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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Anil Kumar's Sunday Satsang at Prasanthi Nilayam
June 24, 2001

The Sunday Talk Given by Anil Kumar on:

The significance of Guru Purnima

24th June, 2001

OMÖ OMÖ OMÖ

Sai Ram.

With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan,

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

The sacred festival of Guru Purnima is fast approaching. I thought it necessary to do some homework before we actually celebrate this festival. Guru Purnima is a special occasion with profound meaning and depth and inner significance. If we know fully what the occasion is, why it should be celebrated and what it means, this will be helpful for us if we decide to practice what we hear here.

Guru Purnima will fall on the 5th of July. This session weíll spend pondering over, thinking about and reflecting on Guru Purnima and its importance. Perhaps the celebration is unique here in Prasanthi Nilayam. The way it is celebrated is different from the way it is observed elsewhere.

Actually speaking, we have a very a large group of people who are worldly. By 'worldly' I mean that their imagination, their planning, their effort, their program and their entire activity centers around the establishment of a very high standard of living. In establishing a very high standard of living, it becomes absolutely necessary to amass wealth. And to amass wealth, it becomes necessary to strain more, to exert more, and sometimes even to take to unlawful methods.

In other words, we are totally engaged in raising our standard of living. No one is an exception. A high standard of living is a sign of pride, which builds up our ego more and more. It establishes a sort of status or position in our society, and therefore we work hard to improve or establish a higher standard of living. But Guru Purnima calls for a high standard of life, not a higher standard of living. Guru Purnima emphasizes and stresses upon the high standard of life and not a high standard of living. By life, I mean the quality of life.

On the occasion of Guru Purnima, Bhagavan has said many things. Now let us try to concentrate on a few concepts. We are at a loss to know the meaning of life. If that question is put to anyone of us (and I'm not an exception), we have no immediate answer. What is the meaning of life? The meaning of life (according to what we currently think) is what we call a 'status symbol' or a higher involvement or placement in society. That is what appears to us to be the meaning of life. But the Guru Purnima celebration focuses on another aspect. Guru Purnima tells us the meaning of life.

What is the meaning of life? My friends, each one of you will have to work, to evaluate, to introspect, in order to find out the meaning of your life. Each one will have to find out the meaning of oneís own life. Nobody is going to tell us, "This is your meaning of your life." No, we have to work out for ourselves, to find out the meaning of our life.

Thatís the reason why the Guru Purnima celebration is individual and collective. Collectively, we assemble here and we listen to the Divine message. But individually, we express our trust in our Guru. We try to find out the meaning of our own life individually, whereas collectively we celebrate.

Individually, we have to own the responsibility. When we own the responsibility for ourselves, weíll know the meaning of life. If someone gives us the definition of life, if we look forward to others to define our life and indicate the purpose of life, thereís no beauty or charm in it. Rather we may find it difficult to adopt it. But when we work on our own, we'll find the meaning of life.

The Meaning of Life - Go Higher and Higher

What is the meaning of life and how shall we go about it? I remind you that all these thoughts are taken from Sai literature. I repeat that in every one of my talks because I'm highly conscious of the fact that I'm just supplying you information from Sai literature. That's all. Yes!

How are we to understand what is the purpose of life? A seed, for example, what is the purpose of a seed? The purpose of a seed is to sprout or to germinate. If the seed does not sprout or germinate, the seed has lost its meaning, right? The seed germinates into a sapling. The sapling has got its own meaning. It has to grow into an adult plant. The plant should grow into an adult and it should flower. So, flowering is the meaning of a plant. But flowering is not the be-all and end-all. The flowering should then spread its fragrance.

So, from a seed to a sapling, from a sapling to a plant, from a plant to flowers, and from flowers to the spreading of fragrance - so it goes always to a higher stage. Human life is one of continuity to eternity. There is no stopping at any stage. The continuity lies in the evolution. It lies in its transcendence. The meaning is that we always transcend to higher and more unknown levels. But we are afraid of that unknown level. We want to remain where we are. That is the reason why we are not progressing.

Bhagavan tells many people, "What is this? Are you still in kindergarten? Why are you still learning the alphabet? You donít seem to have improved. You donít seem to have made any attempt to find out higher realms of thought, the higher fields of experience, or exposure to a wider arena of understanding and awareness." Thatís what Bhagavan says when we ask any simple question. Swami will point us to a higher level. What does this mean? To find the higher meaning, we have to evolve and transcend the present condition. What do I mean by that?

Guru Purnima - Documenting of the Vedas

There was a great sage by the name of Veda Vyasa. Vyasa is, to some people, the very Incarnation of God. Veda Vyasa, the great sage, noticed the Divine vibrations, so full of knowledge, so full of awareness, so full of Divinity, indicating the purpose of life, revealing the meaning of life and conveying the message of life all over.

Veda Vyasa, with all his vision and fortitude, and with his compassion for the vast humanity, along with meditation for long periods of time, started recording and classifying the Divine knowledge, the Divine wisdom. Being in that highest vibration, he started receiving this Divine wisdom. All the vibrations had been recorded and documented. Thereafter he started classifying this Divine knowledge, this Divine information, which was available to that age. Veda Vyasa is what is called Veda or the Divine knowledge. Veda is the Divine wisdom spread all over in the form of vibrations, electro-waves. All that he received, like an antenna, he recorded, documented and classified for the convenience of study, research, and investigation.

The Vedic literature is so vast and infinite that it has to be classified and categorized. What relates to rituals, to the knowledge of the Self, to music, and that which insures longevity of life, medicine, these are the four branches of Veda. The first branch of Veda speaks of the ritualistic aspect. How to perform various rituals, the procedural aspects, the methodology, is the first branch of Veda, the Rig-Veda. The second branch of Veda deals with the knowledge of the Self, which is called the Yajur Veda. And then comes the Sama Veda, which deals with music. And the last one deals with medicine, the longevity of life, the Atharvana Veda.

Rig-Veda, Yajur Veda, Sama Veda and Atharvana Veda - these are the four Vedas dealing with the ritualistic aspect, the knowledge of the Self, music, and medicine. That day of classification, the day of dividing or categorizing the Divine knowledge by Veda Vyasa, according to one school of thought, is called Guru Purnima. Guru Purnima is the day when Veda Vyasa classified the Vedic literature for the benefit of humanity into these four branches. That is what is called Guru Purnima, according to one school of thought.

Two Other Meanings of Guru Purnima

The second meaning is, according to some people, that it is the birthday of Veda Vyasa. This school of thought is also very logical and rational and quite acceptable. It is not contradictory here. The meaning of birthday here is not the annual birthday celebration we know, but the day of revelation, the day of experience, the day of realizing the Divinity within, the day of experiencing the Unity in diversity. That day of the experience of the Cosmic Divinity in the entire universe is the real birthday. That is Guru Purnima.

According to another school, Guru Purnima is the day when Lord Buddha had Self-Realization. Buddhists say that Buddha attained Nirvana or liberation on a full moon day (Purnima), Buddha Purnima. Lord Buddha realized the Truth after spending twelve years doing penance and meditation.

The importance of Guru Purnima is interpreted in different ways. I wanted to share with you these three this morning: the first, the day of the classification of Vedic literature; the second, the birthday of Veda Vyasa, and the third, the day of Realization of Lord Buddha.

Purnima - The Full Moon Day

What does Purnima mean? Purnima means 'full moon day'. Bright moonlight, yes! Why? What is the significance of Purnima? The moon is the presiding deity of the mind. The mind and the moon are related. Lunar and lunatic go together! (Laughter) Everybody very well knows the effect of the moon on the human mind. On a full moon day, when there is no trace of even a single cloud across the sky, when it is bright, it is wonderful and so beautiful! This is an indication of the human mind, which has become very, very clear, without any clouds.

If the human mind is the sky, if the human mind is the space, the clouds are the clouds of doubt, the clouds of ignorance, the clouds of desire, the clouds of suspicion, the clouds of duality, the clouds of anger, the clouds of possessiveness. There are different types of clouds, as you know. Some have raindrops, some are full of dust, and all are different. You will agree with me that all clouds donít rain. Similarly, the human mind has so many clouds, full of dust, drops, and wind.

So, on Guru Purnima day or this full moon day, our human mind should be so clear, without any clouds of suspicion, disbelief, distrust, body identification, ego, possessiveness, or attachment. All these clouds should clear out, so that the sky is absolutely clear in all the cool moonlight, which soothes and pacifies with all its coolness.

A simple example: It is a full moon night. Suppose you climb up your staircase and go to the terrace on a very hot summer night. You had a very hot day, a Puttaparthi summer, OK? You have gone up to your terrace. How do you enjoy the cool breeze at that time? How do you watch the moon? All the trouble that you had during the course of the day, the effect of the scorching sun and the heat of the day, are all forgotten the moment you enjoy the coolness of the moon that night.

Similarly, once we have realized that Knowledge, when the sky of the human mind is clear, without any clouds of despair, despondency, disappointment or frustration, we then enjoy the coolness of God's Grace. That is what Purnima means. It is not a just any day in the season. Certainly not! Let me experience the full moon day, the coolness, the comfort, the joy of the cool breeze, so that all my agitations, all my disturbances, all the tensions and the stress-formed clouds vanish. When the entire sky is absolutely clear, that is full moon day.

At that time, in that moment, we find the meaning of our life. We find the meaning of our life when once we are clear off these clouds of our pitfalls and our weaknesses. When there are dark clouds, even if only a few are there, we cannot see Him. Similarly, the clouds of our weaknesses, the clouds of feeling diffident instead of being confident, will keep us from enjoying the sun or the moon.

It is in this context that I bring to your notice what Bhagavan tells us: Guru Purnima is not the message of doing something different or of investigating a different path. No. Guru Purnima is the day of Awareness of our true Self. We are not going to meet anybody new, no! You are not going to get something, which you do not already have right now.

Searching for Ourselves Outside

I have two pens in my pocket. Well, as ill-luck would have it, in the midst of my thoughts, in the midst of this communication, I forgot that I'm carrying these two pens. So I'm in search of some pens. Now my friend will get up and say, "Mr. Anil Kumar, you seem to be absent-minded. We know that you have retired! (Laughter) (Thatís the reason why retirement age is also decided for us!) The pens are there. Look in your pocket," he will tell me. "Oh! I see! I thought it was necessary to search." My friend adds, "No, no, theyíre right there with you!"

Bhagavan gave one example of Professor Bhagavantham, who was the translator of Bhagavanís discourses in the 1960ís. It seems that Professor Bhagavantham, a very great scientist and vice-chancellor, while he was the Director of the Institute of Science there in Bangalore, was searching for his glasses. Swami was sitting there. As Swami wanted him to read one paper, he was just searching. Swami said, "What is it that you are searching for?" "Swami, my glasses!" "They are there on your nose, OK?" (Laughter)

Similarly, we are searching for ourselves outside. When the Self is inside, we are searching for the Self by following the methods outside, while the method to know the Self inside is not adopted. The method to follow, to know the Self inside is called 'inquiry'. 'Inquiry' does not say bring flowers, two truckloads of flowers, or buy agarbathi. That is all external.

Rituals are Not Spiritual

All the rituals we do, the flowers that we offer, and all the acts of worship are external. We are not dismissing those things. I am not an atheist. I am not against these things. But I am conveying the depth of what Bhagavan has said. All spiritual activity we have been doing till this day, the bhajans, the chanting, the meditation and worship are all rituals. They are all good sacred activities, but they are not spiritual. That is underlined - not spiritual. I can give you the page number and the date when Swami made this statement. . (I am a teacher and very responsible. You donít have to doubt me. I cannot concoct things because I know that one of you will get up and ask me. So I'm fully prepared! )

So, all those things that we do are sacred activities. They are good activities, but they are not spiritual. I see. Why are these sacred activities not spiritual? I can do these spiritual activities straightaway! Why Ďviaí something else? Are there any straight flights, without getting down in Frankfurt? Is there anything like that? Straight flights from Bombay to New York, without having to get down in Frankfurt? Why change? No, no! Itís not possible!

Chitta Suddhi - Purity of Mind/Heart

One should have purity of mind. With purity of mind, it is possible to experience spirituality in the true sense. To have spiritual experience, one must have purity of mind. So, all the sacred activities are there to develop purity of mind, chittha suddhi. But being a teacher, I can tell you that old habits die slowly!

Chittha suddhi means the purity of heart. All activity, meditation, worship, and bhajans are for the purity of the mind. It guarantees the fulfillment of wisdom - not just wisdom, but fulfillment of wisdom. Wisdom has got a purpose, or else wisdom is just academic and textual. Wisdom comes down from a sacred text. I am not referring to that textual knowledge. I am speaking of fulfillment of wisdom. Jnana siddhi, fulfillment of wisdom, is possible only after chittha suddhi has been achieved. I think I'm clear.

All the activities we have been doing will help us to develop that purity of mind, chittha suddhi. But that is not the be-all and end-all. Finally comes the fulfillment of Divine knowledge, or the wisdom or experience, what we call jnana siddhi, the genuine spiritual experience.

Guru Purnima is the day of Self-inquiry, or inquiry into the Self. The point is this: Who is the inquirer? What is the path of inquiry and what is it that is known after inquiry? These are the questions that come subsequently. When once we agree upon this, Guru Purnima is the day of Self-inquiry, to know the true Self in its true form, in the right way.

Teachers and Gurus

Guru is a Sanskrit word, but some people mistake it for the word Ďteacherí. A teacher and a Guru are different. 'Teacher' refers to a class teacher - for example, Bal Vikas teachers or, at a higher level, you may say, 'professors'. But he can also become a professor once he stops teaching! (Laughter) Yes, when he stops teaching, he becomes a reader. When he stops reading and teaching, he becomes a professor. But thatís a different thing. But still, one is basically a teacher. At the university level, you call him a professor. At the school level and college level, you call him a teacher, teaching and dissimulating knowledge.

Guru Purnima - Guru is not a teacher. Guru is different from a teacher. Let us understand very clearly this concept. In 'Guru', there are two letters - 'gu' and 'ru'. 'Gu' or 'gukaro andarkaarasya' means or stands for 'the darkness of ignorance'. 'Ru' or 'Rukaro tan nivarana' means 'dispelling the darkness'. So, 'Guru' stands for the removal of darkness and the removal of ignorance.

Dispelling Darkness

Where is darkness? From where is it removed? And how is it removed? A simple question. It is nighttime and very dark. We are not able to see anything clearly. In the morning, at 6 o'clock, with the sunrise and the sunlight, all things become clear. Where has the darkness gone? Has it run away from Puttaparthi to Kotacheruvu or anywhere else? Or has it gone to Hyderabad, or any other neighboring state? Let me search. Where has this darkness gone? An anti-social element is hiding it somewhere? No, no, no, no! The presence of light is equal to absence of darkness. Once there is light, there is no darkness. When there is no light, there is darkness. Presence of light is the absence of darkness.

Similarly, the presence of light or wisdom is the knowledge of the Self. Knowledge of the Self, what we call in Sanskrit, Atma jnana, or Thathwa jnana, is the light. It removes the darkness of ignorance. So the light of knowledge of the Self, Atma jnana, dispels the darkness of ignorance, ajnana.

This is 'Guru', the meaning of the two letters. To repeat once again, 'gu' is darkness or ignorance; 'ru' is the light or wisdom. With the light of wisdom, the darkness of ignorance is dispelled. That is the meaning of the two-lettered word 'Gu-ru'.

Guru Purnima: Purnima is full-moon day. With the grace of a Guru, who is the real Teacher, an aspirant or seeker or spiritual aspirant dispels the darkness of ignorance as he gets into the light of wisdom. That is Guru Purnima. Right? The first letter means darkness or ignorance and the second letter means light or wisdom.

Then, there is another meaning for 'Guru', for these two letters of Guru.

Attributes and Attributeless

Now here is another meaning: Guru has two letters. 'Gukaro guna theetha.' Gunas, what are gunas? Gunas are tendencies, traits, and qualities. It has also got another name, vasanas. So, 'gu' refers to 'guna teetha', which means 'attributeless', without any attributes, without any qualities, without any tendencies. That is 'guna theetha'. What is it? What do you mean?

A simple example: When electricity is used for the mike (microphone), it makes the sound louder. If it is used for the fan, it makes the breeze. Current in the bulb creates light. So light there, sound here, breeze there, heat in a heater, or for things remaining cold in the freezer - the same electricity is used for all these and more.

Now what does electricity mean? Heat? "No," says the mike. Electricity, is it the sound? "No," says the fan. Is it a breeze? "No," says the freezer. Will it help me keep all that foodstuff in storage? "No, no," Says the heater. So, what is electricity now? It is none of these Ė and yet it is all of them. That is the point. Because of the electricity, all these things are functioning. Because of the electricity, we are able to enjoy all benefits of these gadgets in the form of heat and light. But without the electricity, they are all non-functional. Electricity is in all of them, but they are not in electricity. Am I clear?

God is in the attributes, but the attributes are not in Him. Attributes are not in Him, but He is in the attributes. Sound is not in electricity, but electricity in the mike is producing the sound. Likewise, breeze is not in the electricity, but electricity produces the breeze when the current operates the fan.

So, attributes are there. Attributes are functional. Sarva indriya bhaatam, sarva indriya vivarjitam. sarva indriya guna bhaasam. All these attributes are functional and useful because of the Divinity. But these attributes are not there in Divinity. Guna theetha means 'transcendental' or 'beyond' or 'attributeless'. So gukaaro guna theetha means 'attributeless' or 'without any traits'.

With Form and Formless

'Rukaaro, rupa varjithaha' means formless. All created objects have forms. But God has no form. So God is beyond form. He is formless. "Sir, what nonsense! We see Baba there in the form, and yet you say, 'He is formless'?" I'm sure you are going to make me formless at the end of the talk if I donít explain what I really mean (Laughter).

By formless I mean, when He is all forms, you cannot decide that this only is His form. Am I clear? When all forms are His, He is formless. When all names are His, Heís nameless. When all attributes function because of Him, He is attributeless. Yes, what is the form of Swami? Is it the form that we see in the morning? Why not? And He is also in you.

You must have read the book of Sai Baba of Shirdi, the previous Incarnation of Sathya Sai Baba. Once Shirdi Sai appeared in the form of a buffalo. Another time He appeared in the form of a dog. Now what is the form of Shirdi Sai Baba? Was He a buffalo or a dog or a human being?

So, when all forms are His, when you cannot specify that this alone is His form, then we say 'formless'. When all names are His, when you cannot say that this is His only name, He is 'nameless'. Bhagavan responds when you say, "O Jesus!" or "O Allah!" He responds to "O Buddha!" and "O Rama!" He appears in all those forms. Yes, so all names are His and so He is nameless.

So in Guru, gu means: 'guna theetha', beyond attributes, and ru: rupa varjithaha, formless. Therefore, Guru means the realization of, the understanding of, the experience of the attributeless, formless aspect of Divinity. That is the meaning of Guru Purnima.

Guru Purnima is not simply another festival or another occasion. No. Guru Purnima is not the observation of a ceremony or a ritual. The conventional, traditional way is different. What I have told here is according to the teachings of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. But in society, Guru Purnima is observed in a different style altogether. There, when a Guru shows a definite direction to the disciple on Guru Purnima, the disciple offers him some money in gratitude. In other places outside and in other areas of life, Guru Purnima is the day when the disciple expresses his gratitude to the teacher by offering something in return for all that he has received.

Being Born Again

But the Guru Purnima observed here is not about offering money. It is about offering oneís own self (ego). What do you mean by 'offering oneís own self'? It is clearly written in the Holy Bible: "Unless you are born again, you shall not get into the Gates of Heaven." What is the meaning of being 'born again'? I cannot be 'born again' unless I die now. Since I'm not sure of being born again, I donít want to die! If I go by the literal meaning, it is ridiculous! "Unless one is born again," says the Holy Bible. What does it mean? Does one have to die? No. It is speaking of the body identification, the death of the body identification.

So long as I feel that I am the body, it is that thought or that identification which should die. So far as I feel I am the mind, that identification with the mind should die. That day when I realize that I am the Spirit, I am born again. The 'second birth' or 'second life' refers to the new identification with the Spirit or identification with the Soul. 'Death' here means that one dies to the body identification. One dies to the identification of the mind. Heís 'born again', identifying himself with the Soul or Spirit. Unless the seed dies, you do not expect a plant to come. So, the disappearance of one thing is the beginning of the appearance of something new.

Thereís one beautiful word in Sanskrit, Dwija. Dwija means 'second birth'. Dwi means two; ja means birth = second birth. What is this second birth? The first birth is the life in this world, the life of the body, the life of the mind. The second birth, the second life, is the true life of the Spirit. This is the message of Guru Purnima. So, Guru Purnima wants us to understand this concept of being born once again; this second time, identifying ourselves with the Spirit or Soul, not with the body and mind.

Dualism and Non-Duality

Further, Guru Purnima has some more points to convey. Let me also talk to you along these lines. Guru Purnima is the day of the experience of non-duality. What is duality and what is non-duality? 'Duality' means that the world and I are separate. You and I are separate. The material Creation and the Creator are separate. The good and bad are different. The day and night are different. This is dualism. Profit-loss, victory-defeat, success-failure are all dual, meaning that there are two. But Guru Purnima is the experience of non-duality.

How is it possible to have non-duality? Night cannot be the day; day cannot be night! Profit cannot be failure, no! Profit cannot be loss! Success and failure are not the same. Duality is almost a certainty. Duality has almost come to stay with us. Duality has gone into our blood and marrow.

Now the time has come to know non-duality. That is the meaning of Guru Purnima. How is it possible? Here is a simple example. Unless it is night, you cannot have the day. Impossible! It is only the night that leads to the day. It is only the day that leads to the night. So, day and night are not opposite, but one is the continuation of the other. They are not contradictory. They are complementary. Apparently, outside, externally, night and day seem to be opposite. But they are not opposite. They seem to be contradictory or against each other, but no, they are complimentary as one is the continuation of the other. Night leads to the day, and day leads to the night. It is something like obverse and the reverse.

(Anil Kumar now shows the front and back of a writing tablet.) This side is different from that side. Without this front side, the back side cannot exist. Without this, that cannot exist. Both are one and the same in this writing pad. Am I clear?

So, there is nothing like polarity. There is nothing like opposite dimensions. In profit and loss, it is only the loss that takes you toward the profit in business. Business people know this very well because they have seen both sides of the coin. Likewise, profit will also certainly take you to loss.

Life is like a Pendulum

A simple example is a pendulum. You cannot expect a pendulum to be only at the center unless there is something wrong with it. (Laughter) "Sir, my pendulum is so full of equilibrium and tranquility or balanced state of mind that it does not move!" Thank you! When the pendulum stops, the light of life is gone. Time is life; life is time. When time stops, finished! Next day is a holiday because he is declared dead! When time stops, heís dead. Yes, because time is life. So my friends, as the pendulum moves from one extreme to the other, one end is profit, the other end is loss; one end is day, the other end is night; one end is success, the other end is failure. And it continues to move like that.

Thatís the reason why there is the famous saying, "Life is like the pendulum, oscillating between a tear and a smile." There are tears on the one end and smiles on the other end. But I cannot go on smiling unless something is wrong with me. Suppose you find me smiling and smiling continuously. You will also smile for one or two days. From the third day onward, youíll go far away from me, maybe some miles! Why? Because youíll understand that I'm sufficiently mad now! (Laughter) You will run away from me for miles and miles if I smile continually, endlessly, and meaninglessly.

Similarly, if I go on crying throughout the day, youíll also try to avoid me. "Heís passing through some depression or some frustration. (Laughter) Let me try to avoid him. I donít want to spoil my moods." Youíll say that. So, life is not only full of tears, nor is it all smiles. It is something like a pendulum, swinging continuously between a smile and a tear. One leads to the other: This is not non-duality.

Non-Duality is Acceptance

Non-duality is not avoiding oneís state of mind. Non-duality is not preference. Non-duality is something like acceptance. Non-duality is acceptance, not preference. This means acceptance of the reality. This is the time. "OK, I'm miserable. But yet, I'll take it. I accept it. This time I'm miserable. I'm hopeless. There is no one to care for me. I am all alone, entirely depressed. OK. Iíll take it with all composure. I accept it with all courage and readiness." It is not preference.

All right. Here's the other end of the pendulum: "I'm successful. I'm victorious, full of profits in my business. I accept it in a all humility, with all reverence, with all respect, in all dignity, with no arrogance."

So, absence of arrogance when things are favorable, absence of depression when things are unfavorable - no arrogance and no preference - but rather acceptance of what is right, in store for us in this moment, is non-duality. I think I'm clear. To speak of non-duality is quite easy; but to put it into practice is difficult. That is why I'm telling these things.

After all, when one fellow fails in the examination, heís crying. If I go and tell him, "After all, life is non-dual! (Laughter) Pass or failure is nothing. After all, what does it matter? You can smile, though you failed." Or, if a fellow got a gold medal, heís all smiling. Should I say, "No, no, after all what is this? Be non-dual! Why are you jumping for joy? Start crying!" (Laughter) He will make me cry! It is not possible to talk like this.

So, non-duality does not mean absence of reaction or absence of expression. It is not repression. It is not suppression. It is not expression. It is not preference. It is acceptance. I think I'm clear. This is called 'surrender'. This is surrender. Guru Purnima is the acceptance of what is kept in store for us, what we call 'surrender'. That is the meaning and depth of Guru Purnima: unconditional, totally unconditional, acceptance.

"Swami! I'm prepared to pass through the test. You donít look at me. You donít talk to me. All right, I will tolerate this. All right, I can understand Your predicament. I can understand that You are busy. For fifteen days, I'm be able to bear this torture. Later, no more of this treatment!" (Laughter) This is conditional. I cannot give Him some date. "Swami, You can be silent from 5th of June till 20th of June; later than that, no!"

"No, no! Sit down," Heíll say then. (Laughter)

A Timetable for Swami

In the past, some of the teachers, myself included, were very smart at one time. (Sometimes one has to be smart.) Unexpectedly, the sudden thought came to our mind, "Why only some students sit in the front row? Why should Swami talk to some people only? Why?"

So, we made a beautiful timetable: Monday morning, first year mathematics students; Monday evening, biology students; Tuesday morning, second year students (etc.) -- Ah ha! We made a six-day program. We humbly submitted it to Swami. This is double foolishness! To prepare this schedule itself is absolutely foolish. To give it to Him, well, there is no redemption! (Laughter)

Then He looked at it and said, "Oh-ho-ho! You have given Me the timetable. Ah! I see. How about those lakhs of devotees sitting out there? Where are their names? I donít find their names here! You prepare when I should talk to them also, when I should see them too! "

"When I want you to be disciplined, when I want you to develop devotion, when I want you to be more dutiful, instead of following My timetable, you are giving Me the timetable! (Laughter) I have given you the schedule that you should have three: Duty, Devotion, and Discipline; that you should have also these three: Purity, Patience, and Perseverance. Rather than doing that, you are giving Me the timetable - Monday morning, biology; Monday evening, physical science; Tuesday morning, commerce. You have not understood. You have, what you say, 'missed the bus'!"

So my friends, it is not necessary - rather, we should not fix the deadline for God. Some people do this: "If you donít talk to me in the evening, I wonít eat tonight!" (Laughter) If you donít eat tonight because Swami did not talk to you, then youíll be free from constipation in the morning! (Laughter) Youíll be free from indigestion. A little food problem is solved. This world is not going to suffer.

There are some people like this. In fact, one gentleman told me, "Sir, I have come with a serious purpose, a definite program. Until Swami talks to me, I am not going to eat." I said, "What does He lose if you donít eat food?" (Laughter) What does He lose? He is not bothered because He also does not eat food. If Swami eats as much as I eat, He will know what it is. But He doesnít eat! He may say, "So, all right. You have come to My stage. So then, donít eat!"

So my friends, if we stop eating, the world is not going to lose anything. By eating, world is not going to be profited. Eating has got nothing to do with spirituality. The quality of food is something different. Vegetarian or non-vegetarian - thatís an appropriate spiritual topic. But food as such, eating in general, is not spiritual. So my friends, I cannot tell Him, "Swami, I am going to fast for three days. On the fourth day, I am ready for my interview with You." Oh-ho! You cannot say that to God. So, that type of attitude is conditional spiritual practice.

Conditional Sadhana

What is conditional sadhana? It is not spiritual activity. That which is unconditional is spiritual sadhana. That which is unconditional is spiritual. That which is conditional is just a ritual, a mere ritual. "O God! If my son gets a seat in the engineering college, Iíll come to Your temple and break 20 coconuts." (Laughter) Coconuts are not your property or your grandfatherís property. Coconuts belong to the coconut tree. We bring these coconuts here, O God, then we bribe You! But You are the Creator of the coconut plants everywhere!

He is the Creator of the coconut and the coconuts belong to the tree. When you and I then offer these fruits, how ridiculous it is! What a kind of cheating it is! It is really cheating. It is hypocrisy. And yet we want to have that kind of business deal with God. It is not surrender. I cannot take your purse and then donate the money inside to somebody else. It is your money. Then how can I donate it? "All that my friend has here, I am donating it!" Oh-ho! You cannot do that. (Laughter) Similarly, we have no authority, we have no credibility, we have no authenticity, we have no right to make all these 'deals' with God, which are meaningless.

So, Guru Purnima calls for the unconditional acceptance of whatever is kept in store for us. Guru Purnima is the day of Self-inquiry. Guru Purnima is the celebration of the realization of the Divinity within. Guru Purnima is the day of the experience of non-dualism. Guru Purnima is the day of our expression of gratitude to our Guru, the Teacher, the Eternal Charioteer, for all that we have received from Him.

Guru Purnima is the day to determine to take a particular path. "Yes, from now on, I'm going to be non-dual. From now on, I'm going to take to this spiritual path." This is the day of Guru Purnima. Guru Purnima Day celebration is the clearing up of the clouds of doubt and disappointment in the sky of the human mind. It is the day of being absolutely clear. It is the day of dispelling the darkness of ignorance, awakening the light of spiritual wisdom, and letting in the sunlight of wisdom.

(Note: The following (July 1st) Sunday Talk by Anil Kumar was cancelled due to the preparations for the International Bal Vikas Conference held at Prashanthi Nilayam on July 2nd, 3rd and 4th.)

Anil Kumar led the bhajan, "Rama Krishna Hari Narayana...".

Thank you very much!

Om Asatoma Sadgamaya
Tamasoma Jyotirgamaya
Mrtyurmaya Amrtamgamaya

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

Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.


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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