Q: Gurudev, there is a saying that a seeker should not mistake understanding for realization, and realization for liberation. Can you please explain this?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Who said this? I do not have the habit of commenting on someone else’s sayings.
Understanding is intellectual. Experience is subtler than that. And beyond experience is liberation – when you know you are not the experience but the experiencer.
That is why it is said in the Bhagavad Gita, ‘Nastibuddhi rayuktasya nacha yuktasya bhavana, Nacha bhavayata santihi asantasya kutah sukham’
(Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Verse 66).
If your individual mind is not united with the Universal self that is deep within you, you will neither have intellectual sharpness, nor will you have emotional lightness and clarity.