16 of 31 Questions for Reflection. Today’s question is inspired by reading Dṛg Dṛsya Viveka: An Inquiry Into the Seer and the Seen alongside a story by Gabriel Garcia Marquez called “Blacaman the Good, Vendor of Miracles”
What questions arise when I focus on the “miracles” as an object of Vedanta meditation?
A con man named Blacaman takes on an apprentice. He is cruel to the boy, and this cruelty somehow makes the boy into a great miracle worker. The boy can heal the sick. He can bring back the dead, but he doesn’t like to do that because the dead prefer their eternal rest. The boy helps the con man restore his wealth and reputation. However, when Blacaman dies, the boy does bring his mentor back from the dead and leaves him living in a tomb as a way to take revenge for all the tricks and deceptions he played on people who were willing to buy his snake venom antidotes. Ultimately, this whole story is a trick of the author’s genius to try to fool death with narrative.
Meditating on miracles, a Jnana yogi might ask, “If a con man stands before me, charming me, trying to convince me that his product can solve all my problems, and then I just close my eyes for a moment and mentally remember Aham Brahmasmi, will that be enough to ensure I am never deceived? Hey, con artist, aren’t my problems also Brahma? Why does it too often seem the only immortal thing is the con in infinite forms?”