“84th Birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba”
November 10, 2009
With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan,
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
THE REAL BIRTHDAY
First, let me greet you on the eve of the 84th birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, the Avatar of our Golden Age. May Bhagavan shower His choicest blessings on you! I particularly pray for those who will be visiting the website saiwisdom.com, to view Baba’s message on video online, made especially for the occasion. I have chosen excerpts from Bhagavan’s discourses, certain of Bhagavan’s poems. These poems are relevant to the celebration of His holy birthday.
My friends, God has no birth or death. So, you may ask, what is the fun of celebrating Baba’s birthday? It only means that it is our birthday; we are celebrating our own birthday. It is an occasion to see God within ourselves, and to see how our lives have been completely drowned in worldly affairs. It is so we may turn inwards and reflect on the God within. That is the real birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
tHE SEARCH FOR GOD
Now I would like to quote directly from Swami’s literature. I know that you don’t follow the Telugu language, but I will first quote the original poem, followed by the English translation as well, to facilitate your understanding.
What is this birthday? What is its meaning to me individually? What does He want me to do? What does He expect of me? How shall I mould my life? What are the resolutions I should take on this birthday? Those are some of the points I would like to share with you presently.
We see in front of us God, but we are not able to identify Him. We are not able to recognise Him. We are not able to enjoy Him. We have not completely benefited by God’s presence in human form, in our midst today, in the name and form of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
Edutunna Swamini Erugangaleka
Venna Vidichi Neyi Vethukaladinatlu
Venna Vidichi Neyi Vethukaladinatlu
Vunna Maata Telupuchunna Maata!
Here Baba says:
You have butter, but you are in search of ghee elsewhere.
You can heat this butter and make ghee for your use.
Why are you searching elsewhere, when it is readily available?”
Edutanunna Swamini Erugangaleka
Though God is in front of you, you are not able to know it.
We often say that we are in search of God. Why search? Isn’t that a waste of time, a waste of energy, a waste of resources, when God is available to you, right now, in front of you? Having come to this place, Prashanthi Nilayam, to see Him, to experience Him, and to experience the bliss within ourselves, we should have an understanding of Prashanthi Nilayam, the benefits it confers, and the blessings it showers!
PEACE AND BLISS AT PRASHANTI NILAYAM
I put it in Baba’s words:
Dhanamu Raasigaa Posinanu Kanagaraani
Aanadamita Meedha Andukonudee
Even if you accumulate piles of coins,
You will not achieve the kind of happiness you have here.
“Even if you accumulate piles of coins, or heaps of money, you will not achieve the kind of happiness you get here.” My friends, why do people come here? Lots and lots of rich people, industrialists, businessmen, men of authority, men of power, and men of position come here. Why do they come here?
This place has two things which are not available outside. What are those two things which are not available anywhere else? Those two things are peace and bliss. Peace and bliss are present here, readily available to you in abundance.
Theerthayatralu Enno Tiriginan Kanaraani
Anandamita Meedha Andukonudee
People go on pilgrimages to different places. In India, a pilgrimage is a spiritual ritual. They go to different places of worship, and they go to different towns. They pass through many ordeals and spend so much money because a pilgrimage is a holy ritual. But Prashanthi Nilayam assures you of this:
Theerthayatralu Enno Tiriginan Kaani
You may go to a number of pilgrimage centres and places of worship.
Anandamita Meedha Andukonudee
More than any other place, this place gives you bliss and joy,
It offers more than any other pilgrim centre and more.
Vidyallaniyu Vallavesinan Kanaraani
Anandamita Meedha Andukonudee
We have gone through many scriptures. I know the Bhagavatham, the story of Lord Krishna. I know the Ramayana, the story of Lord Rama. I know the Bible, and the entire teachings and life of Jesus. So we know the scriptures, since we have gone through them. Some people even know them by heart, and can repeat them verbatim. For what is all that? It is for the memory, for collecting information in the form of knowledge. All scriptural knowledge will find its fruition, its manifestation, and its content in this holy place, Prashanthi Nilayam. Therefore, scholarship will not give you as much bliss as this place is ready to offer you.
Pranamul Bigabhattina Kaanagaraani
Anandamita Meedha Andukonudee
Today, people everywhere, all over the world, are very enamoured with yoga. They say, “I have an idea of what yoga is! What shall I do?” Some even say, “I am doing yoga,” and some say, “I practice breath control.” Some say, “I follow Kundalini yoga.” There is a lot of attraction to yoga. People clamour for yogic practices.
I am not denying yoga; I am not opposed to yoga. I am not opposed to pranayama, or breath management. But more important than yoga is understanding that the correct perception of reality, the actual real experience of reality, is here in Prashanthi Nilayam, in the form of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
PRASHANTI NILAYAM IS Free
Kaasu Kharchu Ledhu Khaya Kastamu Ledhu
We may have to spend a lot of money to go to different places. Where money is demanded to see an idol, you have to pay the money in order to see it. To enter into some temples, you may have to pay money; and in some places, you may also have to pay money to worship. So, money, money everywhere! Even prasadam, the sacred offering or sacrificial food offered in the temple, is not free. You have to pay for it. But Prashanthi Nilayam is the place where everything is free. You can have darshan for free. You can have entry into the ashram for free. You don’t have to pay money, not even a single pie (Indian coin) is necessary. You don’t have to break coconuts, you don’t have to offer flowers, and you don’t have to offer fruits either, no!
Kaasu Kharchu Ledhu Khaya Kastamu Ledhu
There is no exertion, there is no strain.
You don’t feel under strain, because all of you can go into the auditorium and be seated. Then God Himself comes to you and grants you darshan. You don’t have to go to Him and stand in long queues. He comes to you. And you don’t have to pay any money. So, you don’t have to pass through stress and strain, no, no, no!
Ledhu Chaduvu Sadhanadhi Bhadha
Educational qualifications are not required. You can be an illiterate, or a topmost literate, or a scholar. No sadhana or spiritual practises are required. You need not say, ”I did this, I did that. I did penance, I did worship.” No, no, no, absolutely not! It is not a prerequisite; it is not a condition. Money is not a barrier. The absence of spiritual practise is not a barrier. You can come straight in and have His darshan.
EARNING BHAGAVAN’S GRACE
To earn His Grace, your practise, your money, your position, your power, wealth or possessions are not required. Nothing doing! What do you need to get His grace?
Manasu Okintha Sai Kada Icchi
Manasu Okintha Icchi Sai Kada Vuna
Andaraani Phalamu Pondudayya
Andaraani Phalamu Pondudayya!
Manasu Okintha Sai Kada Icchi
After all this, what can you offer?
What is to be offered?
What is expected from you on this holy birthday?
What are the gifts that we can offer Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba on this birthday? The gift of your mind and the gift of your heart. If you offer your heart and your mind as a gift to His Lotus Feet, that is called surrender. It is enough to earn His blessings and grace. That is what Bhagavan says in this declaration.
SOLUTIONS TO PROBLEMS
Further, I would like to draw your attention to other important features that Bhagavan mentions about this occasion. Yes, my friends, we all undergo certain times which are testing times, troubling times, or challenging times. What shall we do during such times? That is our next question. The birthday message tells you the solution to your problems. Problems are everywhere, but solutions are not everywhere. Solutions to problems are given to you by Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
This birthday should be an occasion to find out solutions, to take stock of all the solutions for our day-to-day problems, so that life should not be burdensome. Life should not be heavy, life should not be serious, and life should not be a torture. Life should be a celebration. Life is full of smiles and happiness if we know the solutions to our problems.
SEEK GOD’S HELP TO ESCAPE sensual pleasure
On this birthday, let us look at the solutions to our problems, as explained by Baba Himself.
Vishaya Vaasanalu Ninnu Ventaadutatarineni
Noretthi Saieesha Saranamu Anumu
What a good statement it is! My friends, we must confess that we have become slaves to our senses. Our senses have total control over us. Instead of becoming masters of our senses, we have become slaves to our senses. We seek sensual pleasure. In spite of my determination, each time I am not able to stay away from sensual pleasure. Therefore, I compromise at one stage or the other. How can we rid ourselves of the desire for sensual pleasure?
My friends, let us understand clearly that we cannot escape sensual pleasure without God’s help. Human effort is not adequate. Human will is not enough, unless it is supplemented and supported by God’s grace. We cannot totally escape sensual pleasure. It is not that easy. Therefore, it is clearly said, “Pray to Him with a full-throated voice. ‘Oh, my Lord! I surrender to You! You are my only refuge. I want You to help me, so that I can escape sensual pleasure.’ ”
NEVER FORGET GOD
The next problem in life:
Kasta Paramparul Kalduvvinappudu
Karametthi Saieesha Kaavu Manumu
It is said in English: “Fortune or misfortune doesn’t come singly, it comes in battalions.” Yes, luck comes in battalions. Bad luck is also like that. Life is a combination of both. When I am struggling hard to come out of the difficulties of life, when I am not able to leave the troubles, worries, and anxieties of my life, when I am totally frustrated because of problems in life, what shall I do? Let me join both my hands in prayer, “Oh God, protect me! I want you to protect me and safeguard me.” That is the solution.
Samsara Tapamul Sangatillinappudu
Manasara Saieesha Maruva Nanumu
We are all householders, so we have family problems. Moreover, today, in the name of the generation gap, we find youngsters turning against elders. Many parents complain, saying, “Here is my son, who won’t listen to me. Here is my daughter, who is not prepared to hear me.” We all have family problems. Sometimes the boy wants to get married to a girl who is not acceptable to the parents. Or the girl wants to marry someone who is not acceptable to her parents. What should you do if you have family problems? How to get rid of them? Wholeheartedly, with your whole mind, pray to Him. “I won’t forget you, Lord! I will not drop You from my memory. I will never leave You, My Lord! I will never forget You in the midst of my family problems.” That should be our attitude.
PRIDE AND EGO
Madhini Durahankaram Odaginappudu
Talavanchi Saieesha Daasudu Anumu
We are poor mortals, mere human beings. Therefore, any simple, positive result in our life will make us bloat with ego. We feel proud, and we are highly egoistic of any simple achievement, of any little recognition, of any minimal attainment. Therefore, pride and ego are already there, waiting. They will dominate us and take full control of our life at that moment in time. So when we are prone to be egoistic or feel proud, we have to bend our head and offer prayer in all humility. “Oh Lord, I am Your servant. I am the servant of Your servants. See that ego will not overpower me, that I will never feel proud at any point of time.”
Sathya Bhashi Ayi Saieeshu Sakshiganumu
“Oh Lord, on this birthday, let me decide to speak the truth, feeling You as an eternal witness within me.” Sai is the eternal witness within me. As He is my witness, I cannot betray Him, nor can I cheat Him. I cannot deceive Him when He is the witness. “Oh God, let me feel Thy presence as my eternal witness.”
Mokshamaasinchi Saieeshu Mrolamanumu
Liberation, heaven, paradise, nirvana, or whatever it may be called, is possible only if only we surrender to God, which can bring moksha or liberation. We have to recognise the fact that we are in bondage to our family life; we are caught in its whirlpool. We have drowned, and are deeply immersed in worldly pleasures. So, how to be liberated? How to attain that state of heaven which is within, as stated in the Holy Bible: “The kingdom of heaven is within you.” How am I to reach that heaven within me? It can be reached only by an act of surrender, and not in any other way.
Vishwa Mohanaganammu Veenulalo
Alapinchina Shyamudee Athadu Nammu
THE MUSIC OF NATURE
Have you ever noticed the melodies in Nature? As the wind blows, leaves flutter. That is a beautiful sound. As the river flows, there is a melody. As the wind blows, there is music. As waves surge, there is music. There is music, yes, silent music, soundless sound, if I may say. There may not be amplifiers and mikes, but there is music in this life. There is music in Nature. Life is music and melody. Who is that musician? Who sings for you a melody in the correct beat? Who is that Divine musician? God Himself! Lord Krishna! Lord Krishna, the Divine musician, is here right now in Prashanthi Nilayam. May we all recognise that today, as we celebrate His birthday!
DON’T WASTE TIME
Then, let us not waste time. Let us decide to make every moment of life useful, purposeful, meaningful, fruitful, and blissful. Most of us waste our time in entertainment, socialising, or by drinking at cocktail parties. Or by gossiping, we waste time.
Life is flowing like a river, and our span of life is also getting shorter day-by-day. As I celebrate this birthday, I should also know that my last day is also approaching. Therefore, when we are nearing the tomb, should we still be wasting our time? Is it for that purpose that God has come in human form? What should be our firm resolve on this birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba? We shall not waste our time; we should follow the path of devotion.
Baba guarantees in this stanza what He wants to confer, what He wants to give us:
Kalamanthayu, Kalamanthayu Uraka Gadapanela?
Why do you waste your time, my boy?
Sarva Jana Samathamagu Bhakti Margamu Konudu.
The path of universal acceptance is shown to us
By all religions, by all prophets, by all avatars
Saints, sages, seers, seekers of all times,
All through history to this day.
Let us follow the path of devotion─bhakthi yoga
Sarva Jana Samathamaina Bhakti Margamu Konudu.
Follow the path of devotion, which is acceptable universally.
Ihaparamul Icchi Ihaparamul Icchi Sathyammuga mimmu Saakunu Sai Baba
Sai Baba gives you all the blessings
For your happy life here on earth.
He will take care of you hereafter.
Here, now, there and thereafter, He will take care of you. Sathyamuga: it is a guarantee, it is a vow that the avatar, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, has taken—to come to the rescue, to grant liberation to all those who follow the path of devotion, or bhakthi marga. That is what I want to tell you.
DO NOT DOUBT GOD
My friends, on this birthday, let us not doubt God. Let us not entertain even a trace, even an iota, of doubt any longer. Let us be firm, let us confirm, and let us reaffirm our faith in Him. Why? He gave you a guarantee. What kind of guarantee is it?
Sri Puttaparthi Nilayudu Kaapadunu Nineppudu Karunakarudayi
The compassionate Lord of Parthi,
The Lord of mercy of Prashanthi Nilayam will protect you.
Cheppati Ninnu Brochunu
Ye Pattu Na Viduvaka Yelunu Ninnu.
He will catch hold of your hand,
He will lead you forward.
Onward you can march ahead
Without hesitation, without suspicion.
GOD IS STEADFAST
He will catch hold of your hand and will take you along.
Ye Pattuna Viduvaka Elunu Ninnu
Understand that He will not let go of you.
A lot of your friends and relations may be ready to drop you at any moment. When you are out of power, no one will look at you. When the pocket is empty, no one will say, “Hi, how are you?” “Bien, gracias (I am well, thanks).” No one would say that because you have no money, you have no position. But here God is always with you. He is in you, above you, below you, around you, everywhere.
Ye pattuna viduvaka Elunu Ninnu
He will never drop you at any moment of time,
He will take charge of your life.
PLEDGE TO BE TRULY HUMAN
What a kind assurance or guarantee He has given! We have to remind ourselves of it everyday, beginning from this day of Bhagavan Baba’s birthday.
Bhagavan also tells us certain important points for all of us to cultivate. My friends, are we human? Can we call ourselves human? No, my friends, no! If food and shelter are the criteria, the birds, beasts, and insects also eat, also procreate, and also have their own shelter. In what way are you different from the animal kingdom? Are you really a true human? Let us make a decision today to be human.
Taking advantage of Baba’s birthday, each one of us should live as a true human being, not simply live the life of a human being. The life of a human being is the same as the pattern of any animal. But a true human being is different. The thinking, the quest, the search, the feeling is not there in the rest of the beings. Awareness or consciousness is not present in the rest of the beings.
Is it not time to justify our title of ‘true humans’? First, let us be human. That should be our decision on this day of Bhagavan Baba’s birthday. Further, let us cultivate the basic human values. The value of gold depends upon its weight. The value of any object depends upon its quality. The value of a human being depends upon the human values which he follows, the human values which he adopts, and the human values which he practises; or else he is just a human in form, but not in reality.
Are we actually just humans in form? Should we not be true humans? Should we not cultivate human values? Avatar Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba is celebrating His 84th birthday by reminding us and instructing us to cultivate human values, to improve the quality of life. It is most important today.
If you watch any TV channel or read any newspaper, you find hatred increasing, anger on the rise, and rivalry, conflict, and war everywhere. The absence of human values is the cause. While feeling very sorry for not leading the life of human till now, at least from now on, from the 84th birthday of Baba, vow to be a human being. Cultivate true human values; otherwise everything is just a zero.
Sathya Dharma Prema Shantulu Lekunna
Vidhyalanniyu Nerchina Viluva Sunna
Without Truth, Righteousness, Peace, Love and Non-violence,
All education is of no value.
Sathya Dharma Prema Shantulu Lekunna
Padavulanu Yelina Phalamu Sunna
Without human values,
All our positions of authority and exalted positions are useless.
Sathya Dharma Prema Shantulu Lekunna
Daana Dharmala Sardhakatha Sunna
You may say that you donated, that you are a man of charity,
But it is nothing if you don’t have human values.
Sathya Dharma Prema Shantulu Lekunna
Bahula Satkarya Laabhambhu Sunna
All good deeds, all the good that you do, and all that you claim
Are useless if you do not have the basic human values
Of Truth, Righteousness, Peace, Love and Non-violence.
Ee Sanathana Dharma Harmyambu Niluva
Ee Nagulu Punadhi Godalapaa
Pillars of Human Values
For this mansion of humanity, for this multi-storied building of humanity, human values are the pillars. Human values constitute the foundation on which the mansion of humanity rests. Therefore, my friends, I sincerely appeal to every Sai devotee to think of these basic human values, adhere to them, and practise them from now on, in the name of religion, or in the name of any country for that matter!
We all say that we have our own procedures. Some say they pray daily. Good, why not? Some say they meditate. Very good, please continue! Some say they do yoga. By all means, continue! Some say they go to church on Sunday. Good, God bless you! Some say they go to the mosque every Friday. Please do it!
We do these things as spiritual sadhana, but that is not all. That is only ritual: mechanical, routine, robot activity. Bhagavan Baba says that the spirit of a ritual is to be spiritual, not ritualistic. The spirit of the ritual makes you spiritual. It is not enough if you follow a ritual like your parents or grandparents; that is only ritualistic. Why do you go to the church? My father goes, therefore I go. Why do you go to the temple? My mother goes, therefore I go.
AwARENESS OF THE PURPOSE OF SADHANA
It should not be that way. We should have awareness. That is what Baba says here:
Sadhanachesi Phalamemi Shramamu Leka
You may do any ritual; but if you do not have control of your senses, if you don’t have control of the mind and the body, for what are all these rituals? Some people do yoga for some time, some people do dhyana or meditation for some time; but immediately after that, they shout at everyone. They go on shouting at everyone because they are full of anger. Then why meditate? Why practise yoga if you are angry and furious after yoga or meditation practises? Therefore, all spiritual practises will be fruitful only if we have control over our mind and body.
DEVELOP PATIENCE AND PEACE
Yogamulu Pooni Phalamemi Orpu Leka?
If you don’t develop patience, why practise yoga? Someone may say, “I attended Suprabhatam this morning. When am I going to attain moksha?” Oh, you attended Suprabhatam this morning, and you want immediate moksha or liberation? We should have patience. Patience is the first quality of a devotee. To get a degree, we study for three years; to get a post-graduate degree, we study for two years; for a Ph.D. three more years. For worldly, secular education we spend years and years studying. For spiritual attainments, for spiritual achievements, should we not spend some time? If we don’t have patience, what practise yoga? It is useless.
Japamulunu Narinchi Phalamemi Shanti Leka
Some people say, “I recite God’s name, and I sing bhajans everyday.” Good, do it! But the outcome of the repetition of God’s name lies in your state of peace. The more peaceful you are, the more you benefit. With a very serious face, with the face of trouble and worry, I say I do so much penance . . . why? Peace is absolutely necessary. Without the qualities of patience and peace, how can self-control appear?
UNDERSTAND GOD IS IN EVERYONE
Savithi Bhoomini Dhunnina Sarani Kaadhe
“Would anyone cultivate a barren land, a useless land? A barren land is unfit for cultivation.” (The translation is something like that.)
Again, we should also know on this day what Baba tells us. Clearly He said one point, my friends. Some people say that they have been coming to Prashanthi Nilayam for ten years, fifteen years, or twenty years. But for what? Some people say they have read all His books. Okay, read, continue to read. But Baba said the essence of all religions, the essence of all books, can be said in one sentence. What is it? The consciousness in you is very much the same as the consciousness in anyone. God is one in everyone. We should understand that.
Sarva Vedantha Grandhala Saaramella
Oka Vakyana Cheputhu Okasari
That is what Baba says: “Come on, listen to Me. I put the essence of all philosophy in one sentence.”
Akila Bhootamulandunna Atma Neevu
Okati Ani Manasuna Vundavalayu
That consciousness, the spirit within you, is very much the same as the consciousness or the spirit in anyone and in everyone, because consciousness is the only one Supreme, which is uniform in all. That should be the message of this holy birthday, which we have to carry home from this important function.
HEAVEN IS withIN
I would also appeal to you, my friends. So many people ask, “Why are you spiritual, being so religious?” What do they expect? Some say, “Oh! I expect to be happy in heaven. Yes, I expect to be in paradise. I expect to go to Kailas. I expect to live in Vaikunta!”
My friends, it is ridiculous! Is there heaven anywhere? An American astronaut named Armstrong went into space, but he did not see heaven there. He might ask, “Where is heaven? I have searched all over space, but I have not seen it anywhere. Where is heaven?”
“The kingdom of heaven is within you,” says the Lord. Paradise or swarga or heaven is in you. Let us enjoy the heavenly bliss on this holy day of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s 84th birthday. What does He say?
Swargamanaga Veru Swarlokamuna Ledu
Heaven is not a place where angels are present. It is not a separate plane of angels; it is not a different world, no!
Narula Lokamandee Amari Yundu
It is here right now. Heaven is here, right now on earth. It is not a separate planet, no,no,no!
Sadgunambulundi Sari Nadaka Ayiyunna
Adhiee Swargamavvu Avaniyandhu
A VIRTUous Life CREATES HEAVEN
Actually speaking, if you have virtues, good qualities, and good behaviour, yes, that is heaven itself. John Milton, a great poet of English literature, said, “It is the mind that makes heaven out of hell, or hell out of heaven. Heaven is right here.” You don’t need to search for it anywhere. The day you are virtuous, the day you are peaceful, is heaven itself. The day of misery, the day of torture, and the moment when you are sorrowful, is hell. Hell is not a separate place; it is the moment when we are not happy. That is the message we should understand on this birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
Then, my friends, I would also appeal to you to realise the value of life. The value of life does not lie only in the personality. I may be very tall, I maybe very handsome, of that height, of this weight, of this chest width. Those are all physical measurements. The tailor may care about that, because he has to stitch garments for me. After all, what is this body? The true analysis will tell you that the body is an iron safe, similar to an almirah (cupboard-style closet). It is like an iron safe; but inside the safety locker there are jewels and there are diamonds. So the jewels, the diamonds, are the consciousness within. The body is an iron safe, but the safe is of less value than that of the diamonds or the jewels, the consciousness within. Understand that!
Viluvaleni Inupapette Yandhu
Like the iron safe that has no value,
Viluvaina Nagalu Pettinatlu
But valuables are kept inside,
Dehamandhu Atmadevudu Vundunu Sumi
In this body there is consciousness, which is totally Divine
Let us try to realise this.
FACE YOUR INNER ENEMIES
Let us try to experience it for a moment. Let us try to question ourselves. How far from this conflict, this challenge, are we? How near are we to experiencing this Divinity, this reality within ourselves, asks Bhagavan. We also feel we want to dominate everyone, and that we want to control everyone. ‘Yes, he is my enemy. Let me finish him off. He doesn’t like me, so let me avoid him.’ My friends, we have enemies outside, we have critics outside. We are always immersed in thoughts about our enemies. We are always immersed in thoughts about those who are critical towards us.
Where are the critics? Your conscience gives you the correct assessment; your conscience gives you a one hundred percent correct assessment, because the consciousness is Divine. The conscience is reality, the conscience is a witness. It lets me know that my enemies are not outside; my enemies are inside.
Who are my enemies? My anger is my enemy. My lust is my enemy. My greed is my enemy. Avarice, possessiveness, and attachment are all enemies within me. My enemies are not outside. It is foolish to think that our enemies are outside in this world; our enemies are within us. If I cannot kill an enemy within me, how can I attack an enemy outside me? Is it possible to attack an enemy outside, without killing the enemy within?
On this birthday of Baba, let us identify our enemies within us, like anger and lust. Identify them and try to uproot them. Let us try to face them and attack them. That is the call of Bhagavan on this birthday.
Loni Satruvulaku Loginpoyinavaadu
One who has become a victim to his inner enemies,
Bayati Vipulanu Etlu Pattagaladu
How can he be a victor in the outer world?
How can he be victorious in killing the outer enemies?
It is not possible.
Tatvameriginantha Dhanyudau Ilan
Tatvameriginantha Dhanyudau Ilan Narudu
If you know the essence of this, your life is redeemed. Your life is fulfilled. This should be our goal, our main sadhana, which we have to undertake from Baba’s birthday onward.
LIBERATION from Ego
My friends, I also bring to your attention that we find many people going to many gurus today. They visit many ashrams. Where are you going? “Oh Sir, from this place I am going to see some other guru!” Oh, I see! “I am going to some other ashram.” Okay, go, there is nothing wrong in it. Go to as many gurus as possible. Go to as many ashrams as possible, as long as you can afford it. But no one can save you, take it from me. Unless that ‘I’-ness is gone, unless the ego is dropped, unless the ego is gone, you cannot be liberated and you will not attain liberation. Moksha is a far distant goal, so what is to be done now? The goal is not to run after people in order to be egoless. The lack of ego is the main quality we have to develop from the day of His birthday onwards.
Mukthikoru Narudu Mukkotti Devathalanu
Veduchundunu Kaani Vethalu Teerabovu
Go to different temples, go to the Hanuman temple, go to the Shiva temple, the Vishnu temple, the Durga temple, the Mata temple, the Kali temple, good! But problems are not solved that way. Problems are not with gods. Problems are with the ego.
Tanadhuloni Ahamuthaa Champukunna
Mukthi Yela Thaanu Mukthi Kaada
If I kill my ego, is it liberation? I am the very name of liberation. Minus ego, I am liberation. I don’t say I am liberated. I am the liberation. So it is the ego that is the problem which you have to face. This you have been facing for the last several lives. We should put an end to it, at least now, as Baba calls us to face this hurdle in life: getting rid of ego.
UNITY OF THOUGHT, WORD, DEED
Then Bhagavan talks about one more important point, my friends. It is a very serious problem. On this birthday, let us at least do it. Let us do it. Let us determine to do it. What is it? Harmony, or unity of thought, word, and deed. How unfortunate it is that many say something, but act in a different way. Many act in a different way, feel something else that is opposite to what they say. There is no unity of thought, word and deed.
The basic quality of a religious man, the fundamental quality of a spiritual man, should be harmony. When there is no harmony, when there is no unity of thought, word, and deed, how do you expect him to improve? How do you expect him to advance on the spiritual path? Therefore, on this birthday let us cultivate unity and harmony. At least be an example of unity of thought, word, and deed, which is a beginning for our spiritual journey.
Manavathwamanaga Manasu Maata Kriyayu
Anni Okatigaane Athikiyundu
Baba says you are a true human only if you have unity of thought, word, and deed. He put it in a refined way. “Three ‘H’s,” He said. The first ‘H’ is the heart, the second ‘H’ is the head, the third ‘H’ is the hand. In heart, head, and hand, there should be unity of thought, word and deed. That is what Bhagavan said.
Manasunandu Veru, Matayu Kriyayunu
Veru Verulayina Viluvadhemi
When I am in disharmony, when word and heart are in divergence, when my thought and word shows proof of dichotomy, how can I be a true human? Therefore, oh Bhagavan, help us on this 84th birthday to place importance on the basic, noble quality of maintaining unity between thought, word, and deed.
MOTIVEs, not Deeds, are important
Then Bhagavan makes another point my friends. We are business-minded. I am sorry to say that. We wonder what we will get if we do something. If I talk to you, what do I get? If I do a favour, what do I get? Life has become a business. This is very unfortunate. Our whole life cannot be a commercial contract. It cannot be a financial bargain, no, no, no!
God doesn’t look at your deeds. God does not look at your actions. God looks at your inner motive. What is it that makes you do it? What do you have in the background, which made you do this? Are you doing it to make a name for yourself? Are you doing it for the sake of your reputation? Are you doing it for publicity? Are you doing it for position? What is your motive? That is important for God, not what you do. The motive is much more important than the action. Bhagavan, let our motives be pure hereafter.
Help us to have good motives that prompt good actions. If there is a good motive, there will be a good action which will bear good results. If there is an evil motive, there will be wrong actions, leading to failure eventually. That is what says Baba said.
Manasuloni Bhavambhu Manchidaina
If there is a good idea, a good motive in mind,
Kaligiteerunu Phalasiddhi Karyamandhu
There is bound to be success in your attempt.
Manasulonunna Bhavambhu Malinamaina
If your motive is bad and if your motive is wrong,
Phalamukooda Aa Reethiga Malinagunu
The results are also tainted.
The results will be a total failure if the motive is not good. That is what Baba said.
HAPPINESS COMES FROM GOODNESS
On this birthday, we have to remind ourselves of another point that Swami made. “Oh devotees, you want Me to make you happy. You want Me to make you blissful. How is it possible? How do you expect Me to make Me happy. Why? There is no goodness in your words, there is no goodness in your thought, and there is no goodness in your actions.”
How do you expect Sai to make you happy? Impossible! This is the question asked straightforwardly by Baba to His devotees on one occasion.
Goodness in the heart,
Good words, sweet talk,
When all these are absent,
Sai Mimmu Mecchi Santhoshamuletulicchu?
How do you expect Baba to confer happiness,
To make your life joyful and to make your life blissful?
Chepparayya Meeru Oppukundhu
Do you blame Me?
Am I at fault for not making you happy?
No! “Your words are not good, your heart is not pure, and there is no goodness anywhere. Then how do you expect to make you happy?” asks Bhagavan.
UNITY OF RELIGIONS
On this day of Baba’s birthday, let us also observe the unity of religions. This is very important! In certain countries, importance is given to Hindu rituals. No, my brothers and sisters, if the gathering comprises Christians, let us sing Christian hymns. If the gathering comprises Muslims, let us read excerpts from the Quran. Unity of religions is very important. Let me not impose my Hindu ritual, and let me not impose my Hindu texts, on those people. Let me not require that everyone learn Sanskrit. That is not necessary. Why should they waste their time? God knows all languages. He is the Mother of all, and all mother tongues are known to Him.
Here is a simple anecdote to make you happy. There were two friends: one was British and the other was German. In World War II, the Germans lost and the British won. These two friends prayed to God every day. The German asked his friend, “Oh, my friend, you pray and I also pray. Why did we lose and why did you win?” The Brit immediately asked, “In what language do you pray?” The German answered, “We pray in the German language.” Then the Brit said, “That is your mistake. God knows only English. He follows only English prayers.” Ridiculous!
So to think in another religion, and to speak the language of some other religion which we do not know, is nothing but foolishness. Let us follow our own religion. Let us think from the viewpoint of our own culture. The Spanish language is rich enough. Spanish countries have their own culture. Germany and Japan have their own cultures, as do all other countries all over the world! Let us follow our own culture. Let us follow our scriptures, because unity of religions is very important. No religion can ever dominate other religions. Why?
Mathamullani Cheri Manchine Bodhinche
All religions teach only good things.
Telisi Melaga Velayu Thelivi Thoda
It is for your intelligence to understand,
Your intelligence should grasp all that is good in every religion.
Mathulu Manchivaina Mathamemi Cheddadhi
Vinudu Bharatiya Veera Suthudha
If your mind is good, then the religion is good.
If your mathi (mind) is good, then matha (the religion) is good. Which religion is bad? It is not the religion that is bad. There must be something wrong with your mathi (mind). That is what Baba says.
SPEND YOUR TIME WITH SPIRITUAL PEOPLE
My friends, let this birthday remind us that we have to spend our time in the company of noble people, pious people, good people, and spiritual people, not with any wayside, roadside Romeo or rowdy. Baba says every time, “Tell me your company and I shall tell you what and who you are.” Therefore, good company is very important for a spiritual life. Let us strengthen that, let us struggle to maintain that, and let us run away from bad company. That is what Baba says.
Iron in the company of dust gets rusted. Iron in the company of fire loses that dust and rust. Similarly, man is the iron. In the company of dust, meaning bad company, man gets rusty and turns bad. But in the company of fire, meaning noble people, man will also shine brilliantly.
Mattitho Chera Inumunaku Pattu Thuppu
The iron is rusted because of dust.
Agni Tho Chera Inumuna Aduvu Thrupu.
When you put it in the fire, there is no more rust.
Saaha Charyambhu Gittula Sambhavinchu.
It is only the company that shapes you.
Let us not entertain any bad company hereafter.
May this birthday help us to develop equal-mindedness or equanimity, a balanced state of mind when there is pleasure or pain. Whether there be pleasure or pain, let me be balanced. Let me not lose my balance. That should be my attitude. That should be my decision on this 84th birthday.
Kastasukhammulu Oka Reethigaanchavalayu
Pleasure and pain have to be viewed alike, because a shadow follows me if I am experiencing pleasure. My shadow is the pain. Both have to be accepted.
Kalimilemulu Viddateesi Gaduparaadhu
Profit and loss are not separate. Plenty, prosperity, and poverty are not separate. A poor man may be rich tomorrow; a rich man may be poor the day after tomorrow. They go together.
Keerthi Apakeerthi Okkamurthigaane
One may praise you, while another one may condemn you. Do you dance because you are praised, or get depressed when you are attacked? No! Praise or blame will not affect me. That should be our determination.
Bhavamandunchi Melagute Bhakthipadamu
True devotion is a balanced state of mind, where you are beyond pleasure and pain, where you are beyond praise and blame, where you are not affected by these pairs of opposites.
GOOD AND BAD IN EVERYTHING
Finally, my friends, on this birthday let us be reminded of what Baba has said: let us not condemn anything as good, nor let us brand anything as bad, because in God’s sight there is nothing good or bad. Both are His creation.
It is only a matter of time before good turns into bad. For example, the food we eat today is good, but tomorrow it is bad excreta. The same excreta can be used later as manure, which again leads to good things and causes good things to happen. So there is something good in bad, and bad in good. Let us not condemn, let us not judge, because both are in God’s creation.
I think I have brought to your attention sufficiently well the many views of Bhagavan for improving the quality of our lives, in order to be worthy devotees of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
May this 84th birthday bring all the joy possible! May it bring all the happiness possible! May it make everyone dance! Let us celebrate the 84th birthday joyfully.
May Bhagavan be with you forever and ever more. Jai Sai Ram!
Asato Maa Sad Gamaya
Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya
Mrtyormaa Amritam Gamaya
Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Om Shanti Shanti Shantihi
Jai Bolo Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Babaji ki Jai!
Jai Bolo Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Babaji ki Jai!
Jai Bolo Bhagavan Shi Sathya Sai Babaji ki Jai!
Thank you. God bless you.
© Copyright Prof. Anil Kumar Kamaraju - Puttaparthi All rights reserved.
The Sunday Talk Given by Prof. Anil Kumar
84th Birthday of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
“Constant Integrated Awareness”
November 22, 2009
With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of Bhagavan,
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Let me first of all greet you on the eve of Bhagavan’s birthday. As you know, we are going through a busy schedule of programmes, coinciding with the 84th birthday celebrations. We had the procession of the chariot with the local deities’ idols on the 18th. And later, on the 19th, we celebrated Ladies Day.
Yesterday, the children of Sri Sathya Sai Primary school made a presentation on the great epic Ramayana. And today, the 21st, we are going to witness a drama entitled “The Nectar of Wisdom” presented by the students of Sri Sathya Sai University in the Divine presence.
Tomorrow morning, the 22nd, we are going to have the Convocation of our university, and the chief guest happens to be Dr. Sandweiss from California, USA. Dr Sandweiss needs no introduction. He is very well known to all Sai devotees. We eagerly look forward to his message tomorrow morning.
I pray to Bhagavan to shower His blessings on all of you such that we lead a comfortable, happy life in security, plenty and prosperity, and growing devotion and in service.
I would like to speak on one important theme, which will help us to celebrate Baba’s birthday in the true spirit, with full understanding of its significance.
WHAT IS CONSTANT INTEGRATED AWARENESS?
Constant Integrated Awareness is very much talked about and frequently stressed by Bhagavan in His discourses. What is this Constant Integrated Awareness? Why is it necessary? Do we have it? Exactly how to develop it? What connection has it with Baba’s birthday celebration? These are the aspects of Constant Integrated Awareness that I would like to deal with this morning.
We can understand Baba and we can experience Him if we develop this Constant Integrated Awareness. This birthday calls for cultivating the attitude of constantly thinking about integrated awareness. What is this integrated awareness? I shall highlight some of the points.
The first thing that we need to know is this: we as humans, we as individuals, are limited. We have our own limitations. For example, our lifespan is limited. I am not going to live forever. The body has a limited personality. The eyes’ perception is limited; our auditory capabilities are limited. So the human body with its senses are all under limitations.
We are not limitless, but Divinity is limitless. Divinity has no boundaries. Divinity is infinite, all-pervading, vast, and expansive. To have an understanding of that limitless Divinity, what should I have? What is it that I can do with this limited body and limited perception, with limited cognition, and with limited faculties? How am I to understand the limitless?
This is the challenge; this is the point of our eternal quest. This is what is called an eternal journey. We march ahead in this Constant Integrated Awareness. How to know the limitless with this limited identity? How to experience that vastness with this limited personality? My friends, since the senses are limited, they will be able to perceive only that which is limited.
TRANSCENDENCE MEANS GOING TO A STATE OF NO-MIND
Eyes can see to some distance, can tolerate some light intensity; beyond that, eyes cannot see. Ears can bear sound to some extent; beyond that, they cannot. So, all our senses are functional, within certain limits.
With these limited senses, we are not able to experience God. Why? He is limitless. Why? He has no boundaries. Why? He is infinite. Being here, I cannot see anything else in other places. Being here, I cannot hear anything beyond this area. Therefore, it is very, very clear that God is beyond our senses. God is beyond our mind.
Our mind is limited. So, the limited senses and the limited mind have to be transformed. We have to grow beyond our senses. We have to grow beyond our mind. We have to know the mind, K-N-O-W, and then go to the state of ‘no-mind’, N-O. So, from this ‘KNOW’ to the other ‘NO’, that is what is called transcendence. When I transcend my senses, I can experience Him; when I transcend my mind, I can experience Him.
In other words, what I want to share with my friends this morning is this: our experience today is within the framework of our senses and our mind. But our attempt is to know the limitless, infinite, ever-pervasive, omniscient, omnipotent Divinity. This is possible only when we go beyond the senses and the mind.
This is what is called awareness. There is awareness within the limitations of these senses and the mind, and there is awareness of that which is beyond. So the awareness includes both, within the limitations and beyond the limitations. That is total understanding. As Baba always says, awareness is complete comprehension, total understanding. So that kind of total understanding should be kept in our mind throughout our life. That’s why it is called ‘constant’.
Constantly from womb to the tomb, from the beginning till the end, we should constantly ruminate and ponder over this particular aspect of knowing the limitless, by transcending the senses and the mind. This is the first aspect of Constant Integrated Awareness.
THE VISIBLE AND THE INVISIBLE MAKE THE TOTALITY OF LIFE
The next point is this: we know our beginning point. What’s our beginning point? The date of birth is our beginning point; but we do not know our end point. However, Constant Integrated Awareness demands us to know our end point also. Let us not spend all our life at this beginning point. Let us know our potential to know our ultimate state, our end limit also.
In this context, we should know that there are two things that exist here in the universe: one that is visible and the other that is invisible. Awareness means to know both the visible and the invisible, and its totality of existence, which is awareness. So what I see here, what is visible is quite possible to grasp within the mind and with my senses. But to grow beyond that, to know the invisible, I should transcend my senses, and I should go beyond the mind.
So, there is the visible through senses, as well as the invisible beyond the senses. Likewise, there is the visible within the mind, as well as the invisible beyond the mind. So these two make the totality of life, the whole existence; that’s what we have to understand. That’s what we have to take note of this morning under this title, “Constant Integrated Awareness”.
Though the eye sees, there is an optic nerve behind the eye; that optic nerve also has another centre. I do not see these things; they are invisible. So, the invisible is inside, while the visible is outside. That which is visible on the outside is possible because of the invisible which is inside. The invisible which is inside is a cause for the experience of the visible that is outside. So what is my life now—invisible plus visible?
The food that I eat is outside, but the digestion, ingestion, and assimilation are all inside. What am I now? Both visible and invisible. If I think only the visible food is the whole thing, I am wrong. If I think all this digestion, ingestion, assimilation—the inner invisible is the only reality, I am also wrong. Food outside is as much a reality as digestion and assimilation inside. That experience or knowledge is integrated. This type of understanding is awareness. To bear that in the mind throughout our life is Constant Integrated Awareness. This sort of Constant Integrated Awareness will help us to go nearer and nearer to the Divine, closer and closer to God, gaining in spiritual experience thereafter.
Let me give you another example. With my eyes closed, I may still see you; but sometimes even with open eyes, I may not see you. What does it mean? When all that is visible does not appear, even with my eyes open, it is the same as if the eyes are closed. Sometimes students keep their eyes opened, but don’t hear your lesson in class. Sometimes they open their eyes, but they are asleep also! This is an extra faculty these days! (Laughter) So, even with your eyes open, you need not see. We don’t see everybody even though our eyes are open. It simply means all that is visible has not gone inside.
On the other hand, we can still see sometimes, even with the eyes closed. What does it mean? I am thinking of you; therefore my eye, though it is closed, still sees you. Therefore my friends, eyes open or an eye closed is immaterial. The seer is important. The seer is inside. When the seer wants, he will see with the eyes open or with the eyes closed.
Seer is inside. This seer, who is inside, exercises this process of seeing the seen, which is outside. That which is seen, the process of seeing, and the seer are three in our vision. We think only one is true. No! I see you, so you are the seen. I am seeing; that ‘I’ is the seer. ‘I’ is the seer, the process is seeing, and you are the seen. These three have got to be harmonious. These three have got to be blended, combined, coordinated, and integrated, so as to have complete understanding or awareness.
SEEING, SEEN, AND SEER
So long as I concentrate on the seen, I cannot see the seer. Simple example: some people watch a movie where the heroine cries, and the fellow in the audience also cries. Why? It is only a movie. This happens when someone is seeing only the outside; they are being influenced by the seen, which is outside. The heroine is harassed, the heroine is put to difficulty by the villain; therefore people cry. This scene outside causes pain to them. However, if we forget about the seen and focus only on the process of seeing, then there is no response. There is no reaction.
Sometimes Baba, in darshan line, looks at people. ‘Has He looked at me, the seen?’ Maybe! ‘Has He looked at you?’ Probably! But He focuses on seeing, not on the seen—please understand this! When He wants to give you an interview, He will see the seen. The rest of the time it is only the process of seeing, not looking at the seen. That’s why even sitting on the dais, He goes on moving His hands like that, looking into empty air.
‘I am here! Can’t You look at me?’ No, no, no. He goes on looking like that. Focusing on the seen is out of the question. Why? He is seeing, but not me, the seen. Why? The reason is seeing will take him into the seer. Focusing on the seen will take Him away from the seer. When I look at the seen, I will be seeing the seen and enjoying, describing it. But when I don’t see the seen but only see the process of seeing, that will make me experience the seer inside, the Divinity inside, the Brahman inside.
Therefore, Baba with His eyes open, waving His hands like that, with this process of seeing, not focusing on the seen, is the seer, Divinity, Atman, Brahman. Therefore my friends, let us see even without seeing the seen. That is the right process of seeing. And this right process of seeing (without seeing any scene outside) will take you to the seer inside. That is the point I want to draw to your attention this morning, which comes under this subject of “Constant Integrated Awareness”.
I would also like to say another thing that Baba always says:
Kasta Sukhambulu Kalasi Vundu Vida Deesi Gadupa Raadhu.
“Pleasure and pain go together; you cannot separate them.” What does this mean? As I walk, there is a shadow behind me. Can I ask my shadow, “Please get out.” No! “Oh shadow, where are you?” “I am with you, my boy. Wherever you are, I follow you,” will answer my shadow. Similarly, pleasure will be followed by the shadow of pain. Birth will be followed by the shadow of death. Light has its shadow, darkness. Light and shadow or dark, and birth and death seem to be opposites; but they are integrated.
THE COMPLETE TRUTH IS A COMBINATION OF OPPOSITES
My friends, the second point I want to tell you on this happy, birthday occasion is this: let us know the totality of truth, the complete truth. What is complete truth? Complete truth is a combination of opposites.
Yes, a simple example. How is it now? Well, today, right now, it is a beautiful morning; I see bright light. Correct. You are right. But it is only a half-truth. What is the other half? By 6 o’clock in the evening, it is going to be dark. So that darkness which comes in the evening is other half of the truth. So what is truth now? Light in the morning and darkness in the evening, together is total truth; separately, they are only partial truths. So, complete truth contains both pairs of opposites, see that.
CONSTANT INGRATED AWARENESS MEANS ACCEPTING OPPOSITES
Examples are birth and death, victory and defeat, success and failure. The flower opens in the morning, and blossoms into a beautiful flower. Just a half-truth! By evening it fades away, another half-truth. So, the complete truth is a combination of opposites, a combination of positive and negative. Our problem is that we are choosy. I want only birth; I don’t want death. Impossible! I want only the flower that will not fade. Then choose plastic flowers! Real flowers are sure to fade.
Therefore in Constant Integrated Awareness, integration means accepting opposites—light and dark, young and old, birth and death, success and failure. Accepting these two contradictions, accepting these two opposites is what is meant by Constant Integrated Awareness. Accepting both, this integration is very important. If I de-link these two opposites, what happens? Life is only a half-truth. If there is no death, birth loses its value. If there is no birth, death does not arise at all. So birth and death go together.
Therefore, on this birthday, let us have this integrated awareness. “Oh Lord, good and bad are Your gifts; success and failure are Your will. I accept them both. I integrate them both and will have understanding, awareness. I will think of this throughout my life.” That is Constant Integrated Awareness, which is what I want you to be aware of this morning.
THE REAL ‘YOU’ IS INFINITE, LIMITLESS, AND TRANSCENDENT
Therefore, my friends, I think I am one; however, I am not one, but three, as Baba says. Our students also joke in the college. In the night, they eat chapattis. It seems that they are supposed to eat two chapattis. So the teacher is giving two to each and everyone.
One M. Tech boy came and said, “Sir, I want three.”
The teacher said, “No, only two chapattis.”
“No, sir, I want three.”
“Baba said, ‘You are not one, but three.’ So I want three chapattis.”
Though the student was joking, it is also the truth. “I am not one, but three.” What does it mean? The two opposites, two aspects! Beyond these two is the third aspect. That’s what Baba says: “You are not one, but three: the one you think you are, the one others think you are, and the one you really are.” The one you really are is transcendence, limitlessness, infinity, the vast expanse of the universe. It is existence without boundaries. That is the One. That is who I am really.
The one I think I am and the one that others think I am are two opposites. A simple example: some people may think I am a very peaceful; but if you ask my wife, she will tell you how peaceful I really am! You may think I am a great man; but I know how great I really am. So there are two different things, just as visible-invisible, good-bad, success-failure—two aspects.
LIFE IS A PANORAMA OF OPPOSITES
Life is a drama. It is a panorama of opposites. The panoramic view, the panoramic view of life, has got these two aspects: the one you think you are and the one others think you are—two opposite dimensions of our existence. This is the two-sided picture of our life. Here I would like to tell you my friends, if we know this, if we know that this life is a drama, that this life is two-sided—the one I think I am and the one others think I am—two opposite dimensions of life, the more awareness I have of this, the more integrated I will be.
I live with the thought that I know I will also die some day. I move, but I also know that some day I will not move. So, these two are there. You know, everyone thinks that he is permanent. Is anybody permanent? Nobody is permanent. To know this is awareness. So live with the awareness of death. Enjoy with awareness of displeasure or pain. Have pleasure, but be also aware that there will be pain some day.
LIBERATION IS ACCEPTANCE OF LIFE’S TWO OPPOSITE DIMENSIONS
That is the key to success in life. That is the secret of life: being aware of these two aspects, where one follows the other necessarily like a shadow, is liberation. Liberation is choiceless awareness. Choiceless: I cannot say I want only day, nor can I say I want only night. No, these two are there. So unconditional acceptance, readily, happily, of the two opposite dimensions of life is liberation.
But accepting only one aspect while rejecting the other, acceptance of one while denying the other, is bondage. “I want to be happy.” Be happy, alright. There is nothing wrong in wishing to be happy. But you will be unhappy when you lose your happiness. In happiness, if you are aware that there will be unhappiness some day, it will not cause as much a pain as when you are not aware of it. When I know that something that was destined to happen happened, I will not be ruffled; even in that moment, I cannot be shaken.
So, what is liberation? Liberation is acceptance of the two opposite dimensions of life. And this is the drama of life. Who is the Director? The one I really am; the one who you really are! The one others think you are, is only one dimension. The one you think you are is just another dimension. The one you really are is eternal, immortal, non-dual, beyond these two dimensions—the third dimension. Two dimensions we know; this is the third dimension, the one you really are.
Now, what are you? All these three. That is integrated-ness. So, the integrated three aspects of life have to be understood. This is called awareness, and has to be remembered constantly. That is what is meant by Constant Integrated Awareness.
My friends, there is no point in simply quoting these sentences of Baba’s without application, without reasoning, without elaborate thinking, without extensive exploration, without getting into the depth and profundity of such large statements. If we simply repeat like that, there is no difference between us and a parrot. Parrots also repeat whatever we say. No, no. We have to analyse every statement and apply it to our life situations. That is the virtue of celebrating His birthday. The virtue of celebrating His birthday is to develop this Constant Integrated Awareness.
THE SOUL IS IMMORTAL
Now I would like to take you to another important aspect of life. How beautiful is this life? In fact if we just watch our own life, we will enjoy it thoroughly. Could you ever imagine that death and eternity can go together? Why not? It is the body that is born, it is the body that will grow, and it is the body that will die. But the in-dweller in me has no death; it is permanent, eternal. Now, who am I? I am immortality in death; or I should say, death comes to the body, but the soul is immortal.
Baba’s birthday wants us to know this immortal soul. The body had a beginning, and will some day face its end also. So life is a combination of death and eternity, of mortality and immortality, the transient and that which is permanent. Therefore, I should develop this awareness. I should grow and live in this awareness.
That is what a spiritual life is all about. It is unfortunate if we think spiritual life is meant only for doing some bhajans and eating prasadam. It is one aspect, but it is not complete. It is not total. There is something more, not simply bhajan and prasadam. Awareness is more important. So the 84th birthday will remind everybody to develop this awareness. What kind of awareness? Integrated awareness! When? Constantly! That’s very much required.
GOD AND YOU ARE LIKE THE WAVE AND THE SEA
All of us know the sea. As you stand near the seashore, what do you find? Wave after wave comes near you. A wave is separate from the sea because a wave has a form; the sea has no form because it is infinite. Wave has a size, while sea has no size. Wave has a limit, while sea has no limit. Wave can be seen, while the sea cannot be seen. The sea exists in depth—calm, unruffled, undisturbed. The sea’s depth cannot be seen. So here are two: the sea and the wave. Wave is limited, while sea is unlimited; wave is seen, while the depths of the sea are unseen. Wave has a form and size, but sea has no form and size.
Though they seem to be opposites, wave is born out of the sea. Though separate, a wave cannot be free from the sea. So, it is of the sea and yet separate from the sea, but cannot exist without the sea. That’s what I and my God are. I am different from my God. Oh I see, because I have a name and a form and a size. God is the sea and I am the wave. I am born, I originated, I emanated from Him. I grow in Him and I merge back into Him, like a wave that comes out of the ocean: it grows in sea and then goes back into the sea. Though wave is separate from the sea, it cannot exist without the sea.
That is the relationship between wave and the sea. That is the relationship between me and my God. That is the relationship between you and your God. Your God is the sea, who has given birth to you, a wave with a name and a form. And you, the wave with a name and form, will go back to your God.
My form goes on changing. The wave might appear to be too big; but as it emerges and comes slowly to the shore, the size of the wave goes on decreasing as it comes closer and closer to the shore. So also, I grow and grow; and then gradually, my sense of self (ego/body) weakens and weakens till I slowly become nothing, and go back to my place of origin. That is integration. So, this integration refers to both the emergence and the re-merging back together.
Life is integrated. On this birthday, let me know: “Oh God, I am the wave, while You are the ocean. You are the One out of whom I have emerged. You are the One in whom I grow, and You are the One into whom I will merge back.” That is my awareness. This I think throughout the day, constantly. I also understand the wave integrating back into the sea.
So Constant Integrated Awareness is a beautiful phrase coined by Baba, which He frequently uses in His Divine discourses. I request each and every one of you, the viewers and listeners of saiwisdom.com website, to focus your attention on this Constant Integrated Awareness, which is nothing but the transcendence of these two—the one you think you are and the one others think you are. The one you really are is the Divine, the totality of existence.
As Baba’s devotee, as one who has total trust in Him, what is it that is necessary at this moment on the eve of Baba’s birthday? One example: lamps are of different colours and sizes, but the light is the same. Lamps represent different religions; the light is God, only one. “There is only one God who is omniscient,” says Baba. “There is only one language, the language of the heart; only one religion, the religion of love! There is only one God, who is omniscient.” That oneness of Divinity is the light, while the outer lamp is the religion. As Baba’s devotees, let us think of the light, focussing our attention on the light, not the lamp, because one lamp is sure to be different from another lamp (like the differences in religions).
Here is another point to think about on this day of the celebration of Baba’s birthday. We are carried away by the outer, so we don’t realise that there is something inner. We don’t understand there is something deeper. A simple example: we think the earth is stable. That’s why I construct my house and have a table and chair. But is the earth actually stable? No. It goes on revolving around itself and revolving around the sun.
Reality is different from day-to-day experience. If I say that the sun rises and the sun sets, it is correct, isn’t it? But the sun does not rise nor set. It is only the earth that rotates. The surface that faces the sun experiences sunrise, while the surface which does not face the sun experiences sunset followed by darkness. It is only the earth that moves; the sun neither rises nor sets. But we say the sun rises and the sun sets.
So, similarly, my friends let us go to the reality. Another example: here is a stick. When you put the stick in water and observe, we seem to see that the stick is bent. Outside the stick is straight, but in water it appears to be bent. The truth is that it is straight, but its appearance is bent. Where? In water.
I am the stick; I am straight, Divine but appear to be bent, deluded and ignorant, with mistaken identities—body identification, ego problems, in the ‘water’ of family, community and society; in the ‘water’ of sensual pleasure, in the ‘water’ of the world. So, I am the reality, straight, Divinity; but I appear to be bent in the ‘water’ of life. Both are true. One is delusion, while the other is the reality.
Therefore, on this holy birthday, let us know that we are essentially Divine! Because of this body identification, our life seems to be ‘bent’. In life, we face bumps and jumps, ups and downs. Why? Because of this ‘water’ of body identification, because of this ‘water’ of identification with the senses, and interaction with the outer world.
So basically I, the reality, am comparable to a stick that is straight. That is the awareness. What are you? You are bliss in reality, but you experience unhappiness. Why? Due to illusion! What is illusion? The ‘water’ of ignorance! What is ignorance? Body identification! This understanding is what is called awareness. Constantly develop a blended or integrated (outer and inner) awareness. This is what is called Constant Integrated Awareness.
BABA NEVER INFLUENCES ANYONE BECAUSE HE IS THE DOER
Finally, we often say, “I came under the influence of Baba.” People say, “I came under the influence of Baba. He has influenced me.” It is wrong to say that. Baba is not here to influence you. He need not influence you. You are not influenced, and He is not influencing you. To use this word ‘influence’ is wrong in the spiritual field.
You can influence me and I can get influenced by you because you and I are separate. There is a distance between you and me. There is time to influence you; there is time to get influenced by you because we are in time and space. But when God is in you, when Baba is in you, when you and Baba are one, who is influencing whom? Are you influenced? Is He influencing you? No!
Then what is happening? Awareness! Awareness of the fact that He is in me, awareness of the fact that He is the seer, that He is the doer, that He is the indweller, that He is the invisible, unseen reality, the limitless, vast, expansive, immortal, blemishless, eternal oneness of Divinity, the Truth. This should go into our minds, deeper and deeper, as we celebrate His birthday.
The other day I was speaking about what Baba wants us to do—the real way of celebrating His birthday. This morning I want you to apply this aspect of celebrating His birthday: in full awareness, with Constant Integrated Awareness, enjoying Him within, wherever you are, whatever you do, whatever you think, whenever you act. This is Constant Integrated Awareness. Then you will know that you are fully Divine. That is the true spiritual path; that is the true spiritual sadhana.
Because of differences, we are not able to enjoy; because of body identification, we are not united; because of this possessive ego, we are proud. Hatred prevails; there are no human values amongst us because we have no awareness that we are Divine.
Human values are possible only if there is awareness. Human values can be practised if we are integrated personalities, and if this constantly felt experience is preserved and sustained in our lives. So, Constant Integrated Awareness of the Divinity within me will help me to practise the human values.
Today Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba is amidst us, as a human being, to tell us that He is within us. Never think that He is outside you! Never think that you can be away from Him. Never think that you are the doer. No! He makes you do that. The tyres cannot move unless there is a steering that directs the wheels to move; the light cannot illumine unless there is a switch behind it on the wall. So let us know the Divine Director through this process of Constant Integrated Awareness.
May Bhagavan be with you forever and ever! May He bless you in your individual sadhana and also in your community sadhana, so that we lead a perfect spiritual life! Sai Ram!
Asato Maa Sad Gamaya
Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya
Mrtyormaa Amritam Gamaya
Om Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Samastha Loka Sukhino Bhavantu
Om Shanti Shanti Shanti
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