A Discourse for Devotees, by
Michael Goldstein M.D.
My dear Brothers
Sai Ram to you all.
I am happy to be with you and very
grateful to Swami for this opportunity to speak to you. We are in
a good place today, and in fact, we are here together on this
planet Earth, living our human lives given to us by God, for the
purpose of loving and raising one another to the experience of
Spiritual realisation is the
constant realisation of divine consciousness. That is the reason
why we are here together today and why we live these human lives
which God has given us.
As devotees of Bhagavan Sri Sathya
Sai Baba, as sincere spiritual aspirants, as people with common
sense, we recognise the importance of time, the time spent in this
good place and the time which we spend embodied in these human
lives, given by God. This time is limited.
Hence we focus on the most
important: “The nature of God and man, our spiritual purpose and
our plan, and time, time, time.
Now is the time to amplify our
perspective and contemplate the human passage from birth to
realisation, from the entrance into this world and its obstacles,
to the transcendence which goes beyond the illusions of maya! Now
is the time to move towards becoming aware of our innate divinity.
Today I am speaking to you about
these themes, but I must ask myself, “Am I prepared, and am I
worthy?” What do ‘prepared’ and ‘worthy’ mean?
Recently, our beloved Swami gave me
a profound and poignant lesson on the significance of being
prepared and being worthy, a lesson which is applicable to all of
us, in every moment and in everything we do.
I was in Prasanthi immersed in a
conflict which was the result of my own attachments. I had serious
differences of opinion with my brothers of the organisation.
Unresolved differences of opinion breed conflicts.
Conflicts breed bitterness and
deception. Bitterness and deception breed anger. Anger is the
antithesis of spirituality.
This particular day, Swami had planed to give a
discourse. He came out to give Darshan; he walked among the
multitudes and exuded his Divine Love. We were all seated there,
waiting to hear His discourse.
Generally, His discourses are a preceded by one
or two orators pre-selected by Swami. That day, I did not have the
privilege of being pre-selected. Swami came to me and to my great
surprise he asked, “Goldstein, are you going to speak?” I
answered, “Swami did not give me instructions to speak today, but
if it is Your will, then I will do so.”
Swami then asked, “Are you prepared?” I
replied, “If it is Your will, then, Swami, I am prepared.” He
moved away and continued to give Darshan.
A little later He returned and once again he
asked, “Are you prepared?” I repeated to Him, “If it is Your will,
then I am prepared.”
He entered his room for some
moments, and came out again walking among the devotees. Before
sitting in His chair for the Divine Discourse, for a third time He
came up to me and asked. “Are you prepared?”
This time full of eagerness,
anticipating the happiness to have been selected by Swami to speak
in His Divine Presence, I said, “Yes Swami, I am prepared!”
Swami then leaned close to me and
said softly, “To be prepared… Is a state of the inner self.”
Instantly I knew the significance of
His words!!! “PREPARED AND WORTHY ARE ONE” I had thought I was
prepared to speak, but I was experiencing inner unrest. Your words
must reflect what you think, feel and do.
Then you will be prepared and you
will be worthy. I was feeling uneasiness and conflict with respect
to matters of the Sai Organisation and so was not prepared to
speak of peace and love.
My interior world was not in peace
nor in harmony. “To be prepared is a state of the inner self” and
obviously I was not prepared, and I must tell you that I did not
speak that day. For us, Sai devotees, to be prepared and to be
worthy are one and the same.
With a simple word or phrase, Swami
teaches us many lessons at many levels. That is the nature of
Divinity. One of the reasons for telling you this story in
particular is that I know that many of you have bad feelings about
our Sathya Sai Organisation.
Now I beseech you to search deeply
within yourselves and ask your conscience, which is your master,
if these sentiments are noble, spiritual, free of all egoism and
worthy. As always, we want a spiritual experience! So let us look
as the result of those meetings and programmes offered by the
Organisation, the true spiritual experience and not only mundane
Now I must repeat my mantra for
today, the nature of God and man, our purpose and plan, and time,
When the Lord allows himself to
manifest himself among Man, it is to ennoble him and allow him to
understand the Divine Essence and the purpose of human life. The
Lord, to make Himself known, allows Himself to manifest Himself to
Man in many ways. God has created nature for us, that we may find
our own divinity. It is like playing ‘hide and seek’. Being the
omnipresent Lord, He hides everywhere. Candidly we look for Him
outside of ourselves, as we mature spiritually we look within, in
our own hearts. There we find our true self, our divine self, our
self…. free of all egoism.
The knowledge of God is immanent in
all the experiences of life.
In so many ways the Lord allows
himself to be recognised by man. Unquestionably, the greatest of
all is when he takes the form of man, embodies as Avatar, as
God-man and walks amid us. The Bhagavad Gita teaches us that this
occurs when civilisation suffers a spiritual and moral downfall,
to the point that darkness befalls us. The Lord comes to the world
as a divine light, loving and enlightening, and he enables us to
recognise the outstanding characteristics of true humanity, of
nobility, of character, of excellence. He manifests himself in the
universal human values; Sathya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema, Ahimsa;
truth, right conduct, peace, love and non-violence.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai has embodied
for this purpose. Contemplate and rejoice! The lamb and the lion
of God are amidst us!!!!!
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, our
Beloved Sai, is merciful and compassionate, peaceable and loving.
He is the Lamb of God.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, our
beloved Swami, is all powerful, omniscient, omnipotent. He is the
lion of God.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, our
beloved Swami, is the divine synthesis of sweetness and strength,
of innocence and of knowledge, of attainability and of
He is both the lamb and the lion of
Frequently, through the years, many
people have asked why I travel to India, being so far away and so
often. Before answering the question, I contemplate my experiences
with Swami in the last 25 years and I ask myself the same
questions, which I have just mentioned.
Who among men,
knows all that we have thought, felt, said, done and also dreamt?
Who among men, is
not limited by the law of time and space, nor matter nor energy,
as our scarce knowledge allows us to understand God’s creation?
Who among men can
comfort the ignorant, or the suffering, with a look, a smile, a
simple touch and so many other imperceptible ways?
Who among men has
given his life for the good of humanity so magnanimously, and so
free of all egoism, always giving and forgiving, never taking and
Who among men
spontaneously speaks the eternal truth with fundamental authority?
Who among men can
inspire the pure and innocent love of a child in the hardest and
most cynical of hearts?
According to my experience, Sathya
Sai Baba does all of these things. For me, that confirms His
Divinity. Ironically, Swami himself has
said that only an idiot goes out into the world to look for God,
because God resides in the heart of every man and woman. So,
perhaps I have made so many journeys to India because of
stubbornness and being hardhearted.
But I feel a great unprecedented
love and rejoicing, when I am in the presence of Sathya Sai Baba.
The life of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai
Baba demonstrates Divinity and inspires our own spiritual
The message of Bhagavan Sri Sathya
Sai Baba teaches us the nature and paths of Divinity and inspires
us to look for the spiritual purpose of life.
The work of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai
Baba exemplifies the omnipotence of Divinity and inspires us to
emulate Him to transcend our imagined limitations.
The nature of God and man, our
purpose and our plan and time, time, time.
What about time?
Bhagavan Baba has said, “Don’t waste
even one moment of the span of life which has been granted to you.
Time is the body of God”
Swami is like a divine clock. The
hands of the clock, whose movement we cannot see, represent the
changes that He is making in the world. The minute hand represents
those movements that we can almost see. They represent the changes
that He is making in each and every one of us. The second hand,
whose movements are almost imperceptible, represent those glorious
occasions when Swami intervenes directly in our lives and we know
it without any doubt whatsoever.
I remember an incident in which a
devotee, who had been behaving incorrectly was reprimanded by
Swami. The devotee, mortified by Swami’s reproach, said to Him:
“Swami, I will stop my incorrect actions from this moment on.”
Swami responded, very severely, “ From this moment on--no, but
from right now!”
Without a doubt, Swami wants us to
understand that time is life and that no one knows what awaits us
ahead. How can we squander the most priceless which cannot be
replaced, and which cannot even be measured …? The time of our
lives! Only Swami knows what is awaiting us.
The presence of Bhagavan Baba amidst
us, here and now is the will and work of God. In fact, it is the
Lord himself that has come to keep us from the precipice of
auto-destruction. That He is with us here and now, in the human
form of our beloved Swami-- that is the will and work of God.
The advent of the millennium is the
will and work of man. Man has divided time into various units,
according to the movement of the celestial spheres, in order to be
able to act and interact in an orderly way in this world. Man has
created the distinctions in time: second, minute, hour, day, week,
month, year, century and millennium.
An unfortunate consequence of our
useful classification of time in these divisions has been the
development of the possibility of the power to “postpone”, as a
form of life, amidst humans.
Only man delays and postpones.
Animals, birds, ants and other forms of living beings do what they
are meant to do at any given moment, only we leave for tomorrow
that which should be done today.
We are punctual for the frivolous
divisions, but we are out of time to study and apply the Divine
Teachings of Bhagavan Baba in human nature.
The nature of God and man, our
purpose, our plan, and time, time, time.
And what of man?
Swami indicates that we should
repeat to ourselves, “I am a man, not an animal”. What does this
I am a man, not an animal.
A great philosopher once said, “
Knowledge is not enough, we should apply it. Will is not enough,
we must do it”.
The will of God will be done.
Our bodies are the tools which
fulfil the work of divinity.
Our minds are the artisans which use
the tools to fulfil the work of divinity.
Our conscience is
the light of the Lord within us, which guides our minds, which are
the artisans that use our bodies, which are the tools, to fulfil
the works of Divinity.
Repeat slowly…… (repeat the above,
beginning with “Our conscience is the light of the Lord….)
“The conscience gives wise advise to the mind, which sends
orders to the body”
Repeat slowly….. (repeat the above,
“The conscience gives….)
Through our conscience, our minds
and bodies become instruments for the demonstration and the
preservation of the glory of the Divine Conscience, which is Love,
and Love is God. Love all, serve all. These are the works of
Will we adhere to the
spiritual path of life?
Or will we succumb to the
squandering of mundane life?
The choice is ours, truly
I am a man, not an animal.
Swami has described the spiritual
anatomy of man, using the analogy of a carriage. He tells us that
the horses represent the indriyas or senses; the reigns represent
the manas or the mind; the carriage represents the body; the
coachman represents the buddhi, or intellect, and the passenger in
the coach represents the atma, or spirit.
Let us ask ourselves in this
context, if we journey through these lives as divine passengers,
or will we be driven through these lives as beasts of burden?
The choice is ours!
I am a man, not an animal.
We should never allow our lack of
control to limit the Divinity within.
We aspire to experience Divinity
from the height of divine wisdom and the attitude of unconditional
Our mind is a reservoir. We must
maintain the contents clean. Our conscience stirs up the dirt and
the detestable, and drowns the conscience of God. The torrent of
purity draws the cardinal enemies of man; lust, anger, greed,
pride, attachment, and jealousy. They submerge and then the clear
waters of pure love, free of egoism, water the ground of our
humanity and allows our sprits to flourish.
We must have confidence in our
conscience and in the conscience of others, Then society will
become a gracious game, rejoiceful and of amorous interaction
between the Lord, Our Beloved Baba, and His creation, humanity. We
are really brothers and sisters in the family of humanity. Are we
prepared to live in confidence of our own conscience and in the
conscience of others?
The choice is ours!
Our lives are a crossing of the
illusion of reality, of the fears of the darkness to the light and
to clarity, from the poverty of ignorance, to the opulent treasure
of the knowledge of oneself.
To arrive at our divine destiny, we
must look at the map, which is engraved in our hearts, that is
To see the map within us, and to
know love free of all egoism and to navigate these lives in this
exterior world with wisdom, we need light, Divine Illumination.
The Lord provides the light of His
love to everyone. It is within us and around us. It is everywhere.
Swami so often tells us that He is in us, beside us and around us.
Swami is the light of the Lord that allows us to experience the
unconditional love and see the map of the self-knowledge inscribed
in our hearts.
Swami is the light.
The light is the loving divine
The loving divine consciousness is
The nature of God
and man, our purpose and our plan, and time, time, time.
What is the purpose of our lives?
First is there is creation.
Then there is civilisation.
Then there is self-realisation.
First there is creation.
God dedicates himself to humanity.
Our past actions determine our
genetic predisposition and the circumstances of our birth. We are
born in a situation that allows us to learn the spiritual lessons
we need, to obtain the spiritual recompense we deserve, and to
repair our past transgressions. This way we truly reap what we
Then there is civilisation.
Men and women recognise that the quality of life improves with
peace and love. Men and women search for a purpose in their lives.
There is self-inquiry. Our character determines our level and
place in civilisation. If we are generous and compassionate,
sincere and unconditional, we are free and noble. If we are mean
and indifferent, false and egoistic, we are enslaved and we are
ignoble men. The ignoble person is enslaved by one’s ego and body.
The desire of power over others and sensual pleasures contaminate
and enslave the ignoble person.
Then there is self-realisation.
Men and women experience and become one with their innate
divinity. They live in constant and everlasting consciousness of
their divine reality. That is self-realisation. This is the divine
purpose of our human lives.
First we are born and we see the
light of day.
Then we learn and experience the
light of love and wisdom.
Then we identify ourselves with our
consciousness and we become one with the light of God.
We see!--------------we experience!
-------------we become light!
The purpose of these human lives,
then, is to become constantly conscious of the loving divine
consciousness which saturates all creation. The nature of this
consciousness is unconditional love.
The nature of God
and man, our purpose and our plan, and time, time, time.
WHAT IS OUR
PLAN TO ACHIEVE OUR GOAL?
Heaven is a mental state, a state
free of egoism. Heaven is a mental state in which we experience
and live So Ham: I am That. We become that. That is divine
consciousness which saturates all our experience of infinite
bliss. The absence of ego, being free of attachment is a state of
infinite bliss. It is a state of self-realisation. That is heaven.
Swami assures us that we can reach heaven in these human lives. We
can live in heaven now. All we have to do is to search within
ourselves and find heaven.
From this it comes that hell is also
a state of mind and we can convert our lives into hell if that is
what we choose. Hell is characterised by incessant desires. As
each desire is satisfied, this gives origin to another desire to
obtain more. Desires of power and of pleasure. Desires which can
never be satisfied in an everlasting manner. This gives origin to
deception and frustration, to pain and discouragement. We become
frenetic and foolish, running madly around the desert chasing
every mirage which appears in the exterior world.
Heaven or hell. The choice is ours.
Suppose we all choose heaven. We
make a decision. We choose heaven and we repel hell. What do we do
Spiritual transformation is the
awakening of our latent divinity. Our Lord, Bhagavan Baba,
transforms us in many ways. The Lord is inscrutable and
mysterious. We cannot understand his way of working with our lean
mental capacities. We can understand, up to a point, through our
intuitions, when He inspires us. Then the attained knowledge is
experienced knowledge, not knowledge learnt by memory. This
distinction between learnt knowledge and experienced knowledge is
When we really know, we do not
accept the knowledge, we are the knowledge. This is true
knowledge. That is wisdom.
Swami has taught us that God is
consciousness and that the nature of consciousness is
unconditional love. He advises us to dig deep into our hearts and
that this is how we can find this consciousness. How do we do
We are all very different as
individuals. But our differences are superficial. We are brothers
and sisters of the divine mother and father. That is the unity of
our essential nature in spite of the diversity of our appearances
and external circumstances. For each one of us the most efficient
method of moving us spiritually will be something different.
Although, do whatever we do, and however we do it, this must be
compatible with the divine teachings. I will explain a simple
example. It is based on my own experience with Swami and his
I have talked about this before. It
is important to have a spiritual plan. To make a plan for oneself
which embraces Swami’s teachings, which satisfies our needs and is
befitting to our lives. Have a spiritual plan. Then you can
dedicate yourselves to your spiritual purpose.
This plan consists of 9 points. 3
points are about perspective, 3 points are about attitude, and 3
points are about actions. The perspective, the attitude, the
action. What we think about things, how we feel about them, what
we do with them.
It is necessary for each of us to
determine his perspective, his attitude and his actions. We must
examine what we think, how we feel and what we are doing to move
in the right direction. I don’t want to give you the impression
that we can make a package deal of spirituality. But you can think
about this and put it into practice in an orderly manner. I will
describe the nine points. I will give you examples of experiences
with Swami wherever possible.
Firstly, the nine points are:
In the category
1 - do not worry about the past,
but learn from the mistakes made.
2 - do not worry about the future,
but make appropriate plans to achieve one’s objectives.
3 - do not worry about what other
people are thinking about you or about events in the world
around us. Consider everybody as divine brothers and sisters and
all the events as God-given opportunities to serve.
In the category of attitude:
4 - Be loving with all, always.
5 - Always be happy within.
6 - Always be silent and pacific
In the category of
7 - remove all unworthy thoughts
from the mind before they make an impression causing emotion or
action. Allow noble thoughts to mature till they become uplifted
8 - Follow the conscience and act
without delay with complete confidence upon the base of the
9 - focus upon Swami, His name,
His form, His love, His words, His actions, in all of Him, for
He is all.
Now we examine each of these points
with examples of Swami wherever possible.
Point 1 is to forget the past, we must live in the present.
We must learn from the past, but not
be worried by it. We must learn to live now, in this moment. We
must not let sadness nor past errors contaminate the present nor
In my first journey to India I knew
I would be a devotee of Swami for the rest of my life. I knew that
I had met the love of my life, the fountain of the realisation of
my life. This happened more than 26 years ago. I knew I would
always follow Swami.
What does `follow Swami’ mean? It
means that one will follow a spiritual path. What is the final
result of following a spiritual path? It is union with God,
I had lead a very mundane life and I
worried that my past transgressions could prevent my spiritual
progress. The last day of my first visit to India, I was sitting
in the Mandir for morning Bhajans, just before leaving the Ashram.
Whilst sitting in the Mandir
listening to the Bhajans I started to worry about my past errors.
I felt useless and without hope because of my past. I felt that
although I knew I would always follow Swami, my past would not
allow me to reach the end of the spiritual path. I thought past –
past – past, an unsurpassable obstacle. Then suddenly I felt a
hand on my shoulder. It was Swami. He had entered the Mandir by
the back door, coming up to me from behind. He simply put his hand
on my shoulder, looked at me in the eyes and said. “Forget the
past”, he then carried on walking. He left me and I cried. I felt
The Lord said, “Forget the past”.
The heavy load of past errors, the sadness and the guilt were
That is the power of the Lord!
Point 2 is do not
worry about the future, live in the present.
A long time ago there was a Sai
devotee who had cancer. His doctors had given him chemotherapy.
Then his cancer regressed.
He was a devotee of Swami and he
used to go to see Swami periodically to ask for his divine
intervention. The man lived many years more than the doctors had
given him. One day this man came to me and he said that he had
just arrived in India and he had refused to be treated with
chemotherapy prescribed by the doctors.
He pleaded that I ask Swami to
intervene. As Swami had spoken to the man on many occasions, I
told Swami that this man was in the Ashram, and that he was afraid
of dying and I asked Swami to intervene and to save his life.
Swami then said
to me, “This man has had cancer for twelve years. Each time that
he came to Swami during the last twelve years he has been thinking
about the cancer and death. Swami has given him twelve years of
life, but he has not used this time that Swami has given him to
live. He has only been thinking about death during those twelve
years”. None the less, Swami received the man and he continued to
We must not worry so much about the
future that it stops us appreciating the present. Swami tells us
to live in the present, the omnipresent.
Point 3 is we must not worry unduly about the events in the world
or about other people’s reactions towards us.
Swami teaches us that we are three
people. The one we think we are, which corresponds to our body;
the one others think we are, which corresponds to our mind; and
the one we really are, which corresponds to our spirit. We are not
the body, we are not the mind, we are the spirit of God, enclosed
in this human form. So, our emotions and actions must not be based
on other people or on exterior facts. Our motivation, direction
and destiny must be governed by the owner, our conscience.
The three points 4,5 and 6, under
attitude are: be loving, be happy, and be silent and pacific
Point 4 is be loving
Bhagavan Sathya Sai Baba, our
beloved Swami, has come to light the lamp of love in the heart of
humanity. The qualities of light are purity and the absence of
egoism. The powers of light are redemption and transformation.
To love spiritually is to love
without egoism. This means love without desire. Love without the
need to possess the object of love. That is pure love,
unconditional love, divine love. We learn to love as humans in our
diverse relationships to be able in time to love God as he loves
us. This is the most important of the nine points. If we are
really loving, everything else will be given to us.
All creation is like God’s thought
and life is like God’s dream. Our chosen form of God is the
thinker that planned the universe and the dreamer that conceived
life. The Lord has all his creation and is immanent in all. But
God is bigger than the creation that has originated from Him. In
the same way, divine love contains and includes the feelings,
which we are capable of harbouring as human beings, such as
affection, respect and veneration.
But as God is greater than his
creation, in the same way divine love transcends, and is greater
than, our human family expressions and our experience of love. The
qualities of divine love are purity and the absence of egoism. The
powers of divine love are redemption and transformation.
As Sai devotees, how do we love
Swami? How should we love Swami?
Most of us have some hardness in our
hearts. Some of us have enormous blocks of granite and others,
only grains of sand. We must open our hearts and soften them.
On a superficial level, we are
delighted with the beautiful form of Bhagavan Baba, and fascinated
by his divine personality. Is this not love? Yes, it is, but it is
not sufficient, On a deeper level, we feel inspired by the noble
words and actions of Bhagavan Baba, and we aspire to emulate his
heroic actions. Is this not love? Yes, it is, but it is not
Finally we recognise Swami as the
Embodiment of the most uplifted, noble and true aspect of
ourselves. We turn our minds within, and we see the divine light
of truth and love. We understand that this, our spiritual heart,
is our true identity, and it is one with the Lord. We reach the
absence of egoism. The duality of God and us no longer exists. We
fuse with the Lord. We must make an effort to love God in this
To love God has a dramatic effect on
our lives. To love God is like diving into the ocean of the
absence of egoism. When we dive into these waters of absence of
egoism we give origin to waves which expand and embrace
everything, concentric circles of sacredness which eventually
include all creation. When we dive into these waters of the
absence of egoism, we submerge ourselves profoundly in a
purification process which changes us forever and uplifts all who
know us. Such is the nature of unconditional love. It transforms.
Point 5 is be happy.
Happiness is contagious. When we
smile, or show a happy gesture, we shine light in the minds and
hearts of our brothers and sisters. We make others happy. And so
they make us happier than ever. And so on successively. Happiness
generates joyousness. The realisation of our own divinity is
Swami has a marvellous sense of
humour. When He smiles and laughs, this makes our hearts glow and
one cannot help but feel very happy. One day I found myself in the
house in Kodaicanal with Swami and a group of students. Swami was
talking to them in Telugu. I could not understand what he was
saying. Then he looked at me and mentioned my name and the boys
laughed. I sensed the boys were laughing because Swami had made a
joke about my excess weight. I was sitting facing Swami and Swami
looked at me and laughed with all his heart.
I watched him laugh, I watched his
eyes and then I was filled with happiness and joy. I also started
to laugh, even though Swami’s happiness and laughing made me so
happy that I also laughed. Then suddenly Swami stopped laughing.
He looked at me and asked, “”Why are you laughing?” I answered, “I
am laughing because Swami is so happy that it makes me happy”.
Then Swami became serious and said to the boys,
“Goldstein is happy because Swami is
happy. He is laughing because Swami is laughing. That is true
This apparently simple event which I
have related is the way in which Swami often teaches us important
lessons. He created this little drama in that which the joke was
about me, but I was happy because Swami was happy and I love him
so much. In this incident Swami used me to demonstrate devotion to
the students. To be happy is very important.
Point 6 be silent
To be silent within is to be in peace. Peace is
the absence of turbulent emotion. To be silent within is essential
to hear the interior voice of God. Respect and preserve the
interior temple of silence.
The last 3 points, points 7, 8 & 9 are all about our actions.
Point 7 is to
cleanse de mind of all unworthy thoughts.
Do not allow these to create an
impression which causes emotion or action. At the same time,
always accommodate noble thoughts and allow that these cause
Swami teaches us that we should
consider bad thoughts as devils, which enter into our minds to
sidetrack us from our spiritual path. We should not let them
enter. Bad thoughts generate emotions and actions, which then
cause bad tendencies and bad habits.
Our conscience must sift thoughts
and determine if a thought a worthy of entry into our mind. This
results in a good character and spiritual progress.
In one of my visits to Prashanti
many years ago, I played a little game with my thoughts, whist I
was sitting in the Mandir. Every time an unworthy or distracting
thought entered my mind, I shook my head lightly and threw out the
unwanted thought. At first I shook my head so often that I feared
the brothers sitting near me would think that I had developed a
neurological affliction. While I practised this exercise, I
discovered that unwanted thoughts came less frequently. Since then
I have learned that physical gestures are not necessary to control
Point 8 is to follow
one’s own conscience. To act without delay and with complete
confidence based on the dictates of the conscience.
One day another devotee and I were
sitting at Swami’s feet. Swami started to talk to me. He told me
that this man was a good devotee. Swami said that each time this
man had to make a decision he looked within and looked for an
answer within his own conscience. The man never doubted the answer
which came. Swami said that this man asked, ‘Is this correct or
incorrect, is it good or bad, what would Swami do?’ And then the
man acted according to the answer he heard in his own conscience.
Swami said that the answer did not always come at once. But the
man persisted in his enquiry until he received an answer. Swami
put great emphasis on the importance of this process in
spirituality and said that this man was a good devotee because he
had faith and always followed this process.
We must recognise that our
conscience represents God within us. The commanding morals which
come from our conscience must be respected.
Finally, point 9 is
to focus oneself in Swami, to focus oneself in the Lord, His
divine name, form, love, teachings and actions.
The constant focus on the spiritual
is essential to be able to reach our spiritual purpose. We can
focus ourselves in one of His names and forms, we can focus
ourselves in the great spiritual principles, in those on which all
religions are based. We can focus ourselves on the generosity and
sacredness which we see around us. They are all expressions of the
loving universal consciousness which is God.
The spiritual movement is that
movement which has the purpose of taking us to the realisation of
our inherent divinity. To move in the correct direction it is
important that we consider our own perspective, attitude and
actions. I have given you a formula which consists of 9 simple
Our perspective should also include
living in the present and not to be worried about the past nor the
future, the reactions of people nor the events of the world. Our
attitude should be loving, happy and silent within. Our actions
should include discarding unworthy thoughts, following our
conscience and focussing on Swami.
I advise you from my heart to draw
up your own spiritual plan to reach your spiritual purpose. Your
own plan will be adequate for who you are and where you are in
your spiritual understanding.
Swami has given us another spiritual
tool. He has put his name to a spiritual movement, the Sathya Sai
Baba Organisation, so that we, His children, can learn to love one
another and bring unconditional love and service to the world.
Humanity has no life without
universal consciousness. Swami teaches us that universal
consciousness is the omnipresent divinity, it is divine love. This
universal consciousness resides in the heart of each man and woman
and provides life to the mind and body. Universal consciousness is
realised and appreciated by each one of us by way of our
The Sai Organisation, or any
spiritual organisation, has no life without the conscience of each
man and woman in that organisation. It is not spiritual, it is not
of God, nor from God, if it is not immersed in, and if it is not
saturated by, the universal consciousness, or unconditional love.
This can only happen if the organisation is guided by the
conscience of each man and woman acting together in the spirit of
unconditional love. It is for this reason that Swami has given His
name to the organisation.
Swami repeatedly says that He is a
source, not a force. He is a spiritual source. The Sai
Organisation should also de a source, not a force. It should be a
source of light and love. In everything we do, people should feel
an unconditional love and obtain spiritual benefit, they should
feel uplifted. That is the nature of a genuine spiritual movement.
As members and co-ordinators of the
Sathya Sai Baba Organisation we should consider ourselves servants
of the people whom Swami has already called and of those he will
call in the future. We should have a solid faith in the divinity
of our Lord, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, and believe that he
will motivate and touch the hearts of everybody that they may
commence the spiritual path.
The spiritual path of a particular
individual can include, or not, the name and the form of our
beloved Bhagavan Baba. That is between the Lord and every
individual heart. But all the names and forms of God are one. The
eternal spiritual principles are one for all the religions and
We in the organisation should
consider ourselves spiritual doorkeepers. What are the duties of a
spiritual doorkeeper? We greet with love those who come to the
door. We open the door and thus we provide access to Swami’s
teachings and programmes. And what is more important, we provide
access to Swami’s love if the organisation is functioning
correctly. Finally, as spiritual doorkeepers, we protect the
establishment. We protect the sacred name of Bhagavan Sri Sathya
Sai Baba. We do this assuring that everything that happens within
the Sai Organisation, under the name of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai
Baba, is worthy of His Divinity.
We should remember that He is the
omnipresent witness and we should trust that all we do and
everything that others do as part of the organisation will obtain
My beloved brothers and sisters,
In conclusion, we are all apparently
different. Different in names, forms, experiences, nationalities,
races and religions. These differences are the clothing that our
spirits wear to act and interact in this world, to be able to play
the rôle in the divine drama of the creation.
Although, having said our lines,
having sung our songs, having danced our dance, we take off our
makeup and our fancy dress. We return to our solitary beings. And
here we discover that we are all part of the one, of the loving
universal consciousness, which is God! Our beloved Bhagavan Baba
is the incarnation of this divine universal consciousness. He is
constantly reminding us that we are all divine consciousness. We
are all divine love.
Today we have reflected upon the
nature of God and man, upon our spiritual purpose and our plan,
and time, time, time.
Now is the time for you and for me,
and for everyone everywhere, to advance towards the realisation of
our innate divinity!
Jai Sai Ram