|Date: 17 October 2003||Occasion: Discourse||Place: Prasanthi Nilayam|
Develop the Spirit of Brotherhood
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
This land of Bharat (India) has given birth to many noble women,
like Savitri, who brought her dead husband back to life;
Chandramati, who extinguished wild fire with the power of truth;
Sita, who proved her chastity by coming out of the blazing fire unscathed; and
Damayanti, who reduced an evil-minded hunter to ashes with the power of her chastity.
This land of piety and nobility attained plenty and prosperity and
became the teacher of all nations of the world because of such women of chastity.
Human life is meant to demonstrate an ideal to the world. Man is endowed with infinite powers. But, he leads a life of ignorance, being unaware of his innate powers. Though everyone is endowed with divine powers, only a few are able to manifest them. In others, these powers remain hidden. Everyone should make efforts to realise their inherent divinity. Man appears and behaves as if he is an ordinary human, in spite of being one with infinite divine powers. Janakiramaiah (Swami's younger brother) is one such divine power. He was younger to this body by 2 1/2 years. However, he was an expert in the field of politics. He would mince no words in expressing his opinion. At times, I used to caution him, "Ramaiah, you do not know the abilities of others. Do not use harsh words. Talk with restraint." He might have used harsh words when the situation demanded, but he was always tender-hearted.
When Lakshmana fainted in the battlefield, Rama lamented thus, "If I were to search in the world, I may get another wife like Sita, a mother like Kausalya, but not a brother like Lakshmana." In this manner, Rama was deeply touched by the fraternal love of Lakshmana and extolled his qualities. There are many such families in the world where the parents, brothers, and sisters have demonstrated great ideals. You don't need to doubt whether such ideal brothers exist even today. They do exist. There may be temporary differences of opinion, but they always have love for each other.
Every man must necessarily make efforts to realise the principle of Atma, which is present in all. The sweetness of Atmic experience is unparalleled. In the spiritual field, what one has to attain is the experience of Atmic bliss. He who realises the inherent divinity in humanity is a true human being. The Atma has no specific form. It is full of love and bliss. This has to be realised and experienced by every individual. One may know the nature of an individual, but it is not possible to understand and estimate the nature of the Atma. In order to understand the principle of Atma, you have to emulate the ideals demonstrated by Rama and His brothers.
One day, as the brothers were playing a game, Bharata came running, sat on the lap of Mother Kausalya and complained, "Mother, whenever I am about to lose the game, Rama manages to lose and makes me the winner." Lakshmana, Bharata, and Satrughna would tell their mothers that it was their great good fortune that they had Rama as their elder brother. They would praise Rama, saying that He was full of love and nowhere could they find a brother like Him. They always wanted to be in the company of Rama and serve Him. There was such unity and love among them. They enjoyed intimate and inseparable relationship. Even today, there are many such brothers in the world. But the situation of the world is such that people are not encouraged to practise brotherhood of man. Our institutions should demonstrate the ideal of brotherhood and show the way to the rest of the world. You call each other brothers and sisters. Mere verbal expression will not suffice; it should be reflected in your conduct. While in exile, Rama would not bear separation from Lakshmana even for a moment. He would anxiously ask Sita about Lakshman's whereabouts whenever he was not found by His side. In this manner, Rama taught the ideal of brotherhood by His example.
Today, students are acquiring education with the sole purpose of occupying high positions in society. They are not prepared to share their love with their fellowmen and demonstrate the ideal of brotherhood. The need of the hour is to practise the ideal of brotherhood. Brothers should lead their lives in an ideal manner. Bodies may be different, but their life principle must be one and the same. There is no dearth of such ideal brothers in this land of Bharat (India). But there are some who are not able to translate their sacred feelings into action and set an ideal to others. Only when we share our love with fellowmen can we experience Divinity.
What is the hallmark of a true student? Manasyekam vachasyekam karmanyekam mahatmanam (those whose thoughts, words, and deeds are in perfect harmony are noble ones.) It is said: The proper study of mankind is man. But, today, we do not find true qualities of mankind. People may show respect toward each other outwardly, but they do not experience true love, unity, and happiness inwardly. They say they that belong to mankind, but in reality they have monkey mind.
What is true humanness? You should treat your fellow men as your own brothers. You deserve to be called a human being only when you cultivate the spirit of unity. Where there is no unity, there you find enmity and hatred. Consequently, the principle of love is lost altogether. Man's foremost duty is to share his love with others. Only then can he realise the dictum: Brotherhood of man and fatherhood of God. But, unfortunately, such idealism is not found today. You may not believe in the fatherhood of God, but you must have faith in the brotherhood of man; practise it and experience bliss therefrom. Our country, Bharat, will regain its pristine glory only when we achieve such unity. There should be unity and love not only among brothers but also between the husband and wife.
Today, you have heard that a doctor from Singapore (Dr. Pillai) wants to establish an institution in memory of his late wife. Pillai has been a devotee of Swami for the last 20 years. His wife was also a highly virtuous lady. She always had a smiling countenance and would always speak softly and sweetly. There are many such noble women in this country. It is because of such women that the country is full of auspiciousness, plenty, and prosperity. There are many such devotees who express their love in an unostentatious manner.
The country of Bharat (India) is highly sacred. But people are flocking to foreign countries with the false hope that they would find happiness there. The happiness that you do not find here cannot be found anywhere in the world. It is said, Yanna Bharate thanna Bharata (that which is not found in Bharat is not present anywhere else). That is why Bharat has been able to live in peace and amity with the rest of the world for the past thousands of years. The Bharatiyas (Indians) share their love with others and maintain brotherly relationship. In fact, they have lived up to the ideal of Brotherhood of man and Fatherhood of God. In spite of many foreign invasions, the love and unity of Bharatiyas has not diminished a bit. At times, you may find infighting, but this is only a passing cloud. There is, however, the sweet fragrance of love in everybody's heart.
There is no point in talking sweetly if there is no sweetness in your heart. Sweetness in speech and bitterness in heart is not the quality of a human being. There should be sweetness in your thought, word, and deed. This is the true sign of a human being. You should fill your life with love. There is nothing superior to love in this world. Man is considered to be most sacred because he has the unique quality of love in him. But you are not able to realise the value of human birth. God incarnates in human form in order to spread the message of love. Once you have love in your heart, you can conquer the whole world. There is love in you, but you are not able to express it in the proper way.
You read a number of books. You also study history. But, do you go through the history of Rama? Have you understood the strong bond of love that existed between Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata, and Satrughna? First and foremost, you should develop the spirit of brotherhood. Even when you come across your bitter rival, address him as brother and talk to him with love. When you address him as brother, his heart will melt and hatred will disappear at once. You can conquer the whole world with the weapon of love. There is nothing that you cannot achieve with the power of love. Love is the supreme power. True human value lies in sharing and experiencing the supreme love. But, today man wastes this noble quality of love in worldly pursuits. This has become his taste. He does not realise that love is Divine. The gopikas (cowherd maids) had realised this truth. That is why they prayed to Lord Krishna thus:
Oh Krishna, play your sweet flute and
sow the seeds of love
in the desert of our loveless hearts.
Let the rain of love fall on earth and
make the rivers of love flow.
The power of love is unmatched. When you fill your heart with love, all people will become your brothers and sisters. You will not have enemies at all!
Embodiments of Love!
Truly speaking, you are the very embodiments of love. Let the stream of love flow from one heart to another. Consider love as your life. This is your foremost duty. You may search anywhere in the world, but you cannot find anything greater than love. Here is an example. So many of you have gathered here today! What is the reason? It is Swami's love that has attracted all of you. Love is the divine magnetic power present in man. In all the sacred epics like the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, and the Bhagavata, you find love as the undercurrent. Once you cultivate love, you do not need to acquire any other property. You can attain God only through love. He cannot be attained by any other means. Love is the magnetic power that can transform even your bitter enemy into a dearest friend.
Develop love. This is more important than your worldly education. Love is life. Not merely that. Love is light. It illumines your path and helps you reach the goal. Your journey of life will be safe and secure when you carry the light of love with you. You will never find darkness. Fill your heart with love. Love is God. Live in love. This is what you have to learn today. Today, people merely utter the words "love is God", but they do not actually live in love. This should not be the case. Your life should be suffused with love.
Embodiments of Love!
You have heard the talks given by C. Sreenivas, and the present and the former Vice-Chancellors. They spoke with love in their hearts and emphasised the need to cultivate love. They are, in fact, ringing the bells of love in your heart, but you don't seem to pay attention to them. Once you hear the bells of love, you cannot waste even a moment. You will dedicate your whole life to the cause of love and ultimately merge in love.
You may acquire various types of knowledge and travel across the globe. But, in spite of all your worldly achievements, you may not able to understand the principle of love. Once you have the taste of love, you will see the world in its real form. Therefore, become truly embodiments of love. Let love flow incessantly from your heart. Immerse yourself in the flow of love. Out of love, emerge truth and righteousness. Sathyam vada, dharmam chara (speak truth, practise righteousness). Truth and righteousness are the two pillars on which the mansion of human life rests. It is love that gives rise to these two principles. There is no knowledge greater than the knowledge of love. You may read a number of pustakas (books), but love cannot be acquired from such books. What is the use of reading pustakas when your mastaka (head) is filled with "dirt"? It is because of such "dirt" that you become an animal losing the sense of discrimination.
Adore love. Live in love. There is no greater education than this. Traverse the path of love. Partake of the food of love. It is not enough if you merely partake of love, you should also assimilate and digest it. Only then the essence of love will spread to every cell of your body giving you immense strength and wisdom.
Today's education is leading to agitation. True education lies in assimilating and digesting the principle of love. You are the embodiments of love. You are filled with love. You may not know this, but I can see love in you from top to toe. In the future, the principles of the Ramayana will be manifested in a glorious manner. The Ramayana will fill your lives with love and make you forget yourselves. Let your love be directed towards Rama. Rama + Ayana is Ramayana.
I hope I am not causing any inconvenience to you by speaking at length. In fact, it should not be a trouble at all for you. You cannot find the love that Swami showers on you anywhere else. Day after day, I will fill your hearts with more and more love. I have no other work. My only job is to fill your hearts with love.
(The programme ended with bhajans by students)