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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Anil Kumar's Sunday Satsang at Prasanthi Nilayam
July 4, 1999

This is the Sunday Satsang held on the first floor of the North Indian Canteen on 04-07-99, given by Anil Kumar.

Topics: Laziness, Ego, Yagnas, Suffering, Science and Spirituality, Personal family stories.

Sai Ram.

Last week we started sharing certain descriptions of Bhagavan’s trip to Kodaikanal, including certain questions put to Him and the answers Bhagavan gave. I also gave some description of the materialisations. With the passage of time, I shall also mention these once again.

One question put to Swami was this: Why is it that some are lazy in the name of spirituality? We find some people who are not prepared to take employment, though they are quite physically fit. Though they are quite eligible for a job and physically fit, they think it is spiritual to idle their time. This is laziness, laziness. Why, they even put on a long face, thinking that this is spirituality. It was Vivekananda who said, "Long, serious faces deserve a place in the hospital, not in the field of spirituality." (Vivekananda said this. So please do not blame me, if anyone is affected!) So, laziness is not a sign of spirituality. Certainly not! But unfortunately, some are like that. They do not take any job. They do not do any work and they have a complacent nature. Swami, what are Your views about it? What are Your views?

The first point He said is this: "Laziness is rust and dust. Realisation is rest and best." Realisation is a rest and best. Laziness is rust and dust. No one should be lazy. Swami wants everyone to do some work or other, to associate with one assignment or another. Here Bhagavan said, "Do not expect God to help you, unless you do your job." Unless you participate, unless you associate yourself, unless you make use of your brain that you are gifted with, unless you exercise the sense of discrimination with the intellect that we are blessed with, God is not going to help us. God helps those who help themselves.

He gave a few examples in this direction. What did He say? Here is a match box. Here is a matchstick. Matchstick. If you want to light it, what should you do? Take the matchstick and strike it against the matchbox to light it. Am I not right? Similarly, though both these flints are there, one must strike the matchstick against the matchbox to get the flame. Likewise, you must make your own effort to get the light. You must make your own effort, do your own job, for this ‘light’ of realisation. In Telugu Bhagavan always says, "Krushi vunte krupa vuntundi." Krushi means human effort. Krupa is divine grace. You will have krupa, divine grace, if you do that exercise which is called your own effort or krushi. Krushi is human effort. Krupa is divine grace .This is what Bhagavan says regarding those people who are lazy in the name of spirituality.

Then He gave another example. A devotee of Rama was going in a cart. On the way he fell down. The whole cart in which he was travelling turned upside down! It was reversed. This fellow who fell into a convenient spot, started crying, "Oh, Ramachandra, I am Your devotee. Is this the way that You are blessing me? The whole cart just reversed now. I am suddenly on the ground! I am helpless! Oh God, is this the gift of love?" He went on crying. Then God appeared in his dream and told him, "Why, useless fellow, I gave you muscles. I gave you hands. I gave you skills. I gave you brains. Why don't you get up? Come on, get up! Try to place the cart in its original position. It is reversed. It has turned upside down. So come on, get up. Try to put it in the normal way. I will assist you." So, as this man got up and tried to lift the wheel, he found Hanuman on the other side, trying to put the other wheel into its original place! This is the example given by Bhagavan to impress on everybody that God is there to help us anytime if only we put in our effort. It is a conditional clause. With man’s effort, God’s grace comes. These are the views of Swami on laziness.

What does He say about the ego? Any amount of things can be said about the ego because there is no one without ego. There is only a difference in proportion. One person may be the very personification of ego, the very embodiment of ego. Another may have 50% ego or 40% ego, but there is no one without ego. Bhagavan said that we should all tell our ego, "Oh ego, you go! Oh ego, you go because you are putting me to all types of problems, and all my headache is because of you! Oh ego, you go!" Swami has also said, "We can be free from ego, ego will certainly go, if only we analyse what we are in this world." In this world, there are many, many people. In the past, there were very noble people, sages and saints. And now there are many Avatars and Incarnations, many scientists and great people. The world is not short of rich people or intelligent people. After all that, who am I? Compared to everybody, what am I? God existed even before me. God exists even now. God continues to exist even after I leave this world. God is infinite. What am I? There are so many great people. Where am I? So this sort of analysis, that is, trying to know where exactly we stand in the company of the noble people, in the company of the sages and saints, in the company of the devotees, helps us to understand that we are nothing. That would be the best way of driving out our ego. Rather, unnecessarily bloating up or puffing or stuffing the entire ego, results in our head being full of ego, which is a red signal for our fall in the near future. Ego grows fast before a man totally falls. So the ego is most dangerous on the spiritual path. Particularly Bhagavan does not even tolerate an iota of ego. If He suspects that there is the least of ego in any one of us, well, that is a matter for three months' treatment – His very Himalayan silence!

Only recently I spoke to our former students, old students of our Institute. They asked me to share a few thoughts from my mind with them. I just now went and spoke to them. I am just coming from there. I told them, "Hey boy, you may feel that Swami is not looking at you. You say, 'Swami is not looking at me. He is not smiling. In those days, I had a number of padnamaskars and a whole number of interviews. Why not now? What happened to me now? Am I a stranger? Am I a nobody? But in those days, when I was in full form, He gave me the opinion that I was very important for this Incarnation, that I was the only powerful devotee! Now what has happened? Why is He avoiding me?"

And here is what I told my boys, just now. I told them, "Boys, understand: He is avoiding you because He sees you first. If He wants to avoid anybody, He cannot avoid them without seeing them. So, when He is avoiding all of us, it means He is seeing us first, in order of priority. Then if He wants to talk to you, He will look at you next. So do not think that Swami is not looking at you because He is positively, necessarily avoiding all of us. So, He is certainly looking at us! Otherwise, how can He turn His back on us like that? He saw us first! Therefore, He is looking away. Hence, He turned His back! It is like a registered post. If you send something by registered post, you will get an acknowledgement receipt back. So, when He turns His back, that is our acknowledgement receipt. Don't worry." That is what I was telling them. Why all this?

When we ask, "Swami, how is it that You do not look at us? Why?" He said, "I always look at you. I am here for you. But you did not clean yourself. There are certain impurities. There are certain obstacles between you and Me. Ego is an iron curtain between us. It should be made thinner and thinner and thinner. It should get lost once and for all so that I can look at you." The thicker the ego, the farther and farther He is away from us. So, ego is a thick curtain, rather an iron curtain, between a devotee and God. Swami is really dedicated to such a thing. No one should have any kind of claim of doership like, "I have done. I have done." If I tell Him, "Swami, I arranged this all very nicely," He will say, "You have not built it. You have not built it." And so saying, He will see some dust in some corner. "Ah! This is how you have done!" On the other hand, if I say, "Swami, excuse me. I wanted to do it. I could not do anything. I am a useless fellow. It is a pity that I could not come up to your expectations, Swami. Please pardon me." Then His response will be, "No, no. You have done a lot!" (Anil:) Why do you say like that?" (Swami:) "No, no, no. You have arranged the hall and you have laid the carpets and the mike and everything. Appa! You have done so nicely!" Why He speaks like this now? Because I have not taken on the role of doership. I have not taken on that role, or rather made a claim that "I" have done it. This "I," the ego, is ruining everyone of us. It is only a difference of proportion, that's all! When we just accept that we are helpless, that we are not able to do anything, then comes His blessing: "No, no. You have done enough. I am pleased." Because God is pleased not with the quantum of work, nor with the intensity of work, nor with talk about our work, but with the feeling, the idea, with which we do it. The feeling with which we do is more important than what we do. It is the ego that comes in between. That is what Bhagavan has said.

Further, Bhagavan is a Poet of poets. He said, "You know, there are many good things in this world. And there are bad things also. Good things and bad things. But we miss good things and take bad things, miss good, take bad. That is the miss-take in everyone." So, the mistake with most of us happens to be: to miss good things and to take bad things. Miss + take = mistake. That is the tragedy of life. So these are the mistakes that we do because of the ego. That is what Bhagavan has said.

In the same context, He narrated a story from our epics. I do not want to go into the details but, in short, the story is this: One demon prayed to God, "Oh God, let me be powerful. So powerful that, on whomsoever I lay my hand on his head, he should be burned to ashes!" Appa! Lovely desire this is! "So, if I keep my hand on anybody, that fellow most be reduced to ashes!" That was his desire, a rather demonic desire. "OK, God?" God responds, "Yes, boy, carry on." So this fellow started running hither and thither, putting his hand on everybody and people got burned. Finished. Brought down to ashes.

Ultimately, this fellow wanted to test God. "If I keep my hand on God’s head, what will happen?" So he went to Kailas straight away. "Oh Shiva, You granted me this boon. Let me test it on You now!' And God acted frightened. He started running. This fellow started chasing Him. So God and this fellow started running and running and running. In the meantime, the whole thing was noticed by Laksmi. Vishnu is the Sustainer. Brahma is the Creator. Vishnu is the Sustainer. Shiva is the Annihilator. So this is the desire or boon granted by Shiva. Then Laksmi, the consort of Vishnu, noticed what was happening. She thought, "This fellow will keep his hand on Shiva. Next it will be my husband's turn! He, too, may be burned like that!" Therefore, she wanted to take enough precautions. Immediately she called her husband: "Look here, Vishnu, that fellow is coming now. Be ready! Shiva will be finished very soon and then he will come to you. Be careful!"

Then Vishnu thought over the whole thing and understood what he had to do. He has taken on the role of a beautiful dancer, Mohini. This devil's name was Bhasmasura. Bhasmasura started dancing and Mohini started dancing. Bhasmasura was very much pleased with the dancing of Mohini, the most beautiful star, and he started to imitate her, with all the movements of his hands, gestures and postures, so that he would equal her in performance. But then Mohini, while dancing with all the postures and movements, kept her hand on her own head. She kept her hand on her own head! This Bhasmasura noticed it. "Oh," he said, "what a beautiful posture!" And he kept his hand on his own head. (Anil claps his hands!) Burnt to ashes!

This story Swami narrated and explained, "Look! Look here! God created man. God created man. Man is so egoistical today that he thinks that he is final. He thinks that he is the controller of the entire creation, when in fact he has been exploiting the entire nature. He is highly egoistical. He is so proud of himself that he now starts denying the Creator!" Now he is questioning God! Now he is denying God! Man, a mere creature created by God, starts questioning the Creator Himself, like Bhasmasura, who wanted to attack God, the Creator, the One who had granted him the boon in the first place! What happened to the demon finally? He kept his hand on his own head! Finished! So the present man is ruining himself. No man is a cause nor is anyone responsible for our fall. No. We ourselves are responsible for our own fall due to our own ego. This you should understand. That is what Bhagavan has said.

And then Swami also referred to modern people. This was the question put to Swami: Bhagavan, how is it that we have certain rituals which appear to be outdated, old-fashioned. These rituals, they are not ultra-modern. We are aware that we belong to the computer age. We are highly conscious that we belong to Internet and the space age. Why are these yagnas and yagas there at Dasara time? During Dasara, we have yagnas and yagas, the fire and the smoke. Our eyes start burning. Why do all these rituals which are all outdated. Why don't You have some yagna at the Internet level? Something like a package deal! Why not? Why not! Because these yagnas and yagas are dreadfully ridiculous and outdated. When everything is "the latest," well then, why not the rituals also?!? These rituals appear to be quite funny. A few priests sit there in front of the sacrificial fire, and tins and tins of ghee are poured into the fire. Some smoke comes out of it, and we experts are at a loss watching all of this! Ah! It is meaningless. Why? This is the question. Some dare to ask, some may not, but this has been the feeling of many of this present generation.

Swami gave a simple example: The rituals like yagnas and yagas, the spiritual rituals, the Vedic rituals, are not useless. They are not ridiculous. They are never outdated. They are very important. And then He gave an example: One highly educated man with his PhD in computer science, went to some village. It is his first visit to a village. He never saw a village before because he belongs to a metropolitan city of air pollution. So he went there into the village. There he saw a farmer, an agriculturist. The farmer was holding paddy grains and then he started throwing all the paddy grains everywhere all over the field. This educated fellow saw this and thought, "This fellow seems to be a madcap! How is it that he is simply throwing paddy grains like that? That is why India is poor! That is why there is no food here in this country! People don't know how to make use of the paddy grains. They simply throw it there!" He went to the farmer and said, "Hari Ramu, you are a fool! Why do you throw them like that?! That is food, don’t you know that?" The farmer said, "Sir, I am not simply throwing it like that. One bag of paddy grain today will yield fifty bags tomorrow. You do not know. You think I am simply throwing like that. But they are being first sown in this way. Then the field is watered and, in course of time, the seeds sprout and we have the harvest of the crop. Fifty bags will come from one bag of paddy. We will have fifty bags of paddy tomorrow." Then this educated, latest man, with his PhD in computer science, could understand that he has a PhD in foolishness also. Not only in his field of specialisation, but also in foolishness!

Like that Bhagavan said that in yagna, near the sacrificial fire, very valuable items are kept there, including tins and tins of ghee. It is not a waste of money because out of this yagna and yaga, smoke comes. It gets mixed with the atmosphere and air pollution is gone. Air pollution is reduced. So the only solution to air pollution is yagna and yaga. Most people today suffer from lung problems and heart problems. Why? Environmental pollution. So, as yagnas and yagas, as these spiritual rites are undertaken, as spiritual rituals are performed from time to time, the air pollution could be brought under check or control. That is what Bhagavan has said. So, in the name of modernity, let us not call these things nonsensical, ridiculous or meaningless.

Then another question is put to Swami: Bhagavan, I think I am sufficiently spiritual in my calculation (because the other follow refuses to calculate and estimate, so let me estimate myself in a modest way). Well, I think that I am spiritual, but why is it that I still suffer? Why? Though many people are spiritual, though many people meditate, though many people attend nagarsankirtan, read holy books, and fast every day if possible, though they do all the spiritual practices and follow all the spiritual disciplines, but yet they are unhappy. Why? A very good question. Why are we unhappy, though we are spiritual? Why? Why do we have problems? Why do we face problems, family problems, social problems? Why all this? We are spiritual!

This is the answer that Bhagavan has given. I think you will be very much interested to know it. Let us be clear about what is happening in our spiritual life. Let us be very clear. What we want and what we aspire for are two different things. We aspire for two things. What are they? One is peace. Another is bliss. Everybody wants peace. Everybody wants bliss. Peace and bliss are two things which are very much sought after. People want them. But when we start praying, "Oh God, please give me some lakhs of rupees. Peace and bliss, they will follow the money. They will naturally follow. So first grant me money. The rest of the things will follow." The person in fact wanted peace and bliss to begin with. He aspires for those things, peace and bliss, to start with. But when he comes to prayer, he asks for worldly possessions, worldly name and fame, worldly money. Therefore, here Swami says there is a dichotomy. There is a dichotomy: We aspire for one thing, but we pray for another thing. Something like, I want to go to Madras, but I get into a Bombay train! So where do I go? The ticket collector will come in between the two destinations and ask me to get down somewhere else. That is a tragedy. So, we should pray for that which we aspire for. What all we aspire for, what all we dream, what all we really want, we should pray for that. Because worldly desires, worldly positions, and worldly possessions will never give us peace and bliss. We know that. And we want peace and bliss. Yet we want these other things. That is the reason why, though many are spiritual, they are still not happy. They still may feel sad for this reason.

Secondly, Bhagavan said that we do not have proper priorities in life. No proper priorities in life. What do you want? If you ask any man, what do you want, if you ask a post-graduate student, what do you want, "I want at least a green card to go to the United States." Oh, very good. Or, one may want a Contessa car. Good. What do you want? A four-figured salary? Impossible? A five-figured salary? Oh. I see. So, these are the things that we want. Not that it is wrong to ask for these things. No. In priorities, where do you keep these things? What place you give them?

Bhagavan gives two examples: We have the Pandavas on the one side, and then the Kauravas on the other side in The Mahabharata, the sacred epic of this land. The wicked fellows are the Kauravas. The noble, pious, and virtuous people are the Pandavas. Virtuous, noble people give first place to God. First priority goes to God. Next, to everybody else. They keep themselves in the last. God first, others next, and "I", the last. That is the priority which noble people, pious people, seekers and aspirants will have. On the other hand, the wicked fellow will keep "I" first, others next, and God in the last. A wicked fellow, in the order of priority, keeps God in the last place. Here Swami says that if you keep God in the last, you are lost, l-o-s-t. You are lost (1-o-s-t), you are gone because, in order of priority, you have given the last place to God, l-a-s-t. So happiness depends upon the priorities in life. We are sad because of wrong priorities. That is what Bhagavan has said.

So Swami, what shall I do now? All right, I have wrong priorities now. OK, I understand I am wrong in giving top priority to myself. I am sorry. So what shall I do now? Bhagavan gave a simple example, saying, "You don't have to do anything else. Only understand yourself." Swami, what is it? "Here is a glass of water. At the bottom is sugar." A glass of water, at the bottom of which there is sugar. All right. "Now taste the water at the top. Tasteless. Taste the water in the middle. Tasteless." Oh, I see. "Where is sugar?" It is at the bottom. "So what should you do now? Take a spoon. Keep it there. Stir it up. Mix the sugar completely, so that it gets dissolved totally. Now you taste the water on the top. Is it sweet enough? You taste the water in the middle. Is it sweet enough? You taste the water at the bottom. Very sweet, yes? Why? Because sugar got mixed into it and dissolved totally. So, body is the glass. Water is the life. Sugar is the divinity. Spoon is the intellect. Body is the cup. Water is life. Sugar is divinity. What you have to do is, with the spoon of the intellect, stir it well, mix it well. That is sadhana. This process of stirring up, this process of mixing is called sadhana or spiritual practice." It only means the whole water is sweet now. Earlier it was tasteless. Then and now, there will be sugar. Earlier, sugar was there at the bottom. When once I mixed the sugar with the spoon, the sugar got dissolved all over. Sugar is there from the beginning. The sugar is divinity. So, sugar of life is divinity. When once, with the intellect, we mix the sugar all over in the water-of-life present within the cup-of-the-body, the whole life is bound to be sweet. Life will be sweet. Life is worth living. Life is meaningful. Life is purposeful. Life is enjoyable. Life is fruitful. If at all we mix this divinity such that it gets dissolved in the whole of our life structure, in the whole of our lifestyle, in the whole of our life pattern, then that is how we can make our life quite sweet and nectarine.

So my friends, we are unhappy now and then. We are very sad now and then. We get carried away by certain incidents in our life. In our individual life, we have a problem. In our official life, we have a problem. I have a problem. Any problem is enough for me to feel sad. Any problem is enough. Now, when once I mix the sugar of divinity all over, then I pray, "Oh God, let me forbear it. Oh God, give me strength to bear this problem. Oh God, give me the strength to come successfully out of this problem. Oh God, give me the solution to this problem, so that I don't have to feel sad at all."

That is the reason why Bhagavan says, "Why fear when I am here." We sing that song very well. We quote it repeatedly. But yet we fear because we do not know He is here. We fear because we do not know that He is here! We are not aware that He is here. We are not sure that He is here. Therefore we fear. But we sing, "Why Fear When I Am Here." Fine. It is fine to sing, but we are not convinced! If you are really convinced of that, when you have the firm conviction that God is here, then there is no need to fear. Only then we will really enjoy life. Life will be full of smiles. So this is one solution that Bhagavan gave for all those who feel sad in spite of being spiritual.

Then Swami made two points again here. After all, this greediness, this greed makes everyone want more and more, over and over, too many desires. And in order to fulfil those desires, we undertake many, many responsibilities. Our thinking goes like this: With a lot, I have. With money, I have. I am not satisfied. I want much more. Therefore, I will have many more responsibilities. So, "Less luggage, more comfort. Make travel a pleasure," goes the right-way slogan. If you have less luggage, your travel is quite comfortable. Your travel is quite happy. When we have more desires, the whole life is full of burden a heavy luggage of desires. Therefore, we are very uncomfortable. We feel very insecure and happiness is totally robbed from us. So, Bhagavan says that in order to be happy, one should cut down on their desires. Have a ceiling on desires, a control on desires. It is most important so as to be happy, according to Bhagavan.

And second thing that Swami said was that all this is our own making. All this unhappiness is of our own making. He was talking to the boys. One day here He said, "Hey Mister, get up!" There in Kodaikanal He said, "Master, get up!" At that time, there were about six professors there. I got up all of a sudden. He said, "Why do you get up?" "I'm a master," I said. Swami said, "Are you a master?" I answered, "Yes." Swami said, "No, no, no. You are not a master." So I asked, "Then Swami, who am I?" Swami said, "The one who has got control of the senses is a master. The one who has no control of the senses is a mister. You are a mister, Anil Kumar, but you are not Master Anil Kumar." So I said, "Oh, I see. So shall I sit down or get up now?" Or run away from there? Then I said, "Swami, in the way You meant, I am not a master. But by profession, I am a master teaching boys." But God won't leave you there! Then He said, "All right, if you are a teacher, if you are a master by virtue of profession, there are six other professors. They did not get up. Why did you alone get up?" He won't leave you! Then I said apologetically, "I am senior-most, Swami. Therefore I got up." Swami asked, "How?" I explained, "This is the thirty-seventh year of my service. Therefore, I am quite eligible to get up." Then He asked one of the professors, "What is your age?" That man said, "I’ll be fifty-one." Without Him asking me I said, "I'm fifty-seven. I’ll be retiring next year. Therefore I got up." Then He said, " Appa! What a just indication, what a reply you made! Now will you go!" He said.

So the point is, we feel like that in order to realise the desires we have. All of this is of our own making after all. Our very own making. He was talking to the boys, "Hey, boy. As a mister, you are very comfortable. As a mister, you are a master of senses. Yes. You are fine now. You are a master, and you are a mister. You are just a bachelor. You are talking to boys. You are a bachelor. It is quite nice. But you must be getting married very soon. You are quite independent now, walking straight with two legs. When once you get married, you will have four legs. You will have to walk horizontally like an animal. With one child, you will have six legs like a scorpion. With one more child, you will have eight legs like a cockroach. As you have more and more legs, your walking will slow down. Whose responsibility is that? Who is responsible for all this bondage? Who has chosen for you this web of bondage? Whom can you blame? It is all your own making." So, for my misery, for my unhappiness, for my sadness, I am responsible. No one else. So, all the desires, all the attachments are of our own making. Let us understand. Let us not blame God for any reason.

Bhagavan further said that many of us feel sad, many of us, most of us, beyond time and space. Most of us feel sad. Why? Bhagavan, Psychologist of psychologists, said that there are two reasons:

We are sad because we always think of the past: Fifteen years ago, I lost one lakh of rupees. So I cry now. Ten years ago, you did not give me a good breakfast, so I complain to you now. Last year, you did not answer my questions. So I do not want to look at your face. Like this, most of the problems, most of the conflicts, most of the in-fighting, most of the misunderstandings are because of our brooding over the past. We go on thinking of the past. This and that, that and this. The husband telling the wife, "Your father has not given me the proper wedding suit." He already has grandchildren now. Why is the husband grating the poor dead father now, who must have already been finding a place on the other planet! And then this wife goes on telling, "Your mother has not treated me well when I first stepped into your house forty years ago when we were married." The mother-in-law died fifteen years ago. How can this poor fellow help the situation?!? So, we take to this misunderstanding and fighting all because of the past. Please forget the past. Past is past. Really speaking, if Swami considers the past, I am sure, the whole of Prashanti Nilayam would be vacant! But He gave us a blank check: All right, past is past. OK, it does not matter. From now on, lead a good life. Every time He gives us a blank check, but we continue to be what we are. At one time when in a good mood I said, "Swami, if it is a matter of competition between God and the devotee, between God and man, man won over God. Why? God has taken ten births, ten Avatars, to correct man. He failed utterly. We continue to be bad. We have given You ten chances to reform us. You have failed! We have given you ten chances to reform us as Avatar. You have miserably failed!"

So this is our life. Our life is not interesting for this reason: We think of the past. What can we do? We are helpless. Past is past. Further He said, you have walked all the way. You have walked all through life. You do not need to look back because you have passed that way. What is the need to look back? That time is gone. Past is beyond recovery. You cannot get it back anyway. So one reason for our sadness is thinking of the past.

The second reason for our misery is about the future: After fifty years when I grow old and helpless, what will happen. Nothing will happen. The world will not loose anything. It will celebrate if we kick the bucket: Waste of food, that's all! So what will happen in the world if I die? She will be more comfortable. Like this we think of the future: What will happen to her when I die? She will be more happy because this fellow who was a nuisance is gone. She may not say it aloud now. Later, if this fellow has got a chance to notice after leaving this plane, he will see how much happier she is, how much happier without him.

So we value the future. We go on amassing money, money, and more money, feeling that the money will save us from death. It was Osho who said, "Love of money is fear of death." What a wonderful statement it is! It appears to be rather funny. Love of money is fear of death. Man thinks that he will keep himself from death by having money. But the money is meant for those who are left behind, not for the fellow who is leaving. So he will amass wealth and he will depart one fine day. His children will enjoy it. Therefore we think of the future and are very much worried. Hence we do not enjoy the present.

So my friends, Bhagavan has said that much of the misery and much of the anxiety and worry is because we think of the past and worry about the future. Instead, let us live in the present. Bhagavan said, "In the past it was a tree. In the future, it is going to be a tree. In the present, it is a seed. The present seed is out of the past tree. The present seed is a future tree. So the future and the past, they are all trees. In the present, it is a seed. So present is a result of the past. Present is the foundation for the future. So it is not a simple present. It is omnipresent, as Bhagavan explains repeatedly.

Last time there in Kodaikanal there was a discussion. During that discussion, Swami made a mention of this story. The Raja of Jamnagar, was an ardent devotee of Bhagavan. He came to see Bhagavan and Bhagavan said, "All right, Raja. You go home. You go to Jamnagar. I will see you there. I will see you there." This Raja went. After few months, the Raja had a serious heart attack. Being Raja, the king of that area, he was examined by thirteen doctors. All this was told by Swami in Delhi. Swami Himself said this: "Thirteen doctors examined him and declared him dead." But suddenly the body got up and he started talking as if Swami were seated there. "Oh, Bhagavan, have You come? You promised that You would be here. I am so glad that You are here. You said, ‘You go to Jamnagar. I will meet you there.’ You have fulfilled Your promise." He started speaking like this. Because they had enough courage, the other doctors did not run away from that place. Normally, if any dead body gets up and talks, no, none of us will remain there. Just imagine ourselves in that situation. Because a big crowd was there, the doctors and everybody started wondering. Suddenly the body fell down. At that moment, the Palace received a telegram from Bhagavan, saying "Raja reached My Lotus Feet. Raja merged in Me. Raja arrived here." That was the telegram sent by Swami.

Speaking this sincerely, Swami said, if you have got to laugh, if you have got attachment, you need not freely leave this Divine Body. The spirit will come to Me, will surround Me. Even now it seems the mother of Bhagavan, Easwaramma, visits Prashanti Nilayam still today. He was telling us what has happened sometimes, and what she has said. One time, just in a happy mood, Swami said the following. (Anil adds, "I don't know whether I am supposed to share this with you or not, but I take the divine spiritual risk, as I often do.") Well, what happened was this: It seems He was feeling rather loose here in this part, where He wears His dhoti. (Anil shows his waist.) And suddenly Swami said to the boys, "Boys, I want a belt. Would you get me some belt?" (in order to make the dhoti tighter). The boys took it quite literally. The next morning, a few belts came: a belt from Singapore, a belt from Bombay, and a belt from Delhi. That morning Swami exclaimed, "Chi, chi! Do you think that I would have these belts?!? Chi! Take it away!"

That night Mother Easwaramma came to Prashanti Nilayam. She went into His room directly. The boys who were sitting outside Bhagavan's room could overhear the talk there. They slightly opened the door to Swami's room. They saw Easwaramma and Swami talking to each other. Mother Easwaramma told Swami, "Swami, You gave me so many jewels in those days. I knew then that these jewels should go back to You after my death. At that time my whole body was burning with these jewels! I still have that chain, the golden chain, Swami, which You gave me then. Why do you want those other belts? Chi, chi! Take this chain and use it as a waistband. It will be tight enough." And thus she gave her gold chain to Bhagavan. It exactly fit Him. Then He gave that chain to one boy there. And He told Easwaramma, "Why did you come like this? The boys are afraid of you! You go now." And she left. Then Swami asked, "Boy, bring that gold chain." That boy brought it and He showed us that gold chain. From this incident Swami was explaining that if you have intense love for people, even after you leave this body, the spirit or the soul can still linger around, move around those people whom you loved the most.

He also mentioned another incident connected with Easwaramma: One day she came directly and the boys could hear the conversation. They opened the door and listened to the conversation. What did she say? "Swami, you have established a very big hospital. You have lost weight. Why don't you have health check-up for Yourself?" Health check-up, why not! So many thousands are waiting there. He said, "Easwaramma, do not tell Me that. If you talk in this way, I will not allow you to come back like this. Nothing will happen to Me. Go." (Easwaramma)"I will not go, Swami, unless You promise that you will go for a health check-up." Swami said, "All right. What else to do? Those who serve us, their hand we should oblige."

All right! After some days, He sent word to the hospital doctors. They brought some medical equipment, and checked Swami. To quote Swami, "They all declared, Swami is the healthiest man! Healthiest: BP normal, pulse rate normal, everything is paka (fine). The doctors were very much surprised to see such fitness at the age of seventy-five! What! So fit! That is the divine body. It is not a human body. It is not a body like yours, not like your body or my body. No, it is a divine body, so strong, so strong. This Swami said, and He laughed and laughed.

It seems Easwaramma came once again on another occasion and she said, "Swami, I have one request." "Hey! You go on coming here with some request. Go and come." (Easwaramma)"Please, Swami!" (Swami)"OK! Only this is the last request! What is your request?" (Easwaramma)"You take a kerchief from everybody. Do not do that hereafter because people of this century, people of these days, are mischievous fellows, dangerous fellows. They may put some chemical there on the kerchief that will poison You. Please do not do that." And He said, "Amma, chi! No poison can do anything to Me! Nothing! Nothing will happen to Me, I am telling you!" (Easwaramma)"No, Swami, unless You promise that You will not take kerchiefs from people, I will not leave from here." In order to drive her away from that room, Swami said, "OK. I will not take from everybody. I will take kerchiefs only from students hereafter."

There is another story Swami told about his physical father and the request he made to Swami. He pleaded with Swami, "Soon after I die, make some sweet preparation. I have also brought with me a hundred rupees. When the time comes, get some small change for this hundred rupees, and just distribute that change as the dead body is taken in a procession. Why? Because I had a provision shop here. When customers came here to buy some provisions, I might have forgotten to give them some small change. I do not want to leave this body in debts. No, let me clear up all these debts. I should not be indebted to anybody. So, let coins be distributed to everybody, Swami." That is what Swami’s father said. Baba told him, "Don't worry. I will take care of it." He died on that same day, and the coins were distributed to everybody as per his request. And a sweet dish was prepared in the early morning. Then Swami said that His father could have a premonition of his death because he was the father of this divine physical body. Therefore, he could know when his death was coming.

Bhagavan was also referring to His grandfather. Grandfather was at that time, coming to Swami in the early morning around four o'clock. He would come calmly and silently before the sun rose, around four o’clock. Swami, the poor boy, the tiny tot with His blanket covering Himself from the top of His head to the bottom of His toes, would cover up more so on coming to know that Grandfather was fast approaching! He covered so that Grandfather could not notice His Feet. But Grandfather came slowly and despite Swami’s effort to hide His Feet, he lifted the blanket and touched the Lotus Feet. Like that, he would take padnamaskar and leave every morning. That had been his practice.

Once Grandfather said, "Baba, my last prayer, I want You to answer my last prayer." Baba said, "What do you want?" (Grandfather)"Swami, I want You to be by my bedside when I breathe my last. When the end comes, I want You to be there near me," Swami said, "OK." Then suddenly one day Swami started moving to the Old Mandir. He kept moving toward the village. Grandfather saw Swami coming there. He immediately called the mother of Bhagavan, Easwaramma, the daughter-in-law, and said, "Oh, Swami is coming. My end is nearly approaching. I am going to die." And she said, "What, Grandfather! You are 112 years. How is it you are going to die? No, no. You are so strong!" (Grandfather)"No! Swami said that He would be here when my end approaches. So I am going to die." (Easwaramma)"So what shall I do?" (Grandfather)"Get some water and Tulsi leaf ready." Then Swami came slowly and put His grandfather’s head on His lap. Grandfather started looking at Swami. Swami made him sip a few spoonfuls of water with Tulsi. Looking at Swami and praying to Him, he breathed his last. Thus Bhagavan was describing the end of His grandfather.

This story prompted other devotees, who wanted to know more about the life-after- death, to ask some other questions to Swami. "Swami, what will happen after death?" Another person started asking, "Swami, what will happen to the spirit? How long will it be there?" I was very much fed up to tell you honestly. These are young boys. They have got a long life before them. For these young boys, who have got such a long life ahead, such a topic they should not relish. Immediately I said, "Swami, a humble prayer." He said, "What is it?" (Anil)"Let us not ask questions on this point. What have we learnt of death? We have nothing to say. If the life after death is going to be interesting, well I cannot help the situation here and now. I cannot be very happy now. Even if I am going to be happy hereafter, my present debts and loans are not cleared here. My present problem is not solved. And, on the other hand, if I am going to be unhappy after death, should I start caring from today? Why? Not necessary! Whether the life-after-death may be happy or unhappy, why should I worry about it now? On the other hand, we are extremely happy today watching You. We are extremely happy today to talk to You. We are extremely happy to be near You and to listen to Your message. It is time for lunch. Let us go!" I said. He liked it immediately. "What he said is true. Why do you want to know about the life-after-death, losing the present good chance? The present chance is quite a golden chance. To be in the company of God is most precious and very much coveted. Why are you worried about the life-after-death? Why all that? Now this is the golden opportunity."

So my friends, the sadness is there in us because we worry about the future and also about the past. Then Bhagavan gave one simple example: When you drop any heavy object, it will fall to the ground. But if it is cotton, it will go up because of its light weight. So too, as you become lighter and lighter, discharging your duties as required from time to time, clearing all responsibilities by the age of fifty, then you will enjoy life. If a lady starts a fresh business at the age of sixty, or if a gent wants to get married at the age of seventy, we cannot help the situation. So, after fifty one should be free from all responsibilities, as Bhagavan says. The whole life should be as light as a piece of cotton so that it can fly high. It should not be a dead weight so as to pull one down. So this is the secret to being happy. That is what Bhagavan has said.

For this morning, I want to bring to your attention a beautiful question put to Swami. I also notice youngsters are here. I think they will be profited by hearing this. "Swami, many of the scientists deny God. Many of the scientists are not for God or religion or spirituality. They think that this life is the only reality. Life is full of comforts, conveniences, extravaganza, the full works, the music, the fun and frolic. That is their idea of the reality of life. So they do not accept the very concept of God. Now the question is: Are science and spirituality complimentary or contradictory? Do they supplement each other, or do they negate or oppose each other?" This is the question put to Him because there were many students of science there.

Ah! What a beautiful answer He gave! "Remember, science speaks of this. Spirituality speaks of that. Spirituality speaks of Tat, That, whereas science speaks of this, Twam. Science speaks of matter. Spirituality speaks of Atma, the spirit, the spirit behind it, the principle behind it. Science speaks of matter. Science refers to the physical body, the five elements and the world. Spirituality speaks of something beyond, something transcendental. Science is limited by the body and the mind. Spirituality transcends the body, mind and intellect. Science is below the senses. Spirituality is above the senses. Science is the split of love. Spirituality is the spirit of love."

What a beautiful explanation! All these sentences are Bhagavan's. None of them are mine. Please be convinced of it, believe me. "Science is the split of love, while spirituality is the spirit of love. Science refers to this world. Spirituality talks about the other world. Science speaks of the five elements. Spirituality goes beyond. Science has a beginning. But it does not know how to end." A simple example: A scientist may invent an atom bomb. Once there is an atom bomb blast, he cannot retrieve it. He cannot take it back. So, science knows how to shoot. It does not know how to withdraw. A scientist should be a "saintist," He said. A scientist should be a saint, meaning: science is something like the letter "C . It starts at one place and ends at another place. Whereas, spirituality is like the letter "O". It starts at one place and also ends there. It is holistic. It is total. It is complete, whereas science is incomplete. "Science divides, whereas spirituality unites. Science is diversity. Spirituality is unity." In that way, Bhagavan explained the differences between science and spirituality.

Like this, there were several questions which Bhagavan answered. Next week also, we will be dealing with these questions and answers. Finally it will all be published in a book form quite soon, but I want to serve things "hot-hot, fresh from the oven," as I often do. I thank you very much for listening to these things in rapt attention.

Sai Ram.

(Anil Kumar closes this discourse by singing "Sai Narayana, Narayana" along with the devotees gathered there, followed by Asatoma… and Loka samastha…)

Thank you very much.

We meet next week, same day, same time.

© Anil Kumar Kamaraju 2004 - Here reproduced for personal use of the devotees for the purpose of seva.
Anil Kumar website: http://www.internety.com/anilkhome/ - http://www.internety.com/saipearls/


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