Swami teaches....Part 42
Light and Love
Swami teaches... 17 - 19 October 2005
Human's Mind in the Mirror of Cosmic Consciousness (Atma)
Become entitled to the honoured title of Bhaktha. Swami's glory is spread daily through those who call themselves Swami's bhakthas. Your virtue, your self-control, your detachment, your faith, your steadfastness - these are the signs by which people read of Swami's glory. Not that Swami wants any such prop. But in this world people estimate others indirectly, rather than directly.
What is Bhakthi (devotion)? Who are Bhakthas? It is faith, steadiness, virtue, fearlessness, surrender, absence of egoism. How to become Bhakthas? Nothing is possible without mental work for obtaining spiritual awareness about human's real Nature. To ignorance of one's real Nature, ignorance so deeprooted that it affects thoughts, words and deeds. The drug that can cure it is patented under different names: jnaana, karma, upaasana (contemplation), bhakthi. They are all the same in potency, spiritual and curative power. The difference lies only in the method of administration either as mixture or as tablet or injection.
Below are the tablets from this drug for inner contemplation for everyone who walks on the path of righteousness, dharma. (Dharma means morality, the control of passions and emotions and directing them along beneficial channels. If you have no greed or hatred, you will get good sleep, also. There is no need to swallow sleeping tablets).
Spiritual disciplines determine the character of a person. Character determines the destiny. Character is built up by constant practice of good actions. Actions, in their turn are based on one's thoughts and intentions. Whenever any thought arises in the mind, one should examine whether it is right or wrong, whether it will do good to society or cause harm to it. Actions should be based on such enquiry.
Bharatiyas have held the view that one should try to sublimate one's tile by seeking a Guru and acting according to his teachings. There are eight types of Gurus: 1) Bodha Guru; 2) Veda Guru; 3) Nishiddha Guru; 4) Kaamya Guru; 5) Vaachaka Guru; 6) Soochaka Guru; 7) Kaarana Guru; 8) Vihita Guru. Bodha Guru teaches the Sastras and encourages the pupil to act upto sastraic injunctions.
The Veda Guru imparts the inner meaning of tie Vedas, establishes the pupil in spiritual truths and turns his mind towards God.
The Nishiddha Guru imparts knowledge about rites and duties and shows how one's welfare here and in the hereafter, can be ensured.
The Kaamya Guru makes one engage himself in meritorious deeds to secure happiness in both the worlds.
The Vaachaka Guru imparts knowledge of Yoga and prepares the disciple for the spiritual life.
The Soochaka Guru teaches how the senses are to be controlled through various types of discipline.
The Kaarana Guru reveals the unity of the jivi and the Atma.
The Vihita Guru clears all doubts, purifies the mind and shows how Self-realisation can be attained.
Of these eight Gurus, the Kaarana Guru is the foremost. Through various teachings and practices, he helps the individual to progress from the human to the divine consciousness. All other Gurus can be helpful to a limited extent.
The Bharatiya spiritual tradition has been based on four basic beliefs:
1. Every action has its inescapable results.
2. Belief in the role of Avatars.
3. No one can escape from the consequences of his actions.
4. A firm belief that there is something sacred in everything in the world.
Four items of enquiry have been emphasised for ages by the sages of India. They are: Dheham, Naaham, Koham and Soham. First, the Body where you dwell, is called, meaningfully, dheham, that which is combustible, liable to be burnt. It is subject to growth and decay; it is the harbour of worms and viruses, of foulness and illness. It is subject to impulses and the impact of passion and emotion. It is the seat of disease and unrest; of fancy and fantasy and fear. It calls on you enticingly to invest yourselves wholly in its care and cure.
When you delve deep into the transience of the dheham you get well rooted in the next idea: Naaham, I am not the Body. Naaham means, Not-I. The Dheham is Naaham, the Body is Not-I. I am the owner, the temporary user, occupier of this instrument or bundle of instruments; that is all. Koham means, "Who am I?" "I am a highly evolved ape," say some. "I am a conglomerate of chemicals," say others. "I am a contraption with a limited life, I begin at birth and end at death," say some. "I am an eternal entity, and this is but one sojourn of mine here on earth," say others. 'I' is a false limitation imposed by ignorance; "I am a wave of the ocean and so I am the Ocean itself," declare others. These last announce that the I is Soham, 'I am He. He, meaning the eternal, Universal Absolute, the Brahman, the Atma, the Boundless, Beginningless, Endless entity, Cosmic Consciousness. When that axiom is meditated upon and made one's own deepest experience, human has the Bliss of merging into the Atma. Human is a spark of the Divine and must manifest in every activity of him/her the Divine. Anybody cannot exist without the physical activity of breathing, or the mental activity of thought. (We presume that the non-believers are those who have no faith in God, but in fact it is not true. There can be no one who has no faith in himself. All people who have faith in themselves are believers).
Human existence can become meaningful only when human, at the very outset, recognises the nature of the mind and bases the actions on that understanding.
You should not die; you should merge and fulfil yourself. That is the destiny, that is the destination. You are not limited by any name. The name separates; it distinguishes; it announces the divisive characteristics of language, religion, caste, race, etc. Go beyond the name to the individual, beyond the individual to the God who is installed in the heart. Get beyond the horizon of body, mind and intellect, and be One with the Vastness. Brahman means the Vast, the expanse without horizons.Then, kinship is cognised. Spend the years of life, the wherewithal you earn or possess, in the service of others who are in distress.
Serve others with reverence - that is the easiest and best method to cognise the Divine content in each. Since all are His forms, His sparks, His children, feel that kinship with every community; pray for the welfare and prosperity of all mankind, whatever the political boundaries which might shut them from one another. Pray that tolerance and understanding shall prevail and that love and cooperation hold sway, more and more among mankind. Each country is but a room in the mansion of God. Small minds select narrow roads; expand your mental vision and take to the broad road of helpfulness, compassion and service.
Develop a calm unruffled serenity of mind. Welcome pain and grief, for they toughen the moral fibre, they reveal hidden sources of courage and hardihood. They appear to affect your career; but, the real 'you' is unaffected.
Everyone seeks peace and talk much about peace in the world. But it can never be secured from the outside world. Alexander had no peace; Mohammed of Ghazni had no peace. Accumulation of riches or power cannot endow peace. Peace can come only from the fountain of peace, within. God is the inner Truth of all; He is latent, in this vast assembly. He is patent in this Universe, which is His vesture. Happiness arises out of union with God if one acts in consonance with one's conscience one gets peace.
The scripture declares: "The mind is at the root of the Cosmos." Human is bound by the mind and the senses. There is no place, or form or action wherein the mind is absent. We have to recognise the fact that human life depends on the functioning of the mind. As long as one is governed by the mind one continues to be human. Once one goes beyond the mind, one can enjoy the vastness of the limitless expanse of Cosmic Consciousness. Once you get rid of this body consciousness, you will experience the vast expanse of the Universal Cosmic Consciousness which is all-pervasive. God is the Indweller in all beings, but there is no change in the Atma. Human lives will continue to be generated like the waves of the ocean. But the ocean of Cosmic Consciousness remains unchanged.
In the pursuit of the spiritual path, first of all the mind should be brought under control. Along with control of the mind, one should control the temper and avoid tension. However, metaphysical lectures alone will not transform the mind. What is learnt must be put into practice. This is the real Vedhaantha you have to learn today. This is the spirituality that is vital for you.
To see the lamp that gives light you don't need another lamp. So also no other means of cognition is needed to realise the self-effulgent Atma or Self. The Buddhi (intellect) has no light of its own but it shines by the effulgence of the Atma. If the intellect is able to apprehend and judge everything in the world, it is due to the power of the Self. Buddhi or intellect is based on Medha shakthi (intelligence). The power of the intellect is only a reflection, of Atma Chaithanya (the effulgence of the Atma).
The mind has two aspects, as doer and experiencer. It is the cause of the sense of attachment and possession. Human action is more evident in the wakeful state than in the dream state or deep sleep state. In the deep sleep state, the Super Intellectual Consciousness is shining and the mind, senses and intellect are absent (as hidden during the deep sleep). When the mind is steady, you reach the state of Super-Mind. In this state there is no room for physical or transient worldly feelings.
To enjoy the fragrance of the sandalwood, it has to be rubbed on the grinding stone vigorously. Likewise, to experience the great fragrance emanating from Nature, its unity with the Divine has to be realised. For this, it is necessary to transcend the limitations of the ordinary mind and proceed to the Super-Mind, the Higher-Mind, the Illuminated Mind and the Over-Mind.
When does human experience the pure Divine Self? It is in the Thureeya state - the fourth state of consciousness beyond the waking, dream and deep sleep states. This is the state of the Over- Mind. In that state human is one with the Divine. Nature is bound by the five qualities of sound, touch, form, taste and smell (these are the qualities of space, air, fire, water and earth - the five basic elements). With the loss of each quality, starting from smell, a process of expansion takes place. Finally, we have Akaasha (ether or space) which has only one quality, sound, and is all-pervading.
When human develops the internal vision and experiences the Divinity within, the Cosmos will appear as a reflection of the Divine. This is called realization of the Cosmic Divine. What is the difference between the Cosmic Divine and the Inner Divine? There is no difference between the two. But when it is experienced by the individual, it is described as Inner Divine. When the individual experience is extended to the entire Universe, it is called Cosmic Divine. The Individual Self and Paramaathma (the OmniSelf) are one, like the rind of a fruit and the juice inside.
Human's view of the world has to change. This cannot be done by intellectual argument. When the mind is subdued, the oneness of the Jeevi (Individual) and the Divine will be experienced.
We see before our eyes many persons dying, being cremated or buried after death. In spite of this, everyone has a desire, "I must live for ever." What is the inner meaning of this desire? You are eternal and the idea of immortality arises in you because of this. The body is impermanent, but you are eternal.
Truth, Bliss, Beauty are forms of the Divine. They are also known as Sathyam, Shivam, Sundharam. These represent the true form of human. Shivam is that which has no death. Sathyam is that which is not subject to change (on account of time, place or circumstance). Sundharam (Beauty) is the form of the Divine.
The gross body flourishes on food. But it is bound to perish some day. But the subtle body, made up of Praana (the Life-Force), Mahaa (the mind) and Vijnaana (intelligence) lasts as long as the mind lasts. When the mind is absent, what happens? This state is described as Sushupthi (deep sleep state). In this state, there is only the Kaarana shareera (causal body). This is a state of bliss.
Vijnaana is full of intelligence and common sense. It is called Divine Intellectual Will. The Divine Will Power has to be-acquired by everyone. Only then, they can realise their true human nature. It is through this Will Power that the Cosmic Divine nature of the Universe can be recognised.
This Cosmic Power has to be seen with the eyes, experienced mentally, practised through the body and made an integral part of one's being. Do not speculate whether this is possible or not. If one has the determination anything is possible. If an ant has determination it can travel any distance. But, even an eagle, if it has no will to fly, will be confined to the ground.
(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 3. "Climb the right tree," Chapter 1; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 11. "Who am I?" Chapter 25; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 19. "The five-letter Mantra," Chapter 14; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 24. "Enjoyment through sacrifice," Chapter 10; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "Tame the mind and realise the Self," Chapter 18, "Beyond the Mind," Chapter 20 and "Thought waves make up the Cosmos," Chapter 21).
Namaste - Reet
Light and Love
Swami teaches... 15 - 16 October 2005
The Ideals which Beautify the Tree of Life
In every one, there is the thirst for God; only many deny it on account of false pride, some on account of ignorance, some call it by some other name, worry, discontent or despair. Some have faith only in Love, some believe only in Truth, some swear that they care only for Goodness - but, all these do not know that they are referring to God alone by these names. They too are pilgrims to the same Sacred Shrine.
The Tree of life, with its countless branches proliferating into thoughts, words, and deeds, attitudes, tendencies, and impulses, is known by the sages of India to have its roots in Heaven. So, every rule and ritual was made sacred and holy, suffused with purity, humility and love. This resulted in peace and happiness, for the individual, the family, the community, the nation and the world.
Indian thinkers have reached the dizziest heights of speculation and the clearest depths of intuition; they have found that the experience of fundamental unity is not negated by most rigorous logic. Therefore, all other faiths are but facets of this supreme Truth, this sublime experience. And, each little duty cast upon human in the Hindu Code of Morals reflects this awareness of Unity.
Although the Truth is one, the sages used to give it different names. Truth is not any one's private property. It is not related to any one nation, nor to any particular faith. Nor is it related to a specific time. Truth transcends the bounds of space, time, religion and country. In adhering to Truth, people of all countries, of all religions and of all times, have equal right. Truth does not follow anyone. Every human being has to follow Truth.
The primal grandsire of humanity, Manu, expounded this Truth. Manu laid down the rule that should be prepared even to sacrifice own life for the cause of Truth. Manu gave to the world profound declaration: Utter the Truth. Say what is pleasing. Never tell what is truthful but unpleasant. This means that you should not speak an untruth because it may be pleasing to one. Nor should you speak out the truth when it is likely to hurt a person's feelings. Every man should speak the truth, but it should be truth that is pleasing. In the Gita it has been stated that in speech, the words should not cause any excitement, they should be true, pleasing and well-meaning.
When you see a blind man, you know that he is blind. This is true. But because it is true, if you hail him as: "Oh blind man!," you will be causing him pain. As soon as he hears the word "blind," he feels distressed. No doubt what was said was true, but it distressed the hearer.
In past ages, Avathaars rid the
world of evil, by destroying the few fanatics and ogres who wrought it.
But, now the number of asuras (evil people) is legion; no one is free from
that taint; all are wicked to some extent or other.
You can win the Grace of the Lord only by dharma. Dharma induces the spirit of self-surrender and develops it. Without the training what 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. If you step across the bounds of Dharma and play foul, you cannot win the game of life.
The Shaasthry said the Lord wishes that His bhaktha should shine over non-believers; that he should be happier, more contented, more courageous than the rest: bhakthi ought to make a human so, But the bhaktha does not cultivate these traits deep enough. If Shaasthry gives his sons a hundred acres each, one son may tend it well and reap golden harvests from it: another may allow it to lie fallow and himself sink into misery. The equipment each has brought from previous lives may be different. you cannot blame thee father for this state of affairs. Spiritual strength will be less in one, more in another, in proportion to the efforts of each, now and in the past.
Human is the only animal that can
picture a previous existence and existences in a series, with impressions
accumulating from one to the other. What you see and feel in a dream has
some basis on what you have seen and felt in the waking state; so too,
what you see and feel in the present life has, as its basis, what you have
seen and felt in other lives, previous lives.
It may take many lives for a human to prove that person knows what is best for him/her, that person is able to chalk out own future without harming anybody. 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. This experience is enshrined in the Vedhas.
The Upanishads are like the crown
for the Vedas. Among the Upanishads the Isaavaasyopanishad is foremost.
This Upanishad is in the form of mantras in the Sukla Yajur Veda. Upto the
39th canto, the Yajur Veda is concerned with the Karma Marga (the path of
rituals). From the 40th canto, the exposition of the Jnana Marga (the path
of Supreme Knowledge) begins. This canto starts with the Isopanishad.
Jnana presides over Karma. Karma is the basis for Jnana. The Upanishads
seek to reconcile and coordinate the Karma and Jnana
The Isaavaasyopanishad declares that whatever bhoga (pleasures) one wants to enjoy, he/she should do so in a spirit of renunciation. In daily life, enjoyment and renunciation do not go together. The thyagi (renunciant) is not interested in enjoyment of sensual pleasures. The bhogi (the pleasureseeker) will not think of renunciation. In such a situation, how is it possible to combine enjoyment of pleasures with renunciation or sacrifice? It is in this context that the Isaavaasyopanishad has declared that when every action is free from the sense of egoistic doership and all enjoyment is free from attachment or desire, there will be no difference between enjoyment and renunciation.
This is the spiritual teaching of the Isaavaasyopanishad. The Upanishad also demonstrated that actions performed in this spirit transform bhoga (enjoyment) into yoga. Yoga is the divine culmination of the results of spiritual exercises and disciplines.
Yoga is the state that is realised by one who, born as a human being, engages himself in various spiritual exercises to experience the transcendental Divinity. It refers to the envisioning of that which is beyond the physical vision, not easily attainable, but possible when to acknowledge the essence of Kshema and Yogakshema. Kshema means safeguarding the yogic experience which has been realised through spiritual efforts. Yogakshema, therefore, means acquiring experience of the transcendental Divine and endeavouring to preserve it. Such a transcendental experience may be described as bhoga (enjoyment) associated with thyaga (sacrifice).
Human is not merely a composite expression of body, mind and spirit. He has what is known as Prajna-sakti, the faculty of "Constant integrated Awareness." This "Awareness" pervades the body, the mind and the Antahkarana (the internal instruments), what is the combined expression of the mind, the Buddhi (intellect), the Chitta (will) and the Ahamkara (ego). The mind is the instrument of continuous thought. If you take a piece of cloth, you find that it has threads in its warp and woof. The mind is like that cloth. If you remove the threads from the warp, there will be no cloth. Likewise, when thoughts are removed the mind will be functionless. This process has been described as going beyond the mind.
When you limit your desires, keep the welfare of society in view, and seek to discharge your duties, you will be realizing the objective of combining enjoyment with sacrifice.
The true secret of enjoyment lies in sacrifice. Sacrifice has also been declared to be the only means of achieving immortality. Giving up what is taken in is a law of life. It applies to breathing, food and other things. Likewise, the wealth which one acquires should also be given back to society. Wealth includes not only riches, but every other form of acquisition including knowledge, scholarship, and skills of various kinds. The knowledge you have acquired through education should be imparted to others. This means that the more you give, the more you grow.
There must be a Divine Purpose in life. Human must know the way to attain the Lord, must be educated to rid himself of distractions on the path, must know that, which if known, all else is known. The rest is all secondary, incidental, unnecessary.
People want the Eternal, the Absolute; not, the temporary and the particular. Books, published today must deal with the eternal verities, the absolute certainties, the vast immeasurable joys. The fascination that the temporary has over the mind is called Maaya or Delusion. The world is a labyrinth in which human has become entangled; he/she must find a way out.
The Lord is ever behind you. Turn back from the world - He is face to face with you. Cultivate enough strength of mind to know its weakness and to surrender your all to the Lord whom you see face to face in all beings and at all moments. He does not calculate the cost of the 'all' which you surrender at His feet. He examines the spirit in which it is surrendered.
An ancient story tells that Shankaraachaarya stood before a house with his begging bowl. The old lady who lived there was struck by the effulgence on his face that betokened a realised soul; but she had nothing which she could drop in that bowl. She wrung her hands in despair; she cursed herself; she wondered why the distinguished mendicant had come to her door, instead of going to the doors of the affluent. Then she remembered she had a single myrobalan fruit, the last. She brought it out and, with tears flowing in her wrinkled cheeks, she dropped it into the bowl. Shankaraachaarya was touched by her contribution; the Lord willed; a shower of golden myrobalans fell in the yard in front of her hut. She was placed above want even without her asking for it. That is the way Grace works.
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. The Lord is like the current in 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. You have no reason to fear the Lord; fear rather the tendencies in you that drag you into vice and sin. Love towards the Lord must be witnessed by love towards human being, for human is the visible manifestation of the Lord, a manifestation whose grief and pain you can understand as akin to your own.
When asked who you are, say that you are Naaraayana-swaruupa, playing the role of Pullayya or Thimmayya or Mallayya, or whatever your name is. So too, every other person is a role played by Naaraayana. Naaraayana washed clothes as the dhobi, shapes wood as the carpenter, forges iron as the blacksmith, prepares pots at the wheel as a potter. Sugar-dolls are valued for the sugar, not the shapes they are given by the manufactures. Elephant, dog, cat, rat, jackal or lion - it does not matter. That is a matter of individual fancy. Each is sweet, that is the essential thing. (The Avathaar has own, another role He takes up for another purpose).
The Divine is equally all-pervading, but cannot be seen or held. It can only be experienced. When you experience the Divine by sadhana, it is equivalent to direct perception. Embarking on the process of Self-realisation, seeking to experience Divine bliss, performing the spiritual exercises prescribed for getting near to the Lord and merging in Him, when you develop selfless love, only then the Divine, will be experienced. Love will not grow in a field barren of love. Where love does not grow, the fruits of love cannot be gathered. That was why the gopis prayed to Krishna to shower the nectar of His love on their parched hearts by playing on His flute. This was exemplified by the total devotion of the Gopikas to Krishna. They were lost in ecstasy over the melodious music of Krishna's flute. They found in that music the essence of all the Vedhas and the scriptures. What is the significance of the flute? It symbolises the human body what should be considered as the flute of God. It should be rendered completely hollow, so that the Divine may blow through it. Today the body is anything but hollow. It is filled with all kinds of desires. Only when the desires are removed, the body will be a fit instrument for the Divine to fill it with nectarine music.
All things in the world are perishable. But there is something which endures even after death. These are the ideals for which one has lived. It is these ideals which remain enshrined in the hearts of the people over generations.
(Reet's compilation from:
Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 3. "Climb
the right tree," Chapter 1.
PS: Spelling as in original texts.
Namaste - Reet
Light and Love
Swami teaches... 13 -14 October 2005
The Integrated Approach to the Mind. Sankalpas. Directions
Today all the five elements and food are affected by pollution. Science and technology have made great strides in contributing to the progress of human society. But human has deteriorated morally and spiritually. But in this wide world, everyone aspires for long life, prosperity and health. How human being can to realize this desire?
A healthy body is essential if one has to achieve the four goals of human life - Dharma (righteousness), Artha (wealth), Kaama (desire) and Moksha (liberation). A harmonious blend of religion, philosophy and art direct human being to live healthily and happily in the world. In this context religion means the religion of love as the only religion in the world. One should cultivate human values for healthy living. This calls for harmony in thought, word and deed. When you cultivate this harmony you will be free from desires and fears.
Atharvana Vedha is the one that has given the science relating to longevity, known as Ayurvedha. Ayurvedha transcends time and space and is valid for all places, at all times. It relates to the spirit, mind and the body and has an integrated approach. Ayurvedha lays emphasis on mental peace and aims at the elimination of the root cause of disease. Ayurvedha affirms that purity of mind is more essential for one's health than medicines.
In the ancient times, sages and scientists commended the Ayurvedhic system of treatment as it was considered a natural system for curing disease. This system is closely entwined with acquiring spiritual awareness and deep faith to Atma, mind and body.
Human is made up of Prajna (awareness), Praana (the vital force) and the body (the material substance). Prajna Shakthi is the radiation energy that promotes wisdom. Vibration is the expression of the Praana. In every action, there is a vibration which is in between the consciousness and the physical body. The mind is not influenced by any external force but by the internal source, which is Prajna or integrated awareness.
The mind, is not like a blank paper. It is a palimpsest which carries on it the imprint of the experiences and actions of many past lives. It manifests as a reflection of the Atma.
The body with all the sense organs, made up of the five elements, is the dwelling which the mind has established for its fulfilment. It is like an armour. The mind is the basis for the body. It is the cause of all worldly activities and experiences. A body without the mind is like a school without a teacher, a temple without a deity, an electric wire without the current - useless and lifeless.
The joy or distress experienced by the mind is the result of the impressions conveyed by the senses. All experiences are products of the mind. The world itself is the projection of the mind. The sages have declared: "Mano moolam idam jagath." (This universe is based on the mind).
The mind travels quicker than sound, far quicker than even light. Obey the mind's vagaries; you become a beast. Let discrimination control the vagaries; you become a candidate for Divinity. Every urge must undergo test, must be cleared by a judge, namely Buddhi. Does it prompt one to ridicule or defame another? Then, dismiss it as unworthy. Good intention sprouts as action; action fructifies into Sadhana; from sadhana emerges virtuous character that draws down the shower of Grace.
Ships at sea are guided by the compass along the desired direction; without it, they risk being wrecked on rocks or icebergs. Human has to sail safe across the ocean of Samsara (Flux and Flow) by the help of Swami's directions and good company of devotees.
The mind wills, yearns, prompts and insists on effort and action. This process is named Sankalpa. Everyone has to be aware of the variety and validity of the actions induced by these promptings. Of the thoughts that appear and vanish, the clouds that pass silently, many stay and stir the mind into activity. These are referred to as Sankalpas. Until these are well understood against their vast background, human cannot live happily and in peace. Good sankalpas can elicit the best out of person and help to use all strength for uplift. Person has to recognise bad sankalpas or urges as soon as they arise and render them ineffective by the systematic cultivation of beneficial sankalpas what can save a person from disaster.
The face is the index of the mind. Evil sankalpas based on anger, hatred, envy, despair, arrogance, egotism or good sankalpas based on truth, love, charity, compassion are reflected on the person's face. We can picture it as the notice board. A sankalpa affects the consciousness more subtly than an electric charge. It manifests as a need, a motive with a name and form. It colours the thought stream in a distinct way. It causes clusters of reaction in the blankless mind. Its potency depends on time and circumstance. Sankalpas breed further sankalpas; they play their role, unaided through their own latent force.
The mind activates the eye and ear, the tongue and nose and every organ of perception and action. The mind initiates its activation when a sankalpa influences it. The mind is the unseen witness, the interested observer.
Sankalpas or conations or inner resolutions tend to be attracted towards one another, when they flow in the same direction or are related to similar desires. Some pictorial examples similar to attraction sankalpas. Cranes fly together as flock; they do not mix with crows. Among beasts of the forest, bisons have herds of their own kind; they have no comradeship with elephants, which keep bisons away and mingle only with elephants. Similarly, a musician attracts musicians around him. Teachers seek teachers for company.
The decisions which the mind makes, either to commit or omit, are amazing, for, the Cosmos and all its contents can be described as their consequence. The mind decides on the fact or facet of the objective world which it has to notice. Sankalpa bears fruit and the fruit conforms to the seed from which it springs. It has to reveal its impact, sooner or later. For example, one might entertain a thought to harm or injure someone. And, it might fructify as harm or injury on him. But, the sankalpa will surely rebound on the person bringing with it hundredfold harm and injury. A bad sankalpa hurts both the person and his target.
Therefore, as soon as a passing thought sprouts in the mind as an urge or desire, one has to examine it with care to discover whether it would tarnish or promote one's reputation, hinder or help one's progress, weaken or strengthen one's character. If it is of the former category, cast it away, as a foul stinking object. And, save yourself by saturating the mind with good intentions.
The nature of the sankalpa that motivates a person can be sensed by others. The story of Ted Ross, a farmer in Holland, illustrates this. He left his brother and mother in order to live in peace and freedom and settled on a forty-acre farm in a cottage he built thereon. He had interest in poultry farming and raised chicken. One night a fox entered the yard and made a meal of them. Its visit continued, night after night. So, the farmer took a decision (sankalpa) to kill the fox and kept awake with gun in hand. But, though fowls disappeared, the fox was not seen. He could hear its approach, the flutter of the birds and its exit, but he could not spot where it was. His vain vigil persisted for five long years.
He consulted many elders about the mystery. A pure hearted sympathiser told him, "Ted! Your mind is so free from blemish that even a tiny blot is patent to all. The fox is aware of your intention and is taking clever measures to avoid being noticed." Animals have this capacity. It is a gift of nature. A dog curled on the brink of the road will not be afraid of your approach, when you are Sankalpa-free. Plan to hit it, while even twenty feet away; the dog will rise and run.
Human's sankalpas, their manifestations in action, can be too detected easily. A person who has committed wrong, who has 'robbed another's property, who has scandalised another or uttered a lie - look at his face; examine it closely. You will notice the signs of confusion and fear. The anxiety makes the blood cells become weak; the face becomes pale; lips quiver. The person suffers in health. Suppression is dangerous; expression brings about infamy. This is the effect of evil sankalpa.
Unrest, anxiety and anarchy are fed by evil sankalpa. You must see good, hear good and act good, so that evil intentions do not arise. Remember: "From good thoughts, good minds; from good minds, good God."
The mind can be an instrument to gain success in any of the paths of Yoga and in the struggle to gain the goals of life. The mind of the individual, has originated from the Cosmic Mind of God, Brahman. One's duty is to merge it in the source and will become "I" ("Self").
People are generally prone to regard the mind as intimately bound to the body. But the highest realisation consists in using the Buddhi (intelligence) to acquire Vignana (the higher wisdom) and conquering the mind through that wisdom. This consummation is attained only through sathsankalpas (good thoughts). The prime requisite for the cultivation of good thoughts is sathsang (association with good people). Thoughts have an objective reality of their own. Thoughts radiate their good or bad vibrations around them. Every expression is charged with a power of its own. Good company has a great power and can help people, who have lost the right way in the arena of the Divine play. Below are three examples.
Ratnakara was a highway robber who supported his family by attacking wayfarers and robbing them of their possessions. Such a person was so completely transformed by association with the seven great sages (Saptarishis - Vasishta and others) that he later became Valmiki, the great Adi Kavi, who wrote the epic "Ramayana". Not only was he the first among poets, but he achieved the same status as the sage Vyasa.
During Buddha's time, there was a very cruel and wicked man known as Angulimala. Like Ratnakara, he was also engaged in waylaying travellers, robbing them of their wealth and cutting off their thumbs to use them as a necklace round his neck. The Buddha was able to reform even such a cruel man and turn him into a spiritual seeker.
Gauraanga belonged to a community called Jagaayi-Maadhayi, who were noted for the wicked ways and their cruelty. Through his association with holy men, he became a great devotee of the Lord Krishna. He devoted his entire life to glorifying God in song and dance. So the union of good resolutions with faith in God is like the coming together of the positive and negative ends of electric wires; through this combination, any great thing can be accomplished.
Absorbed in sensual desires and worldly pursuits human being has lost all sense of morality and sight of own divine nature. Greed has turned human against human.
Concerted efforts must be made to change this situation by influencing peoples thoughts and attitudes. The primary requisite is to develop the will power of people along right lines. When the will power is developed, other powers like discrimination, intelligence, retentivity, articulation, analysis, etc. can be developed. Without a strong will, nothing can be accomplished.
But how help to human being to develop will power and to give an impulse to obtain skill of self-control, to discover own divine nature, and to quiet the mind? There are several rites and methods. In present serial mantras and mudras, specially stressed and presented by Swami are noticed.
Mantra is a compounded set of words what emanates from the inner power. The mantra when it is pronounced properly, brings out the Divine power in human being. The vibrations produced by the utterance of the mantra, uniting with the Cosmic primal sound in the Universe, become one with the Universal Consciousness.
For all the mantras, the primary mantra, which enshrines the attributeless, omniself, is the Omkaara. It is the union of Brahma and deity Saraswathi. The body is regarded as Brahma and the tongue is regarded as Saraswati and the vibrations emanating from the heart find expression in sound through the union of the body and the tongue.
Although there are many letters and words, the fundamental letter, which has primacy of place, is the Omkaara. "Om ithyekaaksharam Brahma" (the single letter Om is Brahman Itself) says the Geetha. All other letters and words are linguistic creations. Omkaara has no form and is the manifestation of Brahman as sound. It is present in all creation. It is effulgent. It is in all speech. It is ever blissful. It is Paraathparamyee (embodiment of the Supreme). It is Maayamayee (the repository of illusory power). It is Shreemayee (embodiment of prosperity). The Omkaara is the base for the Vedha.
The Omkaara has a unique, distinctive quality in the way it is pronounced and the goal it represents. When other letters are uttered, the lips, the tongue, the cheeks and the jaws are in action. But when the Omkaara is pronounced, none of these move at all. This is a unique characteristic of Omkaara.
In reciting any mantra the primacy to be accorded to Om should be recognised. The mantra ends with the word Namah. (The worshipful attitude signified by the term Namah will be lost if the word Om is not used at the beginning of each mantra). In ordinary parlance Namah is understood to mean namaskaaram (salutation). But it has a wider meaning. It means Prakrithi (the phenomenal world). Om connotes Purusha (Divinity). The purpose of the mantra is to reveal the connection between Prakrithi and Purusha.
Swami presented to us a five-letter mantra "God is" ("Devudunnaadu," in Telugu) as the message for Guru Poornima 19 years ago and asked to proclaim it in all circumstances and at all places with all the conviction and strength. He asked to make this mantra devotees sheet-anchor. Have this five-letter mantra as your constant companion and strengthen your faith in God. The mantra "God is" can be more powerful than a mantra based on any particular deity's name. Moreover, mere repetition of any mantra is of little use. Greater than the power of mantra or yantra is the power of a pure heart (chithasuddhi). Your faith must stem from the heart, which is the seat of the Divine.
The sages practised self-control as the means to enduring happiness. This technique is described as Tantra. It consists of a variety of practices called Mudras. By practising mudras, the sages tried to turn the senses and the mind inwards. There are many serials of mudras. The three easiest of the serial what help to quiet the mind and to turn the sense organs away from the influence of happenings and objects in the outer world.
1. Khechari Mudra: It consists in concentrating the two eyes on the mid-point between the eyebrows during meditation. This exercise enables the integration of vision by which one's Reality is experienced. This mudra can also be practised by closing the eyes, but concentrating the look inwardly on the midpoint between the brows. Performing the mudra with open eyes is an ordeal. Hence concentration with closed eyes is preferred.
2. Bhoochari Mudra: In this, meditation is done with the eyes and the mind concentrated upon the tip of the nose. When the Divine is meditated upon in this manner, a unique kind of joy is experienced.
3. Madhyama Mudra: In this, the eyes are concentrated on the middle of the nose between the tip and the mid-point of the brows. Unlike the Bhoochari mudra, in which the eyes may be fully open, in this the eyes are only half-open. This mudra becomes easier after practising the Bhoochari mudra.
(To this serial belong Shanmukha Mudra and Sambhavi Mudra. For beginners to practice these mudras is not easy). The three mudras - Khechari Mudra, Shanmukha Mudra and Sambhavi Mudra - are of immense value in developing control of the mind. The practice of these mudras is closely related to the awakening of the shadchakras (the six centres) in the spinal column.
The self-controlled person, by discovering his/her divine nature, can illumine the world around. Like a joss-stick, which scatters its fragrance in all directions, the name and fame of the pure-hearted self-realised individual reach all.
(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 2. "With prathyaksha to paroksha," Chapter 11. Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 17. "Unique significance of Omkaara," Chapter 25. Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 19. "The mind use and misuse," Chapter 13; "The five-letter Mantra," Chapter 14 and "Mano moolam Idam Jagath," Chapter 15. Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 26. "Integral approach to human ailments," Chapter 4).
Namaste - Reet