cannot be experienced. In sound sleep, mind has temporarily ceased; but ego is there. The impressions again make the mind wake up, and the mind again makes the ego feel false. In innumerable lives and forms, the ego is there. The mind is there also, but the mind's impressions change and so accordingly the body changes, and then its experiences also undergo changes. Therefore, for the false "I" to become real "I," mind must go.
This grip of the mind has bound us so tight that the more we try to escape, the more we find ourselves bound, because mind has to be destroyed from its root. But who is going to destroy it? Mind has to destroy itself. Yet that is an impossible task. The very process of destroying itself creates impressions in the mind of this effort at self-destruction, and so one gets more bound. Says Hafiz: "You yourself are the veil, oh Hafiz! And so remove thyself." Now how to remove yourself? The very process of removing creates fresh sanskaras (impressions).
There is a story of four Iranis who heard about how the soul leaves the body and how it goes to the sky, etc. One day, being intoxicated with bhang,* they caught hold of a wheel of a cart and went on pulling at it for a long time, thinking that thus they would be able to detach their souls, but obviously this didn't help and they realized that they had injured themselves in the bargain. There have been many attempts of this type to destroy the mind, which is made up of impressions of every kind—good, bad, low, high, etc. Thousands have thought of destroying the mind—through the main paths of Action, Meditation, Knowledge and Love. These have been chalked out by the Masters for the purpose of destroying the mind while still retaining consciousness.
Let us consider how, through the Path of Action, the goal of Man-O-Nash , that annihilation of the mind which transforms the false "I" into the real "I," can be attained. Perfect Masters saw that actions which have false ego and impressionful mind as their background feed the mind instead of destroying it. They saw that everyone has to do actions; even the laziest of men has to eat, drink, etc. These actions, instead of destroying the mind, only feed it again. Therefore they conceived of "action-less action." That means to act but in such a way that the effect is as if no action were done. In this way, past impressions of actions get spent up mentally through experience of happiness and misery, but no new impressions are created.
Suppose you help someone without any thought of self-interest; suppose
*A native beverage.