Render service with divine - April 18, 1998
God shines with effulgence in the universe,
And the universe shines in God.
This is the friendship between
The Creator and the creation.
[Telugu Poem]

The universe is the effect and God is the cause. No one can fully understand the relationship between the Creator and the creation. The whole world is a combination of cause and effect. The universe is a manifestation of Divinity. Viswam Vishnu Swaroopam (All animate and inanimate objects of the world are divine). Though the forms are multifarious, all are essentially divine. We are not able to understand divinity, because we are carried away by the external physical appearances.

Because of unlimited desires, man is suffering from unnecessary anxiety and gets frustrated with disappointment due to unfulfilled desires.

Divinity is the mixing of positive and negative. The world is positive and man is negative. What the modern man wants is good results having done bad deeds. How can you get mangoes when you have sown the seed of lime? As the seed, so is the tree; as the tree, so is the fruit.

When a child is born there is no chain of gold or diamond or gems around the neck. But Brahma provides the invisible chain (kantha mala) of results of past actions —good and bad— though no one may be aware of this. Human quality has become rare amongst people now; and animal quality is predominant. Man is wasting the precious gift of human life in unworthy pursuits.

The basic alphabet is to know the human quality

Many people undertake spiritual sadhana (spiritual exercise) in order to realize divinity. If they don't understand human qualities, all these efforts become exercises in futility. Without learning the alphabet, how can one pick up the meaning and usage of words, phrases and sentences? Develop human values and unflinching faith in the Divine.

The basic alphabet is to know the human quality. Only after mastering this can you do other sadhanas. Even great saints, poets, and seers don't understand divinity and tread on the wrong path. They subject themselves to selfish pursuits and blame God when their aspirations are not fulfilled.

Even the great saint composer Thyagaraja, when he was once subjected to misery and suffering, doubted whether the sakthi (power of the Lord) had diminished. On reflection, he realized that the defect was only in his devotion and not in the power of the Lord, who had helped even a monkey to cross the ocean, the army of monkeys to build a bridge across the sea and Lakshmana to serve Rama for 14 years and Bharata to worship Rama's divine sandals (padukas).

People should understand that there is no pleasure without pain and pain is only an interval between two pleasures. Whenever you get a painful experience you should have the firm faith that it is the foreboding for something good that you will be enjoying in the near future.

Manickavasagar, a minister with the Pandyan King, was sent on a mission to buy horses but was so influenced by a saint that he turned his attention Godward, resulting in spending his time and money in renovating a Siva temple. When the king summoned him and put him in prison, Manickavasagar was not at all sorry but started composing poems on Lord Siva, which were appreciated by the Lord Himself. These are still shining as “Thiruvachakam”, the most famous prayer to God sung even today in all Siva temples of Tamil Nadu.

When you spend your time thinking of God and chanting His name, you will never come to grief. Follow the dictum, "Sathyam vada, dharmam chara (speak the truth, practice righteousness).” You are bound to have success always. Truth is common to ail countries and all times. If you follow truth, which is God, you will invariably do only righteous work. Divine love will flow to such persons. This will ensure your doing sacred work. There cannot be love without dharma and dharma without love.

Follow the conscience

God is in your heart. Wherever you go and whatever you do, it is known to God even if you think none has noticed it. People start worrying about petty temporary things that are passing clouds and sometimes falter in faith and devotion. This is not correct. You should never give up devotion. Your good work will beget God's grace without fail. Sin or merit comes only from your own deeds, not from outside.

God is in you only in the form of conscience. Follow the conscience. Some do not do so because of bodily attachment. Gayathri mantra starts with “Om Bhur Bhuvah Suvaha.” Bhu represents materialization — body. Bhuvah represents vibration or prana (life force). Suvaha represents radiation — Prajnana or Atma. All these three —radiation, vibration, and materialization— are in the human body itself. Prajnanam is constant integrated awareness. You are all Brahman.

From ancient times, this sacred Bharat (India) has been proclaiming to the world the universal prayer “Loka samasta sukhino bhavanthu (let the people all over the world be happy.)” Just as the same electric current passes through all electric gadgets of various types and sizes, so also Atma is common in all beings. Stars are many, sky is one; cows are of many colors, milk is one; jewels are many, gold is one; beings are many, breath is one; countries are many, earth is one. Therefore, comprehend the One in many, the unity in diversity.

You have only to do good deeds

Stop worrying. Discriminate between good and bad. Do not harm anyone. Then you can have peace.

Follow the conscience. That is the Divine in you. You are endowed with the precious gift of body with the sense organs and limbs. It is given to you to discharge your duties in the world. You have only to do sathkarma (good deeds). You should do things that are acceptable to God and not to please humans. Sath means God. You should have the company of God or proximity to God. Chith is awareness. The combination of Sath and Chith gives Ananda —divine bliss.

Sath is sugar and Chith is water. If you mix them, the names of sugar and water go away and you get syrup. Sath is Atma and Chith is body (deha); both combine to make up the person. Sath is Sivam and Chith is Parvathi. So, the combination is Ardhanareeshwara (half male and half female). Every one of us is Ardhanareeshwara.

Fill up the tank of heart with love. This will flow through the taps of all sense organs and also the five pranas (vital airs). We refer to humanity as mankind. Does this not imply that as a human you should radiate kindness?

The essence of the Puranas

Sage Vyasa gave the essence of all eighteen Puranas as, "Paropakaraya punyaya, papaya Parapeedanam". In this, we generally take it that paropakara means helping others. Para means God, upa means near, kara means do, make efforts. The import is that you should make efforts to be near God. It is meritorious.

Papaya Parapeedanam means to see the many in One is sin. How can you avoid this? You have to see the One in many, or unity in diversity. This is the correct thing to do. That is to say: help ever, hurt never, perceiving Atma in all. If you are not able to do any help, sit down quietly and do no harm.

See Divinity in all and do sacred activities. Don't waste the elements or misuse them. Being bound to the world with attachment to worldly objects is the negative approach. Make the positive approach: turning toward Divinity. The difference lies only in turning your mind. Turn to world, you get bound; turn to God, you get liberated.

God is without birth and death and is an eternal witness; you must strive hard to earn the love of God. One who receives the love of God will be earning the love of all. If you realise Love is God, you will not get attached to worldly things.

No one can take the wealth of the world with him when he dies. This is a truth we have seen throughout the history of mankind. Many great kings, emperors, saints and seers have left without taking anything. When you are born you don't bring anything with you.

Render service in divine awareness. In order to lead a fruitful and meaningful life, render service to mankind, which will take you nearer to God. In a football game, the six players on either side go on kicking the ball till it is sent to the goal. The goal of life consists of two posts: secular and spiritual. You must see that the ball does not go beyond the posts. It should be hit within the two posts. You are born as human with the goal that you should not be born again. You must live within the frames of secular and spiritual pursuits. Then only you will be attaining liberation.

The six bad qualities —lust, anger, greed, desire, pride, and jealousy— are on one side and good qualities —truth, right conduct, peace, love, nonviolence, and sacrifice— are on the other side. The game is between these two teams. Another lesson we learn from this game is that the football is kicked as long as it is inflated with air. If it is deflated, you take it in your hands.

You should say to yourself, “I am not man, I am divine; I am not body, I am Atma.” The body is like a dustbin of all foul matter and flesh and bones. You are Chaithanya or “awareness”. The instruments are negative and work through positive divinity. Tread along the divine path so that you can get peace. Let us experience peace and share it with others. Then we will be liberated, and the world will be happy.

18 April 1998

Thought for the Month

"Selfless service is the recipe for experiencing the oneness of mankind. It is the way to transcend the ego. For whose sake are you performing service? For your own sake. You do this to become aware of the atma within answer the question 'Who am I'?" Sathya Sai Baba