Thought for the Day - As written at Prasanthi Nilayam

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August 2004

August 1, 2004

Worldly life is full of sorrow and suffering. Lord Krishna said in the Gita - "Anityam asukham loke imam prapya bhajasvamaam" meaning the world is ephemeral and full of misery; contemplate on Me constantly. Having taken human birth, you must find fulfillment in life. You must pursue a noble path. Do not get inflated by praise; be above praise and blame. Foster peace. Where is peace? It is not available in the market ready for sale! Peace is to be found within you. In the world outside you find only 'pieces'.

August 2, 2004 - Guru Poornima

Reduce your attachment to the body. As your attachment to the body increases, your suffering also increases along with it. Consider your body as the temple of God. It is God's gift to you. Use the body for performing sacred deeds and attaining bliss; you will experience divinity. Continue your spiritual practices. Always be suffused with the feeling that God is in you, above you, below you, around you. Strengthen this feeling in you and shape your life accordingly. Lead your life with love.

August 3, 2004

Meditate on the truth and you will find that you are but a sparkling bubble upon the waters; born on water, living for a brief moment on water and merging back in to it. You owe your birth to God; you subsist on God and you merge in God. Every living thing, and for that matter, even non-living things have to reach that consummation. So do it now; take the first step. Purify your heart, sharpen your intellect or atleast start chanting the name of God. The rest will follow in due course of time.

August 4, 2004

The Divine is like intoxicating wine. It is produced by the nectar of the Lord's name. Taste it but once and you will forget everything else; you are transformed. Man is, they say, a monkey that has lost its tail; well, he must lose many more attributes of the monkey before he is entitled to call himself man. He must dedicate his thoughts, words and deeds to God and surrender himself to His will. Only then is this 'animal' entitled to become a man in whom the Divine is enshrined.

August 5, 2004

Proceeding along the road, you can watch your shadow falling on mud or dirt, hollow or mound, thorn or sand, wet or dry patches of land. You are unaffected by the fate of your shadow, is it not? Nor is the shadow made dirty thereby. It does not worry in the least where it falls or what it wades through. We know that the shadow and its experiences are not eternal or true. Similarly, you must get convinced that 'you' are but the shadow of the Absolute and you are essentially not this 'you' but the Absolute itself. That is the remedy for all sorrows and pains.

August 6, 2004

Nothing can illumine an object that does not reflect light; but a flame illumines itself and sheds light all around. God is self-luminous; He illumines all. He is beyond Nature which is but a manifestation of His glory. He can be seen only through the eye of wisdom that can be won only by His grace. Engage yourself in Sadhana (spiritual practice) which will secure the grace of God. That will grant you the eye of wisdom.

August 7, 2004

Be like a bee drinking the nectar of every flower; not like the mosquito that drinks blood and spreads diseases in return. Consider all as children of the Lord, as your brothers and sisters. Cultivate love and always seek the welfare of humanity. Love and you will be loved in return. Hate will never be your lot if you promote love and look upon all with love. If you want to attain Me, cultivate love and give up hatred, envy, anger, cynicism and falsehood. I do not ask that you should be a scholar or a recluse or an ascetic skilled in Japa (recitation of God's name) and Dhyana (meditation). Is your heart full of love, that is all I examine.

August 8, 2004

Like underground water, the Divine is inherent in everyone. He is the Atma (soul). He is in you as much as in everyone else. His spark illumines the cave of the heart of everyone. Just like the sun that shines equally on all, His grace spreads equally on all. It is you who erect obstacles that prevent the rays of His grace from warming your heart. Do not blame the Lord for your ignorance and foolishness. Underground water wells up in a gushing spring when a bore is sunk down to that depth. Similarly, when by constant chanting of His name, you touch the spring of divinity, it will gush out in cool plenty and bring unending joy.

August 9, 2004

Utilise the world as a means to an end; do not desire to stay in it. It is a bridge wide and strongly built leading back to the source. But, can any pilgrim build a house on it for himself? The cosmos is changing constantly. The minutes that have passed cannot be retrieved, even if tempted with a billion rupees. The past is not ours anymore; the present slips from our grasp; and the future is uncertain. In spite of this, bonds of attachment keep growing. This is the greatest illusion.

August 10, 2004

If you have Shanti (peace) within, the world will appear like a quiet, peaceful place. If you have Ashanti (agitation) within, the world will be full of Ashanti. Shanti is to be won by Sadhana (spiritual practice), not by study of books. One judge reads huge volumes and delivers one judgement for a case while another judge reads the same books and delivers quite an opposite judgement for the same case. Books are just guides for a small part of the journey. Thereafter, you have to find the way yourself.

August 11, 2004

It is to clear the path of spiritual progress of man that the Avatar (Divine incarnation) has come. The Ashanti (unrest) in which man is immersed has to be removed. That is what is meant by "Parithraanaaya sadhoonam" or protection of the virtuous as declared in Bhagavad Gita; saving good individuals from the tentacles of Ashanti or grief caused by ignorance of the unimportance of worldly things. All individuals must get Shanti (peace) and Santhosha (happiness), that is the mission on which the Lord comes again and again on Earth. He takes on a human form so that you may meet Him and talk to Him, understand and appreciate, listen and follow, experience and benefit.

August 12, 2004

Intelligence being the special mark of humans, every effort must be made to amplify and sharpen it. Along with intelligence, character too has to be cultivated in equal measure, for then alone can that intelligence be used to serve society. The readiness to renounce one's pleasure in order to relieve the burden of another is a prime virtue. When asked as to which is the most valuable object, everyone says gold or diamonds. But who cuts the diamond to expose its lustre? Who finds the ores of gold deep within the Earth? It is man who is really most valuable and his strength lies in his capacity to purify his thoughts, words and deeds.

August 13, 2004

Man is burdened with the delusion that the temporary is eternal. Long identification has trained him so; so he has to be re-educated into the right vision. The absolute reality that persists unchanged is this ' I '. All else is unreal, appearing as real. The ' I ' in you is Paramatma (God) Himself. The waves play with the wind for a moment over the deep waters of the sea. It gives you the impression that it is separate from the ocean below., but it is just an appearance - a creation of the two ideas of Name and Form. Get rid of the two ideas and the wave disappears into the sea; its reality flashes upon you and you realise that God is present in man as Love.

August 14, 2004

The grace of God cannot be won through the gymnastics of reason, the contortions of yoga or the denials of asceticism. Love alone can win it- Love that needs no requital, Love that is unwavering, Love that knows no bargaining. Love that is offered gladly as tribute to the All-loving. Love alone can overcome obstacles, however many and difficult.

August 15, 2004

Wherever you may be, in whatever country, do not give room for religious differences. Do not give up your religion, adhere to your faith and tradition. When differences between religions are given up, love will develop in you. When love grows, you can have a direct vision of God. Without love, mere verbal prayers are of no avail. Realise that the Love that is present in everyone is the same. It is that common bond of love of God that binds everyone.

August 16, 2004

Believing that the world as cognised during the waking state is real and that the highest goal is the attainment of happiness in that world, man accumulates the instruments and symbols of that happiness; he fashions after his own taste and inclination, the laws, ideals, institutions and principles that would bolster that happiness. But can the goal of Life be just this - to struggle amidst the waves of joy and grief that rise and fall in this visible objective world, to be carried along the current of desire, gathering food, shelter, comfort and pleasure, and finally, to flounder into the jaws of death? If man too leads life in this manner, verily he is no better than a mere animal.

August 17, 2004

No one can liberate you, for no one has bound you. You hold on to the nettle of worldly pleasures and you weep in pain. The kite is pursued by crows so long as it carries the fish in its beak; it twists and turns in the sky trying to dodge the crows that seek to snatch the fish; tired at last, it drops the fish. That moment it is free. So, give up attachment to the senses, then grief and worry can harass you no more.

August 18, 2004

When one's inner reactions and agitations are sublimated, all that one experiences through the senses, the mind and the intellect take on a divine lustre and reveal their divine core. When man's heart is full of love, he can be in the world and yet be unaffected by it. All activity will then be for the Almighty, for His Grace, and through His will.

August 19, 2004

When in difficulty, pray for guidance before making a decision. Men can give you advice only as far as their intelligence can reach, but the Lord who illumines the intellect will reveal to you the way out of the difficulty. Have patience and wait prayerfully. Prayer can bring about the impossible. Sing the glory of the Lord and repeat His name. That will bring success.

August 20, 2004

Dreams are unreal; they are illusory. Yet, for as long as we are dreaming, the experience appears to be real and valid. Often in these dreams, we experience such extreme fear, pain or excitement we awaken and the dream dissolves away. Thus, the dream itself led to the awakening. So too, in this waking dream - the illusory world, where every experience is deemed true and valid, the teachings of the Vedas awaken man into Higher Awareness.

August 21, 2004

Man has to give up the pursuit of sensory objects if he seeks lasting peace and joy. Material wealth brings with it not only joy but also grief. Accumulation of riches, multiplication of wants - these lead only to alternation between joy and grief. Attachment is the root of both joy and grief; detachment is the saviour. Feel that your family, your house and your possessions are all the Lord's property and you are only the trustee.

August 22, 2004

A fine diamond, even if it is in a heap of garbage, will not lose its brilliance or its value. Likewise, the glory and greatness of good men will suffer no diminution in whatever circumstances or situation they may be placed. Such divine effulgence is shining in every human being. Love is an expression of this effulgence. To manifest this love, men must bear every kind of suffering. The human being is like the sugarcane, filled with the juice of love. It is only when he is subjected to hardships that the divine, sweet juice of love can flow from him.

August 23, 2004

Purify your emotions; make your mind strong to resist the force of ignorance and the wiles of the senses - then you are assured of peace and joy. You maintain health by physical exercise, similarly mental health must be maintained by means of certain spiritual exercises or sadhana. For example, by means of pure food, the mind can be rendered pure and sharp; it can then cut through obstacles and temptations and rend asunder the veil of misconception. You must also try to be constantly in a good environment and in good company.

August 24, 2004

Practice the attitude of offering every act at the feet of God as a flower is offered in worship. Make every breath an offering to Him. Do not be upset by calamities; take them as acts of Grace. Understand that nothing happens without His Will; everything that happens has a deeper significance attached to it. When you know that the Lord is the Ultimate Cause, the source of all, you will deal with everyone in a humble and respectful manner. This is the easiest path to Divinity.

August 25, 2004

Service is the most difficult of the nine steps to God. It is basically the action arising out of the yearning to win the grace of God. It is the most important step to erase the ego. Through service alone can man attain mastery of the senses, the passions and the predilections, and through that reach Divinity. Love expresses itself as service, and God is Love.

August 26, 2004

Egoism is a thorny bush, which when planted and fostered in one's heart, makes one pay the penalty. Egoism makes enemies of even dearest friends; it ruins many good causes and projects, for it does not allow two competent men to work together. Grief follows it like a shadow. Joy, peace, courage, co-operation and love flourish in the absence of the ego. When man is aware that the same Divine consciousness that motivates him is equally motivating all others, then love ousts the ego to the background and takes charge of man's actions, words and thoughts.

August 27, 2004

There is no discipline equal to service to smother the ego and to fill the heart with genuine joy. To condemn service as demeaning and inferior is to forego these benefits. If a wave of service sweeps over the land, catching everyone in its enthusiasm, it will be able to wipe off the mounds of hatred, malice and greed that infest the world. Attune your hearts so that it will vibrate in sympathy with the woes and joys of your fellowmen and fill the world with your love.

August 28, 2004

Onam is the festival of Lord Vamana's advent as well as Emperor Bali's transformation. Lord Vishnu approached Bali in the guise of a Brahmin boy named Vamana and asked for a gift of just three paces of land. His preceptor Sukracharya however, dissuaded him. Bali replied that there was no greater sin than going back on one's words and he upheld the promise made to Vamana. Bali was prepared to undergo any misery while upholding truth and thus attained to eternal life through truth and love. This is the lesson that we must learn from Bali's life. Body is like a water bubble, mind is like a mad monkey. Don't follow the body, don't follow the mind; follow your conscience, for conscience is deathless.

August 29, 2004

There is no living being without the spark of love; even a mad man loves something or somebody intensely. But, you must recognise this love as but a reflection of the Premaswarupa (embodiment of Love) that is your reality, of the God who is residing in your heart. Without that spring of Love that gushes forth from your heart, you will not be prompted to love at all. Recognise that spring, rely on it more and more, envelop the whole world with it, discarding all traces of selfishness. Do not seek anything in return for it from those to whom you extend it.

August 30, 2004

Move towards the light and the shadow falls behind; move away from the light and you have to follow your own shadow. Go every moment one step nearer to the Lord and then Maya (illusion), the shadow, will fall behind and will not delude you at all. Be steady and resolved. Do not commit a mistake or take a false step and repent later. To make the right decision first is better than having to regret for a mistake committed.

August 31, 2004

All religions teach one basic discipline, the removal of egoism and giving up petty desires. Every religion teaches man to fill his being with the glory of God and evict the pettiness of conceit. It trains him in methods of detachment and discrimination, so that he may aim high and attain liberation. Believe that all hearts are motivated by the One and only God; all Faiths glorify the One and only God; all names in all languages and all Forms that man can conceive of, denote the One and the only God who is best worshipped through pure Love. Cultivate that Ekabhava (the attitude of oneness) towards men of all creeds in all lands.


Online source: Radio Sai Global