Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?Abraham Lincoln
Twofold is the life we live in
Fate and will together run
Two wheels bear life’s chariot onward
Will it move on only one?
“Okay. Can you tell me what Ayn Rand says?” Like an interviewer Bhagawan Yogi Ramsuratkumar asked with eyes sharply fixed on me.
“I can tell, Bhagawan. I have read one of Ayn Rand’s novels many times. Three of her novels are very popular — ATLAS SHRUGGED, WE THE LIVING, and FOR THE NEW INTELLECTUAL. These are also my favorites.”
“Okay. Then, tell me about Ayn Rand’s philosophy.” He asked again.
“Ayn Rand says that SELFISHNESS IS A VIRTUE. SCARIFICATION IS A FRAUDULENT WORD. Nobody sacrifices anything for anybody. Behind every sacrifice, there is selfishness hidden. There is no necessity for anybody to sacrifice anything. Selfishness alone is the only sacred thing.”
“Is it?” Yogi shrunk His eyes, and continued, “What she says is against our culture, isn’t it? Do you believe in this? When every religion says we have to sacrifice, I think, she is talking on the contrary, and gaining popularity. What do you say about this?”
I mused for a while, and said “Bhagawan, I think what she says is right. Everybody, in every stage of life, is selfish. Our selfishness is what makes us to live. What husband has with wife; wife has with husband, father has with son; son has with father, is nothing but selfishness. It’s only with selfishness we live.”
“I didn’t ask you to take your life as an example. Here (in India), there are so many noble souls who have sacrificed their lives…do you say that they all did it out of selfishness? Do you say Mahatma Gandhi was selfish? Do you say Ramalinga Vallalar was selfish? Can we call Buddha, Shree Ramakrishna Pramahamsa, Bhagawan Ramana as selfish people? You say everyone is selfish. Will you include them too? Will Ayn Rand certify their lives as selfish too? Will she say their sacrifices were fraudulent?”
Though His face was calm, the question was intense. I was not able to say Shree Ramakrishna Pramahamsa and Bhagawan Ramana as selfish people. At the same time, I was not able to ignore Ayn Rand too. I sat with an ideological confusion. My family was watching me.
Yogi gesticulated to talk. As I remained silent, He expounded, “Balkumar, once a person came to Bhagawan Ramana and said something similar to this: ‘Everyone in this ashram is working and doing jobs. You alone are sitting simply without doing any work. Why don’t you do something like others?’ Bhagawan Ramana retorted: ‘THERE IS NO OTHERS!’
Do you understand what it means, Balkumar? When there is no ‘I’; then, there is no ‘you.’ Only when you have the sense of ‘I’; then, there will be the sense of ‘you’. Only for those who have the ego ‘I’, there is a division called ‘others.’ Only when we separate ourselves as ‘I’ and ‘you,’ then, there can be a division that some are superior and some are inferior. Only for those who are divided, ‘selfishness’ and ‘sacrifice’ appears as two opposite ends. In our Hinduism, selfishness itself means only others’ welfare. SELF MEANS ONLY OTHERS. OTHERS ARE THE SELF. In truth, there is no such thing called division.
Birds, trees, animals, plants, stone, mud, sea, sky, wind, humans—nothing is separate. Everything is One. That’s called God. You and I are part of Him. You are in me, and I’m in you. In an ocean, is there a difference in the waves? Are two sea waves different? We see them only as a part of ocean, isn’t it? Within ocean, they may separate themselves as waves and bubbles. But still they remain only as a part of the ocean. Each wave and each bubble are part of the whole sea; rising and dissolving are an appearance. In fact, they are not different from the ocean. And so are we, like the sea waves in the ocean.
Balkumar, this is not just told for the sake of an example. This is truth. This is a reality. This is a state we all can attain. We all can live in.
If you feel hungry, I should also feel hungry. Your hunger should disturb me. If you cry, I should also cry. Your tears should shake me. This is the life of every enlightened men. Humans should always try to live such a life. Each one of us should continuously strive to live like that, even if it takes lifetimes.
What Ayn Rand says is a delusion. Something very superficial. Born out of ego.
In our lives, after marriage, the ‘I’ thought is slowly broken as it expands as my wife. Then it further expands as my children; my children’s children; my children’s relatives; my children’s friends, and also as my country men— so on and so forth. Likewise, as one grows older, this ‘circle’ called the ego must also grow bigger and bigger, and get expanded. That’s a life worth living. But if the opposite happens…if the circle shrinks…it becomes ugly. Such a mind will only become deluded.”
Since I didn’t fully grasp and digest what Bhagawan explained, a foolish question arose in my crooked mind: “If I eat, will your hunger be satiated Bhagawan. If you have food, will my hunger be satiated.”
But Yogi Ramsuratkimar is a Divine Master. He could easily read others’ thoughts.
“Once a river mingles in ocean, then it’s never called as a river. It can’t separate itself from the ocean to become a river again. Similarly, those who have dissolved themselves in God can never come back to ordinary state. God’s mercy and compassion are like the ocean that never drains. And that’s the state of those who have attained God-hood. In them too, God’s mercy and compassion will ever be there, flowing to all others.
This is how Shree Ramakrishna Pramahamsar, Bhagawan Ramanar, Shree Aurobindo lived. There was not a drop of selfishness in their lives, Balkumar. They never did their sacrifice as an act of deception.”
When He uttered the last line, there were tears in His eyes.
Seeing that, I panicked and got up. I prostrated before him, and said, “If I have spoken something wrong, please forgive me.”
He smiled and said, “What you spoke has made me happy. You should always speak like that. Only then you can clarify your thoughts, and write with ease.”
Yogi Ramsuratkumar made me realize the virtue of sacrifice, and the ugliness of selfishness. From then on, my writings got transformed. It was all because of my Guru, God’s child, Yogi Ramsuratkumar.
A man’s fate is his own temper; and according to that will be his opinion as to the particular manner in which the course of events is regulated.Benjamin Disraeli
It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness.Charles Spurgeon
Education gives humility. Humility gives social acceptance. Social acceptance gives industry. Industry gives wealth. Wealth gives the ability to perform good karma. Good karma gives happiness.Hitopadesa
Human suffering is not a sign of God’s anger with mankind. But a sign of man’s ignorance of divine law.– Paramahansa Yogananda
A few days ago an astrologer came here. At about 10 a.m., the day after his arrival, he asked Bhagavan several questions on astrology and obtained suitable replies.
I give below a brief report of their conversation:
Questioner: “Swami! According to astrological science, predictions are made about coming events, taking into account the influence of the stars. Is that true?”
Bhagavan: “So long as you have the feeling of egoism all that is true. When that egoism gets destroyed all that is untrue.”
Questioner: “Does it mean that astrology won’t be true in the case of those whose egoism is destroyed?”
Bhagavan: “Who is there to say it won’t be true? There will be seeing only if there is one who sees. In the case of those whose egoism is destroyed, even if they appear to see they do not really see. The window is open. Even so there must be some one to see. Does the window see anything?”
Questioner: “If that ego were not there how could the body continue to function from day to day?”
Bhagavan: “Yes. That is it. The body is a house for us. This house will be properly maintained only if you are in it. Hence we must realise that we are keeping the house habitable only so long as we are in it and must never give up the knowledge that the house is separate from the Self. The moment that is forgotten the feeling of ego comes in and troubles begin. Everything in the world thus appears realand the destruction of that feeling is the destruction of the ego. When that ego is destroyed nothing (of this world) is real. What is to happen will happen; and what is not to happen will not happen.”
Questioner: “You say that what is to happen will happen and what is not to happen will not happen; if that is so, why should it be said that good deeds must be done?”
Bhagavan: “If something good is done, it results in happiness. Hence people say good deeds must be done.”
Questioner: “Yes. That is why elders say that sorrow is adventitious.”
Bhagavan: “That is so. Sorrow is adventitious. It is only happiness that is natural. Every living being desires happiness because his natural state is the embodiment of happiness. All sadhanas (spiritual efforts) are for overcoming adventitious sorrow. When a headache comes on casually, you have to get rid of it by medicine. If it is a permanent ailment of the body, attached to it from birthto death, why should you try to get rid of it? Just as boils and other diseases of the body are cured by a doctor’s treatment, sorrows which are the result of various difficulties can be overcome by sadhana specially aimed at them. This body itself is a disease. The root cause of it is ignorance. If for that ignorance the medicine called jnana is administered all inherent diseases will disappear at once.”
Questioner: “Is it possible to get immediate results by sadhana?”
Bhagavan: Some yield immediate results and some do not. That depends upon the intensity or otherwise of the sadhana. If good acts or evil acts are done with great intensity the results will manifest themselves immediately; otherwise the results are slow. The results, however, necessarily follow.It cannot be helped.
“Dead people receive more flowers than the living ones because regret is stronger than gratitude.”– Anne Frank
What you gave up is of no importance now.
What have you not given up?
Sadhana is a search for what to give up.
Empty yourself completely.Nisargadatta Maharaj
Absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence.Carl Sagan / Aphorism derived from Archeology
Come out of the circle of time, and into the circle of love.
The mistake that makes you humble is better than achievement that makes you arrogant.
Remember, your own soul knows the reasons why you were born in this life. It knows what you need to accomplish in this birth. As a soul, you know what obstacles and challenges you need to face and overcome to grow stronger and conquer past karmic patterns through fulfilling your chosen dharma.Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), founder of Hinduism Today
From compulsiveness to consciousness: that is the journey.– Jaggi Vasudev
Science asks How; Philosophy asks Why; Nature doesn’t give a shit.
In the Verse 24 of “Reality in Forty Verses”, Ramana Maharshi says that neither the insentient body says “I”, nor the sentient, self-effulgent, ever-present Consciousness says “I”. Between them, the Ahamkara (ego-self) rises as “I” and ties both of them together and it is known as Chit-Jada Granthi (Sentient-Insentient Knot). This knot needs to be cut using Viveka, the sword of reasoning and discrimination. The non-emergence of the egoistic “I” is the pure state of being. To destroy the ego, the source of its emergence has to be sought by digging deep and turning the mind inwards. Then the Ahamkara (ego-self) subsides and the experience of the Self emerges as the real “I” – “I” – “I”.Arun Kumar, Author of “Pearls of Vedic Wisdom to Succeed” on Quora
I came from brilliancy.
And return to brilliancy.
What is this?
The poem was one line short of the customary four, so the disciple said: “Master, we are one line short.”
Hoshin, with the roar of a conquering lion, shouted “Kaa!” and was gone.
Before I was born, there was nothing that distinguished me from the galaxy and after I die there will be nothing to distinguish me from it. But now there is something that separates us, but I don’t really know what it is.
Stephen Damon, a Soto Zen priest who leads a small Zen group in San Francisco writes:
“After settling into a daily home practice and attending monthly one-day sittings for a while I began to sense that the great question of life and death was my question. The question became my “center of gravity” around which the rest of my life—in the Zendo and out in the streets—revolved. Most important, I felt an urgency, not to find an answer but to become more intimate with question, until I became the question. In a very deep sense, I was no longer “Stephen” or “Korin” or a Buddhist, I was the question of what is life and death. Over the years this question has deepened and broadened to include everything. And every time I take my seat at home or in a zendo and every time I pick up a sutra or any book on Zen I am that question.
If a book does not offer a response to the question I file it away, but if it does offer something, or if it does open me up to a place in myself that can respond to the question I keep it close by to come back to often. I will keep Hoshin’s poem in my mind and heart always. While the three lines are powerful, what is even more powerful is the emptiness of the fourth line. Every Buddhist teaching is incomplete and must be completed in oneself. Hoshin’s poem, while eloquent in its succinctness was incomplete until he yelled “KAA!” Perhaps, a death poem should be only three lines to be completed by an expression of a person’s last moment. Some may yell out something, and some may gently and peacefully breathe out one last breath and watch it blend with the air around him or her—into the Great Silence behind everything.”
“As Terence McKenna observed, “Modern science is based on the principle: ‘Give us one free miracle and we’ll explain the rest.’ The one free miracle is the appearance of all the mass and energy in the universe and all the laws that govern it in a single instant from nothing.”Rupert Sheldrake, Morphic Resonance: The Nature of Formative Causation
सतसंगत्वे , निसंगत्वे ।
निसंगत्वे , निरमोहत्वे।।
निरमोहत्वे , निश्चलतत्वम ।
निश्चलतत्वे ,जिवनमुक्ति ।।
सत् के सगंत मे हो तो, बुराइयां आप का साथ छोड़ देगी।
बुराई का साथ छुटेगा तो,मोह माय़ा से मुक्त हो जाओगे ।।
मोह माया छुटने पर ,समभाव की भावना आती है ।
समभाव की भावना से, जिवन की मुक्ति होती है।।
य़ोग रतोवा, भोग रतोवा ।
सगं रतोवा,सगं विहीनह् ।।
यसय बार्ह्मणी, रमते चित्हः ।
ननंदति ननंदति ननंदतेवा् ।।
चाहे आप य़ोग में हो या भोग में हो
किसी के संग मे हो, य़ा किसी के संग के बिना हो वह प्राणी जो ब्रह्माण के रचयीता को ध्यान मे रखता है,या फिऱ ब्रहम को चित्त में रखता है वह व्य़क्ति हमेंशा आनंद आनंद आनंदमय़ रहता है ।।
Sadhana is a practice; it is a discipline; it is a manner of streamlining one’s life – conducting oneself in daily life in a specifically ordered and scientific way. Doing anything that one thinks, going anywhere one likes – that is not a disciplined life. Even if it is necessary for you to do varieties of things in a particular day, those varieties have to be beautifully blended into the pattern of a unity, which is the day for you. The whole day is a unity of purpose. In every act of ours, every day, we are expected to take a further step of advance towards the realisation of Truth, an advance in the direction of Reality, which means to say an effort in the direction of imbibing in one’s own personal life those characteristics which are to be found in Reality Itself.Swami Krishnananda
If your efforts in life have not made you a little happier than you were yesterday, your efforts in any direction whatsoever are a waste.Swami Krishnananda
Truth is a pathless land.J. Krishnamurti
If I don’t care for myself, who else will?Dipanshu Rawal, Quora user
If I don’t invest in myself, who else will?
If I don’t create a life I want to live, who else will?
If I don’t pause and reflect on my current state, who else will?
If I don’t develop patience, stillness, and peace in myself, who else will?
When you can’t find the sunshine, be the sunshine.
The what-ifs and the should-haves will eat your brain.
-John O’ Callaghan
Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.Søren Kierkegaard
The best index to a person’s character is how he treats people who can’t do him any good, and how he treats people who can’t fight back.Abigail Van Buren
அன்பே உன் அன்னை
அறிவே உன் தந்தை
உலகே உன் கோவில்
ஒன்றே உன் தேவன்
Talent is God given. Be humble.
Fame is man-given. Be grateful.
Conceit is self-given. Be careful.
Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right.
To grow old is to pass from passion to compassion.
Spontaneous, true action happens naturally when there is no ‘you’ checking whether the action confirms to your idea of what is best for you.
– Ramesh Balsekar
Inwardly be free of all hopes and desires, but outwardly do what needs to be done. Without hopes in your heart, live as if you were full of hopes. Live your heart now cool and now warm, just like every one else. Inwardly give up the idea ‘I am the doer’, yet outwardly engage in all activities. This is how to live in the world, completely free from the least trace of ego.
When the goal of spiritual life is reached, there remains only compassion in the heart.
The individual ‘I’ exists for as long as there is desire for pleasure.
Just as rivers flow from east and west to merge with one sea, forgetting that they were ever separate rivers, so all beings lose their separateness when they eventually merge into pure Being.
– Chandogya Upanishad
Death is not the extinguishing of the light, but blowing out of the candle because the dawn has come.
– Rabindranath Tagore
As long as there is a ‘who’ asking the questions, that ‘who’ will continue to remain puzzled.
– Ramesh Balsekar
Whatever decision we think we are making is actually being made for us, because the decision is the end result of a thought and we have no control over the arising of the thought.
– Ramesh Balsekar
The Atman is the witness of the mind and its workings.
The self exists both inside and outside the physical body, just like an image exists within and outside the mirror.
– Ashtavakra Gita
A poor devotee points to the sky and says, ‘God is up there’. An average devotee says, ‘God dwells in the heart as the Inner Master’. The best devotee says, ‘God alone is and everything I perceive is a form of God’.
The moon is one, but on agitated water it produces many reflections. Similarly, ultimate reality is one, yet it appears to be many in a mind agitated by thoughts.
“One of the very worst uses of time is to do something very well that need not to be done at all.”Brian Tracy
Light to-morrow with to-day!Elizabeth Barrett Browning, The Romance of the Swan’s Nest
The field is the sole governing agency of the particle.Albert Einstein
And when people believe they are powerless, they become irresponsible.Bruce Lipton
“Where your attention goes, your time goes.”Idowu Koyenikan
Text below is reproduced from “A Search in Secret India” published from London in 1934 by Dr. Paul Brunton where in he describes Ramana Maharishi.
There is something in this man which holds my attention as steel filings are held by a magnet. I cannot turn my gaze away from him. I become aware of a silent, resistless change, which is taking place within my mind. One by one, the questions which I prepared with such meticulous accuracy drop away. I know only that a steady river of quietness seems to be flowing near me; that a great peace is penetrating the inner reaches of my being, and that my thought-tortured brain is beginning to arrive at some rest. I perceive with sudden clarity that intellect creates its own problems and then makes itself miserable trying to solve them. This is indeed a novel concept to enter the mind of one who has hitherto placed such high value upon intellect.
I surrender myself to the steadily deepening sense of restfulness. The passage of time now provokes no irritation, because the chains of mind-made problems are being broken and thrown away. And then, little by little, a question takes the field of consciousness. Does this man, the Maharshi, emanate the perfume of spiritual peace as the flower emanates fragrance from its petals? I begin to wonder whether by some radioactivity of the soul, some unknown telepathic process, the stillness which invades the troubled water of my soul really comes from him.The peace overwhelms me.
The Maharshi turns and looks down into my face; I, in turn, gaze expectantly up at him. I become aware of a mysterious change taking place with great rapidity in my heart and mind. The old motives which have lured me on begin to desert me. The urgent desires which have sent my feet hither and thither vanish with incredible swiftness. The dislikes, misunderstandings, coldness and selfishness which have marked my dealings with many of my fellows collapse into the abyss of nothingness. An untellable peace falls upon me and I know that there is nothing further that I shall ask from life.
The Sage seems to carry something of great moment to me, yet I cannot easily determine its precise nature. It is intangible, imponderable, perhaps spiritual. Each time I think of him a peculiar sensation pierces me and causes my heart to throb with vague but lofty expectations.
I look at the Sage. He sits there on Olympian heights and watches the panorama of life as one apart. There is a mysterious property in this man which differentiates him from all others I have met.
He remains mysteriously aloof even when surrounded by his own devotees, men who have loved him and lived near him for years. Sometimes I catch myself wishing that he would be a little more human, a little more susceptible to what seems so normal to us.
Why is it that under his strange glance I invariably experience a peculiar expectancy, as though some stupendous revelation will soon be made to me? This man has freed himself from all problems, and no woe can touch him.
The Sage seems to speak not as a philosopher, not as a pandit trying to explain his own doctrine, but rather out of the depth of his own heart.
I am not religious but I can no more resist the feeling of increasing awe which begins to grip my mind than a bee can resist a flower in all its luscious bloom. The [Maharshi’s] hall is becoming pervaded with a subtle, intangible and indefinable power which affects me deeply. I feel, without doubt and without hesitation, that the centre of this mysterious power is no other than the Maharshi himself.
His eyes shine with astonishing brilliance. Strange sensation begins to arise in me. Those lustrous orbs seem to be peering into the inmost recesses of my soul. In a peculiar way, I feel aware of everything he can see in my heart. His mysterious glance penetrates my thoughts, my emotions and my desires; I am helpless before it.
At first, his disconcerting gaze troubles me; I become vaguely uneasy. I feel he has perceived pages that belong to a past, which I have forgotten. He knows it all, I am certain. I am powerless to escape; somehow, I do not want to, either.
I become aware that he is definitely linking my own mind with his, that he is provoking my heart into that state of starry calm, which he seems perpetually to enjoy. In this extraordinary peace, I find a sense of exaltation and lightness. Time seems to stand still. My heart is released from its burden of care. Never again, I feel, shall the bitterness of anger and the melancholy of unsatisfied desire afflict me. My mind is submerged in that of the Maharshi and wisdom is now at its perihelion. What is this man’s gaze but a thaumaturgic wand, which evokes a hidden world of unexpected splendour before my profane eyes?