My Dear Kith and Kin in God:
Yagnas are to purify our minds - so we should perform all actions in the spirit of yagnas. There are many methods to control the mind. The strongest and surest method is to love God. Once you have perfect faith in God the mind subsides without the practice of any other method. With pure, unstinted and perfect faith in Him, we get the control of the mind. We get liberation. If a vessel has soot on it, it takes sometime to clean it thoroughly. Likewise if we have much impurity of the mind, it takes some time to purify. If the mind is less impure then we get Liberation more quickly. Only knowledge of the Self will be able to lift us up and free us from the three gunas.
Sri Krishna tells Arjuna to practice equal vision. He says ‘Because even if there are differences and disparities in human beings, I who am without any differences reside in their hearts. He who has donned these bodies and He who withdraws life from the bodies is also Myself. I am the Lord. I am All. If you, Arjuna, want to get knowledge of the Self, if you want immortality, it is not so easy. If there is even a speck of impurity in you, you can’t realise the Self. So whether you like it or not, you must see Me residing in each and everybody, as a patient has to gulp the medicine when he is ill. See me in all things without paying attention to the outer name and form and qualities. Real vision opens up, when you get the true vision of the inherent Truth. There should not be any flaws in your mind, word or deed. With all the differences in forms all beings reside in Me. You also are in Me. So, have this vision. Am I different in each and every person?
If you want immortality you can get it only by recognizing this quality. So, practice this equal vision. You have to get prepared to realise this unity. If we want to buy something with five rupees, and we have only four rupees, we must earn the extra one rupee to get our desire fulfilled. Like this, if you want to reach Me you must first prepare yourself. Without having the ability and fitness you can’t reach Me by resorting to tricks and jugglery. You must get this equal vision and see Me in All. If you see Me in All you will know that these names and forms are also My own Self. I am all these forms and I am the breath in them and also He who takes away the breath. When I am everything where are differences Arjuna, where is sorrow? If you want to reach the state of Absolute Bliss, you must purify yourself. One who is impure cannot conquer death and reach the deathless state. Try to purify yourself. The Lord in your heart is pure. If you bring the mind to that state your mind will merge in Him like a river in the ocean. It will become Self, the Heart itself. Till that time do not let the mind be distracted from the path.
Do not engage in useless thoughts and actions. Whatever work you do, do it sincerely and steadily. If you have trust and faith in the Lord your mind gets merged in Him. We are all in the clutches of maya (illusion). You by your own efforts cannot get beyond maya. As soon as we are born we get all the qualities of nature. Even though sattva guna is one of the three gunas it releases you from the hold of maya. Practice this sattva guna. Then you will be fit for My Grace. Without My Grace you cannot be rid of nature. Divine maya cannot be crossed over without the help of Divinity.’
As a first step, look into your mind and analyse how many plus points and minus points you have. If there is hatred in you remove it. One boy was studying for a doctor’s degree. He had hatred towards his elder brother because the elder one was more intelligent in studies. Instead of hating him he should have him as his ideal! Hatred throws us into dark worlds and brings about physical and mental ill health. If the elder one hates you, do not hate him but love him. Then you will be fit for God’s Grace.
Baba used to tell us to look in our minds and analyse them thoroughly. Some people preach hatred but only those who have hatred in themselves will listen to them. Sai Baba of Shirdi used to stress this point. If someone praises you do not get elated and if someone critics you do not get depressed. Observe your own mind and see what is in it. If you have cancer it does not help you if someone says that you do not have it. If you do not have cancer but people think you have, it also does not matter. It does not matter what others say. So constantly observe and remove impurities that may rise up. That is sadhana.
Once somebody complained to Bhagavan that a sannyasi came to town and was preaching that there was no God. Bhagavan told them that there is nothing wrong in his preaching, but the mistake lies in going to listen to the preaching. So observe the mind and whenever any impure thought arises reject it. Your own effort will not be enough to do this; there must also be the Grace of God. When by His Grace you get this universal vision then consider this is your last birth. You need not come back to this word at all. ‘Arjuna, we hear that people who have performed austerities and yagnas go to the world of Brahma. But, I am not asking you to go there. You must go to a place from which one never returns.’ Said Sri Krishna, the Lord.
We are enjoying small pleasures in the world. While you have a crore of rupees in your pocket and lots and lots of gold in your iron safe, you are searching for pennies, pieces of flint and brick. You have forgotten the world of happiness in your own heart. You should forget the little pleasures you get from worldly objects and remember God and be immersed in the ocean of pure peace and bliss.
When you give up being engaged in a search for worldly pleasures you can immediately see that the mind gets introverted. The identification with the body brings about involvement in worldly pleasures. Bhagavan says it is no good if you give up everything but keep your identification with the body. You will gain nothing by sacrificing if you hold on to body identification. Real renunciation is to give up this identification.
Sri Krishna asks us to offer Him what we like most. We offer dried up decaying mangoes and other such useless things. Can you get any peace in life, if you offer such things? We put before the photo of God what is useless to us. When we do godanam (donating a cow), we search for the most sterile and cow and offer it. We think all good things are for our enjoyment and all useless things are to be offered to God! The thing more useless and worthless than a blade of grass is the ego. As you are giving every useless and worthless thing to God, why do you not offer him your ego? You will never do that because you identify yourself with your body. That is ignorance. To be rid of this ignorance is wisdom.
The thought that you are the body is the first thought that rises in the mind. All other thoughts follow it. We have infinite happiness in us, but it cannot be grasped by the word or the mind. When the mind subsides there is Silence. God manifests Himself only in that silence. Suppose you get the experience of immortality. Even if you die and people cry that you are no more, you will still be able to realize the immortality of yourself. Try with all your heart and soul to reach that state.
Do all your work with dedication and devotion. You should be engaged in austere practices, yagnas with selfless attitude and burn away all your vasanas (inherent tendencies and modes of the mind), says Krishna. We have to burn away our mind. If we work with no involvement in the rewards of our actions, the mind will be burnt in the process. Along with the mind the vasanas of future lives also will be burnt.
Desires bring sorrow in their wake. The fruit mango or gold do not in themselves bring sorrow. But the desire for them causes the sorrow. The desires for objects of the world bring sorrow. If the world really brings sorrow it should have brought sorrow to Sri Ramana, Sri Ramakrishna and other saints. If our desires are fulfilled we feel happy. A thousandfold happiness is got by one who has no desires at all, even though he also gets pain and pleasures according to the bodily prarabdha (destiny). He is like the ocean. Whether his desires are fulfilled or not he always remains the same.
It is not enough just to give up worldly possessions. You have to give up the thought ‘I’. And then there will be nothing else to renounce. If you hold on to the ‘I’ thought and give up only the possessions, then when there is a congenial atmosphere, the ‘I’ thought will come up with full force. Even though a tree is cut down its roots remain intact and as soon as the rainy season arrives all its branches, leaves and flowers blossom. If you get involved in the ‘I’ thought, it is like taking medicine, which is prescribed for some other trouble. Hence the trouble remains as before.
The mind must subside. That mind then becomes atma (self) itself. Loss and gain, pain and pleasure, elation and depression are only in the mind. If the mind subsides there is nothing else. Everything is in the Self. There is no connection between the body complex and God who resides in the Heart. Even if God takes a body, He remains free. He knows that He is not the body.
Baba said, ‘I am sent by God to look after your welfare. I am His representative.’ That which could not be attained, even after doing sadhana for years together can be attained by the mere presence of the Sadguru. By surrendering to his feet the mind subsides and in such a jnani’s presence eternal silence, peace and bliss flow uninterrupted. Like the stars in the sky the truth flashes in your heart. Once a devotee told Bhagavan that he thought at first that the attachment between himself and Bhagavan was only of this life, but later understood that the connection is of many, many hundreds of lives. When the body dies except the connection with the guru all other connections get cut off. The guru does not give up his disciple till he attains the truth, his own real state.
Our likes and dislikes shatter our happiness. These make the mind wander outside. We like to give some people and deny others. We must get rid of these likes and dislikes. It may take hundreds of lives to understand this point. One cannot get liberated until he destroys likes and dislikes. Everybody can preach these things, but it may take hundreds of births to realize what is destroying our happiness. Where is the guru who will tell us all these things? These likes and dislikes are the cause of the mind’s extroversion. Krishna says this throughout the Gita, but who listens to his golden words? Many people complain that they have lost their peace. Who is it that has stolen their peace? The likes and dislikes of the mind steal away our peace like the thief who steals our possessions. But it may take us a hundred lives to understand this point.
You say that some people are not good. My daughter-in-law is not good says a mother-in-law and the daughter-in-law accuses the mother-in-law of the same thing. If the Lord himself suffers them what is your problem in bearing with them? Sometimes our enemies of a past birth are born in our house as relatives. This is a result of our past actions. In some houses all the people are united and in other we feel that all the members are born enemies. Krishna instead of going to every house to kill the evil ones gathered them all in one place (in the guise of a war) to kill them. He told Arjuna that if he kills without having the identification with the body he would incur no sin.
A jnani even when he is residing in a body is not the body. His influence enters the heart of his devotees. It also acts and influences the whole creation. Great people always work silently. The ego wants recognition. The whole gist of the Gita is this. The dilemma is whether it is ‘I’ or ‘not I’. Is that you or not? Why are you bothered about that which is not you? The real ‘I’ means consciousness. That which is not consciousness is not you. Is that clear? You should analyse everything in this way, and you will attain knowledge. Why do you worry so much? Why do you torture yourself? The jiva in you is not you. He is Mine. When I remove My jiva you have only a corpse. People cry out ‘He has died, he has died.’ The body is there, only the jiva has departed. God has taken away his own. The corpse is ours. We can keep it, isn’t it so?
Because the Truth resides in the heart of saints, those who seek their company realize it in their own hearts. The company of ordinary people results in attachment and the company of saints gives one knowledge and God-experience. This happiness is not temporary which becomes stale after time. It is ever new, divine bliss. So contact with saints is rewarding. Sankaracharya used to give utmost importance to the company of saints. We cannot recognise saints if we are impure. When the Lord manifested as Krishna how many could recognise Him? Arjuna was one of those who recognised God in Sri Krishna. If we have true faith in Him, He will take up a body to uplift us. He is so compassionate. At first He will make us love Him. Then He will give us the intellect to grasp His teaching. After that He gives Himself to us. He who understands this is blessed
Once Bhagavan told his childhood friend Rangan that those who offer clothes to anyone also get them stitched. Likewise the guru prepares the disciple, makes him fit, and gives him ability to do sadhana. Next he will bless you with his true form.
Everything is Iswara. Those who understand this will cross the ocean of samsara (the cycle of birth and death). Those who think they themselves are doing all actions are in the wrong. Only by the Grace of God can we can understand anything. If we do not have His Grace we can’t understand. So, the company of saints is always fruitful. Saints possess universal loving hearts and always work in silence. Silence is all-powerful. It is greater than words. When you realise yourself there is no need for any words. When the mouth is full nobody is able to talk. Only when the mouth is empty one can talk. Silence is devoid of any thought, such silence is the state of Dakshinamurti.
You must hold on tightly to the Guru and God, like the compartments of a train hold onto each other. To remember God means holding on to him. We must always remember Self or God. Like an engine, which holds and leads all the compartments of a train, Guru and God leads you to the ultimate goal. So always remember that, and understand its value. Christ said, ‘Don’t throw pearls before swine.’ That means do not try to impart scriptural knowledge to the unfit and unprepared. What will a pig do? It does not know the value of the pearls and so it stamps on them with its feet. So do not be worried even if your bodies are at a distance from the Guru. Develop a mental affinity with saints. Do not think that only those who live close to you are your neighbours. ‘Those who are your well-wishers and those who love you are your neighbours, however distantly they are placed,’ says Christ. He who makes you realize the Self is the real neighbour.
If you surrender to God you will get Self-realization in this birth itself. Unalloyed love of God without any desire is surrender. If you have any desires they will become a hindrance to your realization. If you only love God so that he fulfils your desires, you will get only those desire fulfilled. If you love God intensely without any desires, you will get liberated in this birth itself.
Baba said to a devotee, ‘At first you came to me to get your desires fulfilled, next time you came to ask for self-control, the third time you do obeisance to me thinking me as God. This is how you mind is developing.’ There is love and there is faith. Hold on to both and you need not watch your breath (pranayama) anymore. The Guru is not just the body. We think Baba is a body, but even when he cast off the body our attachment to him remains as before. It continues all the time. We do not know what the Truth is. But the Guru knows it. Till we realise the Truth in our hearts, the Guru will be with us throughout any number of births.
Baba is practical always. One of his devotees was a drunkard. Usually we call such a man a drunkard and scold him. But he, the Guru treated him as his own son. If your own son is a mischief-maker and the whole town calls him such, you still would think that your son is innocent. That is the love of the mother. Sri Krishna took the form of many children and stole milk and butter from the gopis’ houses and the gopis complained about his pranks to Yasoda. She could not believe the gopis. She said that her son had never left the house and was with her all the time. There is a story about a devotee who was a drunkard. Many well wishers asked the drunkard, as he was a devotee why did he not stop drinking? But he still didn’t stop the habit. One day he dreamed that Baba was sitting on his chest. Baba was squeezing his neck and he was losing his breath. This man was a real devotee and had divine qualities in him but he was slave to a bad habit. In the dream Baba was on the man’s chest and getting heavier and heavier. The devotee cried out that he was going to die and prayed to Baba to save him. Baba told him that he would save him if he promised not to drink. Then only the devotee woke up and never more went near a bottle. Baba is such a practical Guru!
We are beyond birth and death and so have no body or mind. Deep sleep is our Guru. There we have no body, mind or emotions. That same state exists in the waking state also. It is in our Heart. Get this experience in the waking state too. That is the only work to do. Utilize your body, mind, Guru and the scriptures to the maximum. Without this, whatever you achieve is a sheer waste of energy and a mirage.
He who brought you here and is making you listen to me and understand my speech is the Lord. If he did not shower His Grace on you, you could not have come. Some relatives or friends would have turned up just as you were setting out. So, every small incident is God-propelled. His language is silence. That is His real teaching. Silence also talks (communicates). This wordless communication is deep and total. It is not something shallow. If some guest comes and our children start doing mischief we just look into their eyes and they stop their mischief. That means we have communicated with our children through our eyes. Our silence spoke to them.
If you don’t have desires or hatred in you, your mind becomes pure. Your eyes will be bright, peaceful and steady. That means the jnana in you is manifesting itself through your senses. The jnana is your Guru. Suppose your mind resides in the lap of God instead of prakriti (manifested nature), your face reflects the peace in your mind. Hence saints need not talk. Their presence is enough.
There is God in the temples. If you are as pure as the God in the temple, your body also will be a temple. People will worship you even if you do not encourage it. God is in your heart just as he is in the temple. So people will worship you.
The Absolute Truth has no thoughts. How can you find that which is beyond thought, with your thoughts? In deep sleep there are no thoughts. Once Sri Sankaracharya was asked, ‘We are active in the waking state, we are happy in the state of deep sleep. But what is this nuisance of dreams? Why did God create this state?’ He replied, ‘There are some weaknesses which you are not cognizant of. The dream state helps you to realise these weaknesses. Unfulfilled desires come up in dreams, so that you can cognise them and try to remove them.’
Bhagavan tells us that idol worship, visiting holy places; baths in holy rivers, fasts and the like do not equal one look of a jnani. The fire of knowledge enters the hearts and burns away the impurities of the jiva. A jnani’s look is sharp and powerful. But you do not understand what he is doing. It is not visible. It is like the blades of a fan that is rotating at high speed. Do not get deluded that a Jnani is doing nothing.
When Baba’s body died you thought Baba died. But he still exists. If Baba really died you would not worship him. You worship him because he still exists. When you are in the presence of a Jnani your age old vasanas are suppressed and your mind becomes steady and peaceful. Without your knowledge you will enter the state of samadhi. Once Rangan asked Bhagavan to teach him to attain the state of samadhi. Bhagavan told him that he would teach him the state of sahaja samadhi. We do not know what to ask from saints. God knows our needs better than us. Sometimes he sends sorrows, not because he does not love you, but to make you pure. He purifies you through suffering. The stone idol in the temple does not become fit for worship till the chisel and hammer beat it.
A devotee of Lord of Pandaripura prayed to Panduranga like this, ‘O Lord, you are defeated by me. You sent me many tribulations expecting me to be upset but I was unperturbed by them. You have no more weapons to frighten me. You are defeated at my hands.’ There are many devotees who have thus been victorious over the Lord. It is a pleasure for God to be thus defeated.
The Guru’s look is enough. Bhagavan sings about the gracious look of the Lord. When the Guru closes his eye, he looks into his own Self. When he opens his eyes he will show us who he is. Till the realization of the Self he has been with us in all our births. Guru’s love is immeasurable. If you love somebody very much you wish them to be as prosperous as you. If this is human love, how glorious God’s love is! One person was sitting near the corpse of his father and lamenting, ‘O father! How many times these hands soothed me?’ In the same way the Guru gives us the taste of divine love. We must hold on to that love and make it permanent.
Sahaja samadhi means that you should not slip from the knowledge within. You should be in Brahman, without slipping from that blessed state. That is sahaja samadhi. Whether you work or don’t, whether you are praised or criticised, your bliss should not be diminished. If you know who you are, all these things will be just dust to you. All these things are only body-oriented. If you are the body then why do you leave it at the time of death?
Even though the tendencies of the mind have not died totally, Guru, out of his infinite Grace gives you the taste of the bliss of the Self. The vasanas spoil the taste of this bliss. It is to get rid of vasanas that we should prostrate at the feet of the Guru. Only when vasanas get totally destroyed can we get eternal bliss. It is solid happiness. The Bliss of the Self is not something like the pleasure we get from eating food. When food touches the tongue we get pleasure. But Divine Bliss is independent. It is not born out of the contact of the senses with their respective object. You will feel the happiness of Self, more strongly than you feel the happiness of the senses. The state of the Self is not a void. It is solid, unbroken and quiet. When you once experience that happiness you will understand that you never have tasted such bliss before. It is divine happiness.
Go to the temple with friends. Read good books and have contact with saints. If one is exhorted like this, he will say that he is busy and cannot spare even a moment. ‘Well, you may not have visited temples. But do the activities you are engaged in give you purity? Why then do you do such useless things?’ asks Baba. Some day you have to face death. If you tell death that you do not have any time to spare for it, will death wait at your gate? He who says that he has no time is an over-ambitious person. Any amount of teaching to such people will fall on deaf ears.
God or Guru’s love is not stagnant like the water in a pond. It is an overflowing river. It makes you rush towards the ocean and mingle with it.
Thank you all. Love to you. Bliss to you. Peace to you.
Om Santih! Santih! Santih!