1008 Pearls of Sayings of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
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THIS World is full of people who suffer from insanity but, who are still outside the asylums! Suddenly, when hatred envelops a country, even ordinary sane people go mad and behave like savages. But sometimes in the Mental Hospital you will find one type of "mad man". He sits in a corner, resting without a break, watching the pranks and the wildness of the other inmates. The doctors will be thankful to him, for he needs no care; he causes no trouble. His madness may be melancholia or he may be a Jnani. The God bound man is like that. He is the only sane man in this mad world.
BECOME fit for the vision of God that you seek in the temples. Go humbly, with Prema in your heart for all creation. Take the "Hrudhayapushpa", full of fragrance of Prema, the "Mano-phala" uncontaminated by the pests of greed and egoism. Become sweet in word, deed and thought, so that you can dedicate yourself to the services of God's Plan.
YOU will have seen the announcement that you should not bring Me fruits, flowers etc. Some of you I know are sad that I have announced so. But I tell you; Come to Me with empty hands. I shall fill your hands with gifts and Grace. If your hands are full, what am I to fill them with?
ALL Worship and Puja is for "Bhakthi" only; for the better comfort and more luxurious consumption of the Worshipper himself. Devotion has been vulgarised into a business deal. I shall give you so much, provided you give me so much in return. If another shrine promises more, this shrine is given up. And if you do not get quick returns there or somewhere else, some other God, might be more profitable. That is the way in which worldly men wander about in their panicky rounds.
YOU are as distant from the Lord as you think you are, as near Him as you feel you are. Well, let me tell you this. This distance from Me to you is the same as the distance from you to Me, is it not? But, you complain that I am far from you, though you are approaching nearer and nearer. How can that be? I am as near you as you are near Me.
WHEN a prisoner is taken from place to place, he is accompanied by two Constables. When man, who is a prisoner in this jail, moves from one place to another, he too, is accompanied by "Ahamkaram" and "Mamakaram": Egoism and Attachment. When he moves above without these two, you can be sure he is a free man, liberated from prison.
DO all the household work as acts of Worship for Him. That is more fruitful than hours of Dhyana, hours gained by entrusting this precious work to paid helpers. Men too must feel that frittering away precious time, flitting from one vanity to another and seeking more and more purposeless means of spending days and nights, is detrimental to the main aim of life. Spread joy, give strength, distribute courage, console the distressed, and help the lame to walk, and the blind to see. That is the real timetable of activities of man.
THE wealth that you hoard is not yours. The wealth that you have shared is yours. For wealth that belongs to you need not be hidden. The wealth that you have given away is really yours. That is the reason why Vedas have declared: "Not through actions, not through progeny, not through wealth can Immortality be won; it can be won only through renunciation".
IF only you surrender your wish and will and your fancies and fantasies to God, He will lead you aright, and give you peace and joy. You must not run after diverse ends and fleeting pleasures. Leave everything to God. Accept whatever happens as His Will.
GOD is the echo of the hills, the flutter of the leaves, the whisper of men, the babble of children, and the OM that is wafted everywhere. God is present at all places but, to recognise Him Saints have had to prescribe a thousand methods. He is in everyone, yet He evades discovery by all but a few, being all powerful. He is the Giver of all Gifts, the Providence bestowing upon us all the wherewithal: "Asvrithya Thishtathi" (He remains All Encompassing).
THROUGH sheer ignorance, and perversity, the Shastras have been ignored and set aside, and man is misleading himself into the belief that his fancies are true, just, and beneficial. Man has thrown his "humanness" into the crater of cruelty; forgetting his best interests under the influence of hatred, envy, conceit and power. He has cast aside the expanse of his culture. As a result, Peace has flown from the heart of man, from the fold of Society, and the boundaries of Nations.
ONE flower cannot make a garland. All flowers must come together to make one. So you must equip yourselves with strong bodies, sacred ideals, and unselfish intentions in order to serve your country. You can achieve any high ideal provided you are cooperative, well disciplined, soaked in service and sacrifice, and fully determined to succeed.
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 him 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 living examples of their greatness.
THE Upanishads proclaim that Thyaga alone can grant "Amrithatva" (Renunciation alone can bring about the Bliss of Immortality). One has to ignore all bonds of kinship and comradeship, give up all attachment and affection, and, in the heart thus liberated, install God in all His Glory. This is the only means to earn everlasting and undiminished Ananda.
WHETHER one is a renowned scholar with expert knowledge of the deepest levels of religious lore, a monarch reveling in the brilliance of palatial luxury, a hero of many battles, or a miserable victim of poverty - if one has no devotion to the Lord, one does not deserve homage, honour, or attention.
DO not hesitate to practice humility and obedience, discipline and compassion; Give up pride of your status, wealth, scholarship or official position. "Can I, a big Officer, a rich merchant, a great scholar, a man highly respected in Society, descend to this level of clubbing with this sorrowing man? "Do not ask such silly questions. Everyone of these qualifications of which you boast will disappear with death, or sometimes sooner. The Ananada that you give and the Love that you share will be your lasting possessions.
THE great axioms of Bharathiya Culture found in the Vedas - "Iswarassarvabhuthaanaam", "Isaavaayamidam Sarvam", "Vassudevassarvamidam" (God is the inner Motivator of all beings; All this is enveloped in God; All this is Vasudeva and the Divine is to be inside one). 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 Heart.
WHAT is the root of worry? Wants and the efforts to fulfill them, and the fear of not succeeding to the extent desired. Reduce wants and you reduce worry. You congregate here on the Nilayam verandah seeking a personal interview with Me, with a load of wishes in your heart; wishes, that you want me to fulfill! Why carry all the load? Carry only one load: the desire to win the Grace of God. He will confer what is best for you. Leave the rest to Him.
WHAT is this lifetime? Is it to struggle in the mire or march straight on to the eternal? You will get millions to tell you what is pleasing to you, but it is difficult to get one in a million who can tell you what is good for you. What is good for you is akin to Truth. Truth is hard but beneficial. It is unpleasant advice to tell a man to stick to the Truth at all costs; Truth alone pays dividends that satisfy.
PEOPLE think that they live on food. Then how is it that, while the wealthy who can afford all kinds of food, succumb to untimely death, while the poor still live? Man does not live by food alone. In fact he lives by the power of the Soul. Without discrimination, what is the use of physical strength?
TO presume that either from wealth or 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.
WE talk of Moksha. What is it? It is only giving up the "Anatma", the Unreal. Suppose you want a tumbler of fruit juice. Unless you throw away the water already in the tumbler, you cannot pour the juice in the tumbler. Similarly, unless you give up materialism, "Atmabhava" (spirituality), cannot come to you. "Moksha" is not a distinct and different "Sadhana". It is only giving up unnecessary desires. Through anger, wisdom is lost. Disharmony is the cause of anger; of disharmony, jealousy, and of jealousy, ignorance is the cause.
MAKE your body and mind pure. This place is like a workshop where broken-down cars are repaired and made whole. Do not entertain bad thoughts and do bad deeds. Life is holy and sacred. Go through it with joy and happiness. Do not carry gloomy, unhappy faces. Happiness is union with God. This period of your life is sacred. If you can not derive happiness and live in Bliss at this age, can you be blissful when you grow old? Now, you have only two legs to carry; you can jump about freely. But when you marry and rear up a family, you will move like a caterpillar with many legs!
SO long as man is bound to the body, his God too has to be in a body like his own. It is often said disparagingly, that God is conceived as having eyes, nose, tongue and limbs. When the person who worships has these, the worshipped too must have them, in order to make the worship meaningful. Only when one is unaware of his "form", can he adore the "Formless"! It is indeed surprising that those who laugh at God being pictured as having a body, do not laugh at their being enclosed in a body! When man has to be corrected and liberated, God has to come as Man, as Narayana had to do to save Mahabali.
THE Vedas are the foundation of the Bharatiya Culture. If in modern Society a trace of spiritual illumination is visible, we can ascribe it to this Vedic basis and the way of life I demand. All moral codes (Dharma) have emanated from the Vedas; and all the Worlds have Dharma as their sustenance: "Vedamulam Idam Jagath".
YOU will learn that I am Prema itself; that I give only one thing, Ananda, through that Prema. My task is to distribute Solace, Courage, and Shanti. That is to say, My Characteristics are the ancient authentic ones. Only the Manifested Form is new. My desire, if I can put it in so many words, is this: "More and more should yearn for Me. The desire will be realised only if I assume this Form and come among you".
EVERY day, when you sleep, where are you? Who are you? Your senses are inoperative; your intelligence is in abeyance; your mind creates a World of its own and, after playing in it for some time, it lapses into inactivity. That is sleep: the nearest you reach in your journey to Samadhi. Live in the "Atmathathwam" that will ensure "Shanti". With the poison of "Raga" and "Dwesha" inside you, how can you be pronounced healthy? If you experience the "Atmathathwam", you become Bhagawan Himself.
ONCE Narada was asked to name the most noteworthy among the things of the World. He answered that the Earth was the biggest. But, he was told water has occupied three fourths of the Earth; it threatens to swallow up the balance too, bit by bit. So, water, he had to agree, was more powerful. However, water too was drunk up by the Sage Agasthya and the Oceans were rendered dry by him and he, in turn, is now just a star in the sky! Is the sky the biggest, then? For it was covered by one single foot of the Vamena Avatar of the Lord. And, the Lord? O, He enters the hearts of the devotees and resides there. So Narada had to conclude that the hearts of Bhaktas are the grandest things in creation.
SANKARACHARYA came for the work of Dharma-Sthapana, but he did not wage a war against the narrow Sectarians, or the wild Theologians who opposed him as a Pseudo Buddhist. He won them over by argument, persuasion and preaching. He spoke softly, but with conviction. He gave his opponents a fair chance to present their cases to the best of their ability and sometimes he even helped them to clarify their own points of view. Through Bodha alone, can Dharma be saved in the modern Kali age. That is why I am engaged in Bodha, this task of reconstruction through Upadesa.
A LIFE without character is as barren as a temple without a lamp, a coin that is counterfeit, and a kite whose string has snapped. A teacher who instructs pupils with his eye fixed on his salary, and a pupil who learns with his eye fixed on a job are born missing their vocation. The teacher has to help the pupil unfold and manifest the skills and qualities inherent in him and encourage him to rise to the fullest height he is capable of. The Divine is the Core in both the teacher and the pupil.
EVERYTHING in the Universe is vibrant with Sath, Chith and Ananda. We (Sath) are intelligent (Chith) and blissful (Ananda). These three are attributes of Divinity, which is our dormant but dominant force. Ignorant of the truth, structures are built up and paraded on other bases. Mankind suffers from fear and hatred on account of this fundamental defect in their search for Knowledge.
PRAYERS for worldly ends do not reach God. They will reach only those deities who deal with such restricted spheres. But all prayers arising from pure Love, unselfish eagerness to render service from hearts that are all inclusive, will reach God. For God is the very Embodiment of Love. We know that we can see the Moon only through the Moonlight. So too, God, who is Love, can be realised only through Love. Love is God. Live in Love.
THE desires that cling to the mind are the blemishes that tarnish man's inner consciousness. Control the senses. Do not yield to their insistent demands for satisfaction. When a corpse is placed on a pyre and when the pyre is lit, both the corpse and the pyre are reduced to ashes. So too, when the senses are negated, the mind too disappears. When the mind disappears, delusion dies and liberation is achieved.
VAAK or voice has to be rigourously trained to avoid chatter and wandering prattle. Keep the tongue under control; do not express all you are prompted to say; cut that inclination to the minimum. Silence will charge the battery and you can win through a longer period of "Dhyana". Be full of Prema and then your words will spread Prema. They will be sweet and soothing like balm to those who suffer.
ATTACHMENT, affection and interest will create prejudice, partiality and illusion; they hide the truth; and they dull the intelligence. Raga is Roga; attachment is a disease, so far as the inquirer is concerned. It does not become a Yogi to have Raga (affection); He must be free from favourites, fancies and fondness. Once you attach yourself to some person or habit or mannerism, it will be difficult for you to shake them off.
UPASANA means that all your thoughts, deeds and words on those holy days must be about God; that you should spend the day "Near Him", "in Him" and "for Him". It means that eating, sleeping and other bodily avocations have to take a secondary role and that Meditation and Japam have to take the main role. If your body wastes away as a result of these fasts, God will be blamed. So, you are only drawing down the calumny of people on the God you adore.
WHY must man live for years - a burden on earth, so much of rice or
wheat consumed, year after year with no return in joy or peace to himself or
others? The Petromax light will shine bright only when you pump air
vigorously, that is to say, engage yourself in Sadhana and illumine your
mind better and spread light on all who come near you.
THOSE who deny God are denying themselves and their glory. All have Love in their hearts, in some form or other; either towards the children of the poor or their work for the good of others. That Love is God, the spark of the Godly in them. They have Ananda however small or temporary, and that is a spark of God and the Godly. They have Shanti, Detachment and Sympathy. All these are the reflections of the Divine on the mirror of their minds. These are all mental excellences, revealed through an appreciation of the advantages of virtue.
THE principle of Love has no trace of ego or blemish. It is fully free from selfish attachment. Whatever Sai does, whatever Sai thinks, whatever Sai says and whatever Sai observes is all for your sake, not for Sai's sake. My only desire is your Ananda. Your Ananda is My Ananda. I have no Ananda apart from yours.
WHATEVER thoughts arise in Me are only for the Peace and Welfare of the World, for the progress of Youth and for transforming ideal boys and girls who will lead others along the path. You must dedicate yourselves for rendering enthusiastic service to the people of the World, recognising thatthe Sai Principle has no egoistic urge.
WHEN do we need Light? Not during the day, but when night prevails. Then we need a lamp, a flame, the Moon; so too, until wisdom enlightens us, we need Sadhana; until we experience the one Unified Divine, we have to accept and practice discipline, regulations and Sadhana. Ignorance is the Night. Knowledge is the Light. There are nine lamps that can illumine the mind and free it from darkness: Sravanam (listening); Keerthanam (Adulation); Smaranam; Padasevanam; Archanam (ceremonial worship); Vandanam; Dasyam; Sakhyam; and Atmanivedanam.
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