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Swami teaches....Part 104

 

 

Links to Swami Teaches - Part 103

    Light and Love
 
  Swami teaches... 7 - 8 May 2007  
 
  Part 3. First for the Mother...

 
  The money we accumulate will not follow us. To whom will it go ultimately? Nobody knows.

 
  Means of living and the goal of living are the two wings; the two wheels are material and spiritual, skill and sadhana.
 
  Do not be proud of your wealth, progeny and youth;
  the tide of time may destroy them in a moment.
  We have to accumulate the wealth of Divine grace
  and to pray for the welfare of all with selfless love.
  It is the noblest prayer.
 
  The Divine Mother Swami directs all mothers, community, nations, and humanity.
 
  Adi Sankara (approximently 788 - 820 CE, famous philosopher, stressed the importance of the Vedas) insisted on the recognition of the unity that underlies all diversity. Sankara declared that Shiva is everything, by whatever name He is called. Thereby, the omnipresence of the Lord is proclaimed.


  The Adwaithic doctrine of Sankara propagated the view that bodies are manifold, and in these separate bodies, the one Divine is present. With regard to Adwaitha, however, it is possible only to experience it as a conscious feeling, but not for applying nondualism on carrying out one's activities in daily life.


  There is the divine in a tiger, a snake, and a human being. You can recognize this as a concept, but on that account, you cannot go and embrace a tiger. The tiger must be treated as a tiger and a snake must be treated as a snake.


  If you sustain a fall, your foot may suffer a fracture and you may have a bandage. Nevertheless, irrespective of the love your mother bears for you, she cannot bandage her leg to relieve you of your pain. She may feel sympathy for you, but she cannot take over your fracture by bandaging her leg. In the phenomenal world, such differences are inherent.
 
  Most people do not realize that there is this Divine spirit in human beings. They should realize that beyond the annamaya, pranamaya, manomaya and vijnaanamaya koshas (the physical, the vital, the mental and the supramental sheaths associated with the body), there is the Anandamaya kosha (the sheath of Supreme Bliss). When do you attain this Bliss? It realizes when one suppresses own ego's materials and emotional aspect.
 
   It is difficult indeed to understand the ego - its depth and devious ways. Ego is an inert entity (quality), that is to say, it cannot know itself, nor can it know others. It has no fear; it will not bend before others. It degrades human from the golden glory, which is his/her due, to the level of lowly dust. Snakes hiss, pigs grunt, bulls moo; they are asserting their ego, intent on keeping others away.


  Egoism cannot tolerate love for others, nor can it be happy with itself. If the harvested grain is neither consumed nor shared, it will only rot. At the least provocation, egoism gets irate against one's parents, children or wife or teacher. It thrusts aside everyone who comes in its way.
 
  Therefore, human's enemies are not outside. They prompt human to act contrary to all codes. Ravana was prompted into sin by his nefarious ego and his crime reduced his splendid kingdom to a heap of ash. Hitler rose to be the dictator in Germany; victory over sundry neighbouring states boosted his ego and made him power mad. He caused a World War and died amidst the ruins of his own capital city. Egoism is an infection that ruins all chances of expanding and elevating one's consciousness. .
 
  Once upon a time in the temple of Visweswara in Kasi, Pujari (surname that means priest) was offering arati to the deity. Suddenly, a big gold plate fell from above.


  Pujari was surprised and happily picked it up to have a closer look at it. There was an inscription on the plate, which read as follows: "It should be given to the greatest devotee. One who does chant the Divine Name is not always qualified to get it." Then Pujari thought to himself, "Every day, I am performing Sahasra Lingarchana and Abhishekam to the Lord. I am sanctifying my time by chanting the sacred mantras from the four Vedas." His ego realizes that there cannot be a greater devotee than he. However, the golden plate did not react to his thoughts and turned out of his way. 
 
  From that day onward, whoever visited the temple was asked to touch the plate. However, it so happened that the plate would turn into an earthen one whenever somebody touched it. It continued for a few days.


  There was a devotee, who always chanted the Name of God, but did not perform any other sadhana (spiritual exercises) like japa (soft repetition of the name), thapa, dhyana (meditation), etc. He had no desires. He had achieved dama (sense control). One day he visited the temple.  


  On being requested by Pujari to touch the plate, he said, "Sir, I don't have any desires, I feel no ego for material and other kinds of wealth. Hence, I don't want to touch it." Pujari requested him to touch the plate at least for his satisfaction.


  The devotee did not want to displease Pujari and therefore he touched the plate. No sooner did he touch it than it started shining with added brilliance. People who were witness to this event surrounded him and started asking, "Oh noble soul! What is the method of worship you follow, what is the sadhana you perform?" Then he replied, "I have not performed any japa, thapa, yajna or yaga (sacrifices or rituals). I only serve the poor. They are very dear to God."


  From then onward, many rich people started visiting Kasi to see this devotee. Wherever there are rich people, it is but natural that the poor also gather begging for alms from the rich. This devotee resolved, "God loves the poor very much. That is why He has drawn so many of them to His abode.”
  From then on, he continued to serve the poor and the needy with greater devotion and enthusiasm.

 

  After imparting such sacred action to the people around him, the devotee started coming out of the temple. As he stepped out, the gold plate also followed him. Along with the plate, all the coins started rolling behind him. Then the beggars started going behind him asking for the money. The devotee said, "My dear ones, what is the use of asking me? God is the guardian of all. Hence, pray to Him." As he was moving away, many coins started falling from the gold plate. The beggars collected those coins.
 
  What this legend teaches?

 

  When there is hard rock below, you have to bore deeper for tapping the underground perennial pure water. The softer the subterranean soil, the quicker the success. Make your heart soft; then, success is quick in sadhana. Develop compassion, sympathy; engage in service, understand the agony of poverty, disease, distress and despair; share both tears and cheers with others. That is the way to soften the heart, and help sadhana to succeed.

 

  What is sadhana, fundamentally? It is 'upavasam,' 'upasana.' Upa means near, Asana means sitting and vasam means residing.


  We sit near God, so that we might derive some godly qualities, and get rid of ungodly characteristics. God is the Antharyamin, the Inner Director, the Inner Reality, the Unseen Basis, and Inner Fire on which all this seeable world is built.


  He is like the fire-principle that is latent in wood, which can be made manifest, when one piece is rubbed vigorously against another. Satsangh (company of the good and the godly) makes you meet with other souls (individuals) of a like nature, and creates the contact that manifests the Inner Fire.
 
  The Atma, everyone is, vast and expansive. We fancy that the Atma is in us, in each of us. However, we are in the Atma, we are all in the Atma. All beings are alive and active, moving and resting in the all-pervading Atma. 


  An example: we live in homes, however, our homes are not in us; we have only the memories of our homes and say pictorially that our homes are in our hearts...


  By philosophical and scientific aspect the Universe with all objects and appearances in It are the infinite holographic patterns of Cosmic Consciousness what less or more reflect in human's mind. By general aspect we are in the Universe, not vice versa. Swami is not in us, we are in Swami with infinite aspects of diversity. We have installed Swami in our hearts as the spark of the Divine Energy that guides us from inside us, from our spiritual heart. We simply say Swami is in our heart, God as Indweller is in our heart. However, more exactly He is the reflection of the Divine Energy (whatsoever name to this Energy we give; all names are His) what acts within us.
 
  It is usually said, "The body is a temple and the indweller in the body is God." This expression in short is correct but we have to understand its general meaning. In greater detail the Indweller is the reflection (in veiled or unveiled manifestation) of the Divine Atmic Energy in human's mind. This reflection is possible when there is a temple - body.

 

  In every temple, we find a bell. Nevertheless, the bell present in the temple of a human body is not visible outside. It is not a bell, which one can ring. However, it rings continuously on its own day in and day out as long as life remains in the human body. This is nothing but the human heart. When the bell stops ringing, the body becomes lifeless.
 
  The entire Universe is the temple of God. In this temple of the Universe, one can continuously hear the sound of the bell Om. That is why God is described as Sabda Brahmamayi, Characharamayi, Jyotirmayi, Vangmayi, Nityanandamayi, Paratparamayi, Mayamayi, and Sreemayi (the embodiment of sound, movable, and immovable, light, speech, eternal bliss, transcendental, delusion, and wealth).
 
  Today, as a rule, we are unable to listen to the Divine voice of God, the embodiment of existence, consciousness, and bliss. Let us remember some fragments from Gita and to go nearer to hear the Divine call.
   Krishna is named Yogeeshwara (the Lord of yogis) in the Gita. What does that mean? Yoga is defined by Patanjali (author of the Yoga Sutras, which form the foundation of the Yoga system of Indian philosophy) as the control of the agitations of the mind-stuff. If the mind is stilled and free from waves produced by the wind of desire, then he becomes a Yogi and the Lord is the highest Yogi, for He is the ocean that is unaffected by the waves which agitate the surface.


  Krishna danced on the hood of the serpent Kaliya and forced it to vomit its poison, it is said. This is only another way of saying that he forced sensual desires to divest themselves of pernicious effects. Yoga of this type is the best means of attaining the Yogeeshwara; not breath control, but sense control is the prescription.
 
  Transcend the consciousness of the many and cultivate the consciousness of the One that will end strife, grief, pain, and pride. See all as but expressions of the same God, as appearances on the same screen. Feel that you and they are able to talk and walk, think and act because of the God (in the form of the spark of the Divine Energy of Cosmic Consciousness, or Rama's, or Christ's or Swami's spark of Divine Energy) within. All is The Great One.


  The world is One, but, each sees it from the own angle and so, it appears as if it has multiple faces.

 

  Below are two Swami's precious directions for every-day practice (who is interested in it).


  1. The Japa maala* teaches you the Unity, though it has 108 beads. If it is a sphatika maala (garland of crystal beads) you can see the string running in and through each bead, the inner reality on which all this is strung. If the beads are not transparent, you still know that the string passes through, holds together, and is the basis for the maala to exist.


  Why 108 beads? 108 is the product received by 12 is multiplied 9 times.  Twelwe is the number of Aadhithyas (Luminaries), that reveals the objective world, and so, symbols of the Sakara aspect (the world of name and form, of manifoldness, the seeming variety, the fleeting pictures). Nine is the screen on which the pictures appear, the basis, the rope that deludes you as the snake in the dusk, Brahman, the Nameless, Formless, and Eternal Absolute.


   9 is the Brahman Number, for it is always 9, however many times you multiply it! It is immutable, for 9 multiplied by any number finally adds up to 9 only. Therefore, when you turn the beads, impress upon yourself the fact that there is both truth, and travesty in the world, that the travesty attracts, distracts and delights in deceiving you, diverts you into devious paths; the truth makes you free.

 

   Before everything, you must know the symbolism of the fingers. The thumb represents Brahman, the eternal Absolute, the Immanent Principle. The forefinger, the index one, which indicates this and that, you and other, is the jivi (individual), feeling separate and distinct. When these two are joined at the tip, held in that position, it is the Jnana Mudhra, the gesture of wisdom, for, wisdom consists in the jivi becoming One with the Brahman, the mergence of that which felt that it had emerged! The other three fingers, represent Prakrithi the objective world, which is negated when the mergence is effected. They are the three gunas, the sathwic, the rajasic and the thamasic (qualities of purity, passion and inertia), that by their interplay create the phenomenal world.


  Hold the rosary over the middle finger, keeping the three guna fingers together. This means that you are now transcending the world of attributes and qualities, of name and form, of multiplicity that is the consequence of all this transformation, and proceeding towards the knowledge of the unity. The jivi finger now slowly passes each bead towards the thumb (Brahman), touching the tip of the Brahmam finger when the bead passes over.  This mergence is emphasized with every bead and every breath, for, while the fingers learn and teach the lesson, the tongue too repeats the mantra or the Name, with the Pranava (the primal sound of OM).


  The japa maala (rosary) is very useful for beginners in sadhana, but, as you progress, japa must become the very breath of your life and so the rotation of beads becomes a superfluous and cumbersome exercise in which you have no more interest.


  That is the stage to which the japa maala should lead you. You should not be bound to it forever; it is only a contrivance to help concentration and systematic contemplation. The belt has to be discarded when you have learnt to swim, the crutches when you are able to walk.


  2. One can win the Divine Grace by earnest prayer. Before you start dhyana, your meditation session, chant 'so-ham', inhaling 'so' and exhaling 'ham.' So-ham means 'He is I,' it identifies you with the Infinite and expands your consciousness.


  Harmonize the breath and the thought. Breathe gently, naturally; do not make it artificial and labored. It must flow in and out, soft and silent; if you have some flour on your palm and hold it near the nostrils, it should not get fluttered the least. 


  The faster the breath, the sooner you are burnt up, the shorter becomes your life span. Slow breath quietens and calms the emotions. The mood of relaxation produced by this 'so-ham' recital is a precondition for a profitable session of meditation.
   Performing this relaxation, have no thorn of hate in your mind; develop love towards all.
 
   (Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 9. "Japa, Saadhana," Chapter 6; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 7. "Roots into the deep," Chapter 28; Sathya Sai Speaks.  Vol. 15. " Love of the Motherland," Chapter 44; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The juice, the sugar and the sweets," Chapter 15 and  "What great mothers mean to the nation," Chapter 16; Sathya Sai Speaks.  Vol. 36. "LOVE AND RESPECT YOUR PARENTS AND SANCTIFY YOUR LIFE," Chapter 10).
 
*Malas or Japa Malas are Buddhist, Hindu, and multi-faith prayer beads or rosaries crafted from various sandalwoods and natural materials. Buddhist Malas are generally 108 beads. 

 

  Namaste - Reet


  Swami teaches... 6 May 2007  
 
  Part 2. First for the Mother...
 
  Four ideals have placed before human. Each one quality being sublimated and subordinated to the next - dharma, artha, kaama, moksha. Artha or material happiness to be won by dharma (virtuous living), moksha (liberation) to be held as the only desirable kaama or goal. It is mothers’ role to teach these ideals to her children. 

 There have been many mothers in the world who have sought, by their strenuous endeavors, noble thoughts and sacred practices, to bring up their children in the path of righteousness.
 
  In Calcutta lived a mother and his son. For the education of the son, the mother made many a sacrifice. She, however, impressed on the son one lesson: "Dear son, do not be concerned about worldly education. Through scholarship, one learns only to engage himself in controversy but does not acquire complete wisdom. One should study that which frees him from death. Only spiritual knowledge can lead to immortality. For earning one's livelihood, worldly education is necessary. But this education should be acquired only to lead an independent life, with limited desires. Therefore, dear son, while pursuing studies, embark also on the spiritual quest."


  Human life should be utilized for service and sacrifice. The mother taught her son in this manner the true aim of education.


  The boy completed his education and took up a small job. One day, in that village, there was a folk festival. The womenfolk of the village donned their best clothes, and jewelers to attend the festival. The mother also went with tattered clothes. The son could not bear to see that sight. He said, "Mother, you have no good clothes or any jewelers. Please let me know what ornaments you wish to have, mother!" The mother replied, "This is not the right time. I shall let you know at the proper time."

 

  Thanks to the good behavior and diligence of the lad, he rose to higher positions in service. Once again, he returned to his mother and asked what ornament she desired. "I shall get them as far as I can," he said. The mother told him that she wished, three ornaments, but she would disclose what they were later on.


  The son in the course of years reached a very high position. Once again, he entreated: "Mother, I have now some money. Please let me know what jewels you would like. I shall get them for you." The mother said "Dear son! I am now not in a state when I can wear jewels. However, there are some ornaments in which I am interested.


  Drawing the son nearer to her, she said, "In our small village, I am grieved to find that the children have to go to distant places for education. My first ornament I desire is that you should set up a primary school in the village. Secondly, our people have no facilities for medical relief even for small ailments. I spend sleepless nights thinking about their plight. If you set up a small hospital for the village folk, that will be your second ornament for me. The third ornament is something, which you have to do by yourself. If anybody asks "who is your mother?" you may mention my name. Your conduct must be such that you will uphold your mother's name. You must share with others the benefits of the education you have received. Do not go after wealth. The worshipper of mammon will not yearn for God. The seeker of God will not seek for wealth. Observance of this is the third ornament I desire from you."
  The young man who heard these words from his mother, later became famous, and earned the people's esteem was none other than Eeshvar Chandhra Vidhyaasaagar. He earned a great name in Calcutta.

 

  Once he was proceeding to a neighboring village to deliver an address. People used to gather tin large numbers to listen to his lectures. A young officer, who wanted to listen to Eeshvar Chandhra Vidhyasaagar's lecture, got down from a train with a suitcase to go to the lecture-hall.


  Eeshvar Chandhra Vidhyaasaagar also got down from the same train. The young officer was calling for a porter to carry his suitcase. Eeshvar Chandhra went to him and said, Can't you carry your suitcase yourself and save the money?" He replied. "It is not in keeping with my dignity to carry my suitcase. I am an educated person." Eeshvar Chandhra told him: "The hall-mark of education is humility, not pride. If you cannot carry your own bag, how are you carrying your body? If, however, you cannot carry your bag, I shall do so." In addition, Eeshvar Chandhra carried the officer's bag. He acted on the motto: "Plain living and high thinking." Eeshvar Chandhra left the bag where the officer got off. The young man wanted to offer money to his "Porter". Eeshvar Chandhra told him. "To serve you is my reward."


  The young officer left and was later proceeding to the venue of the meeting. There people were offering garlands to Eeshvar Chandhra Vidhyaasaagar to welcome him to the meeting. The young officer realized that the man who had offered to carry his bag at the station was none other than the respected lecturer of that evening, Eeshvar Chandhra Vidhyaasaagar. He felt ashamed that he had made such a great man carry his bag. He reflected: “What is his education and what is mine? I am like a glow-worm before the Sun."
 
  Eeshvar Chandra's mother shed tears of joy when she realized the great fame her son had achieved. "Having begotten such a son, my life has been redeemed. It does not matter what happens to me hereafter," she said to herself.
 
   In some rare cases, through the grace and intervention of the Divine, some children are rescued from going astray and are guided on the right path despite the desires of their parents.


  For instance, King Shuddhodhana adopted many methods to prevent his son Siddhartha (who became The Buddha) taking to the path of renunciation. However, he could not prevent it.


  This is due to the Will of the Divine. It is when human effort and Divine Will are in unison that the great consummation takes place.
 
  When there are good mothers, good sons, and daughters will the nation be free from troubles. What the nation needs today is not material prosperity and wealth. It needs men and women of character.


  Every nation depends on three sections of its people for its progress - the producers, the protectors, and the preceptors. All three are equally important and closely interdependent. Prosperity rests on this tripod. Love is a seat placed on the three legs and the nation can be happy and peaceful if all the three sections work together in mutual love for the nation.


  Every being is entitled to partake of God's Prema (Love), irrespective of gender, nationality, color, creed or status in society. When God and God's Love are activating every atom, who dare say, 'Stand out' to any one?


  By legend Chaithanya, the son of Satheedhevi, once went to Puri and had dharshan of Lord Jagannaath. He worshipped Jagannaath with these words: "Oh Lord! You are not merely the Lord of the Earth. You are the Lord of the Universe! You are the Lord of Love! Swami! I do not need wealth or vehicles. Even less do I seek devotion, wisdom, or renunciation. I do not aspire for worldly pleasures or possessions. It is enough if I am endowed with the Love to love you. If I have that Love, all other things will come of their own accord. The only thing I seek is Love towards you. Grant me this boon."


  Chaithanya declare, "My property is not 'Shri' but Hari. I value not Lakshmi (the Goddess of Wealth), but the Lord of Lakshmi (Vishnu)." There is no greater wealth than Love of the Lord. Revere the mother as the Lord.   


  Once Rama told Sita, while they were staying on the Chithrakootha Mountain, that as few could comprehend the subtle principle of Divinity, people should adore their parents as the visible embodiments of God.
 
  From ancient times, the relations between mother and children have been hallowed as a result of the purity, the virtue and the integrity of the children. The relationship was full of love, mutual esteem, intense devotion, and nectarine sweetness.
 
  However, today the many children have no respect for the mother. Mothers have also little concern for the children. With the result, the Kali Age has become Kalaha Age the age of discord.


  Who are responsible for this situation? The mothers are the root cause. It is because of the pampering of the children in all sorts of ways by the mothers that the children tend to go astray.


  What is it the mothers ask for today? Not compassion, good character, integrity and such virtues they ask. They want their children to get educated, secure a big job, marry a wealthy girl or boy and lead a comfortable life. "Many mothers today are behaving like Kalakanthi (the woman who had Chandhramathi's son bitten by a serpent).


  Mothers should impress on their children to use their wealth in righteous ways, develop compassion, and lead a just and moral life. They have to explain to their children that the act of service is not to be judged according to the cost or publicity it entails; it may be only the offering of a cup of water in the depth of a jungle. But, the need of the recipient, the mood of the person who offers - these decide whether the act is gold or lead. Children who misbehave should be severely dealt with. (Such high-minded mothers have become rare these days. Integrity and morality are going down day by day).


  Many fathers today are behaving like Dhritharashtra (the father of the wicked Kauravas). In Mahabharatha  the wicked Kauravas brought ruin upon their entire clan by their evil ways).
 
  The Mahabharatha epic, which Vyasa collected and composed teach quite emphatically and clearly the evanescence of wealth, authority, power, physical prowess and all that is considered desirable by human on Earth. Vyasa taught dharma in the Mahabharatha, bhakthi in the Bhagavatha, and shanthi and prema in the 18 Puranas. He taught the knowledge of "knowledge, knower and the known" in the Brahmasuuthra. He emphasized that harming others is the seed of sin and serving others the seed of merit. That is the lesson of Prema i.e. Love, pure and simple.
 
  Due to the effect of Kali Age, bhakthi (devotion) and the Divine Love have become artificial. People are trying to please others, but not God.


  Vedic scriptures have prescribed nine paths of devotion.


  Sravanam (listening),
  Kirtanam (singing),
  Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu),
  Padasevanam (serving His Lotus Feet),
  Vandanam (salutation),
  Archanam (worship),
  Dasyam (servitude),
  Sneham (friendship),
  Atmanivedanam (self-surrender).


  Make your home the seat of virtue, of morality, of love. Control anger and greed. That is the sign of the genuine bhaktha, not unrestricted speech, and movements. (You may claim to be a devotee and declare yourself as such, when you speak; but, unless your egoism has gone and you love all equally, the Lord will not acknowledge your devotion).
  Only through hard striving, can the Divinity in human be realized, like the fire that emerges from the rubbing of two sticks and butter from the churning of butter-milk.


  Swami stresses that though the Divinity that resides in all human beings is one and the same, but the capacities and personalities of various individuals are different. Depending on the ripeness of their experience on the cultural practices they have pursued, on the nature of their spiritual disciplines, and on their parental background, these individuals have a wide or narrow outlook. The attitudes of individuals are determined by their day-to-day experiences.


   The Divine Love is the Amritharasa (essence of nectar) which fills the Upanishadhs. When human realizes the inefficiency of the senses, the mind and the intellect, to grapple with the reality and know the inner core of truth, then, human discovers he/she is the Atma. Or, human realizes that there is God who is the basis of all this superstructure, who has designed and contrived all this and he/she surrenders own ego to Him. "Let Your will prevail." 


  Troubles, miseries, handicaps, grief, and pains that were hitherto causes of distress suddenly take on a new and magnificent rate: they are "His handwork, His gifts, His Grace." They are no longer unwelcome; they are as welcome as the successes, the pleasures, the happiness is. Both are His Will.
 
  Love is of three kinds, depending on the guna (quality) that predominates in the individual. Thamasic love confines itself to "me" and "mine," it does not flow beyond that little circle. Rajasic love flows only towards those in power, or have wealth, or to those who will give it a spectacular effect. Sathwic love, on the other hand, always flows towards the good, the pure, the detached, towards awe and wonder, towards God.


  When light of Love is absent in the heart; and, so, bats and nocturnal birds infest it and foul it. The bats are the evil qualities of hate and malice and greed. 
 
  Love is the spring that feeds the roots of all the virtues.


 You must have seen paddy fields where the crop is drying, though the ground is wet and there is a thin sheet of water still under the plants. You must have seen also big trees, standing upon hard dry ground, but decked with a rich crown of green foliage. Have you paused to find out the reason for this contrast? The roots of the paddy plants do not go deep; the roots of the trees go down unto the very springs of underground water that are perennial. 


  Desire is a storm; greed is a whirlpool; pride is a precipice; attachment is an avalanche; egoism is a volcano. Keep these things away, so that when you do japa or dhyana, they do not disturb the equanimity. Let love be enthroned in your heart. Then, there will be sunshine and cool breeze and gurgling waters of contentment, feeding the roots of faith with garland of Love or vice versa.
 
  Have faith and love towards your home, your village, your Motherland. However, that does not imply hatred of other countries. On no account should hatred or enmity or intolerance pollute your minds.


  Consider an example from the Ramayana. After the death of Ravana on the battlefield, Lakshmana asked Rama, "Brother! Our brother Bharatha has been ruling the kingdom of Ayodhya very well, for fourteen years. That kingdom, though poor, is happy under his role. Now, Lanka has come into our hands. I pray that you assume ruler over Lanka and reform the rakshasas." Rama smiled at this suggestion. He replied, "Does any son give up his mother because her features are ugly? My motherland may be poor but it is my mother. Can I adopt a woman as mother, if she is more charming then my own?"

 

(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 9. "Japa, Saadhana," Chapter 6; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 7. "Roots into the deep," Chapter 28; Sathya Sai Speaks.  Vol. 15. " Love of the Motherland," Chapter 44; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The juice, the sugar and the sweets," Chapter 15 and  "What great mothers mean to the nation," Chapter 16; Sathya Sai Speaks.  Vol. 36. "LOVE AND RESPECT YOUR PARENTS AND SANCTIFY YOUR LIFE," Chapter 10).
 
  Namaste - Reet


  Swami teaches... 3 - 5 May 2007  
 
  Part 1. First for the Mother...


  What gift is greater than the gift of food?
  Is there a greater deity than one's parents?
  What virtue is greater than compassion?
  What is more valuable than good company?
  Is there a worse enemy than anger?
  Is any disease worse than debt?
  Can any death be worse than infamy?
  What can be grater than a good name?
  What wealth is greater than God's love?
  It is to acquire this supreme wealth that human has taken birth on the Earth.
 
  By legend wise man, Pundaleeka was tending his parents when God appeared before him as Narayana. He was revering them as the God in them. So, he asked Narayana to wait a little, He threw a brick towards Him to serve as a footstool on which He could stand, until he was ready to worship Him. If you do not revere the parents, how can worship the God Narayana?
 
  When Rama went to the forest with Sita, one day he told her: "In this world there are no greater adorable deities than one's mother and father. Without adoring mother as Divine, how can a human contemplate on a Being that is subtle and beyond his daily experience? The Divine transcends all human understanding. How can this be recognized? People who cannot comprehend the hearts of parents who are close to them, whose love they experience in daily life, how can they comprehend the Absolute, which the Upanishads declare is beyond the reach of speech and the mind. Hence, the injunction that the mother and the father should be adored as Divine. It was my foremost duty to carry out the will of my father."
 
  The womb of a mother is like the womb of Mother Earth. The thought that prevails at the time of conception results in the kind of child that is born. If the parents desire to have virtuous, exemplary, and noble children, they have to observe righteous practices and lead virtuous lives.


The mother sacrifices her all for rearing the child, protecting, and bringing child up well.


Hence, the sweetness manifest in material love cannot be found in any other object or experience, "What greater sweetness is there than a mother's love? One's honor is greater than one's life," goes the saying.

 
  When human emerges from the womb of mother,
  one does not find any garland round his neck.
  There are no jewels made of pearls
  nor are there glittering gold ornaments.
  There are no chains studded with precious stones
  like emeralds and diamonds.
  There is no garland of flowers either.
  But there is one garland round his neck.
  Brahma strings together the consequences of
  past deeds into a heavy garland and
  puts it round the neck at the time of birth. 
 
  From ancient times, the culture of Bharath has been upholding high ideals. Foremost among its teachings was the concept of reverence for the mother and the father as embodiments of the Divine.


  In Swami's school days, when Sathya (i. e. Swami) with other students returned from the Bukkapatnam school in the evenings, mother Easwaramma would lovingly enquire as to what happened in the school that day. One day the children told her, "Mother, today a teacher by name Kondappa made our Sathya stand upon the bench." They started criticizing him.
 

  Mother Easwaramma intervened and said, "Children, you should not talk ill of your teacher. No teacher would punish his student without a proper reason. Our Sathya might have committed some mistake." Then she asked, "Sathya, what is the mistake you committed?" Sathya told her the facts as they happened. Kondappa ordered, "Whoever has written the notes should place it on his table. Others should stand upon the bench." Sathya had not written the notes. That was His mistake. He also said something that was more than necessary, "Sir, can all those boys who have taken down the notes answer your questions? Though I have not written the notes, I can answer any question that you may ask." Kondappa thought that Sathya was egotistic and ordered Him to stand upon the bench for three periods.
 

  Meanwhile, the other teacher, Mahboob Khan, came to the class. He was pained to see Swami standing on the bench. He asked, "Kondappa, why have you made this boy stand upon the bench?"  Kondappa said, "He has not taken down the notes, hence the punishment."


  Mahboob Khan defended Sathya saying, "So what if He has not taken down the notes? He can answer all your questions, and that is enough. Ask Him to sit down." However, Kondappa insisted that Sathya should be punished as he had disobeyed teachers command.


  The bell rang and Kondappa had to go to another class. Nevertheless, he was unable to get up from the chair. Initially he thought that his dhoti had entangled to a nail in the chair. But that was not the case. He was stuck to the chair! When he tried to get up from the chair, the chair also came along with him.
 

  Then Mahboob Khan said, "Kondappa, He is not an ordinary boy. He is one of great Divine powers. You have punished Him without a proper reason. At least now, ask Him to sit down."


Kondappa realized his mistake and told Sathya to sit down. Immediately, he could get up from the chair.


  When all this was narrated to mother Easwaramma, she said, "Dear Sathya, you should not punish your own guru (teacher)." Sathya answered, "I did not punish him; in fact, he punished himself."
 
  Easwaramma imparted a sacred teaching to the children, saying, "My dear ones, you are going to school to study. Whatever you learn put it to proper use. If you do not make proper use of your education, you become a rakshasa (demon)."


  Then Swami's mother told, "Sathya! At any time and under any circumstances, do not cultivate hatred toward anybody.”  In this manner, mother Easwaramma taught the children many sacred ideals. Though mother Easwaramma had no formal education, she was one of profound wisdom.
 
  Mother Easwaramma used to impart many noble teachings to the devotees when they gathered around her. Many ladies would go there and plead with her, "Mother, we have been here for a long time. Please tell Swami to grant us an interview." She would tell them, "My dear, Swami may look small to our eyes, but He does not listen to anyone. He will not act on recommendations. He will give you what you deserve. You should try to understand the Divine Principle of Swami." In this manner, she would give proper guidance to the devotees. 

 

  “ We should not hurt others or make fun of them. We should love all.” This is what mother Easwaramma taught everybody. Do your duty sincerely. Then, you will certainly progress in life.
 
  One day she told Swami, "Sathya! The whole world is coming to You. Please bestow peace on the world with Your Sankalpa (Will)."


  Swami answered her, "It is not that I have to make a Sankalpa for world peace. Each one has to attain peace by him/herself. You have to manifest your love. You have to experience peace within. You have to follow the path of truth.
 
  Since ancient times, there have been many noble mothers, who have guided their children on the right path. The future of the nation rests in the hands of mothers. That is why one calls one's own country as Motherland. 

 

  Some examples from history.


  It was because Aryamba was a devoted and pious woman and observed sacred practices that the great world-teacher, Adi Sankaracharya was born to her. For Vivekananda to achieve worldwide renown, his mother's sacred life was responsible. Ramakrishna Paramahamsa was able to preach the sacred doctrine of love to the world and achieve greatness because of his mother's good qualities.

 

  Gandhi earned the appellation of "Mahathma" because of the sacred vow ritual "Kokila Vratha" observed by his mother.


  As soon as she completed the ritual, she would wait for the call of the Kokila (the Indian cuckoo) to have her breakfast. However, on one day, she waited for a long time, withouttaking food, for the call of the cuckoo. Noticing this, the young Gandhi went out of the house, imitated the cooing of the cuckoo and then told his mother, "Now that the cuckoo has made its call, please, mother, take your food." Unable to contain her grief, the mother slapped on the cheeks of Gandhi and wailed: "What sin have I committed that such a liar should be born to me! What a great sinner am I to have begotten such a wicked liar as son, Oh Lord!" She was shedding tears as she spoke. Deeply moved by his mother’s words, Gandhi made a promise to her "In my life, henceforth, I will not utter falsehood."


  Gandhi became a 'Mahathma' because of the severe punishment meted out to him by his mother. Gandhi's mother Putlibai, had a maid called Rambha. One day Gandhi came running to her saying, "I am afraid, I am afraid!" Rambha was a worthy maid of Putlibai. She told the young fear-stricken lad, "Don't have any fear. Whenever you feel afraid, repeat the name, 'Raam, Raam,' and your fear will leave you." Gandhi all his life remembered that teaching.
 
  Bharath's ancient culture has accorded first place to the mother. Father comes only next. Even on invitation cards we write Smt (Srimathi) and Sri. The husband may be highly educated and occupying a position of authority. Yet, we cannot write Sri and Srimati while sending an invitation. Since ancient times, women are treated with great reverence and respect in Bharath.
 
  A true human being loves the mother and becomes the recipient of the mother's love. Experience and enjoy your mother's love. Dedicate your life for the happiness of the mother.


  You may acquire any number of degrees; you may undertake any number of sacred activities; but all of them will prove futile if you do not please your mother. There is none superior to the mother in this world. The Veda has accorded the place of highest prominence to the mother.


  (There may be a son/daughter in this world who does not love own mother, but, as a rule, there cannot be a mother who does not love her child. There may be differences of opinion between them, but the motherly love will never diminish).
 
   After the Burma war (in the Forties), a mother, and her son came to Madras as refugees. This son used to go out begging for food and bring it home for both of them to eat. Seeing the pathetic condition of the young one, the mother said that from the next day she herself would go out for getting food, leaving the boy in the shed. Moreover, no mother would like to see her son going out as a beggar. For this reason, also she decided to go out herself. For some days, she went out begging, but could manage to get only a small amount of food. She gave the food to the child and starved herself, but told him that she had already eaten. After some time the woman was too weak to go out begging. The son started going out to beg for food and kept feeding his mother.


  Her condition deteriorated from day to-day. She could not bear the pangs of hunger. The son went out and begged for food at an officer's residence. The officer, who was glancing through the day's newspaper, heard the boy's cry for food to appease his hunger. The officer brought some food and gave it to the boy and asked him to eat it in his presence.


  The boy said he would not eat there, but takes the food home. The officer questioned him why he would not eat there when he was hungry. "You are not really hungry. You are lying," shouted the officer. The boy was too weak to stand and dropped down at the feet of the officer with the food in his hands. The officer noticed that the boy was muttering some words to himself. He went close to the boy's mouth and heard him say, “First for mother, first for mother." Saying those words, the boy passed away.

 

  What an example is this of the love of a mother and the devotion of a son. Even though he was hungry, he wanted to give the food first to his mother. Does this kind of feeling exist even a little among students today?


  It is your foremost duty to love your mother. As soon as you wake up in the morning, the first thing you should do is to touch your mother's feet and offer your salutations. Such a noble practice will protect you always and bestow on you all types of wealth.
 
  The boys and girls are going to be fathers and mothers in future. You will be loved and respected by your children only when you love and respect your parents now. You are bound to face the reaction, resound, and reflection of your actions. When you respect your parents, there will be rich rewards for you in the future.


  There are many who are highly educated. Having received many sacred teachings, you should practice at least one of them. You perform worship and sing bhajans with devotion. It is enough if you practice and experience at least one word of the bhajans you sing. For example, you extol God as 'Premaswarupa' (embodiment of Love). Accordingly, you should develop love and share it with others.
 
   People attribute certain teachings to Rama, Krishna, and so on and so forth. It does not matter whether it is Rama or Krishna; enquire what, why, when, where, and under what circumstances they had given those teachings. You should remember the context those teachings and act accordingly.


  Many students do not pay heed to the words of their mother. Mothers speak from their heart wishing the welfare of their children. You should understand their feelings and give due respect to their words.


  Obey the commands of your parents. You will certainly be blessed with all types of education and strength. You do not need to make any special efforts to acquire them. Discharge your duty sincerely.

 

(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 9. "Japa, Saadhana," Chapter 6; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 7. "Roots into the deep," Chapter 28; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 15. " Love of the Motherland," Chapter 44; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The juice, the sugar and the sweets," Chapter 15 and ”What great mothers mean to the nation," Chapter 16; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 36. "LOVE AND RESPECT YOUR PARENTS AND SANCTIFY YOUR LIFE," Chapter 10).
 
  Namaste - Reet
 


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