Spirituality Studies 9-1 Spring 2023 59 Hari M. G. ergies in the physical world. Settling into the certitude of the fundamental truth of life – the metaphysical oneness of life according to Kabir – enables the poet to see the reality of life as a dynamic process. Roland Stahl (1954,152) makes an interesting observation in this regard: “God is the ground of all being and the creator and sustainer of all finite existence, not only in idea, but in actuality… This conception of reality, with its view of life and activity within the absolute, committed Kabir to the doctrine of reality as dynamic process.” Another connection that Kabir makes with the transcendent ultimate and the physical here-now is that he posits the former as the only solution to the suffering that integral to the latter. He sees grounding oneself firmly in the certainty and security of the being of the universe as the only way to settle the chaos of relative existence (Kabir 2003, 187): Without the song of testimony, the quarrels of the world don’t end. Once again, the thrust here is on interiorisation – the subjective experience of divinity, not on an uncritical adherence to belief systems. It entails, as Charlotte Vaudeville and Harry B. Partin (1964, 196) note, “withdrawing to the innermost depths of one’s interiority”. Such a withdrawal is presented in Kabir’s poetic world, as a flight beyond the reach of mental chaos (Kabir 1993, 246): If you but remain quiet for an instant, God, the Lord, will be present. Again, Kabir’s use of pronoun implies a much deeper perception than the seemingly simple surface meaning indicates, like in some of the other poems discussed in this paper. It is said if “you” remained quiet for a moment, God would be present. By the words, “Lord” and “God”, Kabir always talks about a divine dimension that is beyond the constant traffic of the mind. “You” can only mean the mind, in this context and hence divinity is presented, here, as a dimension that is accessible when we develop the necessary discipline to keep the mind aside. Quieting the mind, as always in Kabir’s mystic world entails an unwavering commitment to truth because, for him, the constant traffic of thoughts in the mind is a result of the identification with the world of phenomenality. This stance with regard to the mental structure of a human being is, in fact, quite radical. Kabir sees all identification that a human being passionately invests in, as consequences of a fundamental lack – the lack of basic understanding regarding the true nature of one’s being. His perspective is not limited to one identification or the other; rather it posits all identities as mental constructs to camouflage this lack. Hence, it is quite natural that he sees the ultimate truth as beyond the mind as mind itself is a ploy. The mystic wisdom of the mind being a conditioned mechanism that is repetitive in nature, is illustrated here with sharp precision. The most striking and fascinating poetic expression of the mystic reality in Kabir’s poetry, is in the poems which are usually called “ulatbaasi” poems or “upside-down” poems. These poems are an attempt to put into words an experience and a dimension that are beyond language and logic. Since, the experience itself entails an “anti-language” quality, the poet uses weird imagination to represent the illogical nature of the mystic dimension (Kabir 2011, 5): Is there a man so clever Who’ll explain this Topsy-turvy Veda? Water catches fire; The blind can see. A frog swallows five cobras. A buffalo carries off a tiger; A goat eats a wolf; A deer kills a cheetah. A quail gets the better of a falcon; A mouse of a cat; A Jackal of a farrier. Respectfully, With palms folded, I offer this song To the Lord, says Kabir. It is quite evident that the poet, through a juxtaposition of illogical imagery, is striving to drive home the point that it is impossible to put into words the mystic oneness that he experiences in the deepest spaces of his subjectivity. The last four lines of the poem indicate the attitude that the poet has towards such an experience – “with palms folded” he offers his song about the profound mystery of one’s being to the “Lord”. This marks the ultimate realization of the truth that the seeker in Kabir always longed for. The break in language and logic that he calibrates to great poetic effect, becomes a representation of the absolute reality, which is transcendent and metaphysical. Like many other mystics, Kabir does not tell his readers what the transcendent reality is; rather, he tells us what it is not – he tells us that it is not the phenomenal world of logic and human transactions. The silence he keeps with regard to the nature of the ultimate truth itself