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September 17th, 2006

“Becoming and Being”


Sai Ram

With Pranams at the Lotus Feet of our most Beloved Bhagavan,

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Somebody asked me while I was on my way to this place, “Why don’t you put aside the prepared talk for a while so that we can ask some questions?” OK. So, if you have any questions, you are quite welcome to put them forth.

(Someone from the crowd asks) “What is sadhana chathushtaya?”

Yes. I will discuss sadhana chathushtaya in a lecture form. I’ll make note of it and do it in one full hour talk. Astanga yoga, sadhana chathushtaya—they are very important topics which have to be dealt with at length, that deserve our attention, and prepare us to proceed along the spiritual path. I appreciate it. I’ll make note of it and will definitely do it in one full hour talk.

(To another inquirer) Yes, please.

(Gentleman asks) “Define Baba in a few words, please.”

In two words? (Laughter)

(Gentleman clarifies) “In a few words.”

Oh, you want me to tell about Baba in a few words? (Laughter)


I’ll tell you in one word—LOVE. Why few words? One word is enough—Love. Love. That’s all.” (Applause) One word. (Anil Kumar laughs.) Yes, sir.

Any other, please? Okay. Yes?

(A lady asks) “I am interested in your comment on the relationship between pre-determination and pre-destination, and that Swami knows all, and free will. Because so often they appear to be in conflict—you may have one but how can you have the other?”

Yes. I think all of you could follow her question. I have answered this question many a time in the past, but since the question has been raised right now, I don’t mind repeating it, making it as brief as possible to save time.

Free will Has nothing to do with God’s will

What we call free will has nothing to do with that which is pre-determined. Free will is human choice; that which is pre-determined is the will of God. Pre-determination, or the will of God, may or may not be the same as human will or effort.

For example, I want to be a doctor, but God’s will may not be the same as my preference or choice. Free will is human choice. It is human preference and depends upon likes, dislikes, and the prevailing socio-economic conditions. But pre-determination, God’s will, is quite independent. It does not necessarily coincide with my preferential will or desire.

Human will is a desire, human will is a choice, human will is a preference, and human will is the determination with which you accomplish something. Human will has got ample scope for human effort, in order to accomplish that which one wants, and to realise that which one wishes. Am I clear on that part? Human will is based on choice, preference, effort, likes, and dislikes. I am clear.

Pre-determination is God’s will. A few points about pre-determination: 1) It is quite independent of our own will. It may coincide or it may not. 2) Whatever the pre-determination, God wills it for our own good. 3) The pre-determination of God’s will is based on the merit or karma of the past lives. This means that God’s will or the Divine will or pre-determination or karma depends on our deserving, more than our desiring. We may desire, but we may not deserve. So, God’s will depends more on deserving than desiring.

acceptance of the outcome is Surrender

Now, how does one make both ends meet? Are they parallel? No. My friend, you and I have every choice to desire. You and I have every freedom to will, to desire, to hope, to plan, and to work. But total acceptance of what happens finally is called surrender—acceptance of what happens ultimately, what is kept in store for me in future, what will materialise at the end. If it is accepted totally and unconditionally, it is called surrender. So, acceptance is surrender; whereas rejection or denial is a psychological reaction to a situation that one has determined negative, which one has not accepted.

So, spiritual sadhana (practice) requires one to put in more human effort while preparing to accept whatever happens at the end, with the spirit that everything happens for one’s own good. That’s how we have to link the two. Yes, any more questions, please? Any more questions? Is that okay? Thank you.

To Live with God is a life in THE fire

Now, I would like to share with you a few thoughts this morning. One thing is this: It is not so easy to live with God. It is not so simple to be in the company of a Divine Master. It is not simple. To live in the company of a Divine Master is a challenge. To live with God is a life in the fire. One has to live in fire without getting burnt; one has to walk on a razor’s edge without being cut. Life is a challenge with God. Life is a challenge with a Divine Master.

Sometimes in retrospection, one starts repenting, one starts regretting having been in the company of the Divine Master. Because living close to Him is a matter of choiceless awareness. You cannot choose anything, you cannot opt for anything, you cannot be on your own, and you are not independent. You are programmed; you are designed according to the plan of the Divine Master in whose company you yourself have chosen to live.

If I tell Swami, “Oh, Bhagavan, life here is not interesting,” His immediate answer would be (as I can guess): “I have not invited you to be here.” (Laughter)

If I tell Swami, “Swami, I think I’ll be more comfortable outside,” I am sure He would say, “You are welcome to go.”

And if I tell Him, “To live with You is a challenge which I cannot take anymore,” He would say, “You opted for it; I never asked you.”

Therefore, my friends, living with the Divine Master is what we asked for, what we desired, and therefore we have to take it ungrudgingly, uncomplainingly. If not happily at the beginning, if not joyfully initially, later we get used to it (if not immune to it). (Laughter)

But we should not be immune; we should not be indifferent. Indifference and immunity are negative tendencies. There are some people here who, if you ask, “Oh, you have been in Prashanti Nilayam; how are you here?” Their response will be, “It is alright, getting along.” (Laughter)

It is just indifference. If you ask somebody, “You are with Swami, so how is life?” you may get the answer, “Oh, just like that.” (Laughter) It is simply immunity. If you ask someone, “How are you progressing, advancing spiritually?” he may helplessly say, “He only knows; Baba only knows.” (Laughter) It is confusion!

We do not know what we really want

If you just ask a fellow, “When are you likely to come back to your place?” and he says, “As Baba decides,” it only means he is of two minds. To be or not to be, that is the question.

We are all in some stage or other. I am no exception. You may belong to one category on the list, and I may belong to every category I’ve been sharing with you thus far, because it is not so easy.

Living in the Divine Company of a Divine Master, what happens initially? The beginning years of our stay may be one year or two years. (For some it may be even ten or twenty, depending upon the pace or the speed with which they proceed along the spiritual path.) For the first couple of years, what happens? We will be aware of all that we have lost. If you ask somebody, “How are you?”

“Oh, I left my very big, palatial bungalow there.”

“Oh, is that so.”

If you ask somebody, “How are you here now?”

“Oh, I was in a very good position, big position. But here a seva dal pushed me out.”

Oh, I see. “Sir, how are you here?”

“I am a highly influential man, but nobody greets me here.”

Oh, I see. If you ask anybody, “How are you getting on here?”

“I am just here with nobody, none from my workplace, none from our native place, none from my country, none to speak to me.”

Oh, I see. “Why are you so serious, man, why are you so serious here?”

“There is nothing to smile about, (Laughter) nothing to laugh about, so I am serious.“

If we ask him, “Oh, you have been here quite a long time; what is it that you want from here?” he will say, “I am yet to know, I am yet to know.”

“Well, what is it that you wanted? Did you get what you really wanted?”

He will say, “It takes time. I am yet to know.“ (Laughter)

My friends, this is really interesting. Some of us are aimless here; some of us are here without any idea of what we’re doing; some of us here do not know what we really want; and some of us desire only whatever others get. Yes. “He got an interview; why did I not get it? He got a ring; why should I not get two?” Yes, why not? We just go by all that we see. We just want what others get. But we do not know what we really want. Therefore, my friends, this morning I would like to spend some time on this point because I find many faces which have been here for quite some time.

OUR AIMS ARE DIFFERENT in prashanti nilayam

First question: What do I want while staying in Puttaparthi? What do I want?

Let me first answer this question from a different perspective: There at my native place, in Andhra Christian College, where I served, what was it that I wanted? I wanted the position of head of the department; I wanted the position of principal of the college. I wanted to earn money, I wanted to be influential, and I wanted to be famous.

So, before coming here I had some target, I had some aims and objectives. I could tell how far away I was from my target and how near I was, to what extent I had achieved it and to what extent I could not; who followed my ideals and who achieved what I could not. I had a clear balance sheet. Out of all those ten things I wanted, say five of them I got, while five I could not. Or two I got and eight I could not. Or I could say, “Here are the people there who could be one hundred percent successful.” I could say that there, outside Puttaparthi.

But here in Prashanti Nilayam, can you tell me what I wanted, can I state the aims I have had, the objectives I had, and to what extent I realised them? Or can I say, “Here are a few people who achieved all they wanted, which I could not,” as I had done outside? If I undertake that exercise, it is going to be futile, a total flop, one hundred percent failure. Why?

As a person, I know all that I lost; but I do not understand what I have gained. I see others also in the same situation of confusion. Some are frank enough, but some are not. The more hypocritical one is, the more successful he or she has likely been all down through the ages. So we don’t frankly express ourselves.

Spirituality is a goal-less path

Here come answers from great sages like Ramana Maharshi and Adi Shankara, and from Bhagavan’s literature. I think the answers provided by these men of eminence, who belong to all times, will be able to help us out of this muddle.

Life has got targets, aims, objectives, plans, executions, successes, failures, victories, defeats, losses, profits, and gains. These are all the hard-core realities of life. Nobody outside would say, “I have lost my promotion, thank God.” Nobody would say that. Nobody outside would say, “I am happy to be an utter flop or a total failure.” (Laughter) If anybody says this, then there is something wrong with his mind. He can find his place in a lunatic asylum.

In the outside world, we have certain targets, aims, and objectives. We can say whether we have achieved them or not. If you have achieved them, you are successful; if not, you are a failure. It is clear.

On the spiritual path, we will come to understand in due course of time the naked fact, the naked truth, that spirituality is a goal-less path. (We may understand it in the initial years of our determination to stay here, the honeymoon period; and if emotion brought us here, or a spiritual background, we may understand it sooner.)

It is a goal-less path. It has no aim, it has no goal and it has no end. Spirituality is an endless path; it is a goal-less path; it is an aimless path. (Don’t mistake me to be a madman. I am not yet, though anything may happen in future, after all! But right now, I am quite sane. You can be sure of it.) (Laughter)

So, my friends, spirituality has no aim, it has no goal, it has no end. Take it from me. Why? If I have an aim to be an officer, if I have an aim to be promoted to a higher cadre, the aim is different from my present position. I am a lecturer; my aim is to become a principal. So there is time between the two; there is distance between the two.

My goal is to reach J.F. Kennedy Airport, United States. It requires travel for 21 hours, the time and distance of thousands of miles to reach that destination, JF Kennedy Airport. Likewise Sydney or Melbourne, or wherever you would like--Indira Gandhi Terminal, New Delhi, wherever you want to go. So, to reach a destination you need time and space. To achieve promotion, you need time and effort. Therefore, all worldly targets, all worldly aims and objectives carry these two basic elementary things: time and space.

Spirituality is not about becoming--it is about being

The third thing is different. A simple example: I am a lecturer now, and when I become a principal, it is a different thing. When I am a soldier, if I become a captain, it is a different cadre. So you become something that you are not already. You are going to achieve something that you do not already have. You are going to attain that which you don’t have right now. But spirituality is not that; spirituality is not going to become.

Please understand this point, my friends. Baba has said it many times before, but we think “It’s alright, we know it,” though we do not. Sometimes we feel we have heard something many times, though nothing has changed in our minds. Therefore, please underline this line, benchmark it: Spirituality is NOT becoming, whereas life’s pattern is a process of becoming. The whole outer life pattern is becoming.

“I want to become that; I want to become that and this.” Unfortunately the spiritual field also has come down to the level of becoming. Therefore, it has lost its charm, beauty, and bliss. Because in spiritual organisations, people also feel this way: “Let me be the convener, the president of the Sai Centre, the state president, the national president, veranda-in-charge, carpet-in-charge, or gate-in-charge.” (Laughter) Why? To be discharged out. (Laughter) We want to be in charge of something . . . at least let me be in charge of this table, because I cannot live without being in charge of anything! (Laughter) This is the tragedy which occurs even in spiritual organizations!

we need to remember we are in a spiritual centre

Therefore, my friends, this nasty disease—I tell you, this horrible disease, this cancerous feeling of trying to become has affected the spiritual field also. That is the reason why people have (to quote Baba) “very castor-oil faces”. (Baba says that, it is not my wording. I am not capable of coining such funny words.) Imagine, caster oil! Why are people so serious? “When am I going to become in charge of this?” Arre, arre, arre!

Are you in charge of yourself? You are not in charge of yourself in the first place! No. If you are in charge of your Self, you will never die. If you are identified with your Self, there will never be moments of misery or sadness. If you are one with your Self, you will not dominate anybody. If you are your Self, you will always be happy. But are we so? No.

“I am in charge of you! I am in charge of you—of making you miserable!” (Laughter) “I am in charge of you, of pushing you out!” “I am in charge of you, so I can shout at you!” Thus we can make others miserable and sad, shouting at every person, being in charge.

But we are not in charge of our own Self. We are only getting by in life, in misery and sadness, even in a spiritual centre. This is because our parameters happen to be the same as if we were in the outside world. Only the canvas has changed. But the painting is the same. The canvas is the world outside; the canvas is the spirituality here. But the painting of caster oil faces is the same, really! Or else we should be very joyful here; we should be smiling, blissful, welcoming, friendly, lovable, and respectable. There should be one hundred percent brotherhood here.

Why are some of us not like that? Why? “If you happen to sit at the place where I sit, you are going to be my bitterest enemy.” It is as if that place belongs to me!

Therefore, my friends, first we have to be clear about the fact that we are in a spiritual centre, a spiritual place where the state of becoming is non-existent. The feeling of becoming is foolish, while the effort to become is an act of ignorance. The thought of having to become is a reflection of ignorance. So ignorance and foolishness alone prompt us to make every effort to become; to become in charge of that or this, to become influential, to have VIP status, and so on. These are all transitory states of becoming.

You are a VIP this morning, but by afternoon you may be a ‘very insignificant person’. Who knows? Who knows? We have seen many VIP’s like that--very important in the morning and next, very insignificant in the afternoon. We have seen that happen here. Therefore, my friends let us be clear that the concept of becoming has NO relevance, has NO application, and is most insignificant on the spiritual path.

Then, what is the spiritual path? It is not becoming; it is one of being. It is one of being.

However, one might say, “Arre, what is this?” There is some charm in becoming; there is some incentive in becoming; there is some glitter, glamour, allure, illusion, and attraction in becoming. So what is it that happens in being? If I become someone, I can at least allow you sit in the front row. If I become someone, I can at least push you back. So in becoming, there is something there for me. But in being, there is nothing!

Therefore, we want to become and we don’t want to know what charm there is in being.

Some points about being and becoming

So let us learn. I’ll spend a couple of moments differentiating becoming and being.

* Being is what you are in the ever-present present; becoming is something future-oriented, something to happen in the future.

* Being is not an achievement; it is not attained. It is who you are. Becoming is an achievement; it is attained. It is something separate from you.

* Being is not about recognition; it is about realisation. Becoming is about one who seeks recognition. Becoming is recognition, while being is realisation.

* Being is beyond time and space. Becoming is within the limitations of time and space.

* Being is eternal, immortal. Becoming is fleeting, ephemeral, momentary.

* Being is changeless; becoming is changeable, like governments. (Governments come and go with no conscience. We do not know the names of some ministers because their portfolios go on changing. By the time I begin to remember, there may be another man in that place, or the government may have fallen.) Becoming is changeable, goes on changing. Being is changeless.

* Becoming is variation, variety, multiplicity, plurality, duality. One is a collector, one is an ambassador, one is a judge, one is a professor, and another is a minister--variety. Variety is part of becoming. Being is uniformity, homogeneity, simplicity. So complexity and variety is becoming, while simplicity, unity and uniformity are being.

* Becoming is worldly; being is spiritual.

* Becoming is individual; being is cosmic and universal. Becoming is individual, while being is Divine.

* Becoming is a drop; being is an ocean.

* Becoming is a jewel; being is gold.

* Becoming has got two points—name and form; being is nameless and formless.

My friends! What a world of difference there is between becoming and being! One is earth; the other is sky. If we want to live in a place where being is as important as the aim of becoming, I don’t think we will find that place, as there is no relationship, coherence, integration, or trace of synthesis between the two. Water and fire cannot go together. Water extinguishes fire. Similarly, being and becoming cannot go together. Becoming is worldly, while being is spiritual. This is a spiritual centre, so being is important, not becoming.

THE value at a spiritual center is found in Being

When one wants to become here, or becoming grows important at this centre, what nonsense it is! What Himalayan confusion it is! When people are serious, when people are mad after power, when people are mad after influence, when people are mad after positions, when people are mad after what you call control, domination, ego, they will necessarily be sad and miserable at a spiritual centre.

Rupees do not matter in America. In America, it is dollars, whereas in India, it is rupees. Rupees do not matter in America because their currency is dollars. Likewise, the foreign exchange value in a spiritual centre is being. The ‘foreign exchange’ there in the world is becoming. How can you have this dollar (being) in exchange for rupees (the process of becoming)? It has no value.

Therefore my friends, if we really want to smile wholeheartedly, if we really want to enjoy this place, if we really want to be blissful, if we really want to be friendly, if we want to make our life meaningful, purposeful and joyful; if we want to make our life music and dance at a spiritual centre like this, let us have this description, this eternal theme, of being and not becoming.

being means learning how not to do

This being is not the one of effort—no. For becoming, you have to put in a lot of effort. You have to polish; you have to please your boss. Yes, sometimes you have to compromise; sometimes you have to sacrifice your values; sometimes you have to kill your conscience in the process of becoming. Plus effort is always necessary. But in being, silence is enough. In being, meditation is enough. In being, withdrawal of the mind is enough. No effort, nothing; just, let me remain silent.

Somebody asked Ramana Maharshi, “Swami, what shall I do to attain immortality (moksha)?”

Ramana Maharshi said, “The only thing you have to do is not to do.” (Laughter) “The only thing to do is not to do.” Arre, what is this man speaking? He is almost naked. His answers also are the naked truth. He is not only naked physically, but all his words are naked, true facts.

Somebody asked him, “Swami, what is that you said? You want me not to do?”

Then Ramana Maharshi explained that whatever you do is prompted by the mind; whatever you do is your thought-process in action.

Thought in action is done, dharma. You do that which is prompted by your thoughts; and mind is the centre of thought—something like a generator, a centre of energy, a centre of electricity. Mind is the centre of thoughts, and these thoughts are translated into action. Whatever you do--worship or circumambulation around the temple or pilgrimage--they are all acts, actions prompted by thoughts, originated out of the mind. So not doing—meaning withdrawal of your thoughts, withdrawal of your mind, absence of mind, the thoughtless state—is liberation.

the very being is what you already are

Therefore my friends, the very being is what I am; the very being is what you are. But we have forgotten about it. I am what I am. Sadly, I want to be something different—what I am not.

A simple example: If I behave like a doctor right now, I’ll be the best instrument in solving the population problem because I am not a doctor. (Laughter) So in becoming, you lead an artificial life. In becoming, you will be a failure at one time or the other. In becoming, you have to receive shocks, bumps, jumps, lashes and slashes, sighs, and smiles.

But in being, there is neither a sigh nor a smile; there are neither bumps nor jumps; there are neither jolts, nor promotions, nor reversions because the very being is what you are already--what you have been, what you are, what you will continue to be.

In becoming, there is some tension, there is some fear. Now I am in charge of that, but tomorrow I may be removed, tomorrow I may be reverted, tomorrow I may be suspended, tomorrow I may be dismissed. In the state of becoming, you are always unstable; you are always in a state of disturbed mind. In becoming, you are always comparative and competitive because there is another man behind you who is ready to occupy your position. Becoming is a rat-race. Becoming is a struggle, a strain, laborious, tedious, and ultimately makes us weak.

We have seen in life how people are vexed, how people are tired by trying to become. When they don’t become what they want, they are frustrated, they are depressed, they are rebellious, they are negative, and they are retaliatory. Sometimes they turn anti-social, or become irreligious, non-spiritual, losing their faith because becoming is always shaky, this way or that way . . . whereas in contrast, being is stability. Being is equanimity, being is equality, being is immortality, being is permanent, everlasting—your birthright.

we don’t know why we are so serious

When such a thing as this is there on spiritual path, what is the need to be serious? Some people don’t have reason to be serious.

Yesterday one boy was looking like that (he makes a sad expression) into the empty air while I was teaching in the class. (Laughter) I told him, “Look here, what happened to you? You are, after all, a first-year degree student, about just 15 or 16 years. What family problems have you? How many children have you? (Laughter) Are you having any income tax problems or any professional problems? Why are you so serious?”

That fellow says, “Ah, no sir, no problem.”

“Then why are you looking like that?” He didn’t know.

Our upbringing is such that we don’t know why we are so serious. If you just look at some people sitting there on the verandah or sitting somewhere else, they are very serious in the name of spirituality. (Laughter)

I feel like going to them and saying, “Why don’t you consult some physician or a psychiatrist preferably?” (Really, we don’t need to go for humor anywhere; we don’t need to joke with anybody. We can joke with our own selves. We have become the best jokers of the day with our own selves.)

“Why are you serious?”

“I don’t know.”

“Why don’t you smile?”

“I don’t know.”

“What do you want?”

“I don’t know.”

Then this is enough of a joke for the century! (Laughter)

We are like a rat caught in a drum

My friends, we are like this because we are not definite about our concepts. We are not sure of our path—this way, that way. Baba said, “It seems a rat is caught in a mridangum (a drum).” In drums, a rat can get caught. If a fellow beats the drum this way (indicating the left side), the rat runs towards the other side. If you beat that way (indicating the right side), the rat will run this way.” So if Swami looks at me—appa!—I am highly spiritual. When He ignores me, totally non-spiritual.

The convener in charge is highly faithful, fully loyal, quotes scriptures, and quotes Swami. When once he is out of that convener position, discharged out of being in charge of the carpet at least, we begin to question his spiritual path. It is something like a rat caught in the drum, as Baba puts it.


Therefore, my friends, we are not sure of our path and we are not definite of our path because we are not clear in our concepts. Once we understand, we begin to jump in joy and we begin to dance. We will not have any regrets; we will not repent or have any worries. We will not be anxious anymore. In fact, there are none to compete; there are none to feel jealous of; there is nothing to feel egoistic about. Why? Because we are in a field of realisation, of being.

Once you are in the field of realisation of being, there is nothing to feel envious about. There is no jealousy, none to compete with, none to dominate, no reason to be serious or to cry or shed tears. There is every reason to be bubbling with joy. There is every reason to have our face appear in a floodlight of smiles. Why not? I have nothing to gain; I have nothing to lose. Because I was, I am, and I will be that being. No one can rob, no one can steal, no one can dethrone, no one can use up, and no one can substitute that state of my being. So there is no threat of losing that being. There is no chance of losing that being because I am what I am. The moment I am away from that, there is tension. The moment I am away from my being, there is tension, and there is pretension for lack of attention.

So, when I run away, when I am away from my being, all the states of duality appear. What is the centre point of my life? The centre point of my life is my very being. When I am at the centre point of my life, becoming is only peripheral; becoming is only at the circumference, even if the circumference or periphery becomes bigger and bigger, wider and wider, larger and larger. In fact there is only one centre. At the peripheral level, we are all different. But the centre, all are one. That centre is our very being.

Therefore my friends, our stay in any ashram, our stay in any temple, our stay with any guru, our stay with any spiritual master is only for the realisation of, the experience of, the identification with this being. It is our job to constantly contemplation on and meditate on our being. All this is only possible when we forget becoming.

Let us enjoy life

That is the reason why, my friends, my constant job is to always make a person smile whenever I meet him and look into his face. I don’t leave him until I make him smile. I don’t leave him; no, no, he should smile! Let us enjoy life.

Once one man said, “All through my life, I died to attain some position. Throughout my life, I died to raise my family; I died to build up properties and buildings. But at the time of death, I realised that I never lived, that I had never lived.”

Therefore my friends, let us live our lives. We don’t live our lives. If at all we live our lives, we should be smiling, we should be happy. See the flowers: no flower complains. Flowers smile. But we don’t smile. We may doubt, watching some faces, whether they have teeth or not. (Laughter) It doesn’t matter even if they have lost their teeth. The dentist would have done a better job by removing all their teeth because their teeth are not useful to them or to others if they don’t smile. (Laughter)

So life means joy, life means bliss, life means smiles, life means music. Seriousness is death, misery is death, unhappiness is death, complaining is half-dead, competition is half-dead. Satisfaction is life; love is life. I can love anybody.

If someone says, “I can love people only of my standard,” know that he has no standards. (Laughter) If they say, “I can love people only of my stature,” understand that they have no stature.

Love has no stature, love has no standard, and love has no levels. Love is ethereal. Love is nectarine. Love is oceanic! Love is vast space. Love is a cool breeze. Love is beauty! Love is fragrance! Love is aroma, aroma.

Therefore, when our lives—when your life—is full of love, there is nothing to ask for in this life. Even if there is anybody to give you a billion dollars, you will say “Choddho (Leave it), I don’t want it.” Because a million dollars will be followed by a million punishments. A million dollars will be followed by a billions tears, repentances, worries, and anxieties. Plus your enemies will multiply limitlessly.

True love wants you to love everybody

So, if you want to buy enmity, run after power. If you want to buy enemies, come on, run after positions. If you want more people to hate you, come on, be in charge of something. But if you want to win friends, if you want to be happy within yourself, if you want to be comfortable with yourself, if you want to be blissful, there is only one currency--LOVE. That love makes you move freely with everybody, irrespective of cadre, class, position, dignity, status, knowledge, scholarship, community or caste. These are all cheap, mean things.

True love wants you to love everybody--a cat, a scholar, a monkey, a scientist, a flower, a union cabinet minister. A fruit vendor or a flower vendor on the street is as important as the prime minister of this country. That’s how I feel about it.

Whenever I talk to my friends at the college gate, such as the watchman (I want this to go on record, it doesn’t matter), that watchman at the gate will always smile and say, “How are you, sir, how are you?” I see on his face joy a million times more than a billionaire. I see joy on his face more than on the face of the richest man, a man occupying the highest position.

I tell him, “God bless you with this smile throughout. If at all I have to copy anybody, you are the man I want to copy, not anybody else.”

Therefore, my friends, I do not know why my thoughts are flowing in this direction even though I have written something else to talk to you about today. (Laughter) This is the miracle of Baba. Some people ask me, “Anil Kumar, can you tell us the latest miracle?” This is the latest miracle: I wanted to talk to you about one thing, but I spoke to you about something different. (Laughter) But anyway, you can have the caption for this morning’s talk: “Becoming and Being”.

May Bhagavan help us to realise the real state of our being--what we were, what we are, what we continue to be eternally. May God bless you! May Baba shower His choicest blessings in our sincere attempt to realise ourselves—not anything foreign, not anything alien, not anything new, not anything outside, but that which is within.

Sai Ram! (Applause)

there is no death and there is no birth

(A gentleman from the audience asks :) “Will death also be afraid of me, when I find my being?”

Death is not true; death is totally false. Birth is just as false as death. Birth and death are totally false. The appearance of the body is birth; the disappearance of the body is death. But you are permanent; we as being-ness are permanent. You have taken the body--that is your birth date. You will withdraw from the body—that is the so-called ‘death’. You actually never die because you (as being) were never born. You are eternal. You were never born and you will never die.

People say, “Ah, let me die.”

When people say, “Let me die,” they are referring to their impermanent name and form, not to their eternal being. “Let me be born again” refers to the next transient name and form, not their eternal being. Therefore, when we realise our being, there is no death, because there is no birth. We have no beginning and no ending. It is a beginning-less, endless, eternal, sweet, beautiful, continuous journey. The journey of life is in our very being—that is our reality. That is Sat-Chit-Ananda, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

Sai Ram! (Applause)

(Anil Kumar sings the bhajan, “Jai Jai Prabhu Giridhari Natavara Nandalala.”)


Asato Maa Sad Gamaya

Tamaso Maa Jyotir Gamaya

Mrtyormaa Amrtam Gamaya

Om Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu

Om Shanti Shanti Shanti


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