Do not burden yourself with limitless desires

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba Divine Discourse
Whitefield, Bangalore, 2 May 2006

Sathya, Dharma, Santi, Prema are the pillars of Sanathana Dharma. Without imbibing these values, the acquisition of all education, performance of all acts of charity and undertaking of all spiritual practices is of little worth. What else is to be conveyed to this assembly of noble souls? (Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!

What is the meaning of Avatar (incarnation of God)? It connotes the combination of Divine consciousness with human consciousness. Man is the combination of body, mind, intellect and consciousness. God, who is the embodiment of love, assumes human form to establish identity with man so as to bring about transformation in him through love. God descends on earth and involves Himself in the affairs of the world to teach and guide man and to put him on the right path. Here is a small example.

Do not superimpose human qualities on Avatars

Once the Gopikas approached Yashoda and complained to her, “Mother! Krishna came to our house and broke our pots of curd and milk.” Some other Gopikas came and complained to Yashoda that Krishna entered their house at midnight and tied the plaits of one Gopika with that of the other. When Yashoda chided Krishna for these mischievous acts, Krishna said to His mother, “Mother! You know that I was sleeping by your side all through the night. Then you tell me, how could I go to their houses at midnight?” Yashoda realised that what Krishna said was true. Obviously, the Gopikas were telling lies, she thought. There is a difference between human consciousness and divine consciousness. If the divine pranks of child Krishna were to be analysed from the spiritual angle, the earthen pots represent the human body. Hence, breaking of the pots renotes denouncing dehabhranti (delusion caused by body attachment). Not realising this deeper meaning behind the seemingly childish pranks of Krishna, the Gopikas complained against Him to Yashoda.

Later, the Gopikas realised the true nature of Krishna and prayed to Him, “Oh! Krishna! You are the embodiment of bliss, free from trigunas (satwa, rajas and tamas) and duality and beyond the ken of human mind. It was our mistake to superimpose human qualities on You. Whatever complaints we made against You to Your mother were caused by our ignorance.Oh, Swami! Kindly pardon us and take us into Your fold.” Krishna then pardoned all of them and explained to them the principle of oneness, saying, “You are not different from Me. You and I are one.” Thus, when we develop faith in the principle of oneness, our lives will be sanctified.

Man is endowed with the body and the mind, both of which breed kama and krodha (desire and anger). But God has neither desire nor anger. God does not have even an iota of worldly desires or aspirations. Whatever God does, sees and says is all for the good of the devotees, and not for Himself. When God incarnates on earth in human form, He behaves like a human being only. He may make somebody cry, make some other laugh and indulge in playful pranks with yet another. Seeing all these seemingly human acts, people are deluded to treat the avatar as an ordinary human being. In fact, what could be the reason for God to descend on the earth with a human form? It is only to set an ideal for man and lead him on the path of righteousness.

Unity and equality are the hallmarks of human society

When someone asks your name, the usual reply would be: “My name is Ranganna or Somanna”, etc. But, these names are given to you by your parents. They are not your true names. In fact, when someone asks your name, you should reply, “I am I”. This is your true name. This ‘I’ is present in every individual. That is the atma tathwa (principle of the Self). Excepting this, all other names are only imaginary. This implies that God is immanent in every human being, nay, every living being. All are the embodiments of God. Ekoham bahusyam (the One willed to become many). It is the One that has assumed all forms. Aham Brahmasmi (I am Brahman). This should be the realisation of each individual. This realisation is the basis of the unity of vyashti (individual), samashti (society), srishti (creation) and Parameshti (God). Without srishti, there can be no samashti, and without samashti, there can be no vyashti. But who is vyashti? He is the embodiment of divinity which is present in all. Therefore, society, which is the conglomeration of individuals, is the collective form of divinity. Hence, all are equal in society. No distinction can be made as high or low. Whomever you ridicule, it amounts to ridiculing yourself. It is only your reflection that you see in him. It is only the resound that you hear. One has to realise this truth and develop the feeling of oneness. The names Rama and Krishna were given to the avatars by their parents. When God incarnated in the past, He did not proclaim that He was Rama or Krishna. These names were given to the avatars after their incarnation and not before. Names and forms are merely the marks of distinction of individuals in society.

You need not search for God anywhere. When someone asks you, “Where is God?”, you should say with confidence, “I am God.” People build temples and buildings with brick and mortar and install idols of God in them. In fact, God is firmly installed in the hearts of all human beings, nay, all living beings. It is only to explain this truth that Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita declared, Mamaivamsho jivaloke jivabhuta sanathana (the eternal atma in all beings is a part of My Being). It is possible to realise this truth by adhering to the five human values of sathya (truth), dharma (righteousness), santi (peace), prema (love) and ahimsa (non-violence). Where are these human values? They are not outside. All of them are within you only. It is most unfortunate that you search them outside, while they are very much within you. As long as you search for the reflections outside, you will not be able to recognise the object within. Divinity is immanent in you. Hence, you should consider yourself divine and proclaim, “I am God”. Then, you will not have any fear or anxiety or delusion. So long as you do not realise your divinity within, you cannot get rid of body attachment.

There is no need to go on pilgrimages to search for God. God is present everywhere. Sarvatah panipadam tat sarvathokshi siromukham, sarvatah sruthimalloke sarvamavruthya tishthati (with hands, feet, eyes, head, mouth and ears pervading everything, God permeates the entire universe). Wherever you see, God is present there. There is no place where God is not present. There is no form which does not belong to Him. Man searches for God, thinking that He is at some distant place. But God is in front of you, behind you, beside you. All are the embodiments of God. However, you do not consider the people around you as embodiments of divinity. You look at their form and consider them as mere human beings. Forget the form. Be firmly established in the feeling that wherever you see it is God only. It is only He who provides everything for our sustenance. Hence, whatever work you undertake, consider it as God’s work and dedicate it to Him. If you perform your actions as an offering to God, they will turn out to be pure and sacred. God is not somewhere in a distant corner. You are God. You are society. You are the world. You are the sky. You are the earth. You are the stars. You are everything. Hence, develop the feeling, “I am everything.” You see duality in the world since you go by names and forms. If you see beyond names and forms, you will find unity everywhere.

All of you are the embodiments of the atma. Being the embodiments of the atma, why should you search for the atma elsewhere? What is the meaning of atma? The atma denotes consciousness. Consciousness pervades everything. As long as there is consciousness in the body, it is nourished and protected. When consciousness leaves the body, it loses all its worth.

Develop purity and goodness

Suppose a boy and a girl decide to marry. After the marriage, the girl refers to him as her husband. Similarly, the boy refers to her as his wife. But, for how long? Only for some specific period, i.e., as long as they live together. Later, if either of them dies, one will not have any relationship with the other. Who is the husband and who is the wife? All these relationships are imaginary and transitory. Similar is the relationship between the mother and the son. The son addresses her as mother for a number of years. But when she leaves her mortal coil, the son wails over the dead body of his mother, saying “Oh! Mother! You have left me!” In fact, where has his mother gone? The physical body that he referred to as mother all these years is very much in front of him. If the physical body were to be really his mother, he could have as well kept it in his house; is it not? But, will he do so? Not at all! He takes the body to the cremation ground and cremates it. Hence, all these bodily relationships are only illusory and not real. These are like passing clouds. Only the atma is eternal. Whatever may happen to the physical body, the atma does not undergo any change.

All are the embodiments of God. Since we are deluded to think that God is separate from us, we undertake various spiritual practices to attain God. We think that sravanam (listening), kirtanam (singing), Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu), padasevanam (serving His Lotus Feet), vandanam (salutation), archanam (worship), dasyam (servitude), sneham (friendship), atmanivedanam (self-surrender) are the sadhanas we are required to perform. But, what is sadhana? sadhana = sa + dhana. The letter ‘sa’ in the word sadhana implies salokya (perception of the Divine), sameepya (proximity to the Divine), sarupya (identification with the Divine) and sayujya (merger in the divine). This is the dhana (wealth) man has to acquire and treasure. But, man today is craving for dhana (money) forgetting this ‘sa’ consisting of salokya, sameepya, sarupya and sayujya. Every activity in the world today is centred around dhana. Supposing you request someone to sing a song or do some work for you, he will immediately start bargaining the amount you will pay for his services. Every activity of man has become business today, so much so that business has entered the field of spirituality also. There is no necessity to purchase God with money which, of course, you cannot. In fact, you yourself are God. You yourself are the divine principle. You are endowed with immense divine power. But you have to keep your mind steady. Let it not jump from one thought to another. If you write correct answers in your examination, you will get correct marks. If you have a good mind, everything will turn out to be good. But if there are bad thoughts in your mind, the result will also be bad. First and foremost, understand the nature of your mind. You can understand the secret of human life only when you understand your own mind. Be Good, Do Good, See Good. Then everything will become good in your life. Be always good and tread the right path. Do not follow the wrong path by imitating others. Follow your conscience. If your heart is pure, everything will become pure and sacred.

Keep your desires under control

Embodiments of Divine Atma!

There is a limit for everything in this world. There is nothing without limit. In fact, the world is a ‘limited company’. What will happen to the limited company if it violates its limits? Hence, everyone should conduct himself within his limits. When a doctor prescribes a particular medicine to a patient, he also indicates the dosage. If the patient takes the medicine without regard to the dosage and exceeds the limit, he may contract another disease. Similarly, God has set a limit for every individual. But modern man has limitless desires. It is necessary that he keeps his desires within limits. He will be put to great danger if he exceeds this limit out of his ego. Whether it is the individual or society or the world, all should observe the prescribed limits.

Man is born with many relationships, like father, mother, relatives and friends. All these are created by the world. When he gets married, he has a wife. Later, he has children. Thereafter, he has grandchildren. Thus, his relations go on increasing without any limit. As the relations grow, his desires also grow without limit. Man will be happy if he reduces his desires. Less luggage, more comfort. Reduce your luggage. Develop courage and confidence. These are not the qualities you can borrow from others. You yourself have to develop them with patience and perseverance.

Embodiments of Love! 

Sanctify your life by developing sense control. It is only because people have no control over their senses and no limit to their desires that there is a lot of unrest and agitation in society. Such people roam about freely in society like animals. You should not become animals. Whenever some evil thoughts arise in you, you should remind yourself that you are a human being and not an animal. Anger is an animal quality. When animals get angry, they fight with one another. Unfortunately, today human beings are also fighting among themselves like animals. In a way, animals are better than man today. Animals have a reason and a season, but man has no reason, no season. Thus, man today is behaving worse than animals. Being a human being, you should cultivate human qualities. In fact, a human being should not get angry at all! Even if anger overpowers you, you should try to become calm and quiet. Do not lose your cool. When you cultivate calmness, you will never become agitated and restless.

Peace is within you. It cannot be found outside. Outside, there are only pieces. Similarly, happiness is not outside. Many people come to Swami and pray, “Swami, I want peace of mind.” I tell them that they have to search for peace within themselves. I am always full of peace and bliss. What is the reason for loss of peace in man today? His desires are the basic cause of his restlessness. Where there are desires, peace disappears from there. Therefore, reduce the luggage of your desires. Then you will have less burden in life.

Do not allow evil qualities to enter your heart

Embodiments of Love! 

All of you know that man has to adhere to the path of truth. He should never adopt the path of untruth under any circumstances. Whatever happens in your life, think that it is good for you. Even if someone criticises you, you should think that it is good for you. If you consider everything good, then everything will become good for you. God is not outside, He is within you. Similarly, Sathya, Dharma, Santi, Prema, Ahimsa are not outside. They are within you. When you get angry, you lose your peace. Therefore, you should always remain peaceful and blissful. Being a human being, you should have human qualities. A true human being is one who is suffused with sathya, dharma, santi, and prema. When you develop these human qualities, you will enjoy peace at all times. Then you will always have a smile on your face. But when the mind is disturbed, you cannot have peace.

You are not a mere human being. There is divinity immanent in you. Realise this truth. As long as you consider yourself as an ordinary human being, you cannot escape from restlessness. Changes occur in you due to your food and conduct. Sometimes, some bad qualities like anger and jealousy arise in you. But you should not give scope to these evil qualities.

Suppose, you build a house and fix doors in it. Simply because you have fixed doors in your house, will you allow all sorts of animals and insects like donkeys, pigs, snakes and scorpions to enter your house? Not at all! Even if they try to enter, you will at once close the door. Similarly, control is the door of your heart. If you close the door of the heart on evil qualities, they cannot enter it. You should not get angry with anyone, nor criticise or harm anyone. If, for any reason, such circumstances arise, control yourself. When anger overtakes you, put it down immediately considering it as your enemy. It is said, anger is your enemy, patience is your shield of protection, happiness is your heaven. Fill your heart with love and compassion. If you have love in your heart, you will see God everywhere. Bereft of love, you will see only devil. When you develop firm faith that God is in you and you are God and that your body itself is the temple of God, then there will be no scope at all for anger, jealousy, pride, etc., to trouble you. Hence, Bangaru! Develop love and compassion.

God is your sole refuge 

Wherever you maybe,

In a forest, in the sky, in a city or in a Village, on the top of a mountain, Or in the middle of deep sea.

(Telugu Poem)

Truth is unchangeable, irrespective of time and place. Wherever you are, truth is truth, love is love! If you have love, truth will automatically become part of you and vice versa. You are all born with love. But unfortunately as you grow up, the love in you gradually starts declining and hatred and jealousy begin to increase. Jealousy is a very bad quality. It will harm not only others, but it will cause harm to you as well. Hence, do not at all give scope for such evil qualities. Strive to cultivate good qualities like love and truth. Then only can you experience uninterrupted peace.