Humans' worldly life activity and actions is bound by
various kinds of social obligations. For such activity knowledge
and education is necessary. But it is far not enough of it.
There is needed an internal motivation that gives direction and
purpose of any human's worldly activity. By Swami and Vedic
wisdom this internal motivation is the confidence of the Self as
If whatsoever humans actions and deeds (in social,
spiritual, scientific or cultural spheres) proceed from
confidence of the Self that they are in harmony with Atmic unity,
God and therefore they are productive. If all people of the
world will understand and experience it that there would be no
wars, enmity, cruelty, etc. There would be no danger of
ecological destruction of biosphere as in consequence of
consumer society's scientific and technological activity
deprived their roots. Development of humanity and prevention
global social and ecological accidents can be carried out at
comprehension of confident of the Atmic Self what unite carrier
This basic Truth is one of the root topics of Swami's
Teaching. His explanations concern to self-confidence, self
sacrifice, self-realisation are in His many Works in various
contexts appointed for students and devotees and seekers on
various paths and distances of spiritual development. Swami's
Messages are for all layers of population: be confident of the
Atmic nature of the Self, know that the initial point (active
Divine force) for whatsoever worldly activity, actions proceed
from this primary point - Self-confident. By Swami
self-realisation (as realisation of the Self in worldly life) is
the outcome from confident of the Self.
All kinds of human activity have they of a spiritual or a
scientific direction proceed from one harmonious vibration of
God reflected by human consciousness as Self-confidence, alias
confidence of the Self.
(It is a need to note that in some spiritual works of
Indian gurus and philosophers Self-confidence (Atma vishvasa),
as opposed to methods of developing ego-self confidence and
there are explanations what is the role of 'awakened ego-self
confidence' used for unselfish deeds and services. By Vedic
wisdom ('Tat Sat' by K R Paramahamsa) ego, called the Ahamkara,
is that quality which gives a sense of identity to a person. Ego
makes possible to know (to be aware) about one's experiences or
For persons being not philosophers, such explanations are
difficult, may be not correctly understand among international
devotees and may be cause discussions about the same things from
different angles, what is on the whole not important, as all are
right from their angles of view).
Therefore the best way to follow the explanation of
Self-confidence and related to it qualities by Swami's Teaching.
It is more clear and proper; an opportunity of error in various
expressions there is absent.
Swami does not contradict worldly activity in area of
science or education to spirituality, to the confident of the
Self, but explained that this activity meaningful for service of
humanity, when it is based on the root knowledge as prime base -
confidence of the Self what leads through experiences to
self-realization in whatsoever fields of humans actions,
thoughts and deeds.
Below is a collection of Swami's quotations as a some kind
compilation about Self-confidence, self-realization and
connected with them education is presented. The quotations from
His works (what have written during many years) have directed to
various audience. Quotations have various spelling of terms (sometimes
Atma is replaced with Aathma, what is the same. Confidence of
the Self has mostly written as self-confidence, etc.). As the
collection based on quotations, the spelling is not changed.
How clearly one tries to explain his/her experiences
concern to Swami's Teaching, alive speech Swami through His
Works remains more evident simple and quick-witted for all.
Experiences concerning His Teaching are as subjective
reflections of devotees. Spreading Swami's Teaching and personal
experiences connected with His Teaching is more bright when
there is present direct Swami's quotations as carriers of Divine
energy hidden for eyes but possible to feel through heart.
Namaste - Reet
"Like food to a starving man, like
showers on a parched field, the Vedic science of spiritual
self-discovery is the life-saver for humanity sliding down to
destruction because it has lost its hold on truth, morality,
peace and love." (Excerpts from: Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 7,
"Man is an amalgam of body, mind and spirit. The senses of
perception and action, which form components of the body, are
busy contacting the objective world. he mind - consciousness of
the various levels, the faculty of reason and the ego - examines,
experiences and judges. It decides after discriminations, which
word or deed will be beneficial, favourable, fruitful and
felicitous. It attempts to separate the good from the bad,
...the true from the false, the permanent from the momentary.
The Spirit or the Self or the Aathma is unaffected, stable and
foundational. Its quality is Sath (is-ness) but it is ever aware,
ever chith (consciousness)." (Excerpts from: Sathya Sai Baba.
SSS. Vol. 17, Chapter 31).
"The first thing you have to do is to develop
self-confidence. It is such people who have no confidence in
their own self who begin to wander about and to waver, and take
to various different paths. When you take your body to different
places, and when you go about moving aimlessly, the mind also
goes to different places." (Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 13,
"The ultimate step of self-realisation depends upon the
base of self-confidence. Without having and developing
confidence in your own self, if all the time you are talking of
some power being with someone else... when are you going to
acquire any power and confidence in your own self?" (Excerpts
from: Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 13, Chapter 6).
"...Each one views the world from one's particular
circumstance, background and experience. The Aathmik Principle
is explained or described in different ways. There is no
connection between its reality and the way it is experienced.
Develop that confidence on the Self. The Self is not visible
even as the foundations of a big mansion are not visible. But
without the foundation the edifice cannot stand. Likewise
self-confidence is the base for self-satification. The roof of
Mansion is self-sacrifice. Then you have self-realisation." (Excerpts
from: Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 30, Chapter 28).
"All worldly knowledge is concerned with sustaining life.
When knowledge of the Spirit which is the basis of all other
knowledge of the sciences and the arts is acquired, it is easy
to get any kind of knowledge.
Self-confidence today is manifest only in matters relating
to worldly achievements and self-centered pursuits." (Excerpts
from: Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 19, Chapter 20).
"Through Self-confidence, one can obtain at first
Self-sacrifice and then Self-satisfaction. All this activity
together expresses the state of Self-realization what depends on
the base of Self-confidence - the awareness of the Atmic Self
within everywhere whatever the same and can never be destroyed."
(Compilation from: Discourse of Sathya Sai Baba during the
Summer Course in Spirituality and Indian Culture "Self-Confidence
leads to Self-Realization." May, 1973, Brindavan.
"Your journey starts with self-confidence and ends with the
realization of the Self. That Self is you; it is God. This is
who you really are. Self-confidence is unwavering love for the
divinity within. What will help you to develop this confidence?
Be equal-minded. Be satisfied with what you have. Don't hanker
for anything outside. That is a great truth. Always have
complete faith in God, Who takes care of everything. True
greatness can only come from faith." (Excerpts from Swami's
answers to devotees;
"Self-confidence cannot be purchased or obtained through
learning. It is based on deservedness. To attain deservedness,
develop divine thoughts. If you have faith in God, He will
protect you in the face of all adversities. He is always with
you, in you, above you, beside you, around you." (Excerpts of
the Divine Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "Cultivate Divine Love."
25 Dec 2001, Prasanthi Nilayam).
"First of all, one should have faith in one's own Self.
Develop self-confidence, which will lead to self-satisfaction.
When you have self-satisfaction, you will be prepared for
self-sacrifice. Only through self-sacrifice, can one attain
self-realisation. Self-realisation means to realise that you are
everything. Self-confidence is the foundation, self-satisfaction
is the wall, self-sacrifice is the roof and self-realisation is
life. No one can live in a building without roof. Roof cannot be
laid without walls and walls cannot be raised without foundation.
So, self-confidence, self-satisfaction, self-sacrifice are very
essential for self-realisation. Today man has lost
self-confidence. If one loses self-confidence, one loses
everything. Only through self-confidence can one have the vision
of the latent divine effulgence. " (Divine Discourse: Sathya Sai
Baba "The Life Principles of Man." 9 Oct 2001, Prasanthi
"The absence of self-confidence marks the beginning of one's
decline. Today, the world is facing ruin and disaster because
people have lost confidence in themselves. Self-confidence alone
is capable of granting peace and prosperity to each person. He
receives good everywhere; he is honoured in all places. Whatever
he touches becomes gold. When a person has no faith in himself,
how can he place faith in others? Even when he has such faith,
it cannot be sincere and firm. It is at best artificial and
superficial. Such a person will not have faith in his mother,
father, wife and children. He pretends to believe, that is all.
So he behaves treacherously and might even injure the parents.
So, self-confidence is a must for every student. Students
must study books about persons who stuck to justice and led
straight lives."(Sathya Sai Baba: Vidia Vahini, XVII, p. 62).
"For, loss of confidence in the Atma or
Self involves loss of faith in God Himself. That Omnipresence,
that Inner Motivator of all, who is the warp and woof of our
body and mind, our emotions and intellect - strengthening faith
in Him is the only means of realising the highest goal of man.
This is the lesson that Bharathiya spiritual history longs to
Children of Bharath! Teach your children
this life-preserving, glorious and heart-expanding Truth from
the early days of life." (Sathya Sai Baba: Vidia Vahini.
Religion is Experience, p. 28).
"Finally the elephant got tired and lost all his physical
as well as mental strength. He had placed all his confidence in
his physical and mental prowess, but having exhausted all that,
he began praying to the Lord. As long as his vision had been
directed to his body he did not look towards God. As long as he
had confidence in his own bodily and mental strength, the
thought of God did not arise and the Lord's grace did not
descend. When the elephant lost his physical and mental power
and turned towards God, immediately Lord Vishnu hurled his
sacred discus, and freed Gajendra from the catastrophe that had
overtaken him." (Sai Baba Gita. Turn Towards God and God will
Turn Towards You. XXIX , p. 290).
"It is only when you have developed
self-confidence, confidence in the indwelling atma, that you
will be able to develop a strong confidence in the Lord. If you
do not believe in your self, you cannot truly believe in God.
For the body-mind this master is the indweller. He will never
leave you. Therefore, by means of inner inquiry, you should try
to discover and recognize this unchanging indwelling divinity
which is your true reality.
Every spiritual aspirant should take up inner inquiry. In
all your spiritual practices that you engage in, you should
spend three fourths of your time on self-inquiry. The most
important reason for all these sorrows you are prone to, is the
weakness you develop because your senses are not under your
control. Put your mind on the right path and develop a firm
resolve. You will gain great strength thereby.
The Gita declared that you should control the senses, not
that you should destroy them. The Gita does not say that you
should renounce action, but that you should renounce the fruit
of your action. Therefore, you have to do your work. Although
there is no need for the Lord to perform any particular work,
you will find that he is working all the time.
Perform your work and use all your senses correctly. Use
them within the proper limits for the purposes for which they
were intended. This is the message of the Gita." (Excerpts from
Sai Baba Gita. Worldly Knowledge is Useless without
Self-knowledge. XX, p. 205).
"Far more valuable than the scholarship gathered from a
million books is the grain of wisdom gained through a session of
meditation. That flash (Jnana), however slight, is a precious
acquisition. It is the product of personal Sadhana and
indisputable authentic experience. As one cultivates and
develops this grain of wisdom, controversy and criticism will
cease. All arguments will be with one's lower self only until
the Truth stands revealed. Self-confidence is essential for a
person to enter on this path of spiritual practice." (Sathya Sai
Baba: Leela Kaivalya Vahini." Stream of Cosmic Sport Divine. p.1).
"The main purpose is to help you to
cultivate self-knowledge and self-confidence, so that each one
of you can learn self-sacrifice and earn self-realisation. The
teaching of the university curricula and the preparation for
presenting you for the university examinations and the award of
university degrees - these are only the means employed for the
end, namely, spiritual uplift, self-discovery and social service
through love and detachment. Our hope is that by your lives you
will be shining examples of spiritual awareness and its
beneficial consequences of the individual and society." (Sathya
Sai Baba: Divine discourse "The Higher Role." 1974, Ananthapur;
"Virtue can grow only in an atmosphere
of theism; you must have faith in the omnipresence of God, that
God is the witness, the guide, and the guardian. Self-confidence,
confidence that you are the pure unlimited self, is the great
reinforcement that religion can endow you with. When you
establish this in your hearts, you can be entrusted with any
type of responsibility, and any type of work." (Sathya Sai Baba:
Divine Discourse "Instruments of the Divine Will." 1974,
"It is in this context that it is said
that one should essentially have faith in one's own Atma or have
self-confidence. Only when one promotes self-confidence or
confidence in himself will he develop the peace of mind and will
he experience the satisfaction or Ananda of the Atma and then he
will sacrifice everything else. Experiencing Ananda and removal
of sorrow are simultaneous events." (Sathya Sai Baba: Divine
Discourse "The Lord is the Embodyment of Prema and Can be
Contacted Only Through Prema." 1974, Brindavan;
"There was once a Guru living in a place
and he was communicating wisdom to people who used to come for
his Darshan. Those people who were coming to have his Darshan
used to bring some flowers and fruits in accordance with Indian
traditions. One day, as the offerings were plenty in the form of
fruit, he called a disciple and asked him to cut the fruit and
arrange for its distribution as Prasad. The disciple cut the
fruit and reported to the Guru that all was ready for
distribution and asked him as to who should be given the first
fruit. The Guru asked him to start with the person in whom he
had the greatest faith and the highest confidence. All the
people assembled there thought that the disciple would first
give the fruit to the teacher and then distribute to the others.
But the disciple did not do so. He took the first fruit himself.
When the surprised onlookers asked for an explanation, he said
that since he had the greatest confidence and affection for
himself, he took the first fruit. This demonstrates that he had
indeed, confidence in himself and that he truly loved himself.
When we look at this story in its external aspects, it may
look as if the disciple had no faith in the Guru but we should
realise that he acted in this manner because of supreme
confidence in himself. Therefore, if one does not touch the feet
of God, does not go to a temple or does not go on a pilgrimage,
we should not conclude that he has no faith in himself.
Confidence in one's self is something which can only be
experienced and cannot be exhibited." (Excerpts from Divine
Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "The Ladder that Enables an Ignorant
Person to Become a Liberated Soul." 1973, Brindavan;
"There are two things which are important
for man's life. One is confidence in one's own self and the
other is cleansing one's own mind. Man cannot live by himself in
isolation. The entire world depends upon the social structure
and on the manner in which individuals are knit together into a
society." (Excerpts from Divine Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "The
Company of Good People." 1973, Brindavan;
"Sanctify all the limbs of the body in selfless activities.
But it is not that easy to practice. There is always some
self-interest in whatever man does. Self-interest is also
necessary, but it should be within certain limits." (Divine
Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "The Life Principles of Man." 9 Oct
2001, Prasanthi Nilayam).
"Life is not a one way traffic. You
should conduct yourself in such a way that you give happiness to
others and then ask others to give happiness to you. Man cannot
live in isolation like a drop of oil put on the surface of a
sheet of water. The happiness of the individual is intimately
connected with the happiness of the society. The prosperity of
the society itself is intimately connected with the happiness of
the world. Our educational methods should include spiritual,
religious, ethical and moral aspects. Every youth must make an
effort to generate confidence in himself and he can then enjoy
happiness and bliss." (Excerpts from Divine Discourse: Sathya
Sai Baba "Opening Address to the Students."1973, Brindavan;
"Every thinking individual concerned with education is
today faced with a large number of problems; problems that have
been agitating the minds of students and of teachers. It is the
duty of everyone to see that these problems are solved and the
right solutions are put into the hearts of young people, and
thereby infuse a sense of the Divine in their minds. Because
good qualities like sacrifice, forbearance, truth and love have
been somewhat pushed to the background, the society is suffering
from various ills. It is the sacred duty of good education not
only to rectify such ills and give proper shape and form to
society, but also to rid the minds and hearts of people as well
of all evils. In our educational methods of today, we are
attaching great importance to giving voluminous books and the
information contained in these voluminous books to the students.
We are not making an effort to improve the ideas and ideologies
of the students.
The first thing to have is self-confidence, after which
alone you will get self-satisfaction. Once you have got
self-satisfaction, then you must acquire the virtue of
self-sacrifice and after self-sacrifice alone, you come to
self-realisation. Thus to achieve self-realisation,
self-confidence is the most important thing. In all these four
attributes, namely, self-confidence, self-satisfaction,
self-sacrifice and self-realisation, the one common word is
self." (Excerpts from Divine Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "Exhortation
to Students." 1972, Brindavan;
"When you recognise Me as the dweller in your heart? you
will walk on the path of self-knowledge, self-confidence,
self-satisfaction and self-realisation." (Divine Discourse:
Sathya Sai Baba "Thirst and Quest." 1971, Dharmakshethra;
"No doubt, worldly education is also
essential... but it cannot impart true wisdom. Only Atma Vidya (knowledge
of the Self) can grant you everlasting happiness. However,
secular education is also essential to take care of your
physical needs. You should not give it up altogether. Worldly
education is Negative and spiritual education is Positive. Both
are essential for happiness here and hereafter." (Divine
Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "Concentration the mind on the Divine
is real Sadhana." 19 Feb 2004, Prasanthi Nilayam).
"Education is not an exercise. Neither is it meant to make
a living. It is for the purpose of achieving the goal of life.
It is said, "Secular education is for happiness in the mundane
world and spiritual education is for happiness in the other
world." In order to acquire spiritual education, one must spend
some time in enquiry. Spiritual knowledge cannot be acquired
with secular education."
Today, scientific knowledge is considered to be great. How
did science acquire this greatness? Science deals with the
physical aspect of the universe. It strives to explore the
secrets of the universe, and not beyond. But, there is a
knowledge beyond this which forms the basis for its creation,
existence and dissolution. That is spirituality. Without that
spiritual basis, science has no effect.
I have often quoted the example of Abhraham Lincoln, the
late President of America. In his childhood days, Lincoln did
not have enough money to prosecute his studies. He was so poor
that he used to sit under the streetlight in the bazaar and read.
He used to borrow books from his classmates and read them during
night times and return them the next morning. One day, his
friends made fun of him saying how could this beggar pursue his
education. Lincoln felt very sad and humiliated. He came home,
crying. His mother tried to comfort him with soothing words. She
enquired: "My dear son! Why are you crying? What is the reason?"
He replied: "Mother! I don't have any money even to drink a cup
of tea. I realise the situation in our house. I am aware that
you and father cannot afford spending money on my education."
Thus, Lincoln struggled hard in his childhood days and studied
well, with self-confidence and self-respect, with the moral
support extended by his mother. He did not hesitate to
supplement the family income by doing some painting work and
boot polishing. Nevertheless, throughout his educational career,
he sustained his self-respect. By doing so, he earned a good
name in society. In the meanwhile, he could secure a small job.
With the meagre income from that job, he used to support his
father and mother. The good name he earned in the society
commanded their respect and love for him. In due course,
elections came. His well-wishers and supporters advised him to
contest in the elections. They assured him of their support and
votes. On their advice, he contested in the elections and got
himself elected to the position of the President of America. How
could a poor carpenter's son with no money even to pursue
primary education, become the President of the United States of
America? It is only because of the self-respect and
self-confidence, he assiduously cultivated right from his
childhood. Therefore, Dear Students! Do not ever give up
self-respect, wherever you are and whichever circumstances you
are placed in.
Humility is the hallmark of education. Give up ego and serve
society with Self-confidence." (Excerpts from the Divine
Discourse by Sathya Sai Baba on Convocation. 22 Nov 2002,
"Today, the education being pursued by you is only secular
(i.e., value neutral). Mere secular education is not enough. It
must be supplemented by spiritual education. Secular education
is for making a living, whereas spiritual education is for
reaching the goal of life. Therefore, it is the duty of students
as well as educators to harmonise the secular education with
spiritual education. Today, the world has recognised the
importance of harmonious relationship between secular and
Modern studies in institutions is referred to as education.
But, spiritual education that has its effect on one's heart, is
'educare'. 'Educare' means bringing out the latent divinity in a
human being and establish it as an ideal to the whole world.
Modern education ends with mere bookish knowledge. This is
confined to what is contained in the books. Educare, however, is
not related to the books. It is related to teaching about the
source of all knowledge, that is latent in the heart of a human
being. Therefore, underlying such type of education is the prime
A harmonious blend of secular and spiritual education is
ideally suited to the present-day world. One is an inner
awakening and the other is an external teaching. Secular
teachings are related to the physical world. They are the
negative aspect; whereas teachings related to the inner
awakening are positive.
Education without knowledge is useless and knowledge
without education is foolishness.
There is a vast difference between modern education and
ancient wisdom. The time in which you are pursuing your
education may be modern, but your behaviour should always be in
accordance with the ancient wisdom. Only then will your
education command respect.
Modern science is, of course, great. But, your senses are
at a low level. Along with science, the senses must also be
raised to a higher level. Today, we are leading a high level
life, keeping our senses at low level. This should not be what
is meant by 'educare'. Educare is bringing out the latent
divinity in a human being. Whatever words you speak, you must
watch whether they are the result of your education or educare.
Science starts with an enquiry. "What is this? What is this?
On the other hand, spirituality begins its quest with the
enquiry "What is that? What is that?" The enquiry "What is this?"
indicates nearness, nearness to the senses. This is science. In
contrast to this, the enquiry "What is that?" indicates distance,
i.e., distance from senses. That is spirituality."
(Excerpts from the Divine Discourse: Sathya Sai Baba "Character
- True End of Education." 20 Nov 2002, Prasanthi Nilayam).
"Self-confidence is helpful to secure
advancement of the individual, but it is not enough to promote
the welfare of the society or the world. Everyone should realise
that he is born to discharge various obligations and not to
enjoy rewards for unrendered services.
Education is not solely for a living. Essentially it is a
process of Self-realisation. Without understanding his own Self,
how can one understand the world or achieve anything worthwhile?
What is the value of scientific knowledge without wisdom?" (Excerpts
from: Sathya Sai Baba. SSS. Vol. 30, Chapter 1).
"Where there is confidence, there is
Where there is love, there is truth;
Where there is truth, there is peace;
Where there is peace, there is bliss;
Where there is bliss, there is God."
(Sanathana Sarathi. June 2003. P. 171).