Gurur-Brahma Gurur-Vishnu Gurur Devo Maheswara;
Guru Sakshat Param Brahma Thasmai Sri Gurave Namaha.
Guru is Brahma, Guru is Vishnu, Guru is Maheswara.
Guru is verily the supreme Brahman. So, salutations to the Guru!
Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva are the three different names and forms of the same divinity. "All are one, be alike to everyone." Though the names and forms of the physical body are different, Divinity in all beings is one only. Brahma is the Creator, Vishnu is the Protector, and Shiva is the Destroyer. Yet, all three aspects represent the one Divinity. The one God when engaged in the creative aspect is referred to as Brahma, while protecting and sustaining the living beings as Vishnu, and, finally, in the act of Laya (dissolution) as Shiva.
In order to avoid the confusion created by ascribing different names and forms to Divinity, God is referred to as Atma or the Absolute Brahman (the nameless, formless, attributeless Divinity). The one Atma permeates all living beings.
Religions are different, path is the same;
Clothes are different, cotton is one;
Beings are different, Atma is one;
Nationality and lifestyle are different, human birth is the same.
Every human being has to develop three qualities: love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. It is only lack of fear of sin that is responsible for the present state of lack of morality in society. Love is the cementing factor that unites people. Where there is love, there society will be united. Devoid of morality, one does not deserve to be called a human being. Hence, morality is important for everything.
Though God showers His love on one and all, it is the human being who has lost the precious quality of fear of sin. Man today is committing several sins with the belief that God is kind and will ultimately forgive his sins. With this belief, he is indulging in more and more sinful acts. He has developed a sort of complacency in this regard and thinks that he can escape punishment.
But the fact is otherwise. Though God is compassionate and may forgive all sinful acts, a human being has to necessarily pay for their sins. Hence, every human has to develop these three qualities of love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. Where there is no fear of sin, there will be no morality in society.
People are behaving most irresponsibly and are undertaking several undesirable activities with unbridled ego. They have no fear of sin. They don't even think for a moment of the consequences of their acts. One has therefore to restrain oneself from seeing evil, speaking evil, and doing evil. If not, the consequences of these evil deeds will boomerang on that person later, if not today. It is also possible that the results of all these sinful acts will come back to that person all at one time with a bang.
If one is really interested in the welfare of the society, one must work for the development of morality in society. One who lacks morality is not a human being at all but is an animal, verily. Speaking untruth, doing injustice to others, and indulging in unrighteous acts and bad practices is very bad. One has to lead one's life by following the three principles of love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society.
It is said that one who has no morality in themself is worse than a monkey. In fact, a monkey is better than such an individual.
No one will respect an individual who indulges in immoral acts in this world. Only a person who follows moral principles will command respect from one and all. Even those who try to harm such a person will be restrained by others with a warning. "That person is a good person. Do not try to meddle with that person." Those who lack morality are looked down upon in society as worse than dogs. Hence, one has to develop morality and lead a life of moral principles at all times.
There are three sadhanas (spiritual practices) by which love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society can be developed. They are bhakti (devotion to God), jnana (the path of wisdom), and vairagya (detachment). Karma (activity) is a natural and essential attribute of the physical body. It is only when the body undertakes good karmas that the mind will function well. When the mind is sound, love for God can be developed. Thus bhakti, jnana, and vairagya are interlinked with love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. They are like the three blades of a fan. It is only when the three blades rotate that we can have refreshing air; otherwise we feel uncomfortable.
People today question why we have to develop love for God. Love for God enables one to develop fear of sin, which in turn will develop morality in society. Everyone has to discriminate between good and bad, sin and virtue. Having analysed, one must try to do good only. Be good, do good, see good, this is the way to God. Devoid of these three, any number of rituals, worship, japa (chanting the divine name) and tapa (penance) will be of no use.
The nine forms of devotion are: sravanam (listening), kirtanam (singing), Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu), Padasevanam (serving His Lotus Feet), vandanam (salutation), archanam (worship), dasyam (servitude), sneham (friendship), and Atmanivedanam (self-surrender).
The first step is sravanam (listening). Then one has to analyse whether what has been listened to is good or bad. If you think that it is a bad suggestion and therefore not to your liking, how can you implement it?
It is possible today that one can get one's work done by speaking untruth and scoring victory over others by false and unjust means. Hence, one has to enquire into the sanctity or otherwise of every act that one undertakes. One should not be complacent about the consequences that would follow; sooner or later, the result of a sinful act would accrue. It may happen now or a little later, at any moment. Hence, be prepared to undertake only good and noble acts with a pure mind.
More than anything else, purity of conscience is of utmost importance. That is Atma Thatthwa (Atmic Principle). Nobody can understand what Atma is. Since the bodies and forms are many, some names have to be given in order to distinguish between them. However, Atma or Brahma has neither birth nor death, unlike the physical bodies. Hence, no one can identify it as such and such.
Atma, though beyond one's comprehension, has been described as nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, nirmala swarupinam (eternal, pure, enlightened, free and embodiment of sacredness). It is niranjanam, sanathana niketanam (unsullied, final abode). There is only one Atma, and it is immanent in all beings. That is the essential nature of the Atma.
A small example; when you place one hundred pots filled with water under the sky on a moonlit night, you will find one moon reflecting in each of those pots. The body is like a pot. It is bound to perish at any time. Then where does the moon (Atma) go? It does not go anywhere. It is there. However, since there is no water (body), it is not reflecting in the water. In the same manner, the Atma is present in every human being.
A person that does not have good character has no morality. A person with no morality does not deserve to be called a human being. We have to earn honour and respect for ourselves in the society. However, we don't find anyone concerned about good name in the society these days.
But people are very particular about who is rich and who is poor. Money comes and goes, but morality comes and grows is the adage. It is, therefore, not correct to aspire for wealth, power, and such other worldly things. All these possessions are transitory. You may try to hold on tightly to them, but they just slip away even without your noticing them.
The Atma, however, is eternal. There is no coming and going for Atma. It always remains an eternal witness to everything that goes on in the world. We have to develop faith in such eternal Atma. Those who develop faith in the Atma Thatthwa will not be disturbed by injustice, wrong, and bad practices.
People say, "My body, my senses, my mind, my intellect," etc., but "you" are none of these. For example, you say, "This is my book." This book is in your hands at this moment. The next moment somebody wishes to have a look at it. It goes into his hands. Similarly, you hold some currency in your hands. After some time it will go into someone else's hands. It just comes and goes. But, morality comes and grows. Morality has no form.
If someone wishes to improve society and the world, morality has to be developed in the individual first. Several political parties come forward these days saying that they will improve society. They propose to transform society. But they invariably fail because what they try to do is to garner the votes of people for their selfish ends. They do not at all bother about society.
If you want to transform society, there must be purity in your heart. First, the individual and then society. In order that the individual is transformed, there must be love for God and fear of sin. Then comes morality in society. Individuals make a society. Hence, if unity among people is developed there will be purity and Divinity. Unity, purity, and divinity cannot be attained by mere education.
Suppose you sit for meditation, closing your eyes. However, the mind goes on wandering everywhere. You try to bring it back to the starting point. It is all a practice. Only when the wavering mind is stilled is meditation possible. This process of making the mind steady is called concentration. Meditation is possible only after concentration. The proper order is concentration, contemplation, and meditation.
Do not believe someone who claims to be meditating the moment they sit. That is an artificial exercise, not meditation. Real meditation is forgetting oneself totally. It is forgetting dehatma bhava (the feeling of identification with the body) completely. One has to totally give up attachment to the senses. Then only will the mind be steady.
Once, there was a father who had four sons. Each one wanted to follow a different vocation to earn money. One son wanted to take up business. Another wanted to open a small grocery shop. The third son wanted to take up employment, and the fourth another vocation. Though money earning was the common objective, each one wanted to go in a different path. Finally, it is the means that are adopted for earning money that result in accumulation of virtue or sin. People commit a sin even without their knowing that they are doing so. The sins committed by people will continue to haunt them.
Some time ago, there were heavy floods in the State of Orissa. They ravaged several villages in four districts. The houses, trees, standing crops, even animals, and some people were swept away by the surging flood water. Hundreds of villages were inundated, and people were marooned. They were fear-struck at the fury of nature.
Then I sent a telegram: "Don't worry. Be happy. I will build your houses." The people of Orissa came to see Me, by arranging a special train. The government was there, MPs and MLAs were there, who were expected to come to their rescue in that hour of need and provide succour to them. But none came forward. Immediately I sent ten crores and arranged for distribution of relief material and building of pucca houses for the affected people.
I am not interested in accumulation of money. I want only your love. Be happy. Develop your morality and love for God. If you develop love, that love itself will drive away the demonic qualities in you.
Before the Rama-Ravana war commenced, Hanuman entered Lanka, as part of his mission to search the whereabouts of Sita. After he found Sita, he was on his way back to pass on the information to Sri Rama. He was caught by the demons and brought to the court of Ravana. Ravana was infuriated on seeing Hanuman, who destroyed the beautiful Asokavana while he was returning. Ravana questioned Hanuman, "Who are you? How dare you enter this impregnable city of Lanka?" He underestimated the power of Hanuman and derided him addressing him as an ordinary monkey.
Hanuman replied in the same tone as an equal and told Ravana, "The Lord who cut off the ears and nose of your sister has sent me."
Ravana was very angry, since no one dared to talk to him in such an undignified manner. In fact, Hanuman used the same language as Ravana did. Ravana felt insulted. Hanuman was not bothered in the least, for he was always chanting Ramanama, which gave him the courage and strength to face any situation.
Ravana could not tolerate the impertinence and arrogance of Hanuman and therefore ordered that Hanuman's tail be wrapped with clothes dipped in oil and set on fire. Immediately, clothes soaked in oil were wrapped round the tail of Hanuman and set on fire. Hanuman did not keep quiet. With that burning tail, he jumped from one building to the other and thus set the entire city on fire. Beautiful and palatial buildings studded with precious stones went up in flames within no time. Even Mandodari's palace was engulfed by flames. She came out. People ran helter-skelter here and there. Not a single building was spared from the raging flames.
Hanuman then advised Mandodari, "Mother, it is the sin committed by your husband that is responsible for this devastating fire and consequent loss of so many lives and property. Please tell your husband not to commit such heinous sins hereafter. If you can thus save your husband, it amounts to saving yourself and the Rakshasa clan."
People have to suffer the consequences of their actions. God is only a witness. Good or bad, one gets the fruit of one's actions. Hence, first and foremost, one has to develop morality, which is based on developing human qualities first. If human qualities are to be developed in a person, one should have love for God. Thus, love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society are interdependent. When there is morality in society, all people will be safe.
One important point has to be remembered in this context. You may hide your actions from society, but the omnipresent God knows everything. You will have to suffer the consequences of your actions. It is an immutable law. Hence, if you can do help to others, it is alright. Otherwise just keep silent. Do not harm others. Do not commit a mistake by thought, wor,d and deed. Sometimes, you may not get the result of your actions immediately. It will take some time. But surely the result will follow.
People study spiritual texts like the Bhagavad Gita but fail to realise their own innate nature. The Upanishads exhort one, "Dear son, try to realise your own nature first. Know thyself! If you can do that, it amounts to knowing everything." The knowledge of the Self (Atma Bodha) entails realisation, "I am not the body, I am not the mind, I am not the intellect," etc.
The mind is like a cloth consisting of threads woven together. How long will this cloth last? As long as the threads are intact. Once you remove the threads, the cloth loses its shape. Or, if you put the cloth in fire, it will be reduced to ashes.
People say, "So and so is my wife, so and so my child, so and so is my son-in-law, so and so is my son," etc. These relationships are only illusion. Who are all these people? All are God's property. Everything in this world is God's property; nobody has any right, whatsoever. People fight between themselves claiming rights, thus wasting their time. "Time waste is life waste." In fact, it is not time we are wasting; we are wasting our precious life.
In conclusion, I would like to stress once again that you should cultivate love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. These are valuable assets, which you must always safeguard. If you safeguard these values, they will in turn protect you.
You think you have to realise Brahma Thatthwa (the Brahma Principle) today. In fact, Brahman has no name and form. It is nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathana niketanam, nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, nirmala swarupinam (God is attributeless, unsullied, final abode, eternal, pure, enlightened, free, and embodiment of sacredness).
The bal vikas children from Tamil Nadu are waiting to present a cultural programme. Witness that programme. I will continue My Discourse tomorrow.
Be Exemplars of Selfless Service
[Editors note. In the morning of 7 July, Guru Purnima, four senior functionaries and their wives were honored in Sai Kulwant Hall: from the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences, A.V. Appa Rao, Financial Controller, and A.V. Sathyanarayana Murthy, Senior Engineer; from the Sri Sathya Sai University, Prof. Nanjundaiah, Controller of Examinations, and Prof. A.V. Lakshminarasimhmam, Registrar. In the evening, Bhagavan Baba again called Appa Rao, Prof. Nanjundaiah, and their wives to the verandah. Then Bhagavan Baba gave this discourse.]
Embodiments of Divine Atma!
In the morning there was no time to talk about these people.
Ever since our hospital started functioning, Appa Rao has been working there as an auditor. For fourteen years, he worked hard, day and night. I am pleased with his work. He came here with the sole intention of rendering selfless service, not with any other motive. Those were the initial stages of the Super Speciality Hospital, so there was plenty of work, day and night. He alone had to attend to everything É receiving parcels of medicines, checking them and noting them down. In spite of being a non medical person, he worked untiringly taking care of patients also. He is meticulous in checking all details. He has worked with full satisfaction. All these fourteen years, he never aspired for anything.
He did not accept even a naya paisa. Everybody in the hospital earns these days twenty to thirty thousand rupees. But he has not taken any money. He had to climb up and down the stairs many times everyday, while looking after the stores, patients, nurses and doctors as well. He looked after so many things, all alone. He never complained to Me also.
He has been adjusting himself. He has never been deficient in his work. I Myself used to see him now and then to enquire about the work. We should express our gratitude to such a dedicated worker.
With much compassion toward him, I told him, "Appa Rao, Now the number of patients coming to our hospital has increased by thousands. Mentally, of course, you are quite alert, but physically you are weak. Therefore, take rest at home. You have come to serve Swami. There was no shortcoming whatsoever in your service."
His wife also supported him and has been taking good care of him at home, looking after his food and other needs meticulously. He has no habit of taking food outside. So, when necessary, she used to send his food to the hospital.
Appa Rao has also been taking care of poor people in many respects. He rendered help in many heart operations to the poor people. He used to send free medicines to the homes of those heart patients even after they were discharged. He worked very hard. My heart melted at his service. How can we leave such a person who worked so hard? Everybody, including students, sought his help. I tell our students often, "Help ever, Hurt never."
We do not take even a paisa from anyone for rendering medical services. Our hospital always gives and never takes. He rendered seva (selfless service) with the feeling, "This is my hospital, my Swami's hospital." He considered the hospital as his own and served it selflessly. Even when I was away physically, I helped him in all that he did.
As this is our first Super Speciality Hospital, he had to work very hard for its development. Subsequently, another Super Speciality Hospital has been established in Bangalore. There is an orthopaedic division also in our hospital here. Appa Rao has been looking after all this. I liked his work.
Before this, he worked for the government. There also, he rendered good service. As he utilised all his experience for the benefit of our hospital, today we have gathered here to honour him.
His younger brother Murthy is an electrical engineer. He is also working with us. Whenever there is any electrical problem he is called by telephone, and he attends to it immediately. Even at night, he is ever ready to do service.
The youngest brother Lakshminarasimham worked in our university as Registrar. He is also growing older, and needs a little rest. He has not married, so there is no bondage. He has been totally dedicated to our university. He first joined in Seva Dal. He did Ph.D. with the intention of joining our college. These three brothers have been rendering good service. They have been very helpful to us, in spite of many troubles they had to face.
Nanjundaiah has been the controller of examinations. He has been very kind to all students. He has been working day and night in order to declare the results well in time. He never used to take rest even for a while. He would engage himself in correcting papers even while suffering from fever. Everybody was depending upon him. He had to take much trouble in sending results to Anantapur and Bangalore colleges. We were very much concerned at the troubles he had to face. His wife also has been taking good care of him at home, providing timely food and looking after other needs meticulously.
The University has now grown very large. We are receiving more applications as compared to other institutes. Right from big officers to small clerks in India, all have great regard for our institutions. Be it the hospital or the university, there is no habit of taking money for the services rendered in our institutions. We know only to give. In Sai Organisations, there is only giving and no taking.
Recently, we appointed a committee to oversee the working of the Hospital and provide necessary help and guidance. We have procured some new machinery also. We have even imported necessary equipments from abroad. We have in our stock a variety of books. The University has produced many Ph.D.s. This year also, fourteen researchers got Ph.D. degrees.
The students have great faith in these two people. These two have been very helpful to us with regard to hospital services and educational activities. All the responsibility was shouldered by them. They used to send me letters while I was not present here. I used to discuss every detail with them. I used to ask Nanjundaiah about the examination results. The results were always good.
We have now decided not to burden them with these responsibilities any longer. Today, I am thanking and blessing them. These two are foremost among those who have strived hard for our Institutes. Therefore, wherever they are, Swami is always with them, guiding and guarding them. They came here only for the sake of Swami. Therefore, I wish to provide them with houses and keep them here only. Just as they looked after patients and students, I wish that hereafter also they both extend necessary guidance and help to the newcomers in the respective areas. There is much to learn from these two people. What is this Organisation doing for the society? How is it doing? What is their responsibility in this regard? Such details should be accorded to the newcomers, and necessary zeal and motivation should be inculcated.
The university was started first with undergraduate courses only. Now studies up to Ph.D. level are available.
Our university and hospitals are now being regarded as the best in India. I am very happy that you have contributed much for this name and fame. You always belong to Me. You have never thought that you are working for the hospital or the college. You have been working with the feeling, "This is ours, this is our Swami's." That is why we got all first prizes for the colleges and high reputation for hospitals. Even this information is known only through newspapers; we never proclaimed it in any manner. Our hospitals and university have become very famous indeed.
The students have learnt many things from such people, and have grown up to great heights. Many of them, who are Ph.D.s, have been appointed here so as to lead these institutions. Now many novel subjects have been introduced along with the conventional faculties like B.Com., B.Sc., M.Com., M.Sc., Ph.D., etc. Many deserving students are unable to get admission in other schools and colleges and with great hope are looking at us for help. I told our authorities to take such students also into our fold. We do not have any selfish motive. It is only in consideration of their parents' anguish. They have given us the responsibility of looking after the welfare and progress of their children.
Appa Rao and Nanjundaiah must both be given the job of keeping watch with vigilant eyes on the affairs of these institutions. In other institutions, new entrants have to pay money and take receipts. But our hospitals and university have never given a scope for such things. Here everything is free, free, free. People wonder how we are managing these institutions with so many entrants, like this, without taking even a paisa? They just come in their clothing, as we admit them here. We are admitting all, including those who obtained average marks, and we are developing them into "First class" students.
In other hospitals, patients have to spend thousands of rupees toward heart operations. But we do not charge them even a paisa. For us, love and devotion are important and not other things. "Love to love, Heart to heart." We seek only this. They are all deriving great joy. Many patients are coming from Nepal and Bhutan for free treatment. In this endeavour, the students also must extend necessary help to the doctors and other officials. Our hospital and Institutes have been fostered in this manner for the past twenty years.
This trend has to continue in the future also. Without begging anybody, we have made fixed deposits to the tune of twenty or thirty crores for each institute, and they are running on the interest accrued from these deposits. I have made necessary arrangements in this regard. We are paying at par with the government salaries. Students of our institutes or patients in our hospitals need not worry about anything. We take care of everything.
You must strive to keep everybody happy. Make parents happy. Help your parents. Some parents are being admitted into old age homes when they are short of money. This is not correct. You must provide necessary support to your aged parents. It is your own responsibility to look after your parents. Even though Swami is taking care of your education and other necessities, the aspect of parent's care is your own responsibility. Parents should not be sent to old age homes. You must keep them with you and serve them. You must work hard and take good care of them. You need not prepare special items for their sake. It is enough if you can give them whatever you are eating.
As soon as students pass the exam and acquire a degree, they go in search of jobs.
When all women go out on jobs, who will look after chores of their homes?
When they go out for teaching other children, who will teach their own children?
When husband and wife go to offices, who will take care of their children?
Some people are deprived of homely food because there is no one at home to cook food. So they eat whatever they get. Thus, they are spoiling their own health. There is no happiness for a woman who is employed in an office. They spend their valuable time in some clubs. They do not have any consideration for their children in the house and for their timely food. One should give priority to the fostering of the children.
An officer gives a phone call to his house and tells the cook, "We have arranged a tea party at home today. Make all arrangements for the party." But there is no tea powder, no sugar, no material for making chapathis or pakodas in the house. This is the kind of situation they have at home. Also, the children's health gets spoiled because of inconsistent food habits and lack of parental care. They drink contaminated water and spoil their health, because there is no one at home to guide them.
Why should the wife go out and work? When she goes to school to teach other children, who will teach her own children? So it is your own duty to take care of your children. It is equivalent to earning a good salary if you can teach your own children and bring them up well. One feels sorry at the state of a woman who fails to take care of her husband and children. It is enough if you are able to provide proper timely food to your children and take care of their health. If you take up jobs, leaving your children at home, your entire earnings will go toward cooks, baby sitters, and cleaners. The house gets mismanaged. What you spend toward the cook, caretaker, and others will work out to be more than what you earn. You can save so much money if only you attend to your own work. This is the way of life all women must adopt.
The children should also learn to render necessary help at home. As soon as you come home, find out what is available and what is not available? What is needed immediately? When there is shortage of water, the boy should not keep quiet. He should immediately rush out with a container and fetch water from the available source. He should not feel, "I am educated. Why should I carry water?" Family life involves such domestic chores.
Students must learn how to make parents happy. Parents' duty is to take care of their children. This is the education that is essential for one and all. After having obtained a Ph.D., one need not go far away for the sake of an extra thousand rupees. If you take care of your children and do service to parents, that itself is a great wealth.
Today, parents are being treated like servants. It is enough if you take care of your parents, your children and the family. That is real education. Getting a first class and struggling for a job is not a wise thing. Whatever job you take up, you must help your parents. This is what you must learn.
Students must emulate people like Appa Rao. "Help ever, hurt never." These are the good qualities that you should learn in the Sri Sathya Sai College. Whenever any poor person comes to you, you must feed them first, even foregoing your meal if necessary. Instead of going to a club and spending money there, it is better to use that money for the sake of the poor. It is necessary that you learn good qualities and habits so that you may improve society.
First of all you must develop love for God, fear of sin, and morality in society. Bad qualities have to be curbed and ethics must be fostered in the society. When morality is lost, what is the use of any amount of social service you do? These are the lessons that you must learn. When you follow the path of elders such as these, you can reap immense joy and goodness in life. It applies to girls also. You must learn from parents the aspects of service and put them into practice. If you make your parents happy, your children will make you happy.
What is meant by morality? It is not just earning money and depositing in the bank. You must refrain from troubling your parents. When you have love for God, you will have fear of sin. After acquiring morality you may proceed to serve the society at large. When you are unable to attain GodŐ's love, how do you expect to win peopleŐs love? You must earn name in the society in a way that people talk of you as a good and helpful person. You must learn from parents how to help.
First thing is to develop love for God, fear of sin and morality in society. How can morality be acquired while one is engaged in acts of sin? When you come across elders, always respect and serve them.
Today I am honouring such good people so that you will try to emulate them. This is what gives Me happiness. First take care of your children at home and extend happiness to your parents. How can you be happy while your parents are not happy? If today you love your parents, tomorrow you will receive love from your children. You can be called educated only when you learn these two things. You may acquire big degrees, but who will love you if you do not love your parents? Society will love you when you take good care of your parents. First set your house in order and then think about the progress of society. It is with this purpose that I am honouring today these experienced elders. You should take a lesson from this and follow in the footsteps of the elders.