the ancient seers and scriptures into the world of modern man, by relating it to the nearest and dearest within ourselves, the one who is aware, our own Self.

By becoming aware of the One who is aware, we reverse the attention away from its outward-moving flow towards names, and forms, and perceptions, to the source and home of awareness, the Knower itself. Only when we rest in our source do we awaken to the truth of existence.

Throughout the forty-five years that Swamiji taught, lectured and offered his divine presence, he refined this sense of Knower from something we thought related to our own physical manifestation into the awareness that Knower is not a subject watching an object. Knower – the way Swamiji used the term – is that which is before consciousness itself. It is the source and home of all sense of experiencing and knowing. When attention resides in its source home, one becomes aware that Knower alone, Purity alone, exists, and that the entire sense of world arises out of this awareness.

Through the years of gentle, kind, and sometimes earth-shattering guidance that Swami offered, he dissolved that sense of separation of Knower and world, Seer and scene, me and you, to make us recognize that what remains when all dissolves is simple One, Knower, Self, Me, Shyam Aakaash. This is our essence, our Being, and the space wherein all that is perceived and known, the universe, exists. It is all One Pure Consciousness. No words can describe it, yet it is not nothing and it exceeds everything.

Meditation, along with inquiry and the essential element of Guru’s words, are the means by which Knower is revealed.

In a writing from 1998 called My Legacy, Swami writes that:

For all the ages to come I leave the legacy, even while I am alive or in the absence of my body, that we will prepare people only for meditation, because the conclusive consciousness which unfolds through meditation makes everybody alert, conscious, and aware of this highest principle that humanity needs meditation in all the ages, hereat and hereafter.

…This is the first and only will. It will never be last, and there will never be another.

Photo by: Gyaan



Meditator, yoga and founder of illumayog and Meditative Awareness Blog. Shuchita offers online courses in meditation as well as Illuma-Yoga and meditation workshops.

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1 Response

  1. Robert says:

    Thank you Shuchita for being so good with words and what you infuse them with.

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