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The Sunday Talk Given by Anil Kumar

“Dasara”  Part I

21st September 2003

   

 

OM... OM... OM...

Sai Ram

With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan

Dear Brothers and Sisters!  

I welcome you all to this morning’s session. For the last two days, you must have observed Veda recitation taking place daily in the evening, while bhajans are going on. We have bhajan and Veda recitation simultaneously. I feel that the Dasara mood has already set in. So I thought that we should also set our minds in tune with the Dasara mood and the Dasara celebrations.

  Dasara celebrations commence on the 27th of September and conclude on the 5th of October, as per the calendar. I am not making any official announcement as far as the ashram is concerned. I am speaking about these dates based on the calendar - please underline, calendar! (Some people might misquote me or misunderstand me, so I have to arrange for my safety and security.) (Laughter)

The Dasara celebrations commence on the 27th and conclude on the 5th. Usually a weeklong celebration is observed here. If it is going to take place, we may have it start from the 29th. This is also a speculation, not a confirmation – underline, no confirmation!  

We have a sacrificial ritual, an annual sacrificial practice, that we call yajna. It is performed every year, coinciding with the nine-day celebration. The nine-day celebration is called Navarathri. Nava means ‘nine’; rathri means ‘nights’.

I would like to explain the significance of the yajna and the process of yajna, as a sort of homework, before we actually participate. If we do some groundwork, we will be able to appreciate what we see, and we will be able to actively participate in that yajna, being the beneficiaries of that important ritual, which may take place during that time. Keeping these points in view, I have chosen to speak to you this morning on yajna.

 

DURGA, LAKSHMI, SARASWATHI

The three names that you will often hear are Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi. You will often hear these three names of the deities during the nine-day period. They are repeated and recited by priests, who perform the yajna. We also have a bhajan to these deities: 

Durga, Laksmi, Saraswathi, Sai Jaganmaatha,

Durga, Laksmi, Saraswathi, Sai Jaganmaatha.

 

These are the three presiding deities - Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi. The whole spiritual activity during the nine-day celebration centers around these three deities.

My friends, names may be many, but the spirit is One. Names may be many, but God is One. Each aspect is given one name, like any of us. You are a parent at home; you are the officer in your office; you are a brother in your family; a friend outside; and a citizen in the country. You have so many portfolios, don’t you? Likewise, there are so many Names given to explain each of the aspects of Divinity.

This morning we are trying to learn the different aspects of Divinity. During this season of Dasara, three aspects of Divinity are dealt with in depth: Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi. It is a three-dimensional view of Divinity. I think I am clear.

 

KRIYASAKTHI, ICHASAKTHI, JNANASAKTHI

The first aspect, Durga, stands for the power of action. One should necessarily act to be successful in life. By worshipping God, by thinking of Him, by contemplating on Him, you have more of what is called Kriyasakthi. Kriyasakthi means the power to act, the will to act. (As a teacher, I can’t go wrong in my spelling!) Kriyasakthi is the power of action.

Lakshmi, the second deity, the second aspect of the Divinity, stands for Ichasakthi. So, Kriyasakthi means the power of action and Ichasakthi means will power. I think I am clear. I repeat again: Durga symbolizes Kriyasakthi, the power of action, while Lakshmi stands for Ichasakthi, will power. 

Now, Saraswathi, the third aspect, represents Jnanasakthi, the power of discrimination. I repeat again: Durga symbolizes Kriyasakthi, the power of action; Lakshmi stands for Ichasakthi, will power; Saraswathi represents Jnanasakthi, the power of discrimination. So, Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswathi are the power of action, will power and the power of discrimination.

Nobody will ever say, “I don’t need one of the three. I don’t need to have will power.” Without it, a person would be an utter failure! No one would ever say, “I don’t need to have the power of action.” It would be literal death! Nobody would say, “I don’t need the power of discrimination.” He would be worse than an animal! So, we need all these three faculties – action, will and discrimination, which are Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi.

Then, there are three other Names associated with these first three Names. What are they? Gayathri, Savithri and Saraswathi. These three Names are associated with the earlier three Names, and are more or less synonymous, or having the same meaning. There are different names, just as we have a first name, a last name and a nickname, which is a name given to us by friends. These are different Names here also, but actually they convey the same spirit.

Gayathri, Savithri, Saraswathi -- what do they stand for? Most of you must be reciting the Gayathri Manthra. To my surprise, to my astonishment and to my pleasure, I often stop wherever our friends are repeating the Gayathri Manthra when they assemble in groups in the evening. I should tell you that all of you can recite the Gayathri Manthra far, far better than natives of this country, far more sincerely than people who are born in this country. That is amazing. That is the power of Sai! The power of Sai is very much reflected in these people. They are repeating the Gayathri Manthra in perfect intonation, with a perfect accent. That’s really great.

 

THE GAYATHRI MANTHRA

The Gayathri Manthra, as you all know, is:

Om Bhoor Bhuvah Suvaha,

Tat Savitur Varenyam,

Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi,

Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayaat.

Om Bhoor Bhuvah Suvaha: These three words -- Bhoor, Bhuvah, Suvaha -- Bhoor is Gayathri or Durga; Bhuvah is Savithri, who is Lakshmi; Suvaha is Saraswathi. Am I clear? So, Bhoor, Bhuvah, Suvaha are Gayathri, Savithri and Saraswathi. Or, you can call them Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi – the power of action, will power and the power of discrimination. Am I clear?

What does Bhoor mean? Bhoor pertains to the body. The body should be healthy. The body should be an effective instrument in the Hands of God, in order to participate in the Divine mission. The body should be perfect. We pray to God, Bhoor, “Oh God, make me physically fit. Oh God, make me physically strong. Oh God, make this body an effective instrument in Thy Hands!” That is body, Bhoor.

The second aspect, Bhuvah, relates to the mind. The mind should also be alert. The mind should be awakened. The mind should be sensitive. The mind should be receptive. The mind should be sacred. The mind should be positive. When the mind is not positive, when it is not prepared, when it is static, when it is dull, when it is inert, it is a useless mind! That mind has to be treated by a psychiatrist. Therefore, I pray, “Oh God! Make my mind alert, make my mind powerful, make my mind sensitive.” That is Bhuvah, the mind.

The third one is Suvaha. Suvaha pertains to the Atma, the spirit or consciousness. The life behind the mind, the consciousness, the spirit, the soul behind this mind is Atma, the consciousness. That is Suvaha. The body represents materialisation. Body is composed of various materials, various limbs. So, Bhoor is materialisation, Bhuvah is vibration, and Suvaha is radiation or Atmic power.

I have collected all of Bhagavan’s discourses, which have been given during the Dasara season. Being a student of science, I thought that it would be fine if I put it in a tabular form. This will give us a summary of at least half a dozen discourses, I am more than certain. We are living in a computer age where things have to be supplied as a package deal. Am I right? So, this is a package supply of information covering Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi.

So, Durga is Kriyasakthi - the power of action. Durga is Gayathri, or what we call Bhoor, which represents the body. It is the materialisation. That’s the first step.

The next one is Lakshmi, the Ichasakthi, or will power. Lakshmi is Savithri, Bhuvaha, representing the mind, which is the life principle or vibration.

And thirdly, Saraswathi or Jnanasakthi, the power of discrimination, represents Suvaha, which symbolizes Atma, consciousness. This is radiation.

So, Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi represent materialisation, vibration and radiation. Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswathi, and Gayathri, Savithri, Saraswathi, all mean the same respectively. In other words, to remember them all, I’ll give you a simple clue: M.B.A.

M.B.A. is a very important course. There is a great demand for admission into the M.B.A. course. M.B.A. is M = mind, B = body, A = Atma. Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswathi: B or body = Durga. M or mind = Lakshmi; A or Atma = Saraswathi. That is M.B.A. So, we should have that M.B.A degree. We all have it - body, mind and Atma; Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi; or Gayathri, Savithri and Saraswathi; materialisation, vibration and radiation; or, what you call, the power of action, will power and the power of discrimination.

If I repeat this again, it might appear as if I am taking you back to the fundamentals. I am highly aware of the fact that all of you are well informed about these aspects. These classes are meant more for my benefit, rather than benefiting anybody else. This gives me an opportunity to go through all that Bhagavan has said on earlier occasions and relate these to the present occasion, when a situation demands or arises. This is the first aspect that I wanted to bring to your attention. 

GODDESS SARASWATHI

Then let us discuss the second aspect. Bhagavan has said a few things about Saraswathi. Saraswathi is Divinity, the Divine aspect. These are the points:

Saraswathi has another name - Bharathi. This country of India is also called Bharath. Some people think Bharath is the name of a king, after whom this country was named. According to Swami, this interpretation is totally wrong. He said that before the birth of Bharath, this country existed. What was the name of this country before Bharath was born? This country of Bharath was there even before his birth.

Therefore, this country is named Bharath after Bharathi, a Vedic term, a word found in the Vedas. That’s what Bhagavan said, which is a matter of revelation to most of us. We think that Bharath is the name of the king, after whom this country was named; but this is not so. According to Swami, Bharathi is a Vedic term, a Vedic word, after which this country was named.

Saraswathi has the swan, hamsa, as Her chariot. The swan, hamsa, has the faculty of separating water from milk. Hamsa, the swan, can separate water and milk. The swan has this beautiful gift, meaning the sense of discrimination.

Also here, hamsa represents the breath, the breathing process - inhalation and exhalation. Breath! If there is anything wrong with our breathing process, we need to go to the Super Speciality Hospital. The breathing process should be normal. The breathing process is a sign of a person being alive. When the breathing process stops, well, he will appear under the obituary column! So, the breathing process is the life process, and that is called Hamsavahini. Vahini means the chariot. Hamsa, the swan, is the chariot of Saraswathi, who represents our breathing process, or the life principal.

Saraswathi has another name, which is ‘Deepthi’. Deepthi means ‘light’. By praying to Goddess Saraswathi, the darkness of ignorance is shed. The darkness of ignorance is dispelled with the light of knowledge. With the light of knowledge, the darkness of ignorance is totally gone, is totally dispelled. By praying to Goddess Saraswathi or Deepthi, you are going to be full of light. Deepthi means you are radiant, you are vibrant, you are full of awareness, you are awakened, aware and alert.

Bhagavan refers to other aspects of Saraswathi as Sabdabrahmamayi. God is responsible for all the sound, the primal sound, the sound within everybody.

Then, Characharamayi: God is the source of the mobile and immobile, the motile and immotile, or whatever you may call it. The present day science also speaks of this. All matter, no matter what it is, is composed of atoms and molecules. They, in turn, are comprised of electrons, protons and neutrons. Electrons, protons and neutrons revolve in different orbits. They liberate energy. Electrons, protons and neutrons jump from one orbit to another, liberating energy. That energy is the source of life. I am living, dynamic. Non-living is static. That is apparent. That is only external. But inherently, deep within, organic or inorganic, all material is composed of molecules, atoms, protons, electrons and neutrons, dissipating energy, which is the source of life - Characharamayi.

Next comes Jyothirmayi: The light is because of Divinity. Jyothirmayi is ‘light’.

Vangmayi: Your talk, your word, is the speech faculty.

Next, the whole nature is Mayamayi.

Then there is Nityanandamayi, which is Eternal Bliss.

Paratparamayi is the Divinity.

Sreemayi represents wealth. 

Swami, in His discourses, repeats these words very fast. Well, that really shakes me, perhaps for your entertainment. I am literally shaken, because Swami says them very quickly: Sabdabrahmamayi, Characharamayi, Jyothirmayi, Vangmayi…(Laughter). But if I am given some time, I will be able to say them. That is the Divine melody, or the Divine Romance.

So, these are the eight aspects of the Divinity: Sabdabrahmamayi, Characharamayi, Jyothirmayi, Vangmayi, Mayanayi, Nityanandamayi, Paratparamayi, Sreemayi, which represent the sound, movement, light, speech, nature, bliss, Divinity and wealth. They all come under Saraswathi, the Goddess whom we worship during this season of Dasara.

Now, we come to the third point: You also hear another name – ‘Parasakthi’. During Dasara, we also worship Parasakthi. Parasakthi pertains to the victory of the devas over the asuras - the righteous over the demonic. Righteous people will win over the unrighteous. Good people will certainly win over bad people. The good will survive; the evil shall perish. The triumph of good over the wicked, that is the meaning of Parasakthi.

Further, Parasakthi also represents the Kundalini power. In our back, there are six chakras, which we call shadchakra. Shadchakras are present in our back. The chakra at the bottom is called the Mooladhara chakra. The chakra on the top is the Sahasrara chakra. So, on the top is Sahasrara, while at the bottom is Mooladhara. By praying to the Goddess Parasakthi, the Kundalini or Divine power ascends from the primordial Mooladhara chakra. The movement of the Kundalini across the six chakras is the process of awakening or enlightenment, by which we can enjoy peace and joy. That is the meaning behind the worship of Parasakthi.  

YAJNA

Then I come to the fourth aspect -- yajna. Yajna is undertaken every year during this season of Dasara. Why? What is happening in the yajna? On the dais, you find many priests sitting, lined up, dressed well. You find some priests sitting at the center, with an altar of smoke and fire. You find priests reciting slokas. We hear them and we want to know what it is.

In the Poornachandra Auditorium, at the center of the stage, you find the yajna. You see the sacrificial fire, the smoke and priests around it. What is it all about? Bhagavan explains clearly the various aspects of yajna.

In the Poornachandra Auditorium, the central raised place is the altar, which represents the human mind. That place with the sacrificial fire, that particular altar, represents the human mind. You find the priests making various offerings. They are called havis. Havis are the offerings. What are they? What are you supposed to offer? Your desires, anger, jealousy, pride - the list is endless.

Then you have the fire. That fire is the human heart. And the smoke coming out of it, homam, is sacredness. You find people repeating manthras. You also find some yanthra, the mystical structure, kept there in that altar, which represents all the money that you spend, all the resources that you have, all that you offer for the successful conduct of yajna.

And finally, we find those priests wearing silk dhotis, silk robes, which are given by Bhagavan. As they wear red silk dhotis, as they walk, each one feels like a bridegroom. Well, that is a special dress, a special priestly costume. Likewise, we also have a convocation costume, when we attend our convocation as a teacher. Similarly, the priests also have a special design, a special costume. The silk robe represents purity and selflessness.

You find a very pleasant smell at the place where the yajna is conducted. So many condiments, so many precious things are offered there. These condiments and perfumes are aromatic and fragrant. They represent the human values like Truth, Righteousness, Peace and Love. So, my friends, the yajna conducted here is symbolic. It represents the mind, desires, the heart, sacredness, our resources, purity, selflessness, human values and what not!

Some of you may ask, “How can you interpret that way? Are they really symbolic? How can I accept it in this scientific age? In this age of computers, how can I accept this? It is all your imagination. It is all your interpretation.”

Maybe these are the questions that some might entertain within. But the truth is this: On the day of Independence, we salute our national flag. The flag is nothing but a piece of cloth. Why should you salute that piece of cloth? That piece of cloth represents your country. Therefore, when you salute it, you respect your national flag. It is not a simple piece of cloth. No. It represents a nation. Don’t you think so?

Then the stamp that we affix on an envelope, a postal stamp, it represents value. Unless you put a stamp on it, the letter will not be delivered. It will be sent back to you. Is it not so? The stamp attaches value. The signature of the Reserve Bank governor attaches value to the currency note. A currency note, after all, is just paper. Yet, you keep it in your pocket. You keep it in the safety deposit locker. Why? It is not just paper. It is money, currency!

Similarly, it is not simply a yajna; it is not a game. No. It is not a matter of fun and frolic. Certainly not! It is not a simple ritual. No. Do not condemn it as a traditional, ancient, archaic spiritual activity, no. It is ultra-modern.

Such activities are needed now more than ever before. Why? In the days when these yajnas were conducted, the country had timely rain. People never died of drought. There was never a situation when there was no rain at all. The country never passed through drought for a prolonged period of time. Because of yajna, there was no famine at all. A ritual becomes spiritual, and ultimately, that guarantees physical life.

So, physical life is based on the spiritual content and the spiritual content is based on the ritual. These are the three levels -- ritual, spiritual and physical. We don’t want spiritual; we don’t want ritual; yet, we want the physical. This mentality deserves a place either in a mental hospital or just death. There is no other alternative; there is no safety; there is no security. Yajna is conducted everywhere for people to live in affluent plenty and prosperity, in safety and security. That is the fourth aspect.

 

PRIESTS INVOLVED IN YAJNA

The fifth aspect: You find priests sitting there on the dais. Why don’t I also go and sit? I am not eligible. Why don’t you go and sit? Why does it take time? Who are those people? Why do they sit there? Why not you and me?

They have some designations. Yes. The person who stands behind the President of India is his bodyguard. The person who stands in front of His residence is a watch guard. Understand? The one who carries a rifle and a pistol is a soldier. Each army person has a duty to perform. All right.

Why don’t I wear the dress? I can wear the uniform, but it would only be a drama. I don’t know how to handle a rifle. I might wear the uniform of a soldier, maybe for a photograph, but not for any performance. Am I clear?

Priests also have specially designed tasks, specially assigned jobs to perform. What are they?

One gentleman, the head priest’s name, is Brahma. That is the job title, not that he is called Brahma.

After the yajna, you can’t say, “Oh Brahma, please come here!” No! No! No! (Laughter)

By profession, I am a lecturer. ‘Lecturer’ is not my name. My name is Anil Kumar, but my profession is a lecturer.

“Oh lecturer! Come on.”

You cannot call me like that. I will file a suit against you! (Laughter) (I have become more legal- conscious after a recent visit the U.S.!) (Laughter)

The point is that you can’t call me by virtue of the name of my profession. Am I right? Therefore, the point is that the chief priest is Brahma and he recites a very important Veda named Atharva Veda. He goes on chanting, repeating that Veda.

“Sir, I want to be Brahma.

“Come on, you recite Atharva Veda! Then you can go and sit there.”

“I don’t know it.”

“So, you cannot be a Brahma.”

The second priest is Hotha. He recites another Veda named Rig Veda.

The third priest is Udgatha. He recites a Veda named Sama Veda.

The fourth priest is Adhwarya. He recites a Veda named Yajur Veda.

These are the four important priests around the altar. They will be reciting, they will be repeating each of the four Vedas. Am I clear? That is the fifth aspect, which I want to draw your attention to.

 

READING OF SCRIPTURE- PARAYANAM

The sixth aspect: You find some priests sitting on either side of the dais. These priests go on reading. “What do they read?” we wonder. They don’t read newspapers, no. (Laughter) They don’t read any novels. Certainly not! They read certain sacred texts.

This process of reading a spiritual text is called parayanam. Parayanam means reading a scripture. Being the product of a Christian college, I know that on every Christian occasion, there will be a scripture reading. There is the Gospel according to Timothy, the Gospel according to Luke, the Gospel according to Mark or the Gospel according to St. John. On every occasion, someone will be reading portions from the scripture.

In Sikhism, Guru Granth is read, which is a sacred activity. Scripture reading is very sacred, that is why it is called parayanam.

What do they read? Devi Bhagawatham is one book. Devi Bhagawatham speaks of the energy aspect of the universe. Energy, the cosmic energy, the dynamism, is depicted in the Devi Bhagawatham.

Another sacred book that is read there is Ramayanam, the story of Ramachandra, the earlier Incarnation. These scriptures are read there on the dais.

 

SALUTATIONS TO SUN-GOD -- SURYANAMASKARAM  

You also see some people doing namaskar, salutations, getting up, prostrating, and when Swami is present, going around Him. Why should someone do that? When others are simply keeping quiet, why is this man doing that? Why don’t the others also go around Bhagavan? It is not possible. There are certain rituals performed by certain priests.

One priest does Suryanamaskara. Surya is sun, the sun god. The priest will have some design there on the ground, a design of the solar system. He will be prostrating; he will be worshipping that design of the solar system. Once Swami comes there on the dais, he will say, “Oh Bhagavan! You are the sun god!” So, he will go around Him.

When you see me, you don’t need to look at my photo, do you? When a person is here, why do you need to look at his photo? So when Bhagavan, the sun god, is there, why pray to that design? It is not necessary. So, when Bhagavan is seated on the dais, that man will get up and go around Him because Bhagavan is identified as Aditya, the sun god himself. Am I clear please? That is Suryanamaskara.

Then there is another person, who will be worshipping Rudrahomam. Rudra ensures the Bhadra. Bhadra means safety. Bhadra is security. We need safety and security in our life. By doing this Rudrahomam, one will have all safety and security in their lifetime.

Then we have the recitation of Veda, Vedaparayanam and Sahasralingarchanam. There will be so many lingas there. You must have seen lingas. I don’t need to speak at length about linga. Linga is a symbol of life. Bhagavan has said that linga is a symbol into which the entire cosmos finally merges back.

So, the whole creation came out of linga, the whole creation is sustained by linga, and the creation merges back into the linga. It means the lingam represents creation, sustenance and annihilation. Sahasralingarchana means worshipping the three principles of creation, maintenance and annihilation.

These are the rituals that will be performed on the dais. These are the texts, which will be read on the dais. These are the jobs of the priests, who will be doing their assigned tasks on the dais during this yajna period.

 

VISHNU- THE PRESIDING DEITY

I would like to draw your attention to another point. Who presides over this yajna?

You find the President presiding over the Lok Sabha. You find the Vice President of the country presiding over the Rajya Sabha. The Governor presides over the legislative assemblies in the respective states. Who presides over this yajna, the sacred ritual going on there? The presiding deity of this yajna is given the name ‘Vishnu’. The One who presides over this yajna is God.

Yajnovy Vishnuhu.

Vishnu is God, who presides over the whole activity of the yajna here. The President presides over the Lok Sabha (Senate); but at home, he doesn’t preside over anybody! Am I right?  Similarly, God in that position, God in that designation of presiding over the yajna, is called ‘Vishnu’. Vishnu, God as the presiding deity of the yajna, has the following tasks, the following responsibilities.

What are they? Yajnabhruth means that He is the master of the yajna. The second is yajnakruth. He is the performer of the yajna. The third is yajnabhuk, the receiver of the yajna. The one who performs the yajna, the one who accepts the yajna, and the process of yajna is the same - the same Divinity. The performer, the acceptor or the receiver, and the process of yajna, all three are the same and are given these three names: yajnabhruth, yajnakruth, yajnabhuk. This is what Bhagavan said during His discourses.

Now I draw your attention to another aspect of yajna. What are the objectives? What is the ultimate purpose behind this yajna? I want to present before you certain other important points in this connection.

 

SELF-REALISATION

One: By performing yajna, you will have that deservedness or prapthi. What is it that you deserve? It is Self-realization, Atma consciousness. My friends, some of you may have a doubt now. Should all of us do yajna?

“Shall I arrange it in Italy or in the United States or in Russia, wherever I belong? Is it possible to do yajna all over the world?”  Please be very clear. Brothers and sisters, I want your special attention to this statement. Lend me your ears. What does Bhagavan say?

“ANY SELFLESS, PURE ACTIVITY UNDERTAKEN WITH LOVE IS YAJNA.”

That’s it! A selfless, pure activity, undertaken with Love, is yajna. The fire and the offerings and the priests are not necessary. Doing your job selflessly, what you call ‘being devoted to your duty with a spirit of Love’, that is yajna. You may be a professor, you may be a doctor, you may be an engineer or you may be a businessman. Whatever you do, once you offer yourself to God and do your activity with Love, selflessly and with purity, that itself is yajna. It does not require any special activity; it does not require any manthra to be chanted or Veda to be recited or read. It is not necessary! Do it dutifully, diligently, selflessly, with all your heart, mind, soul, and that is called yajna. Bhagavan gave that beautiful definition, which will support our own way of life, our own walk of life.

The point is deservedness. When I do my duty with purity, selflessly and with Love, I will have the vision of the Divine within. I will have the vision.

I am not saying a dream. My friends, be cautious of this. Some people say, “I had a dream last night.” Please continue to dream throughout your life. Life is not a dreamland. There are some people who go on harassing you, who go on chasing you with their dream experiences. Please beware of these dreamers. Life is not a dream. Life is a reality! Life is here and now, not in the dream.

I am not speaking of dreams; I am speaking of vision. A vision is different from a dream. A dream is psychological, while vision is spiritual. Dream is an unfulfilled desire; dream is an unfulfilled task; dream is revengeful, full of reaction, reflection and resounds. Whereas, vision is creative, vision is spiritual and vision is Divine. Therefore, the point is that you will have the vision of the Self, that experience of the Self, or what you call ‘awareness’.  

YAJNA AND NON-VIOLENCE

The next aspect: Yajna has another name - atharva. Atharva means non-violence. Here non-violence also implies not to be violent in your words. Some people speak violently, using horrible, very harsh words. They go on speaking with a very high pitch in their voice, which is most disturbing, as if they are screaming, as if they are agitated, as if they are disturbed. Their words are not soothing. Their words are not sweet.

So, you can be violent by using harsh words. You can be violent by your actions. By your thoughts, you can be violent. Thought also communicates. We feel like talking to some people and we don’t feel like talking to other people. We feel like being close to some people; we feel like maintaining a respectable distance from other people. Why? Due to vibration, thought. So, the thought can also be violent.

By having positive thoughts, good thoughts, you will attract people. By having bad thoughts, you have to live all by yourself. The face is the index of the mind. The face will tell us automatically what thoughts he has behind him.

So, we can be violent by thought, word and deed. We should not be violent. Let us be non-violent. Words that are soft and sweet are non-violent. The positive mind is non-violent. Deeds that are constructive are non-violent. This is atharva.

Yajna has another name - chandas. Chandas is derivative of chat, which means bliss. This chandas is a Vedic word, which means bliss. Ultimately, it confers moksha, or liberation, or nirvana. What is nirvana? What is moksha? Detachment is moksha. Desirelessness is moksha. Detachment and desirelessness are moksha. Moksha is not a separate world for which you need a passport or a visa. The moment you are desireless, you are liberated. The moment you are detached, you are liberated. That’s what Bhagavan says.  

INNER AND OUTER ASPECTS OF YAJNA

This yajna has two important aspects. One is outer, and the other is inner.

A simple example: You present a good dress to your son. That is an outer gesture. But the inner feeling of love is expressed by way of this gift. Am I not right? You visit me. I give you a memento, I give you a gift, which is an expression of my love. So, all the inner activity, all the inner feeling, is the background for the outer activity. Inner is the base, is the foundation, while the outer is its expression. Similarly, yajna has these two aspects - the outer and the inner.

Outer aspects are the homam, havis, fire, everything. That is just the outer. But what is the inner one? Physical fitness, psychological alertness, and intellectual awareness are the advantages, the inner aspects, the inner purpose and the significance of yajna.

I think I should cover these aspects related to the yajna this week, although I know that we have one more week to go. We also have next Sunday at our disposal. But we should also be prepared for any eventuality later. I don’t want to take a chance. I want to cover these aspects this week. My friends, I want to draw your attention to some more aspects.

This whole yajna will help us to develop three important aspects. What are they? One is heart. Yes! The yajna will help us develop a heart that is not polluted by hatred or by attachment. The heart should be unpolluted. It should be pure, crystal clear.

As Bhagavan says, “Raga - dwesha. Raga is attachment and dwesha is hatred.”

These two evil traits pollute our mind and heart. This yajna, this spiritual activity, will keep our mind unpolluted. It will keep it clean and sacred. This is one advantage.

The second purpose behind this yajna is to maintain our speech, to always center it on the principle of Truth. Under no circumstances should we utter a lie. Untruth, falsehood or lies pollute our speech. This process of yajna also assures us of speech that is unpolluted. So, the mind becomes free from hatred and attachment; second, the speech becomes free from falsehood and untruth.

The third thing is that the body is unpolluted by violence. Violence pollutes our body. Violence is not necessarily killing or murder. No, no, no! By thought, word and deed, we can hurt anybody. Making the body physically non-violent is the third point.

Yajna will help us to develop speech, which is full of Truth, a heart free from hatred and attachment, and finally, a body, which is free from any violent activity, keeping us pure and sacred. That is an important aspect, which I wanted to draw to your attention.  

MEDITATION HAPPENS

The next point is also worth consideration. My friends, when we think of God, when we are all alone by ourselves for some time, in full concentration, we call it meditation. I want to share this point with you:

Meditation is not a process. Meditation is not an activity. Meditation happens. Meditation is never done. If you do it, it is not meditation. If it happens, it is meditation. Therefore, you can be in meditation, but you can never do meditation. Am I clear? You can never do meditation! You can be in meditation -- try to be and never do!

What do I mean? Once you do, you become a doer. Am I clear? When you become the doer, naturally, pride and ego are ready to settle in our head. It is like a snake ready to raise its ugly hood to attack. When you play the role of a doer, you become proud. When you take the role of a doer, you will be egoistic. Therefore, don’t do. Be! You can be in meditation; you cannot do meditation

GOD – NEITHER SUBJECT NOR OBJECT

My friends, another beautiful idea I can share with you is this: God is not an object; God is not a subjective experience! Some people say, “I have experienced God!” But this means, “I am different from God.” Gone, zero marks. “I have experienced God!”

God is not a subjective experience. God is an experience, that’s all. He is neither an object nor a subject, but an experience. Therefore, this yajna will bring us that sort of awareness - to feel God as an experience. Yes! This is a very important relevant thing.  

Chaitanya

I want to draw your attention this morning to aspiration: The desire for God should be great. There is one great devotee named Chaitanya. The word chaitanya means awareness, consciousness.

To quote Swami, “Constant Integrated Awareness.” ‘C.I.A.’ Am I clear? So, chaitanya is C.I.A. = ‘Constant Integrated Awareness’.

There is a great devotee by name Chaitanya. What did Chaitanya say? “I don’t want Sri.” S-r-i. Some people say, S-h-r-I, Shri. You can say ‘Sri’ or ‘Shri’. The meaning of ‘Sri’ is affluence, prosperity and property.

So, Chaitanya said, “I don’t want Sri, but I want Hari.”

Sri is affluence; Hari is the Master. Hari is God, Lord of Sri. Sri is Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth. Hari is Vishnu, the Master of Lakshmi.

So Chaitanya says, “I want Hari, God, and not Sri, the property.”

Somebody said, “I see. So, if I don’t want property, is Hari enough?”

Nobody will give you any accommodation by simply saying, “Hari, Hari.” You have to pay. You cannot go to the hotel and say, “Hari, Hari.” It is not possible. The hotelier has to be paid. Am I clear?

For that, Chaitanya said, “Remember, when you pray to Hari, Sri will follow. Sri Hari.”

Sri, Lakshmi, wealth follows Hari, Her Master. On the other hand, if you pray to Sri only, Hari may not follow Her. So, if you pray to Hari, it is a double advantage. Am I clear? It is a wholesale deal, not retail. When you pray to God, you will have affluence also. Sri Hari! Sri follows Hari. That’s what Chaitanya said.

That’s one of the implications of offering your prayers to God. Instead of praying for that and this, pray to Him, and everything will be given unto you.

“Seek the Kingdom of Heaven. Everything shall added unto to you,” says the Holy Bible. Once you seek the Kingdom of Heaven, the Divine gem Himself, everything shall be added unto you.

 

BEWARE OF THE POLITICAL MIND, NOT POLITICIANS!

It is important that we be more alert, and make our mind free from the politics or the gimmicks. Some people want to politicise the situation: “If I do this yajna, what will I get?”

Repeatedly, Swami says, “I don’t want my students to be politicians. Beware of politics.”

What does this mean? We find politicians also come here for darshan. Why does Baba condemn them? Yet Baba says, “I don’t want my students to be politicians.” What does this mean?

The answer is this: Swami does not condemn a politician. Bhagavan does not deny the politician. Bhagavan does not reject the politician. But He does criticise the political mind. Your political mind is condemned. Your political mind is to be attacked. The political mind is to be destroyed, not the politician. I think I am clear. One need not be a politician, yet he can still be political. Am I right?

A political mind in the queue is someone who avoids poor people, tries to occupy the front seat, and tries to ask that fellow or this fellow for a chit to occupy the front row. Taking other’s credit, trying to get the advantage at every point, standing at a vantage point whenever Swami comes, while denying the same advantage to others, are also the expressions of a political mind.

The political mind need not necessarily go with politics and political parties. The political mind is a manipulating mind. A political mind is maneuvering. A political mind is management, exploitation.

Therefore, when Bhagavan says, “Don’t be a politician”, He means detach from the political mind, the manipulation. Spiritual activity has nothing to do with a political game, has nothing to do with political benefits and advantages, whatever they may be. The moment I become a human being, well, that is the fulfillment of life. That is the Divinity. Humanity, at its climax, is Divinity!

Therefore, in full realisation of the human values during this period of Dasara, I pray to Bhagavan, “May Bhagavan’s choicest blessings be showered on everybody, on all those who have gathered here, and on your families as well.” 

 

                                                       Thank you very much.

Sai Ram.

 

Anil Kumar closed his talk by leading the bhajan, “Vibhuthi Sundara Sai Ram”.

 

Om Asato Maa Sad Gamaya

Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya

Mrtyormaa Amrtam Gamaya

 

Om Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

 

Om Shanti Shanti Shanti

 

Jai Bolo Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba Ji Ki - Jai!

Jai Bolo Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba Ji Ki - Jai!

Jai Bolo Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba Ji Ki  - Jai!