People can say that
this is Brahman,
None can say, however, that this is not Brahman,
God only exists always,
The world is illusory, look!
Today, everybody is enthusiastic about New Year's Day. Significantly,
this New Year's Day has started on a Thursday. It is one's foolishness
to single out a particular day in a year and celebrate that day with
great joy. For a true devotee, everyday is a festival day. Therefore,
it is essential that we have to consider every minute, every day as
new and celebrate it with joy. In fact, every day is a New Year's Day.
Everything in this objective world is impermanent and unreal. Hence,
we have to contemplate upon the eternal truth and reality. We should
not waste our time brooding over the past or anticipating the future.
It is great foolishness to worry about the future or the past,
forgetting the present. The present is only real. Past is past, you
cannot get it back, however, much you may pray for it. The future is
hidden in the womb of time. It is not possible to visualise it.
Therefore, only the present is important. Unable to realise this
truth, people are worried about the past and future.
The foremost activity man should engage in, is service to the fellow
human beings. Instead, people are wasting their precious time worrying
about either the past or the future. Therefore, embodiments of love!
You should always engage yourself in service to the fellow human
beings. There is no greater sadhana than such service. Considering the
nine paths of devotion, namely Sravanam (listening), Kirtanam
(singing), Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu), Padasevanam
(serving His Lotus Feet), Vandanam (salutation), Archanam (worship),
Dasyam (servitude), Sneham (friendship), Atmanivedanam
(self-surrender) as the only important means for salvation, people are
engrossed in these activities. They totally forget the importance of
service. Only the fruits of service will be eternal. We must
constantly engage ourselves in service to others. God has given us
this body for that purpose only. This body is not meant to be engaged
in mere eating and drinking and thus wasting our valuable time. We
must realise the truth that God has given us this body for serving
others and thus help others. There is nothing greater than service to
humanity. Service to man is service to God. All great men have
sanctified their life only by serving humanity. Therefore, you start
serving humanity at least from now onwards. Service is more important
than Bhajan and all other Sadhanas.
Embodiments of Love!
What, according to you is service? You consider helping people in
difficulties is service. No. It is not as simple as that. Your body
should be constantly engaged in serving others. The human body
consists of several limbs. All these limbs are meant to be engaged in
serving the fellowmen and not for other activities. Unfortunately, we
are forgetting this basic fact. Every limb in the human body has been
granted by God for Karmopasana (worshipping God through service).
Karmopasana is the only means by which the human life can be
sanctified. We are building several temples. We are undertaking
various sadhanas. But, all these sadhanas can give us only temporary
satisfaction, not eternal joy. Our ancient Rishis have been able to
achieve eternal joy through a conscious effort. Therefore, you must
develop firm faith in the truth that nothing can provide eternal joy,
except service to humanity. Undertake service to the suffering
humanity. Service is not merely confined to health services. Service
encompasses every possible help to the fellow human beings.
The ancient culture of Bharat
is still preserved in the villages and not in towns and cities. In
fact, our culture is defiled in all possible ways in the cities.
Therefore, go to the villages, find out their necessities and
undertake such types of services that will alleviate their sufferings.
Today, several people shift to the towns and cities in pursuit of
comfort and luxuries. In the process, they end up in sorrows and
difficulties. This is their own making. Na Sukhat Labhyathe Sukham
(happiness cannot be obtained out of happiness). It is only through
suffering, happiness can be achieved.
You should undertake service. In fact, the hands are given to you to
serve humanity. The hands that serve are holier than the lips that
pray. Therefore, undertake selfless service and attain glory. When you
undertake good work, you enjoy peace in your life. Today, the boys who
sang Bhajans are former students of the Institute. They have
undertaken several services to please Swami. God is not interested in
worship and other sadhanas. He is interested only in service. Hence,
undertake service and more and more service. The best way to love God
is to Love all and Serve all. God is interested only in love and
service. If you can recognise the importance of these two sadhanas and
conduct yourself accordingly, there can be no greater sadhana. You
need not have to spend a lot of money in service. Sanctify your life
by undertaking loving service. Today, the old students of Sri Sathya
Sai Institute of Higher Learning have brought a cheque for Rs. 48
lakhs for presenting to Swami as a token of their love and service.
This amount has been saved by them from their salaries, by undergoing
lot of difficulties. But, to whom should the amount belong really?
This amount is meant to be utilised for service in the villages. It is
for serving the poorest of the poor. Therefore, I told them, "My dear
ones! You deposit the money in the bank and undertake the service
activities with the interest accrued on the amount." Money is of no
help in developing good qualities. Sacrifice alone can develop noble
qualities. It is only in sacrifice, there is real yoga. That is why it
is said Thyagenaike Amrutatthwamanasu (it is only by sacrifice that
man can attain immortality). Today, however, people want bhoga (enjoy
material comforts). By such bhoga, only roga (disease) will be
contracted. They cannot attain yoga. Hence, you try to attain yoga by
thyaga. Only then can you attain eternal joy.
Embodiments of Love!
There is no use contemplating on God without making sacrifice. By
contemplating on God, you may perhaps derive some mental satisfaction.
But, that is of no use. Therefore, you develop firm faith in the truth
that every living being is permeated by God and act accordingly. God
lives in every living being and experiences bliss. The Upanishads
declare, Easwarah Sarva Bhutanam (God is the indweller of all beings)
and Isavasyam Idam Sarvam (the entire universe is permeated by God).
You should not be under the impression that God is confined to some
temple or a structure somewhere. It is said Deho Devalaya Proktho Jivo
Devah Sanathanah (the body is a temple and the Indweller is God). The
real temple for God is the body itself. God is installed in the temple
of our Heart. That is why it is given the name of Hridaya. Hrid + Daya
= Hridaya. It is only when you cultivate compassion in your heart, it
can be called Hridaya. Therefore, cultivate the quality of compassion.
Whatever service you undertake with a compassionate heart, it becomes
sanctified. Consider every human being as a living divinity. God is
present everywhere. Forgetting such an omnipresent divinity, we are
hankering after petty and trivial bodily pleasures. The fact, however,
is that we can never attain real happiness with the body. This body
has several limitations. With such a body, you can never attain
limitless Ananda. (bliss).
The body is made up
of five elements and is bound to perish sooner or later but the
Indweller has neither birth nor death. The Indweller has no
attachment whatsoever and is the eternal witness. Truly speaking,
the Indweller who is in the form of the Atma is verily God
You must be able to recognise
such a divine Atma. Today, we are worshipping idols and pictures,
thinking that God is somewhere in the outside world. But, God is very
much present in the human being. That is why our ancient Rishis have
proclaimed, Daivam Manusha Rupena (God incarnates in the form of a
human being). Of what use is it to worship unseen God, while at the
same time causing suffering to the living beings around us? Every
human being you come across is an embodiment of divinity. No purpose
will be served by worshipping the idols and pictures, forgetting the
living gods in front of us. Therefore, give less importance to such
indirect methods of worshipping God. Consider the human being standing
in front of you as an embodiment of divinity. Even if you come across
your worst enemy, say, 'hello' to him lovingly. Address him as
brother. Then, he will also respond by saying, 'hello brother'. On the
other hand, if you hate him and start scolding him, he will
reciprocate the same thing to you. Respect every individual and you
will be respected. Man, today expects others to respect him; but he
will not respect others. If you do not respect others, how can you
expect others to respect you? Manava (human being) means an individual
deserving respect. Since you are born as a human being, give respect
and take respect. This is the quality you have to cultivate today.
When you respect others, others will also respect you. When you offer
your Pranams to somebody, to whom does it go actually? You are not
merely offering Pranams to the physical body consisting of the five
elements. It reaches in fact, the Indweller in that human body who is
none other than God. Now, what is the nature of this body?
This body is a den
of dirt, and prone to diseases; it is subject to change from time
to time; it cannot cross the ocean of Samsara. It is nothing but a
structure of bones. Oh mind! Do not be under the delusion that
body is permanent. Instead take refuge at the Divine Lotus Feet.
What can you achieve by
relying on such a body? It is only sin that you accumulate. You should
sustain the body for the purpose of serving others. You have taken
upon this human body only for the purpose of serving your fellow human
beings. Develop firm conviction in that truth. What happiness do you
derive with the body? In fact, nothing. Whatever pleasures you enjoy
with the help of this human body, you will have to leave all those
pleasures as well as the body itself in a trice one day or the other.
Should you have to undergo so many trials and tribulations for the
sake of these momentary pleasures? You have to respect the Jiva in the
human body. That is the real Daiva Seva (service to God). You have to
dedicate your body to such service. If you do that, every minute of
your life is fresh and new. Every day is a festival day. On the other
hand, if you undertake service once in a year, that is not real
service. Your deha (body) is Mrinmaya (made up of five elements). The
divinity residing as Indweller therein is Chinmaya (consciousness).
Therefore, rely upon such a divinity and earn salvation.
You all know about Abraham Lincoln. He used to go to school in the
company of wealthy boys, in his childhood. Those boys were wearing
costly clothes and ornaments. Lincoln, however, had to go to school
with worn out clothes that were mended by his mother. One day, his
friends made fun of his poor dress. He could not control himself. He
went straight to his mother crying and told her, "Mother! I will not
attend school hereafter. My classmates are making fun of me. They are
looking down upon me as a poor boy unable to wear decent dress." Then,
the mother took him into her arms lovingly and consoled him saying,
"My dear son! You need not have to feel sorry for such a trivial
issue. All this is going to help you in your future life. You keep our
family condition in view. Do not give credence to what others say.
Lead a life of self-confidence and self-respect. Respect every
individual and be respected by every individual." From that day
onwards, Lincoln put his mother's advice into practice and started
respecting everybody. He used to be courteous with even a cobbler
saying "Sir! How sacred is your life! You are doing great service by
stitching sandals for us so that our feet are protected from thorns".
Gradually, Abraham Lincoln could command respect from all people by
his good behaviour. He earned a very good name for himself. After
sometime, elections were held in America. He was persuaded by his
friends and well - wishers to contest the elections. He expressed his
inability saying, "I am a poor man. Who will vote for me? I do not
want these positions and power". Today, Indians are spending crores of
rupees to contest elections, but refuse to part with even a rupee as
alms to a beggar.
The good words taught by Lincoln's mother made a lasting impression on
his mind. He started respecting every individual. He used to speak
courteously with everybody. As a result he earned a very good name for
himself. At last, he bowed to the wishes of his friends and
well-wishers and contested the elections. He scored a spectacular
victory and was elected the President of the United States of America.
Then, he went to his mother and said "Mother! I am able to rise to
this exalted position and command the respect of the people of
America, because of your noble teachings those days".
It is the mother that is responsible for the children earning
reputation and fame. If children wish to earn good name, they should
obey the command of their mother. That is why, the Veda has conferred
the supreme position on the mother and father and declared Matru Devo
Bhava, Pithru Devo Bhava ( Mother is God, Father is God) . The mother
is like the body and the father, the Atma. Hence, we have to respect
our father and mother. Then, we can earn any amount of respect.
Abraham Lincoln could earn great name and fame and became the
president of America, only on account of his respect for his mother.
What do the children earn today? Nothing. They simply waste the money
earned by their parents. They bring bad name to their parents. This is
not what the children are expected to do. They should properly utilise
the money given by their parents. In fact, every drop of your blood is
the contribution of your parents. You owe your existence in this world
to the love of your parents. Hence, whenever there is a need for blood
donation, you should come forward to donate your blood. Thereby fulfil
your obligation to your parents and society. Do not ever work for your
selfish interests. In fact, selfishness and self-interest are the main
causes degrading the human being. You might have heard about Winston
Churchill, the former Prime Minister of England. He once declared "man
has conquered all, but not conquered himself".
Children should cultivate good habits and good qualities and reach
good position in life. Thus, they should bring good name to their
parents. You can earn good name not by money, but by sterling
character. No matter how wealthy a person is, his reputation will be
tarnished if his character is not good. A wealthy person may be living
in great mansions and enjoying the luxuries of life; but, he will not
have peace of mind and happiness. People crave to earn more and more
money. But, of what use is the money they earn? They waste all their
money in worthless things. One has to utilise the money earned by him
for undertaking good and beneficial activities for the society. He
should conduct himself with good behaviour and good habits. Only then,
will he have real peace in life.
Today, everyone is literally crying for Peace. But, what is this
Peace? It is in you itself. You are most sacred souls. Love is within
you. Peace is within you. Unfortunately, today you are losing the
peace and happiness that is within you and craving to earn something
in the outside world. You want to earn great wealth and build big
mansions. Devoid of good qualities, all the wealth that you earn
becomes mere waste. Therefore, cultivate good qualities. There can be
no greater wealth in the world than good qualities. The more you spend
the good qualities, the more you accumulate. They will never exhaust.
Embodiments of Divine Atma!
Prepare yourself for sacrifices. You will find eternal bliss only in
sacrifice. One who does not make sacrifice will not find peace
anywhere. People of every country in this world pray for peace
chanting 'Santhi, Santhi, Santhi' But do they get peace? No. They are
engulfed in disappointment and despair. Therefore one should develop
faith in the truth that the eternal Lord is always with us. How can
you obtain peace by ignoring the Divinity immanent in you and
worshipping some unseen God?
Share your education and wealth with your fellow human beings. In
fact, God is the real owner of the wealth acquired by you. The money
you earn belongs to God's Trust. God Himself is the President of the
Trust. Keep your trust on God and make proper utilisation of your
money. Do not hanker after money and other forms of wealth. Constantly
contemplate on God. You need not have to go to the forest or caves in
the hills in search of God. He is always with you. Develop that faith
and win over demonic qualities. Today, wherever you see, demonic
qualities and violence are rampant. People do not hesitate to acquire
wealth by sinful ways. What ultimately comes along with you at the
time of leaving the body is the sin or merit you have accumulated and
not the wealth you have acquired. Share at least a morsel of food you
eat, with others. Help yourself and help others. This is the greatest
sadhana. In fact, it is so easy to practise. Leaving aside this simple
sadhana and forgetting the noble quality of love, you are going in
search of peace in the wide world. Is it not foolishness on your part?
Embodiments of Love!
Develop the quality of love. Do not hate anybody. Develop the faith
that whatever happens is for your own good. Whenever you encounter any
difficulty or suffering, you alone are responsible for it. Respect
others. That alone will protect you. On the other hand, if you insult
somebody that alone will punish you. Pleasure or pain, they are the
products of your own making. The merit or sin committed by you will
follow you like a shadow. Man today is giving sermons to others. But
he himself is not following his precepts. What values such teachings
will have? All this is mere deception. Whatever teachings you may read
or listen to, can never help you if you do not put them into practice.
Help your fellow human beings at least in a small measure. That alone
will help you. Do not blame others for the difficulties you face. Do
not ever abuse others. Love all. Treat all people as your brothers and
sisters. Cultivate the feeling of brotherhood of man and fatherhood of
Embodiments of Love!
The Bharatiyas are really fortunate. They have all facilities. But the
quality of love is missing in them. If only they cultivate love, none
can excel them. Therefore, enhance your honour and prestige by
cultivating the quality of love. Follow the twin principles of Sathya
and Dharma with love. Love alone can protect you.
Embodiments of Love!
What for are you given the hands? Is it for feeding the mouth? No, no.
You have to sing the glory of God with your tongue. The hands are
given to you for the purpose of keeping the beat in accordance with
the tune. Bharatiyas are those who worship God with Bhava (feeling)
Raga (the tune) and Thala (the beat). The syllable 'Bha' also stands
for bhakti (devotion) 'Ra' for Raga (tune) and 'Tha' for Thyaga
(sacrifice). You have to sing the glory of the Lord combining these
three aspects. They alone are the real Bharathiyas. Every individual
born in the country of Bharat is sanctified. We do not need heaven.
Let's participate in seva chanting the divine name. There can be no
greater wealth than this. Why should we suffer when we have such a
great wealth with us? Consider all your education and the service you
undertake as God's work. The Gitacharya has given a clarion call,
Sarvadharman Parithyajya Mamekam Saranam Vraja (surrender unto Me all
your activities and seek refuge in Me alone). Hence, dedicate all your
activities to God. Only then will you attain peace in every possible
Bhagawan concluded the Discourse with the bhajan, "Prema Muditha
Manase Kaho …"