The Mother Divine
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By Sathya Sai Baba
Sri Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath

Premaavatara vihagaadhiruddham
Sreesham vareenyam chidananta moortim
Bhaktaikavedyam bhavataararanaukam
Sathya saayaksha gurum- bhajeham, bhaje ham, bhaje ham

The Divinity (Divine Consciousness, in general referred to God) incarnates in the human form out of its infinite love and compassion for the humanity and all the living, to reveal its purity and infinite power.  It is the embodiment of ‘the all- pervading Infinite Consciousness’ and the dharma (the righteous path)! This is none other than ‘Bhagawan’ (God) whom we rightly and affectionately address to emancipate us from all our redresses. The divinity appeared in human form in different periods of time, in different parts of the world to establish and re-establish the spiritual and righteous paths for the redemption of the humanity all through. The easiest way to attain the enlightened state for redemption is to meditate over the life sketches of these great souls and worship them with adoration and love. The individual ‘soul’ (jeevatma) always continues its relationship with the ‘Universal Divine Consciousness- (paramatma, in the language of the spiritual scientists) all-pervading and omni present i.e. Eswara. This UDC itself radiates through the causal body of the ‘soul’. The ‘divinity’ and ‘Universal Consciousness’ are the two inherent components of the individual ‘soul’.

Advaita (non-dual) concept is the first and foremost in the process of self-realization. This is beyond expression and perception of the mind but only can be experienced through a technique ‘Yoga’. The Visishtadvaita however could be expressed in words through the mind and intellect. The tools –the mind and the intellect- become inept to comprehend the Advaita philosophy in real life!
The essential goal of life is to realize and merge in the ‘Supreme Being’ (UDC). This demands a well-disciplined mind adopting a righteous path (Dharmic path).

The ‘Supreme Being’, the God, can assume any form or shape to grant HIS divine graces to the ‘devoted’. HE is the form of ‘supreme divine Love’ and spark of the living Force of the devotees! In reality, he is absolutely ‘formless’ and devoid of any attributes. One can get the glimpse of such a Divine Force only through one’s own enlightened wisdom. For a devotee, however, this is a cumbersome process and needs a rigorous practice to get HIM through ‘Wisdom’ or Jnana. But at the same time one can get HIM (the Supreme Divinity) easily through ‘devotion-bhakti’ a method well established by great saints and sages earlier. By adoring, worshipping and singing HIS (the Supreme Divinity) Bhajans, praising HIS divine qualities constantly fixing a physical form to that ‘Supreme Being’, one can receive HIS divine graces. ‘Complete surrender’-unconditional-by the devotee would yield excellent dividends in attaining that ‘blissful state’. This is the tested and proven way to reach HIM and of course the easiest method to trap that ‘divinity’ within us! During this process the devotee is free to treat ‘Bhagawan’, his divine source, in the human form as his father, mother, friend, and son or conjure any relationship with HIM. HE does not expect anything from the devotee except the devotee’s unconditional surrender and love!

Strength is the source for one’s own materialistic life and its growth in this mundane worldly activity. Synergy of physical, mental and spiritual strength is what is needed for the evolution of one’s self from the present state to the supreme state of divinity. This yields ‘punyam’. Weakness, desperateness and inactivity accrue ‘papam’!

Faith is the root for strength. Denouncing the existence of such a ‘a divine consciousness’ within us and thus proclaiming oneself as ‘sinful’ (papi) can never lead us to the proximity of the absolute divinity. One ought to wipe out such an un-established, concept with ignorance from one’s own mind and march with undaunted courage that ‘I am THAT – THE SUPREME BEING’ the purest of the pure conscience. Stop meditating on the ‘mantra’-papoham, papakarmoham, papatma, papasambavaha……….’  What an untruth we have been daily meditating on……!
Know, you are not those untruthful attributes and ill-conceived thoughts that make one weak, weaker and the weakest! Bhagawan addresses his devotees ‘atma swarupulaara, you are not sinful (papis), but the most blessed! Meditate constantly on ‘praptoham, praptakarmoham, praptatma, praptasambhavaha…... meditate on the divine consciousness within you which is the primordial cause of one’s own existence. Only then, one gets redeemed and liberated!’
One should never fall into that mental abyss ‘sinful’ by constantly uttering ‘I am a papi (the sinner)…I am a papi (the sinner)………’ --- change the mind-set. So, the upanishadic address is ‘amritasya putrah’-Oh! The immortal sons of Bharat!!

Selflessness is the root for the entire moral or ethical codes. Renunciation or un-attachment is the root for selflessness. An urge to strive for the good and welfare of all to reach that ‘supreme being’ guides one into a detached state. One has the least probability of taking his next birth as ‘human’. Having been graced with this privilege – to be born as human-, if one fails to utilize this great opportunity to make a serious attempt to attain the vision of the ‘divine’ even at the fag-end of one’s life, indeed, the very existence of the one as human is a colossal waste!

The divine love is as expansive as the sky and as deep as the deepest ocean. Bhagawan mesmerizes and attracts all with this ‘Love’. One can see the moon in the moon light radiating out of moon itself and enjoys the moon’s ever soothing, pleasing and eye-catching charm! Similarly one can visualize the ‘Loving Divinity’ with the help of the ‘Love’ radiating out of HIM! The surest method to reach and be in HIM is ‘bhakti’ or devotion. Bhakti is the outcome of ‘that unconditional Love’. The essential organs of the humans for sustenance are head, the pouch and the legs. These are similar to the food we consume for sustenance, the energy we use for our routine dynamic activities day in and day out. Liberation is the ultimate goal of one’s blessed human birth. Devoid of any one of these, the life is made void and essence less. The passion in the individual (vyakti) to acquire these aspects mentioned above is that ‘anurakti’ or ‘bhakti’. The letter ‘bha’ from ‘Bhagawan’ and ‘kti’ from ‘vyakti (the individual)’, bhukti, (the sustenance), shakti (the energy) and ‘mukti’ (the liberation) were taken together to reveal ‘bhakti’. The one with ‘bhakti’ is certain to attain that self-effulgent consciousness.
This ‘bhakti’ enables one to diffuse through the transcendental world and drench the bhakta (devout) in that nectar of ‘Divine Love’.

The ‘supreme consciousness’ resides in us making our body a temple. If the love does not radiate through this temple, the body is no more a temple and turns out into an inhabitation for bats and creatures. The love cannot flourish in the presence of these evil creatures. It is rendered inhabitable for the ‘Divine Consciousness’— the Bhagawan. One has to drive away such evil creatures and instincts in the mind with the help of bhakti- the devotion and ultimately be one with ‘HIM’! The devotees of all religions world-wild are able to ‘feel’ this ‘Ultimate’ self-effulgent and self-radiating ‘divine loving form’ through  constant meditation and chanting of the names such as Rama, Krishna, Jesus, Allah, Isha, Brahma etc. The self-effulgent ultimate is ‘form-less’ or can manifest it-self into a physical form. IT has attributes when present in a physical form and is devoid of attributes when IT is formless. None of these two– that which is formless (nirguna) and that which has a definite form (saguna) is superior over the other. Both are one and the same to reach that ‘ULTIMATE or ABSOLUTE’. Anyone is entitled to adopt any of these nirguna or saguna paths with all his sincerity and integrity and only then, is assured of being with the ‘Supreme’.

Man is endowed with two essential tendencies (i) the knowledge resulting in liberation, ‘Vidya’ and (ii) the knowledge that leads to attachment towards the mundane worldly activities spiritually referred to ‘Avidya’, also referred as delusion or ‘Maya’. At the time of one’s birth these two are in a well-balanced state of hibernation. A complete understanding of either of these two will reveal the ‘whole’ also referred as (poornam). Full understanding of either of the above helps one to comprehend the remaining and can be explained with great ease. Fix the digit number 1 (ONE) and any zeros added adjacent to that on the right side increases its value multi-fold. This digit 1 (ONE) is the God and the zeros are the events we daily witness in this material world. If the digit 1 (ONE) is missing any number of zeroes on the right side means nothing but a big zero. Because of 1 only the zeroes could command respect and become heroes. God is the basic foundation to the existence of the man. If HE is with the man, all activities of Avidya (Maya, the world of delusions) are pulled towards HIM, disappear or become one with HIM completely losing their identity as in the case of iron, in the close proximity of a magnet, would turn itself into one with the magnet! It is a divine relationship between man (Nara) and God (Narayana). Man in this world is always a stranger and a new entry. This world is a huge mansion owned by God and all the countries in the world are the spacious rooms in this mansion. Being born in this mansion, man fails to look into the other rooms in this mansion to know the contents there within.

This world  is an age-old mansion and the one who realizes about this mansion and its nature is ‘sanatana’ (eternal) while the one who is innocent about this mansion is ‘nutana’ a new comer or a stranger. God being eternal, with his help alone the nutana can transform himself into a sanatana. When the man enters into this world he should take God as his mentor, a load star and his life’s charioteer, only then, the stranger who entered afresh into this world can attain the eternal kingdom of God (Sai). It is essential when one goes entirely to a new place he needs a shelter for himself and for his belongings. On similar lines when one enters into this world passing through his life’s journey if he is under the kind shelter of God he can be peaceful and once he attains peace he can fully enjoy the beautiful and wonderful nature of this world with utmost happiness. Only then, the true nature of the world can be experienced. 

The jeeva, the ‘i’ (the individual) during his journey encounters several hurdles and hardships some giving him enjoyment some inflicting him sorrow or unhappiness. This is because, he, out of his ignorance loves the mundane world of creation with so many temptations but not the Creator. The bliss is within one’s closest reach but once dragged and attracted by the deluding world phenomena, he becomes a victim to the temptations of the prevailing Maya in this world. He turns out to be a cause for his own destruction. This is exactly similar to what is happening to the rat that enters the stock pile of valuable and delicious food items but is attracted by the menial bait and ultimately trapped into the rat-trap! They are just enchanted by the smell of the fried corn kept in the rat-trap, lured and diverted from their main target and ultimately land into the trap. So the mundane happiness what we seek in this world of temptations is a bait, just transient and lands us into an abyss of ignorance and sorrow.
The inherent tendencies inevitably chase the rat to yearn for the bait. The belch you get is no different from the type of food you take. The thoughts one entertains depend on the food he relishes. As is the food so is the thought. Therefore one is forced to choose a healthy and good association. The saying that ‘you tell me your association I’ll tell your character’ is pertinent in this context! One’s behavioural trend has a strong bearing on the group in which he is brought-up!

No thief can venture into a house whose residents are very vigilant and alert. Such vigilance, one should exercise against any evil thoughts entertaining one’s own mind. Be in the awakened state of the mind so none can mar the character.

God presents HIMSELF in all the living and even in non-living. Yet, the spiritual power is differently manifested depending on the necessity and situation. The rising flames of fire turn everything into ashes. That is its natural inherent property (dharma). A dry twig placed in a fire thrown out of a small matchstick will not extinguish the fire. In a blazing forest fire, even the raw trunk of a plantain tree will be turned into ashes in no time! During the sprouting period of the spiritual power one should guard himself against these baits of worldly pleasures with utmost care by putting a strong fence around. Gradually, the worldly desires and temptations are thrown far off and one emerges out as a hero with equanimity.

‘Eeswaras sarvaa bhutaanaam’ – Yes, God is omnipresent—everywhere—in you in me and in every animate and inanimate object in the world!

The healing wound cannot be meddled with by plucking out forcibly the outer skinny deposit, lest blood oozes out and the wound again aggravates. Let the wound heal itself, with time the skinny outer deposit would fall off with ease on its own causing no damage to inner core of the skin. One is relieved of the pain. Unless one grasps the secret of ‘true self’ it is impossible for anyone to adopt the ‘yoga of action’ (karma yoga) without yearning for any fruits of his action in return. The impediments to acquire knowledge about one’s own true self and its supreme nature are the worldly activities related to his social life, family life, professional life etc. One should conquer these worldly impediments in his path to reach the stage of equanimity. To accomplish this, one has an enlightened path i.e. the path of karma yoga or ‘yoga of action’ without any desire for the fruits of his action in return— a well-known method prescribed by the spiritual scientists as ‘nishkama karma’. In this age of Kali can we strictly adhere to such a rigorous practice? The only alternative most probably as envisaged by our earlier preceptors is a sincere and honest prayer to the ‘Supreme –God’. With all of one’s integrity, surrender to God will yield excellent results and one realizes his own true self through HIS grace. This is certain, certain, and certain!!! This proves to be more powerful than the so called ‘karma yoga and jnana yoga.’

However, one cannot escape the vicious cycle of ‘action-reaction’, the karma. The thought of one’s own experiences and feelings itself credits karma in to our life’s bank account! The result of such a karma piling up fast into one’s bank account could be lessened and the karmic process could be weakened through ‘nishkama- karma’ and one’s own unconditional devotion and love to God.

If one keeps meditating on God and chanting HIS virtues (gunas), desires from our mind can be weeded out and one will be dissuaded from entertaining any desire because mind is full with the thoughts of God and therefore cannot entertain any more. Once, one gets intoxicated with the chanting of Lord and his gunas (attributes), desires will not stir any temptation in him and he is not at all attracted towards them. It is but natural that one who tasted the delicious, sweet date fruit will not touch the tamarind fruit. The thought of God, will relieve us permanently from the action-reaction cycle i. e the karmic process. The close proximity with the Lord has the power of destroying fully one’s own natural unending action-reaction process. For this, one has to develop deep devotion to the Lord first, but not allow him-self into deep ocean of transient worldly temptations, next, get used to do good deeds (satkarmas) entertain good thoughts (sadbhavanas) and spend one’s own time in the group of good and noble people (satsang).

Karma-action- cannot be avoided and one has to perform the action to the extent useful for the  sustenance of his physical body but without seeking any fruits of his action either in the present earthly  life or in his celestial  or transcendental life. One is bounded by the natural law to perform all these mundane activities. But one should be extremely selective and cautious while executing them and one should offer all his karmaic actions at the feet of the Lord. Once one performs the karma for the sake of  karma and surrenders all his karma  to the Lord, he revels in detachment towards karma, he is no more bonded to karma as all his karmas have been absolved by that supreme Lord. This will enrich the bhakti in one’s own heart and he is one with the Lord ‘heart-to-heart’! So karmaphala-tyagam becomes a habit to him! He attains the stage of vairagya which entitles him to be one with HIM!!

Prayer, probably, is mandatory in the spiritual progress of a person as long as one involves in the worldly activities (karmas) until his heart and mind become one with God Consciousness. In the early stages the Sadhaka is in a perplexed state with karma related activities / events. As he moves more and closer to the God consciousness the karma component gradually declines and with absolute surrender of all his karmic activities at the feet of the Lord, one would attain the state of equanimity—a yogic state. Duality disappears from his mind and heart. One should give, therefore, priority to the renunciation of karmaphalam or fruits of karma, yet he cannot desist from doing karma. Jnana yoga (the yoga of knowledge and wisdom) is other essential route to self-realization and hence accomplishing the state of ‘supreme bliss’. However, there are certain limitations to ‘jnana yoga’. The first one is that, man sustains his living through food material. Secondly, the span of human life is very limited and small with the result that sufficient time is not at one’s disposal to practice jnana yoga. The third limitation could be that man is deluded by the thought that ‘he is the body’. To erase the very concept of body consciousness from one’s own mind is very difficult and revolutionary as far as he with the present state of mind is concerned.

Can it be impressed upon him that birth and death are the attributes to the body but not to ‘him’, that, he and his body are separate but, not the same?

But, a jnana yogi is always aware at every moment that the attributes cited above are only to the body and not to him as he is fully aware that he is separate from his body. This realization is that what is required for a sadhaka to be with the Lord. Rarest of the rare can shed of their body consciousness. Lord in Gita declares – ‘out of the thousands of thousands who attempt to realize this jnana only one will try to reach ME. Out of those who attempt to reach ME only one among them will ultimately succeed in realizing ME and installing ME in his inward self!’ 

The same is recited in no compromising terms through the sloka of the Gita.
Manushyaanaam sahasreshu kaschityadati siddhaye
Yatataamapi siddhaanaam kaschinmaam vetti tattwataha (7.3)

Ignorance is nothing but the feeling that God (paramatma) and jivatmaa are separate and therefore they are distant apart. True jnana is that when one gets the revelation that ‘God is within himself and ‘he is THAT’. If one finds the true self in him-self, then he is aware of that ‘Supreme Being’. He is blessed with that ‘aatmasaakshaatkaara or ‘bhagavatsaakshaatkaara’  i.e. vision of one’s own SELF.

What is this ‘I’? Is it the blood, flesh, muscular body? No, not at all. If one makes a deep enquiry into this ‘I’ and concentrates on this ‘I’, it dissolves and he realizes that there is no such ‘I’ which is identifying one with his body! If this ‘I’ disappears, God appears.

Knowledge can be categorized as the secular knowledge which is experienced by all of us. This is similar to a candle in the room. This can give light only within the dimensions of the room in which it is placed. But the realized soul of a devotee radiates light so brightly, similar to the full moon light thrown out from a clear sky! The contents both inside and outside the room can be perceived. This is known as spiritual knowledge.