Swami teaches....Part 26
Light and Love
Swami teaches.... (5 - 6 May 2005)
Ways to Overcome Desires,
Life itself is a seesaw, with human sitting on a plank, poised on the round log - Jnaana Shakthi, the basic nature of wisdom. When the plank comes down to one side, it is Icchaa-shakthi - Bhakthi Yoga, emotional adoration; when it comes down on the other side, it is Kriyaa-shakthi - Karma Yoga, activity to adore humans as embodiments of divinity. So long as the seesaw is based on Jnaana (wisdom), one is safe. Jnaana is the awareness that God is all. He is the seed, the Universe is the tree; instincts, impulses, emotions, passions - these are the branches and boughs and twigs; intelligence is the flower; pure unattached consciousness is the fruit; love is the sweetness in the fruit.
The other aspect of seesaw, not based on Jnaana is anger, exultation, pride, self-condemnation, alternating joy and grief.
In order to ensure happiness and peace, people contrive long-time plans, build bridges, dams, factories, etc. and boundlessly use sources of nature. Human is misled into believing that nature is the rival which has to be defeated and conquered; a person struggles and suffers loss and pain in the process. Human being considers it heroic to undergo travail in what he calls conquest of nature. But, when you see everywhere, on every inch of ground, in every being, small or big, the footprint of God, nature is seen in a new vesture of glory, a manifestation that demands worship, rather than exploitation and enslavement.
When knowledge shines, inner and outer natures are both seen as divine. There is nothing that is not 'it'. When this is experienced, love floods the heart and flows towards all. There is no independence; there is only interdependence, for all waves are equally dependent on the sea beneath. You use the word, 'my own'; who is this 'my', who owns you, and whom you own as yourself? It is the divine in you, and in all. Listen to the voice of God, that warns, directs, prompts, and prevents; you cannot then be wrong.
But, without the cleansing of the spirit, the strengthening of detachment, the promotion of compassion and kinship, economic progress promotes only hatred, faction and envy. Self-confidence, self-control and self-knowledge - these alone can lead human to peace and joy.
It may be said that love is a universal virtue and it is being manifested in human relations, more or less, by all. But, it is limited and poisoned by petty considerations and dried up by hatred and envy. Love cannot ignore the divinity in others. Blind men have the right to deny light; but, those with eyes, have no such explanation. When such men swear that they see only the many, and not the one, it is surely the fault of the vision.
The knowledge that you are the architect of your fortune and that you can, by steady effort, rebuild it or foster it, that you are ever laying on or pulling down the structure of your career, will be a great inspiration, provided you welcome it. Nothing ever happens without proper reason, however accidental or mysterious it might appear. The roots go deep and are out of sight.
Vedhaantha is the best and highest food which human can consume; it keeps your propensities pure, your body in perfect trim, your passions well controlled, your emotions clear and lucid, your thoughts simple and sincere. Sathsang (noble company), is more nutritious than fruits and nuts, milk or honey. It will keep you young and fresh, full and free, beyond the disintegrating influence of time and space peace within.
Naaradha learnt from the sage Sanathkumaara that he can acquire Shaanthi (peace) only when he knows that he is Shaanthi and nothing else. A-Shaanthi (restlessness) is something that has possessed him, like a phobia which has no footing. Shake it off; exorcise it. He is free. It is the role that is tragic; not the actor. He has only to remind himself that it is a play and that he is playing the role of a tragic hero! This Naaradha learnt and his equanimity was never again disturbed.
In this Maya Reality vibration, motion, light, darkness - all are intertwined, all are in mutual change.
The Universe is the handiwork of God, and therefore, meaningful and moral. View it as such and derive the utmost benefit. Without dedication, work is like a paper-flower, unfit to be offered to God; cheap, fragranceless, dry, tawdry. Offer God real flowers grown in the garden of your heart, fragrant, beautiful, and delighting. Try to see everyone as a ray of God. Be self-confident, that is to say, have confidence in your Self; for, that Self is divine; it has in it all the strength, all the sweetness of the Atma (true Self), which is but a wave of the ocean of Param-atma (supreme reality).
How to reach to this awareness?
You have three means of understanding: Icchaa-shakthi (the power of the will), Kriyaa-shakthi (the power of action) and Jnaana-shakthi (the power of Knowledge). Direct all three towards God; desire Him, serve Him and know Him. Set before them the goal of God. If your emotions prescribe one direction, guide them in the contrary direction; that is the way to counter their evil.
You cannot destroy anger by anger, cruelty by cruelty, hatred by hatred. Anger can be subdued only by forbearance; cruelty can be overcome only by non-violence, hatred yields only charity and compassion.
When desires make you greedy to posses, it is mind; when love makes you revere and adore, sympathise and serve, then, it is Chittha (consciousness). The mind can be transformed into Chittha, only through Jijnaasa and Saadhana (inquiry and discipline). Jijnaasa is the stage of studentship or apprenticeship; Saadhana is working on a job; and when you go through these two stages, you can afford to be calm, contented, loving all and being loved by all. When you give expression to your innate divinity, it takes the form of love. Raamakrishna Paramahamsa could not even tolerate someone walking on grass; he felt the weight of the feet and the crushing himself.
One of the main tools to the God consciousness is Yajna. It means, any activity dedicated to the glory of God, not merely, this activity prescribed in the ancient scriptures. Activity dedicated to the glory of God is being done, and can be done in all climes, in all realms, by all races. Every activity in the world is God-directed, God-ward moving, whether you know it or not. Only one has to be aware of it and share in the thrill of that knowledge. If God is not the inspirer and motivator, how can the universe be moving in harmony, wheeling so smoothly? Else, there will be chaos, anarchy and an inferno of gamble.
Yajna is a continuous process; every one who lives in the constant presence of God, and does all acts as dedicated to God is engaged in Yajna.
Three processes go together in spiritual discipline, as laid down by the sages; Yajna, Dhaana and Thapas (sacrifice, charity and self-control). Charity and self-control are integral parts of Yagna. That is why Yajna is translated as sacrifice, for, the process of charity or Dhaana is essential in Yajna. Also Thapas, that is to say, strict regulation of emotions and thought-processes, to ensure peace and faith.
There are various Yajnas prescribed by the Vedhas. The Vedhapurusha Yajna, a sacrificial ceremony dedicated to the Purusha. The Vedhapurusha is the supremest person for by His will He manifested Himself as the cosmos and its components, out of Himself. There is nothing that is not He; so, how can you be different? In these matters, faith comes first; it has to. Believe that you are divine; conduct yourselves in accordance with that sovereign status; then, you will be blessed with the experience, the vision, the realisation, the awareness, the bliss. And, as a result, you are merged in that everlasting Aanandha. See the Purushotthama in all Purushas. Purusha means, he who lives in the Pura (port, city, or town). Each one of us is the resident and the sole resident of a distinct house of God. But, the Purushotthama - the supreme resident in all the cities - is God.
Every householder has the duty of performing for his own welfare and the welfare of the society in which he lives, five Yajnas like Pithryajana (Yajna by which the forefathers are worshipped), Rishiyajna (Yajna by which the sages are honoured, that is to say, by the study and practice of their teaching), Bhuuthayajna (Yajna by which the animals and lower-beings are revered, that is to say, by provision of shelters, fodder etc.) and Dhevayajna (worship of God).
You must perform another Yajna too, every day. Pour the egoistic desires and emotions, passions, impulses and acts into the flames of dedication and devotion. In fact, that is real Yajna, of which there are reflections and prompters, guides and prototypes. Peace of mind cannot be gained by wealth or fame or scholarship or skill but by service of the divine forms that move around you with clean mind, pure heart.
There are nine stages of devotion, through which the seeker has to ascend, before he culminates in total surrender and mergence with his divine ideal. Of these, the seventh stage is 'Service of the feet of the Lord!' And you have the good fortune of being considered fit for that stage, now itself. The Lord's feet are million; the feet that are rushing into this campus are those of the Lord. Serve them, so that you can move on into the two further stages and realise you goal.
To realise the one, the universal absolute, which personalises itself into God and creation, there is no discipline more valuable and more effective than Seva. All the 1008 names of the Sahasranaama Archana reach the one. This is the truth you have to realise and cherish as the most precious in life.
Service to those needing help makes you the comrade of all, irrespective of other considerations. Be looking all around you, all the time, even beyond the horizon of your allotted tasks, for any extra chance to serve. An old man may be stranded in the hot sun, a paralytic may be casting his eyes for a chair, a child may be wailing for its parent, a mother may be clamouring for water to slake her thirst, another may be heartbroken for she has not got a vantage point from where she could see what is happening on the Dais - watch for these, and run towards them, with a smile and a word of cheer.
You have to busy yourselves with activity, in order to use time and skill to the best advantage. The dull and the inert will hesitate to be active, for fear of exhaustion or failure, or loss. The emotional, passionate individuals will plunge headlong and crave for quick results and will be disappointed if they do not come in. The balanced persons will be active, because it is their duty, they will not be agitated by anything - failure or success. The godly will take up activity as a means of worshipping God, and they leave the result to God. The godly are following the Saathwik, but, due to sheer ignorance and the unquestioned obedience to the senses, people are suffering pain and grief; that is the sad state of affairs all over the world.
Do not condemn your majesty bewailing, "I am unfortunate, I am despicable, I am downhearted". You are elated, you are enthroned, you are exalted. You are all this; but you are not aware of this, on account of Maya (illusion). Maayaa is like your shadow in the well; if you do not peep into the well, it is not there! It is there, only whenever you peep into it.
The mind is a bundle of resolutions and hesitations, of desires and doubts. When the basis of the ego is removed by spiritual effort heroically directed towards this end, then, all the drama of name and form drifts away into nothingness.
During deep sleep, one is not aware of time, space or causation; the I is not aware of its Aanandha, not aware of itself. It is only after one awakens that one declares, I had a very pleasant sleep. During the dream stage, the mind is active, though the intelligence, the senses, are all dormant. The dream builds a bungalow in a few seconds, and you occupy it and live happily in it, until, in the dream, an earthquake brings it down on your heads, and you flee for sheer life. The entire story of construction, occupation and destruction was the reflection of mental aberration, its Sankalpa (resolve). It is the seat of the ego what plays all sorts of pranks with the mental stuff, during sleep, when the senses and reason are temporarily out of action.
Never stray from the path of right, whatever the trouble or temptation. Do not loosen the grip; do not turn back. Do not allow faith to be upset. If you attach importance to riches or children or fame or fortune, you are hereby announcing that you are devoted, not to God, but to riches, children and the rest. If you are devoted to God, manifest that devotion by manifesting divine qualities, divine virtues, divine love, divine strength. Become Swami, be Swami. Belief in the creator, the designer, the supporter and the disintegrator is a necessary equipment for the pilgrim on the Earth.
(Reet's compilation from,
Sathya Sai Baba. The Divine Discourse "Yajna-What It Teaches." Prashanthi Nilayam, 11 Oct 1972;
Sathya Sai Baba. The Divine Discourse "The Sea-Saw," Prashanthi Nilayam, 26 Sep 1972;
Sathya Sai Baba. The Divine Discourse "Sappers And Miners," Prashanthi Nilayam, 21 Feb 1971;
Sathya Sai Baba. The Divine Discourse "Green across the Door," Prashanthi Nilayam, 14 Jan 1971).