Saturday, April 27, 2013

Paramahansa Yogananda on the Christian theory of "Man is the Sinner".

As narrated by Swami Kriyananda :

In Los Angeles, Yogananda once went to a revival meeting.  A women was leading it.  During her haruenge she shouted: "God has no use for sinners! In his eyes they are an abomination."

Voices were raised everywhere in fervent response: "Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! Right on, Sister!"

"Unless you accept Jesus Christ, and live for his glory, you will end up in hell!".
Again the responses with few variations.

The women continued: "Man is naturally sinful. He can be redeemed only by faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ!."
Once more the congregation intoned heartfelt replies.
"You are all sinners! Get down on your knees!"

                                            In all that crowd, only Yogananda remained standing. Later, he commented, "I wouldn't accept her statement that I was a sinner! Nobody should ever say that. To call yourself a sinner is the greatest of all sins before God!  Don't identify yourself with your mistakes.  When you know God, you will become aware of His Presence everywhere.  And than you will never judge anyone."

                                            On another occasion, in the Pacific Northwest, he stopped at a farmhouse hoping to buy some cherries, and got into a discussion on religion with the farmer.  At a certain point this man, who proved to be a religious fanatic, shouted, "We are all sinners!-doomed to eternity in hell!"

                                             The Master paused a moment before replying.  Then he asked, as if irrelevantly, "You have a son, haven't you?"
The answered dolefully, "Yes. I have a son."
"He gives you trouble, doesn't he?"
"Oh, my God, what trouble!"
"He drinks, I think?"
"Like a whale! You can't imagine the grief I go through on his account."
Yogananda than announced confidently, "I have a cure for his problem."
"Oh, sir, if you can help me with that, I'll be grateful to you forever!"
"Well, here's what you do: The next time he comes home late at night, drunk........." He interrupted himself.
"Have you a large oven?"
The man glared suspiciously. "Say," he demanded, "what have you got in mind?"
"No, no, just wait."  Yogananda spoke reassuringly. "I'm offering you a solution to your problem."
Hesitantly the man replied, "Yes, i have such an oven."
"Has it a large door?"
Suddenly again apprehensive, the man cried, "Just a minute! Where is this all heading?"
The master spoke soothingly. "Just be calm. I'm going to solve everything for you."
The other sat back, relaxing slightly.
"Now then, here's what you do: The next time your son comes home drunk......well, first have the oven good and hot......"
The man sat up again, horrified.
Yogananda was now speaking hurriedly: "Grab him; tie him up with a strong rope, and shove him into the oven!"

Furiously indignant, the man shouted, "Blasphemer! Evildoer! Whoever heard of a father throwing his own son into an oven! Get out of my house this minute!"

                             Yogananda than spoke appeasingly. "Don't you understand what I've just said to you? You said God wants to throw us all into hell.  But He is our true Father!  You, a mere human being, were horrified at the thought of throwing your own son into an oven despite all the trouble he's given you.  Can you seriously believe that Godm who is Perfection Itself, has less love for you than you have for your own son?"

                              From panting fury the man grew gradually calm. "I see now?" he said.  He reflected a moment. "Yes, you are right."  He looked at his visitor with a grateful smile.  "Oh, thank you! You've cured me of a serious error. God is Love.  He can't wish our destruction! Thank you! Thank you!"

Excerpt from the book "The biography - Paramahansa Yogananda" by Swami Kriyananda

Meera's Husband - An example of One's inner life is often best kept a secret from others

As narrated by Swami Kriyananda :-

One's inner life is often best kept a secret from others.  Yogananda told us the story of Meera, a queen who lived several centuries ago in India.  She herself was a bhakta (one who follows the path of devotion), and many devotees would gather around her for blissful sankirtans (group singing to God).  Her one grief in life was that her own husband never spoke of God.

                  He, meanwhile, was actually an even greater lover of God than she.  But he had promised the Lord, "If anyone ever discovers my secret, i will leave this body, for i will feel that my devotion has been besmirched."

                   One night, lying beside him in bed, Meera awoke to hear him crying quietly, "Oh, my Beloved, how can i live without seeing You! This world of maya(delusion) means nothing to me! Help me to know you! Help me to merge in You!

                    The next morning, with radiant face, she cried to him, "Aha, i have discovered your secret!."

                    "Don't say it", he cried. "Please don't say it."
                    "Oh yes. I know now how much you love God."
                    "I am sorry you told me that. Now, i shall leave you, for i promised God that i would no longer keep this body if anyone ever discovered the precious secret i have been keeping."

                     He sat on the floor in lotus pose, and forthwith left his body.

Excerpts from the book "Paramhansa Yogananda - A biography" by Swami Kriyananda.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


The disciple is ready. In fact to say that he is ready to die is something less than the truth. The disciple has already died into the master; it is not going to happen in the future, it has already happened. It has happened the day the disciple accepted the master as his master: since then he has been no more, only the master lives in him.

Slowly slowly, the presence of the master overfloods the disciple. And the presence of the master is not really the presence of the master himself: the master is overflooded with God. The master is only a vehicle, a passage, a messenger; it is God flowing through the master. When the disciple surrenders to the master totally he is really surrendering to God in the guise of the master. God he cannot see yet, but the master he can see, and in the master he can see something godly. The master becomes the first proof of God to him. Surrendering to the master is surrendering to the visible God.

And, slowly slowly, as the surrender deepens, the visible disappears into the invisible. The master disappears. When the disciple reaches into the innermost heart of the 
master, he does not find the master there but God himself, life itself -- indefinable, inexpressible.

What is a Siddhi ? - Satsang With Sadhguru

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Forest Flower e-version now available online for free! just inset zero or donate whatever you want :)


"Observe some rule of silence. Outer silence is not to talk with your mouth. Inner silence is not to talk with the mind. It is in the silence of body, mind, and senses that you will hear GOD speak."

Sri Gyanamata, "God Alone"

Most of the problems in this world is because lack of love

Guruji gave this story: There was a boy whose parents brought him to Guruji complaining that the boy was not at all obedient to the parents. He was wasting away his life. He was older than the other boys in his class, and no one was ready to take him under their guidance. They hoped Guruji would take him under his protection. Guruji refused to take the boy without having a heart-to-heart talk with the boy. Guruji spoke to the boy and asked him why he disobeyed his parents. The boy said he did that because he was often beaten by the parents. Guruji agreed to take the boy in, providing the boy would promise to be honest with Guruji. Guruji told him that if ever he felt like having a smoke he should not smoke on the sly, but come to Guruji and Guruji would not only let him smoke but even give him the money to buy the cigarettes. The boy thought Guruji was only joking. For a few days he could abstain from the desire to smoke, but a few days later he was strongly tempted to smoke, so he went to Guruji and told him that he had a strong urge to smoke. Guruji at once gave him some money and told him to go and buy himself a cigarette. This astonished the boy. He felt so ashamed to go and buy himself a cigarette that he decided to give up the habit of smoking altogether.

What was the principle behind this story? The boy was able to communicate with Guruji. He was also able to relate to Guruji as his father and mother. He could trust Guruji. Also, the problem was not so much the child’s problem. His parents used to beat him up, so the parents were also responsible for that condition. No trust, no love from the parents, so the child was finding love in other ways. Such a child can also become a terrorist. He then becomes a negative person. Guruji has also said, “Only love can take my place” and Babaji has said, “Only love can change this world.” MOST OF THE PROBLEMS IN THIS WORLD ARE BECAUSE OF A LACK OF LOVE.

Swami Shuddhanandji , How to Overcome All the Problems in Life

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Even an emperor is no match for a man with no want. - Bhagavan Ramana

Sri Bhagavan said that Tatva Rayar was the first to pour forth Advaita philosophy in Tamil.

He had said that the Earth was his bed, his hands were his plates for taking food, the loin cloth was his clothing and thus there was no want for him.

In Maharaja Turavu (the renunciation of the king) he says: He was seated on the bare ground, the earth was his seat, the mind was the chamara; the sky was the canopy; and renunciation was his spouse:

Then Sri Bhagavan continued:

I had no cloth spread on the floor in earlier days. I used to sit on the floor and lie on the ground. That is freedom. The sofa is a bondage. It is a gaol for me. I am not allowed to sit where and how I please. Is it not bondage? One must be free to do as one pleases, and should not be served by others. `No want' is the greatest bliss. It can be realised only by experience. Even an emperor is no match for a man with no want. The emperor has got vassals under him. But the other man is not aware of anyone beside the Self. Which is better?
— at 17th March, 1939 Talk 648.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Many lessons to be learnt in the company of Bhagavan

ONCE we went on a pilgrimage to Kaveri Pushkaram and on our way back we stopped at Arunachala. We were told that a young Brahmin saint was living on the hill for the past ten years. The next morning we went up the hill along with the others. We found the young swami near Virupaksha cave. As soon as I saw him I was convinced that God Arunachala Himself had come in human form to give salvation to all who approached him.

The next time I visited Bhagavan he was living at the foot of the hill. He was seated on a couch and about a dozen devotees were sitting on the bare floor. We sat in silence for ten minutes and returned to the town. Bhagavan’s presence gave me the experience of inner silence and mental stillness, but away from him I could not regain it and I spent a year vainly trying to free myself from all thought. But soon I got a chance to visit Tiruvannamalai. I met Bhagavan the same day. The next day after the midday meal Bhagavan was explaining a verse from the Bhagavad Gita to Sri Yogi Ramaiah. As no one else was in the hall, I gathered courage and asked, “What is Atma? Is it the limitless ether of space or the awareness that cognizes everything”? Bhagavan replied, “To remain without thinking this is Atma and that is Atma, is itself Atma”. He looked at me and I felt my mind melt away into nothing. No thought would come, only the feeling of immense, unutterable peace.

Several times I was invited to work in the kitchen, but I felt that the Ashram ways were not orthodox enough for me. One day Bhagavan’s own sister asked me to take her place in the Ashram kitchen as she had to leave for some time. I could not refuse. Though I was very happy to work in the kitchen directly under Bhagavan’s supervision I wanted to go home. I left and after a year returned to Ramanasramam to discover that I belonged there.

Yet I would feel restless, thinking that I should spend my time in meditation. One day Bhagavan looked at me intently and said “It looks as if you are still hankering after meditation”. I replied, “What have I got except endless work in the kitchen”? Bhagavan said with deep feeling, “Your hands may do the work but your mind can remain still. You are that which never moves. Realise that and you will find that work is not a strain. But as long as you think that you are the body and that the work is done by you, you will feel your life to be an endless toil. In fact it is the mind that toils, not the body. Even if your body keeps quiet, will your mind keep quiet? Even in sleep the mind is busy with its dreams”.

Regarding the need to fast as enjoined by scriptural texts Bhagavan explained, “It does not mean that you should starve. You need not torture the body. It only means not giving the body more than it needs. With your mind, hold on to enquiry and just keep the body going so that it does not become a hindrance. For this, pure and fresh food, simply prepared and taken in moderation is a great help”.

Once I prepared curds and served it to Bhagavan alone while all the others were served buttermilk. The moment he saw the curds on his leaf he looked at me. That look scorched me to the very depths of my soul! When we went to take leave of him in the evening he turned away his face from me. He stopped taking buttermilk. I suffered agonies and remorse for disobeying Bhagavan. At last I got a chance to ask for his forgiveness and prayed that he should start having his buttermilk again. He said, “No, no, why do you worry? I happened to have a cold and is not buttermilk bad for colds”? That very afternoon Echammal brought some curds and Bhagavan said, “Tell Subbalakshmi not to suffer. I shall have my buttermilk”.

Once five or six devotees sat down before Bhagavan and sang a hymn in praise of the Guru. He got up in the middle of the recitation and went away, saying, “Prayers and praises will not take one far. It is the merciful look of the teacher that bestows true knowledge”. I felt elated. But the next day he said, “Unless one becomes a six-month old baby, there is no hope for him in the realm of Self-knowledge”. My heart sank. Although I lived in the presence of Lord Arunachala Himself, I was far from becoming an infant.

I made a habit of offering him a few dry grapes whenever I came from the town. He disliked all formal devotion. One day when I gave him the grapes, he started scolding us, “Why all this show of respect and devotion? Who taught you all this hypocrisy? Can’t you just be natural? What is needed is a heart, pure and sincere. How can you please me with a show”? It went on for quite a long time. Addressing Muruganar, he complained that our devotion was shallow and its expressions cheap. He told some stories about false disciples, “They take their Guru in procession and parade him before the crowd. When they have done with him, they dig a pit and ask him, ‘Will you get into the pit yourself or shall we push you in’”?
That day even Muruganar was afraid to do the usual prostrations to Bhagavan, who continued, “When people come here they are quite sincere, but as soon as they settle down they become the masters of this place. The swami must do their bidding and ignore their mischief; in return for their prostrations the swami has to put up with all the mess they create around him. They think it is his duty to carry them on his head”.

During the meal I would pour rasam (soup) into Bhagavan’s hands. He would sip it slowly and when his palms were empty I would fill them again. One day he asked me to pour rasam over the rice and go. He would not cup his hands as before. I thought I had offended him in someway and asked Santammal to find out the reason. Bhagavan told her, “When she serves me, she makes others wait”. Despite my remonstrations he never took rasam again in his palms.
Bhagavan wanted us to learn well the lesson that God is present in every being in all his glory and fullness and must be given equal reverence. He would ruthlessly sacrifice the little comforts we so loved to provide for him, as soon as he noticed a trace of preference. The law that what cannot be shared must not be touched was supreme in his way of dealing with us. Separative and exclusive feelings are the cause of the ‘I’ and therefore the greatest obstacles in the realization of the One. No wonder he was exterminating them so relentlessly.

One day I saw him grinding black gram. We always felt ashamed when we saw him working, but when we offered to take over, he would get cross and stop coming to the kitchen, which would make us sad; for in the hall he belonged to everybody but in the kitchen he was our own.

That day I summoned courage and asked him to let me grind the gram. To my astonishment he got up and said, “Yes, finish it. I was waiting for you to come”. When I finished grinding and went back to the kitchen I saw him boiling pumpkin in a huge cauldron. The day was hot, the fire and the steam rising from the cauldron were hot and Bhagavan was bathed in perspiration. So it was to save me from this tiresome work that Bhagavan invited me to grind for him! The stew was boiling vigorously and a piece of pumpkin fell on Bhagavan’s finger. The next day we saw a big blister and when somebody asked about it he replied, “Oh, it is only a ring. I wanted some jewellery”. Thus I learned not to interfere.

Nothing brought to the Ashram could be wasted, not even when it was obviously useless. In this Bhagavan was adamant. A pious offering was Arunachala’s own property and had to be looked after. Even the water in which bitter gourd was boiling could not be thrown away. With salt added it would be taken to the cows.
One had to live and work with him to know what a great teacher he was. Through the trifles of daily life he taught us Vedanta in theory and practice. He led us with absolute wisdom and infinite kindness and we were changed to the very root of our being, not even knowing the depth and scope of his influence. Sri Krishna in his mercy became a cowherd to teach simple milkmaids the way to salvation. Similarly Bhagavan, the same supreme being in another form, took to cooking in order to save a few ignorant women.
- from Ramana Smriti

That moment of transendence from wakefullness to sleep - Sadhguru


You need to understand this: everything that you can experience is life. What you call as death also is life. So, are there choices about death? There are definitely. What you are referring to as death is just the last moment of life. That final moment when you transcend the limitations of your physical body happens only once in your lifetime. Almost everything in your life may happen many times over. But this one thing happens only once in your lifetime and it’s the last thing that you do. I want you to understand death as life, not something else. This is the last act of your life. Is it not very important that you choose to make it happen gracefully and wonderfully? If you are fearful of it, if you are ignorant of the ways of life and you create resistance towards it, naturally you will miss that possibility.

People on the spiritual path choose the time, date and place of their death. The yogi always wants to know the time and date of death ahead of time. He fixes it. Many years ahead he says, “On this date, at this time I will leave,” and he leaves, because he has created the necessary awareness within himself to leave consciously. Leaving this body consciously without damaging this body, like you take off your clothes and walk away, you take off your body and walk away, if you can do that, that is the ultimate possibility in your life. If your awareness has grown to such a point that you know where you as a being and this physical body which you gathered are connected, then you can disentangle yourself whenever the moment is right for you.
Is this suicide? Definitely not. Suicide happens out of frustration, out of anger, out of fear, out of inability to bear with suffering. This is neither suicide nor euthanasia. This is about being so aware that you know when life has completed its cycle, and you walk out of it. And this is not death either. This is known as samadhi, where a human being has developed sufficient awareness within himself to separate himself from the physicality that he has gathered. In that level of awareness, one can leave. If you do not attain such a level of awareness, at least you can make that last moment very graceful, pleasant, joyful and blissful for yourself if you manage certain things.

Just practice this tonight maintain your awareness and see. It will change your life phenomenally.
If you want to exercise this choice, a certain amount of preparation is needed. You cannot waste life and try to make use of death. If you maintain a certain level of awareness right through your life, the moment of passing also can happen in awareness. You live a life of unawareness and you expect that moment to be aware, such things don’t happen to people.

Just practice this tonight, the last moment of passing – I call it passing because you are passing off from wakefulness to sleep that last moment – maintain your awareness and see. It will change your life phenomenally. Just use this as a method every day. Go at it with total perseverance. You will see in a few days, you will get there where the final moment, you are aware. Suddenly, everything about your life, the fundamental quality of your life will change just by doing this one simple thing. If you manage to move from wakefulness to sleep in awareness, this last moment of passing from life to death will happen absolutely gracefully for you. There are other methods also.

In India, traditionally people choose not to die with their loved ones, because if you die among your family, so many emotions will come. Naturally you will try to cling to life. You will not allow it to happen gracefully. So people travel to faraway places which are considered spiritually vibrant and they want to shed their body in that space. Even today, people still do this. This may be completely unthinkable in the West because people there want to die in the comfort of their family. That is not a wise thing. It is truly wise for a person to choose a space which is spiritually conducive, which is vibrant in a certain way and to leave with as much grace as possible. If you have lived your life with grace, it becomes extremely important that you die with grace.

Source Link :

Are we running because we see people in the society running?

Everyone is mad with running and reaching somewhere,and no man know where this 'somewhere' is.

Everyone is running through life."hurry up" has become our watchford.but no one asks "where are we going"? we work hard but we dont know why we work so does not have even time to think why he is toiling day in and day out.he is running just because his neighbour is running,his friends are running.everyone is running for fear of being left behind the other runners.

source book:krishna the man and his


Monday, April 15, 2013

Accessing Higher Dimensions of Life - Sadhguru

Is Grace denied to us, being not able to serve in the close physical presence of the Guru?

One of the visitors was leaving the Ashram. He stood before Bhagavan with folded hands and prayed: "I am going far away. I do not know when I shall be coming back, and if at all I shall be allowed to see your holy face again in this life. I am so much less fortunate than those who have the benefit of your constant presence. How can you help me, a sinner in a distant corner of the world, unless you think of me? I implore you, give me a place in your mind."

Bhagavan replied: "A Jnani has no mind. How can one without a mind remember or even think? This man goes somewhere and I have to go there and look after him? Can I keep on remembering all these prayers? Well, I shall transmit your prayer to the Lord of the Universe. He will look after you. It is His business."

After the devotee departed, Bhagavan turned towards us and said: "People imagine that the devotees crowding around a Jnani get special favors from him. If a guru shows partiality, how can he be a Jnani? Is he so foolish as to be flattered by people's attendance on him and the service they do? Does distance matter? The guru is pleased with him only who gives himself up entirely, who abandons his ego forever. Such a man is taken care of wherever he may be. He need not pray. God looks after him unasked. The frog lives by the side of the fragrant lotus, but it is the bee who gets the honey."

Selected portion of a devotee's remembrance.
Shantammal speaks of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

What is the first thing, that you are seeking in life? Robert Adams

You have to ask yourself, how badly do I wish to awaken? And this will determine what you do ---

What I'm getting at is this:
Whatever you put first in your life that's what you ultimately become.
If you think your work is number one because that's what supports you, you're looking at this thing the wrong way. What supports you is the Self. Work is only one of the channels of the Self. If you know the Self you will always be taken care of because the Self is self-contained harmony and bliss. Therefore I should think your first obligation should be toward finding your Self or finding out who you really are.

What about vacations, holidays? Wherever you go you've got to take yourself with you. If you are a miserable person you're going to take your misery wherever you go. The first day or so may seem as though you were taking a break from your everyday experiences. But soon you will find fault with the hotel you're staying in, with the restaurant, with the food, with everybody because that is what you do when you are here.

It seems to me that if a person really wants to awaken they will put the teaching first. Now it makes no difference to me. I'm not saying this because I want to see you here all the time. As you know you've got the freedom to do what you like. I'd be the last one to tell you where to go or what to do. Sometimes I'd like to tell certain people where to go. But you're free to do what you like.

You have to come to the conclusion of what I'm talking about by yourself. Something within you has to be so strong, you've always got spiritual life on your mind. Why do have to go anywhere? You are the universe. There is no place for you to go. After all you remember that the whole universe is an emanation of your own mind. You are creating the universe. Where do you have to go?

If you're looking for happiness and peace, it's right within you. If you're looking for a change of environment, it's right within you. Whatever you need is within you. There is no where you have to go for anything.

You have to ask yourself, how badly do I wish to awaken? And this will determine what you do.

When some of us are experiencing good karma, so-to-speak and we have the pleasures of life in this world, sometimes we go further away from spiritual life because we assume we're happy. Since we have the so called good things of life. We have forgotten that everything is subject to change. Your fortune can end tomorrow. And even if it doesn't you still become earth bound. So the next time around you will probably be a homeless person.

The universe is a cosmic joke. It plays games with you. It wants you to become attached to things. Your mind appears to be very strong. It will tell you all sorts of things to keep you attached. There are very few people who break out of it. In the Bhagavad-Gita it tells you, out of a thousand people, one searches for God. Out of a thousand who search one finds him. They are referring to the Self.

You cannot possibly find yourself when you are engrossed in the world. I'm not advocating that you become a hermit or a recluse. I'm simply saying, first things first. Focus your attention on the Self, your body will take care of itself. Something will take care of your so called body. It will not starve. This something can take care of your body better than you can ever hope to. So you do not have to keep thinking about your affairs and your body and the world most of the time.

You must begin to understand that you are the only one who can dissolve the maya and awaken to the truth of your being.
You can tell where you're at by what you do all day long.
Just think about today, since you woke up this morning.
How often did you think about your higher Self.
How often did you practice self-inquiry.
How often did you surrender completely.
Not too much, you identified yourself with the worldly situation.
You identified with maya.
With things, with persons, with places and then you tell me I want to awaken.
I want to become self-realized.
Of course the truth is that you're already self-realized, you know that, but those are just words.
What are you doing to prove it?

When you worry you're moving away from self-realization. Even though you may believe that you've got something to worry about. It may appear very important to you, but from a higher standpoint there is absolutely nothing to worry about. Absolutely nothing to worry about. No matter how it may appear to you, at least realize that it is an appearance and that is how you see it from your viewpoint. Rise above it by asking, "To whom does it come? Who is experiencing this?"

When you have fear. Fear of any kind, you are pushing yourself away from liberation. What can you possibly fear, consciousness is all there is, consciousness is bliss. There is nothing else. The mind has invented the rest and causes you to fear. Hate, revenge, all these traits and even the good things, they're two sides of the same coin.

I want to remind you that you are not trying to change bad human hood into good human hood. What you are trying to do is to transcend both. Everything will be all right if you stick to your sadhana. If you take time out to practice self-inquiry, or surrender, or just to sit in the silence. You can do these things while you are working. You really do not have to meditate formally.

How Bad Do You Want To Awaken? - May 23, 1991

Friday, April 12, 2013

PRARABDHA’S WAY - Bhagvan Maharishi

Those who have realized that prarabdha itself serves up one’s food [and other necessities for sustaining the body] will never feel anxious or agitated about food. You should know that for all people, whether they desire it or not, that [ordained] food will not fail to come.
Guru Vachaka Kovai v 150

Prarabdha is the karma that determines the course of one’s current life. Since prarabdha is deemed to be a fixed and unchangeable sequence of events, it is sometimes translated as ‘destiny’.

MURUGANAR: Those who are firmly convinced that prarabdha will take care of the body will not feel anxious and wander about seeking food, and so on. All the enjoyments ordained by prarabdha will surely come. Hence, it is clear that accepting and rejecting are the deluding activities of the mind.

‘I[Annamalai Swami] have this desire to live in a place where nobody visits. I feel another desire to get food without effort. I also want to meditate constantly with my eyes closed, without seeing the world at all. These desires often come to me. Are they good or bad?’…
[Bhagavan replied,] ‘One who leads a righteous life will never make plans of this sort. Why? Because God has already decided what will happen to us even before sending us into this world.’
[Living by the Words of Bhagavan, p. 191.]

Siva shines within each jiva as the witness, [enabling] him [the jiva] to experience his prarabdha through his [Siva’s] presence. Whoever knows his nature to be mere being-consciousness, without imagining through ignorance that he is the experiencer of prarabdha, shines as that supreme person, Siva.
Guru Vachaka Kovai v 151

Siva here denotes Iswara, the personal God, not Sivam, the impersonal absolute consciousness. When he spoke about prarabdha, Bhagavan generally adopted the position that God, Iswara, gave each jiva its prarabdha and also ordained that each jiva must experience the fruits of its actions so long as it identified with the body that was performing the ordained activities.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Amazing Enquiry into the nature of the Self - Bhagvan Maharishi

Dialogue [M = Maharshi and D = Devotee/Visitor]

D: Who am I?
M: What is your first impression on that matter?
D: I am the person now sitting here talking and listening.
M: It is the body that sits here with a voice organ and a sense of hearing. Are you the body then?
D: Am I not?
M: What does your body consists of but hands, legs, eyes, nose, and so on. Are you your hands? Can you not exist without hands?
D: I can exist without my hands, so I am not my hands.
M: for the same reason, you are not the legs, nose, eyes and so on.
D: Just so.
M: If you are not the parts, you are not even the whole body.
D: How does that follow?
M: What belongs to you and is your property is not yourself. Is that not so?
D: It appears so.
M: "My body" you spoke of. Then the body is your property, is it not?
D: It seems so, though I cannot see who the 'I' is who owns the body.
M: Then the owner, you, must be invisible. Are there no invisible entities in existence?
D: Yes, there are, such as ghosts, spirits and so on.
M: Then you may be spirit, may you not?
D: How can a living man be a spirit?
M: When can he be a spirit?
D: After his death?
M: Where was that spirit during life?
D: It must have been connected with residing in the living body.
M: What is the distinction in nature between the spirit and the body, living or dead?
D: I suppose the fact that the sprit is subtle while the body is gross and material, and that the spirit acts upon the body.
M: Then the neither the body, nor the senses,
nor the pranas (the breath and other vital
functions) constitute spirit, which is yourself, your 'I'.
D: No, they are not 'I'.
M: When you think or talk of 'I', what else do you feel is a part of you or your spirit?
D: People say that we have both a body and mind. If I am not the body, it follows that I am the mind.
M: What is that mind? What constitute the mind?
D: I cannot say.
M: When you refer to your mind, what idea do you have at the back of your mind? The mind is not a trunk with limbs head and voice, is it?
D: No.
M: You have something more subtle than the gross body which you express with your voice. Why do you talk now?
D: To express the thoughts and ideas which are in my mind.
M: Then thoughts and ideas are the contents of the mind, and together constitute the mind.
D: Yes.
M: Are thoughts and ideas all of the same sort, or are they the basis of each other?
D: I do not understand.
M: When you see a person, what thoughts have you?
D: I think I see a figure with some qualities such as brightness or shortness?
M: How do you know that it is brightness or shortness?
D: I have known them previously.
M: So you have the primary sensations, and then you compare with a previous stock of such impressions. Is not this power of memory, comparison and judgement of similarity or dissimilarity, a power higher than mere receptivity to impressions?
D: Yes.
M: It is the secondary function that is called the intellect or buddhi, Which of these two: (1) sensations or thoughts, and (2) intellect, is superior?
D: It is the intellect that guides, arranges and controls the thoughts. So the intellect (buddhi) is superior to the thoughts (manas).
M: So the intellect (buddhi ) may be regarded as an inner sheath, a sort of core, for this mind (manas). Can you discover any further inner core to which thisbuddhi is an outer sheath?
D: My mind cannot penetrate into such mysterious region.
M: Why, even now you have penetrated, since you said "my mind"! You include your thoughts and your intellect in the term "my mind", do you not?
D: Yes.
M: Do you have no powers besides the intetellect? Why do you not see if you have?
D: Where or what am I to see?
M: See within yourself, see yourself.
D: How can I see what is not visible?
M: You cannot see with these physical eyes.
D: What other eyes do I have?
M: You have your 'I', See with it and enquire 'Who am I?'
D: How can I see my 'I'?
M: When you talk of 'I', are you not conscious of something?
D: Yes.
M: That consciousness is not a consciousness of objects, so it must be a consciousness of something else, must it not?
D: How does that follow?
M: When you think of an object, you are absorbed and transformed into that object. At that time you are not thinking of 'I' but of the object, are you not?
D: Just so.
M: Now if you drop the object, what remains?
D: Nothing remains.
M: But when you perceived the object, there was both the object perceived (the drisya) and yourself, the perceiver (the drik).
D: Yes.
M: If of these two you remove the first mentioned, namely the drisya or object, what should remain?
M: When you say "my intellect", what is the relationship between you and the intellect? Is it not that of an owner and his property?
D: It may be so, but the matter is not clear to my intellect.
M: Is the intellect the same thing to you at all times, or to you and to all others?
D: No, my own intellect varies at times, and it differs from that of others, especially when I do not agree with them.
M: Do all men have the same degree or quality of intellect, whatever their age, education, health and so on?
D: No. babies have little of it. Older and educated people have more of it. Sick people have little of it. Geniuses have much of it. Fools, drunkards and insane people have little or none of it.
M: In insane people, where is the intellect?
D: It is clouded or destroyed.
M: Do they never recover it?
D: Some do.
M: Just as you recover stolen property. So the intellect is your property, capable of improvement, subject to variation, liable to destruction, and capable of being again restored to you, the possessor. Is it not so?
D: Yes.
M: Then the intellect or buddhi is only your property; it is not you.
D: Just so.
M: Then what are you?
D: I cannot find out what I am.
M: You mean your intellect does not show you who you are.
D: Yes, that is what I meant.
D: Logically or mathematically speaking, the drik or subject 'I' should remain. But in point of fact I do not find it remaining. When I stop thinking of objects, all thoughts ceases. The 'I' does not remain alone.
M: You are partly right. The intellectual and relative concept of 'I' as subject does not exist apart from the similar concept, the object. The subject and object appear together and disappear together. The first person, second person and third person all jump into and jump out of consciousness together. But is there no consciousness apart from these intellectual concepts?
D: I see none.
M: Did you have your intellect in deep sleep? That is, were you then perceiving, comparing and contrasting, remembering and judging things or objects?
D: No, there were no objects to think of and no intellectual play at that time.
M: Yet as you already admitted,
you felt happy, did you not?
D: Yes.
M: What is the general feeling, this happiness unrelated to any object or thought, this feeling or consciousness in which the intellect has no part? You have already found that the nature of 'I', the Self, is to be happy, and here you find happiness when you transcend the intellect. Can you therefore conclude that 'I', 'Self' and 'happiness' are one and the same thing, felt as one, though not intellectually perceived as one.
D: I am convinced that it must be so, but I do not yet feel it clearly. I do not feel this unrelated orabsolute happiness transcending the intellect.
M: That is because of the fact that it has long been your habit to think of and identify yourself with other objects and that you have never faced your 'I' in the above manner. You have always been exercising your intellect and never your intuition. If you reverse your course and take to inward vision, shutting out all external images and falling back on intuitive feeling, in that dark chamber of your mind you will catch the true picture of yourself. This is the real, the realization, the realizer or the Self - the One which words cannot describe and the mind cannot reach, and which is merely suggested by the term often used for describing it, namely sat-chit-anand, that is, existence or reality, consciousness or illumination, and bliss.

Reference: Gems from Mountain Path - January 1983 By
B. V. Narasimha Swami

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Doorway to the Beyond

In India, people use deities in very powerful ways. Any number of Devi worshippers are there, when they sit in front of the Devi, they have a tremendous insight into various aspects of life, but once they step out, they will be innocent of what they uttered just a little while ago. I remember when I was about nine years of age, I was in Guntakal in Andhra Pradesh. I was studying there for two years. There was one lady on the street side with one little temple, an old lady with dreadlocked hair. She must have been over eighty years of age and she was small, like a sparrow. I remember this very well. I went there with my grandmother who was a kind of a meditation initiator herself. A guru had given my grandmother a mantra and she would in turn initiate people. Some families kept her as their Guru Maa. In very close circles, people used to call her ‘Mysore Amma’ because she spent a certain segment of her life in Mysore. But that was not her known name.

My grandmother and I went and sat inside this little temple. It was small, built with brick and stone. This lady who was taking care of the temple went into a trance-like state sitting in front of her Devi. She started making all kinds of sounds, ‘Haauu, Haauu’ and then she said ‘Mysore Amma! Mysore Amma!’ This is not a name that anybody could just know, and she began saying all kinds of things about my grandmother in front of me. My grandmother was so embarrassed — already I was so much trouble to her. My grandmother tried to interfere and say, ‘No, no, no! It’s not like that!’ but this old woman just kept on ‘Aaaiyee, Aaaiyee!’ and told her to shut up. She went on saying so many very embarrassing truths about my grandmother.
In the past, I have repeatedly spoken of Dhyanalinga being a doorway. If you know how to open it, it will open the whole cosmos to you.
Ramanujan was a brilliant mathematician from Tamil Nadu. He had very little formal education, he was mostly self-taught, but he went to Cambridge to work with various mathematicians there. When I say mathematics, you need to understand it is not a school subject. You can convert the whole creation into numbers; that is mathematics. It took years for great mathematicians in the world to understand his work. He did many theorems and said they were given to him by ‘Namagiri’ – his deity. He had initially refused to travel outside India, but later agreed when his mother received permission from Namagiri for him to go to England in a dream.

While on his death-bed in 1920, Ramanujan wrote a letter to his mentor, English mathematician GH Hardy outlining several new mathematical functions never before heard of. In his own words – “While asleep, I had an unusual experience. There was a red screen formed by flowing blood, as it were. I was observing it. Suddenly a hand began to write on the screen. I became all attention. That hand wrote a number of elliptic integrals. They stuck to my mind. As soon as I woke up, I commited them to writing.” In the last 90 years, nobody understood what his theorem was, but they knew it was something tremendous. Only in 2010 did they find out that this theorem describes various behaviors of black holes. Ninety years ago, no one was talking about black holes, the term did not even exist, but Ramanujan made a mathematical impression for it sitting on his death bed and he said ‘my Devi’ gave it to me. When Ramanujan says, ‘Devi gave it to me’, for him Devi is the doorway.

Isha Yoga is a doorway by itself. Almost everybody who comes to Isha Yoga opens it a crack and says, ‘Wow!’ — and then they shut it. You see this happening with everybody around you, including yourself. They open it and say ‘Wow!’ then close it again. They had a good enough peep. You need to open it and keep it open. That’s the thing.

Love & Grace,

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