|Date: 6 March 2008||Occasion: Sivarathri||Place: Prasanthi Nilayam|
Right from the time from getting up till
going to bed, people struggle to acquire wealth.
They spend all their mental and physical energy on amassing wealth.
They undergo many difficulties in the process.
Their mind is confused, and Divinity is forgotten.
It is an endless struggle.
What kind of peace, pleasure, and comfort can one enjoy in this struggle for wealth?
Embodiments of Love!
Today, the entire world revolves around money. Right from a student to a vegetable vendor, everyone runs after money. Not withstanding their education and social strata, people consider pursuit of money as their be-all and end-all in life. Strangely, even a small proportion of struggle that people willingly undergo in acquiring wealth is not to be found in the pursuit of Divinity.
God is the protector and saviour of all in this world. One may be a millionaire or a billionaire, yet one cannot live without God. There are very few individuals who recognize God as the source and sustenance for all beings. Also, there are very few who contemplate on God. That is why the sadhana (spiritual practice) of community singing (bhajan) has been initiated. There may be a few among the group whose mind is distracted during the bhajan and who do not chant the divine name with proper bhava (feeling), raga (tune), and thala (rhythm). Still, by and large, people concentrate and contemplate on the divine name during the bhajan session.
Waves are many but water is the same. Similarly, Divinity permeates all human beings irrespective of their thoughts and feelings. Beings may be many, yet the same Divinity permeates all living beings. Ekatma sarvabhuthantharathma (one Atma dwells in all beings). Ekam sath viprah bahudha vadanti (truth is one, but the wise refer to it by various names).
Those who struggle to uphold Truth are the real devotees. The essence of all Vedas lies in establishing this truth. Unfortunately, today, people who recognise such an eternal truth are not to be found anywhere. One should not forsake Truth. When sathya (truth) and dharma (righteousness) come together, there will be santhi (peace) and prema (love). In fact, sathya is the basis for all other human values, namely, dharma, santhi, prema, and ahimsa (nonviolence).
Embodiments of Love!
Prema (love) does not descend from somewhere. It emerges from the hearts of people. A human being cannot live without love. Love assumes different forms in keeping with the relationship between two individuals — husband and wife, mother and child, between two friends, etc. But, basically, prema remains as the same undercurrent in all human beings. If a question is raised as to where God is, it can be said that God permeates all beings in the form of love. A true and real life is one that is suffused with love. Life devoid of love is not worth living. Love is the source of all virtues and all virtues merge in love.
Brahman is only one and is all-pervasive. Whenever someone enquires about your name, you have to reply, "Aham Brahmasi (I am Brahman). I have no other name." All worldly names are given to you for the purpose of identification. It is said, "Brahma Sathyam, jaganmithya" (Brahman alone is Truth, and the entire world is illusory). To realise the nature of Brahman, one must become Brahman. All names like Rama, Krishna, Govinda, Narayana, etc., merge in Brahman. If only you contemplate on Brahman, you will be able to realise the omnipresence of Brahman. You may call anyone by any name, for Brahman is present in all of them. Every human being has to contemplate on Brahman.
The nature of Divinity is described thus:
Nityanandam, Parama Sukhadam, Kevalam Jnanamurtim, Dwandwateetam, Gagana Sadrisham, Tattwamasyadi Lakshyam, Ekam, Nityam, Vimalam, Achalam, Sarvadhee Sakshibhutam (God is the embodiment of eternal bliss, He is wisdom absolute, beyond the pair of opposites, expansive and pervasive like the sky, the goal indicated by the aphorism Tattwamasi (I am That), One without a second, eternal, pure, unchanging, witness of all functions of the intellect).
While coming into this hall, I saw Eswaramma and Pedda Venkama Raju (Swami's parents). Even at this moment, they are very much here. Pedda Venkama Raju wore a yellow coloured dhoti, while Eswaramma wore a yellow coloured sari. The reason for this colour is that they now reside in Vaikunta, the Abode of Lord Vishnu. Everyone in Vaikunta wears a yellow colour dress. Not only Myself, even Satyajit, who sleeps in My room, has seen Easwaramma wearing a yellow coloured sari. Women who wear yellow saris are forever sumangalis (ever auspicious).
The principle of Brahman is represented by the colour yellow. That is why Lord Vishnu is described as Pithambara dhari, or the Lord who wears a yellow robe. Today, I wanted to bring out a yellow lingam from My body. But all the students, staff, and devotees prayed ,"Swami, You need not bring out a lingam from Your body. We cannot bear to witness the physical suffering You undergo while You bring out the lingam. Please accept our prayer and make us happy."
Whatever I will, it will happen. Whereas human nature constantly undergoes change, My divine nature is changeless and eternal. No one can decipher such divine nature.
The cosmic dance performed by Lord Shiva in Kailas is described thus:
Lord Shiva is lost in ecstasy
Parameswara, Sambashiva is lost in ecstasy,
Dancing and dancing the thandava dance
With the divine sage Narada accompanying on thampura and
The Lord's matted locks shining brilliantly.
Wielding the Trident, Shiva is dancing
Thadhim, Thadhim, Thadhim Thadhimthaka ||Lord Shiva||
With Goddess Saraswathi playing veena and Indra the flute,
Lord Vishnu on Mridanga,
Dhimi Dhimi Dhimi Dhimithaka ||Lord Shiva||
With Ganges in the matted locks, the
third eye in the forehead
And crystal beads round the neck shining brilliantly
Lord Shiva is lost in ecstasy
Dancing and dancing the cosmic dance. ||Lord Shiva||
Once, when Shiva and Parvati were moving about in the sky, they saw a person cutting the branch of a tree on which he was sitting. As he was on the verge of falling, Parvati prayed to Shiva to save him, "Oh Lord, Please save him when he falls on the ground."
But Shiva said to Parvati, "It is you who saw him first. It is you again who realised that he would die when he falls down. So it is your responsibility to save him."
Parvati replied, "Dear Lord, when someone falls on the ground, he will utter either amma (mother) or appa (father). If this man utters amma, then I will save him, but if he utters amma, you should save him." Easwara agreed to this proposal.
As the branch broke, both Shiva and Parvati came forward to save him. But while falling, this man did not utter either amma or amma; he said, ayyo! (alas!). Though both Shiva and Parvati were waiting to save him, he did not call them.
The moral of the story is that we should always remember our parents. One who does not remember the parents even in times of difficulty is really a fool. Lord Easwara and Mother Parvati are the universal parents. If one constantly remembers them, one will not encounter any difficulty or suffering. Unfortunately, today, people do not remember their parents. That is why they are denied protection.
Rama's Divinity blossomed under
Kausalya's loving care;
Because of the tender feelings and austerity of Sita,
Lava and Kusha achieved name and fame;
Fostered with the love of his mother, Putlibai, Gandhi became a Mahatma;
The loving care of Jijabai made Shivaji a great warrior.
First and foremost, one has to remember one's mother always. Easwaramma represents the divine motherhood. She is the mother of Easwara. Similarly, Venkama means the Lord of the seven hills. Thus, Pedda Venkamaraju and Easwaramma together represent the Ddivine parents. Today, both of them reside in Vaikunta.
There are three Sai Avatars. The first was Shirdi Sai, the second is Sathya Sai, and the third to come is Prema Sai. Prema Sai will be the most important Avatar, because He will unite the entire humanity. You all know that it is prema (principle of love) that unites all!
Unfortunately, today you do not find ekathwa (unity) anywhere. Wherever you see, there is only bhinnathwa (differences and diversity). Where there is love, there will be unity. Then all people will be united, regardless of caste, culture, and country.
Suppose someone asks where you come from; you will reply that you come from such and such state. But the truth is that all people belong to one country and one world. You should feel proud to proclaim that you belong to the country of Bharath. Bharath is the home of all people in the world. In fact, Prasanthi Nilayam has become the home of all people in the world.
In the Ramayana story, King Dasaratha performed the Puthrakameshti Yajna with a desire to have sons. The God of fire, rising from the homakunda (sacrificial pit), handed over to King Dasaratha a vessel filled with sacred pudding, and Dasaratha distributed it equally amongst his three wives. Kausalya and Kaikeyi took their share of pudding to their respective puja rooms. Each of them was happy, thinking that her son would be the future king of Ayodhya.
But Sumitra had no such expectations. She carried her bowl of pudding to the terrace and placed it on the parapet wall, while drying her hair in the sun. Suddenly, an eagle swooped down and carried away the bowl of sacred pudding. She immediately ran down and informed Kausalya and Kaikeyi about what had happened.
Kausalya and Kaikeyi came to Sumitra's rescue and shared their portion of pudding with her. Kaikeyi gave half of her share to Sumithra, and Kausalya did the same. In due course, Kausalya gave birth to Rama, Kaikeyi to Bharatha and Sumitra to Lakshmana and Satrughna.
Sumitra was a paragon of virtues. Her name itself signifies that she was a good friend to one and all! One day, Sumitra was thinking to herself, "Rama deserves to be crowned King of Ayodhya, since He is the eldest among the sons. Or else, Bharatha should be crowned King as per the promise made by King Dasaratha to Kaikeyi. My two sons, Lakshmana and Sathrughna, should serve their elder brothers — Lakshmana to serve Rama and Sathrugna to serve Bharatha." Thus, all three wives of King Dasaratha, namely, Kausalya, Sumitra, and Kaikeyi, and also their sons lived in unity and love.
In keeping with the noble traditions and ideals set out in the Ramayana, we should always maintain unity and brotherhood. If only we are able to cultivate these two, we can be good friends to one and all. In the Ramayana and Mahabharatha, unity and spirituality were projected as the ideal qualities to be emulated by all.
A few years ago when I visited East Africa, I told them that I came from India. The then President of Uganda, Idi Amin, further queried as to which state I came from. I reiterated that I came from India. I emphatically told him that entire India represents only one country. If all people cultivate such noble principles, the country as well as the people living in it will prosper.
Very soon, the entire country of Bharath will be united and all differences will subside. It is of utmost importance that all the people be united and live like brothers and sisters. This principle of unity shall be propagated in every nook and corner of the country. The languages people speak, the individual vocation, and the education they pursue may be different. But all should practise the principle of one country, one caste, and one culture. It is only because these aspects are treated as different now that differences arise among people. The important message of this festival is that the country of Bharath shall be united. It should be the endeavour of people to treat it so.
Embodiments of Love!
Wherever you go, proudly proclaim that you belong to the country of Bharath, you speak the language of Bharath ,and you follow the culture of Bharath. Believe in the principle of unity. Develop faith in the principle of unity, and live accordingly. The country, caste, and culture — all the three must merge into one. Then only will the country progress. Bharath, the name of our country, signifies the message of Bha (meaning God) and rathi (meaning love). Therefore, Bharath is the country where people develop love for God. This Truth has always to be borne in mind.
(Bhagawan sang the bhajan "Hari Bhajana Bina Sukha Santhi Nahi".)
Whoever wishes to have santhi
(peace), must participate in bhajan.
Bhajan is the only sadhana (spiritual exercise)
that confers peace on an individual.