Sai Baba Sri Sathya Sai Baba

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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Anil Kumar's Sunday Satsang at Prasanthi Nilayam
January 7, 2001

Talk by Anil Kumar on January 7th, 2001



Sai Ram.

With Praanams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan,

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

Nice to meet you this morning in this New Year for the first time…New Year first session! I was thinking what I could talk to you about this morning. Before I go into any other topic, I know that most of you are interested to know what has been transpiring there in the evenings when Swami talks to the students. I know. It is also my interest to share with everybody. I am equally interested.

I believe that every conversation of Sai is meant for the benefit of everybody. Nothing is personal. Nothing is private. Things are impersonal. Things are universal. All that Bhagavan says to anybody in any context, on any day, in any situation, is meant for the benefit of everybody. The only thing is He takes advantage of every situation to convey a message. People should be sharp enough, people should be smart enough, people should be alert so as to get, so as to draw, all what He wants to drive into our head!

Now Bhagavan's mood is towards the Annual Sports and Cultural Meet of Sri Sathya Sai Educational Institutions. The Inaugural function will be taking place on the eleventh of January. We have two sessions - morning and afternoon. The afternoon session is for the Primary School children. The morning session is intended for Brindavan Campus, Puttaparti Campus, and Anantapur Campus. That is the program for the day, which I am releasing beforehand, because I have no secrecy.

I am not capable of keeping anything secret. What to do? I am not capable. That's the reason why I tell all my friends, "Please speak to me those things that should go to the notice of the public. (Laughter) Don't tell me that which is to be hidden or kept 'Top Secret'. I am unfit for that." Bhagavan also knows pretty well. Therefore, He speaks only such things!

He has been speaking about the sports and games to the students. He has been inquiring how boys are gearing up, how boys are preparing. In fact He gave a sort of indication there in Brindavan, during the course of His Christmas talk. Some of you must have heard it. He said, "I am going to Prashanti Nilayam so that boys may be encouraged for the coming Sports Meet." So it is very clear. And He has been doing it. As Napoleon said, "Be clear, and the rest will follow." That's what Swami did.

He came here. Ever since He is here, He has been inquiring, "Boys! What are you doing? What are you doing?" When He puts that question, as He elicits answers, He passes on a simple message, which we have to treasure because it is applicable. The Sports Event may be an occasion of the day or of the year. But the message is universal. The message is acceptable to everybody for all times. What did He say?

"Look here, you boys! I saw you doing some stunts on motorbikes. But you have not consulted Me on how to be successful, how to win in the motorbike stunt! Had you asked Me, I would have told you the secret." He said.

"Oh please tell, Swami! What is the secret?"

"No, no, I won't tell you. You should have asked Me before doing it."

"No, Swami, we want to know it."

Then Bhagavan said, "Look here. As you proceed with these stunts on the motorcycle, you have to start slow initially, and then increase the speed slowly. You should speed up gradually. That is the secret of winning or a success."

Then He said, "I know that technique."

"Swami, what is the technique that You don't know! When You are handling most of us useless stuff, can't You handle motorcycles?"

And then Swami said, "You see, in Kamalapuram while I was in school, I used the same technique."

"Huh? Same technique? What is that, Swami?"

"We had a running race competition every year. And you know that in the school, they are all big, big boys, older boys, grown up boys, and well-built, hefty personalities. Even now I am short. You can imagine how I was then! (Laughter.) Not just short…very lean and thin, wearing knickers and a shirt. But I always stood first in the running race. Do you know that?"

"Swami, first in the running race? You stood first in every way!"

"Ah! That's a different thing. You know the secret of My success?"

"What, Swami?"

"All the boys stand in the front. I'm always in the back. They thought, 'This little boy, after all, is useless. I allowed them to think so. (Laughter.) They were all standing in the front. Now the drill teacher will blow the whistle……'Start!' All the boys in the front, the grown ups, start running, running, running, running, running. I start running slowly to begin with. The front boys, as they start with a high speed, they get exhausted and start gasping for air. Then they slow down. Then I'll pick up speed. So I used to pass them. (Laughter) That's how I used to win." That's what He said.

"Ahhh! Swami, wonderful, wonderful!"

And then He said, "You know, you should have some control on your body. You should eat limited stuff. You should not fill your stomach like a garbage bag. You should not go on eating throughout the day. You should have some discrimination. You should follow some rules with regard to your food habits."

Then I said, "Swami, is that possible?"

Swami said, "I know why you have put that question, because it is impossible for you!" (Laughter)

I love food, especially more spicy food.

Then Bhagavan said, "No, no, no. It is possible."

"Swami, at this age, why regulation? Why should I look smart and all that? It is not necessary. I want to have food, enough of the food that I want. I don't think I can control the food," I said.

"No, no, you can! Age has got nothing to do with the food habits. You can control. You can have a check on your food habits. You can certainly eat what you are supposed to and you can certainly cut off all that you should not, all that would add to your body. You should be very careful. Age is no bar. Look here! You believe Me or not, I don't know till this day what appetite is. I don't know what thirst is. I don't know what taste is till this day."

"Oh, what a thing it is!" Then I said, "Swami, You don't know what taste is?"


"Then how can You eat?"

Then Bhagavan said, "I don't go by the taste of the food. I don't go by the taste of the preparation."

"Then what, Swami? Then what do You go by?"

Then Bhagavan said, "If you are able to win over, cross over, this barrier of taste, this barrier of some-more-pepper to be added, some-more-chili to be added, some-more-onions to be added, if you cross over this barrier of taste…"

"What will happen, Bhagavan?"

"You'll look more handsome. You'll be more presentable. There'll be a kind of radiance, there'll be a sort of brilliance around your face."

"Well, I want to be radiant and brilliant, but not with this regulation and check on the food. The goal is fine, but the path is so tough!"

Then Bhagavan said, "I don't know anything. I just take a morsel. That's all. I don't eat much. My weight is same."

"Oh Swami, You're always like that. Swami is Swami. How can we be Swami?" (Laughter)

"No, no, no. You can also be Swami if at all you have got some kind of regulation. I don't know what thirst is also. I just sip water. I don't drink. I sip. By these things, one can be very healthy and one can live long also by exercising control over your food habits." This is the message that He conveyed.

"Swami, supposing we eat more, what will happen?" I want to argue this side, to provoke God Himself because if you agree, and say, "Everything is fine. Everything is all right," He'll pass on. If you say, "How is it possible for me?" Then He'll say, "You are a useless fellow!" Then He'll come with a message.

To be told that I am a useless fellow is not a discovery. (Laughter) To call me a fool is not an invention or a new finding either. Let me provoke God and get a message from Him. It doesn't matter. I am not bothered whatever people may feel about me. After all, this 'me-ness' is gone long back. When once we decide to stay here, there cannot be 'I-ness' or 'me-ness' if you want to be here for some more time. So we forgot it, our 'I-ness'. Initially we had some problem! Initially. It is painful, you know.

Then He said, "If you eat more, this will happen."


"You find pillars to every building. You have got pillars. And on these pillars, a roof is laid, a slab is laid on the pillars. Right? Now the pillars are so weak. The pillars are so thin. But the roof slab is so heavy. Then what will happen? The pillar starts shaking. The roof, the slab, may fall on your head!"

"So, Swami?"

"The pillars, your legs, are thin. The roof, the body, is hefty! (Laughter) Now what happens? You have to walk like that bent, not straight. Many people bend. Many people have knee problems. Many people have joint problems, joint pain, backache, and headache. What ache! All aches! Why? The slab is heavy and the pillars are thin! (Laughter) Therefore you bend."

"Oh Swami, is that so?"

"And by further dumping stuff, the stomach will come forward. Then you don't need any table to write on! You can easily write on that. (Great laughter) And we also read the situation: The whole personality (shape) looks like a question mark! (Laughter)

These are the jokes of Bhagavan Baba. You'll be watching from a distance there. Hence I am telling you.

And Bhagavan said….I will try to explain as briefly as possible because I am sure that some of you might not be knowing the whole history, the epic Ramayana. Swami narrated an episode from Ramayana. There in the epic Ramayana, Sage Vishwamitra took along with him Rama and Lakshmana to that forest to save yagna and yaga. Yagna and yaga are sacred rituals conducted by sages in those days. These sacred rituals were disturbed by demons. Vishwamitra wanted to protect that yaga.

So he goes to Dasaratha, the father of Ramachandra and tells him, "Please send both of your sons to protect the yagna and yaga." The father was not prepared to send them because he had children only after a long penance, a long period of time. He said, "Oh Sage, don't ask for my children. You want those children to protect the yagna and yaga against the onslaught of demons. These are tiny tots. They cannot fight with the demons. After all, I had children only after a long period of penance and sacrifice and waiting. How can I live without them, O Sage? Be merciful!"

Then Sage Vishwamitra says, "Look here, O King! You seem to be a fool. Don't you know that these two sons are not ordinary people? Don't you know them? Your first son, Ramachandra, is Lord Vishnu Himself, God, the Divine! And your second son, Lakshmana, is His follower, close associate, like Shesha, the serpent with six hoods on which Lord Vishnu reclines on the Ocean of Milk."

The story goes like this: There is this Ocean of Milk on which there is a big serpent, Adi Shesha, with six hoods. On the Adi Shesha, Lord Vishnu reclines. Some of you must have seen the picture.

"So this Lakshmana is Adi Shesha. Rama is God Himself. Don't you know that?" He gave a lecture.

Finally Dasaratha agreed, "All right, let them go. Let them follow you."

Now Vishwamitra gets into the forest followed by these young boys, Rama and Lakshmana. They reached one hermitage, an ashram called Siddhashram. While very close to that Siddhashram, Sage Vishwamitra calls these boys, "Look here. It is time for sunset. It is getting dark now. It is a time of twilight. At this moment, demons start their activity, my dear boys. You are right from the Royal Palace. You are so young. I'll teach you some mantra so that you can protect yourself, so that you can fight with the demons."

Now Swami tells this: "To their father, Sage Vishwamitra told that the boys are Divine. But when the boys are near him, he takes them as ordinary human boys and wants to teach them some mantras." What foolishness it is! At one time, he was wise. There in the Palace, he knew that Rama is Divine. But here in the forest, the sage takes him as a normal human child. This is what is called delusion. This is illusion.

We all get into that. Sometimes we say, "Oh Baba! He's God!!! Ahhhhh!"

Later when He comes and talks to you, you will say, "I know Swami will come and talk to you!"

"Oh, you know?"

You do not know. We suddenly take Him as a human being and we also realize later that He is Divine. This kind of confusion, this kind of feeling, this kind of dichotomy, this sort of two ideas - one time, Divine, another time, human - this happened in the past with Sage Vishwamitra. How about all of us? We are no exception. Not that this is a justification. It happens. It is not necessarily the rule always. We'll be often deluded.

Then Swami said now, "Rama and Lakshmana had their banquet, had their full meal for the first time, after reaching Mithila, where they were married." And Swami said, "It is father-in-law's house. So He could eat well!" So Rama is also no exception at having good hospitality from the in-laws' house!

Then Swami said, "In the later part of the story of Ramayana, when they were with Sita later, during the period of exile, it was Lakshmana who collected fruits. They have partaken only fruits, no solid food. They took those fruits which are just enough, for them - not all fruits available. Why? They wanted birds to eat them. They're so friendly towards Nature. They're so understanding towards birds. They have got such a feeling of existence, co-existence, with animals and beasts all around. That was the mentality of Rama and Lakshmana. Therefore, this sort of discipline is required of you boys." That's what He said on one of those days' evening chat.

Another day He said…I don't know whether I can say this or not because I am afraid…This half (indicating the ladies' side) may feel a little more proud of what I am going to say. Bhagavan is testing the patience of this side (indicating gents' side) of the audience. (Laughter)

He said, "You know, Anantapur girls are coming up with very good programs." To boys He says this. Then what shall I say?

Well, I simply said, "Is that so, Swami?"

"Why do you say, 'Is that so?' They are coming."

"Oh, oh, oh. Good program?"

"Perfect program!"

"Anyway, better than our program?"

"Yes! Why do you doubt? Best programs!"

"Oh, I see." Well, to carry on the dialogue, I continued, "How is it possible that they come with best programs every time? Why?"

Now Swami said, "Women are determined. Women take decisions. When once they take a decision, they don't go back." Of course, at times, this is a problem (looking at men's side)! (Laughter) That He did not say. It is personal. (Laughter) Born out of experience. (More laughter)

"So when once the decision is taken, it is not a question of going back. They have got determination. Not only that. They have two criteria."


"They have got that sraddha. Sraddha means sincerity of purpose. Sraddha means concentration. Sraddha means enough of motivation. Sraddha means steadfastness. They have that."

"Swami, don't we have that?"

"First, keep quiet," He said. "They have it."

"Second criteria, Swami?"

"They have full concentration."

"Oh, I see. Don't we have concentration?"

"Shhh!" Then He turned towards us. "Boys don't have concentration."

"Oh, I see." Then I know that He'll come to me next. (Laughter) "Then, Swami, we have concentration, I believe, Swami," I said.

"No, no, no. You boys, when you do some stunt there during Sports Meet on motorcycles, what do boys do? They'll be watching, that side and this side. 'Are people aware of my talent? Am I noticed by people everywhere, that side and this side?' So they are so conscious of their performance - 'Ah! How great I am going, huh? Fine!' Girls are not like that. Full concentration." (Anil Kumar imitates girls' full concentration by his gestures.) (Laughter)

So I am waiting until they'll come here so I can tell them to look that side and this side! (Laughter) And so, they have got full concentration, whereas boys are not like that. They look that side, this side.

And then He came forward with two ideas on how to be successful in sports, how to be successful in life. One is utsaha, meaning enthusiasm, dynamism, zeal, and bubbling enthusiasm. The second one is sraddha, sincerity, care, and discipline. That is sraddha.

"Swami, both of them exist together?"

"Yes, they must if you want to be successful."

"What will happen if one of them is missing? What will happen?"

Then Bhagavan said, "If you have merely utsaha, dynamism, enthusiasm, without sraddha, sincerity, what will happen? Without sraddha, without care, what will happen? You'll be met with an accident. Failure is certain. The enthusiasm should be followed by discipline, sincerity."


"If there is only sincerity without enthusiasm, it is also a failure. You are very sincere to do it, but you are passive. You are dull. You are inert." To quote Bhagavan, 'castor oil face'. (Laughter) Horrible! So failure is certain.

So, these two are absolutely certain - utsaha, enthusiasm, and sraddha, the care and sincerity. A beautiful message.

Is it only for sports meets? No. The whole world is a play and we are all the players. Let us play well. Let us not be defeated in any moment of time. We should win every match, don't you think so? Every match, every situation, is a game. Every situation, every day, is a game. And in this game, should we not be successful? I take Swami's message from that perspective, not simply as words of fun and frolic, not simply the statements of humor. They have got a message for posterity. It has got a definite direction. That is what Bhagavan has said.

And then another day He was telling…He looked at one boy and said, "You wore a red shirt yesterday. Is it OK?"

He was surprised, "Yes, Swami."

"Day before yesterday, you wore some T-shirt. Is that OK?"

Instead of saying "Yes, Swami," he started shivering!

Then He looked all around and said, "I know the color of the clothes each of you has worn. I know. I can tell you."

Then I said, "Swami, You not only know the color of our clothes. You also know us in our 'true colors'. You also know everyone of us in our 'true colors', not simply the color of the clothes we put on."

"I know. I know," is what He said.

This is an occasion for boys to know that He is a Master, that He is the Motivator, that He is the One who guides them at every step on every occasion. Well, the boys got thrilled! "Is that so, Swami?"

"Yes, I know."

So, my friends, as Bhagavan speaks of these things, He'll be going on narrating what life is. Once He said, "You should eat so much as to make you get up comfortably, easily. As you sit, you should also get up, with that same easiness. If you feel heavy, then your days are nearing. Your days are numbered. (Laughter) So, it should not be like that." That's how Bhagavan has been explaining about the food habits, about the discipline, and about the training.

Not only that. He said, "Napoleon, what type of man he was? Winston Churchill, what type of man he was? One should have courage."

Somebody said, "Swami, we're going to have this time a boy from Brindavan. He will fly high, 5,000 feet above the ground. He can go up until 50,000 feet also. For the time being, he is going up only 5,000 feet. So we should be able to see him, at least like a bird across the sky! Five thousand feet he will go up. He'll have some machine tied up to his waist, to his back, and a big colorful canopy. He'll start running…two, three, step, up…."

Swami has been explaining, "He will go. He will go."

"He'll go?"

"Yes, he'll go."

"Swami, as I imagine there at that height, well, I don't think that I can survive. I need to be more spiritual there. (Laughter) I should be thinking of You more there.

Then He said, "No, no, no, no. You should have the courage. Courage is absolutely necessary in life to be successful. Utsaha, enthusiasm, sraddha, sincerity, third, dhairya, the courage, bravery. If you have got the courage, you'll be able to face things."

"Swami, how to be courageous? How to be courageous?"

Then He said, "The one who relies on God, the one who has got faith in God, will be courageous. The one who just thinks of the world - having thoughts like 'He may dominate me,' 'He may upset me,' or 'Whether I'll be successful or not' - surely he'll be timid or a coward."

That's the reason why the Holy Bible says, "Seek ye the Kingdom of Heaven. Everything shall be added unto you." When once you rely on God, there's no chance of failure. You'll be courageous because our Lord said, "Why fear when I am here?" Because we doubt the second statement, "when I am here", we have got only the first statement, "Why fear?". This is the fear. This is the cause of the fear. If we know the second statement also, "When I am here," then you don't need to fear. So, the first statement and the second statement are interdependent, interrelated. Both are one and the same thing.

"So, that boy is so courageous there on the top because he depends on, he has got full faith in Me. "And the second reason he gave: "A person who is shaken in the world, who is shaken by everything, he will start shaking in the game of life. Up in the sky, he will start looking that side and this side, totally shivering as if he is lost, as if he is going to die because he is puzzled, he is ruffled, he's disturbed by the worldly problems here. The one who is steady here, will be steady there up in the sky." That's what He told the boys.

"That boy who is going to go up 3.000 feet tomorrow has been with Me for the last three years. He never left My company. Though he has got many friends, though he has got many relations, he has not left My company. He has been staying here all along. He's a very thin boy. See this time, he is going to perform." That's what Bhagavan said.

So, to be successful in life, besides food habits, the courage, the sincerity, and the enthusiasm are absolutely required. They are absolutely required. That's what Bhagavan has said.

And Bhagavan made mention of another point about which we can proceed further this morning. What did He say? Please this side (indicating gents' side), better you don't hear my statement. (Laughter)

Swami said, "Men are full of ego. That's the reason why they often fail."

"Oh, I see." But what to do? We have to accept the Divine statement. If I don't accept it, it is proof of my ego. If I say, "Swami, I'm not egoistic!" then you're highly egoistic, or else you won't say that. When once you say, "I am not egoistic," it means that you're highly egoistic. Or else you wouldn't say that. It is only ego that makes you say that.

Take for instance a simple example: "Be peaceful." (Anil Kumar says this very gently and peacefully. Then he repeats the same words, but with a loud, angry tone.) "BE PEACEFUL! YOU UNDERSTAND ME!?" (Laughter) Peace is gone. That very shouting is not peace. Similarly, it is ego that denies. It is ego that negates. It is ego that contradicts. It is ego that argues. It is ego that differs. So we should say, "Oh ego, let you go! Let you go. Please leave me!"

Now, what is this ego? Why ego? This is something that is worth thinking about. Let us reflect upon this subject, ego. What is the center of origin of ego? Why are we egoistic? How to be free from ego?

According to Bhagavan, all the pain and pleasure, success and failure, victory or defeat, win and loss, this duality is entirely due to ego. It is ego that makes us feel elated. It is ego that makes us oftentimes feel depressed or frustrated. So, it is all the gimmicks, the 'sports meet', of the ego which is happening every moment of our life.

Suddenly when Swami says, "Hello, hello! How are you?" I am very happy. I'll stop the whole traffic jam there to inform everybody, "Swami spoke to me. You know my seniority. You know my devotion. You know I have been coming here for the last thirty years! Have you not observed Swami walking towards me straight, talking to me?" That is the very metaphor, the very symbol, the very reflection of ego. Abhorring! It has to be condemned. It is ridiculous. Therefore, it is ego which makes us feel so proud.

And then what happens? Then He does not talk to you. Then He does not look at you. Then He avoids you!

When I say 'you', it includes me! Please understand me. Perhaps I am the first in the list of the general 'you'. Please don't exempt me. We are all the same. I had a very, very prolonged period of probation for seven years when I was non-existent in the sight of Baba. Not even the size of a Puttaparti mosquito! OK? Now Puttaparti mosquitoes are very healthy, as they feed on foreigners' blood. (Great laughter) These mosquitoes like foreigners' blood, you know: "Ah! More nutritive, healthy! More proteins! Indian blood is only out of starch, after all. (Laughter) Starch and fat. Foreigners' blood is full of protein! Hamburger, cheese, what not! Kentucky Fried Chicken! Huh?" (Laughter) So naturally Puttaparti mosquitoes are relatively healthier and bigger in size. And perhaps they don't react to mosquito repellents also. They are resistant, providing enough of music throughout the night! A lullaby! (Laughter) So for seven long years, I was just a mosquito. He simply ignored me. I know what it is. So when I say that, when I say 'you', that 'you' includes me! I'm first on the list!

So what is the origin of ego? How does it act? Baba avoids you. He avoids the whole line, sometimes going that way. We feel very much offended. I am more offended to face others, to whom I said yesterday that I am a 'must' to this Incarnation, (Laughter) that I am a VIP to this Divine Avatar. Because of my false claim, I cannot face him the next morning. I try to avoid him, telling, "Sai Ram. I am going to the Dining Hall. OK? See you tomorrow." Ego dance. It is a dance. It is a play of the ego.

The ego is there in everybody. It's in everyone. There is no one who can say, "There is no ego in me." If he says this, that is the biggest ego! He's a hypocrite number one. Beware of such fellows. It is only a difference in the quantity. It is only a difference in the expression. But ego is there. Milligrams, grams, tons and tons (Laughter)…that's all. It is only a difference in quantity.

So, the ego often expresses itself and this ego is born out of the false image we have built over the years. Over years we have built a false image of our own selves. "I am the President of Sai Center." "I am a Ph.D." "I have been coming here." "I am a devotee." "I am….." (fill in the blank). This is ego.

When once I say, "I am so-and-so", it is ego. When once I say my education qualification, my profession, my avocation, my habits, my tradition, my culture, all that I speak about myself is nothing but ego only. This is what we call false image or personality. We have developed a personality over the years. When that personality is hurt, we feel the pain. When that personality is puffed up, it just bloats. So it takes a parachute and flying high, high, high, high! When Swami says, "You're a good boy," ah-ha! The whole year 2000, we're very good boy. When He says, "Bad boy! Please get up!" We don't want to see the world at all! This is personality. When the personality is damaged, when the personality is pinched, the ego is hurt.

So, ego is built, is based on the personality we have developed. That's the reason why Bhagavan does not give priority to the personality. If anyone comes with a well-built body, He'll say, "Hi, Pakoda! How are you?" So personality, physical, gone!

Yesterday someone was telling, "Swami, this military man is judged as the best man, as the best trainer to the entire Army. By Your Grace, we could have him here. Do you know what He said? "Though judged as the best man, in My view, he's the worst man." So, Swami's judgment is different from the judgement of the world. If I say, "Swami, he's the best boy." He'll say, "How do you know? How do you know?" So, our judgment is always wrong because my judgment is based on my ego. This ego sees that ego and mutual psycho-fancy or flattering statements are shared. It's all flattery and praising. That's all.

So, my friends, it is the personality that disturbs. So, Swami will never go by personality. It is a lesson to every one of us not to rely, not to depend too much on personality, which is external, pravritti. Pravritti is external. But besides personality, we have something greater than that. Personality is temporary, ephemeral, momentary, fleeting, ever-changing. But the other side of our life, which is permanent, which is immortal, which is eternal, which is nectarine, which is nothing but Truth - what is the other side? Individuality.

So personality is ego. Individuality is that which is the spirit. Ego is mundane, while individuality is celestial and spiritual. So we should have our individuality, not personality. Individuality is never ego-centered. It is never ego-based. Therefore, we should think in this direction. How does ego express itself by way of personality at one moment? So, we should grow more and more in our individuality. Go by the individuality, never by personality.

How does ego work? Ego is always after achievement. It is always after some attempt. It is always after some trial. It always wants to experiment. It wants to take a number of chances. It wants to pass through stress and strain to have that finale of success. So, the ego is always after something new, something to be obtained, something special. If I feel I am special, that is a sign of ego. If I want to achieve something, that is ego. If I want to accomplish something, that is ego. Then it is not spiritual.

But individuality has no craving for achievement. Individuality will never run after accomplishment because there is nothing to achieve in this world. Spirituality or individuality speaks not of achievement. It speaks of realization. Ego runs after analysis. Individuality stands for realization. One is analysis. The other is experience. Individuality experiences. Personality analyzes. Personality wants to achieve. Individuality wants to realize. Personality wants to pass through some effort, some strain.

Individuality never wants any stress or strain. It always wants to relax and keep composure. Spirituality wants relaxation. Spirituality expects us to relax, to be comfortable, to be unto yourself. Don't strain. Why should you strain? Why should you exert? Why should there be tension as God is in you? You are God. "The Kingdom of Heaven is within you," says the Holy Bible. To find that which is already in you, should you strain? To know what you are, should you pass through tension? To know what you really are, should you exert? No, just relax.

So, individuality is based on relaxation, while personality directs you towards stress, strain, and achievement. Personality thinks of the world. Individuality is after the spirit. The individuality is based on the experience, whereas personality is after expression. Personality stands for expression. Individuality represents experience. We want to express what we are - expressiveness. This expressiveness is a sign of personality. Experience is an indication of individuality.

Personality always divides because it wants to show something special, something unique. When all are discussing, supposing I say, "This evening bhajans are nice." It is a general statement. A fellow personality, born out of ego, will say, "You don't know last year. Bhajans were better!" When I am saying, "Bhajans are good this evening," what makes you speak of last year? That personality-ego expresses itself so as to tell you: "I am senior to you", so as to inform you, "I heard better bhajans than you", so as to impress upon you that 'your standard of judgment of bhajan is low, whereas my estimate of the standard of bhajan is high'. That expression is born out of personality.

Whereas a man of individuality, who stands for experience, he will have his eyes closed throughout. He drops himself. He drops himself in that experience of ecstasy, in the thrill of bliss, in the joy, in the excitement. Therefore, my friends, individuality never expresses. So, the one who is expressive has a personality. The one who is impressive has individuality. Expressiveness and impressiveness are different.

Also this personality always wants some authority. Personality is always after authority. If I say, "Sir, it seems your State Seva Dal is working? The Seva Dal of your place are working right now. This time is for your service activity." He will not say, "Sai Ram." No. Instead he'll say, "I am in charge of this service activity." Oh-ho. You are in charge, which I know. Whether you discharge or not, time has to decide! He wants to tell you immediately, "I am Convener. I am in charge of that." So, this is not his fault. It is the personality, an ego problem. So, ego or personality wants some authority. "How many are there in your office?" "Ten are working under me." "Oh-ho. 'Under you'? Why not, 'with you'? The reality, God, is above you!"

So, personality wants some authority. Individuality knows that you have no authority for any authority. No authority because in spirituality all are the same. All are the same, basically the same. After all, one may be in a position, and tomorrow he may be out of this position. You may not be in a position today. You will be in a position tomorrow! More often it has been happening in India! A minister today, he'll be out of place tomorrow! We only have to see the newspaper! In our younger days, we used to learn by heart all the names of the ministers and their portfolios. Today it's not worthwhile. By the time you remember his name, he'll be out of position tomorrow! (Laughter) Out! Finished!

So, this so-called personality is after authority, which is neither permanent nor great. Individuality understands that there is nothing great in authority, nothing special in position. Why? Bhagavan gave a simple example. Two people were proceeding: one was sitting on the back of the horse. The other man was carrying a pillow under his arm. The two were proceeding. A third man looked at both of them. He thought, 'This man sitting on the back of the horse must be superior, higher in life. The man carrying the pillow may be a class IV employee, a helper or a peon, an ordinary fellow, carrying the luggage like a railway porter.' That was his estimate.

After some time, heavy rain started. When heavy rain started, the man who was riding on the horse went slowly, tied up that horse to a tree very near, and rested very close to the horse, so that nobody will take it away. Whereas that fellow with the pillow now walked into the temple, put the pillow under his head and then slept fully relaxed. The third man came and he thought, 'Oh-ho. He's the officer now. The one having the pillow, totally relaxed, he's an officer! The man on horseback is after all only a horseman, a horse rider, not that big.'

So, the one time he may be big, and the next time he may be low. You may think he is a low man today. The next time he may be big. This is realized by individuality, not by personality. So personality runs after authority, after position. Individuality knows pretty well that no position is permanent.

Now what is the permanent position? The Veda says, "Understand that you are the son of Immortality. You are the One of eternal bliss. You are immortal." That's what the Veda says. The Holy Bible says, "You're not the dust. You're eternal. And you should understand you are the son of your Father, the Father in Heaven. You belong to the Divine. Yes, you are Divine." That's what Holy Bible says. And this is the Truth the Holy Bible wants us to understand. Veda wants us to see the Light beyond darkness.

What is the Light beyond darkness? Darkness means the darkness of ignorance, the darkness of the world, the darkness of desire, the darkness of attachment. Beyond this darkness of desire, attachment, delusion, illusion, bondage, there lies above the Light of knowledge. There lies beyond the Light of consciousness. There lies above the Light of awareness, the effulgence, and the brilliance beyond this darkness. That's what Vedas says. This is the job of the individuality.

So, individuality wants to experience that brilliance. It wants to taste that effulgence. It wants to taste that ever-radiant, ever-brilliant, Self-dependent, unsullied Divinity, which is the Light. That is individuality. Whereas, to compete with you, comparing myself with you, trying to dominate you, trying to ride over you, trying to contradict you, is nothing but personality, the jumping, the dance and the expression of ego.

My friends let us understand what is separating us from God. Being the son of God, being the one of God, having been born, having been into the Divine, why this delusion? Why this darkness? Why do I not experience God? Why do I not see God? Why? Why do I not experience Him? What is it that separates me from God? It is nothing but ego-born personality. Why do you suffer? My personality, my ego is hurt. Why do I feel insulted? My ego is hurt. Why I am so egoistic? It is because of my imaginary personality, which I have developed over years.

But ego is different from pride. Ego and pride are two separate things. They are not synonyms. Pride is positive. Ego is negative. "I have the pride of being with God." "I am egoistic of my stay here." Horrible! If you are egoistic of your stay here, it is negative. "I am proud to have Swami!" The pride is born out of satisfaction. Pride is born out of confidence. Pride is born out of complacency. Pride is a claim. It is not domination. Pride is a declaration, if not an achievement. So, ego is to be condemned. "I am proud of my country." "I am proud of my national flag." "I am proud of my culture." So, this pride relates to nobler things, higher things, while ego relates to lower, mundane, physical things.

So, my friends, we are proud of Bhagavan. We have got the pride of watching Him every day. We are proud of Swami. We are proud of ourselves, of having opened the gates of our heart such that Bhagavan can enter into the mansion of our life. The gates of my heart are always ever open, so that God can walk in!

It is not simply, "Knock and it shall be opened." So says the Holy Bible. "Oh God, my doors are never closed for You to knock. My doors are opened so that You can right walk in, up the higher steps." So Holy Bible says, "Knock and it shall be opened." But Sai devotees should say, "O God, You don't have to knock. When the doors are closed, You need to knock. My doors are opened. You can simply come in. The knocking is out! Now You can simply walk in!"

The Holy Bible says, "Ask and thou shalt be given." "O Bhagavan, You give me without my asking. You give me without my requesting. You give me without any bargain. You give me without any prayer." Most of the Sai devotees have their prayers answered, have their desires fulfilled, without ever asking. Am I not right? Please ask yourself. So, it is not a question of "Ask and thou shalt be given." Thou shalt be given without asking.

"Knock and it shall be opened." No! They are always opened! This is possible when once we get over the barrier of ego, of our own imaginary personality, of our own differences of opinion, of our own differences on silly grounds of language, of country, caste, community, and ideologies. Then life becomes a matter of celebration. Life is a golden dream. Life is full of beauty, full of beauty! This is what I concluded.

There are two more statements I would like to draw your attention to. We are members of the same family. Believe me or not, I love you. I consider all of you as my brothers and sisters. It is not a matter of formality that I am speaking from here. I feel one with everybody. I don't feel strange. I don't take even a second to be free in any company, whether you are from Turkey or America or Italy. It doesn't matter. I feel one with you all because Bhagavan Baba is our Father. We are all His children. I will be one with you freely. Most of you have seen this in me.

When once we accept that He is our Father, we are brothers and sisters. When once we realize that God is our Father, Fraternity - Brotherhood of Man, Fatherhood of God…It is possible when we cross this barrier of our ego. When once we enjoy this brotherhood, this kinship, this Sai bondage, there is no difference of opinion. There is no clash of personality. There is no coercion. It is only cohesion, never a decision. It is always togetherness, never dividedness.

For all this to happen, we have to see that vulgar, horrible monster of ego right in front of us, which is of our own making. Let us remove this ugly ego so that we can move hand-in-hand and enjoy the beauty of life, realizing the value of life. When once I find the identity, when once I experience the reality, life is a celebration. Life is a festival. I find beauty. Life is never burdensome. Life is never heavy when once I condition my life. It's something like programming into the computer. If my life is programmed, limiting myself to my language, region, caste, community and personality, life becomes heavy and burdensome. When once we understand our true identity of the reality, of oneness with the Divinity, we'll have this fraternity. Then that life becomes so enjoyable, wonderful, and beautiful, full of festivity and gaiety. Time will never drag on. Life will never be burdensome, provided we experience our true identity, the reality.

Thank you very much.

Anil Kumar finished his talk by singing, "Sai Narayana…"

Asato Maa Sad Gamaya
Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya
Mrityormaa Amritam Gamaya
Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.

Loka Samastha Sukino Bhavantu
Loka Samastha Sukino Bhavantu
Loka Samastha Sukino Bhavantu

Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti

© 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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