By meditating upon the lord Parameshwara, the highest lord, the all-powerful, the three-eyed, and the ever-silent, the meditator reaches him who is the source of all manifestation, the witness of all, and who is beyond all ignorance.
From the world to the ultimate, take any image of God as a single step. This will look strange because we think of God as the ultimate. But the Upanishads never think of God as the ultimate. They say, “God is a step toward the ultimate.” And the ultimate—they always use for the ultimate the term brahman, the absolute. God, Ishwara, Parameshvar is just a step toward the ultimate. God is not the ultimate aim, God is just to be used as a technical help for the jump into the ultimate abyss. Use God as a jumping board from the worldly mind to the ultimate abyss.
This image of God used as a technical help is very typical and strange because ordinarily the religious mind feels that God is to be achieved. But yoga says God is also just a technical help. That’s why there are systems of yoga which are Godless, for example even Buddha’s system. Buddha never talks about God; he discarded. He created other steps; he discarded God. Mahavira never, never uses the word God. He discarded it; he used other techniques as jumping boards. But the ultimate remains the same. Hindus call it brahman, Buddhists call it nirvana, Jains call it kaivalya. The ultimate remains the same; God is used as a technical help. Any imagery, any symbolism can be used. But it must be such a symbol that when you have used it, you are capable of discarding it.
Buddha has told a parable. He says, “Some villagers crossed a stream by a boat. But then they thought, “This boat has helped us so much; otherwise to cross the stream was impossible. So we must not discard this boat.” Then they carried the boat on their heads into the town. The whole village gathered and everyone began to ask, “What is the matter? Have you come to sell this boat in the town? Or why are you carrying it? The boat seems so old—just a ruin. Who will purchase it? And we have never seen anyone carrying a boat on the head. Why you are carrying it?” So they said, “This boat is not ordinary; this has helped us to cross the stream. Without this it was impossible to come to this village, so we cannot be ungrateful to it. Now we will have to carry it.”