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This section of the blog presents a message of Bhagawan Baba every week. Mostly, it is the form of a question that is answered by Bhagawan, giving us the correct understanding and interpretation of a concept or a term or a practice. So watch out every Sunday for a special message from Bhagawan Baba that could serve as your driving force throughout the week. Wish you a happy week!!
The audio clip of the message has a name that adopts the following code: Title relating to the message, Duration of the clip, Year-Month-Date of the Clip. Below the title is the English translation of the message. Below the English translation is the audio player.  

01 September to 07 September 2014
What is the true meaning of MBA?
What is the true meaning of MBA-5.29-2001 August 22

We have started the MBA programme in our College. When asked what MBA stands for, students say, “Master of Business Administration”. No, no, no… M B A – M stands for Mind, B stands for Body, and A stands for Atma. Therefore, MBA is the collective form of the Mind, Body and Atma.

Mind is given to us for thinking. Body is given to us for translating these thoughts into action. Atma is meant to watch over these two; to ensure that they are performing their duties. Atma is eternal and permanent. Mind is always wavering. The mind has to be made steady and experienced in the proper manner. We need to enquire, “I am a human being. Do I have the mind of a human being or of a beast?” We need to develop the mind of a human being. That is “M”.
“B” is the body. How should the body be used? The thoughts determined by the mind have to be executed by the body. Here, the Buddhi or the intellect has discriminating power. It discriminates, “These thoughts that have been determined by the mind: are they right or wrong, are they true or not, are they wrong or not?” If the thoughts are good, the Buddhi (intellect) passes these on to the Atma. If the thoughts are not good, they will not be allowed to reach the Atma.
Therefore, every human being must recognize the principle of the mind, intellect, body and Atma. First of all, the mind must be purified. Until the mind is purified, the intellect will not accept it.
Buddhi Grahyam Atindriyam
(Intellect that transcends the senses)
Bhagavad Gita – 6.21
The intellect controls the mind and is beyond the senses. However, we go behind the senses and follow the mind. Mind is the master of the senses. But what is the use? The mind does not control the senses. We say we have a very sensitive mind. What is this sensitive mind? It is only animal sensitivity. Thus, master the mind and be a master mind. The mind that controls the senses is the true master.
Vinaayaka has a primary position with respect to the principle of the mind. Vinaayaka always remains as the witness. He never gives any reply through words. He only demonstrates through actions. Therefore, Vinaayaka sets an ideal for all fields of human endeavour. The principle of the Atma is a witness. It sees everything. It enquires into everything. But it will not get involved in it. Why? Because, these are all duties related to the body and the mind. The Atma refuses to enter their departments.
Today in the government, the leadership gets into the affairs of each and every department. But since ancient times, the master / leader of the body and the mind, which is the Atma, never gets into their affairs. Does the mind discharge the duties pertaining to it? Does the body discharge the duties pertaining to it? The Atma oversees this with its two “eyes”. The Atma also forgives any mistakes committed by them. But when does it forgive? Until the mind and the intellect tread along the right path, acknowledge and recognize the mistake committed by them and repent sincerely and wholeheartedly (for the mistakes committed), the Atma remains a mere witness.   
                         22 August 2001

25 August to 31 August 2014
Ganesha Chaturthi Special
What is the significance of Lord Ganesha having only one tusk?
What is the significance of Lord Ganesha having only one tusk-2.29-1994 September 09
Ganesha broke away his tusk to write the Mahabharata!!

Embodiments of the Divine Atma! This is the most significant teaching of Vighneshwara. His very life is an ideal life, a life full of sacrifice. When we enquire correctly into the scriptures, we may at times neglect the same as mere mythology (myth). It is fine even if we neglect the Puranas (mythology), but we must not neglect the ideals placed before us in these Puranas.   

Sage Vysasa sat down to write the Mahabharata. Vinaayaka approached him, offering to help him. Vyasa observed, “O Vinaayaka, you are such a compassionate one! You are doing me a great favour. But whatever I tell you, you must write it down correctly”. That is the condition laid down by Vyasa. But Vinaayaka was no less. He too laid down a condition for Vyasa. He said, “Vyasa, when my pen is writing down, it should never stop. You must keep narrating continuously in such a way that there must be no need for me to stop writing at any time”.
At one point, when Ganesha was writing, the stylus of the pen broke. At that very moment, he broke one of his tusks and started writing down with the tusk. You may consider this as a mere myth. But this is how he came to be known as Ekadantaa – a single tusked one. The inner meaning of this is that Ganesha was ready to make any sacrifice in performing his work, in his determination to work. That is the ideal set by him. What a sacrifice it is to break one’s own tusk and write with that.
Recognizing this, the Vedas declare:
Na Karmana Na Prajaya Dhanena Tyaage Naike Amrutatva Manashuh
Neither by actions, nor by (acquiring) progeny and wealth, but by renunciation alone is immortality attained. 
Kaivalya Upanishad, Verse-3
Also in Sanyasa Suktam, Mahanarayanopanishad, 4.12
Where is the immortality other than in sacrifice? Therefore, today for humanity, if there is Prema (love) and Tyaaga (sacrifice), it is enough; their whole life can be spent in happiness.
                        09 September 1994

25 August to 31 August 2014
Who is Iswara, Parvati and Vinaayaka?
Who is Iswara, Parvati and Vinaayaka-1.40-1995 August 29

Today, in our human world, we refer to Ganapati as the son of Parvati. Parvati means Prakruti or Nature. The Divine principle, Divine power of Prakruti and Paramatma (Nature and Supreme Godhead) is humanity. Therefore, every human being is Vinaayaka. He is a spark / a drop of the Shiva Shakti Swaroopa (embodiment of Nature and Supreme Godhead) that represents the Divine principle.

Therefore, Prakriti (Nature) is Parvati (feminine principle). Purusha (masculine principle) is Iswara. Human individuality is the relationship between Prakriti (Nature or the feminine principle) and Purusha (masculine principle). We assume that Vinaayaka is the son of Parvati, there is Iswara residing somewhere and there is a power called Parvati. All this is very wrong. Everything arises or takes birth from Prakriti (Nature). All elements are aspects of Prakriti(Nature). In order to help recognize this sacred Divinity, festivals are celebrated with lot of spiritual significance.         
               29 August 1995

18 August to 24 August 2014
How do we understand Brahmaananda-Bliss of Brahman?
How do we understand Brahmaananda-Bliss of Brahman-8.00-2000 May 23
Maanavaananda  x 1020 = Brahmaananda

In the Aananda Valli, the concept of Brahmaanandahas been described in a very unique manner. Brahmaananda is that which cannot be described by humans. It is the one that confers limitless bliss. This bliss cannot be described in words or comprehended by the mind. Unless one leads a calm, stable, peaceful, unsullied and detached day-to-day life, one can never understand this Brahmaananda. In this creation of nature with worldly life and worldly feelings, Brahmaananda has no relevance.

The happiness that human beings experience in their day-to-day life, that enables them to lead a strong, healthy and satisfied life, is named as Maanavaananda. A thousand times more than Maanavaananda is Gandharvaananda (happiness experienced by the celestial beings). A thousand times more than Gandharvaananda too, is Devaananda (happiness experienced by the Devaas or demi-gods). A thousand times more than Devaananda (or Devagandharvaananda) is Brihaspatiaananda (bliss experienced by Brihaspati, the preceptor of the devas). A thousand times more than Brihaspatiaananda too, is Prajaapatiaananda (bliss experienced by Prajaapati who according to the scriptures, is the one associated with the practical aspects of Creation). And finally, thousands of times more than Prajaapatiaananda  is Brahmaananda (bliss experienced by Brahman). One can imagine the immense gulf that exists between Maanavaananda  and Brahmaananda.          
However, without having any idea about the meaning of Brahmaananda, human beings in many situations, often use the expression, “Oh…I am experiencing Brahmaananda, I am in Brahmaananda”. Having gone to a hotel and having had a good meal, he exclaims, “Oh, it is like Brahmaananda (meaning the experience of eating the good food is like Brahmaananda)”.
What is the difference between Brahmaananda and Maanavaananda that are described in the Aananda Valli? The latter is Anoraneeyaan(the micro aspect of happiness) and the former is Mahatomaheeyaan (the macro aspect of happiness). The latter is like an atom of happiness. Maanavaananda is within the domain of human words and mental comprehension. However, Divine bliss has no limits, it has no reason. At all times, always, in all situations, bliss remains as bliss only.  
Brahmaanandam…Brahma or the Atman are not separate entities. Brahma is verily Atmanand Atman is verily Brahma. Therefore, Brahmaananda and Atmaanandaare not different from each other. The principle of the Atman is always in bliss. In fact, the meaning of the word Brahma is bliss. The bliss that is all pervasive is called Brahma. Compared to Brahmaananda, Maanavaananda is merely like an atom.   
In this world, that which is all pervasive is air. None can decide a fixed shape or form for this air. However, this air, which is all pervasive, when blown into a small balloon, assumes the form of the small balloon. The balloon cannot contain more air than what its limited form can hold. The balloon is limited. When blown beyond an extent, it bursts with a loud sound. What is the difference between the air that is in the balloon and the air that is all pervasive? No one can measure or demonstrate any difference. Thus, Brahmaananda is vaster than Brihaspatiaananda and Prajaapatiaananda.
Note: In the Ananda Valli from the Taittiriya Upanishad, one measure of human joy or Maanavaananda  is taken as the joy experienced by a noble youth, in the prime of age, most swift and alert, perfectly whole and resolute, most vigorous and of good learning, and to whom belongs the entire earth laden with all riches. Subsequently,
Maanavaananda x 100 = Manushya Gandharvaananda
Manushya Gandharvaananda x 100 = Deva Gandharvaananda
Deva Gandharvaananda x 100 = Pitrinam Chiralokaananda
Pitrinam Chiralokaananda x 100 = Aajanajaanaam Devaananda
Aajanajaanaam Devaananda x 100 = Karmadevaanaam Devaananda
Karmadevaanaam Devaananda x 100 = Devaananda
Devaananda x 100 = Indrasyaananda
Indrasyaananda x 100 = Brihaspateraananda
Brihaspateraananda x 100 = Prajaapateraananda
Prajaapateraananda x 100 = Brahmaananda
Therefore Maanavaananda  x 1020 = Brahmaananda
Manushya Gandharvas – Human musicians
Deva Gandharvas – Heavenly musicians
Pitrus – Manes (souls) inhabiting the long enduring world
Ajanadevas – Souls born during and under the rule of Manu
Karmadevas – Souls elevated to the heavenly abode through their deeds
Devaas – Demigods
Indra – Leader of the demigods
Brihaspati – Spiritual master of the demigods (including Indra)
Prajapati – Presiding deity over procreation and protection of life
Brahma – Creator of the universe
Instructions on Happiness (Ananda Valli)

11 August to 17 August 2014

How do we befriend God by overcoming Maya?
How do we befriend God by overcoming Maya-3.19-1996 July 31

Who is the owner (of the building of creation)? Paramatma (Cosmic Self/God) Himself! When you become one related to Paramatma (God), then you will be able to understand all these valuable principles. Therefore, you need to develop friendship with the owner. How do we develop this friendship? This has been explained in Vedanta clearly, but to make the children understand, I am bringing it down to their level and explaining it in simple terms.

The owner is present on the terrace of the building. You go over there to see the Paramatma(God) or the owner. But there is a huge Alsatian dog near the gate. That is Maya (illusion). This Maya does not allow you to enter inside. Then what should you do?
If you are able to overpower the Maya, then you can enter inside. Or else, you have to call out to the owner from below, Sir, Sir, Sir. Once you do that, the owner who is on the top, will come out and see. He will then say, “Oh, Hello, you have come” and He will come down. Having come down, He will come and escort you in. At that time, the dog will not do anything. If you accompany the owner, the dog will not trouble you. If you try to go alone, it will not allow you inside.
This is referred to as Urdhva Mulam Adhah Sakham (The roots are upwards and the branches are downwards, Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 15, Verse-1). God, who is the witness to everything, is always on the top. He has ordained Maya (illusion) to be located at the entrance. Controlling or overcoming Maya(illusion) is Jnana (wisdom). How can you control Maya? Whose creation is Maya? Maya has been created by the owner. The dog has been appointed by the owner. Once you start speaking about the principle of the Divine owner, the Maya will allow you to go inside. You need to talk about the principle of oneness between you and the owner. This is referred to as Advaita Darshanam Jnanam (Vision of non-dualism is true wisdom). If not this approach, you need to shout from below, “Rama, Krishna, Govinda, Narayana, and the owner will come out and see. He Himself will come down and escort you inside. At that time, the Maya will not do anything to you.
Therefore, in order to get God, either on one side we need to have Bhakti or on the other side we need to have Jnana. Then, certainly, we would be able to see the owner.        
31 July 1996

04 August to 10 August 2014
How should we handle criticism and abuses from others?
How should we handle criticism and abuses from others-2.43-1992 May 24

When either anger, jealousy, hatred or any other wicked quality arises in you, suppress it immediately. Tell yourself, “Chhee (an expression of disgust)…this beastial instinct must not exist in me”.

Here is a very good example. Let us say somebody has criticized you. You get angry. When you get angry, do not react immediately. Think to yourself, “Do I have in me, the defects that have been pointed out by them? If in case, those defects are there in me, then is it not my mistake to get angry with them? However, if the blemishes pointed out by them are not present in me, then why should I get angry with them?” If you thus give an opportunity for such an enquiry and spend time in introspection, your anger will subside.     
Students, the correct ideal for Me is Me Myself. My life is My Message. So many people criticize Me. Many others glorify Me. But I do not bloat with praise nor get depressed with censure. Because, if things that are there in Me are spoken in front of Me, I do not need to worry. If things that are not there in Me are told at any place, yet I do not need to worry. When they keep talking about blemishes that are not there in Me, what is the necessity for Me to worry?
Here is an example to illustrate this point. When people call Me ButtatalaSai Baba (Sai Baba with a basket like head), I need to get offended. But, I do have a basket like head. Therefore, I must accept this is true. But if they call Me Pattatala Sai Baba (Sai Baba with a bald head), then this is not true; so why I should I accept it? Therefore, if blemishes that are not there in Me are mentioned right in front of Me, even then I will not accept it. That is the right kind of determination. You must have self-confidence in yourself. Without self-confidence, even at the slightest provocation, you will get either elated or depressed and this will become like bumps in an aeroplane. Therefore, students, first of all you need to develop self-confidence.
24 May 1992

28 July to 03 August 2014
How do we understand our true Divine Source and recognize this process as real spirituality?
How do we understand our true Divine Source and recognize this process as real spirituality-3.20-1992 May 24

We are forgetting our true form today. We are feeling miserable looking at our temporary form, which is a mere reflection. This is not our true form. We must correctly recognize the Divine principle that is our native land (Svasthaanam– true source). Our native land is the land of the Atman. Adi + Atma = Adhyaatma (spirituality). We must reach our native land (true source); that is spirituality. Only then, will we acquire total happiness.    

Get a fish. Keep it in a gold cup studded with all nine gems (Manikya, Mukta, Praval, Markat, Pushyaraga, Vajra, Neela, Gomeda and Vaidurya). However, the fish does not rejoice just because it is placed in a gold cup that is studded with the nine gems (Ruby, Pearl, Coral, Emerald, Yellow Sapphire, Diamond, Blue Sapphire, Hessonite and Cats Eye). It does get any happiness even on account of the value of the gold. It instead desperately aspires to go away from the gold cup to the water, which is its native origin. Similarly, we have come from the land of the Atman. Today looking at the happiness, sorrow, pleasures, wealth, comforts, property and material objects, we are getting carried away and we are forgetting our true form. If we enquire into this correctly, the fish seems to be more intelligent than us; is it not? The fish does not forget its native origin. But man who has such intelligence, who has acquired so much education, who has so much power, and who is endowed with knowledge and wisdom, forgets his native origin (true source). Therefore, our native land (true source) is the land of the Atman. Rest all are stations that have come in between along the journey.
The physical bodies are like vessels. In whatever way the vessels may change, the true source (original material) will never change. This is a silver plate, this is a silver glass and this is a silver box. We call it a box, glass and a plate. Their names and forms are different and the use they are put to is also different. But what happens when you melt the glass? It gets transformed into silver. What happens when you melt the box? It becomes silver. What happens if you melt the plate? It also gets transformed into silver. When the plate and the glass are melted, they ultimately reach the source (Atman). Therefore, the value remains the same. Hence, whatever form we may be in, we need to give the value of the Atman to the Atman. Spirituality is to have the AtmaDrishti (Atmic vision).  

24 May 1992

21 July to 27 July 2014
Is there any difference between Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva?
Is there any difference between Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva-4.42-1992 July 14

Vishnu…who is Vishnu? Lord Vishnu is the one who has the Shankha (conch), Chakra (discus), Gadha (maze) and Padma(lotus) in His four hands. In one hand, He has the conch, in another hand, He has the discus, in yet another hand, He has the maze and in the fourth hand, He holds the Lotus. What is the inner significance of these? Conch stands for sound. It means that sound is in the Hands of God. Discuss or wheel is the wheel of time. Time is also in the Hands of God. Maze stands for strength or power. Power is in the hands of God. The Lotus stands for the lotus of the heart. Everybody’s heart is in the Hands of God. Therefore, it is propagated to the world that Lord Vishnu is the all powerful one, bearing symbolically the conch, discus, maze and the lotus.   

However, on one hand they say Vishnu and on the other hand they say Iswara; and believe that Vishnu and Iswara do not get along with each other. But, they are not two different beings so as to not get along with each other; they are verily One. The narrow minded people who worship them are the ones who do not get along with each other. Some say, “we are Vaishnavas” and the others say “we are Shaivas”. All this is narrow mindedness. This is the fight that goes on among themselves (the devotees); but God is one.

In the hands of Vishnu, we see the conch and the discus; the maze and the lotus; symbolizing sound, time, power and heart. All these four are in the Hands of God. Coming to Iswara, we find the Damaroo (drum) in His one Hand. In the other Hand, we find the Trishul(trident). The drum represents sound, which means sound is in the Hands of God. The trident represents the subtle form of the three time frames (past, present and future). Therefore, time also is in the Hands of God. Thus, if we see from this perspective, God is only one; the forms and the names are different.

From the worldly perspective, based on the daily experience of the Bharatiyas, here is a good example. The Vasihnavites visit Tirupati (temple). The Shavites also visit Tirupati. But the Lord Venkataramana is only one. When the Shaivites visit Tirupati, they call the Lord as Venkateswara, Venkateswara. When Vaishnavites visit Tirupati, they call the Lord as Venkataramana, Venkataramana. One one hand “Iswara” and on the other hand “Ramana”. The difference lies only in the feelings (of the devotees) but there is no change in Lord Venkateswara. It is only for the satisfaction of the narrow minded people that the Lord is referred to as Venkataramana and Venkateswara.     

Iswara is known as Pasupathi. Pasupathi means the Lord of all the pasus, i.e. the animals (cows). What is the meaning of Pasu? The life principle that combines the mind and the intellect is referred to as an animal. With respect to Lord Vishnu, they call Him Gopala. Gopala and Pasupathi actually mean the same. Some call Him Gopala while the others call Him Pasupathi. Even the name points out and highlights the principle of unity. But, it is the narrow mind of the humans that is the root cause for all diversity. However long we may perform Sadhana (spiritual practice) with this narrow mind, we would never be able to reach noble heights. We must recognize unity in diversity. That is true spirituality. You are God. Until you do not realize this, you are Jeeva(individual being); once you realize and know this, you are Daivam (God).      

14 July 1992

14 July to 20 July 2014
What is the significance of the bull in Shiva temples?
What is the significance of the bull in Shiva temples-2.52-1992 May 24

In temples of Iswara (Lord Shiva), there is always a Nandi (bull) at the front. If we enquire as to what this bull stands for, the temple authorities as per their traditions would state that the bull is the vehicle (vahana) of Lord Iswara. But, is it that Lord Iswara could not get a better vehicle than the bull? Why should He have the bull specifically? Therefore, it is very wrong to consider the bull as the vehicle of Lord Iswara.

Just as the Lingam is the symbol of the Divine principle of Isawara, in the same way, the Nandi (bull) is the symbol for the life principle (Jeevatatva). The Nandi (bull) stands for the beastial instincts in the life principle. The life principle (in the bull) that is combined with the beastial instinct, on account of turning its vision only towards Iswara and not towards Nature (Prakriti), develops proximity to the Lord. The Nandi (bull) has turned its vision towards the Lord. It does not turn its vision towards Nature (Prakriti). However, we call this being as the Nandi and the Lord as Iswara, thus differentiating between the two.
There are other meanings to the Nandi (bull) that are also propagated. There should be no obstacle between the Nandi (bull) and Iswara. This means that there should be no obstacle between the Jeeva (individual being) and the Lord. How should the Jeeva (individual being) see the Lord? The Lord should be seen between the two ears of the Nandi (bull), as per the practice in vogue. The inner meaning is that from the beastial quality, basing on the virtue of Sravanam(listening to the name of the Lord) and on account of remembering and chanting the name of the Lord, the Nandi (bull) gets transformed into Iswara. Thus, Nandi is no more separate from Iswara and the two become one as Nandeeswara.          
What is the reason behind the animal with beastial instincts getting transformed into Iswara? Though being an animal, it has given up its beastial instincts, and has turned its Divine vision towards Isawara and has thus got transformed into Iswara.
24 May 1992

07 July to 13 July 2014

Who is a Guru?
Who is a Guru-5.27-1992 July 14

Who is a Guru? Many say:

Gurur Brahma, Gurur Vishnu,
Gurur Devo Maheswara,
Gurur Saakshat Para Brahma,
Thasmai Sri Gurave…
Guru Brahma. Brahma is Guru. Who is Brahma? Brahma is the creation, the creator, the one who sustains the entire creation. He is the creation and the creator too. He is the one who exists in this universe. Sarvam Brahmamayam Jagath. The entire universe is permeated with Brahma. It therefore becomes clear that the one who has assumed all these forms (in creation) is the true Guru. 
Guru Vishnu. Who is Vishnu? Is He the one who bears the conch and the discus? No, no. Vishnu means the one who is all encompassing, all expansive. He is the actor and the action too. The entire creation assumes the form of action and God is the actor (doer) for this creation. The very form of the actor and the action is God. He is the cause, the action and the duty. Everything is Vishnu. Viswam Vishnu Swaroopam. The entire universe is the form of Vishnu. Therefore, who is Vishnu? The form of creation itself is Vishnu. And, He is the Guru.
Who is a Guru? Is he the one who gives a mantra and some advice? No, no, no.
Gukaro Gunateethaha Rukaro Rupavarjithaha. “Gu” stands for attributeless (the one who transcends attributes) and “Ru” stands for formless (the one who transcends the form).
Gukaro Andhakaarasya Rukaro Tannivaranaha. “Gu” stands for darkness and ignorance and “Ru” stands for the one who dispels this darkness. What dispels the darkness of ignorance? The light. Therefore, Guru means the one who dispels the darkness of ignorance.
Guru is not the one who merely blesses you with a mantra. Guru is not the one who advices you about the message of Vedanta (philosophy). None whom we experience in this physical world can be termed as a Guru. These people can be called teachers (Adhyaapakas). Among them, those who practice and teach may be called Achaaryas. Achaarya is the one who demonstrates through one’s actions. Today there are no Achaaryas nor any Gurus. Chevvulo Mantram Chetulo Daabu – Mantra in the ear and money in the hands. Is this the principle of Guru? No, this is not the characteristic of a Guru.              
Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo Maheswara.  Who is Maheswara? Maheswara is the one who rules (commands) all the beings in this world. He is the one who is resplendent with all the powers of the Sastras(scriptures). What does He command? He is the one who advises everyone about who should perform what action, at which place, at what time, and on what day. He rules the entire world. He does not change this at any moment of time, any day and at any time. The rising and the setting of the sun is part of His rule. The occurrence of the seasons is His rule. Rain, day and night, all these are as per His command. He is the one who bestows this world with His ruling over everything, in a very disciplined manner without missing anything. Guru is omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent.  

14 July 1992

30 June to 06 July 2014
What is the true meaning of the ritual called Yajna or sacrifice?
What is the true meaning of the ritual called Yajna or sacrifice-4.28-1992 May 24

Here’s a small example. In ancient times, people performed Yajnas(sacrifices) and Yaagas (religious rituals). The scriptures have clearly stipulated the procedures for all the Yaagas and Yagnas. But there were none to uncover and clearly explain the inner significance of these rituals. They spent all their life only in external activities.

In this act of sacrifice, offering animals as a sacrifice, people with the faculty of speech offering these poor dumb animals as a sacrifice, was propagated as the procedure laid down in the scriptures. This is very wrong. These are just meaningless and useless activities.
What is the meaning of Pasutvam (animality)? Jeevatatvam (principle of human life) is Pasutvam (animality). What is Jeevatatvam (principle of human life)? Body consciousness (attachment to the physical body) is indeed Pasutvam (animality). What is body consciousness? The feeling that “I am the body”, i.e. the Aham (ego) is animality. Therefore, the true meaning of Yajnas and Yaagas is to offer the Aham(ego) on the sacrificial altar of Jnana(wisdom). We must sacrifice our Ahamkaaram(ego) and Mamakaaram (attachment). Without sacrificing ego and attachment, to sacrifice the dumb animals is not at all the dharma of human beings. 
Therefore, what is the meaning of sacrifice? It means to offer our bad qualities, bad thoughts and bad feelings to God so as to please Him. How should we offer these bad aspects to God? God alone can receive the bad and give good in return. There is none else in this world who will be ready to receive bad. There is no one who can receive bad and give good in return. This is possible for God alone.
Here is a small example. You may have a soiled 100/- rupee note. It may be very dirty. No coolie (labourer) will be ready to accept such a note. No friend will be ready to take it. But if you go to the Reserve Bank and give them this dirty spoiled note, they will take it and give you a good note in return. In the same manner, who will receive the offering of bad feelings and disgusting feelings is us? The all powerful Chairman of this Reserve Bank is God! When we offer Him all our bad, He will receive it and give us a good note in return.
Therefore, we must offer our bad notes to the one who will receive it. Merely, worrying that our notes are bad, our notes are bad and sitting without doing anything, will lead us nowhere. Thus we must offer our bad qualities, bad thoughts and bad feelings to God and receive in return good thoughts and good feelings from Him. Transforming thus, our life into an ideal life is true spirituality.   

24 May 1992

23 June to 29 June 2014
What is spirituality in the true sense?
What is spirituality in the true sense-8.14-1992 May 24

Be it great men or scholars, they are unable to communicate the message of spirituality to the youth of today, in a meaningful manner, explaining the inner significance in a way that it gets imprinted in their hearts. They presume that spirituality is mere acts of nobility like worshipping, doing Bhajans, going on pilgrimages, visiting temples, etc. The main cause for this is that they themselves have not understood and recognized the truth in the Vedas and the Vedangas (auxiliary disciplines of the Vedas), the inner significance in the Itihaasa(scriptures) and Puranaas (epics) and the true meaning of this world (Jagath).  

The modern youth – boys and girls, have not been able to understand perfectly the complete meaning of spirituality. They have assumed that spirituality is the impact of good acts such as thinking of God, visiting temples, going on pilgrimages, bathing in sacred waters, conducting Yajnas (sacrifices) and Yagas (rituals) etc. But this is not the right meaning of the word “spirituality”. It is very essential to understand the right meaning of the word “spirituality”.
Eliminating the animal qualities in man and transforming humanity into Divinity is the correct meaning of the word “spirituality”. Therefore, spirituality means experiencing the infinite awareness or power in man through acts of adventure. Spirituality means to ensure that the Divine powers which manifest in man are not associated with ego but with the Atman (Self). The spiritual path is about regarding all the powers that manifest within man, not as rising from the mind but as rising from the spiritual source. The right meaning of the word spirituality is to associate all our feelings with God and not with the world.
Spirituality is not entering into Divinity from humanity. It is manifesting the Divinity in humanity itself. Spirituality is not entering into the transcendental supreme principle from this world of five elements (Prapancha); it is manifesting the transcendental supreme principle in man itself. That is why; man today is confused and thinks that spirituality is the journey from this world to the other world and from the other world to this world. Young people of today are totally confused about spirituality. Spirituality is losing its meaning today. It is perceived as unstructured and ridiculous by young men and women of today.
Spirituality is the principle of the Atman (Self) in our day to day life. Spirituality is in essence, the way of life. It is the very path of our life. In fact, our very life is spirituality. All our powers are spiritual. To think that spirituality has nothing to do with our worldly life, that spirit has no connection whatsoever with the world, is a great mistake. Spirituality is not living life in solitude. To perceive the entire mankind as one; and as the manifestation of the one Divine Atman, is spirituality. Our entire life is embedded in spirituality. Whatever we may think, speak, act or feel; the basis is spirituality, from which all these acquire their inner meaning. The propagation of the message of the inner Atman is spirituality. Spirituality is not merely the good actions performed by the external physical body.     

 24 May 1992

16 June to 22 June 2014
How do we understand the Law of Karma?
How do we understand the Law of Karma-6.02-1992 May 22

In the morning, Dr. Venkataraman, while explaining the principle of spirituality, stated that God, after creating this universe, did not retain it within His control, but gave away all His powers to mankind. This is true. God is the creator. He created everything. But God who created this (world) did not retain its power in His hands. He gave away all the powers to the people. But along with all the powers that He bestowed on mankind, He just laid down one condition. 

You may act as you desire, you may use all the material in this creation as you like; there is no objection from anybody for this. God too will not object to this in any way. But, you can never escape from facing the consequences of your actions. We must understand this very clearly. How?
A beautiful analogy was presented this morning (in the morning session). The wind is blowing very well. It is also raining. In the Dwapara Yuga, Brahma brought about non-stop rain. All the people prayed to Lord Krishna, “Swami, we are unable to bear this heavy rain, our cattle and even our life is being subject to great difficulty, please stop this rain”. Lord Krishna replied, “This is not in My hands. What is destined to happen; has to take place. But I assume the responsibility of protecting you from that (danger). This is law of Nature. This has to take its natural course. But because of your devotion and steadfastness, I will, if necessary, lift this mountain (Govardhana Giri) and protect you. But there is no way the rain can be stopped”. 
Therefore, wind has been given the power to extinguish the lamp flame. The lamp flame has been bestowed with the power to give light. Both these are powers of God only. But it is a sign of ignorance to ask the wind to not extinguish the flame. Wind has the power to extinguish the flame. The lamp flame has the power to burn and give light. But it is your human effort to place a chimney (glass shade) around the lamp flame to prevent it from being extinguished.
Through such examples, we need to demonstrate the ideal. Going against the creation of God is not possible at any time. Therefore, man can use freely any material that is created. But you need to exercise your discrimination to identify what can be experienced and what should not be experienced.
Just because God has given (this creation), we should not experience just as we like. Why? Because the consequences are following every action. There is no way to escape the consequences of your actions. If you are prepared to face the consequences of your actions, then go ahead and do what you wish. While performing the actions, we perform with great joy; but while experiencing the consequences, we do so with great worry. This is your weakness.
Nature is just like a mirror. Whatever actions you perform in this Nature, the consequences of these actions are reflected in this Nature itself. Go and stand in front of the mirror and do Namaskaar. Your reflection (image) will also offer a Namaskaar to you. You now punish and scold the image; the image too will scold you. Recognizing this (principle), it is stated in the Vedanta, “Yad Bhaavam Tad Bhavati” (As you feel, so it becomes).  
Therefore, in this Nature, whatever type of actions we perform, we can never escape facing the results / consequences of those actions. If not today, even after 10 years, you would have to face the consequences (of your actions). 

22 May 1992

09 June to 15 June 2014
What constitutes true Service or Seva?
What constitutes true Service or Seva-2000 March 05

Students! You are all youth. There is so much energy contained in youth. The power that is present in this earth is present in you too. The attraction power, the radiance, the current is very much in you. When all the powers are present in you; to lead a life as though you have no power at all, is such a weakness. Wherever there are difficulties in the country, you must go running there and participate in serving there. You must not give any scope for differences like “who are they and who am I?” Give up all the differences of “theirs” and “mine”. Have the feeling that everything is mine! Recognizing the oneness in diversity, you must participate in service to the society. 

Society is an important limb of Nature. This is my one hand, this is my other hand, this is my nose, these are my eyes, this is my stomach, these are my legs; but all these put together, what happens? They become limbs of the body. And whose limb is this body? Body is a limb of society. And whose limb is society? Society is a limb of humanity. And whose limb is humanity? Humanity is a limb of Nature. And whose limb is Nature? Nature is a limb of Paramaatma (the supreme Divine).

Therefore, Nature is the limb of the Divine. Therefore, believing Nature as the limb of God, we must express our love, faith and engage in serving Nature. Only then, our human life will find fulfilment. All these limbs are related to the body. The body in turn is related to the society. This body must be put into the service of society. We must serve using all our limbs. We must recognize and act according to the needs and requirements of individuals, based on what is good for them. That is true service to society.

Today, in the name of service to society, many people go to villages, sweep the place, clean up the place, paint the village temples and feel satisfied by just doing this. No, no, no. This is not service at all. This is merely our duty. This is the task that we need to do anyway. But what is true service then? Find out why the people in those villages lack peace. What are the inconveniences faced by those people? What do they really need? We must put in our strength and capabilities in fulfilling their needs.

The summer season is nearing. Every village will face shortage of drinking water. Water is the very life for us. Under these circumstances, to the extent possible, we must go and either dig a bore well or make arrangements to draw water from a close-by river, and make attempts to deliver water to those people. Only when we enter into tasks that are of use to the people, that are essential for the people, we can consider this as true service.

Truly speaking, this also should not be considered as service. If you consider that you are serving somebody else, your ego may rise. No, no, consider that you are serving your very own people. We all are human beings. We belong to the caste of humanity. We all belong to one family, one faith, one language; with such feelings, we must enter into service. Then it will get transformed into true service. Thus we must engage in service to the society and translate whatever education we have acquired, whatever knowledge we have gained, into service to the society and thus make it meaningful and purposeful.     

05 March 2000

02 June to 08 June 2014
How can we use Intellect as a mirror to see our Self?
How can we use Intellect as a mirror to see our Self-3.50-05 March 2000

Man has been bestowed with the intellect (Buddhi) so as to know his true Self. The intellect is highly sacred and pure. The mirror of the intellect is coated with the chemical of Love on the reverse side (just like in a mirror, the glass is coated with a reflective substance like non-toxic silver or sputtering aluminium). If the reflective chemical is not coated on the reverse of the mirror (glass), we would not be able to see our reflection in it. That is why the chemical of Love is coated on the reverse side of the mirror of intellect. Today we are looking through the intellect that does not have the coating of Love. That is why we are seeing the objects that are behind the mirror of the intellect, but are not able to see the object that is in front of it.     

You must recognize your true Self (form). To recognize your true form, there needs to be a chemical coating behind the mirror (glass). Today, we keep the mirror devoid of love in front of us and make an attempt to see our face. But we are unable to see our true face. What is the reason? It is because there is no coating of the chemical of Love on the reverse of the mirror (intellect). If we wish to see our face, we need to keep the mirror coated with Love in front of us.

In order to show us our true reflection, God has gifted us the mirror of intellect. But humans today are not making any attempt to recognize their true form with the mirror of their intellect. Instead, man takes the mirror and keeps it in front of others’ faces. Thus, only their faces will be seen, how will you see your face? Today, we use the intellect to enquire into the outer world. Whomsoever we see, we question them, “Who are you?”, “Where have you come from?”, “What is your name?”, “Which is your hometown?” We make attempts to question the outer world, but we do not make any attempt to question ourselves.

Therefore, first of all, stop asking the question, “Who are you, who are you?” and start asking the question “Who am I, who am I?” The intellect has been given to you to see yourself and not to see others. Getting increasingly absorbed in the world, man is forgetting his own Truth. Right from a young child to an elderly person, all are entering into matters of the world. Apart from the earth they live on, they also enter into the sky, into the world of stars and planets. They enter into all outer worlds but do not enter within themselves. They travel lakhs of miles into space but do not progress even half an inch into their own heart.     

 05 March 2000

26 May to 01 June 2014
What is the most apt and significant name by which God can be known?
What is the most apt and significant name by which God can be known-1.51-2000 March 04

God can be known by so many names, indeed thousands of names. But among all names, the most apt and significant name is SathChitAnanda (Sathchidananda). Sath means eternal (Truth), Chit means total (Awareness). The unity of the two is Ananda (Bliss). Sath is like sugar, Chit is like water, when we mix the two it becomes sugar syrup. The sugar syrup is like Ananda. If, however, we keep sugar separate and water separate, how can we get sugar syrup (Ananda)?

Therefore, the principle of love that emanates from the heart and the Divine principle that manifests through our words (chanting the name of God) must unite together and that is the sacred principle of God. Whatever we do, we need to do it wholeheartedly with the principle of love. This must be love from the source (Premasource) and not love by force (Premaforce). Today we perform acts as though out of some compulsion. This is not the way. Even if you do something for half a minute, do it with a full heart; that is enough. It is enough if we have a tea spoon full of sugar. It is enough if we have a tea spoon full of cow’s milk. Why barrels of donkey’s milk? If we wholeheartedly say few words, it is enough.     

 04 March 2000

19 May to 25 May 2014
What are the five afflictions that prevent us from expereincing Atmic Bliss?
What are the five afflictions that prevent us from expereincing Atmic Bliss-2000 March 04

Embodiments of love! You are full of bliss and happiness. Forgetting your own true form of bliss and happiness, you are struggling in this world for bliss and happiness. Being the very embodiment of bliss, it is so ignorant to search for bliss in this world. When we wish to acquire this bliss, the five sheaths place all sorts of obstacles in our way. These are called the Klesha(afflictions).

The first one is Avidya Klesha, the second is Abhinava (Abhinivesha) Klesha, the third is Asthitha (Asmitha) Klesha, the fourth one is Raaga Klesha and the fifth one is Dwesha Klesha. It is because of these five Kleshaas that man is getting very far away from the Atman. He is unable to have the vision of the Atman, he is unable to experience Atmananda(Atmic bliss).   
The first Klesha(affliction) is Avidya Klesha. Avidya Klesha causes man to give too much importance to the body, love it and offer his entire life for its sake. There are many afflictions that arise out of this body; such as diseases, desires, sensual pleasures and all these lead us to sorrow. The second Klesha is Abhinava (Abhinivesha)Klesha. Man considers this world as everything and he forgets his true form. Without knowing that the mind is the true basis for everything, considering the vision of the world as primary, he diverts all the desires of the mind towards this world, and thus gets afflicted. Without exercising restraint over the mind, without gaining control over the mind, without giving up body attachment, man is troubled most by these two Kleshaas. Man considers desires of the mind as most significant. He considers the physical body as the proof for the existence of this world. Thus, he becomes the victim of so many sorrows. The third one is Asthitha Klesha. Asthithameans strong desire for sensory pleasures. He considers sensory pleasures as his very life. That is why he becomes the target of many difficulties. Raaga Klesha is the love for wealth, worldly objects, comforts and conveniences. By acquiring all wealth, comforts and conveniences, desires only increase, but they do not decrease. This puts us into so many troubles. Dwesha Kleshameans we desire for some object or some individual. If the desire is fulfilled it gives us joy. But if the desire is not fulfilled it gives rise to hatred. This is not the case with ordinary people alone. Many devotees too pray to God with certain desires in their mind. If these desires are not fulfilled they even start hating God. This Dwesha Kleshais on the rise in the world.     

04 March 2000

12 May to 18 May 2014
What is the lesson Lord Buddha teaches us about handling criticism?
What is the lesson Lord Buddha teaches us about handling criticism-6.02-1984 September 06

Once upon a time Buddha set out to seek alms. He neared the village that he was supposed to go to. All the residents of that village had great faith in Buddha. However, as he reached close to the village, some rowdies (ruffians), taking to the wrong path, started abusing him in all ways. Instead of travelling further, Buddha sat there on a rock. He asked (the ruffians), “Children, what is the pleasure that you get in abusing me?” Not giving any reply to him, they started abusing him in a more heinous manner. Buddha sat there stating that they could abuse him as long as they wanted.

They got exhausted by abusing him continuously and finally they were preparing to leave the place. As they were about to leave the place, Buddha addressed them thus, “Children, in the village that is nearby, all the people love me very much. If you would have behaved like this after I reached that village, they would have cut you down to pieces. Therefore, to make you escape that danger and to give you an opportunity to abuse me as long as you want, I sat here all this while”.

In order to make others happy, we have to put in lot of effort and spend lot of money. But today, it is so comforting to me that without spending even a naya paisa (a former monetary unit of India, the 100th part of a rupee) and without putting in any effort, I have been able to give so much happiness to so many of you. If you are so happy to abuse me, then am I not responsible for (giving you) that happiness? I have to satisfy you somehow. Therefore, I am happy that I have satisfied you.

To make others happy, there are many who build choultries, dig wells and perform several other tasks to help others. But without putting in any such effort, in this unique way, I have been able to make you wicked people so happy. This amounts to accomplishment of such a great task by me.
Buddha taught them one more lesson in a manner that made a great impact on their heart. Children, (let us say) a beggar comes to your house. He asks for alms – Bhavati Bhikshaandehi. You get some alms. But it is not the alms sought by the beggar. You have brought some other alms. The beggar asks, “What would you do if I do not accept the alms?” Your reply would be, “If you do not take the alms, I will take it back with me. It will belong to me only”.

In the same way, you all made an attempt to offer me the alms of abuses. I did not accept that. Then, whom will these alms reach? Redirect – it will reach back to you only. Therefore, you all are abusing yourselves and not me. If we post a registered letter to a friend, and if the friend does not accept the registered post, what would happen to that cover in the post office? It will be redirected and will reach the person who has sent it. In the same manner, if you have abused somebody, or if you have criticized somebody, and if they do not care about it, it will all get redirected to you only. Therefore, hatred and jealousy actually hurt you only. To think that it causes harm to others amounts to mean satisfaction. 

 06 September 1984

05 May to 11 May 2014
What is the trigger for information and transformation?
What is the trigger for information and transformation-2.15-1990 May 29

Though the same Atman is in all, based upon the ego and attachment of each human body, every individual takes upon the respective joys and sorrows. Here is a small example. Let us say there has been a plane accident somewhere. If our own relatives were to be on that plane, one need not express what our state would be. We would put in efforts for making all types of enquiries. However, if our own people are not on that plane then we get into all sort of gossip, “how did the crash take place?”, “what did happen actually?”, “how many have died?”, etc. We thus get into the act of collecting information.

When the feeling of “this is mine” is not there, we get into the information collecting mode. When we understand that the principle (of Atman) existing in all is the same, we will not get into the information collecting mode. We will get into the transformation mode. Therefore Atma Bhaavam should lead us to the feeling of oneness. There is only One, One…there is no other. But so long as we associate ourselves with this body and the mind, it is very difficult to recognize this oneness. But stating that it is very difficult, it is not correct on our part to lose ourselves in experiencing the body and the mind all the time. Even if it is difficult, we must make efforts to recognize the Truth.   
29 May 1990

28 April to 04 May 2014
How do we understand consciousness?
How do we understand consciousness-3.54-1990 May 29

It is very difficult to understand the principle of Chaitanya. Chaitanya is referred to as consciousness. In order to recognize and understand the principle of consciousness, we take a small aspect of it called the “Conscience”. Conscience means the witness. It is also called Awareness. From this conscience, further comes the “Conscious”.

The three principles of Consciousness, Conscience and Conscious get transformed into three attributes. “Conscious” is related to the senses. “Conscience” is associated with the mind. “Consciousness” is associated with the Atman. For the purpose of worldly understanding and worldly practice, we have divided in this manner into three attributes.

Here is a small example to illustrate this. Let us say, there is a Doctors Conference going on. The hall is full of doctors. All are referred to with the name “doctors”. However, one may be an ENT specialist, another a bone specialist, etc. That is, based upon the in-depth study carried out by them on a particular aspect of the human body, there may be many specialist doctors. One doctor may have specialized in bones, another in kidneys and yet another in heart. In all these cases, the same human body is divided into so many parts, and for the purpose of a living, each one specializes in a particular part and gets recognized as a specialist doctor. However, all are basically doctors.

In the same manner, all are essentially the embodiments of the Atman. For the purpose of a living, one may take up an office job, one may work as a coolie, yet another may take up some business, and some other person may take up land cultivation. It is based upon the professions we take up for the purpose of eking out a livelihood, that we assume different names. These titles are based on our professions but they are not our permanent names.        

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