Swami teaches....Part 53
Links to Swami Teaches...52
Swami teaches... 25 - 28 January, 2006
God has Thousands of Heads, Eyes and Feet
Bharat is a sacred land. Noble souls were born there. Bharat was ruled by Sri Rama Himself. This is the land of the song celestial, the Bhagavad Gita. This is the birthplace of the first composer, Valmiki and our beloved Swami. This is the birthplace of Veda Vyasa, who classified the Vedas. This is the land traversed by Lord Buddha. This is the birthplace of spiritual aspirants, seers and sages. Swami has incarnated there in order to achieve the supreme task of uniting the entire mankind as one family through the bond of brotherhood; of affirming and illumining the inner reality of each being in order to reveal the Divine, which is the basis on which the Universe rests; and of instructing all to recognise the existing Divine heritage that binds human to human, so that human can rid of the animal and rise to the Divine, which is the goal.
More effulgent than the Sun,
Once a devotee asked Swami: "There is the pronouncement Brahma Sathyam Jaganmithya I want to know what is real and what is unreal". Swami told him: "Leave Brahman to Brahman and the world of delusion to itself. First of all try to find the truth about yourself. Why bother about Brahman and Jagat (world) when you do ,not know what you are. Find out whether you are real or not. You are not aware of your existence in sleep. In that state, are you real or unreal? You are not aware whether you are alive or dead. It is neither real nor unreal. Mithya (myth) applies to this state of Sat-Asat (real-unreal). When you know yourself and recognise the Mithya that you are, you will view the Jagat as Mithya."
However, today many, many humans has no desire for spiritual teachings and they have no divine feelings in mind. In such a situation, how can human remain unaffected by worldly influences? Human has to transform worldly influences into innate nature. The last is to erase worldly influences.
It is arrived the time for true devotees to expand Swami's Teaching through examples from their own lives and actions. You may go through any number of books, you may visit noble souls, you may listen to sacred teachings, but the reality is one. People read hundreds of books, Swami's original Works, some read these compilations by Swami's Teaching, however, few translate them into action and do not have practical knowledge.
The one who has practical knowledge will have understanding of the Divinity. True Dharma (righteousness) is to put into practice the Truth that originates from the heart. When Truth is translated into action, it becomes Dharma. But, today, people are heroes at platform and zeros in practice. You should be heroes in the practical field. It is useless to be a hero in reading books or in giving lectures. There is only one hero, and He is God is the teaching of the Vedas. Everything becomes truth in the company of God. Put into practice one sacred principle. At least speak the truth or develop love. That is enough. There is no greater sadhana (spiritual discipline) than this.
Swami has not sought anything from anybody. But Swami will be happy with any kind of service you render. Spend your money to help the needy. Do everything for the good of society. Wherever you may be, in whatever country or place, take part in the service activities there. People claim to render social service, but their motives are self-centred. On the contrary, they should be conscious of all that they owe to society and render service in a spirit of selflessness. They should recognise their identity with society.
You pray to a river: "Oh river, overflow with water." Don't pray to the river. Address your prayers to rain. When the rain responds, the rivers will get filled automatically. Likewise, when you serve society as the Divine, automatically your desires will be fulfilled.
The Vedas, the Upanishads and all scriptures have their origin in Truth what is the proper abode of God.
His presence can be experienced in many ways. When you see a mountain or waterfall or a forest you feel happy. All these proclaim the presence of the Divine. Light shines, the stars twinkle, the Sun blazes, the planets revolve in their orbits. All these-phenomena are manifestations of the Divine. By understanding the nature of a flame you can understand the nature of fire. By examining a drop of water you know the nature of the Ganges. Likewise by understanding the true nature of humanness, you can understand Divinity.
Today human has taken to many paths to acquire wisdom. The acquired knowledge is not true knowledge in the strict sense of the term. Knowledge of the spirit, Atmic knowledge, is the true knowledge. That is Brahma Jnana. (Atma, Brahman, and Jnana are synonyms). All that is related to our senses, the fleeting objects of the material world, and our actions, speak of our ignorance. True wisdom dawns when all thoughts are decimated.
The thoughtless state between two consecutive thoughts
is Brahma Jnana (Atmic, spiritual wisdom). Human is not able to experience
this thoughtless state of Brahman and is carried away by fleeting,
ephemeral, and momentary things.
People today are keen to know all about everything except themselves. What they are seeing is the manifestation of God, they declare that they cannot see God. But all that is seen, the act of seeing and the seer are all Divine. When the unity of this triune aspects of Divinity is understood, real bliss will be experienced.
Human today is prey to endless desires. Far from bringing happiness, desires only lead to misery and frustration. It is when the delusion is destroyed that the Self can be realised.
Even a sage like Narada, who had mastered all the sastras, was subject to delusions. He said to Sanatkumara: "Master! How I can have vision of the Brahman. Confer this benediction on me." When Sanatkumara asked Narada how he was qualified to receive this message, the sage recounted his mastery of the Vedas and the scriptures and proclaimed his ability to expound them. Sanatkumara smiled and asked if he knew anything else. Narada replied: ?When I have mastered all the scriptures and recognised that the Divine is the basis for all of them, what else is there to be known? What is the unknown mystery about the Brahman?" Sanatkumara said: "Dear Child! If with all this knowledge, you have not been able to experience the Divine, you must enquire into the reason for your failure." Sanatkumara explained: ?God cannot be realised by intellectual enquiries or study of the scriptures. Pray to God with deep devotion. You will have the vision of the Divine."
Only a clean mirror can reflect a correct image. If the mirror is not clean, the reflection will be likewise. Similarly, to experience the Divine, a pure heart is necessary. Purity of the heart results from purity in thought, word and deed.
In this human body, constituted by the five elements, God dwells in the form Brahma, Vishnu, Maheshvara. The Trinity are not embodied beings and dwell in the every human body as three gunas: Sathva, Rajas, and Thamas. The three qualities are forms of the Divine. Brahma is responsible for creation. This transcendental process is taught by the mother. The mother is to be adored as Brahma, the Creator. Revere the mother, serve the mother and trust the mother. This symbolises worship of God. The father protects the child. This protective function is attributed to Vishnu. Hence the injunction: "Revere the father as God." Thus the mother and the father are images of Brahma and Vishnu. Then there is Eeshvara. He gives whatever one prays for. To experience this embodiment of auspiciousness (Shiva), Thamas is the mean. The Thamasik quality is usually associated with slothfulness and indolence. But this is not the proper meaning of Thamas (as an attribute of Shiva). Shiva's role is to lead human on the right path to realise the divinity.
Follow the conscience. That is the principle of Atma, the Self. The spiritual quest means making use of the vibrations from the conscience to understand the truth. Without troubling to find out where God is, it is enough if one worships the mother and the father who are the living embodiments of God. To ignore the deities who are directly visible, in the form of one's parents, it is delusion to search for an invisible God. Brahma and Vishnu are to be worshipped in the physical forms of one's parents. These two deities have no forms. The forms seen in the paintings of Ravi Varma are the products of his imagination.
(In the 18th canto of the Bhagavad Gita the Lord has declared: "Eashwara dwells in the heart region of all living things." This means that one must see the Divine in every being).
Make good use of the Divine Trinity in you. So recognise the Divine in your mother, father and preceptor and revere them. Develop the conviction that the Divine you adore, who is your favourite deity, is within you. That Divine is Sathyam, Shivam, Sundharam (Truth, Goodness and Beauty). Plato (the Greek philosopher) declared that Truth, Goodness and Beauty are God. With these truths in your hearts, embark on service and bring a good name to your country.
All humans are the forms of God. The Atmatathwa (Self) present in every being is in fact God. It is Divinity in its true sense. An aspect of Swami's Divinity is resident in each being. Do not search for God. Look within. Divine will manifest in you. Spiritual texts may be many, the teachings of spirituality may be different, but the Atma is the same.
At one time, someone questioned Shirdi Sai Baba, 'Are you God?' What was His reply? 'All are the forms of the Divine. I am not only Divine, but also the Divinity that is present in the Divine,' said Baba. So, the same Divinity is present in every being as all are the forms of the Divine.
You must realise that life is like a two winged bird. The two wings are Love and Sacrifice. To attain permanent peace, develop Love within. Love can turn earth into sky and sky into earth. This sacred Love is within you. (But, you direct it in the wrong direction and thereby it gets perverted. You are responsible for the loss and suffering. You are responsible for the wicked actions and agitations outside).
Your sense of hearing does not become holy by listening to the expositions of a teacher. By self-effort you should put your senses of sabda (sound), sparsa (touch), rupa (form), rasa (taste), and gandha (smell) to right use. It you want to make your life sacred, you have to first sanctify your senses. When the senses follow the right path, only then does the life force vibrate in the body properly. This vibration is Divine in nature. What is the source of this vibration? This vibration originates from radiation which is related to spiritual knowledge. To recognize the nature of this truth, human should first attain the unity of thought, word, and deed and bring about complete harmony in them. This is the real spiritual practice.
Buddha who did penance for several years, understood that all ritualistic practices were useless without achieving right vision, right listening, right speech, right thoughts, and right acts as the five primordial principles for the guidance of human. Humanity will be in danger without right vision. The image of every seen object gets imprinted in the mind. Therefore, first of all one must have right vision. Right vision is that which is untainted by the baneful influence of evil feelings, evil thoughts, and evil deeds.
Bliss is within one's own Self. You are struggling hard for artificial happiness outside. You are not aware of the reality that lies in the heart, not in the world. Why should you search for God when He is everywhere? You are God. All sadhana (spiritual practice) will go in vain if you do not know your true identity. You are the master of this material world. Master the mind and be a mastermind.
You have to exercise a ceiling on your desires. This means exercising control over them. Your life is a long journey. You should have less luggage (desires) in this long journey of life. Therefore, it is said: less luggage more comfort makes travel a pleasure. You have to cut short your desires day by day. You are under the mistaken notion that happiness lies in the fulfillment of desires. However, happiness is an internal conscious experience which comes as an effect of the extinction of mental or physical desire. The perfect happiness consists in the destruction or satisfaction of all desires in the Absolute being.
The purpose of performing different ceremonies is to realise the omnipresent Divine through various activities, rituals and media. Pujas, japas and dhyana have their place in worship. But you should not confine yourself to them. You must go beyond them to the stage of God-realisation. You must progress from the rituals to upasana (meditation), and from upasana to jnana (Self-knowledge). That is you have to proceed from Dwaita (dualism) to Visishtadvaita (qualified non-dualism) and to Adwaita (non-dualism). Without having the Adwaitic experience you cannot understand the true nature of the Atma.
Atmic feeling, is human?s innate nature. Truth, righteousness, peace and love constitute Atmic feelings.
Several ways of spirituality are enunciated in the Vedas, the epics and the Puranas. What is spirituality? That which destroys human's animal nature, nurtures humanness, and finally transforms human into a Divine being is spirituality. Worshipping, singing devotional songs, and performing rituals are acts of secondary importance.
First of all, you should understand the Truth that the changeless and eternal bliss is within. It is described as, Nirgunam, Niranjanam, Sanathanam Niketanam, Nithya, Suddha, Buddha, Mukta, Nirmala Swarupinam (attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free and embodiment of sacredness).
There are many who say that they are undertaking a particular ritual for world peace. You can never attain peace from rituals. Peace is contained in Love. You can develop Love only when you have faith in the Self. So faith to the Self, Atma is the first step; the following steps, actions are as the results of this inner Awareness of Unity.
There are no 'others'. (You consider yourself different from others because of body attachment). Once you give up body attachment, you will realise that there are no others and all are yours. That is the true vision of Atma. Bliss is Atma, Consciousness is Atma. Conscious means related to the senses; conscience is the inner witness and Consciousness is the all-pervasive Atma. Understand the unity of these three.(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 20. "The perennial quest," Chapter 22; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 28. "Love and sacrifice will save mankind," Chapter 36; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 32, part 1. "Put Ceiling On Your Desires," Chapter 6 and "Nature of Self," Chapter 13; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 33. "Human Birth Is To Experience Atmic Bliss," Chapter 12).
Namaste - Reet
Swami teaches... 23 - 24 January, 2006
Know the Ancient Scriptures and Become Stronger Thereby
The deity, Dakshinamurthi (primal divine teacher of eternal spiritual wisdom) was walking along a wide seashore alone, immersed in deep meditation. He turned towards the waves and watched the unending succession of breakers. He saw a dry little twig on the crest of a wave in the distance; it was being passed on from one wave to another, from trough to crest, from crest to trough, until it was cast on the sands on the shore, near where He stood.
The Ramayana too teaches that Sita had to suffer, separation from Rama as a result of a tiny little desire: to own the golden-hued deer. If only she had cast it off her mind, as the Ocean did.
Be free from the bondage of desire - this is the refrain in the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, the Bhagavatha, the Bible, the Quoran, and all the scriptures of mankind.
Each religion exhorts those who are attracted by it to meditate on God in certain Form known by a certain Name; but, one who is aware that He is all Names and all Forms will adopt a sound which is profoundly significant, which summarises all Names, namely, the Pranava (OM) sound, the akshara (unchanging, indestructible). Through the changing to the unchanging, that is the journey.
There are three steps or stages in this journey. "I am Yours," You are Mine," and "I am You." Every sadhaka has to walk from one to the other, and reach the journey's end. Move on, don't halt. Religion is three-fourths character. No person can claim to be religious if he merely observes the sacraments and rules, and fails to be upright and compassionate. Character alone can harden one to the blows of pain and pleasure.
Grow and rescue yourselves from the limits and regulations, the doctrines that fence your freedom of thought, the ceremonials and rites that restrict and redirect. Reach the point where churches do not matter, where all roads end, from where all roads run. There is no shortcut to attain Self-realisation.
Faith in God being within the heart, faith in His constant presence and constant guidance - these will confer courage, virtue, and illumination. The Sastras say, have faith in the doctor, so that you may get cured of illness; have faith in the mantra with which the preceptor initiates you, for then alone can your sadhana be fruitful; have faith in the sacredness of the temple, for then alone is your pilgrimage profitable; have faith in the astrologer's predictions, for, without it, why bother yourselves with him and his abracadabra? Have faith in the Guru, for then alone will your steps be steady and firm, on the path to Self-realisation. Faith in the Guru should bring faith in the Atma, the Self.
Veerabhadhra Sastra described very realistically the childhood pranks of Krishna and explained their significance. There was the scene of Krishna's dance on the head of the Kaliya a huge big serpent, full of poison, rolling in death and destruction. Krishna saw the carcasses of animals which had died when they inhaled the poisoned air, near the Kaliya pool; birds had fallen dead on the ground. Nothing green could survive in the neighbourhood. As soon as Krishna jumped into the pool to save the region from the serpent's havoc, his companions ran horne to bring the parents, so that they could intercede and stop the foolish pranks of their mischievous son. As He had no vishaya (objective desires) and so visha (poison) could not affect Him.
Kaliya is the representative of human, rolling in sensory objects,
poison so far as its effect on life is concerned. Vishaya (sensory object)
is the most deadly visha (poison). When Krishna danced on the head of
Kaliya, the poison was all vomitted. And the serpent was subdued.
When God is revered, the world and all its poisonous fumes recede and you are restored to original health.
The Lord and lust cannot be together. How then could the gopees have
any body-consciousness, when they adored Krishna?
Krishna had already announced His Glory to the cowherd maidens by such divine miracles, as the uplifting of the mountain Govardhanagiri. He had manifested the Universe in His mouth and showed that He had come on a Divine Mission to destroy the wicked and save the good. (Avatars choose the time and the mode of announcement of their advent and their Glory).
The gopees knew the secret passage to the heart of the Lord and they realised Him quick and fast. The Gita says that if you give up all Dharma and take refuge in Him alone, then He will save you from sin and wipe your tears. Giving up Dharma does not mean that you can bid farewell to virtue and righteous action; it means, you have to give up the egoism that you are the 'doer,' be confirmed in the faith that He is the 'doer' of every deed.That is the genuine 'giving up.'
You have heard that Krishna is Murali-Madhava,(Madhava - the Lord of the Universe) and what exactly is the murali? You must be the murali (the flute). Let the breath of Krishna pass through you, making delightful music that melts the hearts. Surrender yourself to Him; become hollow, egoless, desireless; then, He will Himself come and pick you up caressingly and apply you - the flute - to His lips and blow His sweet breath through you. Allow Him to play whatever song He likes. Even objective desires will be transmuted into higher spheres of purity when one approaches the Lord. Nothing against Dharma can stand the presence of the Lord. That fire will consume all impurities.
Sanctify every word and deed by filling it with Prema of Krishna or whatever Name and Form you give to the Lord you love. The gold of which an anklet was made, can become the gold for a crown on the head of a temple image; only it has to be melted in the crucible and beaten into shape. The waters of the river might be dirty; but, the bhaktha who sips it with a mantra or a sacred sound or prayer on his lips, transmutes it into a sacred sanctified water. The body becomes healthy by exercise and work; the mind becomes healthy by Upasana (devout contemplation) and Namasmarana (remembrance of the Divine), by regular, well-planned discipline, joyfully accepted and joyfully carried out.
All your life, you must be Love, with Love, for Love. That is to say, love expressed through service to those that draw that love from you, and by drawing, help to increase it and deepen it. Spiritual discipline is designed to canalise that love, so that it may irrigate the heart, which will otherwise go dry.
Love must be many-stranded in order to be strong and tough. A single strand, is too weak. Have it many-stranded, one towards the mother, another towards the father, others strands towards husband, wife, friend, son, daughter, etc. of course Love is all-embracing, it cannot be confined to one item and denied to, another. It is a current that flows over all meditation on the Lord and His Love will help you to tap it from the depths of your heart. And, if there be righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in the character; if there is beauty in the character, there will be harmony in the home; if there be harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation; if there be order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.
(Injury inflicted on any being is sacrilege, self-injury. Love is transformed into poison if hate contaminates it. Love some, but do not hate the rest. Love comes automatically to the realised soul; but, the spiritual aspirant has to cultivate it by means of service and inquiry into the unity of the Atma).
There is no living being without the spark of love; even a mad human loves something or somebody intensely. But, you must-recognise this love as but a reflection of the Premaswaruupa (the embodiment of Love), that is your reality, of the God who is residing in your heart. Without that spring of Love that bubbles in your heart, you will not be prompted to love at all.
However superfine the paper, however artistic the envelope, however poetic the composition of the letter, it will not reach the addressee by post when it lacks the stamp! So too, the trappings, vestures, shawls, robes, and rosaries are ineffective; they cannot reach the addressee, God. What will take their prayers to the addressee is the 20 paise stamp - dedication or bhakthi.
The goal of life is the final merging in the God. Listen to all such things which will draw you towards the principle of Godhead; then, think it over in the silence; make it part of your consciousness. This process of manana (reflection) makes you a human; that is the test of human.
Learn from the saints and sages who have realised the Truth about the path you shall tread and the goal you have to attain. That Goal is God. He is beyond all notions of good and bad, fight and wrong. These are earthly measures, by which the temporary is weighed and judged. He has no form, no limbs, no dualities, no preferences, no prejudices, no predilections.
Do not lend your ears to people who swear there is no God. God is too vast, too far above the reach of reason or imagination. You can only get glimpses of the Bliss derivable from the contemplation of His Magnificence.
God wears Truth; the good seek Truth; the bad are rescued by Truth. Truth liberates; Truth is power; Truth is freedom. It is the lamp that illumines the heart and dispels doubt and darkness. The effulgence of God is Truth. Welcome God in your heart. Install Him there as a result of Yearning. Be always concerned with Brahman; then, you are entitled to be known as a Brahmin.
You are the noblest being yet created, and so, you have to develop a sight that sees no high or low, that sees all as suffused with divinity, and therefore, not different one from another. Shankara declared, "Make your dhrishti (view) charged with jnana (wisdom, spiritual knowledge); then, the 'seen' will appear in its true light as Brahman."
Such sight is called divine, supernatural, supersensual and auspicious. Each body that you see before you is a mirror in which if only you open your eyes you can see the image of God. Do not imagine the others to be distinct, they are only you, in so many mirrors. The world is filled with your kith and kin; all are sparks from the same flame.
So the Upanishads designate the Divine power as the Brahma* Tatwa or Atma*Tatwa (Principle of the Supreme Absolute Reality or Chit Sakti or Constant Integrated Awareness/Consciousness). The Upanishads further declare that it is due to the effulgence of Brahman that the world shines and that there is no effulgence in the Universe which can illuminate Brahman. It is the light of Brahman that enables the eyes to see all things except Brahman. The mind is able to function because of the light of Brahman, but it cannot grasp or describe Brahman i.e. Atma. This all-powerful Atmic Principle resides in every human being in subtle form. (Human is not able to recognise this Divine power because human is preoccupied with utilizing the physical and mental faculties for the acquisition of wealth and worldly goods).
The Kenopanishad deals with this question and points out that this Divine power is the life of our life, the mind of our mind, the eye of our eye, the ear of our ear, the speech of our speech, because it is the motivating, coordinating and illuminating principle underlying all such organs of the human personality. All the organs of our body are animated or motivated by the divine Atmic power inside, thereby enabling them to discharge their respective functions.
Bear in mind what the Kenopanishad also taught to the celestial beings, the sages and other human beings. It taught them about the inexorable, immutable and inescapable law of Karma, duly stressing the fact that the results of good or bad actions are not like the milk that you get immediately as you draw it from the udder of a milch cow, but they are like the fruits that you get from a tree long after the seed is planted. Therefore, don't feel elated just because your bad actions have not given you the bad results immediately; you are sure to experience them in due course.
One meaning of Karma which is popularly accepted as one's destiny, or fate, the inescapable "writing" on the brow, which has to work itself out. There is no escaping from it. But people forget that it is not written by some other hand. It is all written by one's own hand. And the hand that wrote it can also wipe it off.
The husk, with which the paddy is born, can be removed by effort; the Maya (worldly illusory power) which persuaded you to write all that destiny can be conquered in an instant and then, the entire page can be wiped away.
The Upanishadic Rishis (sages) undertook more intelligent, more intensive, and selfless research into life's most fundamental problems, in shining contrast to the researches of the scientists of today. Do not underrate these ancient Rishis whose invaluable findings have been enshrined in the Upanishads which serve as guideposts that lead mankind to the fulfilment of the purpose of human life.
(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 3. "Vishaya, the visha," Chapter 21 and "Loka Kalyaanam," Chapter 29; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 9. "The voice of the ocean," Chapter 14 and "Beauty and duty," Chapter 30; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 24. "The inner motivator," Chapter 11).
* For the aspirants of Swami's Teaching who are not Indians. Here is namely used different words and expressions as underlining that they all have the same essence.
Namaste - Reet
Swami teaches... 21 - 22 January, 2006
Gita, Secrets of Spiritual Science and Creative Education
What is humanness? Essentially it means unity in thought, word and deed. When what one thinks differs from what one says and does, he/she ceases to be human and becomes a demon. True human qualities can grow only in a heart filled with spiritual aspirations, like a seed sown in a fertile soil and not on a piece of rock.
Human is not aware of the grand goal of the pilgrimage. Human is
straying into wrong roads which lead towards disaster. Human puts faith in
outside things and plans to derive joy, from and through them. But all
spring only from the spring that is inside. Human only envelopes the outer
things with own joy and then, experiences it as though from that other
thing - that is all.
When you try to prepare a meal, you may have with you all the materials you need: rice, dhal, salt, lime, spices, vegetables. But, unless you have the fire in the hearth, you cannot get the edible meal. So too with life Jnana (of your own Reality, as just a wave of the ocean of divinity) is the fire which makes the material world and the external activities and experience, edible and tasty, assimilable and health-granting and joy-giving. That joy is called Ananda; it is uplifting, it is illuminating, it is constructive.
The spiritual meal for all humanity is the Gita. The Gita is a text book giving the secrets of spiritual science in clear and simple terms. But it will be useful only when the reader has as much detachment as Arjuna had when Krishna started the discourse.
Only a patient ailing from a disease is entitled to the specific which will cure it. What business have others with it? What profit can they draw from it? The Gita will act on the mental system only when the symptoms of grief are strong.
The purpose of the Gita is to remove the delusion which overwhelmed Arjuna and made him feel that he was the doer, whereas the truth is, he was but an instrument. So Krishna asks him at the very end of the discourse, "Has the delusion born out of ajnana (ignorance) been fully destroyed in you?" For, like a good teacher, Krishna is evidently quite willing to resort to some other means or to discourse a little longer, in order to make the pupil understand the teaching. But Arjuna is a good student; he declares, "Destroyed is the delusion I have gained recognition." Now what is the recognition he has gained? The recognition of the Self or Atma. He has seen himself as basically Atma, and he has seen the world and all objects as superimpositions on the Atma, due to ignorance or Maya.
A person walked on the beach played with the waves, and had a dip in the water; his feet are wet. There is no miracle in this. This is what happens to many a scholar who wades in the sea of the Gita. The Pandith may have great pomp before others but to himself, in the secrecy of own conscience, he/she is a small human being indeed. Greatness depends upon the sadhana (spiritual discipline) and the success achieved in it, in practice of spiritual austerities and in firm adherence to it.
"Awake, arise and stop not till the goal is reached," it is said. But one need not march towards the goal. It is not some place where you have to go. It is jura the opening of the eye, the removal of the veil, the waking from the dream, the lighting of the light of spiritual wisdom.
Through bodha (knowledge, teaching) alone can Dharma be saved in the modern Kali Age. When you scatter seeds on the surface of the soil, they do not germinate. You have to keep them inside the soil. So too, bodha, if it is scattered on the surface, it will not germinate, grow into the tree of knowledge and yield the fruit of wisdom.
The Vedas and Sastras, since they were won by penance and travail by sages and seers who were interested in the welfare of humanity and the liberation of individual are the greatest repositories. Know that the basic reality is God, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent. Become aware of it and stay in that awareness always. Whatever the stress and the storm, do not waver from that faith. By means of any one of His Names, any Name that is fragrant with Divine Perfume, any Name that is reminiscent of His Beauty. His Grace, and His power.
Let the pretty wishes for which you now approach God be realised or not, let the plans for promotion and progress which you place before God, be fulfilled or not; they are not so important after all. The primary aim should be to become Masters or yourselves, to hold intimate and constant: communion with the Divine that is in you as well as in the Universe of which you are a part. But individual who has emerged from God, is an embodiment of love. Instead of limiting love within narrow confines, human should extend it to all and thereby make the life purposeful and worthy.
There is an example from the Mahabharata to illustrate this situation.
Because of Sri Krishna's grace, all the Pandava brothers survived the
Kurukshetra war. All the hundred Kaurava brothers died in the war. Seeing
the plight of Gandhari, not one of whose sons had survived the war, people
blamed Krishna for such a calamity. Krishna went to Gandhari to console
her. On seeing Krishna, she burst out in anger: "Krishna! Being Divine,
should you exhibit such favouritism?
Could you not have saved at least one of my sons?" Smilingly Krishna replied: "Mother! Did you set your eyes on even one of your sons? When you yourself did not choose to cast your eyes on your sons, how do you expect God to look at them?" (Gandhari had blindfolded herself from the time of her marriage to her blind husband, Dhritarashtra, and had never removed the bandage out of devotion to her husband).
Life is not a simple affair; it is not governed by uniform laws which can be discovered and applied. Twice two may not always be four, in life, though it may be so in arithmetic. Each one has own strength and weakness, foibles and fears; skills and handicaps, and so no one prescription can be suggested for all. One day is sunny, but, the next may be rainy. One person may come upon a treasure while walking on a road; the person behind on the same road may lose purse and all that person possessed. Each one must proceed from the place where one is, at own pace, according to own light. But, if each has caught a glimpse of the Atmic Reality, of the source from which he/she has emerged and the goal into which he/she is to merge, then all will reach the goal of the journey, sooner or later. Once that glimpse is received either through grace or through a Guru or through some other means, the fascination for the body and the senses which dominate it, and the world which feeds the senses, the fascination for the vainglorious adventures in search of fame and fortune, will become meaningless and will fade away.
No object in the world of Maya can be without a creator. Here is a
loud-speaker. Someone must have produced it. For everything which human
enjoys in daily life there is a creator. But we are also seeing objects
which are beyond human capacity. The stars which twinkle in the sky
demonstrate their existence. The glory of the Sun and the Moon which
illumine the world is also visible to us. The supreme power which has the
capacity to create such marvellous things has been described by the Vedhas
as Aprameya, which means, one who is beyond all proofs and all
limitations. He cannot be described in words. The primary object of human
must be to seek to understand this Infinite Power.
To recognise the Creator, there are certain criteria. There are three
types of evidence determining the existence of a thing. The first is
direct perception, the second is inference, the third is the authority of
We generally consider direct perception as the most important type of
evidence. We are able to see how many hands we have, how many legs we
have, how many eyes, and so on. We boil milk and add some curd to it at
night and the next morning find that the milk has turned into curd. For
the conversion of milk to curd, our own
action provides the direct proof. The evidence of our own eyes is enough
to convince us about how the change from milk to curd has occurred.
Inference is another form of proof. We see smoke on the top of a distant hill. We infer from the smoke that there must be a fire on the hill. Although we see only the smoke, we infer that there is fire. To infer the existence of the "unseen" from the presence of what is "seen" is inferential proof.
But these methods of determining facts are applicable only to the external universe. We cannot understand what is meant by Atma. For determining the Divine Principle we must depend only on the Vedas. When the Divine is described as without attributes, eternal, ever-existing, pure, free, and self-effulgent, this description will not make the Brahman (Atma, Infinite Power) visible to us. You cannot grasp God. He can only be experienced in the heart.
All subjects in the Universe have three characteristics, which are derived from the Divine. These are asthi, bhaathi and priyam. (These qualities are also otherwise represented by the terms Sath, Chith and Ananda - Being, Awareness and Bliss). The existence of an object is derived from asthi (as Being). What it is, is known from bhaathi (as Awareness), that is, from how it appears to our eyes. That it is a useful or enjoyable object is derived from the quality of priyam (as Bliss). These three are fundamental qualities. While human can change the forms and names of objects, human cannot create the basic materials out of which the various objects are made. Equally the scientist makes use of materials available from nature for conversion to various uses but the primary material or energy, itself is not created by scientist .
What all you see is Divine. What you eat is Divine. The air you breathe is Divine. Your nature is Divine; what has happened is that delusion has covered it with dirt. The washerman does not make your clothes white; it is white already; what he does is to manifest its whiteness by removing the dirt that has hidden the genuine native colour, white.
One of the first equipment that is necessary for the Brahmachaari (young spiritual aspirant) is a rigorous self-examination. In scriptures has described the ceremony of Brahmopadesam (Upanayanam) which means, "taking near," taking Brahmachaari near Brahman, introducing him/her to desire to know Brahman, the path of Brahman. It is one of the Samskaras (purificatory acts), rites which reconstruct the personality, reform the mind, purify it and rebuild it. It makes the person receiving it a Dwija (a twice born). The person is born first into the world; now, he/she is born into the Sadhaka world and becomes a person who walks towards Brahman.
The initiation was done by the Upadesham (instruction) of the Gayatri Mantra - a Universal Prayer that can be used by people of all climes and creeds. It calls upon the Glorious Power that pervades the Sun and the three worlds to arouse, awaken and strengthen the Intelligence, so that it may lead to intense Sadhana and Sadhana may lead to success.
The sound of a Gayatri is as valuable as its meaning. Even a poisonous cobra is quietened by music; sound has that allaying property. In the case of the Gayatri, the meaning too is easy and profound. It asks for a dear intellect, so that the Truth may be reflected therein correctly, without any disfigurement.
The Brahmachaari has vowed him/herself into a life of spiritual discipline. What are the requisites for the discipline?
Second: Do not worry about ups and downs, loss or gain, joy or grief. You are yourself the maker of the ups and downs. If you but care, it can all be one smooth level. You crave for a thing and when you get it, you call it joy; when you don't, you call it grief. Cut the craving off, and there will be no more swinging from joy to grief.
You have not yet got started into secrets of sacred wisdom? Still you demand Shanthi; you demand Grace. How is it ever possible? Start! Then, everything will be added unto you.
The foremost need today is to live the life of the Spirit. For the progress of the world, it is not some factory or industry that is needed. The world needs good students and good men and women. People do not realise that as their desires increase, their happiness diminishes. There is no limit to desires. They multiply like ants in an anthill. There is no sense of satisfaction, however much one may possess or enjoy. Animals and birds have contentment. They have neither the selfish propensity to hoard nor the sinful quality of exploiting others. Human alone is prone to acquisitiven hoarding and exploitation.
People crave for peace and happiness but they do things which can only bring unhappiness and worry. You are essentially sparks from the Divine, but like sparks coming from a furnace which after a time turn into ash, you are forgetting your divine origin. While pursuing your education for worldly purposes, you should also pursue the spiritual discipline, which will lead you to the Divine.
(Each one desires to loll on sofas in airconditioned office rooms. Can this be named pleasure? Can this be the ideal for an educated person? This state will only breed physical and mental illness. How can a student be regarded as a success, if at the end of the course, he knocks at the door of every office, exhibiting the diploma he has secured, and clamouring like a beggar asking for jobs? Education has conferred on student this disgraceful role).
The educated person must serve the people through sweat and toil. Education has to inspire youth to offer service, to sacrifice and to help. Education without right conduct is of no value. You must make use of what you have learnt, not only for earning a living but for service to society. Whatever job you may take up, wherever you may be working, you must continue to practise spiritual discipline and aim at Self-realisation. Without a spiritual basis, education is futile.
Whatever learning one may acquire, whatever positions one may occupy, however great a scientist one may be, if one lacks human values, one is no human being at all.
Of what avail are speeches and exhibitions if these values are not practised? The world will not be reformed by propaganda. It is only when there are living examples of these ideals that they become meaningful and inspiring.
(Reet's compilation from, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 2. "The ideal disciple," Chapter 10; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 4. "Upanayanam," Chapter 18; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 6. "Hitha and priya," Chapter 6; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 15. "Vidhyaarthis and Vishayaarthis," Chapter 2; Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 22. " Let practice prevail," Chapter 7).
Namaste - Reet