Let us consider a few of their sayings: Christ said, “The kingdom of God is within you.” And this same idea was declared by another great sage, for Buddha said: “Look within, thou art the Buddha (pure in consciousness).” This was echoed by the Greeks, for they wrote above the main door of their temples the following sentence: “Man, know thyself, and thou shalt know the universe”. In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna affirmed this when he said: “Meditation is far better than knowledge (intellectual knowledge).” In recent times this was beautifully phrased by Ramakrishna Paramahamsa as follows: “The fabled musk deer searches the whole world over for the source of the scent which comes from within.”
How is it possible that these different people, living at different times in different parts of the world and with different languages and social backgrounds could utter exactly the same idea, though clothed in dissimilar terms? The answer is obvious: they were speaking about a basic truth of existence. These people knew that the path of evolution of higher awareness lies in unfolding the inner realms of our being. It does not lie in totally absorbing or losing ourselves in hectic external actions. It is possible for everyone to learn from their experiences and from the knowledge that they tried to pass on to other people.
Infinite dormant potential exists within each of us. It is there waiting only to be discovered. To find it, however, we must plunge into our inner being. In a sense we must be like an explorer; but instead of exploring outer unknown territories we have to discover the inner uncharted environment. Like the first explorers of the world, we don’t really know where it will lead us. We must be like Marco Polo, for example, unknowing of the nature of our journey and destination. Marco Polo had strange but wonderful experiences on his journey and fabulous riches at his destination – China. It is the same with meditation. We cannot tell you the wonderful experiences that you will have on your inner journey; only that you will surely have them. Many people did not believe the stories and experiences that Marco Polo described when he returned home.
It is the same with meditation; no one will believe people who relate their experiences unless, of course, they have made a similar journey themselves.
The choice is yours: either you continue to devote all your attention to fumbling around in the outside world as most people now do, or else you try to evolve in a new direction inwards, following the advice of those who have already made the same choice and quest. The choice is easy because you do not have to give up your present lifestyle. All you need is the interest to make the inner journey of self-discovery and to back it up with yogic practices, including meditation.