"Unflinching devotion to the Teacher is paramount in the life of a true seeker. To begin with, an external God can be the object of faith. But once the devotee grows to be a seeker, only a Wise Teacher can fulfil his quest.  It is then for the seeker to get purified and enlightened by the words of wisdom from his Guru.  Their bond and attunement put the Teacher on the pedestal of God.  Such an impeccable Guru-sishya bond alone bestows wisdom, strength and fulfillment to the seeker."

The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam & Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

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Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

See, we are speaking quite a lot about the Self, God, devotion etc. but have you understood so far that whether we are looking to God, practising devotion, whether you are a seeker of the Supreme Knowledge, call it God-realization, Self-Realization or Brahma-jñāna or whether you are a practitioner of yoga or you believe in reading and reading and reading and reading, we have the four paths – jñāna path, karma path, yoga path, bhakti path, whatever may that be, have you understood that the effect that we are trying to bring about by these practices are in the mind, in your mind, not in anybody else’s mind? The effects are to be brought about in you, particularly it is not in the body or sensory level, (but) in the mind level. That it is so, is a knowledge and compulsion that you must have from the intelligence level.

So, spirituality if you analyze it from a knowledge level, it is a close interaction and alliance, marriage and alliance between the mind and intelligence. The intelligence is always wanting to know, so the seeking intelligence is given the right and true information, knowledge. When the intelligence finds that it is true and right, instantly in your character, in your behavior and interaction, the mind is the most important point there; that mind should accept it. The sensitiveness of the mind to accept what the intelligence says or has found out, and the readiness of the intelligence to go into all propositions from a seeking and rational point of view, these are the two important factors. I don’t know when our people are going to understand this.

Imagine, Arjuna was shedding tears. His Gāṇḍīva had already fallen from his hands, slipped. He could not stand, so he sat. Shedding tears, "aśru-pūrṇākulekṣaṇam viṣīdantam idaṁ vākyam uvāca madhusūdanaḥ" (Bhagavad Gita 2.1). Arjuna was grieving, shedding tears. Leaving Arjuna to that plight, Krishna started talking to him. The first point that Krishna said was that ‘kutastvā kaśmalam-idaṁ viṣame samupasthitam’ (Bhagavad Gita 2.2). "Wherefrom did you pick up this mood of dejection and retreat? This is not in harmony with your birth, growth, lineage, tradition. It will not lead you to heaven nor will it lead you to any kind of an acclaim and approbation from the people. One is a religious outcome - hell. Another is a worldly and societal outcome, de-recognition from the people, another is the propriety of what you do. From three points of view, it is wrong. It is weakness of the mind and heart. Shelve it, get up deciding to fight." This is what Krishna said.

Because of the close relationship between Krishna and Arjuna, Arjuna could not doubt or refuse what Krishna said. Instantly you find that Arjuna’s tears stopped and he started reflecting upon his position. Then he became a questioner, an enquirer and a seeker. Let the grief be produced by anything but the fact is mind was aggrieved and the aggrieved mind suddenly stopped grieving and the intelligence took up the path of enquiry. Then, from the emotional mental level he was raised to the intelligence level and it was a full conversation between Krishna and Arjuna for about two and a half hours.

Rama came with a much deeper and widely spread out dejection after his pilgrimage. Vasishtha called him, “Tell me your grief.” Rama started pouring forth. If Arjuna said twenty ślokas, Rama said perhaps 2000 or more ślokas narrating his grief. So, you can imagine how deep and widespread it was. Vasishtha had no problem. He said, “It is your mind that has courted or generated grief for you. The same mind will have to overcome it.” You think in a sectarian manner, in a certain manner about the world but you don’t understand the world has got a deeper and a loftier note. It is true that in the sensory level, a number of dejection and disappoint-causing highlights and features are there, but understand that all existences that we see are circumferential. And if you go deeper down into the center, whatever you see outside is totally negated, invalidated.

Our earth has got its gravity but if you go to the center inside, it is got zero gravity. Similarly, in the human personality, whatever you see and find as differences, whatever you feel impacting your mind differently, impacting your intelligence variously, if you go a little more down into the center of your personality, there you will find all these differences are multiplied by a zero. That central, neutral position imparts impersonal and impartial position of the human personality was revealed both to Arjuna and Rama. The same thing is what Śuka Muni revealed through Bhāgavata narration to Pareekshit.

Vishnu Sharma took away three school children, children, Princes because the father found that they were not becoming educated. They were dunces. He became so disappointed that he convened an assembly of good people and said “My children are idiots. I have tried my best through good teachers. Nothing could be done. They could not learn at all. What shall I do?” One from the audience got up. "There is one teacher called Vishnu Sharma. He has already retired from his profession but because it is a national cause, a kingly cause, people’s cause, if you call for him, he will come. And present your problem to him."

The king was humble and wise enough to follow the advice. He sent for Vishnu Sharma. Vishnu Sharma came. He said, “I have stopped my teaching role, I have become old. But because it is a cause of the kingdom, I shall take it up. Give the children to me.” Please listen to it and understand, it is the story of India. “Give the children to me, I will take them. I will bring them back after three years. When they come back, if they are not intelligent and wise to your satisfaction, all that I can tell you is ‘My name will not be Vishnu Sharma’.”

See, when a person speaks with confidence you cannot say it is ‘ātma praśamsa’. He also wanted to have a will, he had already retired. But he has to take up a mission. So he also had to make some declarations. Suppose I say something before you, that will haunt me. “I have said this, so I must do it.” Unless that resolution is expressed, that is why we pass legislations in the parliament. We accepted a constitution and everybody upholds the constitution. Because it was something we said and resolve and accepted.

So, Vishnu Sharma to generate the necessary will and resolve in him, he said that “My name will not be Vishnu Sharma if I don’t teach them and they don’t become wise.”

"Oh, he has made a tall declaration, don’t believe him." I don’t think (like that).

There are people who make false claims, maybe they are majority. But there are people who make good claims also. You should imagine, as a teacher, the integrity of that man. It is the King who had maximum resources to muster from. He said, “My children are idiots; they don’t learn.” Without going into the history, this wonderful Brahmin had to say, "I will teach them." It is just like Gangādatta making a resolve, “I will become a lifelong celibate.” You know, the whole sky echoed his statement. Was it an ātma praśamsa’? Certainly not! When we make some declarations, those declarations remain as a watch word, compulsion and persuasion. This is what happens. He went, took the children, wrote a special book called Panchatantra in the form of stories to teach them, particularly kingly science, kingly resolve, kingly wisdom, kingly forethought, insight etc. And the children were brought. All of them were wise. Why I say this?

All of you are the children before they were taught by Vishnu Sharma. When I tell you the mind has potential, in the same way as it is aggrieved now, it can become delightful and joyous. One is a home it digs, another is a filling it makes. One is walking eastward with the legs, another is walking backward with the legs. Or you are climbing down to bury yourself or you are climbing up to remain safe even in floods and cyclone. Can you understand and accept this simple principle? Never bring God, never bring fate, never bring karma. “Swamiji, is there any karma of my past life?”

“Yes 5000 tons are there, what are you going to do?” Can we wait? What is it that you want? You tell me!

“Swamiji, I may have 10000 tons of karma in the past life I don’t know. All that I know is my present life. Can I undo all past influences and can I go forward?” This is the question that you should ask.

The wicket mind becomes virtuous. The virtuous mind becomes wicked. The good mind becomes bad. The bad mind becomes good. Tell me which category you belong to. Don’t start a venture thinking of the obstacles it may evoke. Start the venture, when obstacles are met, leave it. Another is, repeatedly beset by obstacles, be bent upon doing what you have once attempted and go forward. Now the question is, which category you want to fall in? The option is there before you.

So, my dear souls, mind is a treasure, cultivate it properly. Think the manner in which you want. Do not be worried about the negative thoughts. Think the way you want and in three months, six months, one year, two years, in three years, you will find your mind becomes golden, heavenly and immortal.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru Jai Guru.

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