AND CHARACTER ARE THE HALLMARK OF EDUCATION
UNDERSTAND THE SPIRIT OF SERVICE
Of Karma born, in Karma grown, in Karma does man die. So rules Karma, all
stages of human life as though it is the very deity of human existence. Of
joy and sorrow, the master is Karma.
Of the denizens of creation human beings are the highest. It is said
Jantunam Nara Janma Durlabham (of all living beings, birth as human is the
rarest). It is the human creation that has caused major changes in the
world. Joy does not exist alone and is entwined with sorrow and vice versa
and the human being is the root cause for both happiness and sorrow.
Embodiments of Love!
Nowadays man is unable to realise his true nature because he is giving
importance to only the physical form. He has lost his reasoning faculty.
As he calls himself a human being, it is his duty to realise the
uniqueness of humanness. A person cannot name himself a human being merely
on the basis of his birth and educational qualifications. Actually, real
humanness cannot be found in academic degrees. Even birds and beasts can
be taught certain skills to perform wonderful feats imitating human
beings. It is no credit to a human being deriving satisfaction simply by
empty rhetoric, quoting Scriptures and relating to others. Real humanness
consists in practising ideals in one’s life and setting an example to
others. Man has no authority to teach ideals to others without putting
them into practice himself first. There is immense divine power in human
beings. He is not simply a Dehadhari (one who has assumed a human body).
He is endowed with Vijnana (higher wisdom), Prajnana (constant integrated
awareness) and Sujnana (discriminatory knowledge). He is, therefore,
expected to channelise these higher forms of knowledge in the right path.
First and foremost, one has to understand the true meaning of Jnana. Some
people think that knowledge acquired by reading numerous books is Jnana.
No, this is not correct. Real Jnana is the knowledge that emerges from
one’s own self and which is experienced and taught to others. Finally,
this would enable the person concerned to be greatly benefited and
One has to realise the importance of the term, “human quality” first.
Human quality emerges from one’s own self. It cannot be acquired by
reading textbooks or listening to others.
Embodiments of Love!
You have come all the way from Kerala and assembled here to acquire Jnana
and to know the real meaning of the terms Prajnana, Vijnana, Sujnana. Mere
textual knowledge without practical knowledge becomes ‘allergy’. On the
other hand, when bookish knowledge is transformed into practical
knowledge, it becomes “energy”. If you wish to know what is real
knowledge. That which has been acquired by practice is the real knowledge.
That alone would entitle you to the epithet Manavatwa (humanness).
Embodiments of Love!
All that we teach to others must be supported by practice. Everything is
reaction, reflection and resound of one’s own inner being. Every word we
utter is the resound of the inner being. Reflection is that which is
contemplated upon, experienced and put into practice. The third aspect,
reaction is however, very important. Reaction comes out of action. Hence
our actions must always be pure and sacred. The three aspects “reaction”,
“reflection” and “resound” occupy a place of prominence in the life of a
human being. Whatever man learns today comes under the category of
resound, meaning, they are taught by the teacher from textbooks. This is
bookish knowledge. Resound comes out of reaction and reaction transforms
itself into reflection. The unity of all these three aspects constitute
humanness. Hence, a human being should not waste his time by empty
rhetoric. Every word he utters must be backed by deep contemplation and
knowledge of its inner meaning. It is only after that he should try to
teach others. Unfortunately, these days mere bookish knowledge is
considered as true knowledge and a lot of time is spent in acquiring it.
Real knowledge should emerge from the Mastaka (head and heart). One
should, therefore, cleanse his head and heart and remove the impurities
therein. Then only, is it possible to understand things in the right
perspective and acquire wisdom.
Exult not on your erudition oh man, without humble prayer and devotion to
your indwelling god, all your learning is just a load in your head.
Embodiments of Love!
It may be necessary for you to adapt yourself to new techniques and
practices from time to time. At present the world is undergoing phenomenal
changes. All those changes may not be relevant to you. Nevertheless, you
are required to acquire several branches of knowledge in the modern times
to cope with the rapid changes in science and technology taking place all
over the world. However, they do not constitute real Vidya (knowledge).
Real education is that by which one is able to realise one’s own nature.
Avidya breeds Avidya. Hence, one cannot become great by pursuing secular
education. One has to make efforts to distinguish between Vidya and Avidya.
Vidya is that by which one can develop the power of reasoning and
discrimination and realise the truth. On the other hand, Avidya
constitutes indiscriminate usage of words and vain argumentation. One has
to acquire practical knowledge as well by which one can gain experience.
This experience can be shared with others. Such practical knowledge and
experience confer strength on a person. However, this strength is not to
be construed as mere physical strength. It is like the electrical energy
latent in a wire. Just as there is electrical energy in a live wire,
similarly, there is latent energy in the human body which manifests in
different ways. It can be harnessed for different purposes like reading,
writing, walking, talking, etc. It has, however, no form. Nevertheless, it
travels throughout the body of a human being from head to toe. By tapping
this energy, an Ajnani (ignorant person) can become Jnani (one of wisdom).
Embodiments of Love!
You are all students and you continue to be so throughout your life. It is
a mistake to think that you have finished your education and are now
engaged in service activities. You are not servants working under
somebody. In fact, you are leaders. It is a mistake to confer doership on
yourselves for any service activity undertaken by you. This should never
happen. In fact, whatever service activities you are undertaking are for
your own upliftment. These service activities must be undertaken with
self-confidence, self-satisfaction, self-sacrifice and ultimately for the
purpose of self-realisation. Thus, the spirit of service develops from the
self. Service is not any way construed to be helping others. You may think
that you are helping others by joining the Sathya Sai Seva Organisation
and undertaking service activities. This is not correct. Also, you need
not seek the help of others in these service activities. You can depend
upon your own innate strength and energy. The power of your own self will
help you in all your endeavours. In fact, you are the beneficiary of all
your service activities and not others. Your own self will protect you in
Members of the Seva Dal!
You may think that you have come here for undertaking service. This
service is not for others. You are coming here for serving your own self,
just as you eat food for filling your own stomach. Man undertakes every
activity for his self-fulfilment.
There are several things which you have to learn in these two days. We
will discuss these matters later. Since this is the first day, I spoke to
you in detail so that you may understand the spirit of service. There are
several other things which you have to learn. What is Seva Dal? Each
member of the Seva Dal is like a Dal (petal) in a beautiful flower. There
are several skills to be learnt by the members of the Seva Dal. If you
plant a sapling, it will grow into a plant in due course and yield
beautiful flowers. However, the sapling by itself is not attractive. When
the plant grows and yields flowers, the beauty of the flowers and
fragrance therein will provide joy to one and all. There are several
petals in a flower. The flower appears beautiful as long as there are
petals in it. Once the petals fade and fall down, the flower ceases to
exist. Hence, you should be like the petals of a beautiful flower. Let
everyone experience the beauty and enjoy the fragrance of the flower in
which you are like the petals. There are several things still to be told
to you which Mukundan will tell you. Later on, I will provide any
clarifications you may require.