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Swami teaches....Part 111

Links to Swami Teaches - Part 110


Swami teaches... Part 1 - 3. Creator Is the Cause, Humanity Is the Effect


Light and Love

Swami teaches... 6 - 10 Aug, 2007

Part 3. Creator Is the Cause, Humanity Is the Effect

The Atma shines eternally,
With no birth and no death,
With no beginning, middle or end
Ever remaining the All-Seeing Witness.

You may give God any name or form. The Divine has given various names. Even the rishis have called God by many names - Siva, Shankara, Adithya, Sambhava, Bhagavan... These names were given to Him; He did not give Himself any name. So, all that you see may be called God. Nature is God. Energy is God. Nothing is God. But, it is really not nothing; it is everything.


In what you call everything, there is nothing. What you call nothing has everything. (By recent discoveries of modern science, it is physical vacuum that is 'nothing'. At the same time physical vacuum has an infinite capacity to be full of everything. It is very close point where modern quantum physics of recent years as fused into Swami's Teaching).


Everything is nothing and vice versa. Some say, "There is no God", but everything is in God. The atheist denies the existence of what is. In saying "There is no God", "There is" comes first. This means that atheist is denying what is.

However, most scientists who have not attained the knowledge of the totality suffer from want of faith in the Divine Will.


Even though the scientific method with its hypotheses, data collection, and statistical analysis is well documented, the method by which scientists themselves came to conclusions, remains largely hidden without spiritual outlook. It is truth, what none can deny.

/Two vital ingredients seem to be necessary to make a scientist: the curiosity to seek out mysteries and the creativity to solve them. According to one definition, curiosity is sensitivity to small discrepancies in an otherwise ordered world. To resolve the conflict between reality, data, and theory, a scientist often has to think outside the box and approach the problem from different angles.


Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck (1858 -1947) one of the worldly known fathers of quantum physics, Nobel Prize for Physics in 1918, once said, "The scientist must have a vivid and intuitive imagination, for new ideas are not generated by deduction, but by an artistically creative imagination.? This creative imagination is activated by the Divine Will only and will lead to the awareness of the Great One/.

The information and the physical and intellectual skills and gain will be of use in dealings with this material world. Scientific knowledge can be expanded through the manipulation of matter, or through the understanding of the world and the changes that happen in them.


Scientists can describe the composition of matter and its behavior, but they cannot delve into the why and wherefore of things. The real aim of education must be to help the student discover the Divine in every being (in scientists also).

Every must necessarily make efforts to realize the principle of Atma, which is present in him/her and all others. The sweetness of Atmic experience is unparalleled. In the spiritual field, what one has to attain is the experience of Atmic bliss. He/she, who realizes the inherent divinity in humanity, is a true human being. The Atma has no specific form. This has to be realized and experienced by every individual. One may know the nature of an individual, but it is not possible to understand and estimate the nature of the Atma.


When one proceeds to attain the Atmic vision, one has to negate everything as 'Not this', until at the end of the journey, the Atma alone is cognized. It admits of no definition, no description, and no designation. On the end of enquiry of all endeavors, the silence swallows all speech.


The primary seed of knowledge is "I am not the body." It contains three entities: I, body and not. 'I' is the Atma, the Only truth. The idea 'I' applies only to the eternal 'I', over which, the transient is superimposed by ignorance, born out of false identification.


/Deha (body) means that which will undergo destruction. It means the five feet bundle of bone and muscle, nerve and brain, the senses, the vital airs, the mind that imagines (constructs images), the intellect that argues pros and cons, the chittha that revolves around the past impressions and choices and the ahamkara (ego) that urges outwards, the internal and external equipments of human/.

We live in ignorance of our innate reality. Entangled by the elements, we become victims of duality such as those or pain and pleasure, joy and sorrow and life and death.

Human's primary need is food. The production of food involves cultivation of land to grow food crops. Without the production of grains, hunger cannot be appeased by mantras or money. With the basic needs of food, shelter and clothing satisfied and with rearing a family, human is content. Nevertheless, with the growth of knowledge and skills, huts develop into mansions, villages turn into towns and cities; population grows and human is proud of what has accomplished. However, human is not aware of the things which are outside his/her ken and beyond his/her capacity.


Although births and deaths have been occurring from the beginning of time, people have not been able to understand the reasons for these happenings or their inner significance.

Recognizing that despite all human's intellectual achievements, there were many things beyond understanding and control, the ancients concluded that there was some super-human power behind and beyond the phenomena. Vedic sages (rishis) felt that they should enquire into the nature of the power without which human could not exist, no plant could grow, and no living being could survive. These enquiries were not based on blind faith or ignorance and lack of knowledge, nor were they products of wild imagination. They were profound seers, free from attachment and self-interest. They sought to find the truth by austere penance. They regarded it as a search for God. After discovering the basic truth through disinterested enquiry and personal experience, they gave it to the world.

The earliest finding of the Vedic rishis was that the Sun was the most important factor in determining the daily life and providing the basic requirements for living. The Sun was regarded as the source of all energy and responsible for birth, growth and destruction of all things in creation. It was for this reason that Sage Viswamitra glorified the Sun God (Savitr) in the Gayathri mantra.


The sages believed that the Divine principle was present in and outside of everything and that it could be experienced directly as well as indirectly. They pursued their penances further, for the benefit of humanity. They realized the Truth that the Divine Effulgent Person was beyond the outer darkness and, experiencing this Reality, they called upon all to seek and experience it. This Effulgent Purusha is utterly selfless, full of light, the embodiment of all auspicious qualities and free from attributes. By Upanishads Iswara is one who is endowed with all conceivable kinds of wealth.


He was described as "Shiva" meaning one who is beyond the three gunas, absolutely pure and untainted. He was regarded as eternal, omnipotent, all pervading and the possessor of all that is great and glorious.


The sages found that Shiva is also the protector of those who seek refuge in Him. Hence, He was called Shankara - one who confers protection and grace. His Sankalpa (Will) and grace have no bounds and are not dependent on any person, condition or qualification. He was described as Swayambhu (self-created). The sages conceived of Him as one who could incarnate at will for the protection and rescue of human and the safeguarding of Dharma. In view of this transcendental power, He was described as Sambhavah - the one who incarnates whenever Dharma (the reign of Righteousness) is in danger and the good need protection.

Recognizing that the Divine is present in all living things, the rishis gave Him the name, Adithya.


They realized that it is not possible to know this all-pervading, all-knowing, omnipotent entity.


There are three bases for knowing anything:


1. Direct perception,
2. Inference
3. Vedic sabda (testimony).


The Divine is beyond prathyaksha (direct perception) because He has no form. The Divine may appear in the form one contemplates, but that is not the reality. Proof by inference may not be valid in the case of the Absolute. You may know that a seed has the potential to become a tree, but you cannot know what kind of tree it will actually become. Hence there are obvious limitations in seeking to know the nature of the Divine by means of direct perception or by inference.


We have, then, the Sabda (testimony) of the Vedas. The Vedas can only describe the Absolute, but cannot demonstrate it. It has, therefore, been declared: "Not by rituals, or wealth or progeny can you attain the Eternal. Only through sacrifice can you realize the immortal". The Upanishads* (i. e. Vedanta, part of Vedas) explored the process of elimination--"Not this", "Not this" - to arrive at the Absolute, Atma, as was briefly mentioned above.


Having found that the Divine cannot be known by any of the three methods of knowing, the sages gave the name, aprameyah - the indescribable, the immeasurable. The sages also found that the Supreme Person was not only the creator and the protector, but also the destroyer and-that he combined in himself all the powers required for these three functions.


In fact, he was all these and more; that he could confer joy or sorrow, affluence or privation, and that, there was nothing beyond his power. They wanted to choose a name, which would be all comprehensive and appeal to one and all and so gave him the name Bhagavan a name which expressed all the glories and powers of the Supreme Person.

The Upanishads declare, "By knowledge of the Self can freedom be won."


The goal of self-realization depends upon the foundation of self-confidence. Without having confidence in yourself, if all the time you are talking of some power being with someone else, when are you going to acquire any power and confidence in yourself? You should consider self-confidence as the most important asset in life. You are God yourself; God is the eternal resident of your heart. Believe in yourself. Then believe in God. When you have this kind of faith you will not be affected by dual tendencies in nature.


The Upanishads were authored by sages (rishis) who experienced the deepest truths and exhort us to seek liberation from the consequences of ignorance through knowledge of the Self.


Sanathana Dharma has no single founder. Swami indicated that unlike other spiritual traditions, the Supreme Being is the Prophet of this Sanathana Dharma. He is the Founder. Four Vedas and the Upanishads constitute its foundation. The Bhaghavad Gita constitutes the essence of the Upanishads.


Do not neglect the great lessons embedded in Sanathana Dharma, which have sustained countless generations in Bharath for many centuries and spread to many countries over the world. "May All the Worlds Be Happy" - this is the goal towards which Sanathana Dharma is leading. Welcome within the fold of your love all people without distinction of race, religion, color, or class.


Two weapons that have provided to humankind to overcome the bondage of Maya are discrimination (viveka) and detachment (vairagya). A study of the Upanishads helps the jivi (individual soul) to exercise such discrimination and detachment to discover or merge with the original source (Paramatma), what is the Prime Cause of all Creation what is the effect of Prime Cause.

 

(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.11. "Saline turned sweet," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.15. "A happy human community," Chapter 12; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.19. "Bhagavan and Bhakti," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The life of Samartha Raamadhas," Chapter 10; Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol. 36. "Develop Spirit of brotherhood," Chapter 15).

*The teachings of Upanishads have known as Vedanta.

Namaste - Reet



Swami teaches...30 July - 5 Aug, 2007

Part 2. Creator Is the Cause, Humanity Is the Effect

God is the cause and humanity is the effect as the heading notes. The effect reveals the cause. The pot is the effect of clay. Why can't pots be the effects of water or of sand? When the cause (the clay) assumes the form of the effect (the pot), it reveals itself in the effect. The Dharma (innate nature) of the cause will be evident in the effect also. Dharma means 'vesture', that which is worn. The effect has the same vesture, characteristic pattern, as the cause.


Salt is salty; if it loses its saltiness, it is not salt. Chilies must taste hot; if they do not possess that characteristic and unique quality, they are not chilies. Each thing has a unique quality for which it exists. Human too has unique quality, which marks him/her out from other beings. It is thyaga, the capacity and the willingness to give up, renounce, and sacrifice. Human is endowed with that quality for a high purpose. Immortality, not death, is the genuine Dharma or nature of the human being.

(When human attaches to the ego, he/she loses access to the higher levels of consciousness. When the Reality eludes, a crowd of contradictory conclusions confronts human. This calamity in the thought process results in mental confusion).

The ways to reach to the Enlightenment are very different and depend on the seekers faith, character, state of knowledge (awareness), karma, etc.
However, on the path to the Enlightenment Sathya and Dharma go together; they are two faces of the same coin. Truth and righteousness are two pillars on which the mansion of human life rests. There is no Dharma higher than Sathya. Righteousness is built on the foundation of Truth.

Below are very different examples given by Swami for contemplation.

The first example.

 

Swami gives a detailed account of the life of Samartha Ramdas, the great Maharashtra 17th century saint; author of work on religious duty; guru of the great King Sivaji. (Since Ramdas had the extraordinary capacity to do many great things, he came to be known as Samartha Ramdas, the appellation Samartha meaning a man of versatile skills).

In the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra, a son was born to a couple highly devoted to God. He was named Narayana. He grew up as a naughty boy, neglecting his studies and quarrelling with other children. At the age of eight years, he lost his father. His mother Ramaa Dhevi, found it difficult to control her mischievous and delinquent son. Her relatives and neighbors advised her to get him married so that he might realize his responsibilities and change for the better.


Although the boy was only 13 years old and too young for marriage, his mother yielded to the persuasions of others and arranged for his marriage. At the time of the wedding, a screen of thick cloth was held in-between the bride and bridegroom, according to the prevailing custom, and the priests removed the curtain to hand over the sacred thread of wedlock to the bridegroom for him to tie it round the bride's neck. Lo and behold! The bridegroom had disappeared behind the curtain, without anybody's notice. A thorough search was made to trace him out, but in vain. So, the marriage could not be performed.


The boy Narayana, who had escaped from the marriage, ultimately reached a place called Nasik near the source of the sacred river Godhavari. He stayed there for sometime and then moved to a nearby mountain called Chitrakuta, which is considered holy, because Rama and Sita lived there for nearly 12 years. The boy was enraptured by the grandeur of the scenery of the place and was immersed in the contemplation of Rama.


What was the cause for the naughty boy turning into a pious young man? Apart from the fact that his latent good samskaras (accumulated tendencies) were aroused by the sudden shock of the prospect of being saddled with the heavy responsibilities of married life. During his journey to Nasik, the boy entered to a Hanuman temple reroutes, and wholeheartedly prayed to the Deity to bless him with all the noble qualities for which Hanuman was renowned. He had an indication of his prayer being answered by way of gentle movement of the idol transmitting spiritual vibrations in the direction of the boy.


After 12 years of intense penance, Narayana gained the three-fold realisation of Lord Rama, as did Hanuman. Namely, when he had body consciousness, he was the servant and Rama the Master, when he was conscious of his being a jivi (individual soul) he was a part of Rama and when he was aware of his being the Atma he and Rama were one.


After this realisation, he returned to Nasik. While there, he came to know that the country was in the grip of a severe famine. Then he began to reflect that to spend his time thinking of only his own liberation, when all his countrymen were suffering due to famine, amounted to extreme selfishness. So, he coined the slogan, "Rama in the heart, and work in the hand.? Narayana entered the arena of social service with all his energy and zeal, giving to himself and his band of dedicated workers mottoes such as "manava seva (service to human) is Madhava seva (service to God)" and "Grama seva (service to the villages) is Rama seva (service to Rama)."

Proceeding thus from village to village, doing social work, coupled with chanting of Ramanaam, Narayana on the way to Nasik, saw saint Tukaram, who was singing the glories of Rama so melodiously that a large number of people including Shivaji, the ruler of Maharashtra, were attracted to him. Shivaji prayed to Tukaram to give him initiation. Tukaram declined saying, "Ramdas is your Guru, not I, so you have to receive initiation only from him."

When Shivaji came to know that Narayana alias Ramdas was in Nasik, he sent his ministers and other high dignitaries to invite Ramdas to the royal court with a band of music and other traditional honors befitting a highly distinguished personage.

When Ramdas arrived, the king received him with due honors and reverence, arranged for his stay in the palace itself, and after washing his feet, he sprinkled the holy washings on his own head and submitted to him in all humility: ?O revered Master! From this moment, this kingdom belongs to you; and I too, am yours.


Thereupon Ramdas replied, "My son, I am an ascetic who has renounced everything. I have neither the right nor the desire for your limited kingdom. God's kingdom is unlimited. The goal of my life is to help every one to reach that unlimited kingdom of God.


I am now coronating you as the ruler of this kingdom which you have offered to me. From now onwards, you will be king with a difference. You should consider that the kingdom really belongs to God and that you are only His instrument or trustee administering the kingdom on His behalf.

 
Ramdas gave Shivaji three things as mementos to guide him in his royal duties.

1. A coconut to remind him that just as our intention in buying a coconut is to consume the white kernel inside, so also the purpose of owning and administering the kingdom is that the king himself should lead a sathwic life and also to ensure that the sathwic quality prevails in his kingdom.


2. A handful of earth in purpose to remind the king and through him his subjects, about the sanctity of Bharath, their motherland.


3. A pair of bricks to symbolize that just as bricks are used to construct houses for the safety of the inmates, the king should use his powers to protect the people and promote their welfare and progress.

Once on his way Ramdas visited Pandaripuram where he was an eye-witness to the ideal way in which a man by name Pundareeka served his parents as veritable gods, making the Lord Himself wait in front of his house standing on a pair of bricks, till he completed his service to his parents.


Pundareeka's devoted service to his parents at Pandaripuram was revived in Ramdas mind and he hastened back home with the idea of serving his aged mother. When he reached home, his old mother could not recognize him, particularly because of his long beard and strange dress. He told her that he was her son, Narayana, who was popularly known as Samartha Ramdas. Thereupon, his mother exclaimed ecstatically, "O my dear son, I have been hearing so much about Samartha Ramdas and have been eager to see him for a long time. However, I never knew that it is the popular name of my son, Narayana. I am proud of you and thank the Lord for making me the mother of such a great one. My life is fulfilled." So saying she breathed her last on her son's lap.


Ramadas duly performed the obsequies of his mother. Shortly thereafter, he heard about Shivaji's death in A.D 1680 (just six years after he was coronated by Ramdas in A.D 1674). He went to the King's capital, installed Shivaji's son as the king and blessed him so that he might rule the kingdom, following the footsteps of his noble father.

The next examples are from other area and show how evil desires and conducts rob human of peace.

Karna, the great hero of the Mahabharatha epic, had the Sun-god Himself as his progenitor. He had divine blessing in ample measure. As a consequence, he possessed enormous powers. No one could overcome him in battle. However, on a few occasions, through man's own innate willfulness and wickedness or through his goodness and purity, blessings are transformed into curses and curses are sublimated into blessings.


Karna's life offers a good lesson in this respect.

He approached to the sage Parasurama and desired to learn archery. He sought also to gain some supra-human weapons like the Brahmaastra (Brahma's weapon of infallible destruction) from him on the conclusion of his training.


Parasurama had vowed to destroy the entire wicked kshatriya caste, for they had dealt with his father, Jamadagni, very cruelly. So, no kshatriya boy was accepted by Parasurama as a pupil. Karna therefore claimed to be a Brahmin himself, of the same caste as Parasurama. Parasurama accepted him as a Brahmin boy and instructed him in archery and taught him the use of the Brahmaastra also. Nevertheless, in the end, he came to know that Karna was a kshatriya: he grew angry. He said: "Since you learnt archery from me through impersonation, I curse you that you shall never succeed in using this sacred Brahmaastra".


Since Karna was arrogant and cunning, he had to suffer defeat at the hands of the Pandava brothers.

Bhishma, the other hero of Mahabharatha epic had won great fame from the vow by which he abjured wedded life as well as throne to which he was entitled. He was the teacher of both the Kauravas and the Pandavas. He was a great warrior, a fearless fighter, an unfailing guide. He knew all the intricacies of dharma.


But he failed to guide Dhuryodhana and Dhussasana at a critical moment when they dragged queen Droupadi by the hair and insulted her in open Durbar before himself and others.


Of what avail was his mastery of dharmic codes?


Since Bhishma, Dhrona, and others did not rise to the occasion and stop the wanton wickedness of their wards, they covered themselves with infamy. What was the reason for their inaction? It was consideration for the self, sheer self-preservation. They were overcome by a sense of gratefulness. Conscious that they were eating the salt provided by Duryodhana, they attached more importance to the impermanent body and its needs and ignored the permanent values of truth and morality.

Apply always the knowledge of Truth in every crisis during your lives; follow the path Dharma; do not be misled by falsehood or wickedness by fear or favor.

Only two paths are open before people: the path of individual freedom and the path of social service. Adhering to individual freedom, you should not lose yourselves in egotism. Develop simple living and high thinking. In the name of high thinking, do not lose yourselves in internet and tons of books and waste your energies in barren pursuits.


The mind will only confuse, confound and weaken your reason. Use only the energy that the situation and the need of the moment demand.

 
(Control of the senses is not easy. Even an evolved person like Arjuna who confessed to Krishna that sense-control was extremely difficult. If one has nothing to do, the mind wanders in all directions. The sages knew this well from their own experience.


What kind of vigil is it in which there is no purity of mind and no meditation on God? The stork that stands on one leg waiting to catch a fish cannot be regarded as doing penance.


The drunken sot who is oblivious to the world cannot be equated with one who is absorbed in the Divine. The human who gives up eating after a tiff with the wife cannot be described as observing a fast).

Many people think of God only when grief overtakes them; of course, it is good to do so; it is better than seeking the help of those who are also equally liable to grief. Nevertheless, it is infinitely better to think of God in grief and in joy, in peace and strife, in all weathers.


The proof of the rain is in the wetness of the ground; the proof of bhakthi is in the santhi the bhaktha has, santhi that protects human against the onslaughts of success as well as failure, fame and dishonor, gain and loss.

 

(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.11. "Saline turned sweet," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.15. "A happy human community," Chapter 12; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.19. "Bhagavan and Bhakti," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The life of Samartha Raamadhas," Chapter 10; Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol. 36. "Develop Spirit of

brotherhood," Chapter 15); http://www.sivanandadlshq.org/saints/samartha_ramdas.htm .

Namaste - Reet



Swami teaches...25 - 29 July, 2007

Part 1. Creator Is the Cause, Humanity Is the Effect

Every being is the effect of some cause and has created for some purpose. All things and beings in the Universe have God as the cause. Every deed involves a doer. After profound enquiry, the rishis discovered that God is the source of everything in creation. The Upanishads are the outcome of the explorations into the nature of the Divine made by the ancient sages. They declare that Jagath (the world) is permeated by Iswara (Lord, God, Supreme Being). Jagath is the place wherein all beings are born, grow, and disappear.


The rishis compared Jagath to a seed. Every seed is covered by husk. It is only when the grain and the husk are together that the seed can germinate. Likewise, in the Cosmos, the inner grain is God, the outer husk is Prakriti (Nature).

/By Swami, the Upanishads are as "the whisperings of God to humanity." (There were originally one thousand one hundred and eighty Upanishads, but today only one hundred and eight of them have survived).


Arthur Schopenhauer (1788 ? 1860), famous German philosopher, wrote, "In the whole world there is no study so beneficial and so elevating as that of the Upanishads. They are destined sooner or later to become the faith of the people."

Ceaselessly the air blows over the Earth everywhere, but we do not see it. Time passes through a procession of days and night filled with activity and sleep. Continuously, somewhere or the other, births and deaths, joy and sorrow, pleasure and pain are occurring. The year is filled with varying, seasons, blazing heat, or freezing cold, heavy rains or temperate weather. It is not easy to overcome these changing phenomena.

The Universe demonstrates the unity of God and Nature. Nature is dependent on God and God is the basis for Nature. Likewise, when we seek refuge in God, He provides the protecting cover for us.

 
This is described as Siva-Sakthi-Atmaka-Swarupam - the union of Shiva and Sakthi.


The Cosmos i.e. the Universe, thus, is not apart from God. The scientists are saying the same thing in their own language when they say matter is energy and energy is matter.


The relationship between matter and energy indicated the Prakriti-Paramatma (Nature-God) relationship.


"God is beyond the reach of mind and speech. From where speech returns, together with the mind, unable to grasp it," says the Upanishad.

Measure the microcosm you have measured the macrocosm. Know all about clay; you have known all about pots, pans, plates, and cups. Know about the base, you have known about the superstructure. Know about water, you know about rain, cloud, steam, stream, river - all its modifications and manifestations. The same quantity of silver might be shaped into a plate today, a set of spoons tomorrow, and a number of cups the day after. The forms get new names; the uses of each are different. When put to use or when silver remains as a silver 'lump' only, in the hands of every one that holds, it or handles it, in the beginning or in the end, it and they are always silver.

In the murky, dusk of ignorance, it appears diverse, that is all for, then, your are led to distinguish and differentiate on the bases of name and form.
The multifarious efflorescence of Maya, the primal desire which proliferated into the Universe - all that is the permutation and combination of the five elements, to cognize which human has equipped with the nose (smell, earth attribute), tongue (taste, water attribute), eye (perceptible form, attribute of fire), skin (touch, attribute of air) and ear (sound, attribute of sky).

'I am not the body' declares that Nature, the Universe, all created things and beings, are only appearances in the ocean of limitless diversity of the Great One.


Human can realize the goal either by picturing something that is different and distant, and praying to it, adoring it, worshipping it - such ways are useful only up to a limit, to purge the mind of low desires, sensual urges etc., or by delving into oneself, to reach the truth.

The Divine cannot be known by ordinary perception or through rules of logic and reasoning. The realization of the Great One cannot be won by means of advice, science, listening to talks and discourses, study of books or austerities. It worried even Narada (sage-bard; traveled the world chanting Narayana he was famous for creating disputes, resulting in solutions for the spiritual advancement or victory of the virtuous), who approached the sage, Sanathkumara, for the vision of the Infinite. With this decomposing body and the deteriorating intellect, human cannot experience and contain the boundless surge of bliss that accompanies the realization that he/she is the absolute.


The wisdom that comes of actual experience is as the raindrop, when compared with seawater, which is saline and undrinkable book-knowledge or derived knowledge. Through the inter-action of the rays of the Sun, the salinity was removed and the water that floated into the sky became sweet and sustaining. Sadhana that turns the physical into the meta-physical is the solar action that confers portability.

Deep sleep is often compared to samadhi, for, the senses, the mind, the reason, are all absent therein; only the ego is immersed in itself. It is in bliss, but it is not aware of that bliss, for, waking alone gives that knowledge. Therefore, what can grant realization is the awareness of the waking stage and the bliss of the sleeping stage. Concentrate on the point, where one is having these two: that is the moment of victory.

Samadhi is a much-misunderstood word. All kinds of emotional upsurges, attacks of hysteria, nervous breakdowns, and neurotic fits are now extolled and exalted as Samadhi.


Samadhi - it says sama dhee, balanced, unruffled intellect; that is, a discriminating reaction of equanimity, in the face of heat and cold, grief and joy, pain and pleasure, rejection or rejoicing. Sama-dhee it is the being, the awareness and the bliss. One who has attained that stage, or realized that he/she is the One without a second, will be indifferent to fear or favor, to hate or love, to exalt or execrate.

Young people must make all efforts to know the Reality by boldly entering the realm of the spirit, as Swethakethu (spelling also Shvethakethu, name of a great sage).


Swethakethu sought to discover the first Cause, the Reality, that which is neither born nor subject to death, which has neither beginning nor end. (The hypothesis that food was the cause of life was rejected. His father led him from one theory to another, which he visualised as the ultimate Truth). Swethakethu was convinced that the Cause could not be water, fire, air, or ether (akasha). It could only be God, the Great One.

Youth are makers of tomorrow's on the Earth; good or bad, is dependent on them. Tomorrow depends on their skill, on their character, on their eagerness to learn and to serve. They can also bring about, by their conduct and character, the disintegration, the decline or the debilitation of its culture and fame.


Today there is a great need to assert and proclaim by every means possible the power of truth and morality, their holiness and their unique importance in life. This must be proclaimed both by words and by deeds. The inner urge to uphold them is the urge of the Divine in us.
In the world today, knowledge and skills have grown immensely, but human qualities have practically not developed. Every subject is riddled with controversy. The reasoning process is invoked, without understanding what exactly is reason.


(What a reversal of values has human accomplished. Truth is treated as a foe; falsehood is the friend of human. Pictorially, liquor is sold in a tavern, to which people trek miles; but milk is taken to their doorsteps, by vendors who cry hoarse, to draw the attention of the residents, but yet, they turn away with their ware unsold).

Youth have to pay attention to 26 categories.


Five senses of action (karma-indriyas); five senses of knowledge (jnana-indriyas); five vital airs (prana); five attributes of the elemental principle, smell (of prithvi or earth); taste (of water); light (of fire); touch (of air); sound (of sky); and the remaining four manas (mind), buddhi (intellect), chittha (differentiating memories) and ahamkara (the selfish ego).


The jivi (individual soul) is the 25th; it has the 26th, the Paramatma (the Supreme Self or Reality) on one side and 24 principles on the other. Jivi has to illumine all 24, and draw them all to the Reality, namely, the 26th category, the Paramatma. When they are illumined, they disappear, for they cannot survive light; they are but creatures that are the progeny of Maya (delusion and illusion).

When all 24 categories are analyzed and known, nothing is gained. For, they belong to the realm of the relatively real, not the absolutely real. They are Jagath, the moving, changing, the transitory, and the untrue.


(The Vedas, Upanishads, Sastras and Puranas have not mentioned anything about the origins and dissolutions of these, with any degree of certainty, because they are concerned more with the rescue operations of the 'I' that is entangled in them and with validation that they are of no importance. Know thyself; you know the world, which is but a projection of thy mind; that is the lesson conveyed).

The most desirable subject for study is the secret of the soul, which is immortal. Do not be satisfied with the education that helps to eke out a livelihood during your sojourn on earth. You have come to the world as humans in order to manifest fully the special human endowment, of intelligence and intuition. For realization of this faith is essential for human progress in every field. Faith is only one. There is nothing like blind faith. For faith, there can be no reason and no season. Faith and spirituality are beyond reason. It is foolish to search for the grounds of faith.

Knowledge, and through knowledge, wisdom can be earned only by means of faith and effort. Equipped with these, human can venture into the heights and emerge victoriously. (Of course, one has to be warned against cultivating too much faith in things that are merely material). Faith is power. Without faith, living is impossible. We have faith in tomorrow following today. People with no faith cannot plan; they court misery by their want of faith.

A rich man in South Africa once heard a divine voice, which promised him a gold mine, if only he would dig at a certain place. He dug at that place to a depth of 200 feet and failed to discover any vein of gold. His faith waned. He doubted the authenticity of the voice. He talked to others how the voice had played false. When another rich man heard his story, he developed great faith in what he believed. He dug in the same areas and laid bare a rich gold mine barely three feet below the surface of the earth. That became the richest and the most famous of the gold mines of South Africa.


Those who dug for the gold mine could well say, "It is only three feet of soil between victory and defeat".

Another example from history.


During the Second World War, the Japanese bombed an Indian steamer and it was sunk. Many lost their lives. Only five men managed to row their lifeboat and hoped to have a chance to survive, in spite of the surging ocean. One of them became desperate. "The sea will swallow me. I will be food for sharks," he cried, and, in panic, he fell into the sea. Another man wept for his family. "I am afraid they will suffer much. I am dying without arranging for their future", he said. He too lost his faith in his survival and breathed his last. The third man said, "Alas! I have with me the policy documents of insurance. What a pity I did not give them to my wife. How can she get the amount, now that I am dying?"


The other two men reinforced each other's faith in God. They said, "We shall prove by sticking to life, however desperate the situation. God has created us for some good purpose. We shall not give up faith in God's compassion and power.? They had to give up the leaky boat and swim towards the shore. Within five minutes, a helicopter sent from a coastal ship, which had received signals for help from the sinking steamer, sighted them, and hauled them up to safety. While safe on land, they said, "It is only five minutes between victory and defeat."

Among people are optimists and pessimists, the hopefuls and the depressed. The optimists keep their eyes always on higher values; the pessimists slide down into dispiritedness and despair. During nights, the optimists look up at the starlight; the pessimists look down and grumble at the darkness around them. The optimists draw confidence and courage from the twinkling of a myriad lights on high. The optimists have eyes only for the flower on the rose plant. The pessimists see only the thorns underneath the flower. So fear of thorns results in rough handling and the petals of the lovely rose fall off.


Seeing a glass half filled with water, the optimist is glad that it is half-full, while the pessimist is sad that it is half-empty. Though both statements are correct, the optimist hopes to fill the other half too, while the pessimist gives up in despair. The one has faith; the other has no faith to sustain him. Therefore, we must develop faith by steady effort.

Many festivals in Bharath have been ordained in order to take stock of one's spiritual progress, one?s faith in this progress and to make human resolve to march forward, until the goal is reached. These festivals underline the significance of ancient sacred scriptures, Bhagavad Gita, Mahabharata, Vedas, Upanishads, and many others.


For example, recently the festival of Ashadi Ekadasi - the eleventh day of the lunar fortnight of Ashad was celebrated. It is known as the great Ekadasi or Maha Ekadasi.


However, the real meaning of Ekadasi, the eleventh, is the following. When ten senses (five senses of action and five through which knowledge of the objective world is gained) are coordinated and turned in the direction of God, the eleventh, then it becomes genuine Ekadasi. The eleventh was a day on which one has to transcend the lower impulses originating from the thamasic (inertia) and the rajasic (passionate activity) natures and, help the upsurge of sathwic (pure) tendencies.


This is also the meaning of the Namaskar, where you fold both palms together and hold them on your chest, near the heart region. The ten senses surrender to the person adored, with real sincerity in the heart.

 

(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 11. "Saline turned sweet," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.15. "A happy human community," Chapter 12; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol.19. "Bhagavan and Bhakti," Chapter 4; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "The life of Samartha Raamadhas," Chapter 10; Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol.36. "Develop Spirit of brotherhood," Chapter 15).

Namaste - Reet


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