The One in all

FROM time immemorial, scriptures and the experience of saints and seekers have agreed in declaring that there is One Supreme lndweller in all beings, and only One. All efforts to distinguish between the devotee, the object of devotion and the means of devotion have concluded, at this point only. Prahlaadha, the greatest devotee of that Supreme Godhead has declared in the Bhaagavatha, “Why doubt and discuss whether He is here or there? Seek Him anywhere and you can see Him there itself.” He is near and far, before, behind, beside and inside everything in the known and unknown worlds. People dare describe Him as thus and thus; that reveals only their faculty to guess; no description can exhaust Him or delineate Him, in full. Such description is based on their experience of the transitory outer world and will surely be affected when direct realisation is won of the Highest Bliss.

It is beyond the reach of human intelligence or imagination to realise the Full and the Eternal; in proportion to the development of the faculty, man seeks to picture the Vast Magnificence and locate it in Ayodhya or Dwaaraka or some such spot and give It a Name and a Form, so that he can approach It and adore It. He might even revere It as Full, but, how can a fraction be Full? How can a facet be the entire Diamond?

All Names and Forms are of the many-faceted One

Consider each fraction as a value, as valid; do not deride it as incomplete. It is impossible to experience the Complete and communicate the experience. Fractions too are facts. They share the splendour and glory; they are sustained by the same spring. When the Full is seen as a part, the Fullness does not suffer dimunition. Raama, Krishna, Vishnu, Shiva — these are Names and Forms of the many-faceted One; when you pay attention to one facet, the rest are not neglected or negated. When the devotee dives into the flood of Bliss that the one Name-Form confers, he is diving into the same Ocean of Bliss that the Full IS. The waters of the Ocean are not separated by lines drawn on them to demarcate this God’s region or that God’s. Plunge anywhere; you are plunging into the self-same Bliss.

All this variety is the play of Name and Form; without the multiplicity of names to distinguish one from the rest and the vast phantasmagoria of form to identify and cognise, knowledge of the many is impossible; then, all will be seen and felt and experienced as One, which it really is. To remind man of this fundamental Unity so that he may not get lost in the conflicts and complexities of manifoldness, the One assumes Name-Form and comes as Avathaara (Divinity incarnated in human form) among men. Then man is drawn towards the Avathaara by means of Grace and Prema, and led into the path that will give him the vision of the Full, the One. The One can best be defined as Prema, Love; for, all Nature is immersed in Love, all beings are bound by Love, all are drawn by Love. Love is in all, Love is of all. Love is all.

As affection, sympathy, attachment, fraternity, loyalty, reverence, adoration, patriotism, Love expresses itself in many directions. Adhwaitha (non-dualism) proclaims that! this One is inseparable and unique; Dhwaitha (dualism) emphasises the excellence of Its Names and Forms; Visishtaadhwaitha (qualified dualism) speaks of the Names and Forms as integral parts of the One. All reveal Its Glory.

Individual and the Universal are ultimately One

Adoration, Puuja, is the way of approach, to reach the One and submerge oneself in Its Glory.

Adoration arises when awareness of the glory is effected; then, it is a continuous process, called Saadhana. In the beginning, the Adored and the Adorer are different and distant, but, later, they commingle and come to be more and more composite. For, the Individual and the Universal are ultimately One. The wave must yearn only for losing itself in the sea, it should not have any lesser wish, any other aim. Merging gives full content. The ego will be dissolved; all signs and symbols of particularism like name, form, caste, colour, creed, nationality, church, sect and the fights and duties attendant thereon, will fade.

For such liberated individuals who have merged their ego, the only task that will adhere will be the uplift of humanity, the welfare of the world. Their stage of Bliss will react on the world beneficially, without any conscious effort on their part. They have been rendered Amruthaswaruupa and so, they are embodiments of the sweetest Aanandha; Endeavour to reach that Goal and do that Seva, to the world.

*Editor’s Note. The date of the discourse is July 1967, the exact date is not known.