Sri Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol 30 (1997)
Compassionate Heart is the Temple of God

Editor’s note: This discourse does not appear in the Sathya Sai Speaks series. It is taken from the following website and edited slightly:
Spiritual aspirants must first of all keep away from bad company. Tell me your company, and I shall tell you what you are. Seek only friendship with good people. A serpent may bite you only once, and that too when assaulted. But wicked people transmit poison constantly day and night. What was Karna’s fate at the end? He was a great warrior, more valiant than Arjuna. But because of the bad company of Duryodhana, Dussasana, and Sakuni, he also became wicked.
Compassion is the basis of the world
With the help of good company, devotion is developed. It is not enough if you keep away from bad company; you must give up bad qualities and develop good qualities. Life is an ocean with waves of grief and joy. Separation and union are natural to a human being. People become sacred when they associate with good company and are separated from bad company.
What is merit (punya)? Worldly people consider merit as giving things in charity and helping others. But it is not its true meaning. Its true meaning is paropakara. ‘Para’ means divine, ‘upa’ means proximity, and ‘kara’ means doing. Those deeds that take us near God are paropakara. Proximity to God is paropakara.
Speak truth, speak pleasantly, and do not speak unpalatable truth
(Sathyam bruyath, priyam bruyath, na bruyath sathyamapriyam).
Some people say that money is the basis of the entire world (dhana moolam idam jagat). Others say that righteousness is the basis of the entire world (dharma moolam idam jagat). But the correct statement is that compassion is the basis of the world (daya moolam idam jagat). The five basic elements, the sun, the moon, and night and day all function on the basis of compassion (daya). The heart filled with compassion is divine. Even if others talk to us harshly, we should always speak amiably. One can find fulfillment in life only with compassion and mercy.
One may be a Brahmin, a demon, or a king, one may do a lot of yoga, one may grow beard like a renunciant, one may smear one’s forehead with ash, one may keep on chanting names of God, but one avails nothing without possessing a heart full of compassion. Although compassion is a natural quality, people are not able to realise this. The entire world is based on kindness. Philosophies, religions, nations, and languages may be different, but the heart is the same.
One Atma dwells in all beings (Ekatma sarva bhutantaratma).
Truth is one (Ekam sath).
The Vedas declare that truth is one only. Water is called by different names in different languages. In Telugu it is neeru, in English it is water, in Hindi it is pani, in Tamil it a thanni, and in Sanskrit it is vari. Though the names are different, water is one and the same. Likewise, all hearts are full of compassion. Every thought should be filled with compassion. We use the word ‘mankind’. He who has kindness is man. What is the use of life without kindness? One who is filled with kindness is near the Divine. A man of kindness is a friend of God. Such a person considers God as their mother, father, wealth, knowledge, and everything. Knowledge also emanates from the heart.
Everything in this world is a reaction, reflection, and resound of the inner being. Whatever you do is reflected in the mirror of Nature. God is the object, a person is the reflection, and nature is the mirror. When you remove the mirror, only the object remains. In worldly mathematics, 3-1 equals 2 but in spiritual the sense, 3-1 equals 1. So, spiritual mathematics is more correct. In order to develop affinity with God, get rid of affinity with the world. Remove body consciousness and develop divine consciousness. If you want to develop divine consciousness, reduce the burden of desires and worries and become detached. Detachment does not mean leaving wife and wealth and running away to the forest; it is sacrificing negative feelings, desires, and delusions. Desire comes out of illusion (bhrama), not Brahma (God). Remove the illusion and reduce the desires to make the journey of life a pleasure. God is everywhere. He is all sweetness. As the Upanishads say, God is like a doll of sugar, every part of which will taste sweet. No matter what for and how you pray to God, you will get sweetness, because God is filled with sweetness of love.
Reduce the burden of your desires
Who is responsible for your burdens? Once a cowherd maiden (gopika) went to a well to fetch water. After filling water in three pots, she put one on her head and another in her one hand. She was trying to put the third pot over the pot on her head. But she was finding it difficult, and was in need of help from someone.
Since Krishna was standing nearby, she asked Him for help. But He refused. Meanwhile, another gopika who was passing by came forward and helped her in putting the pot on top of her head. Krishna followed the gopika on the way to her home. As soon as she reached home, Krishna came forward to help her put down the pot from her head. She then asked Krishna why He refused to put the pot on her head earlier, and why He came forward to help her put the pot down. Krishna then explained that it is not His nature to put burdens on people; He is interested only in removing their burdens. People think that God gives them all burdens. That is not correct. There was a student who, after completing his education, got married. Before marriage, he had two legs. Now after marriage, he became fourlegged, like an animal. Some time later, he begot a son and he became six-legged, like a cockroach, and thereafter he got a daughter and became eightlegged, like a spider. In this way, people keep on increasing their burden. People are responsible for all their bondages, not God. Give all your burden to God, then you will be relieved of your burden. Gradually reduce your burden. Strengthen your relationship with God and reduce your relationship with the world to reduce your burden. Bliss comes naturally to you when sorrow is removed. Removal of attachment is liberation (Moha kshaya is moksha). Liberation (moksha) is not anything separate or different. It is reduction of attachment and development of detachment. It is possible only through the strength of devotion, which gives steadfastness, leading to detachment. Food, strength and liberation (bhukthi, sakthi, and mukthi) all come from supreme devotion (para bhakthi).
Perform service with love
Embodiments of Divine Love!
Divine love and compassion are naturally present in your heart. Try to protect them at all times. A compassionate heart is the temple of God. First give happiness to God within you. Many people visit places of pilgrimage in search of God. Do not waste your time and money. He is within you. It is God who is searching for a true devotee.
Ceiling on desires is of four types:
Firstly, don’t waste food; food is God.
Secondly, don’t waste money. Misuse of money is evil.
Thirdly, don’t waste time. Time is God. The Upanishads say that nothing is more precious than time. If you waste time, it is as good as wasting the opportunity given by God.
Finally, don’t waste energy. We lose and waste energy by misuse of senses. Just as the batteries in a radio are drained when radio is switched on, we lose energy by talking too much. We waste our life by wasting energy.
See no evil, see what is good;
Hear no evil, hear what is good;
Talk no evil, talk what is good;
Think no evil, think what is good;
Do no evil, do what is good;
This is the way to God.
Today, people are worried about what they are incapable of. They do not think about what they are supposed to do. Students keep dreaming about the future, without attending to their studies. Past is past. Don’t worry about the past. Whatever was done will not come back. Future is in the womb of time; it is unseen and uncertain. So do not worry about future. The present is very important. It is not ordinary present, it is omnipresent. The past is a tree, the future is also a tree; but the present is the seed. The past is in the present; and the future is also in the present. What you ate earlier, you will have its belch now. Experience the present properly. Don’t worry; always be happy. While eating food, don’t worry where the vegetables came from and what will happen to the consumed food tomorrow. So, don’t think of past or future; be happy in the present. There was a mother whose son became ill and died of fever. After five years, her second son also became ill. The mother started worrying that the same might not happen to him.
Think of happiness, rather than unpleasant things. Past is past. Know the correct way to utilise the present.
People today worship lifeless objects while harming living beings. Spiritual practice (sadhana) and devotion must be accompanied by the awareness that God exists in everyone. So, give respect and joy to all. That is sacred life, true devotion, and spiritual practice.
What is the way to love God? The best way to love God is to love all and serve all. But it should not be worldly, material love; it should be divine love, which is changeless and eternal. Worldly love collapses, perishes, and exhausts itself; whereas divine love is changeless and limitless and constantly renews itself. God is always with you, in you, and around you. There is no need to search for Him. In fact, God is in search of a true devotee.
We must recognise that the world is based on compassion. Perfect faith, dharma, and devotion to God residing in your heart will protect you. Once, God promised a devotee that He would always follow him wherever he went. Then the devotee got a doubt. He turned back to check whether God was really following him or not. Since he did not see Him, the devotee questioned, “God, You promised that You would be behind me; but when I looked back, I did not find You. Why?” God replied, “I was very much there behind you; that was true even when you turned back! That is why you could not see Me!” Divine power is real power. You may have all powers with you, but if you lack divine power, you can never succeed in life. Develop love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. These are on the decline in the world today. When all individuals stick to moral values, society will become pure.
Spending time in rituals is not devotion. Perform service with love. Spiritual life is to love all and serve all. May you all attain the ability to love!
(Bhagavan brought His discourse to a close with the bhajan, “Sathyam Jnanam Anantham Brahma…”)
Selected Excerpts From This Discourse
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