|Listen to Prabhaata-rashmih Audio|
Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru.
I was discussing the composition of Shankara on the multi-pronged activities of the jeevanmukta in the world. There he will be in the company of children, little aged people, old people. He will be sometimes in the mountainous environment, sometimes on the banks of rivers, sometimes in multi-storied mansions, sometimes with the rich people, sometimes with poor people; sometimes given to very highly logical discussion, sometimes given to silence, sometimes given to absorption, sometimes given to colourful worship, singing different praises, sometimes in the company of shaivites, vaishnavites, saurites, gaaneshites, a lot of variety Shankara speaks about. I would like you to understand, the message is this; jñāna does not make you exclusive or secluded. True jñāna will make you flexible and lend yourself to any situation without any conflict!
Every situation belongs to the world and is part of the world. It may be in your family, in the society, in the market place, on the road, in the corporate office, in the administrative desk or anywhere! Its all world situations and all world situations should be equally, flexibly met. That rigidity and obstinacy; these are the sinful traits in any person. So if you are able to have a flexible mind, allow the mind to take in whatever comes and to leave whatever goes. Then you have a flexible mind, an assimilative mind - everything will be away from the skin or on the surface of the skin. Nothing will enter your mind.
Now, when M. told me, “Swamiji, is it possible for people to live in this manner?” See, some change will be there. According to the social and economic conditions, there will be change, but the structure, the inner structure and the essence, they never change at all. I don’t know whether I told you. I had three influences in my mind. One is Rama, another is Krishna, the third one was Shankara. My whole life is a reflection and radiation of Rama, Krishna and Shankara.
So I had a flair for renunciation. Not the ascetic renunciation alone. Rama abandoning the kingdom and his wife; if Rama could do it, I will also do it. And that renunciation, sacrifice and renunciation, that always had a very high, inspiring value in me. When I read Shankara, I am not so much after the wisdom of Shankara, but after the inspiration that he had. Devoid of inspiration, all the statements and revelations on spiritual wisdom will not be very, very relevant. As I always say, any value when properly explained will evoke an emotional persuasion and an intellectual compulsion. Compulsion because this is right, it cannot be rejected. Emotional persuasion is - it is so inspiring that everybody should rise to this. That we are not able to rise and we don’t try is a different matter. As a human we are meant to rise to this level.
It is just like, instead of keeping ten kilograms of steel or cast iron, it’s a question of keeping about ten kilograms of gold. Who will not like it? Similarly this spiritual wisdom is gold and the material wisdom is perhaps, steel. That’s all! Cast iron!
Nevertheless, I was wondering, Shankara met Govindapada, walking all the way from Kerala to the Gujarat, the bank of Narmada. So will I be able to meet somebody like Govindapada? When I went to Calcutta, within 2 months, my brother brought my Gurudev to our flat. I never expected to meet anybody like that, he was looking....he had put on a shirt when he came to our house, but otherwise he was a very skeleton like person with skin and bone with beard as well as hair. He was looking quite ascetic, right in the ancient times, but when he started speaking very good English, I found that he was not merely an ascetic; he was a modern person also. Then I was wondering, when I read Vivekananda’s book, before that I was wondering, Shankara lived 1200 yrs back. I am living after that. The whole country has changed. We had modern British administration, after that we have become independent. Jawaharlal Nehru was very much interested to make India a welfare state, like some of the European states are. So in these days, is there any place for an ascetic life, an austere life, I was wondering? In spite of my flair I wanted to think about it in a very reasonable manner.
That was the time I happened to read the biography of Vivekananda Swami, by his eastern and western disciples. Then I understood. Only a few years back Vivekananda started travelling and many of his experiences were mentioned there.
I am not a hard core traveller. I am not also geared to, in a very hard core manner... you know, I don’t like to go for an evening walk outside the ashram. I would like to walk within the ashram. I used to go, but I would like to avoid it. Given to myself, I don’t like to see any and all kinds of people. People who like to see me, whom I like to see also, if they come, well and good! Otherwise I would like to be where I am. I don’t know whether you call it austerity. I am going out, staying in different places. We have our own centres. I do it for a purpose. But I would like to come back here and be in my own natural way. Having my simple bath in my bathroom, going to the toilet when necessary and going to my simple bedroom.... I feel quite free!
Ever since I came here, I have never maintained any social contact except the interactions I have with seekers of truth who come here. My dear children, you should know, this Swamiji is very, very happy! He is very happy, not for any reason, but only..... I don’t know what, there is some goodness, you may call it some purity or if not purity, at least innocence. So, after reading Vivekananda’s book, I was very happy. My flair was capped and crowned by another level of understanding and confirmation. It did not take long for me to decide and implement that renunciational step, so I came away and started wandering also. But my wandering life undertook a drastic turn. Instead of wandering without any aim and destination, people started calling me for giving lectures. So it became a disseminational travel, rather than a lonely travel. Even now I am not interested in travelling in a lonely manner. I found that I don’t have to create a situation- the situation would come by itself. Let me not try to create or anything like that. Whatever comes, wherever I am, even in Narayanashrama Tapovanam, travel will come and knock at the door. Now people are asking me to travel. Ma tells me, “Don’t travel so much.” So I have started telling them, giving them some excuses. Someday they want me to go by 11.00 o’clock or 11.30 from here to talk to the children and distribute some prizes or something like that. I feel I don’t like to go. This is also travel. It is not necessarily that you go alone. After all when I went alone, then also people surrounded me and I had to talk. They liked me.
So, my life has been Paramahamsa Parivraajaka, means – the travel. That is our life style. So my dear M. my little son, don’t have any doubt. You may doubt yourself but don’t this doubt wisdom and its excellence. It will be a great shortage or even sin to doubt these great things. This is the backbone of our culture. Appreciate it, you may not be able to follow it, I don’t expect you also, but never doubt it. These are all records written by people. I don’t think your grandfather has left such a message in the form of a writing. But here is a common grandfather called Shankara and similar people, who have made a record of what they felt, understood. And they are saying, it is a question of delving into your mind and making the mind pure. Not by force, but by fondness. Not by valour and heroism, but by humility. Not by a mood of conquest, but by a note of affinity, attunement. Like it, it becomes yours! Be fond of it, it will come to you, flood you.
This is nothing but the greatness and the grandeur of the supra-material substance- called the mind! It is the mind that has shaped your body, M. Your eyes are shaped, not by external matter, world, wind, earth or anything. Your eyes have been shaped by what you call the mind - Your nose, your tongue, your brain, every cell in your body! The food is digested because of the mind. A dead body cannot eat and digest food, it is the life that makes it eat and also digest. Different types of matter are thrown, M., into your stomach, do you find any trace of blood in any of the food articles that you take? I mean vegetarian food. Even in the non-vegetarian food, there is no circulating blood, only flesh is there. But all the food is assimilated in a matter of 4 or 5 hours and you find living blood is generated.
My dear boy, matter cannot bring about this transformation. It is a transformation where you find inert and dead matter is transformed into living blood. What greater mystery do you want? What greater miracle do you want? Everyday this is taking place. The whole food is assimilated and it is converted into biological blood. And who does it? It is not by matter, it is not by physics, it is not by chemistry, it is primarily by sentience. S-E-N-T-I-E-N-C-E - and mind is an expression of sentience.
This is the miracle or the magic that the mind does! And the whole of spirituality is getting into the mind and making it, making it, if not anything else, simple, innocent, pure, humble. That’s all!
Water flows downward. If we become humble, the whole universal majesty will flow to your head like water. What prevents anybody from becoming humble? It requires a lot to make one proud, because you must have education, money, position, this, that and all. But to become humble we need nothing! So I think these are all excellences of the human mind, aided by the human intelligence, and always graced and sustained by the un-negatable soul!
Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.
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