Pilgrimage to the throne
Discourse of Sathya Sai Baba, Birthday Festival, Puttaparthi,
23 November 1965
Published by Sri Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust
The search for truth must become your daily
spiritual discipline; every moment must be used for this primary
duty. Truth can reflect itself in your intelligence only when it
is cleaned by thapas.
Thapas means all acts
undertaken with higher motives; all acts indicating yearning for
the spirit; repenting for past blunders; staunch determination to
adhere to virtue, self-control; unyielding adherence to equanimity
in the face of success or failure. Thaapam means heat, burning,
intensity, earnestness of endeavour. It is thapas (penance
or religious austerity) that fosters renunciation and discipline.
This discipline is
essential when, as at present, the temptations to deviate are so
many. In this iron age, when darkness is enveloping the mind of
man, any little lamp that can light the steps is most welcome.
That is why I advise you to resort to sath-karma, sad-aachaara
and sathpravarthana (good deeds, good conduct and good
attitudes and outlook), so that you may be established in the
constant presence of the Lord. You must also strive to "hear"
(shravana) elevating words, to ruminate on these promptings of
the spirit (manana) and then, when the validity is
recognised, to meditate on it in profound reverence
(nididhyaasana). All other activity is secondary; this alone
is edifying, this alone is beneficial.
This day, there is a Solar eclipse and many people
wondered whether the Birthday festival will be celebrated or
postponed. The shadow of the moon falling upon the sun is not the
calamity that people should fear; the shadow of maaya
falling upon the intelligence is the eclipse that has to be
treated as a bad omen, as inauspicious. The mind is the moon, the
intelligence is the sun; see that they do not suffer from eclipse.
Then, you are safe. Do not worry when something happens in the
outer sky; worry when the shadow of some dark desire, some foul
passion, some monstrous emotion, some fell intention casts its
evil gloom over your inner sky. See that the splendour of the
Lord, the cool rays of His Grace are not dimmed in the recesses of
The emblem of Prashaanthi Nilayam
I find that some one has upset the usual seating
arrangements; the women are on the left and the men on the right.
That is to say, the women have most of the scorching sun and the
men are under the shade of the tree. So, I shall not keep you
longer. I shall unfurl the flag, which is the symbol of
Prashaanthi, the higher equanimity when all dualities are
superceded and man gains the supreme joy of calm balance,
unaffected by ups and downs, pain or pleasure, when the waves are
stilled and the storms rage no more. The flag contains the picture
of the emblem that is represented in concrete shape in front of
the porch here; it is the summary of the progress of the pilgrim
to the throne of the Lord in the altar of his heart.
The pilgrim must traverse and overstep the vast
wastes of worldly desires (kaama) and overcome the thick
slushy growths of anger and hate (krodha) and negotiate the
cliffs of hatred and malice (dwesha), so that he might
relax on the green pastures of concord and love (prema).
Having thus become master of his inner foes, he has to rest in the
silence of his own heart, as a Yogi, with all the
agitations of his inner realm stilled. That is the meaning of the
six-ringed pillar in the centre of the circle here; the six rings
are the six chakras (centres of energy) of yogic discipline
in the central spinal naadi (nerve current) of man.
Fixed in the undisturbed calm of his deepest
consciousness, man finds that the lotus of the heart blooms into a
thousand petals and then, the flame of awakening into the truth
lights itself, as Prashaanthi. That moment, the seeker
knows that he and all else are One, that the One is Brahmam.
This progress that every one has to make, today or tomorrow,
in this life or in the next, is outlined as a clear picture in the
symbol on the flag; so, when it flutters above this Prashaanthi
Nilayam, resolve to hoist it on your heart too. Take the first
step today, in this long pilgrimage. Give up, in order to gain;
restrain, in order to receive; become blind (to the external
view), in order to see more clearly (the inner vision).
Nilayam: Birthday Festival, 23-11-1965
Anger, malice, greed and envy---all these are
obstacles in the path
of love and co-operation. They lower man from the Divine to the
SHRI SATHYA SAI