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Harih Om Tat Sat. Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.
Our Ashram Narayanashrama Tapovanam is actually a knowledge abode. When one takes up sannyasa, he does so because he feels very sure that in human life, knowledge is the one goal, one purpose and one means. Human life is always meant for gaining knowledge. Gaining such a knowledge that will fulfil our life. For fulfilling our life, our mind must have its need for joy and contentment. The intelligence also must fulfil its need of knowledge. Knowledge of whatever we see outside through the senses and also knowledge of whatever is inside the body by the help of which we see the objects.
Knowledge can be divided into two. One is the object we look at and oneself who is the subject that looks on. One we call the material knowledge because it is connected with matter and energy. The other we call spiritual knowledge because it is different from matter and energy. The entire world is consisting of matter and energy whether it is sun, moon, stars including the earth, all are formations of matter and energy.
In our Ashram, we always speak about the subject knowledge - knowledge of oneself, knowledge of the mind, knowledge of the intelligence, knowledge of the ego and knowledge of the self or soul. People go to the temple. They worship the Lord in the form of an idol from a distance and come away. We all know that the idol will not look at you and speak to you about what you need to do. There is always a gap there. Our worship is one-sided. In all the worship that we do, we don’t get an answer from the God whom we worship.
When you come to the Ashram, there is a great change. It is not a mute and a silent idol that you interact with when you come to the Ashram. The temple Gods are mute, the Ashram Gods are articulate and vibrant. What are we saying primarily here?
When you come to the Ashram, you see ascetics here, their disciples, all of them are very much vibrant and active in their pursuits. You get an opportunity to talk to them and get clarity. In one way or the other, everyone who comes here is after God, realizing God or after knowledge, the knowledge of the self. And all the discussions, lectures, talks, questions, answers, all of them are around this one subject. What are we trying to say?
Don’t simply practise devotion but become a devotee. When you become a devotee, all your life will be devotional. It is you, the devotee that lives, so the life is to be devotional. Whatever you do should and will be a devotional act or activity. This means that 24 hours of your life everyday, you will be connected with, intertwined with God. This is a message I have to give. You are perhaps worshipping God for half an hour or 45 minutes in your own way, keeping an idol or a picture before you in the pooja room. That means you can become a devotee for half an hour. Now my statement is that as you yourself have become a devotee and you are doing devotional activities during your worship, become an all-time devotee once and then start living the whole life in a devotional manner.
In other words, it is the art and science of extending your half an hour or 45-minute devotion to the full day out of which for a few hours you get lost in sleep. Say about 7-8 hours. Then you have 16 hours as a remainder in a day. All these 16 hours also, I want you to be a devotee and only devotional things.
When a girl is married, whatever be the nature of marriage, when it is held, that girl becomes a wife of her husband. It is a one-time performance, a one-time act. She considers that “I am the wife” and she will continue to be the wife in health, ill-health, when she becomes pregnant, when she delivers a child and becomes a mother. That one-time marriage makes her a whole-time wife. One-time child birth means the whole-time motherhood. If it is possible, my dear children, I am asking you, can you not become a devotee and convert to the whole of your life as devotional?
You come to the Ashram and feel the spiritual sublimity and blessedness. When you go away from here, you should not lose it. Try to generate it from within you. You can ask any one of us, Mā or Nutan Swamiji or even me if necessary, “Swamiji, what is that secret or science by virtue of which you say the whole life becomes a full-fledged devotion?”
When you dip a dry cloth in water, don’t you think that the water percolates and wets all the fibres of the cloth? Even when you take it away, it will still be wet and containing moisture. Similarly, you should dip your personality in the half an hour or 45-minute pooja, and when you dip and take it, then you will find your personality continues to become devotional. Tell me, arithmetically is it not a fact? Then why should you not have a practice and fulfilment of this in your life? This is the knowledge message that we are giving.
I told you, you also know that we are very busy and we are working also very hard. People used to say, especially Ramaswamy, I used to previously go around, participate in work, give directions etc. And from that work field, I will come to my office space, sit on the chair, start using the computer and writing. Very beautiful writing I produce. A few moments back I was with the workers. “Swamiji, how is it that you do this?” I said there is no difference for me between an interactional activity on the one hand and this kind of a meditation or talk. How to be like that if you ask me, yes. Our desires and vāsanās are what separate us from the so-called God.
Why don’t you think, why don’t you understand that the whole world is created by God and he dwells there? And every individual is only a very small part of the Earth, the globe on which you live? If this is so, can you not think of your life, somebody who lives, small entity in the corner of the globe? If the whole world is God, don’t you think, you, a denizen of the Earth is also God? What problem is there in thinking in this manner?
In the pooja also your purpose is to bring God a little nearer or go to him a little nearer. It is that thought that matters. Give a full dimension to your worship, your being a devotee, and extend your devotional nature and devotional purpose after you get up from the pooja room. In other words, I want you to extend your devotional life, devotional efforts to all the 24 hours of the day.
When you go into sleep, you should have God’s name or the mantra you have got from the Guru. Extending the worship, becoming a wholesome, all-time devotee. If you can score 35 % mark in your examination, by additional efforts and knowledge, you can score 98 % also. It is exactly like that here. Why don’t you think about it? It is simple arithmetics. If you can transform you to be a devotee for half an hour, you must be able to transform yourself as a devotee for the whole life. There is no crisis, there is no pain, there is no constriction, it is a simple growth and enrichment.
All the instances that our people do here, activities, every one gives an opportunity for you to transform your devotion from its limited range to the day’s full range. The trouble is with our mind and the trouble should be clearly understood and kept away. I think this is the message I can give you. Don’t remain a short-term devotee of the day but remain a full-term devotee of the day, of the week, of the month, of the year, of the decade. It is absolutely possible. You may need some more explanation or message as to how to be one like this. That is a genuine question and we can answer it and show you the guidance.
Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru.