Do you know who God is?

Do you know who 'god' is? God is not Visnu (a deity) or Siva (energy) or Brahma (creator), not the wind, the sun nor the moon; not I or you; not Laksmi, or the mind (intellect).

God is without form and undivided (not in the objects); that splendor (devanam) which is not made and which has neither beginning nor end is known as god (deva) which is pure consciousness (awareness).

That alone is fit to be worshipped; that alone is all.

If one is unable to worship this consciousness, then he is encouraged to worship the form. The latter yields finite results, but the former (consciousness) bestows infinite bliss. He who ignores the infinite and is devoted to the finite abandons a pleasure garden, and seeks the thorny bush.

However, sages sometimes worship a form playfully.

Now for the articles used in worship: wisdom, self-control and the perception of the Self in all beings are the foremost among those articles. The Self alone is consciousness, which is fit to be worshipped at all times with the flowers of wisdom.

Indeed only infinite consciousness (cid-akasa) which alone exists even after the cosmic dissolution, exists even now, utterly devoid of objectivity. All these mountains, the whole world, the firmament, the Self, the jiva (individual) and all the elements of which the world is constituted - all these are nothing but pure consciousness.

Before the so-called creation, when only this pure consciousness existed, where were all these (heaven, etc)?

Space (akasa), supreme or infinite space (paramakasam), absolute space (brahmakasam), creation, consciousness - are mere words and they indicate the same truth, even as synonyms do.

Even as the duality experienced in a dream is illusory, the duality implied in the creation of the world is illusory. Even as the dream objects seem to exist and function in the inner world of consciousness in a dream, objects seem to exist and function in the outer world of consciousness during the wakeful state.

Nothing really happens in both these states. Even as consciousness alone is the reality in the dream state, consciousness alone is the substance in the wakeful state too.

That is the Lord, this is the supreme truth, that you are, that am I, that is all.

The worship of that Lord (consciousness) is true worship, and by that worship one attains everything. Consciousness is undivided and indivisible, non-dual and neither fashioned nor created by activity; it is not attained by external efforts. Its adoration is the fountain source of joy.

The external worship of a form (deity, holy personage) is prescribed for those whose intelligence has not be awakened, and who are immature like little boys. When one does not have self-control, he uses flowers in worship; such worship is futile, even as adoring the Self in an external form is futile. However these immature devotees derive satisfaction by worshipping an object created by themselves, they may even earn worthless reward from such worship.

I shall now describe to you the mode of worship appropriate to enlightened people. The Lord fit to be worshipped is the one who upholds the entire creation, who is beyond thoughts and description, who is beyond the concepts of even the 'all' and the 'collective totality.'

He alone is referred to as 'God' who is undivided and indivisible by space and time, who's light illumines all the objects, who is pure and absolute consciousness. He is that intelligence which is beyond all its parts, which is hidden in all that is, which is the being in all that is and which robs all that is of their being (i.e. which veils the truth of their Self). This God is in the middle of being and non-being (as awareness). It is God, and the truth that is indicated by 'Om'. It (awareness) exists everywhere, like the essence in a plant.

The pure consciousness which is in you, in me and in all the gods and goddesses alone is God. Holy one, eve the other gods endowed with form are indeed nothing but that pure consciousness. That is God, that is 'all' I am; everything is attained from and through him.

That God is not distant from anyone, nor is he difficult to attain: since he is forever seated in the body and he is everywhere like space.

Somewhere this consciousness functions as space, somewhere as jiva (individual), somewhere as action, somewhere as substance and so forth; but without intending to do so. Even as all the different oceans are but one indivisible mass of water, this consciousness, though described ain different ways, is but one cosmic mass of consciousness.

This consciousness is like a mirror which holds a reflection within itself, as it were, without undergoing any modification thereby. Without undergoing any modification in itself, this consciousness appears as all these countless beings in this universe.

In this body, thoughts and notions generate action in the light of this very consciousness. Surely, but for this consciousness even an object which is immediately in front of oneself cannot be experienced? The body cannot function or exist but for this consciousness. It grows, it falls, it eats. This consciousness creates and maintains all the movable and immovable beings in the universe. The infinite consciousness alone exists, nothing else exists. Consciousness alone has arisen in consciousness.

Consciousness does not undergo any modification nor does it become impure. The infinite consciousness which is unmodified and non-dual, can be realized by one in the self-luminous inner light (of awareness). It is pure and eternal, it is ever present and (being awareness) devoid of mind.

Consciousness alone is the reality in all forms (of existence) and all experiences. Action springs from thought, thought is the function of the mind, mind is conditioned consciousness, but consciousness is unconditioned!

Since the omnipresent infinite consciousness alone is present at all times, diversity is absurd and impossible. Belief in the existence of a goblin creates it. Belief in diversity establishes it. When the non-dual being is known, duality vanishes instantly.

That infinite consciousness alone is fit to be adored and worshipped. However, there is no use in inviting it for the worship; no mantra are of any use in its worship for it is immediate (closest, one's own self), and hence does not need to be invited. It is the omnipresent self of all.

The 'realization' of this infinite consciousness (which is totally effortless) is alone the best form of worship.

This infinite consciousness can be compared to the ultimate sub-atomic particle which yet hides within its heart the greatest of all mountains. It encompasses the span of countless epochs, but does not let go of a moment of time. It does nothing, yet it has fashioned the universe. Sustaining the entire universe, it does nothing at all. All substances are not different from it, yet it is not a substance; thought it is non-substantial, it pervades all substances.

The supreme being is formless, and yet the following five are its aspects: will, space, time, order (or destiny) and the cosmic unmanifest nature. It has countless powers or energies or potencies. Chief among them are knowledge, dynamics, action and non-action. All these are but pure consciousness; because they are called the potencies of consciousness, they are apparently regarded as distinct from consciousness, though in fact they are not.

This entire creation is like a stage on which all these potencies of consciousness dance to the tune of time.

The foremost among these is known as 'order' (the natural order of things and sequences). It is also known as action, desire or will-to-do, time and so on. It is this potency that ordains that each thing should have a certain characteristic - from the blade of grass to the creator Brahma. This natural order is free from excitement but not purified of its limitation: that (natural order) is what dances a dance-drama known as the world-appearance.

It portrays various moods (compassion, anger and so on), it produces and removes various seasons and epochs, it is accompanied by the celestial music and the roaring of the oceans, its stage is illumined by the sun and the moon and the stars, its actors and actresses are the living beings in all the worlds - such is the dance of the natural order.

The Lord who is infinite consciousness is the silent but alert witness of this cosmic dance. He is not different from the dancer (the cosmic natural order) and the dance (the happenings).

(Concise Yoga Vasistha pg 292 to 296 - ISBN: 087395954X)