Sri Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol 11 (1971 - 72)
Constant Divine Communion

THERE is no illness worse than desire; no foe fiercer than attachment; no fire so ravenous as anger; no ally so reliable as wisdom. In the ancient ashrams (monasteries) of India, the Master took the pupil by the hand and, by precept and example, he removed the wild weeds and planted the seeds of virtue and equanimity, which grew into love and wisdom. There man became aware of his fundamental Divinity and drew unfailing Anandha (bliss) from that awareness. But now, taking delight in dubious designs and tortuous trials, man is fast shaping himself into a demon! The mind is the conspirator, who has brought about this calamity. If man yields to the mind and its vagaries, and the mind is enslaved to the senses and their fancies man cannot escape, calamity.
The mind prompts man to seek sukha (happiness), and avoid dhukha (misery); it creates the distinction and deludes the activity; it pushes forward and pulls back, tossing man back and forth, throughout his life. The idea of happiness, which is often only another form of comfort, arises in the mind and gets concretised as objects shaped by the hands and brains of man, like the aeroplane, the radio, and even the bomb that devastates and delights the mind saturated with hate.
Ideas, desires, cravings, yearnings - these get concretised and so, the world is only the product of the mind. In fact, the Universe is itself the manifestation of the Divine Mind, which willed, Ekoham bahusyam: "I am one, let me become many!" The Universe arose in the Mind of God, it sprouted and spread there, and since then, the mind has become potent and permeating. For each of you, it is the mind that colours the world. If it is pure, the jagath (world) is congenial; if it is unclean, the world is replete with jeopardy. The sages of Bharath laid down a series of exercises and disciplines, in order to de-contaminate the mind, so that it may turn away from the senses towards the buddhi (intellect). These are included in the comprehensive path, dhyana (meditation).
Meditation should be a continuous process, not a fad
Dhyana is, according to many exponents, the performance for a few minutes when man tries to assume a certain posture, and controlling the ingress and egress of breath, endeavours to fix attention on an image or ideal, to the exclusion of everything else. During meditation, people feel elated, have exaltation of a kind, experience joy and peace; but when the period is over they lapse into the normal routine of scandal, envy, faction and fear. So, dhyana has become a fad, a routine, a pastime or habit, a drug or tonic, instead of the very sustenance of the spirit. It should not be taken up and left off, at stated hours of the day; it must be continuous process, filling the personality with sweetness Divine. The mind must be rid of bitterness, and be charged with the nectar of Universal love. That love must reveal to you that the jeeva (individual) is only Dheva (God), clothed in that garment. You too are not this temporary vesture that you have worn, but, the ancient bodiless Divine! The limits of time and space which make you declare that you were born in one particular year and that your native place is some dot on the map of the world are also artificial and temporary and incidental; they are not fundamental. The wants that the mind spins out endlessly can never be over; they are like the digits, which can be added ad infinitum, and with each addition, the total load increases! When you are in the coils of kama (desire), you cannot come to Rama (God). The study of sacred books, the counsel of sages, the company of the wise - these are barren when you do not transmute then into awareness and Anandha! Pour the mind into the mould of God, His Glory, His Majesty, His Beauty. The mind-stuff is rendered an instrument of liberation, from being a shackle that binds.
Desires are often momentary urges
When you come to Me weighted with wants, prayers for boons and materialistic wishes, you stand the risk of losing faith and losing your moorings; for, that faith is frail. Develop the love that asks for no return; build faith on that basis. Thereby, you can rescue yourselves' from the duality of exaltation and despair. The path of love knows no ups and downs; it is smooth and level, straight and safe; it leads you to the throne of the King of Kings, installed in your heart! Nothing can delay your journey, or devise obstacles to stop you. Desires? What is their nature? When a cat kills your pet parrot, you are enraged; when it kills a mouse, you are pleased. Though the behaviour of the cat is same, you desired one and disliked the other, as a result of your attachment! Desires are decided by personal prejudices and fancies. They also pall when fulfilled and are often momentary urges, clamouring for immediate satisfaction. After a full meal, food becomes uninteresting, if not positively repellent! Once satiated, the thing desired becomes disgusting!
Gateway to God's glory lies open everywhere
There are two attitudes of mind: the separative attitude and the unity attitude! In the grip of the separate "community" idea, you cling to some as friends and keep away from others. This attitude cannot win the Grace of the One. He who sees unity wins the Grace of the One. And, one spark of that Grace destroys in the conflagration it causes the fame and blame, the joy and grief, that the world heaps on the head. Do not worry about temporary trifles, and tribulations. Do not exaggerate the inconveniences they cause. Bear them with courage, and a smile. Aim at the highest goal; hunt the royal tiger, not the foul fox! Even if you fail to bag the tiger, there is a grandeur in being foiled. In the case of the fox, what glory is there when you finally bring its corpse home? Why become too considerate about the body, too concerned about the state of health, too worried about material possessions? Be concerned to acquire as support the embodiment of truth! Be anxious to win the status of immortality! Struggle for Eternal Verity, though the victory may be distant and difficult. To realise that Verity, you have the opportunity and the invitation, everywhere. The gateway to that Glory lies open everywhere. Open your eyes, and witness His Compassion, His Majesty, His Beauty, spread before you; sitting in meditation for three hours, you are not able to concentrate on these attributes of God for even three seconds! You get pain in the back, your legs ache, you have to change posture a dozen times an hour! But, before you, above your head in the sky, under your feet the handiwork of the Almighty calls on you to adore His artistry.
Invest yourself fully in meditation
Why spend all that time trying to achieve control of the mind? Practise another sadhana - the sadhana of seeing the Divine all around you! Believe that the Atma in you is the same Atma that activates everyone else, and makes him live and love, wail and hail. Dhyana is not a limited liability concern! There are no bounds for your share in it. It is a full time endeavour; invest yourself fully in it. Then you get a plentiful harvest of returns. You become aware that you are a Hari-mandhir (a temple of God), that your limbs are the holy vessels that are consecrated for service therein, that' your deeds are the fruits, your thoughts the flowers, your words the music, with which the worship is consummated every moment. Offer yourself as the heart of faith. Then, whomsoever you contact, will shine before you as God Himself. The words - social, cultural, spiritual, moral - all indicate only facets of this vision. Social service or consciousness is but the expression of this ever-present Divine in all members of the human community. What is culture, except the culture of the mind to reap this harvest? The spirit, when it blossoms, finds kindred spirits everywhere. And, as for morality, its highest expression is truth, and the truth is unity!
All activity originates from a common source, God
When you speak with the tongue or see with the eye, or plan with the brain, who is it that speaks, sees, judges and decides? It is the One intelligence, the One that, like a current, works in and through all men and materials, God. When you are immersed in bhajan, note how the One is activating you! Your tongue pronounces the words in the tune designed for them; your palms beat the time, slow or fast; your head sways in unison with the sentiments that the words express; your mind is gushing Anandha, at the magnificence of the pictures that the song evokes! So too, a dancer is articulating harmony and melody through every gesture and movement of muscle and limb. But, all the activity originates from a common source, God, who is resident as President in the heart. When He is ignored, neglected, or denied, there is no joy for you or through you for others. You are either Thamasik - dull, inert - or Rajasik (passionate, fanatic) - but, not Sathwik (pure) balanced, serene! God is all. He is all forms, His is all names. There is no place where He is not; no moment when He is not! (Even the devil has the syllable dev to indicate his affinity). Thunder is God's message; the rain is his grace. Let no second pass without awareness of Cod; let no event lapse without reminding you that He is the artificer! You have an image or picture, in the room you have set apart for worshipping God. You light a lamp before it! You say, "I have lit the lamp;" but, is it you really? Who endowed the oil, the wick and the lamp, the property of producing a flame together? Who moved you to revere the picture in this form? Who was it that placed the lamp, lit it and bowed before the picture? It is all God, Cod, God. There is none else nothing else, for the man who knows and feels.
Live in the consciousness of Rama & His message of Truth
This morning, someone asked Me, when I called him in and gave him the chance to speak to Me, "Baba! The world is fast forgetting the potency of the Name of God. People do not have it on their tongues; they do not sustain themselves by its sweetness and sanctity. Bless me and bless a plan that I have, to make them ever conscious of the precious treasure that they are missing. I propose to print posters, blazing in colour, with the Name 'Rama' and paste them on all available walls, pillars and vantage points, so that the eye may warn and waken the mind of man." I told him that his posters will be smothered by the loud lascivious announcements and ads of film makers and exhibitors, and they will soon give place to the scrawls and scribbles of hate. Nor is your plan worthwhile, I told him. Paste the poster on your heart, I advised him. "Reform yourselves, live in the consciousness of Rama and the message of dharma which He lived out in His earthly career. That is enough publicity, enough prompting. That is the best that you can do to promote loyalty to the name," I said. For, people will know how it has changed you into a more joyous, peaceful individual and wonder how it was possible. Realising the how, they will start revering the name, like you. Do not get tied up with symbols in stone or metal; raise yourselves to the higher stages of realisation. Do not get entangled in rituals and ceremonials.
Fill your heart with God, not with 'you'
Ego plays all kinds of tricks, in order to get unholy pleasure. During the construction of the bridge to Lanka to take the army across, Hanuman heaved a boulder on the raging waves of the sea, as part of the bridge! It floated! Rama heaved another; it sank! Hanuman's ego was tickled, naturally. He laughed in derision; at that very moment, his boulder sank! And, the boulder that Rama had thrown, rose from the bottom of the sea and floated! Hanuman's ego was pricked into nothingness. That was the purpose for which Rama had willed that his boulder should sink!
Yearn to fill your heart with Him, not with 'you.' Your yearning must be warm, so warm that it can be called thapas (heat). Become hot earnest! Now it is only lukewarm longing, a surface activity. Examine yourselves how far you have filled your heart with Him. Measure the heights you have reached with the yardstick of virtue, serenity, fortitude and equanimity. You now become easy victims of lust, anger, malice, envy and the rest of that evil brood, for, the atmosphere of the heart is polluted by ego fumes. The knowledge derived through the mind utilising the senses is always "incomplete, incoherent;" but, the knowledge that is earned through the buddhi (intellect) illumined by the Atma (divine Self), is full free-ing, and revealing the Truth. The first is termed Mano jnana and the second, Atma jnana. Mano jnana informs that you are distinct from others, that God is at Kailash, Thirupathi or Kashi or Prasanthi Nilayam, that the God at Kailash or Kashi or Prasanthi Nilayam is different one from the other! But, names, forms and temples are only for the kindergarten stage. You print the picture of a head or a net or a wave, and have underneath the words, thala (head, in Thelugu) or vala (net, in Thelugu) or ala (wave, in Thelugu), so that the child may learn the letters quicker, while pronouncing the name of the picture which the word represents. Once the letters are learnt, the picture can be dispensed with. The kshara (temporary picture) can be given up when the Akshara (permanent letter) is learnt. The picture is only a crutch. The transient is only an illustration of the truth that it reflects.
Accommodate all forms of God in your heart
The kshara can be rubbed off the blackboard, when the Akshara is fixed in the mind. The brick and mortar structure where God is taken to be can be, rubbed off the mind board, once the presence of God is experienced. When you change your puuja (worship) room in your house, it does not mean that God too shifted from one room to another, that he is no longer where He was and that He has been brought over to a new place! He is not a piece of furniture that you can transfer hither and thither! He is here, there, everywhere, inside and out, above, below, around. Accommodate all forms of God in your heart; do not exclude some and welcome others: Bear with those who adore Him in another form through another name and acclaim Him in another language.
There was once a heavy downpour of rain in a small village. A lonely monk was caught unawares and he ran helter-skelter seeking some shelter from the hard-hitting drops and the chilly wind. He found a short length of dry floor, on the raised verandah of a house, the inmates of which were fast asleep behind closed doors. Being a yogi with no weight on his mind, he fell asleep soon, and was lost within himself. Very soon, another forlorn man, who also had no shelter, espied the verandah and came on to it. The yogi woke up and finding another claimant for the space sat up and said, there is sitting room for two; come, we shall sit the night through!" Within a few minutes, another desperate man arrived and he had to be accommodated. The two who were sitting agreed that there was standing room for three! They decided to stand until dawn; that is the spirit of tolerance that has to be cultivate, by the children of God, towards brothers in distress. God is love; so, you must become love, in order to merge in Him. He is beauty; so, be beauty, with no ugliness in you. Then, you can be one with Him, He is compassion, be compassionate. Water mixes easily with water, not with oil. Oil mixes with oil only.
Devotees should cultivate the spirit of tolerance
God is sweetness; His words are sweet, His sight is sweet; He sounds sweet; He is sweeter than sweetness itself. But, when your tongue is afflicted with illness,. He will be bitter. Cure the illness, by cultivating love to all. There is no need to take refuge in a forest or in solitude. You cannot give up activity. You have to move along the line to which you are attuned; you cannot lead a life of renunciation, on the spur of the moment; it requires long years of preparation. Once Arjuna was seen by a monk, walking listlessly in the forest looking for something. The monk asked why and Arjuna replied, "I am searching for roots and tubers that are edible, for, my brother is certain to be invited to a game of dice as soon as this exile is over and since he is certain to wager us once again and lose, we are destined for another long spell in the forest; so, it is better to accustom oneself to sparse and saintly sathwik (wholesome) food now itself." Then the monk said, "No, you are a kshathriya, born and bred for war on wickedness and evil; how can you throw off all that tendency for dedication. Besides, why sanyas (mendicancy) to discover that your real core is Madhava (God)? It is God that agitates you, admonishes you, administers you! A minute's introspection must convince you of this truth." Know that you are but an instrument; what can you prepare for? It is all His Will, His plan.
Know that you are but an instrument of God's Will
Sathatham yoginah - always a yogi! Be calm, unruffled serene; unaffected by good fortune or bad, for you are a puppet making motions and contortions according to the pulls He gives to the strings! Be pleasant in speech and manner; do not inflict injury or insult on others nor be affected any adverse act or remark by others. Be happy that everyone and everything is so ordained by God. It is His play, His sport! Also be eager to confer consolation and courage; be anxious to be of help. Watch for the chance, snatch each opportunity to expand yourself by sympathy, to enlarge the horizon of love, by understanding and prayer. Don't keep another at arm's length, saying, "My God is different from yours" or "My Clod is opposed to yours." It can never be so. Paramatma, the name for God does not mean, a stranger God, but, the Supreme God! Who can vouchsafe for the correctness of the picture which you now worship as the picture of Rama or Krishna? The poet described and the painter delineated; but, both relied on their imagination, rather than actual authentic vision.
Who can set limits to the freedom of God?
A shepherd boy heard a Brahmana discourse on God and describe Him as a dark blue being of human form, riding a white eagle. He prayed for many days continuously giving up food and drink, that God must come down where he was tending the fold and partake of his gruel. At last on the tenth day, when he threatened to put himself to death (for he had become desperate) God came in the form of an old man. And, demanded the gruel. The old man declared that he was God, but, the shepherd would not accept the credential! He did not see the dark blue complexion or the white eagle! He refused to share the gruel with Him, unless the Brahmana certified that the visitor was genuinely God. The Brahmana was brought post haste, but, what could he say? He had only expounded from books, written by equally blind persons and from pictures drawn by equally audacious painters! Who can set limits to the freedom of God, to assume any Form He likes or, any Form that the devotee likes? For the shepherd, God was valid, vital and very near; for the Brahmana who expounded the texts, He was a mystery; a distant possibility, an image lined by fancy.
Be convinced that God can and will appear in any form and so all forms are His. Don't refuse to recognise Divinity in the form you dislike or did not expect! He can appear as a fox, as a dog, as a beggar, any form. When you call on God, whatever form appears, treat it as God. Thotapuri taught Ramakrishna that Mother Kali was Vishwaswaruupini, the all-comprehensive form of the formless energy that pervades the Universe, and not the eight-armed occupant of the shrine at Dhakshineshwar, the form that was appearing between his brows, whenever he tried to delve into himself and discover the unity behind all the multiple manifestations! She was One without a second. With no name or form or body or sex or age, beyond time, space, causation. She was all forms and so, of no form; she was all attributes and so, beyond the attributeful. She was saguna as well as nirguna, the nirguna being the base on which the saguna was conceived.
Emerge from meditation more charged with love
We divide the one into two, and play the game of duality; positing one half as giver and the other as receiver, one as the seer and the other as the seen, one as subject and the other as object. We say Sarvam Brahma Mayam - "All is Brahma!" As if there is an All, which is to be identified with another thing called Brahma. Sarvam and Brahma are One, not two! That is why we say, Adhwaitha (Not-two), in spite of the appearance as two. In deep sleep, you are one with yourself, though at the time you have no Chith and no Anandha. The realisation that you are not two but One will endow you with the awareness and the bliss. To earn that consciousness of not-two, love alone is the path. Prema, means seva, which means sadhana, which means expansion, self-enlargement, reaching out to the very horizon of being and becoming! - until all is I. Prema (love) must grow with every moment of sadhana. It must sweeten every word, deed and thought of yours. Emerge from dhyana as a person more charged with love! Emerge from bhajan with a greater measure of love! Return from Nagarasankeerthan with a firmer conviction that everything is surcharged with the same Divinity that is behind all your activity. I find now that these have become mere routine procedures, a matter of schedules, time-tables and attendance registers and reports! The thrill, the exhilaration, the enthusiasm are absent; the singing starts like a wail, without strength and joy.
Bhajan must spread goodwill and love
The "O Bhagavan song" is a very weak, meek song to begin bhajan with. You do not put any spirit into it and so it falls flat on the ear. Do not have it from this day; begin with a vigorous song on Ganesha, instead. Also, have the song for arathi (waving the lights), both morning and evening and during all occasions of arathi, Jai Jagadeesha Hare - and give up the Pavana Purusha, which is a much mutilated Kannada song, which has lost its meaning and appeal as a result of a number of emendations and interpolations from other linguistic regions! When you sing without the thrill of ecstasy I do not derive any joy, nor does the I (that resides in everyone of you) get it.
Bhajan must spread good-will, love, ecstasy; it must cleanse the polluted atmosphere; it must invite all to share in the joy and peace. The Nagarasankeerthan must be inspiring, radiating devotion and love. The Anandha, I derive from bhajan, I do not get from anything else. That is the reason why I am emphasising these points. Be sincere, feel in your hearts what you are singing by your voice. The motion will express itself through the raga and thala it chooses. You need not worry about the raga being appropriate or the thala being accurate. When Rama is prompting you to sing, the raga and the thala can never be wrong. Rama is the pen, Rama is the thought, Rama is the word, Rama is the style, Rama is the composition. How then can error creep in?
Shravan is the first stage of spiritual progress
Fill every moment with energy, enthusiasm and effort. The epics teach you how to succeed in this. The Mahabharatha describes how, when every other of the hundred Kauravas died, the eldest Dhuryodhana was challenged by Bheema to meet him in a duel; when at last, he fell on the ground, Bheema struck his head with his foot in order to add insult to injury. Dhuryodhana's pride was hurt; a Kshathriya such as he could not pass that insult by. He retorted, even when he was dying, "Do not exult that you have done some big heroic act by trampling on my head! In a few seconds, dogs and vultures will be doing that act. It does not require a hero to plant his foot on a dying man! You dared not do this when I was capable of hitting back, you coward!" That kind of awareness of one's potentialities and quick response to all happenings must be present in you, too. Heroism gushed out his lips even when he was passing away! Today is the first day of Shravan month. Shravan is the month when the Vedhic studies are considered most fruitful, for, Vedas are Shruthi (the heard), coming to man through Shravan (hearing from the Guru). Shravan is the very first stage of spiritual progress. So, it is a good day for inaugurating spiritual study and practice. Shravan leads ultimately to Ath-manivedana, surrender of the individual to the Universal. I bless you that you may achieve that goal.
Selected Excerpts From This Discourse