Whether you tread the path of love or the path of meditation, ‘awareness’ or ‘consciousness’ plays a very significant role in the journey towards God, though unique characteristics manifest in either case. Visibly, in the path of love, consciousness appears to look like unconsciousness and in the path of meditation, unconsciousness appears to be like consciousness. The seeker on the path of love is overflowing with so much joy and exuberance on the surface that people around him are deceived by his tranced state. They suspect him to be unconscious, under the influence of some kind of intoxication that has made him lose control over his senses, unable to recognize the brightness of the lamp of awareness which is constantly burning within him just as in the case of Meera, in the case of Chaitnya or in the case of RamKrishna Paramhansa who were a pilgrim in the path of love. The tranced state misleads people who misinterpret elation as unconsciousness. The actual fact is that what the eye perceived and interpreted as unconsciousness was absolute profound consciousness for Meera, RamKrishna and Chaitanya. Unconscious outwardly but fully conscious and awake within.
On the path of meditation too a similar phenomena takes place when both consciousness and unconsciousness become one and the same. The difference being in the perception, as seen in the life of Mahavira and Buddha who appeared to be completely conscious and alert on the surface but within were immersed in deep ecstasy and the ultimate peak of divine bliss. Unshaken, unwavering, calm, composed and serene outside; intoxicated, submerged and drenched in the overflowing stream of bliss and ecstasy within.
Intoxicated with bliss and ecstasy outside, conscious and awake within on the path of love. Conscious and awake outside, intoxicated with bliss and ecstasy within on the path of meditation.
Whichever path you choose, path of love or the path of meditation, consciousness and unconsciousness go hand in hand. The final moment of consciousness is similar to the final moment of unconsciousness. The experience in the end is ultimately the same. The moment the answer to the question ‘who am I’ is revealed, the ‘I’ dissolves or in other words when the ‘I’ drops, the true Self is revealed. When we become empty, when we become nothing, that very moment, in that absolute nothingness we become whole. And when we become whole we are empty. Eventually, at that peak all the differences resolve, all duality drops and all the conflicts comes to an end. Awareness then is no longer awareness and unconsciousness is no longer unconsciousness, both become one. And the supreme transcendental phenomena comes into existence which we call nirvana, moksha or God-realization !