FROM 15th Annual Convention of the Children for Sathya Sai Alumnai meet
QUESTION: What is purity of thought? How can we achieve it?
ANSWER: Purity is the basis of everything. Selflessness is purity. There is nothing pure than selfless thought. If you think about yourself, your well being, your welfare that is not purity. If you think about others without any expectations that is purity. How to develop it? Only if you have tremendous faith in God, that I need not worry about myself because God will look after all my needs, then you can become selfless. Till then, out of fear for your own self, your future, you will never allow yourself to lead a selfless life. Develop the faith that Swami will look after all my needs that Swami will give me whatever is required, whenever it is required, wherever it is required, how much ever it is required at the right time. I need not even ask, without asking He will give me. If we have that kind of tremendous faith we can become selfless. We will not hide and store things for the sake of protecting ourselves, our future. We should be ready to sacrifice everything for others sake, for God will look after us. This kind of faith will lead to selflessness. Only a selfless thought is a pure thought. Only a pure thught will lead to pure words. Only pure words will lead to pure actions.
What is Karma Yoga? That which leads you to God is Karma Yoga. Karma becomes Yoga. Only selfless acts lead you towards God therefore selfless acts are Karma Yoga. Without fear for yourself, without worrying for your future; if you can act speak and think, without concern for yourself, this is a pure life.
QUESTION:Swami, How can we live our daily life while recognising that you are the doer?
ANSWER: Are you putting in efforts to breathe? Who is digesting your breakfast and lunch? Are you putting in efforts to digest this food? From the beginning, from your birth to death, your heart and body functions on its own without any ones support. The heart goes on beating on its own. Who is doing all these things? Without all these things can you do anything? You may be a great singer, a great speaker, a great engineer or doctor, whatever you are it is possible for you to do that ony because God is looking after all these things within you. The moment you think like this you will know the you are not the doer. It is HE who makes all this happen so that you can acquire some knowledge, develop some skills so that you can do these professions and lead your lives. Therefore, meditate on the breath, SoHum, I am That. Then when ego rises up inside of you, attachments trouble you, sit down in a quiet space and concentrate on your breathing. Say "So Hum So Hum, I Am That, I am That." It is THAT which is doing this through me. Then our ego will disappear.
QUESTION: Swami often we start spiritual activity and service activities but then we are not able to sustain them as our personal priorities start to take precedence. How do we manage this?
ANSWER: You might be getting ready for the office in the morning. You might have woken up late. Then you run late for breakfast at home. You say to yourself dont worry I will have breakfast at the office. If something gets delayed at the office you may not have breakfast. But your stomach keeps reminding you. You may not be able to walk, talk or do things for lack of energy. You will at least have your lunch. Even if you are really busy and decide to miss your lunch you will definitely have your dinner. Without food we can not live even for one day. If that is the kind of priority you give to seva then where is the question of postponing it? The way we dont forget to eat for even one day or we donít forget to sleep, likewise we can not forget to do seva. Make seva an integral part of your life. We may postpone it because of some issues but ultimately we must end up doing it. Postponing is the sign of weakness. People keep postponing, postponing, postponing good work.
One day Krishna went to Karna. Karna was applying oil to his hair. In his right hand he had the oil in his left hand he had the oil resin. Krishna approached and asked him, "I want you to give me this oil". Immediately Karna extended his left hand and offered it to Krishna. Krishna only wanted to demonstrate Karnas grant sense of giving. He told Karna, " Don't you know the right tradition. You should not give anything with your left hand. Give with your right hand." Then Karna told, "Lord what is there that you do not know? My right hand is smeared with oil. If I had to go and wash my hand and then come and give it to you, I do not know if my mind might change therefore I can not trust my mind. It may postpone giving this oil to you. It may think of itself and retain the oil for itself. Therefore, without losing a moment I want to give it to you. Our Minds are like this. Whatever bad is there immediately it wants to do it. Whatever is good the mind postpones it. Instead, whatever is good you must do it immediately without thinking of the consequences. Whatever is bad think of the consequences and do not do it - postpone that ! It depends on you ! What you choose to do. Train yourself to do this way.
QUESTION: How do we involve more Alumni and motivate more Alumnai to take up your actvities?
ANSWER: First you be motivated ! Lead by example and others will simply follow. If Narayan Bhatt had not been motivated led the way do you think all these people would be around him? ! If I did not lead the life of sacrifice and service do you think that all of you would have been around me?! Therefore by thoughts we can not motivate. We will frustrate people by talking more. Instead, do and demonstrate and that way you can motivate more. First you do ! Your actions will speak for yourself. Dont waste words.
QUESTION: Swami you have always said that we must have a one to one relationship with you. How do we distinguish your voice from thoughts in our head?
ANSWER: In this hall all of us are seated. Only I am speaking. Because I am speaking you are able to listen. If you all also start speaking simultaneously we do not know who is speaking to whom and which is Swami's voice and which is the others. So first learn to quieten your mind. Your mind has a tendency to keep giving you bad advice all the time. If you control the mind and make it quiet, like all of you are quiet here, then you can hear the voice of Swami.
How do we quieten the mind? You see there are toys that children play with. If you put a battery in a toy car the car will keep running around and around and around. Toy train will keep moving around and around. Toy helicopter will keep flying around and around. The moment the battery is finished the helicopter will fall to the ground, the train will stop, the car will not move.
The energy to the mind is breath. When you breathe fast, if you take too much breath, the mind will become energised and become uncontrollable like an energetic small child. However, if you slow down your breathing, and give only so much breath to your mind it will lose this unnecessary restlessness and calm down. Control your breath that way you will control your mind. Your mind will quieten and you will hear my voice more and more.
Even when a mother is walking in the kitchen and there is so much of noise in the kitchen; the baby in the cradle even makes a slight sound the motherís ears are always tuned to the baby voice. Despite all the noise around she is able to hear the babies cry. If you have that kind of attachement to me you will be able to listen to me wherever you are. Even admist all activities or a place of silence you have to go on tuning your ears to me.
There are so many musicians who play music here. Even if one note goes wrong a good musician will be able to tell. He may not be knowing what is happening with the others but even if one shruti goes wrong his ears are so tuned that he will pick it up and point it out. The same way the more you practice, by listening to my advice and quietening the mind, the more you become perfect. Practice in a silent space, like you practice driving a car in an open empty ground, so that there are no distractions. Once we have good control of the car we can go onto a road full of traffic. Even though there are so many people around you will be able to drive the car and not get distracted there. First, practice this way.
Secondly, you may get two answers to a question. Remember, the one that is selfless is mine. The one that is selfish is yours. If you follow my advice the next moment peace will decend on you. The proof of the rain is the wetness of the soil. The proof of you having followed my words is the immediate peace that fills your heart. There is no confusion. All doubts are put to rest. Try ! Unless you practice you will not be able to see the results. You may make a few mistakes initially yet with constant practice you will be able to hear me.
QUESTION: Swami, we know that everything happens because of your wish and will. Yet, when something negative happens to us we get upset and we get into a negative mindset. How to we get out of this negative mind set and still accept that it is all your will?
ANSWER: Everything is Divine Will. All is a drama. Everything is an act written by God. If you are in India you have to follow the rules of India. If you go to America you have to follow the rules of America. In India they drive on one side of the road and America they drive on the other side of the road. You have to follow the rules of the place you are in. You cant imagine that you are in America and drive that way in India. In the USA you must drive on the right. We have Free Will and that is which comes in the way of Divine Will. Free Will comes in the world of duality. I tell you to do certain things, the heart tells you to do certain things but your mind comes and obstructs it. Everytime you follow the mind rest assure that will lead you to sorrow. If not today at least tomorrow. Therefore, always constantly follow the heart. Then you can say that it is Gods Will. So, why do I allow you to follow the mind? So that you make mistakes, you suffer, you learn from it and donít repeat the same mistake. Everytime something goes wrong, something goes bad, know that something in you is selfish, something is not Divine and that has led you to this misery. Next time by this constant contemplation, concentration and meditation you will get rid of what you have done wrong. Follow your heart - it will never lead you to misery. Practice.
QUESTION: Swami, you have said that whatever happens to us is the effect of Karma. But why do we have to face this effect when we do not remember what we were in our past lives or what we did in our past lives. How do we understand this ?
ANSWER: In the 6th class if you are not able to multiply or divide it means that in the first class you have not done your numbers well. If you are not able to achieve something today it is because you have not put efforts towards that. A 5th class boy might say, "Why am I not able to do this?" The answer lays in that some day you did not do what you were supposed to do. That is why today you are not able to achieve this. Instead of brooding over all that hurt take this opportunity of the present, correct it now and ensure that the furture is better. Just because you do not remember you can not get rid of your Karma. Even with your ignorance it is not an excuse for escaping the punishment. Why would the universe now permit you?
QUESTION: Educare nutures the child with good values but what can be done for us elders to transform us ?
ANSWER: If you had done your job as a child correctly you may not have been asking this question ! Today, by correcting your ways you will be able to change yourself. Start with thought and think "I AM DIVINE". Speak as if you are Divine. Act as if you are Divine. If you pretend then you will end up coming back. Start thinking that you are Divine from today onwards. Shun everything - all acts, speech and thoughts that are not Divine. That way you practice. Even today there is hope that you can be corrected. Atma Jnana will come to a sincere person within no time. Just a little sincere effort will fetch you good results. Because you have not put the right efforts earlier therefore you are not what you need to be today. However, if you put the efforts in now definitely you will be transformed in the future. You will reach the goal. It depends on how fast you want to reach there.
QUESTION: Swami you have said that we must see God in everyone. Yet, even though we may be loving towards someone the other person may not reciprocate and may speak harshly towards us. How do we react in these situations?
ANSWER: If you pass one exam it does not mean that you will not get another exam. As you grow in your education your exams only get tougher. You went with the thought that you must love that person and you expected that the person should also love you. This is primary school exam. High school is when you go with the thought of loving the person and the person does not love you yet still you are able to love the person, then you have passed the High School. At the end, with no expectation you love because that is your nature, then you are in University. Everytime a person responds negatively know that you have to improve not the other person.
QUESTION: Swami, sometimes we feel very low in life, we call out to you yet we are not getting a response. What is happening here?
ANSWER: You are not ready that is why you are not getting. If you are totally ready to follow my command I will give the command. If you are not ready why should I waste my words on you? If you have totally surrendered your mind and deep within you are ready to follow what Swami has got to say, not what you want to hear, I will command. In such case do some self analysis. Find out if you are really ready to do what Swami wants you to do. That may or may not be what you want to do at that time. Most of the people know God and avoid God because they know God will tell them to do things that they dont want to do and therefore they will not get a respose.
Nobody has asked me about educational institutions ! It means that you are all clear ? Or you have not understood anything ! Which is true ? You are all clear ? Be clear and the rest will follow. Just knowing where you want to go is more than enough. Everything else will follow. Not knowing where you want to go leads to chaos and confusion. Like Karna do not postpone the good things. Do it now. Do not wait for another day. I told srinivas speak to all the students and tell them all about all the things that need to be done. Afternoon when I went I saw one envelope in the hands of Narasimlamurthy. He gave me the envelope and said, "Swami, Srinivas has left a cheque behind for the education of 10 boys and girls. That is what I want! Not speaking. Srinivas said, "How can I myself tell them something when I myself have not done it. Now I am giving this." I have assured Srinivas, that those children, those whose operations that are being performed in Raipur, those who are very poor and need help, we will definitely take them into our institutions.
Go back and preserve this feeling that you have developed here. Again, if you go back and join the company of air and water again the rust and dust will form. By being here all the ego and attachment has been removed, has been scrubbed clean. Be in the company of magnets, in the company of like minded people then you will be able to retain this Divine feeling within. Therefore, now that you have come together, work together, reach together and merge together. Dont give up this good company. Be with like minded people. There will be many people who will come and tell you not to be fooled by this modern avatar, he will take away everything. Dont give in to the advice from such wrong people. If God has commanded you, Narasimlamurthy said, "What greater opportunity do I have? If Bhagavan has asked me for my life I must give it. Because, who gets this opportunity of being asked by God Himself. God is always giving. For once, if He commands and I dont follow I will never ever be able to forgive myself." With that Faith and surrender Narasimlamurthy has offered himself to Bhagavan.