Satyopanishad – Upanishad Of Sri Sathya Sai – Part 5
Anil Kumar Kamaraju Questions Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! Many people feel that they are too busy to have rest. How, then, is one to take rest?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: Change of work is rest. You should never be idle. You should not be lazy. Laziness is rust and dust. But work is rest and best. If you are tired of a particular piece of work, change to another. Change of work is rest.
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! We worry a lot. Sometimes we fall sick also due to worry. What is worry? Please tell us how not to worry?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: In my opinion, there is nothing like worry. If you enquire in depth, you will know that there is no worry at all in this world. It is merely psychological. Worry is fear mentally created. That is all! Nothing more! It is all your imagination.
At times you feel guilty. So, you worry remembering your past, which is beyond recovery. By no effort can you recover it. Past is past. Then, why worry about the past? Is there any sense in it? You may worry about the future. This is also useless in my opinion. Why? Because the future is uncertain, anything may happen. Who knows? The future is unknown. Why, then, should you worry about the future? What do you gain by that?
Understand clearly that everything is in the present. It is not simple present, it is omnipresent. How? In the present lie the results of the past. The present is the foundation of the future. The seed of today is out of the tree you grew yesterday, and it will germinate and grow into a tree tomorrow. So, worry is useless. Hence, never worry about anything.
Question) Swami! Nowadays many educated people waste their time, money and energy in towns and cities. Bhagawan, we are eager to know your views on this subject.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: “Time is God”. In your prayers you say, kalaya namah, kalakalaya namah, kalatitaya namah, and so on. Time is divine. You should not waste time. It is a sin to waste or misuse time. Everybody must follow time. God is the master of time. Time waste is life waste. Haste makes waste, waste makes worry, so do not be in a hurry. We should perform good actions and thus spend our time in a sacred way. Youth and a river will never flow backwards. When you pass the stage of youth, it will not come back. The river water flowing forward will never retreat. Therefore, you should consider time a very precious commodity.
You have also pointed out that money is wasted by many educated people. This is very bad. Waste of money is evil. You should not misuse money. Remember always, much money makes many more wrong things. Much money leads you into bad habits. You should spend money on welfare programmes. You should express gratitude to society, which has been responsible for your present status, by spending money on service activities. You should sacrifice for the poor and needy. “Na karmana na prajaya dhanena, tyagenaike amrtatva manasuh.” You attain moksha or liberation only by sacrifice. No action, no offspring, no possession or property ever equals sacrifice.
In the human body, blood should always circulate. Similarly, money should circulate in society. It should not stagnate in the hands of a few persons. If blood does not circulate, there develops on the body a boil or a tumour. If you run short of money, it is difficult to manage things. At the same time, too much money spoils you. It should be like your shoes that fit your feet exactly. If the shoes are loose, you cannot walk; if they are tight, then also you find it difficult to walk freely. Your shoes always should be of the exact size of your feet. So also, money should neither be too little nor too much for you. Bear in mind what I tell repeatedly and caution you. Money comes and goes, but morality comes and grows.
Morality consists of proper utilisation of energy and other resources. You should not waste energy in any form. You should not waste water. Do not waste food; annam brahma, Food is God. You can eat till your hunger is appeased. There is nothing wrong in it. There are many who are starving. There are many who do not have enough food to eat. What is the prayer you say before you take your food?
brahmarpanam brahma havih brahmagnau brahman a hutam, brahmaiva tena gantavyam, brahmakarma samadhind. aham vaisvanaro bhutva praninam dehamas’ritah, pran apana samayuktah pacamyannam caturvidham
Oh God! You are in the form of Vaisvanara. You verily digest and assimilate the food that I eat. I offer the food that I eat. I offer the food to you. You alone supply its essence to all parts of my body.
This is the meaning of the prayer that you say before youtake your food. Therefore, you should not waste food. It is a sin to waste it.
I want you to place a ceiling on your desires. This is possible only if you decide and pledge not to waste time, money, food and energy. All the five elements of nature earth, water, air, fire, and space are divine. You should be highly reverential and grateful to these five elements. Always consider them divine.
Question) Swami! When we are not happy with the type of education and the money we receive, is it right to feel that they are useless? Should we give up these two? What is the way out?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: It is not correct. In this world, nothing is useless. Everything depends on your mind. Your thoughts and counter-thoughts are responsible for all that you feel, say, and do. God created this world for the benefit and the betterment of humankind. Use, abuse, and misuse depend on your mind. Therefore, you go through certain experiences and the corresponding results. In fact, in education there is nothing wrong, for prajnanam brahma, Knowledge is God. So education can’t be defective. When your mind is pure, your education confers wisdom and spiritual awakening on you. But a polluted mind makes use of education for its selfish gains. Hence, education being the constant, its utility depends on the nature of the mind. This is true of money as well.
A sacred mind prompts you to sacrifice: But a polluted mind makes you waste money by taking to vices. It makes you a slave to all sorts of bad habits. Ultimately you lose your good name. Here also money being constant, its utility depends on the mind. Therefore, it is necessary to keep your mind pure, sacred, Godward, and full of selfless divine love. This process is sadhana, spiritual endeavour. Body attachment, doubts, jealousy, hatred, ego, and selfishness pollute the mind, and lead to the total ruin of life. Therefore, these evil tendencies must be got rid of forthwith and your mind filled with love instead. Thus, your education and money are well utilised. They would prompt you to undertake service activities enabling you ultimately to experience Divinity within yourself.
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! Our country, Bharat, is famous politically for its secular constitution. But, political parties interpret “secularism” in a variety of ways. Some offer distorted comments. I pray for your clarification.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: “Secularism” does not mean atheism. A secular nation is not the land of Hiranayakasipu, but one where each citizen follows his dharma, propagates and professes it freely without criticising other people’s faiths and dharmas under any circumstances. Sanatana dharma does refer to the “secular”. Sri Krishna remarked:
Svadharme nidhanam s’reyah paradharmo bhayavahah
In other words, you should follow ‘svadharma’ and not ‘paradharma’. But, there is a subtle point here. ‘Svadharma’ does not mean the dharmas relating to one’s caste, stage in life, orprofession, as you imagine. ‘Svadharma’ is Atmadharma, the dharma based on Atma consciousness, and ‘paradharma’ is Anatmadharma based on non-atma or bodily consciousness, devoid of the spirit.
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! Today a number of international organisations are striving for peace. It looks as though the guiding principles of these organisations are not focused properly. How then is peace to be achieved?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: Their approach, is defective. Where is peace? Peace is within you. You are the embodiment of peace. Peace is not to be found in the world outside. What lies outside is not peace, but pieces. First, achieve peace as an individual, then spread it in your family. Gradually you will enjoy peace in the community and then in the nation. Many countries stockpile atom bombs and other weapons of mass destruction and ceaselessly go on chanting peace aphorisms. Is this peace?
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! In this modern age, many of us consider our age old religious rituals like yajnas and yagas meaningless, ridiculous and outdated. Why has this happened?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: Ignorance is the main cause, the utter ignorance of thoughtless speeches. A simple example. A District Collector went to a village on official work. Therein a field he saw a farmer who was just throwing rice grains on his plot of land. The official felt that this was the reason why India was so poor. “What a funny man is this rustic fellow throwing away rice grains at a time when people are starving,” he thought. He finally decided to ask the farmer why he was doing that. The farmer responded, “Sir, I am not wasting these rice grains. Today it looks as though one bag of rice is just thrown to the winds, but later you will get fifty bags of rice out of this one bag”. Then the Collector understood that he was mistaken.
Likewise, watching sacred rituals like yajnas and yagas, one might feel that ghee and lots of other materials are wasted by being put into the sacrificial fire. It is not so. The smoke that comes out of this fire as these materials are poured into the fire, and the Vedic mantras chanted simultaneously cleanse the polluted air. The whole atmosphere is purified. So it is foolish to consider these rituals as outdated, ridiculous, and meaningless. They ensure timely rains and harvests. In fact all these rituals prescribed by our Vedic texts are meant for the welfare of mankind and confer peace and bliss.
Question) Swami! Kindly instruct us in the main principles making for progress in spheres such as Science, Politics, Ethics, Religion and Spirituality.
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: If you follow three main principles, all round progress is ensured. You will undoubtedly progress in all fields of activity, individual and collective.
The first principle is daivapriti, Love of God. The second is papabhati, Fear of Sin. The third is sanghaniti, Morality in Society. Unless you love God immensely, you cannot fear sin. With fear of sin, morality gets automatically established in society. Thus, the three principles are interdependent and interrelated.
I often tell my students, “Before you do anything, just put this question to yourself: Will Swami approve this action? Is this going to please Swami? “ Your intense love for Swami will not allow you to do anything wrong. Evidently, love of God leads to fear of sin. We find turbulent and raging waves in the sea dashing against boulders that stand steady and unshaken. In the same way your faith should be steady, strong, unshakeable, and unwavering, irrespective of losses, failures, defeats, troubles, difficulties, and problems. For instance, if anyone says to you, “There is no God,” what reply should you give? You should reply in this way, “All right, you don’t believe in God, but what right do you have to deny me my belief in God?”
Never forget God, remember pancaksari, the five lettered mantra ‘devudunnadu’ (1) de, (2) vu, (3 ) du , (4) nna, (5) du , (Telugu sentence with five letters meaning God exists). In order to see that you don’t doubt this, repeat astaksari , the eight lettered Sanskrit mantra, “samsayatma vinas yati”, (1) sam, (2) sa, 3) ya, (4) tma , (5) vi, (6) na, (7) sya, (8) ti which means ‘doubt is death’. Never doubt God. In a sentence like this, “God is nowhere” reflects your pitiable plight of being denied His presence. Now, move the ‘w’ from the third word ‘where’, and join it at the end of the word ‘no’. Then the sentence reads, ‘God is now here’.
Man most unfortunately commits sins but is not prepared to face their consequences. He expects punyam, merit, the result of good actions, but does not refrain from doing papam, sin. Nor would he do any meritorious deeds to get good results. Is there any logic or rationale for him to get good results? How foolish are such expectations? How do you expect one kind of result from an altogether different and opposite kind of action? Always bear in mind the whole thing comes back to you in the form of reaction, reflection, and resound. You cannot escape them. When you fully realise this, you will not commit sins or involve yourself in harmful deeds. So you should ‘Love God’ and ‘Fear Sin’. With these two, there will be ‘Morality in Society’.
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! Many speak of culture? What is the value of culture?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: Culture is very important because your life and its value depend on it. Culture is a way of life. Culture enables you to experience divinity in your life. Culture helps one to know unity in diversity. Without culture, man becomes a demon. He falls down in stature and ultimately ruins himself.
You know that sea water is saline or salty. Human life is like a vast sea. God’s grace is like sunlight that falls on the sea. The seawater because of the heat of the sun becomes vaporised. This is the vapour of bliss that settles as clouds in the sky to fall down to the earth as rain. It is the rain of love. The sea water is salty but the rainwater is sweet. Why? Where does the difference lie? Sea water is refined by sunlight. So also, our life must be cultured and refined. The value of life will then go up. A piece of iron worth less than a rupee can be made into a beautiful costly watch after it is processed and refined. This is due to the culture it has undergone. So long as a boulder remains itself, it is bound to be neglected. But, once it is in the hands of a sculptor, chiselled and hammered, and shaped into a beautiful Krishna idol; it starts receiving respect and worship. Why? It is only culture that makes all the difference. A boulder, once trodden by everyone underfoot and now in the form of an idol, occupies a place at the altar in a temple and is worshipped everyday. This is the value that culture confers.
Without culture, one develops a foolish view of life finding diversity in unity. For example, take a needle. It stitches pieces of cloth into a garment. The needle stands for culture. But scissors cut the cloth into pieces. This is the condition in the absence of culture.
Question) Anil Kumar: Swami! Have people come closer to God in this modern world?
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba: The modern world is completely superficial and artificial. Outwardly, all say ‘hello’, ‘hello’ to each other. Everyone says ‘thanks’ for every small thing. This is all mechanical, routine courtesy, and those words don’t mean anything. You find utter selfishness everywhere.
Modern science has enabled man to land on the Moon. But, man has forgotten to step into his neighbour’s house. Yes, he can reach chandra, the Moon, but can’t see Ramachandra in his heart. Modern man can swim in water like a fish, and fly like a bird, but can’t walk a mile with his two legs on the ground. With his physical eye, which is not even two inches in size, he is able to see a galaxy lakhs miles away from him, but he is not able to see himself. The eye and the ear are so near but they don’t see each other! Do they? God reclines on the ksirasagara , ‘ocean of milk’ located in your Heart, but today we find that the ‘Heart’ has become ksarasagara, ‘ocean of poison’. How do you expect him to realise Divinity?
Even after having become a very rich country, France, lost the great war. Why? It was because of her reckless youngsters and the vices of the day. This trend is increasing today among people. Man is living and working for the fulfilment of his asalu, lowly desires, but he should live for asayalu, ideals. People with high ideals alone can come closer to one another spiritually.
Upanishad means the “inner” or “mystic teaching”. The term Upanishad is derived from “upa” (near), “ni” (down) and “shad” (to sit), i.e., sitting down near. Groups of pupils sit near the teacher to learn from him/her the secret doctrine. In the quietude of the forest hermitages the Upanishadic thinkers pondered on the problems of deepest concerns and communicated their knowledge to fit pupils near them. The most well known Upanishads are: Aitareya, Brihadaranyaka, Taittiriya, Chandogya, Kena, Isa, Svetasvatara, Katha, Mundaka, Mandukya, Prasna, Kausitaki, Maitrayani, Kausitaki, Muktika and Shakta. The Satyopanishad is the Upanishad of Truth (Sathya) but more specifically the Truth as revealed by Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Anil Kumar questions the illustrious Guru and provides us with Sathya Sai Baba’s answers to ponder, ruminate and derive ananda.
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