"It is not what you do that matters, but how you do it – with what attitude and aim. The spiritual effect that a seemingly spiritual activity brings, can also be had by the domestic pursuit, provided you preserve a spiritual attitude and dedication."

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.

As many of you know, I have been doing a telecast program in Asianet for the past, more than 27 months, more than 2 years. After a few months, when we started making it known that Narayanashrama Tapovanam is doing this program and these are the telephone numbers in which you can contact the Ashram or the Swamiji, many people used to telephone us and also there has been regular stream of visitors. I generally welcome them and tell them that “I am happy that you have come. It is nice to see you.” And I used to ask “Why is it that you have come and what do you feel?” One remark that I have been getting uniformly from the viewers is that “This is such a good exposure for us. We have started missing if for any reason we are not able to see the program due to cable defects or power failure or something like that”. I was wondering as to why so many of the people feel like this. Another remark that I hear from them is “Swamiji, why did you not come before us some 15 or 20 years back? The telecast has completely changed my life. My life is almost grown up now, over. I am trying to do something so far as my children and grand children are concerned.”

Why I am mentioning this? What is it that they get from the telecast? In simple language, briefly put, it is satsang, association with the wise people, holy people, knowers of truth, this is what is meant by satsanga. And what is a satsanga? A kind of an association and an interaction where ‘sat’, the Supreme truth, the everlasting presence will become the subject of discussion. Any wise man is supposed to tell you only about the Supreme truth or the Ultimate Reality.

What is this Ultimate reality? Whenever we see the world including our own body, mind and intelligence through which we see the word, the seen as well as the seeing mechanisms, all these are fleeting and evanescent. They don’t have a stable or long-standing life. They are not eternal. They are fleeting. Because they are fleeting, the enquiry naturally becomes inevitable as to what is behind these fleeting phenomena. Any fleeting cannot exist by itself. It must have an un-fleeting substratum or support. What is that? What is that so far as the world seen all around is concerned and what is that in our own personality?

If the body is changeful, mind is changeful, intelligence is also so and ego is also changeful, the question arises. I have been living uniformly from every since I had my memory. In spite of these changes, I continue to say ‘I’, ‘I’, ‘I’. This ‘I’ definitely refers to a presence and that presence has not fleeted. It has been uniformly there. Maybe I was young many years back. I am now growing or grown up. Either I am a middle-aged person or may be a little old. The ‘I’ continues to be the same. I have made no difference so far as the ‘I’ is concerned. I may sometimes say “I am weak, my body has become weak. My voice is very low. My mind is not able to think. My intelligence is not sharp. My ego is very inflated.” All these things I may say but they are all mine. They are not ‘I’. The ‘I’ in the nominative always remains. Unless there is an ‘I’, I cannot make a reference to ‘my’ or ‘mine’. Whatever I refer to as ‘my’ or ‘mine’, is an object possessed by me, by the ‘I’. While the ‘I’ remains the same and singular, the ‘mine’ can be to any extent assorted and multifarious. It can be multiple. The world consists of myriad objects. All of them are things which are seen by me. They are objects to me. So what is this subject ‘I’? This enquiry becomes inevitable.

So it is not merely the Supreme Reality of the visible world, it can also be the Supreme Reality in myself because my body, mind, intelligence and ego are subject to change. So, what is that changeless substratum? Is it not that I refer to as the ‘I’? If it is so, the ‘I’ is within the body. It is not distant. Then should I not know about it? This enquiry is inevitable in human life today or tomorrow. As long as we have an intelligence and a mind, such an enquiry can never be avoided. You can postpone it. You can be indifferent to it, negligent about it but the enquiry by itself is very substantial and undeniable. In satsanga, this is what is exposed.

A satsang becomes true and meaningful only when it is able to expose to the listeners and participants, this ‘sat’ - the supreme or ultimate reality. Reality is that which remains uniform in the past, in the present and in future. It cannot change or disappear. But all the things in this world are disappearing and vanishing. So, there must be an un-vanishing substratum. What is that? It is a very legitimate enquiry. This enquiry will sharpen your intelligence, will purify your mind, will bring about a regularity and regulation, a reformation in your senses and sensory interactions.

The human personality is a composite. It has an external counterpart in the form the biological aggregate called the body. This aggregate is consisting of matter and energy, a point I repeatedly stress. Neither matter nor energy has the power to think, know, feel, understand, memorize, doubt, enquire, know. At the same time, we have all these. So, what is that non-bodily factor from which emotions arise, enquiry arises, knowledge is gained, memory is retained? It cannot be matter and energy. That is how we arrive at an inner personality consisting of mind, intelligence and ego. Inside the body as it were different from matter and energy and bodily parts, we only have three constituents, mind intelligence and ego. All these three are functional units. They are not separate entities or existence. It is like the legs walking, running, standing, sitting, lying. The legs are the same but the functions are glaringly different. Similarly, mentation is called the mind, intellection is called the intelligence and assertion is called the ego. But all these are functions done by sentience or consciousness.

So, in our composite personality, the body is only an external one. The whole body and the instruments and the senses, organs in the body, they only act as instruments to be wielded and employed by the mind. So, the mind inwards, is the internal personality. This inner personality is to be enriched. Like food and nourishment enrich the body, what are the things which will enrich and empower your mind, intelligence and even your ego? We must have a very persevering mind, a sublimated mind, a mind that is capable of assimilating all inputs and impacts from the world and transform them into a progressive enrichment process. Our intelligence must be able to focus on anything whatsoever and try to understand deeper and deeper about it. So it always should encourage itself to take up questions and enquiries and enhance its knowledge. The ego should become sufficiently sublimated and enlightened. You must have a humble, at the same time very confident, functional ego, an enlightened ego, I would like to call it.

What is that process or pursuit by virtue of which this inner personality consisting of the mind, intelligence and ego can be enriched, can be elevated, can be enlightened, can be enlarged? We must be flexible and assimilative enough to assimilate all kinds of impacts and inputs from the world. Before nothing we should feel weak, timid or insufficient. I think the whole spirituality provided by satsang is meant to enlighten and reinforce our inner personality so that your interactional life will become better, more effective and more enriching to the world and everyday will also be a day of greater and additional enrichment to yourself.

So, our life should be self enriching as well as it should make enriching contributions to the world wherever you are, whatever you do. The whole life is revolving around the individual. It is an interaction between the individual remaining constant and the variable factors of the world like persons, places and events. In this interactional life, the individual should always be asserting himself and he must be able to give rise to the best and super-best interactions. I think the entire satsang is aimed at making the individuals better and better, more effective and more beneficial performers. If you go further and further, no harm should result from you. Only help and contribution should emerge. That kind of a benevolent, creative, useful life where you don’t feel subdued, overpowered or intimidated by the world but on the other hand, you always remain heroic, valorous, a master of the world as we put it, not a slave of the world.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

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