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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Anil Kumar's Sunday Satsang at Prasanthi Nilayam
August 19, 2001

The Sunday Talk Given by Anil Kumar

August 19th, 2001

The New Ten Commandments (Part Two)



OMÖ OMÖ OMÖ

Sai Ram

With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan,

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

Recap of the First Two Commandments: ĎIí and ĎWe'

Last week we began discussing a new set of Ten Commandments. I recall covering three of these commands. I will briefly repeat them now for the benefit of those who were not here last time.

The first commandment is the most damaging, one-letter word, ĎI'. It is better to avoid it. It is damaging to always claim, "I am that. I am this." We wonít have any place in the spiritual field unless this ĎIí is removed. ĎIí is used when referring to nativity, achievement, occasion, avocation, profession, etc. This 'I'-ness should go.

The second commandment is a most satisfying two-letter word. What is it? ĎWe'. We should use it. We can see from our experience that when people come in a group here, Bhagavan usually grants them an interview. This is because Ďweí is satisfying and ĎIí comes next or last. Bhagavan wants us to develop this great sense of 'we'-ness, which is so great. (Please notice that the number of each command equals the number of letters in the command!)

Bhagavan gave a few examples to illustrate this. A forest consists of an infinite number of trees, but a single tree will not make a forest. A number of residences or houses make up a village, but a single house will not constitute a village. Many people make up a community. A single person will not constitute a community. Similarly, there is tremendous happiness and infinite joy in the sense of Ďwe.í So, it is a most satisfying word, this two-lettered word 'we'.

Recap of The Third Commandment: ĎEgoí

The third commandment is about the three-letter word, Ďego'. We should kill it. If we donít kill the ego all by ourselves, Bhagavan will take care of it! (Laughter) He won't spare the ego. He won't let it flourish. As I told you last time, because of the probability of ego coming into your life next year, Bhagavan will operate on you today itself. He will do pre-surgical treatment instead of post-surgical treatment! Bhagavan will not tolerate even a trace of ego.

When we want to act smart by trying to get the first seat in the first row, Bhagavan may come from the other side or darshan may be cancelled altogether! This is because our ego wants us to get up and project ourselves. We are not supposed to get up unless He points to us and calls us to go. However, sometimes we are so enthusiastic that we (prompted by our ego) get up anyway. We donít want to call ourselves egotistic, but still that is the ego once again.

Not admitting that there is ego when one has it, is double ego! (Laughter) Let us say that there is ego in me, but I donít admit it. So you can call this 'double' ego or 'triple' ego or even 'multiple' ego. If I get up, Baba may say, "Sit down. Not you! I mean the other one next to you." (Laughter) Finished, finished, finished! I won't dare to get up again in my lifetime! Or, suppose He asks one of you to distribute chocolates or sweets. I may get up and try to assist you, just trying to act smart. Heíll call to that man and say, "Did I ask you to get it done through that man? You should do it yourself or not do it at all!" Both of us will get punishment - the man with the ego and the man keeping company with him. As we appeared together, it is a 'joint' operation (of ego demolition!) by Bhagavan.

Ego is the most dangerous thing anywhere in the vicinity of Bhagavan. He will not tolerate it at all. I can give you any number of examples relating to this, regarding persons of prestigious positions. However, I had better not do it for my own safety and security! (I might have to quickly pack my luggage in order to flee!) (Laughter) We may feel very sorry to watch how Bhagavan removes ego (oftentimes painfully) from people. But Bhagavan knows that the ego is the biggest obstacle or stumbling block to know and experience the Divine. So He removes it, even though it may be agonizing to the people.

The Fourth Commandment: ĎLove'

Now we come to the fourth commandment. The fourth command is the most used, four-letter word, 'Love'. 'Love' has two implications. But we only recognize one aspect. We think that only positive things are coming out of 'Love'. But this is not so! The things that seem negative to you are also born out of 'Love'.

For example, punishment is also given out of Love. Bhagavan may neglect you. He wonít talk or look at you out of Love. He does this in order that we will examine, evaluate, and reform ourselves. 'I was very busy finding faults with everybody until now. But now let me find my own faults.' A sadhana or spiritual practice given to all of us to follow is, "Seek out your own faults and otherís merits". It is the worst possible sin to go on pointing out the faults of others. We have to discover our own faults.

Bhagavan goes one step further: He says that the faults that you find in others are not actually there. Whatever you find (see) outside is nothing but whatever is present within you. Those faults you see outside are nothing but the reflections of your own inner being. Therefore, love all. There is no condition or stipulation or limit there. Love, love, and love alone! This is the most powerful antibiotic in order to be very close to Bhagavan. This is a 'must' for everybody at all levels - people of all countries, all communities, and all cadres in the organization.

Love is very, very necessary. Even though He neglects you, heavily 'bangs' (reforms) you, or scolds you in public, still you must love Him. You are not free to cry. Why? When you understand that Bhagavan is scolding you in your own interest, you will continue to love Him. When you are convinced that it is in your own best interest, then youíll continue to love Him, even though He ignores you.

Experience of Bhagavanís Love

Here is one simple example, though it is not a pleasant one! Somehow Bhagavan was upset with me long ago, about ten years earlier. He came down very heavily on me. He threw terrific verbal missiles at me in public, more powerful than 'scud' missiles. Ka-da!, Ka-da! (Sound effectsÖLaughter) I felt very, very sad and badly about it. Since that was the first year of my coming into His fold and into the organization, I could not help but react.

That evening I put on a long face because, instead of being appreciated in public, I was scolded. We expect appreciation, tributes, and felicitations. I have been used to that all along. I did not know this 'B-side' of the cassette! (Laughter) I got used to the 'A-side', but He also made me listen to the 'B-side' too, which was to be humiliated and insulted. I felt so badly.

That evening He said, "Come on, get up!" (Anil Kumar snapped his fingers) Then Swami started giving a discourse and I had to translate. What did He say? "When I scold some people, they feel so badly. (Laughter) Thousands and thousands of people come here for darshan. Out of them, only a few people get an opportunely to be close to Me. Very few people have the blessing of working in the Organization. I want them to be perfect, above blame, beyond blemish, and without any mistake. I scold and correct them in order to perfect them. But some people appear to feel so badly about it."

Actually, in this case it was not 'some people', but only one fellow - me! (Laughter) Perhaps Swami thought that if it was said directly, the case would be further worsened. Then He said, "I correct and scold you because I love you. If I didnít care about you, I would just leave you alone. I would leave you to yourself. I scold you because I want you to improve. You should understand this."

So my friends, Love includes both praise and blame, pain and pleasure, felicitation and condemnation, preference and being totally ignored. It includes repeated interviews and being in a state of abyss, totally lost. It is something like a pendulum. A pendulum moves back and forth to both sides. As it goes to one extreme, that side will feel happy and think, 'The pendulum is near me.' Next momentÖta-da! It goes to the other side. If the whole structure were fully aware that it moves equally on both sides, then it would be steady. There is time because of the movement of the pendulum. Time is God. God is time. God transcends time and He is the Master of time. There is time because of this oscillating movement of the pendulum. So, both things happen in life out of Love. We should understand that.

This love is beyond our own understanding. In life, we should be ready not only for positive things like recognition and rewards. We should also be ready for 'whips and lashes', which are also given out of Love, with the desire for our perfection. Bhagavan gives the example of a boulder. It is shaped into a beautiful idol of Krishna with the help of a chisel and a hammer. Unless this stone passes through the pain and the agony of continuous hammering and chiseling, it would not take the shape of a beautiful idol, deserving adoration and worship.

All the difficulties, tragedies, and calamities in life are not the curses of God! They are equally the gifts of Grace. This is easier said than done! It is easy to say, but it is very difficult to pass through. Yet, a fact is a fact. God gives gifts only. They are all boons. It is up to us to take it in the correct and positive sense. So, Love means that state which is absolutely, totally positive. We should never take it in the negative sense. This is a four-letter word, which is beyond age, time, position, and circumstances. We have to value this Love.

The Fifth Commandment: Smile!

The fifth command is a most pleasing five-letter word. What is this five-letter word? Smile! Keep wearing a smile. People will come to you if you have a smiling face. Please take it from me: If we put on an ugly, horrible, serious face, nobody will look at us - not even God! (Laughter) The lesson I have learned is to cry at home and smile in front of Bhagavan, even if I have genuine grounds to cry. (Laughter) I may have good reasons to cry, but He will avoid me if I cry in front of Him. All the people sitting by my side will also have to bear the cross of my tears and face the brunt of it.

All of us should keep on smiling! This is the most pleasing thing. We have to learn from Bhagavan. We always see Him smiling. One incident happened long, long ago. His own brother-in-law, His sisterís husband, died. Kasturi, a senior gentleman here, went to Bhagavan. What did he see? Swami was standing, leaning against the wall crossed-legged smiling. Though His brother-in-law had just died, Kasturi found Him smiling.

Kasturi could not say, "I'm very sorry for the bereaved. My condolences." We can't say those words in front of Bhagavan, as they have no relevance. So he said, "Swami, many are feeling sad in the Ashram." (Laughter) Swami answered, "Why, why?" Kasturi did not say, "Your brother-in-law has died." Instead he said, "Swami, so-and-so, a gentleman, passed away. He was a very friendly man and people are feeling very sad about it."

Please note this. Bhagavan said, "Why should you feel sad? If such things didnít happen, what work would I have here in this world? (Laughter) If there were no arrivals and departures of trains or airplanes, the station master or general manager would not have a job. Heíd be unemployed."

Therefore, He was enjoying it. Is that possible at the human level? No, it is impossible! That is a smile, which is beyond duality. It is a smile that represents uniformity and equanimity. Our ever-smiling, never-failing, ever willing God is Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. You find Him smiling at all times, even in the midst of a tight work schedule.

Yesterday one boy sustained a fracture while playing football. He was sitting for darshan. Swami came and said, "Ah! What happened?" The boy answered, "Swami, I have a fracture." Bhagavan started smiling and said, "A fracture? Very good!" (Laughter) Another fellow broke his leg. Bhagavan smiled and said, "Very good. Sit on the chair. Now you are a 'chairman'! (Laughter) You got elected as the Chairman without having to pay money for it and without contesting in an election!" (Laughter) Could you smile like that? No, it is impossible!

Once in Kodaikanal, Bhagavan had a fever. He called one lecturer saying, "Hey, come here!" That lecturer took His temperature and found it to be 104 degrees. I noticed that His body was shivering and also sweating. I moved very close to Him. He said, "Hey! What is it?" (Laughter) Conveniently, diplomatically, and in a political statesman style I said, "Swami, let us not have the public meeting this evening. Let the discourse be cancelled." I did not say, "Let me cancel the meeting because You have fever." Who am I to cancel it? I am also not supposed to say, "You have fever.í (Laughter)

Bhagavan asked, "Why?" He wanted me to commit myself! Then I said, "Swami! There is rain outside." (A.K. and everyone laughs) Yet God knows everything. I cannot cover up my diplomacy! No. Immediately He said, "Hey, it isn't a matter of rain. People have already sat for the bhajan. Oh! You may be suffering because of the rain! You can stay back. I will go." (Laughter) Then I went close to Him and whispered into His ear, (Anil Kumar drops his voice to a low whisper,) "Swami! Temperature, temperature!" Swami answered, "Sit down! No, I will go." It is very hard, I know!

He sat there and was saying, "Hmmm. Good, good. My temperature is good." He called the same lecturer again after ten minutes saying, "Come on, get the thermometer." The thermometer recorded a normal temperature of 98.4 degrees! "So! Letís go and have the meeting! Iíll definitely give the discourse." He then looked at me and said, "So many devotees have assembled there in anticipation of the discourse. I cannot send them home disappointed! My devotees should never be disappointed. I will go and talk to them." Bhagavan finds some time to laugh and He spends time with the youngsters, even in times of fever or busy work. We should also keep such a smile!

It is very unfortunate that many people are cut off miles and miles from smiles. (Laughter) They donít know how to smile. Itís a tragedy! A tragedy of human life is not being able to smile. We have to pity and pray for such unfortunate people. "You cannot always oblige but you can always speak obliging." You can greet people smilingly, "Sai Ram! How are you this morning?" After all, you wonít lose anything by doing so. It is very necessary to be quite accessible, so that people can meet you and get things done. You will look healthy and fresh when you smile.

The Sixth Commandment: Rumors

The sixth commandment is the fastest-spreading six-letter word. It is faster than a jet fighter and faster than the Concorde! What is it? 'Rumors' - IGNORE THEM!

Many people come and ask me, "Sir, when is Swami going to Bangalore?" Today Swami is here! Why do you want to send Him there? Why are you worried about Him leaving? (Laughter) Why are you interested? Some people come and say, "When is He going to Mahaboob Nagar?" (a town in the Mahaboob District of Andhra Pradesh). I donít know! Weíre interested in knowing when Heís leaving, forgetting the fact that He is already here today! How unfortunate and ridiculous it is!

Rumors spread like wild fire! Some people say, "Sir, I heard such-and-so. Is that true?" The very fact that you doubt is enough to state that it is not true. We are not here to spread rumors. Spreading a rumor is a sin for a spiritual aspirant.

I am the last person to interpret any of Swamiís sayings. I do not interpret. I just quote Swami. Thatís all. We should not interpret because we may be wrong. Let me not imagine or interpret. Just let me quote. Thatís all. There are thirty-one volumes of Sathya Sai Speaks. One need not interpret, spoiling the nascent beauty and grandeur of the Divine statements. We can explain His statements with the help of His speeches, not in any other way. I strongly believe this.

Bhagavanís Advice Regarding Rumors

We should get clarification from Swami. Please note this point. This applies to everybody, as we are susceptible to rumors and gossip. People do not have valuable things to say, so they resort to rumors. It is all useless stuff. It makes us equally useless.

One gentleman asked this question, "Swami! We hear so many rumors. People come and tell me so many things. What shall I do?" Bhagavan said, "You hear all the rumors because you have ears. You can close your mouth, but you cannot close your ears, as they are wide open. I understand how helpless you are. Yet, I gave you legs also! (Laughter) When you find it painful and undesirable to remain, you can simply walk out of that place."

So, one should ignore rumors. Never go by rumors because rumors are not genuine. Rumors will not contribute to any development, growth, or progress. A rumor is useless talk, which has no basis at all. Therefore, ignore them.

The Seventh Commandment: Success

The seventh commandment is the most enviable seven-letter word to be achieved. What is it? S-u-c-c-e-s-s. What is success and how to achieve it? Actually, there is nothing like failure in this world. The real success in spirituality lies in maintaining balance. Even failure turns into success when you maintain equanimity, a balanced state of mind.

Bhagavan often gives one example to illustrate this. You must have heard of Noble Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore. Once, when he was a boy, it was his schoolís Anniversary Day. He came running home and met his father, Devendranath Tagore, who was a saintly man. He said, "Father! I'm very happy today!" His father replied, "I know my child! You are happy because today is your schoolís Anniversary Day. Am I right?"

Rabindranath Tagore replied, "No, Dad, I am not only happy because of that. There will be prize distribution today. I donít have a prize, but I am so happy because my own elder brother is going to get four prizes!" His father felt happier with him than with his elder brother. He was jumping in joy because his brother would receive four prizes. This is what is called success.

We have our own yardstick or parameters of success. I feel I'm successful if I get four prizes. However, if you donít get any prize, I am of course more successful! (Laughter) If I get an interview I'm successful, but if you donít get one, I have greater success. This is a most unfortunate attitude. This should not happen. I should be happy even if you get an interview.

Believe me or not, Bhagavan said that this feeling of sharing is more among the foreigners. If Bhagavan calls a group of foreigners for interview, even the members of other groups feel very happy. When they come out, the others say, "Oh! Congratulations! Swami spoke to you? Oh, really? So nice! What did He say?" They also share the joy. So, success lies in not being affected by failure or by being left out. One should not be carried away or too sensitive about it. One should not take it personally. If I'm balanced, even failure is a success.

Here is a simple example. Lord Krishna was smiling at the time of war. He was very happy. Somebody went and asked Him, "War and bloodshed are going on! So why are you happy and smiling?" Krishna answered, "This is the time when all the evil will be destroyed." God comes in a human form to annihilate the wicked and to protect the pious.

Our Bhagavan Baba gave another example. When I have surgery, I should feel happy because a diseased part of my body is being removed. I should not cry because thousands and thousands of bacteria will be killed! No! It is only to save the body. Similarly, "failure is a stepping stone to success", as the proverb goes. The real success at all levels lies in that.

Socrates continued to be peaceful, although his wife was often shouting at him. He maintained balance and didnít fight with her. It was not a Korean War! He was simply smiling. We remember Socrates for his balance and not his wife for shouting! In fact, it was also a success for his wife because she could shout full-throated and her husband did not react, retaliate, or retort. He did not turn violent and hit her. He just sat silently, colorless, odorless, and tasteless, like a stone. Thatís all. However, according to the world, Socrates was the real success.

True Success

So, silence is success. But failure can also be success! Success has a different connotation in spiritual parlance. We cannot take it to mean the same thing as in the worldly way. After all, for example, some of us may be a failure in our business, a total flop in the worldly sense. Take the cases of Tukaram and Kabir. They were total flops in business, but highly successful spiritually. It is only our perspective that decides whether we are successful or not.

Albert Einstein was a great man. He brought about a revolution in the field of physics. The study and research of physics changed altogether because of Einsteinís 'Theory of Relativity'. Everybody knows his name, but I do not know how many of you are aware of something else. Toward the end of his life, he left a brief note of a single sentence and died. What is that sentence? He wrote, "If I am to be born again, I want to be born as a plumber and not as a scientist." Would you expect words like that from such an eminent scientist? Albert Einstein was fed up and totally disgusted with all the name and popularity. He also witnessed the greatest catastrophe that mankind had to face, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. That was the 'benefit' to mankind from the research of Einstein.

He noticed the calamity and tragedy that was at the doorstep of mankind. Therefore, he was not mindful of the name, fame, and prestige of being a researcher. He never wanted to be born again as a scientist. He wanted to be born as a plumber, unnoticed, unhonored, unwept and unsung for. "Let me be a simple man." That is the success as understood by Einstein in the last moments of his life.

Alexander the Great thought that he was successful, being conqueror of the whole world. Yet, was he really successful? No! When he was dying he declared, "Let the whole world know that I came with empty hands and that I'm returning empty-handed." What is the success? To know that we were empty in the beginning and that weíll be empty at the end. There is only a heavy load of luggage in between! Success lies in realizing this fundamental truth of life.

Aloneness and Solitude

Long back, there was a wide rumor that all the seas would swell up, floods would come, and the whole world would be drowned. It was believed that humanity would perish! At that time, I read one small item in the newspaper. One fellow climbed up a treetop and he was resting there for four days. (Laughter) Journalists came and asked, "Hey, boy! Why are you there?" That fellow answered, "Donít you know? All of you are going to die! Only I am going to survive!" Oh, thank you! If everyone dies, what will YOU do afterwards?

Life lies in company, in community sharing, and in caring. Life lies in loving, not in aloneness. Some people are asked, "What are you doing now?" Their answer is, "I am left to myself." Youíre left to yourself? Perhaps you are an incorrigible fellow, so you are living by yourself? Imposing aloneness is not spiritual. Solitude is spiritual, but aloneness is a punishment. If I come and tell you, "I am feeling lonely, Sir," you will not say, "You are spiritual, Anil Kumar." The statement "I am lonely" is negative. It means that I am alone because I am forsaken or given up by everybody. But solitude is positive. It is when I leave everyone, wanting to be left alone (even though everyone wants to see me and I have enough work to do). Solitude is spiritual. It will make you wiser and wiser. Aloneness is burdensome, a curse and likely to take you to madness.

Therefore, the real success lies in enjoying solitude, failure, and poverty. Why shouldnít poverty be a sign of success? You must have heard of the epic Mahabharata. In it, the five Pandava brothers preferred to stay in the forest where they were exiled though legally they were rulers of the empire. That is success! Success is a state of mind when I love my poverty, and when I really realise that failure is also good for me. There lies the real success. I wanted to share that idea with you.

The Eighth Commandment: Jealousy

The eighth commandment is the most incorrigible eight-letter word. What is it? Jealousy. As Swami passes by, He may suddenly materialize a ring for someone. Then He will talk to another man saying, "Are you jealous?" (Laughter) Many of you might have experienced this. He will immediately know how jealous we are. We wear gloves while working on electric wires, so we wonít be electrocuted. In the same way, as a precaution He may say, "Jealousy?" We will answer, "No, Swami!" When Swami says it beforehand, you will not feel jealousy later.

One day He materialized a watch for one lecturer. He looked at me and said, "Hey! Are you jealous?" I answered, "No, Swami! I already have this watch that You gave me." Swami is the ultimate! He answered, "You do not feel jealous only because I have already given you one! It is not correct. It is neither a virtue nor a good quality. You should not feel jealous even if you had not received one beforehand! Then you would be a good man."

You are a noble and virtuous man if you donít feel jealous when the other man receives something that you donít have. Jealousy leads to wars and restlessness. It is the cause of anger and the foundation of frustration. It will make us restless and sleepless. It also affects our performance and our relationships with others. If I am jealous, I will not be friendly, happy, or effective at work. If youíre handsome, I should appreciate it. Instead, if I am jealous, I become uglier. I'm already ugly and jealousy will make me uglier! We become much worse because of jealousy. I think I'm clear.

Be Lavish in Praise

Let us learn to appreciate others. We should follow the simple principle: Be lavish in praise. However, it should not be hypocritically. We may say, "Good to see you! Nice meeting you! God bless you! It was so nice to hear you speak." If you care to, afterwards you can pass on some comments and suggestions like, "Who is that fellow to speak? We can't understand what he means!"

I will only exhibit my own jealousy by underestimating others, criticizing, and looking down upon them. If I don't show them the respect and esteem that they deserve, nothing will happen to them. But it shows that there is something wrong with me. I will be exhibiting my own jealousy. If I donít say "Sai Ram" or "Hello" to you, you will not lose anything. I will be the only loser. One should always be lavish in praise and peevish in blame.

It is absolutely necessary to be peevish in blame. It means that we should never blame people. The Holy Bible declares, "Judge ye not lest thou shalt be judged." I have no business to judge or evaluate anybody. No. I may think I am greater than you are, but I am less in front of another man who is higher and greater than I am. Thereís nothing like an absolute. Everything is relative. I'm taller than you are because youíre short. Yet, I'm the short one in front of another man who is taller than I am! Am I correct?

Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa gave one example. You must have seen glowworms that start shining in the nighttime. Those worms think, "We are shining!" Then stars appear after sometime. The glowworms' light is nothing in front of the light of the stars. They feel humbled and belittled. The stars then think, "Ah! We are shining." Then the moon rises, and in its light, the stars stand nowhere. The moon thinks, "I am the Lord!" Yet, at 6:30 in the morning, the sun will say, "Sit down. I am here! It is my turn." (Laughter) So my friends, things are absolutely comparative and relative. No one is absolutely great nor absolutely small or little.

Thereís no reason for any one of us to feel jealous of anybody. On the other hand, when we share, weíll feel even happier. I feel happy by congratulating you and complimenting you. Thatís the reason why people congratulate others on their birthdays or wedding anniversaries. They donít get anything special with this, but we feel very happy by sharing. Sharing is celebration, sharing is caring, sharing is loving.

All this is possible if there is no jealousy. Jealousy stinks like a skunk. It is the most stinking thing in this world Let us not entertain it, as it is the worst of the bad qualities. It also gives way to several other bad qualities.

The Ninth Commandment: Knowledge

The ninth commandment is the most powerful nine-letter word. What is it? Knowledge. Acquire it! Knowledge should be acquired. Bereft of knowledge, a human is worse than a beast. Knowledge makes you human. A lack of knowledge will make you either inhuman or an animal.

When anyone starts telling us anything, we immediately cut him short and say, "I know" though we do not know. We feel very insulted when another man tells us something that we do not know. Thatís wrong. To say, "I know" when I do not know is absurd and ridiculous.

Bhagavan often explains different types of knowledge. (There is nothing here of my own, my friends! Thank God that I am not capable of creating things. Let me not do it in this lifetime. Our good God is here and has given us enough literature!) The first two types of knowledge are superficial and bookish knowledge. This is all that you think you know, acquired through hearing or reading, though you do not know in depth. That is not knowledge at all.

Some may say, "I know about America because I have gone through a few chapters about Chicago and New York in that book." Oh! Do you really know the beauty of New York or Los Angeles or San Francisco? This is like merely reading the menu card, but not eating. (Laughter) Will your hunger be appeased? No! Hunger will not be satiated unless you eat. Similarly, mere bookish knowledge won't help you. It will not give you the true experience. Superficial knowledge is questionable and bookish knowledge is doubtful.

The third type is general knowledge. All of us are supposed to have this. I should know what to do in everyday situations. When the fuse blows, I should be able to repair it. I should not have to call a student of physics to do it. You donít need a chemist to prepare your coffee or a Ph.D. expert to work in the kitchen. If I want a Ph.D. in home science to cook for me, she will cook me also! (Laughter) It is not necessary.

The fourth one is discrimination knowledge. This enables us to exercise discretion between what is right or wrong, good or bad. It allows us to discriminate between what is momentary, fleeting, ephemeral, transient and what is eternal, permanent, steady, immortal, and Divine.

Experiencing Bhagavan

The fifth and topmost one is practical knowledge. You obtain this through personal experience, not through the agency of a book or hearsay. This is very necessary in the spiritual field. Some people say, "I experienced this in meditation." I will say, "Oh! I also meditated, but I did not experience that!"

Bhagavan says the three words, "Come, examine, and experience." By coming, youíll be able to examine. By examining, youíll be able to experience. By experiencing, youíll have practical knowledge. Suppose you go back to your own home and tell everybody, "Bhagavan is this; Bhagavan is that. I cannot tell you how great He is!" You go on sermonizing like this due to your blissful state. People listen to you out of their respect, courtesy, etiquette, and decency but they donít believe you. They donít trust you because their own personal experience is necessary. Experiencing Bhagavan is very important.

Experiential, experimental, and existential knowledge are all the same. They are all real practical knowledge. All of us are here because of our own personal experiences. Bhagavan has His own means of communion. He may prompt from within: "Donít do that! Donít go there!" Still, we silence Him and we do things in our own way!

My friends, I said this long back and I am repeating it now once again. All of us believe in communication, but Bhagavan works by communion. Communion is different from communication. We communicate through a letter, message, speech, or verbal words, but God communes. Communion takes place even in the state of stillness, in utter silence. God speaks from within. It is what is called the 'inner voice' or 'conscience'. Conscience is communion, but not communication.

Practical knowledge means communion with God. I am in communication with you, but I am in communion with God. Communion is speechless, wordless and soundless. It is spiritual and takes place within, being absolutely individual and personal. Communication is meant for everybody but when Bhagavan communes with you, it is absolutely personal and individual.

God is both personal and impersonal. Heís impersonal when giving a discourse in the Auditorium or during darshan. It is personal when He calls you for an interview and talks to you. It is personal when He goes deep into your life, guiding, directing, and telling you the secrets in the inner recesses of your heart. Communion is personal, while communication is general.

Practical knowledge will make us receptive and prepared for communion, to listen to the inner whisperings or voice of God, which is the conscience. For this reason, Bhagavan insists on silence. "It is only in the depth of silence the voice of God is heard." What a wonderful statement of Bhagavan Baba! What a tremendous impact it will have on our lives if we know the significance and the beauty of silence. When I am just verbal, making sound and giving scope to sounds in all directions, I will not be able to listen to my inner voice. Silence is prescribed and commanded, as it is necessary to hear the inner voice.

So, practical knowledge will help us to become humans in the true sense. It will help us to be aware and alert to Consciousness. It will also help us to know the Divinity within.

The Tenth Commandment: Confidence

The last but not least is the tenth commandment, the most essential ten-letter word. This is confidence. Trust it. Trust your confidence. Never lose it. If you have confidence in yourself, you will certainly have triumph, victory, and success.

Bhagavan says, "Confidence is the breath of life. Self-confidence is the foundation, Self-satisfaction is the wall, self-sacrifice is the roof and Self-realization is the life within." I should have confidence. If I am not confident of my life, I wonít venture to construct a house. If I'm not confident of my safe return, I wonít go to the market. If a driver has no confidence within himself, he wonít be able to drive the car. If a pilot is not confident of his job, the next morning weíll find the aircraft hitting the headlines of the newspaper! (Laughter) So, confidence is very necessary.

As I mentioned before, Bhagavan didnít look at me for eight years. Still, many people come and ask me, "Sir! How can we get an interview?" I answer them, "I donít know! When you discover the secret, please let me know so I can tell others also!"

You may condemn those eight years of 'exile' as a cursed or bad period. However, even during that time, I remained confident that He would certainly care to look at me someday or other. I was a non-entity during that time of 'exile', but I felt that a day would certainly come when this mass of flesh would make its presence felt and be noticed by the Divine Lord. A student who fails this year will have confidence that he will pass next year. Now as a teacher, it was as though I had taken eight chances and failed one time after the other in succession. Yet, I maintained absolute confidence that I would get through the examination in the ninth year. Thatís what happened in my life.

So my friends, never allow yourselves to live in frustration or depression. No! Bhagavan has His own art of communion. He may talk to you directly, appear in your dreams, or even send a friend to talk to you. All of a sudden, unexpectedly a friend will come and talk about certain things which apply to you and which are relevant to you. Consider that person as a special messenger of God. You might also get an answer when you look at His photo or while sitting in meditation.

The physical form of Swami attracts, enchants, and allures. But yet, it deceives you. So, donít go only by it. It is not possible to be in the company of the physical form all the 24 hours of each day throughout our lifetime. Spiritual travel is from form to the formless, from attributes to the attributeless. The physical form is here today and will lead us to the formless state in the years to come.

So my friends, the most important thing that I want to tell you is this: Let us have confidence!


Swami!

Let me not lose confidence.
I'm ready to lose everything, but not confidence!
I'm confident that You will certainly give me an answer to my problem
and respond to my prayer.


O Lord!

I have come to You with the agony of so many difficulties.
You are my only refuge.
I am sure that You will solve my problem.
You will certainly give me relief, my God,
Because You are a willing, loving, and ever-living God.
You are in our midst.


May we grow in that confidence! These new Ten Commandments will help us to grow on our pilgrimage, nearer and nearer to God, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Let us thus conclude this morningís session.

Thank you very much!

(Anil Kumar closed his satsang by leading the bhajan, 'Sai Narayana...')


Om Asato Maa Sad Gamaya
Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya
Mrityormaa Amritam Gamaya


Om Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu
Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu
Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu


Om Shanthi, Shanthi, Shanthi!


Sai Ram, Thank You!


© 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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