Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Welcome to the 2019 issue of Raas Purnima

by Sri Sandip Dasgupta

Dear fellow seekers,

Our Master has often pointed out that the sole cause of our miseries and sorrows is our attachment to objects of the world. If we reflect on this, it is so true. Let’s take some examples:

  • If we do not own any stocks/shares, then we do not have to worry about the swings in the stock market – one of the sources of our mood swings in eliminated.
  • If we have a lot of objects of possessions (like investing in real estate – which we think of as our assets), then we are constantly involved in asset management.
  • If we develop very deep and emotional ties with family members/friends, then there is the potential of getting emotionally hurt by various events/statements etc.
And the list goes on…….

The source of sorrow is the fact that we think that these objects and/or friends/family members are mine/ours.  According to our Master, the Lord is the Absolute creator/owner of the objects and the people around us. Our only relationship is with the Absolute – not with the relativity of the Jagat.  Our Master has repeatedly urged us not to ask anything from the Lord – instead focus on giving Lord’s gifts back to the Lord.  This will enable us to remove our minds from the results of actions, objects etc.

On this occasion of Raas Poornima, Lord Shri Krishna danced with Radha and her friends - this happening being called Raas Lila. They became eligible for this divine Lila because they surrendered themselves completely to the Lord.  Our Master again urges us to surrender everything to the Lord at all times – like Radha and the Gopis.

In the Master’s words, the Supreme Consciousness, out of His own will has created this world (Jagat) and beings(Jiva).  The Supreme Consciousness is the substratum of all, the cause of all – and all results belong to the Supreme Consciousness.  The only real love is Divine love – between the Supreme Consciousness and the Jiva.  Everything in this world is an expression of that Consciousness.  The ordinary human being is no different than the Sadguru – except that the Sadguru is always aware of the underlying consciousness – whereas the ordinary human being has forgotten about the Real existence. Our strength in life is in remembering that we are made of the same substance as anybody else - and hence should identify ourselves with the same Absolute one.  We should not be identifying ourselves with our enemy or adversary etc. – instead we should be winning them over with our love.  We should stop looking for fault in others, instead looking only at their good qualities.  Instead of looking at others’ shortcomings, we should constantly be looking for faults amongst ourselves and try to rectify them.

So, on this occasion of Raas Poornima, can we resolve to follow our Master’s teachings and strive to become like the Gopis – so that we can become eligible for Raas Lila with the divine Lord.

Joy Babathakur! Joy Babathakur! Joy Babathakur!

Monday, November 11, 2019

The Science of the Absolute (Part-3)

by Sri P.C. Lahiri

This is the 3rd part of 'The Science of the Absolute' article, the first two parts of which were published in the 2019 Buddha Purnima and the 2019 Janmashtami issues of e-Sanai.
……Think before you act, don’t think after the act. Barring impulsive action-oriented persons who are more often than not acting before thinking, there are many others who knowingly or unknowingly act in haste despite having time in hand. We often develop unsteady and restless mind due to the unpalatable changes and developments in the outer circumstances. Most of the mistakes and blunders in life are committed during these times. One of the major reasons is that we fail to think before we act. The disturbed and agitated mind looks for a quick fix to get rid of the problem and commits blunders. However, those who have properly developed this habit of thinking before acting over a long period of time in the normal course of life, do not fall prey to behaving otherwise during times of distress. The key is to consciously develop this habit during normal times. Master has regularly stressed on the need of change of old habits by the new ones as revealed by Him. New habits to be cultivated are the ones which take us on that path of self-development, at the end of which the lower self merges with the higher Self, our True Nature. The self-development training that we get from instructors, various courses or institutions are the ones which develop the lower self to be successful in this mundane world as per the standards set by it. Imperfection breeds further imperfection; it can never lead to Perfection. Such development on one hand is not fool-proof and on the other it leaves room for more and more development. Complete and ultimate self-development is achieved only with the unity and identity of the lower self with the higher Self. Needless to mention, Instructors who lead us to our True Self are very rare.

This habit is very much needed in the spiritual pursuit of a seeker also. We often come across disillusioned devotees who do not get direct access to the famous guru after they have taken deeksha (initiation) from him. Most of these initiations have been impulsively taken without enough thought. Older established disciples are not able to adequately handle the issues and questions of these new disciples. A seeker in the initial stages needs handholding till his/her mind is able to grasp the true meaning and import of the initiation, teachings and the processes. I will narrate a very pertinent and educative episode on this topic. Already initiated, sincere and highly devoted two young ladies had approached the Master to find a way out of the family and social boycott they were facing. They very devotedly and dedicatedly followed each and every direction of the guru on a daily basis including constant internal chanting of the deeksha mantra. Resultantly certain uncommon sattvic (higher and pure) qualities revealed in them. Common people are not able to appreciate uncommon higher qualities partly due to ignorance and mainly due to jealousy. They make all efforts to bring down the elevated soul to their level. Hence, such souls face lot of hardships and impediments in their quest for spiritual perfection. This is the time when the shiksha (teachings/education) of the guru is needed, but if the disciple only gets deeksha sans shiksha, then he/she has to suffer. Master has gone to the extent of saying that if proper shiksha is given then deeksha may not be needed. Proper shiksha teaches the all-inclusive science of the universe which equips and strengthens the sincere disciple with the wherewithal to deal with any eventuality in life as well as show the path to perfection.

Master says that in this kali yuga (iron age) persons endowed with sattvic qualities shall face undue hardships. A disciple is incomplete if he/she has only devotion (bhakti), because bhakti without jnana (knowledge) cannot adequately answer all the queries that periodically keep cropping up in the spiritual path, as we saw in the case of the devoted young ladies. Similarly, jnana without bhakti can result in inflated ego, become too dry. The disciple may lose motivation and the zeal to move on. A powerful engine can drive a machine for a long time at a good speed provided the moving parts are adequately greased and oiled for their frictionless smooth movement. Powerful engine is jnana, and bhakti does the greasing, oiling and increases the life span. Both are equally important. However, Master has made it clear that the path of jnana and bhakti appear different due to ignorance. Once the Ultimate Knowledge dawns, they merge into One and the disciple then realizes that they were always One. 

In bad times think of good times, in good times think of bad times,
once good and bad equalize, the three ds (i.e. disturbance, delusion and dread) don’t materialize. 

The above is an unconventional revelation of the Master. In good times we live in intoxication of the good and in bad times we are drowned in the bad. All of us go through good and bad times but have never thought of the opposite while going through either of the two phases. This habit has to be consciously cultivated. Conscious cultivation assumes great significance because our entire inner and outer system (bahir & antar indriyas) will totally refuse to accept the change due to old ingrained diehard habits. Through strong and conscious self-effort, the habit has to be changed first. Once changed we will feel that why didn’t we do it earlier because it is very effective. I am reminded of an incident. We were once there with the Master in Delhi in the peak of summer. A devotee remarked that the weather was too hot to handle. Master said think that you are on a snowclad mountain experiencing the cold. Gradually your body temperature will come down and very soon you will be comfortable. I had never heard anything like that before. Later on, when I did an analysis based on the general learning received from the Master, a few things opened up.

The outer organs (bahirindriyas) like eyes, ears, skin etc. are controlled by the vitals (prana) and vitals are controlled by the mind. So, an impression created in the mind directly by a thought process of the mind itself overrides the impressions sent by the subordinate outer organs through vitals. If we move deeper within, then we have learnt from the Master that mind is controlled by intellect. A person with a refined intellect (an intellect which is inclined towards Consciousness behind it, rather than the mind created world in front of it) will not be affected by the heat or its effect shall be minimal which will never prompt him/her to say that the heat is unbearable. Now think of the souls who are Consciousness personified, i.e. their mind-intellect-ego do not function as a separate entity but have become one with Consciousness. Heat is only an expression of Consciousness. So, after identity with Consciousness heat does not remain as a separate entity. We, the common people, treat everything other than our own body as separate entities. That is why we want to get rid of heat or for that matter anything unacceptable or unpalatable. One of the amazing aspects of the Masters is their revelation of features of deep truth through simple statements suggesting simple processes to achieve it. What is amazing for us is their natural behavior.

Our minds are so preoccupied with multifarious aspects of the mundane outer world that we do not give due importance to such revelations. We get impressed when we hear them, but this impression vanishes as we come out of the room and get engrossed in the mundane. The effort needed to retain it is minimal, but we lack the habit of even putting this minimal effort. Our worldly education has trained our mind-intellect-ego to go for only those actions which give tangible quick results, beneficial to me and mine (ami-o-amar). When I look at myself, I find that although the above write-up has come out of me as per my learning received at the lotus feet of the Master, but have I truly learnt it? No, I haven’t. Learning is complete only when it becomes a habit which is never missed in daily life, like I do not miss to see, hear, eat, sleep etc. Par-excellence of learning is when the student becomes one with the learnt. I have to go on and on and on revising my lessons till Sadguru reveals Himself fully within out of un-reasoned Supreme Grace and exuberance of Supreme Ananda (Bliss).
(to be continued)

Submitted at the lotus feet of the Master