Swami teaches....Part 23
Swami teaches.... (12 - 13 April 2005)
Training the Attraction of the Grace of God*
Swami's Teaching guides the path to the new (more exactly ancient, Vedic) spirituality. The first characteristic of this is concept of unity in diversity. The second is that all we are the One expression of eternal Atma. Therefore, the life is also eternal, as constant flow with different forms and fluctuations. The main conclusion from Swami's Teaching for humanity is if we are all One expression of Atma, we need to stop our competition and struggle with each other. Through the glasses of Atmic reality, humans' struggles turn against humanity themselves. There is an urgent need that His Teaching would become the pervasive spirituality for whole humanity.
Increasing the power of technology and science (both, with positive and negative results) causes the increasing the content of life's energy-informational potency. Human's consciousness as seeking the own existence on a higher level, as seeking the new possibilities, experiences concern to own true reality as a great spiritual opportunity.
which sustains the Cosmos and the Cell is the same one,
the all-pervasive Consciousness, named Brahmam. When this
infinite vastness is spoken of in relation to Cosmos (Jagath,
the Superflux), It is the Paramatma (the Overself) and it
is the Atma (the Self) when it is conceded as the core of
individual beings. All three are one entity, but they
'appear' different and
When the "urge to become," namely Maya impels Brahmam to project itself, it appears as Eswara or God when associated with satwa guna, as Jivi (human and living beings) when associated with rajo guna and as Prakriti (Nature) when associated with tamo guna. Brahmam is the basis of all three. Maya is the mirror in which Brahmam is reflected as Personalised God, Human and Nature.
Become attached to God. Feel His Presence, revel in His Glory. He has none, but if you love Him deeply, you will be concerned about Him, just as if He is your Lord and Love. God will serve you; He will save you and be by your side ever - only you have to cultivate your character and polish your interior so that He might be reflected therein. Let His Will be done - this should be your guide-line. Just as you prescribe minimum qualifications for every profession, the minimum qualification for Grace is surrender of egoism, control over senses and regulated aahaara and vihaara (food and recreation).
is the creation of the internal. Brahmam has manifested
Itself as all this. God created the world.
Human, through yearning, imagination and intensity endows
God with a form and name, and a large bunch of attributes.
But, God is above and beyond human traits and
characteristics known as Gunas. Krishna tells Arjuna in
the Bhagavad Gita, "I have no need to engage myself in any
activity. I am busy acting, in order to promote the
well-being of the world and its inhabitants." Five fields
in the attainment of this Samathvam (equal mindedness)
2. The field of social ups and downs. One has to welcome with equal mindedness fame and blame, respect and ridicule, profit and loss. Fortune is as much a challenge to one's equanimity as misfortune.
3. The field of knowledge with its ups and downs. Until the summit of knowledge wherefrom one experiences the One which has become this vast make-believe, there are many temptations and obstacles that lead the seeker astray. The Gita defines a Pandit who has gained the awareness of the same One in all beings.
4. The field of devotion with its ups and downs: there is a great deal of racoon and fanaticism, prejudice and persecution, which arise out of ignorance of the sameness of the God, through various rites and rituals, modes and methods. There is only One Omnipresent God.
5.The field of actvity with its ups and downs must be sanctified by divinising the purpose. When work is sublimated into worship, defeat and disappointment will not dishearten. Success will not promote pride; it will lead to humility and gratitude for grace. Work performed as duty, as due from us to society, to its service, brings the reward of joy.
The Lord had announced that He showers Grace on inner purity, not outer pomp. When one has established himself in equal mindedness, the Lord installs Himself in heart: His voice becomes the conscience that guides at every step. Through yoga, fortitude must be acquired; through japa (pious repetition), sense-control must be earned; through Sadhana, the mind should be filled with peace. Human must be a yogi always, under all circumstances (sathatham yoginah), says the Gita. Faith in God can ensure equanimity and balance. Knowledge must develop into skill, which must be directed and regulated by a sense of balance. Or else, skill degenerates into 'kill'.
All spiritual endeavour has its aim the attraction of the Grace of God on ourselves. The stone is not worshipped as stone; it is the symbol of the God that cannot be pictured in His abstract, attributeless, Nirguna (Formless) aspect. The idol is of great help in concentration, as was proved by Raamakrishna Paramahamsa, Meera, Thyaagaraaja and a large number of other seekers.
Another Hindu belief is that food, when it is offered to God and then taken as consecrated by His acceptance, is activated by Divine energy and is freed from all evil influences that might adhere to it. This helps the attitude of dedication, and encourages the conviction of the constant Presence of God as an inseparable guide and guardian wherever you may be.
We go to a temple and stand before the main shrine, strike the bell hung there; the sound will draw the attention of the Lord to the supplicant just arrived. The bell must be accompanied by a sincere prayer from the heart.
Gayathri - it is a universal prayer. It has three parts,
dhyaana - meditation on the Glory of God as the
illumination immanent in the worlds, upper, middle and
lower (Om Bhuhbhuva-swah; thath savithur varenyam); it has
Smarana or picturisation of the Grace (bhargo devasya
dheemahi) and Praarthana, prayer for compassion for the
sake of liberation, through the
Service is the best school for training equanimity. Through seva you realise that all beings are waves of the Ocean of Divinity. No other saadhana can bring you into the incessant contemplation of the One-ness of all living beings. You feel another's pain as own; you share another's success as own. To see every one else as yourself and yourself in every one, that is the core of the saadhana of seva. Again, seva makes the ego languish for want of food. It makes you humble before the suffering of others, and when you rush to render help, you do not calculate how high or low his social or economic status is. In seva there can be no high or low, for Sai is in all. Sai receives your seva, to whomsoever you may offer lt. Swami is the nearest to him/her who calls on Him and sees Him in all beings.
The service that you render must reward you, not only with your satisfaction, but with the satisfaction and relief of those whom you serve. You should have the joy of the recipient as your objective. Human is endowed with the equipment of senses, reason, feelings, passions and detachment, so that anyone may keep away from the enticement of pleasures and spend the life in helping, serving, sustaining and saving fellow human beings.
Remind that you are a spiritual aspirant and that seva is the spiritual path that you have ventured upon as the easiest and the best. When you mix with volunteers and others who have no deep faith or sweet experience of the value of seva, you may get caught up in conversation that might shake your conviction. Do not allow their superficial judgement to undermine your steadfastness. Keep away from such persons; let them test their doubts on the touchstone of their own experiences of seva. Take their disbelief indifferently, and allow them time to realise and overcome their doubts by their own will.
Intolerance is the product of anger, hate and envy. Try the best to suppress the first appearance of anger. The body becomes warm, the lips twitch, the eyes redden - so, when you get the intimation, drink a cup of cold water, sip it slowly, close the door and lie in bed, until the seizure passes away, and you laugh at your own folly. This may appear difficult, but you have to practise it. For the consequences of your yielding to anger will be so disastrous that you will have to repent long for them.
What is most needed today is a total effort to manifest more tolerance, more humility, more brotherliness, more compassion and deeper awareness of the springs of joy and peace that lie within the heart of each one. Love is the solvent for the hardest of hearts. Without love, free, full and selfless, no spiritual saadhana can succeed. Without it, bhajan is waste of breath, sathsang a waste of time and meditation a selfdeception. Bhajan, sathsang and meditation done with a mind soaked in love, can confer peace, joy and wisdom. When the rain drop falls into the sea, lt gets the name, form and nature of the sea. So, too, when the individual merges in the vast concourse of humanity and feels one with all, he is endowed with the name, form and nature of Divinity.
If you have confidence in your strength and skill, you can draw upon the inner springs of courage and raise yourselves to a higher level of joy and peace. For, confidence in yourselves arises through the Atma, which is your inner Reality. It is from the Atma that you draw all these equipments for spiritual progress. (Reet's compilation by Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 7. "Stagnation in the same class," Chapter 2 and "Jumping to conclusions," Chapter 37; Vol. 13. "No bumps, no jumps," Chapter 18; Vol.18. "The Yoga of Samathvam," Chapter 19).
PS: *The Grace of God can be explained also as human's the state of harmony with the Cosmic Conciousness (the Real Self, Swami's Cosmic Form).
Namaste - Reet
Swami teaches....(14-16 April 2005)
Change the Vision to Recognize the Divinity
You can win the Grace of the Lord only by dharma. It induces the spirit of self-surrender and develops it. Without the training that the practice of dharma gives to your senses, your feelings and emotions, you cannot have steady faith and steady detachment. The Lord is Dharma conceived as a personality. Rama is known as Vigrahavaan Dharmah (Righteousness personified).
In past ages, Avathaars rid the world of evil, by destroying the few fanatics and ogres who wrought it. But, now fanaticism and felony reign in every heart. The number of evil persons is legion; no one is free from that taint; all are wicked to some extent or other. Therefore, every one needs correction; every one has to be educated and guided into the right path. Every being is a pilgrim destined to reach Maadhava (God) and merge in Him; but most people have forgotten the road; they wander like lost children, wasting precious time in by-paths.
In Tretha Yuga Rama fought the battle in person. In Dwapara Yuga Krishna played the role of a witness, using others as His instruments. In Kali Yuga today, the divine and demonic forces are battling in each human being. This is the mark of the Kali age. In Kali Yuga because the two opposing factors are in each individual, the Lord plays the role of a witness and as the conscience. Human being has to use the power of discrimination to fight the evil forces within. Anyone has to foster the divine elements within by own efforts and listening to the voice of his conscience. The freedom to choose has been given to human being for this purpose. This is the unique feature of the Kali age. Realise that no special Sadhana is needed to experience the Divine in you. You must get rid yourself of impure thoughts and actions. Sanctify every action you do and make it a Sadhana. The Divine is not a created object. It is self-effulgent and present in everyone.
We cannot change the appearance of the Universe. But by a change in our vision, its divinity can be recognised.
In every person there is a combination of the Mayatatwa (the Deluding principle) and the Brahmatatwa (the Divine principle). Without the Deluding principle, the Brahmatatwa cannot be experienced. Without the Brahmatatwa, the power of Maya cannot be manifest. On the surface of the vast ocean, countless waves are seen. There must be a force that causes these waves. It is the power of wind on the water of the ocean that produces the waves. Without the force of wind there can be no waves. Maya can be compared to this wind. The water in the ocean can be compared to the form of Sat-Chit-Ananda (Being-Awareness-Bliss). The individual selves are the waves of the ocean.
The Divine in human being is always radiating light and bliss. But, because of the barrier of bad thoughts, human is unable to experience this bliss. The Divine is not something different or separate from one's self. Although one is identical with the Divine, the dark cloaks of Raga (attachment) and Dhvesha (hatred) envelop the divine essence and prevent to realise the inner Reality. The only truth human being has to discover is the truth about him/herself.
that God and you are one. There will then be no need to
describe God as father, mother, guru and the like and
confound oneself. We should strive to reduce the bondages
created by such relationships as father, mother, etc. We
should aim at realising that basic Unity that underlines
and sustains everything. The only relationship that lasts
forever and does not
As the clouds
form droplets and fall upon the fields which they choose
to foster, the Formless Absolute individualises Itself,
assumes Form and comes down in the midst of humanity to
save and sustain, That is the secret of God Maadhava
coming down as maanava (human), the cloud taking pity on
the crop, parching in the Sun. Once the rains come, the
Sun has its uses. So too,
for a moment: Are you serving God? Or, is God serving
you? When you offer milk to a hungry child, or a blanket
to a shivering brother on the pavement, you are but
placing a gift of God into the hands of another gift of
God. You are reposing the gift of God in a repository of
the Divine Principle. Without His Will, no single blade
of grass can quiver in the breeze. Fill every moment
with gratitude to the Giver and the Recipient of all
The Lord, it was said, punishes some and favours others. Really the Lord does neither. He is like the current in this electric wire. It rotates the fan and makes one's life cooled; it operates the electric chair and makes one's life shorter. It has no wish to allay the warmth of the atmosphere; it has no eagerness to kill. The Lord's Grace is like the wind that blows. Roll up your sails and the boat lies limp and lame; unfurl them, it moves faster and faster. It is like light; one person does good using the illumination; another executes an evil plan, with its help. Have an "inner day," though an "outer night." Let the light within, shine. The Vedhas teach this Truth and impart the discipline needed to attain this fortune. Not set aside the commands of the Vedhas: they are the authentic voice of the Lord as heard and recorded by purified intellects. It is best to trust to the experience of sages, who were filled with compassion and who were moved by that compassion to illumine the path of liberation. Faith in the Vedhas irrigates the heart and makes it yield the harvest of Universal Love.
Bhakthi (devotion) involves dedication, with nothing held back; not even a wisp of ego should remain. His command alone counts; His Will prevails. Bhakthi is unconcerned with all that is unrelated to own ideal. He is deaf to the call of hunger and thirst; he misses steps in logic and he calculates wrongly while dealing in the market place. Naaradha says that those full of the liquor of ignorance stumble after the shadows of the world, while those drunk with nectar of wisdom never move away from the Highest, which they have discovered as themselves. Bhakthi must soften the mind and keep it receptive to the higher emotions for perception of Divinity.
The term "daiva"
(Divinity) means wholeness and immanence. Divinity is
immanent in the Prakriti (whole of creation), which cannot
exist otherwise. The energy that is present in every
object in Creation is derived from the divine (Sat-Chit-Ananda).
Divinity represents the unity of Sat-Chit-Ananda and
Prakrti. In modem parlance, this may be stated as: Matter
plus Being is
Recognition of this basic unity calls for earnest and continuous striving. In the pursuit of this fundamental quest, four major obstacles have to be overcome.
1. Avidya prathibandhakam is the impediment that arises out of the feeling that one is too weak and powerless to seek the Divine. As long as this sense of weakness remains, one cannot understand the Omni-Self.
2. Prajna prathibandhakam is the obstacle that is created by self-conceit. When one feels that one knows everything and is unwilling to learn from elders he/she becomes unfit for undertaking the spiritual quest.
3. Kutharka prathibandhakam, is faced by those who are caught up in illogical reasoning and false arguments. They give farfetched interpretations to the pronouncements of sages and engage themselves in meaningless controversies.
4. Viparyaya Duragraha prathibandhakam, is caused by ignorance of one's inner Reality and a refusal to make the effort to understand it. It arises out of a feeling of arrogance that one knows everything and has no need to learn from others. The cause of this arrogance is Maya (delusion). Such persons view the Jagat (world) as a physical phenomenon.
A person stands
knee-deep in the Ganga or Godhaavari river and uttering
Vedhic hymns in praise of the river, he lifts up in his palm
the sacred water of the river and pours it back as his
offering to the deity that the river represents. Its water
into itself - God's gift for God's. Gift - that is all that
one is capable of; that is all that one needs to do. He has
endowed you with this wonderful body, this sweet tongue,
this amazing instrument called mind. He has granted you
intelligence, the powers of analysis and synthesis, the
capacity to receive and give up, to remember and to forget.
Acknowledge these gratefully and use them to the best
advantage. Use them to see Him
Those who have attained the inner vision see the Cosmos as the manifestation of the Lord the Cosmos is the vesture of the Divine. The scientists admit that matter is composed of energy. Without energy nothing can exist in the Cosmos.
Human exhibits great mental and physical courage, on the battle-fields and during adventures on land, sea and air. He has evinced in history, vast reinforcements of courage inside him, to meet all varieties of obstacles. But the courage to give up entanglement with the material world is a great achievement. (Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 3. "Climb the right tree," Chapter 1; Vol. 6. "Love the source of love," Chapter 5; Vol. 10. "Truth of Truth," Chapter 35;
Vol. 20. "God and you are One," Chapter 15.
PS: Spelling of names as in original texts.
Swami teaches....(17 April 2005)
Spiritual Secrets of Ever-Present Being
Motto: Friends and enemies change with time. But the ever-present Being (Sath) does not change. It is always with you, above you, below you, around you and in you.
Human's thoughts are one's permanent property. Thoughts develop from within and arise from inner compulsions. The inner compulsions are based upon the mind and mind takes shape on the basis of thoughts.
It is through the medium of the body integrated with thoughts and senses that you experience happiness at worldly levels. Human acquires wealth and property, experiences pleasure and pain through the body. Human's thoughts in form of desires are responsible for this.
Wealth can never provide permanent happiness. Spiritual wealth is the true wealth. Human is not able to enjoy true happiness due to the greed for money. No doubt, money is necessary but it should be under certain limits. One may also have wife/husband and children, wealth and property and enjoy family life for some time. But such happiness is not true and eternal. It is but an illusion to think that money, wife/husband and children will give happiness.
Human desires to live in peace in this unstable world. Human strives to find assurance, security, and peace in wealth, status, or scholarship. However, wealth, comfort and status won't give peace. Peace takes birth in the heart. A heart full of love gives peace and security.
It is very easy to make dissertations on truth and dharma. But it is difficult to understand them. People expatiate on truth and dharma without properly understanding them. Everywhere, human values are on the decline. Everywhere, fear and weird imaginings are abundant. Courage and strength have disappeared.
blind, lacking the eyes of faith. A rich man will trust a
gurkha watchman for the safety of his home. One will trust a
driver for the safe driving of his car. A man will trust a
dhobi for washing valuable clothes. One submits his head for
tonsure to a barber wielding a sharp razor.
Once a person, after listening to many discourses on Ramayana, was asked to tell the name of Rama’s consort. He replied, “Mrs. Rama”, as he did not remember her name. Such is the sorry state of affairs and delusion into wordly actions.
As it was mentioned, bliss originated from own heart. So, turn your vision inward. That all-pervasive God is present within and without. When you develop inner vision, you will automatically experience eternal bliss. However, the inner vision is impossible to obtain without following the moral and ehtical principles.
In order to foster one's individual personality and spiritual awareness, everyone has to acquire knowledge of ethics and morality. Personality expresses the essential quality of a human being. Personality is acquired on the basis of adherence to moral principles. The prestige of any community depends upon its morals. One may have plenty of wealth, position, authority and much else, but all these are meretricious; morality alone enhances the worth of a human being. Morality helps one in a number of ways. If your conduct is not good, society will not respect you. As long as one is in power, society may respect one. Once power goes, one will be an object of derision. You may not have any power, but morality will confer honour and respect.
Only a moral life can be called sacred. Human is a sacred being. God as the Indweller guides and directs human life as Anthar-aatma, the inner-conscience of every human being. You will be guided by your conscience, which will always lead you properly.
You can find proofs of this in the Ramayana, the Bhagavatha and the Mahabharatha. The Ramayana depicts the triple qualifies of Sathwa, Rajas and Thamas. Every human is a repository of desire, anger, and greed as result from the body what Ramayana describes well. The relevance of the Ramayana is not confined to a particular time, place or circumstances. It is of universal significance for all times to all countries, not to India alone.
The ideals and sacred objectives established in human hearts shine forever. People over the world can realise the sacredness of the Ramayana and comprehend its inner significance through deep symbolism represented in this ancient epic, actual forever.
By the way, what is the meaning of the name Puttaparthi? Parthi means effulgence. So, Puttaparthi is the place of effulgence. It is the beacon of light. Earlier it was called Puttavardhini. Putta means anthill. There used to be anthills and snakes everywhere. The Ramayana has a close relationship with anthills in the sense that anthills grew over its composer, sage Valmiki. He was completely covered by anthills, and snakes were moving in and out of them. There are many snakes of wicked qualities in the anthill of your heart. When you do namasmarana (remembering the Divine name), all the ‘snakes’ of bad qualities will come out. Be one young or old, rich or poor, everybody has to do namasmarana. Do it with full mind and total dedication. Sing the glory of God wholeheartedly without any inhibition. You may not have any musical instruments for this. It is enough if it emerges from the core of your heart. Take care that you do not have evil thoughts as they will produce discordant notes. Then will you become the recipient of Divine Grace and energy.
If one has to live upto an ideal, one must be prepared to face many ordeals, difficulties, calumnies, trials and tribulations. These ideals have continued upto the present day to glow in the hearts of the people because they have been upheld inspite of vicissitudes and ordeals. Aeons may come and go, continents may appear and disappear, people may pass away, but ideals and values remain a perennial source of inspiration to the world.
What cannot be achieved through physical prowess, the strength of numbers or the power of wealth, can be accomplished through the power of Buddhi (intelligence). Viveka (wisdom) is the hallmark of intelligence. One acquires wisdom by adherence to Truth and the pursuit of Dharma (righteousness). But the light of wisdom is derived from the Buddhi. The illumination of the Buddhi is due to the Atma (the Indwelling Spirit). That Atma is the foundation. It is Brahmam. It is Paratatwa (Supreme Cosmic Principle). It is the Paramatma (Omni-Self). It is the Avataric principle.
Usually people can derive no benefit if the Formless Absolute remains in Kailasa or Vaikunta (the heavenly abode of the Lord). It is extremely difficult to comprehend the Formless and the Attributeless Absolute. Therefore, for example, Rama-Avatar appeared in human form to enable humanity to experience the Formless in a form which is accessible and helpful to them.
The descent of the Avatar means the Divine coming down to the level of the human to bless and rescue those who cannot rise to the level of the Divine. The ignorant assumes that because the Divine has descended with a human form God has lowered Himself to the human level. This is a case of bending and not kneeling down. It is an act of benediction and not of submission.
The attributes and powers of the Divine remain unaltered in their pristine amplitude. The Divine manifests His powers according to the needs, the circumstances and the conditions prevailing at a particular time or place. The Avatar does not forgo any of His supreme powers merely because He lives and moves among human beings as a man.
When God comes in human form human beings can have the full opportunity to experience and enjoy the Divine. When human life is sublimated, it gets divinised. Life X Infinity is God. Virata Swaroopa (the Cosmic Form) is: Body X Infinity. Mind X Infinity is Hiranyagarbha (the Cosmic Consciousness). God, Virata Swaroopa and Hiranyagarbha are not distinct entities located in specific places. They are immanent in human being. God manifests in consonance with person's own feelings.
This profound truth is contained in the Upanishadic dictum: "Tat Twam Asi" (That Thou Art). "Uniting That with This" is the meaning of this declaration. "Prajnanam Brahma" (Brahmam is Cosmic Knowledge) is another declaration which is designed to remind human of own Divine essence and enable to merge in the Divine. "Ayam Atma Brahma" (This Atma is Brahmam) is the third declaration expounding the same basic purpose of Religion, namely, to make the individual realise his oneness with the Supreme. The dictum "Aham Brahmaasmi" ( I am Brahmam, the Absolute), is the final declaration by the Self-realised person, that in reality, there is no difference between person and the Absolute.
Celestial spheres are revolving and disintegrating; time is fleeting; age follows age; era succeeds era; bodies that have taken birth, grow and end. Through the process of giving up great things can be achieved. Cultivate detachment, and the Lord will attach Himself to you. The past is beyond recovery; those days are gone. But, tomorrow is coming towards you. Resolve to sanctify it with Love, Service and Sadhana. (Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 24. "Ideals of the Rama Avatar," Chapter 6; Vol. 25. "Perennial message of the Ramayana," Chapter 16; Vol. 35. "Redeem your life by Namasmarana," Chapter 7. Bhagawan Sathya Sai Baba. The Divine Discourse, "A Heart expansive as the ocean is necessary." 3 March 1999, Brindavan).
Swami teaches....(18 -20 April 2005)
Contact with the Supreme Consciousness through Yajna
The presence of God, the vision of the Absolute, is not a state to be attained or newly achieved. God or the Absolute is the very nature of the Self. The individual is the indivisible God. Even when enmeshed in this world of conflict and confrontation, the Self is God, in reality. The selves that have assumed human forms and that are designated by separate names, emerge from the same source and merge in the Universal form which they particularised. Krishna declares, "The multiplicity of individual selves has happened from a part of Me." They may appear different but their reality is the One. The Vedhas accost all selves as children of immortality.
totality, the One which integrates and includes the many.
The sages of yore were not
Vedhas invite us to realise that everything - living and non-living - every quality and characteristic of everything, is only an aspect of the one Aathma, the Source and Substance of all. The Aham or the Ego is an appearance on the Aathma as the foam on the edge of the wave, which is but the ocean itself. The Aathma can well be devoid of Ego, but the Ego cannot exist without the Aathma as the reality underneath.
However, human validates the Ego (Aham), giving it a form (Aakaaram) full of attributes and so, it gets polluted as Egoism (Aham-kaaram). When the Ego is free from the status of 'ism,' it is a facet or factor of the Aathma. Attributes, modes, gunas drag it into the tangle of dualities and so, it gets malefic and sheds its positive, purifying role. The 'ism' or mould in which the Ego has hardened tantalises human and blinds person to the Truth.
Shankaraachaarya has described the harm it inflicts and prescribes the recitation of the name of God to defuse the consequence. The pure ego will then merge and lose its identity in the Aathma.
Gaayathri manthra is all Gods in One: The triple stranded Sacrificial Strand of Thread is to be worn by every one who is initiated into Gaayathri recital, for he has to perform the three sandhya rites when the Sun rises and sets, as well as when the Sun is at the zenith. The rites are in adoration of the Trinity - Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The purpose of the rites is to invoke the Gods to bless the novitiate to lead a good life at all times (past, present and future), in all places (heaven, earth and nether region).
The Gaayathri divinises the five elements; it represents the presiding deities of all the five. Gaayathri is worshipped as a Five-Faced Goddess - Om, being the first, Bhoor-bhuvahssuvah, the second, Thath Savithur Varenyam, the third, Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi, the fourth, and Dhiyo Yonah Prachodayaath, the fifth face.
These Yajnas cleansing of all levels of consciousness (chittha-shuddhi) including Egoism, for they involve renunciation, invocation of Divinity and ascetic practices. Vedhic rites were gone through in order to win the boon of sorrow-free wordly life and blissful heavenly sojourn, and as a stage in realising the freedom from birth and death, and merging in the Truth.
Many seekers of Truth perform the worship, named "The hundred thousand" (Lakshahaarchana) or "The Week-long" (Saptaaham). What is done then is repeating the names a hundred thousand times, or for full seven days and nights. A flower is placed before the picture or idol, with the pronunciation of a name - Maadhava, Kesava, Naaraayana, etc. The idol is the same throughtout. When we name Him, Maadhava, we are conscious that He is also Kesava and Naaraayana, and we derive delight from that knowledge.
Every Vedhic ritual had as its goal the prosperity and peace of the world. The Vedhas yearn to establish the welfare of the three worlds - the nether regions, the earth and heaven. The Vedhas do not allow scope for distinctions on the basis of caste or creed. The Vedhas desire human to give up the animalist ego, its complement, anger and all 'bestial' evils. They declare that love, tolerance, compassion, non-attachment, and adherence to truth are the genuine human traits
The Yajur Vedha deals with Yajna or Ritual Adoration of fire, as the medium of communication with the Gods. Yajur Vedha has as subsidiary many complementary bodies of lessons on special skills. The Vedha mentions many specific items that are to be used as offerings to Gods, conveyable through the emissary, fire. Oblations are offered in this sacred fire to the One, but the One is invoked through many names. The Rishis or sages had each a favourite form and name and, as a result, the one Lord acquired may names.
On Vijayadashami day (usually in October), the seven-day long Vedhic ritual, performed for the promotion of peace and prosperity among all people in all lands and called Vedhapurusha Yajna, (sacrifice dedicated of Vedhic divinity) concludes with the valedictory offering to the Gods who preside over various facets of nature. This is called Poornaahuthi (the fullest Invocation) and usually a number of valuable things are poured and placed in the sacrificial fire, adored and fed during the entire week. The closing ritual is named Samaapthi, a word usually translated as the End. But its real meaning is the attainment of Sama and Brahma (Braahmic vision). The purpose Yajna of contacting the Supreme Consciousness in its various manifestations named deities, can be realised only when the altar is laid down as prescribed, when the fire is evoked as recommended and when oblations are offered with the correct recitation of propitiatory formulae. The Vedha itself is the authority for that belief. The Vedha which has probed into the science of propitiating the Gods says that the Sacrificial Fire conveys the subtler aspects of the offerings.
What exactly is Poornaahuthi or Sharanaagathi? The meaning that is most current is to declare: “My body, my mind, my possessions, my all, I offer to you." This interpretation is a sign of total ignorance. It concedes that you and God are distinct entities, but that is not true. God is not separate from you, for God is in all, everywhere, at all times. How can God be separate entity? Water, wave and foam are only apparently distinct. All three are the same; only their names and forms create the illusion of diversity.
You cannot give what you do not own. How can you dedicate your body, which you cannot rule over? Such statements like surrendering body, mind and heart are only rhetoric sanctioned by tradition and long usage. The act of surrender is often highlighted as aathma-arpana. When you are Aathma in essence, how can Aathma (Self) offer it to itself? In truth, that dweller is the God of Gods who resides as Aathma in you. This is what the seers have experienced. So aathma-arpana is a meaningless expression. You have nothing in you or belonging to you that you can claim as yours to offer to God.
Then, what does surrender of the Self signify or imply? To experience God as Omnipresent, to be aware of nothing other than God - this is true surrender. To see God in everything, everywhere, at all times, is true Poornaahuthi or Sharanaagathi. He gives, He enjoys, He experiences. If you offer, and God accepts, you become superior; how can God be all-powerful? You should not reduce the glory of God through such high-sounding statements.
You may be an erudite scholar who can interpret the scriptures. You may read or recite the Bhagavad Geetha scores of times for good attainments and practices. But, one has to carry out one's duty with devotion and discipline. It is not devotion to parade the ochre robe; sins won't fade away when manthras roll out of the tongue. The real saadhu is whose deeds are in accordance with the words of advice he utters. Render your life worth-while through faith to the Surpreme Conciousness (God) and service to society. That is the most important aspect of surrendering the Self.
A millionaire may take on the role of a down-and-out in a play and act the part remarkably well on the stage, but that impersonation does not make him a down-and-out. Even while on the stage, he knows that he is a millionaire, pretending to be poor. He will indeed be a fool if he forgets his reality. The individual Self of every human being is the role; the reality is God.
Every role and action has a method, a mode, a way. A painter, for example, has to calculate the area, the base, the background, the culture, etc. If they do not pay attention to these, the structure won't be strong, the picture won't be liked. The same holds good for the Yajna (sacrificial rite) what involves renunciation. It means giving up one's evil tendencies, harmful thoughts, selfish feelings and longing for sensual pleasures.
The Yajna has a deeper meaning, the meaning that symbols have, the meaning that is really valuable for human progress. Every rite is a symbolic act. Yajna is correlated at every step with human aspirations and saadhana. It is kept in touch with human life and aspirations in its minutest detail. Butter is the product of the churning of the emotions, impulses, impressions and instincts; the purest and the most authentic essence of the divine in human being. That butter, when it is still more clarified, becomes ghee; it is that which is offered to the Gods. Every Yajna has a great unseen influence on human affairs, for these manthras are potent sounds, charged with subtle mysteries.
Philosophy is interpreted as the search for Truth. But, Truth is not something to be sought for. One have only to be aware of it, to experience it, to be it. TheYajnas which encourage to sublimate the emotions are all designed to direct towards the contact with the Self inside and with the Cosmic or Supreme Consciousness outside what are in essence one and the same Atmic Unity or Oneness.
concentrate on the lasting fruit; the universal, the
spiritual. Do not pursue mean objectives; utilise the mind to
follow the Plan of the Lord to re-establish Dharma in the
world. What can one plan with paltry intelligence? There was a
man once who laughed at God for giving the majestic banyan
tree a tiny molecular seed and conferred on the ash gourd a
Take everything as it comes; cultivate contentment; do not multiply your wants and foster greed and despair. The coat of desire has to be taken off when the warmth of bhakthi increases. Believe firmly that the body is the residence of God, that the food you eat is the offering you make to your Deity; that bathing is the ceremonial bathing of the Divine Spirit in you; the ground you walk upon is His domain; the joy you derive is His gift; the grief you experience is His lesson that you tread the path more carefully. Remember Him even in sun and shade, day and night, awake or asleep. (Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 2. "Ghee and sandal," Chapter 43; Vol. 15. "The Gaayathri," Chapter 11, "Poornaahuthi and Sharanaagathi," Chapter 28 and "Significance of Yajnas," Chapter 50).
PS: Spelling of names as in original texts.