Sai Baba Sri Sathya Sai Baba

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Sri Sathya Sai Baba Articles

  Swami's Words of Wisdom

Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Human desire is illimitable and without end. It makes you pursue the mirage in the desert; it makes you build castles in the air; it breeds discontent and despair, once you succumb to it. But develop the thirst for Krishna; you discover the cool spring of Ananda within you. Krishna Nama makes you very strong and steady; it is sweet and sustaining.

Mine, not thine, this sense of greed is the root of all evil. This distinction is applied even to God!- my God, not yours! Your God, not mine!

Your life is really like a tapestry. You look at one side and see all the disconnected and loose ends, and say, 'What a mess my life is!' God sees the finished product on the other side and sighs, 'How beautiful you have become!'

The individual born in the lake of Society must swim and float in the calm waters, and joining the River of Progress, merge into the Ocean of Grace; Man has to move from the stance of 'I' to the position of 'We'. To this day, we see only the wild dance of go-stricken individuals, who hate society and behave most unsociably.

All men have two constables ever with them; They are the symbols of his sentence of imprisonment. They are 'Abhiman' (Sense of I) over 'Mamakar' (sense of mine), the egoistic feeling and the pride of possession. Man is a prisoner of his senses as long as these two keep him under guard. Man strays away into misery and pain, because he loses the sense of value and runs after the temporary and the trivial. He ignores the voice of God which warns and guides him from within; and he pays the penalty for the transgression.

Man is equipped with a return-ticket when he takes birth. Holding it in his grasp, he earns and spends, rises and falls, sings and dances, weeps and wails, forgetting the end of the journey. But though he forgets, the wagon of life moves toward the cemetery, which is its terminus. It brings no glory to man if he is tied helplessly to the wheel of birth and death. His glory and greatness consist in disentangling himself from that revolving wheel.

Do not consider any act of service as demeaning. Sweeping the streets, for example, is not below your dignity. Do you not sweep the floor of your homes? Do you not scrub and wash off dirt? When you undertake such tasks, the villagers will also gladly share in them. Why feel ashamed to be good? The ridicule that may be cast on you has been the reward of many saints. It will soon fade away. Muhammad was driven out of Mecca by those who could not appreciate his teachings. Jesus was crucified. But their names resound in the heart of millions.

Remember, God is your guardian, when you sleep; when you are helpless; even when you have forgotten or neglected or discarded Him. He has no need you offer or promise to offer. He is ever content, ever blissful, ever full and ever free. Do your duty to yourself - that is enough offering for Him.

You may have a vast scholarship, fame or fortune. But, the bee can give you a lesson on how to be free from torment. The tree can teach you forbearance and tolerance. It offers shade to all, irrespective of age, sex or religion, nationality or status. It helps with fruit and shade even to the foe who lays his axe on its trunk! The dog can teach you a lesson in Faith, Self-less service and the process of Dedication.

There is only one God and He is Omnipresent". True. But to concentrate on the Omnipresent, some fixed point or preliminary form is needed. And to conceive of the Divine as present everywhere and at all times, the mind of man is to be clarified and purified by means of a certain psychological process called Sadhana.

My activities are not for publicity or propaganda or even to confer joy on others! They are for conferring joy primarily on Me! I have no need to please others and to earn approval or appreciation. For, I and you are not different entities; you are I; and I am you. I am the current that flows into every bulb and illuminates it. Those who see me as separate are seeing falsehood. I am in your hearts; you are in Mine. Don't be misled into doubt and distress. Dogs may bark and jackals howl; but Truth moves Majestically forward.

A person being transferred from one Goal to another will have two constables who will escort him; the 'Punya' and the 'Papa' ( good consequences and the bad consequences of actions) are the consequences who lead man from one birth to another. If you must escape from their attention and avoid migration from one Goal to another, act - but do not calculate the consequences. That is to say, do not worry about the consequence; leave it to God who prompted the act and made it possible. Dedicate the act, the will and the wish, all to God.

Happiness and peace do not follow when man is fed well, clothed well, housed well, and educated up to a good standard and employed under comfortable conditions, with no injury to health or security. There are many who have all these in plenty but who are yet worried or in pain or discontented. They depend on the inner equipment of man, not his outer skill or riches.

The ultimate step of Self-realisation depends upon the base of Self-confidence. You must therefore develop as a first step Confidence in your own self. Without having and developing Confidence in your own self, if all the time you are talking of some power being with someone else, if in this way you travel all the time and depend on power which is with someone else, when are YOU going to acquire any power and confidence in ownself?

If you live on the level of the Body and the Individual, you will get entangled in food, fun and frolic, ease, envy and pride. Forget it, ignore it, overcome it -- You will have peace, joy and calm. In the Divine Path, there is no chance of failure; it is the Path of Love.

It is easy to criticise or belittle the "leelas" or infinite potencies of God. But it is very difficult to comprehend the truth about the Divine. The Omnipresent Divine is present both in Truth and untruth. He is present both in righteousness (Dharma) and unrighteousness (Adharma). He is present in good and evil. With regard to such an all-pervading Divine, how can anyone determine what is good and what is bad?

No matter where you go, always do your duty as you see it and know that I will be there inside you guiding you every step of the way...There is no need to worry about anything. Whatever is experienced, whatever happens, know that this Avatar willed it so. There is no force on earth which can delay for an instant the mission for which this Avatar has come. You are all sacred souls and you will have your parts to play in the unfolding drama of the new Golden Age, which is coming.

You cannot be fresh and feeling fine, wearing a washed vest under an unwashed shirt; or, an unwashed vest over a washed shirt. Both have to be clean, to provide a sense of tingling joy. So too outer and inner cleanliness is but the reflection of the inner achievement. There is a strange glow on the face of a guileless person. Inner cleanliness has its own soap and water - the soap of strong faith and the water of constant practice.

Reason can prevail only when arguments are advanced without the whipping of the Sound. Silence is the speech of the Spiritual Seeker. Soft sweet speech is the expression of genuine Love. Hate screeches; fear squeals; Conceit trumpets. But, Love sings lullabies; it soothes; it applies balm. Practice the Vocabulary of Love; unlearn the language of hate and contempt.

I had to tell you so much about my Truth, for, I desire that you should contemplate on this and derive joy from the reform, so that you may be inspired to observe the disciplines laid down by Me and progress toward the Goal of Self Realisation, The realisation of the Sai that shines in your hearts.

To achieve release, man kneels before a million Gods, in frantic pain. If he but blasts the ego within the Goal is reached, he is freed indeed! It is difficult indeed to understand the ego in its depth and devious ways. It is an inert entity: that is to say, it cannot know itself not can it know others; It has no fear; it will not bend before others; it degrades man from the golden glory, which is his due, to the level of lowly dust.

The World today is in a very bad state. The situation can improve only through Asthikas, who are believers in Divinity. They should become Prema Swaroopas or Embodiments of Love and by their Sadhana, backed by patience, forbearance and compassion, play their role in serving Society and contributing to the betterment of the World. God is present in you and is visualising through thousands of eyes what you do. Even when no one is seeing, God is watching your actions always. Do everything with this awareness.

Life is a bridge. Cross over it, but don't build a house on it.

All religions exhort man to cleanse the heart of malice, greed, hate and anger. All religions hold out the gift of Grace as the prize for success in this cleaning process. Ideas of superiority and inferiority arise only in a heart corrupted by egoism. If someone argues that he is higher or his religion is holier, it proves that he has missed the significance of his faith.

Man is basically, essentially and fully immortal. He is 'Amrithaswarupam' yet he is afraid he would die! He is 'Anandaswarupa'; yet, he is it that weeps that he is miserable. He is 'Shanthiswarupam'; yet, everywhere he is overlaid by anxiety. This absurd self-deception is the root of the tragedy from which the World suffers today.

For each person, there is a Code of Conduct laid down in the Shastras, according to age and status, the profession adopted, the stage of spiritual attainment reached and the goal of life accepted. Do not carp at the behaviour of others or at the efforts they make, to get consolation and courage amidst the turmoils of life. For each, there is the path that he has chosen and the Name and Form of God he prefers. Also do not give up your code of duties and take up that recommended for someone else.

Man seeks joy in far off places and peace in quiet spots; but the spring of joy is in his heart. the haven of peace is in himself. Even when he walks on the moon, man has to take with him, his fears, his anxieties, his prejudices and his pet aversions. Have faith in God and in the correctness of moral living. Then, you can have peace and joy, whatever may be the fare that fortune offers you.

The parents gave you this body and fostered the intelligence and love that are embedded in it; so, gratitude is their due. If you do not honour the parents who are the creators in human form, how can you learn to honour the Creator in Divine Form? Moreover, the parents reveal to you the glory of God and the means of worshipping Him; they are the first representatives of the authority which you meet with, authority modified by love and care. Learn to bend before that authority and you will learn how to submit before the Lord.

You have it in your power to make your days on Earth a path of flowers, instead of a path of thorns. Recognise the Sai resident in every heart and all will be smoothness, softness and sweetness for you. Sai will be the fountain of Love in your heart and in the hearts of all with whom you come in contact. Know that Sai is Omnipresent and that, He is present in every living thing and you. Adore everyone as you adore Sai.

Rise up to the Divine, don't bring Godhead to your human and even animal levels. Do not worship God as the picture before you, but worship the picture before you as God, because God is in everything and can be grasped through every single symbol. There is nothing wherein He is not,; there is no might or right, apart from Him.

Snakes hiss; pigs grunt; and bills moo! They are asserting their ego, intent on keeping others away. Of the traits of ego, pride is the most poisonous. But, the pride of the scholar and the vanity of Pundits are so thick, that it is impossible for them to get rid of these.

In organizations like Government there are different Departments; namely, the Departments of Health, Education or Finance. Similarly, even in the spiritual field, there are different "departments". They are creation, sustenance and dissolution. Each department has a [leader]. Each leader of a department has to look after and run the department smoothly and efficiently. There would be a Master (Head) in charge of all three departments. He may be called either Chief Minister or Prime Minister. He controls all the three departments. He is also called Allah and [other] names by different people. In the English language, He is called GOD. "G" stands for Generation; "O" for Organization; and "D" for Dissolution.

To know the Divine, we should develop Divine thoughts.

The essence of all religions is One. Surrender is the main duty of everyone. Surrender means the feeling of oneness: I and God are One. Why? The reason is that the One who is present in you is present in me.

Only one God is present in everyone. Never follow the differences basing on the differences of the body. There is no chance or scope for conflict. It is the body attachment, which is responsible for fights. Never believe that body is permanent. Body is like a water bubble. Mind is like a mad monkey. Don't follow the mind. Don't follow the body. Follow the Conscience. That is the main principle of this text. So we should follow our Conscience.

In order to acquire Divinity, in order to find out the Divinity within us, if you want to know yourself, you should develop PURE LOVE. It is this bond of Love that binds everybody. This is the bond of Love.

Practice is very important. You can propagate, that will never be permanent. You can propagate by practising what you say, through practice. That is the fundamental thing. When you practice and enjoy, others will follow you.

This attachment is not God's gift. Bliss is God's gift. God's gift is Peace. God's gift is Truth. That is the God's gift. All the rest are passing clouds.

So today we have to develop compassion. That is the principle of Jesus. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. LOVE IS GOD. LIVE IN LOVE. START THE DAY WITH LOVE. FILL THE DAY WITH LOVE. SPEND THE DAY WITH LOVE. END THE DAY WITH LOVE. THIS IS THE WAY TO GOD. Therefore, we should live in LOVE continuously.

GOD IS ALWAYS WITH YOU, IN YOU, AROUND YOU. We should have such a friend. So actually speaking, real friend is GOD. God is our permanent friend. All worldly pleasures and comforts are like passing clouds

GOD IS IMPORTANT. If you have God with you, you will have the rest. Real wealth is God. Real health is God. We should make every effort to pray for God. Because we are from God, we should be back to God.

Embodiments of Love! There is Love in everyone of you. Develop that Love. Share it with the people. You also experience with your fellow people. This love - this love is not one-way traffic. It is just two-way: GIVE and TAKE. We don't need to go anywhere, if you have Love.

All are One. Be alike to everyone. Share, propagate this truth all over the world. God is in everyone. God is in you and you are God. Strengthen this fundamental truth. When you propagate this truth, that is the real service. It is the service that will take you to closer proximity, a boat. In this ocean of life, take the help of this boat and gain the proximity.

The Lord rushes toward the Bhakta faster than the Bhakta rushes towards HIM. If you take one step towards Him, He takes a hundred steps towards you ! He will be more than a mother or father. He will foster you from within you, as He has saved and fostered so many Saints who have placed faith in HIM.

You must not be a bit of blotting paper, absorbing all the passions and emotions, all the joys and grief that the actress of Nature demonstrates of the stages of life. You must be a Lotus, unfolding its petals when the Sun rises in the sky, unaffected by the slush where it is born or even the water which sustains it!

Faith in God is the secure foundation on which hope has to be built. The faith has to be stable and strong. The feeling that God will come to our rescue has to be vivid and vital, motivating and activating all that we do or speak or think. Service rendered to others in this spirit will be a great source of joy to you as well as to the recipient.

Women are proverbially too individualistic! There is a popular belief, born out of folk-experience, that three women cannot live in unison! There is a Telugu limerick, which says, "The world shivers before one woman. The ocean will dry up, if there are two! And if there are three, O, the stars will drop down at noon!" Why is woman so characterized? Woman is extremely deficient in Sahana, I mean ability to bear defeat, fortitude, forbearance, patience and quiet, suffering with no thought of retaliation. That is why woman is said to be the weaker sex.

SILENCE, Cleanliness and Forbearance. In Silence can be heard the Voice of God, not in the revelry of noise. Through Cleanliness, you earn purity. By Forbearance, you cultivate Love. You have come today to your own home. This is your home not Mine. My home is your heart. So, do not try to have your lunch elsewhere but in your home, where you get this day food consecrated by Me, the Prasad.

If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in character. If there is beauty in character, there will be harmony in the home. When there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation. When there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world".

I have come to light the lamp of Love in your hearts, to see that it shines day by day with added lustre. I have not come on behalf of any exclusive religion. I have not come on any mission of publicity for any sect or creed or cause; nor have I come to collect followers for any doctrine. I have no plan to attract disciples or devotees into my fold or any fold. I have come to tell you of this unitary faith, this spiritual principle, this path of Love, this virtue of Love, this duty of Love, this obligation to Love.

It is the duty of everyone to live in the awareness of Truth. He who lives on Earth must become Man at first. Then, he has to learn the way to God, and discover the delight of the Spirit. This is the 'Raja Yoga' path that the Vedas teach. The Atma illumines all objects; It needs no other source of illumination to shine; It is the seer of the Universe.

The world itself is a great teacher, a constant guide and inspiration. That is the reason why man is surrounded and sustained by the world. Every bird, every animal, every tree, mountain and star and each tiny worm has a lesson for man, if he has but the will and the thirst to learn. These make the World a veritable University for man; it is a Gurukul (place where teacher and student both learn and grow together) where he is a pupil from birth to death.

If you do not feel the call at the sight of human distress, disease or deviation from the right, how can you muster the determination and dedication necessary to serve the unseen, inscrutable, mysterious God? When you do not love man, your heart will not love God. Despising brother-man, you cannot, at the same time, worship God; if you do, God will not accept that hypocrisy. God is resident in every heart; so, if you serve any one, that service reaches God within him: it brings to you the Grace of God.

Life has been bestowed not for just eating and digesting and roaming and reclining, but for a far greater purpose - the realization of Divinity in us, in all that exists around us and even beyond all things that strike our senses. To waste such a life in vain pursuits and in mere senses of pleasures is not the sign of an intelligent person. Deserve the Grace of God by helping the weak and poor, the diseased and the disabled, the distressed and the downtrodden.

Faith has to be cultivated, first and foremost. It has to be nurtured in Love. Love is fostered by Shanti (equanimity). Shanti can be got only when there is full reliance on God and complete surrender to the Divine Will. If one loses wealth, he may regain it by some means or other. If he loses health, some doctor might prescribe a tonic to win it back. If one loses status and authority he may, by sheer luck, gain them back. If Virtue is lost, it is lost forever; nothing can restore the pristine purity. So one has to be ever vigilant and should never slacken.

The spiritual laws that the sages of India have discovered and laid down will never be overruled; they stand valid for ever. Further research can only strengthen and confirm their authenticity, as further facts only render the diamond more brilliant. Bharath has contributed to the World the priceless gem of Truth; 'Iswarah Darvabhutaanaam Hrddese, Arjuna, Thishtati'. God is the resident motivator of all beings. Until this fact is realized by the individual, he will be tainted by traces of anger, pride and hate, for he sees others as distinct and different.

All religions teach one basic discipline - the removal from the mind of the blemish of egoism, of running after little joys. 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 - that all faiths glorify the One and the Only God; that all names in all languages and all Forms men can conceive, denote the One and Only God.

It was ascribed to one's past deeds and one's own mental tendencies. It is wrong to cast the blame on others. But, someone pointed out that God was the originator of both joy and grief and that, without His Will, no blade of grass can waver in the wind; Yes; if that Truth be firmly established in the heart, one gets the unique bliss of liberation. God gives everything; whatever we get is His grace. You have no right to judge whether what you get is good or bad."

You are only actors on the stage before the footlights. The Director, who knows the Play, who assigns the roles, who gives the cues, who calls you in and puts you on is behind the curtain. You are a puppet; He holds the strings. If He must be seen, you have to be His 'Sakhaa' (friend) or 'Bandhu'(kinsman). Merely being an onlooker will not entitle you to approach Him and be in His Holy Company. Cultivate His Friendship or Kinship by the attitude of Love and Dedicated Service.

Do not hope to gain Grace by looking down upon mankind and looking up at Sai. Remember, that your dress, behaviour and appearance will reveal your character and attitude towards others. Always have sweet, soft words on your tongue; cast your eyes only on holy sights. Wear clean, simple clothes and do not imitate those who are fascinated by latest fashions in dress and style. How can you do Seva when you move so far away from the common man ? I advise you to "Follow the Master". By 'Master' I mean the Conscience within you, the Voice of God.

Service is God. Why has God endowed man with a body, a mind and an intellect ? Feel with the mind, plan with the intelligence and use the body to serve those who are in need of service. Offer that act of service to God; worship home with that Flower. Put into daily practice the ideals that Sathya Sai has been propagating and make them known all over the World, by standing forth as living examples of their greatness.

God is the inner Motivator of all beings; All this is enveloped in God; This is the inner mystery of the Incarnation. God incarnating in all ! All are one; The One is All. There is only one God; He is Omnipresent ! There is only one religion - the Religion of Love. There is only one Caste - the caste of Humanity. There is only one Language - the Language of the Hart.

To presume that either from wealth or from kith and kin you can derive mental peace is a great error. Such peace only comes from God. In fact there is no strength superior to Love; where Love is there everything is. So you must live in God; and live in Love; then everything shall be right. You must make others also live in Love.

People crowd into film shows, rush towards social clubs - spend days together in playing cards - but when they are asked to sing the Glory of God and purify themselves and the atmosphere, they clamor for concession ! When the heads hit against each other in anger, can the feet be steady and unaffected ? They too will kick and trample as maliciously as they can.

As the Vedas announce, there is no Dharma higher than Truth. Truth gets hidden, appears distorted and is declared to be failing; so, the Avatar asserts its validity and value once again. God wears Truth, the good seek Truth and the bad are rescued by Truth; Truth liberates; Truth is power; Truth is freedom. It is the lamp that illuminates the heart and dispels doubt and darkness. The effulgence of God is Truth. Welcome God in your heart. Install Him there as a result of yearning. Be always concerned with Brahman; then you are entitled to be known as a Brahmin.

Injury inflicted on any being is sacrilege, self-injury. Love is transformed into poison, if hate contaminates it. Love some but do not hate the rest, for that hate will foul the Love and make it mortal. Love comes automatically to the realised soul; but, the Sadhaka has to cultivate it by means of Seva and inquiry into the unity of the Atman. Love must flow not from the tongue or from the head only, but chiefly from the heart.

Prasadam means Grace, which flows from God when He is propitiated. My Grace is ever with you; it is not something that is given or taken; it is given always and accepted by the Consciousness that is aware of its significance, Win the Grace of your own sub-conscious, so that it may receive the Grace of God which is ever available. God does not deny anyone; it is only you, who deny God. When the gift is proffered, you have to do only one little act, so that you may earn it. You have to extend your hand to receive it.

Ambition to earn fame in the world, to gain some position of authoritz over fellow-men, to lead luxurious life - this can never ensure Shanti, Mental Peace. Mental Peace is the result of quite different attainments. Wealth cannot command it, nor authority commander it ! It must be won the hard way through Meditation, Namasmaran and the nine steps to the presence of the Almighty. It must be won on the Earth, to which man rightfully belongs; and, not on any other heavenly body towards which he may dare navigate.

The basic lesson that each Religion teaches is to surrender to the sovereign-will of God and leave the consequences of deeds, well done, to the Lord Himself. It is His will and your only duty is to shape yourself into a fit instrument. To suppress the assertive ego, disciplines have been laid down in every Religion, by every compiler of moral codes, by every educator and reformer of human morals. But the oldest, most-effective and the most successfully practised system is the body of directives laid down in the Vedas and Shastras of India.

Time ticks on relentlessly and man is born, lives and dies, rotating on the wheel of Karma and consequently unaware of the means of escaping from the oncoming destiny. Agony and anxiety have not softened his heart; adventure and achievement have not made him humble. He is proud of his advance in the path of hatred and haughtiness. He revels in cruelty and sin. He displays an unholy satisfaction in immorality and untruth. He has reduced himself to a level lower than that of beasts.

The receptacle may be different but the Divine content is the same. The taste of sea-water will be saline whether you test a truckload, a bowlful, a potfull or a sip or a drop on the tongue: the taste of the Divine can be experienced in the atom or the Cosmos, the friend as well as the foe, the virus and the Universe. This is Realisation, the Liberation, the Illumination and the Revelation: "Sarvam Vishnumayam Jagat". This sphere of change is surcharged with the Omnipresent Divine.

From the narrow vision of 'individual need', man must voyage out into the broad vision of the 'Universal'. When a drop of water falls into the Ocean, it loses its narrow individuality, its name and form, and assumes the form, name and taste of the Ocean itself. If it seeks to live separately as a 'drop', it will soon evaporate and be reduced to non-existence. Each one must become aware that he is part of the one Truth that encompasses everything in the Universe. It is reprehensible to stick, for one's whole life-time, to the narrow path of selfishness, envy and greed. Make the heart big and the mind pure.

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 fellow-men. Fill the World with Love. Love will warn you against advising another to do something which you yourself are unwilling to do; your conscience will tell you that you are living in a lie!

There are Four *F's* that you will have to fix before your attention:
(1) Follow the Master;
(2) Face the Devil;
(3) Fight to the End; and
(4) Finish at the Goal.

Follow the Master means: observe Dharma. Face the Devil means: overcome the temptations that beset you when you try to earn Artha or wealth or the wherewithal to live in comfort. Fight to the End means: struggle ceaselessly; wage war against the six enemies that are led by Kama or lust. And finally, Finish at the Goal means: do not stop until the goal, Moksha or Liberation from ignorance and delusion, is reached. The *F's* are fundamental for the pursuit of the four Purusharthas - Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha.

No bird casts the seed on land to grow food for itself, nor do beasts plough and enclose fields claiming - this is mine, this is for my children and children's children -. 'Nishkama-Karma' is the natural face of activity for the children of God, the progeny of Immortality. They sing and swim, they dance and drive, they talk and walk and they pray and pine, because they must; it is the nature too. They do not know what will happen, as a consequence, they do not care; they do not anticipate any result. They are just themselves when they do these things. It is Sahaja-Lakshana, their innate nature and their inborn characteristic.

Agriculture is for living; mind culture is for life. Skills are for shaping material things so that they cater more for the comfort of man; studies are for shaping attitudes, feelings, desires, emotions and impulses of man, so that they may confer more peace, more joy and more fortitude on man.

Egoism will be destroyed, if you constantly tell yourself, 'It is He, not I', 'He is the force, I am but the instrument'. Keep His name always on the tongue, and contemplate His glory whenever you see or hear anything beautiful or grand. See in everyone the Lord Himself moving in that form. Do not talk evil of others; see only good in them. Welcome every chance to help others, to console others and to encourage others along the spiritual path.

Man is suffering because he cannot rid himself of the greed for sense-objects, and sense pleasures, or Vishaya-Vasana. He knows that he has to give up whatever he earns and collects, sooner or later; but yet his attachment waxes instead of waning, as the years go by. If every man on Earth could take with him on death even a handful of mud from the Earth, there would have been nothing much left and mud would have been rationed at so many ounces per head!

You have read that the Lord, melted and moved when one performs acute Thapas, comes and asks softly and sweetly: "My dear child, What is it you need ?" He wants you to express in words what you have yearned for and ask the Lord whom you have brought before you through the exercise of silence. That is the little game He plays. And sometimes He wills that the questioner answers in the way His plan demands.

To cross safely the flood of "Birth-Death-Continuum", the bridge, called Nishta or discipline of an unflinching kind, is essential. It must be a sturdy, safe bridge: or else you will fall into the raging waters and be drawn into the sea, infested with the sharks: Lust and Anger. See how great heroes like Prahlada did not lose their hold on the Lord, in spite of heavy odds. Prahlada never gave up the repetition of the Name of the Lord, though he was tortured, twisted and burnt. One, must have that determination and faith.

Sorrows and disasters are like the clouds that flit across the sky; they cannot injure the blue depths of space. Your duty is just to strive on from this very moment. Do not vacillate or postpone. Who knows when death knocks ? May be, he may knock this very night, this very moment; therefore, do not delay. Do you postpone for tomorrow the dinner of this day ! Feed the spirit as scrupulously as you now feed the body.

You will find that you have craved only for paltry things and for momentary distinctions for fleeting fame; you should cry only for God, for your own cleansing and consummation. You should weep, wailing for the six cobras that have sheltered themselves in your mind, poisoning it with their venom: Lust, Anger, Greed, Attachment, Pride and Malice. Quieten them as the snake-charmer does with his swaying flute. The music, that can take them, is the singing aloud of the Name of God. And when they are too intoxicated to move and harm, catch them by the neck and pull out their fangs as the charmer does. Thereafter they can be your playthings; you can handle them as you please.

If you seek to fulfill low desires, why come here ? Come here only if you seek to earn Grace. Go to a hospital only when you are resolved to take the drug the physician prescribes and go through the regimen he lays down. So, obey the directions that I give, whatever others may say or however difficult they may appear to be. You have not come to Prasanthi Nilayam to please those others. You have to please Me.

Turn the key in the lock to the right, it opens; turn the same key to the left; it is locked. Turn your mind towards the objective World, it is locked, caught, entangled. Turn it to the right away from the objects of the senses; the lock is loosened, you are free and deliverance is at hand. How to turn right? Well, begin with Namasmarana, as the first step. That will itself take you through the second and the third...... to the very goal.

If Liberation means the stoppage of grief and the acquisition of joy, then it is easy. What you have to do is to place all your burdens on God; that makes you grief-free and care-free. Then, when you take everything as the Leela of Lord you love, you clap your hands in Ananda whatever may happen, for it is His Leela and you are as happy as He is, when His plans are going through!

The mind must become the servant of the intellect, not the slave of the senses. It must discriminate and detach itself from the body. Like the ripe tamarind fruit, which, becomes loose inside the shell, it must be unattached to this shell, this casement called body.

Liberation is just the awareness of Truth, the falling off of the scales of delusion from the eye. It is not a suburb of select souls - it is not a closed monopoly of expert Sadhakas. Like the Godavari losing its form, its name and its taste in the sea, Liberation dissolves the name and form, aptitudes and attitudes. You are no more a separate, particular individual.

You are happy, that you have come on a pilgrimage here, but let Me tell you one thing: unless you control the stream of desire that springs in the mind, this is just a wasted opportunity. If your wish is fulfilled, you revere Me; if it is not, you revile Me. That is how Desire debases you. When one wish is fulfilled, ten rise in its place. For there is no dearth of want; the same person has come to Me seeking success at the examination, then a job, then a father-in-law, then a child, then a rise in the salary, a transfer in a cheaper place and a seat in the Medical College for his son - a never ending series of wants, until at last he comes seeking My Grace for an end to worldly pursuits and for initiation into the path of spirituality.

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

When you know that thieves have broken into your neighbour's house, you become extra cautious and, every night, before you retire, you examine every lock and bolt in the house. When you know that death has carried away a victim from the house next door, why do you not examine yourselves, whether you are equipped to meet it when it comes for you ? Why do you immerse yourselves in distractions like building houses, piling bank-balances, celebrating picnics and contesting elections. Engage yourselves rather in things that will make you immortal and serve your best interests by service to the World ! Seek your own Reality, That is what a wise man should do.

Remove the vices of lust and hatred, and put out the raging flames of anger and greed, then the innate Santham and Soukhyam and the Swarupam and Sevabhavam of Man, will manifest themselves unhindered. Santham is the Swarupam; and Soukhyam; and is the Swabhavam of man.

The body can be clean if washed with water; speech can be clean if it is saturated in Truth; life can be purified if it is sanctified by Tapas; and the intellect can be cleared of blemish through Jnana. Above all, the conviction that you are not the body only a resident of the body has to grow in you. If you identify yourselves with the body that you carry about with you, you are inviting sorrow and suffering to overwhelm you instead of the joy and peace which are awaiting to bless you.

When the Gita directs you to give up all Dharmas (Set codes of morality), it does not ask you also to give up all Karma (activity): that is to say, you have to do Karma, and, when you do it for God, through God and by God, the Dharma of it does not matter; it has to be acceptable and it is bound to benefit you. The statement is not an invitation to licentiousness or complete inactivity; it is all for dedication and surrender to the highest in Man, viz. God.

Do not admit into your mind the demon of A-santhi. Direct all your cleverness and all your intelligence to the successful execution of the great Drama, in which all of you are taking part at present. It is His Drama. He is the Director, you play a role, an actor carrying out His Will, speaking the words that He put in your mouth and making movements as directed by Him.

The experience of this one life must be enough to show you that there is no joy unmixed with grief, that both grief and joy are short-lived and they both depend on the mind and its control. You do not require the experience of a series of lives to grasp this patent fact. This World is keeping you in bondage; it is a prison from which you must get released; and you should not plan to return to it again and again.

The eye which is scarce two inches long can see millions of miles into space, but is incapable of seeing itself ! Man too is as shrewd and as weak as the eye. He can analyze others' motives, count others' faults and map out others' skills and capacities, but he is powerless to analyze himself, his feelings and his emotions. Unwilling to discover his own faults, he cannot assess his innate skill and realize his inner reality ! But the power can be acquired if you keep company with Sadhakas (aspirants for spiritual progress), not otherwise.

Man thinks himself that he knows everything but, when asked about himself, he hangs down his head in shame. Man knows the news of every land, but he is ignorant of the nuisance that he himself is to himself and others. He is moving in darkness but yearning for Ananda. He does not know the means of securing Ananda: Prayer, Seva, Study of Spiritual Texts, Meditation and Silence. He has no face that he is Ananda and that Ananda is his own nature. He is blown off by calamity, for he has no strength to withstand the blow. Faith in the God within is the toughest shield against the thrusts of Fate.

When you do not accept the insult some one casts on you, it goes back to the person who indulged in it first; a registered letter that is not accepted returns to the sender. Do not damage your mental peace by receiving the letter and reading the contents. Refuse to receive it. You have a chance of correcting the wrong-doers too; accept it and join the gang of mischief-makers. So be warned!

WHEN you pray for a thing from God, you run the risk of condemning Him, if for some reasons the Prayer is not answered the way you want it to be or as quickly as you want it. This contingency arises because you feel that God is an outsider, staying in some Heaven or holy spot, far away from you. God is in you, God is in every word of yours, every deed and every thought. Speak, do and think as befits Him. Do the duty that He has allotted to you to the best of your ability and to the satisfaction of your conscience. That is the most rewarding Puja.

WHEN you stand before another, his image is in your eye and your image is in his; have you not observed this? You are in Him, I am in you: that is the Truth this phenomenon proclaims. When you believe in this, and when you cultivate Love, Humility, Reverence for Life and Tolerance, you are on the Right Path. When you are not on this Path, that is to say, when you are traveling left, you are certainly left out when it is a question of sharing Divine Grace.

I KNOW many parents who dote on their children and admire them when they learn the bad habits of gambling or drinking! They do not curb them when they swagger about in the bazaars, teasing and bullying those who pass by. They do not instill into the young minds the attitude of reverence towards property belonging to others. As a consequence, their children land themselves in trouble and, then, the parents repent and curse themselves for their unpardonable foolishness.

IF the parent is a drunkard, a gambler and a cheat, no amount of textbook ethics can cure the sons. I like children and the young innocence. I will not allow them to be blamed. The fault lies wholly on the shoulders of the elders, the parents, and the leaders who shape the norms which they imbibe.

CLEANSE your emotions, passions, impulses, attitudes, and reactions. That is the essence of spiritual discipline as laid down in all Faiths. Examine your mind, your thoughts; do not seek the fault ridden person. Seek only purity; speak ill of none. Do not humiliate anyone; respect him for the good in him. Their grief at your behaviour will haunt you during your last moments.

LIFE is a mosaic of pleasure and pain - grief is an interval between two moments of joy. Peace is the interlude between two wars. You have no rose without a thorn; the diligent picker will avoid the pricks and gather the flower. There is no bee without the sting; cleverness consists in gathering the honey nevertheless. Troubles and travails will haunt you but you must not allow them to deflect you from the path of duty and dedication.

IF you feel you must have something to be happy, pray to God: "God, you have the responsibility to keep me healthy, happy, good and intelligent; give me this thing which I believe is necessary for my happiness; but, if you think I am wrong, give me whatever you think best". God will never desert His obligation. He will feed you and foster you.

WOMEN preserve the culture of this country with greater tenacity and faith. They keep men on the moral path and inspire them to follow spiritual discipline. Their hearts are tender and full of compassion for the hungry and the distressed. That is why in this land, women are adored and revered.

THOSE who deny God, the Supreme Will or the First Cause, can give no real satisfactory justification for their stand; nor can those who assert that there is God. Both have to rely on their own experience. After all, how can sweetness be denied by one who refuses to taste sugar? How can one be convinced that sugar is sweet until one tastes it? We have to feel the great marvel of energy, manipulating both, the minutest atom and cell and the vastest, most distant star. How else can we understand the Omnipresence and Omnipotence, except by accepting God as the Architect of the Cosmos?

Follow the call of the Divine arising from the hearts of all living beings. Serve them in an attitude of worship, not expecting something in return. Do not accept even gratitude, having dedicated all your acts to the indwelling God. This will purify you so that you shall be able to listen to the "Soham" that your breath repeats every moment. "Soham" transmutes itself into OM when the distinction between He and I has dissolved itself in the process of 'Samadhi'.

The very first lesson of the Primer of the spiritual text is "Control of Speech". Speech is the armament of man; other animals have fleetness of foot, sharpness of claw, fang, horn, tusk, beak and talon. But man has sweetness of Speech which can disarm all opposition and defeat all the designs of hatred. Sweetness makes you "Pasupathi" - Divine; harshness makes you "Pasu" - bestial. Mere outward politeness or sweetness is hipocrisy ! Sincere speech must flow from real sweetness of heart, a heart full of love. Remove all evil from the Manasarovar, the pellucid lake of your Mind, and make it a fit abode of Godhead.

Every man desires to acquire Ananda. From where can Ananda be acquired ? Faith alone can win Ananda. Peace can be got only through Faith; Faith is the spring of Joy. But now we see Sorrow, wherever we cast our eyes. Why does this happen ? Because, man has lost Faith. He has no Faith in himself. How then can he acquire Ananda ? How can a person, how has not got Faith enough to live happily for a few days, win the Grace of God ?

At present, everyone is after Sukha. The hunt for comfortable jobs and positions of influence, the founding of banks and business-houses, the growth of bungalows - all this is evidence of the eagerness to live in happiness. But there is no eagerness to live in Santhi. Sukha is confused with Santhi. Sukha is taken to be the same as Santhi. No one of the rich or well placed or prosperous or powerful has Santhi. You can investigate and find out for yourselves the truth of this. Santhi is not found in the Pass-Book or many-roomed bungalows or godowns or iron safes. Your whole attitude is topsy-turvy.

Go straight along the path of Karma and Dharma towards Brahma; this is your destiny. Karma has to be done; there is no turning away. Each has his allotted task, according to the status, taste, tendency and earned merit. Do it, with the fear of God and of sin, deep in your heart. Welcome pain and grief; so that you take both success and failure as hammer-strokes to shape you into a sturdy Sadhaka. Inner contentment is more important than outer prosperity.

FRIENDSHIP must serve as lids for the eye, as sandals for the feet. The friend must be "another Me". He must experience, in equal depth, the joy and the grief of the other. Friends must be like milk and water. Let Me elaborate this example. When milk, into which some quantity of water is poured, is placed on a burning stove, the water goes off as steam. The milk laments the separation and boils over. Then, the only way to keep it calm, is to sprinkle a spoon or two of water; its friend is back and it is happy. Milk cannot tolerate separation from its friend.

YOUR friends today attach themselves not to you but to your purse or to some advantage they can gain through your father's kindness. When your purse is empty or when your father is no longer in power, they bid you good-bye. Friends who drag one away into evil habits and vicious deeds, are prowling around in search of victims.

Be in the world like a maid servant in a rich man's house. The maid servant deals with all the objects and things always knowing that nothing belongs to her and that this is not her true home.

Those who seek to know God must steel themselves to bear insult, injury and torture, with a smile.

Sri Sathya Sai Baba

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