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What is the most important thing to have... in ‘Bhakti’ which leads a person to higher spiritual levels? Is it faith, devotion, ‘shradhha’, patience, Sewa, or all of them?
The answer is simple. It is HONESTY. Everything that you do... just do it with Honesty.
Honesty is that lone ingredient which if missing renders everything else useless... and if present compensates for all shortcomings. What is honesty? Is it just speaking the truth?
Well, honesty here refers to your actions. If you are doing Bhakti, do it with honesty. If you feel devoted, feel it with honesty. If you have faith, have it with honesty. If you are doing Sewa, do it with honesty. What does that mean? Simply that; nothing needs to be done, just for the sake of doing it. Or for the sake of showing it to others. Such actions, if not futile altogether are largely meaningless.
Remember... Your Guru can always read your intentions. He chooses whether to disclose them to you or not. Sewa, Bhakti, and other actions are the means of reaching to your goal... and Honesty is the path on which they are driven. What is the point of driving in an expensive car, if you are going the wrong way? Can you ever reach your destination? Elaborate Sewa might be rendered useless in the absence of honesty in performing it.
Let us try and understand by way of an example. If a person is doing Sewa in presence of his Guru and executing it very politely and properly, it is good. But if the same person starts behaving differently when his Guru is not physically present, gets rude and improper then the act of doing the Sewa starts becoming meaningless. To be honest with Sewa is to perform it in the same way in both cases. It is to believe that your Guru is watching over you whether or not He is physically present... and the next stage is to just perform your Sewa in the way your Guru would want you to, not because of His fear (that He is watching), but because of Love.... for the Sewa and for your Guru.
Love. It is the natural progression of emotion when you do your Bhakti with honesty. Honesty is the harbinger of unconditional love for your Guru which in turn automatically leads to ‘Shraddha’, devotion and faith. All these are the vital ingredients of your Bhakti which ultimately leads a person to his final goals in life. All transcendental experiences start from this simple rule of being honest.
In the previous post, we talked about being passive in approach and to be a good listener. Whom to listen to, was a question put up then and it was mentioned that we talk about that later. Listen to your Guru, is the correct answer given by all of you. But what to do when you are not physically present in front of your Guru? Does the process of achievement stop during that time? No, it is a never ending task and process. Once initiated, it should only go forward. Then? Whom to listen to? Is a question that remains un-answered. Well, the answer lies in the root of faith and that is honesty. Listen to your Conscience... because when your Guru is not present in front of you physically, He talks to you through your conscience. And believe it... He ALWAYS guides. Receptiveness is what is needed.
This receptiveness comes from the unconditional love for your Guru which is possible to achieve only when you bring this factor of honesty in your Bhakti, in your faith and thus in your life. You become loving. Spread this love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier. This is the mantra of progressing on your path to realization. Shun your ego to love your Guru. Become a nobody. Only those who are ready to become nobodies are able to love.
One more thing. We have to achieve our goals while leading the life we were put into. We are... where we are for a reason and we must respect that. In our personal life we do face situations where speaking the truth is not an option, especially when it can damage someone. Suppression of facts in those times is what? This question might arise in the minds of many of you. Well, here again apply the rule of listening. If your conscience exists and allows it, then it is right.
As fragrance abides in the flower As reflection is within the mirror, So does your Lord abide within you, Why search for him without?
No need for elaborate words or fancy dialogues. They are not needed either impress your Guru or to showcase your feelings. Your feelings will always be understood in simplicity. Always. We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far. Even Kings and emperors with heaps of wealth and vast dominion cannot compare with an ant filled with the love of Guru.
Be simple. Totally simple. Simply bring Honesty in your Bhakti and everything else will fall into place for you. This is the first step to reach your destination..... and the journey would be a far more pleasurable experience.
The purpose of the group “Guruji Of Gurgaon” (https://www.facebook.com/groups/157918097566202/) on “Facebook” is to bring the followers of Guruji on a platform where they can share their views and experiences. Also to reach out to those, who intend to follow His path in future. This blog is probably to take that forward.
A few months back I had read a quote written on the group’s wall by one of the Guru-bhakts which struck my imagination. Not only struck me, it stuck with me and the thought process started. I re-produce the quote here below:
“We are all born as essentially spiritual beings --- perfect in our imperfection. As we grow older, we get guided to absorb negative patterns.... parents, teachers, society, making us get farther and farther away from our authentic selves. Gurudev directs us to return to our essence and rediscover who we really are....to get back to the perfection we once possessed before we allowed so much negativity to cloud the lens through which we see the universe.”
When I read this quote, two things came to my mind. First, how many of us read it more than once to try and absorb it. Did we just read it and moved ahead? I don’t know the name of the scholar who wrote these lines, but the summarisation in them was too good to ignore. This is the time, when the second thought crossed my mind. The essence of this group is to share thoughts with each other. Therefore, for all my friends, who missed out on putting some time to think about it, here is a small start, wherein all of you can add to the ideas, the feelings about the thoughts expressed. Just hope that every such discussion will take us closer to what we all seek..........because as the quote says.......we are all essentially spiritual beings!
Whatever I write now, I don’t claim to be mine. These are thoughts which have been sent or shown to me and I have just tried to string them together. The idea is not to just read what is written. The idea is to understand and relate to it.
To actually relate to the thought process below, you will have to read beyond this point, really slowly.
Whenever we talk about Spirituality, the first thought link that we make is with God. What is God? How can God be reached with our senses, our mind, heart and soul? Such questions routinely spring up in the minds of the seeker.
God is a synergetic experience. Such an experience cannot be explained by the principles of science or the depth of philosophy. It can only be understood by a very passive and a very loving approach.
Listening is one of the basic secrets of being passive and thus moving forward towards entering into the temple of God. Listening means passivity and forgetting yourself completely. If you cannot forget yourself, you never listen. You cannot reach God by being aggressive. You can reach God only...or it will be better to say God can reach you only when you are receptive. When you become receptive, the door is open - and you wait. Listening is the art for becoming passive and receptive. (Whom do you listen to? is another question which pops up... we’ll talk about that later.)
Being receptive not only entails being a good listener, it also means to listen with your heart, keeping your mind aside. Two things just cropped up, the heart and the mind. Though ‘both’ belong to ‘one’, they can be different. The man, who can see the world without the barrier of the mind, is Brave. Seeing the world without the spectacles of the mind is tremendously different, utterly beautiful. People are seen as people. There is nobody who is inferior and there is nobody who is superior – in such a vision, there are no distinctions whatsoever. Suffering seems real because we don't have a clear understanding of our true nature. Instead, we believe the passing thoughts, such as 'I am no good, 'I am not there yet,' 'I am stuck' or whatever the thought may be. Eventually we understand that we are not those thoughts. Once our real self is pointed out, the suffering loses its grip.
Let us look at it in a more tangible way. When we go to see a movie in a cinema hall, we look at the screen; we never look at the projector which is at the back. The film is not there really on the screen; it is just a projection of shadow and light. The film actually exists just at the back, but we never look at that. And the projector is always there......
Our mind is at the back of the whole thing, and the mind is the projector. But we always look at the other person, not at our mind because the other person is the screen. When we are in love, the person seems beautiful, no comparison. When we hate, the same person seems the ugliest, and we never become aware of how the same person can be the ugliest and the same person can be the most beautiful.... So the only way to reach to truth is to learn how to be immediate in our vision, to drop the help of the mind. Without the ‘projection’ of the mind, our vision starts becoming synergetic. The same people start looking equal, devoid of perceptions and thus, beautiful. The mind deals and operates exclusively in the realm of thought. Since "you" are not a thought, it cannot know "you."
Pain is felt by the body. Suffering is felt by the mind. Both arise in awareness. On the surface, suffering is the mind's resistance to or refusal of pain. On a deeper level, suffering is the result of believing yourself to be a separate self. Withdraw identification from the ego idea and all suffering drops away immediately. Will things still hurt? Yes, Of course. But they will not produce unnecessary suffering. This agency of the mind is the problem, because mind can create only dreams....
When we see dreams, we get excited. Through our excitement the dream starts looking like reality. At the peak of this excitement, we start losing our senses and then whatsoever we see is just our projection.....our own!
The mind also spars ego. As the mind projects to our eyes, the image of people we see, it also projects an image of our self to us. This image can lead to inflationary opinions and harbour the ego. To be with the divine, we have to lose our self, our ego. For example, when we look at a sunrise, just for a second, if we are able to forget our separateness; then, for that moment of time we are no longer ‘seeing’ the sunrise............we ‘are’ the sunrise. That is the moment when we ‘feel’ the beauty of it. That is an experience of what salvation could be like.
The moment a person says that it is a beautiful sunrise; he is no longer ‘feeling’ it. He is merely ‘looking’ at it now, with the vision projected by his mind. He has come back to his senses......to his separate, enclosed entity of the ego. Now the mind is speaking. Ever wondered that why the mind can speak, even when it knows nothing; and the heart knows everything, but still cannot speak............ Perhaps to know too much makes it difficult to speak; the mind knows so little, so, it is possible for it to speak.
The heart is on the left, but is always right-- whenever there's a question of choosing between the mind and the heart; probably because, the mind is a creation of the society. It has been educated. You have been given that educated mind by the society, not by existence. The heart on the other hand, retains its original state. It is unpolluted. Probably, that is why people say that a child is the image of God, because the child has his heart in place.....and his mind is yet to be educated.
And yet, is it just enough to have a heart and close the mind to synergise? Not always. The heart is like a flower - unless it is open it cannot release its fragrance into the world. The fragrance of the heart is made up of the qualities and virtues of our spirit. Most of us have learned how to keep our heart closed in a world that would trample all over us if we let it. Being open hearted today seems to require tremendous courage. Such courage comes only when we realise that no one can hurt us, no matter what they say or do. They may hurt our body, but if we have realised that we are the spirit, nothing outside can touch us...........if we so decide.
Between the banks of pain and pleasure the river of life flows. It is only when the mind refuses to flow with life, and gets stuck at the banks, that it becomes a problem. Let come what comes and go what goes. Desire not, fear not, observe the actual, as and when it happens, for you are not what happens, you are to whom it happens.
What is the way? How to go about it? Will a man always be entangled in this battle? Where to make a start? Endless questions like these are bound to spring up by now. What is said is very difficult and yet so easy. Slowly and steadily, practice opening your heart to those, whom you think have hurt you. Realise it wasn’t them that hurt you, it was yourself. And it taught you not to trust and you closed your heart. A closed heart is in need of opening. And when you do, you will have begun to heal yourself.
Somebody might ask, “Does this mean that we should start trusting the person who is not making our payment and go and give him a new line of credit?” No, opening your heart does not imply being foolish. (The previous paragraph says it all). In the same way closing your mind may cut off your intellect, but in no way does it reduce your intelligence. We always have to think intelligently.
Intelligence is a natural phenomenon -- just as breathing is, just as seeing is. Intelligence is the inner seeing; it is intuitive. It has nothing to do with intellect. One should not confuse Intellect with intelligence, they are actually, opposites. Intellect is of the head; it is taught by others, it is imposed on you. It has to be cultivated. It is borrowed, it is not inborn. But intelligence is inborn. It is your very being, your very nature.
We have talked about the energies of the mind and heart in self realization today and there are so many more things to talk about, which we will do in future as and when I am guided to write more.
The discussion has taken a lengthy route so a summarisation is now essential. To achieve closeness to the almighty, it is necessary to be in a state of thoughtless-ness. It is essential to remove the existence of the mind and to get closer to your own heart. This feat is impossible to achieve by a mortal.
Then how can one transcend on this path. It can only and ONLY be achieved under the guidance and blessings of your Guru. Become more and more innocent, less knowledgeable and more childlike. Take life as fun - because that's precisely what it is!
You don’t need to understand what we discuss here. It is not there to teach you anything, just to arouse the zest for seeking. It will lose importance as soon as the lamp of self-realization is lit. Movement toward the goal of your soul can be achieved in a much more simple way. Start loving your Guru. Close your mind to what he says and listen with your heart. Enlightenment will be now the beginning, not the end. It will be a beginning of a non-ending process - in all dimensions of abundance.
To all seekers of self – realisation........all that I am capable of saying is.....................Jai Gurudev.
Why do we celebrate Diwali or Dipawali / Deepawali? What is the significance and what should be learnt from it? Is it limited to lighting ‘Diyas’ and burning crackers? Is there something more to it? What all happened on this day? How did it originate? There are endless questions in our mind whenever we think about anything. Diwali is a great festival so questions are bound to arise. Though no mortal can possibly understand the entire essence of the Lord’s creation, leave apart explain it, but yes, within our limitations we can try and comprehend what it tries to teach us.
Diwali comes from the word Dipavali which has two words ‘dipa’ means light and ‘avali’ means carrier. Therefore Dipa or Diya signifies ‘coming to light’. “Tamaso Ma, Jyotir Gamaya” means ‘Do not remain in Darkness, Come to Light’, meaning ‘come to spiritual awareness or awakening’.
Diwali is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Vaishnavs and other sub-sects for their own reasons. Many of us don’t know all the reasons that go with this festival of lights. Probably I don’t know all of them too but some of them are:
1.The most popular and well known reason is the return of Lord Ramachandra from His exile for 14 years. People in ‘Ayodhya’ celebrated by lighting ‘Diyas’ in their homes and the entire city.
2.The day also signifies the appearance of Laxmi Devi from the ocean of milk. The Goddess of wealth and thus of shine. This is the reason the Goddess Lakshmi is specially worshipped on this day.
3.Another reason is the appearance of Lord Dhanvantari, who gave Ayurveda to the world. The gift of health and thus enlightenment.
4.Lord Krishna’s defeated the demon Narkasura and freed / released the 16,100 princesses from his clutches. A day of happiness.
5.Return of Bali Maharaj to his kingdom for one day from the Patal loka (lower planetary system) where he was sent by Krishna’s Incarnation of Vamana Deva. A day to rejoice for his kingdom.
6.Observance of Kartika in Vrindavan for whole month for Lord Krsna’s pastimes of Damodar Lila.
7.Duryodhan was killed on this day so all the Brij-vaasis had also celebrated Diwali and the return of Pandavas after their exile for one year. Again the celebration included the lighting of ‘Diyas’
8.Kuvera (the treasurer of the universe) was appointed at his post one of the universal managers appointed by the Lord.
9.Yamaraj also took up His duties as the God of Death.
10.One of the greatest Indian Kings; King Vikramaditya was ordained on this day therefore the Vedic Calendar starts from then. That is why the Indian calendar is called ‘Vikram Samvat’ and the New Year starts from the next day of Diwali.
11.Surabhi Cow had appeared from churning of the Milk Ocean (Kshirsagar) so the cows are worshipped and honoured
12.Lord Krishna lifting the Govardhan Hill for seven days to protect the residents from Indra’s devastating rain.
13.Appearance of Lord Parashu Rama during this Season.
14.Pandavas also return from their one year exile from the forest on this day.
15.Kali Pooja – when Goddess Kali remembered Her true self as Lord Shiva lay in Her way.
16.For Sikhs, this day symbolises the return of their sixth Guru - Guru Har Gobind Ji (1595-1644). People illuminated lamps in the way to Shri Harmandhir Sahib (Golden Temple) to honour and welcome their beloved Guru.
17.For Jains, the day commemorates the passing into ‘Nirvana’ of their latest enlightened master (and 24th Tirthankar) Bhagwaan Vardhaman Mahaveer.
18.Buddhists especially the ones from Nepal celebrate Diwali to remember Indian Emperor Ashoka, who adopted Buddhism on this day.
So, we see that this festival has the uniqueness of being associated with a number of events. The above list may not be complete and I may be missing some more important events that happened but that is not the point because that is not what we are talking about. What is important is that, all we think about is ‘Light’ whenever we think about ‘Diwali’. It is thus called the festival of lights.
What does this mystical light signify? The events associated with Diwali as discussed above are not just earthly achievements. They are spiritual in nature. Thus this light signifies spirituality. This inner light can also be called “Atman” (the true self – beyond form and personality). Literally the word ‘Atma’ also means ‘the opposite of darkness’, or light.
The proper significance of Diwali then should be; the awareness of the inner light in us. The existence of the ‘Atma’; the spiritual power which is pure, infinite and an eternal & integral part of any human being. This power is free from birth and death. (A person dies, the ‘Atma’ does not die). Diwali is the celebration of this inner light in us, which has the power to outshine all inner and outer darkness like obstacles, ignorance and awakens a person to his or her true spiritual nature.
If a person realises that he/she is a part of an unchanging, infinite, universal, pure and transcendental truth, a sense of compassion and love can be achieved from the awareness that everything is connected through this “Atma” which belongs to the “Paramatma”. This awareness brings a feeling of joy, peace and happiness. No other event can match the degree of happiness that this awareness can give.
On the Diwali day, we bring more ‘light’ into our homes and thus more spirituality in our lives. We become giving, loving and feel devoted. In short, we become more spiritual. This feeling needs to stay. Diwali should not be celebrated as just a festival and then forgotten till the next year. It should be celebrated as a reminder of our true self and the way of life which we need to continue even after that, year after year.
May Guruji bless all on this auspicious day and may everyone achieve their spiritual goals. Happy Diwali for this day and for a lifetime to come...
With His name, we start this blog for the new generation, in their language to understand spirituality as it exists since eternity but as is understood today. Time and again, thoughts come to our mind about us, about our life, about the purpose of our life and many times we find ourselves lacking. In this space we discuss about the various aspects of life and way of living. To begin with one can visit the website: