Beacon in the dark

THE reason why this land is today plunged in various types of distress is to be sought in our own deeds, behaviour and relations with others, which deny the faith in the innate divinity within us! Of what benefit is it to lament when stricken by disease? One ought to lament and be warned when the first false step was taken towards damaging the health. Ignorance of the rules of health, gleaned by the experience of generations, is the root cause of the illness which had laid India low. The ancients had discovered a cure for death itself and for birth which is the concomitant of death. They were votaries of Mrithyunjaya (the victor over death), not of Death which many nations worship today out of their greed for glory.

We praise our ancient seers but discard their heritage; we revere the texts they collected, but disregard their teachings. We expound their doctrines and discoveries, but decline to practise them! We are beggars living in a house of gold. The fact that it is precious metal that surrounds us is unknown. Discover it and you are saved!

This is called Praaptha-praapthi (attaining the already existing). This mike was purchased from a shop; it was not in the possession of the man who wanted it. But, peace and joy are not like this mike. They are not available in shops; they are in the possession of the very men who are in need of these. A friend comes into your room when you are desperately in need of money and you ask him for a loan; but, just then, quite by accident, he finds inside the pages of a book from your book-shelf that he starts reading, a tenner that you had kept there and forgotten. It is your money, but you had ignored it; it was out of sight; he drew your attention to its existence and saved you from the shame of a loan. That is an example of Praaptha-praapthi. The Guru reveals the treasure within.

Spread the rules of religion

More than the Guru, the Guri (Goal) is essential for attaining the Divine. The very pursuit of the goal will evoke the Sathwa guna (quality of serenity) and weaken the hold of the inferior Rajas and Thamas (qualities of passion and inertia) in your composition. Dhaanavathwam (fiendishness) is caused by Thamas and Maanavathwam (human nature), is stabilised by Rajas; but, Sathwa alone can guarantee the elevation into Divinity. Sathwa guna fertilises the upward tendencies of man; it cleanses the mind, removing the weeds of evil. Sathya is the very basis of Sathwa guna. Sathya and Sathkarma (Truth in word, deed and thought) are acts, which are beneficial to others.

Matham (religion), wherever it is practised, by whomsoever established, lays down the rules and regulations by which the Sathwa guna can be fostered and the impact of the two other gunas (human qualities) lessened. Therefore, it is very necessary that the adherents of religion spread the knowledge of these rules, both by precept and example. Christians and Muslims carry on this work with great enthusiasm; but the followers of Sanaathana Dharma have not got the faith in its excellence which alone can induce them to talk about it to others, and to make others listen to their talk. I find many are ashamed to accept the principles of Sanaathana Dharma (Eternal Religion), like Varnaashrama, Vigraha aaradhana (division of castes, idol worship), etc. While western aspirants find the ancient texts of Sanaathana Dharma valuable sources of inspiration and they adore Bhaarath as a beacon in the darkness, the children of Bhaarath admire the tawdry victories in the field of material research which other countries have won. The Vedhas and the Shaasthras are the two eyes of Bhaarathamaatha; by neglecting both, her vision is dimmed and damaged. Her vision can regain its clarity and sharpness, only when the Vedhas and Shaasthras enter into the daily life of her children. Then, the children will have faith in the Supreme, and in their destiny of ultimate merger with it. This will make them true devotees, for they will then be devoted to their true Goal.

Bhaktha is the supremest creation

When Naaradha once told the Lord that the earth was the grandest in creation, doubt was raised, because the ocean occupies more than two-thirds of it. But, the ocean was drunk dry by the sage Agasthya, who is but one single star in the vast firmament. Can we then Count the sky as the grandest in creation? No, for the Lords Thrivikrama strode the sky with His one Foot! However, even the Lord, who encompasses the three regions, is imprisoned by the bhaktha in his heart. Therefore, it was decided that the bhaktha is the supremest in creation. Such is the glory of the bhaktha, a glory that is conferred by his close study and practise of the Shaasthras.

The Shaasthras are now kept at a distance, because people are unaware of the sweetness and light that they can acquire through them. They are condemned as outdated, as kill joys, as unduly restrictive and reactionary. But, all this is simply the patient’s condemnation of the doctor and the drug that can cure him. The patient is suffering from anxiety, fear, despair, cowardice, greed, envy and the consequent weakness of mind and body. The Shaasthras can confer on him peace, courage, confidence, contentment and friendliness, if only he would take the first step of obeying their dictates. For, the very first lesson they teach is the Immanence of God. God is in the heart of every being, and so, one has to love another, as one loves God. God is residing in one’s own heart and so there is no need to fear or despair. How can you hate another, when the God you adore is in him too? How can you covet his wealth? Or compete with him? Or be deaf to his entreaty?

Scholars should not feel scholarship as burden

The body is the tabernacle of God, the chariot in which He is seated in all majesty. Do not identify yourself with it and its modifications and transformations. You are the Aathma and so, you are above these affections of the body. Cleanse your mind of the temptations and tenets of ignorance; make it free from dust, so that God may be reflected therein. God cares more for the motive behind the deed, the ideal that prompts the effort — the bhaava (depth of feeling), not the baahya (outer pomp). The goldsmith who is purchasing the golden idol offers equal sums for every gram of gold, whether the gold is the crown, the foot or the head of the idol. God too says, “I care for the depth of your thirst for Me. I do not care what Form you select for your adoration.”

This Prashaanthi Vidwanmahaasabha has been formed to teach men this path and this endeavour, revive this pilgrimage which is fast being overwhelmed by the pressure of paltry journeys into the waste-land. The Vidwaans (scholars) are fast declining in numbers and influence. They must be revered and fostered. Do not say that this is a difficult assignment. I am not asking you to improve their material standard of living more and more; what I want you to do is to remove their fear that their scholarship is a burden. Use them, to learn the essentials of Sanaathana Dharma and they will feel happy and contented. Their estimate of themselves will then be proved true. They will live in peace, if not in plenty.

Any good deed done with sincerity will be rewarded. Do not have an eye on the reward when you do it, that is enough. It is natural that you are agitated by the gathering of clouds over the Indian sky; but, prayer to

God and the constant remembrance of His Grace will remove all anxiety. There is no other support in times of dire need than God. To know Him, to cling to Him, to merge in His immeasurable splendour — that is the highest goal of man. The Governor, the Chief Minister and other officers who are here plan and execute schemes to keep bodies free from disease, brains sharp and skilled; but the mind has to be tended by ourselves.